KUCHING, Jan 13 — Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Openg has vowed to get Sarawak’s oil and gas back from national oil company Petronas legally.
“Of course, there are some parties who may not agree, but we will pursue because we believe in the supremacy of our law, particularly our federal and state Constitutions.
“So let the legal experts decide, including the court, on our regulatory power based on the Federal Constitution and state constitutions,” he said in a recent special interview with the local media held in conjunction with his third anniversary as chief minister today.
“And as you know, based on the provision of the federal and state Constitutions, the state government has imposed our sales tax on oil and gas or petroleum products within Sarawak,” the chief minister stressed.
He said the state government has amended and upgraded the Oil Mining Ordinance 1958 (OMO 1958) that gives the state regulatory power over oil and gas.
“We are pushing that. Of course, certain people are against it, but we leave it to the court to decide.
“But definitely we have the power. Our legislature is there to give this particular power,” Abang Johari said, adding that oil and gas was part and parcel of the then-state Barisan Nasional’s manifesto in 2016.
He said the state-owned Petroleum Sarawak Berhad (Petros), which was founded in 2018, is a vehicle for the state government to participate in the upstream and downstream activities of oil and gas.