KUCHING, July 22: Sarawak for Sarawakians (S4S) put forth four demands to the Sarawak government during its 722 Gathering at Padang Merdeka this morning.
One of its organisers and speakers, Hanim Jaraee, revealed these demands to the gathering of about 1,000 at about 10am.
The first demand was 100 per cent autonomy to be returned to Sarawak.
“We are an equal partner to Malaya, not one of the 13 states. We ask for the return of 100 per cent autonomy to Sarawak,” said Hanim.
The second demand was for the Sarawak government to deny the implementation of 16 per cent Sales and Services Tax (SST).
“We demand Sarawak deny the 16 per cent SST to be implemented in Sarawak. Our people are already very poor, and we don’t want to be taxed further,” said Hanim.
Thirdly, S4S demands for 100 per cent of oil and gas royalties, not 20 per cent.
“We want to own 100 per cent of our oil and gas, not 20 per cent of profit sharing. We refuse 20 per cent (oil and gas) and 16 per cent SST.”
The fourth demand was for the Sarawak government to exercise its rights of referendum and to enact a new ordinance to protect Sarawak’s rights and constitution.
Hanim further urged the state government not to surrender its sovereignty to others.
“Don’t surrender our sovereignty. Kamek anak Sarawak (I am a Sarawakian). Don’t look down on ourselves. We were born here.”
“Today we hoisted our crown flag, which is when Sarawak originated. It should not be erased from our history. It cannot be taken from us. And we cannot keep quiet,” said Hanim.
The participants gathered at the Reservoir Park car park early this morning before marching to Padang Merdeka, accompanied by a convoy of about 30 Vespa scooters.
At Padang Merdeka, the Sarawak Anthem was sung and the State Flag was hoisted. Following that, Fair Land Sarawak, the former State Anthem, was sung while the Crown Flag was raised.
The gathering later chanted slogans such as ‘Petronas, out of Sarawak’, ‘Sarawak sokong Sarawak’ (Sarawak support Sarawak), ‘NCR’ (native cosutomary rights0, ‘PPBM, No’ (Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia, No), ‘Dun Spero Spiro’ and ‘Agi Idup Agi Ngalaban’.
There were also several short speeches before the gathering dispersed.
At about 11am, a convoy of motorcycles and cars from another rally jointly organised by Sarawak Anak Solidarity (SAS) and other non-governmental organisations (NGOs) arrived at Padang Merdeka before proceeding to Bau for their own 722 Celebration in Bau today. — DayakDaily