Wednesday, July 3, 2013

✿ Independence Day ✿





History ;

The eastern seaboard of Borneo was charted, though not settled, by the Portuguese in the early 16th century. 
The area of Sarawak was known to Portuguese cartographers as Cerava. 
During the 17th century, Sarawak was self-governed under Sultan Tengah. 
By the early 19th century, Sarawak had become a loosely governed territory under the control of the Brunei Sultanate. 
During the reign of Pangeran Indera Mahkota in 19th century, Sarawak was facing chaos. 
Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin II (1827–1852), the Sultan of Brunei, ordered Pangeran Muda Hashim in 1839 to restore order and it was during this time that James Brooke arrived in Sarawak. 
Pangeran Muda Hashim initially requested assistance in the matter, but Brooke refused. 
In 1841, Brooke paid another visit to Sarawak and this time he agreed to provide assistance. 
Pangeran Muda Hashim signed a treaty in 1841 surrendering Sarawak and Sinian to Brooke. 
On 24 September 1841, Pangeran Muda Hashim bestowed the title Governor to James Brooke. 
He effectively became the Rajah of Sarawak and founded the White Rajah Dynasty of Sarawak, later extending his administration through an agreement with the Sultan of Brunei. 
Sarawak was thus an independent kingdom from 1841 until 1888, when the state was placed under British protection.


Brooke Dynasty ;

James Brooke was appointed Rajah by the Sultan of Brunei on 18 August 1842. Brooke ruled the territory, later expanded, across the western regions of Sarawak around Kuching until his death in 1868.


His nephew Charles Anthoni Johnson Brooke became Rajah after his death; he was succeeded on his death in 1917 by his son, Charles Vyner Brooke, with the condition that Charles should rule in consultation with his brother Bertram Brooke.
The Sarawak territories were greatly enlarged under the Brooke dynasty, mostly at the expense of areas nominally under the control of Brunei.In practice Brunei had only controlled strategic river and coastal forts in much of the lost territory, so most of the gain was at the expense of Muslim warlords and of the de facto independence of local tribes.
The Brooke dynasty ruled Sarawak for a hundred years and became famous as the "White Rajahs", accorded a status within the British Empire similar to that of the rulers of Indian princely states. 


In contrast to many other areas of the empire, however, the Brooke dynasty was intent on a policy of paternalism in order to protect the indigenous population against exploitation. 
They governed with the aid of the Muslim Malay and enlisted the Ibans and other "Dayak" as a contingent militia. 
The Brooke dynasty also encouraged the immigration of Chinese merchants but forbade the Chinese to settle outside of towns in order to minimise the impact on the Dayak way of life. 
Charles Brooke, the second White Rajah of Sarawak, established the Sarawak Museum, the oldest museum in Borneo.
In the early part of 1941 preparations were afoot to introduce a new constitution, designed to limit the power of the Rajah and give the people of Sarawak a greater say in government. 
Despite this democratic intention, the draft constitution contained irregularities, including a secret agreement drawn up between Charles Vyner Brooke and his top government officials, financially compensating him via treasury funds.

Second World War and occupation ;

Japanese invaded Sarawak and occupied the island of Borneo in 1941, occupying Miri on 16 December and Kuching on 24 December, holding both territories for the duration of World War II until the area was secured by Australian forces in 1945. 
Charles Vyner Brooke formally ceded sovereignty to the British Crown on 1 July 1946, under pressure from his wife among others. In addition, the British Government offered a healthy pension to Brooke.
Anthony Brooke continued to claim sovereignty as Rajah of Sarawak. 
After the end of the World War II, Anthony Brooke then opposed the cession of the Rajah's territory to the British Crown, and was associated with anti-secessionist groups in Sarawak. For this he was banished from Sarawak and he was allowed to return only seventeen years later, when Sarawak became part of Malaysia. 
Sarawak became a British colony (formerly an independent state under British protection) in July 1946, but Brooke's campaign continued. 
The Malays in particular resisted the cession to Britain, dramatically assassinating the second British governor, Sir Duncan George Stewart.

Independence ;

Sarawak was officially granted independence on 22 July 1963, and joined with Malaya, Sabah, and Singapore, in the federation of Malaysia,formed on 16 September 1963, despite the initial opposition from parts of the population.
Sarawak was also a flashpoint during the Indonesian Confrontation between 1962 and 1966.
Between 1962 and 1990, there was also a Communist insurgency in Sarawak.



The agreement :

Point 1: Religion.
While there was no objection to Islam being the national religion of Malaysia there should be no State religion in Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah), and the provisions relating to Islam in the present Constitution of Malaya should not apply to Borneo.

Point 2: Language.
* a. Malay should be the national language of the Federation
* b. English should continue to be used for a period of 10 years after Malaysia Day
* c. English should be an official language of Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) for all purposes, State or Federal, without limitation of time.

Point 3: Constitution.
Whilst accepting that the present Constitution of the Federation of Malaya should form the basis of the Constitution of Malaysia, the Constitution of Malaysia should be a completely new document drafted and agreed in the light of a free association of states and should not be a series of amendments to a Constitution drafted and agreed by different states in totally different circumstances. A new Constitution for Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) was of course essential.

Point 4: Head of Federation.
The Head of State in Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) should not be eligible for election as Head of the Federation.

Point 5: Name of Federation.
“Malaysia” but not “Melayu Raya”

Point 6: Immigration.
Control over immigration into any part of Malaysia from outside should rest with the Central Government but entry into Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) should also require the approval of the State Government. The Federal Government should not be able to veto the entry of persons into Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) for State Government purposes except on strictly security grounds. Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) should have unfettered control over the movements of persons other than those in Federal Government employ from other parts of Malaysia Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah).

Point 7: Right of Secession.
There should be no right to secede from the Federation

Point 8: Borneanisation.
Borneanisation of the public service should proceed as quickly as possible.

Point 9: British Officers.
Every effort should be made to encourage British Officers to remain in the public service until their places can be taken by suitably qualified people from Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah)

Point 10: Citizenship.
The recommendation in paragraph 148(k) of the Report of the Cobbold Commission should govern the citizenship rights in the Federation of Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) subject to the following amendments:
* a) sub-paragraph (i) should not contain the proviso as to five years residence
* b) in order to tie up with our law, sub-paragraph (ii)(a) should read “7 out of 10 years” instead of “8 out of 10 years”
* c) sub-paragraph (iii) should not contain any restriction tied to the citizenship of parents – a person born in Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) after Malaysia must be federal citizen.

Point 11: Tariffs and Finance.
Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) should retain control of its own finance, development and tariff, and should have the right to work up its own taxation and to raise loans on its own credit.

Point 12: Special position of indigenous races.
In principle, the indigenous races of Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) should enjoy special rights analogous to those enjoyed by Malays in Malaya, but the present Malays’ formula in this regard is not necessarily applicable in Borneo(Sarawak & Sabah).

Point 13: State Government.
* a) the Prime Minister should be elected by unofficial members of Legislative Council
* b) There should be a proper Ministerial system in Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah).

Point 14: Transitional period.
This should be seven years and during such period legislative power must be left with the State of Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) by the Constitution and not be merely delegated to the State Government by the Federal Government.

Point 15: Education.
The existing educational system of Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) should be maintained and for this reason it should be under state control.

Point 16: Constitutional safeguards.
No amendment modification or withdrawal of any special safeguard granted to Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) should be made by the Central Government without the positive concurrence of the Government of the State of North Borneo

The power of amending the Constitution of the State of Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) should belong exclusively to the people in the state. (Note: The United Party, The Democratic Party and the Pasok Momogun Party considered that a three-fourth majority would be required in order to effect any amendment to the Federal and State Constitutions whereas the UNKO and USNO considered a two-thirds majority would be sufficient).

Point 17: Representation in Federal Parliament.
This should take account not only of the population of Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah) but also of its seize and potentialities and in any case should not be less than that of Singapore.

Point 18: Name of Head of State.
Yang di-Pertua Negara.

Point 19: Name of State.
Sarawak or Sabah.

Point 20: Land, Forests, Local Government, etc.
The provisions in the Constitution of the Federation in respect of the powers of the National Land Council should not apply in Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah). Likewise, the National Council for Local Government should not apply in Borneo (Sarawak & Sabah).