Call for the Designation of Sabah Chief Minister as Premier

KOTA KINABALU: The designation of the Sabah Chief Minister as Premier would not only highlight the equal status of Sabah and Sarawak within the Federation but also acknowledge the unique historical and political context of these two states.


Former Petagas assemblyman Datuk James Ligunjang emphasised that Sabah and Sarawak played an equal role in the establishment of the Federation of Malaysia in 1963, alongside the states in the Federation of Malaya.

By designating the Sabah Chief Minister as Premier, it would address the perception of inequality and reaffirm Sabah’s equal status as a founding member of the Federation.

In his latest social media post, he stated that this change in title would also emphasise the significant contribution that Sabah has made to Malaysia’s development and foster a sense of unity among all states.

Furthermore, this change in designation would have practical implications. As Premier, the Sabah Chief Minister would have a higher profile and a stronger mandate to negotiate with the federal government on behalf of the state, he said.

“This would enhance Sabah’s ability to address its unique challenges and priorities, such as the need for greater development, infrastructure, and autonomy.

“Overall, designating the Sabah Chief Minister as Premier would symbolically and practically recognise the distinctiveness of Sabah and Sarawak within the Federation of Malaysia. It would empower the states to effectively assert their needs and aspirations while promoting a more equitable and cohesive federation,” he added.

Ligunjang said it is important to note that Sabah should no longer be considered on par with the Chief Ministers of Malacca and Penang, as they are states within the Federation of Malaya.

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