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Sudden rush to join DAP Labuan
Published on: Thursday, June 14, 2018

Labuan: The Democratic Action Party (DAP) here which for years had been struggling under a two-man operation, Lau Seng Kiat as chief and young lawyer Wong Kwan Kit as secretary, has now become the first choice party of many Chinese.

"Due to the overwhelming interest, we are setting up three branches initially and will expand by another three or four later. We welcome anyone to join DAP as long as they are doing for the right reasons and understand the party's agenda," said Wong after handing over a stack of membership forms.

The forms were handed during a simple ceremony to Sabah DAP Organising Secretary Henry Shim, witnessed by KK Member of Parliament Chan Fong Hin and Likas Assemblyman Tan Lee Fatt.

Wong said the interest in joining DAP was a good sign.

"It shows many are confident that DAP, being a component of Pakatan Harapan, the ruling party, is now well placed to address local and other problems affecting the community and others," he said.

It is understood that among those applying to join DAP were from MCA as well as Parti Gerakan.

DAP Labuan has always received strong support, as shown in the 2008 general election, when Lau Seng Kiat, contesting as an independent candidate, could scratch the Barisan Nasional (BN) elephant by snatching away 2014 votes. The result showed the undercurrent of disappointment against MCA especially.

Even MP Datuk Rozman Isli acknowledged before the recent general election that he wanted an increased support from Sungai Keling, Ramsay and Bandar as in the previous elections BN lost to the opposition.

All the areas have predominately Chinese voters.

"But instead of getting more Chinese votes, BN was more severely rejected by Chinese voters, some 90 per cent of the 5,000 Chinese who voted supported Warisan," said an observer.

He added that many came back for voting from as far as Kuala Lumpur using their own money to support Warisan.

According to another observer, the Labuan Chinese had always been a silent supporter of the opposition because they felt sidelined in opportunities.

"Now they are surfacing and joining DAP because they don't fear to be aligned to the new political powerhouse." - Sohan Das

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