KUALA LUMPUR: The 1963 Malaysia Agreement (MA63) is a primary issue advocated by every leader of the Sabah People’s Alliance (GRS) who speaks at the 2023 National Convention of the Unity Government.
For GRS, the establishment of a nation based on unity and a Civil Malaysia (Malaysia Madani) must comply with the requirements of MA63, namely the rights of the people of Sabah that have not been fulfilled for 60 years.
GRS Secretary-General, Datuk Seri Panglima Masidi Manjun, emphasises that the people of Sabah are always proud to be Malaysians but are disappointed that the pace of development in the state lags far behind the states in the Peninsula.
“That is why the concept of Civil Malaysia is important because, personally, I consider it a continuation of the National Principles, the Nobility of the Constitution; we must respect the provisions in the Constitution and among those provisions are some special rights granted to Sabah and Sarawak.
“In terms of development distribution, 40 percent of the taxes collected in Sabah must be returned to Sabah.
“MA63 clearly sets the conditions for the entry of Sabah and Sarawak; I stand here not to question, but to want a prosperous Malaysia and for Sabah and Sarawak to feel proud within the country called Malaysia,” he said while discussing the topic of Civil Malaysia at the convention at PWTC today.
Masidi said it is time for the Unity Government, led by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, to set one of the national agendas as reprocessing Malaysia’s future towards betterment by using past shortcomings as guidance.
Meanwhile, GRS Deputy Chairman Datuk Seri Panglima Dr. Jeffrey Kitingan, asserts that the differences of opinion between the people of Sabah and Sarawak and the Peninsula stem from the failure of past leaders to implement MA63.
Jeffrey, who discussed the topic of the Nation-State at the convention, said the current Prime Minister is, however, very open since governing the country and gives hope for the formation of a fairer and more inclusive Malaysia.
“Our country was formed 60 years ago; during the formation of Malaysia, our founding fathers overlooked several matters, especially the aspirations of Sabah and Sarawak.
“As a result, Sabah and Sarawak do not align or have the same views on many matters, especially on the issues of rights and status within the Nation-State.
“Federal leaders at that time were arrogant and unwilling to accommodate Sabah and Sarawak until the people themselves changed the political landscape of Malaysia starting in 2018,” Jeffrey explained.
According to Jeffrey, Anwar’s current leadership concept, which fulfils many of the Sabah Government’s demands, can pave the way for the formation of a genuine Malaysian Nation-State based on MA63.
“When asked about the MA63 Special Committee, the Prime Minister said, ‘what is the need for a committee, just implement MA63’, this is the Prime Minister we have been looking for; perhaps the real Malaysian Nation-State has emerged.
“Let us make Malaysia a home for all, implement the concept of equal allies, where the majority support the minority and the weak, and vice versa, the minority support the majority,” he said.