It's Sarawak government, not state government, says deputy premier

KUALA LUMPUR: The Sarawak premier is equivalent in federal protocol to the country's deputy prime minister, said Deputy Premier Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian.

He said this was instructed by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim through the federal cabinet and subsequent circulars by the Chief Secretary to the Government to members of the federal civil service.

He said this reflects Sarawak's status in Malaysia since the title "Chief Minister of Sarawak" was changed to "Premier of Sarawak" after its constitutional amendment in February 2022.

Sim said many people had probably missed the subtle changes.

For example, he said, the Sarawak assembly's Hari Raya open house was now call the "Dewan Undangan Sarawak Hari Raya Open House" and not the "Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak (Sarawak state legislative assembly) Open House".

"No longer (is the premier) seated after, at best, (or) behind, at worst, any of the federal ministers in any of the official federal functions.

"Let's be consistent and start with ourselves by not calling Sarawak 'negeri'... so, the term is 'Sarawak government' and not 'Sarawak state government'," he said in a Facebook posting.

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