KUCHING: The Bill tabled in Parliament to amend Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution is "totally unacceptable" to Sarawak, says the Sarawak United People's Party (SUPP).
Its president Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian said the proposed amendment maintained Sarawak as one of 13 states in Malaysia, instead of one of three equal-partner states along with Sabah and the peninsula.
"We view the Bill as another failure of the Pakatan Harapan government to honour the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).
"In fact, Pakatan has just committed another U-turn on their election promise to return Sabah and Sarawak’s status accorded in MA63," he said in a statement on Thursday (April 2).
The proposed amendment to Article 1(2) was tabled for first reading earlier on Thursday by de facto Law Minister Datuk Liew Vui Keong.
Dr Sim questioned why the government bothered tabling a Bill which did not include returning Sarawak's autonomy in healthcare and education as promised by Pakatan.
He also said there was no amendment to Article 160 to make Malaysia a federation under MA63 instead of the Federation of Malaya Agreement 1957.
In addition, he said there was no mention of Sarawak's substantial entitlement to a third of national resources and a third of the total number of MPs under the Bill.
"Therefore SUPP demands the Bill to be withdrawn as its contents are against the wishes of our people in Sarawak.
"With such a disappointing amendment tabled by the Pakatan government, we believe that the status of our state should be decided by our people in Sarawak and not in Parliament," Dr Sim said.