Taib confident PBB will retain all 35 seats

KUCHING: PBB president and Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud is optimistic that the party would be able to defend all the 35 seats allocated to it.

As the backbone of the state, PBB has been allocated 35 seats, while three other BN component parties are allocated 36 seats.

Out of these, SUPP is allocated 19 seats, PRS 9 and SPDP 8.

“I think for PBB it should be okay,” Taib told reporters on his arrival from Matu and Daro at Hornbill Skyways hangar here yesterday.

However, he added that he could not comment on other BN component parties yet as he has yet to visit their areas.

Out of the four BN component parties, SUPP looks the most vulnerable as it is under siege by the DAP while both SPDP and PRS are under siege from PKR, SNAP, PCM and independent candidates.

PBB is expected to face uphill battles in at least 10 areas where new faces are fielded.

In this election, PBB has 10 new faces, SUPP has seven and both PRS and SPDP have one each.

The 10 PBB new faces are Dr Hazland Abang Hipni for Demak Laut, Maclaine Ben @ Martin Ben (Kedup), Aidel Lariwoo (Sadong Jaya), Razaili Gapor (Beting Maro), Ricky @ Mohd Razi Sitam (Saribas), Datu Talif @ Len Talif Salleh (Belawai), Abdullah Saidol (Semop), Dr Annuar Rapa’ee (Nangka), Ripin Lamat (Lambir) and Dennis Ngau (Telang Usan).

Leading SUPP’s new faces are well-known cardiologist Professor Dr Sim Kui Hian for Pending, Sim Kiang Chiok (Padungan), youth chief Sih Hua Tong (Batu Lintang), Ling Kie King (Maradong), Chieng Buong Toon (Bukit Assek), Lanang MP Datuk Tiong Thai Ling (Dudong) and Ling Kuong Meng (Kidurong).

For PRS, a surprise package in the person of Stanley Nyitar @ Unja Malang, a former Sesco manager for Kapit has been nominated to replace Larry Sng, who has been dropped from the line-up.

SPDP has replaced Ba Kelalan incumbent Nelson Balang Rining with lawyer Willie Liau.

In the previous state election held in May 2006, PBB won all its seats, while SUPP lost eight and PRS lost one.

However, SUPP received a bonus when Engkilili incumbent Dr Johnical Rayong joined the party towards the end of last year.

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