PKR vice-president Nurul Izzah Anwar, who was photographed with the daughter of a Sulu separatist leader in Manila a few months ago, has been barred from entering Sarawak.
Nurul Izzah was stopped by immigration officers at the passport control counter soon after touching down at the Kuching International Airport at 4pm on an AirAsia flight.
Dr Xavier Jayakumar, another party vice-president who was with her on the flight, told reporters at the airport that immigration officers informed Nurul Izzah the order came from the Chief Minister’s Office.
Nurul Izzah was last week barred from entering Sabah after a photo of her and Jacel Kiram, the daughter of Jamalul Kiram III, who was behind the 2013 Sabah incursion, went viral on social media.
The Lembah Pantai MP has also been summoned to the Parliament’s rights and privileges committee.
Sarawak has autonomy over its immigration regulations and has barred other opposition politicians, including DAP’s Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua and Seputeh MP Teresa Kok, and PKR’s Pandan MP Rafizi Ramli from entering tjhe state.
Lawyer and activist Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan and Bersih 2.0 resource person Dr Wong Chin Huat have also been barred.
Dr Jayakumar said no reason was given for refusing Nurul Izzah entry.
“It’s a black day for democracy and a black day for Sarawak.
“I don’t know what the issue is (to bar Nurul). Only the Sarawak government knows.”
The Sri Andalas assemblyman said Nurul Izzah’s referral to the parliamentary rights and privileges committee should not be used as a reason to bar her from the state.
He also said he could not think of anything that would make Nurul Izzah a threat to Sarawak’s security.
Dr Jayakumar said the only reason he could think of is that Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem was not “confident enough to face the people (of Sarawak in the coming state election)”.
Nurul, as the party’s election director, flew to Kuching to announce the party’s line-up for the state elections.
She also wanted to chair a meeting on the party’s preparation and strategy on the seat allocation with their state Pakatan Harapan partners, DAP and Amanah.
Nurul Izzah, in a statement, said she was barred from entering under Section 65(1) of the Immigration Act 1959/63.
She said the act was to stop the mass migration of people from the peninsula to Sarawak and Sabah and not to stop MPs who came to the Borneo states on political business.
Sarawak PKR vice-president See Chee How said the action to bar Nurul “looked like Adenan is going back to the same old culture” of the administration of his predecessor, Tun Abdul Taib Mahmud.
“He (Adenan) wants to be seen as a liberal, reformist. But he’s not.
“If he is, then he should not be barring opposition political leaders from the state.”
See said the state should not use its autonomy over immigration to bar opposition politicians from coming to the state to do legal and legitimate business.
By The Malaysian Insider