Sunday, September 20

Ready for psychological warfare


ALL EARS: Taib (centre) listening to views from Infrastructure Development and Communication Minister Dato Sri Michael Manyin (second right) while leaving the PBB headquarters after the meeting. Also in the photo are Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Alfred Jabu Numpang (second left), Housing and Urban Development Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg and the other BN elected representatives. — Photo by Johnathan Bullet


BN representatives have been trained on how to subdue the opposition during DUN sitting

KUCHING: State BN elected representatives have braced themselves for a possible massive ‘onslaught’ by the opposition during the eight-day State Legislative Assembly (DUN) sitting which starts today.

Chief Minister and State BN chairman Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud told reporters yesterday that they (BN assemblymen) were now prepared to respond to members from the opposition in the august House.

A 3-day ‘Parliamentary Discourse on Government 2011’ seminar was held, beginning last Thursday, to toughen up the assemblymen.

The pre-Council meeting at PBB headquarters yesterday was also one of the preparations for the DUN sitting which ends on June 29, Taib added.

“They were given a course to understand the procedures. They were also briefed on the possible issues to be raised by the opposition and to understand their (the opposition’s) attitude … such as what drives them.

“We also need to know

how we must handle them (opposition) because it can become too political (in the DUN). This is not about focusing on individual interests,” he explained.

Taib had earlier chaired the pre-Council meeting which was attended by cabinet ministers, assistant ministers and government backbenchers.

The meeting, which lasted for more than two hours, was also attended by DUN Speaker Dato Sri Mohd Asfia Awang Nassar.

In the April 16 polls, the BN won 55 of the 71 seats it contested in.

However, in the 2006 state election, it had won 63 seats.

The opposition’s strength increased to 15 seats after DAP won 12 and PKR three.

The remaining seat in the 71-seat Assembly was won by an Independent candidate.

This DUN sitting, which is the first after the April 16 polls, will see a total of 23 new assemblypersons, including 11 from the BN.

Head of State Tun Datuk Patinggi Abang Muhammad Salahuddin Abang Barieng will declare open the DUN sitting today.