15 issues on MA63 still oustanding Maximus Ongkili

19/09/2022 04:09 PM

KOTA SAMARAHAN, Sept 19 (Bernama) -- Fifteen issues being monitored by the Special Council on the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MKMA63) have still not been resolved, said Minister in the Prime Minister's Department (Sabah and Sarawak Affairs) Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili.

According to him, the issues include the state's authority over health issues, the remaining legislative authority on the environment, labour force in Sabah and Sarawak and the release of land given ownership rights to the federation in Sabah and Sarawak.

"Most are already passed to the committee (MA63 Special Council Committee). There are ongoing matters still under discussion. For example, the issue of grants under Act 112 (1) of the Federal Constitution (Increase of Posts) with Sarawak.

"Discussions have started but there has been no decision yet on how much there is to be reviewed regarding the refund (for oil royalties and petroleum cash refunds). Besides, the additional Sabah and Sarawak parliamentary seats is also still under discussion," he said.

Speaking in a media conference after attending the 1963 Malaysia Agreement Awareness Forum MA63: From the Perspective of the Millenial Generation' at Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS) here today, he said among other issues that have not been fully resolved is the review of special grants (Article 112D of the Federal Constitution) for the state of Sarawak and the gas and electricity regulatory authority of the state of Sabah.

Meanwhile, when asked on whether the ratio for the distribution of 35 per cent of the Parliamentary seats in Sabah and Sarawak should be maintained without following the state's population, Maximus said it was up to the Election Commission (EC) as it was still in the discussion stage.

He said the more important thing is that the goal for the two states to regain the percentage of seats as stated in the Malaysia Agreement is achieved.

"The main objective is to return the 30 to 35 per cent rights. The ratio used by the EC focuses on population and urbanisation, however, the important thing is that aspirations and terms such as the agreement are returned," he said.

In the meantime, Ongkili hopes that more programmes explaining the formation of Malaysia and the goals of MA63 can be held at higher education institutes, whether in the Peninsula or Sabah and Sarawak.