In Sarawak crony companies are allegedly throwing RM30 million in each constituency where opposition DAP has an edge over SUPP.
KUCHING: Barisan Nasional crony companies which stand to lose heavily if the opposition wins the 13th general election are pumping in “big money” to ensure the odds favour BN candidates.
Word here is that several of the mega-companies which flourished pre-2008 and which scaled back or transferred their operations during Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak’s term have returned on the quiet and their “bosses” were “in business” again, indicative perhaps of rumours that former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad and his key adviser Daim Zainuddin were slipping back into mainstream.
It also perhaps explains the upbeat mood in the BN camps across the country and the “confidence” they seem to have of winning the 13th general election despite ground indications to the contrary.
Najib had recently expressed confidence that BN would achieve its two-thirds majority despite contradictory ground reports.
There are 222 seats in Parliament and BN needs to win 112 seats for a simple majority.
BN is confident of 125 seats, leaving the opposition Pakatan Rakyat pact and Independents with 97 seats.
In Kuching, last week, DAP national adviser Lim Kit Siang said the opposition pact needed 29 seats to wrest Putrajaya and it should come from Sabah, Sarawak and Johor.
According to government insider information, both the Sabah’s Musa Aman-administration and Sarawak’s Taib Mahmud-helmed governments have written off six and eight parliamentary seats respectively in this “mother of all” general elections.
Political observers in both these seats, however, opine that the numbers could go up as high as 13 seats in Sabah and 10 in Sarawak.
In Johor, the opposition appears confident of wresting 10 seats, although BN insiders claim this is “highly unlikely”.
In the 2008 general election, Pakatan made hardly a dent in these three states. It lost one parliamentary seat each in Johor (Bakri), Sabah (Kota Kinabalu) and Sarawak (Bandar Kuching).
It’s a conspiracy
Meanwhile, speculations are rife that a conspiracy is underway to “ensure” BN wins and retains Putrajaya.
Among the means to “ensure” this is to “fix the match”.
In Sarawak, DAP claims it has received information that BN cronies are throwing RM30 million in each constituency where the opposition has an edge over BN ally Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP).
DAP and SUPP are locked in battle in Stampin, Bandar Kuching, Sarikei, Lanang, Sibu and Miri. Currently DAP is “ahead” of SUPP in all these seats.
Speaking to reporters here recently, DAP secretary Chong Chieng Jen said it was “odd” that these companies were prepared to “invest” money in syndicates and bookies.
“These crony companies are throwing money to the syndicates or bookies to get more people to gamble on the election results.
“It is odd that these companies are prepared to spend some RM30 million on each constituency and lose it so long as BN continues to be the government.
“The amount of RM30 million is nothing to these crony companies because when the BN continues to be the government, they will not only earn back the money they have lost, but will also make more profits,” Chong said adding that the information about bookies and syndicates was passed on to tip off DAP.
Chong is the incumbent in the Bandar Kuching parliamentary constituency. He is challenged by SUPP Youth leader Tan Kai.
Urging Sarawakians not to gamble on the election results, Chong said: “This is a conspiracy on the part of the cronies of the BN leaders to throw away money with the sole purpose of losing it but winning the votes.
“The idea is to attract the people to vote for SUPP, so don’t fall into the trap.
“By gambling on the election results, you are gambling away your children and our country’s future.
“I call on voters not only in Stampin and Bandar Kuching, but throughout the state not to gamble on the election results.”