KUCHING: Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg should hold public discussions on the documents that the legal team will bring back from its London’s mission, Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak Baru (PBDSB) president Cobbold John said today.
He said the representatives from all Sarawak’s political parties should be allowed to participate in the discussions on the documents related to Sarawak in the formation of Malaysia in 1963.
“The future of this nation does not depend only on the party in power but on all who are concerned about the future and the generations to come,” he told reporters after chairing the party’s supreme council meeting here.
The legal team, to be led by Law, State-Federal Relationship and Project Monitoring Assistant Minister Sharifah Hasidah Sayed Aman Ghazali, is due to leave tomorrow for London for a week-long fact-finding mission.
Cobbold said the Dayak party supports the move to go to London with a view to finding more facts on the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) and supporting documents related to the formation of Malaysia.
“It has been said that with better knowledge about the formation of Malaysia, correspondingly more will be known about the reasons why Sarawak agreed to form Malaysia with Malaya, Sabah, and Singapore at that time.
“Such enhanced knowledge will put the State in a better bargaining position to demand back what rights and benefits that should belong to Sarawak but have been lost to Malaya over the years,” he said, adding Sarawak can work it out to recover those lost rights from Putrajaya.
He said Sarawak has lost so much since 1963 to the federal government, and that it is only right and in the interest of the future generations that things should be put right immediately.
“For example, while MA63 provides for English to remain as official language of the State, but because education in Malaysia has been in Bahasa Melayu, the people in Sarawak are very poor in the command of English language,” he said.
Cobbold said students are taught from kindergarten in BM and when they enter the job market they will not find difficulty to gain employment in the private sector.
And at the same time places in the public sector is getting very limited as people from Malaya also join the civil service in Sarawak as well.
He said the situation is only made worst for workers from Sarawak as more often than not the interviewers for civil service jobs come from Malaya.
“It seems Sarawak had lost even the means to find jobs for its citizens who have to compete with those from Malaya.
“It is noted overall the Dayak communities have produced the least number of civil servants in Sarawak, be it Federal or State.
“And it is a fact that civil servants of Dayak origins in senior ranks in the civil service, police and or armed forces are becoming a rare commodity nowadays,” Cobbold said.
He said the same situation is true with the number of Dayak students given any government scholarship to further their studies in local and or overseas universities.
“Opportunities in businesses, finances, and other durable economic benefits and spins-off from long term government policies are not available to the Dayaks.
“And even if any such opportunities are supposedly made available the Dayaks are not having the means to benefit from them because they lack the basics to be able to do so,” he claimed.
Cobbold noted that Sarawak’ first Chief Minister Tan Sri Stephen Kalong Ningkan once said that he saw in Malaysia a promise to help Sarawak financially, but at the end, he was dismissed from power without ever seeing the promised fund from Malaya to help Sarawak.-dayakdaily.com