Malaysia rejected claims by the Philippine Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr who said Sabah belonged to the Philippines.
The Malaysian Foreign Ministry said Malaysia does not recognise and will not entertain (ever) any claims by any party on Sabah, which it says is fully recognised by the UN as Malaysian.
“The state of Sabah is an integral part of Malaysia. This fact has been duly recognised and accepted by the United Nations and the international community since the formation of the Federation of Malaysia on Sept 16,1963.
“Therefore, any statements alluding to or insinuating the anachronistic claims will be rejected as unfriendly towards Malaysia,” it said in a statement yesterday (Sept 8).
Last Thursday, Locsin Jr. reaffirmed the Philippines’ claim over Sabah after Lanao del Norte Rep. Khalid Dimaporo asked if the DFA has allocated funds for Sabah.
“We shall never have an Embassy in Sabah. To even think of it is an act of treason,” he told the House Committee on Appropriations, reported the Manilla Bulletin.
This is not the first time Manilla is stating its claims on the state in Borneo. This is the second time this year Locsin made such claims.
In April, Locsin insisted that the Philippines should “keep an eye” on defending its claims on resource-rich Sabah, which became part of Malaysia in the 1960s.
“Save your prayers, we’re doing all that can be done—for now. And later on with firmer commitment from abroad more. Also keep your eye on Sabah. Some jerks are proposing we compromise our historical claim to it with diplomatic moves of implicit surrender,” Locsin said in the April tweet.
But the Foreign Ministry in Putrajaya said Malaysia accords great importance and high value to its relations with the Philippines, bilaterally and as partners in the Asean, as well as other regional and international organisations.
“The Malaysia-Philippines relationship that continues to expand and bring mutual benefits to the two countries and the respective peoples certainly does not deserve such unfriendly and harmful comments,” it said.
According to Lanao del Norte Rep. Khalid Dimaporo, Sabah is one of the parts of the Bangsamoro territory hence Manilla should claim that Sabah is part of the Philippines and not part of Malaysia.
Malaysia played a decisive role in the negotiations that led to the creation of the new Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, ending a decade-long separatist insurgency that left about 150,000 people dead. -/TISG