NGO warns GPS not to work with Pas and Umno

Peter John Jaban (right) warns GPS against working with PAS. – Facebook picture

A NON-governmental organisation has cautioned the state’s ruling coalition, Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS), against joining a federal alliance that consists of Umno and PAS.

Solidariti Anak Sarawak (SAS) spokesman Peter John Jaban said Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg, who is GPS chairman, must consider carefully how the new coalition would be perceived in multi-cultural Sarawak, especially with the state election looming.

“Sarawak activists are expressing their dismay at the reports of political manoeuvring at the federal level and purported coalitions which seem to be forming on increasingly racial grounds.

“We hope that Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) would not sully the name of Sarawak with undemocratic alliances,” he said in a statement today.

He pointed out that UMNO and PAS were defeated in the last general election in a widely acknowledged rejection of both corruption and race politics.

“Sarawakians are, indeed, different and we do not appreciate race politics and we live in an atmosphere of religious tolerance.

“We also maintain a separation between federal and regional concerns and while we realise that there is currently a drive for greater autonomy and the relationship with the Federal Government is central to that, we are all necessarily and rightly judged by the company we choose to keep too,” he said.

There have been speculations that a new coalition, said to be called Muafakat Nasional or Perikatan Nasional, would be formed to take over from the Pakatan Harapan government which collapsed following the resignation of Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad as prime minister.

Dr Mahathir has been appointed by the Yang di-Petuan Agong as the interim prime minister, pending the appointment of a new premier.

Umno and PAS have been rumoured to be in the new pact which is allegedly trying to court GPS to ensure that they would have enough seats in parliament to form the next government. – Borneo Post