KUCHING: As a Sabahan as well as a Malaysian, Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia is entitled to his personal views on the significance of the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).
However, Sarawak Barisan Nasional Youth chief Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof feels the Dewan Rakyat Speaker went overboard by challenging Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Abdul Rahman Zohari Abang Openg to a debate on the agreement.
In a statement today, Fadillah said Pandikar was never mandated by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak on the matter.
Najib had instructed the setting-up of several committees to coordinate negotiations on devolution of powers from the Federal government to the Sarawak administration based on the spirit of the Federal Constitution, the MA63 and other important documents.
“He (Pandikar) is entitled to his views but there is no need for him to judge the opinions or teach the people of Sarawak or even dare the Sarawak Chief Minister to a debate on MA63.
“The struggles championed by the chief minister is based on the aspiration of the people in the state. The matter was also raised after thorough research in accordance with the legislation, our Constitution and the spirit which led to the formation of Malaysia through MA63.
“Even the prime minister himself had agreed to look into the matter and formed a joint committee which, we believe is a positive development and should be supported,” Fadillah, who is also Works Minister and Petra Jaya Member of Parliament.
Abdul Rahman Zohari was previously quoted as saying that he did not agree with the view expressed by Pandikar, who had allegedly stated that MA63 is not important.
The chief minister had said that MA63 outlined the territorial rights of Sarawak, Sabah and the Peninsular, which are the basis for the formation of the nation.
“If you want to say that it is not important… I do not think so. That is all I have to say,” the chief minister had said on Wednesday.
Pandikar yesterday denied ever issuing any statement describing the MA63 as not important.
To another question by a reporter who asked for his reaction on statement by Abdul Rahman Zohari that his views was not important, Pandikar replied: “If he says that my view is not important, I can also say to him that his view does not make sense to me.”