KENINGAU, Sept 17 (Bernama) — Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail has refuted the allegation that the assurance given by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to restore the status of Sabah and Sarawak as equal partners in the federation was merely an empty promise.
Dr Wan Azizah, who id also PKR president, said the Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition had decided on the matter even before the last general election.
“We have been talking about restoring the status of Sabah and Sarawak not as states, but equal partners of Peninsular even before we won the general election. We promised to do so,” she told reporters after attending the Jasamu Dikenang programme at Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan Cina Yuk Yin here today.
In his speech at the national-level 2018 Malaysia Day celebration in Kota Kinabalu yesterday, Dr Mahathir assured that the PH government of the New Malaysia would restore the equal partner status to Sabah and Sarawak as enshrined in the MA63 when Malaysia was formed 55 years ago.
He said that restoring the status of Sabah and Sarawak as per MA63 would give a solid foundation to strengthen the ties between the three regions (Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak).
On PKR president-elect Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s recent statement saying that his wife, Dr Wan Azizah, would resign as the deputy prime minister if he becomes prime minister, Dr Wan Azizah said the matter was a pledge made by the party and accepted by all party members.
“If he (Anwar) becomes prime minister, I will not hold any position in the Cabinet,” she said.