Warm relations between state and federal governments possible, says Abdul Karim

Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah

KUCHING, May 25: Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah says that a good working relationship with the federal government may result in the state ruling coalition being seen as friendly and “not as an opposition” after all.

He acknowledged that the wind of change may get stronger, and with Pakatan Harapan (PH) forming the federal government and most state governments, Sarawak is finding itself to be the odd one out.

“When the state election comes, we are not too sure how they (PH) will play out. I think that depends on how we build up our relationship with them from now until the next state election.

“Personally, I see if we are in good working relations, because we practice federalism, if we are working well together, I believe that they might not really look at us as a state that is really in opposition to them.

“That is why there must be co-operation between the state and the federal governments,” Abdul Karim who is Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) vice-president told DayakDaily yesterday.

He also expressed much relief over PH de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s recent statement that the federal government was ready to reach out to Sarawak and hoping that Sarawak would accept the reality of PH taking over the government and work closely with the federal government.

“I am very happy to see that even Anwar Ibrahim looks at it that way, that the federal government will try to reach out to us where he called on Sarawak to understand that the federal government is a different government now,” said Abdul Karim.

Abdul Karim said the uniqueness of Sarawak may factor in creating a totally different relationship between Sarawak and the federal government.

“The way Sarawakians look at things, we are not too parochial, we are not too engrossed in religion. Sarawakians being Sarawakians, this is what makes us able to mix between the different ethnic groups.

“We are just being open and willing to accept those who are different from us. That may perhaps finally result in a very different kind of political relationship between Sarawak and the federal government,” said Abdul Karim.

Meanwhile, Abdul Karim said the state ruling coalition was quiet because it is now the fasting month and state leaders are using this time for prayers, reflection, introspection and thinking how to better serve the state. — DayakDaily