KUCHING, February 11 ― Amendments to four articles of the Federal Constitution relating to the rights of Sabah and Sarawak, which were unanimously adopted by the Dewan Rakyat on December 14 last year, entered into force today. today.
Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar, minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Parliament and Law), said the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah, in a Federal Gazette, consented to the application of the amendments. to the four articles.
“What we need, we can demand because these are the constitutional provisions. This is the huge impact of the constitutional amendments in Sarawak and Sabah,” he told a press conference here today.
He said the amendments, enshrined in the Constitution (Amendment) Act 2022, entailed listing the states of the Federation in clause 2 of section 1; the definition of Federation and the new definition of Malaysia Day in clause 2 of Article 160; the indigenous races of Sarawak in clause (6) (a) of section 161A; and the deletion of clause 7 of section 161A.
Wan Junaidi said implementing the amendment would enable Sarawak to claim certain rights listed in the 1962 Intergovernmental Committee (IGC) report.
Asked if the amendments would change Sarawak’s status as “territories” rather than states as currently defined in the Constitution, Wan Junaidi said the matter would be decided by the State Legislative Assembly.
“I leave it to the state to decide what they want in the spirit of the amendments to differentiate the status of Sarawak and other states in the Malay Peninsula,” he said.
He said negotiations to make several other amendments to the Federal Constitution would continue taking into account the interests of all parties involved.
This includes a more equitable distribution of parliamentary constituencies between Sarawak, Sabah and Peninsular Malaysia, as well as listing state government technical agencies in the federal list to facilitate the implementation of development projects. ― Bernama