The following is an excerpt from a monograph by Kevin YL Tan of the Centre For International Law, NUS:
The Philippines claimed sovereignty over Sabah on the basis
that it had sovereignty over Sulu and was thus successor in title
to all possessions of the Sulu Sultanate. On 12 September 1962,
during President Diosdado Macapagal’s administration, a series
of instruments were executed by the alleged heirs of the Sultan
of Sulu to transfer all sovereignty, rights and interest they may
have had in Sabah to the Philippines Government (Ref to footnote 54)
Footnote 54 states:
These instruments were: (a) Instrument dated 24 Apr 1962 under which
five heirs transferred their claim to North Borneo to the Philippine
Government; (b) Resolution of Ruma Bechara of Sulu authorizing
the Sultan in Council to transfer his title of sovereignty over North
Borneo to the Philippines dated 29 Aug 1962; (c) Document signed
by the Philippine President authorizing Vice-President Emmanuel
Palaez to accept an instrument of cession of rights over Sabah from
one of the heirs dated 11 Sep 1962; and (d) Instrument of cession of
North Borneo by Sultan Mohammed Esmail Kiram, Sultan of Sulu,
dated 12 Sep 1962. See Jayakumar, ibid, at 308 n14.
Given the above, it appears that in assuming the UK Government's payments to the Sultan of Sulu the Malaysian Government sought by deed and action to signal their disregard
for the 1962 instruments entered into between the Government of the Philippines and the heirs of the Sultan
of Sulu . Put in another way, the Malaysian Government was in effect recognising the Sultan's sovereignty
over Sabah in opposition to the very agreements , norms and conventions of international law that gave the Federation of Malaysia sovereignty over Sabah.
It seems that in the minds of Malaysia's leadership politics. religion, ,culture, tradition took precedence over basic concepts of the common and international law. As recent events have shown, one cannot seek the shelter of the law that one has spurned. Having taken a path outside its boundaries, one is left to resolve matters by the norms of ones culture,tradition and religion.