KUCHING: Great expectations and hopes are expected from the new Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob for fairness and justice to be practiced, as well as extended, to Sarawak and Sabah.
Datuk Peter Minos stated that the two regions have been long neglected and almost taken for granted.
In saying this, the political observer noted that Ismail Sabri should appoint a deputy prime minister from Sarawak and Sabah respectively.
He said this in support of Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) vice-president Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah who openly called for the appointment of a deputy prime minister from Sabah and Sarawak.
“The deputy prime minister should preferably be from the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) with it being the biggest political group with 18 MPs fully siding with the ruling Perikatan Nasional (PN) side for Ismail Sabri to be the prime minister.
“GPS can be said as the real arbitrator in determining as to whether PN or Pakatan Harapan (PH) is the federal government or otherwise. GPS is not part of PN, but it is friendly, considerate and thoughtful towards PN for good valid reasons,” he said yesterday (Aug 24).
At the same time, Minos pointed out that the deputy prime minister from Sabah and Sarawak must also be given a portfolio pertaining to rural development or works and utilities.
He said the positions will enable the deputy prime minister to help Sabah and Sarawak to some extent; on top of helping the nation.
“It is public knowledge that both Sabah and Sarawak are far behind if compared to Peninsular Malaysia in all areas and aspects. We also know that Malaysia’s incomes and revenues come substantially from oil and gas, much of which originated from both states.
“If Sabah and Sarawak are given only extra power through a deputy prime minister but not with extra funding coming up, this is not acceptable and can even be a disappointment,” he said.
He also said that the deputy prime minister must also be given more funds from the federal government’s annual budget for development as the previous years were grossly low and unfair.
“Imagine Sabah and Sarawak getting less than the other states. To think that both states (Sabah and Sarawak) combined are bigger than Peninsular Malaysia — this is not fair and is a sore point that must be addressed.
“Both states must be treated as regions and equally with the others by always remembering that the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) was signed between Sarawak, Sabah, and Malaya,” he added.