Better for Sarawak to stay neutral, says PBB man

PBB information chief Idris Buang (left) says Sarawak Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg should decide on the ‘best direction to take’.

KUCHING: A senior PBB member says the ruling Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) state coalition should maintain a neutral stance and not join any new federal coalition.

PBB information chief Idris Buang said GPS should “remain independent and be a master of our own fate”.

“We should not be part of the federal government but we must work with them for the best interest of the state,” Idris told FMT.

PBB (Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu) is the dominant partner in the ruling GPS state coalition.

There had been speculation that GPS may join a new federal coalition comprising Umno, PAS, MCA, MIC and a breakaway PKR faction, which has come to be known in the media as Pakatan Nasional,

Idris, who is assemblyman for Muara Tuang, said Sarawakians should not be subjected to a “Malayan-based party” like they used to under the Barisan Nasional (BN) government.

“We want to be respected as an independent force that fights for Sarawak’s lost and trampled rights,” he said.

He said Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg had been mandated by GPS leaders to decide “the best direction to take” bearing in mind Sarawak’s interests.

Yesterday, it was reported that GPS leaders led by Abang Johari had met with MPs from the state at a hotel in Kuala Lumpur, and that they were later joined by Sabah Chief Minister Shafie Apdal.

The outcome of the meeting was unclear as both leaders remained tight-lipped.

The two chief ministers were also believed to have been granted an audience by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong at Istana Negara later in the evening.

A press conference scheduled to be held by Abang Johari at the PBB headquarters here at 5pm tomorrow has been “postponed until further advice”.