Sarawak politician calls for Bill amending Constitution for MA63 to be given to MPs


  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 03 Apr 2019

KUCHING: Another Sarawak politician has called for the Bill to amend Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution to be given to MPs before its tabling in Parliament.

Asajaya assemblyman Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah (pic) said Sarawak MPs need time to study the proposed amendment in detail first before stating their support for it.

"This proposed amendment has been publicised since a few months ago. It shows that the federal government has the intention to amend Article 1(2).

"So why wait until a day before the Bill's tabling to distribute it? We do not even know what the contents are and yet they ask us to support it.

"We do not want to be like 'kerbau' (buffaloes) led by the nose. Of course we need to study it first," he told reporters here on Wednesday (April 3).

The amendment to Article 1(2) will restore the status of Sabah and Sarawak as equal partners with Peninsular Malaysia and is expected to be tabled in Parliament next week.

However, Sarawakian MPs from the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) coalition say they need to see the Bill first before backing it.

Last week, the state's consultative committee on the Malaysia Agreement 1963 also said it was reserving its comments on the proposed amendment to Article 1(2) as none of its members had seen the Bill or its contents.

The committee's chairman Datuk Amar Mohd Asfia Awang Nassar said it would only support amendments that contained substantive improvements to Sarawak's rights and interests and were not merely for window dressing.

Abdul Karim said since the proposed amendment was an important matter involving Sarawak's rights, it was only fair to give all MPs the opportunity to read the Bill so that they can prepare to debate it.

He also called on all Sarawakian MPs, whether they were from Pakatan Harapan or GPS, to present a united front on the Bill.

"When it comes to something related to the rights of the state, we must be seen to be united," he said.

 

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