KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 27 — Political parties from Sabah and Sarawak have expressed hope that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim could consider their representatives for the post of deputy prime minister.
While both Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) and Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) said it was up to the discretion of the prime minister, they had requested that more of their MPs be involved in the Cabinet.
GPS secretary-general Datuk Seri Alexander Nanta Linggi said although appointments are the prerogative of the prime minister, it should be noted that there have not been many Sarawakian representatives in the Cabinet.
In fact, he said, representatives from Sarawak should not be reduced even if the Cabinet is smaller for the good of the vast state with its people of many races and religions.
“However, if it is done like Pakatan Harapan (PH), which ruled for 22 months with one minister and one deputy minister, that is not right. We are a big state. It cannot be like that.
“If we want to reduce the size of the Cabinet, but there are fewer of us, it might not be good for Sarawak because we need a lot of attention, and if we are included, let it be as part of the ministries that are meaningful to us, such as those related to development, rural areas or public works,” he told Mingguan Malaysia when contacted yesterday.
According to Alexander, Sarawak had four representatives in the Cabinet before, so this time, it is hoped that there will be no fewer than that.
Meanwhile, GRS information chief Datuk Joniston Bangkuai said that his party did not reject the idea of a smaller Cabinet, but the important thing was that representatives from Sabah and Sarawak should be considered because the participation of representatives from those two states in the Cabinet ranks has been very low for a long time.
“As for the deputy prime minister, Sabah would also like to have a deputy prime minister from Sabah, but ultimately that is the prime minister’s prerogative,” he said.