Why they prefer Henry Jinep over Nansian in Tasik Biru

ELECTION TALK: In the race for the Tasik Biru candidacy, folks, especially the Bidayuh who make up more than 90% of the votes, are impressed by Sarawak Progressive Democratic Party (SPDP)’s new prospect, Henry Harry Jinep.

Henry, who has entered the fray with the full blessing of all four state Barisan Nasional (BN) component parties, Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB), Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS), SarawaK United People’s Party (SUPP) and SPDP, is a big hit among both kampung folk and the business community.

Since his introduction as the BN candidate on Feb 6 by SPDP secretary-general Anthony Nogeh Gumbek, Henry has become the one popular topic among folks in the villages and towns.

Inevitable, people compare and contrast, and by all accounts, Henry beats his rival, Tasik Biru incumbent Peter Nansian, like the hare that outran the tortoise – only this hare doesn’t rest to take a nap to give the tortoise the chance to steal his way to the finish line.

Henry, who has made it good in the corporate world, outruns Nansian all the way in the popularity race – and he is not stopping – because he stands for the new generation of Bidayuhs who want a piece of the cake that older players selfishly guard.

At just 48, Henry is an icon to a community known for its commitment to the future of their children to whom they give the best that education can offer.

Undoubtedly, Henry plays his cards well, making his millions in the construction sector and giving back to society in the process.

Today he is synonymous with Yayasan John Jinep, the first charity foundation solely for the Bidayuh, by a Bidayuh to provide financial aid, bursaries, grants, scholarships and loans to needy Bidayuh students who want to further their studies up to tertiary level.

The foundation was registered on 8 Dec 2014 with an initial fund of RM1 million deposited in Amanah Raya Berhad on 21 Sept 2015.

While he continues to receive accolades for his excellent business acumen – his company, Putra Sentosa Enterprise, won the Malaysian Construction Industry Excellence Awards Contractor Grade 6 for three consecutive years – his long list of beneficiaries continues to grow.

He has helped with building and repairing village churches – Mt Singai Church (RM382,000), Batu Gong (RM80,000) and Kampung Stungkor Lama (RM120,000) – and community halls.

He donated to masjids and suraus, PTAs and alumni of schools, NGOs like Dayak Bidayuh National Association (DBNA) and Redeems, and civil and youth movements.

He has to date given out well over RM2 million of his own money towards this social endeavour of his, not so much to win over the hearts and minds of the people but more to ease their pains and facilitate their progress.

Henry did not enrich himself by depriving the people of their only wealth – land.

He did not buy the people’s land at dirt price and sell this to the companies at a fortune.

He never approached the poor Bidayuhs waving notes of all colours and tempted them into departing with their land because he knows this would only give them temporary relief but has every potential to confine them to life-long poverty.

Unfortunately, this is the harsh reality that many in Tasik Biru are face today.

Henry also did nothing like collecting money from potential Bidayuh investors in projects that promised the moon and the stars but never saw the light of day.

For all the things that he rightly did and did not do, Henry comes into the Tasik Biru candidacy race bearing a personal integrity that’s hard to match by any measure – or rival suitor.

Integrity is no burden, in fact in any political race it actually makes for speed, which is why Henry is running with the light-footedness of a young buck.

To his supporters, who have been packing community halls and sun tents wherever he went, if he could do what he had done as just Henry, as their next assemblyman he is capable of doing more than the RM300 million worth of projects pledged by Nansian for the constituency’s development blueprint over the next five.

While SPDP described Nansian’s pledge as “an extremely extravagant promise” that’s not only unrealistic but an attempt at fishing for sympathy, Henry’s supporters think the incumbent assemblyman should have done that long ago and not wait until he has been in office for 20 years and approaching the tail end of his political career.

They are not going to fall for Nansian’s rouse. Not when Henry makes a better option.

Mega projects and mega developments in Tasik Biru, if and when they come, will not be by Nansian but by Henry.

The Tasik Biru electorate, including the already high number of Bidayuh families who have lost their land to wealthy politicians and speculators, are looking to Henry to bring back a sense of pride to their community that now must compete with none of the assurance of solid ground under their feet.

To them, Nansian has got his chances and he has failed – miserably.-The Ant Daily

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