LEADERS from the peninsula are short-changing Sabahans and holding them to hostage in their power games, said Dr Jeffrey Kitingan.
Federal Barisan Nasional leaders are “dishonest” and subservient to Umno and left many Sabah folk dependent on handouts, the Sabah Solidariti Tanah Airku (Sabah Star) Parti president said today.
This is the result of the BN leaders’ failure to uphold the guarantees in the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).
To date, he said, Putrajaya has only fulfilled 80% of the MA63, but refused to deliver the remaining 20%, especially in areas of finance under article 8 of the federal constitution.
“Only quite recently were Sabah leaders given federal cabinet posts.
“This is the political game played by leaders from West Malaysia and there are various games being played by them,” he said during his presentation on the Malaysia Agreement 1963 at the Gabungan Sabah conference in Kota Kinabalu today.
Gabungan Sabah is an alliance of five Sabah parties – Sabah Star, Sabah Progressive Party, Parti Harapan Rakyat Sabah and Parti Perpaduan Rakyat Sabah – led by Kitingan, Yong Teck Lee, Lajim Ukin and Mohd Arshad Abdul Mualap.
An example, he said, was the unfair distribution of parliamentary seats.
Seats in the peninsula account for 72% out of the 222 parliamentary seats compared with 25% held by Sabah and Sarawak.
“This means the West Malaysian leaders are able to amend the constitution and also formulate laws without the participation of the Sabah and Sarawak leaders.”
Among others, he said, leaders from the peninsula also violated state rights on land matters via the drilling of its oil resources under the state grounds.
“Under the distribution of federal and state list, land matters are a state matter and, therefore, anything growing on top of state land belongs to the state and so are the things buried underground.
“But they formulated the Petroleum Development Act 1976 to allow them to drill our oil for their own benefit.”
As a result, Sabah was denied its own oil revenue, leaving the state the poorest in Malaysia.
Although it was a resource-rich state, many Sabahans are under the impression that the annual allocation from Putrajaya was federal wealth when, in fact, 65% of the national oil extraction came from Sabah, Kitingan said.
“There is no longer any need for Sabahans to give their support to the Barisan Nasional government.
“We could no longer be content with goodies like ‘1Malaysia tank’ or BR1M cash aid (1Malaysia People’s Aid), when all the source of wealth comes from Sabah.”
If Gabungan Sabah were given to mandate to form the next government, the state will demand full control of its resources and finances under article 8.
“We will no longer demand 20% royalty from the oil revenue but we will demand in full. We will be a fair government.
“We will share our revenue with the federal government,” he said, adding that the same applies to the goods and services tax.
On another note, Gabungan Sabah will observe its own Sabah Day celebrations in Kundasang on August 31, and Malaysia Day on September 16 in Keningau.