FreeMalaysiaToday reported yesterday that PKR’s Tian Chua confirmed that negotiations with SNAP to work out an agreement on seat allocations for the forthcoming state elections had reached a fruitless end and a parting of ways, and speculated that SNAP’s “unbending insistence on contesting no less than 27 seats” was the result of “peninsular based forces that have long sought to subvert and break up the Pakatan Rakyat coalition” and have “successfully orchestrated the current impasse”.
The day before, Malaysiakini reported Anwar, while not explicitly referring to SNAP, yet leaving no one in doubt that he was referring to the latter, as saying : “Two years ago, there was a party which was dying but now suddenly it wants to contest here and there. Where does the money come from? “Who gave them the money? The party is to split the opposition votes”.
On 25th March, MCLM announced that it was severing the alliance forged with SNAP just the month before as we had received reports that the “SNAP candidates and some of their ‘privileged’ leaders had suddenly come into significant funds that were being made available by operatives from Kuala Lumpur acting under the directions of BN”, and that if this was in fact true, it was a “betrayal of the worst kind to a people who have been subjected to oppression for the last 30 years”.
Regrettably, to-date, no SNAP leader has stepped forward to allay these concerns.
SNAP’s director of operations, Paul Kadang, in a 39-paragraph press statement, most of which was devoted to painting a poor picture of PKR, said little of the concerns under consideration here.
A mere 4 paragraphs deal with the matter of the financing of their election campaign.
Paul offers that “in the last few months, SNAP has been inundated with monetary contributions from well-to-do natives working abroad”.
Yet, in our meeting with the SNAP leaders in Kuching in late February, no mention was made of this. Instead, they lamented of an impoverished state.
When MCLM announced the severence of the alliance with SNAP, I conceded that there was no cold, hard evidence of the matters that we had come to suspect.
Last week, whilst in Sabah, one of the local politicians asked if I thought that MCLM might have acted too hastily, and that we might be wrong.
I told him that, for the sake of the many marginalised Sarawakians, I hoped I was wrong and that SNAP would, in the final analysis, prove me to be so. I should happily eat humble pie if such is the case.
Until then, I am obliged to inform the voters in Sarawak of the concerns we have that has seriously undermned the trust we had in SNAP.
That trust, so vital for a continuance of the alliance, was, to some extent, founded on the willingness of the Dayak iconic leader, Daniel Tajem, to step forward and throw his support behind SNAP.
Perhaps it is time for Tajem to speak up on these matters, no?