Questions on Blocks L
& M not fully answered
Lumpur, July 1, 2010: Member of Parliament for Tawau, Datuk Chua Soon Bui,
said the federal government did not give a satisfactory answer on why the
3 million acres of oil block L and M were ceded to Brunei.
The federal government evaded
her real question by quoting 'national interests', fairness to neighbours,
boundary sharing, socio-economic and cultural ties being the factors for
ceding of the oil blocks.
The federal government added
that Malaysia's action at the time was to neutralize the tense situation
that arose as a result of the oil and gas exploration.
Chua questioned why since it
was the issue on the oil and gas exploration rights that created the tense
situation, why didn't Malaysia negotiate for joint exploration and
extraction rights rather than having to give up the sovereignty rights on
the 3 million acres of marine territory?
"In any eventuality, why didn't
Malaysia refer the matter to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in resolving such an important issue of national
"No other rational reasoning would be good enough for the people
especially when the nation is so proud of the winning of the sovereignty
rights of Pulau Ligitan and Pulau Sipadan on 17/12/2002 in ICJ as recorded
in the Malaysia Maritime Realm Atlas.
"There is no mention that one
coastal nation must surrender its sovereign rights to another neighbouring
nation as what the federal minister has claimed that their decision was
based on the United Convention on Law of the Sea 1982 (UNCLOS 1982) on the
"Why was such joint submission
not done when Malaysia had the experience of such joint submission with
Vietnam on 27 August 2009 since the UN Commission on the Limits of the
Continental Shelf, under Article 76 of UNCLOS 1982, which has the right to
decide on the maritime territory of the disputed member states of
Malaysia-Brunei?" Chua asked.
"If there was any earlier dispute, why wasn't it indicated in the
Malaysia Maritime Realm Atlas and why were there reports which showed that
blocks L and M belonged to Malaysia until given away on 16/3/ 2009?
more.....on adjournment speech by
Datuk Chua Soon Bui (Tawau) in
Parliament (Mesyuarat Kedua, Penggal Ketiga, Parlimen Kedua Belas):
"Malaysians especially Sabahans are confused, questioning and would like to
know the status of the 3 million acres oil and gas rich block L and M
after statements made by ministers failed to shed lights on the recent
revelation by our Ex-Prime Minister, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamed that
Malaysia's rights on the block L and M oil fields were given to Brunei,
causing a loss of RM320 billions to Malaysia in Oil and Gas in an area
equivalent to the combined size of states of Perlis, Penang, Melaka and
The people of Malaysia especially those in Sabah have the right to know
the reason why the Federal Government made the decision in March 2009 on
the ceding of 3 million acres of Sabah's maritime territory of block L and
M to Brunei.
Although many official statements have been released that Block L and M
were not part of Malaysia, why then Murphy Oil Sabah Co. L:td.(a
subsidiary company of Murphy Oil Corporation) announced on 16/1/2003 that
it has been awarded Sharing Contracts covering Block L and M offshore
Malaysia. Murphy Oil has 60% interest in Block L and 70% in Block M with
Petronas Carigali Sdn. Bhd. holding the remaining 40% and 30%
respectively, each block covering 1.5 million acres making up a total 3
The awarding authority was Petroleum Nasional Bhd. (PETRONAS).
Why was there no dispute or mention of Brunei's interests at the time of
the award? If the blocks are not part of Malaysia, the well established
Murphy Oil Corporation would not have set up a Sabah based Murphy Oil
Sabah to share the contract with Petronas Carigali Sdn Bhd.
Most importantly, why was Petronas be the awarding authority if these
blocks were not part of Malaysia? The great awakening only came on 22nd
April 2010 when Murphy Oil Corporation announced that it had been informed
by Petronas on 21/4/2010 that following the execution of exchange of
letters between Malaysia and Brunei on 16/3/2009 that the offshore
exploration areas of block L and M are no longer part of Malaysia, the
sharing contracts were thus terminated.
The people are questioning the legality and are asking for TRANSPARENCY on
what had transpired between 2003, after the award of the contracts and
2009, whether Sabah's maritime territory (north of Labuan) had been
re-delineated? Is the move a violation of Article 2 of the Malaysian
constitution making it unconstitutional and illegal.
Malaysia had referred the Sipadan case to the International Court of
Justice and won the case in December 2002. Surely the 3 million acres of
Block L and M with oil and gas worth of RM320 billions is much valuable
and beneficial to Malaysia as compared to Sipadan.
If there was any
dispute at all with Brunei, why was the case not referred to International
Court of Justice as Malaysia has the expertise on International law on
The people of Sabah is surprised that government
went all out for the Batu Putih and spent millions to fight for
territorial claim, but did not raise a finger to fight for the oil and gas
It is not just the loss of valuable oil and gas productions, but it is
also the loss of Malaysia territorial waters for transportation, the
marine lives and food resources for the interests of all Malaysians
especially those in Sabah and Labuan.
It is therefore with sincere
intention that I propose to the Prime Minister Department to call for a
"White Paper" to clarify all the people's doubts and to ensure that the
rights and interests of the people are always protected."