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By Lian Cheng
KUCHING, May 20: Any misinterpretation by the Federal government in not recognising the applicability of the 40 per cent revenue sharing formula would have a detrimental consequence in securing Sarawak’s constitutional entitlement when Sarawak agreed to form the Federation of Malaysia almost 60 years ago.
This is the position taken by Kota Sentosa assemblyman Wilfred Yap who also pointed out that the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) government is legally obligated with the huge mandate given by the people of Sarawak during the 12th Sarawak Election in asking for a proper review.
“Article 112(D) is clear and concise that reviews are to be conducted jointly between the Federal and Sarawak governments and Sarawak must insist that the Federal government be transparent in making information available on the 40 per cent revenue sharing formula pursuant to Article 112C and sub-section 2(1) of Part IV of the Tenth Schedule of the Federal Constitution.
“Despite ongoing negotiations between Sarawak and the Federal government to find a reasonable formula for the special annual grant to Sarawak under Article 112D of the Federal Constitution, Sarawak must still insist that the Federal government will respect the applicability and acknowledge the rights of the 40 per cent revenue sharing formula,” said the first term Sarawak lawmaker.
He reminded that Sarawak must not be deceived into believing that any review under Article 112D must only take into account the financial position of the Federal government. The financial needs and entitlement of Sarawak for its holistic development and process which is still lacking compared to Malaya is an equally important factor to consider.
The reason for Sarawak being allocated special grants under the Federal Constitution is to meet Sarawak’s aspirations and needs for quicker infrastructure and economic development, he said.
Despite being an oil and gas producing State, he stated that there can be no doubt that Sarawak is still behind Malaya in infrastructure and economic development.
“We should not shy away from our duties and responsibilities in getting a fair review and the best deal under Article 112D of the Federal Constitution for Sarawak,” said Yap when debating on the Governor’s Address at Sarawak Legislative Assembly (DUN) here today. — DayakDaily