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LAST_UPDATEThu, 21 Sep 2017 8pm

Sarawakians Have Lost A Great Leader - Abang Johari

KUCHING, Jan 11 (Bernama) -- With the passing of Tan Sri Adenan Satem, the people of Sarawak have lost a chief minister and a leader who could have steered the state to greater heights, said Sarawak Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg.

He said Adenan had collaborated well with the federal government under the leadership of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and at the same time, had fought to win back the rights of the state.

Abang Johari, who announced the news on Adenan's death, said the people had lost someone who had contributed greatly to the state and country.

He said the last time he and fellow Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas met Adenan was yesterday at the Sarawak Heart Centre in Kota Samarahan here.

"Actually, he was quite cheerful when I met him yesterday. I have been with him from 'kampung' (village) days because we were from the same kampung and Adenan was a very bright (person).

"He blended with people from all walks of life. It is great a loss to us, the Sarawakians because he was a very humble person with a lot of ideas," said Abang Johari at a press conference to announce the news on Adenan's passing at the State Operations Room in Wisma Bapa Malaysia Petra Jaya here today.

Also present were Uggah and Sarawak State Secretary Tan Sri Mohd Morshidi Abdul Ghani.

Abang Johari said Adenan would be accorded a state funeral.

His remains would be taken from his residence in Damai Jaya, Santubong to the State Jamek Mosque in Petra Jaya at 10am, before being laid to rest at the Samariang Muslim Cemetery after Zohor prayers, he added.

Meanwhile, Uggah said Sarawak had lost a leader who had fought for the state's rights.

"We were there with him (yesterday). He was jovial, smiling and cheerful. He even asked about the latest gossip in town and joked with us," he said.

Adenan had been scheduled to officiate the Batang Kayan Basin River Corridor Preservation Plan ground-breaking ceremony in Lundu about 100 kilometres away from here last Saturday.

However, Adenan, who had just returned from holidaying in Australia, was replaced by Natural Resources and Environment Minister, Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar.

-- BERNAMA