Sarawak seeks to restore 1963 position

The Sarawak government will table a motion at the upcoming state legislative assembly meeting to restore the state’s rights and status to its position in 1963.


Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem said the motion would cover “all aspects” of Sarawak’s rights under the Malaysia Agreement, Malaysia Act, Inter-Governmental Committee Report and Cobbold Commission.

He said this included seeking to reverse the 1976 amendment to Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution, which downgraded Sarawak’s status from an equal partner in Malaysia to one of 13 states.

“It will be a comprehensive motion to bring us back to the status that we occupied in 1963. The Constitution originally says that the states of Malaysia are (a) the states of West Malaysia, (b) Sabah and Sarawak and (c) Singapore. Of course, Singapore doesn’t apply anymore.

“But they changed that in 1976 to say that the states of Malaysia are the states of West Malaysia and Sabah and Sarawak as the 12th and 13th states. We want to change this back to what it originally was,” he told reporters after witnessing a contract signing ceremony between Sarawak Shell Bhd and state-owned Brooke Dockyard and Engineering Works Corporation here yesterday.

The motion, to be tabled by one of the state ministers, will also touch on federal legislation which encroaches on the state’s rights.

This includes the Territorial Sea Act 2012, which limits the state’s jurisdiction to only three nautical miles from the coastline.

Adenan also dismissed the call by Sarawak DAP chairman Chong Chieng Jen for the state Barisan Nasional to withdraw from the coalition if its demands were not met.

“That is his opinion, which is always contrary to ours. It is nothing new,” he said.

The state assembly will meet from Nov 21 to 30.



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