SUPP delegates, invited guests and others at the closing ceremony. – Photo by Muhammad Rais Sanusi

KUCHING (Oct 18): Sarawak United Peoples’ Party (SUPP) fully supports Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) chairman Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg to lead the state’s ruling coalition into the 12th State Election and continue as the Chief Minister.

Its president Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian said today that this was one of the six resolutions adopted at the party’s annual delegates’ conference held yesterday.

He said another resolution urged the state government to use the RM3.18 billion revenue collected from last year’s State Sales Tax (SST) on petroleum products to give a one-off payment of RM500 to all Sarawakians.

“We urge Sarawak government to use the revenue to set up a special trust fund for human resource development to help our future generations in skill training, technology research and business development.

“We also urge Sarawak government to use the revenue to set up a Sarawakian Sovereign Fund to ensure that the future generations will continue to benefit from oil and gas revenues even after the depletion of our oil and gas resources,” he said before Abang Johari closed the SUPP Special Convention 2020 at the party’s headquarters here.

In a response later, Abang Johari said he supported the idea of setting up a sovereign fund for the benefits of young Sarawakians.

Dr Sim said SUPP also appealed to the state government to approve conversion of leasehold residential and commercial land to freehold throughout Sarawak without payment of any additional premium.

In light of the Covid-19 pandemic, SUPP also urged the Sarawak government to provide free Covid-19 vaccines to all Sarawakians when such vaccines are available.

Another resolution called upon the state government to build at least 5,000 units of affordable houses every year to benefit the B40 and M40 groups, pointed out Dr Sim.

He added that the Sarawak government should also provide financial assistance for first-time home buyers.

“Sarawak government must continue to pursue the restoration of Sarawak’s rights stated in MA63 (Malaysia Agreement 1963) including Sarawak’s health and education autonomy,” he said.

Dr Sim said Sarawak was lucky to have Abang Johari, who has over 40 years of experience, to lead the state after former chief minister Pehin Sri Adenan Satem passed away in January 2017.

He lauded Abang Johari for getting the four GPS component parties – SUPP, Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB), Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) and Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) together days after the 2018 general elections when Barisan Nasional (BN) lost Putrajaya.

“We thank Abang Johari for his quick action to set us free from national coalition and started our own Sarawak coalition, GPS, allowing us to pursue what Adenan started with greater freedom for Sarawak First,” added Dr Sim.