Time ripe to have single multiracial party, says Masing

Tan Sri Dr James Masing

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KUCHING, June 13: Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing says forming a single multiracial party may be ideal as the outcome of the recent general election (GE14) indicated that racially-based parties may no longer be relevant or well accepted by Malaysians.

In a telephone interview today, Masing disclosed that during the meeting that took place before the announcement of the setting up of Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) yesterday, he suggested the establishment of a single multiracial party, but the idea was rejected by some senior party leaders present.

“(But) all is not etched in stone as a task force to be chaired by Datuk Alexander Nanta Linggi has been established to fine tune GPS to make it in line with Sarawakians’ wants, needs and aspirations, which will ensure that GPS remains relevant in the coming years.”

Masing, who is also Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) president, also disclosed that he did send a memo to Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg on the day before the announcement of the formation of GPS.

“The memo might not have reached him (before the announcement) as I just finished (writing) the memo late in the afternoon.”

In the memo, Masing also touched on the issue of land reforms, which he described as important to all Sarawakians.

“I hope what needs to be done with regards to NCR (native customary rights) land will be tabled at the next State Legislative Assembly sitting. The people have waited patiently enough. What needs to be solved should be solved soonest.”

He also pointed out that religious diversity and racial tolerance amongst Sarawakians is an asset to the state. Their harmony is a factor that could mobilise all Sarawakians, regardless of race, to fight for Sarawak rights should there be any perceived outside threats, he added. — DayakDaily