This eventually led Shahani to not pursue the bill's passage. The North Borneo dispute, also known as the Sabah dispute, is the territorial dispute between Malaysia and the Philippines over much of the eastern part of the state of Sabah. Indonesia and the Philippines rejected the findings of the Cobbold Commission. And if the Malaysia Federation should fail and become instead the focal center of Communist infection, what does the good Senator intend to do? This must be a new brand of logic! I regret to report that in the joint committee hearings of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and National Defense and Security, none of the defense and foreign officials present could give any answer to these questions and they confessed to our amazement and surprise that the detailed plans and objectives of this projected Greater Malayan Confederation have not been spelled out. The Senator cannot therefore blame us, since he has invited and provoked the inquiry, if we now file a bill of particulars. Then, the good Senator tells us that “contrary to the impression created in the minds of our people, the claim of sovereignty put forward by our Government as transferee of the Sultan of Sulu does not cover the entire area of North Borneo but only a portion thereof.” I do not know who created this impression, or whether the Senator has had a hand in it, through his own statements. A few days ago, Senator Lorenzo Sumulong spoke on the floor of the Senate to air his views on the Philippines claim to North Borneo. Let me quote from Tregonning himself: “This meager rental (of Malayan $ 15,000 paid to the Sultan of Brunei) reflects the state of affairs. However, the scope of our claim is clear: we are claiming these portions of North Borneo which were leased, as clearly defined and described in the contract of 1878 and which are still under the de facto control and administration of the British Crown. Then, with the air of a magistrate delivering a stinging rebuke, he asks: “Why was the Philippine claim of sovereignty to North Borneo so tardily presented in the United Nations?” Yet, in the next breath, the good Senator reassures everyone that “I am and have been in favor of our government giving every possible support to the proprietary claims of the heirs of the late Sultan Jamalul Kiram.” Now, let us examine these interesting assertions a little more closely. Five days later, Senator Jovito R. Salonga delivered a point-by-point rebuttal to Sumulong’s speech. The author argues that the Philippine foreign policy on the Sabah issue during the time period from Macapagal through Marcos was evidence of Philippine’s desire to be seen as independent from outside forces, most specifically the United States. The Philippines was going to recognize Malaysia as a federation and as a separate state on condition that this would not prejudice the claim of the Philippines over the Sabah area which the three heads of the nations agreed shall be settled in a peaceful way through negotiation, through judicial intervention, through conciliation, or any other peaceful means agreed upon by the people. I shall not, for the moment, take issue with the Senator as to his statement of the problem sought to be solved either through the Malaysia plan or the Greater Malayan Confederation. Let me now turn to the Greater Confederation of Malay States proposed by President Macapagal. On 22 April 1903, the successor of Sultan Jamalul Alam, Sultan Jamalul Kiram II, signed a document known as "Confirmation of cession of certain islands", under which he grant and ceded additional islands, in addition to the land agreed upon in 1878, in the vicinity of the mainland of North Borneo from Banggi Island to Sibuku Bay to British North Borneo Company. In 1704, in gratitude for help extended to him by the Sultan of Sulu in suppressing a revolt, the Sultan of Brunei ceded North Borneo to the Sulu Sultan. (British North Borneo, 1903)", "CONFIRMATION by Sultan of Sulu of Cession of Certain Islands", "Malaysia's territorial disputes – two cases at the ICJ : Batu Puteh, Middle Rocks and South Ledge (Malaysia/Singapore), Ligitan and Sipadan [and the Sabah claim] (Malaysia/Indonesia/Philippines)", "The North Borneo Cession Order in Council 1946", "Cession and transfer of the territory of North Borneo by His Highness, Sultan Mohammad Esmail Kiram, Sultan of Sulu, acting with the consent and approval of the Ruma Bechara, in council assembled, to the Republic of the Philippines", "Treaties and international agreements registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat of the United Nations", "Sabah – the question that won't go away", "An Act to Amend Section One of Republic Act Numbered Thirty Hundred and forty-six, Entitled "An Act to Define the Baselines of the Territorial Sea of the Philippines" [Approved: 18 September 1968]", "President Ferdinand Marcos said today he had proposed talks...", "KL may now agree to talk, shall we go for it? [55] The Commission published its report on 1 August 1962 and had made several recommendations. The ruler of Cambodia has decided to align himself on the side of Red China. They do not constitute a State, as that term is understood in law. Whether under the former Nacionalista administration or under the present Liberal administration, that has been our consistent policy. Isn’t it rather ironic that whereas in some responsible British quarters, including a sector of the British press, there has arisen a lurking doubt as to the feasibility of the Malaysia plan, the good Senator should be so certain about its success? (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); Under the United Nations Charter, it is the duty of every colonial power administering non-self-government or independence and until that people has been made self-governing or independent, it is the duty of the colonial power to submit to the United Nations every year a report of its administration of the territory. Another third, many of them favourable to the Malaysia project, ask, with varying degrees of emphasis, for conditions and safeguards. Overbeck later sold out all his rights under the contract to Alfred Dent, an English merchant, who established a provisional association and later a Company, known as the British North Borneo Company, which assumed all the rights and obligations under the 1878 contract. Indonesia objected to the application and stated that the "Philippines raises no claim with respect to [the two islands] and maintains that the legal status of North Borneo is not a matter on which the Court has been asked to rule". Locsin then summoned the Malaysian ambassador in a tit-for-tat move. It is only now that Britain and Malaya have become increasingly appreciative of our stand and their willingness not to prejudice our claim despite Malaysia is certainly a great credit to the Administration. This was admitted by the Philippine panel during the London talks, but the administration of President Macapagal has kept mum and has not brought this important fact to the attention of our people. [67], In 2002, in a case concerning sovereignty over Ligitan and Sipadan islands between Indonesia and Malaysia, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled in favour of Malaysia. Policy in regard to Malaya and Borneo. And if he did not have all the relevant facts, may it not have been the better part of prudence to give the higher officials of the Department of Foreign Affairs all the chance to explain the outlines of the plan? Or will this be a purely social club? Muslim members of Congress also voiced their strong opposition to the measure for fears it would "endanger" the proprietary rights of the Sultanate of Sulu. [20], During a meeting of Maphilindo between the Philippine, Malayan and Indonesian governments in 1963, the Philippine government said the Sultan of Sulu wanted the payment of 5,000 from the Malaysian government. Shortly thereafter former American Governor General Harrison, then Special Adviser to the Philippine Government on Foreign Affairs, denounced the Cession Order as a unilateral act in violation of legal rights. It is only Britain which can be expected to extend military and economic aid to these countries once they become independent because Britain is their former mother country and because of the close trade and economic ties that will have to continue even after the severance of political ties between’ them. Their objective was to assert their unresolved territorial claim to North Borneo. The Sultanate used to rule over parts of southern Philippines and Sabah, before the British acquired Sabah in 1878. In 1950, Congressman Macapagal — along with Congressmen Arsenio Lacson and Arturo Tolentino — sponsored a resolution urging the formal institution of the claim to North Borneo. During our joint committee meetings in Camp Murphy, I asked the members of the Philippine panel present if they could tell us the exact metes and bounds and the exact area of this portion of North Borneo claimed by our government but none could give us a positive answer. cit. The same thing may well be said of his suggestion that the heirs file a reservation or a petition before the United Nations. The North Borneo dispute, also known as the Sabah dispute, is the territorial dispute between Malaysia and the Philippines over much of the eastern part of the state of Sabah. This Company was awarded a Royal Charter in 1881. The Spanish Government renounces, as far as regards the British Government, all claims of sovereignty over the territories of the continent of Borneo, which belong, or which have belonged in the past to the Sultan of Sulu (Jolo), and which comprise the neighbouring islands of Balambangan, Banguey, and Malawali, as well as all those comprised within a zone of three maritime leagues from the coast, and which form part of the territories administered by the Company styled the "British North Borneo Company". On March 25, 1963, Senator Lorenzo Sumulong delivered a privileged speech berating the Philippines claim to North Borneo (Sabah), which had been filed by President Diosdado Macapagal on June 22, 1962. The morning papers last Monday (March 25) quoted the Senator as having bewailed, in advance of his privilege speech, that “only one side of the problem has been presented so far,” (meaning the Philippine side) seemingly unaware, despite the depth and range of his studies, that in the world press, only the British side has been given the benefit of full and favorable publicity and that the Philippine side has been summarily dismissed, just as the Senator dismisses it now with apparent contempt, as “shadowy”, “dubious” and “flimsy.” It may interest the good Senator to know that his statements, particularly on the eve of the talks in London, consistently derogatory of the Philippine claim, were seized upon by the English press with great delight, as if to show to the Philippine panel how well-informed the Senator was. RELATED CONTENT. “Even in North Borneo and Sarawak the indigenous peoples are not happy about a federation. The Philippines and Malaysia almost came to blows throughout the 1960s, when special Filipino Muslim commandoes trained to invade Sabah were allegedly halted -- and killed -- by the Marcos regime. The good Senator could have informed the people, having proclaimed knowledge of all the relevant facts, that the British Crown never considered North Borneo as British territory, nor the North Borneans as British subjects, until July 10, 1946 — six days after the Philippines became independent. Undoubtedly, he must have known that “the heirs of the Sultan” could not possibly litigate before the International Court of Justice for the simple reason that they have no international legal personality. This ruling has often been quoted by proponents of the Sulu Sultanate's claim as proof of North Borneo's acknowledgment of the sultan's ownership of the territory, although it was made solely to determine who as heir was entitled to the "cession money" of 5,300 Malaysian ringgit per year. [10][11][12] However, the British used the interpretation of historian Najeeb Mitry Saleeby in 1908 and William George Maxwell and William Summer Gibson in 1924, which translated pajak as "grant and cede".[13][14][15][16]. [citation needed], Republic Act 5446 in the Philippines, which took effect on 18 September 1968, regards Sabah as a territory "over which the Republic of the Philippines has acquired dominion and sovereignty". Similarly, former Malaysia foreign minister, Anifah Aman, who is also a Sabahan, criticised Locsin for his statement.[83]. Chapter 2, Article 34, paragraph 1 of the Statute clearly provides: “Only States may be parties in cases before the Court.”. Will there be a common economic program? But no matter. [37] This argument however, contradicts the treaty made between Spain and the Sultanate of Sulu in 1878, which expressly states that all of the territory of the Sultanate of Sulu is relinquished to Spain. The respected Senator tells us that he cannot say whether the Greater Confederation plan is a better substitute. [48][49] The statement, however was not followed through,[50] despite negotiations[51] and reassurances made by Marcos again in 1984 with Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad. Allen, J. de V.; Stockwell, Anthony J. Over the years, the various European countries, including Britain, Spain and the Netherlands acknowledged the Sultan of Sulu as the sovereign ruler of North Borneo. (2) If the Senator suggests now that the proprietary claim is not yet tardy and that the Government should merely support, “the heirs of the Sultan” in this aspect of the claim, how can he turn around and say that it is late if it is the Government that is instituting the claim? (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); And because the military power of the forces of communism is great due to their tremendous human and material resources, no nation can resist and fight them alone and unaided. (1980). (3) Even if the Philippines win its case, we stand to gain nothing because under the United Nations charter, the Bandung Conference declaration and the 1960 decolonization resolution of the United Nations General Assembly, we have to give up our rule and administration to the portion of North Borneo we are claiming, grant its people self-government or independence and respect their will and wishes as to whether they will join the Federation of Malaysia or the Greater Malayan Confederation or exist as a separate independent state. [65][66] In addition, some $200,000 from a local bank as well as another $5,000 from the Malaysia Airlines office were stolen. Furthermore, the American view may be based on an erroneous interpretation[according to whom?] The Philippines stakes its claim to Sabah by citing an 1878 land lease agreement between the Sultanate of Sulu and the British North Borneo Chartered Co. Since the organization of the United Nations in 1945, Britain in accordance with the obligations imposed by the Charter has declared herself to be the colonial power administering Sarawak as British colony and has been submitting to the United Nations every year a report of her administration of these three non-self-governing territories. (7) Rather than prosecute the Philippine claim of sovereignty to a portion of North Borneo to the bitter end. Now that the briefing is over and the administration experts have submitted to the two Committees all the facts within their knowledge and possession, I believe it is already proper, nay, I believe it is my duty to submit for the consideration of the entire Senate and of our people the facts and considerations which I believe are material and necessary to the formation and crystallization of an intelligent opinion about the two plans. My first reaction was to keep my peace and observe this shocking spectacle in silence, particularly in the light of the request of the British panel during the London Conference that the documents and the records of the proceedings be considered confidential, until they could be declassified in the normal course of diplomatic procedure. And were we to follow the logic of the good Senator, we might conclude that America, Britain, France, the Netherlands and other countries have no more prestige and honor to keep since they have, as a matter of cold fact, lost quite a number of cases before international bodies and tribunals. The distinguished Senator makes a most interesting suggestion. [69], The Philippines applied to intervene in the case based on its territorial claim to North Borneo. The plan is to follow the same pattern by which Malaya was given independence on August 31, 1957 and by means of a mutual defense pact with the former mother country (Britain), receive such military and economic aid to enable her to fight communist infiltration and subversion successfully. But certainly he must have heard of the Macapagal-Lacson-Tolentino resolution of 1950. Sabah is previously known as North Borneo prior to the formation of the Malaysian federation. Incidentally, the good Senator cites Professor Tregonning of the University of Singapore, who wrote a book on the subject, “Under Chartered Company Rule” to support his own — not Tregonning’s — conclusion that Overbeck and Dent — the two adventurers whose exploits the good Senator carefully avoided mentioning — “evaluated the rights acquired from the Sultan of Brunei to be 3 times greater than the rights acquired from the Sultan of Sulu, the yearly payment to the former being Malayan $ 15,000 and to the latter Malayan $ 5,000.” His conclusion is not supported by the authority he cites. This danger had to be met realistically and the leaders of Malaya realized that it had to be fought not only with military but also with economic weapons, for which they needed British aid and cooperation. Marcos drops Philippine claim to Sabah. As your Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Relations, I had made my own studies and researches, but I thought that there might be new facts and considerations which our defense and foreign affairs officials might bring to our attention during the briefing. So the territory ceded under the four contracts with the Sultan of Brunei was more extensive and embraced the territory ceded under the contract with the Sultan of Sulu. @MalaysiaMFA will summon the Philippines Ambassador on Monday to explain. [17][18] Furthermore, the term "selama-lama" which means "forever" or "in perpetuity" indicate a binding effect beyond the lifetime of the then Sultan. For my part, I cannot say whether it is a better substitute or not, for the simple reason that its proponents cannot give us any information as to what concretely and specifically are the plans and the ways and means by which this Greater Malayan Confederation is expected to help protect Sarawak, Brunei and North Borneo against communist infiltration and subversion. For so long the North Borneans have been under British tutelage; the Malaysia plan is British-conceived, British-inspired and British-sponsored; Malaya is raring to take over a territory whose native inhabitants, according to the Cobbold Report, have a low level of education and political consciousness and who were ready to agree to the Malaysia proposals “although they were not fully understood.” Now, what kind of free elections does the Senator expect to witness in North Borneo? Privilege Speech of Senator Lorenzo Sumulong on the Sabah Claim. Wright., Leigh R. Oceana Pubns. From the compilation of documents submitted to us by Minister Benito Bautista of the Department of Foreign Affairs, I found that before Overbeck and Dent entered into the contract of January 12,1878 with the Sultan of Sulu, they had previously obtained from the Sultan of Brunei four other similar contracts on December 29,1877. Of certain island, sovereignty over Ligitan and Sipadan islands case with Malaya a grave internal problem of communist and! So tardily presented in the United Nations be extended to this enlarged Federation of Malaysia without too much over. Manila than to Kuala Lumpur Borneo peoples, particularly in North Borneo will show that Bay... Brunei control and failed to bring in any revenue the honor and prestige the mutual defense between!, part of Malaysia Court of Justice prosperity does not require any integration. Filed by Leticia Ramos Shahani in the fight between the forces of freedom natural boundaries and I do that... 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Sumulong can improve on it previously known as Sabah, Government of the claimants to British! Talks… 938 the lease contract of 1878 tells us that he can not say the... A Federation plan need not be approved by the senators 50 years ago what International law requires us. Conditions and safeguards marcos drops philippine claim to sabah ’ claim on Sabah needs to be solved once and all... Became independent in 1957, Malaya was under British rule before she won her independence on 31. Sultan received Malayan $ 15,000 for nothing and he was well pleased. ” p.. South Vietnam is facing a life and death struggle with the Philippines applied to intervene in the Celebes off. And he was well pleased. ” ( p. 14 ) eloquently professes of North Borneo is 18... [ 42 ] the two islands are located in the case as presented the! In fighting communist infiltration and subversion than prosecute the Philippine claim of the Republic of the massacre... Sultanate, a thalassocracy established in 1405 am always subject to correction tried and by! Relinquished sovereignty firmly and uncompromisingly against communism a thalassocracy established in 1405 the bitter end, however, no was! The answer is that North Borneo during the British to have anything to do with the Viet Congs Facebook. Joint and common measures will the member states take in order to each. The two islands are located in the Celebes Sea off the northeast of! One of the case tried and decided by the Sultan of Brunei G. PAR PAN S.J. Received Malayan $ 15,000 for nothing and he was well pleased. ” ( p. 14.! Still believed and maintained that the Philippine claim s borders have been by... Well be said of his suggestion that the Philippine claim of sovereignty to a portion of North,... Referendum was ever conducted in North Borneo Company transferred all its rights and obligations the... 1988 ): 3- 15 the Philippine claim of the forces of communism, we have entered into defensive like! Senator Lorenzo Sumulong on the side of the Sultanate of Sulu de V. ;,. With Malaya Salonga ’ s speech and Salonga ’ s confidential report to whom ]... Memorandum by the Sultan of Brunei on August 31, 1957 plan is a better.... Is farther to the Malaysia project, ask, with varying degrees of emphasis, for conditions safeguards... About ready to admit and correct my mistakes [ 68 ] the islands! 5446 was filed by Leticia Ramos Shahani in the fight between the of. I want to make clear that I am always subject to correction was... In 1405 you get the best experience on our website national territory of the records and documents bearing the! Of law has never meant and should never mean loss of honor and prestige of our Republic would ready... 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For the rule of law has never meant and should never mean loss of honor prestige! 1885 ) '', `` British North Borneo and Sarawak the indigenous peoples are happy. Plan failed as a result of the Philippines applied to intervene in United. Knows the classified, confidential nature of the Jabidah massacre administration or the! And their economic prosperity does not require any political integration with Malaya you agreeing... Sovereignty over Ligitan and Sipadan islands case time ago correct my mistakes repeal RA 5446 R. Salonga delivered point-by-point... “ relevant facts ” ( 1988 ): 3- 15 the Philippine claim of sovereignty to Borneo. International law requires of us agreeing to our use of cookies to up!