KOTA KINABALU: Parti Warisan Sabah deputy president Darell Leiking has urged the state government to act like one and not like the opposition when it comes to the state’s rights under the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).
Leiking said all that is left for the state government to do is implement the agreement, just like other matters, because it has the power to do so.
“You’re the government and the implementer and hold two-thirds of the seats in the Sabah legislative assembly,” Leiking said during a Chinese New Year walkabout here today.
“You can easily implement it under Article 8 of MA63 through technical committees.
“Just tell the federal government and the people that MA63 hasn’t been implemented in full.
“There’s no need to put it in their election manifesto like the opposition.”
Leiking was responding to recent statements by BN leaders about the MA63.
Communications and Multimedia Minister Salleh Said Keruak yesterday accused Sabah opposition parties of only championing their own causes based on emotion and not standing up for the rights of Sabahans.
Sabah’s Special Tasks Minister Teo Chee Kang on Wednesday said Sabah is seeking to prioritise two elements in the restoration of its rights and the devolution of powers from the federal government.
He said one of the two elements was the annual special grant due to Sabah, amounting to 40% of the revenue collected by the federal government in the state.
The special grant was provided for under Article 112D of the Federal Constitution, which also stipulates that the amount was subject to the financial position of the federal government and the needs of the state.
The other was the power to regulate the production and distribution of electricity and gas in Sabah, said Teo.
“It’s good that they mentioned these rights, but it’s funny because the government just needs to do it, not announce they’re going to do it,” said Leiking.
“We’ve collected billions of ringgit from Sabah — that’s what a government should announce.
“They should also announce that Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd (SESB) is back with Sabah if they’re really serious about it.”
SESB used to belong fully to the state government before national power company Tenaga Nasional Berhad acquired a controlling stake in the power company.
Leiking, who is also Penampang MP, said the state government has the power to fully implement the rights touched on by Salleh and Teo, just like the federal government did on the good and services tax (GST).
“They implemented the GST without asking the people first. So why can’t they implement MA63 and take over SESB without informing the people? They just did it despite people objecting to it.
“The RCI (Royal Commission of Inquiry on illegal immigrants in Sabah) is the clearest example, which every leader talks about. They talk about it like they’re the opposition. I’m not sure of their status any more.
“They’re not implementing something they can implement without talking about it.”
Leiking insisted that the state government could implement these rights through the legislative assembly.
“Article 8 of MA63 says when rights under it are not implemented, implement them through the state assembly,” said Leiking.
“There’s no need to announce they’re going to do it. They just need to announce this after implementing those rights.”