Did Lim try a gambit which failed?

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The trip to Sarawak by Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng who is also secretary-general of DAP is akin to a gambit in a chess game.

After the state government had denied entry to several leaders from his party into the state raising howls of accusation of abuse of the state’s immigration power, Lim must have thought his visit to the state would put Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Adenan Satem in an awkward situation.

The DAP secretary-general actually said in Penang before his trip that he was flying to Sarawak to see if he and Penang state executive councillor Chow Kon Yeow who accompanied him would be barred from the state.

Denial of Lim’s entry into the state would add to the crescendo of protests by the opposition against the state Barisan Nasional (BN) state government giving more ammunition for them to fire in their election campaign.

However, Lim was surprised and perhaps disappointed that he faced the minimum of fuss at the Kuching International Airport as he sailed through the immigration checkpoint smoothly.

With his gambit not taken, Lim then made an attempt to make himself a political martyr by telling Adenan to ban him but let the other opposition leaders into the state.

His latest attempt will not cut any ice with the state government as Adenan would not be that naïve to fall for it.

Lim and the opposition leaders should not try to gain any political capital from Sarawak’s right to stop anyone from entering the state as it is the duty of the government of the day to deny entry to anyone it deems dangerous or harmful.

The government is elected by the people and has their mandate to administer the state it sees fit. Others who were banned from the state should also respect the right of the state government to deny them entry.

Party officials from both sides of the political divide, activists or any controversial figures from Semenanjung Malaysia must realise and accept that the immigration autonomy of Sarawak is not a privilege but right agreed upon in the formation of the nation.

They do not have the right to question this right or the way the state government exercise this power.

As for Lim, well at least he has the consolation of being able to meet his party officials in the state and hold press conferences while he is here.

The state BN government has proven to him that those barred from entering the state were not because of their political affiliation.