Tiang wonders where Chong stands on Sarawak’s rights

Michael Tiang

KUCHING, June 9: SUPP Central Youth chairman Michael Tiang today questions Sarawak Pakatan Harapan (PH) chairman Chong Chieng Jen’s sincerity in defending the state’s rights in relation to Petronas claiming ownership to oil and gas resources in the state.

In a statement, Tiang said instead of being suspicious of Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s role on this matter, Chong should ask the prime minister why Petronas is allowed to challenge Sarawak’s rights to its oil and gas resources.

“I am even more puzzled with the comments made by Chong that the meeting between Tun Dr Mahathir and Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg is suspicious to him as the Petronas suit followed days after that meeting.

“Which side is he (Chong) on now? Is Chong still interested in Sarawak’s rights or not?” wondered Tiang, who is also a political secretary to the Chief Minister.

Tiang said instead of setting up the promised cabinet committee to ensure fair implementation of the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63), which includes reviewing Petronas’ rights over oil and gas in Sarawak, the PH government, through Petronas, slapped the state with a suit.

That being the case, he urged Sarawak PH to apply to the Federal Court to intervene in the national oil giant’s application to have full regulatory control of upstream activities in oil and gas prospecting and mining.

“It is only apt for PH Sarawak to file an intervention to the Petronas suit if indeed PH Sarawak MPs are serious about rebutting Sarawakians’ common perception that they are making u-turns to their election manifesto after the general election (GE14).”

Tiang admitted that it would take time for such a cabinet committee to be set up, but Petronas’ legal move tantamount to challenging Sarawak’s rights even before their “new boss and his team” had time to review whether any state rights had been infringed under the MA63. — DayakDaily