Abg Jo: GPS election machinery akin to booster shot for facing state election
Posted on : 28 Nov 2021  Source of News: The Borneo Post Online

Abang Johari (centre) leads the singing of GPS song after the. symbolic handing over of flags to leaders of component parties. — Photo by Roystein Emmor

KUCHING (Nov 28): Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) launched its election machinery for the 12th State Election tonight, which according to its chairman Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg, is like a ‘booster shot’ for them to face the battle ahead.

Abang Johari in his speech said that GPS candidates will be fielded in all 82 seats without any seat given to those from outside the alliance.

“Some had asked for seats (from us) but we have decided (on our stand). But if they come in, we go to war (against them).

“You come with ‘bunga satu’, I counter with ‘bunga dua’. Just like in silat. The ‘kuda kuda’ is an important move. For Sarawak, the ‘kuda kuda’ is GPS,” he said at the launch of GPS election machinery at the Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) headquarters tonight.

Abang Johari’s comments were probably referring to Perikatan Nasional (PN) components such as Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) and Parti Islam Se-Malaysia (PAS), which are partners with GPS in the current federal government.

While Bersatu had indiciated it would not take part in the state election, Krian incumbent Datuk Ali Biju is now with the party and is said to be making his rounds in the constituency in a bid to defend the seat.

PAS, which has never won a seat in Sarawak, had yet to make a decision whether to contest or stay out from the state election.

Abang Johari, who is also PBB president, said that several new faces will be fielded by the party and other GPS component parties.

He said that these new faces are younger and potential leaders who will take over the reins one day.

“No, we cannot change all the incumbents. We know what kind of changes are needed. But of course, one day, we (the senior leaders) have to give way to new people,” he said.

He singled out Tebedu incumbent Datuk Amar Michael Manyin, Kalaka incumbent Datuk Wahab Aziz and Stakan incumbent Dato Sri Mohd Ali Mahmud for their bold decisions not to defend their seats but to give way to new faces.

“This is the culture that we have. I also, one day, have to say goodbye but we must fight on.

“The new generation of Sarawak will bring Sarawak from 2030 to 2050,” he said.

He expressed hope that if all component parties can work with the same team spirit, it is possible for GPS to make a clean sweep of the seats.

Abang Johari added that the people in Sarawak want a very stable, and clean, government to continue in the state.

He said that Sarawakians have learned from what happened in Melaka, which had its snap election recently, which saw the voters opting for stability.

He added that Sarawak can be a prosperous state by 2030 under GPS.

Meanwhile, when met by the media after the launch, Abang Johari said that GPS’ election machinery has been ready all this while before being shifted to a higher gear tonight.

“Our machinery was ready before the term of the State Legislative Assembly was supposed to expire in June.

“With the nomination date fixed on Dec 6 and polling on Dec 18, we will now mobilise our machinery,” he said.

Also prsent at the launching ceremony were leaders of GPS components namely Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) deputy president Datuk Joseph Salang, Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP) president Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian and Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) president Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing.

PBB deputy president Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah was mentioned as GPS’s election operations director.