18-point agreement

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The 18-point agreement, or the 18-point memorandum, was a hypothetical list of 18 points drawn up by Sarawak, proposing terms to form Malaysia, during negotiations prior to the creation of the new federation in 1963. It was argued as hypothetical as unlike the 20-point memorandum of Sabah submitted jointly by its political leaders in 1962, which exact documents existed, the details of who prepared & signed the 18-point memorandum remains sketchy. [1]

A Commission of Enquiry, headed by Lord Cameron Cobbold, and The Lansdowne Committee, an inter-governmental committee, were appointed to aid in the drafting of the Malaysia Agreement. Lord Lansdowne served for Britain and Tun Abdul Razak, Deputy Prime Minister of the Federation of Malaya, served for Malaya.[2] The 18 points were based on the Nine Cardinal Principles of the rule of the English Rajah.[3][4] A similar memorandum, known as the 20-point agreement, was prepared and submitted by North Borneo. Now, Sarawak's and Sabah's rights within Malaysia have since been badly eroded.

The agreements, which can be found in the Proclamation of Malaysia and also the Cobbold Commission reports, stated the conditions and rights that were meant to safeguard the autonomy and the special interest of the people of Sabah and Sarawak, protecting, among others, these regions’ rights on religion, language, education, administration, economy and culture.

Some of the points were incorporated into the Constitution of Malaysia while the rest of Sarawak’s 18 points are outlined as follows:

  1. Religion Point
  2. Language Point
  3. Constitution Point
  4. Head of the federation Point
  5. Name of the federation Point
  6. Immigration Point
  7. Right to secession Point
  8. Borneanisation Point
  9. British Officers Point
  10. Citizenship Point
  11. Tariffs and Finance Point
  12. Special position of indigenous races Point
  13. State Government Point
  14. Transitional period Point
  15. Education Point
  16. Constitutional safeguards Point
  17. Representation in Federal Parliament Point
  18. Name of Head of State

See also[edit]


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ Bastin, John Sturgus (1979). Malaysia; Selected Historical Readings. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press. ISBN 9783262012165.
  3. ^ Rawlins, Joan (1965). Sarawak - 1839 to 1963. Macmillan & Company, (Original from the University of Michigan Press. p. 240.
  4. ^ Sarawak Constitution

Further reading[edit]