Parti Rakyat Sarawak president James Masing has a piece of advice for the newly elected Batang Ai state assemblyperson Malcolm Mussen if he is to be effective as a people's representative.
"Mussen has only accomplished the first part of the job by winning the by-election. The second half of his job will determine whether he can keep the job as state assemblyperson," Masing said during a thanksgiving dinner to celebrate Barisan Nasional’s victory in the April 7 by-election on 7 April.
Mussen, the PRS candidate defeated the former five-term Lubok MP Jawah Gerang of Parti Keadilan Rakyat by a majority of 1,854 votes, after he secured 3,907 votes. This was the biggest ever majority secured by any BN candidate since the 1970 election.Elected six times as the Baleh state assemblyperson, Masing said: "From my personal experience, it is the second half of the job that is much, much harder. It would require your stamina, endurance, dedication and patience.Privacy does not exist"And in this profession, the word privacy does not exist. Your time is voters' time, your home is voters' home, and your allowance is voters' allowance. All elected representatives are public property, and you are now officially public property," he told Mussen.
Mussen was a civil servant holding the post of assistant director of agriculture before he resigned his post to contest the by-election and as a civil servant he led a different lifestyle.Masing went on to say that by being a YB would mean that a person would take up a profession which required him to be a philanthropist, banker, social worker, all rolled into one.Unless he was prepared to do all this, he could not be an effective elected representative and expressed hope that Mussen's wife, Dorothy and their three children would give their fullest support to him so that he could be a good politician and an effective assemblyperson.
Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin who was present at the dinner reminded the state BN leaders that they must fulfill the promises they made to the Batang Ai people. -malaysiakini