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Monday, February 23, 2009

More than a month still no charge or arrest of Police suspected murderers of A. Kugan

HINDRAF condemns the lacklustre attitude taken by UMNO led government and the AG's office in prosecuting the police suspected murderers of A. Kugan. A. Kugan was murdered on January 20, 2008 in police custody and to date more than a month, no charge or arrest has been made on a single policeman.

In all fairness and justice, A. Kugan is as much as a Malaysian as any other Malaysian who deserves to be treated equally and fairly. Why is the government taking a step back and practicing double standards in administrating the due process of law against the police murderers for a murder that was committed in police custody? Is it because A. Kugan happens to be a Malaysian Indian?

This condemnable approach taken by the UMNO led government and the AG's office in delaying the charge and arrest of these murderers will only further agitate the public and in particularly the Malaysian Indians who had suffered enough under the tyranny of the government through systematic marginalization and discrimination.

Public accountability and transparency of the UMNO led government and its agents in relation to protection of human rights in Malaysia is severely undermined and are provided merely as a lip service exercise to appease the public. A. Kugan's case is a classic example, more than one month had passed and no charge or arrest for a murder that took place in police custody.

The continuous callous attitude by the government against the Malaysian public in particular to the Malaysian Indians will only distance itself further from the public as the frustration grows in all segment of the society with no ability to seek a fair and just recourse for the injustice that prevails to maintain the status quo of the UMNO led government and its agents.

HINDRAF seeks immediate actions to be taken against the police murderers and not lip services from the AG's office in this matter. One month without any charge or arrest is just to long for a murder that took place in police custody unless there are ulterior hidden motive for the murder of A. Kugan that otherwise could jeopardize the integrity and sanctity of the police force.

Thank you.

P. Waytha Moorthy

Hindraf- Chairman

1,000.000 People wants Malaysian Govt, Release 4 HINDRAF Lawyers from ISA

Let us show the UMNO govt that we care for our hero, who fought and keep on fighting even from inside Kemta for our rights. We should act before anything bad happen to him. Let we give pressure to them to give him proper medical treatment.
Balai Polis Brickfields, KL.
10 pagi
Kesihatan Wira makkal sakthi P.Uthayakumar semakin kritikal.
Laporan polis secara besar-besaran, seorang demi seorang demi seorang, terhadap Rejim UMNO, Kemta dan KDN kerana menafikan hak rawatan dan nyawa beliau terancam. Sila datang ramai-ramai untuk Wira kita.
Sebarkan mesej ini kepada semua


1,000.000 People wants Malaysian Govt, Release 4 HINDRAF Lawyers from ISA

Chinese school may suffer from BN-Pakatan feud

Police report lodged against

RPK’s habeas corpus : Reporting live from Putrajaya on 23/2/2009


By Haris Ibrahim

11.18am : Still at the Bar Room.

Malik Imtiaz has just been informed by the Registrar of the Federal court that the three judges have indicated that they will be reserving their judgment, to be delivered on another date to be fixed later. They have said that they will write up their judgments.

That means no decision today on the motions to review the dismissal of RPK’s 4 motions last week, including the dismissal of the motion to recuse Augustine Paul.

Have also been informed that the hearing of the appeal proper in court room 2 will also not proceed.

RPK will continue to remain free.

10.57am : Reporting from the Bar Room on the ground floor.

At 10.45am, the three judges retired to the ante room to consider submissions. We were told that the court would resume in about half an hour.

Earlier, at about 10.30am, Tun Majid commenced his submissions to oppose the review applications. He relied heavily on an earlier decision of the Court of Appeal, the case of Wan Khairani, in which Richard Malanjum, Tengku Baharuddin and Augustine Paul had sat. That case, too , involved the question as to whether two judges could have sat to hear an application for injunctive relief. Richard and Tengku, who formed the majority in that case, answered in the affirmative. Augustine dissented.

Malik, in his reply, distinguished Wan Khairani with the present case. There, he pointed out, the relevant statutory provision would have allowed one judge to sit and hear the application in question. Two judges sitting therefore, would not have impacted on the constitutionality of the proceedings. However, that was not the case here.

10.26am : Imtiaz still submitting on the matter of whether the two judges could have heard and disposed of the recusal application last week.

10.21am : Powerpoints at the bar table are all not functioning. Battery running low. May have to continue later as delayed reporting. Sorry.

10.12am : Malik submits that the dismissal of the recusal application last week was flawed owing to what Malik refers to as ‘corum failure’, when two judges unconstitutionally heard and dismissed the recusal application. Having dismissed the recusal application a dn then inviting Augustine to resume his seat on the corum, the court then was contaminated with the apparent bias of Augustine, which contamination then infected the dismissal of the remaining three motions filed by RPK and which were heard and dismissed last week.

10.00am : Court in session.

Malik informs the court that the decision to dismiss the recusal application last week is the critical review application fixed for hearing this morning. The contention however, is that as Augustine Paul had sat to dismiss all the other three motions last week, those decisions, too, are tainted by the participation of Augustine Paul and are therefore also the subject cof review applications this morning.

Tun Majid, for the Home Minister, presents his preliminary objection, which, in substance, is that these review applications are an abuse of process, bordering on contempt, as it amounts to an attempt to ‘judge-shop’.

The court does not seem to be with Tun Majid and Malik is invited to begin hus submissions.

9.35am : Gallery in court 1 is filled to the brim. Outside, RPK supporters wait for a chance to get in. Inside, we all wait.

9.20am : The legal team is assembled in Federal Court 1 where the motions for orders to review the four motions filed by RPK and heard and dismissed last week, are due to be heard.

Of particular interest is the motion to review the decision last week to dismiss the motion to recuse Augustine Paul.

The corum hearing this morning’s review motions : Richard Malanjum, Ariffin Zakaria and Hashim Yusoff Alauddin Sheriff.

Meanwhile, the corum to hear the appeal proper waits in Federal Court 2. Whether the main appeal will proceed today depends on what happens here in court 1.

Ramon: Say It With The Ballot

"Your ballot is the only language the government understands. If you blame someone for corruption but still vote for him, then the issue will never be resolved."

By FAN XIAOQI/Translated by DOMINIC LOH/Sin Chew Daily

Transparency International Malaysia president Tan Sri Ramon Navaratnam said the issue of corruption had been deeply rooted in this country, as it had become a part of the living and habit of Malaysians.

Ramon said during an exclusive interview with Sin Chew Daily that corrupt officials were living comfortable lives and were thus unwilling to make changes.

"As such, the government indeed has a responsibility towards the severe corruption problem here, but a greater responsibility lies with each and every one of us, as we have allowed them to be corrupt."

Although Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi has reiterated that the country wants to be more open, democratic, liberal and to fight corruption, he said this idea must be put into implementation.

Ramon said where the prevention and battling of corruption to ensure transparency in governance is concerned, Malaysians generally still lack the awareness.

"The public know where the problems are, but choose to remain silent. They must seriously look into this issue, listen and express their views, if they really care about the country.

"People like to condemn the corrupt officials and corrupt culture, but take no practical actions."

"If the government fails to rectify the problem of corruption, then don't show them your support in the elections.

"Your ballot is the only language the government understands. If you blame someone for corruption but still vote for him, then the issue will never be resolved."

General elections a critical turning point

Ramon said the general elections last March were a turning point for the country's political situation and future, but we have yet to see whether the country will continue moving on the right track after this turn.

"We made a turn at the crossroad, away from the wrong direction. But if we do not keep to the right track, we may turn into yet another dead end."

He admitted that the country had become more open-minded, the media more liberal, policies more open and government more positive to combat corruption after the March general elections. However, conflicts have also surfaced within Barisan Nasional because of this.

He said although most people felt that Abdullah had not done enough to check corruption, some thought he had done too much and too fast.

"Such a drastic effort has affected certain quarters of people, and therefore these people try to slow things down a bit, even to drag down those who actively battle corruption.

"This is the problem the prime minister is now facing."

Unfair to compare BN with Pakatan

When asked to compare the incorruption, transparency and corruption-fighting effort of BN and Pakatan governments, Ramon said BN had many years of experience ruling the country while Pakatan was formed less than a year ago, and it is therefore unfair to make a comparison between the two.

"One is an adult, while the other a toddler. How are we going to compare them? We feel that adults are more corrupt, this is because a child has yet to learn how to become corrupt."

Nevertheless he said the policies implemented by the state governments of Penang and Selangor so far, such as open tenders for public projects, have received positive responses from the public, showing that Pakatan is still open-minded and clean so far.

Najib should restore confidence

Ramon said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi had laid a solid foundation for his successor, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, adding that Najib should be able to fight corruption more effectively and speedily upon this foundation.

He said Najib should ensure that Abdullah's reform agendas and new rules would be put into effective implementation in a transparent manner, or the integrity of the country and its government would be jeopardised and the public would lose their faith in them.

"Compared to Abdullah, Najib should be able to do it better. Abdullah inherited a tough problem from former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir, but the foundation has now been laid and Najib should therefore act more boldly.

"If the government fails to continue implememting reforms that will benefit the rakyat, it will have a very heavy price to pay."

Review judgment reserved; RPK remains free

1118: Judgment of the review of RPK’s applications has been reserved and will be delivered at a future date. RPK is free - for now.

1052: The first step is won; the court has agreed to hear the review of RPK’s applications. At the moment, the court is hearing the appeal to have Augustine Paul recused.

0918: The Federal Court hearing to look into RPK’s four motions, including the application for Augustine Paul’s recusal, is about to begin any time soon. More police visible outside courtroom and they occupy three out of five rows of seats available to the public.

Keutamaan Semua Kaum Jadi Teras Pakatan Rakyat

Semalam saya hadhir memenuhi undangan Majlis Pelancaran Tabung Bantuan untuk Sekolah Sin Ming di Puchong. Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim mengumumkan bantuan sebanyak RM 50 ribu dari pihak kerajaan negeri Selangor buat sekolah tersebut.

Turut hadhir dalam majlis itu ialah YB Yaakob Sapari, YB Abdullah Sani, YB Teresa Kok, juga beberapa pimpinan Pakatan Rakyat Negeri Selangor serta masyarakat Tiong Hua sekitar.

Dalam ucapan saya mengungkap kata-kata Han Su Yin yang terkenal iaitu, “Empat Lautan Terbentang Luas, Semua Manusia Bersaudara”. Teras dasar Pakatan Rakyat sangat jelas iaitu memastikan semua kaum di Malaysia tidak dipinggirkan.

Meski pun diberi amaran oleh Kementerian Pelajaran, masyarakat setempat begitu ghairah menyokong usaha Kerajaan Pakatan Rakyat Negeri Selangor di dalam memperkasa pendidikan ibunda; baik jenis kebangsaan, Tamil dan Cina.

Jelas sekali pendukung UMNO-BN sememangnya tidak mahu berubah. Keutamaan mereka hanya satu yakni untuk tetap berkuasa walau ianya menidakkan kemahuan rakyat.


Kulim shootout: Full disclosure sought- Malaysiakini

The MIC Youth wing is not satisfied with the manner six men were shot dead by the police in Kulim earlier this week and is seeking a full disclosure on the shootout.


At the same time the youth wing is also seeking legal opinions from top lawyers in the country on the shooting of the six suspected criminals by the police.

vell paari vellpaari"We are looking into the various aspects of the shooting. We will then see on what actions we should be taking on behalf of the family members," the youth wing's advisor S Vell Paari told Malaysiakini today.

"We are also pushing for the police to immediately start an inquest on the shooting incident. The police too must come clean on what actually transpired," he said.

He added that several lawyers had also expressed interest in acting for the family members - "either to hold a watching brief in an inquest or to file a suit at a later stage".

Vell Paari was commenting on the incident which happened on Feb 17 in a small town called Karangan, located some 15 kilometres from Kulim, Kedah.

'Police had no choice'

In that police shootout, six men believed to be involved in several armed-robbery cases in Kedah, Penang, Perak and Selangor were killed by a team from federal police headquarters in Bukit Aman.

The killed men were contract worker R Elangovan, 38; LS Santana, 34; contractor R Pannir, 28; crane driver S Vadivelan, 29; carpenter S Gurusamy, 50, and lorry attendant R Dilip Kumar, 20.

Kedah police chief Syed Ismail Syed Azizan said that two of them were wanted by the police for investigations into several crime cases.

Syed Ismail had said that the police team had identified themselves to the group outside a house in Kampung Kemunting but were shot at in the incident which happened at about 11pm.

"We had no choice but to retaliate or else the policemen could have been shot dead. The exchange of gunfire ultimately led to the death of the six men aged between 20 and 50," he added.

Holes in police version

The shootout caused an uproar among the public, politicians and NGOs. Several questions were raised, especially in the brutal manner the six were shot and killed.

Several family members of the victims have also denied allegations of their (victims') involvement in criminal activities.

"The MIC Youth wing had visited some of the families and we discovered that some of the victims were in the house in Kampung Kemunting for valid and legitimate reasons," said Vell Paari.

"Some of the victims were from elsewhere and had just stayed in the house while visiting Kulim. One man was a carpenter from Lumut and was to leave Kulim the next day," he added.

police brutality sinister corruption secretsVell Paari said that it was important that an inquest was held urgently to find out more about the police killing.

He also said that the police version of events "had some holes".

He also said that the current practice of dealing with police shootouts must be reviewed to make public inquests compulsory for every police shooting incident.

"How often do we see inquests being held for such extra-judicial killings?" he asked.

Independent members sought

Vell Paari said that a committee has been set up by the youth wing to play an effective role in handling such police incidents.

"But the purpose of the committee is not just to handle custodial deaths and police shootings. Instead it will be fire-fighting committee that will step in every time such an incident happens."

The committee will be looking into all other issues affecting the Indian community and will soon come out with a comprehensive report of proposals to solve these issues.

The membership of the 10-person committee consisted of five MIC youth wing members and five independent outsiders.

"We are looking for independent, non-party people to sit in the committee. We have identified two such persons. If anyone is interested, they can contact us," he said.

The Malaysian Police are Prosecutor, Judge and Executioner , all in one .

Today I tagged along with our Human Rights Activists who have been fighting Police Abuses for a long time – S. Jayathas, S. Surendran, YB S. Manikavasagam (MP for Kapar) and YB M.Manohar(MP for Teluk Intan). to find out what actually transpired when the 6 were killed by the Police in Kulim.

Ever since their killing the other day I have been very bothered by the event. The media shouted out “criminals” – as if that was the foregone truth. The Police had executed all 6 of them as if they were the Prosecutor, Judge and Executioner all in one and utterly above the law. It was not one, not two, it was six and it seems with impunity. Every one had their own view of the episode. But I needed some answers.

At the outset let me say that I am not condoning crimes or criminals, but there are so many questions that this incident raises that we need some good answers, and fast, as this situation seems to be spinning out of control – before the ink dries on one, another seems to happen. Kugan’s case before Prabakaran’s settled, and now the six before Kugan’s case is settled.

We visited the shootout site, the families of 3 of the deceased and spent some time with the neighbour at the shootout site. The picture that emerges is different than what the mainstream media has been putting out. The MSM paints a picture that the Police only returned fire after being shot at and that this turn of events was totally unavoidable and that they were dealing with a bunch of unscrupulous criminals.

Let me detail some of the facts we gathered before commenting on them. The scene of the shooting was in a small town of Karangan some 15km from Kulim. It was in a small house which was being renovated in one of the backroads of Karangan, a little off the main road of the town. The fence around the house was a tall wall made up of corrugated sheet – something you would do to cut off from view what was going on inside.

A very forthcoming neighbour told us that when he returned home from work that rainy night at around 10 or so he was met with a large group of police men in front of his house, who had already packed his family into the prayer room of his house in the event of stray bullets during the impending ambush. He was asked to get in with them. He only heard the frightening shootout that dreadful night from within his prayer room.

The shootout took place at around 10.30, a very noisy and frightening episode, narrated that neighbour. There did not seem to be any attempt by the Police to try to get the people they were seeking, out from the premises, by summoning them out first using hailers or some such device, before the shoot out. The shooting just happened. The neighbour knew nothing more till the bodies of the killed men were removed at somewhere between 4 and 5 am the next morning.

The first of the killed men, the one that the Police probably had a reason to get, the owner of the house where the shootout happened, was shot in the middle of the top of his head, top down it appeared, though his death certificate indicated he died due to shot wounds in his chest. The family of this victim, mentioned he had several more shots on the front side of his body – as if someone shot at him from the front. This individual, we were told by the family had no prior police record.


The second victim that we visited was someone who was actually working in Singapore for a company called SBS (maybe the Singapore Bus Company) who had come back to Kulim for a holiday. He was due to go back shortly and had a return ticket for that. His death certificate also indicated death due to shots in the chest. Apparently he had several shot wounds on the front side of his body also, as if shot from the front. He appeared to be a friend of the first victim. It is not clear from the little information we got that this person was at all a close accomplice or even a participant in any crime that may have been in the works. Of course, I am concluding this with very little information, but these are the facts as we got them from the family. The family was distraught, because this had damaged the standing of the family in the community, having their dead son branded a criminal. This victim also has no past criminal record, we were told by the family.

The third family we visited was that of a young chap of about 20. His family lives in a dilapidated little estate house in Padang Serai. He had seven siblings and it was obvious the family was just existing. This young chap it appears was working for the first victim assisting in the renovation of the house where the shootout happened. The parents did not seem to know much more about what he did. He was obviously not being paid very much, as he had just 2 days before the incident asked one of his family members for 20 ringgits. He had shot wounds on the forehead and it looked like the back of his head was all bloodied as if from an exiting bullet. He was dressed only in a towel at the time of his death. His parents even had difficulty putting together some money to buy him a shirt and a dhoty for his burial. 36 ringgits was all they had. They could not even afford the coffin in which he was ultimately buried. The Police disallowed the victims kin to examine the body when they tried to. The body was all bloodied in the front. This victim also has no past record, we were told.

To say the least, this was a carnage. It appears like we are in Gaza or in Iraq or in Afghanistan or even in SriLanka – the scale and method of killingsuggests nothing short of this. Let me ask, are we in one of these countries or is Malaysia descending there?.

It looks like Indian lives have become very cheap, very cheap in this country – the lives of anjing keeling, yes that’s what it is, the cheap lives of the anjings - that they can be wasted in this manner. Uthaykumar was so right!.

By all of this, I am in no way saying crime is alright. What I am saying is the way the problems of crime are being dealt with. Let me layout some perspectives for you all to consider:

1) What was the need to kill these people? They were not terrorists. They had no previous records. They were not murderers, surely not the mafia. They could have been easily arrested. In fact the first victim regularly stays is just a stone’s throw from the Police Station. Why were they not apprehended? Or why were they not given a chance to come out with their hands up to surrender themselves for arrest – even in war this is done?. Why were they not given this chance?

2) We understand there were a number of sharp shooters from around the country on hand for the job for the Police. This seem to indicate that this was planned kill event.

3) Why was it that the shot wounds were all in the front side of the victims – not any location on the body, but systematically on the front side?

4) One victim was shot on the top of the head, how could that happen in a normal exchange of fire. That seems to suggest some crouching position and a shot into the head, from the top.

5) Why were the victims not shot at on their legs or where they will not be killed but disabled on being shot?

6) Why were the kin of one of the victims denied their right to inspect the body?

7) If it was a shootout between the Police and the victims, only two could have had the guns, as the police produced two guns, why were the shot wounds so systematic in the chest and the heads on all three of the victims? We do not know about the other two victims – but I suspect they will show similarities.

In summary this ugly incident in the series of incidents of police killing and atrocities seem to emphasise the following issues.

a) The Police in Malaysia continue killing Indian crime suspects with impunity – taking upon themselves the role of Prosecutor, Judge and Executioner all in one. I am sure that the powers be know exactly what they are doing. So, we have to take it that they are trying to provoke a response from us so they can slam emergency rule snd set us all back?

b) The Police very urgently need to be Policed . That looks like a very remote possibility, as long as UMNO rules this country of ours. . See what’s happening to the reform driven MACC, it has become just another tool of UMNO. Any IPCMC will probably end up in that same rubbish bin. In any case this UMNO regime seems to be promoting Police brutality as a means of maintaining their hold on the levers of power.

c) So many crime suspects in Malaysia are from among the Indian community.? I think the answer to this has been already abundantly answered by Uthayakumar – this underclass of Indians are a direct result of the UMNO policies over the last 50 years of marginalizing Indians – neglecting the development of the Indian community. There does not yet seem to be any serious effort to get to the bottom of this problem.

d) The way the Police are shooting Indian crime suspects seem to give additional credence to the racist line of UMNO – the anjing keling line.. They seem to be wittingly or unwittingly creating a stereotype of the Indians in the country – despicable, troublecausing and uncouth Indian. What do you think the jibes of children in school reflect – when little Indian children are called “anjing keling” by their Malay classmates.
e) Poverty seems to be intertwined with all of this. Take the case of the third victim that we visited - what kind of money was he making for him to be lumped up and shot. Does this make sense, 20 years old, barely making a living and then shot in the middle. These are the youth of the country who should be nurtured and built up into the the human potential we so much need.

This is all very infuriating.

There comes a time when all of this has to stop. This cannot continue. UMNO , stop playing games and get on with doing something positive about the problem. If you do not know how, then get expert help, I am sure there are agencies around the world that can help. Or are we to take it that you just do not want to , and then the only way we can find some resolution to the problem is by replacing you, UMNO.



It was reported that a Senior Constitutional UMNO lawyer has flown to London, United Kingdom today to seek advice from a leading Queen's Counsel (QC) on the matter pertaining to the Perak tussle where UMNO had conveniently 'hijacked' and toppled the legitimate Pakatan Rakyat Opposition government by using the Palace to appoint the UMNO-led Barisan Nasional lawmakers by using 'frogs' who have 'vacated' their seats through a pre-signed resignation letters as showing their support them when previously they had shown their support to the PR Opposition government.

The Perak State Assembly Speaker after the meeting of the Special Privileges Committee on last Wednesday had further decided to suspend the Sultan appointed Mentri Besar and his Exco Members from the Barisan Nasional for a period of 18 to 12 months respectively for their involvement in this illegal act of takeover subsequent to complaints received from lawmakers.

The surprising fact is when there are a number of highly qualified Malaysian legal intellectuals who would be in a better position than a foreign QC to advice, UMNO had embarked to waste public funds and time to get a similar result that their action was unconstitutional and that the State Assembly is the only avenue where a Mentri Besar can be removed if he does not tender his resignation through a vote of no-confidence. The Perak Sultan does not have the power to terminate a lawfully appointed Mentri Besar, taking into account in this scenario.

This clearly shows that UMNO is just trying to hoodwink the Malaysian public that they need to trust the 'thief' in this tussle.

picture courtesy of Malaysiakini

Zambry - seek legitimacy as Perak MB through state polls

Yesterday, the illegal and illegitimate Perak Mentri Besar Dr. Zambry Abd. Kadir admitted that people were wondering whether he was truly the Mentri Besar and lamented that his position was considered illegitimate and illegal – undoubtedly by the majority of the people in Perak and Malaysia if they are given the opportunity to have their say.

Zambry should seek legitimacy as Perak Mentri Besar through a new snap state election in Perak as he will never gain legitimacy through the immoral, illegal, undemocratic and unconstitutional power grab orchestrated by the new UMNO Perak chief and the Prime Minister-in-waiting Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Unless the Perak State Assembly is dissolved to return the mandate to the voters of Perak to elect the state government of their choice, Zambry will go down in Perak and Malaysian history with the dubious reputation as the “usurper” and illegal Mentri Besar who has no popular mandate or legitimacy to be the head of government because of the immoral, undemocratic, illegal and unconstitutional power grab orchestrated by Najib.

The Perak political and constitutional crisis sparked by Najib’s immoral, illegal, illegitimate and unconstitutional power grab had dragged on for too long and it is the responsibility of all the political leaders in both Pakatan Rakyat and Barisan Nasional to end the political stalemate of two Mentris Besar to restore the people’s confidence and mobilise state and national energies to face the worst global economic crisis in 80 years.

The Perak political and constitutional crisis can be ended in 30 days if the Perak state assembly is dissolved to return the mandate to the voters of Perak to elect a new government of their choice – as the 12th national general election last year was held within three weeks of dissolution of Parliament and the state assemblies.

This means that the Perak political and constitutional crisis could be ended even before the Umno party elections, which is the other political factor creating uncertainty in the country, at the end of next month.

Is Zambry prepared, together with Datuk Seri Muhammand Nizar Jamaluddin, to jointly agree to an end to the Perak political and constitutional crisis in 30 days through the dissolution of the Perak state assembly and the holding a new state election in Perak?- limkitsiang

The man who gave Indonesia its name rests in Penang


James Richardson Logan, the man who coined the term ‘Indonesia’ in the 19th century, lies buried in the Protestant cemetery in Penang - Photos by Anil Netto

logan-and-indonesia-006The Logan Memorial

Here’s something that could be a drawcard for visitors to Penang.

Few Malaysians are aware that the man who gave Indonesia its name lies buried in Malaysia - in Penang to be specific. I did not realise it myself until Indonesia’s blogger of the year 2007, Andreas Harsono, alerted me to it.

Logan was born in Berwickshire, Scotland, in 1819 and studied law in Edinburgh. Arriving in Malaya when he was just 20, he was later viewed by segments of the non-European local communities as a champion of their rights. He was editor of the Penang Gazette and the 27-volume Journal of the Indian Archipelago and Eastern Asia, which were also called Logan’s Journals. The Logan Memorial (pic above) describes him as “an erudite and skillful lawyer, an eminent scientific ethnologist and he has founded a literature for these settlements…” He died of malaria in 1869 - a passing the Memorial describes as a “public calamity”.

This is an excerpt from The Idea of Indonesia, Cambridge University Press 9780521876483 - The Idea of Indonesia - A History - by R. E. Elson:

The word `Indonesia’ was first manufactured in 1850 in the form `Indunesians’ by the English traveller and social observer George Samuel Windsor Earl. He was searching for an ethnographic term to describe `that branch of the Polynesian race inhabiting the Indian Archipelago’, or `the brown races of the Indian Archipelago’. But, having coined his new term, he immediately rejected it – it was `too general’ – in favour of what he deemed to be a more specific descriptor, `Malayunesians’.

A colleague, James Logan, undeterred by Earl’s decision, decided that `Indonesian’ was in fact a more telling and correct usage, to be employed primarily as a geographical rather than an ethnographic term:

I prefer the purely geographical term Indonesia, which is merely a shorter synonym for the Indian islands or the Indian Archipelago. We thus get Indonesian for Indian Archipelagian or Archipelagic, and Indonesians for Indian Archipelagians or Indian Islanders.2

Distinguishing between geographical and ethnological uses of words, Logan was the first person to employ the name `Indonesia’ to describe, however loosely, the geographical region of the archipelago. He proceeded to make relatively free but not exclusive (`the Indian Archipelago must remain’) use of the words `Indonesia’, `Indonesian’ and `Indonesians’ in this basic geographical sense here and in later writings. Indeed, he divided `Indonesia’ into four distinct geographical regions, stretching from Sumatra to Formosa.

His use of `Indonesia’ was not immediately followed. Only in 1877 did E. T. Hamy, a French anthropologist, employ the word `Indonesians’ to describe specific prehistoric and `pre-Malay’ racial groups within the archipelago. In 1880, the British anthropologist A. H. Keane followed Hamy’s usage. In the same year, a more properly geographical sense of the term, along Logan’s lines, was employed by a British linguist, N. B. Dennys, a practice adopted by W. E. Maxwell two years later.3 Adolf Bastian, the famed German ethnographer, well apprised of Logan’s earlier use of the term, employed the term in his five-volume Indonesien oder die Inseln des Malayischen Archipel, published in 1884–94.4 Given Bastian’s scholarly eminence, his adoption of the term gave it a previously unknown respectability.

But it was only in the 20th century that the term “Indonesia” gradually gained more popular acceptance including among groups opposing Dutch colonial rule.- anilnetto

Apa Jadi Pada Ratusan Laporan Rasuah Ke Atas Pimpinan UMNO-BN?

Saya kesal dengan kenyataan politik Suruhanjaya Pencegahan Rasuah Malaysia (SPRM) yang telah bertindak menghukum Tan Sri Khalid sebelum sebarang pendakwaan dan perbicaraan bersabit dengan kenderaan dan juga lembu.

Sikap pilih kasih dan pendakwaan selektif yang begitu ketara ini sangat menjijikkan, tatkala puluhan, malahan ratusan laporan polis serta laporan rasuah yang dikemukakan kepada SPRM melibatkan pimpinan UMNO-BN, dibakulsampahkan dan senyap sunyi tanpa berita!

Reformasi apa yang dijanjikan kini? SPRM ghairah memperjuangkan kes lembu, walhasil mereka menampakkan diri mereka ibarat lembu dicucuk hidung.

Cara jelek sebegini pastinya satu percaturan yang diatur bagi memenuhi agenda peribadi Datuk Seri Najib untuk memastikan suara rakyat dilenyapkan.

KeADILan dan Pakatan Rakyat ingin menegaskan bahawa kita komited dengan agenda membanteras rasuah ke akar umbi dan menentang sistem yang rakus dan zalim.


Anwar ticks off Najib for putting politics before economic crisis

By Lee Wei Lian

PUCHONG, Feb 22 – Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim criticised the deputy prime minister’s management of the economy today, accusing Datuk Seri Najib Razak of being too focused on politics at the expense of governing the country in the face of a global economic crisis.

Najib, as Finance Minister, announced an RM7 billion stimulus package last November, but assumptions made then are no longer valid as the country’s exports have plunged more sharply than anticipated because global market demand for the country’s products has plummeted.

The government is expected to announce a stimulus package worth more than RM30 billion next month, according to a report in Sin Chew Daily today.

Anwar is, however, not impressed and says that the mini-budget is too late.

“While the leaders of other countries have acknowledged that serious measures are needed to fight the economic slowdown, Malaysia has not issued such statements because the finance minister is too busy abducting people,” says Anwar, referring to the three former Pakatan Rakyat (PR) Perak state representatives who were incommunicado for several days until they resurfaced in a press conference to declare that they had defected.

“Only on March 10th will he finally take additional steps to tackle the slowdown.”

Anwar said this at the official opening of a new classroom block at the Sin Ming Chinese school in Puchong.

While much of the world has been focussed on the grim global economic outlook, politics has dominated Malaysia in recent months.

BN and PR parties have been embroiled in a constitutional impasse in Perak in recent weeks following the defections and the formation of a new government.

PR leaders have also accused BN parties of trying to engineer more defections in Selangor and Kedah.

The Umno elections and the upcoming by-elections in Kedah, Perak and possibly Selangor is also a major distraction.

Najib is seen as the man behind the attempts to topple PR state governments as part of a bid to boost flagging support for Umno and BN ahead of him taking over as prime minister at the end of March.

The DPM is also keen to use the mini-budget, expected to be announced on March 10, to give BN a political boost ahead of the Umno polls.

At the onset of the global financial turmoil late last year, the government had remained optimistic on the outlook for Malaysia.

However, analysts and economists have been painting a grim picture for Malaysia and this has finally forced the government to revise downwards its economic growth forecasts and come up with supplementary stimulus measures.

Dr M mocks BN over Perak deadlock

By Leslie Lau
Consultant Editor-The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 23 – Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has ridiculed Umno president Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi for asking Datuk Zambry Abdul Kadir to lodge a police report against the Perak State Assembly Speaker.

Writing in his popular blog, he said that while it was possible for the Speaker to commit a crime, “the suspension of any assemblyman is not a crime which the police can take action against.”

Known for his acerbic criticism, the former prime minister has been a thorn in Abdullah’s side in recent years.

But in previous remarks, he has also expressed his disapproval over Barisan’s move to court the defections of the two former PKR Perak assemblymen – Osman Jailu and Jamaludin Mohd Radzi.

The resignation from PKR of the two men and their backing for Barisan Nasional (BN) sparked the downfall of the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) Perak government but it has also drawn criticism because the two men are facing graft charges in court.

In his latest blog post, Dr Mahathir poured scorn on Abdullah’s suggestion for Zambry to lodge a police report against Speaker V Sivakumar over the suspension of the Perak MB and his entire state executive council.

“If the decision of the Speaker can be considered a crime, then what will happen when the Parliamentary Speaker suspends opposition members for whatever reasons?

“And this happens frequently. Will opposition members lodge police reports? If they can, then can we consider the police to have powers over the Parliamentary Speaker?”

The former PM also commented on Zambry’s statement that he would attend the state assembly sitting despite the suspension.

He said that under the legislature’s standing orders, the Speaker can direct officers of the assembly to remove Zambry.

“Also, where will Zambry sit? What if Datuk Seri Nizar Jamaluddin sits in the mentri besar’s chair? Will the Speaker ask his officers to force Nizar to vacate the chair?

“Let us all as citizens watch what happens next.”

Nizar clarifies Pakatan to seek vote of confidence in his government

By Debra Chong-The Malaysian Insider

IPOH, Feb 22 – Datuk Seri Nizar Jamaluddin has clarified that Pakatan Rakyat (PR) intends to table a vote of confidence in his government when the Perak state assembly convenes.

He called a press conference in the afternoon to correct remarks made to reporters earlier that he intended to initiate a no-confidence motion against the Barisan Nasional (BN) government of Datuk Zambry Abdul Kadir. The comments were made before he moved out of the official mentri besar’s residence here this morning.

And the Pas man anticipates turmoil because of the expected challenges from BN to the move.

Nizare said PR expects to win such a vote as Perak Speaker V Sivakumar is likely to bar Zambry and his state executive councillors from attending proceedings after recently meting out suspensions against them.

This means PR will have the advantage with 28 assemblyman against BN’s 21 allowed to vote.

“We will table the motion and see who will get the majority,” Nizar told reporters today.

Sivakumar will seek consent from the Sultan of Perak to convene a sitting of the legislature, Nizar said.

Under the Perak state constitution, not more than six months can elapse between sittings of the assembly. While only the Sultan can convene sittings, he is bound by the constitution to call for an assembly by early May.

Nizar also brushed aside Zambry’s remarks yesterday that he would still attend proceedings.

“They have been suspended by the Speaker,” he said, referring to the six exco members as well as Zambry.

He argued that the Speaker had full powers to suspend or expel lawmakers and that the decision is final.

Umno and BN leaders are disputing this assertion, and are contending that suspensions must be voted on by the assembly.

The Perak state constitution says that the assembly may regulate its own procedure.

Umno is expected to attempt to challenge the Speaker’s decision in court, but it is still unclear if such decisions are subject to judicial review.

“Umno is now terrified and worried,” Nizar told reporters.

MIC To Pick A Local From Bukit Selambau As Candidate

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 22 (Bernama) -- MIC President Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu says the party will pick a local from Bukit Selambau as candidate to contest the state assembly seat if given the opportunity by Barisan Nasional (BN).

"Among the criteria's, we are looking form a candidate who knows the area well, work hard and can speak the Kedah dialect so as to ease the process of interacting with the locals better.

"MIC had contested the seat four times before so it is merely our seat. To us whether the candidate is young or old does not matter but what is important is that voters must like the candidate," he told reporters launching Selangor MIC's voter registration bureau at the MIC headquarters here today.

Speaking of Jerlun Member of Parliament Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir's view that an Umno candidate would stand a better chance of winning the Bukit Selambau seat during the April 7 by-election, Samy said: "He can talk anything he likes, he cannot change national decision."

The Bukit Selambau seat fell vacant after V. Arumugan of Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) tendered his resignation on Feb 8.

During the general elections in March last year, Arumugam, 54 who contested as an independent, beat BN candidate S. Krishnan from MIC by a 2,362-vote majority.

Samy said during his recent visit to Bukit Selambau in Kedah and Bukit Gantang in Perak, people were very receptive to BN and MIC compared with what was the case before the last general election.

"They (people) agreed that they had made a mistake by voting for the opposition. The opposition had made many promises but did not deliver and hoped their problems can be settled by BN," he said.

He added that victory should favour BN in both Bukit Selambau and the Bukit Gantang Parliamentary seat that fell vacant after Roslan Sahharum, 50, of Pas, died on Feb 9 due to a heart attack.

About 1,000 from the MIC youth movement had been deployed to Bukit Selambau and another 900 to Bukit Gantang to start organising activities throughout the by-election period.


1. Kita sedang melihat banyak peristiwa yang pelik berlaku di Perak yang dahulu terkenal dengan timahnya. Tetapi tidak ada yang lebih lucu daripada nasihat Perdana Menteri kepada Dato' Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir, Menteri Besar Barisan Nasional supaya beliau membuat laporan polis berkenaan dengan penggantungannya oleh Speaker Dewan Undangan Negeri Perak.

2. Jika keputusan yang dibuat oleh Speaker boleh dianggap sebagai satu jenayah, apa akan jadi jika Speaker Dewan Rakyat menggantung ahli pembangkang kerana apa-apa sebab? Dan ini kerap berlaku. Apakah ahli pembangkang akan lapor kepada polis? Jika boleh maka bolehlah kita anggap bahawa polis berkuasa keatas Speaker Dewan.

3. Memang ada jenayah yang boleh dilakukan oleh Tuan Speaker tetapi menggantung seseorang ahli Dewan bukanlah diantara jenayah yang boleh diambil tindakan oleh Polis.

4. Sekarang dilaporkan yang Dr Zambry akan hadir sidang Dewan Undangan Negeri Perak. Mengikut aturan peraturan Dewan, Speaker boleh arah pegawai Dewan untuk keluarkan Yang Amat Berhormat Dr Zambry dari Dewan. Dapatkah pegawai berkenaan yang bukan terdiri daripada parti Pakatan Rakyat berbuat demikian?

5. Dimana pula tempat duduk YAB Zambry? Apakata kalau YB Dato Seri Mohamed Nizar Jamaluddin duduk di tempat Menteri Besar? Apakah pegawai Dewan akan disuruh oleh Speaker untuk paksa Nizar kosongkan kerusinya? Apakah YAB Zambry akan berada di Dewan atau di luar Dewan setelah Speaker mengarah pegawai sekat YAB Zambry daripada berada dalam Dewan.

6. Bersama-samalah kita rakyat lihat akan peristiwa yang akan berlaku.

PKR KL/Selangor Dinner 2009: Anwar Ibrahim (Part 1)

Part 2