Ex-reps setting up legal team to help Sarawak reclaim its petroleum rights

Ng (right) and Voon holding Malaysia Agreement 1963 and Inter-Governmental Committee documents.

KUCHING, June 30: Former Padungan assemblyman Dominique Ng today announced that he and former Batu Lintang assemblyman Voon Lee Shan are assembling a legal team to assist the Sarawak government reclaim its rights over petroleum from Petronas.

He claimed five to six lawyers had already agreed to join this team, which will work with the state legal team on this matter.

“I would also like to inform that after a discussion with fellow Sarawakians, those who are in Sarawak and those who are overseas (that), I have been tasked to form a legal team.

“And now, I’m in the midst of forming a legal team of fellow Sarawakians who are lawyers to study this matter (and) to take it to the next level,” Ng told a press conference here today.

Asked to comment on the role of Petroleum Sarawak Berhad (Petros), Ng said he was doubtful how Petros would charge Petronas licensing fees effective tomorrow.

“Certainty (the setting up of) Petros is a small step in the right direction in asserting our rights on Oil Mining Ordinance (OMO) 1958, but I really doubt it can go as far as we really hope for and as all Sarawakians hope for,” he said.

Meanwhile, Ng claimed that Petronas earned about RM65 billion from gas and RM45 billion from oil extracted from Sarawak last year.

Asked whether the federal government should start paying Sarawak 20 per cent oil royalty as promised, Ng replied, “I have no confidence in the Pakatan (Harapan) government fulfilling its pledges to Sarawak, unless somehow we force their hands.

“When the federal government is so used to get 95 per cent of what we own for 40 over years, do you think they will happily return it to us without a fight?” he asked.

Ng added that the state was also facing a dilemma in its fight against Petronas and the federal government because several past leaders of Sarawak were “complicit” for signing off the state’s oil rights under the Petroleum Development Act (PDA) 1974 for perpetuity.

Present at the press conference were Voon and S4S members. — DayakDaily