DAP says will contest 12-14 Sarawak seats in GE
PETALING JAYA, April 10 — DAP will most likely contest 12 to 14 parliamentary seats in Sarawak for the next general election, state leaders said today.
Sarawak DAP chief Wong Ho Leng told reporters that half of the said seats would be in Dayak, Iban and Melanau areas while the other half would be Chinese-majority constituencies.
"We are contesting 12 to 14 seats, half of them Dayak areas, non-Chinese seats, Melanau and Iban as well.
"But we are still negotiating with PKR and PAS," Wong said, adding that there were still on-going negotiations with PKR.
PAS, however said Wong seemed "agreeable" to DAP's Sarawak election plans.
"Certain parties are expecting more confidence than other parties...there are some overlapping seats.
"The last parliamentary election we contested seven seats, won one," said the Sibu MP.
Sarawak DAP state secretary Chong Chieng Jen said that out of all the states in Malaysia, Sarawak registered the least amount of new voters after the 2008 general election.
"Unlike other states, the increase of voters is genuine, especially young voters," he said.
DAP Dayak consultative council chairman Dr John Brian Anthony said that Dayak support towards Pakatan Rakyat had increased since the last GE.
"Dayak votes has increased about 34 per cent for PR..there are a lot of Dayaks voting in urban areas," he told reporters.
In 2008, PR was 30 federal seats short of taking over Putrajaya with only DAP winning seats in Sabah (Kota Kinabalu) and Sarawak (Kuching).
However, it gained another seat in Sarawak when DAP state chief Wong won the Sibu by-election in May 2010.
The Sarawak state election in April last year saw Barisan Nasional (BN) losing 16 seats, twice the number it ceded in the previous state polls.
DAP made the biggest gains, doubling its representation to 12 while PKR won three seats, up from just one in 2006.
PR leaders have said the April 2011 state polls will translate to gaining another four to six federal seats in the next general elections but believe even more voters will swing their way during federal polls.