Sunday, 21st February 2010
Najib visit to Sarawak has been welcomed with a political split in the BN when a members of SPDP aligned to Sylvester Entri announced today that it will merge with PRS, another dayak majority party.
Enteri said that his group wanted the merger with PRS to be formalised as soon as possible in order to further strengthen Barisan National especially in the rural-based constituencies as well as in the broader interest of the Dayak community.
He said SPDP president William Mawan took too long to make a decision to merge with PRS since the idea was mooted by Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud five years ago.
"My group is taking the first step to merge with PRS and we want it to be formalised immediately," he said.
Last month, they walked out from SPDP's supreme council meeting when Mawan announced the appointment of Nelson Balang Rining, Ba'Kelalan state rep, replacing Enteri.
Enteri and other leaders who were also founding fathers of the seven-year old SPDP were unhappy with Mawan's decision as they charged that the president did not honour his promise of maintaining a status quo in party elections last December.
PRS now second biggest
Their merger with PRS today confirmed the story on Feb 18 and it has effectively enlarge the growing support for PRS which now nine state assemblymen and six MPs.
The entry of Enteri's group brings the number of PRS' state legislators to 14 and members of Parliament to seven, while SPDP led by William Mawan, state Social Development and Urbanisation Minister has its state elected representatives reduced to three – Mawan himself, Nelson and Krian state rep Peter Nyarok.
PRS can now claim to be the second largest BN component party in Sarawak after Abdul Taib's PBB.
Meanwhile, PRS President James Masing said that what Enteri and his group did was just fulfilling the wish and dream of SPDP and PRS leaders and members to merge.
"Such a move will consolidate rural-based constituencies and strengthen Barisan Nasional. PRS accepts their move to merge and I laud their courage to take the risk for the good of the rural populace.
"With Enteri and group, PRS has no problem in merging," Masing assured.
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