Sarawak BN parties expected to stick together

KUCHING: The Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PPB) supreme council will meet for the first time since the May 9 election on Wednesday, with its top leaders told to attend the meeting chaired by Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg.

According to Abang Johari, who is also the state BN chairman, the meeting is to allow BN to strategise its new role as the opposition following the fall of the BN federal government last week.

The four BN components in Sarawak are expected to stick together despite the coalition’s disastrous election outing in which it lost seven of the 26 parliamentary seats won in 2013.

Two PBB ministers have already quashed speculation that the party will cross over to Pakatan Harapan, saying it is still the backbone of the state BN government with a clear two-thirds majority.

This came after Sarawak PH chairman Chong Chieng Jen rubbished talk of a possible PBB-PH collaboration following a meeting between newly minted Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Sarawak governor Abdul Taib Mahmud last Friday.

A top leader of a state BN party said he expected the four BN components to stick together and play the role of a responsible opposition.

“We are a disciplined group of people. We might have lost the federal government but we are still in control in the state. It is important that we stick together as one and move together as one,” he told FMT.

“This is politics. You cannot win all the time. Losing an election is part of the democratic process. We have to accept defeat graciously and move on.”

Last week, the chief minister himself said Sarawak BN would remain in the coalition and would not cross over to PH.

Abang Johari’s decision is expected to receive the consensus of state BN components PBB, PRS, SUPP and PDP.