Share |

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Bukit Selambau By-Election : Mediarakyat

Tengku Razaleigh clears 'misrepresentative' reports



Figuring out One Malaysia

tmi-n.jpgKUALA LUMPUR, April 12 – What is One Malaysia? This has been troubling supporters of Umno since Datuk Seri Najib Tun Abdul Razak announced it in his maiden speech as prime minister nine days ago.

Opposition parties have claimed it mirrored the Malaysian Malaysia concept championed by the DAP and, before that, the PAP under Lee Kuan Yew when Singapore was part of Malaysia.

This claim has troubled Barisan Nasional politicians aiming to regroup after the coalition’s disastrous Election 2008 outing.

Today, the Umno-owned Mingguan Malaysia refuted that connotation in an opinion piece and put in perspective that One Malaysia means no one in the country will be sidelined but affirmative action policies will continue.

In not too many words, it remains faithful to the two planks of the National Economic Policy (NEP) – the eradication of poverty irrespective of race and economic restructuring that was launched by Najib’s father Tun Abdul Razak Hussein in the aftermath of the May 13 race riots.

The opinion piece headlined ‘Satu Malaysia versi sebenar’ by Awang Selamat, a pseudonym used by the newspaper’s editors, allayed fears that Najib will end the NEP and ensure equality for all.

Among others, Awang wrote, it included elements of development based on unity and integration, the people’s interests and excellence to push the country’s progress, adding he was glad when Najib denied it had anything to do with a ‘Malaysian Malaysia’ although the government would be fair to all races to transform the country.

“Awang hopes the true version of One Malaysia is understood clearly. The affirmative policies to help the Malays who really poor and left behind (compared to other races) will continue.

“Indeed there is a need to continue the affirmative policies due to historical realities and the social contract while the government intensifies efforts to increase the quality of life for all,” he wrote.

While Mingguan Malaysia, which enjoys wide circulation in Malaysia’s rural areas where Umno still commands majority support and respect, has made its definition, it remains to be seen how Najib will put the slogan into action.

However, it is clear that the concept will not work with a top-down approach as Malaysians become more aware of the power of their vote and are willing to shop around for a political party or coalition more in tune with their desires and needs.

While the economy is at the forefront of their minds, Malaysians – particularly the young and those in the urban areas – have been clamouring for an independent judiciary, respectable police force, equal treatment and politicians who don’t speak from both sides of their mouths.

They have been demanding reforms in various government policies and institutions, handing former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, a huge mandate in the 2004 elections but taking it back in 2008 when the reforms faltered.

The country’s sixth prime minister has added “People First, Performance Now” to his One Malaysia concept to recapture the people’s confidence and it will be up to him and his cabinet, which has already been maligned by the opposition, to ensure they live up to his slogan.

And ensure that his “One Malaysia” is the same as their “One Malaysia”.

Cleaning up the Home Ministry

NEWS ANALYSIS- The Malaysian Insider

APRIL 12 – Review the Internal Security Act. Actually, repeal it. Reform the police force. Repair the damage from the “Allah” ban for Christian publications. And implement the Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission (Siap). That, in a nutshell, is the inbox of the new Home Minister when he takes office this week.

Datuk Hishammuddin Hussein will have to clean up the mess of his predecessors that has given Malaysia’s enforcement agencies unfettered powers to use, or abuse. Among them are police custodial deaths, unconscionable detentions, suspect directives for deportations and others.

And of course, salvage the integrity of the various enforcement agencies seen mostly as bullies or corrupt, or both, by the people at large.

In no small way, their handiwork has contributed to Barisan Nasional’s poor image among the voters who punished the ruling coalition in Election 2008.

In keeping with the slogan formulated by his cousin, prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Abdul Razak and his “One Malaysia, People First, Performance Now”, Hishammuddin will have to ensure people-friendly enforcement agencies and their performance will be his performance.

His Johor Umno colleague and predecessor Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar did not meet the mark although he tried defending a series of missteps by the police, immigration authorities and some divisions within the ministry.

Reviewing the ISA, reforming the police force – particularly their treatment of detainees in various lock-ups – and ensuring human rights are respected should be his priority. Releasing 13 ISA detainees last week, some conditionally, is seen as too little, too late by most people.

The security law that provides detention without trial was meant primarily for combating communist guerrillas in the 1960s but has been conveniently expanded to lock away political opponents, currency forgers and even a nuclear parts middle-man, is seen as an archaic law.

The law has been amended 18 times since it was enacted although first prime minister Tunku Abdul Rahman said later, “The ISA introduced in 1960 was designed and meant to be used solely against the communists ... my Cabinet colleagues and I gave a solemn promise to Parliament and the nation that the immense powers given to the government under the ISA would never be used to stifle legitimate opposition and silence lawful dissent.”

To his credit, Syed Hamid has proposed only certain police officials should be allowed to detain anyone for up to 60 days without a court order.

But that is not god enough to human rights activists and opposition leaders, who insist that any detention without judicial review is still unjustified.

The death of A. Kugan and the conflicting autopsy reports related to the nature of his demise has deepened the people’s distrust in the authorities.

The latest case of Adi Anwar Mansor drinking thinner, despite being handcuffed while undergoing interrogation, has further exacerbated the distrust.

Too many people have died in lock-ups or during interrogation. So many, in fact, that the police once announced closed-circuit-television cameras would be installed in all police stations. However, many are still without it.

It is understood that the Royal Malaysian Police has received huge allocations, including some off-budget funds, over the past few years but the only sign of that money is a fleet of super-fast patrol cars and motorcycles.

Hishammuddin will also have to look into the short-lived directive to privatise the processing of those who over-stay and send them back home, as exposed by The Malay Mail recently.

This comes on the back of last year’s corruption scandal in the Immigration Department when the director-general, his deputy and several officers were charged with taking bribes from foreigners seeking visas, work permits and social visit pass extensions.

The department records show it detained 216,373 illegal immigrants from 2005 to 2008, 191,583 of whom have been deported.

Most of these illegals were detained with the help of Rela, the volunteer organisation that has also received a fair amount of bad press.

While Siap is toothless to act on wayward enforcement agencies with no power of prosecution, the Semberong MP will have to ensure that all these agencies work for the people and not against the people.

Thus far, the only element that works in the ministry is the issuance of passports. But that is not enough for Malaysians.

There are the other aspects that Hishammuddin, and lawyers like Syed Hamid, has to work on especially in ensuring human rights is respected by the agencies.

After all, his late father Tun Hussein Onn, the country’s third prime minister, helped found the Human Rights Association of Malaysia (Hakam) that has been campaigning for rights since the 1990s.

THE INDIAN MARGINALIZATION ISSUE - WHAT THE PR STATE GOVERNMENTS MUST NOW DO.

THE INDIAN MARGINALIZATION ISSUE NEEDS TO BE ADDRESSED IN A COMPREHENSIVE MANNER.

74 percent of the Indians (1,295,775 out of a total 1,749,639 Indians in the country – year 2000 census) live in the 5 states controlled by the Pakatan Government (at least till Perak fell into a Limbo) and the Federal Territory of KL. This is a substantial opportunity for the Pakatan Governments to consolidate the support of the marginalized Indians, who form a large section of the Indian community.

Let me suggest a few things that the Pakatan State government should begin doing now so that it will be a win – win situation for the marginalized Indians and the PR governments:

1) Knowing that primary education is Primary, the PR State Governments in all these states should draw up a comprehensive plan of allocating land to all the Primary schools in the state that are not on their own land or are in very confined spaces.

This is well within the authority of the Pakatan Governments. They can prepare the way for a revamp of the Primary School system for the marginalized poor. This will set the stage for an improved future for this group. The state government should get off the mindset that the federal government holds the purse strings in education and therefore they have to wait to get federal government cooperation before they can move on this rather serious issue.

Look at the history, on which issue has the BN government cooperated with the PR government. So, the PR state governments should not wait but should get on with the task of identifying the lands for these schools per the national standards and alienate the land to the schools. This will all surely take some time and maybe after this is done the BN government may not want to be outdone and may come up with money and other resources for the remainder.

2) The Pakatan State governments can begin setting up appropriate Citizens groups (NGOs) to begin understanding the many social issues that invariably exist within marginalized groups to determine what needs to be done and then to draw up plans to address them . All they need to do is to work with organizations like Hindraf to set up necessary NGOs for this purpose. They can fund and resource these groups.

The social problems are many and clear plans need to be drawn up to address the issues comprehensively. This is a long haul effort. There are no shortcuts. The problem is multiplying.

There was a recent report that 100,000 Indian youths are involved in some criminal activity (reported by the erstwhile BN Human Resources Minister). In the census quoted above,in the year 2000, a total of 234,000 male Indian youths are in the age group of 15 to 29 years. This means about 40% of the Indian youth are at risk. This is a very serious problem by any measure.

This probably is what Uthayakumar was always alluding to in saying what he did that got him into Kamunting. Can he be faulted for saying what he did, when such a big problem has crept up on all of us?

Think what happens when they become parents in their turn. Think how this problem will multiply. So, who is going to address this problem if it continues to languish because of the racial mindset in everything? The Pakatan Government should start seeing these things with a national perspective. These are clear nation building issues. Our human potential is going wasted because of the mismanagement of the country. This is a significant opportunity for Pakatan to live out its Electoral promise of a New Dawn.

3) There are significant issues of citizenship documentation within large numbers of this marginalized group. Resources can be applied by the PR State Governments to locate and to resolve the problems, as the BN recently did in Lubok Antu in Sarawak.

The problem with the birth certificates and ICs is a problem of poverty, ignorance, mistaken beliefs, attitudes, practices of customary marriages, out of wedlock births, child runaways, broken homes and such issues that directly are caused by poverty and deprivation.

To top it all off, the Government Bureaucracy is totally insensitive to this situation. They do not provide an iota of assistance to help these people regain their lost rights. Lately the JPN is going through some motions to do something about all this. The mindsets at the counters in the various Pendaftaran offices are that the applicants deserve the problem they find themselves in. They should have done it right in the first place, but did not, so whose fault is it. Anyway they are of Indian ethnic origin – pendatang. This is the mindset and anyone who does not think so, should go and spend a day at the Pendaftaran office and they will find out themselves.
Plus, the procedures for correcting this situation are so complicated, that even the strong among us can be brought to our knees. What of these people.

The PR State Governments should start a publicity campaign, identify the people with such problems, help them to meet all the documentation requirements and then work through the bureaucracy to finally resolve the issues and get these people what is their right. This will truly be the kind of thing that a Government of the people should be doing for the people.

This is another very serious situation, as there are so many without these documentation who are being exploited in various ways, who are underemployed, who are just waiting to find a way out by engaging in criminal activity. They have anyway been excluded.

4 Allocate affordable housing for those in dire need of such housing. The State Government sponsored NGOs can be assigned to identify and work with the respective Administrative units to appropriately allocate low cost housing units to those in true need.

There apparently are low cost housing projects with one or two room units available – but few people seem to know about this.
All of this can be readily and easily addressed by the Pakatan Governments.

5) Small business help can be provided to create employment opportunities for the poor and marginalized. These include providing micro credit to purchase the basic tools of some trade, providing some licences, maybe identifying spaces and providing for such other basic needs of people in these situations.

These could include training programs in the conduct of business or training in some skills that can create a viable and sustainable income. A Government of the people should take all this seriously and start on some program like this. Again NGO assistance can also be used.

6) Training programs to develop employable skills can be initiated for the 18 – 25 group as special programs for the groups at risk. Skills that will help them realize their human potential.

There are agencies that can be recruited to advise the Governments on such programs. There is plenty that has already been done for the Bumiputra community in this area; similar efforts need to be instituted for the marginalized Indian poor.

It is time that something comprehensive like all of this is attempted so that the Indian poor and marginalized can see that they equal citizens of Malaysia, so they can regain their pride and position in our country. Also this will certainly make them feel they were right in supporting the Pakatan Government in these 5 states.
The attempts to address the issues must be sincere, not superficial, not piecemeal but comprehensive. The issue is National in character and must not be argued away as a narrow racial issue, as I see being done often when this problem is raised. This is what the aggrieved Indians are looking for immediately. All other social and political reforms that are needed only come after.

So, Pakatan Government, what are you all waiting for?

Altantuya's Killers Judged Guilty

ImageBut the case leaves an indelible stain on Malaysia's political and legal systems

Two Malaysian police bodyguards have been sentenced to death for the October 2006 murder of Mongolian translator Altantuya Shaariibuu, in a case that raised as many questions as were ever answered, including who, according to the testimony of one of the two, offered RM50,000 to RM100,000 to kill her.

The trial of Chief Inspector Azilah Hadri and Corporal Sirul Azhar Umar has been intricately connected to the fortunes of Najib Tun Razak, who was installed as Malaysia's prime minister last Friday. Azilah and Sirul served as bodyguards in an elite police unit supervised by Najib, then the country's deputy prime minister. Also on trial with the two, but acquitted without having to put on a defense, was Altantuya's jilted lover and one of Najib's best friends, political analyst Abdul Razak Baginda. Razak Baginda almost immediately left Malaysia for Oxford, where he is seeking a doctorate degree.

According to the Associated Press, the two men listened impassively as High Court Judge Zaki Yasin ruled that he found their defense "unbelievable" as "each of them are blaming the other." He said he was convicting "both of you as charged" with murdering 28-year-old Mongolian Altantuya Shaariibuu sometime between Oct. 19 and Oct. 20, 2006. "They failed to raise any reasonable doubt" of the prosecution's case, Zaki said. Lawyers said the two would appeal the verdict.

From the start of the trial, during which prosecutors and the judge were hurriedly switched without warning, to the end, when the verdict was delayed since last February until after the United Malays National Organisation convention that named Najib party leader and thus prime minister, the case has appeared more about suppressing evidence and protecting Najib than determining the guilt or innocence of the accused.

By several accounts, the 28-year-old woman, who was executed with two bullets to the head in a jungle clearing near the suburban city of Shah Alam and whose body was blown up with military explosives, was at the very center of a massive scandal scandal over the purchase by Malaysia of three French submarines. Altantuya, then Razak Baginda's lover, reportedly was the translator in the purchase, which cost Malaysian taxpayers €1 billion (US$1.32 billion in current dollars), netted a company controlled by Razak Baginda €114 million (US$151 million) in "commissions," according to testimony in Malaysia's parliament.

By Razak Baginda's own cautioned statement to the police, he grew tired of Altantuya and broke up with her after a year-long affair in which he gifted her thousands of dollars. However, she flew to Malaysia to demand as much as US$500,000, according to other reports, for her part in the purchase of the submarines. As she stood in front of Razak Baginda's house, demanding that he come out, the two policemen, accompanied by a policewoman, swooped down on her, tossed her into the back of a car, and she was never seen again.

In a cautioned statement that was never introduced in court, Sirul testified that he and Azilah had attached explosives to the woman's legs up to her abdomen and her head, raising questions why they had sought to destroy her abdomen rather, for instance, than her hands, which could identify the body. In his statement, he said that as she begged for her life, she said she was pregnant. Presumably the explosives would have destroyed any DNA samples of whose baby was inside her, if any.

P. Balasubramaniam, a private detective hired by Razak Baginda to keep the woman away from him, swore in an intensively detailed statutory declaration that he was told by Razak Baginda that Altantuya had been the lover of Najib as well, that she liked anal sex, and that she had been passed on to the analyst because Najib intended to become prime minister and didn't want a sex scandal hanging over his head. In the declaration, Balasubramaniam said he had seen text messages from Najib after Altantuya disappeared, telling him to "be cool" and that he would take care of the matter.

After delivering his statutory declaration, which can be found here, Balasubramaniam was summoned to a Kuala Lumpur police station, where he was forced into a total recantation of the document. He and his entire family disappeared. There apparently was never an attempt made by the court trying the three men to find him and ask him to testify as to the accuracy of the statement.

Myriads of other questions remain over the trial. In Sirul's cautioned statement, which can be found here, the police constable said Azhar told him Najib's chief of staff, Musa Safri, had ordered them to pick up the young woman. Azhar first suggested going to the Hotel Malaya, where she and two friends were staying, to kill them all, but decided not to because of the presence of closed-circuit cameras. Neither of the two was ever asked in court about Musa's involvement in the matter, nor about their relationship to Najib.

Burmaa Oyunchimeg, Altantuya's cousin who accompanied her to Kuala Lumpur and one of the two women whom Sirul and Azhar presumably intended to kill in the hotel, testified in the trial that she had seen a picture of Najib together with Razak Baginda and Altantuya. Both the prosecution and the defense leapt to their feet and asked that her testimony be stricken and she was never asked about it again. She also testified that when she attempted to leave the country, there was no indication that she had ever arrived there, leading to questions of how her records had disappeared from the immigration department. No questions were ever asked about how that could have happened either.

When Razak Baginda was first brought into court in June of 2007, his wife, Mazlina, shouted, asking why he was being brought to trial when he had no ambition to become prime minister, which could have been construed as a reference to the allegation of Najib's relationship to Altantuya that was described b Balasubramaniam. Mazlina has never been asked to explain her statement.

Nor has Najib, along with Musa Safri, ever been asked to appear in court or been questioned about the case. With his elevation to prime minister, it appears unlikely that either ever will be, unless Sirul or Azilah were somehow to give a jailhouse interview about what really happened in a case in which Malaysia's legal and political systems have closed tightly around the establishment to protect it. There is no indication of what will be done with the two urns containing the attractive young woman's bones that were exhibited in court.

Imagine

If only the governments of 1,400, 2,000 and 3,500 years ago also saw what Umno sees today. How nice this country would be. It would be a beautiful country undivided by people believing in so many religions.

NO HOLDS BARRED

Raja Petra Kamarudin

Imagine there's no heaven
It's easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today...

Imagine there're no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace...

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one.

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world...

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one.

(John Lennon)

*************************************************
Now imagine this.

Imagine if 1,400 years ago, the Mekah government had introduced the Internal Security Act, the Sedition Act, the Societies Act, the Official Secrets Act, the Printing Press and Publications Act, the Police Act and all those many Acts that exist in Malaysia, today.

Under these Acts, no citizen may gather in groups of more than four people without government permission. No citizen may publish books or periodicals without a permit. No citizen may utter any statement that may make the people turn against the government and the established system as inherited from their ancestors before that. No citizen may oppose the government or say anything perceived harmful to the government. No citizen may reveal the shortcomings, excesses, transgressions and wrongdoings of the government. In short, no citizen is free to talk or act in any way that the government does not like.

Imagine if that happened 1,400 years ago. Then the man they call Muhammad would have been prevented from talking and spreading what the government then considered as lies and harmful to the established system. He and his band of followers would have been arrested and thrown into jail. The established order would have been saved and would not have been perverted by the teachings of this man called Muhammad who claimed that his message came from God.

And if they had also done the same 2,000 years and 3,500 years ago, there would be no Jews, Christians and Muslims in the world today. And, today, the world would be a peaceful place. Malaysia too would be a peaceful place. There would be no Jews, Christians and Muslims in Malaysia. Every Malaysian would be a follower of just one religion. Malays, Chinese and Indians would share the same religion and would not be divided by so many religions like they are today.

No wonder those people in Umno defend laws such as the Internal Security Act, the Sedition Act, the Societies Act, the Official Secrets Act, the Printing Press and Publications Act, the Police Act and all those many Acts that exist in Malaysia, today. Umno says these laws maintain peace and stability in Malaysia. If only the governments of 1,400, 2,000 and 3,500 years ago also saw what Umno sees today. How nice this country would be. It would be a beautiful country undivided by people believing in so many religions.

Umno realises what those people of 1,400, 2,000 and 3,500 years ago did not realise. The Internal Security Act, the Sedition Act, the Societies Act, the Official Secrets Act, the Printing Press and Publications Act, the Police Act and all those many Acts that exist in Malaysia are good laws. These laws unite people and keep them together. These laws prevent irresponsible people from dividing the citizens.

If only they realised this 1,400, 2,000 and 3,500 years ago. Today, we would all be one people of one religion and not divided by so many religions. But the governments of 1,400, 2,000 and 3,500 years ago failed to see this. And they failed to introduce laws such as the Internal Security Act, the Sedition Act, the Societies Act, the Official Secrets Act, the Printing Press and Publications Act, the Police Act and all those many Acts that exist in Malaysia, today.

And that is why we are so divided, divided by many religions that were allowed to flourish and were not nipped in the bud in the early stages before they spread and became popular. The Internal Security Act, the Sedition Act, the Societies Act, the Official Secrets Act, the Printing Press and Publications Act, the Police Act, and all those many Acts that exist in Malaysia could have prevented this, 1,400, 2,000 and 3,500 years ago.

And that is why Umno wants all these Acts to be maintained. Umno realises that allowing citizens too much freedom is bad for the country. It divides the people. And this was proven when 1,400, 2,000 and 3,500 years ago the governments of that time did not introduce these laws which would have prevented all these new religions from emerging, thus dividing the people like how they are divided today.

Tsu Koon – Super Minister or Superfluous Minister in Najib Cabinet?

Gerakan Youth leader Lim Si Ping yesterday hailed the Gerakan President, Tan Sri Dr. Koh Tsu Koon as the “Super Minister” in the Najib Cabinet who is tasked with monitoring the performance of the other 28 Ministers.

Is Tsu Koon a Super Minister or Superfluous Minister in the Najib Cabinet?

If one is to strike out the most superfluous Minister in the 29-member Najib Cabinet without causing any ripples of having to find a replacement, it will be difficult to find another candidate than Tsu Koon and his portfolio.

How pathetic – to end up as a Superfluous Minister when he should be a Super Minister after 18 years as Penang Chief Minister, especially as he is the most senior Barisan Nasional government leader in the Najib Cabinet after the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyideen Yassin and Information, Communication, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Rais Yatim.

He is even more senior as Barisan Nasional government leader than the other Umno leaders including Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishamuddin Hussein, Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Rural Development and Territories Minister Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal, International Trade and Industry Minister, Datuk Seri Mustapha Mohamad and Minister in PM’s Department (Law and Parliament) Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz, not to mention the MCA President and Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat, the MIC Minister for Human Resources, Dr. S. Subramaniam or the Minister for Agricultural Development and Commodities, Tan Sri Bernard Dompok.

As a flyweight in the Najib Cabinet, who will believe Tsu Koon can wield the powers and influence to monitor the performance particularly of Umno heavyweights like Muhyiddin, Hishammuddin, Zahid or Shafie Apdal – when as Penang Chief Minister, he could not exercise authority or influence over Penang Umno divisions or branches, as illustrated by the “Chinese are squatters” political scandal precipitated by the Umno Bukit Bendera division chairman, Ahmad Ismail during the Permatang Pauh by-election last August?

However Gerakan national leaders are not so naive like the Gerakan Youth chief as to believe that Tsu Koon has become a Super Minister, which is why the Gerakan Central Working Committee in its statement on April 10 welcoming the Gerakan President’s appointment into the Cabinet through the “backdoor” of Parliament was careful to touch only on Tsu Koon’s role to monitor the performance of the 40 Deputy Ministers, omitting all reference to Ministers.

Clearly even the Gerakan CWC knows that it is ludicrous to expect a flyweight like Tsu Koon to monitor the ministerial performance of Umno heavyweights like Muhyiddin, Hishammuddin, Zahid or Shafie Apdal.

Never mind about being the “monitor” for the other Ministers on their Key Performance Indicators to gauge their respective ministerial performance and achievements.

Is Tsu Koon prepared to set a KPI example for the rest of the Cabinet by being the first to make public the framework and structure of the KPI to evaluate the success or otherwise of his carrying out of the Ministerial portfolio to promote national unity?

Najib had said when announcing his new Cabinet that he has created a separate portfolio in the PM’s Department to oversee national unity which will “adopt creative approaches towards promoting national unity, in line with the concept of One Malaysia. People First. Performance Now.”

In other words, whether Najib’s slogan of “One Malaysia. People First. Performance Now” succeed or fail as miserably as those of his predecessors, like Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s “Cemerlang, Gemilang, Terbilang” and Dr. Mahathir Mohamad’s “Amanah, Berseh, Cekap” , will be on Tsu Koon’s shoulders.

Is this what Gerakan Youth leader meant when he said Tsu Koon is the Super Minister in the Najib Cabinet?

How can the Malaysian public evaluate Tsu Koon’s KPI to assess the success or failure in ensuring that Najib’s “1Malaysia. People First. Performance Now” is instantly the overarching philosophy of the Najib government in all fields and not just empty rhetoric?

Is Tsu Koon able to come out with a website without any delay so that Malaysians who have complaints about the failures of the government in measuring up to Najib’s “1Malaysia. People First. Performance Now” slogan can lodge their complaints and seek immediate redress?

Way of the Iron Lady

The Sunday Star
BY SHAHANAAZ HABIB

The formidable Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz, who was ousted as Wanita Umno chief, says she is beyond hurt. While she may write letters to the new Prime Minister on issues she feels strongly about, there’ll be none to her successor.

Since losing the Wanita Umno Chief post some three weeks ago, Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz has been keeping a rather low profile.

Except for a brief sms through the media congratulating her victor and the new line-up, the Iron Lady has stayed mum on the Wanita polls.
“Don’t egg me on because you won’t get anything from me. (Under the initial Wanita transition plan) I was supposed to go in June (2009) anyway so what’s the problem? It just got accelerated in March with the big hassle and so what?

“It’s no skin off my back. There is no need to speak about it because it is done and finished. There is no anger, no rancour. Life goes on. Let’s talk about something else,” said Rafidah, who was delighted to be off to Hong Kong the next day for some shopping.

The former International Trade and Industry Minister who used to be running all over the world negotiating market access and trade agreements for Malaysia now has more time on her hands.

She can now have long lunches with friends, spend time with her five grandchildren whom she clearly dotes on and get down to writing another book.

“I am fully occupied. I find that there are only so few hours in a day. You would be surprised how time flies,” said Rafidah, who has kept herself busy with the Malaysia-Europe Forum, the Global Coalition for Efficient Logistics (Gcel) and being chairman of the Asia Logistics Council.

Rafidah was the country’s youngest senator at 31 and the first female parliamentary secretary before rising up the ranks to become Deputy Finance Minister at the age of 34, then Public Enterprise Minister when she was only 37 – a real feat for women in those days – before landing on the plum job of Inter­national Trade and Industry Minister, a post which she held for 21 years and where she made her name.

After the 2008 general elections, even though she won the Kuala Kangsar parliament seat, the then Prime Minister Datuk Seri (now Tun) Abdullah Ahmad Badawi dropped her from the Cabinet.

And in this year’s March 25 Wanita Umno election, her deputy in the wing, Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil, who had lost the Lembah Pantai parliamentary seat, challenged Rafidah for the wing’s top post and trounced her by a sizeable 227 votes.

Women’s rights

Some have argued that when Rafidah was Wanita chief (1984 to March 2009 with a one-term break from 1996-2000 when Datuk Dr Siti Zaharah Sulaiman was at the helm), she did not do enough to champion women’s causes or rights.

Refuting such claims, she said she has been fighting for women’s rights since way back in the 1960s, “before some of these women were even born”.

She had worked with Tun Fatimah Hashim (former Wanita Umno chief and Cabinet minister) and the National Council of Women’s Organisations (NCWO) in setting up the Women’s Department, Hawa (Secretariat for Women’s Affairs), Nawem (National Associa­tion for Women Entrepreneurs of Malaysia), culminating in a Ministry for Women.

“Who do you think got it done if not us working as a team? Shahrizat – sorry to say – was nowhere to be found then.”

Rafidah had also fought for separate tax assessment for working women, equal pay for equal work and permanent status for women in the civil service. In the past, women were employed in the civil service only on a temporary basis, which did not qualify them the perks that came with a permanent position.

“If that is not fighting for the women, I don’t know what is. But once we set up the (Women’s) ministry, we expect the minister to carry on and do the work.

“If there is any failure of the (Women’s) ministry, blame the minister concerned, which means the minister was less than efficient in carrying all that,” she said in an apparent dig at Shahrizat, who was the Women, Family and Community Minister and has just been re-appointed to the post.

As far as Rafidah is concerned, the structure for women to go as far as they want to is already in place and Malaysian women should now stop talking about women’s rights, quotas and just put their money where their mouth is.

“When a man succeeds, you don’t hear them talking about men’s rights. They just go and do it,” she says, adding that women too should just go out and do it.

For her, a person should be recognised because they are good and not because they are women.

“I don’t believe in glass ceilings. There is no glass ceiling. The concept of glass ceilings must have been put forward by men who want to put women in a psychological cage or by women who want to give excuses for not going as far as they can,” she said.

Rafidah also absolutely hates the concept of setting aside a 30% quota for women. “If there are more able women, why limit it to 30%?”

Some say that given her calibre, intelligence and experience, Rafidah would have made a good deputy president or Prime Minister but her gender stood in the way.

This is something Rafidah dismisses.

“I don’t want to. Why? Because I got other things in my life that I want to do. If I wanted to be deputy, I would be politicking, having facades and pretending that I am the best person around. I don’t want to do that.

“To me, a minister’s job is good enough and I can do the job to the best of my abilities. How many people get to be a minister for so long?” she said, adding that if any woman wants to make politics her vocation and aims to go as high as she wants, nothing can stop her.

Charm not the way

The sharp-tongued Rafidah is also quick to say that women should never resort to using their charm to get their way.

“Keep your charm to yourself and for your private moments. Don’t use your charm to win over voters or get people to agree with you. That is wrong,” she said in reference to Shahrizat, who told the women in the recent by-elections to turn their charm on voters.

“People must see the quality in you – the strength. This cannot be turned on and off. It’s either there or not. Basically, the most important thing is to know that you are a person of integrity, responsibility, and someone who can do that job,” she said, adding that she would never dream of trying to charm her way through a WTO negotiation or FTA or bilateral trade discussion when she was International Trade and Industry Minister.

“I can never charm Malaysia’s position onto the table. You have to make your point and put your point across the best way possible. We are talking about deadly serious matters – Malaysia’s trade and market. There is no time for smiling and charming your way where your national interests are concerned.”

As for Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak taking over as Prime Minister, Rafidah says that after having worked with him all these years, she is confident of his ability.

“But you must remember that Najib can’t work alone. No matter how good the leader is, he has to have a good team – one with integrity and who works with diligence to deliver what the Prime Minister has promised.

“As the Prime Minister, he can enunciate things but if the others whom he has mandated to do the job don’t deliver, there would be a gap between the leadership promise and expectation and what’s happening on the ground,” she said, adding that people’s expectations these days were so high.

She also cautions ministers against becoming “yes men” and being afraid to speak up.

“If everyone says ‘yes’ to Najib, I really pity him. In these challenging times, nobody should just say ‘yes’ so as not to offend him or to make life easy for themselves.”

Rafidah, who confesses that in her 22 years with Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s administration, she enjoyed “every squabble, disagreement and every jeling jeling (a side glance away to show annoyance)” during discussions and Cabinet meetings.

“Whatever was said was with good intentions and sincere. There were no ill feelings at the end of the discussions.”

Rafidah will not be blogging nor will she be criticising Najib in public. But that does not mean that she will not say her piece.

“If I feel strongly about something, I will not hesitate to write to him. I would rather write than talk behind his back,” said Rafidah, who is known for her handwritten letters that at times caused quite a stir in the past.

“Tun Mahathir maybe has a trunk full of letters from me on all kinds of issues. Pak Lah has a few because we were together only for a few years.

“When the temperature rises and the issue is hot, my words become bigger and there are only three or four words in one line!”

But she certainly won’t be writing to the new Wanita chief.

“When people challenge the incumbent, obviously the understanding is that the challenger is the better person so surely the ‘better person’ will not accept opinions from someone who is not as good. And I don’t like to interfere anyway,” she said.

On Dr Mahathir re-joining Umno, Rafidah says she is happy to see him return.

“If you ask me, he shouldn’t have left to begin with. I regard it as a symbolic leaving because he was not happy with the previous administration,” she said.

However, while people still hold Dr Mahathir in high respect, he does appear to be meddling and there are some who chastise their former leader for this because it does cause difficulty to the Government, she added.

Ex-leaders should convey their thoughts to the Prime Minister in office, but this should be through the right channels and not through the media because when harm is done they cannot go back and repair the damage, said the Iron Lady.

MIC top brass did not discuss 'pull out' - Malaysiakini

MIC deputy president G Palanivel today said he was unaware of any meeting of top officials to discuss the possibility of pulling out the party’s representatives from the new cabinet.
MCPX

palanivel"If such a meeting was held, I would have known about it. MIC secretary-general Dr S Subramaniam and information chief M Saravanan have also denied knowledge of the proposal," he added in a statement.

Subramaniam is MIC's sole full minister overseeing the human resources portfolio while Saravanan is the deputy federal territories minister.

Apart from the duo, the party has one more deputy minister, SK Devamany (Prime Minister's Department).

However, Palanivel agreed that MIC - being a senior partner of Barisan Nasional - should be given greater representation in the cabinet and in other decision-making bodies in the government, government agencies and government-linked companies.

He also hoped that newly minted Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak will rope in experienced people into advisory positions as well.

He added that Najib once told him that he does not belief in putting 'all the eggs in one basket' and expressed hope that the premier 'will just do that'.

Unresolved issues

Palanivel was responding to a Malaysiakini report yesterday, which quoted an insider saying that MIC was mulling pulling out its representatives in the cabinet.

The insider said MIC was deliberating on doing so because of many unresolved issues, chief among them is the 'treatment accorded by the new administration to the Indian community'.

He said MIC was willing to become a standalone party within BN and concentrate its efforts to unite the Indian community.

"The decision is expected to be made soon, perhaps at the next MIC central working committee meeting later this month," he added.

According to the party insider who is close to the MIC leadership, topping the list of grouses is that the Indians were still being 'treated as second or even third-class' citizens in the country.

Secondly, and perhaps the main reason for the pull-out threat, is because the new cabinet line-up saw the absence of a senior ministerial portfolio for MIC despite the party's repeated appeal to former premier Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and current Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak to return the Works Ministry to MIC.

samy vellu exclusive on tamil schools 080708 06MIC president S Samy Vellu had declined to comment on the matter but those close to him claimed that the veteran politician is upset with the cabinet line-up with regards to his party.

The Malaysiakini report was also picked up by Tamil dailies today, with the Samy Vellu-owned Tamil Nesan running it as the top story on its front-page.

Not a junior ministry

Meanwhile, Palanivel said he could not comment much on the report since he is unaware of who the senior official (quoted) is. "My policy is not to comment on speculation or unsourced news."

However, he disagreed with the party insider's assertion that the Human Resources Ministry was a junior ministry.

dr s subramaniam interview 210308 01"In many countries, ministries such as human resources, social development ministry and the environment ministry are considered important ministries and are often held by senior ministers.

"As such, I will not term the Human Resources Ministry as a junior ministry. In fact it is an important ministry centred on human capital development," he said.

On a personal note, Palanivel said given his relatively new experience, Subramaniam has been doing a good job as minister.

"Our two deputy ministers are also doing a good job," he added.

290411 SlangStation 2

CERITA KARTUN KANAK-KANAK

By RwindRaj(cryingvoices.blogspot.com)
Pada zaman dahulu ada seorang raja yang bernama, Baginda TutanHakum, dia adalah seorang Raja yang kejam tetapi lincah dan pandai.. baginda telah menghantar 2 orang Hulubalang yang terkuat untuk membunuh kekasih yang tidak dicintainya lagi. Dengar Khabar rakyat di negeri Raja tersebut, kekasihnya itu ingin mendapatkan sebahagian harta Raja tersebut yang juga hak Kekasihnya itu. hulubalang pun pergi la membawa kekasih Raja yang sedang mengandung itu ke sebuah hutan di Puncak alam.. oppsss silap.. Puncak kemongolon... lalu membunuh kekasih raja itu dengan menggunakan bom c4, oppss dulu mana ada bom.. meriam buluh yang diikat diserata badan kekasih raja itu.
Hancurlah badan si kekasih itu yang berasal dari mongo.. oppss silap lagi.. negeri manggis.. Raja Amat gembira!! baginda pun sungguh suka hati dan ingin memberikan cenderahati kepada kedua hulubalang itu.. tetapi Tuhan Maha kuasa telah pun menyedarkan rakyat dan memberi sedikit bukti yang kukuh mengenai kaitan Raja dalam pembunuhan itu.. masyarakat pun marah terhadap Raja, Baginda ingin membetulkan keadaan dan menyuruh hulubalang-hulubalang itu untuk mengaku membunuh altan... oppsss salah taip.. kekasih raja baginda.. lupa koma, baginda, lalu mereka pun mengaku membunuh.. tetapi Raja yang pandai ini.. mempunyai satu helah muslihat, selama perbicaraan kes pembunuhan itu, Raja menyuruh hulubalang hulubalang itu tidak menunjukkan muka mereka kepada rakyat jelata, pada hari untuk menjatuhkan hukuman gantung sampai mati pada mereka, Raja telah menukarkan orang lain yang serupa rupa tubuh mereka yang berasal dari Indon opsss silap lagi... dari indokomatra(negara Jiran taklukan Baginda).. Kedua Hulubalang itu telah disuruh berpindah ke negara lain dengan harta yang mencukupi oleh Raja Baginda dan naji.. opss salah taip lagi..Raja itu telah menjadi Raja selamanya tetapi risau memikirkan Raja petra.. opss salah taip.. raja tetra yang arif tentang sikap Raja itu... itu lah cerita Kartun Kanak Kanak Negeri itu.. Faham Tak Kanak-Kanak yang sedang menghisap Jari melihat adengan adengan drama negeri itu? Sekian Tamat dan Hancur Celaka! 

Another police torture victim?

As Authorities Protects, Police Brutality Continues

p4110159

KLANG, April 11 — Some 100 people today protested at the Klang police headquarters over a youth said to have drunk thinner while in custody, months after A. Kugan died in mysterious circumstances while in detention.

Police say Adi Anwar Mansor drank the spirit despite being handcuffed while being interrogated last Tuesday.

The 23-year-old suspected drug trafficker was rushed to the Tengku Ampuan Rahimah Hospital where he was admitted to the intensive care unit.

His family is crying foul and have pointed out there was no way Adi could have drunk the thinner as he was handcuffed.

p4110188

His mother Jiknah Harun lodged a police report today, saying she did not believe he drank the thinner voluntarily.

She said there was no reason for Adi to do that as he was married and has a three-month-old son.

Jiknah, 59, claimed her son was instead assaulted with a rubber hose besides being kicked and beaten as his head and face had injuries.

p4110194

She is demanding police free Adi on bail as she is concerned for his safety and wanted him treated at another hospital.

Jiknah said her son, who is now in a normal ward, is being handcuffed to his bed.

She further alleged doctors are only speaking to police about his condition.

p4110184

Outside the police station, angry protesters from PKR Youth and several non-government organisations carried placards calling for the resignation of the Selangor police chief over the Adi’s treatment.

Klang MP Charles Santiago and Kapar MP S. Manikavasagam were there and were allowed into the station after initially being refused entry.

Santiago said police should form an independent body to probe the serious allegations while the policemen involved should be suspended.

Klang police chief Assistant Commissioner Mohamad Mat Yusop said investigations are under way and the findings will be made known to the public.

Report : themalaysianinsider , picture by Jayathas (police watch Malaysia)

Upset at not being made minister, Samy Vellu threatens BN

By Baradan Kuppusamy

KUALA LUMPUR, April 11 — Embattled MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu, whose wish to return to the Cabinet was rejected by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, is playing his final gambit by threatening to withdraw the sole MIC minister.

The Malaysian Insider understands Samy Vellu has little support except from party vice-president S. Sothinathan in this gambit which was sparked after Najib rejected all hints last week to make Samy Vellu a senator and put him back into the Cabinet as works minister.

Samy Vellu complained to his supporters that if Gerakan president Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon could be made a senator and minister, he should have been accorded the same privilege.

Samy Vellu is also unhappy that Selangor Gerakan chief A. Kohilan Pillay has been made a deputy foreign minister, a high-profile post for an Indian.

He feels it should have been given to one of his nominees.

After failing to get himself re-appointed, Samy Vellu tried to propose two additional deputy ministers posts for Sothinathan and Senator Loga Chitrakalla, according to MIC sources.

The sources said a close aide of Samy Vellu had leaked the story that Samy Vellu was considering pulling out Human Resources Minister Datuk Dr S. Subramaniam and deputy ministers Datuk S.K. Devamany and Datuk M. Saravanan, to put pressure on Najib to give additional positions in the Cabinet.

The leaked story is said to be timed for the MIC central working committee meeting on Thursday where Samy Vellu has two choices — to work up his loyalists into making a “do or die” stand over the issue or deny the leaked stories and walk away from the issue.

MIC leaders are divided on whether he will carry out the threat.

“Except for Sothinathan, Samy Vellu is alone in this gambit,” said a senior MIC leader. “He has been asked to wrap up and hand over power in the party by mid-year and that has upset him. He wants to put his man as deputy and serve his three-year term as president before handing over.”

"Najib has told him not a day longer than necessary," the sources said. "This is the real spark for the rebellion against Najib."

Samy Vellu, who seriously believes he can make a comeback, was elected president for an 11th term last month and wants to complete the three-year term before handing over to a yet unnamed successor.

The Malaysian Insider understands from aides that the party's government representatives were shocked and perplexed by the threat.

Samy Vellu’s plan to pull the ministers out of the Cabinet but keep the MIC in the Barisan Nasional coalition, party insiders said, is a scheme hatched out of emotional disappointment with the Cabinet outcome.

“What is the rationale for pulling out of the Cabinet but remaining in the Barisan? If he pulls out of the Cabinet, then MIC must also pull out of the various state executive councils in the country,” the MIC leader said.

Former MIC vice-president Datuk M. Muthupalaniappan, when contacted by The Malaysian Insider, said he takes the threat seriously.

“It is not advisable to pull out of the Cabinet because we will be rendered blind on how the government is thinking and the decisions that are being made,” he said.

“It will be a great disadvantage to the Indian community,” he said.

Another former MIC leader said on condition of anonymity that there would be stiff resistance to the idea at Thursday’s CWC meeting.

“This is one matter Samy Vellu cannot carry through,” he said. “There is too much fear and self interest involved. They will not allow Samy Vellu to carry out this threat.”

But other MIC leaders said a desperate Samy Vellu is capable of even pulling out of the BN and joining the Pakatan Rakyat.

Ibu Adi Anwar buat laporan polis - anaknya dizalimi





Belumpun reda kes A Kugan yang dibelasah hingga mati dalam lokap polis USJ awal tahun ini, satu lagi kes menggemparkan rakyat mengenai tindakan zalim yang dipercayai dilakukan oleh pihak polis di Ibu Pejabat Polis Daerah Klang.

Kali ini, Adi Anwar Mansor dibelasah dan dipercayai diberi minum pelarut hingga menyebabkan dia koma dan dimasukkan ke unit rawatan rapi Hospital Tengku Ampuan Rahimah, Klang 8 April lalu.

Adi Anwar, 25 tahun kini dalam keadaan stabil dan menceritakan kejadian yang berlaku kepada ibunya, Jiknah Harun yang mendapati banyak kesan lebam di beberapa bahagian badannya.

Disebabkan tidak puashati terhadap layanan pihak polis di lokap berkenaan, Jiknah hari ini membuat laporan di IPD Klang.

Dia ditemani peguam N Surendran, ADUN Kapar, S Manikavasagam, Ahli Parlimen Klang, Chales Santiago, Ketua Angkatan Muda KeADILan, Shamsul Iskandar, Ketua Pemuda Pas Selangor, Solehan Muhi dan pemimpin Hindraf, Jayath ass.

Dalam laporan itu, antara lain Jiknah meminta pihak polis membebaskan anaknya dan menyiasat punca kejadian yang menyebabkan anaknya terpaksa menerima rawatan kecemasan.

“Saya baru balik ke rumah, anak saya cakap, mak abang ada kat hospital wad ICU. Saya bersiap dan terus pergi, bila saya sampai ada guard tak bagi saya naik. Saya kena tunggu sampai puluk 12, saya sampai pukul 10, berapa jam saya nak tunggu. Bila saya naik tengok, saya dah tak boleh cakap apa-apa, saya sebagai ibu, saya yang bela dia, janganlah pukul dia macam tu, kalau dia bersalahpun,” Jiknah menceritakan keadaan ketika dia menemui anaknya di hospital.

Peguam yang mewakili beliau, N Surendran berkata, Adi Anwar memberitahu bahawa dia dipukul di dalam kereta polis dan kemudian dibawa ke balai dan dipukul lagi di bahagian kepala, ditendang di belakang dan dipukul dengan host getah sehingga dia tidak tahan kesakitan.

Ahli Parlimen Klang, Chales Santiago mahu pihak polis menyiasat bagaimana Adi Anwar boleh meminum pelarut berkenaan.

“Apa yang mendesak sampai saudara Adi Anwar terpaksa minum tinner, menjadi persoalan penting. Mengapa? Adakah dia tak boleh tahan kena pukul oleh itu dia terpaksa minum tinner atau apakah sebab lain dia minum tinne. Itu mesti disiasat,” katanya.

Ketua Angkatan Muda KeADILan, Shamsul Iskandar pula berkata, pihak polis tidak boleh sewenang-wenangnya mengambil tindakan seperti ini kerana Adi Anwar hanya disyaki.

“Tidak boleh dikenakan tindakan mengikut selera, untuk menghukum atau menzalimi sesiapa kerana belum tentu seseorang yang ditahan itu bersalah.

“Saya ingin mendesak Najib supaya mengutamakan perlaksanaan refomasi terhadap pasukan polis bagi mengelakkan kejadian seumpama ini berulang.

“Selagi tidak ada badan seperti IPCMC yang memantau perkara ini, saya percaya dan yakin kes ini akan berterusan. Mula-mula Kugan India, hari ini Melayu, besok cina, lusa mungkin iban, tulat mungkin kadazan,” tegas beliau.

Sementara itu, Ahli Dewan Undangan Negeri Kapar, S Manikavasagam meminta supaya satu siasatan bebas diadakan dan menghukum mereka yang terlibat dalam kes berkenaan.

“Kita tak membela mana-mana penjenayah, kita mempunyai mahkamah, pihak polis boleh tangkap, boleh dakwa, kita boleh, tapi bukan macam ini,” katanya.

Adi Anwar ditahan kira-kira jam 11.30 malam Selasa lalu kerana disyaki terbabit dengan kes dadah, tetapi tiada sebarang bukti ditemui.

Jiknah berkata, tiada sebab anaknya melakukan kesalahan sedemikian kerana dia baru mendapat bayi berusia tiga bulan dan hidupnya sekeluarga gembira.

Ketua polis daerah ACP Mohamad Mat Yusop dilaporkan berkata empat anggota polis berada di dalam lokap ketika Adi Anwar dikatakan minum pelarut berkenaan.
"Apabila anggota-anggota polis itu menyedarinya, ia sudah terlambat kerana kejadian tersebut berlaku dalam masa kurang 10 saat," New Straits Times memetik Mohamad sebagai berkata.

Innocent until proven guilty? Or the other way around?

Image

We can’t apply one standard for our own people and another for the other side. We must have just one standard that applies to all, friends and foes alike. And if we are prepared to overlook allegations and suspicions about our own people, then we must do the same for the other side, Najib included.

THE CORRIDORS OF POWER

Raja Petra Kamarudin

Awhile back, I said, Parti Keadilan Rakyat needs to evaluate the manner in which it chooses its candidates in the elections. This was soon after two of its members from Perak declared that they are now ‘independents’ but will vote with Barisan Nasional. You just can’t be ‘independent’ and at the same time pledge undivided loyalty to a certain political party.

An independent, in the true sense of the word, will not vote along party lines but based on issues. You first look at the issue and then vote accordingly, depending on what is the best for the people who voted for you and put you into office. Unfortunately, since the party ‘allowed’ you to contest that seat which you won, even though it were the voters who gave you the job, you have to demonstrate loyalty to your party and not to the voters. You therefore vote along party lines even if that may not be quite in the interest of the voters.

In reality, that is how it works. The voters come second. The party comes first.

That, basically, is what is wrong with the system. And I am proposing that, come the next general election, the many civil society movements -- including the Blogging community, etc. -- offer candidates to the various parties contesting the elections. This will solve two problems. First would be we would be addressing the problem faced by parties such as Parti Keadilan Rakyat in finding and fielding quality candidates. Second would be to ensure that at least a percentage of the candidates are independents who will not automatically and blindly vote along party lines even when what is being proposed sucks.

And that brings us to the issue of the only ‘independent’ candidate from Pakatan Rakyat, Ibrahim Ali.

Ibrahim Ali is a case in point. Yes, he was or is an independent candidate. But at the same time he is a Malay nationalist who believes in the New Economic Policy and Ketuanan Melayu and Bahasa Malaysia as being the supreme language of this land and whatnot. This spelled doom from the word ‘go’ and Pakatan Rakyat should have smelled trouble from Day One.

The seat that Ibrahim Ali contested is a PAS seat. Ibrahim Ali has or had a very strong relationship with PAS, in particular with Tok Guru Nik Aziz. In short, Ibrahim Ali conned the PAS people and created the impression that he had reformed and had now seen the light and wants to come back to the true path and all the crap.

Ibrahim Ali just used PAS to get a seat. In the by-election before that, Ibrahim Ali contested the state seat in that same parliamentary constituency in a three-corner fight and not only lost but lost his deposit as well. That was how badly he lost. So, this time around, he wanted to ensure that there would not, again, be a three-corner fight and that he would not, again, lose his deposit. He therefore offered himself to PAS and PAS was very happy to have him.

But we must remember, Ibrahim Ali was from the group that left Umno to set up Semangat 46 together with Rais Yatim and many others. And this was the group that swore in the name of God they would never return to Umno even if they died and were reborn and that when Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad dies they are going to urinate on his grave.

Today, all these people are back in Umno and holding positions in the party. Ibrahim Ali wants to first see what the ‘offer’ from Umno is before he considers whether to return to Umno or not. The offer must of course include a Cabinet post. Is Ibrahim Ali a turncoat? If from his point of view, no! And this is because he is not a PAS member or PAS candidate but merely an independent candidate who contested a PAS seat.

I would not have allowed Ibrahim Ali to contest that seat if it was left up to me to decide. And the reason is simple. Ibrahim Ali has a very unstable and inconsistent track record. I would therefore place him way at the top of my list of ‘suspects’. In short, I would pronounce him guilty until proven innocent.

I know this goes against the very grain of justice. One should be considered innocent until proven guilty. Yes, that would be so if that were in a court of law involving a criminal case. But when it involves public office, and involves public funds putting you and keeping you in office, then we have to use the basis of guilty until proven innocent.

Ibrahim Ali has too many flip-flops to his name. We must assume that he is still a flip-flop and has not changed his spots. That may not be fair to Ibrahim Ali, I agree. But what is more important is what is fair to the 50,000 or 100,000 constituents he should be serving. One man has to be sacrificed for the good of 50,000 or 100,000 people who will suffer if he flip-flops, yet again, like he appears to be doing now.

Pakatan Rakyat, in particular Parti Keadilan Rakyat, seems to have a lot of problems with the people it has selected as candidates in the election. Perak fell because two of its representatives were caught with their pants down and had no choice but to go join Umno or else go to jail instead. The RM5 million they received helped as well.

Penang is a similar situation. It’s former Deputy Chief Minister, Mohammad Fairus Khairuddin, was also caught with his pants down and was removed from office. Will he now also go join Umno and collect RM5 million on the way to avoid going to jail? Will we therefore be faced with yet another by-election in Penang soon?

No, we can’t go on like this. How many more by-elections are we going to face just because someone from Parti Keadilan Rakyat has been caught with his or her pants down? There are many others in Pakatan Rakyat, in particular from Parti Keadilan Rakyat, who are prominent on my list of suspects. Anwar Ibrahim and many within the top party leadership also know who they are. They all have to go even if they merajuk (sulk) and resign from the party. There are no two ways about it.

Eli Wong is another case in point, although a most unfortunate case at that. Personally, I like Eli and consider her my friend. In fact, the day the crisis exploded I phoned her and told her not to resign but to stay and fight. But that is my personal view, of course. In the interest of the party and Pakatan Rakyat she has no choice but to go. And allowing her to continue as an EXCO Member in the Selangor State Government is just not on.

We crucified Abdullah Ahmad Badawi because of the US and UN reports alleging that he was involved in the Oil-for-Food scandal. He was alleged to have misused his position to assist his sister-in-law in getting an oil quota from Iraq. It was a mere allegation that surfaced in the US and UN reports. Abdullah was never arrested, charged, put on trial, or found guilty. But the allegation was good enough for us to crucify Abdullah Badawi. Even Tun Dr Mahathir demanded his resignation based on this yet unproven allegation.

That is the fate of those in public office. Normally, you are innocent until proven guilty. But for those in public office, you are guilty until proven innocent. And if we can’t prove your innocence then we have to assume you are guilty.

And is this not the same standards we apply for Najib? Malaysians are demanding that Najib be investigated and cleared of the allegation that he may be involved in Altantuya’s murder. It is not that there is evidence he is. It is that there is no evidence he is not. Those are the standards we apply for Najib, as we did for Abdullah in the Oil-for-Food scandal when we demanded his resignation.

It is most unfortunate that Eli has been dragged through the mud in this manner. But now that she has, whether she is an innocent victim of a conspiracy or not, we have to eliminate any doubts by retiring her. That is the only option open. Once we demonstrate to Umno and the people how we handle cases of this manner, we shall then command the moral high ground and can demand that they prove Najib innocent of murder or else we must assume he is guilty and should therefore leave office.

We can’t apply one standard for our own people and another for the other side. We must have just one standard that applies to all, friends and foes alike. And if we are prepared to overlook allegations and suspicions about our own people, then we must do the same for the other side, Najib included.

Najib has not been proven guilty. It is just that he has not been proven innocent. And since one is innocent until proven guilty then we must assume he is innocent and immediately drop all talk about Najib and Altantuya. Is this what we want to do? Personally, no! A person in public office needs to pass higher standards than innocent until proven guilty. And this includes Eli and Fairus and all those others who appear to have blemishes to their name.

That is the price that comes with public office. And if you can’t afford to pay that price then don’t hold public office. And I personally and openly apologise to Eli and trust that she knows my heart is with her but I shall not allow my fondness for her to cloud my judgment.

CABINET POSITIONS IN PROTEST

The Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC) which is the third largest component party in the Barisan Nasional and who claims to be the 'champions of the Indian community' will decide at its Central Working Committee Meeting in a few days time whether the party officials who have been appointed to newly appointed Prime Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Razak's new Cabinet should resign since MIC feels that they are treated like 'second and third class citizens' by being offered junior ministerial positions.

The MIC had at all material times held the Works Minister's position and since the disastrous 8 March general elections, the MIC had this position taken away and offered a junior position as Human Resources Minister.

MIC President Datuk Seri S Samy Vellu claims that the Indian community seems that MIC is unable to demand anything from UMNO control BN, although every component party have to be treated fairly and squarely. He further claims that the Indian community have been lacking behind since the government had neglected their request for such a long time and since the restructuring of the estates and Indians flocking to the urban life, most Indians were unprepared or not given proper guidance or care, resulting in the community facing many serious problems while Indians are also victimised by the system.

In order for the government to take a serious view, and since our appeal is unheard, a boycott in the Cabinet would force the BN leadership to address the Indian community woes. MIC should no longer be 'bullied' to achieve other communities benefit. Malaysia is made up of various races and its time for the BN federal government to look into their plight and try to resolve most of their grievances rather than giving in to certain communities.

But the Indian community is quite sceptical on whether MIC will make such a move since they could be 'bought'. MIC, which always claims that 'MIC will sink or swim with BN' may be talked out of this plan and the MIC leaders know that it better to hold something rather than becoming 'irrelevant'.

But the Indian community feels that if such a move materialises, the BN federal government would immediately address the grouses which the community have been hoping for such a long time now. With this move, MIC would be able to regain its lost glory with the Indian support returning to them wholeheartedly.

Will MIC take this BOLD STEP?

Dr M unwanted, says Zaid

The Malaysian Insider
By Shannon Teoh

KUALA LUMPUR, April 10 — Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad had no effect on the April 7 by-elections and this shows that people do not want him anymore, says Datuk Zaid Ibrahim.

The former law minister, who has had a running feud with the former prime minister since his move last year to compensate judges sacked by Dr Mahathir in the 1987 judicial crisis, said this in an interview on the “Fairly Current Show”, a short programme that aired on the Internet yesterday.

Zaid, who is widely expected to join Pakatan Rakyat — most likely PKR — soon, also added that his former party, Umno, was too weak to stand up to Dr Mahathir and members were afraid of being ousted like Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, who stepped down as prime minister last week after years of criticism by his predecessor Dr Mahathir.
"There were thousands of people in Sungai Petani they say, but clearly there was no effect," he said of Dr Mahathir's stop in Bukit Selambau in a two-stop blitz that included Bukit Gantang on the last day of campaigning in the by-elections.

PR, in fact, increased its majority in the two seats which, Zaid said, was an indicator of Dr Mahathir's unpopularity.

"He feels that people still want him. This is the problem with strongmen who some call dictators. Sometimes, they don't know they are surrounded by people who tell them their leadership is still needed," he said.

He added that it was the same throughout history, citing Suharto, the former president of Indonesia, and Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe, who also "do not know when they are unwanted".

However, in a recent blog posting, Dr Mahathir continued to insist that Abdullah was still "entirely responsible for all the ills" in Barisan Nasional which led to the electoral defeats as "a leader plays a big role especially in Malaysia and the quality of his leadership affects the behaviour and performance of his subordinates."

Zaid also mocked the idea that Umno wanted its longest-serving president back.

"It is not that Umno wants to take him back but he wants to rejoin. But nobody is brave enough to stop him. This shows Umno is very weak and its leaders are not brave enough to stand up to him because they are afraid of ending up like Pak Lah," he said of Abdullah, who was handpicked by Dr Mahathir but then suffered years of harsh criticism from him.

Zaid cited, as an example, the fact that Khairy Jamaluddin, Abdullah's son-in-law, won comfortably ahead of Dr Mahathir's son Datuk Mukhriz in the Umno Youth chief contest because "he interfered. If not it would be a tougher fight".

Zaid and Dr Mahathir most recently clashed in a war of words over the appointment of Datuk Seri Najib Razak as prime minister, with Dr Mahathir calling Zaid's plea to the King not to appoint Najib "very stupid".

Waspada dengan Hishammuddin Hussein!

Assalamualaikum wbt.

Datuk Seri Anwar,

Saya sangat bimbang dengan perlantikan Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein sebagai Menteri Dalam Negeri yang baru kerana saya khuatir keselamatan Datuk Seri bakal tergugat sekali lagi.

Kita sedia maklum dengan tindakan cucu Datuk Onn Jaafar ini yang sentiasa mencari masalah dengan Datuk Seri sebelum ini. Jadi dengan tindakan sepupunya, Datuk Seri Najib dalam rejim Mahathirisme ini adalah antara kaedah untuk menjahanamkan Datuk Seri dan ini sememangnya peluang Hishammuddin untuk mengenakan Datuk Seri dengan jawatan barunya ini.

Saya cuma boleh senaraikan dua masalah yang Hishammuddin pernah timbulkan berkenaan diri Datuk Seri iaitu;

1. Mengeluarkan kenyataan kononnya Datuk Seri menyokong penggunaan Bahasa Inggeris sewaktu menjadi Menteri Pendidikan satu ketika dahulu.

2. Menuduh Datuk Seri sebagai pengkhianat negara dalam perhimpunan agung UMNO baru-baru ini.

Sebagai orang politik Datuk Seri lebih masak dengan beberapa tindakan lain Hishammuddin yang gemar menimbulkan masalah dan kontroversi demi mencari publisiti murahan.

Semoga Datuk Seri dapat terus bersemangat berjuang dan berdepan dengan pasukan Najib Razak, Hishammuddin Hussein dan Mahathir Mohamad.

Yang benar,

Zin Rahim

After Kugan, Adi Anwar: First test for Hisham = another victim of police torture? (updated)

Updates 6.30pm:

Another article on MK:

The mother of Adi Anwar Mansor, 23, has lodged a police report against the police for allegedly abusing her son while he was under police custody.

“He was kicked on his back, hit on the back of his head and hit with a rubber hose until he could not take the pain,”
wrote housewife Jiknah Harun, 49, in her police report filed at the Klang district police headquarters this morning.

Jiknah said that the details of the assault was related to her by Adi Anwar, who is currently warded at the Tengku Ampuan Rahimah hospital, Klang.

“I feel disappointed. Why was my son beaten until he slip into a coma? When I went to see him (on April 8), his face was swollen. As a mother, I feel very sad,” she said.

Meanwhile, a crowd of about 50 people gathered in front of the police station today to show their support for Adi Anwar and Jiknah.

The people comprised mostly of the Makkal Sakhti movement supporters and Pakatan Rakyat coalition party members. Many held placards in front of the police station denouncing the police for allegedly assaulting Adi Anwar.

There you have it, from the horses mouth >:(

I am also very heartened that the Makkal Sakhti people came to show their support and solidarity, demonstrating that theirs is truly a cause that is blind to ethnicity.

Najib, Hisham: we’re still waiting!!

*

Malaysiakini:

The family of Adi Anwar Mansor, 23, wants the police to explain how he had allegedly drank paint thinner and sustained injuries while he was held under police custody.

Adi Anwar is currently semi-conscious and is under observation at the intensive care unit of the Tengku Ampuan Rahimah Hospital in Klang.

Mohamad was quoted in the media today as saying that Adi Anwar was arrested for alleged drug possession at about 11.30pm on Tuesday in Jalan Kebun.

The police chief had said that Anwar was near a table at the police station and reached for a bottle containing the poisonous liquid and consumed it before police officers could stop him.

On the injuries sustained by Adi Anwar, Mohamad was reported to have said it could have occurred during the scuffle when he was apprehended.

There is less details as compared to the Kugan case so far I think, but still: drinking thinner?!

What could possess a man to do that? If it wasn’t forced on him, I would speculate that only desperation (perhaps to ‘escape’ torture?) would compel someone to do such a thing.

Once again, the police have some burning questions to answer, and a record to set straight. Their version of the story just doesn’t seem to make sense (again!)

If Mr. Najib wants to be the good PM he says he wants to be, establish the IPCMC now! We need to get to the bottom of this, and ensure that our police are 100% clean from even the suspicion of abuse of their powers.

And Mr. Kerishamuddin, our new Home Minister - Are you going to be another Syed Hamid? Here’s your first test.

An Unexpected Ending For Najib And All At Pattaya

From Yong Soo Heong and D. Arul Rajoo

PATTAYA, April 11 (Bernama) -- An unexpected ending -- that was the description by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak over the postponement of the 14th Asean summit and related summits when he walked into the press conference with the Malaysian media here Saturday.

When asked how his day had been, he said: "It has been a frustrating day. I was absolutely prepared to meet them (the other leaders at the summits), I was looking forward to meeting them.

"Unfortunately, that couldn't take place. We were unsure what was going to happen next, so I was in a state of flux," he said.

Najib said he was told of the postponement at about noon.

As the drama was unfolding, Foreign Minister Datuk Anifah Aman and International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Mustapa Mohamed were having lunch opposite Royal Cliff Beach Hotel. A Malaysian official who was also present said they saw an unusually large numbers of fully armed soldiers entering the dining hall.

"When asked what was happening, the Thais simply said reassuringly that the soldiers were taking their lunch break," she said, adding that they were actually sent to provide extra protection to the delegates.

Asked whether he saw the demonstrators, Najib, who was staying on the fifth floor of the Royal Cliff Grand Hotel and Spa, said he could not because of the angle of his hotel room.

At the same time, security officials of the various leaders were running helter-skelter around the hotel to look at alternative arrangements to evacuate them if the situation warranted.

"I was told that they managed to get into the hotel lobby and there was a high degree of mayhem down below. My security boys told me that I cannot go down for I was quite keen to go down and see," Najib said.

Najib, when asked if he would be taking a helicopter or a boat out of the resort, he said no.

"I will be taking the normal route...going by car (to the airport)," said Najib who looked very relaxed despite having to go through the ordeal of preparing for the Summits and subsequently the unexpected cancellation.

Asked about the potential risks he would face if Thailand were to reconvene the summits, he said: "The risks would be the same for all of us, not just for me."

"I am sure they (the Thais) would take into account the experience at this summit at Pattaya and preparations will be made accordingly," he added.

Najib said the Thai government had decided to defer the conferences because the situation did not permit the Summit to proceed.

"We all understand the situation faced, it was beyond their expectation and under these circumstances it is more important in the interest of the safety of the leaders of Asean, China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand and India not to continue the conference and to take steps to enable them to return home safely."

A decision has been reached for the conference to be held at a date to be informed later.

Najib, when asked whether the postponement would adversely affect Asean, said the reason for the postponement was an internal issue and would not affect the Asean spirit of all member countries that was still strong and solid.

He said that when China and Japan compete with one another to contribute more through the Chiangmai Initiative, it showed that Asean was a regional cooperation mechanism that was very viable.

He said Asean could still head toward the objective of creating one Asean community by 2015.

Read about the competency of the Chief Doctor of this country - Tan Sri Dr Ismail Merican

It certainly looks like a mafia is running this country.
Murders without need for motives is OK rules the judge. Inadequate grounds for the defence to be called said the judge in the recently concluded murder case.. Forensic evidence in Kugan's case is confiscated for no reason. Brutal beating leads to Kidney failure but the Chief Doctor of this country says Kugan died because of acute pulmonary oedema .

This mafia really thinks they have asses for people in this country. or maybe we really are because we continue taking all this crap.

Is Tan Sri Dr Ismail Merican a liar?
Thursday, 09 April 2009 17:35
By Sree Sudheesh

The 10-man committee formed to investigate the ‘differences in post-mortem reports of A. Kugan’ has unanimously concluded that there was no evidence of thermal injuries to the skin on the back of the deceased as reported in the second post-mortem.

Furthermore, Health Director-General Tan Sri Dr Ismail Merican claimed that “all body injuries noted on the deceased were insufficient, either individually or collectively to cause death directly”. Firstly, on what basis did the committee perform their task, considering that the two post-mortem reports were diametrically opposed to each other? It was one report against the other. And yet without doing another autopsy, how can this committee make a conclusion on the cause of death?

The second autopsy report had concluded that the first report was erroneous and did not state the correct cause of death, but the committee overruled this report in favour of the first. On what basis was this call made? It is an insult to the Malaysian public’s intelligence to have a sham 10-man committee formed just to exonerate the guilty police officers who have senselessly murdered a 22-year old.

I am appalled at Tan Sri Dr Ismail Merican’s cheek to state that blunt force trauma could have led to acute renal failure which aggravated acute myocarditis, resulting in acute pulmonary oedema and then in the next sentence claim that death was not ‘directly’ caused by bodily injuries. Without further examination of the body, the committee overruled the cause of death stated by the second report. Even ignoring this, he essentially says that Kugan was beaten repeatedly to the extent of causing his kidneys to fail which then caused his death and yet claims that the death was not a ‘direct’ result of the injuries.

I ask Dr Ismail Merican this: “You said that blunt force trauma caused acute renal failure. Isn’t this by itself a life-threatening situtation? A person with acute renal failure inevitably dies. And according to the doctor who performed the second autopsy, this was indeed what happened. How on earth do you have the guts to stand up and make the claim that death was not caused directly by injuries?”

Are you playing with semantics here? This is a person’s life we are talking about. If kidney failure and pulmonary oedema resulted from the blunt force trauma, does that make the death ‘indirect’ and as a result exonerate the police from the crime of their deed? If one were to cut off a person’s hand and the person bleeds to death, would we say that he died from lack of blood in his heart and he did not die directly from the injury but another indirect cause? Plainly put, this is clear (pardon my usage of the term) bullshit.

Dr Ismail, it is evident from your semantic play of words and unconvincing overruling of the second post-mortem without valid reason, that you and your 10 man committee are acting to protect the interests of those who walk in the corridors of power. It is clear that you have no conscience, no soul and no moral principles. By trying to avoid bringing to justice those involved in this murder, you have become an active participant in this crime.

You are clearly acting under fear of those higher up or for personal rewards. By acting in such a cowardly manner, you have lost all moral authority that the Hippocratic oath had bestowed upon the noble profession of a doctor.

Tan Sri Dr Ismail Merican, you sir, are a liar.

I challenge the new Prime Minister, Najib Tun Razak, to walk the talk and bring transparency and accountability to our public service and bring those involved in this vile crime to justice. If not, this will count as the first failure of your administration, the first nail in the coffin.

- Sree Sudheesh

How many Tsu Koons does it take to make a Najib's cabinet? ... ( 3 )

By Jeff Ooi

UPDATED VERSION. So, how many Tsu Koons, or my definition for political rejects, made it to Najib's Cabinet? You count.

Meanwhile, here's some feedback. From Malaysia Insider, titled: Najib chose BN over country in Cabinet choices:

The Najib Cabinet is the best that BN can offer.

Sad but true. Don't think Ahmad Shabery Cheek is up to scratch? Who else does Umno Terengganu have to offer?

Think Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop should have been dropped? But he is the only Penang MP (besides Abdullah) still in the House.

Why is Anifah Aman the foreign minister? Because Sabah had to be rewarded and he is one of a clutch of MPs who is comfortable conversing in English.

But what about Tan Sri Koh Tsu Koon? Did Najib have to pick someone who was booted out of Penang for underperforming to monitor the performance of ministers?

Short answer: Yes.

The appointment of Koh was a lifeline to Gerakan which has been toying with irrelevance since Election 2008.

Could Najib have put the needs of Malaysia first before that of his party and the BN?

Definitely.

But was he willing to ride roughshod over Umno warlords and BN party leaders?

No. No one who occupies the top office in the country will dare alienate these powerful power brokers and risk the possibility of them leaving the coalition.

And talk about BN component party leaving the coalition, Malaysiakini points to rumbling within MIC, which says it was "brushed aside" Najib. Quote:

"We have been brushed aside in the new line-up and this has further eroded the support of the Indian community to the BN government," he said.

The party insider said Najib did not take notice of the return of the Indian voters to BN in the two by-elections although the ruling coalition lost in the two constituencies.

"Many Indians and MIC had expected the party to be allocated a senior ministerial position in the new cabinet but their expectations are lost.

The Star trailed Malaysiakini by carrying a similar source story on its portal, titled: MIC may withdraw its lone minister, deputies from Govt.

UPDATES: 10.00pm April 11: K. Baradan wrote in Malaysian Insider that:
Embattled MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu, whose wish to return to the Cabinet was rejected by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, is playing his final gambit by threatening to withdraw the sole MIC minister.

The Malaysian Insider understands Samy Vellu has little support except from party vice-president S. Sothinathan in this gambit which was sparked after Najib rejected all hints last week to make Samy Vellu a senator and put him back into the Cabinet as works minister.

Samy Vellu complained to his supporters that if Gerakan president Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon could be made a senator and minister, he should have been accorded the same privilege.

Samy Vellu is also unhappy that Selangor Gerakan chief A. Kohilan Pillay has been made a deputy foreign minister, a high-profile post for an Indian.

He feels it should have been given to one of his nominees.

If you remember, Screenshots gave the first warning of a possible crack of unhappiness in MIC as early as April 2.

'Back door' listing

Meanwhile, Dr Koh Tsu Koon kept arguing that he ain't no political reject resurrected via a 'back door listing'.

To this, Chun Wai observes in his blog:

The appointment of Koh Tsu Koon and Shahrizat Jalil have led to some criticism. Again, the considerations were the representation of women in the Cabinet and the position of Koh as the president of Gerakan.

The two would now need to prove that they deserve their appointments as they would be closely watched.

Koh, for example, cannot to possibility be handling just KPI (key performances indicators) and unity. His roles need to be better defined.

Today, Kwong Wah Yit Poh unearths news archives to prove that Tsu Koon had decided not to become a minister via a Senatorship appointment, not once but 4 times on March 10, 11, 23 and June 12 last year.

That Tsu Koon had to eat his own words testifies the longevity of a Chinese sage's wisdom: 时穷节乃见.

As the Minister for Performance Management, let's see how Tsu Koon measures his own performance and that of his peers in The Cabinet -- a key factor that saw him trounced and Gerakan annihilated in Penang -- without stepping on the toes of his Umno masters.