Saturday, 23 August 2014

‘Federation of Malaysia 1963 does not exist’

Separation, not Pakatan Rakyat, is the answer for Sabah, Sarawak woes within the federation, says activist Daniel John Jambun

KOTA KINABALU: The opposition’s stand that it is better for Sabah and Sarawak to vote BN out rather than secede from the federation is purile, claims activist Daniel John Jambun.

“The people of Sabah, Sarawak and Malaya have long lost their sovereignty to an apartheid-style set up in Putrajaya.

“As in Thailand, it’s not possible to change the government through the electoral system because of this loss of sovereignty.

“What exists is the Federation of Malaya 1957 masquerading as the Federation of Malaysia 1963,” said Jambun.

Jambun pointed out that Article 1 of the Federal Constitution stated that the Federation will be known in Malay and English as Malaysia.

Article 160 of the Federal Constitution however defines Federation as that set up by the Federation of Malaya Agreement 1957.

“Article 2 further states that Sabah and Sarawak are the 12th and 13th states in the Federation.

“The first 11 states are the States of Malaya. So, it cannot be suddenly said that Sabah and Sarawak are the 12th and 13th states in Malaysia.

“This means the Federation of Malaysia 1963 does not exist,” he said.

No referendums

Jambun was responding to comments from both constitutional lawyer Aziz Bari and Monash university professor James Chin.

He said while Aziz was barking up the wrong tree on Sabah and Sarawak re-thinking the idea of Malaysia after 50 years, Chin was also wrong to label separation attempts in Borneo as treason.

“When the two Borneo nations were dragged into the Federation with Malaya, the Conference of Rulers, the Sultans and the states in Malaya were not consulted.

“Why must Sabah, Sarawak go through the Conference of Rulers now that they want to stand on their own two feet?” he asked adding that no referendum was called before the Malayans and British dragged Borneo into the Federation.

He cited principles in the Western Sahara Case Advisory Opinion ICJ Reports (1975) 12 which supported Sabah and Sarawak going their own way.

He said the principles include  (a) a unique cultural or ethic group; (b) a defined geographic area; (c) the will to emerge as a free state; (d) the will to self-determine governance independently; (e) attempts to assert the aforesaid wills.

“A reading of this case is a good start as well as the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Territories and Peoples, General Assembly Resolution (XV) of December 14, 1960 GAOR, 15th Sess, Supp 16 at p 66.

“Whether it’s easy or otherwise for Sabah and Sarawak to leave the Federation is beside the point.

“We have to consider the exact nature and actual circumstances surrounding the British departure from Sabah and Sarawak in the wake of the independence of these two countries on 31 Aug, 1963 and 22 July, 1963 respectively,” he said in a statement here.

Pre-meditated move

Jambun went on to add that the disturbing contents of declassified British colonial documents made it clear that the British were convinced that Malaya would colonize Sabah and Sarawak after their departure.

“These revelations and facts clearly demonstrate that the UK Government abandoned Sabah and Sarawak, inadvertently or otherwise, to Malayan colonialism on or before 16 Sept, 1963.

“The British disguised it as a coming together of parts of the empire in the wake of decolonization although they knew Malaya would colonize Sabah and Sarawak after they left,” he said.

Jambun in actuality the strategy was the  Singapore and Malaya getting together in the wake of the occupation of Sabah and Sarawak by the latter to “facilitate”  the Singapore-Malaya merger.

“Malaya ostensibly would not ‘agree’  to the merger unless Sabah and Sarawak were part of the 1963 Federation to offset the large Chinese population in Singapore.

“After Malaya got Sabah and Sarawak, it kicked out Singapore from the Federation two years later.
“But the Borneo nations were not allowed to leave.. why? he asked.

According to Jambun it was clear  that  then prime minister Tunku Abdul Rahman had used the 1963 Singapore-Malaysia merger as an excuse to get Sabah and Sarawak in as colonies.

“Having got his hands on the two Borneo Nations, he lost no time within two years to kick out Singapore to pave the way for apartheid a’la  ketuanan Melayu.

“Why (else) did the British force the Rajah of Sarawak to cede his kingdom to the colonial office in London and “buy” Sabah for 1.2 million sterling pounds from the British North Borneo Company.

“Both were done in the wake of World War II, if not to unwittingly or otherwise myopically facilitate Malayan colonization in shouldering the defence burden in the interests of Britain’s commercial empire in Borneo.

“The no compliance on the Malaysia Agreement (by Putrajaya) stemmed from the fact that there was no proper decolonization in Borneo and that Malaysia at the time was not properly set up by the British Government in particular and the UN in general,” he said.



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