SPA: Sarawak’s rights including self-rule should be returned soon

Datuk John Lau Pang Heng

KUCHING, July 21:   Sarawak Patriots Association (SPA) believes that the rights and privileges taken by the Federal government before should be returned to Sarawak soon, including the rights to self-rule.

SPA chairman Datuk John Lau Pang Heng made the assertions by citing two of the Nine Cardinal Rules preamble to the Sarawak Constitution 1941 – Rule 5 and 8.

Rule 5 states “that the goal of self-government shall always be kept in mind, that the people of Sarawak shall be entrusted in the course with the governance of themselves, and the continuous efforts shall be made to hasten the reaching of this goal by educating them in the obligations, that responsibilities and the privileges of citizenship”.

“On July 22, 1963, Sarawak was granted self-rule by the British government. And on September 16, 1963 Sarawak partnered Sabah, Malaya and Singapore to form Malaysia,” Lau said and pointed out that for years now, the Sarawak government has been run by Sarawakians and not outside people.

The Nine Cardinal Rules preamble to the Sarawak Constitution 1941.

“Those rights and privileges taken by the Federal government before, shall be returned to Sarawak soon.”

Meanwhile, Lau quoted Cardinal Rule 5 which states that “the freedom of expression both in speech and in writing shall be permitted, encouraged and that everyone shall be entitled to worship as he pleases”.  

“This is freedom of belief and religious. And sharing whatever thoughts we have in our mind. This is commendable that Sarawak uphold this cardinal rule till today and beyond.”

He said Sarawakians cannot retire until “we have witnessed the return of Sarawak privileges and rights”.  

“History needs to be re-written so that students will learn the history of Sarawak, the formation of Malaysia, the constitution of our nation and Sarawak, democracy and voting privileges,” he added.

This to him was particularly needed as the voting age in Malaysia has been lowered to 18 years old in recent parliament sitting.

As Sarawak is celebrating her 56th Sarawak Day on July 22, Lau said SPA was very happy to note that Sarawakians are living in harmony, peace and stability where there is no racial and religious issues among Sarawakians.

“Sarawakians eat, celebrate, grow up together, do business and compete in a very friendly climate, and live in happiness and harmony.”

He thanked the late Pehin Sri Datuk Patinggi Dr Adenan Satem for declaring the Sarawak Day as a public holiday in Sarawak and expressed full support to the Sarawak government’s vision to implement digital economy. 

“This is the right track for Sarawak’s future and SPA calls upon all Sarawakians to support the government’s initiatives,” Lau said.

To the federal government, he opined that  Federal government should share funds that rightfully belongs to Sarawak as per Pakatan Harapan (PH) GE14 election manifesto Promise 40 and Promise 41 which states that the Federal government will pay Sarawak 20 percent of the oil royalties collected.

He reminded also PH government of Promise  42 which is to create more employment opportunities for Sarawak youths; and promise 44 which is to improve the quality of education and healthcare services in Sarawak. — DayakDaily