KUALA LUMPUR: A special council, instead of a parliamentary select committee, will be set up to deal with the implementation of the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).
The council will be chaired by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.
The chief ministers, selected Cabinet ministers as well as representatives from both the Sabah and Sarawak governments and the federal government will also sit on the council.
Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Sabah and Sarawak Affairs) Datuk Hanifah Hajar Taib the government is of the view that a special council will suffice for now.
She was responding to a question from Datuk Seri Rohani Abdul Karim (Batang Lupar - GPS) who wanted to know about the government’s efforts to continue discussions and to seek a commercial solution on Sarawak’s claims to oil and gas rights.
She said the government was finalising the composition of the special council and its proposal would then be brought to the Cabinet for consideration.
“The special council is a forum specially set up to discuss and monitor the overall implementation of MA63 together with the Sabah and Sarawak state governments,” she said.
On the implementation of 17 out of the 21 items tabled to the Special Cabinet Committee on MA63, Hanifah said the responsible agency requires one to two years to implement them.
She said the remaining four unfinished matters, include oil royalties and cash payments for petroleum, minerals and oilfields, would be discussed by the council.
Hanifah said the government is confident that the success of the council will help ease the dissatisfaction felt by the people of Sabah and Sarawak.
In April last year, the then law minister Datuk Liew Vui Keong had said that the committee would involve selected MPs, to complement the Cabinet special committee on the same issue.