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Sarawak’s State Legislative Assembly, the oldest legislature in Malaysia, was established after its first inaugural meeting at Bintulu on 8th September 1867. Its first 21-member Sarawak General Council, headed by Rajah Charles Brooke, consisted of six of Brooke’s officers and 16 local community leaders. In 1903, the General Council was renamed Council Negeri.
In 1941, Brooke’s son, Vyner, established a written constitution known as the Constitution Order in Council during the 100th anniversary celebration of the Brookes’ rule in Sarawak. As a result, the Council Negri membership numbers were increased to 24. Instead of Vyner Brookes (in his role as Rajah) the Chief Secretary was appointed to preside over the Council Negeri.
In 1963, the Council Negeri’s membership increased to 42. Since then, it rose incrementally to 48 in 1968, 56 in 1989, 62 in 1996 and 71 in 2006. In 1976, the Council Negeri was renamed the Dewan Undangan Negeri (DUN).
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