Taib mum on successor, to meet Head of State this Saturday
Taib (third left) inspects state Rela personnel before officiating at the 42nd anniversary celebration at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching. — Photo by Chimon Upon
KUCHING: Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud did not announce the name of his successor yesterday, but revealed he is meeting Head of State Tun Datuk Patinggi Abang Muhammad Salahuddin on Feb 15.
“Not yet, on the 15th,” he told journalists when asked if he had met Salahuddin to convey his intention to step down as the chief minister of Sarawak after opening the 42nd anniversary celebration of Rela at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching here.
Taib, also state Barisan Nasional chairman, said he looked forward to serving the country in another capacity upon his retirement.
“I look forward to doing something useful for the country, at a leisurely pace,” said Taib.
“There is nothing to worry about. We have to take one step at a time,” he added.
At a press conference later, Home Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said he believed Taib would announce his successor after meeting Salahuddin on Feb 15.
Ahmad Zahid said Barisan Nasional trusted Taib to do what had to be done regarding his retirement.
“It is the prerogative of the chief minister to name his successor as well as to observe and follow protocols. As a component party of Barisan Nasional, Umno respects every decision made by all component parties.
“In this case where PBB is led by the chief minister of Sarawak, a decision has been arrived at within the party, and Umno will respect that.”
When asked about the state election, Ahmad Zahid said it would not be held soon.
“I do not think an election will be held soon as the current term expires in June 2016. Election or no election, we are ready to be mobilised, not just for Sarawak but also the whole country.”
On Sunday, Taib said he would step down by “the end of the month” but added there were protocols to be observed before making an announcement.
“I need to go through a few more steps. I have got to see the governor first. I like to do things in proper sequence,” he told reporters after chairing the state Barisan Nasional meeting at PBB Headquarters at Jalan Bako.
With the term of current Head of State for Salahuddin expiring on Feb 28, PBB supreme council had unanimously recommend Taib to be the next Head of State following his “outstanding sterling contribution” to the state and nation. - theborneopost