PKR Sarawak in crisis

Baru Bian also alleges that money is being used to oust him as the PKR Sarawak leader

(Borneo Post) – Sarawak Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) chairman Baru Bian has urged the party’s national leadership to respect the autonomy given to the state under a ‘gentleman’s agreement’ between them and the state leadership.

“We are very disappointed with our national leaders who have dishonoured our gentlemen’s agreement that Keadilan Sarawak and Keadilan Sabah enjoy autonomy in all state matters.

“A state convention comes under the purview of the state but the decision by the headquarters to proceed with the convention blatantly ignores the wishes of the majority of the State Leadership Council (MPN) and breaches the autonomy agreement,” Baru said at a press conference in Kuala Lumpur today.

He was referring to the convention in Miri which is apparently still being held although the state MPN had cancelled it last Friday.

Asked to comment on party president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s remark that the convention in Miri would proceed this Saturday, Baru said Anwar might have been fed the wrong figures and information which could have led him to endorse the convention.

“I don’t know perhaps he was given wrong information from ground, but obviously that number is wrong. We are obviously the majority in MPN,” he said, adding that out of 46 MPN members, 32 had agreed to cancel the convention.

Baru iterated that the party national leadership should look back at the party’s constitution as it has been agreed that in certain areas, Sarawak and Sabah PKR have autonomy.

Asked what would he do if party members attended the convention, Baru said there would not be any disciplinary action taken against them.

To another question, Baru said his group was prepared to face action from the party’s leadership.

“We made out stand here today. If it’s against the party law and constitution, it is up to them to decide. What we do now is within the confines of the party constitution. It’s not unlawful. We raised our concern and I think I don’t see any problem with the law,” he said.

Last Friday, the MPN called off the state convention in protest of the move to stop the party’s deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali from officiating at the Angkatan Muda Keadilan (AMK) National Convention, the party’s Youth congress in Melaka.

In a joint statement, the state MPN said they were dismayed and disturbed that Azmin’s invitation to officiate at the youth convention was rescinded by the AMK National wing leader and all the AMK state chiefs unilaterally.

“MPN Sarawak calls on Keadilan’s top leadership to avert a party crisis immediately. Until and unless it is resolved satisfactorily and democratic principles are restored and honoured within the party, the Keadilan Sarawak Convention slated for the 23rd of November in Miri, Sarawak is cancelled,” said the statement.