KUCHING, Sept 17: Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak Baru (PBDSB) president Cobbold John says Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s promise to accord Sarawak and Sabah equal status is just repeating what has been said previously by former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
Cobbold cautioned Sarawakians not to get too excited about Dr Mahathir’s promise which he announced during the Malaysia Day celebration held in Kota Kinabalu on Sunday.
“What Dr Mahathir told Sarawakians and Sabahans in Kota Kinabalu yesterday is merely a repeat of what his predecessor Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak had often said each time he visited Sarawak or Sabah.
“Therefore, there is no need for us to expect too much from Dr Mahathir’s assurance otherwise we will all be disappointed,” said Cobbold in a statement today.
As he believed that the promise made by Dr Mahathir was merely rhetoric, he urged all Sarawakians to continue reminding the federal government to return Sarawak’s rights.
“That is why I urge all of us not to be too optimistic with what the prime minister had told us, but at the same time, we must continue to remind the federal government to return back our rights of equal status to Malaya.
“When we formed Malaysia in 1963, we were on the same level with Malaya and Sabah when our forefathers signed the Malaysia Agreement. But because the federal government under Najib’s father, Tun Razak Hussein, amended Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution in 1976, the status of Sarawak and Sabah was downgraded to be among the states in Malaysia.”
He said what Sarawakians and Sabahans want is for the amendment of Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution to revert Sarawak and Sabah back to their original positions.
“This can be done by tabling an amendment to the Federal Constitution in the coming sitting of the Dewan Rakyat.”
He said with the support of UMNO MPs, he was confident that the required two-thirds majority will be met to amend the constitution. — DayakDaily