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Warisan Govt contravened MA63 in appointing non-Sabahan Nominated Assemblyman

KOTA MARUDU, June 4, 2019:

Recent appointment of a non-Sabahan as an appointed assemblyman by the Warisan Government shows they have no respect on the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).

Describing it as "setting a dangerous precedent", Parti Bersatu Sabah President Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili fears the decision would now open the floodgates for non-Sabahans and Malayan party leaders to occupy political positions in the Sabah administration.

"It shows how the Warisan Government cares very little of the MA63, especially on the rights of Sabah and Sabahans. They are not a defender of our sacred MA63," said Ongkili in response to the recent appointment of Loh Ee Eng as assemblyman under the DAP's quota.

The Kota Marudu Member of Parliament explained that the provision of appointment of nominated assemblymen in the State Constitution was meant to provide the contributions of minority groups to political decision-making in the State.

He added that the minority groups were meant to include native communities not represented in the normal democratic process of election because of their small numbers in rural constituencies.

"The nominated assemblymen provision was also meant to pave way for appointment of outstanding local professionals to balance ethic composition of the elected assembly.

"But all intents and purposes, the appointment provision was meant for Sabahans, specifically natives of Sabah. It was never meant for non-Sabahans of Malaya origin," he stressed.

Speaking after surveying commercial potential commercial ecotourism sites along the Marudu Bay with PBS leaders of Pitas and Tandek divisions, Ongkili pointed out that the foundations of the MA63 are the Twenty Points, Cobbold Commission and Inter-Government Committee Reports (IGC), and one of the central conditions enshrined in the IGC recommendations is the Borneonisation safeguard.

"Put simply, the condition on Annex B of the IGC on Public Service states that in the recruitment of senior officers and decision makers  of the government, priority must be given to officers and leaders of local or native origin, including for the appointment of nominated assemblymen.

"By appointing a non-Sabahan as a nominated assemblyman, the Warisan Government has breached the Malaysia Agreement,  specifically the IGC safeguard," he asserted.

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