Anwar mobilises Plan B by courting potential Borneo allies
AS voices of discontent for UMNO president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to call off a possible Barisan Nasional (BN) pact with Pakatan Harapan (PH) grows louder after caretaker prime minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob having joined the fray, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim is taking no chances by reaching out to Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) to be part of PH’s unity government plan.
(Focus Malaysia) – At a glance, Anwar’s invitation could not have come at a better time for GPS chairman Tan Sri Abang Johari Openg who himself has been facing a backlash for wanting to join forces with the PAS-dominant Perikatan Nasional (PN).
But with time running out – the Yang di-Pertuan Agong has extended by 24 hours till 2pm today (Nov 22) for the Malaysian 10th PM hopeful to get his house in order so to speak – one wonders if the Sarawak Premier who knows pretty well that his coalition is in a GE15 kingmaker position will be contented with just a deputy premiership post at best.
Last night (Nov 21), Anwar told The Vibes that he has deliberated to Abang Johari why aligning GPS with PH would spell a better option for Sarawak as opposed to PN.
“Yes, I reached out to Abang Johari through our trusted representatives and explained why we are better partners for Sarawak and also Sabah,” the PKR chairman told the news portal briefly when contacted.
“We have a deep respect for Sarawak and its people and we understand their struggles and needs. Sarawak and Sabah just want to be treated fairly and PH can offer that.”
While sorting out their differences could be a headache of sorts, Abang Johari will now have to consider the religious sentiment and sensitivity of Sarawakians given that the state boasts the highest number of Christians in the whole of Malaysia with some data claiming Christians make up an estimated 50% of the state’s population.
Even as PAS secretary-general Takiyuddin Hassan has assured that his party would not implement measures that oppress non-Muslims in Sabah and Sarawak if it were to become part of the new federal government, Sarawakians are unlikely to treat that as music to their ears given the tendency of the Islamist party to flip-flop on its words and policies.