KUCHING: Pakatan Harapan Sarawak (PH Sarawak) has challenged Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah and Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) to redress the great erosion of Sarawak’s rights.
PH Sarawak information chief Vernon Kedit said the Barisan Nasional (BN) MPs should express the will of Sarawak to be a territory and not a state.
“So, I challenge Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah to right this wrong and use the power he and his fellow BN Sarawak parliamentarians hold in their hands to redress this great erosion of Sarawak’s rights.
“Go to the Prime Minister and tell him that Sarawakians want to return to being a territory, not a state. Do it now and prove to Sarawakians that a local party like PBB can protect and amend the rights of Sarawak. Do it before the elections and stop with the delaying tactics of only announcing the London mission findings at the right time,” said Vernon in a press statement yesterday.
Vernon who is also Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) information chief was referring to Uggah’s statement in a local daily which said that PH’s latest launched menifesto was meant to fish for votes.
“May I remind the good Deputy CM that a manifesto is indeed a document that lays out the promises of a party and its sole purpose is to seek votes! BN will also be fishing for votes soon and promising heaven and earth, but like many BN promises, very little is delivered.
“How many times has the BN government promised the Iban voters in Sri Aman that BN would build a hospital in Sri Aman and unashamedly did earth-breaking ceremonies every time an election was around the corner to fish for votes?
“I am sure he (Uggah) attended several of these earth-breaking ceremonies but until today, where is the Sri Aman Hospital? So what development is he implementing when old promises from four elections ago he cannot even keep?” questioned Vernon.
He stressed that the first and fundamental thrust of the Pakatan Harapan New Deal was to return the rights of a Territorial Government to Sarawak.
“This means Pakatan Harapan will recognise Sarawak as an equal partner in Malaysia and not the 13th ‘state’ anymore. We will return Sarawak to its original position as a territory as in the Malaysia Agreement of 1963. This is the most important restoration of all of Sarawak’s rights as per the Malaysia Agreement of 1963 and Pakatan Harapan has boldly promised this as its first thrust.
“This is what all Sarawakians, regardless of political leanings, truly want. Every Sarawakian, whether on the street or in the village, wants Sarawak to be a territory again. We were never a state or ‘negeri’ until the PBB-led Barisan Nasional government of Sarawak in 1976 helped UMNO to downgrade Sarawak from a territory to the 13th ‘state’.
“It was Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah’s own party that led the Sarawakian MPs at the time in downgrading Sarawak to the 13th ‘state’, and this he cannot deny.
“Pakatan Harapan will make Sarawak a territory again and restore the pride of Sarawak. Can the PBB-led Barisan Nasional Sarawak do what all Sarawakians desire and restore Sarawak to being a territory? If it cannot, then it should move aside and let Pakatan Harapan do what BN has failed to do for 54 years,” Vernon said.