Voon: Exit Malaysia to protect Sarawak’s rights and interests

Voon (fifth) and PBK members showing the article about oil and gas in Sarawak.

By: Malcolm Lau

KUCHING: Parti Bumi Kenyalang (PBK) has reiterated stand in favour of Sarawak exiting Malaysia to safeguard the rights of the state and protect the interests of Sarawakians.

Its president Voon Lee Shan made this call following a recent offer by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamd to sell stakes in Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Petronas) to Sarawak and Sabah.

“It will not be surprising that Petronas will seek a declaration in court to get the court to declare that all oil and gas resources from which the 60 oil wells Petronas are pumping our oil resources within the three nautical miles off the shores of Sarawak belong to Petronas and Sarawak has no legal right at all to these,” he told a press conference today.

“It is speculated that outside three to 12 nautical miles offshore of Sarawak, there lies 200 untapped oil fields and Petronas is pumping away 850,000 barrels of our crude oil with a loss of revenue to Sarawak, estimated around RM285 million,” he stressed.

Voon opined that this was legal plundering the Sarawak resources and that the process of negotiations on Sarawak’s oil and gas was a sign of taking Sarawak’s oil and gas illegally.

He noted that Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg had many times through the media stressed that he would protect Sarawak’s interests under the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).

“So we urged the Chief Minister to declare independence for Sarawak and to be set free from the Federation of Malaya.

“The issue of protecting Sarawak’s interest under the Treaty does not arise because the Treaty is invalid in law,” he said.

Emphasising that the people in the Sarawak were crying to exit from Malaysia, Voon highlighted that there were many political and legal grounds which can help in justifying the exit from the federation under domestic and International law.

Meanwhile, in the GPS Leaders with People programme today, Abang Johari has stressed that the state government does not intend to buy a stake in Petronas.

He said it will be pointless for Sarawak to buy stakes even if Petronas were to give two or three per cent as the state government will not have a say in how Petronas should be managed.

“Under the Petronas Constitution, the power is for number one,” he said, referring to the Prime Minister.

Abang Johari added that the state government must be careful when it comes to dealing with the state’s rights, including oil gas resources in its territorial waters.

“I am not a lawyer, but in GPS we have many lawyers and we support the rule of law,” he said.

The chief minister said it was imperative for the state government to protect its territorial boundary of up to 200 nautical miles from being altered by the federal government.

You cannot simply alter it,” he said referring to the enactment of the Territorial Sea Act 2012 in Parliament that reduced Sarawak’s boundary to three nautical miles from the shore at low tide.

The chief minister said the state’s boundary was established in 1954 by the Queen in Council when Sarawak was a British colony.

He said the state’s border can only be changed with the agreement of the State Legislative Assembly expressed by the law and also by the Conference of Rulers.— DayakDaily