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Sunday, April 17, 2016

Sarawak DAP decided not to challenge against Sarawak's autonomy

KUCHING - Sarawak DAP has decided not to proceed with its plan to challenge the state’s autonomous power over immigration after finding it is “not worth the effort”, its chairman Chong Chieng Jen said today.

“We have studied precedents or past cases of similar nature, and there is not much of a chance to succeed so we decided not to proceed with the case,” he said when asked on the plan to challenge Sarawak’s decision to deport federal lawmaker Tony Pua in September last year.

The Petaling Jaya Utara MP was picked up by five immigration officers while having lunch with former Piasau assemblyman Alan Ling at a restaurant in Miri, and was then deported to Kuala Lumpur from Miri Airport.

In September last year, Chong had announced that the state DAP planned to initiate a judicial review against the state government’s decision to ban Pua.

Chong had said that Sarawak DAP had formed a legal team, headed by its former chairman Chong Siew Chiang, to challenge the legality of the deportation of Pua by the state government.

He had asserted that the party was left with no choice but to bring the abuse of autonomy to the court for determination and adjudication.

Over a dozen opposition figures have been barred from entering Sarawak since Tan Sri Adenan Satem became Chief Minister on February 2014, succeeding Tun Abdul Taib Mahmud -- now the Sarawak Governor.

Kluang MP Liew Ching Tong was the latest opposition lawmaker to be denied entry into Sarawak just days shy of the Sarawak election campaign period.

He joins a list of other opposition leaders which include DAP’s Anthony Loke, Teresa Kok, Tony Pua, Teo Nie Ching, PKR’s Nurul Izzah Anwar, Chua Tian Chang, Shamsul Iskandar, Zuraida Kamaruddin, Sim Sze Tsin and Parti Amanah Negara’s Mohamad Sabu.

Despite criticism over the travel ban on opposition leaders, Adenan recently insisted that the ban was justified as it was to protect Sarawak from unsavoury elements and it would be lifted after the state elections slated for May 7.

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