Sarawak's deputy chief minister dies from Covid-19

SIBU (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) – Sarawak’s deputy chief minister has died after being infected with Covid-19.

Tan Sri James Masing, who was admitted to Normah Sarawak Medical Centre, Petra Jaya, on Sept 28, died at around 7am on Sunday morning (Oct 31).

He was 72.

Mr Masing, who was also Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) president, had received two doses of the vaccine.

On Sept 28, Mr Masing had said on Facebook that he had Covid-19 and was experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, loss of appetite and water in his lungs but was coping well.

Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob said in a statement on Sunday: “His passing is a great loss to Sarawak and the country. He was people-oriented, far-sighted and principled.”

He said the services and sacrifices of the late Mr Masing for the people would always be remembered.

“On behalf of the government and all Malaysians, I extend my condolences to the family of the deceased and wish them the strength and patience to face this sad moment,” he said.

Former deputy information, communications and culture minister Joseph Salang will be the acting president of PRS.

Mr Salang – who was the party’s deputy president – said he will assume the role of the acting president until the party formed a new committee at its annual general meeting (AGM).

“Our supreme council will decide when to hold the AGM but it will be after the state election. In the meantime, as the deputy president, I will take charge,” he said.

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