April 29 for Sarawak polls?

Tan Sri Adenan Satem Minister will be celebrating his second anniversary as Chief Minister on March 1. Will the election be held in March?  

In a new year celebration held in conjunction with the abolishment of the Tun Salahuddin Bridge toll in Putrajaya recently, Adenan had hinted at election being held in March.

Is the date just a red herring? Political pundits and analysts are making  predictions on the date for the 11th State Election which must be held before June 20.

Most political analysts and pundits had previously pointed to April as being the possible date.

The mandate of the state government ends on June 20. Elections must be held within 90 days of the dissolution which is widely believed to be by the end of March.

When asked by journalist many times before this, Adenan’s answer was: “It will be before June 20.”

The last Sejiwa Senada programme’s date has been rescheduled from early March to  mid-March. The programme aimed at enhanching greater rapport between the government and the people kicked off on January 8, followed by Sibu , then Saratok and Sarikei.

The last Sejiwa Senada programme will be held on 18-20 March in Mukah.

A popular prediction is now the end of April. University Malaysia Sabah political analyst Dr Lee Kuok Tiung believes it will be held on April 29 (Saturday) and nomination to be held on April 18 which also falls on Saturday.  Several factors point to date being selected for the election.  

“It is a suitable date since it falls on a Saturday. Based on past records, State Elections were always held on Saturday. The last State Election was held on April 16, 2011, and the fifth Sarawak Election in 1987 was also held in April. It cannot be May for this election as it is a bit anti-climax as the feel good factor is felt by everybody now. Furthermore, Adenan’s popularity rating is also very high. It has nothing to do with  the school  holiday period.

Lee says the weather is definitely friendlier by then. “On top of that, I believe Adenan would have solved the issues between SUPP-UPP and SPDP-Teras by then. The quarrels between SPDP and Teras and SUPP and UPP cannot be taken lightly.”

Barisan National insiders say the date for the elections has been chosen.  Last year Adenan told the local media he could dissolve the state assembly after presenting the state budget in November.

Adenan, who is seeking his own mandate as chief minister, has made it clear that Sarawak BN wants to win the 11 new seats.  A total of 82 seats will be contested.