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KUCHING, Dec 11: Sarawak People’s Aspiration Party (Aspirasi) party president Lina Soo opines the Commercial Settlement Agreement (CSA) inked between Petronas and the Sarawak government recently is the “Judas Kiss” meted out by Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) to the people of Sarawak.
Soo explained that “what appears to be a patriotic act of fighting for Sarawak rights in reality is a furtive move detrimental to the people of Sarawak whose oil rights and interests have been jeopardised and compromised is the Judas Kiss”.
Frustrated with the secrecy surrounding the Agreement, Soo alleged the CSA is an act of perfidy by the Sarawak government shrouded in obscure language with little meaningful perception or understanding to Sarawakians.
“I call upon the government to release the terms and conditions of the CSA with its fine print, as it is a public document of national interest to Sarawakians, as no details of the Agreement has been forthcoming from the Sarawak government save for a brief statement with little substance.
“The CSA to be the mother of all smokescreens with its mumbo jumbo, in order to cover up the Sarawak government’s failure to regain dominion, ownership and economic rights over Sarawak’s oil and gas wealth,” she said in a press statement today.
At the same time, Soo noted, Sarawak alone accounts for more than half of the production of oil and gas in Malaysia and since the 1970s Sarawak has contributed billions of petroleum revenue annually to Petronas and Petronas, in turn has been dishing out RM40 billion every year to UMNO for more than 30 years, as had been disclosed by former Petronas chairman Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah.
Soo added that she was dumbfounded by the so-called concession to Petros to manage, control and undertake all petroleum operations relating to exploration and exploitation of petroleum onshore of Sarawak (on land), and questions whether the Sarawak government is conceding to Petronas ownership and full control over Sarawak oil and gas offshore.
“Has the GPS solemn promise never to relinquish our Sarawak oil and gas rights turn out to be only political rhetoric and hot air just to hoodwink voters?” she asked.
Soo pointed out that the Sarawak government should be pursuing ownership over the state’s oil and gas, offshore and onshore by addressing the legality and constitutionality of the Petroleum Development Act (PDA) and Territorial Sea Act (TSA) which should not be applicable to the coastal state of Sarawak under international and domestic law.
“By signing the CSA, the Sarawak government has to all appearances, endorsed and validated the status of the PDA and Petronas in an act of betrayal of Sarawak’s dominion and ownership over our oil and gas resources in our territory.
“As long as Sarawak’s oil and gas are controlled by Petronas, what kind of a deal is this, and is it even legal?” she further queried.
Soo said the Sarawak government has conveniently forgotten that Petronas should be applying for the necessary Sarawak Oil Mining Ordinance (OMO) permits to operate in Sarawak, and instead GPS has yielded and caved in to recognise Petronas’ position as owner and regulator of Sarawak’s petroleum resources.
According to her, it is now glaringly obvious and an open secret that GPS has given up fighting for Sarawak rights, as it appears that the CSA has endorsed the PDA and Petronas’ position as the oil company with exclusive right to own and exploit Sarawak oil and gas.
She laments the Sarawak government in twice selling out on Sarawak’s oil and gas resources, where the first sellout was on March 27, 1975 when former Chief Minister Tun Abdul Rahman Yakub without constitutional mandate unilaterally signed the vesting order to surrender Sarawak oil and gas in perpetuity to Petronas.
Secondly, she said, is the CSA signed on Dec 8, this year, by the GPS administration which apparently represents the betrayal of Sarawak oil and gas resources of tragic proportions in surrendering all rights to Sarawak’s offshore petroleum mineral wealth to Petronas.
“As for the distribution of gas, nothing has changed except for the change of colour of the gas tank from yellow and green to red, as Petros’ supply of gas is purchased from Petronas as a commercial transaction only. This has not benefited the consumer in any way and in simple terms, the Sarawak government has simply become the gas delivery boy of Petronas,” she opined.
She also contends Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg’s call for time to prove who is right on CSA, that Sarawakians have no more time to lose as Sarawak cash cows continue to be milked by Petronas and the federal government to no end.
“Every sunrise brings a colossal economic loss to the people of Sarawak with its oil and gas resources sucked out by the minute and hour every day,” she added. –DayakDaily.