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By Karen Bong
KUCHING, March 7: Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) has accepted the invitation to join the federal cabinet on the condition that it is based on the “PN+GPS” formula.
Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg disclosed today that GPS has received the invitation to be part of the federal cabinet two days ago (March 5).
“The prime minister (Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin) has agreed on the formula of PN+GPS.
“Having taken all considerations, PBB together with other GPS component parties have decided to join the federal government and be part of the federal cabinet members,” he told a press conference after chairing the Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) supreme council meeting here today.
Abang Johari, who is also PBB president, said such consideration had been taken on two premises.
“We (Sarawak) will have representation in the federal cabinet, meaning a voice to continue fighting for the aspirations and interests of Sarawak and its people.
“As cabinet members, we will continue to pursue Sarawak rights under the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) and we want Petronas to abide by the State Sales Tax,” he continued.
Most importantly, he said that Sarawak’s involvement and participation in the federal cabinet will be based on the relationship of Perikatan Nasional (PN) plus GPS.
“This is because we are a separate entity from PN. We are not with PN. We will not be involved in their politics, we are just part of the federal government,” he reiterated on GPS’s stand in prioritising Sarawak first.
On the number of posts GPS was offered, Abang Johari said this was the prerogative of the prime minister.
“He is a very experienced man. He knows the position of GPS and the needs of Sarawak. As for the number (positions), I leave it to him.
“Cabinet is a collective responsibility. It is up to the prime minister on the (ministerial) portfolios. But as long as we are in the cabinet, we have a voice,” he said, adding that the federal cabinet line-up may be finalised within two to four days.
He however did not reveal the names of the potential candidates but emphasised that GPS had many experienced people including former ministers.
The GPS-led Sarawak government comprised of PBB, Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS), Sarawak United Peoples’ Party (SUPP) and Progressive Democratic Party (PDP). — DayakDaily