State PKR makes early preparations for next state elections
Updated: Sunday January 12, 2014 MYT 2:43:40 PM
KUCHING: With the next state elections due in two years, Sarawak PKR has begun honing its preparations to be more precise and efficient.
PKR strategic director Rafizi Ramli said the preparations would include the establishment of more sub-branches and early announcement of candidates.
“There will be trebling of efforts in creating sub-branches. We are looking at setting up at least 1,000 new sub-branches between now and the next state election.
“At the rate our colleagues have gone in the last few months, we think this is within reach,” he told reporters during an election strategic planning and preparation workshop here yesterday.
On candidates, he said there was a commitment to announce them earlier than previously so that they could be introduced and the candidates would have ample time to service the constituencies.
According to Rafizi, yesterday marked the first day of state PKR’s election preparation calendar for the next polls, due in 2016.
He said the main difference this time was that the party’s planning and execution would be more precise and efficient.
“Because this is day one of our election preparation calendar, the public in Sarawak can expect the momentum of our preparations to go faster. We will up the ante in the next few months and more announcements are coming,” he said.
He added that the party’s strategy now was to look beyond Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud as the next polls were likely to be his last.
“We are looking for a Sarawak post-Taib. That means it’s no longer just opposition to his rule but a vision of what Sarawak should be, given the natural resources and wealth that it has,” he said.
Rafizi also said this was an opportunity for party leaders and volunteers from Peninsular Malaysia to come here and help their Sarawak counterparts, not only to support their election preparations but to learn about the state’s multiracial harmony.
“We need this cross-learning because Sarawak is a good role model. In the peninsula we have problems in terms of race and religious issues, but the people of Sarawak live harmoniously.
“We come here to share and reinforce our precise election work. At the same time our leaders and volunteers from the peninsula will learn a lot about how Sarawakians live in a multiracial setting,” he said.
Earlier, Sarawak PKR chairman Baru Bian said the party had to build up its machinery, influence and presence on the ground in order to make inroads in the state.
“We need to continue recruiting members, register voters and make our presence felt on the ground. After this we will go into more detailed local issues and what main issues Sarawakians are interested in.
“From this workshop, we hope PKR will be clear and focused on these issues as we face the state election,” he said.