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Monday, March 1, 2010

Anwar blames Najib, Rosmah for latest PKR resignations

By Neville Spykerman - The Malaysian Insider

PUTRAJAYA, March 1 — Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim accused Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor of being behind the latest resignations from PKR.

“It’s a difficult for me to understand if there’s no other circumstances, knowing that the Najib-Rosmah strategy is to try to buy people as much as possible,” the de facto PKR leader told reporters outside the Federal Court here.

Nibong Tebal MP Tan Tee Beng announced he was leaving PKR today, days after he faced a party disciplinary board over his criticisms against deputy president Senator Dr Syed Husin Ali and Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng.

Last night, former Penang Deputy Chief Minister I Mohd Fairus Khairuddin quit PKR to join Umno while former PKR secretary-general Datuk Salehuddin Hashim confirmed resigning from the party two weeks ago.

Salehuddin was seen with Tan today when the latter announced his resignation.

Another Anwar’s ally, Bayan Baru MP Datuk Seri Zahrain Hashim, quit the party two weeks ago to become an independent MP after he cited a lack of faith in the party leadership.

Two judges recuse themselves from Anwar’s appeal

By Neville Spykerman - The Malaysian Insider

PUTRAJAYA, March 1 — Two Federal Court Judges here today agreed to recuse themselves from hearing Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s application to challenge a Court of Appeal decision in dismissing his RM100 million defamation suit against Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

Datuk Hashim Yusoff and Datuk Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin, who had previously heard suits involving Anwar’s sacking as deputy prime minister, agreed to disqualify themselves in the interests of justice after Anwar’s counsel Karpal Singh made the application.

The application hearing has been adjourned to next week after the two judges are replaced.

Anwar had sued former premier for calling him a homosexual after he was sacked as deputy prime minister and finance minister in 1998, but the Court of Appeal last year dismissed the suit.

Nibong Tebal MP quits PKR

(The Star) KUALA LUMPUR: Nibong Tebal Member of Parliament Tan Tee Beng on Monday morning announced he has quit PKR and would remain an independent MP.

Tan, who last week faced the PKR disciplinary board on charges of openly criticising Penang Chief Minister and DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng, said he was quitting all party posts immediately.

In February, Bayan Baru MP Datuk Seri Zahrain Mohamed Hashim also quit PKR citing, among other reasons, dissatisfaction with Chief Minister Lim’s leadership of the state.

Tan's press conference on Monday was arranged by Kulim-Bandar Baru MP Zulkifli Noordin, which led to speculation that he too was quitting PKR to join Umno, just hours after former Penang Deputy Chief Minister I Mohammad Fairus Khairuddin did the same.

Zulkifli was facing disciplinary action for lodging a police report against PAS’ Shah Alam MP Khalid Samad, and has accused “little pharaohs” within the party of trying to kick him out.

He had earlier said that PKR vice-president Azmin Ali, strategic director Tian Chua and political bureau member Zaid Ibrahim had already called for his sacking, adding that even party adviser Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim had labelled him as an “extremist.”

Ironically, he demanded that the disciplinary committee comprise only Muslims as it was related to the controversy related to the use of the word “Allah” by non-Muslims.

Zulkifli’s friction with the party mostly revolved around his hardline Islamic stance. In 2008, he led a group of protestors to storm a forum discussing Islamic issues, forcing police to request the peaceful dialogue be called off to prevent violence.

No arrests were made.

On Sunday, Fairus quit PKR, saying the stance taken by PKR and Pakatan Rakyat over the “Allah” issue had made him lose confidence in the party’s leadership.

He denied it had anything to with the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission clearing him of graft charges over illegal sand quarrying activities in Penang.

Fairus had quit as Penanti assemblyman and DCM I last year.

Also on Monday, news portal The Malaysian Insider reported that former PKR secretary-general Datuk Salehuddin Hashim has quit the party.

Salehuddin had quit his post earlier this year.

On whether he would join another party, possibly Umno, Salehuddin only said that “he was a politician who has retired,” The Malaysian Insider said.

Last week, 77 PKR Youth members resigned from Anwar’s stronghold in Permatang Pauh to join Umno. Among them were the Guar Jering branch deputy Youth chief Fakhrul Che Umar and treasurer Hesabudin Md Isa.

Forget PERKASA, here's a New National Agenda: No Malaysian Left Behind

Our economic measurement tool is faulty. We continue to bury human beings under numbers. We still talk about an economic pie as if it is a constant.


Azly Rahman
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We ought to abandon the metaphor of the pie that is increasingly becoming synonymous with the race to meet the gains of material standards at the expense of the real issue - distributive and regulative justice. We ought to adopt a new form of justice that cuts across racial lines and one that looks at the poor in their eyes and into their souls.

That form of justice will meet our nation’s physical, emotional, and metaphysical needs.

The new issue facing us is one that is class-based. We can no longer use race and its sentimentality as a perspective to analyze what is gravely wrong with the developmental project we are pursuing.

Class Matters

We have subdivided ourselves into classes of the rich and poor from all the major races and the classes of those who own the material and cultural capital. Our pattern of consumption, our daily grind, the kind of car we drive, the school our children go to, and how widely traveled we are reflect the class we are in.

But our politics is renewed every now and then to restate the commitment to “correct the imbalances” using econometrics, without engaging in a sustained deep inquiry into the harder reality of living.

We are engaging in another exercise in the renewal of political-economic spirit that wishes to see the creation of more and more multi-million perhaps multi-billionaire Malays, Chinese, Indians, and other pribumis, but fail to inquire into the impact of such continuing policies that will further divide us into classes. No longer have arguments on racial imbalances, to me seemed to be attractive. Classes create antagonisms.

From time to time, revelation of the issues of the distribution of wealth reflects how much public interest is intertwined with personal greed. It reflects how much those in power invoke the mantras of “economic progress for this or that race” yet create a system that benefits this and that person/s. This is the game of equity we play. Our voters are either ignorant of the nature of interlocking directorateship in politics, or are too comfortable playing this game of patronage politics.

We somehow are not getting the clearest picture of what more than 30 years of “growth by equity” policy has taken shape; who benefits? how are the benefits distributed? and why have the benefits of growth not trickle down as it theoretically should?

The Price of our Economic Development

We are not made to read much of the human cost of development − of those marginalized and lost in the numbers game of the economic policy we design. We are startled by the nature of by-products of developments such as these:

The growing poverty (urban and rural) amongst not only the Malays but also the Indians especially, as well as the Chinese and other races. We are going to see a growing number of poverty amongst the immigrants that are helping to build our economy.

An increasing percentage of drug addiction amongst the Malays especially − those who are marginalized by an uncaring, uncreative, and uninspiring educational system that measures people by numbers and by truncated notion of achievement alone − and I am sure of other races in general.

An increasing number of AIDS victims as a possible result of the nature of economic developmental paradigm we construct and the nature of schooling system we build that promotes a few but marginalize and alienate many.

A growing population of our youth disenchanted in our school systems as a result of the slow-paced growth of teaching skills acquisition of our teachers; skills that are needed in making the school a very happy place, and a place wherein children do not get bored and translate their boredom into drug addiction or gangsterism.

A growing breed of our elected representative that cannot articulate logical analysis, prognosis, diagnosis to issues of distributive and regulative justice, but instead choose to continue to verbally clobber each other based on race sentiments.

A clear continuation of the political paradigm our politicians are engaged in − that one needs lots of money to keep one’s constituency happy and even worse, to keep one’s political position stronger.

A clear picture of how our society has now developed − the dangerous growth of classes of multicultural rich and the multicultural poor and the relegation of the multicultural middle class into a new class of “urban poor” whose life is tied to an increasingly dangerous pattern of hypermodern consumption.

A picture of the breaking down of families as a result of the changing patterns of our economy after the implementation of The New Economic Policy. There is so much drive in human beings to earn more and more to make the first million Ringgit so that they will “be a par with the other races”. This has resulted in a dangerous form of psychological breakdown as a consequence of the mental breakdown of modern life. The work ethics imposed on Malaysians by global companies especially profit-driven ones from the advanced nations have impacted the way we look at work, juggle family life, pursue leisure and pleasure, and the way we create or break families.

A dangerous trend of a breakdown of race relations reflected in the nature and style of arguments we engage in be they in Parliament or in our public schools. This is a continuing pattern of mistrust of the other race based on the struggle to outwit and out-greed each other in our pursuit of material wealth.

A continuation of the grooming of political-economic dynasties that is based on the struggle to protect family interests as well as to create more and more wealth so that money can further sustain power. The idealism and ethics of the early years of Independence are now in the dustbin of history − we are now watching a saga of what looked like a war between the Jacobins and the Girondins of The French Revolution. Only that this revolution is played silently, not for the future well-being of peoples of all races, but for the purpose of empire-building.

A New Malaysia needs that 1970s vision

There are possible inroads to the long-term economic solutions we can undertake in order to rekindle the spirit of “restructuring society and eliminating poverty”. The current one we are pursuing is creating the opposite effect.

The current path is creating classes of the extremely wealthy few and a growing population of poor. We need to go back to studying human nature and what kind of society we wish to recreate.

I suggest we do embark upon the following tasks; that we

-understand the theory of justice based on principles of social liberalism.

-develop social humanistic Malaysians, not ones that are trapped in race-based rhetoric wrong diagnosis, and ultimately in the construction of policies that renew communalism.

-understand the real issues being class; no longer race. This can be a better perspective of looking at the issue of ownership and control of the New Economic Policy.

-develop in our citizens the critical sense of judgment in all aspects of thinking about society; is this about race or is this about the race of a few to acquire more wealth by the metaphorical year of 2020?

-work together with each other to construct a new system based on looking at the true value of human beings; one that does not correspond to numbers alone.

As a nation, we have worked hard.

Malays, like the Chinese, Indians and the new immigrants have always been hardworking.

In the case of the Malays, we hear constant backlashing from inner and outer circles − that they do not have much intellectual prowess, not enough survival skills for a globalizing world, not enterprising enough to compete with other races, not much merit in their academic achievement, and not hardworking enough to meet the demands of a post-industrial age. That the Malay are this and that − without realizing that it is the labor of the Malays and (the other races) that build Malaysia into what it is now − the Putra World Trade Center, The PLUS (Highway System), The Penang Bridge, The Putrajaya, The Proton Industry, and The Petronas Twin Towers.

All these criticisms come from those who own the means to criticize the Malays and to loudly broadcast their backlash, making them feel good and feel like champions. These truncated judgment appear in political conferences as well as in meetings of kampong politician, and in Parliaments and in our public educational institutions. The demented discourse on the Malays sadly get used and abused by others wishing to advance their ethnocentric views.

The backlashing come from our leaders − those who still think that the pie is a constant. These are the leaders voted into power, made sure that they stay in power indefinitely, and use the power to plunder the wealth of the nation secretly or openly.

These are also the leaders that do not yet have the intellectual prowess to deal with the complex nature of shifting economic paradigms. We need to read people like John Rawls, Immanual Kant, John Stuart Mill, and Karl Marx to get a better grasp of economics. We need to start reading the work of contemporary radical economists. We need a brand new economic thinking.

But more Malays now know what is rhetoric and what is reality. They now know who to trust.They need not be represented by any racist NGOs or political parties. They need to represent themselves with a pioneering and frontiering spirit.

Let the economic pie be made by all and enjoyed by all.

As the Malay would say “..biar adil lagi saksama .. untuk kesejahteraan anak semua bangsa”.

Malay council another dangerous move by Najib, BN

Wong Choon Mei, Harakahdaily

Pakatan Rakyat and civil society leaders have expressed concern at the formation of the rightist Malay NGO Consultative Council or MPM, predicting that greater polarization and civil unrest may lie ahead as a weakened Prime Minister Najib Razak resorted to sinister and dangerous means to cling to power.

“Of course, MPM is the brainchild of Umno. The party cannot go beyond a certain line or the BN will lose the non-Malay votes," Mujahid Yusof Rawa, head of PAS's national unity committee, told Harakahdaily.

It also does not want to be seen as an ultra party, so Najib and (former premier) Mahathir Mohamad are using the Malay NGOs to ply racist issues and get the community behind them. It is a last-ditch effort to salvage the political ground they lost from blunders like the Perak crisis, Anwar's trial and oil royalty issues in Kelantan and Terengganu."

Two-faced hypocrisy

Indeed, moderate Malaysians have been alarmed at the recent mushrooming of Malay rights groups, spouting aggressive and racist rhetoric that top Umno leaders have rushed to embrace rather than condemn.

Nor has there been any squeak of protest from the traditionally docile MCA, MIC and Gerakan – the main non-Malay components in the Umno-dominated BN. In fact, the MCA and MIC have already voiced support for the BN to open its doors to these ultra groups. Their rationale: anything goes as long as the BN retains the federal government in the next general election!

“It is sad to see not just Umno but also the MCA, MIC and Gerakan fall to such depths. How can they ever build a better future for Malaysia? How can they protect their respective communities when their leaders are more concerned about preserving their own jobs,” PKR strategic director Tian Chua told Harakahdaily.

“This is another two-faced move by Najib and his cohorts. He wants to show he is a multi-racial PM in line with his 1Malaysia slogan. Yet at the same time, he wants to be seen as a hero to the Malays. But most Malays are not that racist, they will see through this ruse,” said Mujahid.

Dangerous consequences

On Saturday, 76 Malay NGOs joined forces to form a consultative council to act as a shield against those who tried to question Malay rights and privileges, the position of Islam and the institution of the Malay rulers.

Their spokesman Ibrahim Ali also warned the MPM would hold a round-table forum on March 7 to “discuss” the economic direction of the Malays ahead of Najib’s announcement of a new economic model for the nation.

“Firstly, Pakatan respects the right of anyone that wishes to group together so long as it is within the law. But the thing with MPM and Ibrahim Ali is, what exactly do they mean by protecting Malay rights?” asked Mujahid.

“Is it Malay rights at the expense of the other communities? Is it the protection of Malay rights at the expense of national peace and unity? Is it dividing the races even further?”

True colors revealed

Indeed, sadly for Malaysia, Mujahid and Tian may have hit the nail on the head.

During its 52-year rule, Umno has not hesitated to play the racial card, even though it cost the MCA, MIC and Gerakan the non-Malay votes. For Umno to now give way to extremist groups like Perkasa and MPM underscore the tough new battle lines it is willing to draw just to keep the Pakatan at bay.

“Malaysians must stay clear-headed. Don’t be confused or be frightened by all the threats of violent racial reaction from these hot-heads," said Mujahid.

"Umno and their partners MCA, MIC and Gerakan have now shown their true colors. Remember, we must reject anything that is harmful for the nation. Support only those who can take the country forward and be in sync with the rest of the developed world."

An insult to our intelligence

Do they acknowledge the difference in severity: Kartika is to be whipped and fined RM5000 for drinking beer but the man who leaves his wife and kids and mistreats her is only fined RM1000? Do they notice the inconsistencies and injustice?

Mariam Mokhtar, Malaysian Mirror

It has become something of a ritual lately that when certain Muslim NGOs run scared of a good debate, they eagerly go about making police reports.

Events of the past week have raised urgent questions about the political leadership in Malaysia. When various NGOs and Majlis Agama Islam Selangor (MAIS) lodged a police report against The Star's managing editor, P Gunasegaran, they said that he had no right to comment about Islamic matters because he is not a Muslim.

I disagree. As a Malaysian, his contribution is of immense importance.

In fact, there should be more voices to debate the issue. According to these protesting NGOs, I satisfy their requirements to comment on Islamic matters. However, I wouldn't be surprised to find that they will deem me unsuitable because I am not sufficiently scholarly in Islamic matters or that I am a woman. Therefore, just as Gunasegaran surmised, these issues have to be urgently aired.

Isn't it deplorable that a non-Muslim highlighted the inconsistencies with which our dual-system laws are interpreted? It shows how Muslims in Malaysia have been cowed into submission and have become fearful of taking the initiative.

Islam is also about critical thinking, reasoning and understanding. It was never meant to be by dogma and doctrine. What or who, do these NGOs and MAIS fear? Why are they acting like the class bully? A great debate will do our politicised religion a world of good.


Gunasegaran brought up valid points in his article and it is only by intelligent discourse that we are able to find amicable answers. Lodging police reports just shows the impotence of these NGOs and MAIS. Their apparent failure to act with dignity and intellect, fails Muslims in our country. Our political leaders, including the Minister for Women Family and Community Development, have not been expansive on these issues, and that is deplorable.

We are moving backwards

I remember a time when all of us lived under the one umbrella called Malaysia and got on well enough, regardless of our race, religion or gender. No one's saying we shouldn't move on from those good old days.

We have. Backwards! It seems that in Malaysia today, Muslim women's lives are under a microscope. When compared with their non-Muslim counterparts, they have relatively little freedom. The downside of this is that Muslim women will build up a lot of resentment. Is it any wonder that Malay women go abroad to find their first taste of freedom liberating; that some are unable to control themselves?

Somehow, I fail to see how the article 'Persuasion, no compulsion', would stir discontent among Muslims. Any unease surfaced days earlier, on Feb 9, when it was announced for the first time that three women had been whipped in Kajang.

All along, Malaysians were under the impression that Kartika, who consumed beer in public, was the first woman to be caned. How is it that none of the NGOs and women organisations was made aware of the plight of these women? To date, the only information we have is that they gave themselves up voluntarily, were 'pleased' to be whipped, and repented for their sins.

No information has been divulged about the men with whom these women had sex? Would it be possible for women organisations to have access to these women to check on their well-being? Did anyone know if they had legal representation and were able to exercise their full-rights? Or were they like lambs to the slaughter, and made show-case examples in a vain attempt to show us the might of the male sex, the might of the religious authorities and the authoritative indefatigable stamp of Islam in our society?

The furore and the international condemnation that ensued have caused a lot of backpedalling from our authorities, with a conference of caning to be hastily arranged. Taxpayers' money must not be wasted on this futile exercise. The answers can be found in this country and not from international participants. Moreover, the whipping laws have already been passed. Any discussion should have been done before implementation.

Some of the questions which we asked, but are denied answers, are simple ones such as why the women were whipped because of syariah law, even though civil law forbids it? Why did the women receive the harshest punishment, which is whipping? Why were they not given any consideration as first offenders, with fines or community service as alternatives?

Making a point

Are these religious authorities trying to make a point – that the government of the day is endorsing its Islamic identity? It is pathetic to use four (including Kartika) hapless women as pawns in their power-game. It is equally deplorable to waste police, as well as the Home Ministry's time to search for Gunasegaran's 'hidden motive' for the article he wrote? Do they think these institutions have nothing better to do?

If the ulama have so much time on their hands, they might care to reflect on the comments of Shahrizat that decaying family values and absentee fathers were compounding the problems in Muslim/Malay society. Maybe the state syariah bodies should finally sit down and formulate solutions to address these social breakdowns?

They could also decide when to standardise our syariah laws, which currently differ from state to state, and plug the various loopholes which men take advantage of.

Do they acknowledge the difference in severity: Kartika is to be whipped and fined RM5000 for drinking beer but the man who leaves his wife and kids and mistreats her is only fined RM1000? Do they notice the inconsistencies and injustice?

Furthermore, they could reassess the enforcement and raids of the religious police so they are conducted with less crudity, which strips people of their dignity. They might wish to reflect on individual human rights, too.

There is so much that these Muslim NGOs and the ulama could constructively do rather than be overly sensitive to statements from individuals.

If anyone has insulted the religion and brought it into disrepute, it is these NGOs and MAIS.

BN’s whipping quandary

Digging...and digging...and digging

THE big hole our government found themselves in after Kartika Sari Dewi Shukarno was sentenced to caning for drinking alcohol has just gotten bigger. Stuck between pleasing those who thought moral offenders deserved caning and outraged human rights groups as well as the international community, the government decided to cane three other Muslim women instead.

The government's face-saving ploy is almost transparent — cane these women quietly then demonstrate how humanely it was done, thereby making their problems go away. Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin reportedly described the caning as "mild". Once everyone sees how wonderfully civilised we are, Kartika can then be caned without much ado. The government has also educated the public on what an effective deterrent caning is against moral offences. Problem solved, right?

Wrong. Seriously, whom is the government trying to kid here? What has the Barisan Nasional (BN) government actually been doing? It is politicising Islam for its own survival, and the caning of the three women is just the latest addition to this trail of expediency.

No kidding

Prior to 9 Feb 2010, Malaysia had never caned a woman for any crime, be it murder or kidnapping or armed robbery, whether under syariah law or otherwise. In fact, before Kartika's sentence, many assumed that caning only applied to men as Section 289 of the Criminal Procedure Code expressly excludes women from caning. Kartika's case also caused a further problem as caning procedures only apply with a jail sentence, and she had not been sentenced to imprisonment for consuming alcohol. This led to a botched attempt by the syariah judge to impose a seven day imprisonment, after the case had been concluded and his sentence passed.

So amidst all the fanfare about the joys and wonders of caning, the government has failed to answer this question: Regardless of how it's being carried out, why are we caning women now, after surviving 52 years as a nation without doing so? What's different? Are these caning sentences exceptions to the general rule? If so, then why don't we review the laws and abolish caning?

tunku saying 'we'd run out of stones'
Tunku Abdul Rahman
(public domain | Wiki Commons)

Do these punishments and government statements signal a greater focus on Muslims' moral misdeeds? How will the government ensure moral policing and punishments are applied fairly? After all, wasn't it our first Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman who made a tongue-in-cheek comment in response to PAS that if all adulterers in the country were to be stoned, "there wouldn't be enough stones in Malaysia for the task?"

Disproportionate sentence

Rather than answering these difficult questions, our government has once again opted for the course of action calculated to garner maximum votes for minimum risk. Judging from their recent actions, Umno-led BN seems to be playing to a gallery it assumes agrees with women being caned for breaches of personal morality. By doing so, it is choosing to ignore or discredit those who oppose the caning. At the same time, it is wary of further ruining Malaysia's already tattered image as a moderate Muslim nation, hence the "caning is mild" rhetoric.

It would have been nice if our government could have demonstrated leadership, for a change. Instead of performing a song and dance about the glories of whipping, why couldn't it have taken a principled stand against it? International standards aside, the least the government could have said was that the punishments in these cases did not fit the "crimes".


Emeritus professor and constitutional expert Datuk Dr Shad Saleem Faruqi told The Nut Graph in a phone interview that the whipping in these cases could be challenged for disproportionality: "In Islam, the punishment must be proportionate to the crime. What is proportionate must be judged in the context of society. In Malaysian society, I think the idea of punishing [such offences] with whipping surely is out of tune with the general perception. After all, we didn't do it for 50 years."

Shad Saleem also said those who disagreed with the punishment for moral offences had a right to speak up. "In a theocratic system, the mandatory, religiously prescribed punishments have to be enforced if all the conditions for their enforcement are satisfied to the hilt.

"[However, our] legal system [consists of] mostly human laws, made and enforced by extremely fallible human beings," he said.

Thus, he said citizens should therefore not be forbidden from examining the substantive justice of the laws and the proportionality and equal application of the sentences.

"If there was violence committed on others — rape, theft with violence; I can understand even the moral argument that what you do to others should be done to you. But in crimes of pure improprieties or sins which do not harm others, education and rehabilitation may be more appropriate."

The road less travelled

The cane is like a magic wand for creating repentant Muslim women?

Unfortunately for Malaysia, this is not how our government has chosen to respond. Its chosen course of action instead involved parading the three women before the media to talk about how they deserved their punishment and how repentant it made them.

In a country beset with politically created divisions and diversions, this is not the time for religious grandstanding by our elected representatives. This is the time for leadership and clear thinking about how we are to progress as a nation.

Whether or not Malaysian law allows women to be whipped, these facts are plain: International standards view whipping as torture and corporal punishment as degrading. Many countries are progressively reviewing their corporal punishment laws and removing them, recognising that such punishment is no longer acceptable in present-day society. We, however, seem to be going in the opposite direction.

How will we foster national unity when Malaysian Muslims can be imprisoned and caned for "crimes" which do not affect their fellow non-Muslim citizens? Will there ever come a time when non-Muslims would also be subjected to Islamic laws to counter allegations of religious discrimination?

Isn't it inconsistent for Muslim women to be caned under Islamic law, while the Criminal Procedure Code disallows it? Shouldn't all state law inconsistent with federal law be deemed void?

Should state resources be devoted to hunting down moral offenders at a time when violent crimes such as murder, rape and armed robbery have become rampant?

Malaysia is unlikely to review its whipping
laws in the near future
These are all questions that our government has chosen not to answer. Instead, it has chosen to answer this question: "How can we the BN get out of this Kartika mess without appearing weak or unIslamic to our electoral base, while also not appearing cruel to our international trading partners?"

By answering this question the way they have done, our government has closed the door on the possibility of Malaysia reviewing its whipping laws in the near future. In being guided by political expediency rather than principle, it has ended up digging an even bigger hole for itself and all Malaysians.

Anwar: No Way Are They Sending me Back to Jail

From MalaysiaKini

exclusive The last time Malaysiakini sat down for a chat with Anwar Ibrahim, he was the man of the hour.

Fresh from a string of victories in the 2008 general election, he was then about to leave for Permatang Pauh to make his political comeback.

A year and a half later, however, his Pakatan Rakyat coalition is on the defensive. There is a new and more robust prime minister in charge. Pakatan lost Perak after BN engineered a number of defections.

Anwar himself is facing another controversial sodomy trial. But being an incorrigible optimist, he remains upbeat.

In this first of a four-part interview, he tells Malaysiakini about his battle to clear his reputation in a second sodomy charge leveled against him, which he concedes is a liability in the battle for Malay votes.

But unlike the Sodomy I trial 10 years ago, Anwar is confident of staying out of prison despite all the “dirty machinations” by BN.

He also said that, although Najib is a stronger opponent than his predecessor Abdullah Ahmad Badawi (Pak Lah), he does not hold a candle to his other adversary, Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

“Mahathir’s strength is that he fights things head on. Najib is never known to have the capacity to face up to things,” he explained.

Anwar said that Najib’s tactics of using Umno mouthpiece Utusan Malaysia and institutions such as the judiciary to smear him is a sign of “cowardice” and “sheer hypocrisy”.

“I know their personal lives, I was their friend…. Who is talking about morality here? In Islam – be it sodomy, adultery, drinking or corruption – who can pass the test? Name one person. Can Najib pass the test?” he asked.

Excerpts of the interview follow. The content has been edited for language and brevity.

Mark 50th anniversary of Malaysia with commission of inquiry on how the dreams and aspirations of Sabahans in forming Malaysia had been betrayed in pa

The Joint Chinese New Year Open House by Sabah Pakatan Rakyat in Kota Kinabalu today is most significant and historic, sending out a clear and unmistakable message that Pakatan Rakyat in Sabah will not repeat the mistakes of the 2008 general elections and we will ensure that the next general elections will see a one-to-one fight between the Pakatan Rakyat and the Barisan Nasional in Sabah.

With the SAPP President, Datuk Yong Teck Lee as our guest here, let me say that we will like to see the one-to-one fight with the Barisan Nasional in Sabah in the next general elections the most unique and important feature in the next Sabah general elections, embracing SAPP also.

The high-spirited overflowing capacity crowd at today’s Joint Pakatan Rakyat Chinese New Year Open House is more than a Chinese New Year reception. It is a potent sign of the changing and challenging times in Sabah and Malaysia – as it is as rousing and inspiring as any climax election rally.

Let us today from Kota Kinabalu raise a political whirlwind to bring about change in Sabah and Malaysia in the next general elections to elect a Pakatan Rakyat Chief Minister in Sabah and a Pakatan Rakyat Prime Minister in Putrajaya.

My visit to Kota Belud and Tuaran yesterday has left me with one abiding impression – how the dreams of Sabahans in forming Malaysia had been betrayed in the past five decades.

In Kota Belud, 800 students and 54 teachers of SMK Tambulion have been suffering daily from the worst and most disgraceful 8km road which covered them in dust, turning them into orang putih, an ordeal which will last another year or two, while Tuaran competes for a place in the Book of Records with a hospital for three decades without a bed!

Bapa Malaysia and Malaysia’s first Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman made the historic proposal for the formation of Malaysia comprising Malaya, Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore at a speech to the Singapore Foreign Correspondents’ Club on 27th May 1961.

Sabah, together with Sarawak, will be commemorating their 50 years of Malaysian nationhood in another three years in 2013.

The people of Sabah were promised progress and development, at least to the level achieved by the Peninsular states.

Have these promises to Sabah been fulfilled in the past five decades? The answers must be a loud No.

From being a very rich state especially in terms of natural resources, the people of Sabah are now among the poorest in Malaysia with the worst poverty rate!

Where have all the wealth of Sabah gone to in the past five decades?

After nearly five decades, Sabah even lack the most basic infrastructures to be found in the rest of Malaysia like regular electricity supply, uninterrupted piped water and good roads and bridges.

This year, the people of Tawau celebrated Chinese New Year’s Eve in darkness because of power blackout – not a rare occurrence but a regular ordeal to the people of Tawau, Sandakan, Lahat Datuk and most parts of Sabah. The provision of piped water is in constant state of crisis. The state of the roads and bridges in Sabah are a scandal.

The people of Sabah are entitled to ask why with Sabah’s immense wealth, they cannot enjoy the basic infrastructures that are taken for granted in other states – why, for instance, Sabahans must suffer constant power black-outs which are unheard of in Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Alor Star, Ipoh, Seremban, Malacca, Johore Bahru, Kuantan, Kota Bahru, Kuala Terengganu – even in Kuching, Sibu, Miri?

After Tunku Abdul Rahman’s historic proposal for the formation of Malaysia in May 1961, various consultations were conducted after various objections internally as well as from foreign powers, even involving the United Nations.

There was a Cobbold Commission which conducted a survey of the people in Sabah and Sarawak to ascertain the views on the formation of Malaysia.

I think there is no more meaningful manner for Sabah and Sarawak to mark their 50 years of Malaysian nationhood than to conduct a comprehensive review of the successes and failures in all aspects of development in these two states in the past five decades with feedback from the people Sabah and Sarawak.

For Sabah, if there cannot be a Royal Commission of Inquiry, then I suggest that Pakatan Rakyat conduct a commission of inquiry in all the 25 parliamentary and 60 state assembly seats in Sabah to allow Sabahans, regardless of race, religion or region to speak their minds on how the dreams and aspirations of Sabahans in Malaysia had been betrayed in the past five decades.

[Speech at Sabah Pakatan Rakyat Joint Chinese New Year Open House at Kin Kwok Chinese Secondary School Hall, Kota Kinabalu on Sunday, 28th February 2010.]

PR Sabah CNY

PR Sabah CNY

PR Sabah CNY

PR Sabah CNY

Towards A Developed Malaysia – Part 4

By Bakri Musa

[Presented at the Third Annual Alif Ba Ta Forum, “1Malaysia Towards Vision 2020,” Rochester Institute of Technology, NY, December 5, 2009, organized by Kelab UMNO NY-NJ. The presentation can be viewed at (search under “Bakri Musa RIT”) or through this link]

Part Four of Six: A Bigger Fish Story

Returning to my original tale, I now have a bigger fish story to tell; the story that is, not the fish. Consider two villages. The leader of one was suddenly struck by the fishing bug; now he also wanted his people to be great fishermen and win coveted derby prizes. He wanted to put his village on the map for its fishing prowess. So he embarked on a crash program teaching his people how to fish, importing great fishermen as teachers, and subsidizing the fishing tools. He also made fishing compulsory in schools and forced every villager to learn how to fish.

He was successful; the village’s catch increased substantially, and his villagers were winning many fishing tournaments. His leadership was widely lauded, making the other villages envious. They yearned that if only they could have such an efficient, far-sighted, single-minded, and yes, even ruthless leader, then they too would be good fishermen and their village would be equally famous.

The leader of the second village on the other hand was not at all interested in winning praises for his leadership; of course he appreciated them but he did not specifically seek them out or made that his priority. He was for developing his people, whatever their talent. If some were caught by the fishing bug, he would support them. He would not however, force everyone to take fishing classes. If others were scared of the water or could not stand the fishy smell but were interested in woodworking or something else, he would also support them and let them be. He reasoned that if they were to become good craftsmen, they could always trade their carvings for fish.

So he encouraged his followers to purse their individual dreams. He did not profess to know what those dreams were or where they would lead, but he trusted his people and encouraged them. And yes indeed, a few of his people who were not interested in fishing pursued their dreams to be scientists. He helped them by building laboratories and importing science teachers.

As luck would have it, one of those villagers who became a scientist discovered an efficient method of fish farming. Now instead of going out in the ocean and risking his life in the storm, all he had to do was scoop up the fish from his pond. He was so successful that not only could he feed his entire village, he had some for export. Sure he did not win any fishing derbies, and those fishermen would mock him for his “fishing” skills. However, where it counts – putting fish on the table – our scientist readily beat those star fishermen.

If you were a villager, which leader would you prefer? The first who would force you to accept his dream, or the second who let your pursue your own?

We will reach a developed state not by chanting and coining cute slogans but through developing our people and equipping them with modern skills, and then granting them the freedom to pursue their dreams. If fishing or rice farming is their passion, let it be, only make sure that they do not do it in the same inefficient ways of their ancestors. Instead help them become as efficient as the Japanese fishermen or American rice farmers. Japanese fishermen have refrigerated ships equipped with canning facilities, while American rice farmers sow their rice seeds from low-flying planes.

We could readily achieve this if in developing our people we would allocate the bulk of the resources towards enhancing the skills of the large middle group while simultaneously emphasizing the top 90th percentile by giving them twice the allocation on a per capita basis.

Once our people are developed, our nation would follow. Once we achieve that, then we could coin whatever fancy slogans we want.

Q & A Sessions:

Q1: What do you think of 1Malaysia, and what is your vision of a united Malaysia? I visualize it as a mighty river with many contributing streams, like the Nile. Can you comment on that?

MBM: I have never heard it put quite that way, but that is an interesting, and if I may add, original metaphor. I like it! The mighty Nile has its Blue and White Niles. I suppose Malaysia has its brown, black, yellow and a few other colors contributing to our Nile.

That metaphor presupposes that we would all mix it up and become undifferentiated, for at the Nile delta you could not separate the waters from the Blue Nile from that of the Red. Unfortunately, or fortunately I would argue, we humans are always proud of our culture, heritage, and even color. The more developed we are, the more conscious we are of our roots. Being conscious and proud of our heritage is very different from being obsessed or being defined by it. The former is positive and constructive; the latter, negative and destructive. Barack Obama personifies the former; Adolf Hitler, the second.

We all have this need to belong; we do not want to be part of a large homogenous mass. Incidentally, that is also part of Allah’s grand design; He could have made us all clones of each other. Life would not be much fun then, nor would it be beautiful.

Let me suggest a culinary metaphor instead. America prides itself with its melting pot model. There is however, no mistaking what is in the pot; it is essentially an English stew – an Anglo Saxon culture and ethos. Today that stew is enriched with the addition of Italian pasta, jalapeno peppers, and French wine, but in flavor, texture, color, and yes, even smell, it is still basically the old English stew. Even a hint of challenging that would throw things in a tizzy. Witness the frenzy of hysteria gripping the White extreme right to Obama’s presidency.

I once suggested the salad as the more appropriate metaphor for Malaysia. Yes, there are onions, black olives and other ingredients, but there is no mistaking that it is not a salad without the greens. Salads are not a regular Malaysian fare, so my metaphor fell flat. More appropriate would be the more familiar and universal favorite, rojak. The main if not defining vegetable there is taugeh (bean sprout). It alone however, does not make rojak; we need cucumbers, tofus, onions, black olives, and all the other ingredients. Without them it would not be rojak. They enhance the overall flavor. Nonetheless when you pick up a handful of rojak, you could still separate out the various ingredients, but once in your mouth, you taste only the complete rojak, not the individual vegetables.

That is my vision of a united Malaysia, the rojak. The Malays, Chinese, Ibans and others should be proud of their heritage; it is not Malaysia without them. As to what I think of 1Malaysia, I do not know as no one, least of all Prime Minister Najib, has clearly articulated what it means. Besides, I am more interested in the content, not the label. I am also not much for slogans; you should all read Shahnon Ahmad’s short story, Unggappan (slogans) about the leader consumed and intoxicated with his endless sloganeering.

Q2: Can we achieve Vision 2020? It is only a decade away.

MBM: Absolutely, nothing is impossible! However, I think your question is really this: Can we do it with the current leadership? I have not seen any evidence of bold leadership to answer in the affirmative. On major issues like the controversies on the teaching of science and mathematics and on Biro Tata Negara, Najib has remained curiously silent.

If Malaysia were to register near double-digit growth in the next ten years, that would put us in the developed category by 2020, at least by economic indices. That is not impossible, as China had demonstrated. However as mentioned earlier, high per capita income alone does not equal developed status. Brunei would quickly disabuse one of that delusion.

As for the other criteria – like respect for the rule of law and an honest police force, or at least the perception thereof – those too could be readily achievable. If Najib were to recruit from Scotland Yard or the FBI for his next police chief and head of the anti corruption agency, the impact would be immediate and dramatic.

Similarly, in making the next senior judicial appointment, if he would canvass practicing lawyers, legal scholars, heads of leading NGOs, and then heed their recommendations, that too could have a significant impact.

I pose this back to you: Is Prime Minister Najib capable of making those bold moves? Your response is the answer to the question on whether we could achieve Vision 2020.

Q 3: We all had high hopes for change following the political tsunami of the March 2008 elections. With the ongoing mess in Perak, Penang, and Selangor however, we are disheartened. It seems that these politicians, regardless of party affiliations, are the same animal. What hope is there for the nation?

MBM: If by change you mean things that you could see, yes, I share your pessimism. It seems that the same cast of lousy actors is back on stage except that this time they are wearing different costumes. They are not even good actors because they still display their old characters.

Let me suggest that you view the situation differently. The Barisan coalition, specifically UMNO, lost four states. Those are no ordinary states. Selangor, Perak, and Penang are the most developed, their economies constitute (I guess) nearly half of the nation’s. If Federal Territory with the capital Putrajaya had its own Assembly, Barisan would be thrashed there too. That is significant, symbolically. Likewise Kedah; it is rural, conservative, and very Malay. For UMNO to lose that state means that the party could not automatically count on Malay support. This is a seismic shift.

To me the most significant but not readily apparent change is with the voters. For the first time they realized that they could actually change their government simply by putting a mark on the ballot paper. There is no need to risk your limb and life by partaking in armed insurrections or demonstrating on the streets. Once citizens get that sense of empowerment, you cannot take it back. That is why in subsequent by-elections even though they would not shift the political calculus, voter turnout had seen record highs.

Other changes follow from that. Now leaders too, recognize that they could be thrown out of office. That definitely has a salutary effect. In the election of 1999, Najib Razak was nearly kicked out in Pekan. As a result he became a better politician because of that near-death political experience.

Do not give up; the March 2008 election was a political tsunami. Unlike the Asian tsunami which radically changed the physical landscape, the political tsunami of 2008 radically changed the mindset of our people. Those who ignore that would definitely be made to relearn its painful lesson come the next election.

Next: Part Five of Six: Q&A (Cont’d)

Live - Beng Hock inquest; Tee Beng, Fairus quit

Gobind Singh cross-examines pathologist Shahidan while Nibong Tebal MP Tan Tee Beng quits PKR.

By Anil Netto

UMNO and PR Mandores

Kampung Buah Pala - What happen to the 9?

Remarks : UMNOs’ AG Racist will not be prosecute PM’s P.A.

This is despite 12 police reports being lodged against Datuk Nasir Safar, Prime Minister Najib Razak’s personal assistant (The Star 4/2/2010 at page N2). In a few days time this very serious matter would disappear in thin air and never to surface.

Just mark our word! But when our Secretary General P. Uthayakumar spoke the truth on the Kg. Medan, indiscriminate Hindu temple demolishments and other “ethnic cleansing” of the Indians in Malaysia, he was within two weeks prosecuted for sedition, imposed an RM 50,000 excessive bail and was thrown into jail again for three years after having served 514 days under the ISA.

But for UMNO a different rule applies.


HRP Information Chief

HRP Negeri Sembilan police report

HRP Johor police report

The Story Of Human Rights

55% UPSR failure rate in Tamil schools. 77.4% failure rate at Sungai Besi Tamil School. No special unit to address. But UMNOs’ Special Unit for rural

No special unit to address this issue. But UMNO’s Special Unit for rural (malay muslim) schools on track.

This Special Unit was announced by UMNO’s Deputy Education Minister (NST 22/2/10 at page 4). But UMNO has zero plans to address the 55% failure rate as mentioned by Selangor Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim (TN 6/1/10 at page 4).

At the SRJKT Sg Besi (near the army camp) out of 53 students who sat for the Standard Five Pejabat Pelajaran Daerah (PPD) exams only 12 out of 53 pupils (22.6%) passed all subjects. This failure rate is presumably based on students failing one to all seven (7) subjects.

Although the issue is grave the 82 Opposition PR MPs’ choose to sidestep this Tamil school critically high dropout rate as the Indians are not politically empowered to speak up for themselves and neither do they have the economic power. Thus they are seen as soft targets by both UMNO and also PKR, DAP and PAS and hence are abandoned. Raising Indian issues may not be rewarding for them.

To move on and the way forward is as per “Indian political empowerment strategy – the way forward”

P. Uthayakumar

UMNO excludes RM 10 Billion Amanah Saham 1 M’sia to Indians.

This RM 3.4 billion Amanah Saham 1 Malaysia in theory was open to all Malaysians with 244,117 investing since last year, 50% of these shares have been allocated to the Malay muslims. 89% of the 30% Chinese quota had been taken up (BH 25/2/2010 at page 4). The Malay muslims have the options to exclusively purchase ASN, ASB, ASM and ASD 2020.

But as for the 15% of the quota for the Indians it is not stated by PNBs’ Chief Executive Officer Tan Sri Hamed Kama Piah Che Othman as to how many percent was take up by the Indians. We estimate only a mere 1% of the Indians bought up this shares as they cannot afford or have the means to do so.

And neither did UMNO secure loans for Indians from Maybank or CIMB with 4% interest to purchase these Amanah Saham, and obtain at least 7% to 12% dividends from the saham, as done for the malay muslims.

P. Uthayakumar

PKR S’gor MB blocks HRP e-mails.

Our e-mails to this PKR Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim, the Selangor Menteri Besar is being rejected with the remarks “rejected by recipient domain. As it stands this PKR Menteri Besar does not reply to our official letters and has refused to give us an appointment to meet him. This is also the case with the Chief Ministers of Penang and Kedah and the top leaders of PKR, DAP and PAS.

Instead he gets his Indian Exco Mandore to do the usual MIC style wayang kulit in the three Tamil press.

The writing on the wall is very clear. Like UMNO, the top leadership of PKR, DAP and PAS, their 82 MPs including their 11 Indian MPs are not interested in addressing even the critical Indian problems.

We have to bend for ourselves and fight for own battle against both PKR, DAP and PAS and also UMNO.


HRP Information Chief

PKR Selangor denies land title to 100 year old Thanaletchumy Estate Sri Muneswarar Hindu temple (MO 12/2/2010 at page

Najib’s 1 Malaysia means total acceptance of diversity

Tan Sri Tiong Hiew King, executive chairman of Sin Chew Media Corporation Malaysia (centre, in blue), welcoming PM Datuk Seri Mohd Najib and his wife Datin Seri Paduka Rosmah Mansor with the lion dance. – Picture by Jack Ooi

By Clara Chooi - The Malaysian Insider

PETALING JAYA, Feb 28 – Datuk Seri Najib Razak today attempted to revive his battered 1 Malaysia concept by urging Malaysians to adopt its paradigm of “total acceptance” of the country’s diversity instead of mere “tolerance”.

The Prime Minister launched his 1 Malaysia idea when he took office last April but a recent spate of racial and derogatory remarks from his Umno party has further divided rather than united Malaysian behind his Barisan Nasional government.

His efforts to liberalise government policies and create a more inclusive, more open policy towards all races appear to have riled Malay right-wingers who now fear that his 1 Malaysia would cause them to lose their rights to the minority races.

“We started off with one basic paradigm and that is tolerance. We say we tolerate or we live in a society that is tolerant of one another. But in the concept of 1 Malaysia, being tolerant is just the beginning.

“The next paradigm is a shift from tolerance to total acceptance. This is when we accept the differences of our people, when we accept diversity as something that is unique, that provides us with a very powerful chemistry in our society... something that can actually give us strength and not otherwise,” Najib said at the Sin Chew Daily’s Chinese New Year open house here.

He added that the third and final paradigm of 1 Malaysia was to celebrate diversity.

“To celebrate diversity – that is our final destination, the final apex. If we celebrate our diversity, then it means we have reached our final destination of ‘Bangsa Malaysia’ and 1 Malaysia. This means that we think as one people, one nation, one dream,” the Umno president said.

Najib added that certain groups may embark on separate pathways but what was important was that all Malaysians converged and reached the same final destination.

“I am sure we all share this same dream – to achieve unity, harmony and prosperity – but we may take different paths to get there. Sin Chew may take a different path, Utusan Malaysia may take a different path but what is important is that we must converge and reach that final destination.

“Of course we much allow discourse and some room for dissent and differences of opinion but we must ensure that it is not at the expense of harmony. We must be conscious that we are slowly and surely bringing Malaysia to harmony,” he said.

Najib warned the people that if Malaysia was not well looked after, the entire nation would fall.

“If we stick to that thinking, then I am confident we can maintain this colourful tapestry of our society - there is no other nation more colourful than Malaysia,” he said.

As if to acknowledge the flailing popularity of 1 Malaysia, Najib also sought to remind Malaysians that 1 Malaysia was not merely a slogan but a continuation of the struggles of Malaysia’s past five prime ministers.

“I am continuing the work of the previous prime ministers. They have, in their own ways, worked towards a more united, harmonious and prosperous Malaysia. They worked tirelessly in their own ways and during their own times and some, through very turbulent times.

“I would like to say that this (1 Malaysia) is a continuation. Many people say they have heard of 1 Malaysia but they must know that it is more than just a slogan - it is about understanding and embracing the principles within the concept which are the values that bring us to shift from one paradigm to the next,” he added.

Najib’s remarks came after nearly 80 Malay groups formed the Majlis Perundingan Melayu or Malay Consultative Council (MPM), ostensibly to protect and defend Malay rights, Islam and the Malay Rulers which they claim is being questioned and sidelined in recent months.

A Malay group leader said the MPM will focus on the economic rights and privileges of the Malays and Bumiputeras to ensure they are not neglected in the New Economic Model (NEM) that the Najib Administration will introduce next month to stimulate the economy.

Najib had said innovation and creativity is needed to push Malaysia into a high-income nation, adding protection and subsidies will have to give way to greater competition in a global world. Malay groups warn that such a move will shrink their share of the economic pie which they claim is dominated by minority groups.

Malaysia recorded 4.5 per cent growth in the fourth quarter of 2009 which helped it out of the recession although the 2009 GDP contracted 1.7 per cent, less than the 3 per cent contraction forecast earlier.

Malay Consultative Council a New Dilemma for Najib

Khoo Kay Peng

1Malaysia vision is facing yet another serious threat. 80 Malay groups came together to form the Malay Consultative Council (MPM) to push the government to maintain affirmative action for the country’s dominant race.

A Malay leader revealed that the MPM wants the Umno-led Barisan Nasional government to maintain a “guided” New Economic Policy (NEP) that protects the Malays and Bumiputras, saying the community was worried about moves to abolish subsidies and other forms of aid.

The fact is the federal government cannot afford to hand out subsidies and aids forever. Malaysia's oil reserve is depleting. Our over dependence on oil revenue is slowing stalling our ability to fund socio-economic development programmes.

Najib has identified the need to build a high growth economy through innovation and creativity. The question is how is he going to convince these Malay NGOs that what they are doing (blind protection of Malay rights) is going to generate more pain than gain for the community.

As a small economy with limited resources, we should have focused on growing the economic pie and not fighting over crumbs. The newly established MCC should prove that it is not all talk but no walk.

What can the MCC do to help in capacity building of the Malays? Malay may be the dominant race in Malaysia but it is just a minority race globally. The community must work harder and acquire as much knowledge and skills as possible to compete with the world's best. Education and knowledge acquisition is the only option for survival. Not racial chest beating or making unreasonable demands.

If MCC is only interested in making demands on Malay rights and blame the non-Malay but keeping quiet on their Malay leadership own mismanagement and all other ills which have much larger implication on the Malay community, it risks being treated as a shallow organisation and a group of racial opportunists.

MCC or Perkasa may not be Ibrahim Ali's best bet to retain his MP seat. He should not be given another opportunity.

Najib should state his stand on the MCC and Perkasa if he truly believes in his own 1Malaysia. We are awaiting to be reassured.

Act against Ku Li, says Umno supreme council member

(Bernama) - Umno needs to take action on Gua Musang Member of Parliament (MP) Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah for working together with opposition parties on the Kelantan oil royalty issue, said Umno Supreme Council member Dr Mohd Puad Zarkashi.

Mohd Puad, who is also Deputy Education Minister and Batu Pahat Umno Division Chief said, special treatment is not warranted although Tengku Razaleigh had been a prominent member of Umno.

“Umno needs to take action on Tengku Razaleigh. He should not be given any special treatment,” he told Bernama here today.

Mohd Puad was commenting on the Gua Musang MP’s involvement in a series of ceramah organised by the opposition on the oil royalty issue in Kelantan.

In its weekly meeting, the Umno Supreme Council let its members decide on the form of action to be taken on Tengku Razaleigh.

According to Mohd Puad, Tengku Razaleigh’s action was intentional so that Umno would be forced to take action on him and turn him into a hero.

“His purpose (for taking part in the opposition ceramah series) was to challenge the party (Umno) to take action on him so he could be a hero,” he said.

Mohd Puad said Tengku Razaleigh’s stand on the Kelantan oil royalty issue was inconsistent and differed from when he had held the post of Finance Minister in the past.

On Tengku Razaleigh’s plan to carry out ceramah series on the issue, he said the party should not feel worried as the Gua Musang MP had little influence and mostly depended on the opposition.

Adakah menegakkan ‘ketuanan Melayu’ bercanggah dengan sunnah Nabi Muhammad SAW?

by Haris Ibrahim

“All mankind is from Adam and Eve, an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over black nor a black has any superiority over white except by piety and good action”. – The final sermon of the Holy Prophet ( peace be upon him )

Adakah menegakkan 'ketuanan Melayu' bercanggah dengan sunnah Nabi Muhammad SAW?


Menolak Perkauman Sempit

Sabah people must fully embrace new Internet technology in the “Save Sabah, Save Malaysia” battle

Sabah people must fully embrace new Internet technology of blogs, facebook and twitter in the “Save Sabah, Save Malaysia” battle to restore justice, freedom and prosperity for all Malaysians regardless of race, religion or region

This is my first visit to Tuaran and it is historic in more senses than one.

Firstly, the coming together of Bajaus, Dusuns and Chinese in Tuaran tonight illustrates the living 1Malaysia in Sabah and not just at the sloganeering level of 1Malaysia since Datuk Seri Najib Razak became the sixth Prime Minister in April last year.

When I visited Kota Belud earlier today, I was told that Sabah – like the Bajau, Dusun, Iranun and Chinese in Kota Belud – had been practising 1Malaysia for decades, with the various ethnic groups in Sabah long having a very easy, friendly and cosy relationships with each other, and their response to Najib’s 1Malaysia is whether the Prime Minister had been sleeping all these decades.

Secondly, this DAP Chinese New Year Open House going on now in Tuaran is being followed not in other parts of Sabah and Malaysia but throughout the world.
This has been made possible by the new Internet technology of blogs, facebook and twitter enabling people not only in Sabah and Malaysia but worldwide to share events, ideas and aspirations on-time and instantaneously, regardless of time and geography.

For instance, when the other leaders like the three DAP MPs, Hiew King Cheu (Kota Kinabalu), Teo Nie Ching (Serdang) and Lim Lip Eng (Segambut), the DAP’s sole State Assemblyman Jimmy Wong Sze Phing (Sri Tanjong) and Sabah DAP officials like Edward Muji (Vice Chairman) and Jeffrey Kumin (Organising Secretary) were speaking, I had sent out four tweets about Tuaran which is accessible worldwide instantaneously.

My four tweets on Tuaran a short while ago are:

  • In Tuaran attend DAP CNY OH Sabah tale of horrors continue Tuaran has most unique hospital not just Msia but world – without a single bed!

  • 150k ppl Tuaran have 2go2KK 4hospitalisation Big shame! 4nearly 30 yrs string of promises 2build ward w beds never met #Save Sabah/Malaysia!

  • 2nd Tuaran horror Dy educ minister Fuad promised last yr work on new secondary school in Pekan Nabalu near Tuaran wld start b4 Xmas Not kept

  • Horror3 – 1994 Umno/BN promised 2build bridge over Sg Damit Tuaran Promises repeated in 4 gen elections Never kept #Save Sabah/Malaysia!

I had said in my first tweet on Tuaran about “Sabah tale of horrors” because I had during my visit to Kota Belud earlier today sent out seven tweets about the deplorable infrastructure and socio-economic problem in the area, viz:

  • Travelled worst n most disgraceful 8km road 4beautiful SMK Tambulion Kota Belud like mirage in desert since school opened June 2006
    Saturday, 27 February, 2010 15:49

  • Some 800 students 54 teachers suffered daily arriving like orang putih covered in dust Muhyiddin shd visit school urgently shame 2MP KBelud
    Saturday, 27 February, 2010 15:56

  • MPs utterly shocked at atrocious road have 2dy ministers visited school n road? We will shame BN govt in parliament Pandikar shld back us
    Saturday, 27 February, 2010 16:08

  • But this not only outrage KotaBelud visited Camp Paradise military complex 2house 1800 personnel impressive highrise qtrs but totally empty
    Saturday, 27 February, 2010 16:22

  • CampParadise is now Ghostland Paradise 35 personnel in complex for 1800 what gross waste public funds Don’t build any more new army complex
    Saturday, 27 February, 2010 16:38

  • Visited Jelapang Padi KB last month 5300 acres of padi land 500 houses flooded under six ft water caused by bad irrigation drainage
    Saturday, 27 February, 2010 16:58

  • Umno MP not going 2find it easy 2defend KotaBelud at such atrocious service record n constituency problems KB ppl complain MP mostly in KL
    Saturday, 27 February, 2010 17:04

The people of Sabah must fully embrace new Internet technology of blogs, facebook and twitter in the “Save Sabah, Save Malaysia” battle to restore justice, freedom and prosperity for all Malaysians regardless of race, religion or region.

As I had tweeted on Feb. 23, there has been an exponential growth of twitter with 50 million tweets created per day in the world from 5,000 tweets per day in 2007, 300,000 tweets per day in 2008, 2.5 million tweets per day in early 2009 and 35 million tweets per day at the end of 2009.

Our visits to Kota Belud and Tuaran has confirmed the shocking neglect, discrimination and marginalization of the ordinary Sabahans regardless of race, religion or region by a handful of political opportunists who have waxed rich from the wealth of the state of Sabah while the people of Sabah had been reduced to the poorest in Malaysia.

The campaign “Save Sabah, Save Malaysia” must be launched without any delay so that the ordinary people of Sabah and Malaysia can fully enjoy the fruits of development and the wealth of the state and country.

[Lim Kit Siang Speech at the DAP Tuaran Chinese New Year Open House in Tuaran, Sabah on Saturday, February 27, 2010 at 9 pm]

Former Penang Deputy Chief Minister 1 Quits PKR, Joins Umno

KUALA LUMPUR, Mar 1 (Bernama) -- Former Penang deputy chief minister 1 Mohammad Fairus Khairuddin announced that he was leaving Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) to join Umno.

He made the announcement in front of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, who is also Umno president, at a function with the Silat Seni Gayung Association in Ampang, near here.

Mohammad Fairus then handed his Umno membership application form to Najib.

Earlier in his speech, Mohammad Fairus, said his decision to quit PKR was because he had lost confidence in the party leadership, especially on matters concerning Islam and the Malays.

"I see that the PKR leaders cannot uphold the sovereignty of the Malays and sanctity of Islam. I am also disappointed with the way PKR handles the issue on the use of the word Allah," said the former Penanti assemblyman.

Meanwhile, Najib said Mohammad Fairus' decision to quit PKR shows that other leaders were losing confidence of the party leadership.

Najib said the action of Mohammad Fairus who was a senior PKR leader and who had held a senior post in the Pakatan Rakyat ruled Penang, was a good example.

"From what I gather from him speech is that he has lost confidence in the PKR leadership and that PKR had failed to protect the fundamental policy of harnessing the true values of Islam," he said.

Syafiah alami kecederaan parah

Utusan Malaysia

HULU SELANGOR 27 Feb. - Betapa berat seksaan yang dihadapi oleh Allahyarham Syafiah Humairah Sahari sebelum dia menemui ajal, kelmarin.

Selain dipukul dan ditampar, kanak- kanak malang itu turut dipijak dan ditendang oleh teman lelaki ibunya tanpa belas kasihan, hanya disebabkan oleh kesalahan kecil yang dilakukannya.

Kanak-kanak berusia tiga tahun itu disahkan meninggal dunia akibat pendarahan pada otak dan mengalami kerosakan buah pinggang, akibat dihentak dan ditendang dengan kuat oleh suspek yang tidak berhati perut.

Hari ini, bedah siasat yang dilakukan ke atas mayat kanak-kanak itu di Hospital Kuala Kubu Bharu mendapati, kematian Syafiah Humairah akibat kecederaan serius termasuk kulit kepalanya terkoyak kerana dipijak.

Timbalan Ketua Polis Daerah Hulu Selangor, Deputi Supritendan Bakhtiar Rashid berkata, bedah siasat mendapati, mangsa mengalami penderaan berterusan dan ia boleh dilihat berdasarkan kepada kecederaan yang terdapat pada tubuhnya.

"Terdapat kesan-kesan kecederaan luaran yang baru dan lama dipercayai akibat dipukul dengan objek keras pada tubuh mangsa.

"Kesan lebam turut dikesan di bahagian belakang tubuh mangsa selain di leher, pipi dan bahunya," katanya ketika ditemui di bilik mayat hospital itu di sini hari ini.

Kelmarin, Syafiah Humairah mati dipercayai akibat didera oleh teman lelaki ibunya di padang bola berhampiran rumah mereka di Kampung Batu 30, Ulu Yam Lama dekat Batang Kali.

Kanak-kanak malang itu dihantar ke wad kecemasan Hospital Kuala Kubu Bharu kira-kira pukul 8.30 malam oleh teman lelaki ibunya, mendakwa dia terbabit dalam kemalangan jalan raya.

Namun, pihak hospital yang curiga dengan tingkah laku lelaki itu menghubungi polis kira-kira pukul 11 malam untuk memaklumkan mengenai kemungkinan kematian kanak-kanak itu akibat didera.

Berikutan itu, suspek berusia 28 tahun kemudian ditahan pukul 3 pagi semalam bagi membantu siasatan.

Dalam pada itu, kematian Syafiah Humairah yang begitu kejam turut membongkar rahsia perhubungan haram antara ibu kanak-kanak itu dan teman lelakinya sejak enam tahun lalu.

Ibu kanak-kanak itu yang masih bersuami, disangkakan telah berkahwin dengan suspek kerana mereka memiliki seorang anak lelaki berusia setahun enam bulan, malah, wanita itu kini sedang hamil empat bulan.

Namun, rahsia perhubungan mereka yang hanya menyamar sebagai suami isteri itu terbongkar selepas siasatan polis mendapati pasangan itu tidak boleh berkahwin kerana wanita itu masih mempunyai suami.

Difahamkan, bapa kanak-kanak malang itu yang hanya dikenali sebagai Sahari ditahan di Penjara Sungai Buloh kerana didakwa terbabit dalam kes bunuh sejak tahun 2006.

Selain berhadapan tuduhan bunuh, suspek yang ditahan reman selama tujuh hari sehingga Khamis depan bakal berhadapan dengan tindakan undang-undang syariah kerana bersekedudukan sehingga melahirkan anak luar nikah.

Rousing reception for Pakatan's Sabah CNY bash

Pakatan leaders, euphoric over the turnout at their Lunar New Year open house in Kota Kinabalu, have told Sabahans that their state could play a leading role in changing the political landscape of the country.

A sea of people packed the hall – Photo via Tian Chua

The turnout this afternoon was “overflowing”, observed Lim Kit Siang, noting that Anwar Ibrahim arrived to a “riotous welcome”.

It is a “sign of the times (for) Sabah, Malaysia”, said Kit Siang.

In his speech, Kit Siang called for a raising of the “political whirlwind for change” in the next general election to elect a Pakatan Sabah chief minister and a Pakatan PM for Malaysia.

Anwar, for his part, touched on the Allah controversy, the missing jet engines, the “unsinkable submarine”, corruption and the need for Sabah to be at the forefront of political change to save the country.

“Fantastic support!” twittered Anwar. “Kit Siang was in his element. My appeal: save Msia and return to the Merdeka spirit.”

Anwar later announced that Kalakau Untul, the United Sabah Dusun Assocation president, was joining Keadilan, along with the Sempurna PBS deputy chief and 500 PBS members from Lahad Datu.

Kalakau had served as deputy labour minister from 1986 to 1990 and United Pasokmomogun Kadazandusun Murut Organisation (Upko) youth chief for a dozen years from 1985.

LIVE: Tsunami alert for Pacific basin

Live coverage of the tsunami alert for Hawaii.

Live coverage of rescue operations after the 8.8 earthquake in Chile

0213: Blog readers Kent and Silvia Sharrar comment at 12.25am (Malaysian time): “We are Ewa Beach residents in Acapulco (at the Fairmont right on the beach). It came & went w/no effect. Loud crash when wave hit the beach.”

0122: Social networking site Twitter is being heavily used with about 500-1,000 updates per minute.

0105: The Malaysian Met Department issued a statement at 8.30 last night. “NO tsunami threat to Malaysia. However, those staying at coastal areas of Lahad Datu, Semporna, Tawau and Sandakan, Sabah are advised to be alert as there are likely to occur rough sea conditions and sea level rise starting tomorrow afternoon, 28 February 2010.”

0100: Sirens wail along the Hawaiian coast again.

0059: This will be a major event with dangerous waves for Hawaii, but nobody can predict how big the waves will be, says a televised warning.

0049: “Tsunami Alert Level 1 remains raised over the East Coast of Philippines”. Estimated time 1.00pm to 2.30pm. More details here.

0043: The estimated tsunami impact has been brought forward from 11.20am to 11.05am Hawaii time.

0041: A twitterer reports that a tsunami update has just hit French Polynesia at Gambier and was under 1 meter. No damage.

0032: New Hawaii tsunami info website set up here.

0005: Tsunami sirens wail in Hawaii at 6.00am local time. The tsunami is expected to hit Hawaii at 1119am (5.19am Malaysian time), according to the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre. Alert affects all Hawaii islands.

Alert issued for entire Pacific basin.

The quake in Chile was the seventh strongest quake in the world since 1700.

2358: Tsunami alert for Acapulco, Mexico. CNN announces that the tsunami impact from Chile’s 8.8 earthquake should hit the Mexican coast at 0015, i.e. less than 20 minutes.