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Monday, February 9, 2009

Was the Sultan of Perak blackmailed?

On 3rd July and 11th August 2008, DATUK KONG HONG MING made two separate reports to the Anti-Corruption Agency in Kota Kinabalu with regards to alleged corruption in the awarding of the ‘Jalan Sapulut – Kalabakan, Tawau’ road project at the contract sum of RM565 million. The sub-contract was awarded to Gamuda Berhad , a company owned by Raja Datuk Seri Eleena Raja Azlan Shah. Thus far no action has been taken by the Anti-Corruption Agency. Was this used to blackmail the Sultan of Perak?

Further reading:

Perak, PR, BN and Gamuda - It’s all about Business, Stupid

Construction New Road Project From Sapulut to Kalabakan, Sabah

To:

The Director / Officer In-Charge
Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA)
Tawau

Dear Sir,

Re: AN ACA REPORT – Request for Investigation of Any Corrupt Practices and Abuse of Power on the Construction of ‘Jalan Sapulut – Kalabakan, Tawau, Sabah’ as a Design & Build Contract at the Contract Sum of RM565 million

I, DATUK KONG HONG MING (NRIC NO.530306-12-5323), a Malaysian of Lot 21, 3rd Floor, Block C, Damai Point, Luyang, Kota Kinabalu (Hand-phone 0138888188 and 088-233558) hereby make this report calling upon ACA to investigate any corrupt practices or abuse of power committed in the implementation of a road construction project by the Federal Government through Jabatan Kerja Raya.

The subject matter of this complaint is a Design & Build contract for a road project described as ‘Jalan Sapulut – Kalabakan, Tawau’ at the contract sum of RM565 million. The design for the road project at the contract sum of RM565 Million for 179 kilometer was a permanent bituminous road with sealed pavement.

The contractual obligations of the contractor in a Design & Build contract require the contractor to provide the design, scope of work and specifications to be approved by the Government and to build according to the approved design, scope of work and specifications. Thereafter, based on negotiation between the Government and the contractor, the Government awarded the Design & Build contract at the negotiated contract sum, in this case, RM565 million for 179 kilometer of sealed road with bituminous pavement.

In a Design & Build contract like this contract, the contractor is not permitted to amend or vary the design and scope of work. In a nutshell, the contractor must complete the contract in full conformity with the approved design and scope of work without variation order.

The Project was completed sometime in early 2008 and the contractor has demobilized from the site recently.

Unfortunately, instead of building 179 kilometer of bituminous pavement serving as a major truck road linking the south and north of the State of Sabah, the Government has only completed only a 179 kilometer of standard gravel road wholly contrary to the Design & Build contract for a bituminous sealed road.

Before the Design & Build contract, the existing road was already then a good gravel road built and used by timber operator for logging activities.

I also urge your ACA experts to investigate into the very sub-standard and extremely poor quality of work done and workmanship carried out in this mega project costing our Malaysians taxpayers some RM565 million. It is just too plain and obvious in inspecting the newly completed retaining structures and concrete roadside drains which are already now in such deplorable conditions.

It is a crime to allow such shoddy workmanship and inferior work in this expensive project. What was the basis for the Government to accept the road as practically and satisfactorily completed?

This is a case of an outrageous and scandalous wrongdoing. It is more than just a serious wastage and abuse of public funds. It has also deprived all Malaysians especially Sabahans in Tawau a good system of road network in furtherance of our social and economic development.

Those who were responsible for the suffering of the people must be held accountable for this tragic loss of public funds and blatant abuse of power.

It will be more outrageous for us, especially the ACA, to ignore it.

Thank you for your attention and further necessary actions against those culprits who were responsible for any corrupt practices and abuse of power.

Yours faithfully,


__________________________
DATUK KONG HONG MING
Dated: 3rd July 2008

***************************************************************

11th August 2008

To:

The Director

Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA)

Kota Kinabalu


Dear Madam,

Re: AN ACA REPORT – Request for Investigation of Any Corrupt Practices and Abuse of Power on the Construction of ‘Jalan Sapulut – Kalabakan, Tawau, Sabah’ as a Design & Build Contract at the Contract Sum of RM565 million

I, KONG HONG MING (NRIC NO.530306-12-5323), a Malaysian of Lot 21, 3rd Floor, Block C, Damai Point, Luyang, Kota Kinabalu (Hand-phone 0138888188 and 088-233558) hereby make this report calling upon ACA to investigate any corrupt practices or abuse of power committed in the implementation of a road construction project by the Federal Government through Jabatan Kerja Raya.

On 03.07.2008, I lodged this complaint at the ACA office in Tawau. I provided some documents for the purpose of investigation. However, I am uncertain whether any investigation has been carried out. I must congratulate you that your ACA officers in Tawau were courteous and professional to complainant at least to me during two occasions. But, I was surprised that in another occasion while I was there, a male staff was not so happy to accept my report on other matter.

The subject matter of this complaint is a Design & Build contract for a road project described as ‘Jalan Sapulut – Kalabakan, Tawau’ at the contract sum of RM565 Million. The design for the road project at the contract sum of RM565 Million for 179 kilometer was a permanent bituminous road with sealed pavement.

The contractual obligations of the contractor in a Design & Build contract require the contractor to provide the design, scope of work and specifications to be approved by the Government and to build according to the approved design, scope of work and specifications. Thereafter, based on negotiation between the Government and the contractor, the Government awarded the Design & Build contract at the negotiated contract sum, in this case, RM565 million for 179 kilometer of sealed road with bituminous pavement.

In a Design & Build contract like this contract, the contractor is not permitted to amend or vary the design and scope of work. In a nutshell, the contractor must complete the contract in full conformity with the approved design and scope of work without variation order.

The Project was completed sometime in early 2008 and the contractor has demobilized from the site recently.

Unfortunately, instead of building 179 kilometer of bituminous pavement serving as a major truck road linking the south and north of the State of Sabah, the Government has only completed only a 179 kilometer of standard gravel road wholly contrary to the Design & Build contract for a bituminous road.

Before the Design & Build contract, the existing road was already then a good gravel road built and used by timber operator for logging activities.

I also urge your ACA experts to investigate into the very sub-standard and extremely poor quality of work done and workmanship carried out in this mega project costing our Malaysians taxpayers some RM565 million. It is just too plain and obvious in inspecting the newly completed retaining structures and concrete roadside drains which are already now in such deplorable conditions.

It is a crime to allow such shoddy workmanship and inferior work in this expensive project. What was the basis for the Government to accept the road as practically and satisfactorily completed?

This is a case of an outrageous and scandalous wrongdoing. It is more than just a serious wastage and abuse of public funds. It has also deprived all Malaysians especially Sabahans in Tawau a good system of road network in furtherance of our social and economic development.

Those who were responsible for the suffering of the people must be held accountable for this tragic loss of public funds and blatant abuse of power.

It will be more outrageous for us, especially the ACA, to ignore it.

Thank you for your attention and further necessary actions.

Yours faithfully,


__________________________

DATUK KONG HONG MING

My Address: Lot 21, 3rd Floor, Block C, Damai Point, Luyang, Off Jalan Damai, Kota Kinabalu

Tel (Office) 088-233558, Fax 088-245646, Hand-phone 0138888188

LIVE: “No basis to rumours”

By Anilnetto.com

Umno's counter-protest

Pas says Umno wanted to form unity government

tmi-n.jpgKUALA LUMPUR, Feb 9 - One of the stories making the rounds after the fall of Perak to Pakatan Rakyat in Election 2008 was about moves by Umno to form an alliance with arch enemy, Parti Islam SeMalaysia (Pas).

Umno and Pas officials were willing to speak about this Umno-inspired strategy in private but no one wanted to go on record until now.

In an interview with Harakah, Pas' commissioner for Perak, Ustaz Ahmad Awang said that Umno officials in the state were stunned by the loss of power on March 8.

"At first, they offered a few Pas assemblymen millions of ringgit to cross over and join them. The first person to get the offer was the Pasir Panjang state assemblyman who is now the Menteri Besar. But when this approach failed, they asked Pas Perak to form a coalition government with Umno and Barisan Nasional. '' he said.

Ahmad claimed that Umno used agents to meet him and party spiritual leader Dato Nik Aziz Nik Mat to put forward this proposal.

"They used a few muftis, senior government officials, NGOs and also a BN MP who is my relative... a senior Umno leader who hails from Perak and a senior government official whose wife is from Perak tried to meet me for discussions.

They were accompanied by a rector from a tertiary institution in Perak. This senior Umno official is a Cabinet minister who spoke to me on the phone and asked for a four eyes meeting, '' he recalled.

The meeting did not happen but the Umno official and his delegation attemped to meet Ahmad at his home in Balai Kuliyyah Tasawwur Islam in Simpang Empat, Semanggol but failed to do so because the place was guarded by Pas volunteers.

He noted that even after Nizar was sworn in as the menteri besar, there have been moves by Umno agents to get Pas to leave Pakatan Rakyat and work together with Umno in the name of Malay unity.

The Malaysian Insider reported last year that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi sent out feelers to Pas leaders including Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang, Nasharuddin Mat Isa and Datuk Mustafa Ali to explore possibility of Malay unity talks.

Abdullah and the Pas officials met several times but when the talksbecame public knowledge, there was a backlash in Pas with Nik Aziz, Husam Musa and others hitting out at attempts by some of their colleagues to bury the hatchet with Umno.

The talks also exposed the rift in Pas over Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's role and standing in the Opposition coalition.

The PM hoped to drive a wedge between the Pas leaders and bring about the collapse of the Pakatan Rakyat alliance.

Anwar to decide Arumugam's status

By Adib Zalkapli

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 9 - Despite rumours that he has quit his Bukit Selambau seat over allegations of adultery, Kedah PKR state executive councillor V. Arumugam has yet to officially tender his resignation, state party chief Ahmad Kassim said today.

Kedah PKR chairman Ahmad Kassim told The Malaysian Insider that Arumugam was still waiting for party de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's decision.

"As of now he is still an assemblyman, no decision has been made until Datuk Seri Anwar decides," said the Kuala Kedah MP.

Arumugam contested and won as an independent in the general election last year but joined PKR after being offered a state executive councillor position in the Pas-led government.

Party sources told The Malaysian Insider that Arumugam's intention to quit as lawmaker was driven by the allegation of extra marital affairs against him, now seen as an attempt by the state opposition to topple the government through defections.

He had earlier complained of threats against him, his family and aides and lodged a police report over an attempted kidnap attempt on him which he claimed was to force him to cross over to Barisan Nasional.

Recently a petition was submitted to the Sultan of Kedah urging the ruler to take action against an executive councillor for adultery.

Kedah Menteri Besar Azizan Razak however had refused to be drawn into the controversy by down playing the issue saying that there are other more serious allegations against Barisan Nasional leaders.

Pakatan Rakyat currently leads the state with an eight seat majority in the 36-seat legislative assembly with Pas holding 16, PKR 5 and DAP one.

Man proposes, God disposes

many-colours-115
by Haris Ibrahim

Yes, even a monarch is but a man, and like all men, is prone to error.

And who better than the Almighty to right an erring monarch.

Perchance His Royal Highness the Sultan of Perak, in acceding to the formation of a BN state government, has misread the sentiment of the good people of Perak.

And so, by the Will of the Almighty, the passing of the MP of Bukit Gantang, Perak, PAS’s Yang Berkhidmat Roslan Shaharum, this morning, paves the way for a by-election.

Perakians, your moment of deliverance is at hand.

DAP reaffirms support for PR to establish an alternative government

(Press Statement By DAP Secretary-General And MP for Bagan, Lim Guan Eng, In Petaling Jaya On 9.2.2009)

DAP’s commitment towards a multi-racial, multi-religious and multi-cultural Malaysia is not only an article of faith but a deep conviction in Bangsa Malaysia. DAP is inclusive of all races and religions. We represent the interests and fight for the rights every Malaysian.

In the effort of being representative of all Malaysians, including both Malays and non-Malays, the party is willing to undertake a transformational process that may be painful but necessary. We have no alternative but to grow without compromising our basic principles.

DAP reaffirms support for Pakatan Rakyat(PR) to establish an alternative government that is democratic, people-centric and with an ethical leadership based on the 5 principles of freedom, justice, truth, social welfare and universal moral values. In this regard the DAP supports PKR de facto leader DSAI Anwar Ibrahim as the Parliamentary Opposition Leader and will remain so as no single leader has ever questioned this during internal meetings whether at the highest levels or otherwise.

The Pakatan Rakyat leadership has clearly endorsed a position that no individual party policy can be PR policy unless it is fully approved unanimously by all three parties. DAP’s position on hudud and Islamic state is crystal clear and regardless of whatever support for both hudud and the establishment of an Islamic State, whether from PAS or PKR, this will not be PR policy as long as DAP does not agree to it.

Similarly DAP’s leadership has been consistently urging the government to enact an anti-hopping law even before the Perak crisis, and we have expressed support of our 28 MPs. As BN does not have a 2/3 parliamentary majority, the support of DAP’s 28 MPs will be required to effect any constitutional amendment for such an anti-hopping law.

As a democratic party, DAP policies can be changed in accordance with the wishes of its members. However until today there has been no request to question or disturb the basic framework of co-operation between the 3 parties of DAP, PAS and PKR that make up PR.

As the party secretary-general, I am duty-bound to execute these policies. However should any member wishes to change them, they are required to use proper party channels to do so and not use the BN-controlled media. I appeal to Sdr Karpal Singh as Chair of the DAP to use internal party channels should he wish to change these policies or even criticise my leadership.

Shocked and hurt by Karpal’s statement - let the party resolve any differences internally

(Lim KIt Siang) I am shocked and hurt by DAP National Chairman Sdr. Karpal Singh’s statement yesterday.

Malaysians are scandalized that instead of uniting Malaysians to face the worst global economic crisis for eighty years, the Prime Minister-in-waiting Datuk Seri Najib Razak had done the opposite – frittering away further public confidence in engendering greater national discord by engineering the Perak political crisis in the illegal and unconstitutional grab for power, resulting in the constitutional crisis of two Mentris Besar in Perak.

Perakians are outraged. Malaysians are outraged. The world looks on in disbelief at the political insensitivity and indifference of the Prime Minister-in-waiting on the imperative to restore public confidence at this critical stage of the nation by giving top priority to uniting Malaysians, by actively creating not only a Perak but national political crisis.

The national economic crisis and the latest political crisis caused by Najib’s coup de’tat must be the topmost concern for all Malaysians.

Let the DAP resolve any differences internally as they should not be allowed to deflect efforts to resolve both the grave economic and political crisis confronting Malaysians.

Nik Aziz Seeks Clarification From Anwar

KOTA BAHARU, Feb 9 (Bernama) -- Pas spiritual leader Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat will seek clarification from Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) advisor Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim on the statement by DAP national chairman Karpal Singh that Anwar was not fit to lead the Pakatan Rakyat (PR).

"I do not want to comment on the matter and I want to ask Datuk Seri Anwar what is the truth," he told reporters after attending a Chinese New Year function here yesterday.

Karpal Singh at a news conference yesterday called on Anwar to quit as PR leader as his actions of encouraging party-hopping was "immoral" and tarnished the image of the PR.

Nik Abdul Aziz, who is Kelantan Menteri Besar, said the matter had to be clarified by Anwar himself.

On the issue of party-hopping, he said such actions were contemptible and against the wishes of voters who chose their candidates.

Bukit Gantang MP From PAS Passed Away

BUKIT GANTANG, Feb 9 (Bernama) -- Member of Parliament of Bukit Gantang Perak, Roslan Shaharum from PAS died today, PAS Secretary General Datuk Kamaruddin Jaafar confirmed.

Penyokong DAP protes di depan SUK

Karpal to Anwar: Step down as Pakatan head

The Monkey Handler

A Chinese proverb has it that it takes three generations to destroy an enterprise. The first starts it; the second builds on it; while the pampered third squanders it. Najib Razak is determined to truncate that process. He is set to destroy a once proud and successful organization – UMNO – which his late father was so instrumental in starting and building.

THE CORRIDORS OF POWER

M. Bakri Musa

In the few months that he has before assuming office I would have expected Prime Minister-in-waiting Najib Razak to be focused on forming his new leadership team and formulating his major policies. Instead there he was in Perak smirking with renegade state politicians who had crossed over to his Barisan coalition. Najib looked like a mischievous monkey handler who had successfully enticed a couple of wily monyets from the neighbor’s coconut tree to his.

In these perilous times Najib is more a slimy backroom political operative consumed with concocting shady deals than a national leader ready to steer the nation through tough economic and other challenges. This latest and unneeded upheaval in Perak only adds to Malaysia’s already muddled political climate, and comes at a time when the nation can ill afford this distraction. Najib is oblivious of the evolving global economic disaster and its inevitable impact on Malaysia.

These handlers too behave like the monkeys they keep. After finishing his latest act in Perak, Najib stayed away. The monkey handler’s interest, like that of the monkeys they keep, was only in creating mischief. Once that is achieved, then he is gone so as to avoid getting entangled.

Initially Najib had planned to join in the Chinese New Year celebration in Ipoh to soak in what he expected would be a sea of public applause to his latest monkey act. Instead because of the unanticipated sea change in public mood, Najib wisely skipped the event. At least he knew when and where he would no longer be welcomed.

Najib should remember that Abdullah Badawi rode into office with the highest approval ratings, and an untainted “Mr. Clean” image to boot. Yet today, less than five years later, Abdullah is being pushed out of office, and his legacy is anything but clean. Najib has yet to assume office and already his approval rating is under 50 percent, and his public image severely tainted by assorted sordid scandals. His public portraits are now being used for stomping muddy shoes. Rest assured that these are only the beginning.

A Chinese proverb has it that it takes three generations to destroy an enterprise. The first starts it; the second builds on it; while the pampered third squanders it. Najib Razak is determined to truncate that process. He is set to destroy a once proud and successful organization – UMNO – which his late father was so instrumental in starting and building.

Najib will bring UMNO down with him, as prophesied by some ancient soothsayer’s “RAHMAN” theory of leadership. The challenge is to ensure that UMNO’s inevitable implosion under Najib would not also take Malaysia down with it.

Our Cultural Burden

If not for his family and political pedigrees, Najib Razak would today be like thousands of other Malays with similar qualifications, nothing more than a midlevel functionary in the civil service or one of the many Government-linked companies.

He was just old enough when his father died to benefit from the generosities and tributes of a nation in need to express them in gratitude to a great patriot that was his father. Remembering the father’s many great deeds, the nation could not do enough for his son; hence Najib meteoric rise.

The dilemma with having your path smoothed out for you is that once you reach the top, there is no one there to grease the trail ahead. From then on you are on your own, and you ill prepared for it.

It is our cultural tradition that such generosities and tributes are showered almost exclusively upon the first-born son. The assumption is that he is the carrier of the father’s traits. This of course is not unique to Malay culture; nor is there a biological basis to that assumption.

I wish we had not been a slave to our culture. By all means shower our gratitude to the late Tun Razak’s family, but then let us be more prudent and choose the smartest or most promising from among his five children to groom, not necessarily only the first born.

Tun Razak’s other sons are way head and shoulders above Najib. The youngest, Nazir, is a banker. Even though he is not a politician, nonetheless his public utterances reflect not only a first-rate mind but also someone very much aware of the many challenges facing our nation. He has also put forth novel ideas on solving them. Unfortunately, Najib is culturally constrained from taking advice from his youngest brother Nazir.

Last year Nazir suggested granting amnesty to corrupt individuals in return for their confessions and making good their loot, prior to implementing tougher laws. To say that it was a radical idea would be an understatement but on reflection, there is considerable merit to his suggestion. At the very least we would get a measure of the magnitude of the problem and its infinite variations. That could help us design better laws and ways to combat the scourge.

Recently Nazir chastised the leadership for not going beyond orthodox fiscal stimulus and monetary measures to meet the current economic crisis. He suggested re-examining the New Economic Policy, with particular reference to minimizing its drag on the economy. He also called for greater collaborations with the emerging giant economies in the region, specifically China, India and the Middle East. Most of all I like his idea of attracting foreign talents, especially into the education sector.

These are the kinds of innovative thinking we yearn from our leaders, not their endless monkeying around with fence-hopping politicians. In chastising the “leadership,” Nazir has shown that he is not constrained by our cultural norms; he has in effect criticized his oldest brother’s leadership.

Monkey Story

There was this story of a peddler of hats who one day fell asleep under a tree in the heat of the day. When he woke up, his hats were all gone except for the one on his head. On looking up he saw the monkeys in the tree with hats. The peddler tried all manner of tricks to induce those monkeys to part with their newfound toys, but to no avail. In disgust he threw his hat to the ground and stomped off. In the finest “monkey see, monkey do” mode, the apes did the same, and that was how the peddler recovered his merchandise.

A generation later it was the peddler’s son who fell asleep under the same tree. He too lost his hats to the monkeys. Remembering the lesson imparted from his father, the young man threw his hat to the ground. At which point the monkeys laughed at him. “You are not getting your hats back,” they scoffed, “we learned your trick from our parents!”

When Najib enticed those monkeys of politics to Barisan, he stole a play from Anwar Ibrahim’s game book. Anwar may rightly feel flattered by Najib’s imitating, or more correctly, aping. However, like the hat-peddler’s son, Najib may have learned his lesson well but what he may not realize is that those political monkeys too had learned their lessons! They are making a monkey of Najib.

When you have a bunch of monkeys and an equally mischievous as well as irresponsible handler, there is no telling what lasting damage they could inflict. It is time to let Najib out of his monkey business and free those monyet under his keep to once again roam the jungle where they belong. If out of habit they still hang around us waiting for their bananas and making a pest of themselves, then we should kill a rooster or two. That would scare away those monkeys.
www.bakrimusa.com

Pakatan Rakyat MP’s Not for Sale

By MPKapar

As the ongoing Battle in Perak State continues, there had been many speculation and rumors that Pakatan Rakyat MP’s many jump ship soon.

What’s happen in Perak is proof how Barisan Nasional manipulated the constitutions to their will . It’s “constitutional Crisis” as reported by Media involving the lawmakers and former Lord President (with all due respect ). We shall leave it to the court of law to decide whether the Sultans has authority to remove a Menteri Besar or declare the seat as Vacant without official resignation or voted by No Confidence Vote.

Does the similarity apply to the Federal Government? Can Yang Di Pertuan Agong remove Prime Minister from his office just with few Independent MP’s support? May not be that easy..

Thus, it’s time for BN hunt PR MP’s with lot of offers . I still believe in PR’s spirit of fighting for Justice though seen some hiccups here and there. As for myself I will remain with Pakatan Rakyat and I believe other PR MP’s surely not up for sale too.

Pakatan will not sue Sultan as Nizar prepares to take his message to the people

By Shannon Teoh-The Malaysian Insider

IPOH, Feb 9 - Datuk Seri Nizar Jamaluddin will travel the length and breadth of Perak to hold a series of ceramah to convince the people he is still the legitimate menteri besar.

The Pakatan Rakyat (PR) alliance has also decided against naming Sultan Azlan Shah in a legal suit it is planning, as it attempts to deflect attacks from Barisan Nasional (BN) over the question of loyalty to the state’s ruler.

The plan was announced before 8,000 Pakatan Rakyat (PR) supporters at the official MB’s residence late Sunday night, where it is making its last stand against BN’s claim to power in the state.

While PR delays what must certainly be the inevitable handover of government to BN, the two coalitions are fighting a larger battle for the hearts and minds of the public.

BN has tried to assert that PR are committing treason by refusing to comply with Sultan Azlan Shah’s wishes.

But with its continued insistence that the mainstream media is under the control of BN, the series of public speeches by Nizar will see PR trying to make added gains in the court of public opinion which already appears to be leaning heavily in its favour.

If the night’s speeches by Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, Pas president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang, DAP vice president Tan Seng Giaw and Nizar are anything to go by, the roadshow will likely centre around the legitimacy of Nizar’s claim and the assertion that Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had robbed the rights of the people by masterminding a “coup d’etat.”

Speaking to the multiracial, but largely Pas-supporting crowd, Nizar said the undemocratic manner in which Najib had forced the overthrow of his administration had turned Malaysia into a laughing stock.

“We will take back the right stolen by Najib Altantuya,” Nizar said of a snap poll which PR is pushing for, referring to Najib’s continued links to the murder of the Mongolian model Altantuya Shariibuu.

Cries of “Allahuakbar” and “Reformasi” went up on numerous occasions as the speakers stood on a balcony with a banner hung below them.

“Daulat Tuanku, Rakyat Pohon Tuanku Bubarkan Dun Perak,” it said, reflecting the wishes of those gathered to have the state assembly dissolved.

The Perak Sultan has refused this request by Nizar and instead declared BN the government, sparking a constitutional crisis with many quarters insisting that the choice of government should be returned to the voting public.

But as usual, Anwar stole the show.

This was not, however, due to a typically inspired speech but a statement earlier today by DAP chairman Karpal Singh that Anwar was no longer fit to be opposition leader.

Anwar told reporters, however, that it was not a concern for PR and it in fact, did not discuss the issue at a meeting just prior to the night’s ceramah.

“I spoke to Kit Siang and he assured me it was Karpal’s personal opinion,” he said referring to DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang.

Anwar further explained that Karpal’s outburst was due to two points of disagreement, the first being the Bukit Gelugor MP’s wish to take legal action against the Sultan and the other being the morality of defections.

“I did not bribe or threaten people to join us. We do not want to create the impression that we are against the institution of the Sultan,” said Anwar in addressing these two issues.

He played down the differences of opinion within PR and said that despite this, there was good cooperation.

“It is not a problem to meet with Karpal if there is an opportunity,” the de facto PKR leader added.

Earlier, he had sought to banish the perception that the Perak PR government was selling out to the Chinese and not protecting the Malays.

Calling it a ruse by Umno, he said that there was nothing wrong with issuing land titles to poor Chinese.

“But who was given Genting Highlands? Lim Goh Tong. How about Pangkor? When BN gives land to Chinese taukehs it is fine but when we give a bit of land to poor Chinese, they turn it into a racial issue,” he said.

Anwar also assured the crowd that should it win snap polls in Perak, Nizar would definitely be returned as mentri besar.

KEDAH STATE EXCO V ARUMUGAM RESIGNS & BY-ELECTION IN BUKIT SELAMBAU.

Kedah State Executive Councillor V Arumugam has resigned as executive councillor and state assemblyman citing the threats and intimidation have made it unbearable for him to continue in public office. The PKR Assemblyman did not join Barisan Nasional.

A by-election for Bukit Selambau will have to be called.
picture courtesy of Malaysiakini

Samy pleads to Indian community's dissenting factions to unite

By : Adrian David , NST Feb 08 2009

An emotionally-charged MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu made a plea to dissenting factions within the Indian community to unite for the sake of all.

He made the call as members of the community were fragmented into various factions within and outside of the MIC, apart from those in other Indian-based political parties.

“It’s almost two years since we have been divided. We must change our attitude. The Indian community must unite to have a stronger and effective voice to seek progress. This includes support from all levels - from the various MIC branches and divisions as well.

“I welcome all concerned Indians, including former MIC members and those from other political parties, to join the MIC as this is the only party that can effectively represent the interests of Indians,” he told reporters at the Thaipusam festival celebrations at Batu Caves today.

On news reports that Indian Progressive Front president Puan Sri Jayashree Pandithan has declined to forge ties with MIC, he said: “I rang her up a few days ago but she was not able to make a commitment then. Now I understand, through media reports, that she will not join the MIC. I can only say thank you very much (to her). But don’t forget that there are IPF members who are keen to join the MIC.”
Calling on the Indian community to support the government if it wanted its support, he said the government was already showing its seriousness in helping the community.

It has done so by establishing a special committee on Indian affairs to seek better educational facilities for Tamil schools, a higher quota for Indians in the civil service and a larger share of the economic pie for them via equity in public shares, he said.

Samy Vellu said the government would undertake repairs to dilapidated Tamil schools and build another 50 new Tamil schools from the RM50 million allocated in this year’s budget as well as from an additional RM30 million special allocation.

The MIC also wanted the Indian quota in the civil service to be increased from the present 4.5 to 8 per cent, he added.
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RM30 Million More For National-type Tamil Schools

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 8 (Bernama) -- The government has allocated an additional RM30 million to build 50 new national-type Tamil schools and to repair existing ones nationwide, MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu said.

He said the amount was in addition to the RM50 million allocated this year.

"I called on the Indian community to unite and support the government which has shown commitment to help the community.

"The government has done a lot such as setting up a special committee to enhance facilities in Tamil schools, to have a higher quota for the community in the public service and to increase the community's equity participations," he told reporters after attending the Thaipusam festival at the Batu Caves here today.

In another development, Samy Vellu said over 5,000 IPF supporters are expected to return to the MIC in the near future.

Asked on the refusal of IPF president Puan Sri Jayashree Gnanapandithan to merge with the MIC, Samy Vellu said, "I can only say thank you. But don't forget that there are IPF members who are keen to join the MIC."

-- BERNAMA

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Hindu Devotees Celebrate Thaipusam

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 8 (Bernama) -- Hindu devotees in Malaysia today celebrated Thaipusam to mark the birth of Lord Murugan by going to several temples in the country.

In KUALA LUMPUR, MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu told reporters that more than 1.5 million Hindu devotees and foreign tourists had been to the Sri Subramaniyar Swami temple in Batu Caves here.

He said the this year's Thaipusam festival was on a weekend, thus making the celebration more merrier than that of last year as it allowed more people to visit the temple.

He said more than 10,000 Hindu devotees carried the "kavadi" and the "pal koodam" milk pot, as well as took part in the coconut breaking ritual to fulfill their vows for wishes that had been granted or to repent for past sins.

Thaipusam is celebrated by Hindus on the full moon day in the Thai month of the Tamil calendar, which is in January or February.

Also known as Thaipooyam or Thaippooyam in Malayalam, it is a festival to mark the birth of Lord Murugan, the youngest son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati.

The festival also marked an occasion when Parvati gave Murugan a vel (lance) so he could vanquish the evil demon Soorapadman.

In JOHOR BAHARU, thousands of Hindu devotees celebrated the festival by holding the kavadi and pal koodam procession.

The kavadi bearers walked for about two kilometres from Arulmigu Rajamariamman Devasthanam in Jalan Ungku Puan in the city centre to Arulmigu Thandayuthapani Kovil in Jalan Kuil.

A similar procession was also held from the Mariaman temple in Taman Seri Skudai to the Sri Bala Subramaniar Kovil temple in Batu 10 Skudai, as well as from the Sri Muniswarar temple, near Plaza Angsana to Jalan Datuk Abdul Hamid.

In PENANG, more than 50,000 Hindu devotees converged at the Sri Arulmigu Balathandayuthabani in Jalan Kebun Bunga to fulfil their vows.

Among them was student, Koh Tze Lim, 18, who was with his family to perform their prayers at the temple for the Thaipusam festival.

"We also went through the fasting ritual and only ate vegetables on Friday for four days," he said, adding that he prayed to be able to do well in the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) examination which he would be sitting for this year.

A tourist from Canada, only known as Julien, 34, said, watching the Thaipusam festival celebration was an experience which he would share with his friend when he returned home.

Having only read about the festival in books and magazines, he said, he was amazed to see how it was celebrated.

"It is a beautiful and colourful festival and I'm impressed to see a man carrying a huge kavadi decorated with peacock feathers," he added.

In IPOH, a crowd of about 100,000 Hindu devotees were at the Subramaniar temple at Gunung Cheroh for the festival.

Various religious rituals, including the Lord Murugan procession from the Sri Maha Mariamman temple at Sungai Pari to the Kallumai Arul Subramaniar temple at Gunung Cheroh took place.

Traffic congestions were reported in the city following closure in stages of several roads leading to the Subramaniar temple since yesterday for the procession of kavadi bearers which passed through Jalan Sungai Pari, Jalan Tun Perak, Jalan Lahat, Jalan Sultan Yusuff, Jalan Sultan Idris Shah and Jalan Raja Muda Musa from the Sri Maha Marimman at Jalan Sungai Pari.

-- BERNAMA

MIC wants Perak speaker's post

Party has made a representation to Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, says Samy Vellu.

KUALA LUMPUR: The MIC wants the post of speaker of the Perak assembly.

Sources said party president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu had recommended three candidates to Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.


It is understood that the candidates were a mixture of experienced faces and new blood.

Samy Vellu said the party had "made a representation to the deputy prime minister".
"We have indicated what we need and we leave it to him to decide.

Perak has the largest number of Indians after Selangor and Kuala Lumpur and if we don't plan things properly, it will be difficult to regain their votes in the next general election."

Samy Vellu said he was also happy Najib had promised to look into the affairs of the Indian community.

"Pakatan Rakyat no longer has the glamour it enjoyed 10 months ago.

"The people expected great things after the opposition victory but Pakatan hasn't done much for them."

In Perak, state MIC chief Datuk G. Rajoo said the party would ask Menteri Besar Datuk Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir to appoint Indian special officers to serve the interests of the community.

He said this was necessary as the state MIC did not have elected representatives in the state assembly.

All four MIC candidates who contested in the state constituencies of Behrang, Hutan Melintang, Pasir Panjang and Sungkai lost in the March 8 general election.

"There is a large Indian community in Perak but we do not have elected representatives in Barisan Nasional.

"We hope Zambry will consider this vacuum and appoint MIC leaders as special officers in charge of Indian affairs."-NST

PRESS RELEASE: Respect constitutional right to seek redress in our courts

ImageThe present situation in Perak raises many legal and constitutional issues.

It is the view of some Constitutional lawyers that the prerogative of the Ruler is “non-justiciable” and cannot be reviewed by the Courts. Thus although we, and others, are of the view that dissolution of the Legislative Assembly would have been the best solution, it is difficult to challenge the prerogative of the Ruler, who exercised that prerogative by ascertaining the views of the majority of the members of the Assembly and then deciding who in the “Ruler's judgment” (under the Perak Constitution) commands their confidence. However, in the Datuk Joseph Pairin Kitingan case, such a discretion of the Governor (not a Ruler) was held to be justiciable.

We are certainly in unchartered territory. Different interpretations are always possible.

In that regard it is the fundamental right of any person to take any matter to the courts for determination and resolution.

We regret to note from reports in the NST today that there are certain groups who are challenging inter alia Karpal Singh's intention to file a suit in respect of this matter. In a modern democratic nation like ours, such a challenge is wholly untenable.

Litigants and their lawyers must be free from harassment and any form of intimidation in the exercise of the right to seek redress in a court of law. An advocate and solicitor must be allowed to advance his or her client's case without fear or favour. It is then up to the courts to resolve the various issues, which they must do independently and without regard to political exigencies. Decisions made with regard to political factors never stand the test of time.

Any intimidation of litigants and their lawyers in the exercise of their rights and duties respectively is an affront to the dignity of the courts and the administration of justice.

We strongly urge that all parties respect this fundamental right to seek redress in our courts. We must never regress to a position where we sacrifice this vital principle for political mileage or self-interest.

Dato’ Ambiga Sreenevasan
President
Malaysian Bar

8 February 2009

Penang PKR Slams Karpal Singh Over Remarks About Anwar

PENANG, Feb 8 (Bernama) -- The Penang Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) liaison committee today took to task DAP chairman Karpal Singh for hitting out at Pakatan Rakyat (PR)leader and PKR advisor Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

Its chairman Datuk Zahrain Mohamed Hashim reminded Karpal Singh that if not for Anwar, the opposition Pakatan Rakyat (PR) coalition would not exist today.

"The remarks by Karpal Singh about Anwar are baseless," he told Bernama when contacted here.

Earlier today, Karpal Singh at a press conference had remarked that Anwar "was not fit" to lead the PR and that he had been "nothing but trouble" for the opposition alliance.

His remarks came in the wake of the PR losing the Perak government to the Barisan Nasional (BN) on Friday, which Karpal blamed on the immorality of Anwar in trying to seek defectors from the BN to shore up the PR.

Nizar Urged To Step Down Honourably

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 8 (Bernama) -- The Persatuan Keturunan Megat Terawis Malaysia, an organisation representing the Megat clan, has urged Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin to step down as the Menteri Besar of Perak honourably.

Its secretary Megat Iskandar Megat Zaharuddin said Nizar should emulate the Orang Kaya Bendahara during the reign of the 15th Sultan of Perak in the 18th century who stepped down along with senior state officials when asked to do so because of a misunderstanding with the Sultan and the government at that time.

According to Megat Iskandar, the role of the Orang Kaya Bendahara then was the same as the Menteri Besar now.

"In the interest of the people of Perak, we urge Datuk Seri Nizar and his state executive councillors to step down honourably and do not go against the Sultan," he said in a statement here today.

To do otherwise was tantamount to treason, he added.

On Friday, Sultan Azlan Shah of Perak asked the Pakatan Rakyat government to resign and Nizar step down as the Menteri Besar after the coalition failed to command a majority in the state's legislature, but Nizar refused to budge.

The clan's history dates back to the very first sultan in the state, that of Paduka Seri Sultan Muzaffar Shah I whereby the Orang Kaya Bendahara was also from the clan.

Karpal Expressing His Personal Views, Says Anwar

IPOH, Feb 9 (Bernama) -- Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said DAP chairman Karpal Singh was only expressing his personal views in hitting out at him and that this would not jeopardise unity in the Pakatan Rakyat alliance of PKR-DAP-PAS.

The Permatang Pauh member of parliament said Karpal Singh's tirade against him today was because he (Anwar) did not agree with the decision by the DAP leader to take legal action against Sultan Azlan Shah of Perak for asking Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin to resign as Menteri Besar.

Anwar, who is also Pakatan Rakyat chief, also denied Karpal Singh's allegation that he was responsible for bringing "party hopping culture" into the opposition coalition.

Met by reporters at the Perak Menteri Besar's residence here Sunday night, Anwar also said that he would be meeting Karpal Singh to thrash out the issue.

He was responding to Karpal Singh's remarks at a press conference in Penang earlier that Anwar was not fit to lead the Pakatan Rakyat because of his propensity to seek defectors from the Barisan Nasional to shore up the Pakatan Rakyat and "creating trouble" in the opposition coalition.

Also present were PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang and DAP deputy chairman, Tan Seng Giaw.

However, DAP advisor Lim Kit Siang and his son Lim Guan Eng, who is DAP secretary general and Chief Minister of Penang, did not turn up at the residence tonight to show support for the embattled menteri besar although it had been reported that they would come.

Nizar has defied the Sultan's order and made the residence his "seat of government".

-- BERNAMA

The real question on Perak — Amer Hamzah Arshad

Historically, before the existence of Malaysia, the Malay states fell into the hands of the imperialists due to greed and power. It was about the power struggle amongst the royalty which eventually led to the colonisation of the states.

Pre-Merdeka, with the emergence of the insurgencies by the left, a "deal" was struck among the capitalists, the royalty, the royalists and the imperialists with the sole purpose of maintaining and guarding "their" positions and influence in Malaya. The collateral outcome of the "deal" was the independence of Malaya. It was a decision motivated by the need to protect and safeguard the vested interests of these actors. It was not about the rakyat. It has never been!

Fast forward 52 years after independence, we see how the same actors have again colluded to stage a modern day "coup" in the state of Perak. Again, this was not done in the interests of the rakyat. Those who have heard about the true colours and the personality/ies of the various decision-maker(s) will not be surprised by the recent decision(s).

Ultimately, one important question that needs to be answered is "what's in it for me?". That was the question that Pakatan Rakyat could not answer.

No doubt there are several legal and moral issues that have arisen from the Perak fiasco. But the real issue that irks the rakyat is the fact that the capitalists and the royalty have robbed the state government from the rakyat.

Regarding the legality of the Sultan's decision to call for the resignation of the menteri besar, I am prepared to say that the decision is wrong in law. Based on the Perak Constitution, the MB does not hold office at the pleasure of the Sultan.

The only way the MB goes is by way of a no-confidence motion in the State Legislative Assembly. The Sultan cannot just ask MB to vacate his office.

Article 16(6) of the Perak Constitution states that:

If the Menteri Besar ceases to command the confidence of the majority of the members of the Legislative Assembly, then, unless at his request His Royal Highness dissolves the Legislative Assembly, he shall tender the resignation of the Executive Council.

The question then is: who decides whether the MB ceases to command the confidence of the majority of the members of the State Legislative Assembly? Should it be the Sultan or the State Legislative Assembly? How and where should such issues be decided?

The answers to these questions are obvious. Matters of grave importance that affect the interests of the state should be decided in the hall of the State Legislative Assembly, NOT along the corridors or halls of the palace.

The next question then is: who holds the majority at the State Legislative Assembly?

To answer this question, one must first ascertain the status of the three so-called "independent" members who have tendered their resignations. There is a dispute in relation to their status as members of the State Legislative Assembly. Their views therefore should not be taken into account until their status have been definitely resolved.

Against this background, how can anyone say that the Barisan Nasional commands the majority?

Some have replied saying that since the Election Commission did not recognise the resignation letters of the three "independent" members, therefore they are still members of the State Legislative Assembly.

This throws up the further question whether the EC has the power and jurisdiction to adjudicate on the status of the resignations.

From the legal perspective, the EC has exceeded its jurisdiction. There is nothing under the Election Commission Act 1957 and the Elections Act 1958 that confers power to the EC to adjudicate on such matters. Consequently, the EC's decision on this matter is ultra vires and is of no effect. Unless the decision by the speaker to declare the seats vacant is set aside or overturned by a court of law, the EC must accept the decision of the speaker. However, we have witnessed how the EC has facilitated the "coup" by disregarding the speaker's decision.

Leaving aside the legal questions — on desirability — in view that the current political scenario in Perak is fragile and uncertain, coupled with the fact that there is no guarantee there will not be any further and sudden defections that may affect the composition of the State Legislative Assembly, the best decision to make is to have dissolved the State Legislative Assembly.

Unfortunately, wisdom may not be the virtue of some.

Who will benefit from this episode? The "decision-makers"? Those who "orchestrated" the situation?

Unless the question of "what's in it for me?" is fully answered, then no one will receive the truth.

The state of Perak was robbed by the capitalists and the monarchy.

The fate of the state should not lie in the hands of allegedly corrupted politicians and a Sultan. It should be in the hands of the rakyat! Let the people of Perak decide the fate of their state through fresh elections.

For the record, I am not a monarchist or a royalist. I have little admiration for slogans such as "Daulat Tuanku" and the related "mumbo-jumbo". Some may say that this article and the fact that I am doubting the wisdom of the Sultan of Perak may be construed as an act of "derhaka" (disloyalty). As far as I am concerned the issue of "menderhaka" does not arise.

And my reply is "derhaka terhadap siapa?" Can I "derhaka" towards an institution that I don't believe in? Can I "derhaka" towards an institution that ignores the will of the rakyat?

It is apt for us to be reminded of what Hang Jebat once said:

"Jangan! Jangan sembah aku. Aku bukan gila disembah. Aku bukan sebagai Sultan Melaka yang mengagung-agungkan pangkat dan kebesarannya. Aku Jebat, rakyat biasa. Pangkat aku untuk kepentingan rakyat. Bergerak aku untuk membuat jasa kepada rakyat, dan aku rela mati untuk rakyat.. kerana aku mahu keadilan, keadilan. Keadilan!"

The time is ripe for a revolution.

So are you game?

Salam revolusi! — www.loyarburok.com

35,000 throng Nizar’s residence in show of support

ipoh-sunday-024

Show of support: This is just a small section of the crowd at the MB’s residence tonight

ipoh-sunday-011
4,000 join Makkal Sakthi Thaipusam procession calls for dissolution of the State Assembly

Zambry - prove he can be Perak MB for all by getting legitimate mandate in a new general election

(Lim Kit Siang) Datuk Dr. Zambry Abdul Kadir wants to be Mentri Besar for all in Perak.

Then let him prove it by getting a legitimate mandate from the people of Perak in a new state elections by dissolving the present Perak State Assembly.

Zambry is a mere usurper and cannot be regarded as a legitimate Mentri Besar to replace Datuk Seri Mohamad Nizar Jamaluddin through an illegal and unconstitutional coup de’tat orchestrated by the Prime Minister-in-waiting Datuk Seri Najib Razak – until and unless he can get a proper mandate through a Perak state elections.

It is of no help to Zambry to compare himself to Barack Obama who pledged to become President for all Americans – as no American doubt or question Obama’s legitimacy as US President in the way Zambry’s legitimacy as Perak Mentri Besar is questioned by the overwhelming majority of the people of Perak of all races.

“Hijrah”: Idealisme Perjuangan atau Rasuah Ugutan?

Ashvin Raj menulis pandangannya di laman Malaysiakini:

I would like to highlight a main difference between Anwar’s attempt of Sept 16 to form a new government and what’s going on in Perak. Anwar said that he had the numbers. He did not say that he ‘bought them’ for a price.

Anwar only gave a call but no money was offered. In this Perak case, a statutory declaration made by a PKR member strongly alleges that money ranging in the millions was offered to Pakatan YBs in order to entice them to crossover.

In this sense, money is the main difference here. I doubt PKR offered any sum of money to BN reps to join Pakatan, as they don’t have access to huge federal funds, unlike BN which has millions of ringgit as the federal government of the day.

What has happened in Perak is cowardice to say the least. The people’s mandate had not been given to BN to rule Perak, but to Pakatan.

I don’t blame the Sultan of Perak, but Najib and his cronies for enticing politicians from Pakatan to join them. This is most shameful and cowardly in that they used a bait of millions of ringgit to lure them.

Were there any monies offered by Pakatan to any BN rep before Sept 16 to join Pakatan and form a new federal government?

Of course, it is ethically wrong to hop from one party to another. But my point here is this, who has the stronger bargaining power when it comes to enticing YBs to crossover?

Certainly it is the one with the most funds and assets accumulated over the past 50 years and that is none other than the corrupt BN regime led by Najib.

—-

Terima kasih saudara Ashvin kerana prihatin sekali. Malah saya sedia meneliti hujah pengunjung meskipun kritikal terhadap pendirian kami. Sayugia diulangi peringatan mengenai singgungan lucah, fitnah dan rendah akalbudi. Saudara-saudari dipohon mengenepikan saja luahan sengsara dan bebal seperti ini dengan mempertahankan akhlak dan budi pekerti.

Percubaan meleset para soldadu tua dan muda yang mendakwa mirip persamaan adegan “lompat” UMNO-BN dengan saranan saya sebelum ini! Dan sepertimana yang dihebah oeh TV3 umpamanya ternyata hambar kerana mempertahankan adegan ala penculikan, rasuah dan ugutan dengan arahan Dato’ Seri Najib.

Pelawaan saya adalah secara terbuka dan sambutan juga harus telus. Tidak ada yang dilari atau disembunyikan dari keluarga sendiri, diugut atau disogok. Kalangan yang memilih untuk menyertai Pakatan Rakyat harus akur dengan agenda perubahan serta menolak kerakusan kuasa dan rasuah.

ANWAR IBRAHIM