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Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Sabah’s Continental Shelf Boundary never changed since 1954 – Dr. Jeffrey

KOTA KINABALU - “It is undisputable that the boundary of Sabah extended to the continental shelf including the seabed and its subsoil which lies beneath the high seas since 1954 with the adoption of the Queen’s Order in Council in 1954 and it has never been lawfully changed since then,” said Datuk Dr. Jeffrey Kitingan, President of Parti Solidariti Tanah Airku cum Bingkor State Assemblyman.

“Sarawak’s boundary was also extended to the continental shelf in 1954 with a similar Queen’s Order in Council”, said Dr. Jeffrey in support of the statement by Chief Minister Abang Johari who correctly asserted that the boundaries of Sarawak were never lawfully changed nor assented to by the Legislative Council of Sarawak.

These boundaries of Sabah and Sarawak were clearly set out in Article 1(3) of the Federal Constitution which unequivocally provides that the boundaries of Sabah and Sarawak were the territories immediately preceding Malaysia Day in 1963, which is the 1954 boundaries.

Like Sarawak, the Sabah Legislature has never assented to any change in Sabah’s boundary since 1954, save for Labuan’s cession in 1984 as a federal territory.

No laws can be passed by the Federal Parliament to alter the boundaries of Sabah and Sarawak without first amending Article 1(3).

Similarly, no laws can be passed to take away the ownership of the territories of Sabah and Sarawak and the ownership of the resources located within including Sabah and Sarawak’s oil and gas resources.

It is unconstitutional for the Petroleum Development Act and the later Territorial Seas Act to be passed and be used to change Sabah and Sarawak’s boundaries and “steal” the oil and gas resources.

It is unlawful, unconstitutional, unconscionable and inconceivable for Tun Razak on 26 March 1976 to sign and vest Sabah and Sarawak’s oil and gas resources to Petronas.

Likewise, it is unlawful and unconscionable for Harris Salleh as then Chief Minister of Sabah to sign on 14 June 1976 and agree to accept 5% of the oil and gas revenues for the oil and gas resources unlawfully vested to Petronas.

What they have done is literally to sign the “torture certificates” of all Sabahans and to condemn the future generations of Sabahans to abject poverty and impoverished lives.

Despite my promptings and repeated calls especially in the Sabah Legislature since 2013, the Sabah government, its Chief Minister and his Cabinet Members and the BN lawmakers have all failed to take any action to undo the damage.  They have done nothing at all to regain Sabah’s oil and gas resources which are continuously misappropriated to develop Malaya while Sabah remains largely undeveloped and lagging behind Malaya by several decades.

For Sarawakians, they should be waiting for Abang Johari to take further steps to regain their oil and gas resources now that he has openly declared that Sarawak did not agree to alter its boundaries.  This means the oil and gas still belonged to Sarawak and her people.

Will CM Abang Jo go all the way?

If not, then Sarawakians should take steps to vote in local parties like PBDS Baru and like-minded parties who are prepared to go all the way to regain Sarawak’s oil and gas resources.

For Sabah, the choice for Sabahans is pretty straight-forward.  Sabah Umno-BN parties are proven toothless and unable to even get 20% cash payment or so-called “royalties” let alone protect Sabah Rights especially on Sabah’s oil and gas resources.

Other than the Gabungan Sabah (GS) parties, STAR, Parti Harapan, SAPP and PPRS, all the other parties have not agreed to fight to regain Sabah’s oil and gas resources.  At best, the other parties still subservient to their Malayan political masters, including a former Prime Minister, are only asking for 20% “oil royalties”.

Only the GS parties have openly declared to take action to regain Sabah’s oil and gas ownership.   Sabahan voters should bear this in mind when casting their votes in PRU-14 and reject Sabah Umno-BN and all the other parties.

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