Sunday, March 24

PBS seeks political partnership with GPS on issues of common interest

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Abang Johari (eighth right) and Ongkili (seventh left) with Uggah (seventh right), Masing (sixth left) and other PBS leaders pose for a group photo. — Photo by Chief Minister’s Office

KUCHING: Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) is seeking to form a political partnership with Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) for a study network on the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).

Its president Datuk Seri Panglima Dr Maximus Johnity Ongkili said this when he led a delegation to pay a courtesy call on Chief Minister who is also GPS chairman Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg yesterday morning to pave the way for such partnership on issues of common interest.

Also present at the meeting held at the Chief Minister’s Office in Wisma Bapa Malaysia here were deputy chief ministers Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah and Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing.

The PBS delegation included deputy presidents Datuk Seri Radin Malleh, Datuk Dr Yee Moh Chai, and Datuk Jamilah Sulaiman, vice presidents Datuk Johnny Mositun, Datuk Almudin Kaida and Datuk Peter Mak, secretary general Datuk Jahid Jahim, information chief Datuk Joniston Bangkuai, Women chief Datuk Anita Baranting, Youth chief Christopher Mandut, and assistant treasurer general Julita Majungki.

The meeting lasted for about an hour where they touched on several key issues that concerned both states.

“We (PBS) are here to strengthen our networking with GPS by exploring and discussing common grounds to pursue ongoing efforts in collaboration and cooperative arrangements as enshrined in the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63),” said Ongkili after the meeting,

During the meeting, he said leaders from both sides also discussed future joint efforts by finding common interests, especially in defending the rights of both states and its people as contained in the MA63.

“A working committee will also be formed between PBS and GPS to review the ground status of MA63, including its historical aspects, as well as the implementation and erosions of the agreement’s contents,” he said.

The committee, he added, would also be reaching out to youths in Sabah and Sarawak through seminars and workshops.

“This is to allow the younger generations be fully informed of the historical aspects of the
MA63, as well as the events that led to the formation of Malaysia,” he said.

Ongkili added that PBS also concurred with Sarawak’s stand on non-negotiable issues such as immigration, land and natural resources.

Just like the former Barisan Nasional (BN) components in Sarawak, PBS had also quit BN after the fall of the coalition in the 14th General Election in May last year.

PBS, Sabah Umno, Parti Solidariti Tanah Airku (STAR) and Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (PBRS) had formed a new coalition called Gabungan Bersatu Sabah on Oct 24 last year.