Abdul Rahman Ya'kub

Tun Datuk Patinggi Haji Abdul Rahman bin Ya'kub (3 January 1928 – 9 January 2015)[2] was a Malaysian politician of Melanau descent from Mukah. He was the third Chief Minister of Sarawak and the fourth Yang di-Pertua Negeri Sarawak (Governor of Sarawak). He is also an uncle of Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud, since his (Taib's) mother Hajah Hamidah Ya'akub (b.1916 - d.2006) was his (Rahman's) eldest-born sibling.

Abdul Rahman Ya'kub

4th Yang di-Pertua Negeri Sarawak
In office
2 April 1981 – 2 April 1985
Preceded byAbang Muhammad Salahuddin
Succeeded byAhmad Zaidi Adruce
3rd Chief Minister of Sarawak
In office
7 July 1970 – 26 March 1981
GovernorTuanku Bujang Tuanku Othman
Abang Muhammad Salahuddin
DeputyStephen Yong (1969–1974)
Sim Kheng Hung (1974–1991)
Dunstan Endawie Enchana (1974–1979)
Alfred Jabu Numpang (1976-2016)[1]
Daniel Tajem (1979–1986)
Preceded byTawi Sli
Succeeded byAbdul Taib Mahmud
3rd President of Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu
In office
1977 – 26 March 1981
Preceded byAbdul Taib Mahmud
Succeeded byAbdul Taib Mahmud
Personal details
Abdul Rahman bin Ya'kub

3 January 1928
Kampung Jepak, Bintulu, Kingdom of Sarawak
Died9 January 2015 (aged 87)
Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysia
Political partyBarisan Ra'ayat Jati Sarawak (1961–1968)
United Malays National Organisation (1965-unknown)
Parti Bumiputera Sarawak (1968–1973)
Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (1973–1981)
Persatuan Rakyat Malaysia Sarawak (1987–1991)
Spouse(s)Toh Puan Normah Abdullah @ Rosaline Soon Siew Joon (Deceased)
Toh Puan Hayati Ahmat
ResidenceSri Bahagia, Petra Jaya, Kuching
Alma materUniversity of Southampton, United Kingdom
OccupationPolitician, Statesmen


Abdul Rahman's first wife, Toh Puan Normah died in 1984. Abdul Rahman's daughter, Khadijah, later married to Tun Abdul Razak's son, Datuk Mohd Nizam.[3] Datuk Norah Abdul Rahman, who is also her daughter, was a Malaysian Member of Parliament for the Tanjung Manis constituency, from 2008 to 2018. He then later married Toh Puan Siti Maemunah, and afterwards Toh Puan Hayati Ahmat.

Hobbies and interests

Abdul Rahman bin Ya'kub was very active in sports during his school days, especially football (soccer). In the later years of his life he also enjoyed playing golf. Abdul Rahman was a very religious man and loved reading religious books on Islam. He even conducted free-religious classes for the public after leaving active politics in 1985.[3]

Early life and career

Abdul Rahman bin Ya'kub was born in the village of Kampung Jepak, Bintulu, Sarawak on 3 January 1928 to a fisherman by the name of Tuan Wan Ya'kub bin Wan Yusuf and Siti Hajar binti Haji Mohd Tahir who was a housewife. Rahman's family left Bintulu and headed for Miri, hoping to gain access for better education.[4] Rahman first attended a Malay school and then the Sekolah Anchi in Miri. His father, who wished that Abdul Rahman bin Ya'kub be given an Islamic education, attempted to send him to the Al-Juned Arabic School in 1939, a decision that was opposed by his mother due to the outbreak of World War II. He then transferred to St. Joseph Miri, but his studies was cut short by the Japanese invasion.[5] At a young age, he learnt the Japanese martial art Aikido and was able to also meet Morihei Ueshiba, the founder of Aikido.

Due to financial constraints, Rahman had to leave school in 1947 and worked as an oil-tester for the Sarawak Shell Company in Lutong, earning RM 2 daily. Not satisfied with his earnings, Abdul Rahman went to Sarawak General Hospital, thinking that he would supervise other workers. However, he ended up sweeping the floor and helping patients instead. He left the hospital after working just one day. Abdul Rahman subsequently secured a job as a Student Native Officer. He was sent to Madrasah Melayu Kuching as a form 3 grader. In 1948, he was sent to Miri as a Probationary Native Officer and Fourth Class Magistrate. He stayed in Miri until 1952, mostly doing court works. In 1952, Rahman was promoted to first class magistrate.[6] Rahman passed with a Grade Two Certificate at Senior Cambridge examination in the following year.[4]

Rahman was 26 years old when he was accepted into University of Southampton to study law in 1954. Five years later, he graduated from the university as a trained lawyer and was appointed as Cadet Legal Officer.[4][7] He worked as the Deputy Public Prosecutor in the Sarawak Legal Department from 1959 to 1963. He was the first Bumiputera from Sarawak that graduated as a lawyer in 1958 from Lincoln's Inn.[3]

Early political career

Rahman played a part in the formation of Parti Negara Sarawak (PANAS) and Barisan Ra'ayat Jati Sarawak (BARJASA) by helping in the drafting of constitutions of both parties. However, Rahman decided to join BARJASA because he opposed Malay aristocrats in PANAS. Rahman contested in the 1963 local council elections of Sarawak but was defeated together with his party members such as Ustaz Abdul Kadir Hassan and Suut Haji Tahir. The Malaysian federal government nominated Abdul Rahman as the first Sarawak chief minister. However, his nomination was rejected by the Sarawak Alliance which was dominated by Sarawak National Party (SNAP) party that time.[4]

Minister in the federal cabinet

Rahman was elected by Council Negri (now Sarawak State Legislative Assembly) to become a member of parliament in October 1963. He was later appointed as Assistant Federal Minister of National and Rural Development for Sarawak. The first Prime Minister of Malaysia, Tunku Abdul Rahman brought Abdul Rahman into politics while the second Prime Minister Tun Abdul Razak mentor him. Tunku was satisfied with Abdul Rahman performance as an assistant federal minister. Rahman was subsequently promoted to the full minister of Lands and Mines in 1965.[3][4] Rahman began recommending the federal government of establishing a national oil company which would later be known as Petronas in 1974. He also recommended that Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah be appointed as chairman of Petronas.[8]

Rahman became an education minister in 1969. He made a bold move by changing the medium of instruction for all the schools and higher learning institutions from English to the Malay language.[3] He is also credited for the creation of Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) in 1970. He also did away with primary six common entrance examination, so that all the primary six students will be able to continue with their secondary education.[9] Education minister was Rahman's last portfolio before he returned to Sarawak.[4]

Appointment to Chief Minister

Abdul Rahman won the Kuala Rajang state constituency during the resumption of 1969 state election in 1970, representing Parti Bumiputera Sarawak, which was part of the Sarawak Alliance. After the election, there was not any party holding a clear majority. Abdul Rahman planned to cooperate with PESAKA in order to form a government but PESAKA did not accept Rahman as their chief minister. Therefore, PESAKA negotiated with Sarawak National Party (SNAP) and Sarawak United Peoples' Party (SUPP) in order to form a government. However, without the knowledge of SNAP and PESAKA, SUPP was quietly negotiating with Parti Bumiputera to form a separate coalition. Rahman was able to convince SUPP to form a coalition government with him as the chief minister. As part of the deal in joining the coalition, SUPP demanded that Sarawak Chinese Association (SCA) be ejected from Sarawak Alliance and be dissolved later. In order to ensure Dayak participation in the Sarawak cabinet, Rahman offered Penghulu Abok from PESAKA a cabinet post. Simon Dembab Raja from PESAKA joined the cabinet a day later as a deputy chief minister. Soon after that, Temenggung Jugah, the president of PESAKA, announced his support for the Rahman's coalition government, thus leaving SNAP as the only opposition party in Sarawak.[4] Rahman was called by Tun Abdul Razak to tackle the communist insurgency in Sarawak.[3]

UMNO membership

Abdul Rahman was appointed an executive member of United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) on 16 May 1965 during the 1966 Sarawak constitutional crisis.[10] He was the vice-president of UMNO Datu Keramat branch and was a central committee member of the party although he was also a PBB member. In 1970, Abdul Rahman was one of the candidates vying for UMNO's vice-presidency. Rahman drafted the PBB constitution by adapting from the UMNO's constitution. Similar to UMNO's party structure, PBB adopted four levels of bureaucracy namely General Assembly, Supreme Council, branches, and sub-branches. This is similar to UMNO's organisational structure of national, negeri liaison office, division, and branches. At every party levels, PBB has youth and women wings which is also similar to UMNO's set up. Abdul Rahman was able to influence party policies and party elections during his term as PBB president from 1977 to 1981.[4]

Sarawak oil and gas rights

According to Sarawak Tribune (owned by Abdul Rahman)[11] published during the 1987 Ming Court Affair, the federal government tried to obtain the Sarawak oil rights by holding several discussions with state leaders such as Abdul Rahman through Abdul Taib Mahmud in the early 1970s. Taib was the federal Primary Industry Minister who was responsible for all mining industry including petroleum and gas. Taib with his aide Adenan Satem tried to persuade Abdul Rahman to hand over Sarawak Continental shelf to the total control of federal government, thus depriving Sarawak of 10% oil royalty which it have been receiving from foreign oil companies.[4] Although Abdul Rahman refused to accept the plan, Taib decided to introduce a hydrocarbon bill in 1974 which would give total dominance of Sarawak oil and gas to federal government, without consulting Abdul Rahman.[4] However, in autobiography of Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah published in 1986, Taib was advocating the sharing of 10% oil royalty between the federal government and the state government.[12] Abdul Rahman threatened to sue the federal government in court if the bill was not withdrawn. Abdul Rahman obtained three legal opinions from the former Attorney general of Australia, a public international law expert from Cambridge University and a former High Court judge to back Sarawak's claims that Sarawak territorial waters was not confined to three-nautical-miles limit for oil royalty. Abdul Razak then invited Abdul Rahman to Kuala Lumpur for a closed-door discussion. During the discussion, Rahman agreed to a smaller payout of oil royalty because the federal government was not wealthy at that time and the oil royalty will be revised in the future.[8] The hydrocarbon bill was finally withdrawn with the persistent protests by the Sarawak government.[4] According to Lukas Straumann, the conflict on the oil and gas rights was resolved as an internal family affair of the Abdul Rahman's family.[13]

The federal government decided to appoint Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah to negotiate new terms with Abdul Rahman. Abdul Rahman also claimed that in a meeting of final decision of oil royalty payments chaired by Tun Tan Siew Sin (Federal Finance Minister) and attended by deputy chief minister of Sarawak Tan Sri Stephen Yong, an agreement of 5% oil royalty was reached without consulting Abdul Rahman.[8] However, according to autobiography of Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah published in 1986, Abdul Rahman agreed to the equal share of 10% oil royalty between the federal and the state government after a private discussion with Razaleigh.[12] Abdul Rahman finally agreed to the 5% oil royalty given by the federal government. Petroleum Development Act was passed in parliament in 1974. This would allow Malaysian oil and gas company, Petronas to gain control over the oil and gas reserves in Sarawak. The revenues from oil and gas will be divided among oil-producing states (5 percent), federal government (5 percent), producer company (41 percent), and Petronas (49 percent).[4]

Tackling communist insurgency

Communist insurgency in Sarawak was responsible for the killings of 12 Iban border scouts in the seventh divisions on 27 August 1970. The communists were also responsible for the killings of several villagers in first, second, and third divisions. Abdul Rahman finally succeeded in impairing the communist movement by signing a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Director of Political Commissioner of Pasukan Rakyat Kalimantan Utara (PARAKU) led by Bong Kee Chok at Sri Aman on 21 October 1973.[4]

Development policy

In order to safeguard national interests, Abdul Rahman declared that he denounced the slogan "Sarawak for Sarawakians" and replaced it with "Malaysia for Malaysians" a few weeks after he became the chief minister. Rahman argued that regional politics is not only divisive but could also harm the national solidarity. He also said that Sarawak should accept policies from the federal government because "Sarawak received a lot of money from the federal government. Without their assistance, we could never hope to progress so quickly." Rahman also introduced a motion in the Council Negri to make Bahasa Melayu along with English language as Sarawak's official languages. The motion was passed unanimously on 26 March 1974.[14][15] This motion prompted fierce criticism from Stephen Kalong Ningkan.[4]

Abdul Rahman also started to implement the national education policy on Sarawak.[16] He changed the medium of instruction of all schools in Sarawak from English to Malay language. Sekolah Datuk Abdul Rahman was the first school in Sarawak to accept this change in 1970. By 1976, a total of 258 primary schools involving 36,267 students adopted Bahasa Melayu as their medium of instruction.[4]

Abdul Rahman started to appoint Muslim Bumiputera officers to important positions within the government. He appointed Abang Yusuf Puteh as the new state secretary, replacing Gerusin Lembat who was the first non-European Sarawak state secretary. Bujang Mohammad Nor was appointed as financial secretary, Safri Awang Zaidell was appointed as secretary of community service council, and Hamdan bin Sirat as Sarawak Commissioner of Police.[4]

Abdul Rahman set up the Sarawak foundation to provide scholarships and educational loans for the needy students. He also established several statutory bodies including State Planning Unit to speed up the development in Sarawak. Five administrative divisions in Sarawak has been increased to seven under his tenure of office. A bridge built in May 1975 which connects the two administrative divisions, namely Kuching North City Hall (DBKU) and Kuching South City Council (MBKS) was named after him.[9]

Timber politics and electoral patronage

Abdul Rahman bin Ya'kub was known for using his chief minister power to distribute state resources to his clients. In return, the clients would finance his electoral campaign during state elections. This is to ensure the loyalty of his clients to his leadership. Zainuddin Satem, Salleh Jafaruddin (Rahman's nephew), Wan Habib Syed Mahmud (Rahman's nephew), Wan Madzihi Madzar (Rahman's nephew), Daniel Tajem were among the recipients of timber concessions. He also gave some timber concessions to his family members namely Norlia Abdul Rahman (daughter), Khadijah Abdul Rahman (daughter), and Jamil Abdullah (Rahman's brother-in-law).[4] A case study in Belaga district revealed that the shares of the Lembahan Mewah timber licence was 70% owned by his daughters while the remaining 30% of shares was owned by the wife of Datuk Tajang Laing, the state assemblyman for Belaga district.[17] Among the Rahman-linked companies that had received timber concessions were Baltim Timber Sdn Bhd, Syarikat Delapan Sdn Bhd, Barbet Sdn Bhd, and Lembahan Mewah Sdn Bhd.[4]

Abdul Rahman with the help of Malaysian federal government also distributed developmental projects, financial grants, and other handouts to voters in exchange for electoral support. The ministers would distribute developmental projects which was already under Malaysian Plan or pledge new projects under their respective ministries. For example, in 1978 Malaysian general election, seven new developmental projects totalling RM 189.9 million was allocated by federal and state leaders. Developmental project and financial grants were also taken from state assemblymen and member of parliament (MP) grants which was valued at RM 200,000 and RM 300,000 respectively.[4]

Financial grants would be given to voters to purchase essential goods. Subsidies in the form of fertilisers, and other specific needs such as water tanks, and land titles would also be given to the voters. In 1974 elections, 8 developmental projects and financial grant valuing RM 22.4 million were distributed. In 1978 election, 102 projects worth RM 200 million were distributed. Such rise in number of developmental projects were mainly due to intense challenge posed by the opposition namely Parti Anak Jati Sarawak (PAJAR), Parti Negara Rakyat Sarawak (PNRS), Sarawak People's Party (SAPO), and Parti Umat Sarawak (UMAT). Such granting of developmental projects slowly eroded the electoral support for the opposition. According to Alli Kawi, the leader of PAJAR:[4]

Then came the onslaught. Truckloads and boatloads of water tanks were delivered to longhouses and Malay kampungs. Minor roads were immediately constructed. These were cheap and less bothersome for minor works for the government which did not require any planning. Boats powered by two powerful engines were seen anchored in the river near Kampung Pusa with some influential and wealthy people who had come to assist in the Barisan Nasional's campaign. Again it was clear that this was the case of money and more money and we could not fight them dollar for dollar.[4]

— Alli Kawi's comment in 1988.

Maintaining the position of Islam

In order to empower the position of Islam in Sarawak, Abdul Rahman was responsible for the revision of Articles 4(1) and (2) into "The Yang di-Pertuan Agong shall be the head of religion of Islam in Sarawak" and "the Council Negri is empowered to make provisions for regulating Islamic affairs through a Council to advise the Yang di-Pertuan Agong". Such provisions enabled Council Negri to pass ordinance regarding the Islamic religious affairs. Abdul Rahman also helped to established state sponsored Islamic NGOs such as Angkatan Nahdatul Islam Bersatu (BINA) which would later renamed to Harakah Islamiah (HIKMAH) in 1994. Through this NGO, Rahman was able to held various Islamic activities without going through the state agencies. This NGO was responsible for the conversions of thousands of natives and Chinese and was publicised through newspapers. Between 1973 and 1980, at least 2,236 cases of conversions were reported in newspapers. The mass conversions would be attended by Abdul Rahman himself and other Muslim ministers at his residence. The total number of conversions made by Abdul Rahman however, was less than the number of conversions made by Tun Mustapha in the neighbouring state of Sabah where the latter was believed to have converted a total of 95,000 Sabahans. Although some conversions are due to genuine belief in Islam, others viewed this as a way to get to political office, employments, or contracts from the government. For example, after a conversion ceremony of Ibans in Kuching, Abdul Rahman announced that a 40-door longhouse would be built by BINA for the new converts. In December 1978, Majlis Islam Bill was amended to enable for the establishment of syariah courts in Sarawak consisting of Supreme Syariah Court, the Appeal Court, and several courts of Kadi. Supreme Syariah Court and Appeal court was enforced throughout Sarawak while Courts of Kadi was enforced only in Kuching, Sibu, and Miri. The Majlis Islam (Amendment) Act was only enforced in on 1 January 1983.[4]

1974 state election and aftermath

Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) was formed following the merger of Parti Bumiputera and PESAKA in 1973. In the same year, SCA was ejected out of the Sarawak Alliance which led to its demise. Meanwhile, Sarawak Alliance was succeeded by Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition which was inclusive of more parties. Abdul Rahman was able to led his BN coalition to another victory in 1974 Sarawak state election, where the coalition secured a total of 30 seats out of 48 seats although the SNAP party won 18 seats for the opposition bench. The PBB party was able to increase its popular vote from 47.3 percent in 1970 to 70.3 percent in 1974. However, the secretary general of SUPP, Stephen Yong, who was also the deputy chief minister of Sarawak at that time, was defeated in the election. For the 1974 parliamentary election, Sarawak BN won 15 out of 24 seats while the remaining seats were won by SNAP. In order to neutralise the electoral threat by SNAP, Abdul Rahman decided to allow SNAP into the BN coalition on 1 November 1976. Therefore, there was an absence of opposition voice in Sarawak for a brief period.[4]

However, the relationship of Abdul Rahman with SUPP started to worsen after 1974 election. In May 1978, a delegation of SUPP leaders led by Stephen Yong tried to persuade the prime minister Hussein Onn to remove Abdul Rahman. However, the plan failed because 1978 election was around the corner. As a result, Abdul Rahman allowed the entry of peninsular-based Democratic Action Party (DAP) into Sarawak in 1978 in order to check the Chinese electoral support towards SUPP. On 28 March 1978, Parti Anak Jati Sarawak (PAJAR) was formed due to dissatisfaction of a number of Malays towards Abdul Rahman's increased tolerance to cronyism and his disregard of the welfare of Malay community.[4]

Abdul Rahman decided not to dissolve the Council Negeri of Sarawak during the 1978 Malaysian general election because he needed to tackle the opposition by the PAJAR party and solve the allocation of state assembly seats after the inclusion of SNAP into the BN coalition. However, Abdul Rahman's BN coalition put up a strong showing in the 1978 parliamentary election by winning 23 out of 24 parliamentary seats in Sarawak. The remaining one seat was won by Sarawak People's Party (SAPO). Abdul Rahman dissolved the Council Negri one year after the parliamentary election. This was the first time in the history of Sarawak that the state election was held separately from the national parliamentary election. Both elections continue to be held separately since then. The Sarawak BN coalition won 45 out of 48 state assembly seats with 61.23 percent of the popular vote in the 1979 state election.[4]

Relationship with Malaysian federal government

Prior to 1974 Sarawak state election, Rahman threatened to step down because of lack of support by the federal government to face the election. Sarawak secretary Abang Yusuf Puteh met the prime minister to resolve the allocation issue. Abdul Rahman subsequently changed his mind and continue his rule over Sarawak. He also went to into an argument with federal government because mal-treatment of Sarawak state agencies in a number of matters. Despite the occasional upheaval with the federal government, Abdul Rahman generally maintained a good relationship with the federal government especially during the administration of Tun Abdul Razak.[4]


Abdul Rahman underwent a successful heart surgery in London in October 1980. With his failing health, Rahman finally decided to step down from the chief minister post while appointing his nephew and successor Abdul Taib Mahmud on 26 March 1981. Upon announcing his retirement, Rahman said that:[4]

Taib would steer the boat with more skill and speed. I am no longer able to steer the boat but suffice that I wave the flag.[4]

— Abdul Rahman Ya'kub's comment as published in Sarawak Tribune on 26 March 1981.

Appointment to Governor of Sarawak

In 1981, he resigned his post as the Chief Minister and became the Governor of Sarawak. However, Abdul Rahman bin Ya'kub retained his influence over the state's principal levers of patronage such as land development permits, government contracts, and timber licenses.[18] He later quit his post as the governor of Sarawak in 1985 due to health reasons.[3]

1987 Ming Court Affair

This political crisis already started brewing when Abdul Rahman bin Ya'kub was the governor of Sarawak. He criticised his nephew in a speech at a ceremony of opening of Bintulu port in 1983.[19] In 1985, Abdul Rahman was involved in a bitter dispute with his nephew, Abdul Taib Mahmud over allocation rights. In 1987, Abdul Rahman formed a new party named Parti Persatuan Rakyat Malaysia Sarawak (PERMAS) to challenge Taib Mahmud at the polls. He also formed an alliance with Sarawak Dayak People's Party (PBDS) to unseat Taib Mahmud. In March 1987, 27 of the 48 state assemblymen suddenly directed their support to Abdul Rahman bin Ya'kub while calling Taib Mahmud to resign as a chief minister. Among the defectors were Taib's 4 cabinet ministers and 3 assistant ministers. A war of accusations on timber concessionaires then broke out between Abdul Rahman bin Ya'kub and Taib Mahmud. Taib revoked 30 timber licenses held by his defectors and Abdul Rahman's clients.[18] Taib then accused Abdul Rahman for awarding 1.25 million hectares of logging concessions worth RM 22.5 billion to Abdul Rahman himself and his relatives. Abdul Rahman bin Ya'kub, in return, revealed a list of timber concessions covering 1.6 million hectares held by Taib's clients and family.[17][20] Despite the unsuccessful attempt at the 1987 Sarawak state election, Abdul Rahman continued his struggle with his allies, Sarawak Dayak People's Party against Taib's led Sarawak Barisan Nasional until 1991 Sarawak state election when Taib's coalition won an overwhelming majority of 49 out of 56 seats in the state assembly.[18][21]

Later life

Abdul Rahman celebrated his 80th birthday in Hilton Hotel, Kuching in 2008.[22] During the grand ceremony, he hugged his nephew, Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud, marking the end of the 20-year-old strained relationship between an uncle and a nephew after the Ming Court Affair. He said that he stitched up his relationship with Taib because "blood is thicker than water".[3] He was active in religious activities as he conducted free religious classes for the public at his residence, "Sri Bahagia", in Petra Jaya.


Abdul Rahman bin Ya'kub was admitted into the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of Normah Specialist Medical Centre, Kuching in early November 2014 due to health problems. He lost appetite and had to rely on ventilation equipments.[23] He died peacefully at 9:40 pm on 9 January 2015, aged 87.[24] He was accorded a state funeral by the Sarawak state government and laid to rest at Samariang Muslim Cemetery in Petra Jaya, Kuching.[25]


Honours of Malaysia

See also


  1. ^ Tawie, Sulok (21 March 2016). "After 43 years, Sarawak deputy CM Alfred Jabu to quit politics". The Malay Mail. Archived from the original on 6 April 2016. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  2. ^ Tun Datuk Patinggi Haji Abdul Rahman Ya'akub. arkib.gov.my
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h Truly memorable 80th birthday The Star
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab Faisal, S Hazis (2012). Domination and Contestation: Muslim Bumiputera Politics in Sarawak. Institute of Southeast Asian Studies. pp. 78–97, 101–108. ISBN 9789814311588. Retrieved 11 December 2015. Through Taib, the central state government persuaded Rahman to hand over the rights of Sarawak's continental shelf to the central government,...(page 92)
  5. ^ "Tun Datuk Patinggi Haji Abdul Rahman bin Ya'kub (Malay language)". National Archives of Malaysia. 16 October 2008. Archived from the original on 9 April 2012. Retrieved 31 August 2012.
  6. ^ BAB 3 PROFIL EKSKLUSIF ABDUL RAHMAN YA'KUB (Chapter 3: Exclusive profile of Abdul Rahman Ya'kub) (PDF). Univesiti Malaya student repository. 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 29 June 2018. Retrieved 29 June 2018.
  7. ^ Jackson, Caroline (2 January 2008). "'Blood Is Thicker Than Water', Says Tun Yakub Of Ties With Taib". Bernama. Retrieved 31 August 2012.
  8. ^ a b c Lau, Leslie (14 March 2010). "Ex-Sarawak CM says Kelantan has no right to oil royalty". The Malaysian Insider. Archived from the original on 14 March 2010. Retrieved 27 April 2015.
  9. ^ a b "Revisiting 48 years of leadership". The Borneo Post. 16 September 2011. Retrieved 31 August 2012.
  10. ^ Porritt, Vernon L (2004). "Turbulent times in Sarawak: the end of expatriate influence and the struggle for power over and within the state". Borneo Research Bulletin. Retrieved 29 September 2015. A UK trained lawyer, Ya'kub was the Deputy Public Prosecutor in the Sarawak Legal Department from 1959 to 1963. He had ethnic, political, and religious empathy with the Malayan Alliance leaders, who supported an unsuccessful attempt to secure his nomination as Sarawak's first Chief Minister (Leigh 1974: 83). Showing the high regard in which United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) leaders held Ya'kub, he was appointed an executive member of UMNO Malaya on 16 May 1965 in the midst of the Land Bill crisis in Sarawak. He became a key player in molding the politics of Sarawak in the UMNO image.
  11. ^ Weiss J (2001). In Tigers' Roar: Asia's Recovery and Its Impact. M. E. Sharpe. p. 261. ISBN 0-7656-0783-2. Google Book Search. Retrieved 19 January 2014.
  12. ^ a b Ranjit, Gill (1986). "19". Razaleigh: An Unending Quest. Petaling Jaya, Selangor: Pelanduk publication. pp. 118–121. ISBN 978-967-978-101-4. When Taib became Minister of Land and Mines, he showed considerable interest in the development of this resource, and in his view, there should be a sharing of royalties between the State (i.e. Sarawak) and the federal government.(page 121) ... Tengku Razaleigh visited Datuk Rahman, ... I suggested the formation of a company, not a statutory corporation, which would distribute profits equally between the Federal government and Sarawak in the form of cash payments. He accepted the proposal and I rushed back to Tun Razak with the news. (page 122) ... The proceeds would accrue to PETRONAS, but 5 percent of the oil revenue thereafter would go to the state, and a similar amount to the Federal government. Rahman agreed (page 123).
  13. ^ Lukas, Strumann (21 October 2014). Money Logging: On the Trail of the Asian Timber Mafia. Schwabe AG. pp. 102–103. ISBN 9783905252705. Retrieved 22 September 2015. When negotiations failed, Kuala Lumpur seized the disputed parts of the continental shelf invoking 1969 emergency measures.(pages 102 and 103), When the question came out again in the early 1970s, Taib, as a minister of primary industries, was the responsible member of the federal government, and his uncle was chief minister of Sarawak. The conflict was sorted out as an internal family affair. (page 103)
  14. ^ "Bahasa in Sarawak:Rahman to make key speech". New Straits Times. 25 February 1974. Retrieved 21 September 2015.
  15. ^ "Kuching gets ready for the Bahasa switch". New Straits Times. 2 August 1974. Retrieved 21 September 2015.
  16. ^ "Sarawak's policy on Bahasa Malaysia". New Straits Times. 5 January 1974. Retrieved 21 September 2015.
  17. ^ a b Politics, Law and the Logging Industry Archived 26 March 2015 at the Wayback Machine URL assessed on 1 December 2009
  18. ^ a b c Ross. M.L (2001). In Timber booms and institutional breakdown in Southeast Asia. Cambridge University Press. p. 148-149. ISBN 0-521-79167-7. Google Book Search. Retrieved on 1 December 2009.
  19. ^ "A long-standing political contest laid to rest". Archived from the original on 21 November 2009. Retrieved 2009-12-06. New Straits Times
  20. ^ Ahmad, Zainon (10 April 1987). "Taib, Abdul Rahman reveal names of licensees, Timber Freeze sparks war". New Straits Times. Retrieved 6 January 2015.
  21. ^ Borneo anti-logging party loses election The Age
  22. ^ Ujang, Azman (11 January 2008). "Truly memorable 80th birthday". The Star (Malaysia).
  23. ^ "Bekas KM Sarawak, Tun Abdul Rahman dimasukkan ke hospital (In Malay) (Former Sarawak chief minister Tuh Abdul Rahman was admitted into a hospital)". Berita Harian. 8 November 2014. Retrieved 10 January 2015.
  24. ^ "Tun Abdul Rahman Yakub passes away at 87". The Borneo Post. 9 January 2015. Retrieved 10 January 2015.
  25. ^ "Abdul Rahman's remains buried". The Borneo Post. 10 January 2015. Retrieved 10 January 2015.
  26. ^ "Semakan Penerima Darjah Kebesaran, Bintang dan Pingat".
  27. ^ "Senarai Penuh Penerima Darjah Kebesaran, Bintang dan Pingat Persekutuan Tahun 1982" (PDF).

Further reading

  • Suhaimi Mokhtar, Putera Kenyalang: Satu Dekad Penuh Cabaran, 1981.

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Tawi Sli
Chief Minister of Sarawak
Succeeded by
Abdul Taib Mahmud
Preceded by
Abang Muhammad Salahuddin
Yang di-Pertua Negeri Sarawak
Succeeded by
Ahmad Zaidi Adruce
1969 Sarawak state election

The first Sarawak state election was held from Saturday, 10 May 1969 and scheduled to be completed on Saturday, 7 June 1969 which lasted for 4 weeks and was carried out in staggered basis. This was due to the lack of transportation and communication systems in the state at that time. The state election was held at the same time as the 1969 general election. The Dewan Rakyat of the Malaysian Parliament and all the state assemblies were dissolved on 20 March 1969, except for Kelantan (which dissolved later on 31 March) and Sabah (which were not up for election as it had held its state election in 1967). The nomination date was set on Saturday, 5 April 1969. However, because of the riot occurred during 13 May incident and the declaration of emergency and the promulgation of Emergency (Essential Powers) Ordinance No. 1 of 1969 on 15 May 1969, all the ongoing polls were suspended until 1970. During when the suspension was enforced, polling in 9 out of 48 constituencies in Sarawak had started. None of the elections in Sarawak was completed at that time.Prior to 1969 election, a political party was suspended from contesting in general election. The political party later mounted a public campaign calling the voters to boycott the election. The Sarawak parliamentary and state election was resumed from Saturday, 6 June 1970 to Saturday, 4 July 1970. During the resumption of the election, there was a tragedy in Sarikei in the third division of Sarawak on 29 June 1970. The communist terrorists had killed three election officials on their return journey after completing polling at a station. There was also an incident were a land mine was exploded outside the polling station in the same division.This election saw 332,373 eligible voters after the first registration in Sarawak. The turn up rate of voters was 80.0%, which was considered high as compared to other states in Malaysia. A total of 221 candidates were contesting for 48 state seats in Sarawak. The breakdown of number of seats were:

33 seats were contested by Sarawak Alliance (Perikatan Sarawak in Malay). It was made up of Parti Bumiputera Sarawak (BUMIPUTERA) and Sarawak Chinese Association (SCA)

40 seats by Sarawak United Peoples' Party (SUPP)

35 seats by Parti Pesaka Sarawak (Pesaka)

47 seats by Sarawak National Party (SNAP)There were 66 independent candidates vying for the seats.

1987 Ming Court Affair

The Ming Court Affair was a political coup in Sarawak, Malaysia that began in 1983, developed into a full-blown political crisis during 1987 state election, and ended after the Sarawak Malaysian People's Association (PERMAS) was dissolved in 1991. This political crisis mainly involved in the dispute between Abdul Rahman Ya'kub (former Sarawak chief minister) and his nephew Abdul Taib Mahmud (chief minister of Sarawak) over the control of the state government and Sarawak's natural resources.

1987 Sarawak state election

The fifth Sarawak state election was held between Wednesday, 15 April and Thursday, 16 April 1987 with a nomination date set on Monday, 6 April 1987. This was a snap election following the Ming Court affair. The state assembly was dissolved on 12 March 1987 by Sarawak governor with the advice of chief minister of Sarawak, Abdul Taib Mahmud.All the 48 Sarawak state assembly seats were contested. In this election, Sarawak Barisan Nasional (BN) fielded candidates for all 48 seats, PBDS for 21 seats, PERMAS for 21 seats, Democratic Action Party (DAP) for 11 seats, and Sarawak Democratik Bersatu (BERSATU) for one seat. There were 16 independents contesting for the seats. There were a total of 118 candidates vying for the seats, which was the lowest since 1979 election.

1991 Sarawak state election

The sixth Sarawak state election was held between Friday, 27 September and Saturday, 28 September 1991. This election elected 56 state representatives into the Sarawak State Assembly. This election saw 72.8% of the eligible voters to cast their votes.Sarawak Barisan Nasional (BN) fielded candidates for all 56 seats, followed by Sarawak Dayak People's Party (PBDS) (34 seats), Parti Negara Rakyat Sarawak (NEGARA) (28 seats), Democratic Action Party (DAP) (18 seats), and Persatuan Rakyat Malaysia Sarawak (PERMAS) (12 seats). There were 19 independents vying for 16 seats. A total of 167 candidates were successfully nominated on the nomination day.After the 1987 Ming Court Affair, PERMAS which was founded by Abdul Rahman Ya'kub (the uncle of Abdul Taib Mahmud) continued his final bid with PBDS in this election to topple the Taib led Sarawak BN. Before this, PERMAS and PBDS lost narrowly in the 1987 state election. However, Sarawak BN won with a larger majority this time. PERMAS won none of the seats in this election and was dissolved not long after in 1991.

Abang Muhammad Salahuddin

Tun Pehin Sri Abang Haji Muhammad Salahuddin bin Abang Barieng is the former Yang di-Pertua Negeri (Governor) of the Malaysian state of Sarawak from 1977 to 1981, and again from 2001 to 2014. He is the first person to serve as Governor twice. He is also fondly known as Abang Louis, by his old friends and acquaintances, especially in his hometown of Sibu. His term officially ended on 28 February 2014, and he was succeeded by the former Chief Minister, Abdul Taib Mahmud, on 1 March.

Abdul Taib Mahmud

Tun Pehin Sri Haji Abdul Taib bin Mahmud (Jawi: عبدالتائب بن محمود; born 21 May 1936) is the Yang di-Pertua Negeri of Sarawak, in office since 2014. Previously he was Chief Minister of Sarawak from 1981 to 2014. Taib was also the President of Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB), which is part of the Barisan Nasional coalition. He is of ethnic Melanau descent.

Taib is informally known as Pak Uban, which translates into "white-haired uncle". Among Chinese speaking communities he is known as Pek Moh (白毛) which means "white hair". Another informal name for him, in reference to the British Brooke family that ruled Sarawak as White Rajahs in the 19th and early 20th century, is the "last white rajah" or "white-haired rajah". Holding the post of Chief Minister of Sarawak from 1981 to 2014, he was the longest serving Chief Minister in Malaysia. He assumed the Chief Minister post at the age of 45. Being a member of the Malaysian Parliament for 38 years, Taib is also the second longest-serving parliamentarian in Malaysia after Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah. Taib and his wider family are regularly accused of corruption and personally benefiting from Sarawak's natural and economic resources.On 12 February 2014, Taib handed over his resignation letter to the Governor of Sarawak to vacate his chief minister post, officially ending his 33 years of chief ministership. His former brother-in-law, Adenan Satem, succeeded him as Chief Minister with effect from 1 March 2014. At the same time, he received the official credentials as the 7th Sarawak Head of State from the Yang di-Pertuan Agong at Istana Negara on 28 February, and officially took the oath of office on the following day. He became the second Sarawakian (after his uncle, Abdul Rahman Ya'kub) to be appointed as the Governor after formally relinquishing the post of Chief Minister.

Ahmad Zaidi Adruce

Tun Datuk Patinggi (Dr.) Haji Ahmad Zaidi Adruce bin Muhammed Noor (29 March 1926–25 December 2000) was the fifth Yang di-Pertua Negeri Sarawak (Governor of Sarawak). He was the longest-serving governor of Sarawak (in consecutive terms from a single appointment), from his inaugural in 1985, to his death in 2000. He was also remembered as the first Sarawakian Bumiputera to receive a MA Degree from a British university (University of Edinburgh).

Bong Kee Chok

Bong Kee Chok (黄紀作; born 1937) is the main leader and member of the Clandestine Communist Organisation (CCO), also known as the North Kalimantan Communist Party (NKCP).As Bong was opposed to the formation of Malaysia, he was arrested on 22 June 1962. After his release, Bong formed the NKCP on 19 September 1965 in Pontianak, West Kalimantan, Indonesia. After a series of insurgencies, and the Indonesians' decision to stop aiding the Communists, Bong decided to surrender and signed an agreement to lay down arms to Sarawak Chief Minister Abdul Rahman Ya'kub on 20 October 1973 which signified the end of further major battles in the Sarawak Communist Insurgency.

Fourth Rahman cabinet

This incomplete article is about the fourth cabinet of the first Prime Minister of Malaysia, Tunku Abdul Rahman.

Jugah Barieng

Tun Datuk Patinggi Temenggong Jugah anak Barieng, also known as Tun Jugah, (1903 – 8 July 1981) was a Malaysian politician of Iban descent from the state of Sarawak. He was the Paramount Chief of the Iban people for more than 55 years. They affectionately called him "Apai" meaning "father" in the Iban language.

Tun Jugah played a fundamental role in bringing the state of Sarawak into the formation of the Federation of Malaysia which materialized on 16 September 1963. Sarawak had been made a British colony after the way and was granted its independence on 22 July 1963. Tun Abdul Rahman Ya'kub said that Tun Jugah was "the bridge to Malaysia," i.e. without his signature, there wouldn't be any Malaysia today. His candidacy as the first Sarawak Governor was rejected by Tunku Abdul Rahman on the basis that the posts of the Sarawak Chief Minister and the Sarawak Governor cannot be both held by Iban at the same time.

He was unfortunately illiterate, like so many other Ibans during his time. He signed documents by stamping his thumb print. However, he managed to become a state leader, i.e. the first Sarawakian and Iban Federal Minister in charge of Sarawak Affairs in the Cabinet of Malaysia. He was famous for his often-quoted reminder before the formation of Malaysia, "Anang baka tebu, manis ba pun tang tabar ba ujung," i.e. "Do not be like the sugar cane, sweet at the beginning but tasteless at the end". He was elected a member of Parliament during Malaysia's first elections in 1963.Tun Jugah, who was Sarawak’s Internal Affairs Minister, was appointed as the first president of the United Traditional Bumiputera Party or 'Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) until his death in 1981. The party was founded with the purpose of the improvement of the livelihood and protect the rights of the Sarawakian Bumiputera in many fields such as politics, economy and social.

PBB was formed from the combination of three parties in Sarawak; Parti Negara Sarawak (PANAS), Barisan Rakyat Jati Sarawak (BARJASA) and Parti Pesaka Anak Sarawak (PESAKA). Tun Jugah was one of the early members who instrumental in setting up Pesaka with other Iban Penghulus of Batang Rajang.

He died peacefully on 9 July 1981 at Kuching, leaving behind his wife Toh Puan Tiong anak Anding, his children and grandchildren.His famous quote was "Anang aja Malaysia tu baka Tebu, Manis di pun, tabar Di ujung" (Let's hope that Malaysia will not end up as a sugarcane, sweet in the beginning, but turned less sweet in the end).

Kuala Rajang (state constituency)

Kuala Rajang is a state constituency in Sarawak, Malaysia, that has been represented in the Sarawak State Legislative Assembly from 1969 to 1991, from 2016 to present.

The state constituency was created in the 1968 redistribution and is mandated to return a single member to the Sarawak State Legislative Assembly under the first past the post voting system.


Matu-Daro was a state constituency in Sarawak, Malaysia, that was represented in the Sarawak State Legislative Assembly from 1969 to 2006.

The state constituency was created in the 1968 redistribution and was mandated to return a single member to the Sarawak State Legislative Assembly under the first past the post voting system.

Norah Abdul Rahman

Datuk Hajjah Norah binti Abdul Rahman (born 4 October 1959) is a Malaysian politician. She is the former Member of the Parliament of Malaysia for the Tanjong Manis constituency in Sarawak, representing the United Traditional Bumiputera Party (PBB) in the governing Barisan Nasional coalition.Norah is the daughter of former Sarawak Chief Minister and Governor Abdul Rahman Ya'kub. Before entering politics, she was a businesswoman. She was elected to Parliament unopposed in the 2008 election, replacing Wahab Dolah as the PBB's nominee for the Tanjong Manis seat. She was re-elected in 2013, winning almost 90% of votes cast to defeat a Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS) candidate.

Paloh (federal constituency)

Paloh was a federal constituency in Sarawak, Malaysia, that was represented in the Dewan Rakyat from 1978 to 1990.

The federal constituency was created in the 1977 redistribution and was mandated to return a single member to the Dewan Rakyat under the first past the post voting system.

Payang (federal constituency)

Payang was a federal constituency in Sarawak, Malaysia, that was represented in the Dewan Rakyat from 1971 to 1978.

The federal constituency was created in the 1968 redistribution and was mandated to return a single member to the Dewan Rakyat under the first past the post voting system.

Sarawak Malaysian People's Association

The Sarawak Malaysian People's Association or Persatuan Rakyat Malaysia Sarawak (PERMAS) is now a defunct Malaysian political party based in Sarawak.The party itself was formed in 1987, during the infamous 1987 Ming Court Affair, by a faction dissatisfied with the Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud, led by none other than his uncle, Former Governor and Chief Minister, Tun Abdul Rahman Ya'kub.

During the 1987 State Election, PERMAS were able to win 5 seats,alongside its ally Sarawak Dayak People's Party (Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak,PBDS). However,they failed to unseat Taib from the State Government, and they tried again in 1991. However,things were no longer in their favour, as the Barisan Nasional, led in Sarawak by Taib, had an overwhelming victory, gaining 49 out of 56 seats in the State Legislative Council. The crushing defeat marked the end of PERMAS, and it was later dissolved.

Sardon Jubir

Tun Sardon bin Haji Jubir (19 March 1917 – 14 December 1985) was a Malaysian politician. He served as Minister of Health, Minister of Works and Communications and was the Yang di-Pertua Negeri (Governor) of Penang from 1975 to 1981.

Tan Siew Sin

Tun Tan Siew Sin (simplified Chinese: 陈修信; traditional Chinese: 陳修信; pinyin: Chén Xīuxìn; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: Tân Siu-sìn; 21 May 1916 — 17 March 1988) was a Malayan (later Malaysian) politician who was the first Minister of Commerce and Industry, Finance Minister for 15 years, and third president of the Malayan Chinese Association (MCA, later Malaysian Chinese Association), a major component party of Alliance and later National Front (BN) coalition.

Third Rahman cabinet

Tunku Abdul Rahman formed the third Rahman cabinet after being invited by Tuanku Syed Putra to begin a new government following the 25 April 1964 general election in Malaysia. Prior to the election, Rahman led (as Prime Minister) the first Rahman cabinet, a coalition government that consisted of members of the component parties of Alliance Party.

This is a list of the members of the third cabinet of the first Prime Minister of Malaysia, Tunku Abdul Rahman.

Third Rahman cabinet (1964–1969)
Fourth Rahman cabinet (1969–1970)
Grand Commanders of the Order of the Defender of the Realm
Grand Commanders
Honorary Grand Commanders

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