KOTA KINABALU, April 14 — The current increase in the Federal Government Special Grant for Sabah is a better increment and offer, compared to the previous special grant formula tabled by Pakatan Harapan (PH) led government.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Sabah and Sarawak Affairs) Datuk Seri Maximus Ongkili in a statement tonight said the PH Government had offered and announced publicly the Special Grant to Sabah and Sarawak, doubling it to RM53.4 million for Sabah and RM32 million for Sarawak for 2020.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob and Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Hajiji Noor, in a joint statement today, said the new special grant for Sabah has been increased by 4.7 times from RM26.7 million to RM125.6 million for 2022.

Ongkili said the previous special grant formula by PH was rejected by the current Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) state government and it managed to secure a more just formula while meeting Sabahans’ demands.

“We are equally proud because this issue has not only received the attention of the Federal Government, but we have reached a better agreement which is 135 per cent more than the amount promised by PH and (this agreement) had (also) been openly accepted by the Warisan-led State Government (then).

“We increased Sabah’s annual amount to more than three times (RM125.6 million),” he said, adding that the decision came through after the federal and state governments reached a consensus on reviewing the special grant to Sabah under Article 112D of the Federal Constitution.

Meanwhile, Ongkili also said that he is confident that both the federal and state government would also be able to find common ground and the best formula for the 40 per cent constitutional provision that would meet the demands of the Sabah government.

“I will not comment much as a joint statement will be issued on the matter by the Sabah government and federal Finance Ministry,” said Ongkili.

He added that apart from the special grant, the Special Council on Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MKMA63) meeting which was chaired by Ismail Sabri today also approved in principle the delegation of powers on environment, labour and return of idle federal lands to the Sabah and Sarawak state governments. — Bernama pic