Equal status: PBB leader hopes Sarawak can reclaim its eroded rights, too

Dato Idris Buang

By Lian Cheng

KUCHING, March 9: Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) information chief Datuk Idris Buang hopes the recognition of Sarawak’s status by the federal government will pave the way for more restoration of Sarawak’s eroded rights.

He said the legal representative team was continuing with their pursuit for the return of Sarawak’s sovereignty, including Sarawak’s rights to its natural resources on land and sea or continental shelf as well as Sarawak’s financial entitlements.


“Well, this restoration of Sarawak and Sabah equal partner-status will, hopefully, pave for more restorations of our eroded rights to the positions we had under the spirit of MA63 (Malaysia Agreement 1963).

“A litany of things had been presented by our YAB Chief Minister (Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg) and his Sarawak delegation (which incorporated the views of the Sarawak State Assembly (DUN) Consultative Committee, made up of the members from both political divide) to the Steering Committee (or Special Cabinet Committee to Review MA63, Pemandu), which were further resounded and enhanced by our Sarawak Technical Committee team at a more detailed level.

“This includes our firm stance on keeping our rights, inter alia to Sarawak land, continental shelf, all our natural resources and our sovereign rights thereto and most importantly our sovereignty thereof as non-negotiable while advancing our claims for better services and treatment for all things like education, healthcare and health facilities, various types of financial grants and plenty more under the Federal List that have been slackened or neglected but constitutionally required by the Federal Government to fulfil and deliver to Sarawak and Sabah,” Idris told DayakDaily today.

He was responding to the announcement by de facto Law Minister Datuk Liew Vui Keong yesterday that the federal cabinet had agreed to amend Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution to restore the status of Sarawak and Sabah as equal partners with Peninsular Malaysia.

He said the decision to amend the constitution was reached at the Cabinet meeting last Wednesday.

Idris said Sarawak welcomed the latest attempt of the federal government.

“It is heartening to know of the federal government’s positive stance on the matter. Sarawakians surely welcome it as a good start in our journey to get back our eroded rights.

“This amendment, I hope, will in effect reinstate the original wordings of the said Article 1(2) as it was before the 1976 amendment, which invariably put us as a territory or region and not “a state”, a status of being a partner to the MA63 in forming Malaysia,” said Idris.

He praised Abang Johari for the latter’s astuteness and exemplary leadership in continuously spearheading Sarawak in this quest with passion and perseverance.— DayakDaily