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Independence

National History - Independence

The Reid Commission toured Malaya in 1956 as part of the process of drawing up a constitution for an independent Malaya. Among the most controversial features of this Merdeka (Independence) constitution were those dealing with citizenship and the special privileges of Malays. In the new Constitution, the paramount ruler (yang dipertuan agung) was given the responsibility for safeguarding the special position of Malays, as well as the ‘legitimate interests’ of the other communities, reflecting the Commission’s dilemma of attempting to satisfy Malay demands while preserving the original principle of a single nationality with equal citizenship either by birth (jus soli) or by fulfilling requirements of residence and language, and by taking an oath of loyalty.

Apart from this sensitive issue, the Constitution also provided for a paramount ruler to be chosen by the Conference of Rulers (Durbar) on the basis of seniority for a term of five years; a parliament composed of a wholly elected House of Representatives (Dewan Rakyat) and an appointed Senate (Dewan Negara); an allocation of power designated in subjects under a Federal List, State List and Concurrent List; and a guarantee of civil rights and of judicial review.

On 15 August 1957, the Legislative Council ratified the Constitution and on 31 August, the Proclamation of Malayan Independence was read by the first Malayan prime minister, Tunku Abdul Rahman at 8.00 a.m at Stadium Merdeka (Independence Stadium), Kuala Lumpur.

Proclamation of Malayan Independence

PERMASYHURAN KEMERDEKAAN

Dengan nama Allah yang Maha Pemurah lagi Mengasihani, segala puji bagi Allah yang Maha Berkuasa dan selawat dan salam ke atas sekalian Rasul-Nya.

BAHAWASANYA kerana telah tibalah masanya bagi umat Persekutuan Tanah Melayu ini mencapai taraf suatu bangsa yang merdeka lagi berdaulat sama setimpal kedudukannya dengan segala bangsa seluruh dunia.

DAN BAHAWASANYA kerana dengan perjanjian yang disebut namanya Perjanjian Tanah Melayu tahun 1957 yang diperbuat antara Duli Yang Maha Mulia Baginda Queen dengan Duli-Duli Yang Maha Mulia Raja-Raja Melayu, maka, telah dipersetujui bahawa Negeri-negeri Melayu, iaitu Johor, Pahang, Negeri Sembilan, Selangor, Kedah, Perlis, Kelantan, Terengganu, dan Perak serta negeri yang dahulunya dinamakan Negeri Selat, iaitu Melaka dan Pulau Pinang, mulai 31 hari bulan Ogos tahun 1957, hendaklah menjadi sebuah Persekutuan baharu bagi negeri-negeri yang bernama Persekutuan Tanah Melayu.

DAN BAHAWASANYA kerana telah bersetuju pula antara kedua-dua pihak dalam perjanjian tersebut, iaitu Melaka dan Pulau Pinang hendaklah daripada tarikh tersebut itu tamat daripada menjadi sebahagian daripada jajahan takluk Baginda Queen, dan Duli Yang Maha Mulia Baginda Queen tidak lagi berhak menjalankan apa-apa kedaulatan baginda ke atas kedua-dua buah negeri yang tersebut itu.

DAN BAHAWASANYA kerana telah bersetuju pula antara kedua-dua pihak yang tersebut, iaitu Perjanjian Persekutuan Tanah Melayu tahun 1948, dan segala peranjian yang lain yang ada sekarang antara Duli Yang Maha Mulia Baginda Queen dengan Duli-Duli Yang Maha Mulia Raja-Raja ataupun salah seorang daripada baginda itu sebelum tarikh yang tersebut hendaklah dibatalkan mulai daripada tarikh itu, dan semua kuat kuasa dan hak Duli Yang Maha Mulia Baginda Queen ataupun Parlimen Negeri United Kingdom dalam Negeri-Negeri Selat ataupun Persekutuan Tanah Melayu seluruhannya adalah tamat dengan sendirinya.

DAN BAHAWASANYA kerana Duli Yang Maha Mulia Baginda Queen, Duli-Duli Yang Maha Mulia Raja-Raja Melayu, Parlimen Negeri United Kingdom dan Majlis-Majlis Undangan Persekutuan dan Negeri-Negeri Melayu telah meluluskannya, Perjanjian Persekutuan Tanah Melayu tahun 1957 itu berjalan kuat kuasanya.

DAN BAHAWASANYA kerana suatu perlembagaan bagi kerajaan Persekutuan Tanah Melayu telah ditentukan menjadi suatu kanun yang muktamad baginya.

DAN BAHAWASANYA kerana Perlembagaan Persekutuan yang tersebut itu, maka, ada disediakan syarat untuk menjaga keselamatan hak-hak dan keutamaan Duli-Duli Yang Maha Mulia Raja-Raja serta hak-hak asasi dan kebebasan sekalian rakyat dan untuk memajukan Persekutuan Tanah Melayu dengan aman dan damai serta teratur sebagai sebuah kerajaan yang mempunyai Raja yang Berperlembagaan yang berdasarkan demokrasi cara Parlimen.

DAN BAHAWASANYA kerana Perlembagaan Persekutuan yang diadakan oleh Majlis Undangan Persekutuan yang tersebut itu telah diluluskan oleh suatu undang-undang yang diadakah oleh Majlis Undangan Persekutuan serta dengan undang-undang yang diadakan oleh negeri-negeri Melayu dan dengan ketetapan-ketetapan dalam Majlis Undangan Negeri Melaka dan Pulau Pinang, dengan demikian Perlembagaan itu telah berjalan kuat kuasanya pada 31 hari bulan Ogos tahun 1957.

MAKA, dengan nama Allah yang Maha Pemurah lagi Maha Mengasihani, saya TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN PUTRA ibni AL-MARHUM SULTAN ABDUL HAMID HALIMSHAH, PERDANA MENTERI BAGI PERSEKUTUAN TANAH MELAYU, dengan persetujuan dan perkenan Duli-Duli Yang Maha Mulia Raja-Raja negeri-Negeri Melayu dengan ini memasyhurkan dan mengisytiharkan bagi pihak umat Persekutuan Tanah Melayu bahawa mulai Tiga Puluh Satu hari bulan Ogos Tahun Seribu Sembilan Ratus Lima Puluh Tujuh, maka Persekutuan Tanah Melayu yang mengandungi Negeri Johor, Pahang, Negeri Sembilan, Selangor, Kedah, Perlis, Kelantan, Terengganu, Perak, Melaka dan Pulau Pinang dengan limpah rahmat Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala akan kekal menjadi sebuah negara yang merdeka dan berdaulat serta berdasarkan kebebasan dan keadilan dan sentiasa menjaga dan mengutamakan kesejahteraan dan kesentosaan rakyatnya dan mengekalkan keamanan antara segala bangsa.

Perdana Menteri

Kuala Lumpur

31 haribulan Ogos 1957

English translation

Proclamation of Independence

In the name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful. Praise be to God, the Lord of the Universe and may the blessings and peace of God be upon His Messengers.

WHEREAS the time has now arrived when the people of the Persekutuan Tanah Melayu will assume the status of a free independent and sovereign nation among nations of the World.

AND WHEREAS by an agreement styled the Federation of Malaya Agreement, 1957, between Her Majesty the Queen and Their Highnesses the Rulers of the Malay States it was agreed that the Malay States of Johore, Pahang, Negri Sembilan, Selangor, Kedah, Perlis, Kelantan, Trengganu and Perak and the former Settlements of Malacca and Penang should as from the 31st. day of August, 1957, be formed into a new Federation of States by the name of Persekutuan Tanah Melayu.

AND WHEREAS it was further agreed between the parties to the said agreement that the Settlements of Malacca and Penang aforesaid should as from the said date cease to form part of Her Majesty’s dominions and that Her Majesty should cease to exercise any sovereignty over them.

AND WHEREAS it was further agreed by the parties aforesaid that the Federation of Malaya Agreement, 1948, and all other agreements subsisting between Her Majesty the Queen and Their Highnesses the Rulers or any one of them immediately before the said date should be revoked as from the date and that all powers and jurisdiction of Her Majesty or of the Parliament of the United Kingdom in or in respect of the Settlements aforesaid or the Malay States or the Federation as a whole should come to an end.

AND WHEREAS effect has been given to the Federation of Malaya Agreement, 1957, by Her Majesty the Queen, Their Highnesses the Rulers, the Parliament of the United Kingdom and the Legislatures of the Federation and of the Malay States.

AND WHEREAS a constitution for the Government of the Persekutuan Tanah Melayu has been established as the supreme law thereof.

AND WHEREAS by the Federal Constitution aforesaid provision is made to safeguard the rights and prerogatives of Their Highnesses the Rulers and the fundamental rights and liberties of the people and to provide for the peaceful and orderly advancement of the Persekutuan Tanah Melayu as a constitutional monarchy based on Parliamentary democracy.

AND WHEREAS the Federal Constitution aforesaid having been approved by an Ordinance of the Federal Legislatures, by the Enactments of the Malay States and by resolutions of the Legislatures of Malacca and Penang has come into force on the 31st. day of August 1957, aforesaid.

NOW, In the name of God the Compassionate, the Merciful, I TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN PUTRA ibni AL-MARHUM SULTAN ABDUL HAMID HALIMSHAH, PRIME MINISTER OF THE PERSEKUTUAN TANAH MELAYU, with the concurrence and approval of Their Highnesses the Rulers of the Malay States do hereby proclaim and declare on behalf of the people of the Persekutuan Tanah Melayu that as from the thirty first day of August, nineteen hundred and fifty seven, the Persekutuan Tanah Melayu comprising the States of Johore, Pahang, Negri Sembilan, Selangor, Kedah, Perlis, Kelantan, Trengganu, Perak, Malacca and Penang is and with God’s blessing shall be for ever a sovereign democratic and independent State founded upon the principles of liberty and justice and ever seeking the welfare and happiness of its people and the maintenance of a just peace among all nations.

Prime Minister

Kuala Lumpur

31st. Day of August 1957

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