Equal status: Don’t be contented, continue to fight for Sarawak’s rights, urges SUPP Women chief

Kho Teck Wan

KUCHING, March 9: Sarawak United Peoples’ Party (SUPP) Women chief Kho Teck Wan reminds Sarawakians not to be contented with just the amendment to Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution to restore Sarawak’s status as an equal partner in Malaysia. 

In a statement today, she said the amendment would mean nothing if Sarawak’s eroded rights that are enshrined in the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) were not restored.

She reminded the Pakatan Harapan (PH) federal government of its election promises, which included granting Sarawak 20 per cent oil royalty, to return 50 per cent of tax collected from the state and to return the education and medical autonomies back to Sarawak.

“I would like to remind all Malaysians that the MA63 is an international treaty that was signed by the United Kingdom, Northern Ireland, Federation of Malaya, North Borneo (Sabah) and Sarawak. Therefore, any discrepancy in the federal constitution is a violation of the MA63. Therefore, the amendment is a correction, which in my opinion, shall not need the two-thirds majority in the lower house.

“That being said, since the federal cabinet has decided to table the paper to amend Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution in the coming parliamentary session, I would like to plead for the support of all members of Parliament, irrespective of the political divide, to vote for the amendment.”

She expressed her sincere gratitude toward the Federal Cabinet for the decision to table the proposal to amend Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution to restore Sabah and Sarawak’s status as equal partners in Malaysia at the upcoming parliamentary session.

According to Kho, although Sarawak is an opposition state, she fully supported any move that would restore Sarawak’s status as an equal partner in Malaysia.

She believed that PH’s upsets in the Cameron Highlands and Semenyih by-elections had indirectly helped expedite the amendment of Article 1(2). 

“Three days after the big upset at Semenyih, PH government held the MA63 Steering Committee Meeting, where Sarawak’s representatives headed by Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg were at Putrajaya to discuss Sarawak’s right under the Malaysia Agreement 1963. 

“I think we should thank the voters in Cameron Highlands and Semenyih as well as so many activists who trolled in social media for helping with the Sarawak’s agenda.”— DayakDaily