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By Nigel Edgar
KUCHING, June 22: Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng believed that Sarawak would go bankrupt in three years’ time if the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) coalition continued to rule the state.
He said the state’s coffers of RM30 billion will be exhausted in three years if GPS were to maintain Sarawak’s annual budget of RM11 billion each year.
He thus, urged Sarawakians to vote GPS out in the coming state election, which must be called by mid-2021, and replace them with Pakatan Harapan (PH) to support the federal government’s effort in restoring the status of Sarawak as one of the three entities that formed the Federation of Malaysia.
“This year Sarawak state budget is RM11 billion. How much do you have in your reserves? RM30 billion. Every year RM11 billion, (in) three years, you have nothing left. If you have nothing left, what will happen to you?” he said at Sarawak DAP’s “Sarawak Here We Come” dinner here on Friday evening (June 21).
Lim, who is also DAP secretary-general warned that Sarawak will end up like Kelantan if they do not manage their finance properly.
“Kelantan is being ruled so badly, they cannot even afford to pay the salaries of their civil servants. They had to borrow from the federal government,” he said.
Lim also pointed out that the GPS-led Sarawak government had failed the aspirations of Sarawakians when they, together with Umno and PAS MPs, abstained from voting for the amendment of Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution in Parliament on April 9, which resulted in the Bill’s failure to secure the two-thirds majority required for it to be passed.
“As a government, you must inspire the people’s aspirations, especially in re-establishing the position of Sabah and Sarawak in the Federal Constitution. If you fail to inspire the people’s aspirations, then you deserve to expire. That is why we ask you to teach the GPS state government a lesson.
“Vote them out, replace them with PH state government that will support the federal government’s effort to restore the status of Sabah and Sarawak,” he added.
Sarawak has tabled a record budget of RM11.9 billion for 2019. Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg had previously said that the state’s reserves would not be used to fund the budget, with the 5 per cent sales tax on petroleum products among the revenues coming in for Sarawak. — DayakDaily