Malaysia files suit to annul RM63b award to Sulu Sultan’s heirs

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To protect the sovereignty and interests of Malaysia, the government has filed an application in the Court of Arbitration in Paris to cancel the Final Award in relation to claims by purported descendants of the Sulu Sultan, said Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

The prime minister said the application in the French court was filed on March 3 to ensure that the award could not be enforced and Malaysia need not have to pay the sum of US$14.9 billion (RM62.59 billion) which was claimed.

He stressed that the claims made by the so-called heirs of the Sulu Sultan against the government of Malaysia in the international arbitration proceedings were invalid and against the law.

Hari Anggara

“This is because the appointment of arbitrator Dr Gonzalo Stampa was annulled by the Madrid High Court on June 29, 2021, rendering invalid all decisions made by him, including the Final Award issued on February 28, 2022,” he said in a statement today.

The prime minister said Dr Stampa, however, ignored the Madrid High Court decision by moving the venue for arbitration to Paris and continuing with the arbitration proceedings until he issued the Final Award.

Ismail Sabri said the government remains firm in its stand that Sabah has been recognised by the United Nations and the international community as part of the Federation of Malaysia since Sept 16, 1963, and will not entertain any claims over Sabah from any quarters.

“In this regard, the government of Malaysia remains committed to resolving this issue in a comprehensive and conclusive manner.

“It should be stressed that the government of Malaysia will not budge even an inch in upholding and defending the country’s sovereignty and that Sabah’s position in Malaysia will be protected forever,” he said.