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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Malaysia: New Prime Minister Should Keep Promises on Rights

Commit to Human Rights Agenda

(New York, April 27, 2009) – Malaysia’s new prime minister should take immediate steps to distinguish himself from previous governments and implement a human rights agenda, Human Rights Watch said in a letter today. The letter to Prime Minister Najib Razak makes specific recommendations for reform on four issues: arbitrary and preventive detention; freedom of expression; impunity of security forces; and protection of migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers.

“Prime Minister Najib has a great opportunity to reverse the abusive policies of the past,” said Elaine Pearson, deputy Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “It’s deplorable that Malaysians continue to face arbitrary detention, censorship, and threats to their lives from unaccountable police.”

The letter welcomed Najib’s stated intention “to uphold civil liberties” and demonstrate “regard for the fundamental rights of the people of Malaysia,” and called for the immediate ratification of core United Nations human rights treaties.

Human Rights Watch urged Najib to revoke Malaysia’s long-abused Internal Security Act and to try fairly or release those being detained under the law. He should uphold the rights of migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers in Malaysia by ensuring that existing laws protect rather than penalize them. Human Rights Watch also called on Najib to abolish RELA, the government-backed People’s Volunteer Corps which has been responsible for numerous rights violations against migrants.

“It’s time the Malaysian government delivered on promises to show ‘regard for the fundamental rights of the people of Malaysia,’ so that it is more than just a pretty sound bite,” said Pearson.

To read the letter from Human Rights Watch to the prime minister of Malaysia, please visit:

http://www.hrw.org/en/news/2009/04/27/human-rights-watch-letter-prime-minister-malaysia

For more Human Rights Watch reporting on Malaysia, please visit:

http://www.hrw.org/en/asia/malaysia

For more information, please contact:

In New York, Elaine Pearson (English): +1-212-216-1213; or +1-646-291-7169 (mobile)

In New York, Mickey Spiegel (English): +1-212-216-1229

In Washington, DC, Sophie Richardson (English, Mandarin): +1-202-612-4341; or +1-917-721-7473 (mobile)

In London, Brad Adams (English): +44-20-7713-2767; or +44-79-0872-8333 (mobile)

Karpal’s objections overruled, sedition trial in August

By Lee Wei Lian - The MalaysianInsider

KUALA LUMPUR, April 28 – Karpal Singh today failed to throw out the sedition charge against him as the Kuala Lumpur High Court rejected his arguments and set August 12 to 21 to hear the case.

The DAP chairman was charged with making seditious statements against the Sultan of Perak but he objected to the case, saying the prosecution's case against him was flawed and should be thrown out of court.

Karpal is to file an appeal against the decision to reject his prelimnary objection made by Judicial Commissioner Azman Abdullah.

The bullshit Islam of some Umno Malays

Image

GMI has invited those Malay NGOs that support the ISA to a public debate. Will they accept the invitation to a debate or will they just respond with ‘buang masa’, ‘takde masa nak layan’, and all those other copouts, which just demonstrates that they are all talk but no substance?

NO HOLDS BARRED

Raja Petra Kamarudin

Let there arise out of you a band of people inviting to all that is good, enjoining what is right, and forbidding what is wrong: They are the ones to attain felicity.

Many Umno people will probably whack me for that first paragraph above (plus, of course, for the title of this article) and will argue that I am talking bullshit. Well, let them, because this is not my quote. This is a quote from verse 104, chapter 3 (Al 'Imran) of the Quran. The Muslims are supposed to believe that the Quran is God’s word. In that case, this would make the verse in that first paragraph God’s word.

This is the trouble with the Umno-type Malays and the Malay wannabes from KIMMA, etc. They rush to the police station to make police reports about this person or that person having insulted Islam and about upholding the dignity of Islam and all that bullshit. And yet they are the ones who are violating Islam.

Look at their claim about defending the Internal Security Act. They say the country must retain the ISA because it is needed to defend Malay rights and privileges.

Now, there are two things wrong with that statement. First, racism is haram in Islam. So how can they, as Muslims, even talk about Malay rights and privileges? Secondly, detention without trial is also haram. So you are using a haram law to defend a haram policy. That makes it a double haram.

Can you imagine using your urine to wash the shit from your backside after you have just answered the call of nature? Then you use the same shit mixed with urine to wash your hands. Then you go make rori canai for your customers. Yuck! I think I am going to stop eating roti canai.

Malays have one warped mind. Actually, they are so confused it sometimes borders on hypocrisy. Bikin tak serupa cakap. Now do you know why these Malays would not hesitate to screw around with other women, even with other people’s wives, and they are not perturbed by their actions, but they will be very concerned if their neighbour’s wife does not wear a tudung.

Islam, to most Malays, in particular to the Umno Malays, is only on the lips, not in their hearts. They scream about Islam being a religion of peace and that there is no compulsion in Islam and all that. Actually, they are just saying this to sound good. In their heart they believe the opposite. And that is why what these people say and what they do are two different things.

GMI has invited those Malay NGOs that support the ISA to a public debate (see the details below). Will they accept the invitation to a debate or will they just respond with ‘buang masa’, ‘takde masa nak layan’, and all those other copouts, which just demonstrates that they are all talk but no substance?

Maybe those Malay wannabes who have made seven applications to join Barisan Nasional -- but have thus far been refused membership -- can instead accept the invitation if the so-called ‘real’ Malays from Umno and its minions like PEWARIS chicken out.

Aiyah, these Malays are all talk. They scream and shout about Islam and act as if they are ready to die for Islam and go straight to heaven and all that bullshit. But the truth is they are one big bunch of hypocrites. These are the Malays who claim to be good Muslims but will use urine to wash shit. That is their particular brand of perverted Islam that they scream and shout about.

In the old days these types of Muslims would be called munafik and their heads would be chopped off and their bodies left to rot in the desert.

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Debat ISA: Haram atau Halal?

Please be informed that Gerakan Mansuhkan ISA (GMI) will be organising “Debat ISA: Haram atau Halal?” in the light of the recent claims made by a group called PEWARIS chanting that ISA is in line with Islam and it is needed in order to protect the religion of Islam.

Please be informed that GMI has sent an invitation to PEWARIS to send their representative to refute the anti ISA stand taken by GMI.

To date, we have not received any reply from PEWARIS whether they will be coming to the event in order to present their views, which are in support of the ISA. In the spirit of freedom of speech and expression, the positive reply from PEWARIS to debate on the above mentioned issue is very much anticipated.

We hope that this information can be published on your respective blogs in order to inform the public on the event. Your commitment and support in the ongoing campaign to abolish ISA are highly appreciated. Please forward this information to your blogger friends. The details of the event are as follows:-

Event : “Debat ISA : Haram atau Halal?”

Spekers : YB Saari Sungib (GMI) V Representative from PEWARIS

Venue : Auditorium, Dewan Sivik MPPJ.

Date : 9 May 2009 (Saturday)

Time : 3.00pm-5.00pm

Please be informed that a press conference on the event will be held on 4 May 2009 (Monday) at Kuala Lumpur Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall at 11.00am. Do come and show your support.

Thank you.

Regards,

Fadiah Nadwa Fikri

On behalf of GMI

Lawyers’ rights respected

The Star

KUCHING: The Federal Court’s decision that only Sabah and Sarawak lawyers can appear in cases originating from the two states when they are brought up at the Court of Appeal is not detrimental to the 1Malaysia concept, Tan Sri Richard Malanjum said.

The Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak said the Federal Court’s decision meant that the rights of lawyers from Sabah and Sarawak, as guaranteed in the Federal Consti­tution, were respected.
“This is not detrimental at all to 1Malaysia. In fact, it should enhance our closeness because we respect each other’s rights,” he said here yesterday.

Malanjum was a member of the five-man panel which delivered its judgment on the matter last week.

He sat with Chief Justice Tan Sri Zaki Azmi, Chief Judge of Malaya Datuk Ariffin Zakaria, Court of Appeal president Datuk Alauddin Mohd Sheriff and Federal Court judge Datuk Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin to preside over an appeal.

The Federal Court’s decision overturned an earlier ruling by the Court of Appeal that counsel Tommy Thomas could represent former Sarawak state assemblyman Datuk Ting Check Sii in his appeal, heard in Putrajaya, against a Kuching High Court’s judgment dismissing his petition to wind up a local company.

An appeal was later filed by Ting for a ruling by the apex court on whether a lawyer from Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah or Sarawak could appear in an appeal to be heard in Putrajaya on a matter originating from the two states.

The Federal Court then unanimously decided that only lawyers from Sabah or Sarawak may appear in cases when the appellate courts sitting in Putrajaya hear appeals originating from the two states.

Malanjum said the decision meant that Sabah and Sarawak lawyers could appear in the Putrajaya Court of Appeal.

On the other hand, peninsula-based lawyers cannot appear in Sabah or Sarawak or in cases originating from the two states unless they obtained an ad hoc admission under the respective Advocates Ordinances of the two states.

Pengumuman Calon KeADILan Bagi PRK DUN Penanti

Pengumuman rasmi calon KeADILan bagi PRK DUN Penanti akan dibuat 9 malam ini di Yayasan Aman, Penanti InshaAllah.

Ketua Menteri merangkap Setiausaha Agung DAP, YAB Lim Guan Eng, wakil MB Kedah dan pimpinan KeADILan Negeri menyatakan komitmen untuk turut hadir.

Lewat petang semalam saya telah mengadakan pertemuan Majlis Pimpinan Pakatan Rakyat yang turut dihadhiri oleh Tuan Guru Abd Hadi Awal dan YB Lim Kit Siang. Mereka telah dimaklumkan mengenai cadangan calon KeADILan dan memberi perakuan untuk sama-sama membantu kempen PRK DUN Penanti kelak.

Sementara itu pimpinan Umno masih terus membelek kitab dan meneliti fakta sebelum membuat keputusan muktamad samada bertanding atau tidak. Datuk Sri Najib membayangkan bahawa Umno tidak bersedia bertanding demi menjimatkan belanja. Namun amat sukar buat beliau mengenepikan saranan Tun Dr. Mahathir untuk tetap bertarung ‘demi maruah dan tradisi Umno-BN’.

Manakala ditanya, saya sekadar menjawab, saya yakin dengan kematangan, kebijak-
sanaan sanak saudara dan rakan taulan saya di Penanti dan Permatang Pauh, inshaAllah.

ANWAR IBRAHIM

CURRENCY TRADING


(This is the third instalment in a series on the trends that led to the present financial crisis)

1. Currency trading is another non-real contributor to the wealth of the rich countries. The trading again involves non-existent money. Banks would lend as much as 30 times the amount of investors' money held by the traders. The loan is again made up of bank created money. So also would be the investors' money if they borrowed from the banks.

2. The huge borrowings by the currency traders enable them to manipulate the market; pushing the value of the currency up or down. When the value of the currency changes the traders make a profit. Since the currency traders control trillions of dollars, their profits would be huge, and so would the dividends paid to the investors.

3. The trade in currency is estimated to be 20 times bigger than total world trade. The earnings per dollar invested would be higher than the dividends from production and trading in goods and provision of services. The investors and traders would therefore earn far more than what they would expect if they were to invest only the money they really have.

4. Individuals cannot borrow 30 times more than the money they have in order to invest. But currency traders can. Hence the investors' preference to invest with the currency traders.

5. The trade in currency is not in order to finance business or trade. It is for gambling on the appreciation or depression of the particular currency. Either way the bettor (trader) would make a profit. Since the profit is from 30 times more than the investors' money, both the traders and the investors would make far more than if they trade in the real amount invested.

6. The profits earned by the traders and the investors would one way or another go into the calculation of the GDP and per capita income of the country.

Uthayakumar’s letter from a Kamunting jail: Fighting words, words of strength

This picture reminds me so much of the first time I met Uthayakumar.

Our position was reversed, I was in a court that looked exactly like the one he is in the picture, and I was the one in cuffs.

He recognised me and very kindly offered to defend me, as the cops had ‘forgotten’ to tell my own lawyers where and when my remand hearing was to be held. I was very anxious at the thought of not having legal representation.

He also helped me smuggle out my passwords, so that they could be changed.

2 years later, he now sits in Kamunting, with no hope on the horizon for his release.

I have reproduced his heartbreaking letter marking his 500th day of detention, a letter which calls to mind another well known letter written from jail, in full below.

In it, he writes not just of himself, but of his fellow detainees, going on 8 years of detention.

He writes of an unwavering dedication to the cause, a conviction of his principles and the struggle against injustice in Malaysia.

He writes of his fears that he may lose his leg to amputation - the sense of helplessness and complete lack of sympathy from the authorities.

He writes of being served beef. Can you imagine if stories emerged of prisoners in Guantanamo were being fed pork?

He writes of his pride in the Makkal Sakhti movement, in the men and women who have thrown off their fears and stood courageously together.

He writes of defiance against his oppressors, just as Reverend King did, echoing stories I read in Syed Husin Ali’s ‘Two Faces.’

He writes of unshakable faith that justice will prevail in the end, if only we persist and are patient.

He writes of missing his family.

Just as he has refused to cut his hair, I think I will not grow mine until they close down the hellhole of Kamunting.

Read the following and be inspired, we have so much to change ahead of us.

Makkal Sakhti Valga!

[Read more →]

India Unhappy Being Under 'Watch' On Patents

NEW DELHI, April 28 (Bernama) -- India has conveyed its "big disappointment" to the United States for retaining New Delhi on the 'Priority Watch List', which binds Washington to exert pressure on America's trade partners to improve their copyright and patent regimes, the Press Trust of India (PTI) reported.

"It is a big disappointment for us. Why should we be on the 'Priority Watch List (PWL)' even after the recognition we have got from the World Intellectual Property Organisation," N N Prasad, Joint Secretary in the Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion, told PTI Monday.

Prasad said India has sent its strong reaction to the US.

"Let's wait for the results," he said.

The US Trade Representative (USTR) issues an annual Special 301 report, which examines in detail the adequacy and effectiveness of intellectual property rights (IPRs) in America's trading partners.

Once a country is listed under the PWL, it provides a basis to the US for a "constructive engagement" with its trading partners. According to Indian patent experts, this means exerting diplomatic pressure on a country for improving its patent regime.

In its latest review, the USTR said, "Large scale copyright piracy, especially in the software, optical media and publishing industries continues to be a major problem" in India.

The USTR in its report has said that the piracy of copyright material (primarily software, films, popular fiction and certain textbooks) remains a problem for both US and Indian producers.

"Costs to the US industry are estimated to be more than one billion dollar in 2008," the USTR has said.

Commenting on the challenges that India may face on IPR issues, Prasad said that at international level there is a need to ensure that India's traditional knowledge is not misappropriated.

He also said that to modernise and meet manpower shortages in intellectual property offices, the Government is aiming to hire 1,380 people in the next three to four years.

In coming years all IPR data would be computerised, he added.

'I want my children back'

Help find my one-year-old daughter, pleads mum - Malaysiakini


Five thousand missing persons posters have been printed to help find Muslim convert, K Patmanathan, and his one-year-old daughter Prasana Diksa.
MCPX

conversion issues posters of mohd ridzuan 270409Last week, the Ipoh High Court granted M Indira Ghandi the custody of all her three children, who were converted by their father without her knowledge on April 12, pending the full custody hearing on May 12.

As the older children – Tevi Darsiny, 12 and Karan Dinesh, 11 – were in the care of their mother from the beginning, the court ordered that the youngest child which is in her father's care to be returned to the mother.

However, despite the court order to return the toddler, the father, who has since the conversion assumed the name Mohd Ridzuan Abdullah, has gone missing.

According to Indira, the police had informed her that they visited Mohd Ridzuan’s mother's house to look for the child, who was said to be in her grandmother's care, on Friday but return empty-handed.

“They have not taken the initiative to do anything else to look for him... I am only worried about my baby, I don't how she is doing as she is so young,” said Indira.

Indira told Malaysiakini that after the court had given the interim order, her husband telephoned her.

“He complained that what I am doing to get my children back as they were, before they were brought into this confusion, is giving him problems,” said Indira.

Indira also said her husband informed her that he was leaving for Singapore with their youngest child and will not return her to the mother despite the court order.

“So with the help of DAP and Malaysia Hindu Sangam (MHS), we have printed posters with the photo of Mohd Ridzuan and my baby Prasana,” she said.

Refused to accept the Syariah Court order

The life of the Hindu mother took a turn for the worst after discovering that her husband, had converted to Islam last month and converted their children without her knowledge and consent.

Mohd Ridzuan also took custody of the youngest child without getting a mutual agreement and obtained a Syariah Court order to gain custody of his two older children.

In a recent exclusive interview with Malaysiakini, she also claimed that her husband had converted their two older children without their presence and by using their birth certificates.

Indira has sought refuge with a relative in fear that Islamic officials would take the two children away since her husband has a Syariah Court order giving him custody of the children.

However, Indira has refused to accept the Syariah Court order.

Since then, Indira has approached various religious civil society groups to pressure the government to take a firm stand on conversion issues.

Her lawyer, M Kulasegaran, when contacted, informed that they need to serve the court order on Mohd Ridzuan, as the case was to start on May 12.

“Patmanathan (Mohd Ridzuan) is aware of the court order as he had spoken to Indira after the interim order was obtained on Friday.

“In fact, he told Indira that he is taking the child to Singapore with him. We have duly informed the police who have said all border posts have been informed to prevent him leaving the country,” said Kulasegaran, who is also the DAP Ipoh Barat member of parliament.

“Somehow I have a feeling he is hiding in Ipoh and (he) is trying to avoid service of court documents... We had requested the police assistance to print posters of Patmanathan last week but it has not taken place to date,” stated Kulasegaran in his blog.

A test of Najib's 'Performance Now' motto

conversion issue posters of mohd ridzuan 270409 02DAP stalwart Lim Kit Siang, in his blog entry said that the efficiency of the government agencies in relation to the conversion case is putting to test new Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak's “Performance Now” motto.

“Yesterday, I had asked the Ipoh police officers how much longer must Indira wait before the police could discover the baby’s whereabouts and return her to the mother.

“I told them that it would reflect very poorly on the capabilities and performance of the Ipoh police if they could not find the baby girl and return her immediately to her mother,” he exclaimed.

He hinted that Najib should take note of the observation made by Indonesian Islamic scholar and former foreign minister, Dr Alwi Abdurrahman Shihab who was in Malaysia a few days ago, that issues of “forced conversion of children to Islam are unknown in Indonesia, while in Malaysia, it has been allowed to be an increasingly polarising factor in race and religious relations”.

“Forced conversions of children is a most unhealthy phenomenon which should not be continued if Najib is serious about another motto of his philosophy, 1Malaysia,” said Lim.

Najib urges Umno to champion all Malaysians

By Asrul Hadi Abdullah Sani- The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, April 27 — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said tonight that Umno must be inclusive and not just champion Malays, but all Malaysians.

Najib told an Umno Cheras dinner that the party must open up to all levels in society. He said Umno must not reject the old and the young, the working class and intellects.

“We dont not want Umno to be anti-intellect, anti-new ideas. Umno must lead the bridge of change and reform. This is the secret that Umno must accept,” he said.

Najib explained that Umno must return to its original philosophy of being a party for the people and only through this can the party be strong.

“We cannot ignore them because they challenge us. Umno has become weak because we are afraid of the intellectuals. We must give space to all so that Umno will become a party that will be loved by everybody,” he added.

Najib stressed that Umno being inclusive represented the core principle of One Malaysia.

“One Malaysia is when we not only champion for Malays but also champion for all Malaysians,” he said.

“I have asked Tun Dr Mahathir to return to Umno and I regard this as an example of a party that is inclusive, to invite national heroes, and also normal people.”

“What has been experienced recently by Umno in the by-election has made us realise that we must bring change and reform so that we can win the confidence and support of the people back to Umno,” he elaborated.

Chennai talks to decide Hindraf’s future

By Baradan Kuppusamy - The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, April 27 — A meeting of top Hindraf leaders will be convened in Chennai, India this weekend in a last ditch effort to save the movement from splitting up.

Over a dozen top leaders are likely to attend the meeting, said Hindraf chairman P. Waythamoorthy.

“The meeting will iron out differences and chart a new course for the movement,” he told The Malaysian Insider.

Hindraf was banned by the government last October as an “extremist” organisation but is very much alive among the Tamil working class.

Among key leaders expected to attend the meeting are original founding chairman P. Waythamoorthy, national co-coordinator R. S. Thanenthiran, Kapar and Teluk Intan MPs S. Manikavasagam and M. Manohar respectively and PKR Indian leader and Hindraf co-coordinator S. Jayathas, who is hoping to attend despite undergoing dialysis.

“This is a key meeting for us. We hope to settle all our major differences once and for all,” Thanenthiran told Malaysian Insider.

“We have to chart a new course for Hindraf or it will become irrelevant,” he said.

The key issue is whether to transform Hindraf into a full fledged political party — a line pushed by Thanenthiran who feels Hindraf has been taken for a ride by opposition political parties like PKR and especially the DAP.

“If we want to remain credible and fight for Indian rights the best option is to form into a political party and get the best from anybody for the Indians,” Thanenthiran said.

“This is the best option open to us,” he said adding by allowing others to ride on it Hindraf had only gained “peanuts.”

“Most of our basic problems — socio-economic neglect, poverty and marginalisation remain unresolved,” he said.

However Waythamoorthy told The Malaysian Insider that Hindraf must remain apolitical and reorganise into a powerful and independent pressure group to gain benefits.

“We are friendly to opposition political ties but beyond that we are apolitical,” he said. “I will push for this case at the meeting.”

He is keeping his options open however and is also willing to open a dialogue with the Barisan Nasional especially with prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to resolve Indian plight.

He is keen to meet Najib put forward to him the movement’s 18-point demand including the need to convert all 543 Tamil schools in the country into fully-aided schools. Currently half are partially-aided leaving them in ramshackle conditions.

Kapar MP and other PKR leaders however will urge Hindraf to stay as a political pressure group and not transform into a political party.

“There is simply no place for another Indian based political party in the country,” he told The Malaysian Insider. “PKR is the vehicle for all Malaysians… we are the future.”

He said he and others would strongly oppose any arguments to form another Indian political party.

“We are already heavily fragmented and another Indian political party is meaningless and will fragment the community even more,” he said urging Indians to join PKR.

Doesn't Bangsa Malaysia include Indians?

Article by : Naragan

If one thinks that just by using the catchall Bangsa Malaysia slogan one becomes a Bangsa Malaysian is being naïve and delusional. For the Liberal Malay and for the vast majority of the Chinese citizens of the country maybe they are at a level of social development where this makes most sense as the next thing on the continuum of their needs.

For the vast majority of the Indians in the country however, their needs are totally different . What they need now is simply better basic education, equal opportunities for employment, better access to skills training, better basic living conditions, equal opportunities to start small businesses and most of all the elimination of an apartheid like color bar, which our colour blind Bangsa Malaysians just plain refuse to accept..

See what a Bangsa Malaysian commented on a recent debate on the formation of yet another political party reprinted from the Malaysia Today Blogsite

“written by bluefire, April 26, 2009 16:19:52

In the land of the stupids, the " " is king!

Malaysia Boleh, oops, Melayu boleh, Cina pun boleh, India lagi boleh!

I wish I knew what these bums are fighting for? Duit pun tada, toddy juga minum, itu bir dan toddy punya wang, siapa punya. Anak pun tada pergi sekolah, Anak pun tada makan. Isteri lagi kena hentam. Tapi itu bir sama toddy juga minum.

Eh, Mindraf Anna. I am interested to know if your party supports the abolishment of alcohol. Anna, I want to challenge you to ban toddy la. Baru saya respect sama Anna. Itu bir punya company ada kasi wang sama lu ka? Sekolah pun tada bumbung, tapi itu toddy mesti ada. Bodoh! “

This was painful for me to read, but this writer has said it all. What does Bangsa Malaysia mean to the Indian stereotyped in that comment. Plain nothing…..understand…. plain nothing.

If our country is to do justice to the Indians and come clean of the sins of exploitation of the Indians in this country then what the ruling elite needs to do is to urgently establish an affirmative action program in the areas indicated above to accelerate the social development of the Indians in the country where they become truly equals. Then maybe Bangsa Malaysia may mean something at that point. Affirmative action is needed now just to equalize for the injustices done to them systematically both during the colonial period as well as in the ensuing fifty odd years to today.

They did not and do not yet have any institutional support nor support from any community network to aid them in their development. They were and are left to their own meager means.

Given the history that just plain means self destruction. The results of that we see unfolding now … a clear criminal underclass developing, high suicide rates, high school dropout rates, young boy runaways, high incidence of single mothers, high unemployment, high incidence of alcoholism and more. All of this simply leads to self destruction of a large section of a community.

So, now you tell me “Does Bangsa Malaysia include Indians”

To understand the Perak Constitutional Crisis

To understand what is happening in Perak today, one must go back 25 years or so to the time when Anwar and Ghafar made those many trips to Istana Negara to engage the Rulers in the Constitutional Crisis. The Rulers got burned badly. And it was Anwar that they had to face, not Mahathir.

THE CORRIDORS OF POWER

Raja Petra Kamarudin

Ku Li: Why Nizar is still the MB
THE STAR, 7 February 2009

Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin is still the Perak Mentri Besar until he resigns of his own accord, or is removed by a vote of no-confidence in a formal sitting of the State Assembly, said Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah.

“Only the answer of the assembly counts, regardless how many sworn statements, defections, press conferences and declarations, or what forms of advertisement, display, inducement or force you bring to bear on the question,” he said in a statement yesterday.

“The Constitution makes no provision for his removal by any other means, including by petitions or instructions from any other authority,” he added.

He also said that a legitimate constitutional government draws all its authority from the consent of the people and only from that consent. The people consent because it is their government formed according to their constitution, whose leader is chosen through free and fair elections.

“To formally test the mandate of the current government, the question must either be put to the people through state elections, or to assemblymen through a formal vote in the Dewan,” said Tengku Razaleigh.

He said to remove and install governments in any other way was to violate the Constitution, erode the rule of law and run the risk of forming an illegal government.

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

That was what YBM Tan Sri Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah said on 7 February 2009. And, on 7 May 2009, we are going to see another chapter in the Perak Constitutional Crisis when the illegitimate Menteri Besar calls for a state assembly meeting and probably, as most already suspect, call for the removal of the Speaker of the Perak State Assembly.

Umno is just driving more nails into its own coffin. The majority of Perakians do not endorse the illegal and unconstitutional takeover of the Perak government. It is nothing short of a coup, by whatever name you wish to call it. The outcome of the recent Bukit Gantang by-election is proof enough that the people do not endorse what Umno did in Perak. If that is not a clear enough message of where the people’s sentiments lie then I don’t know what is.

Many legal minds have spoken on the issue, renowned and respected judges included, and all are of the opinion that Umno’s move is illegal and unconstitutional. Expect the people to converge on the Perak State Assembly on 7 May as a demonstration of their disgust. Even those within Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak’s circle have expressed dismay at what is going on in Perak. They feel that Najib has been ill advised and has made a huge tactical blunder.

Members of the Royal Family, the Perak Royal Family included, are no less perturbed. Not all Royals support the opposition of course. But not all agree with Umno as well. To put it mildly, the Royal Family is divided as to its support for the ruling party. While many support the ruling party for personal and business reasons, they worry that Umno’s blunders may not only see the demise of that party but also of the institution of the Monarchy as well. The Regent of Perak himself feels that the damage done to the Monarchy may not only be long term but may be irreparable as well.

Of course, we can’t interpret the sentiments of the Royal Family as being pro-rakyat or pro-democracy. After all, the succession to the throne is hereditary and no Ruler is democratically elected into office. So, democracy is probably the last thing in the minds of the Royal Family. But the Royals of today are not like the Royals of yesteryear. Nowadays, the Royals are well educated, many having received their education in overseas universities. So they know history. They studied history. And they know what the storming of the Bastille means and how it came about.

The Royals fear for their future. They fear that if they swim against the tide, they will drown. No matter how strong a swimmer you may be, you just can’t swim against the tide. What more if it is not just a tide but, in fact, a powerful Tsunami? A Tsunami will swallow everything in its path and suck all out to sea on its retreat. Malaysians learned the power of the Tsunami on Boxing Day of 2004 -- and, again, on 8 March 2008, when, for the first time in Malaysian election history, the voters demonstrated the potency of people’s power.

The Royals are getting very nervous. They realise they can’t oppose Umno. This would be even more so since the architect and engineer of the mid-1980s Constitutional Crisis, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, is now back at the helm of Umno, pulling all the strings from behind the scenes. The Royals do not fear Najib as much as they fear Mahathir. After all, Najib is more or less a Royal just like them, as was his late father, Tun Razak.

Malays, by nature, are feudalistic. And Umno, therefore, is also a most feudalistic party. It is just impossible to separate the Malays, Umno and feudalism. All three come as a package. And this was Mahathir's greatest beef. He wanted to break the Malay feudalistic culture, which is also the Umno culture. And to do this he had to break the feudalism mentality of the Malays. So he went to war with the Rulers and taught the Malays how to kurang ajar.

At the time of the 1980s Constitutional Crisis, Tun Ghafar Baba was the Deputy Prime Minister. But unnoticed by most Malays, the move to eradicate the Malay feudalistic culture started earlier than that. It started when Musa Hitam was the Deputy Prime Minister. And Musa made the new plan very clear when he openly declared that it is time the Malays learned how to kurang ajar.

Most did not understand what Musa meant at that time. The Malays must learn how to kurang ajar. But kurang ajar against whom? The Chinese? The government? Umno? No! Musa Hitam is not a racist. All his women, and he had loads of them, were not Malays. Musa meant the Malays must break away from tradition. And one of these ‘counter-productive’ and ‘outdated’ traditions was the feudalistic culture that prevented the Malays from progressing and from moving forward. Is it not a Malay proverb: biar mati anak, jangan mati adat? Yes, better the child dies than tradition dies. Malays would die defending their traditions and this is what was holding them back.

Many could not understand why Mahathir chose Musa over Tengku Razaleigh as his Deputy. Was it not the deal that Tengku Razaleigh makes way for Mahathir as Hussein Onn’s number two and then, when Mahathir succeeds Hussein Onn, he would take Tengku Razaleigh as his number two? Yes, that was the deal. But Tengku Razaleigh is a Royalist while Musa is a Republican. And Mahathir, being a Republican himself, wanted another Republican and not a Royalist as his Deputy.

Umno’s history has always been about feudalism and ‘royalism’. Onn Jaafar was an orang istana. So was Tunku Abdul Rahman, followed by Tun Razak and Hussein Onn. The entire lot since 1946 were people brought up in the palace and who were very close and intimate with the palace. Onn Jaafar was in fact honoured by the Japanese during the occupation years and was given a Japanese officer’s uniform complete with Samurai sword to wear. This was the great respect the Japanese had for Royalty (the Emperor of Japan was considered a God) and the acknowledgement that not only was Onn Jaafar a Malay leader, but one who was close to the Johor palace as well.

Finally, in 1981, Umno managed to rid itself of feudalism and, for the first time, they got a Republican (some say Communist) as its leader. It took two generations for that to happen. But now that Umno no longer has an orang istana as its leader, why would Mahathir want to turn the clock back and appoint Tengku Razaleigh as his Deputy? So, instead, he chose Musa. And, when Musa resigned, he chose Ghafar, again, instead of Tengku Razaleigh.

But Ghafar was old Malay. He was one who held dear the old traditions. And when the Constitutional Crisis erupted in the mid-1980s, Mahathir forced Ghafar to lead the charge against the Monarchy. And Ghafar had to make many trips to Istana Negara with Anwar Ibrahim in tow to negotiate with the Rulers. The message was simple. The Rulers resisted at their own peril. If Malaysians rise up to demand that the Monarchy be abolished then Umno would not be able to save the Rulers.

The Rulers remained stubborn. So Mahathir launched a nationwide demonising campaign. The Rulers were dragged through the mud. Now even the Umno Malays were demanding that Mahathir cut the Rulers down to size. Now, it was no longer Mahathir but the Umno Malays who wanted the Rulers taught a lesson. Mahathir gallantly stepped in as ‘mediator’ and settled the problem between the Umno Malays and the Rulers. The Rulers had been taught who is the real boss in Malaysia. Umno, and not the Rulers, is the boss. The Rulers, with their tails between their legs, gave in and admitted defeat. Umno, or rather Mahathir, had won.

But the Constitutional Crisis proved that Ghafar was too weak. He was too soft. He was old Malay who held to tradition and culture. And one of those traditions and cultures is one does not derhaka with the Rulers. If not for Anwar, Ghafar would not have dared face the Rulers and engage them in a confrontation. That was why Mahathir made Anwar follow Ghafar to the Istana Negara. If Ghafar falters, then Anwar can step in to save the day.

And that is exactly what happened. At one point during the heated debate with the Rulers, Ghafar took off his songkok and placed it on the table. It was a most kurang ajar thing to do but something he did unconsciously. Ghafar was not trying to demonstrate kurang ajar. He was feeling desperate and in his desperation he took off his songkok without realising he was doing so. The head negotiator for the Rulers, the Yamtuan Besar of Negeri Sembilan, also took off his songkok and placed it on the table. That was His Highness’s way of saying that Ghafar is kurang ajar so he too is going to be kurang ajar.

Mahathir realised that Ghafar was still very feudalistic at heart. You can’t avoid it though. Ghafar is an old man, seven months older than Mahathir, so he is ‘old Malay’ in thinking. And old Malays do not kurang ajar with the Rulers. Mahathir decided that Ghafar has to go. He can never be a Republican. Anwar can. So Mahathir told Anwar to challenge Ghafar, which he did. And when Ghafar realised that Mahathir wants him out he gave Anwar a walkover. Anwar became the new Umno number two without a fight.

At the height of the Reformasi Movement, and soon after I was released from ISA detention in 2001, I was summoned to the Palace and asked why I am so stupid as to support Anwar and get incarcerated. I replied that I am not supporting Anwar as much as I am opposing Mahathir. I am doing this for the Monarchy, I replied, because Mahathir is anti-Monarchy and would turn Malaysia into a Republic if he could.

The Sultan replied that Anwar is no different. Anwar was one of the key players during the Constitutional Crisis, the Sultan said. It was actually Anwar and not Ghafar who gave the Rulers a hard time. No doubt Mahathir was the architect and engineer. But Anwar was Mahathir’s ‘hit man’ who did much damage to the Rulers. Ghafar did not talk too much. Anwar did most of the talking and was the one the Rulers faced most problems with. The Rulers can never trust Anwar and will not accept him as a Prime Minister.

That meeting with the Sultan revealed what was in the minds of the Rulers. Anwar was perceived as a Republican, just like Mahathir, and it did not matter who won the fight in the Anwar-Mahathir war that erupted in 1998. They realised that Anwar was Mahathir’s victim and they did not believe all the allegations against Anwar, in particular the sodomy allegation. But it is good that Mahathir and Anwar are now at war. A united Mahathir and Anwar would not be good for the Monarchy. It puts the Monarchy at risk. Now that Mahathir and Anwar are at war, they are too occupied to worry about the Rulers and will leave the Rulers alone, at least for the next couple of years.

And that is why the Rulers did not come to Anwar’s aid in 1998 when Mahathir threw him into jail. They welcomed the Reformasi Movement in that it kept Mahathir busy and helped weaken Umno. A strong Umno would mean a weak Monarchy. On the other hand, a weak Umno would mean the Rulers would be needed as Umno can then hide behind the Monarchy to perpetuate its evil deeds, like what is happening in Perak now. Furthermore, would the Rulers dare take Anwar’s side and risk antagonising Mahathir? At least, with the Rulers remaining ‘neutral’, Anwar and Mahathir can go for each other’s throats rather than for the throats of the Rulers like in the mid-1980s.

But Najib is different. Sure, he is carrying much baggage. But then so are many of the Rulers. No one is perfect, in particular the Rulers. After all, the Rulers are also human, just like Najib and all the Umno leaders who have numerous skeletons in their closet. But Najib is an orang istana and he would never dream of abolishing the Monarchy and of turning Malaysia into a Republic. With Anwar they could not be so sure, as the mid-1980s Constitutional Crisis proved. Better a devil like Najib that one knows than an angel like Anwar who might turn out to be the death of the Monarchy.

We must remember that Anwar played a crucial role in the mid-1980s Constitutional Crisis. Najib did not. Najib, in fact, kept the lines of communication with the palace open the entire duration of the Constitutional Crisis. Najib demonstrated that he is a friend of the Monarchy, just like his late father was. Anwar demonstrated the reverse.

It is not puzzling as to why the Sultan or Perak appears pro-Umno, or rather pro-Najib -- because it is Najib who is behind the current Perak Constitutional Crisis. The key word here is survival. Najib can ensure the survival of the Monarchy. Anwar cannot. In fact, in the mid-1980s, he already demonstrated he is anti-Monarchy. You can always argue that Anwar had no other choice as he was under the orders of Mahathir. But then so were Ghafar and Najib but they did not whack the Rulers as hard as Anwar did.

If one wants to argue that Anwar is not anti-Monarchy and was only doing Mahathir’s bidding, the clash Anwar had with the Kelantan Palace put this theory to sleep. Anwar was the Finance Minister at that time and he ordered the Customs Department to impound the Sultan’s Lamborghini on grounds that the import duty was unpaid. Actually, Sultans are exempted from import duty on the first seven cars they import while the Regent, Raja Muda or Tengku Mahkota gets exemption on three. So that makes ten cars altogether and the Sultan of Kelantan had not used up his full quota.

The Sultan was furious and he asked his palace official to go to the Customs office and take the car by force. The palace official just drove off with the car under the very noses of the Customs officers, much to the chagrin of the Customs Department and Anwar who accused the Sultan of stealing the car. Later, it was proven that the Sultan was right and that Anwar was wrong and the issue was quietly laid to rest without any further hullabaloo. But the damage had been done. Anwar’s actions were entirely on his own initiative and not on the instructions of Mahathir. No one can now say that Anwar’s role in the mid-1980s Constitutional Crisis was just to carry out the instructions of Mahathir.

To understand what is happening in Perak today, one must go back 25 years or so to the time when Anwar and Ghafar made those many trips to Istana Negara to engage the Rulers in the Constitutional Crisis. The Rulers got burned badly. And it was Anwar that they had to face, not Mahathir. Yes, the Rulers know it was Mahathir pulling the strings from behind the scenes. But it was Anwar and not Mahathir who tegang leher and bertekak with the Rulers while Ghafar sat there sighing, wishing he had never been dragged into this fight.

Sure, the Rulers are selfish. What they are doing is only to ensure their own survival. But is this not the natural instinct of humankind? Is it not natural for anyone to make a decision that ensures your own survival? And this is exactly what the Sultan of Perak is doing. He backs Najib over Anwar. And he gives the Perak government to Najib’s party instead of Anwar’s. That is what anyone would do when his or her survival is at stake.

But is the reverse going to happen instead? Is what the Sultan of Perak doing going to actually accelerate the demise of the Monarchy rather than the other way around? Time will tell. Maybe what is happening in Perak will just put to question the relevancy of the Monarchy. Maybe the Tsunami of people’s power will challenge the wisdom of the Monarchy and demands for its abolishment may reach a crescendo. Or maybe Najib will owe the Monarchy a huge favour and he will ensure that the Monarchy is retained, at least during his tenure as Prime Minister.

7 May 2009 may, or may not, be the turning point for the Monarchy. 7 May 2009 may see the Monarchy strengthened or may see it weakened. We will know which it is going to be when 7 May 2009 is upon us. Will the people turn out in droves? Will they hit the streets in tens of thousands like what they did on Nomination Day in Bukit Gantang? Are we going to see the storming of the Bastille on 7 May 2009?

Sure, Umno too will make sure they are represented in great numbers. Umno will probably bus in its supporters from all over Malaysia to make up those numbers. No doubt Umno has the money to finance this ‘great assembly’. With money you can do many things. But the ‘other side’, made up of opposition supporters, will also be in Ipoh on 7 May -- not because they have been paid to be there, but because they want to be there. You do not need to pay opposition supporters to come out. They will be there on their own accord and at their own expense.

Expect the police to soon issue a statement. The people will be warned that they must not go to Ipoh on 7 May 2009. The police will declare that the gathering in Ipoh is going to be classified an illegal assembly and that action will be taken against anyone who assembles in Ipoh on 7 May 2009.

I doubt, however, that the people can be intimidated. Gone are the days you can threaten the people and frighten them into staying indoors. The crowd will be there. Both sides will be there. And how the government handles the situation will depend on what happens thereafter.

And don’t say Malaysia Today has not warned you. We are warning you that for every action there will be an opposite and equal reaction. Force begets force and violence begets violence. And there is only so much you can do to oppose the will of the people. Many countries all over the world, our neighbours included, have demonstrated this. The people always win in the end. And there are no two ways about it.

See you in Ipoh on 7 May 2009.

Pandikar prepared to face Gobind in court

Written by Sharon Tan, The Edge

Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia is willing to let Puchong MP Gobind Singh Deo have his day in court.

"I accept the summons and I will answer it. Other than that, I wish not to comment on anything," he told the press after meeting lawmakers from Australia and South Korea in his office in parliament today.

Gobind was suspended by the Dewan Rakyat for 12 months on March 16 for insulting the speaker and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Pandikar said everyone had the right to take action against another person, hence there was no necessity for him to comment on the matter.

He said as a speaker, he had only wanted to ensure a smooth parliament sitting and if MPs could not follow orders, then there was no need for parliament to sit.

"I do not wish to see the repeat of such incident when the parliament sitting resumes on June 16," he said.

On Bukit Gelugor MP Karpal Singh's statement that the Federal Court's decision two weeks ago in the suit brought against Perak Speaker V Sivakumar had set a precedent for Gobind's suspension to be taken up to the apex court, Pandikar said since the suit was filed last week, it was now up to the court to interpret the "precedent".

Gobind filed his suit against Pandikar in the light of Sivakumar's case. He is seeking a declaration that the suspension is null, void and of no effect.

On former Prime Minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi's sitting position in parliament since he was still the MP for Kepala Batas, Pandikar said the House might place Abdullah with other veteran MPs like Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah (Gua Musang-BN) and Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz (Kuala Kangsar-BN).

ELECTION COMMISSION TIGHTEN GRIP ON ELECTIONS - WHY NOT INCLUDE ENTICE 'GOODIES' AND 'HAND-OUTS, BUS LOAD OF PHANTOM VOTERS & NO NEWS REPORTS

The Election Commission (EC) announced that they are tightening up the Elections Laws by introducing new measures to curb political parties and their supporters from canvassing for votes and campaigning from midnight to 5pm on polling day, to allow a cooling-off period for voters to make their choice while did not rule out the possibility that the number of supporters accompanying candidates on nomination day would be limited to a “sensible” number, so that the police strength can also be reduced.

From the recent by-elections, it was noted that these two pointers were the reason for the disastrous defeat of the ruling coalition, Barisan Nasional, and they hope by curbing them BN will be able to entice the voters using various 'dubious' means to distort their opponent.

To make it a fair election, the EC should also include that no political party will be allow to entice the voters with 'goodies' and 'hand-outs' from nomination day to polling day, bring bus load of phantom voters to voter for them on polling day, and stop any mainstream medias from reporting any news covering the elections from nomination day to polling day.

If these are incorporated, the matter will be within the locality and its the duty of the candidate and his supporters to canvass for votes without external interference.

Do you think the EC will include these proposal?

photo courtesy of Malaysiakini

Congrats, YB Senator Tunku Aziz

Congratulations YB Senator Tunku Aziz.

We look forward to Tunku Aziz lending meaning, gravity and direction to the Senate with his appointment as Senator by the Penang State Assembly this evening.

Mansor Othman, PKR's choice for Penanti?

KUALA LUMPUR, 27 April 2009: Is Penang Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) deputy chief Dr Mansor Othman the party's choice for the upcoming Penanti by-election?

PKR is expected to announce its candidate in Penanti at 9pm tomorrow.

Party insiders said that Mansor, 56, a former Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) lecturer who once served as Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's political secretary when the latter was deputy prime minister, was the front-runner for the contest.

They said that Mansor had become the party's primary choice when he was not nominated as PKR's candidate for senatorship by the Penang state assembly.

Earlier, he was said to be among the candidates for senatorship.

Instead, Penang PKR state secretary Mustafa Kamal Mohd Yusoff and DAP vice-chairperson Tunku Abdul Aziz were recommended to become senators next month.

Penang PKR chief Datuk Zahrain Mohamed Hashim, when contacted, neither denied nor confirmed that Mansor was the party's candidate, except to say that PKR would announce its choice tomorrow.

Mansor is said to be Anwar's favourite candidate for Penanti and he may even be the choice for the now-vacant deputy chief minister's post if he wins.

Penanti is the sixth by-election after the General Election on 8 March last year. The Election Commission has fixed 23 May for nomination and 31 May for polling.

The Penanti seat fell vacant after former Penang deputy chief minister I Mohamad Fairus Khairuddin resigned. — Bernama

Nizar seeks to challenge Article 63

PUTRAJAYA, 27 April 2009: Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin today filed a notice of motion to obtain a court declaration that Article 63 of the Perak state constitution null and void for being in conflict with the Federal Constitution.

Nizar, 52, filed the notice through legal firm Messrs Leong & Tan at the Federal Court Registry here and named government of Perak, government of Malaysia and Datuk Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir as respondents.

In the application, he said the 1996 amendment to Article 63 which gave jurisdiction to the Federal Court to hear constitutional issues regarding the Perak political crisis was in conflict with Article 4(3) and 4(4) of the Federal Constitution.

He said the state legislative assembly did not have the authority to make the amendment.

"Any amendment to Article 63 after Independence is supposed to be made through Article 162(1) of the Federal Constitution because the Federal Court's jurisdiction can only be given by Parliament, not the state legislative assembly," he said.

He also requested for the proceedings to determine who is the legitimate Perak Menteri Besar, scheduled to be held at the Federal Court tomorrow, to be deferred pending the disposal of this application. — Bernama

Memperkasa Parti & Organisasi

Dalam sidang pimpinan bulanan di Ibu Pejabat hari ini, saya menekankan semula halatuju perjuagan parti: menggilap semula idealisme perjuangan, muhasabah dengan maksud memperbaiki kelemahan dan menjana kekuatan parti dengan memperkemas jentera serta meningkatkan khidmat kapada rakyat.

Untuk maksud tersebut, saya mengemukakan usul mengikut urutan keutamaan yang wajar dilaksanakan segera oleh pimpinan parti.

Pertamanya agar Presiden, Dr Wan Azizah bertanggungjawab memantau liputan media dan segera mengulas isu berbangkit. Kehadiran beliau dirasakan harus lebih menyerlah lagi.

Kedua: Timbalan Presiden, Dr. Syed Husin Ali menumpukan sepenuhnya dalam isu dasar perjuangan yang menunjangi parti - politik, ekonomi, pendidikan dan budaya. Selain isu dasar umum tersebut, perihal yang diprihatinkan masyarakat Melayu dan Bumiputra perlu ditangani.

Ketiga: Naib Presiden, YB Azmin Ali yang melepaskan tugas selaku Pengarah Pilihanraya akan mengetuai pasukan petugas (task force) yang terdiri di kalangan semua Naib Presiden, YB Dr. Lee Boon Chye, YB Sivarasa, Sdr Mustaffa Kamil Ayub, serta Dr. Jeffrey Kitingan; bersama Ketua AMK Sdr Shamsul Iskandar dan juga Ketua Wanita, YB Zuraida Kamaruddin untuk memperkasa kepimpinan parti di peringkat negeri dan bahagian. Tugas pasukan adalah memastikan kelayakan dan keberkesanan serta disiplin pimpinan negeri, bahagian, Ahli-ahli Parlimen dan Ahli-ahli Dewan Undangan Negeri.

Keempat: Setiausaha Agung, Dato’ Sallehuddin Hashim akan mengurus operasi Ibu Pejabat, perjalanan dan jentera parti, jawatankuasa pengurusan dan kempen keanggotaaan.

Lain-lain perubahan adalah:

Pengarah Pilihanraya: YB Saifuddin Nasution

Pengerusi Jawatankuasa Latihan (kepimpinan parti)- YB Fuziah Salleh

Pengerusi Jawatankuasa Keanggotaan Baru - YB Johari Abdul

Pengarah Strategik - YB Tian Chua

Pengerusi Jawatankuasa Perhubungan Antarabangsa: Sdr Mustaffa Kamil Ayub
Timbalan Pengerusi : Dr Tan Kee Kwong

Ketua Penerangan: Latheefa Koya
Ketua Komunikasi : Jonson Chong
Pengerusi Jawatankuasa Disiplin: Dato Yeop Adlan Che Rose

Timbalan Setiausaha Agung : Sdr Abdul Halim Mohammed Yussof, Sdr Paul Kadang, YB Raveentharan dan Sharifah Shahidah.

Pimpinan biro kanan selaku Anggota (Jemputan) Biro Politik: Dr Muhammad Nur Manuty, Dr Tan Yee Kew, YB Manikavasagam dan Sdr Baru Bian.

Beberapa anggota lain diputuskan bagi membantu jawatankuasa berkaitan. Ini termasuklah penyertaan YB Wee Chee Keong, YB Gobalakrishnan dan lain-lain.

ANWAR IBRAHIM

Mampu Asked To Conduct Study On Organisation Of Religious Depts, Councils

PETALING JAYA, April 27 (Bernama) -- Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Mohd Sidek Hassan has asked the Malaysian Administrative, Modernisation and Management Planning Unit (MAMPU) to conduct an indepth study on the organisation of state religious departments and councils with the emphasis placed on enforcement and litigation.

He said this was important to ensure effectiveness in the two areas concerned.

"I am of the view that it is time for us (state and federal governments) to find the best and fastest ways to ensure that issues which in principle have been decided and agreed upon at the federal level can be implemented at the states level in a wise and equitable manner.

"Indirectly, Muslims in the various states will stand to benefit from fatwas (decrees) that are gazetted besides displaying uniformity among the Muslim community," he said at 19th Conference on the Streamlining of Islamic/Civil Laws here Monday night.

The three-day conference which will end on April 29 is being attended by 68 law experts in various fields and includes state muftis, state legal advisors and chief syariah judges of the various states.

Mohd Sidek also asked the Islamic Development Department (Jakim) to develop quality training modules for the benefit of religious officers in Sabah, Sarawak and the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia.

New FT Minister gets open letter from irked blogger

Close our roads, close our periuk-nasi. Like most bloggers, OutSyed The Box has a day job. He is a Jalan Masjid India trader.

And like the other traders there, he's had enough with the authorities closing roads in KL on a good day for business for no good bloody reason.

I hope Federal Territory Minister Raja Nong Chik reads blogs as Syed has made some reasonable requests and some good suggestions in his letter, here.

p.s. Just the other day the PM told the FT Minister to look at the traffic problems in KL. So, finally, we'll get to see how the government spends the RM4 billion it saved after increasing petrol prices as ordered by the previous Administration, eh? Incidentally, just two months ago, his predecessor spoke of a RM1 billion budget to end traffic woes in 10 hotspots in KL ...

Do you have any complaint or suggestion for the new FT Minister?- Rocky's Bru