By S. Harrish
PARLIAMENT needs to be reconvened immediately to discuss the purported decision by the Federal Government to refer Sabah and Sarawak as “Wilayah” instead of “Negeri”.
Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii said the matter needs to be discussed as it was done without any amendments to the Federal Constitution.
“We do not want this merely to be a cosmetic change without any legal authority, to create a false sense of security as a lure for the upcoming State Elections.
“This can be likened to where someone uses his “glamour name” to look good, but legally in his IC, his name is totally different thus giving that “glamour name” no legal standing at all.”
He was referring to a court decision recently that voided a detention order signed by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin as he did not use his IC name.
Last week during his visit to Sarawak, Muhyiddin had said Sarawak was a region and not a state.
He also mentioned that the Special Council on Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) will announce its decision on several issues including the Federal Constitution amendment and socioeconomic matters concerning Sarawak and Sabah this week.
“Don’t tell me this “cosmetic change of name” is all that is supposed to be announced? If not, the PM should reconvene Parliament and that is the best place to have a proper debate and give inputs towards such an important topic such as this,” said Dr Yii in a statement today.
Under the previous Pakatan Harapan government, he said a constitutional amendment was tabled to restore the original words of MA63 that gave legal authority to the original status of Sabah and Sarawak.
“However such attempts failed due to rejections from Umno, Pas and GPS.”
Dr Yii asked what would differentiate the Borneo “wilayah” from Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur and Labuan, which are under the jurisdiction and authority of the Federal Government.
“This is important as it concerns our rights and whether we are indirectly affirming more control of the Federal Government.
“That is why, Parliament is the best platform for such substantive discussion and debates. There must be greater accountability when it comes to discussion of our rights under MA63.”
Under PH, he said the Special Cabinet Committee consisted politicians and leaders of both political divide, Chief Ministers, legal experts, academicians and even NGOs.
“However, the current model under PN has little accountability and we do not even know who are in the Special Council on Malaysia Agreement 1963.”