Wan Junaidi: “Selling Petronas’ equity to Sarawak? What a joke.”

Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar

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KUCHING, Dec 16: Santubong MP Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar called the suggestion of selling Petronas’ stakes back to Sarawak a “sick joke”.

He told Pakatan Harapan Sarawak chairman Chong Chieng Jen not to “dance to the tempo of his big boss’ sick joke in Putrajaya” but to divest 25 per cent of Petronas’ stakes to Sarawak as a gesture of goodwill.

“Why not ask Putrajaya to show us a little goodwill? Just divest 25 per cent of the Petronas’ equity to Sarawak without payment? After all there are so much outstanding payments the federal government has yet to pay back to Sarawak,” said Wan Junaidi.

He said these outstanding payments included the loss of revenue for Sarawak as result of not reviewing the provision of Article 112D; the loss of revenue for Sarawak following Malaysia joined as member of Asean Free Trade Area (AFTA) since 1985;outstanding revenue which should be paid to Sarawak under Part III, Part IV, Part V of the Tenth Schedule which is specially for Sabah and Sarawak, which is to be over and above the General Rights mentioned in the Federal Constitution.

“If the reviews were done and right calculations had been made, believe me, there are hundreds of billion, if not trillion, due to Sarawak since 1969 when the last review under Article 112D was made.

“I am sure the State government would be generous enough to consider to write-off those unpaid arrears over the years if the State is given 25 per cent equity shares in Petronas,” said Wan Junaidi.

He said if the federal government were to agree to this suggestion, then Sarawak could rightly earn the dividend from the 25 per cent shares, over and above the 5 per cent gratuity which is being paid now and 5 per cent state sales tax chargeable by the state government.

On the suggestion of selling Petronas’ equity back to Sarawak itself, Wan Junaidi brought up another issue – there had been no offer in black and white.

He also urged Chong to assist the Sarawak government in the Malaysia Agreement 1963 negotiations with the Federal Government which he claimed that until now, had no concrete results.

“Chief minister (Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg) just mentioned yesterday – show us the details of the offer, the price and the term of payment to State government.

“You must remember, YB Chong, that the state ongoing negotiations with the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government in Putrajaya have not shown so much progress. Have you been assisting to push for the success of Sarawak agenda to get the Sarawak rights under the MA1963 or just helping your bosses at Putrajaya to sell assets?” Wan Junaidi queried.

Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad had recently suggested that since the PH government could not afford to give 20 per cent oil and gas royalty to Sarawak as promised in the 14th General Election, Petronas may sell its stakes to Sarawak as a way to make up for the unfulfilled promise.

The suggestion had drawn brickbats from Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) leaders who asserted that buying stakes from Petronas was like Sarawak buying its own property back as Petronas has been pumping hundreds of millions of ringgit worth of oil and oil and gas from Sarawak on daily basis.

Contrary to what GPS leaders are asserting, Chong in a recent statement called on the Sarawak government to quickly acquire the stakes which Petronas was offering to Sarawak, amidst Abang Johari’s statement that there was no written offer with regards to Petronas selling its stakes to Sarawak.

Meanwhile, Wan Junaidi also questioned Chong, who is also Stampin MP and Kota Sentosa assemblyman, of the reasons why the latter did not persuade Putrajaya to fulfil the 20 per cent oil and gas royalty and the return of 50 tax collected in Sarawak, as Chong promised before the 14th general elections.

“Why doesn’t YB Chong try to persuade Putrajaya to fulfil his promises giving Sarawak – the 20 per cent royalty from Petronas and the 50 per cent of all tax collected in Sarawak?  After all, this sacred promise was made in Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak (Sarawak State Assembly).

“There might have been thousands of Sarawakians impressed by that brave promise. People are waiting, YB Chong. You must deliver the promise, or is it just like the manifesto, which is not to be fulfilled?

“We need money to develop Sarawak. There have been too many promises made to influence Malaysians including Sarawakians before the general elections. Get that 20 per cent royalty and 50 per cent of all tax collected in Sarawak for the people of Sarawak, as you have promised.” — DayakDaily