By LINA SOO
LETTER: Is Malaysia a Federation or a Unitary State, YB Chong Jien Jen?
I’m responding to Chong’s statement that STAR and PBDS (Baru) had not sought DAP’s help in the Tanjong Datu by-election, What is the point of seeking help from Malaya parties which had deliberately stayed away from Tanjong Datu by-election in surrendering our political and democratic rights, in giving BN a free ride to uncontested victory?
No matter how the people of Tanjong Datu vote, we cannot deny the people their democratic right to the election process.
I must refute Chong’s claim that regionalism is unhealthy for Sarawak. Rather, regionalism politics is to reaffirm the principle of Sarawak autonomy which is guaranteed in the Malaysia Agreement 1963. In this respect, Chong should study the history of the formation of Malaysia and the Malaysia Agreement 1963 in depth to understand Sarawak rights and powers as enshrined in the international treaty.
Regionalism and territorial rights is the political ideology of administration, economic, social and cultural affiliation by region – Malaya, Sarawak and Sabah being three equal partners in the Federation of Malaysia. Borneonisation, land and immigration are regionalism rights.
This is because Sarawak is one of three territories in the federation of Malaysia, therefore politics must be focused to serve the interests of each region, especially when it comes to Sarawak political rights and ownership of resources.
I want to ask Chong to answer if he believes Malaysia is a unitary State or a Federation of three distinct regions? If he believes that Sarawak is equal partner of three regions in Malaysia, why does Chong seem to think that fighting for regional rights is unhealthy?
Does Chong respect the Malaysia Agreement 1963 at all, I wonder.
Did the DAP object to the 1976 constitutional amendment in Article 1 of the Federal Constitution which downgraded Sarawak to 13th state, equal to Perlis? As according to the Hansard which records no objection from DAP in Parliament to downgrade Sarawak political status to one of thirteen instead of one of three regions, then STAR must conclude that DAP does not believe in defending and protecting Sarawak rights and interests at all, not different from Sarawak BN.
Chong can best serve motherland Sarawak by severing its umbilical cord to its political masters in Malaya. In this way, Chong can truly become a Sarawak partriot and subscribe to our ‘Sarawak for Sarawakians’ ideology and not push DAP’s ‘Malaysia for Malaysians’ agenda upon us., which ignores Sarawak interests.
For the Federation of Malaysia to survive, it requires that all Malayan political parties stop their political interference in Sarawak and each region preserve its rights, powers, sensitivities and sentiments. That will lead to a better, fairer and more harmonious Federation.
STAR – Demi Negara Sarawak.
- Lina Soo is president of STAR