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By Karen Bong
KUCHING, Nov 27: Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg has expressed confidence that Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) could win all eight Bidayuh-majority seats in the coming 12th Sarawak Election fixed on Dec 18.
The seats are Opar, Tasik Biru, Serembu, Mambong, Tarat, Tebedu, Bukit Semuja, and Kedup.
“The Bidayuh want it to be returned (to GPS), and I am sure they (candidates) will retain the seats. With GPS’ track record, the people will be with us,” he told a press conference after launching the Sarawak Government Administrative Centre Serian Division today.
Abang Johari also confirmed that GPS had accepted Tebedu incumbent Datuk Amar Michael Manyin Jawong’s decision to retire and not contest in the coming election.
“This will give way to young people who will take over and continue what should be done for the community with the present leaders,” he added.
On the candidate to replace Manyin, he only said that a candidate had been identified but refused to reveal the identity.
“Wait lah, I will announce (the full list of GPS candidates for the coming election) a few days before the nomination,” he told the media.
Manyin, who was present, also believes that the Bidayuh will be wise and vote for GPS in the coming election.
“The Bidayuh community has been with Barisan Nasional (BN) previously and now GPS. They are more educated, and they have seen and experienced the benefits they have gained when they are with the government,” he said.
Abang Johari pointed out intellectual interactions will take place in the near future to develop the Bidayuh community, especially since a Convention Centre is taking shape right behind this Serian Government Complex.
He said the Bidayuh are very progressive as the community has many graduates despite being a minority community.
“I hope we will always be united, and with an innovative government, we move forward together.
“We are a big Sarawak family. Even Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob acknowledged that Sarawak is a model State for the Malaysia Family, which was why he picked Sarawak to launch the concept.
“With that, let us protect this quality Sarawakians have in this coming election. We show them we are united,” he said.
Assistant Minister of Transport Datuk Dr Jerip Susil, Assistant Minister of Youth and Sports Datuk Snowdan Lawan, State Secretary Datuk Amar Jaul Samion, and Serian MP Dato Sri Richard Riot Jaem were among those present. — DayakDaily