‘Election of new office bearers of Bukit Assek not valid’

Sempurai Petrus Ngelai

SIBU: The so-called extraordinary general meeting (EGM) for Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) Bukit Assek division last year did not have the consent of party secretary-general, supreme council member Sempurai Petrus Ngelai claimed.

As such, he added, all those so-called new office-bearers elected at the EGM were not recognised by the party headquarters and secretary-general.

“In fact, all the divisions received notice from the party secretary-general to conduct their annual general meetings only and not the election of office-bearers of the respective divisions.

“The so-called EGM must get sanction or consent from the secretary-general, which Bukit Assek division did not.

“As such, all those so-called new office-bearers elected at the EGM had never been accepted by the party headquarters and secretary-general,” he said.

In a press statement released here yesterday, Sempurai explained that the annual AGM for non-election year is called ordinary AGM “for each division to conduct their normal meeting and for office-bearers to inform the members on their activities”.

He said this ordinary AGM is conducted towards the end of the year where the minutes will be forwarded to the party headquarters, addressed to the party secretary-general for his record.

Sempurai was responding to former PRS Bukit Assek division chairman Duli Sanggau’s statement that he (Sempurai) was not even aware that the particular meeting was in fact an EGM for Bukit Assek division, and was chaired by Edwin Banta, a political secretary to the chief minister, who is also a supreme council member of the party.

In response, Sempurai said: “I have personally spoken to Mr Edwin Banta and he denied any EGM but said he was attending a luncheon and was informed to witness the normal party AGM as it was a non-election year.

“If there is any change of office-bearers, it must be done according to party constitution during the election year, which is 2019 and not last year.

“If he (Duli) does not understand the party constitution please read it which is rather academic because he has already resigned and not a party member anymore.”

Duli has also urged Sempurai, who is the party’s Dudong division chairman, not to meddle in the affairs of other divisions.

On this, Sempurai said: “As to the allegations that I am meddling with Bukit Assek division affairs, I have locus standi as an elected supreme council member to question and comment on their action and motive of asking PRS president to resign when they themselves resigned from the party.

“As a supreme council member I have every right to comment on the wrong doings of members or divisions who do not observe our party constitution especially by conducting an EGM during the party’s non-election year and without the secretary-general’s sanction.”

He added: “It is common sense that once you have resigned from the party, you do not have the right to make statements on party affairs, what more to say, asking the president to step down.”

At the same time, he repeated his call for those who did not subscribe to the party’s constitution and struggle to exit honourably.

“PRS does not have any place for those who have self-interest and are not loyal,” he stated.

Edwin Banta

Meanwhile, Edwin said in a statement yesterday that he was invited to attend the PRS Bukit Assek division’s AGM at Duli’s residence, but did not witness any divisional committee election.

He added that the proposed AGM was concurrently held with the dinner in conjunction with the marriage of Duli’s daughter.

“In fact, Casper Kayong (a branch member who had also resigned) in his welcoming speech listed down activities and requests for the higher authorities to take note.

“He also mentioned that they had elected new committee members of Bukit Assek division.

“I did question Duli Sanggau for holding the election. He reasoned that he could not be an active member anymore. They seemed to be ignorant of the party constitution.

“I did whisper that it was an ordinary AGM to meet the requirement of the party constitution. I witnessed no divisional committee election but probably it was held without our knowledge,” he said.

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