Quickly honour Malaysia Agreement, Sarawak premier tells Putrajaya

·2-min read
Malay Mail
Malay Mail

SIBU, July 22 — Sarawak Premier Tan Sri Abang Johari Openg urged the federal government tonight to swiftly honour the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) in its entirety, in the spirit of Keluarga Malaysia.

He said some of Sarawak’s existing rights and privileges enshrined in MA63 have either been eroded or yet to be honoured after 59 years.

The premier called the MA63 a sacred agreement that cannot be changed or diluted in any way and in whatever form.

“What our Sarawak leaders had included then as provisions in the agreement as part of Malaysia were what they considered as necessary to protect the rights and interests of Sarawak and its people during their time, during our time and after our time,” he said at the Sarawak Day celebration at the Indoor Stadium here.

“For instance, our rights as embodied in the Oil Mining Ordinance 1958 (OMO 1958) obviously existed before 1963, was never repealed, and shall always be enforced, and thus giving us the power over our onshore petroleum resources.” The premier said Parliament recently passed amendments to recognise MA63 as fundamental to the constitutional relationship between the parties forming Malaysia and the equal status of the parties.

He said a suggestion by a federal politician for MA63 to be changed should not have been made at all.

He noted that the events leading to the surrender of power of self-government to Sarawak on July 22, 1963 followed by the formation of Malaysia on September 16, 1963 based on MA63.

He said agreement signed by Britain, Federation of Malaya, Sarawak, Sabah (North Borneo) and Singapore was a foundation on the formation of Malaysia which was recognised by the United Nations.

Singapore was later expelled from the Federation of Malaysia.

Abang Johari gave his assurance that the state government is committed to continuing efforts to safeguard and reclaim the state’s rights, to ensure that MA63 is respected and implemented as originally agreed.

“As the head of the Sarawak government, I call on the federal government to facilitate the next consultation on MA63 for the good of the country as a whole,” he said.

Among those attended the Sarawak Day celebration were the Governor Tun Abdul Taib Mahmud, state and federal ministers, Speaker Tan Sri Asfia Awang Nasar, and Sarawak Secretary Datuk Sri Mohamad Abu Bakar Marzuki.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting