KUCHING, Aug 22: The appointment of Datu Jaul Samion as the new State Secretary proves that the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) leadership looks beyond the colour of one’s skin.
Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari made the announcement earlier today, confirming that Jaul is to be sworn in as the new State Secretary replacing the retired Tan Sri Morshidi Ghani.
“We are colour blind. Our State Secretary today (is) confirmed Datu Jaul (an iban).
“We are colourless (sic) not like over there (Peninsula)…,” he said, responding to reporters’ queries about the Finance Minister II post, traditionally held by a Chinese from Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP), now entrusted to Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas from Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB).
Earlier, Abang Johari announced that Uggah will take up the Minister of Finance II portfolio, replacing Datuk Seri Wong Soon Koh.
Tan Sri James Jemut Masing’s ministry will be changed to the Ministry of Infrastructure and Ports Development (previously Infrastructure Development and Transport), while the new Transport Ministry will be headed by Datuk Lee Kim Shin with Datuk Dr Jerip Susil as his deputy.
Another change to the state cabinet is Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan will be heading the Ministry of International Trade and Industry, Industrial Terminal and Entrepreneur Development — a combination of his previous ministry and Wong’s previous portfolio the Ministry of International Trade and E-Commerce.
Meanwhile, Jaul said there will be tough tasks ahead which he will face as the new State Secretary.
“We need to relook into improving the civil service and focus on serving the people well,” he said.
Jaul said what is left now is to be sworn in by the TYT, including the formal announcement of his deputy Datuk Ik Pahon Joyik.
He is the second Iban to hold the State Secretary post, the first Iban State Secretary being the late Tan Sri Gerunsin Lembat back in the 70s.
“Yes it has been a while (an Iban was appointed State Secretary). This is because I’ve been in the civil service for quite some time.
“We have to talk about service (provided by the civil servants), that’s important,” he said when asked what he would focus as the new State Secretary. — DayakDaily