Fostering and developing a mature democratic society practicing a form of mature, consensual, community-oriented Malaysian democracy that can be a model for other developing countries.
The Party believes that the Government must have openness and transparency, so that the people can see and judge for themselves the workings of the Government. The people must be allowed to take responsibility for issues that affect them and the Government has a duty to listen to the needs of the people.
The Party believes that in a community-oriented democracy; there are no hegemony or tyranny by the majority. The needs of minorities and individual will be respected in this form of democracy.
The Party believes that in a democratic system, there should be no place for personalities and clique. The system should be based on institutions and procedures that can withstand personality changes.
In the State, transparency and openness are not fully practiced. For example, the people do not know how the State’s riches are distributed and they are not fully informed or consulted on matters that affect them. e.g. development projects which affect their livelihood, lifestyle and environment. This has perpetuated a culture of fear of speaking out which is reinforced by the Government issuing retributions with impunity. There is a real lack of dialogue and discussion of central socio-economic issues by the people and the politicians. There is only talk of “development” which, to the present Government, is a reward for political loyalty and patronage. Thus the State is far from practising consensual democracy.
Many of the institutions in the State are run by cliques. The State Government itself revolves around a particular personality, whose sycophants never fail to congratulate him on the anniversaries of his long reign. We have had the Sarawak Economic Development Corporation run almost as a personal business by someone linked to this personality.
The State Civil Service is not spared political patronage and personality cliques that look after their interest over official concerns.
The Party believes that the Government should be responsible for nurturing democratic beliefs and ideals. The Party will organise and sponsor public forums and debates on matters pertaining to major development projects and others matters that affect people.
The Party believes strongly that the Press plays a very important role in checking abuses of power and in disseminating and nurturing democratic values and traditions. The Press shall not be controlled and the Party shall promote fair and just journalism. The Press shall be responsible to the people of the States, not to the Government of the day.
Government leaders shall be subject to greater checks for abuse of power. For example, political leaders shall have a public accounting of their wealth.
The Party believes that the Civil Service also plays an important role in developing and nurturing democratic values. The Civil Service shall be the implementor of the policies of the Government of the day. However, the Civil Service shall remain neutral in Administration.
The Civil Service shall be reviewed to eradicate the formation of cliques and “closely buddy” systems, especially at the top echelon. Progressions in the Civil Services shall be based on a system of merits, not of patronage and favours
In order to achieve a State that practices a mature and community-oriented democracy, the Party:
- Will allow newspapers to be censored only by the public and the readers,
- Will not bar individuals from entering Sarawak on political grounds,
- Will not protect political corrupts,
- Will establish procedures and mechanisms to reward performance in all sectors,
- Will allow more meetings at district levels to allow for political debates on policies and performances,
- Will allow the use of Balai Raya as avenues for political discussion amongst various political parties and,
- Will ensure that the Kampung Chiefs elected by traditional methods are allowed to speak freely, even to criticize the Government, on behalf of their community.
* Behalf of STAR,
We would like to wish all very Happy Chinese New Year. May this Year of Rabbit will be better for all… Full of Happiness, Prosperity and Good Health for All. God bless and Enjoy your blessing Chinese New Year.
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