Sarawak CM dismisses claim Petros will be another 1MDB

SARAWAK Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg has dismissed allegations published online that state oil company, Petroleum Sarawak Bhd (Petros), was created as a vehicle to siphon Sarawak oil money away.

“No such thing. That (claim by the) website – – is malicious with malicious intentions,” he said when opening Brooke Dockyard and Engineering Works Corporation’s second fabrication yard in Demak and the loadout of Petronas Carigali’s Bokor D substructure in Bako, 40km from Kuching.


Sarawak regains all rights to its oil and gas

SARAWAK has regained all the rights to prospect, mine and develop oil and gas in the state, said Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg today.

He said the state would by July “assume full regulatory authority over the upstream and downstream aspects of the oil and gas industry in Sarawak” 

This means that after July, oil companies, including Petronas, wishing  to operate in the state would have to secure a prospecting licence from the state government.

Prior to this, under the Petroliam Development Act (PDA), the oil companies received approval from the federal government.

Abang Johari said with the state now enforcing its rights and laws, “all persons and companies involved in the oil and gas industries in Sarawak, must henceforth, have the necessary licences, permits, leases and approvals required under either the Oil Mining Ordinance or the Gas Distribution Ordinance”. 

“They are required to regularise their operations and activities to comply with all state laws including those relating to the use and occupation of land”

He however, gave the assurance that enforcement of state laws would “not jeopardise the interests or investments of Petronas and other companies already involved in the oil and gas industry in Sarawak, whether upstream or downstream”.

“But their business and operational activities must be aligned with our laws and regulations.”

The chief minister said the state cabinet had approved a bill to amend the Oil Mining Ordinance to “update its provisions and to provide better enforcement”. 

The bill would be tabled at the next sitting of the state legislative assembly in July, he said.

Sarawak’s first oil well was commissioned on December 22,1910 in Miri. 

In 1920, the Rajah issued what was known as the Shell Concession Order to designate the area in Miri for the exploration and mining of oil by Sarawak Oilfield Limited – which was owned by Shell.

Exploration for oil offshore Baram area took place in the 1930s by the Dutch and the British.

 In 1952, the Sarawak Colonial government issued an oil mining lease, in the form of a deed, to Sarawak Oilfields Limited with the liberties, right and privileges to explore and mine all “the petroleum lying or within under or throughout the territory comprising the Colony of Sarawak including lands beneath all territorial water.”

In 1954, the Queen in Council passed the Sarawak (Alteration of Boundaries) Order to extend the boundaries of Sarawak to include the area the seabed and its subsoil which lies beneath the high seas contiguous to the territorial waters of Sarawak. 

In 1958, Council Negeri passed the Oil Mining Ordinance to “make better provision in the law relating to oil mining in Sarawak and its Continental Shelf”.

Petros in August last year was granted a prospecting licence to mine oil and natural gas in the state.

Meanwhile, Abang Johari confirmed Saau Kakok was the Petros CEO. 

Saau, a Bidayuh, has spent almost 40 years of his career in the oil and gas industry. 

His last position was Asia vice-president for a US-based independent oil company. – March 6, 2018.


Petros up and running by 2020

Chief Minister: Company targets active participation in oil and gas industry within 2 years

Abang Johari (10th left) and other members, including Awang Tengah (fifth right) and Uggah (ninth left), in a show of strength for PBB.

MIRI: The state’s wholly-owned oil and gas (O&G) company, Petroleum Sarawak Berhad (Petros), is set to become an active player in the O&G industry within two years.

Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg said the company, established in August last year, aims to exploit all opportunities in the O&G industry once it is fully operational.

“Wait two years for Petros to take active participation in the oil and gas industry,” he said when opening the Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) Miri Zone 10 triennial delegates meeting here yesterday.

The setting-up of Petros was to enable the state government to participate directly in the O&G industry in Sarawak.

Petros chairman Tan Sri Hamid Bugo was reported in November last year as saying the company was expected to start operations in the first quarter of 2018, and was looking for a suitable candidate to fill the post of chief executive officer.

Abang Johari, meanwhile, said Sarawak has the potential to become the strongest state in Malaysia by 2030 with a well-structured development plan based on digital economy, and headed by the state’s backbone party, PBB.

Abang Johari, who is PBB president, said the party’s leaders had been able to manage the state’s resources well.

“PBB, as a party that has always been relevant in all eras, has a strong structure which successfully put Sarawak on the right track. From the time of Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud to the late Tok Nan (Pehin Sri Adenan Satem) and then me, the party has managed to stabilise politics as well as provide space for the government to develop the state as it is today.

“I can say that today, politics in Sarawak is the best in the country. PBB as a party that is bold and daring to make changes has brought tremendous development and stability to the state,” he said.

About 1,200 people consisting of Supreme Council members, exco members, party members and observers from eight PBB Zone 10 branches, namely Bekenu, Lambir, Piasau, Pujut, Senadin, Marudi, Telang Usan and Mulu, attended the event.

On another matter, the Chief Minister proposed to change the Miri tourism promotion approach by using virtual reality method to attract more tourists.

“The local sector can promote the famous Bario Highlands with Bario rice products as well as the beaches of Bekenu as tourist attractions. In addition, Orang Ulu craft products in Miri can penetrate the international market through virtual stores,” he said.

Earlier, Zone 10 coordinator Datuk Gerawat Gala, who is also State Legislative Assembly deputy speaker, said among the decisions reached during the meeting was to fully support the decision of the party’s Supreme Council (MKT) to retain Abang Johari as PBB president without contest in the upcoming party convention.

“In addition, we fully support the party’s MKT decision for both current deputy presidents of the party to retain their posts without contest and the posts of head of women and youth wings not to be contested in the TGM,” he added.

Gerawat noted that within a year, Abang Johari had succeeded in enacting and implementing new policies to spur economic and high-impact development, including the establishment of Sarawak Pay, Petros, the digital village and many more at the state level.

“We will work hard together with other components of the Barisan Nasional to wrest the Miri parliamentary seat from the opposition,” he said.

Deputy chief ministers Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas and Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan, PBB secretary-general Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi Utom and PBB permanent chairman Datuk Amar Asfia Awang Nassar, who is also State Legislative Assembly speaker, were among those present.


Dr M fishes in Sarawak waters

THERE was quite a lot of hype ahead of Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s visit to Sarawak, but everything went without a hitch.

Chief Minister Datuk Seri Abang Johari Tun Openg knew the game that the opposition was playing – Dr Mahathir has gone from being the villain to the darling of Pakatan Harapan and barring him from entering would only give the Opposition an additional issue to play up.

Besides, he is the former premier even though the average Sarawakian is not wild about him.

Dr Mahathir is no stranger to Kuching but everything seemed familiar, yet not so familiar this time around.

The familiar part was that as he stepped down from his private jet, he was immediately ushered by airport security and officials to the VIP lounge.

The less familiar part was that the receiving delegation comprised top DAP leaders including Chong Chieng Jen, who is the state Pakatan and DAP chairman.

This the era of U-turns – enemies have become friends and things that were not okay are now okay for Dr Mahathir.

Lau: Dr Mahathir suffers from trust deficit among Sarawakians.


Chong, who used to be one of Dr Mahathir’s fiercest critics, seemed thrilled to bits to be meeting the elder man. The MP-cum-assemblyman is known for his sweet, boyish grin and he looked as though he had struck the Sports Toto jackpot.

Mahathir too was smiling away, oozing his usual charm. But his voice sounded rather nasal, as though he had a blocked nose, and he also seemed a little breathless because he had trouble completing some of his longer sentences.

But he sportingly fielded questions from the local media, telling them he would like to talk to the PBB leaders in the state government.

“But everybody is very shy nowadays. The last time I came, they visited me. Now (they are) a little bit strained,” he said with his typical wit.

The initial resistance among DAP leaders about Dr Mahathir seems to have evaporated and they are eager to jump on the Mahathir bandwagon.

One of the roles that DAP had envisaged was for Dr Mahathir to be the primary attacker against Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

The racial angle is deflected when you have someone like the former premier showing it is alright for DAP to take on Umno.

It softens the perception that a Chinese party is attacking a Malay leader or as the DAP leaders put it, “Malay screw Malay”.

Chong: He presented Pakatan Harapan’s election manifesto.


Dr Mahathir has lived up to the motto and many DAP leaders now realise how useful he is to their agenda.

Hours later on a damp and drizzly evening, Dr Mahathir arrived for the much anticipated ceramah at the commercial heart of an upper-middle class suburb.

There was a good turnout, although it was below the expectations of the organisers. The novelty factor was of course Dr Mahathir – it was the first time that Kuching residents were seeing him on the Pakatan stage and he did not disappoint.

He launched into what has become his standard performing act – he painted Najib as public enemy No.1, accused his government of kleptocracy, poked fun at his wife, explained why DAP is no longer his enemy and declared that Pakatan could form the next government.

And since he was on Sarawak soil, he made soothing sounds about restoring the state rights of Sarawakians.

He is not as sharp as he used to be and everyone noticed that he referred to Sarawak’s terms in the Malaysia Agreement as “16 Points” instead of “18 Points”.

He made the mistake during the press conference at the airport and several more times during the evening ceramah.

And as expected, he blamed his predecessor and successor for Sarawakians’ grievances over territorial sea rights and petroleum royalty. He was, of course, not to be blamed.

Tiang: Ex-premier not qualified to talk about what Sarawak wants.


“Mahathir is saying what the Chinese want to hear because in the urban area, they are angry with the Government,” said a retired Chinese professional.

Pakatan in Sarawak seems to have gotten its act together after the very public quarrel over seats during the state election.

Standing alongside Dr Mahathir, Chong also unveiled the party’s “New Deal, New Hope” election manifesto which promises equality, empowerment and full state rights to the state, as well as quality education and infrastructure development.

It was a rather hastily drawn up document and he promised to come up with more details closer to the election date.

DAP leader Lim Kit Siang was quite carried away by the whole thing and asked Sarawak and Sabah to deliver 40 of its 56 parliamentary seats to Pakatan.

But Dr Mahathir could not bring the tsunami mood to Sarawak. He looked old and sounded tired against the giant stage backdrop that was plastered with the “New Deal, New Hope” slogan.

The charisma is still there, but the days when he could walk on water are long over.

He carries too much baggage with Sarawakians and as Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr James Masing said: “I do not think he is sincere. In his 22 years as prime minister, he never bothered to touch on it (renegotiating the Malaysia Agreement), he refused to talk to us about it.”

One of the reasons why the state government did not bar Dr Mahathir was because they wanted to assess his impact and they now have the answer.

The saying that it is better late than never did not work in this case and the opinion out there is: Why now? Why didn’t Dr Mahathir do it when he had the power to do so?

Michael Tiang, the political secretary to the Chief Minister, let go a stinging open letter which basically told Dr Mahathir that he is not qualified to talk about what Sarawakians want and that since he retired as prime minister, Sarawak has been able to set up is own development bank, Debos, and its own petroleum company, Petros.

Besides that, Tiang expressed disappointment that despite being a statesman, Dr Mahathir’s attacks on the Prime Minister’s wife were no better than what cybertroopers do on the Internet.

“Your political partners like Lim Kit Siang do not deserve any welcome in Sarawak. He has criticised Sarawak for abusing our immigration powers. What do you mean abusing our autonomy? This is our autonomy since 1963!

“If Lim Kit Siang cannot accept the fact that we had this autonomy since 1963, Sarawakians should not believe there will be any ‘New Deal and New Hope’ for Sarawak,” said Tiang.

Sarawak has always had this peculiar thing about rejecting political parties from the peninsula, especially Umno, whom they view with great suspicion.

But there is also something rather hypocritical about it given the way peninsular brands like DAP and PKR have made inroads.

They do not like peninsular figures telling them how to run their state. They want to keep race and religion out of the Sarawak way of life.

They view Dr Mahathir as a primary cause of what the country is today and that is why many of them draw a line about his leading role in politics today.

“Dr Mahathir suffers from a trust deficit among many Sarawakians,” said SUPP assistant treasurer Robert Lau.

The hardcore Opposition supporters will go along with it. They will do anything to topple Barisan, whether it is supporting PAS like in the last general election or backing the “old dictator” this time.

However, local journalists think that riding on Dr Mahathir could backfire for the Sarawak opposition parties.

“I was not overwhelmed. What does it say about the Opposition that they have to bring him in?” said a Kuching-based journalist.

It is still quite difficult to figure out Dr Mahathir as the leader of the Opposition.

He is in danger of becoming a one-trick pony in his campaign against Najib. He started out with the grand strategy of bringing down Najib via the 1MDB issue. It worked beautifully among the urban voters, but failed to resonate with the rural base and he has stopped talking about 1MDB.

He has also stopped claiming that Malaysia is going bankrupt or that it is a failed state. Things could certainly be better, but economic figures show that the economy is growing steadily.

Malaysia recently moved up two places in the global competitiveness index, China is investing in a big way and the new MRT was the talk of the town.

The Asian Development Bank recently named Malaysia and Hong Kong as the “surprise growth nations”. Malaysia was also named one of the best places in the world to retire, prompting Najib to quip that “however, some people refuse to retire”.

Dr Mahathir’s cameo appearance in Sarawak was not a roaring success, but it was an important stop in his role as Pakatan’s “top dog”.

Will it be Sabah next?

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was supposed to be the X-factor in Sarawak Pakatan Harapan’s “New Deal, New Hope” launch last weekend but he has a trust deficit among Sarawakians and he failed to bring on the tsunami mood.


Sabahans wait to see if Najib will keep promises on state rights

THE return of Sabah’s lost rights will be on the minds of many Sabahans as Prime Minister Najib Razak, who had vowed to return them, begins his two-day visit to the state tomorrow.

This could be Najib’s final visit to Sabah as prime minister ahead of the 14th general election which is speculated to be held before June, although the Barisan Nasional government’s mandate expires in August.

Sabah’s opposition leaders, however, believe Najib will keep the state waiting for any news on the return of special rights due to the state under the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) .

To them, his promises are merely election ploys and they see no reason for delays.

“Najib has come here so many times and all he had to do was just return our lost rights. What is there that is holding him back? 

“Everything is laid out clearly in the Federal Constitution,” said Lajim Ukin, the president of Parti Harapan Rakyat Sabah, one of the four parties in the Sabah opposition alliance, United Sabah Alliance.  

The restoration of state rights under MA63 has become a common call for parties on both sides of the political divide in Sabah and the hottest topic is the state’s 40% revenue entitlement.

A fact-finding groups formed by the government called the MySabah group found the federal government had halted payments of the entitlement since 1974.

The 40% entitlement was the reason why Sabah’s leaders had agreed to form the Federation of Malaysia in 1963, along with Sarawak, Malaya and Singapore, which broke away two years later.

Over time, Sabah’s political leaders said they have seen the state gradually cede its executive powers to the federal government in many areas ranging from oil resources, to education, power generation and other rights.

Sabah Star leader Dr Jeffrey Kitingan said Sabah suffered from a lack of development and had a higher poverty rate as a result of the erosion of state rights.

He said this was due to the lack of federal funds being put back into the state, despite Sabah contributing a sizeable amount to federal coffers from its natural resources.

Parti Warisan Sabah treasurer Terrence Siambun, meanwhile, said Najib should deliver his promise with no strings attached.

“The thing about MA63 is beyond politics. BN has been in power for over 20 years in Sabah but only made little effort to restore our rights.

“But now the prime minister is now going around making this promise just because the election is around the corner. If he is truly sincere, he should just implement our rights and not allow matters like the MA63 to be used as election bait,” he said.

The call for a return of state rights has gained political traction since the last two elections and Najib in his visit to Sabah has repeatedly promised their return.

Political observers expect Najib to announce some progress now that neighbouring state Sarawak has gone ahead to gain control of its upstream and downstream oil and gas industry thought state oil company Petros.

Sabah Umno leader Anifah Aman, who is also the foreign affairs minister, recently piled pressure by declaring he would leave Umno and refuse any federal cabinet post if Najib failed to deliver his promises on MA63. – March 20, 2018.


Sarawak perkukuh persediaan IR

PETALING JAYA : Kerajaan Sarawak akan memperuntukkan sebanyak RM1 bilion dalam menyediakan capaian internet laju daripada 6 megabait sesaat (Mbps) kepada 100 mbps.

Ketua Menteri Sarawak, Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg, berkata peruntukan berkenaan bersesuaian dengan cabaran Revolusi Industri (IR) 4.0 yang memberikan penekanan kepada pembangunan internet yang disifatkan sebagai pencetus kepada pembangunan ekonomi rakyat Sarawak.

Katanya pembangunan berkenaan dilihat sangat penting dalam hala tuju Sarawak dalam melonjakkan ekonomi negeri.

“Pembangunan internet berupaya merubah cara tradisional kepada moden yang dilihat lebih cepat dan mendatangkan keuntungan dalam pelbagai bidang termasuk pertanian,” katanya.

Beliau berkata demikian pada siaran langsung bual bicara, Mandat TV3 di Seri Pentas, di sini semalam.

Abang Johari berkata dalam persediaan ke arah itu, kerajaan akan memberikan latihan kepada golongan muda serta kemudahan berkaitan termasuk bekerjasama dengan syarikat teknologi komunikasi, Huawei dan Singpura net dalam urusan berkaitan perbankan internet.

“Saya akui usaha ini mengambil masa tetapi percaya melalui kerja keras dan fokus, kita berupaya melaksanakannya,” katanya.

Beliau turut membangkitkan mengenai isu minyak dan gas di negeri berkenaan yang perlu diselesaikan dengan cara baik menerusi peruntukan perundangan.

“Pertronas dan Petroleum Sarawak Berhad (Petros) harus bekerjasama menyelesaikan hal ini.

“Mungkin Petros akan menjadi agensi manakala selebihnya kita serahkan kepada pihak eksekutif untuk menyelesaikan dengan cara baik.

“Kerjasama dan perkongsian eksekutif antara dua pihak ini pasti memberikan kebaikan kepada kedua-dua pihak,” katanya.

Mengulas mengenai pembangunan Lebuhraya Pan Borneo, beliau berkata ia berupaya membuka banyak peluang ekonomi kepada negeri dan masyarakat khususnya di laluan berkenaan.

“Saya berterima kasih kepada Perdana Menteri yang bersetuju dengan pembinaan lebuh raya yang bukan saja berkualiti tetapi tanpa tol.

“Walaupun ada yang mempersoalkan mengenai ia sesuatu yang membazir, saya menyifatkan ia sebagai suatu pelaburan jangka panjang.

“Saya rasa PM (Perdana Menteri) kita betul-betul mendengar denyut nadi rakyat, dan ia secara menyeluruh dan tidak secara berpusat seperti di bawah kepimpinan terdahulu,” katanya.

Mengulas mengenai persediaan menghadapi Pilihanraya Umum ke 14 (PRU14), beliau berkata muka baharu dipertaruhkan bukan saja menerima sambutan baik daripada masyarakat, lebih daripada itu mendapat tunjuk ajar daripada pimpinan lama.

“Malah kita optimis akan menang,” katanya.

“Saya dan BN Sarawak yakin untuk merampas antara 28 hingga 29 kerusi (daripada 31 kerusi Parlimen) dalam PRU-14 ini dengan usaha gigih jentera parti.

“Harapan saya agar kawasan yang dikuasai pembangkang penggal lalu dapat kembali kepada BN,” katanya.

Mengenai cabaran menghadapi DAP, Abang Johari, berkata menerusi dasar yang menyentuh hati dan yang dapat menyokong kaum Cina, dilihat dapat menawan hati mereka.

“Tahun lalu saya luluskan RM7 juta manakala tahun sebelum ini RM6 juta untuk sekolah Cina.

“Saya lihat kita perlu berlaku adil kerana dalam masyarakat berbilang kaum dan etnik ini, kita tidak seharusnya meminggirkan antara satu kaum dengan kaum yang lain.

“Sarawak ada budaya sendiri, kalau tidak susah. “Dulu ada juga yang menyokong PKR, kerana simpati tetapi ia tidak lama kerana masyarakat Sarawak turut memiliki hasrat sendiri yang perlu diperjuangkan,” katanya.

Mengenai perancangan menerbitkan TV Digital Sarawak, beliau berkata ia masih dalam peringkat penyelidikan.

“Saya ucapkan terima kasih kepada kerajaan pusat yang bersetuju memberi lesen digital kepada kita. 

“TV ini akan kita panjangkan ke Semenanjung.

“Saya kira ia sebagai platform kreatif kepada orang muda untuk menyampaikan pesanan kepada semua masyarakat,” katanya.


Saau Kakok appointed CEO of Petros

Abang Johari (second left) arrives for the launch of Petros. He is accompanied by Hamid (second right), Morshidi (right), Assistant Minister of Corporate Affairs Abdullah Saidol (left), Petros director Dato Mohammad Medan Abdullah (third right) and others.

KUCHING: The newlylaunched Petroleum Sarawak Berhad (Petros) will be helmed by Saau Kakok, who has been officially appointed as the chief executive officer (CEO) of the company.

Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg said Saau, a Bidayuh, had spent almost 40 years of his career in the oil and gas industry, his last post being the vice president for Asia of a United States-based independent oil company.

“Saau is an experienced and professional individual in the oil and gas fraternity who will lead a competent and high integrity Petros operational team.

“Petros is fortunate to gain Saau’s experience, talent and vision. I am confident that he is the right person to lead Petros into the future, adding value to the careers of talented young Sarawakians while making Petros the best place to work,” he said when announcing the Sarawakian’s appointment at the official launch of Petros at a leading hotel here on Tuesday.

Saau’s appointment, he noted, proved that Sarawak has a good pool of talents with the experience and expertise in the oil and gas industry.

Abang Johari introduces Saau as the CEO during his keynote address at the launch of Petros.

“Their involvement will be further enhanced with participation in contracts and supply of services offered by Petros,” he said and assured that the state government will issue guidelines to Petros to ensure greater and more meaningful participation by Sarawakians and Sarawak companies in this sector.

In addition to Saau, Abang Johari also said that Datin Josephine Hilary Dom had been appointed as an additional member of Petros’ board of directors early this year.

“Josephine is a respected individual in the field of finance and accounting and has been around in the Malaysian corporate world for more than three decades now.”

Petros, led by its chairman Tan Sri Datuk Amar Hamid Bugo, now has five board members; namely Josephine, Datu Zuraimi Sabki, Sharbini Suhaili, Heng Hock Cheng and Datuk Mohammad Medan Abdullah.

Meanwhile, Abang Johari said Petronas has been exporting liquefied natural gas from Sarawak since 1975, and the revenues so derived have contributed tremendously to the national economy and the development of the Federation.

“By the exercise of our constitutional rights, the state government is fulfilling the aspirations of the people of Sarawak that the additional revenues from oil and gas will accelerate industrial development and economic progress to enable Malaysia as a whole to achieve a high income economy by the year 2030.”

To this, he said the state government would like to see Petros work alongside Petronas both in the upstream and downstream sectors of the oil and gas industry.

“Both companies can contribute significantly towards the advancement of the oil and gas industry in Malaysia and the economic progress and prosperity of our nation,” he said.

Among those attending the ceremony were Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas, Utilities Minister Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi Utom, Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian, Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah, State Secretary Tan Sri Datuk Amar Morshidi Abdul Ghani and cabinet ministers.

Abang Johari greets guests upon his arrival.


Petroleum Sarawak is not 1MDB, says Chief Minister

KUCHING: The state-owned Petroleum Sarawak Bhd (Petros) is nothing like 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) as alleged by a website, says Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg.

“There’s been a malicious (article) written on Petros. We have a transparent organisation. That website and has malicious intentions,” he said when opening the Brooke Dockyard and Engineering Works Corporation’s new Demak Yard here on Monday (March 4).


PH ciplak janji pulangkan hak Sarawak : Abang Johari

PETRA JAYA : Janji pembangkang untuk mengembalikan hak Sarawak dan Sabah yang terkandung manifesto gabungan itu sekadar “pemanis” menjelang Pilihan Raya Umum Ke-14 (PRU14).

Ketua Menteri, Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Abang Openg, berkata pemulangan hak itu sebenarnya sudah dibuktikan Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Razak dan sudah pun dilaksanakan.

Sehubungan itu, katanya janji PH untuk mengembalikan hak Sarawak itu bukan hanya menciplak usaha Barisan Nasional (BN) malah jelas hanya sekadar untuk meraih sokongan menjelang PRU-14.

“Perkara itu (memulangkan hak Sarawak) sebenarnya sudah banyak dibuktikan Perdana Menteri antaranya menerusi pemberian hak kepada Petroleum Sarawak Berhad (PETROS) untuk menguruskan pengeluaran minyak di negeri ini.

“Mengapa ketika 22 tahun berkuasa (merujuk kepada Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad) tidak memikirkan hal itu tetapi sekarang tiba-tiba pula menyebut mengenainya,” katanya.

Beliau berkata demikian kepada media selepas merasmikan Pameran Kerjaya dan Latihan Sarawak (SCaTFAIR) di Pusat Konvensyen Borneo Kuching (BCCK) di sini, hari ini.

Abang Johari berkata, beliau tidak hairan dengan janji yang dicipta pembangkang kerana ia ibarat “buah yang gugur” menjelang pilihan raya.

Sementara itu, mengenai pertemuan beliau dengan pemimpin Kerajaan Persekutuan di Putrajaya semalam, Abang Johari sekadar berkata ada perkara penting yang dibincangkan.

“Tunggulah, saya akan umumkannya,” katanya.

Terdahulu ketika berucap merasmikan majlis itu, Abang Johari menggesa rakyat negeri ini khususnya golongan muda supaya berusaha merebut peluang untuk bersaing dalam era teknologi digital.

“Kita mesti merebut peluang untuk menimba pengetahuan dan bersedia untuk berubah sesuai dengan perubahan zaman yang semakin maju.

“Jika tidak mahu ketinggalan, kita harus berubah, contohnya dalam perkhidmatan pengangkutan awam, pengusaha teksi harus menerima perubahan dengan kehadiran perkhidmatan bentuk baharu,” katanya.


Petronas’ suit a desperate act to hang on to Sarawak oil rights, says activist

PETRONAS’ legal action seeking the Federal Court’s declaration on the Petroleum Development Act 1974 (PDA) shows how desperate it is to hang on to the state’s oil and gas resources, one of Sarawak’s more vocal political and rights activists Lina Soo said.

“They must have known that they don’t have control over our oil and gas, so they try to get the Federal Court to shut us up,” Soo, who is also the president of the State Reform Party Sarawak (Star) political party said in reaction to the national oil company asking the apex court to declare that it is the exclusive owner of petroleum resources in Malaysia, including Sarawak, and that it is the regulator for the upstream industry throughout the country.

Soo said Petronas’ legal action reflected Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s long-standing position (when he was prime minister from 1981 to 2003) not to accede to Sarawak and Sabah’s demand for a greater share of its oil and gas resources.

“They just want to avoid paying the 20% oil royalty (Pakatan Harapan promised in its election manifesto) and they will try every means not to pay.”

Soo said Sarawakians should not be surprised if the new PH government would use the RM1 trillion debt as an excuse not to increase the royalty.

The two Borneo territories currently are only getting 5%.

In March, Sarawak Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg said the PDA and the equally controversial law, the Territorial Sea Act 2012 (TSA), are not relevant in Sarawak.

He said since both were federal laws and for any federal law to be implemented in the state, the legislative assembly has to ratify them.

Neither the PDA nor the TSA were ever ratified by the assembly.

“Any law that is ultra vires the constitution under Article 4 of the federal constitution is void,” he said.

Sarawak has also warned all companies in the state’s oil and gas industry and companies intending to do prospecting and mining work to have the necessary licences, permits, leases and approvals required under either the Oil Mining Ordinance or the Gas Distribution Ordinance from July 1.

The state’s newly formed oil company, Petros, will from July 1 also assume full regulatory authority over the upstream and downstream aspects of the oil and gas industry in the state from Petronas.

The state government has yet to react to the Petronas action and the state government spokesman, Assistant Minister in the Chief Minister’s Office Abdullah Saidol, said the chief minister will issue a statement on this matter “soon”. – June 4, 2018.


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