By Stephen Winfred
KUCHING: Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) president and long-serving Sarawak Chief Minister Taib Mahmud is expected to lead the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) in the Sarawak state election but relinquish his government and party posts after the polls.
Party sources close to the top leadership also revealed that Taib, who had helmed the state since 1981, has hand-picked former Natural Resources and Environment Federal Minister Adenan Satem as his successor.
“The matter was revealed to the party supreme council at its meeting on Sunday. All the supreme council members have sworn to keep the matter a secret until the time is right for an announcement to be made,” a source told FMT.
Most supreme council members in the meeting, the source said feel that Taib should lead the BN at the next state election as they are worried that his premature departure could destablise PBB as well as reduce support for the coalition.
Sources also said Taib had personally briefed the party supreme council members on Sunday on his succession plan, where he mentioned that Adenan would take the helm as chief minister after the state polls.
No clue on Balingian seat
“However, Taib never mentioned if he would defend his Balingian state seat at the election but he agreed to lead the state BN into the election,” the source said.
None of the supreme council members were willing to comment on the matter except to declare their undivided support for Taib to lead the state and the party for the time being.
In the past, Taib had eyed a number of PBB leaders as “potentials” to take over from him and they included the late Dr Sulaiman Daud, Effendi Norwawi, Bujang Ulis, Abang Abu Bakar Mustapha and also Adenan.
However, almost all of them had disappeared into political oblivion, for a number of reasons. Some were said to be impatient, while others just gave up waiting.Read more here