Abang Johari (seated centre) seen speaking to reporters at a jetty located near the Dataran Ibu Pertiwi today. Also seen are Uggah (seated left), Sim (seated right), Abdul Karim (standing first row, third left) and other officials.

KUCHING (Jan 1): Sarawak Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg has expressed his bewilderment at being mentioned in recent media reports concerning the alleged ‘Dubai Move’, calling the so-called move “a waste of time”.

Abang Johari said like many Sarawakians, he only learned of the alleged plot to topple the unity government through various media reports.

“This so-called move is just a waste of time. We are now just focussed on wanting a good economy through a stable government.

“I see the media mentioning my name when reporting about the Dubai Move. How could my name be mentioned in the reports when I myself found out about it through the media?” he told reporters during a press conference today.

He was responding to queries after reports regarding the alleged Dubai Move also mentioned that one of the plans of the so-called move was to make him a prime minister.

In questioning the idea of him becoming prime minister, Abang Johari emphasised the importance of recognising one’s ability.

“Before wanting to become prime minister, I should know well to ‘ukur baju di badan sendiri’. How can I become prime minister?”

The alleged Dubai Move gained attention through Malaysian media outlets, which reported claims of a secret meeting to strategise and assign tasks to ‘agents’ to identify MPs who might be persuaded to switch support to the opposition, with the ultimate goal of forming a backdoor government.

Commenting further, Abang Johari said that if such a plot did indeed exist, Sarawak is not interested in being part of it because a move like that would further destabilise the country.

“We are not interested in being involved in any sort of move because we just want to see a stable federal government. Our concern now is that we want a stable federal government.

“By sticking with the current government, we are contributing to a stable Malaysian government. Our country will not do well economically if the government continues to be unstable,” he said.

According to the reports, Gabungan Parti Sarawak backbone Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu was purportedly offered the Prime Minister post, coupled with a promise of greater autonomy, including up to 20 per cent of oil revenue royalties for Sarawak.

The speculation surrounding the alleged Dubai Move emerged as certain opposition leaders reportedly met with government officials during their recent stay in the capital city of the United Arab Emirates.

Prior to the press conference, Abang Johari visited Dataran Ibu Pertiwi, where the tallest flagpole in Southeast Asia is situated, together with his deputies Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas, Datuk Amar Dr Sim Kui Hian, and Tourism, Creative Industry and Performing Arts Minister Dato Sri Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah, among others.

During his visit, the Premier was briefed by the contractors and took time to visit every corner of the square.