KUCHING, Oct 13 — Meluan State lawmaker Rowland Duat anak Jubin has not quit Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) to join Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR), assistant minister of local government Datuk Dr Pengguang Manggil said today.
He said Duat has already denied that he had “jumped ship”.
Pengguang, who is a PDP member and state lawmaker for Marudi, said it is possible that certain people must have picked Duat’s name from the electoral roll as among the new applicants to join PKR.
Separately, Sarawak PKR information chief Vernon Aji Kedit said Duat’s name has been removed from the updated list of applications to join PKR Julau branch.
He said Duat’s name was among over the 12,000 new applicants from Julau that was spotted on the original list submitted to the party headquarters in Kuala Lumpur.
However, his name was missing from the updated list.
“We don’t know who removed the name of the Meluan assemblyman from the list,” he said when asked to clarify a statement issued by Sarawak PKR secretary Nicholas Bawin earlier.
Duat could not be reached for comment.
Asked to clarify that the Julau branch’s total membership has shot from 603 to over 12,000 since the May 9 general election, Kedit said the question should be directed to PKR Julau Member of Parliament Larry Sng.
Kedit said despite the prevailing problems, the election for new office-bearers for the Julau branch remains fixed on November 10, together with the elections of office bearers of all party branches and state leadership.
Meanwhile, Bawin said the party’s election committee is investigating the complaints from members of the Julau branch on the sudden spike in the membership.
“Any reasonable person would expect that the existing members of any branch would smell something fishy if their membership increased by over 12,000 members in one day, including the name of a PDP assemblyman.
“They have the right to object. Nobody has the right to stop the investigation, and no right-thinking person should want to do so. Due process must be allowed to take its course without interference by anyone,” he said.
Bawin also defended state PKR chairman Baru Bian against accusation by PKR Julau Member of Parliament Larry Sng over the Julau membership list issue.
He said the Works Minister has no control over members filing complaints against the spike in the Julau branch membership.
He said there must be no attempt to thwart the investigation by the election committee, adding that Sng must be prepared to accept the decision of the committee if any wrong had been committed.