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Sunday, January 31, 2010

Hindraf disclosing of accounts unprecedented

By Wong Mun Chee

How many, political parties, NGOs and voluntary organizations in Malaysia dared to publish their accounts as the real Hindraf has done. None that I am aware of.

This article alerts the DAP and the PR leaders to open their eyes and not be fooled by implants.

In your craze for Malaysian Indians support you seem to be easily fooled. We are more alert to “Saifuls” of this world.

The real force and support of the working class Malaysians of Indian ethnicity are massed behind Waythamoorthy and Unthaykumar leadership, leadership that is incorruptible and courageous, the same leadership of vision that provided the stimulus for the 308 sweep for the 5 states.

As YBH Lim stated in a early piece of posting, that in some States the Indian are the “King Makers “. It was proven correctly, and it was the real Hindraf Indians.

Vasanthakumar is Najib’s Indian force, a force that can be easily squeezed into public telephone booth. Don’t be fooled.

For security and efficiency the real Hindraf leadership is working discreetly behind the scene to bring about change in the next election. We do not stand and shout with hot air. Each one of you leaders will loose the grip on the Indian votes if you decide to throw you lot with people like Vasanthkumar .

The real Hindraf’s powerbase and pull factor with silent majority remains with Waytha and Uthaya, and is spread globally, from the UK o the USA to Australia to Indonesia to Singapore, wherever the Indians and fair minded people understand the power and deprivation of minorities.

You may recall how the previous Malaysian Home Minister attempted to clip the travel rights of Waytha by cancelling his passport and telling a blatant lies in Parliament. You would have not have not known that we harnessed our international support team to secure urgently unrestricted travel document from the British Home Ministry within days and put Albar to public shame as a liar. Now Waytha can travel anywhere at will. We are capable of doing many more things to right what was wronged over 57 years in our country with birthrights.

Through our discreet campaign we are grounding Samy Velu and mark our words he will be history very soon.

The purpose of this email is to alert you to be reconsider your alliance with Vasnathakumar and his kind, if you do want to gain the support of the silent majority of Malaysian Indians.

Please think about this, as these are not hollow words.

Robert KC

Australia.

UMNO´s politics of animal heads

Unknown WWI soldier buried as mass graves give up secrets

A coffin bearing the remains of an unknown soldier is carried to its final resting place Saturday in Fromelles, France.
A coffin bearing the remains of an unknown soldier is carried to its final resting place
Saturday in Fromelles, France.

FROMELLES, France (CNN) -- An unknown World War I soldier was buried in Fromelles, France, on Saturday, the first of some 250 bodies recovered from a string of mass graves dating back to a bloody -- and largely pointless -- battle that claimed thousands of lives in a single night.

About 2,300 British and Australian troops were killed, and thousands more wounded, captured or left missing in action when they were ordered to charge into German machine guns on July 19, 1916.

Nearly a century later, the battle of Fromelles remains the deadliest 24-hour period in Australian military history, the country's minister for veterans affairs, Alan Griffin, said Saturday.

"The air was thick with bullets, swishing in a flat, criss-crossed lattice of death. Hundreds were mown down in the flicker of an eyelid," said British veterans minister Kevan Jones at the ceremony, citing survivor W.H. "Jimmy" Downing.

So many died that night that the British and Australians were unable to recover all their dead. German soldiers buried hundreds in mass graves.

The graves were rediscovered only in 2008, and last year the Commonwealth War Graves Commission took the lead on a project to recover and identify as many remains as possible.

The Commonwealth is an association of nations that once were part of the British Empire.

Excavations began in May 2009 and lasted until September. Meanwhile, a new cemetery, Pheasant Wood, was laid out near the site of the battle in northern France, near the Belgian border.

The soldier buried Saturday has not been identified, but DNA samples have been recovered from many of the bodies, often from the teeth, said Peter Jones, the DNA consultant on the project.

Some 800 people from Britain and Australia who think they may have a relative buried at Fromelles have provided DNA to try to help identify the bodies, he said.

But that's only half as many as the experts need, Jones added, since about 1,600 Commonwealth dead from the battle remain unaccounted for. The 250 bodies being buried at Pheasant Wood are among the 1,600.

DNA samples are not the only way to identify bodies, though, said Margaret Cox, the archaeological consultant to the project. About 6,200 personal artifacts were found alongside the bodies, which could help to identify them.

In addition to the expected military decorations, uniforms and buttons, Cox said, they include such heartbreaking items as a locket with a lock of hair, and a return ticket to Perth, Australia, left on the body of a soldier who never lived to use it.

Most of the remaining bodies will be buried over the next two months, with headstones being added starting in March for any victims who can be identified, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission said.

Those whose names cannot be determined will be marked by a headstone reading "Known unto God," the agency said.

The final body will be buried on July 19, the 94th anniversary of the battle.

Pheasant Wood is the first new cemetery to be built by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission in nearly 50 years, said spokesman Peter Francis, calling the mass graves "the largest military find since the end of the Second World War" in 1945.

The commission is a nonprofit organization that commemorates the dead of both world wars from the British Commonwealth. Founded in 1917, it maintains graves and memorials at 23,000 sites around the world.

Thaipusam 2010 in Penang - Beyond races

Hindus celebrate Thaipusam amid Allah row - Malaysiakini

Indian Malaysians pierced themselves with hooks and skewers today as they celebrated Thaipusam, hailed as a show of religious freedom after a spate of attacks on places of worship.

Huge crowds of devotees converged on the Batu Caves temple, a spectacular limestone cavern on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur that is expected to draw some 1.5 million people over the annual three-day festival.

thaipusam 120207 faithSome devotees carried heavy ornate structures called kavadis as they walked up 272 steps to the temple, while hundreds of others had their tongues, cheeks, chests and backs pierced with hooks and skewers.

While some worshippers walked quietly and recited prayers, others went into a religious trance, chanting and whirling as supporters held them back by ropes tied onto the hooks placed in long rows down their backs.

"We are here to fulfil our vows and to pray for peace for our country," K Thana, a female devotee who carried a milk-pot offering, told AFP as she walked barefoot up to the temple with her mother.

"I have been doing this for more than five years and for this year, I don't think we are disturbed by the incidents that happened recently," said the 38-year-old bank officer, clad in a yellow costume symbolising purification.

Allah row

Places of worship in Malaysia have been pelted with Molotov cocktails, stones, paint and severed pig heads since a December court ruling that allowed non-Muslims to use the word 'Allah' as a translation for 'God'.

thaipusam 120207 coconutNineteen people have so far been arrested for their roles in the attacks on churches, mosques and Muslim prayer halls, and three of those were charged in court yesterday.

The incidents did not deter devotees and tourists from attending the Thaipusam festival, which is also celebrated in several other locations in mainly Muslim Malaysia.

About one in fourteen of Malaysia's 28 million population are ethnic Indians - mostly Hindus but also Christians and Sikhs.

"This is my first time at Thaipusam festival. This is a very colourful event that I have never experienced before," said Uberto Scotto, an Italian expatriate engineer.

"This is an example of tolerance among Malaysians," he said.

Lisa Wong, a Buddhist and mother of two, said she took her children every year to join her Hindu friends at the festival.

"I like this spirit and I want my children to understand the culture of different races in this country," said Wong, who wore a dot of holy red powder on her forehead.

Thaipusam commemorates the day when, according to Hindu mythology, Goddess Pavarthi gave her son Lord Muruga an invincible lance with which he destroyed evil demons.

Thaipusam hunger strike fails to excite - Malaysiakini

A hunger strike planned by the Movement for Sustaining SPM 12 Subjects to coincide with the Thaipusam celebrations today turned out to be a lame affair.

There were only about 10 people who fasted for seven hours, instead of the anticipated 200 earlier.

The coalition is led by its chairperson, A Thiruvenggadam.

They spent the time distributing their T-shirts. In addition the public bought about 120 car stickers at the Perumal temple, located close to Batu Caves railway station.

This was because the temple committee chairman R Nadarajah did not give them the go-ahead for the hunger strike.

TThiruvenggadam 70809hiruvenggadam (below) who spoke to Malaysiakini prior to carrying milk pots (pal kudam) up Batu Caves also said that their attempt to handover their protest memorandum to Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak last night failed.

"There were 100 of us but we were blocked by the Federal Reserve Unit."

He also claimed that the premier had seen him and the rest of the coalition members last night but ignored them.


"Indians may have garlanded Najib yesterday but but they are still sensitive when it comes to the language issue," said Thiruvenggadam.

As they left for the top of Batu Caves with milk pots, quite a number in the crowd there had on the group's campaign shirts in a show of support.

"Of course, I support their cause," said shaven-headed B Gunaraj.

The coalition was born when a revision in government policy did not give full recognition for the examination results of vernacular subjects in awarding government scholarships for further studies.

UMNO’s Wayang Kulit at Thaipusam, Batu Caves to fish for Indian votes without lifting a finger. No longer possible after 25th November 2007 HINDRAF Ra

All 3 Tamil dailies, The Star, NST headlines and also in Berita Harian and Utusan Malaysia this morning and the radio and TV stations carried the wayang kulit best pictures and coverage of Najib at Batu Caves Thaipusam festival under the Home Ministry’s directions. How desperate?

But why didn’t Najib get to the point and announce land for all Hindu temples and crematoriums and Tamil Schools all in one go as opposed to the piecemeal peanut and wayang kulit paper politics announcements they make.

But just see the pictures below and watch the free ride Najib is trying to get and his attempt in trying to fish for Indian votes.

P.Uthayakumar

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Dr M not surprised Khairy unpopular

Back in Dr Mahathir’s crosshairs. — file pic

By Neville Spykerman - The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 30 — Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad today renewed his tirade against Khairy Jamaluddin, saying he was not surprised the Umno Youth leader was unpopular and openly wondered how the latter won the post.

The former party president has never seen eye-to-eye with Khairy, who not only won the youth wing’s top post against his son, Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir, but is also the son-in-law of his nemesis, Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

“It unimaginable that an Umno Youth leader was told not to campaign during an election because the party feared if he did, they would lose,” the former prime minister said in reference to the Bukit Gantang by-elections last year.

A blog has claimed that two-thirds of the Umno Youth executive council was ready to resign to pave the way for fresh polls and that there were calls for Khairy to resign.

Khairy’s deputy, Datuk Razali Ibrahim has publicly denied the blog’s claims.

Razali and Mukhriz are deputy ministers but Khairy was not given the traditional posting, similar to Datuk Ahmad Zahid Hamidi when he was Umno youth chief during Dr Mahathir’s time in power.

Dr Mahathir persisted to cast aspersions against Khairy today, saying he did not know how Khairy could have won the Umno Youth chief post in the first place.

“They took seven hours to count 700 votes and that’s strange,” he said, alluding to the elections where both Mukhriz and Datuk Seri Khir Toyo lost to Khairy.

Dr Mahathir noted that Khairy won the deputy youth chief post unopposed in the previous party election because no one stood against him.

“That’s his way, and that’s why they can’t accept it,” he said.

The party’s longest-serving president, who founded Umno again after it was declared illegal in 1988, had always won unopposed, after putting in strict rules governing the eligibility to contest top party posts.

He retired in 2003 and handed over the party and prime minister’s post to Abdullah, but a public between the two then saw Dr Mahathir openly campaigning against his successor and son-in-law.

Dr Mahathir also quit Umno in May 2008 to protest Abdullah’s leadership, but rejoined a day after Datuk Seri Najib Razak was affirmed as party president.

Perkasa members pine for return of old Umno

Longing for the good old days. — Picture by Jack Ooi

By Adib Zalkapli - The Malaysian Insider

AMPANG, Jan 30 — What started out as one man’s mission, Perkasa is fast gathering traction with sections of the Malay community who feel Umno was no longer championing their cause.

Ahmad Zaini Ismail, 40 has been an Umno member since the late 1980s, but six months ago, he became very active in the Malay nationalist movement, Perkasa, and was now its Perak chairman.

“I am still loyal to Umno, but circumstances have changed, so I need another platform to continue fighting for the Malays,” said Zaini, who was also an Umno branch chairman in Perak.

As a branch chief, Zaini was also part of the movement in Umno that sought to oust former prime minister Tun Abdullah Badawi after Election 2008.

Despite being led by Datuk Ibrahim Ali, an independent MP, Perkasa has also been able to attract many Umno leaders who were keen to ride on the movement’s popularity.

The Selangor Perkasa launch today was also attended by the Selangor Umno deputy chief Datuk Noh Omar. Several Umno Youth executive committee members were also seen mingling with the state Perkasa delegates.

Zaini said Umno was not doing enough to address the community’s problems, adding that this has resulted in loss of confidence to the party among the Malays. His concern was the lack of opportunities for rural Malays to improve their livelihood.

“During my time, scholarships [and] boarding schools were reserved for the poor, for the Malays from rural areas. Now [when] you go to UiTM, [or if] you go to some boarding schools, you see so many nice cars [there]. Are these people really entitled to be there?” asked Zaini, a son of rubber tapper in rural Perak and who studied in the United States on a government scholarship.

“Opportunities are now monopolised by the successful,” he told The Malaysian Insider.

Zaini, like many in Perkasa, believe that the movement’s struggle reflects the original objectives behind the formation of Umno in 1946.

But some Perkasa leaders were motivated by what they referred to as “threats” to the Malay community and their Islamic faith.

Selangor Perkasa chairman, Abdullah Mansor, in his speech spoke at length on the insistence of church leaders over the use of the word “Allah” to refer to God in Malay, describing the move as a threat to Muslims.

He also slammed PAS’ Shah Alam MP, Khalid Samad, who defended the use of the word by non-Muslims.

“In Selangor, Khalid Samad is so vocal in defending their right to use the word ‘Allah’. From what I know, the Christians form only nine per cent of the population, why is he championing the minority?” said Abdullah.

Sabah Perkasa chief, Musli Oli said the position of the Malays has been in danger since Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad stepped down as the prime minister in 2003.

“The Malays only felt safe in [the] 22 years when Tun Dr Mahathir was the prime minister,” Musli told Selangor Perkasa delegates.

“Tun Mahathir was the man who saved the Malays in Sabah by bringing in Umno to Sabah on the Feb 22, 1991,” he added.

Meanwhile, Sarawak Perkasa chief, Abang Nasser Abang Hadari asked the Malays in the Peninsula to emulate the Malays in Sarawak for their ability to politically control the state despite being a minority group.

Lawyer ini macam cakap ke?

Hey, this is not a popularity contest. I am not trying to win a popularity contest here. I am trying to end the more than 50 years hegemony of Umno and bring change to Malaysia. And if I am the most hated man in Malaysia for trying this I do not care a damn.

NO HOLDS BARRRED

Raja Petra Kamarudin

Your 10 questions

Anybody with even a casual interest in corporate Malaysia would have heard of Tan Sri Megat Najmuddin Megat Khas. After all, he is chairman of four listed companies and a director of three others, all in a non-executive capacity. On top of that, he has long been president of both the Federation of Public Listed Companies and the Malaysian Institute of Corporate Governance. A lawyer by training, he is also a veteran Umno politician and sits on the party’s disciplinary board.

Tan Sri Megat Najmuddin Megat Khas, Corporate personality answers...

Why did you publicly advise your former schoolmate, Raja Petra Raja Kamarudin of the Malaysia Today website to “come back and face the music” recently? – Paul Lee, Kuala Lumpur

He was a junior schoolmate at the fully residential Malay College Kuala Kangsar (MCKK). He has made allegations, some of which are really grave allegations, but he has yet to prove these allegations according to accepted criteria for proof. Going abroad and hurling unsupported allegations from afar would not do him any good. Don’t make a mockery of the law. Come back and be responsible for your allegations like a man. We were brought up at school to be gentlemen. He should face the court with whatever facts and witnesses at his disposal and convince the court that he is right. Justice is a two-way traffic. He will earn our eternal respect and mine, most of all, if he is willing to do that!

(Read the other nine questions and answers here: http://biz.thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2010/1/30/business/5566395&sec=business)

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

The above is one of the ten questions posed to Megat Najmuddin Megat Khas. You can read the other nine at the link above.

I want to respond to the one question that relates to me. I can, if you wish (and may even do that later), respond to all ten questions -- like I did recently to Shamsul Akmar of the New Straits Times. But then, considering how cheong hei I can be, this piece will probably run into so many pages. Therefore, let me talk about this one question and the answer Megat gave.

This is what Megat said: “…..but he has yet to prove these allegations according to accepted criteria for proof…..Come back and be responsible for your allegations like a man…..He should face the court with whatever facts and witnesses at his disposal and convince the court that he is right.…..He will earn our eternal respect and mine, most of all, if he is willing to do that!

I think Megat just does not get it. Is he so naïve or just pretending to be stupid? As a lawyer, how can he talk that way? Lawyer ini macam cakap ke?

I have said this before and let me say it again. I do not need to prove anything. I have been arrested and charged and put on trial. It is the Prosecution that needs to prove my guilt. The onus is on them to offer the evidence and bring forward witnesses to prove my guilt. All I have to do is to raise reasonable doubt. And if I succeed in doing that, then the court MUST give me the benefit of the doubt and declare me innocent.

Megat never once walked into court to attend or witness my many days of hearings. If he did then he would probably have spoken more like lawyer and would not have made that very embarrassing statement, which reflects very badly on his abilities and qualities as a lawyer.

An accused person has the right to defend himself in any way he sees fit. Whether it is a brilliant or stupid defence is not for the court (and certainly not for the Prosecution) to decide and interfere in. But when the court blocks certain evidence from surfacing or certain witnesses from being called to testify, then the accused is being denied his right to a proper trial.

If the court wants to fuck around with me then why should I bother to layan (entertain) the court? I am telling the court and the government to go to hell. If they want to play fair then I will play ball. But if they fuck around with the legal system then I walk away.

What is so difficult for Megat to understand this? I am telling the court that if they fuck me then I will tell them to go fuck themselves. Megat can’t even get this through his thick head?

About the other remarks -- “come back and be responsible for your allegations like a man, he should face the court with whatever facts and witnesses at his disposal and convince the court that he is right, he will earn our eternal respect and mine, most of all, if he is willing to do that!” -- again, I think Megat is missing the plot here.

“What maketh a man?” as Shakespeare would probably say if Megat were to address this statement to him. Meekly walking into court without a fuss and bending over so that the court can screw you in the arse is a mark of a ‘man’? I would have imagined that his MCKK education would have made him smarter than that. I can only say that the MCKK education was wasted on him.

It appears we have different ideas about what being a man means. Megat’s idea of being a man is to subject yourself to persecution and perversion of justice. My idea of being a man is never to allow yourself to be screwed in the arse by anyone -- even the government of Malaysia and the Malaysian judicial system -- and if they try to, then turn your back on them, show them your arse, and tell them to go screw themselves.

Different strokes for different folks, as they say. So, being a man to Megat’s perspective is being a mouse as far as I am concerned. Being a man, to me, means the courage to say “No!” And that is what I am telling the Malaysian government and the Malaysian judicial system -- “No! No! No!”

Oh, and what makes Megat think I need to earn his or anyone’s 'eternal respect'? Does he think I am doing all this to make a name for myself? Seriously, I do not care one bit what Megat and any of the other Umno and Barisan Nasional people think of me. Their opinion of me does not matter one bit.

My objective is to try to bring down Barisan Nasional and Umno in any way possible. Barisan Nasional’s and Umno’s objective is to try to stay in power -- by hook or by crook, by fair means or foul. To Barisan Nasional and Umno, anything is fair game, even racism and religious strife. Just a few days ago, Jakim told hundreds of participants in its lecture that another May 13 is looming over the horizon. Umno is going round the country telling its members that there is soon going to be a ‘civil war’ in Malaysia.

Is Megat saying that Barisan Nasional and Umno are noble and honourable and I am not?

I really don’t care what people say about me and what they think about me as long as I can fight and beat Barisan Nasional and Umno at its own game.

Hey, this is not a popularity contest. I am not trying to win a popularity contest here. I am trying to end the more than 50 years hegemony of Umno and bring change to Malaysia. And if I am the most hated man in Malaysia for trying this I do not care a damn.

So, Megat, I really don’t care a damn what you and your Umno people think of me. Seriously, if you and Umno love me then there is something wrong here. That means I am not doing my job. Only when the entire government, Umno and Barisan Nasional hate me and wish to see me dead would that mean I have done my job.

That is my mission. And regard this as my mission and vision statement.

USM lecturer says PR losing direction

(Bernama) - The bickering among Pakatan Rakyat leaders and elected representatives of late are signs that the opposition pact is losing direction, a Universiti Sains Malaysia lecturer said.

Dr P. Sivamurugan, a political science lecturer with USM, said opposition leaders are also increasingly becoming personal in airing their views and at time, even turning against their allies if they were not satisfied with certain issues.

For instance, he said, Kedah DAP assemblyman Lee Guan Aik had once declared that he did not support the leadership of Kedah Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Azizan Abdul Razak following dissatisfaction with the policies implemented by the state government.

Several leaders are also at loggerheads including Kulim-Bandar Baru MP Zulkifli Noordin of Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) attacking Shah Alam MP Khalid Samad of PAS; Selangor executive councillor Datuk Dr Hassan Ali of PAS who once had a quarrel with Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim of PKR; and the latest, Bayan Baru MP Datuk Seri Zahrain Mohamad Hashim accusing Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng of being a dictator.

“This shows that the opposition pact is in disarray as it does not have a stable policy to unite the leaders and because of that, we can see fragility in their relations,” he told Bernama.

Sivamurugan, however, said that there was also a possibility that the bickering was a diversionary tactic to divert the people’s attention from issues affecting their de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

He said that each time Anwar’s sodomy case was up for hearing in court, various issues would crop up in the opposition pact, and then Anwar would heroically emerge to cool things down.

Two days ago, Zahrain who is also the former Penang PKR chairman was quoted as saying that Lim was “a dictator, a chauvinist and communist-minded”.

Lim refused to answer the criticism and wanted PKR leaders themselves to reply to it — through his deputy Dr Mansor Osman, who expressed regret over Zahrain’s outburst.

Penang PAS deputy commissioner Dr Mujahid Yusof Rawa, when contacted, admitted that there were differences in opinion among Pakatan leaders.

“I will be lying if I say there are no problems in the Pakatan government administration but they should be resolved at the Pakatan Council meeting and not through the media,” he said.

He added that it was normal for leaders to have differences in opinion but he could not agree with Zahrain’s outburst in the media.

PKR confident Zahrain won’t quit

Chow went on to reveal that Zahrain was upset because Guan Eng had refused to endorse his decision last year, when as chairman of Island Golf Properties, he had wanted to award a tender for the privatized management of the Bukit Jambul Golf Club to a RM2 company.

Wong Choon Mei, Harakah Daily

PKR leaders have expressed confidence that Bayan Baru MP Zahrain Mohd Hashim will not quit their party nor instigate another 10 Pakatan Rakyat lawmakers to defect and give arch rival Umno-BN its much longed-for two-thirds parliamentary majority.

“This is clearly another case of the Umno-controlled media trying to create the impression that Pakatan is on the verge of a breakup,” Tian Chua, PKR strategic director, told Harakahdaily.

“And their reason is obvious – to deflect attention from the horrifying shortcomings of Prime Minister Najib Razak and his cabinet over the Allah issue, the huge capital flight and economic mismanagement, as well as Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim’s upcoming sodomy trial that has already been slammed by world bodies.”

Indeed Tian may have hit the nail on the head. At an event in his Pekan constituency, Najib was quick to latch onto the “the political crisis faced by the opposition leaders”.

“It has reached such a serious stage that it reflected a loss of confidence in the policies and administration of the Penang government," the PM told reporters.“The situation has reached such a stage that a group of PKR leaders have issued statements which I consider to be a clear rejection of what is being done by the present leader.”

Yet on the same day, it was his own Umno-BN government that Amnesty International condemned for pushing through with a sodomy “show trial” against Anwar. The global watchdog warned that the sodomy charges were against the rules laid out by the UN Human Rights Commission in 1997 and that the latest federal court ruling disallowing Anwar access to key evidence was against UN specifications of what constituted a fair trial.

Too smart to leave

Nonetheless, it was on Thursday that Zahrain surprised even his own colleagues in Penang by calling Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng a dictator, a Chinese chauvinist and a communist. He also questioned why Guan Eng had delivered one-third of a recent speech in Mandarin.

Zahrain’s outburst, coming hot on the heels of another controversy sparked by by Kulim MP Zulkifli Noordin, was immediately seized on and played up by the Umno-controlled mainstream media. According to their latest speculation, Zahrain was poised to jump ship and take along with him at least another 10 Pakatan parliamentarians.

On the hot list of those most likely to be enticed by the former Penang PKR chief were Selangor PAS commissioner Hasan Ali and Zul Noordin.

“I don’t see Hasan Ali leaving PAS at all. As for Zahrain, he’s a very shrewd man. It is highly unlikely that he will quit PKR and forego all the perks that he is currently enjoying in Penang,” Tian said.

“This is something for him to sort out with Guan Eng. It may well be that he wants to pressure Guan Eng for something or other. If Zahrain really wanted to go, he would declare his departure suddenly – when the time and the numbers are right. Not like now, no need to make so much noise.”

Tian also confirmed that PKR would be holding a supreme council meeting on Sunday but denied it had been specially convened to discuss Zahrain. “It is our usual monthly meeting and there are no plans to discuss Zahrain as reported in some of the press,” Tian added.

Upset over a golf tender to a RM2 company

Meanwhile, in a statement issued on Saturday, Penang DAP chairman Chow Kon Yeow blasted Zahrain for his harsh words towards Guan Eng, the DAP secretary-general.

“Zahrain should not try to provoke sentiments and attempt to break up Pakatan Rakyat in Penang by claiming that PKR has no say in the administration of the PR state government,” said Chow.

“How can Lim be a chauvinist when he went to jail and lost his parliamentary seat to defend a Malay girl who was detained even though she was a rape victim?”

Chow went on to reveal that Zahrain was upset because Guan Eng had refused to endorse his decision last year, when as chairman of Island Golf Properties, he had wanted to award a tender for the privatized management of the Bukit Jambul Golf Club to a RM2 company.

“As chairman of PDC, Lim had recommended that the Board of Directors over-rule Zahrain's award of the tender and called for a fresh re-tender,” Chow said. “The Board of Directors of PDC had accepted Lim’s recommendation that to give the tender of running the only golf club in Penang worth tens of millions of ringgit to a RM2 company would not comply with Penang’s CAT governance of Competency, Accountability and Transparency.

“Giving contracts to a RM 2 company would make a mockery of the change that Penangites voted for in the 2008 elections and make Penang Pakatan Rakyat no different from BN.”

Chow also rapped Zahrain for questioning why a third of Guan Engs speech during the first Pakatan Rakyat National convention on December 19 was in Mandarin.

“Clearly Zahrain was absent as Lim had spoken 85 per cent in Bahasa Malaysia with the remainder 15 per cent in English and Mandarin,” Chow said.

“But even if one third of Lim’s speech had been in Mandarin, is it a crime to speak in one own’s mother tongue? This extremist approach befits a typical Penang Umno leader and not a PKR or Pakatan Rakyat leader.”

PKR perlu kaji kerjasama dengan DAP

(Utusan Malaysia) - Ahli Parlimen Bayan Baru, Datuk Seri Zahrain Mohamed Hashim menggesa kepimpinan tertinggi Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) mengkaji semula kedudukan dan kerjasama parti itu dengan DAP di Pulau Pinang.

Menurutnya, setelah mendedahkan sikap Ketua Menteri, Lim Guan Eng sebagai pemimpin cauvinis, diktator dan berfikiran bahaya, kepimpinan tertinggi PKR perlu mengambil langkah terbaik demi kelangsungan parti itu.

Beliau yang juga bekas Pengerusi PKR Pulau Pinang berkata, dasar yang dibawa Guan Eng sejak memerintah Pulau Pinang telah memberi masalah kepada pemimpin PKR di negeri itu yang kebanyakannya bertanggungjawab terhadap kawasan dan masyarakat Melayu.

‘‘Guan Eng kata dia khalifah, khalifah apa kalau gerai-gerai tanpa lesen milik peniaga Melayu ditarik balik dan premis mereka dirobohkan.

‘‘Tidak timbul persoalan mengenai tindakan saya seterusnya, cuma dengan pendedahan ini, saya serahkan kepada kepimpinan tertinggi PKR untuk mengkaji kedudukan PKR di Pulau Pinang,’’ katanya kepada Mingguan Malaysia di sini hari ini.

Exco Pemuda Umno desak Khairy letak jawatan

(Harakah Daily) - Mesyuarat Exco Pergerakan Pemuda Umno malam kelmarin kecoh ekoran terdapat desakan supaya ketuanya, Khairy Jamaluddin berundur untuk menyelamatkan pergerakan itu.

Harakahdaily difahamkan, punca utama desakan beberapa anggota Exco pergerakan itu kerana Khairy dilihat gagal menterjemahkan hala tuju Pemuda Umno Malaysia selari dengan kepimpinan Presiden parti yang juga Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Seorang Exconya, Mohd Hishamuddin Yahaya dilaporkan membentangkan beberapa bukti yang menunjukkan kepimpinan pergerakan yang diterajui Khairy itu tidak berminat untuk membantu parti dan kerajaan menarik sokongan sebaliknya mengugut agar diberi jawatan.

Difahamkan, Hishamuddin mencadangkan dua usul sama ada Khairy meletakkan jawatan dan membenarkan Ketua Pemuda dipangku oleh Datuk Razali Ibrahim atau keseluruhan Exco meletakkan jawatan bagi membolehkan satu pemilihan baru dibuat secepat mungkin.

Sungguhpun mendapat sokongan tetapi tiada undian atau keputusan dicapai tetapi difahamkan dua pertiga Exco Pemuda bersedia meletakkan jawatan untuk pemilihan semula pergerakan itu jika selari dengan kehendak perlembagaan parti.

Mengikut Perkara 5.7 Perlembagaan Pergerakan Pemuda Umno, jika dua pertiga atau lebih bilangan Ahli-ahli Jawatankuasa Pemuda berhenti, maka jawatankuasa itu dianggap telah bubar dan Majlis Tertinggi bolehlah mengadakan Perhimpunan Khas Pemuda Umno Malaysia bagi menubuhkan semula Jawatankuasa Pemuda dan Majlis Tertinggi berkuasa menentukan tempoh perkhidmatan jawatankuasa yang baru dipilih itu.

Selain isu kemelut yang melanda beberapa Pemuda Umno negeri yang gagal ditangani oleh Khairy, beliau juga dianggap gagal apabila kursus Perdana Pemuda di Janda Baik hujung tahun lalu hanya dihadiri tidak sampai separuh ketua-ketua pemuda bahagian.

Kursus yang sepatutnya menjadi medan menunjukkan kekuatan kepimpinan Khairy untuk mendesak Perdana Menteri memberi jawatan kabinet akhirnya menjadi masalah besar kepadanya apabila hanya separuh jemputan sahaja yang hadir.

Pada mesyuarat malam kelmarin juga, beberapa Exco Pemuda turut mempersoalkan kegagalan Khairy menjadi suara pemuda dan menggerakkan jentera pemuda dalam banyak isu nasional yang sepatutnya dipergunakan bagi mengenakan tekanan ke atas Pakatan Rakyat.

Ada di kalangan mereka yang membangkitkan jika dahulu Khairy yang juga Ahli Parlimen Rembau berjanji mengorbankan harta benda untuk pergerakan Pemuda jika menang, tetapi setelah menang lain pula alasannya.

Disappointed Doctor

Letter

I am a medical doctor who was educated overseas and worked in Australia for several years and recently decided to return to Malaysia to serve the country.

As a professional working overseas I heard about the ‘Program bagi mengalakkan warganegara Malaysia yang berpakaran yang bekerja di luar negara pulang ke Malaysia’ and therefore applied for it. I was very disappointed when they rejected my application on the grounds that it was sent after I returned to Malaysia. Apparently it was meant to be sent whilst I was still in Australia.

I find this a very poor excuse given the fact that Malaysia is trying to lure back its citizens to work for them. It discourages professionals such as me from having to bear the burden to return but not have any perks or encouraging incentives. Furthermore, my parents bore my exorbitant medical tuition fees and I did not receive any governmental loans whatsoever. The “least” is something anyone would expect.

Besides that, it took me a great deal of an effort to locate the abovementioned application form which was hidden in the catacombic archives of one of the governmental websites. Talk about purposeful inconvenience or perhaps voluntary neglect.

I can see why many of my colleagues are hesitant to return and serve the government given the unimpressive, unattractive attitude and to top it off the obvious suboptimal remuneration and working conditions. Now, thankfully I still have the option to return to Australia and am reconsidering my intentions to continue here thanks to the above. Job well done in luring professionals back.

Disappointed DR.

No Plan For Inter-Faith Commission - Muhyiddin

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 30 (Bernama) -- The government has no plan to set up an Inter-faith Commission at the moment as the ongoing closed-door dialogues between religious groups are sufficient to address related issues, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said.

He said the closed-door dialogues would enhance understanding and create a peaceful atmosphere as well as mutual respects among the country's multiracial population.

"We don't need an inter-faith commission. At the moment we don't feel that it is something necessary.

"But continuous dialogues among various religious groups -- representing Muslims and non-Muslims -- could be useful," he told reporters after attending a dialogue on idealism among the younger generation at Angkasapuri here on Saturday.

On the use of the word "Allah", Muhyiddin said closed-door discussions among religious organisations were ongoing and would continue.

"Sometimes it's better this way; this is a more dignified way as it doesn't involve any political interests. This is to find a meeting point, an understanding, and to create a peaceful atmosphere and mutual respect," he said.

At the event, Muhyiddin also held dialogues and explained the various issues affecting the country to students of University of Malaya, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia and Universiti Teknologi Mara as well as representatives of non-governmental organisations.

Earlier, Muhyiddin launched his official website, My-Malaysia, which among others, contains his political and community activities, collection of speeches as well as news reports of his activities in and outside the country.

The interactive website can be accessed at http://www.my-malaysia.com.my.

"I'm launching this website as a platform for us to communicate. I hope you will take the opportunity to air your views on any issues," he said.

Muhyiddin said the website was also an effort to reach out to the younger generation by listening to their views as well as criticisms.

"The younger generation wants a government which practices transparency; in other words, explaining and answering issues raised by the people," he said.

He said that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak himself was actively interacting with the masses through his 1Malaysia website and social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook.

Cabinet ministers were also encouraged to interact with the people through the social media, he said.

"I would like to remind the people, however, to use the social media wisely and to be cautious when criticising because although we might have differences in opinion, we should express our views in a civil way," he said.

Mahathir launches Selangor Perkasa - Anil Netto

1535: Mahathir is at the launching of Selangor Perkasa at the MPAJ Multi-purpose Hall in Hulu Kelang now.

Also with him is Megat Zulkarnain, the Gombak Umno Youth chief, according to a twitter message by an Umno Youth exco member.

Mahathir had said yesterday that the emergence of NGOs rooted in Islamic and Malay causes proves that the Malays now have less confidence in the political parties that are supposed to represent them. On 24 January, Perkasa launched its Pahang wing and days earlier, another wing in Malacca.

The Perkasa website reported:

Dengan mengambil contoh Pertubuhan Pribumi Perkasa Malaysia (Perkasa), beliau (Mahathir) berkata, NGO itu dilihat sebagai antara yang paling berpengaruh di kalangan masyarakat Melayu kerana prinsip perjuangannya.

”Ada di kalangan masyarakat Melayu merasakan UMNO tidak lagi berupaya mempertahankan (kepentingan) mereka, jadi kita lihat kemunculan NGO seperti Perkasa.

”Walaupun mereka (Perkasa) aktif, namun (sebenarnya) UMNO masih lebih berpengaruh daripada NGO-NGO ini.”

Perkasa, which means ’strengthening’, is led by its pro-tem president, Ibrahim Ali.

Ibrahim has suggested that PKR MP Zullifli Nordin should emulate him and become an Independent MP so that “he can struggle for Islam without being bound by any party position”. Ibrahim reportedly said he would give way to Zulkifli so that he could struggle with Perkasa: “There are similarities in the struggle of Perkasa and Zulkifl in that both have no fear in defending religion, race and country.”

Perkasa, which is now being seen as a pressure group for Umno, has also taken a position against the use of the term “Allah” by non-Muslims. According to its website, among the groups that participated in a demonstration on 2 January outside the Federal Territory Mosque were the Perkasa wings from Perlis, Selangor and Perak; the Persatuan Kebangsaan Pelajar Islam Malaysia; and the Umno Overseas Alumni.

But Perkasa has also condemned the recent attacks against places of worship.