Honouring significance of ‘722’

July 22 more than just a public holiday as it reminds Sarawakians to always honour, protect their Motherland, says Chief Minister

Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg

KUCHING: The declaration of Sarawak Day as public holiday back in 2016 should serve to motivate all Sarawakians to strive in safeguarding the security and sovereignty of their motherland, developing it and protecting its rights.

In his Sarawak Day 2018 message, Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg said his predecessor Pehin Sri Adenan Satem realised the importance of the date in that he declared it as a public holiday in Sarawak in April 2016.

Adenan, who was Sarawak’s fifth chief minister, passed away on Jan 11 last year – at age of 72.

“I am taking this opportunity to wish that all Sarawakian would commemorate July 22 – a very important date for Sarawak because on that day (in 1963), we formed our own government, self-government under our first Chief Minister Tan Sri Datuk Amar Stephen Kalong Ningkan.

“It was the first time that Sarawak was first administered by an ‘Anak Sarawak’ (Son of Sarawak).

“This (declaration of Sarawak Day as a public holiday) would become the motivation for us to safeguard the security of Sarawak, to develop Sarawak and to protect all Sarawak’s rights under Malaysia Agreement 1963,” Abang Johari said in wishing all fellow Sarawakians ‘Happy Sarawak Day’.

He also expressed his gratitude for Sarawak’s achievement in claiming its right over its oil and gas (O&G).

“Alhamdulillah (praise to Allah), this year we manage to strengthen our regulatory rights over O&G industry through Oil Mining Ordinance (OMO) 1958, which we have amended.

“This means that we have taken back some of our regulatory rights over our hydrocarbon industry,” he said.

Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas

Meanwhile in his Sarawak Day 2018 address, Deputy Chief Minister I Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas recalled the struggles and sacrifices of past leaders in liberating Sarawak and earning its self-rule.

“I wish to record our appreciation to the leaders of that time for their struggle in liberate Sarawak and their success of earning self-rule, which was the beginning for Sarawak to determine its own future at that time.”

Nevertheless Uggah also noted that since then, much of Sarawak’s rights have been eroded – either intentionally or unintentionally.

“Therefore, today’s celebration should ‘sharpen’ our determination in getting back all these lost rights.

“Now we are fighting to regain our rights, and sustain them for the benefit of all Sarawakians. Therefore, all of us must be united behind our Chief Minister in his struggles to get back our rights, including those on O&G,” he remarked.

 

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