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Devolution of power to be discussed

9:36pm 16/01/2016 Ann Vivien 2 views National,Politics
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Tan Sri Adenan Satem

SIBU:  Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem will meet Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak next Wednesday to settle matters on the devolution of power to the Sarawak state government.

Announcing this when opening the Sibu Division Sejiwa Senada 2016 Programme here today, he said Sarawak wanted the administrative powers taken from it by the federal government, to be returned.

“We want the power to return to Sarawak,” he said, adding, “it was important to development for the people of Sarawak specifically rural residents”.

Adenan would also raise the issue of higher oil royalty payment to the state from the present five per cent.

He expected discussions to be tedious but expressed confidence that the federal government would be agreeable to the state’s requests.

As such, he wanted the people to give him and Barisan Nasional five more years to lead Sarawak “in the interest of all”.

To date, he said, the federal government had agreed not to issue deep sea fishing licences in the waters off Sarawak without referring to the state government.

The federal government had also agreed that 90 per cent of teachers in the state would comprise Sarawakians within the next three years, aside from awarding yearly Petronas contracts worth RM2.1 billion to companies in Sarawak.

Adenan said he had implemented 50 items in the two years he had been Chief Minister including doing away with toll, reducing power tariff and building the Pan Borneo Highway.

He said Sarawak had been left behind in many things in the last 50 years and he wanted to overcome that.

His focus is to develop the rural area and close the income disparity between the urban and rural areas.

“Give me five more years. If you give me a big mandate (at the 11th state election), I can stand up to Kuala Lumpur and tell them what we want,” he said.

Adenan said the people of Sarawak could then judge him in the next five years.

“If I am no good you can kick me out. I don’t intend to stay too long as I’ll be too old for the job,” he said, adding he was confident that the people of Sarawak knew what they had to do at the state election.

More than 30,000 visitors thronged the opening of the three-day programme which started yesterday.

The aim of the programme is to boost the confidence of the people in the government, improve people/government cooperation and deliver services directly to the people.- BERNAMA

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