Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) is the latest political party in the country. Its high-profile leaders have helped PPBM to attract the attention of the people, however, is it attractive enough for many to embrace. Will it be a serious and competitive contender in the nation’s 14th general elections, due by the middle of 2018.
A new political party faces peculiar challenges that the older ones may have been able to surmount.
The first challenge is to embark on a membership drive. It is not easy to get the people to join the party. The other one is regarding the fundamental values of the political party. What is it all about?
What is it fighting for? Is its struggle based on certain ideology? What are the ideas behind its creation?
Is it about justice, equality, and freedom? The people around the world want the government to adopt good governance practices, to be transparent, accountable and responsible? Is the new party about achieving these ends?
A political party is about the aggregation of interests. Different interest groups are brought together under one larger political organisation. What types of interest groups does a political party bring together? It is of paramount important that the people should know whose interests have been articulated and aggregated? Will the party benefit the society or special interests?
The country’s racial mosaic has made it unwise for one particular political party to win the election on its own and govern all by itself.
To win the election and to govern effectively and efficiently, political parties in Malaysia need to form an alliance as in the Barisan Nasional (BN). When political parties come together to form a bigger political entity, this means that they must be willing to compromise, to collaborate, to cooperate, and to work with each other. The BN has been able to establish itself as a bigger political organisation for the last 59 years, and has proven itself to be resilient in overcoming many trials and tribulations.
PPBM and the other opposition parties need to be able to compromise, collaborate, cooperate, and work together as the BN component parties have done. Do they have the common denominators which can act as unifying factors?
In PBB, Sarawak already has a bumiputera party. In fact, Sarawak has 2 functioning bumiputera parties as PBB is consisted of Parti Bumpitura and Parti Pesaka.
Do the bumiputeras in Sarawak need another bumiputera party? Will the state bumiputeras accept and adopt the new bumiputera party?
One of the biggest problems facing the opposition parties in Sarawak is their inability to have credible candidates in the rural constituencies. This and other factors have made the BN invincible in the state.
The general election is coming soon. Will PPBM, if it wants to contest in Sarawak, have enough time to mobilise the bumiputeras in the state? Will it have sufficient time to socialise Sarawak Bumiputeras to its way of doing things, to its ideas, and to accept its basic values?
The BN supporters tend to be conservative in outlook, particularly those in the rural areas. They have been loyal to the BN for so long. There is a possiblitity that they might change their mind but this is quite improbable for now.
Tan Sri Adenan and the State BN are certainly not going to worry about the onslaughts of the oppositions in the state. The BN might be subjected to one or two turbulent experiences, but at the end of the day, Sarawak will still remain as its fixed-deposit state. – Sarawakvoice