Sunday, June 28, 2009
Or else the influential movement would withdraw support for the coalition in future electoral battles, warned its London-based leader, P Waythamoorthy.
He urged Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng to heed to the call made by villagers and civil societies to gazette the ‘Tamil High Chaparral’ as a living cultural heritage urban village.
According to Waythamoorthy, the DAP-led state government should not push Indian Malaysians to a corner, like what Barisan Nasional had done all these years.
“Otherwise, Pakatan Rakyat and Penang government would face Hindraf’s wrath in the next election,” he told Malaysiakini today.
Waythamoorthy slammed Lim’s administration of not fulfilling its responsibilities to end the impasse and for its unwillingness to resolve the villagers’ quandary.
He chided the state government for not showing any interest to preserve the last remaining Indian traditional village in Penang.
“It’s a clear attitude of arrogance ... forgetting the plight of the poor and defenceless after winning the general election.
“The DAP-dominated state government has betrayed the people’s trust. It has failed to protect the weak and the marginalised,” said Waythamoorthy.
He said Hindraf could not comprehend the state government’s nonchalant attitude on the issue, especially when the state government had acknowledged existence of possible wrongdoing in the village land deals.
The Penang government has set up an investigating team headed by Deputy Chief Minister 1 Mansor Othman to probe into the land deals.
Waythamoorthy smacked the Pakatan coalition of falsely portraying itself as champions of justice, fairness and equality when the villagers’ unresolved dilemma proved that the Penang government had failed to “walk its talk.”
“What’s happening in Penang is pathetic. The state government has deliberately refused to exercise its executive powers to protect the village as a heritage,” said the self-exiled human rights leader, who plans to return Malaysia by next month.
Land taken over by BN state gov’t
The current residents and their ancestors have lived in Kampung Buah Pala in Bukit Gelugor, for nearly 200 years, which originally was a housing trust under the Housing Trust Act of 1950.
The original owner of the once coconut plantation area, David Brown, had gifted the land to the current villagers' forefathers.
However, after independence, the Barisan Nasional state government took over the village as the land trustee and collected temporary occupational licence (TOL) rents until 2005.
In that year, the land office alienated the land to the state government before it was subsequently sold for some RM3.21 million to a civil servants cooperative society, the Koperasi Pegawai Kanan Kerajaan Pulau Pinang.
The cooperative has subsequently engaged Nusmetro Venture (P) Sdn Bhd to develop a lucrative housing project, the Oasis.
Early this month, the village residents' association lodged a report to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission alleging fraud in the land alienation and transfer carried out by the northeast district land office.
The villagers now face eviction on July 2 after their appeal to annul the land deals and stop the Oasis project was dismissed by the Federal Court.
Waythamoorthy said Hindraf would hold DAP and its allies accountable for their inaction.
He said Hindraf faced difficulties in explaining to the Indian masses on the deliberate inaction of the state government to exercise the powers conferred upon it by National Land Code and Land Acquisition Act.
The Hindraf chief rebuked claims that the Kampung Buah Pala residents were arrogant for not accepting the compensation initially proposed by the developer.
He said the villagers have only asked for the authorities to protect their constitutional rights to live in their ancestral village.
“Is this too much to ask from a state government which portrays itself as a people’s government?” asked Waythamoorthy.
Waythamoorthy’s elder brother, P Uthayakumar, who is legal advisor to Hindraf, paid a visit to the embattled village early this month. (photo)
The residents are angry that Rayer had failed to keep his electoral pledge to protect their interests and stop a controversial but lucrative condominium project in Kampung Buah Pala.
“At last year’s general election campaign, Rayer vowed to save our village. Now he is hiding from us ... scared to face us because he had betrayed us,” said the villagers during a protest in front of Rayer’s home in Island Park, Georgetown, last night.
Some 100 villagers, led by Kampung Buah Pala Residents Association chairperson M Sugumaran, expressed their dissatisfaction over Rayer’s lukewarm attitude in the matter.
They also want Rayer to explain on why he failed to inform them about the July 2 writ of possession obtained by the developer.
Indeed, it was Georgetown city OCPD Assistant Commissioner Azam Abdul Hamid who informed the villagers about the writ at a meeting yesterday, which was also attended by the developer’s representatives.
The police chief has warned the villagers not to cause trouble when the developer’s demolition team arrives to flatten the village on Thursday.
“The authorities want us to just sit and watch our homes being destroyed,” lamented Sugumaran.
The villagers claim that Rayer was “hiding” inside his house instead of coming out to face them during their protest which kicked off at about 9pm.
“If this is the attitude of our elected representative, then he should resign and pave way for a by-election. We can elect a better leader,” said the association secretary J Steven.
Villagers lost final court battle
Last Thursday, the villagers lost their final appeal at the Federal Court to overturn last month’s Court of Appeal decision favouring the developer Nusmetro Venture (P) Sdn Bhd and its cooperative landowner, Koperasi Pegawai Kanan Kerajaan Pulau Pinang.
The villagers and their legal team have argued that the land alienation and the subsequent sale to the cooperative by the previous state administration were tainted by fraud.
The three-member Federal Court bench however, dismissed their appeal and ruled that the villagers have no locus standi over the village land - part of a housing trust in which the current residents and their ancestors have occupied for nearly 200 years.
The villagers slammed the judgment as being against natural and social justice.
“If our nation’s judges were to be Brazilian judiciary, the whole Amazon tropical forest would be turned into a concrete jungle within a decade,” said the association assistant secretary C Tharmaraj.
Expect stiff resistance on demolition day
The villagers also criticised the DAP-led Pakatan Rakyat government, a self-proclaimed people's government, of betraying them by washing its hand over the controversial issue.
“We voted for a change in the last polls because we wanted to rectify the wrongdoings done by the previous Barisan Nasional government. But the DAP government has not shown any difference,” said Sugumaran.
“It seems more interested with dollar and cents than the plight of working class like us.”
The villagers lamented that except for the two deputy chief ministers - Mansor Othman and Dr P Ramasamy - the other state executive councillors in the 11-member state cabinet are not interested in helping them.
The villagers want the state government to preserve their village as a human cultural heritage, echoing a call made by two Unesco officials to Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng’s administration early this year.
In the next four days, the villagers consisting of some 65 families from 24 homes will have to evacuate the village - the last remaining Indian traditional urban village in the state - to pave way for the Oasis development project.
Kampung Buah Pala is known among locals as ‘Tamil High Chaparral’ because of its population of cowherds, cattles, goats and Tamil traditional cultural features.
Judging by their mood, it is clear that the villagers would not surrender their homes without a stiff resistance come Thursday.
“The judge cannot be the executioner. That is the basic principle of criminal law,” said Bar Council president Ragunath Kesavan.
"Judges must understand their role and what they are and are not allowed to do as we have checks and balances and a separation of powers under the law."
Ragunath was commenting on the sentence passed by judge Zainal Abidin Kamarudin on Friday, who ordered sales promoter Muhammad Syafiq Abd Wahab, 20, to be caned 10 times in the court premises for gang robbery.
The caning would be carried out on July 15, in front of the offender’s parents. Additionally, the judge imposed a sentence of 200 hours of community service.
Zainal Abidin said that 10 “light cane strokes” would be administered as provided under the Criminal Procedure Code for young offenders.
Judge not trained to cane
Ragunath (right) said that the judge and the executioner has to be different people, adding that the judge was not trained to carry out the sentence.
Moreover, there are specific rules specifying how punishment should be meted out.
He said while the law allowed a judge to inflict corporal punishment, this had last been done over 30 years ago, with the High Court swiftly reprimanding the judge for doing so.
Chief Justice Zaki Azmi told the Star daily the planned caning would be investigated.
"I am asking the senior judge in the Kuala Lumpur High Court to look into it and take the appropriate action," he told the paper.Should there be no changes by Monday, Ragunath said that the Bar Council will apply for a revision of the ruling.
I believe it is time the Rakatan Rakyat Selangor state government do something about the 'sulit culture'. The coalition government is supposed to be a transparent, accountable and responsible administration but after a year nothing much seems to have changed.
Even one councillor has allegedly threatened to ask a local council to use the OSA on those who reveal official documents concerning the people's well-being.
Meanwhile, when questionable deals are exposed, the state executive councillor responsible for local councils, Ronnie Liu, cannot be reached for comments. There is a deafening silence.
If the Pakatan Rakyat state government continues the 'sulit culture' of the previous Barisan Nasional state administration and fails to be transparent, accountable and responsible, then many of its supporters will be put off and the next general election will not be smooth going for the Pakatan Rakyat.
Many of the blunders that reflect badly on the Pakatan Rakyat can be attributed to the appointed councillors showing off, abusing their position and power, threatening the people with OSA charges, and talking nonsense. Some are plain publicity crazy, while a few have been tainted by allegation of corruption. Such people should not be reappointed.
In view of the fact that direct election to the local authorities is not legally possible now, the Pakatan Rakyat should consider a sort of indirect election, in which those selected as councillors are nominees of the community, i.e. officials of residents associations, representatives of traders and hawkers, and those recommended by the professional bodies.
To safeguard the interest of the people and to avoid conflicts of interests, businessmen, especially those who have dealing with the local authorities like contactors and suppliers of materials, should be barred from being appointed councillors. As it is, there has be a case in which one businessman councillor has been alleged to have used his position to promote his own business. Whether the claim is true or not, the fact is that he has been tainted and he has lose much respect among the people. Even his own fellow party members have doubts about him. To avoid such a situation, the Pakatan Rakyat should not appoint business people as councillors.
Finally, as a demonstration of its sincerity in upholding transparency and accountablity, the Pakatan Rakyat should make all local councillors declare their assets on taking office and on completing their term. Such a move will ensure that only people of credibility and integrity are made councillors. As it is, the people don't seem to think much of councillors now, and look upon them as being on the take, although it may not be true. Declaring assets will enhance the status of the councillors and bring about some respect to them.
The honeymoon is over, Ronnie, and you need to do something concrete and fast to protect the good name of the Pakatan Rakyat. I need to write this because I am a true friend of your.
Someone who would like to remain anonymous sent me this piece about what happened recently in the Kota Kinabalu Sessions Court. Of course, this is a mere figment of the writer’s imagination, whoever that writer may be, and any similarities or resemblance to any person or persons dead, still alive, or are better off dead than alive, is purely coincidental.
NO HOLDS BARRED
Raja Petra Kamarudin
WHAT THE PRESS DID NOT REPORT
Cross-Examination of IGP On 25/6/2009
For the first time in the history of the PDRM and court proceedings, the IGP PDRM, Tan Sri Musa Hassan, gave evidence against the former Director of Commercial Crime Investigation Dept (CCID), Dato Ramli Yusuff, in a trial in the Kota Kinabalu Sessions Court. The Judge is Puan Supang Lian, the DPP Is Kevin Morais (KM), the lead Defence Counsel is Dato Shafie Abdullah assisted by his junior Badrul and a Sabah counsel, James Tsai (JT). This is an account of what the press did not report.
Judge: Are parties ready to continue with the trial?
KM: Prosecution is ready with its most important witness, the IGP, Tan Sri Musa Hassan.
Badrul: Dato’ Shafie is not in court today, but we are ready to proceed.
Judge: Why is lead counsel not present when the most important witness is giving evidence? Isn’t that the point for admitting Dato Shafie to the Sabah Bar for this case. Anyway no adjournment, Mr James Tsai our Sabah counsel can conduct the case. Please proceed.
IGP wink to KM. Prosecution proceeds to conduct examination in chief. IGP contradicts all his other Directors who had previously given evidence. JT did not ask to reserve cross as was previously done for Dato Shafie.
Cross examination by JT
Q1: You are the 75th witness in this case?
IGP: I am. But please note what the DPP and Judge said, I am the most important witness because I am the IGP PDRM, the highest ranking police officer to give evidence for this case.
Q2: You would be aware that prior to you, there were already the following witnesses:- (a) 33 Police Officers; (b) 26 Government Civil Servants; (c) 15 civilians. A total of 74 witnesses?
IGP: That may be so. But obviously you did not hear the DPP and the Judge. I am the most important witness.
Q3: Why so many witnesses?
IGP: DPP Kevin Morais likes to have many witnesses. The more the merrier… I mean better. It shows the importance of the case.
Q4: But this is just a case about abuse of power in using a police aircraft, yet the number of witnesses is more than a murder case? Is that a good prosecution technique?
IGP: You see, we have no time constraints since we only interviewed all these witnesses after we have charged Ramli. Also, we must spare no effort to secure a conviction especially since one witness after another did not help prove the case, we just add on more witnesses until we get the witnesses who will say what we want them to say. If they still do not comply, we charge them like what we did to Dato’ Gen Yassin. Although he is a former army general, we still charge him. In that way all other witnesses will co-operate. Also the judge will get tired and relent. Yes, in that sense it is a good prosecution technique.
Q5: So your presence in court is to secure Ramli’s conviction?
IGP: Of course! As the most important witness, it is my duty to finish of what we started.
Q6: And what did you start?
IGP: Obviously you Sabah lawyers are ignorant of current affairs. We started with the newspapers getting the public excited about the RM 27 million Cop. Ramli then fell into our trap to make that Press Statement. So A-G Gani Patail and I told our PM that this is not good for the country. Also, we needed to boost the image of the ACA, which will be re-branded as the MACCA, so we need to have these road shows to boost public confidence.
Q7: Boost public confidence?
IGP: Yes, because that blogger RPK has been writing about rising crime and corruption and linking it to Putrajaya. That is no good for the country and makes us less competitive than Singapore. You see RPK is a Singapore agent echoing what Lee Kwan Yew has been saying about crimes in Johor when I was CPO and in the whole of Malaysia when I became IGP. Also at that time, we were just about to legitimise the Alongs aligned to us to be licensed moneylenders to boost the economy. Public confidence is very important to attract FDI.
Q8: But what has Ramli’s Press Statement got to do with the charge against him?
IGP: (murmured - not a very smart lawyer, that’s why we have him and not Shafie today). You see, we need to keep him busy defending himself until people forget him and he retires. We already charged Ramli in KL but those charges are a bit difficult to prove. Using aircraft is easier to prove because all top government officers and politicians do that.
Q9: So Ramli was charged for being the RM 27 million Cop?
IGP: We cannot find that money, so we charged him for owning some shares and properties. All in all we managed to make it look close to RM 1 miilion.
Q10: You mentioned Ramli’s Press Statement, didn’t he complain about his lawyer also being arrested?
IGP: That lawyer was guilty by association. He was Ramli’s classmate since university and tried to defend Ramli when we were going after Ramli. So he deserved what he got for interfering in government affairs.
Q11: But Isn’t Ramli’s Press Statement about the release of a criminal who had previous history of RR, Goh Cheng Poh @ Tongku?
IGP: Yes, but that man has turned over a new leaf. If you follow my press interview, I already stated that he has repented and is a legitimate businessman. He was co-operating with me as IGP. I ordered the release of other people from his syndicate as we were planning a corporatisation and J-V project. You see, we in PDRM must help the reform process to make them become legitimate. Even the ACA cleared him. But the Deputy Minister of Home Security kacau daun. He had other ideas and made use of Ramli.
Q12: You mean Dato’ Johari Baharom?
IGP: I didn’t mention his name, you did. Anyway, he is also now scared of me. He tried to fix me but he didn’t know my J-V included the A-G and the ACA. Now only he knows his fate. Tun M hates him, Tun B also sidelined him. Where is he now, taking care of some fruit farms? I am still the IGP with my good friend Gani Patail as the A-G.
Q13: So it is true when RPK reported about a turf war?
IGP: You don’t believe that fella, he only states the obvious.
Q14: But it wasn’t just Ramli who got into trouble over the Goh Cheng Poh @ Tongku matter?
IGP: Ya lah, some small rank and file officers also tried to implicate me by digging my connection with Goh Cheng Poh and reported it to Ramli.
Q15: And what happened to them?
IGP: They are insignificant. So we suspended and charged them.
Q16: For collating intelligence report?
IGP: They are not so intelligent lah! If they were, they won’t dig further or report to Ramli who then reported to Johari. So now all of them are in trouble.
Q17: And what happened to Goh Cheng Poh?
IGP: Ah… that one easy. A-G did not contest his case and so he is released.
Q18: Isn’t that dangerous, the policemen get charged and the criminal is released?
IGP: Obviously you are not sophisticated to understand these things. After we legitimise them and the Ministry of Housing and Local Government issue them Moneylenders License, this help generate borrowing activities which is part of economic growth. The loan defaulters can also be dealt directly by the Along because they are now licensed. So Michael Chong also cannot have basis to complain (any way Michael Chong is also now with us). We also advise the Along not to go public in collecting their debts. It was supposed to be a good idea when the Along set up their own prison to detain these defaulters until their family pay their debts. But then the TV station misunderstood this objective and showed the two men in chains. Trust me, that is not a true reflection of the corporatisation project. If everybody understands the real concept, crime index can be kept low. Judge, is this relevant? Can we move to something more relevant to Ramli’s case.
Q19: Ok. You would be the 1st IGP to give evidence against his own Director?
IGP: Yes. That shows my sense of responsibility. I will give evidence against anyone who is a security threat.
Q20: You consider Ramli as a threat?
IGP: Of course! I know him very well. I served as his direct subordinate for 6 years.
Q21: You mean he was more senior than you?
IGP: You Sabah lawyers don’t do your research very well. I not only served under him for 6 years, I also got two promotions recommended by him.
Q22: in that sense, Ramli did not consider you as a threat?
IGP: Well, that shows he is arrogant and naive. He never thought I could outrank him just because he has more experience in crime work and he has a law degree.
Q23: But it was also reported that you have a law degree?
IGP: I never said that. All I said in the press was that I am a law graduate. You see, I graduated from the Kuala Kubu Baru Police College with a police law diploma. That makes me a law graduate. You don’t need to have a university degree to be able to conclude that. That is the problem with so many people in PDRM with university degree, including my DIGP Tan SrI Ismail Omar. He thinks he is more qualified than me. What he didn’t know is that I have already informed my Minister Dato’ Hishammuddin who is close to the PM, who is his cousin, that Ismail is not ready to be IGP. So I will be extended for another 1+1 year. This will be announced very soon. Also, don’t forget that my father is a very popular Qur’an teacher, he just got a Tan Sri. So, I also have moral credentials to reform the Police Force.
Q24: So unlike your predecessor IGPs Tan Sri Bakri, Tan Sri Norian Mai, Tan Sri Rahim Noor and Tun Haniff Omar, who are all university degree holders, you do not have a university degree?
IGP: That’s what that makes me more special than any of them. For the first time in 25 years, PDRM has an IGP without a university qualification. This gives hope to others less qualified in PDRM. Actually, PDRM does not need all these ivory tower qualification. After all the Police Motto is Setia Berkhidmat. Loyalty is most important. Loyalty is what counts.
Q25: You have shown your loyalty?
IGP: I have proven this during the Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim cases (DSAI). That also shows my experience as a Police IO where we can secure a conviction.
Q26: How is that?
IGP: That was a difficult case. We found out that Ramli gave medical attention to DSAI after Tan Sri Rahim punched him. Ramli was then Deputy Director CID and I was his subordinate. That makes him disloyal. So, I managed to bypass him during the investigations and worked closely with Gani Patail. That was the break we needed to from a strong case by full co-operation between Police and A-G Chambers.
Q27: But in that case, as IO, isn’t it true you failed to ascertain that Tivoli Villas was not in existence. That was why the charge was amended several times because the charge stated that the sodomy occurred at that place when it was not even in existence?
IGP: That’s a small matter. Gani Patail is a very good prosecutor, so we just amended the charge and did other things as well. What matters is we eventually secured a conviction, just as we will in this case.
Q29: The DSAI case made you famous and proved your competence as IO?
IGP: Some are people are jealous lah and said I became famous because of the mattress that I carried and displayed daily in court. That’s just their view.
Q30: But the evidence on the mattress was thrown out?
IGP: That’s also another small matter. The main thing is we secured a conviction. Why do you raise such petty things?
Q31: But wasn’t the conviction overturned on appeal?
IGP: That’s not relevant. The objective has been achieved.
Q32: But DSAI has now filed an affidavit to say that you and A-G Gani Patail fabricated evidence?
IGP: Anwar is a politician!
Q33: But it is not just DSAI who said that. Dato Mat Zain, the former OCCI KL who investigated the black eye incident also said you fabricated evidence, and he is not a politician?
IGP: Mat Zain is not important. He has been discredited when we announced his bankruptcy recently. You see these people are failures. So they are obviously jealous of other people’s success. The point is after the DSAI conviction, I rose to be IGP and Gani Patail became A-G. That shows our loyalty and ability to protect government matters.
Q34: As you are now IGP and Gani Patail is A-G, DSAI is again facing another sodomy case. Does that not show a pattern of conspiracy?
IGP: What pattern?! The only pattern is Anwar’s own inclination. You have to blame him for continuing with his behaviour.
Q35: But DSAI say all the evidence was fabricated against him?
IGP: Get your facts right. I was cleared by the ACA in both the Goh Cheng Poh’s case and also the DSAI case.
Q36: Ok. Let’s come to you and Goh Cheng Poh being cleared by the ACA. is it not true that the ACA IO who investigated that case and the allegations of corruption against you is one ACA officer called Sok One a/l Esen?
Q37: Is it not true that Sok One a/l Esen also filed an affidavit to support Goh Cheng Poh’s affidavit against the policemen who implicated you in that corruption allegation?
IGP: Sok One is a good ACA officer and will do what it takes to achieve the objective.
Q38: Isn’t it also true that in the Goh Cheng Poh’s case, the A-G did not want to assist the CCID officers to prepare their affidavits?
IGP: That one you ask the A-G lah. Very basic law man, you don’t ask me such questions. Under the Federal Constitution – Art. 145, yes that’s the provision we learn at KKB College, it’s the A-G’s prerogative to defend who he likes and prosecute those he doesn’t like.
Q39: Alright. The court transcript shows that this ACA Officer Sok One a/l Esen is the same officer who lodged the report in this case against DRY?
IGP: Really? Why would the court transcript say that ?
Q40: Sok One a/l Esen is also the same officer who physically abused and arrested DRY’s lawyer, En Rosli Dahlan who was at that time the private lawyer assisting CCID in preparing their affidavits?
IGP: That one served him right. That man thinks he is a lawyer from a big firm, we cannot touch him. See what we did! We took him from his office in handcuffs, kept him one night and charged him one day just before Hari Raya Puasa. All the papers reported it. Padan muka dia! Judge, again counsel is asking irrelevant questions. He should stick to Ramli’s case.
Q41: Ok. Do you know ASP Chew Kam Soon?
IGP: Yes, he is Tatatertib Offcer PDRM. What about him?
Q42: Are you aware that one of the blogs showed a Statutory Declaration by ASP Hong Kin Hock (G/10990), one time with the Cawangan Operasi/Bantuan Teknik Jabatan Siasatan Jenayah Komersial (JSJK), who said that ASP Chew Kam Soon brought him to your house?
IGP: Must be that RPK blog. Not worth answering all the untruths.
Q43: ASP Hong Kin Hock also said that you were upset about the investigations conducted by CCID against Goh Cheng Poh @ Tongku. Is that true?
IGP: Who wouldn’t be upset? I was doing a good project for the PDRM and the country and the CCID want to poke their nose.
Q44: Did you give ASP Chew Kam Soon a promotion?
IGP: Well he is a loyal officer, so I gave him a promotion to DSP or Supt I think. What is wrong giving promotion to a Chinese? I am not racist!
Q45: Was that a reward for doing your biddings?
IGP: What is bidding? I only ask him to carry out orders and for that, as IGP, I can promote anyone I like.
Q46: So you did ask him to see a village headman of Kampong Lok Buani in Sabah, named Roslan Bin Abdul Hamid?
IGP: How do you know that?
Q47: According to the court transcript, ASP Chew Kam Soon came all the way from Bukit Aman KL to an interior village in Lok Buani Sabah to see Roslan and to “kirim salam” for you? Why would Chew do that?
IGP: What’s wrong with that? There is nothing wrong to just kirim salam kosong through a Chinese? PM has said 1MaIaysia, so I am just practising that.
Q48: Or was that “salam berisi”, because the court transcript also shows that after ASP Chew Kam Soon visited Roslan Bin Abdul Hamid, a long complaint letter was sent by Roslan to the ACA against Ramli. Do you admit that you orchestrated the letter of complaint against Ramli?
IGP: Alamak, why all these come out? DPP Kevin please object.
Q49: Roslan also said that he had made a phone call to the ACA. Would you say that it was so coincidental that the ACA Officer who took the call from Roslan is the same Sok One a/l Esen?
IGP: Ya lah, its just a coincidence.
Q50: The ACA report against Ramli was also filed by the same Sok One a/l Esen. Is that another coincidence?
IGP: If takdir like that, what can I do?
Q51: Is it also takdir that it was Sok One who inserted Ramli’s name in the report although Roslan did not mention Ramli’s name when he made a report to the ACA?
IGP: Really, the court transcripts state that?
Q52: Yes. The transcript also showed that Roslan testified that the words in the ACA report were largely not his. As far as the CPC is concerned and as IGP, would you agree it was wrong for Sok One to change or add Roslan’s words in the final report lodged with the ACA?
IGP: If he did that, then he is not so smart lah. They told me he is the best ACA officer for these sort of things. He is Siam you know.
Q53: One more question. In your examination in chief by the DPP, you kept referring to two the civilians. Are you aware that the charge has been amended to delete all reference to the two civilians?
IGP: Really? This is not very good co-ordination by ACA DPP. I will ask A-G Gani to amend the charge again and now include them back into the charge since my evidence today is very good about these two civilians. Amending charge is not a problem. We amended Anwar’s charges several times and still get conviction.
Q54 : But the pilots also said that they never flew over the land or conducted survey over any land?
IGP: That one also no problem, DPP Kevin will also amend charge to state “in the vicinity of the land”. That should be sufficient to convict Ramli.
Q55: I am instructed to put it to you that you orchestrated the whole ACA investigations against Ramli. I am also instructed that you have abused your powers by using the Polis Tatatertib, your connections with the ACA and the A-G to frame DRY so that he can be suspended to prevent investigations into your involvement with the crime syndicates.
IGP: DPP Kevin please object! Lawyers must behave professionally, not mimic RPK’s blogs.
PETALING JAYA, June 28 – Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim today questioned the sincerity of the prime minister in announcing a new merit-based scholarship programme obviously aimed at winning back Chinese voter support from Pakatan Rakyat (PR).
“Last time, when I said it, I was called a Chinese agent. Now that Najib has said it what are you going to call him? Is he now a Chinese agent and traitor to the Malays?” said Anwar sarcastically when asked today about the new scholarships to be based purely on merit.
The Opposition Leader has been frequently labelled a “traitor” and “Chinese agent” by Umno leaders since he launched PR’s reform agenda.
Anwar’s PR has successfully used its Ketuanan Rakyat, or supremacy of the people, slogan to differentiate itself from Umno’s Ketuanan Melayu, or supremacy of the Malays, rallying cry which has caused concern even among non-Malay Barisan Nasional (BN) parties.
But Najib, in a speech to Chinese political and community leaders last night, pledged to set up a new “National Scholarship” based entirely on merit, and also indicated his administration’s willingness to eventually drop the racial quotas in more sectors of the economy.
The prime minister’s remarks suggest a concerted effort is finally being made to hijack PR’s more multi-racial platform.
Najib’s pledges on reform seem to also suggest that he believes he can control the potential backlash from Malays while wanting to convince the non-Malays that, even if they have misgivings about Umno and BN, they should have faith in him.
Anwar appeared to acknowledge the threat from Najib today, and claimed the prime minister had only partially adopted the opposition’s agenda but failed to emphasise on protection for the poor.
“When we proposed something, it has to help people regardless of race but at the same time we will protect the poor, that is our approach,” he added.
MUAR, June 27 — Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin today asked PAS Spiritual Leader Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat to seek forgiveness from God over his statement, likening Umno to a deviant and communist party at a recent political talk in Kelantan.
The deputy prime minister and Umno deputy president said the Kelantan mentri besar, who was said to be a highly respected religious leader, knew that what he had said was most sinful in Islam.
“It is not necessary for him to apologise to Umno as some quarters had demanded that he do so but he has to seek forgiveness from God because his accusation is most sinful,” he said. He spoke to reporters after launching a “Pewaris Muda” programme of the Johor Information Department and Universiti Sains Malaysia in Kampung Jayor, Jorak, here.
Muhyiddin was asked to comment on the statement by Nik Aziz at a political talk in Manek Urai, Kelantan, on June 21 where he had likened Umno’s struggle to the deviant teachings of Ayah Pin and the Sky Kingdom and branded Umno a communist and socialist party that was anti-Islam.
Kelantan Umno Youth has lodged a police report over the statement by Nik Aziz, claiming that it was of a seditious nature.
Muhyiddin, who is the member of parliament for Pagoh, said PAS should not neglect Islam just because its political ideology was different. He said Umno had struggled longer than PAS in upholding Islam in the country, and this was vouched for by the Muslim community.
“Umno is much more Islamic than PAS, and one of our party’s struggles is to uphold Islam in the country. This is stated in Umno’s struggle,” he said.
The deputy prime minister also said that “ulama” (religious scholars) could play a role in criticising the actions of political parties which went against the norm without being accused of interfering in the parties’ internal affairs.
On the Manek Urai state by-election, nomination for which is on July 6 and polling on July 14, Muhyiddin said the Barisan Nasional (BN) would announce its candidate tomorrow.
“The BN has a good chance (of winning) in Manek Urai, but we should continue to work hard (for it),” he said.
PAS has named Kuala Krai PAS secretary Mohd Fauzi Abdullah as its candidate.
The by-election is being held following the death of the state assemblyman, Ismail Yaacob of PAS, on May 22.
Earlier, in his speech, Muhyiddin warned those who always challenged the special privileges of the Malays to be prepared to face the legal consequences. — Bernama
Najib’s announcement of new category of PSD scholarship based on “pure merit” welcome though taken with a heavy pinch of salt
By Lim Kit Siang,
The announcement by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak of a new category of Public Service Department (PSD) scholarships next year based purely on ‘pure merit’, regardless of race, is welcome although it is taken with a heavy pinch of salt after repeated disappointments with previous promises of ‘meritocracy’ by the Barisan Nasional Government.
Firstly, some six years ago, Malaysians were promised a system of ‘meritocracy’ in the annual intake of university students but it proved to be a ‘fradulent’ meritocracy, as there continues to be two incomparable university entrance examinations, the world-class two-year course STPM and the inferior one-year matriculation course.
If Barisan Nasional government is serious about wanting to stop the sharp drop in standards of Malaysian public universities – best illustrated by the best Malaysian universities falling out of the league of the world’s Top 200 universities – and transform Malaysian universities into world-class institutions, the best lecturers and students must be recruited regarded of race or religion.
The first step is to do away with the ‘fraudulent meritocracy’ for university student intake by having one common university entrance examination – whether STPM or matriculation – coupled with a programme of positive affirmation to ensure that students from socio-economically backward sectors get special assistance to get universities places based on need and not race.
Secondly, Parliament and the nation were assured last year that in this year’s 2,000 PSD scholarships for foreign university studies, 20% or 400 places would be allocated solely on merit. This again has proved to be a hollow undertaking, explaining the repeat this year of SPM top-scorers with 11 to 16As denied scholarships as compared to those with lesser academic results.
Now Najib promises a new PSD scholarship based on ‘pure merit’ regardless of race. My response: Welcome, but to see it is to believe it!
Can Najib really ensure that from next year, ‘the best of the best and the creme de la creme will be studying in Malaysian public universities, rather than as at present going abroad universities resulting in serious national brain drain or in private universities?
Skepticism that this new PSD scholarship based on ‘pure merit’ will end up less than ‘pure’ is understandable because of the absence of a genuine 1Malaysia mindset in the higher echelons of the political leadership and the bureaucracy to treat all Malaysians regardless of race as equal Malaysian citizens.
For instance, why is the government planning to limit the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia to 10 subjects for the candidates?
While I frown on students sitting for 18, 19 or 20 subjects, why should students be barred from sitting for say, 12, 13 or 14 SPM subjects?
The problem is not with SPM students taking 12, 13 or 14 subjects but because SPM results are used for the award of PSD scholarships. This problem can be resolved by making STPM or one common university entrance examination results as the basis for the award of PSD scholarships.
However, the real problem is whether Najib can convince Malaysians that his 1Malaysia is not just an empty slogan, good for a ‘dance and a song’ but a living and driving philosophy in all aspects of government policy.
How can Najib convince Malaysians about his seriousness about a 1Malaysia concept when he has not given up his push for ‘Malay unity government’ talks between Umno and Pas?
Is Najib prepared to give his blessing for the holding of ‘Chinese unity’, ‘Indian unity’, ‘Kadzandusunmurut unity’ and ‘Iban unity’ political talks in the country? If Najib is not prepared to publicly give his blessing for ‘Chinese unity’, ‘Indian unity’, ‘Kadazandusunmurut unity’, ‘Iban unity’ political talks, how can he reconcile 1Malaysia with the Umno-Pas ‘Malay unity government’ talks?
What is even more telling is that nobody in MCA, Gerakan, MIC, SUPP, PBS or the other Barisan Nasional component parties dare to ask for a clear decision whether in Cabinet or the BN Supreme Council whether such demands for Umno-Pas Malay unity government talks is completely inimical with 1Malaysia concept!
Umno Youth leader Khairy Jamaluddin has attacked me for being a ‘borderline racist’ in criticising the call for Umno-Pas Malay unity government talks as going against the 1Malaysia concept.
I think Khairy wanted to call Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad a ‘borderline racist’ but dare not do so, and is using this way to hit out at the former Prime Minister. Mahathir repeated his opposition to any Umno-Pas Malay unity government talks at the Pandan Umno division motivational course yesterday.
Khairy’s allegation that I am a ‘borderline racist’ is most laughable coming from one who had been very good at playing the role of a rabid racist, as when he made an uncalled-for attack on the Indian community during a live telecast at the Umno General Assembly in November 2007 or his infamous outburst about the so-called marginalisation of the Malays in Penang.
But so long as Khairy can continue to play with impunity his role as a rabid racist, Najib’s 1Malaysia concept as a unifying force for all Malaysians regardless of race will remain suspect.
by Shaila Koshy
KUALA LUMPUR: The Chief Justice will direct the senior High Court judge to look into the case where a Sessions Court judge is planning to cane a youthful offender himself in the courtroom.
“I am asking the senior judge in the Kuala Lumpur High Court to look into it and take the appropriate action,” Tun Zaki Tun Azmi told The Star.
“We have to confirm what actually happened.”
Zaki said this when asked to comment on news reports yesterday of the “rotan” sentence imposed on Muhammad Syafiq Abd Wahab, 20, under Section 293(1)(c) of the Criminal Procedure Code (CPC).
The former sales promoter, who had pleaded guilty, falls within the definition of a youthful offender since he was 19 when he, and a friend still at large, committed the robbery armed with a knife on Nov 16 last year.
While Section 293(1)(c) allows the court to order a youthful male offender “to be whipped with not more than 10 strokes of a light cane or rattan within the court premises and in the presence, if he desires to be present, of the parent or guardian of that offender,” it is silent as to who should carry out the caning.
It is understood, however, that a magistrate had imposed and carried out such a sentence some 20 years ago and that it had been done by magistrates sitting in juvenile courts a long time ago.
“These days, it’s rarely imposed, but magistrates used to carry out such caning in their chambers in the presence of the two juvenile court advisers, the prosecuting officer and a parent,” said a former member of the Judicial and Legal Services.
Bar Council chairman Ragunath Kesavan said the council would write to the senior High Court judge tomorrow for a revision of the “rotan” sentence to be meted against Muham- mad Syafiq by the judge himself.
“The CPC provides for such a sentence but it’s a fundamental principle of the role of a judge in the criminal justice system that he cannot be both judge and executioner.”
In agreement, DAP chairman Karpal Singh and former UN Special Rapporteur for the Independence of Judges and Lawyers Datuk Param Cumaraswamy urged the Chief Justice himself to intervene in this case.
“This also goes against international human rights laws,” said Param when contacted.
Karpal said that, although Section 288(4) of the CPC states that this type of “whipping” shall be inflicted by way of rattan, a judge implementing his own sentence would infringe the doctrine of separation of powers.
“A judge imposes a sentence. It is the executive which carries out that sentence.”
Karpal said a judge could not compromise his impartiality by “descending” to carry out a whipping sentence, adding it should instead be carried out by a court official designated for that purpose.
KUALA LUMPUR, June 28 (Bernama) -- Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak has invited United States President Barack Obama to visit Malaysia.
The prime minister said he extended the invitation during the telephone conversation he had with Obama on Friday night.
Writing in his blog, www.1Malaysia.com.my, Najib said that during the visit Obama would be able to observe how Islam was applied in a plural, multi-ethnic society like Malaysia.
In his recent address to the Muslim world in Cairo, Obama had stated that he recognised Kuala Lumpur as an example of a progressive Muslim-majority country.
Najib and Obama had talked on the phone for about 20 minutes from 9.12pm on Friday.
"I explained to him that Malaysia shares significant common grounds with the United States of America in that we strongly believe in the ideals and principles of democracy, including accountability and transparency.
"I also spoke about the initiation of the 1Malaysia concept and how the sense of togetherness and belonging will help Malaysians move forward with a common purpose," he said.
Najib said that in their first conversation with each other as heads of government both of them exchanged congratulatory wishes on their respective appointments.
"I expressed that I was looking forward to working closely with him. President Obama graciously acknowledged my ability to serve as prime minister based on my extensive background in the public service," he said.
Najib said the conversation left him "with a sense of optimism towards our relationship with the United States of America.
"I look forward to renewing Malaysia's ties with the United States under President Obama's administration and hope to explore solutions and opportunities to mutually benefit both countries in the immediate and long term," he said.
Temple demolishment - Veera Muneswarar, Jln Yap Kwan Seng ,off Jln Ampang,Kuala Lumpur.
10.00 a.m , 26/09/2009,Around 35 Indian guys that we suspect are MIC gangsters demolished the 20 years old temple. We believe that Umno led DBKL, police, MIC gangsters worked hand in hand with developer BOLTON Sdn Bhd to do this.
The Temple committee had launched several police reports at Dang Wangi Police station requesting protection from the trespassing(dang wangi/022122/09). Sivanaswaran temple committee member told Chief Ispector Anand that the trespassers did not produce a Court Order for the demolition. They just came and they demolished. Disappointing that the police did not protect the temple ,instead they were clearly operating in support of the gangsters. The Police only instructed the innocent temple personal to disperse. Police responsibility is to protect places of worship. Under the penal code sec 295 -defiling a place of worship is a criminal offence which is punishable upto 3yrs of jail. The police should have arrested these gangsters and the developer and charged them under penal code section 295.
We demand that action been taken against these criminals within these 7days.
We are disappointed that none of the temple demolishment case has sp far been produced in court even after dozens of Memorandum have been submitted by HINDRAF leaders P.Waythamoorthy and P.Uthayakumar The temple demolitions will never come to and end until the Attorney General sets in motion processes to prosecute those who defy the law.
Deputy Federal Territory Minister made a Ministerial statement in Parliament in reply to opposition members that no more Hindu temples will be demolished again in the future. What lies? UMNO has no more respect for democracy ,the people and the institution of parliament. Umno lost their 2/3 majority for the first time in the history of Malaysia, mainly because of Hindu temple demolishment. The new UMNO leadership has not changed and if we want this state of affairs permanently changed we have to change UMNO in the 2012-2013 General Elections. There seems to be no other way.
HINDRAF Makkal Sakthi
The police must realise that many sections of our community regard them as an “occupying force” and not protectors of citizens’ rights.
By Tunku Abdul Aziz, MySinchew
THE ROYAL Malaysia Police has come under criticism for one reason or another on a daily basis. Many of the complaints, I am sure, are not entirely fair or founded. This is not so surprising because we expect the police to perform superhuman acts of heroism and efficiency. I
In short, we expect miracles, no less, and often forget that donning the cheap dark blue uniform is a human being with all the frailties of God’s creation who is inadequately prepared for modern policing, generally badly officered and led and woefully under compensated for doing a dangerous and difficult job that no one in his or her right mind will want to do either for love or money.
I am not making excuses for them, but it is less than useless for us to criticise them endlessly without showing them the way forward. We all recognise the symptoms, but the solution ultimately lies in treating the root causes of the malaise. As they say, the devil is in the detail.
So, I was ecstatic, barely able to contain myself as I read a report by Koh Lay Chin of the New Sunday Times over breakfast that Datuk Seri Hishamuddin Hussein, the Home Minister, had said that “in line with the aims to enhance the image and operations of the (police) force he will be retracing steps to see if the recommendations (of the Royal Commission to Enhance the Operation and Management of the Royal Malaysia Police) had made an impact.
A day or so later, there was a report that Hishamuddin not only not retraced the steps, but seemed to have managed to get sucked into a maelstrom of self-doubt. It now looks as if he is going to follow in the footsteps of the lamentable Datuk Seri, now Tun, Abdullah Badawi by dropping the hottest of the 125 hot potatoes dished up by the Royal Commission. I am talking about the most crucial of the them all, and one that will make the greatest impact on policing in our country, and that is the formation of the IPCMC or the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission.
The IGP and his officers have openly resisted its implementation claiming it would interfere with their work. I can understand their concern, but surely they are missing the point completely. It is not about emasculation of their powers, but building public trust and confidence. Does the IGP not recognise that the reputation of the service he leads is in tatters? If he does not, he is living in a fool’s paradise which according to my dictionary, the Oxford Advanced Learner’s, is “a state of happiness that is based on something that is false or cannot last although the happy person does not realise it.”
The only way to enhance both the reputation and efficiency of the Royal Malaysia Police, which was precisely the reason why the Royal Commission was set up in the first place, is for the Government to adopt without any foot dragging or equivocation all the 125 recommendations which have in the main been based on public complaints of police inefficiency, including the very serious charges of abuse of power, brutality and corruption.
I find it extraordinary, to say the least, that Abdullah Badawi as prime minister should have allowed the police to be selective in what they would accept, but then it would not have been Pak Lah’s style to force an issue which is why we find ourselves in this sorry state today.
The police as public servants in a disciplined service should be told in the clearest possible terms that what they think is good for them (such as their highly developed culture of impunity and the obsession with their police powers) is unacceptable in this day and age. Police training should concentrate less on police powers and more on human rights to redress the imbalance.
The police must realise that many sections of our community regard them as an “occupying force” and not protectors of citizens’ rights. All this is extremely unfortunate because if this process of alienation is not arrested quickly, no pun intended, the public and the police will not be able to work together, to the detriment of law and order in our country. Police effectiveness depends on public confidence and support. They have to earn public trust.
The IPCMC holds the key as it does in the UK, Australia, and Hong Kong among others, to fair and efficient policing in the 21st century and beyond. The IGP must move with the latest developments in effective policing, the sort of policing that transforms the police from a force with its uncharitable connotations to a service with emphasis on service in the public interest. The IPCMC is to protect both the citizens, the primary duty of policing, and the police themselves, in their case against allegations of impropriety, often made without any basis.
The police appear to subscribe to the notion that there are already any number of internal rules and procedures to keep them from crossing the thin blue line and no “outside interference, please, thank you.” They must know that there is no police service in the world that is known to be able to police itself, and why should the IGP think that the reputation-battered Royal Malaysia Police is any different because its record seems to suggest otherwise. The IPCMC is their last wake-up call.
The Umno Youth Leader has just uploaded his latest item in his Blog. I thought, for once, I would debate all the issues with him rather than do the usual (linking back to his Blog) whereby the only comments we would receive would be ranting and raving from Malaysia Today’s readers.
NO HOLDS BARRED
Raja Petra Kamarudin
By Khairy Jamaluddin
DAP Parliamentary Leader YB Lim Kit Siang recently charged that the proposed muzakarah (dialogue) between UMNO and PAS is against the concept of 1Malaysia, shockingly implying that Malay-Muslim unity was not good for the country. Never mind that such sentiments are as absurd as they are borderline racist, Kit Siang, true to form, is ignoring facts that don't fit his prejudiced and jaundiced views.
First of all, Prime Minister YAB Dato' Seri Najib Tun Razak stated unequivocally just a few days ago that any unity government - itself never set as a necessary objective of any talks - between BN/UMNO and PAS would not result in non-Muslims being sidelined.
Secondly, as I have stressed from the very beginning, the muzakarah need not be confined to Malay-Muslim issues. Instead, any proposed talks should involve issues of national interest with the hope that the discussions will bring out the best in and most progressive elements of both parties.
Is this too far-fetched a notion for Kit Siang to comprehend? It was after all the leader UMNO and BN that came up with the 1Malaysia concept of inclusivity and mutual respect and Kit Siang's own party is partners with another whose political platform, albeit a recent one, is "PAS for All" after decades of conservative and radical rhetoric. Surely, neither UMNO nor PAS are going to squander attempts to engage with non-Malay/Muslim communities just by talking to one another. In fact, it is imperative that the muzakarah and any subsequent cooperation between UMNO and PAS continue with the spirit of both 1Malaysia and "PAS for All" to demonstrate the inclusivity of this union towards non-Malays/Muslims.
Kit Siang's persistence in arguing that the muzakarah and 1Malaysia are not reconcilable suggests that he believes any UMNO-PAS collaboration will necessarily be racist and threatening to non-Malays/Muslims. I find this position bemusing as his supposedly multi-racial party remains extremely dominated by one race.
Between parties that are explicitly ethnic or religion-based and one that calls itself multiethnic but has failed to really attract members beyond one ethnic group over the last 44 years, I think the latter an example of hypocrisy and disingenuousness. In fact, Kit Siang is a walking example of failure and insincerity when it comes to promoting national unity as demonstrated by his largely monoethnic "multiethnic" party.
As for the question about how BN component parties will react to such talks, Kit Siang should do some homework and refer to MCA Deputy President's statement in support of the unity talks, stating that they “would not affect unity among the races," and that MCA was "confident that UMNO is aware of its responsibility to the people of Malaysia." Now, the hyperbolic-cynic in Kit Siang may attempt another smokescreen and suggest that we shouldn't take Datuk Seri Chua Soi Lek's remarks as representative of MCA, but when the deputy president of a party speaks, you'd better well listen.
Speaking of diversionary tactics, perhaps the reason Kit Siang is so keen on attacking the muzakarah proposal is to cover up the serious cracks that exist within Pakatan Rakyat. First things first: the continued absence of PAS deputy president YB Nasharudin Mat Isa from Parliament last week and the stone cold silence of party president YB Dato' Seri Tuan Guru Haji Abdul Hadi Awang all point towards the reality that all is not well within PAS. It takes no genius to figure out that the party is deeply split. The likes of Nasharudin and Haji Hadi in the pro-muzakarah camp are fed up with the relentless pestering, insensitivity and insults of DAP leaders like YB Karpal Singh and tired of the cult of personality around YB Dato' Seri Anwar Ibrahim that is PKR. Simultaneously, they are waging an internal battle with the "Erdogans" - many defeated in the recent party polls - who are seemingly willing to sacrifice principles and dignity to ride with Anwar to power. These developments represent a slap in the face for the biggest and most established party in Pakatan – treated like a junior partner and bullied to no end.
Notwithstanding that, let me ask this of PAS: if it is willing to put aside its dignity to latch on to the coattails of PKR and DAP, why can't it get the Pakatan alliance to resolve issues fundamental to its existence and readiness to govern? At the very least, PAS deserves some firm commitment from PKR and DAP that their coalition be formalized and the division of responsibilities be made clear to all. This would save PAS from being treated as the under-appreciated component of Pakatan tasked with not much more than mobilizing crowds for a ceramah.
Why, for example, is Pakatan so hesitant to register itself as an official political coalition like BN? If even that is too much to ask, why can't it outline a shadow cabinet or name a candidate for Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister? Quite confusingly too, if Haji Hadi's speech at the recent Muktamar is anything to go by, PAS feels itself ready to lead any prospective Pakatan Federal Government. Is Kit Siang and DAP agreeable to the PAS president being the Prime Minister of Malaysia? I am also sceptical of Anwar’s readiness to give up his 'suspended destiny' of becoming PM in favour of Haji Hadi. What, if any, is the consensus within Pakatan?
Malaysians have the right to know the answers to these questions. Instead of confronting them, Pakatan leaders appear to dancing to the tune of "we'll work them out later" - sweeping issues under the carpet to paint a nice, wholesome picture. I will say this to them, do so at your own peril - the goodwill that Pakatan enjoys post-March 2008 amongst sections of the rakyat is fast disappearing. Granted, Barisan Nasional’s weaknesses are known but we are committed to fixing them for the future, grounded in our rich history and strong fundamentals. Pakatan's failings, on the other hand, are now rapidly surfacing with little indication that its leaders are interested in resolving issues about Pakatan's readiness to govern and instead are continuing with their stale, staple fare of finding fault in others - hardly a convincing proposition for Malaysian voters.
The issue is not whether Malay unity is good for the country or otherwise. Maybe Malay unity is good. But Malaysian unity is even better. What is it anyway that the Malays wish to unite against? And have the Malays always been united in the past whereas it is only now that they are not united?
If one were to study the history of this country -- and I don’t mean the history since only 1946 when Umno was formed and is said to have opposed the British in the pursuit of independence for Malaya -- you will see that the Malays have never been united. The Malays have always been at war with each other.
In the Kuala Lumpur Wars during the time of Sultan Abdul Samad, one group of Malays sided with one group of Chinese to fight against another group of Malays who had sided with another group of Chinese. As much as the history books try to suggest that it was Chinese versus Chinese (some even say it was the Ghee Hins against the Hai Sans), the truth of the matter is it was one Chinese-Malay group versus another Chinese-Malay group.
Selangor was in chaos with thousands massacred on both sides. Eventually, the British had to step in to restore order and to protect British business interests, which were being affected by the bloodshed.
The same happened in Negeri Sembilan earlier. Then, it was the Malays versus the Dutch colonialists. But another group of Malays sided with the Dutch to defeat the opposing Malays.
During the Japanese Occupation from 1941 to 1945, one group of Malays joined Chin Peng to oppose the Japanese -- this was when the CPM (Communist Party of Malaya) was still called the MPAJA (Malayan People’s Anti-Japanese Army) -- while another group of Malays worked with Japanese. Even back then the Malays was split into the pro-Communist group and the pro-Japanese group.
And even earlier still one group of Malays worked with the Portuguese to bring down the Malay government of Melaka. Further north, another group of Malays worked with the Siamese to defeat another group of Malays who wanted to create an independent territory free of Siamese domination.
In short, since the beginning of time, the Malays have never been united even against the Siamese, Portuguese, Dutch, British or Japanese colonialists/invaders. Why is it so crucial for the Malays to now unite long after the Colonialists have all gone home and the country has seen independence for more than 50 years?
We normally unite against something or someone. If the Malays must unite then it should be for a reason like to oppose a foreign invader or colonial power. Is there such a reason for the Malays to unite? Or is that Umno is suggesting the Malays unite against fellow-Malaysians who are non-Malays?
There is a certain amount of merit in Khairy’s comments on some of the other issues although his arguments may not be too much on the dot. For example, he pointed out the weaknesses and failures of the opposition coalition. True, these do exist. Some of these weaknesses can in fact be attributed to the Menteri Besar running those Pakatan Rakyat states. But how would the Malay unity talks be able to address these weaknesses? It is like saying since you are already weak then why not join us anyway?
Since 1999 many of us have been saying what Khairy is saying -- that the opposition should be formalised as a legally-registered entity like Barisan Nasional and that it should contest the general elections not only on a common name but also a common banner, logo and flag. But we were told you need seven political parties to register as a coalition and the opposition currently comprises of only three parties. If this is true then maybe Khairy can get the government to change the rules whereby even two political parties can register as a coalition. Then let’s see Pakatan Rakyat as a legally-registered party with its own flag, banner and logo. And in the next election PKR, DAP and PAS need no longer use their own colours to contest.
I am not too perturbed about the other issues raised by Khairy -- in particular the perceived chaos and disunity in the opposition. You see: it is quite normal for politicians to compete. This is what makes them politicians. And when there is no enemy to face they fight amongst themselves. This is sort of like staying in training and keeping your reflexes sharp.
Politicians will always fight. They fight amongst themselves. They fight the other side. This is what makes them tough and seasoned politicians. The most important thing is will they close ranks during the general election and when facing the real enemy or will they sabotage each other and allow the enemy to win out of sheer spite?
Pakatan Rakyat, just like Barisan Nasional, has internal squabbles -- both inter-party and intra-party. But they have demonstrated a certain level of maturity by uniting and ensuring victory for the opposition during an election. And this is something Barisan Nasional is not able to do.
So I agree with what Khairy said. But it is not something to be overly worried about -- although it is extremely irritating to see the opposition go for each other’s throats when it should be Umno or Barisan Nasional that they should be attacking instead. But as long as they can unite and not engage in three- or four-corner fights come election time, and work hard to ensure that the opposition candidate wins, that is all that matters and I am prepared to allow them this little distraction until then.
Nevertheless, this is still not enough ground for Malay unity talks, if this is what Khairy is trying to suggest. Anyway, the type of Malay unity that Khairy is suggesting means united under Umno. Can’t the Malays unite under PAS? If all we seek is Malay unity then it does not matter under which banner they unite as long as they unite.
If, for example, more Malays support PAS than Umno, would they be prepared to close down Umno and all of them join PAS for the sake of Malay unity? If Malay unity is really the issue then it does not matter under which party the Malays unite. And if Malay unity is so important, then closing down Umno and everyone uniting under PAS would be a small price to pay. I mean: Malay unity should be above Umno or PAS if Malay unity and not Umno is the crucial factor.
Khairy calls his piece Dinosaur Diversions. For that matter many of his arguments about Anwar, Karpal, Kit Siang, etc., are exactly that, diversions. Those are not crucial to the issue. What is would be that Malays have never been united since time immemorial. And they will never be united till the end of time. Accept that. And accept that there is no solution to this. Hey, even Umno has never been united since the day it was formed.
The next issue to note is that we should no longer be talking about Malay unity. We should be talking about Malaysian unity. We are far from achieving unity as Malaysians. And the more we talk about Malay unity the harder it would be to achieve Malaysian unity. Can I hear Khairy start talking about this? But don’t just talk. That is sheer lip service. Show us that you are doing something about it.
And on the national issues that Khairy proposes, this is simple. There are so many national issues to address and all have been raised here in Malaysia Today many times in the past. So I need not waste time repeating them yet again. Khairy knows what they are. I know what they are. Everyone reading this knows what they are. But Umno is resistant to all these ideas. Umno opposes the will of the people. Umno is not in the least interested in reforms.
And this is where the problem lies.
How yet another unpaid kickback in a submarine deal results in death by bombing
But now French authorities are turning to far less conventional — and more controversial — suspicions: that the strike may have been organized by members of Pakistan's military and intelligence services, as revenge for France cutting off millions of dollars in kickback payments promised in a 1994 submarine deal.
THE CORRIDORS OF POWER
By Bruce Crumley, Time
When, in May 2002, suicide bombers attacked a bus in Karachi in southern Pakistan and killed 11 French naval engineers, most officials believed it was the work of radicals tied to al-Qaeda. Although no such group ever took credit for the attack, the jihadist theory has long remained the one favored by authorities in both Pakistan and France. But now French authorities are turning to far less conventional — and more controversial — suspicions: that the strike may have been organized by members of Pakistan's military and intelligence services, as revenge for France cutting off millions of dollars in kickback payments promised in a 1994 submarine deal.
"This theory is being considered as the most likely, especially now that all the other plausible explanations have been seriously undermined," says a French counter-terrorism official who has knowledge of France's inquiry into the Karachi bombing. "Investigations in France have produced written evidence and testimony that kickbacks to Pakistani authorities had been agreed upon, paid, then unilaterally terminated from Paris. That theoretically provides the Pakistani authorities involved with a motive for an attack — meaning we now have to see if that can be fully substantiated."
French counter-terrorism officials have for months been privately airing their growing skepticism about jihadist responsibility for the 2002 attack. It wasn't until last week, however, that word leaked to the press that the specialized investigating magistrates handling the case in France appeared to have all but abandoned the al-Qaeda theory. On June 19, lawyers representing families of the bombing's French victims told reporters they'd received a briefing earlier that day by judges Yves Jannier and Marc Trévidic describing the scenario of Pakistani officials having organized the strike as credible, and citing supporting evidence obtained over the course of France's inquiry into the attack.
This new theory hinges on a change in French government as the possible trigger. In 1994, Paris signed a $1 billion deal to sell and assemble Agosta submarines to Pakistan; a year later, the cabinet of newly elected President Jacques Chirac decided to start holding back payment of some $33 million in kickbacks that had been promised to Pakistani officials who had helped secure the contract. French security officials tell TIME that last year French investigators obtained documents and testimonies by people involved with the transaction showing that after those funds were retained, Pakistani officials who were designated in the contract to receive "commissions" for their help repeatedly insisted they be paid. By 2000, when France applied an international anti-corruption convention banning kickbacks, Paris could truthfully claim it was unable to pay such "commissions" without breaking the law.
That, some French authorities now believe, is when some Pakistani officials got mad. The authorities suspect that members of Pakistan's overlapping military, intelligence and political circles decided to settle their score by symbolically targeting the French submarine engineers tied to the contract. Then they allegedly manipulated extremists whom Pakistan has long been accused of supporting to carry out the attack in order to maintain plausible deniability.
"[Investigators] have now established that these contracted commissions had become a major point of dispute, and are now trying to see if they were the motive for whomever ordered the bus carrying the French engineers to be bombed," the French counter-terrorism official says. "Right now, retaliation for the undelivered payments to Pakistani officials is seen as the strongest theory there is."
Skeptics ask what Pakistani officials would gain by killing the French workers. They still wouldn't get their money, since France presumably wouldn't be bullied into paying up in response to such an outrageous attack. French officials say the logic of the attack would have been similar to Mafia hits on outstanding debtors: to make an example of someone deemed unlikely to pay up, and thereby send a message that others will understand while officially being able to point the finger at another culprit.
After news of the French investigators' suspicions broke last week, Pakistan's media carried a cascade of official denials from leaders, while Farah Ispahani, spokeswoman for President Ali Zardari, qualified the allegation as "farcical at best." In France, President Nicolas Sarkozy — who was economy minister at the time the submarine contract was signed — responded with outrage. "This is ridiculous. Grotesque," Sarkozy told reporters. "We have to respect the grief of the families. Who would ever believe such a tale?"
Pakistan continues to note that its own investigation into the bombing — which killed the highest number of Westerners yet in a single attack on Pakistani soil — traced it directly to jihadists. Following several months of inquiries, Pakistani police arrested seven suspected members of Harkat-ul Mujahideen al-Alaami, a group described as an offshoot of the Harkat-ul Mujahideen currently waging jihad in Kashmir. Three men were convicted and tried for organizing the Karachi attack, which Pakistani officials said was retaliation for the U.S.-led invasion of Afghanistan.
But French officials ridicule Pakistan's inquiry, saying it contained countless errors and ignored all leads that didn't conveniently point to the usual suspects in a post-9/11 world. Because of that, one French security official tells TIME, the entire Pakistani case "seemed to be out to justify the obvious suspicion of jihadist responsibility, rather than studying the evidence to find out who else might have been behind the bombing".
And the Pakistani courts seem to agree. Last month, two of the principle suspects in the attack saw their earlier convictions and death sentences overturned on appeal. A third man who had also been convicted in the case is awaiting appeal.
The implosion of Pakistan's case has further stoked French allegations that the actual goal of the investigation was to hand France plausible culprits while diverting attention from the real plotters. But an article in Thursday's daily Libération indicates Pakistan had some help in that, claiming key French officials themselves long discounted indicators that the attack had directly targeted people linked to the submarine contract as they focused on al-Qaeda connections.
If true, that makes Sarkozy's rush to discredit the latest theory even more puzzling. Some French security officials have a possible explanation for the president's reaction: his concern that it could complicate his efforts to do away with France's independent investigative magistrates and entrust all inquiries to public prosecutors appointed by politicians — which, critics say, would make them more likely to intervene in sensitive cases out of political concern rather than in the pursuit of justice. But for now, the country's independent investigators are pushing politics aside in their search for justice for the Karachi attacks — even if it means rocking Franco-Pakistani relations to their core.
— With reporting by Aryn Baker / Kabul
KUALA LUMPUR, June 27 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak said tonight the government would introduce purely merit-based public scholarships by next year, and also indicated his administration’s intent to completely do away with race-based quotas in more sectors.
The prime minister’s remarks at a dinner organised by the Chinese community appear to be designed to win back the support of non-Malay voters for Barisan Nasional (BN).
While his announcement was short on details, it also indicates his administration’s efforts at hijacking Pakatan Rakyat’s (PR) more multi-racial platform.
The prime minister said tonight that he believed quotas were bad and that he wanted to create a win-win situation for all Malaysians.
Najib’s remarks seem to also suggest that he believes he can control the potential backlash from Malays while wanting to convince the non-Malays that, even if they have misgivings about Umno and BN, they should have faith in him.
Speaking at a dinner organised by the MCA and Associated Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (ACCCIM), he said a new “National Scholarship” would be formed next year. The National Scholarship will be a new category of aid offered by the Public Service Department (PSD).
“These scholarships will be based 100 per cent on merit and those who receive them will be the best of the best,” said the prime minister.
Najib added that he would also soon be announcing a major shift in policy and hinted at doing away with some forms of quotas soon. “I will not let the cat of the bag now but will announce it later,” he said.Najib’s speech represents his government’s first concrete response to growing unhappiness — especially among the non-Malay communities — with his government.
Recently, there were widespread protests particularly from the Chinese community over the way PSD scholarships were awarded. There also continues to be displeasure over race-based quotas, particularly from the business community.
The uneasiness has grown recently with Umno politicians pushing for unity talks with PAS, in what was seen as an entrenchment of Umno and BN’s racial policies.
Tonight, the PM acknowledged the failure of quotas when he said “Having quotas is not the right way and is not good for Bumiputeras.”
Najib said he was aware of the rent seeking collaboration between Bumiputera and Chinese businessmen which undermined the purpose of the quota system.
“We know what’s going on and it’s not getting us anywhere.”
He said the government wanted to create a mutually beneficial situation which was acceptable to all communities. He added the new policy would remove the obstacles to doing business and address the complaints from the Chinese community about government policy and implementation.
Najib acknowledged that the Chinese community only wanted fairer policies, and are not opposed to Bumiputeras progressing or helping them to get ahead.
He added the government understood the need to address the concerns of the Chinese community, especially in areas such as education, the economy, religion and the rising crime rate, in order to regain their confidence.
KUALA LUMPUR, June 27 — Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin defended the aborted unity talks between Umno and PAS today, and called criticisms by the DAP’s Lim Kit Siang “borderline racist.”
“Lim Kit Siang recently charged that the proposed dialogue between Umno and PAS is against the concept of 1 Malaysia, shockingly implying that Malay-Muslim unity was not good for the country.
“Never mind that such sentiments are as absurd as they are borderline racist, Kit Siang, true to form, is ignoring facts that don’t fit his prejudiced and jaundiced views,” Khairy said in an entry on his blog today.
Earlier this week, Lim challenged what he felt was the absurdity of Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s call for Malay and Muslim unity, and mocked the prime minister by asking if Umno would give the nod to Chinese unity talks or similar discourse for other communities as well.
On Monday, Pakatan Rakyat leaders rejected Umno’s unity government proposal and proclaimed all issues surrounding the fiasco, which brought the fledgling opposition coalition to the brink of collapse, resolved.
But the Umno president, in asking PAS not to reject a proposal which he said would be beneficial to Malay Muslims, had appeared to play the religion and race card. Khairy said today that any dialogue with PAS would not necessarily be confined to Malay-Muslim issues.
“Instead, any proposed talks should involve issues of national interest with the hope that the discussions will bring out the best in and most progressive elements of both parties.
“Kit Siang’s persistence in arguing that the muzakarah and 1 Malaysia are not reconcilable suggests that he believes any UMNO-PAS collaboration will necessarily be racist and threatening to non-Malays/Muslims. “
Khairy said he found Lim’s position bemusing “as his supposedly multi-racial party remains extremely dominated by one race.”
Despite the Umno Youth chief’s defence of the unity talks, the idea has caused some concern among his party’s Barisan Nasional (BN) partners.
But the talks have caused the most damage so far to PAS, with rival factions split on whether to have closer ties with Umno.
This has also caused a rift with its PR partners even though the alliance’s national leaders pledged to work together this week and put the controversy behind them.
Bolton Properties who in cahoots with Gangsters and the Police is demolishing our symbol, our temples, indeed our identities.
See who these people are - the Directors of Bolton. See how the super rich gang up against the poor people of this country. You can see who the people attacking us really are. The police and the gangsters are just their paid henchmen and the ones doing their dirty job.
Bolton Prioperties Board of Directors:
Dato' Mohamed Azman bin Yahya
Non-Independent Executive Chairman
Banker Azman Yahya was Mahathir's point man to clean up the financial mess left by Mahathir's cronies after the 1997 crisis.
Wing Kwong @ Chan Wing Kwong
Non-Independent Executive Director
Look at how the elite of this country work hand in glove to get at the poor and the weak of this country. Property developer, multi millionaire.
Tan Sri Nik Mohamed bin Nik Yaacob
Independent Non-Executive Director
Former Group Chief Executive of Sime Darby, Chairman of Scomi Energy Logistics - Scomi the company always linked to KJ.
Datuk Zakaria bin Dato' Ahmad
Independent Non-Executive Director
Former Chairman of Constain Plc, London, U.K, a subsidiary of the Renong Bhd, an UMNO company
Dato' Robert Teo Keng Tuan
Independent Non-Executive Director
Also managing Partner of one RSM group.
Chin Jit Pyng
Non-Independent Non-Executive Director
Abdul Sani bin Busu
Independent Non-Executive Director
Lee Siew Choong
Independent Non-Executive Director
Photos by Kris Khaira
2100: As time runs out, a few dozen High Chaparral villagers have gathered outside the house of the Adun for Seri Delima, R S N Rayer, located off Jalan Masjid Negeri/Green Lane.
Some of the frustrated villagers call for his resignation. “We were betrayed by the BN government previously,” says one of them. “We voted for the Pakatan government, hoping they could bring about change. But we have been let down again.”
No one emerges from the house. The lights inside are off though the porch with cars is lit.
Several of the villagers are being interviewed by reporters. One of them claims that the village land could have been federal instead of state land. He says that when the Housing Trust was dissolved in the 1970s, “Vested Crown” land should have gone to the federal government.
The villagers are now hoping to meet the CM on Monday but they are not sure if he will be around.
One of the journalists suggests that Guan Eng’s hands could be tied as the land was alienated to the senior civil servants’ cooperative and these same civil servants could make life difficult for him if the state government attempts to block this project.
Several observers are wondering why the Chief Minister himself has not yet visited the village to express solidarity.
The alienation of the land was effected a few weeks after the Pakatan administration took over in March 2008 although the agreement was entered into a few years earlier.
Back in the village, the residents are preparing for a wedding ceremony tomorrow morning.
C Tharmaraj, whose brother is the one getting married, says his family has lived in the area since the time of his great-grandmother.
The residents are now engaging the services of lawyer Darshan Singh in a last-ditch attempt to seek a legal remedy. Dozens of them have signed a couple of sheets of paper agreeing to allow him to act on their behalf.