Sabah claim won’t affect Malaysia plan
Published on: Monday, November 19, 1962
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NORTH BORNEO NEWS & SABAH TIMES - (Monday, November 19, 1962) - JESSELTON, Sun.- Before he left Jesselton this afternoon for Sandakan in the RMAF Dove, the Malayan Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman (pic), gave a short press conference at the Airport. 

He had enjoyed his visit he said and wished he had more time to go round and see the villages and other places. 

Referring to his meeting that morning with members of the Sabah Alliance, the Tunku said he had tried to explain the situation to them and he thought on the whole they were satisfied. 

There were only a few points that needed to be cleared up to pacify them, he said, but on those few points he was unable to talk as the Committee was still sitting. He thought the people here, from what he had heard, were ready for Malaysia. 

Answering questions he had not discussed this subject here: “That is one of the things nobody asked me, thank heavens, because I am not in it as yet ... The issue lies between the British and the Philippines. I myself do not know very much but I think the Philippines have played down on their claim quite a lot”. 

He added that if either Government asked him to discuss the matter when he visited the Philippines he would be happy to do so. 

“I do not think a claim of any kind would affect the smooth changeover from a Colony to an independent country” he added. 

The Prime Minister said he had invited the Presidents of the North Borneo Civil Service Union and the North Borneo Civil. Servants Association to go to Malaya to meet Malayan Establishment Officers and discuss with them problems which he had not been able to deal with when he met them that morning.

As soon as he got back he would send them invitations; he hoped that would please them and that would be able to “clear the air about any matters on which they felt doubtful” while they are in Malaya. 

In reply to another question by Reuter’s correspondent, Mr Peter Smark on whether the Prime Minister had found anything that particularly needed stepping up in this country, the Tunku replied jokingly: “I should like everything to be stepped up so that North Borneo can use a lot of its own money rather than wait for Malaysia to be formed when we would have to pay”. 

The Tunku then spoke of the system of planning and development in the Federation of Malaya. Development planning is done by the States themselves, so that people on the spot in the districts concerned, political figures and other representatives of the people do the planning. 

“The plans go in what we call the Red Book” said the Tunku “This is sent by the State to the National Development Council for final approval”. 


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