Sabah to continue cooperation with Sarawak — Shafie Apdal

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KOTA KINABALU (April 10): The Sabah Government will continue its cooperation with Sarawak to restore the rights of the States as equal partners with Peninsular Malaysia after the Federal Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2019 failed to get the two-thirds majority support in the Dewan Rakyat yesterday.

Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal said the State Government would hold discussions with the Sarawak Government for support so that the matter could be realised in the future.

"I will contact my colleagues in Sarawak to study the matter and to ensure that such effort can be achieved. We will carry out another effort to bring the matter to the Parliament.

"We will continue to fight for what our ancestors had agreed in 1963," he told reporters here today.

Asked to comment on the decision of Sarawak MPs to abstain from voting on the constitutional amendment, Mohd Shafie said he was not entitled to give any opinion.

Some 59 lawmakers abstained from voting on the amendment to Article 1(2) in Parliament on Tuesday night.

A total of 138 MPs voted for the amendment, which was short of the two-thirds majority or 148 votes required to pass it.

The Bill, which was tabled and debated for nearly seven hours, was part of efforts by the Government to amend the Federal Constitution to restore the original status of Sabah and Sarawak as enshrined in the agreement for the formation of Malaysia in 1963.