KUCHING: Petronas has no right to keep the Sarawak government in the dark about the amount of oil and gas reserves in Sarawak, Parti Bumi Kenyalang president Voon Lee Shan said.
He said this following Sarawak Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg’s claim that Petronas had refused to disclose any data or information on the state’s oil and gas reserve to the state government.
“Petronas also has no right to keep the Sarawak government in the dark about the amount of oil and gas pumped or extracted each day.
“Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) should take this as a legitimate excuse to seek exit or declare Sarawak independent from the federation of Malaysia,” Voon said at a press conference here today.
He said the GPS government should know that with “economic suppression and political differences”, international law could allow Sarawak to break away from the federation.
“Sarawak can do this by unilateral declaration of independence (UDI), similar to Kosovo from Serbia in 2008,” he said.
Voon said the exploitation of the state’s oil and gas resources by the federal government through Petronas had “cut” into the hearts of every Sarawakian.
He urged the GPS government to not negotiate, discuss or raise this matter with Putrajaya any longer but to call for an emergency state assembly sitting to declare Sarawak independent with immediate effect.
Voon, a practicing lawyer, said all laws passed by Parliament to shift the continental shelf or coastlines of Sarawak for the purpose of allowing Petronas to take Sarawak’s oil and gas were against international law.
“Any territorial shift is an infringement of the international law which states that an existing boundary of a colony or country merging with another cannot be changed.
“The passing of the Sea Territorial Act 2012 and the Continental Shelf Act 1966, including the Petroleum Development Act 1974, not being ratified by the state legislature is also unconstitutional,” he said.
Voon said the spirit and purpose of Malaysia, which was supposed to be founded on equal rights, equal status and equal partnership, were not present.
“Malaysia is not a new nation but is, according to the records in the United Nations, a country called Malaya which on Sept 16, 1963 took a new name after Singapore, Sabah and Sarawak became part of the territory of Malaya.
“Malaysia’s first premier Tunku Abdul Rahman had mentioned in a book titled ‘Conversations with Tunku Abdul Rahman’ written by Tan Sri Abdullah Ahmad that Sabah and Sarawak were ‘gifts’ by Britain to Malaya,” he said.
Voon said it was not the Borneo founding fathers’ intention on the formation of Malaysia to see Sabah and Sarawak become “Malaya’s colony”.