In 1885, Britain, Germany and Spain signed the Madrid Protocol in order to consolidate Spanish influence on the philippine islands. In the same agreement, Spain renounced, in favor of Britain, all claims to northern Borneo, which was once part of the sultanate. [27] The 1878 agreement was drafted in the Malay language using the Jawi script, in which the impugned formulations are as follows: 75 FO memo., 28 Sept. 1878, FO 12/53; and Wyndham at FO, August 27, 1880, FO 71/15. As a result, the agreement clearly stated that Sabah was part of the Federation of Malaysia along with Sarawak and Singapore. Since then, Sabah has been under the direct control of Malaysia. 83 Z.B. Orosa, Sixto y, The Sulu Archipelago and Its People, Yonkers 1931, p. 32 says: „In 1878, Sultan Jamalul Alum ceded the remaining property of Sulu to Borneo to the Sabah North Borneo Company… »; Harlow, p. 90; and Keppel, p. 67. 48 Correspondence between 22 July and 19 August 1878, BNBCoP.

See Ortiz, p. 25. 23 Between Sulu and Spain, there were contracts in 1646, 1726, 1737, 1805, 1836, 1851 and 1878. The treaties of 1737, 1836 and 1851 were „treaties of capitulation” that Spain interpreted as a recognition of Spanish sovereignty. See No. 66 and Saleeby, History of Sulu, Passim. The former territory of North Borneo was ceded or leased to the British in January 1878 by an agreement between the then Sultanate of Sulu and two British commercial agents, Alfred Dent and Baron von Overbeck, of the British North Borneo Company, in exchange for the payment of 5000 Malaysian dollars per year to the British. The amount was increased to $5,300 when the lease was extended to the islands along the coast of North Borneo. Previously, the Sultanate of Sulu, based in Jolo and parts of Mindanao, was absorbed by the Philippines, under Spanish rule. The Philippines became a territory of the United States in 1898, but without North Borneo.

In addition, SJayaratnam, vice-dean of the University of Singapore`s Faculty of Law, defended Malaysia by rejecting the weakness of the Philippines` claim, because neither the Philippines nor the sultan`s heirs have exercised sovereignty since 1878 or actually occupied Sabah. In addition, Malaysia claims that Sabah has been recognized as Malaysian territory by the United Nations and other countries of the world, which justifies their claim. . . .