Sarawak Report has received privileged information from BN insiders in KL, revealing that Najib Razak and Deputy PM, Muhyiddin Yassin, came to Sarawak not to support Taib, but to make him stand down!
This was the reason for the unprecedented dual visit of both the PM and the Deputy PM at the same time.
“One held the pistol and the other a dagger and said ‘it’s time to stand down. We are not going to compromise with you anymore, you have to announce your decision or that’s it!’”, recounted our source.
The 74 year old veteran of 30 years in office however did manage to negotiate a reprieve – on the basis that he would agree to call the election immediately and to leave office once a ‘transition period’ had established a suitable successor. Our sources told us that the Chief Minister, who has been refusing to stand down until he is secure that he can protect his wealth, has been infuriating BN colleagues in KL with his constant delays in holding the election. They were concerned he would hold out till the last moment, making a difficult situation worse.
“He is finished” – the devastating evidence from BN’s secret polling!
Our source confirms that the core problem for Taib is the evidence of a collapse of voter support, as shown by his own secret polling results. It is information BN have been desperate to keep hidden.
Despite the brave faces and continuing public declarations that Taib ‘cannot lose’, the federal hierarchy are now convinced that he will in fact lose badly in this election and may even lose his own seat.
Our contact, who is extremely well-connected and close to BN leading figures, says that Taib’s Information department has done extensive confidential polling in recent months. The sampling has involved at least 2,000 voters in each constituency and the results have been terrifying for BN:
“I have seen them [the results] with my own eyes. This election the PM and Deputy PM know that it is inevitable that Taib will lose”
We have been informed that the findings show that the Chief Minister’s own party PBB will lose ‘at least’ 14 of its 35 seats and that George Chan’s SUPP will lose 90% of its current votes, amounting to 10 out of its 12 seats! SPDP and PRS will also lose at least one seat each. “These seats are in the black not the grey area”, it was emphasised, meaning it was not a question of possibly losing the seats but rather they are definitely going to be lost. BN are resigned to the fact that the existing parties are going to lose at least 33 out of the 71 seats and that the outcome may be far worse than that.
Talk of opposition hopes of merely denying BN its two thirds majority in Sarawak now looks hopelessly outdated, according to these figures. The ruling coalition itself is resigned to being swept away by a tsunami of change and they blame Taib Mahmud for the loss of their “fixed deposit”.
“He knows the game is up. He has run out of ideas and run out of Bomohs”, was the angry sneer. “Whichever way he goes, he will lose. It is time”
The MACC is waiting till after the election!
Sarawak Report believes that it was approached with this confidential information by loyal BN supporters, despite our regular criticism of the coalition’s government of Sarawak, as part of a process of deliberate distancing by BN’ Federal leaders.
For years Taib has been the over-mighty tail that wagged the dog in Malaysia, but they are at last determined to bring him to heel now that he is weakened by growing unpopularity.
There is clearly also a real anger and disgust over the scale of Taib’s greed and kleptocracy, which has worsened BN’s already tarnished record on corruption. Indeed, we were informed that measures have already been taken to trace and secure some of Taib’s stolen assets abroad. Privately Taib’s federal colleagues are determined not to let him escape with the loot!
“He is finished. This is not a question of stepping down, this is a question of being sued for corruption. The MACC are waiting until after the election” Sarawak Report was told.
Taib’s exit plans have therefore been blocked it was confirmed, which has worsened the tension between Federal and Local governments. The Chief Minister’s original get-out strategy, mooted last year, was to accept appointment as Governor, thereby benefiting from a supposed immunity from prosecution. Najib refused. The resulting delay in the calling of the election as Taib searches for new options has caused the present crisis.
No safe exit for Taib
The Chief Minister’s current strategy is to ensure a pliant successor and he has been pushing KL to accept his protégé Awang Tengah, 2nd Minister of Resources and Planning.
Tengah is in the middle of building a monstrous new residence in Kuching, a sure sign of favour from Taib and hardly in keeping with a politician’s salary! This is just the sort of typical display of wealth that has infuriated KL. They are pushing for their own candidate Abang Zohari, who has a reputation they say for modesty and honesty. Taib, however, is reputed to loath him.
The Federal visitors were equally unforgiving about Taib’s choice of candidates over the weekend, we are told. Taib had ten seats reserved for his own family in the list he was offering. Najib and his powerful Deputy told him to tear it up.
“The PM and Deputy PM not only told him to calm down and dissolve, but also to choose candidates that are acceptable to the people and not just his own flesh and blood. That list has to change. He can’t put in his sons and nieces and nephews – he only trusts his family”!
“Relations with KL are terrible now”
So, they smiled for the cameras. But behind the façade we now know the picture is of absolute crisis within BN, at a time when they are loudly accusing the opposition of being divided on the brink of an election.
With local politicians in Sarawak keeping silent out of fear of Taib’s ruthless reputation, he is proving impossible for Najib to replace before the polls. However, BN have identified him as a loser, a loser they dislike and a loser they want to see made an example of.
With just three weeks to go now, KL are looking for a way out and for a new image free of Taib and all his “baggage”. But, after years of tolerating the thieving White Haired Rajah of Sarawak, they are going to have a hard time convincing disillusioned voters, however genuine their regrets!