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By Adrian Lim and Nancy Nais
BALAI RINGIN, April 10: The use of the term wilayah Sarawak or region will depend on the outcome of the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) negotiation between the State government and the federal government.
Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg said the use of the term wilayah Sarawak was just a suggestion from Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin during his visit to Kuching early this month.
He noted the formation of Malaysia is referred to the Federation of Malaya Agreement under Article 160(2) of the Federal Constitution while the formation of Malaysia under MA63 consisted of three regions namely Malaya, Sabah and Sarawak and Singapore.
With Singapore exiting Malaysia, he said the Sarawak government had requested the federal government to amend the law in accordance to MA63.
After the recognition of the formation of Malaysia under MA63, Abang Johari explained that only Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution can be amended to say the formation of Malaysia consisted of Malaya, Sabah and Sarawak.
“The other day, the prime minister recognised that Sarawak is different to other states as stipulated under MA63 and it has a large geographical area.
“This is what we have fought for,” he said in his speech during the launching of the earth breaking ceremony of the Balai Ringin mini stadium here today.
Meanwhile, during a press conference, Abang Johari said the actual term of Sarawak region will be determined by the legal expert after the negotiation of MA63 is concluded.
Abang Johari who is also Finance and Economic Planning Minister was responding to a question asked by a reporter on the status of Sarawak being called wilayah Sarawak.
He added the Sarawak government is still in discussion on the rights of Sarawak under MA63 with the federal government.
Among those who were present during the earth breaking ceremony of the Balai Ringin mini stadium were Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing, Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah, Balai Ringin assemblyman Datuk Snowdan Lawan who is also Assistant Youth and Sports Minister and community leaders. — DayakDaily