SIBU: Disappointed SPDP leaders from at least 40 divisions statewide will collect at least 40 signatures this weekend for a petition that will be sent to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak tomorrow.
Supreme council member James Laju Ambok said the purpose was to tell Najib that they were unhappy because no MP from SPDP was made a Federal minister or deputy minister.
He said the party was extremely disappointed with the complete exclusion of its MPs from the Federal Cabinet despite having successfully delivered four parliamentary seats — Mas Gading (Anthony Nogeh), Saratok (Tan Sri William Mawan), Baram (Anyi Ngau) and Bintulu (Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing).
“We won all our parliamentary seats in the just-concluded general election, a 100% achievement, but we got zero position in the Cabinet,” Laju, who is also Sibu Rural District Council chairman, complained here yesterday.
“We hope it was an honest oversight by the PM. We can’t and won’t imagine it to be any other reason,” he said.
“So, we appeal to the Prime Minister to rectify the situation as soon as possible because it is shocking and very unfair to SPDP,” Laju stressed.
He also said the party in fact expected to be rewarded better than previously when they had two deputy ministers.
“We don’t blame other parties or people. We are just asking for what should be ours. After all, our four MPs are very well qualified,” said Laju.
Tiong, he told reporters, should be made a minister as he is now serving his fourth term and was also Barisan Nasional Backbenchers Club chairman while Nogeh is a lawyer by training, and Anyi is a former district officer.
Party president Mawan is not eyeing any Federal post preferring to stick to the state Cabinet as Social Development Minister.
“SPDP is capable of playing a very active role in the administration of the country. We humbly request the PM to give something favourable to the party,” Laju said, adding that SPDP was not thinking of leaving Barisan, just disappointed.
He urged the members and supporters to remain calm while waiting for the Prime Minister’s final decision.
The Sibu gathering was attended by SPDP deputy secretary-general Paul Igai and representatives from the party’s divisions of Bukit Assek, Bawang Assan, Dudong, Pelawan, Meluan, Nangka, Pelagus, Ngemah, Pakan, Tamin and Sarikei.