Illogical for PRS and SUPP to form new alliance, says don

Dr Awang Azman Awang Pawi

By Peter Sibon

KUCHING, March 12: It is illogical for both Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) and Sarawak United Peoples’ Party (SUPP) to leave Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) to form a new alliance in order to provide voters with another choice in the next state election, said political analyst Associate Professor Dr Awang Azman Awang Pawi.

He reasoned that since both parties had become like brothers in GPS, there was no doubt they would stick with the current setup.

“Whoever suggested such an idea perhaps has an ulterior motive because it is just illogical for both SUPP and PRS to leave GPS and form another alliance,” Awang Azman told DayakDaily today.

He was responding to a suggestion made by Solidarity Anak Sarawak’s Peter John Jaban yesterday. Peter John proposed that SUPP and PRS combine forces following Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB)’s move to take in PRS’ former vice-president-cum-Sri Aman MP Datuk Masir Kujat and former PRS leaders into its fold recently.

Peter John argued that if both parties combined, they could fight for better Sarawak rights under the Malaysia Agreement 1963 and give genuine choice to voters over Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB), which is now dominating GPS with 46 seats. PRS, on the other hand, has 11 state seats, while SUPP has seven.

Awang Azman highlighted that the four component parties in GPS now — PBB, PRS, SUPP and Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) — had been like brothers and their relationship had become more solid over the years.

“Of course, at times there are misunderstandings between the four component parties, but like the Malay proverb ‘Air takkan putus dicincang’, they will reconcile over any differences,” he opined.

On what GPS chairman-cum-Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg must do to address the protracted issue regarding PSB, Awang Azman said he (Abang Johari) had to discuss the matter with the coalition partners in GPS in a genuine and transparent manner.

“The discussion among the partners is crucial to put GPS in the right direction with regards to PSB. After all, PSB has been BN-friendly before this and now it wants to be GPS-friendly.

“So, Abang Johari has a tough time to address the PSB issue as he must take care of the feelings of its two partners too,” he stressed.

Awang Azman said if the state election were to be held and the issue of PSB could not be resolved then, he (Abang Johari) could apply the previous formula used by his predecessor, the late Pehin Sri Adenan Satem, and take in PSB’s winnable candidates as GPS-direct candidates.

“But if there are multiple cornered fights, it could only benefit Pakatan Harapan,” cautioned Awang Azman. — DayakDaily