By Peter Sibon
KUCHING, July 17: Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) president Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing emphasised that Sarawak under Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) should continue to exercise meaningful power-sharing among the four component parties in the Sarawak Cabinet.
“GPS must continue to practice meaningful power-sharing among its four component parties especially in terms of cabinet appointment. We have been doing fine and we hope that the practice will continue,” Masing told DayakDaily here today.
He was commenting on news reports where former Sarawak United Peoples’ Party (SUPP) president and former Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Dr George Chan Hong Nam was quoted as saying that the Finance Minister II post left vacant by Datuk Seri Wong Soon Koh be returned to SUPP as it ‘traditionally’ belonged to the party.
Wong, who is Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB) president had announced that he would definitely resign from his Cabinet posts as Finance Minister II and Minister of International Trade and E-Commerce on Monday. However, he has yet to meet the Chief Minister to hand over his resignation letter.
“But as the Chief Minister of Sarawak, we leave it to Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg to decide (on Wong’s replacement) as it is his prerogative,” Masing reiterated.
On the newly passed Bill to lower the age of voters from 21 to 18, Masing who also a Deputy Chief Minister said such a move was most welcomed as it would allow better representation of the youth.
“At the same time, it would also mean that the majority race in Malaysia, in this case the Malays, which make up about 65 per cent of the population will have the advantage provided that they exercise their voting rights and that would determine the government of their choice,” he said.
Meanwhile, Masing said he would assist the residents of Taman Malihah in Matang, who live in apartments and flats to apply for support from the state government to build a community hall.
He said it was vital for them to have the community hall as it would provide a proper venue for communal activities especially for those who have to observe the wakes of family members who passed away.
“At the moment they have no such facility. So, I will assist them, together with the local YBs, in getting a piece of land to build the community hall,” he said.
He also gave grants of RM25,000 to the Village Security and Development Committee (JKKK) of Malihah and another RM20,000 for Tupong Branch’s Armed Forces Veterans’ Association. — DayakDaily