‘Article 153 will be upheld’


KUALA LUMPUR: The government will continue to uphold the position and principles of the Federal Constitution, including the special position of the Malays and bumiputras as enshrined under Article 153, says the Prime Minister.

Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said this has been the government’s stance all this while.

“We will continue upholding the position of the Constitution, including Article 153,” he said briefly to reporters after delivering a keynote address at the 15th International Conference on Islamic Economics and Finance here yesterday.

Article 153 of the Federal Constitution gives the Malays and natives of Sabah and Sarawak special rights and privileges and it shall be the responsibility of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to safeguard the special position of the Malays and natives of Sabah and Sarawak and the legitimate interests of other communities.

Anwar was asked about Pasir Gudang MP Hassan Abdul Karim’s statement calling for the coming 2024 Bumiputra Economic Congress to reassess whether the privileges under Article 153 truly benefited the intended groups.

Hassan questioned the affirmative action policy, claiming that it had been seized and manipulated by a certain elite group of bumiputra.

The congress, scheduled to take place from Feb 29 to March 2 at the Putrajaya International Convention Centre, aims to propose new directions and approaches for a fairer, just and inclusive empowerment agenda for the bumiputra community.

Meanwhile, former Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Dr Ismail Bakar has been appointed the Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission chairman (EAIC) for three years.

His term will end on Jan 31, 2027.

In a statement yesterday, the Prime Minister said former Federal Court judge Datuk Dr Prasad Sandosham Abraham was appointed the deputy chairman of the commission.

Also appointed as members of the commission were Datuk Seri Dr Yusof Ismail, Datuk Seri Dr Razali Ab Malik, Datuk Dr Mohd Gazali Abas, Datuk Ong Lam Kiat and Datuk Siti Zainab Omar, Bernama reported.

“The appointment has received the consent of the 16th Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah on Jan 24, in line with subsection 5(1) of the Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission Act 2009 (Act 700).

“It is hoped that the appointment will strengthen the implementation of EAIC’s functions and effectiveness towards ensuring the quality of effective enforcement and integrity among enforcement officers and enforcement agencies,” Anwar said.

In the same statement, Anwar expressed his appreciation of the previous lineup of EAIC commissioners Tan Sri Sidek Hassan, Tan Sri Zainun Ali, Tan Sri Mahmood Adam, Tan Sri Aziah Ali, Datuk Alizatul Khair Osman Khairuddin, Datuk John Louis O’hara and Prof Dr Nik Ahmad Kamal Nik Mahmod, who completed their service on June 30 last year.

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