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KUCHING, July 30: By proposing a “new deal”, Sarawak Pakatan Harapan (PH) is making the same mistake as those Sarawak lawmakers who agreed to the Petroleum Development Act 1974 (PDA) 44 years ago.
Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak Baru (PBDSB) information chief Bobby William, who made this comment, said state PH chairman Chong Chieng Jen was no longer talking like a Sarawakian.
“Chong is talking as if he is not a Sarawakian anymore. He was willing to compromise Sarawak’s rights by offering a new deal that comes with terms and conditions to the state government,” he said in a statement today.
By virtue of presenting the “new deal”, Chong showed he did not understand the importance of safeguarding Sarawak’s rights, said Bobby.
Describing the new deal as “ridiculous and preposterous”, Bobby believed that by offering 20 per cent oil royalties based on profit while maintaining the current 5 per cent oil royalty, Sarawak PH was actually helping the federal government to keep Sarawak as a state within the Federation of Malaysia.
“Indirectly, Sarawak not only loses its oil royalty but also loses its identity as a sovereign state within the Federation of Malaysia.
“Sarawak PH is making it sound as though the state’s oil and gas resources as well as its sales tax belong to the federal government entirely, which is clearly not at all,” said Bobby, adding that Chong was holding the state “to ransom”.
On a related matter, Bobby opined that the state government’s action to enforce the Oil Mining Ordinance 1954 (OMO) from July 1 this year was “a late one” and the “bad governance” of Barisan Nasional (BN) had led to the rakyat distrusting the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS)-led government.
PH and GPS, he claimed, were playing politics to hoodwink the people and then take advantage of the state’s resources.
“Let’s look at the facts as Sarawakians. Are we requesting for an increased of O&G royalties or the whole enchilada of Sarawak’s autonomous rights under MA63 (the Malaysia Agreement 1963)?
“If we want MA63 to be honoured and respected, as how it was agreed prior to its formation, shouldn’t we just focus on such objectives instead of being influenced by issues that can compromise such focus?” he asked.
Bobby cautioned that by accepting the “new deal” as proposed by Pakatan, it would signify that the current crop of state leaders is weak. — DayakDaily