Cabinet sets up special panel on Malaysia Agreement 1963
MalaysiaKini July 19, 2018
The cabinet has agreed to the formation of a special cabinet committee on the Malaysia Agreement 1963, which is one of Pakatan Harapan's 100-day promises, de facto Law Minister Liew Vui Keong revealed today. "The cabinet has recently consented to the formation of a special cabinet committee on the enforcement of the Malaysian Agreement 1963 and it will comprise representatives from the Peninsula, Sabah and Sarawak who have expertise in the matter," Liew said in a written reply to Parliament. He was responding to a question from Bandar Kuching MP Kelvin Yii Lee Wuen. Liew said the committee has been tasked to produce a report on the matter within six months from the date it is set up. He said the committee will study and propose corrective measures in relation to the following matters: - The status of the Malaysian Agreement 1963 in the context of current legislation; - Efforts to improve the people's understanding towards the Malaysia Agreement 1963 through the education system; - Implementation of the concept of federalism across the three territories - Peninsula, Sabah and Sarawak; - The rights of Sabah and Sarawak to natural resources as well as oil and gas; - Administrative matters that can be delegated to the states; - The amount of allocation that is within the rights of Sabah and Sarawak; and - Amendment to Article 1 of the Federal Constitution. Sabahans and Sarawakians have long lobbied for the original version of the Federal Constitution to be restored, whereby Sabah and Sarawak are referred to as territories equal to Peninsular Malaysia. However, this was amended in 1976 to list Sabah and Sarawak as one of 13 states in Malaysia. Article 1 (2) of the Federal Constitution, in its current form, states: "The States of the Federation shall be Johore, Kedah, Kelantan, Malacca, Negeri Sembilan, Pahang, Penang, Perak, Perlis, Sabah, Sarawak, Selangor and Terengganu." Liew said once the special committee's report is approved by the cabinet, it will also be tasked to oversee the implementation of the proposals contained in the report.