KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 10 (Bernama) - Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Liew View Keong today announced the names of the 16 members of the Steering Committee headed by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to review and streamline the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63). Besides him, the other committee members are Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal, Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng, Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, Communication and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo, Foreign Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah, Works Minister Baru Bian, Minister of International Trade and Industry Darell Leiking, Transport Minister Anthony Loke Siew Fook, Chief Secretary to the Government Datuk Seri Dr Ismail Bakar, Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak Datuk David Wong Dak Wah, Attorney-General Tommy Thomas, Universiti Malaya Law Professor Prof Emeritus Datuk Dr Shad Saleem Faruqi, Sabah Attorney-General Zaleha Rose Pandin and Sarawak Attorney-General Datuk Talat Mahmood Abdul Rashid.
Liew said the committee would meet in about a month in Putrajaya the determine the direction on MA63.
Liew, who attended the Law Reform Talk programme at Universiti Malaya here, said among the issues that will be studied regarding MA63 included oil royalty and development in Sabah and Sarawak. "So, I think this will be very inclusive that will include so many issues very close to the heart and minds of every Sabahan and Sarawakian.
"Generally, we do not want to go back on the historical aspect of the matter because some of the issues may be agreed upon without much dispute ...go to the core of the matter straightway, the implementation of MA63," he said.
"Everything is going full gear to ensure the restorations will be completed in six months time. After six months, the report will be tabled… it can be shortened, but the six months is to look at the best way to implement MA63," he said.
Under the Malaysia Agreement 1963, Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore joined Malaya to form the Federation of Malaysia. Singapore exited the federation in 1965 and Sabah and Sarawak are now claiming that there has been an erosion of their rights as per the agreement and want the situation rectified.
On a separate matter, Liew said the Cabinet has also agreed to look into abolishment of the death penalty. "This one is also a major development in this country and I hope the memorandum can be completed," he said.