Special Sabah state assembly session on state rights not needed, says Hajiji

KOTA KINABALU: There is no need for the Sabah state assembly to have a special session to discuss state rights under the Malaysia Agreement 1963, says Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor (pic).

He said the matter is being discussed at the MA63 special committee with the Prime Minister and Chief Ministers of Sabah and Sarawak.

Hajiji said this after Deputy Speaker Datuk Ahmad Abdul Rahman ruled that the Opposition’s special motion for MA63 issues to be discussed in the state assembly could not be brought up during the winding-up of the Sabah Budget 2022.

The Chief Minister explained that the proposed amendment Bill tabled in Parliament will reinstate the position of Sabah and Sarawak.

The amendment would rectify a change made in 1976 that relegated the two Borneo states to being one of Malaysia’s 13 states.

He said the amendment would also make it clear that Sept 16, 1963 is the formation of Malaysia, and that Singapore would not be included as one of the original partners of the Federation.

Hajiji added that he is confident that other issues pertaining to state rights could be resolved as administrative measures through the amendment to the Constitution.

On the 17 issues raised by Sabah that were already resolved through the MA63 special committee, Hajiji said to state Opposition leader Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal that the state government will continue to fight for the rights of Sabah and hold discussions with the Federal Government.

He said state rights issues raised at the state assembly were also brought up for discussion at the federal level, and as such, there was no need for any special session.

In pushing for the special motion for the Sabah assembly to discuss issues relating to Sabah rights under MA63, Shafie said that the state assembly was the right place to discuss these matters.

He said Malaysia was formed through four countries coming together under the auspices of the United Nations, and the agreement was signed by leaders from the federation of Malaya, Sarawak, Sabah and Singapore.

As such, he said that it was important for the Sabah state assembly to put forward a united stand to get back its lost or eroded rights.

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