Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem said that to be part of the Federation of Malaysia was one of the wisest decisions made by Sarawak 53 years ago.
He said for instance, when it was under threat from communist terrorists and from Indonesian President Sukarno’s Confrontation against Malaysia, it was the security forces from Peninsular Malaysia that came to its defence.
He was speaking at the national-level Malaysia Day 2016 celebration at the old airport site here tonight.
Sarawak Yang Dipertua Negeri Tun Abdul Taib Mahmud officiated the function which was also attended by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan.
“We were defenceless at the time of the formation of Malaysia in 1963. We did not have the security forces to defend us.
“The Malay Regiment and the Malaysian Rangers fought for us and released us from the clutches of the communists and Sukarno,” he said.
He said this must be acknowledged as part and parcel of the state’s history.
Although Sarawak too had enjoyed great development and progress, he said there was still some catching up to do with Peninsular Malaysia states.
“But let us not dwell on the negative side. Let us be appreciative of what has been done so far.
“We also have leaders who understand our needs and aspirations especially our Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak who is very sympathetic to us.
“He has visited us more than 60 times since becoming the country’s premier.
He has also given us the Pan Borneo Highway project,” he said.
Najib, according to Adenan, should be given the opportunity and the chance to lead Sarawak and Sabah to more progress and development.
“We compliment you Sir on what you have done. We hope you will do more for us,” Ädenan said.