KUCHING: Barisan Nasional is targeting victory in 28 of the 31 parliamentary seats in Sarawak in the general election.
Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg said the state Barisan aimed to wrest three seats from Pakatan Harapan in addition to defending the seats it now held.
“We want to retain our 25 seats and increase that number to 28. With the support and enthusiasm of Barisan Youth members as the frontline campaigners, we can work to ensure victory for Barisan,” he said when launching the state Barisan Youth’s election machinery yesterday.
However, he did not name the seats that Barisan could wrest from the Opposition.
In the 2013 election, Bandar Kuching, Stampin, Sarikei, Sibu and Lanang went to DAP and Miri to PKR. All are urban Chinese-majority seats.
Abang Johari, who is state Barisan chairman, said a strong victory for Barisan would give Sarawak the bargaining power to claim its rights under the Malaysia Agreement.
He chided Opposition leaders from the peninsula who tried to “teach” Sarawak what to do with state rights, accusing them of only “knowing how to talk”.
“We know what we want to do and we can work together with Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak,” he said.
He said the state Barisan was ready for the polls and waiting for the signal from Najib.
“When the Barisan chairman beats the gong, we will swing into action. We have to work hard so we can take back the lost seats,” he said.
Abang Johari also said the state government planned to transform Sarawak into the most developed state in Malaysia by 2030.
“Sarawak has a bright future. We have natural resources and young people who are well-versed in technology. Let us have a stable government. All the races in Sarawak will work together as a family,” he said.