The Aftermath of the Sarawak State Election: Outcome and Implications


About the Webinar

The Sarawak State Election taking place on 18 December 2021, after a delay because of Covid-19, will be closely observed. How many seats the ruling coalition the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) wins will have implications for its future and also on the political landscape in the state and also on the federal level. This heavily social and print media-based election without the usual large rallies or ceramahs (maximum size of 150 attendees for each event) will play to the advantage of GPS, as many parts of rural Sarawak does not have access to the internet and will have to rely on face-to-face outreach.

How did the multi-cornered fights and turnout affect the outcome for GPS and opposition parties? Did the Malaysia Agreement 1963 feature as an important campaign issue? What about native customary rights? Did the opposition Sarawak Democratic Action Party (DAP) effectively use Undi 18 as a campaign issue against GPS? The opposition Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB) consisting of many prominent Dayak leaders is also expected to make inroads in terms of Dayak support. What do the final results suggest for PBS? What do the results for urban as well as rural constituencies indicate for GPS and also the opposition parties. Is there a future for PKR and Pakatan Harapan? And also the “new kid on the block” the Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB)? What do the final results suggest for GPS, the Sarawak Democratic Action Party (DAP) and PSB? How should these parties move forward? What role will GPS play in federal politics and is it expected to continue its kingmaker status?

About the Speakers

Dr Arnold Puyok is currently the Deputy Dean and Senior Lecturer in Politics and Government Studies at the Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak. His works on contemporary Malaysian politics especially Sabah and Sarawak have been published in Asian Journal of Political Science, Journal of Contemporary Southeast Asia and Kajian Malaysia. He also regularly contributes to The Malaysian Insider, Malaysiakini, The Malay Mail Online, Daily Express, The Borneo Post and East Asia Forum. He also blogs at

Professor Wong Chin Huat is a political scientist at the Jeffrey Sachs Center on Sustainable Development. Trained at the University of Essex, he specialises in political institutions, covering parliamentary democracy, electoral system and decentralisation. He advises the Coalition for Clean and Fair Election (Bersih 2.0) and formerly served in the Malaysian Government’s Electoral Reform Committee.


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Dec 22 2021


2:30 pm - 3:45 pm