More ‘ayes’ to making S’wak equal partner in Federation


KUCHING: Two Barisan Nasional (BN) leaders see the proposed motion in the Sarawak Assembly on Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution as a timely move.

“We cannot and shouldn’t take it anymore,” said Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) President James Masing. “With the tabling of the motion, it will ‘wake up’ Putrajaya to our rights.”

Sarawak, added Masing, had “enough” of being short-changed by Malaya over the last 53 years.

“The motion to reclaim Sarawak’s rights is timely,” said Masing, who is also deputy chief minister, according to a report in the Borneo Post.

There is a move by Sarawak leaders to restore Article 1(2) to its pre-13 July 1976 position, making Sarawak an equal partner in the federation and not just another state.

Meanwhile PBB Supreme Council Member Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah said in a statement: “Malaysia was formed based on the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) and related constitutional documents. All parties must respect these documents.”

Masing and Abdul Karim were expressing confidence that the opposition would back the motion proposed by Chief Minister Adenan Satem. Two earlier motions, on the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) and oil and gas, were passed unanimously.

Sabah and Sarawak, before the amendment, were equal partners of Malaya in the Federation of Malaysia.

After the amendment, Sabah and Sarawak were placed as the 12th and 13th states in the federation.

The Motion, Karim who is also state assistant minister of housing, said, was not only about MA63 but also the Inter-Governmental Committee Report (IGC) 1962/63 and the Cobbold Commission Report 1962, among others.

He argued it would be wrong to take the position that constitutional documents on Malaysia were no longer relevant with the Federal Constitution in place, according to the Borneo Post report.

The bottom line, he said, was that many of Sarawak’s rights (as those of Sabah) had been eroded over the years.

“This has to be corrected,” summed up Karim. “The proposed motion is the first step,” he was quoted as saying.