‘Seat allocations for GE14 will be based on candidates’ winnability’

Dr Johnichal Rayong Ngipa – File photo


KUCHING: The days of relying solely on the status quo for seat allocations is over, said United People’s Party (UPP) Youth chief Dr Johnichal Rayong Nyipa.

Rayong, who is Engkilili assemblyman, agreed with Barisan Nasional (BN) chairman Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak that no one party could claim to own a seat forever.

“What is more important is whether the party can win the seat or not for BN. The criteria today to choose a candidate is winnability and not just because the party had contested the seat in the past,” he told The Borneo Post today.

Rayong was commenting on Najib’s message to component parties during the pre-14th General Election (GE14) election machinery meeting at the Putra World Trade Centre on Saturday, where BN component parties have been urged to stop relying on the status quo when it comes to seat allocations in GE14.

Selangor Umno liaison Committee chairman Tan Sri Noh Omar, who conveyed the message, said Najib stressed the importance of unity and tolerance among component parties in ensuring the coalition’s victory in the general election.

Noh said Najib pointed out that in GE14, seat allocations would be based on winnable candidates, which was different from the past three general elections where seats contested were based on the status quo.

“If we want to win, we need to give and take. We can’t contest based on status quo, but on the BN principle. If a seat belonged to a certain party previously, it does not mean the party will own it forever. It is time to make a change. We have to look at winnable seats and whether people can accept (the candidate).

“Basically, to win GE14, we need the BN spirit and learn to share power,” Noh told the media the gist of Najib’s speech after the prime minister left the event.

Rayong said this is the new political reality that some parties are unable to see or to accept.

“They will cling to a seat and demand to contest in it even if it means the seat will be lost to BN. That is selfish party politics. Such politicians clearly place their own party’s interest over the interest of BN.

“That is not the spirit of BN. The true spirit of BN is for all parties to ensure maximum victory for BN and component parties must be prepared to give way to the paramount interest of BN,” he said.

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