KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 22): Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said that annual expenditure distribution and the appointment of Sabah and Sarawak representatives in the Inland Revenue Board are among the main issues in the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63), which have been successfully resolved by the unity government.
He said that the government also agreed to transfer the authority for expenditure on public infrastructure development to Sabah and Sarawak, through their respective state Public Works Departments.
Anwar added that the federal government will also fund public infrastructure construction projects in Sabah and Sarawak with the entire allocation being distributed to the state governments conditionally, but that it must go through strict financial supervision and regulations and be monitored by the Ministry of Finance.
“As an example, of the annual allocation, for example, Sarawak has only received RM16 million thus far and the amount is considered unreasonable for them.
“Therefore, we created a format and regulations to increase the allocation to RM300 million per year, subject to some details of the agreement,” he said when met by reporters after the Chinese New Year open house hosted by the Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall (KLSCAH), at the KLSCAH building here on Sunday (Jan 22).
Anwar said it is important to resolve the matter, to prove that the unity government was serious about fulfilling the promises made in MA63.
Earlier, Anwar, in his speech, stressed that most of the provisions in the MA63 agreement which have been unresolved for more than 60 years were successfully completed during the MA63 Implementation Action Council meeting, attended by the Sabah chief minister and Sarawak premier on Friday.
The prime minister said that the issues were successfully resolved through the support and spirit of unity of all political coalitions which make up the unity government.
Anwar, who is also the minister of finance, said that the success in resolving most of the main issues in MA63 was being driven by the firmness and sincerity of the leadership of the unity government.