Chong not happy with rejection of oil, gas royalty question

Bandar Kuching MP Chong Chieng Jen is not satisfied with the Speaker rejecting his question in Parliament on the ground that a court case on similar subject was pending.

In a press statement received here yesterday, he said he was asking Putrajaya to state the terms and conditions of the Production Sharing Contracts (PSC) between Petronas and other signatories to the PSC, especially those relating to the apportioning of profits from oil and gas extracted from Sarawak.

The state DAP chairman also asked whether the federal government had any intention to increase the oil and gas royalty to the Sarawak government.

“My question was rejected by the Speaker on the ground that a related matter has been referred to court and thus, was sub judice. He said a case had been filed by the Kelantan government against Petronas and the government of Malaysia.

“Such reason is utterly unacceptable because my question relates to the increase of oil and gas royalty payable to Sarawak while the case cited to reject my question is a case between the Kelantan government and Petronas and the federal government, in relation to payment of oil royalty to Kelantan government.”

Chong, also national DAP vice chairman, said yesterday case was not the first time similar question was raised in Parliament.

He recalled being ‘given an answer that beat around the bush without directly answering to my question’ in the June sitting.

“At least, then, there was some answer to my question. This time, when I pressed for further answer, my question was totally rejected.
“This is clearly indicative of the federal government’s intention to delay and evade the question on the demand for the increase in oil and gas royalty to Sarawak from five per cent to 20 per cent.”

He added that the Najib administration had even gone to the extent of disallowing such question to be asked in Parliament.

As such, Chong said the state government must now realise the fact that the federal government had no intention to increase the oil and gas royalty up to 20 per cent as was resolved unanimously at the State Legislative Assembly (DUN) sitting in May this year.

“Six months have passed since the historic resolution was passed in DUN Sarawak, calling for the increase in Sarawak’s oil and gas royalty to 20 per cent. Yet, not a single indicative word on this matter has come out from the federal government. Now, the matter is not even allowed to be discussed in Parliament.

“It is thus incumbent upon the state government to take further and stronger action to compel the federal government to give effect to Sarawak DUN’s resolution; rather than sit back and wait in vain for an answer or be pushed around,” Chong said.

on Borneo Post (8/10/2014)