STATEMENT: Veteran Umno politician and former Finance Minister and Chairman of Petronas, Tengku Razaleigh or more affectionately known as Ku Li, should share some of the blame for the Federation of Malaysia being turned into a Humpty Dumpty and tethering to fall and be broken apart. This is my response to Ku Li’s statement that regionalism is causing Malaysia to break apart.
It is totally wrong to equate regionalism with calls for the restoration of the rights and autonomy of a component State in the Federation, whether it be Sabah, Sarawak or Johor.
Sabahans and Sarawakians and a lesser extent, Johoreans, are unhappy and disenchanted with the Federation of Malaysia because the rights of their State have been violated and eroded since the formation of Malaysia in 1963.
If the Founding Fathers of Sabah and Sarawak had known that the Malaysia they agreed to form in 1963 is the Malaysia of today, they certainly would not have signed the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).
Sabah did not agree to form Malaysia for it to be made a State of Malaya or for Malaya, masquerading as the Federal government, to be the colonizing power or for 95% of its oil and gas resources to be siphoned off to fund development in Malaya and having to beg for crumbs for its own development or to be owing the Federal government RM2.6 billion when some RM20 billion of its oil and gas resources are taken by Petronas annually.
To make matters worse, Sabah and Sarawak were downgraded in 1976 to be the 12th and 13th States of Malaya masquerading as Malaysia by an amendment to Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution. Ku Li as then Finance Minister was part of the MPs who voted and passed the constitutional amendments.
Ku Li as Chairman of Petronas also signed and accepted the 1975 Vesting Order executed by the late Tun Abdul Razak vesting all of Sabah’s on-shore and off-shore oil and gas resources in Petronas.
This was after he had in a television interview started that the Federal government would only be entitled to royalties depending on distance from the shore. Instead, Sabah and Sarawak were robbed of their oil and gas resources by the said Vesting Order.
Seeking the restoration of Sabah’s rights including oil and gas rights is the same as what is being sought by the Government of Kelantan with regards to royalties for the oil and gas found off Kelantan waters and which is whole-heartedly supported by Ku Li himself as a Kelantanese royal prince.
Ku Li is also misconceived that the people clamouring for rights or so-called regionalism failed to take into account the role of the Constitution in binding Malaysians together.
RESOLVE OR DISSOLVE
What binds Sabah and Sarawak with Malaya is not the Federal Constitution but the MA63. The Federal Constitution should not be arbitrarily amended to suit Malaya’s hidden agenda to turn Sabah and Sarawak into their 12th and 13th States, equal to tiny Perlis, just because Malaya has the 2/3 majority in Parliament. Worse still , Sabah is now controlled by Umno Malaya as though it is a colony of Umno/Malaya.
It is not very complicated for the Federal government and the government of Malaya dominated by Umno, of which Ku Li is still very much part of, to resolve the calls for the restoration of State rights by Sabah, Sarawak and Johor. The simple solution lies in MA63 – RESOLVE OR DISSOLVE.
If Ku Li is concerned over the future of Humpty Dumpty Malaysia, after having missed numerous opportunities, it may be his last opportunity to put things right and help the Federation of Malaysia to go back to its original basis of formation and prevent it from falling down where all the King’s men and King’s horses cannot put it back together again.
DATUK DR JEFFREY KITINGAN
President of Parti Solidariti Tanah Airku
State Assemblyman for Bingkor