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Malaysian Studies

Chapter 3:
Formation of Malaysia
The Idea of Malaysia

Idea for Malaysia has been brought up by many


including:
David Marshall (1955)
Ghazali Shafie (1954)
Tan Cheng Lock (1955)
Lee Kuan Yew (1959)
The Idea of Malaysia

Tunku Abdul Rahman


Starts voicing it in 1955
Willing of accepting not only Singapore but Brunei,
Sabah and Sarawak
Different reactions from many
Why Form Malaysia?

Forming a country involves big changes


This is especially so in Malaysias case
But why form Malaysia?
Several factors led to Tunkus decision to form
Malaysia
Why Form Malaysia?

Independence through unification


Common understanding for development
Ethnic balance and unity
Collective fight against communism
Economic co-operation
United in international relations
Why Form Malaysia?

Tunkus idea was widely accepted because:


The suggestion was concrete and had a clear vision
Positive comments from media in future member
countries
Follow up action & surveys helped convinced the
people
Reactions - Malaya

Early 1950s not really keen to include Singapore


However, with Sabah & Sarawak joining, the idea
for unification became popular
PAS opposed the idea claiming Malays would lose
out esp. in economy
MALPHILINDO
Reactions - Singapore

Generally well-accepted earlier on


Lee Kuan Yew was most interested with the idea
Later, United Peoples Party objected the idea and
fought the Peoples Action Party regarding the idea
However, this made Tunku and Lees determination
rise to get the idea realized
Reactions - Brunei

Not unanimously accepted


Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin was very interested with
idea
Opposed by A.M.Azahari (Brunei Peoples Party)
A.M.Azahari wants to create North Kalimantan
(Sabah+Sarawak+Brunei)
Reactions Sabah & Sarawak

Peoples reaction was most encouraging


No strong opposition was shown

Why?
Free from British rule
To combat communism
The Formation of Malaysia

Peoples reactions are different


Anxiety, uncertainty and doubts about the new
country are questions people have inside their
minds
Therefore, Kuala Lumpur created a specially-formed
Committee to verify and answer the peoples
questions
The Formation of Malaysia

Other actions are also taken


Singapore Referendum and the UN Investigation
Consulting with the British, Philippines and
Indonesia
Cobbold Commision
The Formation of Malaysia

Once it is proven that the majority wants to form


Malaysia, the form and structure of the new nation
was determined
Inter-Government Landsdowne Committee
Used the Constitution of the Federation of Malaya as
basis for the Constitution of Malaysia
Bruneis Withdrawal

9th July 1963


Brunei pulled out of the Federation
The Federation was completely taken by surprise by
it
Some give and take issues are said to be the
cause of the decision
Reasons for Bruneis Withdrawal

Number of seats in Legislature & Parliament


Control on oil and other minerals
Monetary autonomy
Bruneis earlier investments
Method of taxation
Authority in education and welfare
Matters of religion
Citizenship
Reasons for Bruneis Withdrawal

Bruneis security guarantee


Position of Sultans and Bruneis status within
Malaysia
Formation of Malaysia

8 July 1963
Malaysian Agreement signed in London

16 September 1963
Malaysia officially proclaimed
External Opposition

Opposition for the formation Malaysia came from


Indonesia and Philippines

Why Protest?
Sarawak part of Indonesia
Sabah part of Philippines
External Opposition

Philippines severed diplomatic ties with Malaya

Indonesia launched a movement of confrontation


against Malaysia which continued until August 1966
Singapores Withdrawal

Singapore-Kuala Lumpurs relation starts to


deteriorate after the first Malaysian general Election
(1964)
PAP leaders belittled MCA
MCA sees it as PAPs intention to take over MCAs
role of protecting the interests of the Chinese
community
UMNO are also offended by PAPs action
Singapores Withdrawal

Effects of the 1st General Elections:


Chinese confused
Malays generally suspicious of Lee Kuan Yew
This caused riots to happen twice in 21/7/1964 and
2/9/1964
Tunku and Lees relationship deteriorate
Singapores Withdrawal

To save the situation, Tunku states Lees idea of


separation may be the only solution to end the
stressful situation
7 August 1965 Separation agreement signed
between Tunku and Lee
9 August 1965 Parliament passed the Separation
Act and Singapore finally left Malaysia
Conclusion

The history of formation of Malaysia is not long but


full of interesting events
Issues such as interest of future member countries,
internal problems, cooperation and conflict are
some of the lessons we learnt from the formation of
this glorious nation