PKR fingers low voter turnout, DAP for defeats in Baram

Roland Engan

Roland Engan

MIRI: PKR Baram blames low voter turnout and DAP’s decision to contest in Mulu as the main reasons for losing all three seats in Baram in the May 7 state election.

The three seats are Telang Usan, Marudi and Mulu.

In an interview yesterday, PKR Baram chairman Roland Engan said only 63.88 per cent of the registered voters voted in Telang Usan, but then this figure is still higher than the 57.2 per cent recorded in the 10th state election in 2011.

Roland lost to BN’s Dennis Ngau by a mere 167 votes in the straight fight in Telang Usan.

“The low voter turnout affected the overall results not only in Telang Usan but also in Marudi and Mulu.

“Many voters, especially those living in urban centres, did not return to vote.”

In the 10th state election, Dennis won Telang Usan with a 845-vote majority in a four-cornered fight.

He garnered 3,597 votes while PKR’s Harrison Ngau polled 2,752 votes, SNAP’s Kebing Wan got 705 votes and independent Jok Ding had 623 votes.

Roland said the DAP’s decision to field Paul Anyie Raja in Mulu against PKR’s Paul Baya, direct BN candidate Datuk Gerawat Gala and independent Dr Roland Dom Mattu had affected the result in Mulu.

“DAP’s decision to go against PKR in Mulu jeopardised Pakatan Harapan’s chances in capturing the seat.”

Roland, however, admitted that some opposition supporters made U-turns and returned to the BN fold in the 11th hour.

Gerawat won the new seat of Mulu with a majority of 1,708 votes.

He garnered 3,198 votes to Paul Baya’s 1,490 votes, Paul Anyie’s 309 votes and Dr. Roland’s 239 votes.

Asked whether he would challenge the result in Telang Usan in court because of the wafer thin winning majority, Roland replied in the negative.

“No, I will not,” he said.

In the 13th general election in 2013, Roland, who was then contesting against BN’s Anyi Ngau in Baram, challenged the result in court as Anyi won by a mere 194 votes.

Anyi garnered 9,182 votes while Roland polled 8,968 votes in the three-cornered fight.