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Datuk Joseph Salang Gandum speaks to reporters outside Masing’s residence. — Borneo Post pic
Datuk Joseph Salang Gandum speaks to reporters outside Masing’s residence. — Borneo Post pic

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KUCHING, Oct 31 — Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) supreme council had placed the task on Baleh division to recommend an election candidate to replace its incumbent assemblyman and PRS president Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing, who passed away today.

PRS deputy president Datuk Joseph Salang Gandum said the council in its meeting today had asked the Baleh division office-bearers to meet as soon as possible to come up with their decision as part of their preparation to face the coming 12th Sarawak state election. 

“Before this, we actually decided to retain all our incumbents for the coming election and the party (before this) have done all the preparatory works to defend Baleh seat and now our task is to select the most suitable candidate for the seat (following Masing’s demise),” he said.

He told reporters after chairing the PRS supreme council meeting at its headquarters here to discuss several matters including the funeral arrangement for Masing who passed away this morning at Normah Sarawak Medical Centre here.

“We may not have other opportunities to group all our supreme council members before the election and today we discussed among ourselves what we had actually resolved all along with the late Tan Sri (Masing before his demise),” he told reporters after the meeting. 

Apart from the Baleh seat which Masing had held for eight terms since 1983, the other 10 state seats currently occupied by PRS are Balai Ringin, Bukit Begunan, Batang Ai, Ngemah, Pelagus, Belaga, Murum, Tamin, Samalaju and Kakus.  

Meanwhile, Salang said as the deputy president of PRS, he had no choice but to abide by the party’s constitution to assume the leadership role of the party following the passing of Masing as the president, as the party’s election would only be held after the state election. — Bernama

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