KUCHING, Sept 9 — Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP) president Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian has confirmed that Serian MP Datuk Seri Richard Riot Jaem will be contesting in the 15th General Election (GE15).

However, Dr Sim, who is also Sarawak deputy premier, did not reveal whether Richard would be defending the Serian seat or not.

He added that SUPP would not be fielding state assemblymen from the party to contest at the Parliamentary level in GE15, to make way for new faces.

“The total number of seats to be contested by Gabungan Parti Sarawak in GE15 is 31, and seven of them are SUPP seats. Richard is a definite candidate, while the other six are young faces.

“We also do not want to be like (members of) the opposition, who have become assemblymen but want to compete for Parliamentary seats as well. Double the salary but work only once, that’s not healthy and no chance for us to groom younger people,” he said.

He was speaking to reporters after the “Lantern of Unity” ceremony organised by Wanita SUPP at the Kuching South City Council Park tonight.

Previously, the media reported that Riot, 71 — who has been Serian MP since 1990 — said the decision on whether he would defend the seat was left to Sarawak Premier Tan Sri Abang Johari Openg. — Bernama