Pakatan did not court us, says Abang Johari

GABUNGAN Parti Sarawak (GPS) chief Datuk Abang Johari Openg said he has not been courted to support opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim as prime minister.

The Sarawak chief minister told The Star that neither Anwar nor Pakatan Harapan reached out to him.

He said this after a meeting of GPS leaders at the state assembly complex in Kuching earlier today.

Abang Johari refused to disclose GPS’ prime minister pick, only saying that the choice is unanimous.

The meeting came ahead of the 4pm deadline set by Istana Negara for MPs to submit statutory declarations naming their prime minister of choice.

Present were Deputy Chief Ministers Datuk Douglas Uggah Embas, Datuk Awang Tengah Ali Hasan and Tan Sri James Masing, and Sarawak United Peoples’ Party president Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian.

“I cannot reveal (the name), I cannot pre-empt the Yang di-Pertuan Agong,” said Abang Johari.

Meanwhile, Santubong MP Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar told Free Malaysia Today that GPS will back Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob as prime minister.

“We have agreed in principle to support Ismail Sabri as prime minister, but our SDs will be dispatched only after our GPS meeting this afternoon.”

Sources in a GPS component party earlier told The Vibes that the state ruling coalition, with 18 MPs, will not back Anwar for the top job.

“All this while, GPS has made known its stance that it is friendly to the Perikatan Nasional coalition.

“Ismail Sabri, who is from Umno, was part of the PN government, so GPS will support him as the candidate for the PM post.

“Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg is not going to rock the boat, and so GPS will not support Anwar.”

Sarawak has a total of 31 parliamentary seats.