Respect us, Abdul Karim tells PN

Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sport Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah speaking to the media at a press conference at Baitul Makmur 2 in Petra Jaya, Kuching. Photo: Mohd Alif Noni

KUCHING: Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah has urged Perikatan Nasional (PN) Sarawak not to split the state up.

The Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) vice-president said Sarawak PN and other Peninsular-based political parties must learn from Umno in respecting that the state wants to be governed by a local party.

He was commenting on Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) Sarawak chief Senator Jaziri Alkaf Abdillah Suffian’s statement that PN’s presence in Sarawak was to strengthen Gabungan Parti Sarawak’s (GPS) position.

“We cannot deny that any registered political party in Malaysia’s democracy system has the right to expand anywhere in the country. However, Sarawak PN must realise and understand that Sarawakians’ wants and needs can only be understood by their own people.

“The people want to be on their own and to have a Sarawak party looking after the state. This is why GPS was formed,” he said on Tuesday (Sept 21).

Abdul Karim reminded that GPS was not part of PN and vice versa, although they were friendly and supportive of each other.

In saying this, he pointed out that GPS had vouched support for PN in the formation of the Malaysian government for the sake of stability.

“Even though in Parliament we are friendly and supportive of PN, it does not mean that we are part of them. The formation of the Malaysian government before this was based on PN+GPS and it is not PN inside GPS, but we are partners.

“We were supportive because the country needed stability, however it does not mean that in Sarawak we are going to accept the party just like that.”

Abdul Karim said the likes of PN and Bersatu must learn from Umno as despite all these years and out of all the states in Malaysia, Umno was not present in Sarawak. 

“You can be our friend but the moment the state election is near and you suddenly start setting up liaison office here and there, we will become suspicious. What do you want?

“After this, are you going to tell us that you want some seats here? Learn from Umno, we respect them because they respect us.”