A federation is usually established by an agreement which outlines the terms and conditions that have been agreed upon by the various political units that have decided to come together to form a larger political entity.
The idea of establishing a larger political entity is important for the security, for the economic development, and for the overall well-being of the people of the various political units.
The terms and conditions of the agreement are to safeguard and protect the interests, the rights and the privileges of the various units. They are to ensure that the smaller units are not to be dominated and overwhelmed by the bigger and powerful units.
The federation of Malaysia is formed under the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).
Tan Sri Adenan Satem, the Chief Minister of Sarawak believed that the State’s rights under the MA63 have eroded over the years and he wanted those rights to be restored. On October 23, 2016, he said that the State Government is going to table a motion on this matter at the DUN meeting to be held between 21-30 November 2016.
But he abandoned the idea on November 16, 2016, specifying that the PM has agreed to deal with the issue through discussion, consultation, and diplomacy.
The state civil service has been tasked to undertake the process of renegotiating the principles of the MA63. How can this be possible when the state civil servants are not equal in rank and status with the top federal civil servants?
The bureaucrats work under the premise of obeying the seniors, and under the concept of the unity of command, they have to follow the orders and the directives from their seniors.
The bureaucrats are quite rigid in the way they do things and are often not flexible as they are guided by the various rules and regulations.
The question as to why the state government reneges on the idea of tabling a motion to restore the rights of the state under the MA63 puzzles and confuses many Sarawakians.
Now the initiative to table the motion has been hijacked by the opposition. The State PKR Chief is asking the state government to restore Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution to its original form where the Federal Parliament may not pass the law altering the boundaries of a State “without the consent of that State (expressed by a law made by the Legislature of the State) and of the Conference of Rulers”.
If his motion is allowed to be tabled, will the State BN DUN members support it? What would be the repercussions to the State BN if it doesn’t want to give its support to the motion it initially proposed to table?
The MA63 must have been broken, otherwise why should CM Tan Sri Adenan request that it be fixed. The whole idea is to make the federal goverment to respect the state’s rights as stipulated in the MA63, in the 1963 IGC Report and in the 1962 Cobbold Commission Report.
Malaysia is more than just a country. Malaysia is about a set of ideal. Our forefathers believed in this ideal, and it is not for us to destroy it. Does Malaysia still subscribe to this ideal?
If the MA63 is not broken, we should work to improve on it in order to make the country a better place for everyone.
Restoring the State’s rights under the MA63 must have been the lifetime dream of Tan Sri Adenan Satem. The idea is quite extraordinary. But why is the State BN government adopting a conciliatory tone?
Are the BN politicians trying to prevent their feet from getting dirty?
Is the state BN at the crossroad between defending the State’s rights and protecting the cohesion and understanding within the BN? Which one is its priority?
The people are already pumped up on this issue. Will the non-tabling of the motion affect their trust in the BN in the 14th General Election which must be called in less than 16 months from now? The opposition is certainly going to exploit this issue and use it to attack the State BN. – Sarawakvoice