Use of ‘wilayah’ term for Sarawak depends on MA63 negotiations

Use of the term ‘wilayah’ or region for Sarawak depends on the outcome of the current negotiation on MA63 – Image from AskLegal

By John Isaac

THE use of the term ‘wilayah’ or region for Sarawak depends on the outcome of the current negotiations on Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63), said chief minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg.

“Let the legal experts determine the actual term. We are still in the midst of negotiating where MA63 is concerned,” he told reporters after officiating at the ground-breaking ceremony for Balai Ringin Mini Stadium in Kuching.

Abang Johari said that the state is asking for the Federal Constitution to be amended to reflect MA63.

“We have raised about the provision in Article 160(2) of the Constitution from the point of interpretation of the Federation. In the current provision, it refers to Federation of Malaya only.

“In MA63, the formation of Malaysia was formed by Federation of Malaya, Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore. So we are asking for the Constitution to be amended, must follow MA63 besides the Federation Malaya Agreement. It has to be combined.

“Only then it can change the Article 1(2) in Constitution to state that ‘Malaysia consists of Federation of Malaya, Sabah and Sarawak’,” he said as reported by Borneo Post.

Abang Johari pointed out that was why prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin during his recent working trip had said that Sarawak is not like other states.

“He stated that it is a region. That is all. But whether we are going to use that or not is depending on the outcome of the current negotiation on MA63.

“It is a suggestion from prime minister. If people want to say you are a region, you just accept it, but the actual term leave it to the experts,” he said.