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Anthony's Story continued

1912 - 1919
1919 - 1939
1939 - 1940
1941 - 1945
1945 - 1946
1946 - 1951
Reflections on Brooke Rule
1951 - 1970
1970 - present
Visiting Sarawak 1983 &1991

Appointed to act as Rajah in Vyner's absence from the State.

Although the British Government could take action on behalf of the members of the British Commonwealth, Sarawak was an independent sovereign state and needed to decide how best to conform with the terms of the 1888 Treaty, requiring it to keep aligned to Britain's relations with foreign powers.

Singapore lawyers took the view that our correct course was to declare war on Germany, but we felt that this would be unduly heavy-handed in all the circumstances and that it would suffice for us to make a declaration of no-trading with that nation. This in effect simply confirmed the existing situation, since no relationship between Sarawak and Germany existed at that time.

As a result of the previously mentioned upheaval in the Sarawak administration and my discussion with the British Agent, I had come to an agreement with him that suitable accommodation should be provided for the appointment of a British representative in Sarawak's Capital, Kuching.

The terms and the conditions of the appointment were not at this stage discussed because they would be a matter directly involving the Rajah on his return to the state in September.

The title of Rajah Muda rescinded. Marriage. Reappointed to Sarikei.

Actually, I should have foreseen what would happen on Vyner's return. He totally disagreed with the action I had taken with regard to the appointment of a British representative and he consequently issued a proclamation removing the title Rajah Muda.

I had meanwhile married and my wife, Kathleen, and I were staying with my mother in Athens when this news reached me. It was wartime and although I decided to join the British Army, because of my age I was in fact not called upon till very much later (May 1942) and in the meantime a great many things were yet to happen.

Vyner decided to re-appoint me to serve as District Officer, Sarikei in the Third Divison of Sarawak, and as I traveled back from Greece our son Lionel was born in Bombay in August 1940. Subsequently we had two daughters, Angela (b. 1942) and Celia (b.1944).


Angela, Lionel & Celia
.

Angela, Celia, Anthony & Kathleen
.

In Sarikei I made good friends with my Native Officer, Abang Openg, who later became the first Governor of Sarawak, which became the largest state within the newly formed Malaysia in 1963. (One of his first official acts as Governor was to invite me as guest of the Sarawak Government to re-visit Sarawak, thus ending the 17 year ban, imposed by the British Colonial Government in 1946.)

 

 
Anthony and Gita Brooke email : optubrookiana@xtra.co.nz