Sarawak State Legislative Assembly
The Sarawak State Legislative Assembly is a component of the unicameral legislature of the Malaysian state of Sarawak; the Yang di-Pertuan Negeri of Sarawak forms the other part of the legislature. The Assembly is derived from the traditions of the Westminster parliamentary system, which originates from the practices of the British Parliament. The executive branch of government is drawn from the elected members of the Assembly. The State Legislative Assembly sits at the Sarawak State Legislative Assembly Building located in Petra Jaya in Kuching, the state capital.
Sarawak State Legislative Assembly
Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak
ديوان اوندڠن نڬري سراوق
Gempuru Besai Menua Sarawak
|Founded||8 September 1867|
Abdul Taib Mahmud
since 1 March 2014
|(As of 24 October 2019)|
|7 May 2016|
|By 7 September 2021|
|New Sarawak State Legislative Assembly Building, Petra Jaya, Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysia|
The Legislative Assembly, as of 2019, consists of 82 members, making it the largest state legislature in Malaysia. Members are elected from single-member constituencies throughout the state under the first-past-the-post voting system, with elections held no more than five years apart. Sarawak does not practice compulsory voting, and eligible citizens are not automatically registered to vote in elections. Elections for the Assembly have been out-of-sync with the rest of Malaysia since 1978.
The Assembly is also the oldest legislature in Malaysia and one of the oldest continuously functioning legislatures in the world, being established on 8 September 1867 as the General Council under the Raj of Sarawak. In 1903, the General Council became the Council Negri (lit. State Council), which lasted through the remainder of the Raj and continued throughout the colonial period and into the early years of the federation. However, the legislature was not directly elected until 1969.
The executive is formed by the party or parties who commands the confidence and supply of the Assembly, with the leader of said party or parties becoming the Chief Minister, the head of government of the state. The formal appointment of the Chief Minister is performed by the Yang di-Pertua Negeri. Since 2018, the Gabungan Parti Sarawak coalition holds a majority in the Assembly after its component parties split off from the Barisan Nasional coalition. Abang Abdul Rahman Johari Abang Openg has been the Chief Minister since 2017.
The first legislative assembly in Sarawak was formed during the rule of the White Rajahs. The General Council (Majlis Umum) of the Kingdom of Sarawak was convened on 8 September 1867 by Charles Brooke, the Rajah Muda under the orders of James Brooke, then the Rajah of Sarawak. Its members were chosen from local tribe leaders who were thought to be capable of assisting Brooke in administering the kingdom. The General Council later evolved into the Council Negri in 1903. The Council Negri first met in Bintulu.
It continued to function even after Sarawak was ceded to the British Empire in 1946. Since 1963, when Sarawak joined with Malaya, Singapore and North Borneo (now known as Sabah) to form the Federation of Malaysia, in line with the federal and state constitutions, members of the Assembly have been elected representatives.
The Assembly originally had 48 seats. That expanded to 56 in 1985, to 62 in 1985 and to 71 in 2005. In 2014 the Assembly passed a Bill to take the number of constituencies to 82. It has a greater number of seats than any other state assembly in Malaysia.
The Legislative Assembly is constituted under article 13 of the state constitution.:art. 13 The Assembly has the power to legislate on any matter for the state, except those that are within the exclusive domain of the federal Parliament as set out in the Federal List of the ninth schedule of the federal constitution.:sch. 9 The Concurrent List (including the supplement) in the same schedule specifies the subjects that both the Assembly and Parliament may legislate for; however, the federal law prevails where they conflict.:art. 75 The State List (including the supplement) are matters that are exclusively under the jurisdiction of the state. However, the Assembly also has residual powers over any matters that are not specified in the schedule.:art. 77
Primary legislation successfully passed in the Assembly are styled Ordinances. The Assembly must sit at least once a year (and often only does so once a year) to approve taxation to and supply from the state's consolidated fund. This is done during the tabling of the budget by the executive Cabinet. Aside from administrative matters, members of the Assembly are free to speak on any issues, as stipulated in the Privileges, Immunities and Powers Ordinance 1963. Members of the Assembly are responsible for scrutinising the executive government's actions.
The Speaker presides over proceedings in the Assembly. They are appointed by the Yang di-Pertua Negeri (Governor) on the advice of the Chief Minister. The Speaker does not vote in any proceeding except to break a tie, and even then would only vote according to Speaker Denison's rule by convention.
Membership and elections
Sarawak is, as of 2019, divided into 82 state constituencies, each directly electing one member to the Legislative Assembly under the first-past-the-post voting system. The Assembly may legislate to alter the number of members in the Assembly.:art. 14(b)
The conduct of elections and electoral matters are bound by part 8 of the federal constitution, but other unspecified electoral matters are within the exclusive jurisdiction of the federal government.:sch. 9 All elections and boundary determinations are therefore conducted by the federal Election Commission of Malaysia and are not overseen by any state authority.
State elections are triggered whenever the Assembly is dissolved. Dissolution is a prerogative of the Yang di-Pertua Negeri,:art. 21(2) but by convention this is only done so on the advice of the Chief Minister. Notwithstanding this, the Assembly is automatically dissolved five years after the first sitting following an election.
Articles 16 & 17 of the state constitution provides the eligibility criteria for persons to be elected into the Assembly. Any Malaysian resident in Sarawak who are at least age 21 may be a member, unless they were convicted of an offence in Malaysia that has not been pardoned, are a bankrupt, holding an office of profit (except that of a native chief), are of unsound mind, convicted of electoral fraud or possess voluntary citizenship of another country.:arts. 16–17 On the other hand, article 119 of the federal constitution regulates the eligibility of voters. Only Malaysian citizens resident in Sarawak, or are last resident in Sarawak if residing outside Malaysia, and are registered on the electoral roll may vote in state elections.:art. 119 Overseas Sarawakians retain the electoral franchise regardless of the duration they are away from the country.
A member is formally styled "Member of the Legislative Assembly" and may use the post-nominal letters "MLA". Informally and in the media, they are often titled "state assemblyman" or "state assemblywoman" as appropriate.
- Selection and Standing Order Committee
- Public Accounts Committee
- House Committee
- Public Petitions Committee
- Privileges Committee
- Events Committee
Following the state election that was held on 7 May 2016, Barisan Nasional was able to form the next state government with a majority of 72 seats out of 82. There were several candidates from breakaway parties such as TERAS and UPP that had their members contest seats under the Barisan banner as direct election candidates under a deal by Adenan Satem after their parties were prevented from joining Barisan after opposition from parties such as PDP and SUPP. On 12 June 2018, all Sarawak-based BN parties including Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB), Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS), Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) and Sarawak United People's Party (SUPP) officially left Barisan Nasional forming a new coalition Sarawak Parties Alliance due to Barisan Nasional's defeat in general elections on 9 May 2018.
|No.||State constituency||Member||Coalition (Party)||Post|
|GPS 68 | PH 10 | PSB 4 | IND 0|
|N01||Opar||Ranum Anak Mina||PSB||N/A|
|N02||Tasik Biru||Henry Jinep||GPS (PDP)|
|N03||Tanjong Datu||Jamilah Anu||GPS (PBB)|
|N04||Pantai Damai||Abdul Rahman Junaidi||GPS (PBB)||Assistant Minister|
|N05||Demak Laut||Hazland Abang Hipni||GPS (PBB)||N/A|
|N06||Tupong||Fazzrudin Abdul Rahman||GPS (PBB)|
|N07||Samariang||Sharifah Hasidah Sayeed Aman Ghazali||GPS (PBB)|
|N08||Satok||Abang Abdul Rahman Zohari Abang Openg||GPS (PBB)||Chief Minister|
|N09||Padungan||Wong King Wei||PH (DAP)||N/A|
|N10||Pending||Violet Yong Wui Wui||PH (DAP)|
|N11||Batu Lintang||See Chee How||PH (PKR)|
|N12||Kota Sentosa||Chong Chieng Jen||PH (DAP)||Leader Of Opposition|
|N13||Batu Kitang||Lo Khere Chiang||GPS (SUPP)||N/A|
|N14||Batu Kawah||Sim Kui Hian||GPS (SUPP)||Minister|
|N15||Asajaya||Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah||GPS (PBB)||Minister|
|N16||Muara Tuang||Idris Buang||GPS (PBB)||N/A|
|N17||Stakan||Mohamad Ali Mahmud||GPS (PBB)|
|N18||Serembu||Miro Simuh||GPS (PBB)|
|N19||Mambong||Jerip Susil||GPS (PBB)||Assistant Minister|
|N20||Tarat||Roland Sagah Wee Inn||GPS (PBB)||Assistant Minister|
|N21||Tebedu||Michael Manyin Jawong||GPS (PBB)||Minister|
|N22||Kedup||Maclaine Ben @ Martin Ben||GPS (PBB)||N/A|
|N23||Bukit Semuja||John Ilus||GPS (PBB)|
|N24||Sadong Jaya||Aidel Lariwoo||GPS (PBB)|
|N25||Simunjan||Awla Idris||GPS (PBB)||Assistant Minister|
|N26||Gedong||Mohd Naroden Majais||GPS (PBB)||N/A|
|N27||Sebuyau||Julaihi Narawi||GPS (PBB)||Assistant Minister|
|N28||Lingga||Simoi Peri||GPS (PBB)||N/A|
|N29||Beting Maro||Razaili Gapor||GPS (PBB)|
|N30||Balai Ringin||Snowdan Lawan||GPS (PRS)||Assistant Minister|
|N31||Bukit Begunan||Mong Dagang||GPS (PRS)||N/A|
|N32||Simanggang||Francis Harden Hollis||GPS (SUPP)||Assistant Minister|
|N33||Engkilili||Johnical Rayong Ngipa||PSB||N/A|
|N34||Batang Ai||Malcom Mussen Lamoh||GPS (PRS)||Assistant Minister|
|N35||Saribas||Ricky @ Mohamad Razi Bin Sitam||GPS (PBB)||N/A|
|N36||Layar||Gerald Rentap Jabu||GPS (PBB)|
|N37||Bukit Saban||Douglas Uggah Embas||GPS (PBB)||Deputy Chief Minister|
|N38||Kalaka||Abdul Wahab Aziz||GPS (PBB)||N/A|
|N39||Krian||Ali Biju||PH (PKR)|
|N40||Kabong||Mohd Chee Kadirh||GPS (PBB)|
|N41||Kuala Rajang||Len Talif Salleh||GPS (PBB)||Assistant Minister|
|N42||Semop||Abdullah Saidol||GPS (PBB)||Assistant Minister|
|N43||Daro||Safiee Ahmad||GPS (PBB)||N/A|
|N44||Jemoreng||Juanda Jaya||GPS (PBB)|
|N45||Repok||Huang Tiong Sii||GPS (SUPP)|
|N46||Meradong||Ding Kuong Hiing||GPS (SUPP)|
|N47||Pakan||William Mawan Ikom||GPS (PBB)|
|N48||Meluan||Rolland Duat Jubin||GPS (PDP)|
|N49||Ngemah||Alexander Vincent||GPS (PRS)|
|N50||Machan||Allan Siden Gramong||GPS (PBB)|
|N51||Bukit Assek||Irene Mary Chang Oi Ling||PH (DAP)|
|N52||Dudong||Tiong Thai King||PSB|
|N53||Bawang Assan||Wong Soon Koh||PSB|
|N54||Pelawan||David Wong Kee Woan||PH (DAP)||N/A|
|N55||Nangka||Annuar Rapaee||GPS (PBB)||Assistant Minister|
|N56||Dalat||Fatimah Abdullah||GPS (PBB)||Minister|
|N57||Tellian||Yussibnosh Balo||GPS (PBB)||N/A|
|N58||Balingian||Abdul Yakub Arbi||GPS (PBB)|
|N59||Tamin||Christopher Gira Sambang||GPS (PRS)|
|N60||Kakus||John Sikie Tayai||GPS (PRS)||Assistant Minister|
|N61||Pelagus||Wilsong Nyabong Ijang||GPS (PRS)||N/A|
|N62||Katibas||Ambrose Blikau Enturan||GPS (PBB)|
|N63||Bukit Goram||Jefferson Jamit Unyat||GPS (PBB)|
|N64||Baleh||James Jemut Masing||GPS (PRS)||Deputy Chief Minister|
|N65||Belaga||Liwan Lagang||GPS (PRS)||Assistant Minister|
|N66||Murum||Chukpai Ugon||GPS (PRS)||N/A|
|N67||Jepak||Talib Zulpilip||GPS (PBB)||Minister|
|N68||Tanjong Batu||Chiew Chiu Sing||PH (DAP)||N/A|
|N69||Kemena||Stephen Rundi Utom||GPS (PBB)||Minister|
|N70||Samalaju||Majang Renggi||GPS (PRS)||N/A|
|N71||Bekenu||Rosey Yunus||GPS (PBB)||Assistant Minister|
|N72||Lambir||Ripin Lamat||GPS (PBB)||N/A|
|N73||Piasau||Sebastian Ting Chiew Yew||GPS (SUPP)||Assistant Minister|
|N74||Pujut||Ting Tiong Choon||PH (DAP)||N/A|
|N75||Senadin||Lee Kim Shin||GPS (SUPP)||Minister|
|N76||Marudi||Penguang Manggil||GPS (PDP)||Assistant Minister|
|N77||Telang Usan||Dennis Ngau||GPS (PBB)||N/A|
|N78||Mulu||Gerawat Jala||GPS (PBB)||Deputy Speaker|
|N79||Bukit Kota||Abdul Rahman Ismail||GPS (PBB)||Assistant Minister|
|N80||Batu Danau||Paulus Gumbang||GPS (PBB)||N/A|
|N81||Ba'kelalan||Baru Bian||PH (PKR)|
|N82||Bukit Sari||Awang Tengah Ali Hassan||GPS (PBB)||Deputy Chief Minister|
- Padungan assemblyman, Wong King Wei was suspended by the Speaker from attending the state assembly for 12 months effectively on 30 April 2019 corresponding of 24 Syaaban 1441H. No by-election was held by the Election Commission of Malaysia due to his suspension since his seat wasn't declared as Vacant.
List of Speakers
|No.||Speaker||Term start||Term end|
|2||William Tan Ho Choon||1968||1973|
|3||Shahbuddin Y.K. Cheng||1973||1976|
|4||Abang Abu Bakar Abang Mustapha||1976||1981|
|5||Celestine Ujang Jilan||1981||1987|
|6||Robert Jacob Ridu||1987||1994|
|7||Wong Soon Koh||1994||1996|
|8||Song Swee Guan||1996||2000|
|9||Mohamad Asfia Awang Nassar||2000||Incumbent|
List of Leaders of the Opposition
|No.||Opposition Leader||No. – State Constituency||Coalition (Party)||Term start||Term end|
|1||Ong Kee Hui||N03 – Kuching Barat||SUPP||1963||1966|
|2||Stephen Yong Kuet Tze||N03 – Kuching Barat||SUPP||1966||1969|
|3||Stephen Kalong Ningkan||N20 – Layar||SNAP||1969||1974|
|4||Dunstan Endawie Enchana||N22 – Krian||SNAP||1974||1976|
|5||James Wong Kim Min||N47 – Limbang||SNAP||1981||1986|
|6||Edmund Langgu Saga||N22 – Krian||PBDS||1987||1991|
|7||Daniel Tajem Miri||N20 – Bukit Begunan||PBDS||1991||1996|
|8||Wong Ho Leng||N39 – Bukit Assek||DAP||1996||2001|
|9||Chiew Chiu Sing||N53 – Kidurong||DAP||2001||2006|
|8 (2)||Wong Ho Leng||N45 – Bukit Assek||DAP||2006||2013|
|10||Chong Chieng Jen||N12 – Kota Sentosa||PR (DAP)||2013||Incumbent|
- Ranum Anak Mina contested the state election as a direct Barisan Nasional candidate, rejoin his previous party PSB on 11 August 2016.
- Jamilah Anu was elected as a Barisan Nasional assemblyman on 18 February 2017 in a byelection following the death of assemblymen and Chief Minister Adenan Satem.
- Miro Simuh contested the state election as a direct Barisan Nasional candidate, joining PBB on 16 August 2016.
- Jerip Susil contested the state election as a direct Barisan Nasional candidate, rejoin his previous party UPP on 13 August 2016.
- John Ilus contested the state election as a direct Barisan Nasional candidate, joining PBB on 16 August 2016.
- Johnical Rayong Ngipa contested the state election as a direct Barisan Nasional candidate, rejoin his previous party PSB on 12 August 2016.
- Tiong Thai King contested the state election as a direct Barisan Nasional candidate, rejoin his previous party PSB after the election.
- Wong Soon Koh contested the state election as a direct Barisan Nasional candidate, rejoin his previous party UPP after the election.
- Rosey Yunus contested the state election as a direct Barisan Nasional candidate, joining PBB on 16 August 2016.
- Gerawat Jala contested the state election as a direct Barisan Nasional candidate, joining PBB on 16 August 2016.
- Paulus Gumbang contested the state election as a direct Barisan Nasional candidate, joining PBB on 16 August 2016.
- "Abang Johari Ketua Menteri baharu Sarawak". BH Online. Berita Harian. Retrieved 13 January 2017.
- Sejarah Dewan Undangan Negeri 1 (in Malay). Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak. Retrieved 14 June 2010
- Sejarah Dewan Undangan Negeri 2 (in Malay). Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak. Retrieved 14 June 2010
- "Sarawak state assembly increase number of reps to 82". The Malaysian Insider. 11 November 2004. Archived from the original on 9 June 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2014.
- Constitution of the State of Sarawak. Available online at: https://psc.sarawak.gov.my/modules/web/pages.php?mod=download&sub=download_show&id=87. Retrieved 16 December 2019. Archived from the original on 16 December 2019.
- Federal Constitution. Available online at: http://www.agc.gov.my/agcportal/uploads/files/Publications/FC/Federal%20Consti%20(BI%20text).pdf. Retrieved 16 December 2019. Archived from the original on 29 October 2019.
- Kuasa Perundangan (in Malay). Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak. Retrieved 14 June 2010
- Pengenalan (in Malay). Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak. Retrieved 14 June 2010
- Fungsi (in Malay). Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak. Retrieved 14 June 2010
- Speaker (in Malay). Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak. Retrieved 14 June 2010
- Jawatankuasa Peraturan-peraturan Mesyuarat dan Pemilihan (in Malay). Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak. Retrieved 14 June 2010
- "Blue wave sweeps across Sarawak". MalaysiaKini. 7 May 2016. Retrieved 8 May 2016.
- Yu Ji (29 April 2016). "Proxy fights in limelight". Retrieved 8 May 2016.
- "Sarawak parties exit Malaysia's BN, leaving former ruling coalition in tatters". The Straits Times. 12 June 2018. Retrieved 12 June 2018.
- "'UPP ready to soar to greater heights'". Borneo Post. 16 August 2016. Retrieved 16 August 2016.
- "Landslide win for BN in Tanjung Datu by-election". Free Malaysia Today. 18 February 2017. Retrieved 18 February 2017.
- "PBB now controls 45 of 82 Sarawak state seats". Free Malaysia Today. 16 August 2016. Retrieved 16 August 2016.
- "Mawan in a Catch-22 situation". Borneo Post. 2 August 2016. Retrieved 31 August 2016.