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Federal Govt Discussing Devolution Of Power With Sarawak

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KUCHING – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said he was in talks with Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem on how devolution of power could be implemented in Sarawak.

“All these years, most of the power is held by the federal departments and decisions are made in Putrajaya. It is time for the power to be transferred to the Sarawak state government departments.

“We can discuss this as we are from the same party (Barisan Nasional),” he said in his speech at the ‘Pemimpin Bersama Rakyat #sarawakfornajib’ programme at Stadium Perpaduan Negeri Sarawak, here, today.

On the speech by Adenan asking for additional oil and gas royalty, Najib said he would review the application.

“If possible, I want to give (additional royalty) to Sarawak so that the oil and gas sector can bring more wealth to the state.”

Najib said since becoming prime minister five years ago, he had approved on the spot, over RM1 billion in development allocations for Sarawak, including for the Pan Borneo Highway.

He said Adenan wanted the Pan Borneo to be from Lundu to Lawas, a super highway with not many traffic lights.

“So I phoned the Treasury secretary-general (Tan Sri Dr Irwan Serigar Abdullah) and told him to replace the traffic lights with a bypass.

“I said, if neccessary, give more allocations as the people of Sarawak are loyal to the Barisan Nasional (BN) government,” he said to loud applause.

The prime minister said the support of the Sarawak people for him and the BN government and the decision to gain independence via Malaysia was right.

“Independence has brought lots of benefit to the people of Sarawak. The Pan Borneo Highway will be toll-free, this is BN’s pledge,” he said, adding that the highway would be a game changer for development in Sarawak. – BERNAMA

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