KUCHING: Pakatan Harapan (PH) vows to review the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) and re-negotiate with Sarawak and Sabah a deal that is fair to all the parties if the coalition comes into power after the 14th General Election.
Its chairman and former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said
discussions would be held to find a way to return the rights that belong
to Sarawak and Sabah under the MA63.
“There are many things that we can do by revising the original
agreement (MA63) between Sabah, Sarawak and Peninsular Malaysia. These
we will be discussed to find a way to give (back) what belongs to
Sarawak and Sabah.
“Pakatan Harapan promises that we will negotiate once again on the
20-point (for Sabah) and 16-point (18-point) for Sarawak,” said the
elder statesman who was seen wearing a ‘Make Malaysia Great Again’ cap
during Pakatan Harapan’s ‘New Deal, New Hope’ rally at BDC here on
Dr Mahathir, who was on his first trip to the state as an opposition
leader, therefore urged Sarawak and Sabah voters throw their full
support behind PH to enable the coalition to win a two-third majority in
“In the next election, you must give full support to PH because if we
don’t get a two-third majority, we cannot change the Federal
Constitution. We need to change some of the provisions of the Malaysian
Constitution so that we can be fair to all the regions of Sabah, Sarawak
and Peninsular Malaysia.”
Dr Mahathir, who was the Prime Minister for 22 years, said before a
law or policy is introduced in the Parliament, a consultation should be
held between the three regions; Peninsular Malaysia, Sarawak and Sabah
to get their consent.
“By right, negotiation must be held among the three regions, but when
we formed Malaysia, there is no longer any negotiation between Sabah,
Sarawak and Peninsular Malaysia. What happened was we used the
Parliament to pass various laws and policies.
“(This resulted in) The three regions are no longer in power but the
one that is in power is the Parliament. In Parliament, surely, the
number of representatives from Sabah and Sarawak are lesser than
Citing Petroleum Development Act that was passed in 1974 as an
example, Dr Mahathir said during that time, there was no discussion
between Sarawak, Sabah and Peninsular Malaysia.
“The one we had was Parliamentary meeting (sitting) which approved
the agreement without taking into account the feelings of the people in
Sabah and Sarawak.
“The reason is because in Parliament, the Peninsular Malaysian states
have more representatives than Sabah and Sarawak. Therefore, every law
introduced by the federal government is approved in the Parliament.
“That’s why we found out that there was no negotiation regarding
20-point agreement for Sabah and 16-point (18-point) agreement for
Sarawak. If there was any negotiation, surely the agreement made between
the three regions will be fair.
“But the negotiation was not held, only Parliamentary meeting where
the opinions of the people in Peninsular Malaysia had exceeded the
opinions of the people of Sabah and Sarawak.”
Dr Mahathir, who is also Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia chairman,
noted that when the Petroleum Development Act was introduced, Tun Abdul
Razak was the Prime Minister; therefore the allegation that he changed
the law was not true.
“From there, we have a law regarding the Territorial Sea Act. We know
that some 12 nautical miles from the coastline is owned by the state.
But when we made this law, we found that this is owned by Malaysia as a
country. There was no consideration for Sabah, Sarawak and Terengganu.
“This resulted in many who are not happy with such an agreement.
Again, the law did not take into consideration the three regions that
formed Malaysia. That was why the share for Sabah and Sarawak is only
five per cent.”
He also noted that when the Territorial Sea Act was approved in 2012, the Prime Minister was Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
“I was the Prime Minister for 22 years, but I did not change the
agreement with Sabah and Sarawak. I am of the opinion that these
agreements and laws must be re-negotiated between Peninsular Malaysia,
Sabah and Sarawak so that it will be fair.”
Dr Mahathir acknowledged that the people were also not happy with the current education system.
“In our agreement, the education system for Sabah and Sarawak is
different from the one in Peninsular Malaysia. So we will negotiate to
give back the rights to have their own education system in Sabah and
When asked by a member of the crowd on whether PH government would
abolish Goods and Services Tax (GST), Dr Mahathir responded in the
“I just want to point out, when I was Prime Minister, the price of
oil was only US$30 per barrel and companies did not make more than RM200
million profit. But nowadays, although the price of oil had came down
from US$120 to US$50, it is still more than the US$30 that was paid for
one barrel of crude oil.
“So with that amount of money from oil revenue and with the tax on
the income of people, he (Najib) should have more money than we had
during my time. During my time, the country was very poor but we managed
to build many airports, even Kuching International Airport and Kota
Kinabalu Airport were built. We also built new ports everywhere and we
built the North-South highway. Did we ask you for GST? No.”
With the weak financial position of the federal government, Dr
Mahathir wondered how Najib could build the Pan Borneo Highway
considering that the project would cost a lot of money.
“When he came here, he promised to build (Pan Borneo Highway) and he
said the state must pay. When Sarawak protested, then they (federal
government) will pay but they have no money. So all of you are to see a
lot of construction going on to build Pan Borneo for years and years
because you have to pay your contractors but he has no money to pay.”
Dr Mahathir said: “What is important is to build a new future. The
present government has got no idea on how to change for the betterment
of people of Malaysia. Only we (PH) can because we can see the mistakes
from outside. Already, people are suffering because the culture of
corruption has spread throughout the country.”
He thus called on all Sarawakians and Sabahans to ‘throw out’ Najib
in the 14th General Election and have a PH government in place to serve
~ Borneo Post