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Monday, July 5, 2010

Zaid: Malaysia turning into a fascist state

By Ken Vin Lek - Free Malaysia Today

PETALING JAYA: Malaysia is emerging as a fascist state after five decades of Barisan Nasional-Umno rule, says PKR supreme council member Zaid Ibrahim.

Speaking at the launch of Friends of Pakatan Rakyat (FPR) at Holborn, London, over the weekend, Zaid likened Malaysia to an ailing nation with a sordid democracy -- its body and vital state institutions all in intensive care.

About 200 people including social activists, Pakatan Rakyat members and reporters were present.

“The medication now being pumped into the sick body of this nation is fascism... fascsim has a penchant for abusing religious or ethnic identities, where they are moulded into a culture of supremacism,” he said.

“The Malaysian state right now distorts and cheapens the sacred core values of our cultural traditions beyond all recognition, so that they can be sold off as the ultimate political drug by BN.”

Zaid, who spoke with candour about the state of affairs in Malaysia, also touched on the Malaysian constitution, describing its spirit as being seriously abused over the years.

“The constitution is a document embedded with great political vision and hope, designed with an intricate system of checks-and-balances to manage justly the conflicting interests of individuals, communities and states.”

“Today, however, the spirit of the constitution has been seriously injured, as a result of the years of abuse, perpetrated through brute force by those with vested interests who turned away from liberty, justice and equality during the judicial crisis of 1988,” he added.

Zaid also hit out at Umno for its transgressions, including abusing democratic and public institutions, making a mockery of cultural values, and taking a skewed approach in defining morality.

He said that political survival of BN is meaningless without principles incorporated into its system.

Relationship with Raja Petra

Earlier last week, Bayan Baru MP Zahrain Hashim exposed details of a meeting between Zaid and fugitive blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin (RPK) in Manchester, UK, last year.

Reacting to it, Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein questioned Zaid’s relationship with RPK, saying that the former must clarify it to the people.

Zaid said that he is prepared to meet Hishammuddin and explain to him his relationship with RPK, provided that it is held in a public place.

He described RPK and private investigator P Balasubramaniam as men who sacrificed their freedom by living abroad because they fear for their safety.

(Balasubramaniam had gone missing in July 2008 after linking Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak and his wife Rosmah Mansor in his first statutory declaration involving the murder of Mongolian translator Altantuya Shaaribuu.)

“The more significant question is: why is my relationship with these gentlemen more important to the government than the truth of the contents of their statutory declarations or affidavits?”

“Shouldn’t the government give them suitable guarantees for their safety and persuade them to come back? We must all remember that Balasubramaniam and RPK are not criminals on the run as there were no charges against them, no warrant of arrests, no offences committed... so why shouldn’t anyone be seen with them?” asked Zaid.

Role of Malaysians abroad

Zaid also said Malaysians who lived abroad have an important role to play in the affairs of the country.

“As Malaysians, you must collectively demand that the Election Commission recognise the rights of Malaysians all over the world to vote.”

At present, Malaysians residing abroad are not allowed to vote in general elections via postal votes, a system practised by many democratic countries.

“The present definition of ‘absent voter' has to be expanded to include you. If you have to take the matter to the courts or to the United Nations, just do it,” Zaid said.

He appealed to overseas Malaysians to rebuild the nation with sincerity, and offered the leadership of Pakatan for a better Malaysia.

Explain the 1,500 custodial deaths, demands DAP MP

By Rahmah Ghazali - Free Malaysia Today

KUALA LUMPUR: The home ministry should clear the air regarding the 1,500 custodial deaths that reportedly occurred between 2003 and 2007, said DAP MP Gobind Singh Deo.

The Puchong MP further rapped Deputy Home Minister Wira Abu Seman Yusop for “being not aware” of the figures when the matter was raised in the House.

This is despite the fact that a UN report on issues concerning Malaysian detention centres had been forwarded to another deputy minister Lee Chee Leong early last month.

The UN group was in Malaysia for about a week in June visiting prisons and studying detention reports.

According to Gobind, the Malaysian detainees' plight was highlighted on the BBC website on June 18, but this was not picked up by the local media.

“I raised this in Parliament on June 23 with the deputy minister (Abu Seman) by referring to the BBC report… and he didn’t seem to know much about it,” said Gobind.

The lawyer was also disappointed when Abu Seman’s only reply was: “The authorities will investigate if you lodge police reports. Only then we will take appropriate action.”

Gobind said: “This involves the integrity of Malaysia's legal and detention laws and that's all he can come up with!

"The ministry is aware of the (preliminary) report as it has been presented by UN. They (UN) cannot wait for a police report every time there is a problem."

Gobind also said Abu Seman’s answer was “disturbing” as thus far no action has been taken although these deaths had been occurring for five years.

“Until now, the minister is unable to give reports and details. Hishammuddin (Hussein) must tell us how these 1,500 people died while in the custody of the police,” said Gobind.

Contradictory reporting by Bernama and BBC

Gobind was also disappointed with government-owned media agency Bernama which he said failed to address the detainees' plight, compared to BBC.

On the same day as the BBC report on the UN group’s observation of Malaysian detention centres, Gobind said Bernama gave a “contradictory view”.

Bernama, on June 18, reported that Malaysian detainees are being treated well according to the UN group.

Besides reporting on the 1,500 deaths, the BBC said that former detainees were “scared” of the Malaysian police and that the government was asked to repeal security laws that allow detention without trial.

According to the UN group, as reported by the BBC, almost all those it interviewed said they were tortured or mistreated in Malaysia’s detention centres.

Almost all complained of beatings, being confined in cramped spaces without light, and had filthy water thrown at them.

“Both can’t be right," said Gobind. "One report says the detainees were well treated, while another says otherwise. There is clearly a contradiction,” said Gobind.

PAS rep to sue Keshvinder over RM3,500 loan

By G Vinod

IPOH: Titi Serong's PAS assemblyman Khalil Idham Lim will be slapping defector Keshvinder Singh from Malim Nawar with a letter of demand for saying that the money the former gave him was for constitutional work and not personal use.

Khalil’s counsel A Sivanesan said his client will be lodging a police report at the Parit Buntar police station later on and that a letter will be sent to Keshvinder today.

Sivanesan, who is also the Sungkai's DAP assemblyman, said if Keshvinder fails to respond to the notice, Khalil will file a suit against the Malim Nawar assemblyman within the next couple of weeks. The suit be filed at the Ipoh High Court.

On July 2, following Keshvinder’s defection from DAP to become an independent elected rep, an online media had quoted Keshvinder as saying that he had received RM3,500 from Khalil for his constituency as he had lacked funds.

Keshvinder denied approaching Khalil for funds but said that he was offered the money .

Khalil has denied the scenario, maintaining that Keshvinder had approached him for money to pay his car loan.

“I gave him RM3,500 personally so that he get can back his car which was repossessed by the bank as he failed to pay the instalments for several months.”

“In fact I went with him to Ambank's branch in Ipoh to make the payment,” said Khalil.

Khalil is claiming RM500,000 in damages and gave Keshvinder 14 days to apologise to him using the main dailies.

Date at Ipoh Gurdwara

In related matter, Sivanesan lashed out at Keshvinder for calling him a 'busybody' when speaking to the online portal on the said date.

He urged the DAP man to concentrate on his own constituency.

“I am the vice chairman of Perak DAP which gives me the right to visit any constituency.” Sivanesan blasted.

The DAP leader also ridiculed Keshvinder's claim that he was never in a financial rut as he had a bank balance of RM35,000 as of May.

“If he had RM35,000 in May, then why did he need the RM3,500 to pay for his car which was repossessed?”

“If Keshvinder is honest, he should declare from where he got the RM35,000 in the first place.”

Sivanesan then challenged Keshvinder to swear upon the Guru Granth Sahib (Sikh holy book) that he never took any money from Umno for his defection and the money he received from Khalil was not used for his car.

“I will be waiting for him at the Gurdwara in Malim Nawar with other DAP members this coming Saturday.”

“I also challenge him to swear that his car was not repossessed after the Sibu by-election.” Sivanesan thundered.

Indian unity meet makes list of demands to govt

By G Vinod - Free Malaysia Today

KLANG: The Indian unity gathering in Dewan Hamzah, Klang yesterday urged the government to look into several issues of concern to Malaysians, in particular the Indian community.

“We want new schooling age for children to be set at five, as this will allow the nation to tap into invaluable human capital much earlier,” said R Kenghadaran.

Kenghadaran, one of two Hindraf leaders at the gathering, the other being VGanabatirau, also urged the government to reduce personal income tax from the current 27 percent to 10.

“This is taking into account the volatile global economic conditions and also the tax reduction will allow people to have more liquidity in their hands.

“The extra funds available can be used by the people to establish education funds for their children to reduce dependency on scholarships and education loans,” he added.

Kenghadaran also urged the government to reduce voting age from 21 to 18.

“The current age limit is outdated as it was mooted by our former colonial masters. I also urge the government to register voters automatically once they attain the minimum age.”

Kenghadaran wants the government to offer Tamil as a core subject in national schools and establish kindergartens within the Tamil schools itself in a bid to preserve the language.

“We are also working hard to establish a private Tamil school in Malaysia that will offer primary and secondary level curiculum,” he said.

Module to rehabiliate prisoners

In a bid to promote workers' rights, the ex-ISA detainee urged the government to establish a pension scheme that will cater for private sector employees.

“If the government needs help, we are prepared to assist them to formulate the scheme. In addition, we also want the government to redefine the poverty range into urban and rural poverty.

“We urge the government to set a mimimum wage of RM1,500 for those in rural areas and RM3,000 for the ones in urban areas,” said Kenghadaran.

The organisers also urged the government to set up a module to rehabiliate prisoners.

“We have drafted a module on rehabilitating prison inmates and we hope the Home Ministry will open its arms to study and implement the proposal,” said Kenghadaran.

The gathering organised by ex-MIC CWC member KP Samy was marred by a ruckus when a pro-S Samy Vellu faction led by Selangor MIC information chief L Siva Subramaniam entered the hall.

The faction claimed the gathering was aimed at discrediting the MIC chief and that it was a pro-opposition event. The police intervened swiftly and allowed the organisers proceed with the meet.

Fraud victims cry foul over Internet banking

By Joe Fernandez - Free Malaysia Today

KOTA KINABALU: A leading local bank here and another on the outskirts of Inanam are stumped that an undisclosed number of customers have lost their monies mysteriously from their ATM accounts with them.

The banks concerned claim that they are still investigating together with the police. Bank Negara Malaysia has also been brought into the picture.

The victims suspect that nothing will come out of their complaints. Three of them have gone public with their story to warn others and put pressure on the banks, the police and Bank Negara “to speed up their investigations”. In two cases, in Karamunsing and Penampang involving the same bank, the local media published the name of the bank involved.

Inanam is still within the Kota Kinabalu city limits like Penampang. The Karamunsing branch is close to the heart of the city, a stone’s throw from the city police headquarters.

In the latest case, involving the bank that has been named in the local media, a housewife is baffled that RM20,000 went missing from her ATM account via the Internet although she has no e-banking facilities.

The victim, who gave her name as Jane Ranjah, found her money missing when she checked her bank balance at the Karamunsing branch on June 8. Apparently, the bank’s recovery section in Kuala Lumpur subsequently advised her that three online transfers had been made from the account a day earlier, June 7, to siphon the funds.

According to the details of the advisory note from the bank, RM5,000 was transferred to the account of another customer with the same bank, RM5,002 into the account of a person at another local bank and the remainder was transferred overseas to an unnamed account.

Hard-earned money

The bank also informed Jane that, according to its records, she had applied for a PIN (Personal Identification Number) to operate e-banking facilities. She denies having done so.

“The contact number to which the PIN was attached does not belong to me,” said Jane. “I suspect that my personal details were misused by someone or some people. The loss of such a large amount is difficult to accept.”

Jane expressed dismay that she had lost her hard-earned money which she thought was safe with the bank. She wonders where she can keep her money in future if banks are no longer safe.

The parties concerned, she urged, should step up their investigations into her case and bring it to an early end. She suspects that she’s being given the run-around by the bank, the police and Bank Negara at a time when she most needs her money.

A Bank Negara spokeswoman here said that Jane’s complaint had been referred to the bank concerned for its attention.

“We have yet to receive a response from the bank as to how this could have happened,” said the spokeswoman. “We can act on our own, and against the bank as well, if the bank does not respond within a month.”

The bank’s regional headquarters here said the matter had been referred to the relevant sections at its headquarters in KL. “We are still awaiting instructions from them on how to proceed on the case,” said a spokesman.

The spokesman confirmed that Jane’s case was being handled together with a similar case of a customer at the bank’s Penampang branch. The case, highlighted earlier in the local media, involves the alleged transfer of RM1,000 from the customer’s savings account to an account in Indonesia. No other details were available.

Transaction code

In the case involving another local bank, Radio Televisyen Malaysia staff Mohamad Suhaimie Jamli found RM2,102 missing from his Internet account when he checked it at his workplace on April 26.

“I wanted to check on my salary balance but found that RM2,102 had been transferred,” said Suhaimie. “Now, I have only RM50 in my account.”

According to him, the two transfers were made from his account. The first was at 11.01am on April 26 and the second at 11.03am the same day. He claimed that he was attending a meeting at that time.

“Usually, when I do a transaction, the bank will send a transaction code via text message,” said Suhaimie. “In this case, the money was transferred out without any transaction code being sent out.”

He said that his bank confirmed on April 29 that his money had been transferred to the account of another individual at a different bank. The money was later transferred to a third account belonging to the same individual but at a third bank.

However, his bank could not recover his money since it had already been withdrawn from the third account.

The case has been ignored by the police, according to the victim, who also ran into another brick wall at Bank Negara, where he tried to lodge another complaint on his missing money.

“I have been asked by both the police and Bank Negara to produce a justification letter from the bank and another from my employer verifying my status,” said Suhaimie. “I tried to speak to the bank but it said the manager was too busy to talk to me.”

A staff member of the bank, according to him, also advised him that there would be no refund in his case “since they couldn’t do anything about it”.

Suhaimie’s bank, when contacted, said the alleged illegal transaction of fund is currently the subject of a police investigation “and therefore it did not wish to comment further on the matter”. “The bank will extend its full co-operation to the relevant authorities,” said a spokesman.

City police chief ACP Ahmad Sofi Zakaria was not immediately available for comments.

However, State commercial investigation officer-in-charge, Supt Soh Hock Sing, confirmed that in another case police had arrested five people who had fleeced a 47-year-old housewife here of RM1.2 million through the Internet beginning June 5. The money belonged to the victim, her husband, mother, sister and niece.

The five, including four foreigners and a local woman aged 37, from Seremban, was due to be charged in court in Seremban last Friday. The four foreigners, all men with student visas, are aged between 24 and 35.

The woman, in whose account some of the money was deposited, will be charged under Section 413 of the Penal Code for habitually receiving stolen properties, according to Soh.

‘Najib’s can’t hold on to Petronas ‘secrets’ anymore’

By FMT Staff

SHAH ALAM: The thickening veil of secrecy shrouding Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas), its “never ever tabled accounts”, the existence of middlemen brokers and a doggedly determined opposition are prying open Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak’s grip on the national oil corporation.

The latest challenge to Najib to table Petronas’ financial reports in Parliament comes from former Deputy Land and Cooperative Development Minister Tan Kee Kwong.

"I, as a member of the Public Accounts Committee, had once urged the Second Finance Minister to scrutinise Petronas’s financial report, but his vague response to me was that he was only in charge of the Finance Ministry and that Petronas came directly under the Prime Minister’s Department.

"Since that is the case, I want to ask the Prime Minister, Umno and the entire Cabinet why can't the public study Petronas’ financial report and accounts? Why, why, why?

“If the government is not brave enough to table Petronas' financial report for fear of public scrutiny, it can only mean that it is afraid.

“And that means the government has a huge secret to hide with regard to Petronas’ accounts,” Tan said, adding that the situation was not acceptable anymore.

Tan said although Petronas was a well-managed government-linked company which contributed about 40% to the country’s annual budget, neither its auditor’s nor its financial reports were ever tabled in Parliament.

Open market

He also raised Petronas’s practice of using option holders or middlemen to sell its crude oil within Malaysia and abroad.

"If this is true, I would like to ask Petronas why can’t it sell the oil directly on the open market.”

“I am given to understand that Petronas is forced to sell to option holders at a low fixed price because it is bound by a long-term contract.”

"For example, the contract states that Petronas must sell its crude oil at US$40 a barrel while the global market pushed the price to US$75 a barrel.

“Based on this, the option holder enjoys a staggering profit of RM35 per barrel and Petronas barely anything.

“If the price per barrel hits US$100, then the commission rate would surely rise further and be much better than what the government paid for the two French submarines.

“This is how our country loses money daily,” said the PKR supreme council member.

Tan also wants Petronas chairman Shamsul Azhar Abbas to confirm if indeed Petronas practised the system of using option holders to sell crude oil.

“If so, then why is Petronas not selling direct and who are the existing option holders and how much of raw oil is being sold (to and through them)? Also, how long has the system been in place?” he asked.

Khairy pressures police to act on RPK

By Syed Jaymal Zahiid - Free Malaysia Today

FULL REPORT KUALA LUMPUR: Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin today blasted the police for alleged inaction against fugitive blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin (RPK). The Rembau MP was questioning the sluggish performance of the police to track down RPK when information of his whereabouts is conspicuously pervasive.

"Where is the action from the police? The prime minister has said the police will be responsible for apprehending Raja Petra. The Inspector-General of Police has said he will get information on Raja Petra's location, but RPK is going around in public," he told a press conference at Parliament House here.

RPK fled the country amid a sedition charge over his controversial allegation about Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak and wife Rosmah Mansor, linking them to the murder of Mongolian Altantuya Shaaribuu.

He is currently in the United Kingdom giving speeches at events organised by Pakatan Rakyat, with the recent one being yesterday.

"Yesterday, RPK was not in hiding; he attended a Pakatan event in London," said Khairy.

He said he was surprised that the police had not tried to engage their British counterparts in the UK to extradite the controversial blogger.

"Even if they cannot arrest him there, the relationship (between Malaysian police) and Scotland Yard is there, through the extradition agreement. The British police can arrest RPK and bring him back to Malaysia.

"Are they (police) unaware, or choose not to know RPK's movements and location? You have to ask the right questions.

"I want to help the police here," added Khairy.

Suara Keadilan issue to be raised in Parliament

By FMT Staff

KUALA LUMPUR: Pakatan Rakyat will file a motion in Parliament to debate the Home Ministry’s move to reject PKR-owned tabloid Suara Keadlian’s application to renew its publishing permit.

Subang MP Sivarasa Rasiah said PKR will also defend in court the content of the controversial Felda report, and the party will not apologise to Felda.

“We have sufficient evidence to defend the Suara Keadlian report; as such, I urge the government to stop its attempt to muzzle PKR and its newspaper,” he said, adding that Gombak MP Azmin Ali will file the motion this morning

Sivarasa also said that the rejection of the application to renew Suara Keadilan’s permit was aimed at preventing PKR from continuing to expose issues of public interest.

“This latest move by the ministry must be debated in Parliament because it touches on the right to free speech, the media and information involving public interests.

“The motion on Suara Keadilan will be filed to oppose the suspension and to urge the minister to immediately approve the publications and not obstruct our voice from PKR.

“The way we see it… the suspension of Suara Keadilan is evidence that Prime Minister Najib (Tun) Razak is rattled and worried about the Felda issue and the facts which Pakatan Rakyat has published in Suara Keadilan,” he said.

Meanwhile, on Felda’s move to summon Suara Keadilan, Sivarasa said: “Felda’s lawyers have seen the letter to Suara Keadilan. PKR will appoint a lawyer to officially study the letter.

‘But we have taken our stand that we will defend the content of the report published in Suara Keadilan,” he said.

Scenes of the launching of Friends of Pakatan Rakyat: 4th July 2010, London

PR shies away from Islamic state issue

by Gan Pei Ling | The Nut Graph
Pakatan Rakyat logo
Pakatan Rakyat logo
THE Nut Graph started posting six questions to 222 Members of Parliament (MP) in January 2010 for its MP Watch: Eye on Parliament project. The project — a likely first of its kind in Malaysia — aims to record MPs’ positions on key issues of democracy as well as provide MPs a platform for voters to know them better.
One of the six questions asked was: “Do you think Malaysia should be a secular or an Islamic state? Why?”
Chinese-language online news portal Merdeka Review analysed the MPs responses to this question, according to party lines, in two parts. The first part, published on 11 June 2010, looked at how Pakatan Rakyat (PR) MPs responded to the question. Part two, published several days later, focused on the replies from Barisan Nasional (BN) MPs.
The Nut Graph translates part one, written by Merdeka Review journalists Chan Wei See and Tan Pek Wan, with some modification below.
DAP MPs
Mahathir
Mahathir
Former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad caused nationwide controversy when he declared on 29 Sept 2001 that Malaysia was an Islamic state. DAP even launched a campaign called “No to 929” in 2002 to reiterate that Malaysia was secular.
However, after the 8 March 2008 general election, some DAP leaders, like their PAS and Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) counterparts, tried to avoid the issue when responding to MP Watch.
When asked if Malaysia was a secular or Islamic state, top PR leaders’ responses were vague and elusive. Many PR MPs evaded directly answering the question. Others claimed it was unnecessary to differentiate if Malaysia were a secular or Islamic state.
DAP leaders who championed the “No to 929” campaign, such as Tanjong MP Chow Kon Yeow and Bukit Mertajam MP Chong Eng, did not answer the question directly. Chong Eng said: “If by a secular state we mean that the government or the country is atheist and has no respect for religion, then obviously we are not a secular state and we can never be one.”
Karpal Singh
Despite that, other DAP elected representatives clearly stated that Malaysia was a secular country according to the Federal Constitution.
These MPs included: Charles Santiago (Klang), Karpal Singh (Bukit Gelugor), M Kulasegaran (Ipoh Barat), Tan Kok Wai (Cheras), Teresa Kok (Seputeh), Teo Nie Ching (Serdang), Fong Kui Lun (Bukit Bintang) and Tony Pua (Petaling Jaya Utara).
PKR MPs
Petaling Jaya Selatan MP Hee Loy Sian from PKR also agreed that “Malaysia should be a secular state”. At the same time, however, many PKR parliamentarians did not make public their stand on the issue.
Ambiguous responses were drawn from PKR de facto leader and Permatang Pauh MP Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, strategic director and Batu MP Chua Tian Chang, Selangor Menteri Besar and Bandar Tun Razak MP Tan Sri Abd Khalid Ibrahim, vice-president and Subang MP R Sivarasa, vice-president Gombak MP Azmin Ali, and Kelana Jaya MP Loh Gwo-Burne. These MPs did not state whether Malaysia was a secular or Islamic state. Some only noted that the Federal Constitution describes Islam as the country’s official religion.
Khalid Ibrahim
Khalid Ibrahim
Khalid’s response was: “There is much debate about this. I am not interested to debate this here. But I am always interested to help Malaysia [to] be free of corruption; to have fair and just economic distribution and a fair judiciary; to have transparency and accountability in its state administration; and a better human rights policy. These are all virtues demanded in an Islamic state.”
Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar said that no one could clearly classify Malaysia. She added that the term “secular” or “Islamic” has been abused by BN, particularly Umno politicians.
“How can anyone categorically state what Malaysia falls under? I am confident in the PR’s stance to uphold the Federal Constitution. We are not changing Islam as the religion of the federation, or anything else related to Malay [Malaysian] rights, despite what [some] would like to allege against us,” she said.
PAS
Portrait
Dr Dzukefly Ahmad
Apart from DAP and PKR parliamentarians, Kuala Selangor MP Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad, who is perceived to be from the more liberal faction within PAS, also did not make clear his stand. He said it was up to the electorate to decide democratically whether the country should be secular or Islamic.
PAS vice-president and Kubang Kerian MP Salahuddin Ayub said it should be decided in a referendum, so that citizens could choose for themselves.
Another PKR-turned-independent MP Zahrain Mohamed Hashim echoed Salahuddin: “I believe in freedom and democracy. So to me, if the majority in Malaysia wants an Islamic state, so be it. If the majority wants a secular state, so be it…So, it’s up to the rakyat. It’s not what I want or what I wish. The people should decide how they want the country to be.”
No response from Hadi Awang and Kit Siang
Gobind Singh Deo
DAP elected representatives who did not reply to MP Watch include DAP parliamentary leader and Ipoh Timur MP Lim Kit Siang, Penang chief minister and Bagan MP Lim Guan Eng, Puchong MP Gobind Singh Deo, Bukit Bendera MP Liew Chin Tong, Taiping MP Nga Kor Ming, and Bandar Kuching MP Chong Chieng Jen.
PAS president and Marang MP Abdul Hadi Awang as well as PKR secretary-general and Machang MP Saifuddin Nasution Ismail also did not respond to the six questions

13th GE: Malaysia Needs A New Federal Government

By Richard Loh

Time to get prepared and be ready for the 13th general election. Let us begin the campaign to call for a NEW FEDERAL GOVERNMENT and oust the racist, arrogant and corrupt Umno-BN from holding on to power.

I have grown up and am old enough to see through the deceit and lies festered by Umno-BN in the past decades through their suppressive, undemocratic, racism, corrupt and arrogant ruling system.

Many Malaysians still do not care two hoots about the importance of voting for a government that will really care more for the rakyat and nation, rather than individual leaders and personal gains. They are so easily swayed and simply accept promises that are left unfulfilled most of the time. It is time for Malaysians from all walks of life to grow up, just like me, and vote in a NEW FEDERAL GOVERNMENT.

After having suffered a huge loss at the 12th GE, Umno-BN has still not changed even though they keep on talking about change. What kind of change are they talking about when they can still hold the rakyat at ransom.

They talk about transparency and yet most government contracts, projects and policies are still classified under the Official Secret Act (OSA).

They talk about fairness and equality to all Malaysians under the NEM but they retained the NEP, bundled and muddled up within the NEM.

They talk about Malaysian First in the 1Malaysia concept but maintain that Malays and ketuanan melayu are still first before others.

They talk about democracy and freedom of speech but there is no guarantee of freedom after speech.
They talk about impartial application from the various institutions but what you see are biased actions towards the opposition and those critical of the ruling government.

They talk about fighting corruption but they still bribe their way through in by-elections, “You help me, I help you”, you wanted the money, I wanted my candidate to win.

The above are just a recent summary of what they talk about but have no intention to actually implement. As usual, they talk more than they walk.

With this generalisation, let’s kick-start the 13th General Election campaign with the theme:

MALAYSIA NEEDS A NEW FEDERAL GOVERNMENT BY VOTING IN PAKATAN RAKYAT WHICH MAY NOT BE 100% PERFECT BUT SURELY 100% BETTER THAN RACIST UMNO-BN.

I am not a politician but just an ordinary Malaysian rakyat who wants to see that we vote in a New, Clean and Fair Federal Government that is willing to serve the country and rakayt first, with integrity and sincerity.

SAVE MALAYSIA! VOTE IN A NEW, CLEAN AND FAIR PAKATAN RAKYAT AS THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT

Muhyiddin should explain whether 1Malaysia is meaningless slogan or serious policy to make Malaysia more competitive by creating a nation where every Malaysian perceives himself or herself as Malaysian first and race second?

By Lim Kit Siang,

Deputy Prime Minister and UMNO Deputy President Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin is getting very defensive.

In Parit Sulong yesterday, Muhyiddin accused me of being more “racist” than him and defended his earlier statement that he is Malay first and Malaysian second, and he asked:

“Tanya Lim Kit Siang sama dia akan mengaku Cina atau bangsa Malaysia.”

It will be tragic if after 53 years of nation-building since Merdeka in 1957, Malaysian politics is reduced to political leaders exchanging allegations of who is more racist.

Firstly, let me state that I have not called Muhyiddin an “ultra”. However, he owes a full accounting to all Malaysians as to whether he really supports the 1Malaysia policy advocated by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak and whether Najib’s 1Malaysia is a meaningless slogan or a serious policy to make Malaysia more vibrant, productive and competitive where every Malaysian perceives himself or herself as Malaysian first and race second?

I did not invent this definition of 1Malaysia. This definition is clearly spelt out in the official documentation on 1Malaysia, the 1Malaysia Government Transformation Programme Roadmap released by the government in January this year, which states:

“The goal of 1Malaysia is to make Malaysia more vibrant, more productive and more competitive – and ultimately a greater nation: a nation where, it is hoped, every Malaysian perceives himself or herself as Malaysian first, and by race, religion, geographical region or socio-economic background second and where the principles of 1Malaysia are woven into the economic, political and social fabric of society.”

Muhyiddin again challenged me to state whether I am Chinese or Malaysian first.

I had already stated in Parliament that I am a Malaysian first and Chinese second. I am proud of my ethnicity but I have always believed that all Malaysians must rise above their ethnic, cultural, religious and geographic differences to seek a common bond with the Malaysian identity transcending all ethnic, cultural, religious and geographic identities.

The question Muhyiddin should answer is why despite Najib’s 1Malaysia policy, not only he but there is not a single Barisan Nasional Cabinet Minister who is prepared to stand up in Parliament to declare that he is Malaysian first and his or her race second?

In fact, I have a question in the current meeting of Parliament asking the Prime Minister to state how many Cabinet Ministers, and to name them, who regard himself or herself as Malaysian first and race second in line with the 1Malaysia policy and definition.

However, this question was ruled out of order on the flimsiest of grounds when the real reason is that the Prime Minister will not be able to answer this question without causing the greatest embarrassment to his 1Malaysia policy – as up to now no Cabinet Minister is prepared to stand up to declare that he or she is Malaysian first and race second.

If this is the position, where no Cabinet Minister is prepared to fully and publicly espouse the philosophy of 1Malaysia, how could the principles of 1Malaysia” be “woven into the economic, political and social fabric of society”?

It is precisely because of this lack of commitment to the goal of 1Malaysia that the New Economic Model (NEM) has met such a quick demise in the 10th Malaysia Plan.

Just to give one example. The NEM drew a picture of Malaysia in crisis, caught in economic stagnation and the middle-income trap for close to two decades.

It admitted: “We are not developing talent and what we have is leaving. The human capital situation in Malaysia is reaching a critical stage. The rate of outward migration of skilled Malaysians is raising rapidly.”

The answer of the Tenth Malaysia Plan is a Talents Corporation but without any political will to address the real problem for the damaging brain drain which has plagued the country for decades which had been rightly diagnosed by the NEM, viz:

“Globalisation has created a fierce competition for talent, forcing companies and government to recognize that people are the most valuable assets. To compete on a regional and global scale, Malaysia must retain and attract talent. Malaysia must be seen by its people and by others as a land of equal opportunity to earn a good living and provide a secure happy life for each individual and the family.”

In other words, 1Malaysia not in sloganeering but in reality – where Malaysians feel that they are Malaysians first and race second in all economic, political and social aspects in the country.

I have suggested a 1Malaysia Royal Commission of Inquiry on how to achieve the goal of making every Malaysian perceive himself or herself as Malaysian first and race second so that Malaysia can become more vibrant, more productive and more competitive.

Is Muhyiddin prepared to support this proposal?

Enact Racial Hatred Act to replace ISA

The Sun
by Opalyn Mok

GEORGE TOWN (July 4, 2010): The federal government should enact a Racial Hatred Act and Racial Discrimination Act to replace the Internal Security Act (ISA) and Sedition Act, said Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng.

A Racial Hatred Act, like the ones in Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States, is sufficient to ensure that nobody uses race to make offensive remarks, he said.

Lim said Pakatan Rakyat the Penang government are against the use of the ISA.

"We oppose the use of ISA on anyone even on Perkasa chairman Datuk Ibrahim Ali and it should be abolished," he said today.

While the state administration is against the racist views and extremism demonstrated by Ibrahim, Lim said the ISA is not to be used on him.

"There are other laws and the government should consider introducing a Racial Hatred Act to replace the ISA," he said.

Lim also called on Umno to withdraw its support for Perkasa if the government is serious about taking actions against racist views.

He was commenting on warnings by Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein that if Ibrahim made remarks that are a threat to national security, he will be in serious trouble, including detention under the ISA.

On an unrelated matter, Lim slammed Penang Umno liaison committee chairman Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi for making false allegations that the state government had taken over village lands for re-development.

"It is not true as the state government did not take over any villages for development," he said.
Lim said only some had to make way for construction of roads and schools, which are under the federal government.

He said Dr Ahmad Zahid should not confuse the development of private land by private companies with that of the state government. -- theSun

Anwar: Malaysia could have kept Tanjong Pagar

July 05, 2010

Anwar accused the federal administration of capitulating to Singapore’s demands. — file pic

MUAR, July 5 — Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim continued to pour scorn on the Najib administration’s recent land-swap deal with Singapore, saying Malaysia could have retained ownership of Tanjong Pagar had it wanted to.
“Tanjong Pagar is our land... this land is KTM land,” the de facto PKR chief said last night after a meeting with Johor party leaders here.
“As long as KTM trains go to Tanjong Pagar, that land belongs to KTM, meaning Malaysia,” said the former deputy prime minister.
He said “the law was clear” and that Malaysia should have sent a train every week from Kuala Lumpur or Johor Baru to Tanjong Pagar just to fulfil that condition.
“Who decides [whether the train goes to Tanjong Pagar]? We decide... To protect our land, we can send [a train] once a week,” Anwar said.
The railway land was acquired under a 1918 colonial ordinance specifically for use by Malayan Railway (KTM) for a period of 999 years. That same ordinance limits the use of this land.
The land swap has been contentious since the Malaysia-Singapore Points of Agreement (POA) was signed in 1990 over the issue of the future of the railway land. The POA was signed between former Singapore prime minister Lee Kuan Yew and former Malaysian finance minister Tun Daim Zanuddin.
Under the agreement, KTM was to vacate its historic station at Tanjong Pagar and move to Bukit Timah while all of KTM’s land between Bukit Timah and Tanjong Pagar would revert to Singapore.
But the key contention was the interpretation of the agreement as Singapore insisted the agreement meant KTM had to move its terminal from Tanjong Pagar to Bukit Timah within five years of its construction, when the republic moved its railway immigration in August 1998.
Putrajaya, however, said it would only be effective once it decided to move the station.
The land at Tanjong Pagar would be handed over to a private limited company for joint development, of which its equity would be split 60 per cent to Malaysia’s Khazanah Nasional Berhad and 40 per cent to Singapore’s Temasek Holdings, according to the POA. Anwar said that while Johor had to maintain good ties with neighbouring Singapore, that did not mean it had to accede to every demand by the island republic.
“We have to be good to Singapore. We want them to invest here and we want to invest there... But does being good mean you have to give everything to them?” he told the 400-strong crowd who came to hear him speak.
The former finance minister said he had no problem with Singapore wanting to negotiate with the Malaysian government but stressed that the agreement should have been looked at more closely.
“When you talk to our friends in Singapore, they are smart, they are serious... that’s why before I went, I examined [the POA] in detail. [I had a] full understanding,” he said.
“This country has the resources. But now, it’s all gone... so how do you go on to respect the leadership of this country?”
Malaysia will soon re-locate its railway and Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) complex to the Woodlands train checkpoint.
The relocation, to take place on July 1 next year, marks a major step in resolving a number of outstanding bilateral issues between the two countries, as first reported by The Malaysian Insider last Sept 29.
The two governments will also form a company to jointly develop parcels of land now owned by KTMB.
Both countries also announced that a company, known as M-S Pte Ltd, will be established no later than Dec 31 this year to jointly develop the parcels of land.
The three parcels of land in Tanjong Pagar, Kranji and Woodlands, along with another three pieces of land in Bukit Timah, will be vested by M-S Pte Ltd for joint development, which in turn could be swapped on the basis of equivalent value for pieces of land in Marina South and/or Ophir-Rochor.

Welfare ministry denied welfare

Philippines' vulnerable women

Prepare for general election, Hisham tells BN

Umno vice-president Hishammuddin Hussein said today the time has come for the BN, particularly Umno, to prove that their past weaknesses and mistakes have been successfully overcome.
NONEAs such, the BN and all its component parties must now be prepared to face the 13th general election without dilly-dallying anymore, he said.
He said cliché and petty excuses which were frequently used before could no longer be cited to support reasons for 'running away' from contesting in the election.
Hishammuddin said amendments to the (party) constitution and a comprehensive transformation in Umno were drastic measures taken to rebuild the party's strength, thus enabling Umno to emerge as the first BN component party to take the bold move.
"We have no choice. We have to be ready, how long can we give the excuse that we are not ready? How long can we delay the election and say that we are still saddled with problems that we had to face during the rehabilitation before?" he asked.
Hishammuddin, who is also the Home Minister, said this when referring to a statement by another Umno vice-president, Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who will present a motion to hand over the chairmanship of the State Umno Liaison Bodies in five states to the party leadership in the states concerned.
This was because Umno's position in the five states, namely Selangor, Terengganu, Penang, Kedah, and the Federal Territory had become strong again, according to Ahmad Zahid.
When asked whether he was ready to relinquish the post of chairman of the Terengganu Umno Liaison Body to the Menteri Besar, Ahmad Said, Hishammuddin said this aspect would eventually be determined the party members.
- Bernama

Combustible start to 'GAS 2' rally


(Malaysiakini) About 600 people gathered at the Dewan Hamzah in Klang today for the second Gerakan Anti-Samy Vellu (GAS) rally to campaign for MIC chief S Samy Vellu to step down.
In contrast to the previous rally, only a single backdrop adorned the stage inside the hall, reading “A New Dawn For Indians”.
From the very outset, trouble loomed in the horizon with the arrival of about 50 members of Klang MIC, who watched from the entrance.
An MIC leader had yesterday said that 5,000 MIC protesters would gather to counter the GAS rally. 50 eventually turned up.
gas 2 rally 040710 crowd 1A shouting match started about half-hour into the rally at 2pm between the gatecrashers and GAS supporters.
The confrontation threatened to get physical, and GAS leaders had to quickly get things under control by restraining their followers and chanting “Ahimsa!” (non-violence), following the non-violent civil disobedience espoused by Gandhi.

A GAS leader also held up a copy of a book on Gandhi's struggles as KP Samy led the crowd in the chant.
Don't say Samy!
As police officers persuaded the MIC supporters to leave, about 30 other police personnel ringed all entrances to the hall.
gas 2 rally 040710 crowd 2The MIC supporters initially refused, saying, "If we leave, everybody has to leave!"
They added that they will not tolerate anyone speaking against Samy Vellu.
"Don't you dare speak of MIC. Don't you dare utter Samy Vellu's name. Get out of this hall, stop this gathering," Bernama reported one of the supporters as saying.
The group is believed to have been led by Selangor MIC information chief L Siva Subramaniam, former Taman Maznah MIC branch chairman S Chandran and former Klang MIC division chief K Tharmalingam.
“If Datuk Seri Samy's name is brought up, we know what to do,” said another unidentified MIC supporter.
As tensions increased, and with the GAS crowd shouting for the police to throw out or arrest the MIC supporters, the police escorted several MIC supporters and their leaders out of the hall.
Some, however, stayed behind to observe the proceedings.
gas 2 rally 040710 oms thiagarajanAmidst the uneasy compromise, former Petaling Jaya MIC leader V Subaramaniam - more popularly known as Bharat Maniam - in his speech thanked the police for protecting the participants of the peaceful gathering.
The police in return advised the leaders to limit their speeches and end early to avoid any incidents, timely advice as MIC Youth secretary C Sivarrajh tweeted that a group of MIC Youth members were heading for the rally from the party AGM.
Others who spoke included GAS leaders such as KP Samy (above, with arms crossed) and V Mugilan (far right) - who led the crowd to chant 'Samy out!' - former Hindraf leader-turned PKR member V Ganabatirau and businessman OMS Thiagarajan (above, with arms raised).
Hired thugs
Earlier during a lull in the confrontation at the rally, Mugilan and KP Samy had held a snap press conference and accused Samy Vellu of being a gangster who disrupts peaceful rallies using hired thugs.
As today's GAS rally concluded, participants and organisers were observed looking nervously out the hall, where a large crowd of angry-looking MIC supporters had gathered and were milling around.
gas 2 rally 040710 mic supportersSome of the MIC supporters, which by 3pm had increased to about 100, even tried to start a second shouting match with those inside the hall.
Fortunately no incident precipitated and the event concluded peacefully at 3pm as all dispersed under the watchful eyes of the police, who had cordoned off the groups to prevent contact.
Initially scheduled to have been held on June 13, the rally was postponed once due to 'security factors'.
'MIC may protest'

Selangor MIC Youth chief M Shanker Raj Ayenger lodged a report at the Klang police headquarters yesterday to protest the GAS gathering.
He had also said the wing may hold a protest against the GAS gathering, but in the end never showed up.
This followed another police report by Selangor MIC information chief L Siva Subramaniam against today's rally and the GAS leaders' plans to distribute anti-Samy VCDs and posters.

In his report, Siva said the distribution of VCDs and the gathering could be detrimental to the Indian community.
The first gathering, held on May 30 in Serdang, saw a lower-than-expected turnout but was still hailed as a success.

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Samy Vellu's attack dogs

In Klang, the only loser was Samy Vellu

(The Malaysian Insider) MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu, with the Barisan Nasional (BN) political establishment behind him, has never lost a fight.

But at the Dewan Hamzah in Klang today his streak ended.

He lost a crucial battle with about 1,000 ordinary people who had gathered at the hall to denounce him despite concerted attempts to disrupt and end the proceeding by his supporters who gate-crashed the event.

About 30 supporters held the gathering to ransom.

The organizers, the three leaders of Gerakan Anti Samy Vellu or GAS – K.P.Samy, V. Mugilan and Kumar Amman - and several other expelled MIC members braved the heckling, harassment and disruption by Samy’s supporters.

But they held on until police arrived to cheers from the audience.

For nearly an hour, from 2pm, the organizers battled with them, with not a single policemen present, except for plainclothes Special Branch detectives who did not interfere to stop the disruption.

Only after people in the audience raised their voices and demanded, “where are the police?” did a dozen uniformed police arrive and stop the disruption.

Samy Vellu lost whatever little respect he still enjoys with the Indian community as one after another in the audience cursed his name.

The gatecrashers, led by well known MIC characters like MIC divisional leader Taman Maznah Chandran and incumbent MIC Youth leader Siva Subramaniam and others of their ilk, continued to argue with police and demanded that not a word was mentioned of Samy Vellu and MIC.

Urged by the police GAS leaders gave short speeches not mentioning Samy Vellu along with former Hindraf leaders Ganapathi Rao, now in DAP, and independent activist P. Gengadharan.

However, Mugilan in his five-minute speech, heckled by the Samy Vellu supporters, gave a fiery speech urging the people to rise up against Samy Vellu.

The meeting ended on that note with the people leaving satisfied that although the group sought to disrupt their gathering they had prevailed and had urged Samy Vellu to step down.

“I am happy that despite so much disruption we managed to shout “Down with Samy!”,” said S. Vellu Samy from Negri Sembilan.

”We won, Samy Vellu lost…he is not fit to lead us any more after this show of gangsterism,” he said.

In Klang today, Samy Vellu’s mask fell and he lost terribly.

Staying as party president and claiming to be leader of the Indian community is simply untenable.

Not a day longer was the message those in Dewan Hamzah sent out to the man who has been president since 1979.

However, the day was not without its irony.

Among those who urged the goons to disappear was Bharat Maniam, the expelled Petaling Jaya MIC division chairman who was the muscle Samy Vellu had used to strike terror among supporters of former expelled vice-president Tan Sri M.G. Pandithan.

Kumar Amman, the sacked MIC CWC member and a leader of GAS, had only months ago attacked an aide to Penang Deputy Chief Minister Dr P. Ramasamy as part of a MIC Youth demonstration against the DAP.

Today, he was carrying a book about Indian independence leader Mohandas Gandhi and shouting “Ahimsa! Ahimsa!” as goons threatened to assault them.

“Yes, I assaulted him but that is a different Kumar Amman…that Kumar Amman no longer exists,” said Kumar Amman.

Ganapathi Rao, a DAP member, said in his short speech that there is nothing wrong in Indians of all persuasions to come together for the good of the community while Gengadharan told The Malaysian Insider he was politically independent.

K.P.Samy, who had dreams of joining Pakatan Rakyat, ended his speech condemning the gatecrashers as “street animals and paid goons” and ended his speech, startling the audience with three shouts of, Long Live Najib!

The only loser was Samy Vellu.

MCA lodges police report against Perkasa

KUALA LUMPUR: The MCA Youth movement has lodged a police report on the publication of a front-page news by Pertubuhan Perkasa Malaysia (Perkasa) in its official organ 'Suara Perkasa', calling on the government to detain MCA Youth chief Wee Ka Siong under the Internal Security Act (ISA).

The police report was lodged by Selangor MCA Youth chief Dr Kow Cheong Wei who was accompanied by about 20 members of the Federal Territory and Selangor MCA Youth at the Dang Wangi district police headquarters, here at about 3pm today.

Kow claimed that the contents of the report published by Suara Perkasa on Thursday was too extreme.

"We hope the Home Ministry would revoke the Perkasa publication licence," he told reporters at the district police headquarters today.

- Bernama

Pro-Samy Vellu gate-crashers cause havoc at critics' rally

By G Vinod - Free Malaysia Today

KLANG: A group of MIC members caused a ruckus at the Indian Unity Gathering organised by critics of party president S Samy Vellu here today, forcing the police to move in to calm the situation.

The 50-odd pro-Samy Vellu group, led by Selangor MIC information chief L Siva Subramaniam, barged into Dewan Hamzah just as the gathering started at 2pm to heckle and throw insults at the organisers of the gathering.

Siva Subramaniam and his men shouted that no one should insult Samy Vellu.

“Who are you to talk about Samy Vellu? What did you do for the Indian community?” one of them asked the coordinators of the gathering.

Despite the tense situation created by the gate-crashers, organisers KP Samy, V Mugilan, G Kumar Aamaan, V Subramaniam and M Karunanidhi held their ground and urged their 2,000 supporters to stay silent and remain calm.

The organisers refused to be provoked and started chanting 'ahimsa' (non-violence), a move which was quickly followed by their supporters. Despite this, FMT learnt, a melee in the hall caused minor injuries to some people, including a journalist.

The police moved in shortly and urged the pro-Samy Vellu faction to stand down and allow the gathering to continue.

Those present were then informed by the speakers of their need to remain steadfast in their cause to unite the Indians.

Samy Vellu is a coward

Talking to reporters later, the organisers blasted their uninvited guests for their uncouth behaviour.

“Samy Vellu is a coward for trying to stop a peaceful gathering,” said sacked MIC central committee member KP Samy.

“We have already mentioned that we fully back the leadership of Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak and the Barisan Nasional government.

“BN is going to have problems due to Samy Vellu's attitude. Now you all know who are the real troublemakers,” he blasted.

Mugilan meanwhile thanked the police for their swift response in handling the situation.

“The crowd today was made up of decent people and Samy Vellu has shown his style of gutter politics here,” said the sacked MIC national deputy youth chief.

“He should step down immediately,” Mugilan said.

All the main organisers of the gathering were sacked by Samy Vellu for working against the party.

Anti-BN gathering

Meanwhile, Siva Subramaniam told FMT that he is very happy that the police controlled the tense situation immediately.

However, he expressed his disappointment that the gathering was permitted to continue despite not having a police permit.

“We even appealed to the Klang local council not to allow KP Samy to use the hall but it dismissed us,” he said.

He added the gathering was not in support of the BN leadership at all.

“How can they claim to be supporting BN when they brought Hindfaf leaders to the gathering,” he said, referring to R Kenghadaran and V Ganabatirau's presence at the gathering. The two of them were arrested under the Internal Security Act in 2007 and released in 2009.

Kenghadaran and DAP-member Ganabatirau told the gathering they were there for the common good of the community.

“This is not about DAP, MIC or any political party. This is about working for a common interest which is uniting Indians for a common agenda.” said Ganabatirau.

Zaid to meet RPK again

By FMT Staff

UPDATED 3.40PM KUALA LUMPUR: PKR leader Zaid Ibrahim has announced that he will meet Raja Petra Kamarudin again next week. He is also ready to clarify his relationship with the popular blogger to Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein.

In his latest posting on myzaidibrahim.com, he writes: “I will be in London next week and, God willing, I will meet Marina and Petra.” Marina is the wife of the exiled blogger.

The article, entitled “Poor Zahrain; so pathetic”, is a reaction to PKR defector Zahrain Mohamad Hashim’s allegation that Zaid was giving Raja Petra financial support.

In a separate development, Zaid also responded through his twitter to Home Minister Hishammuddin who had asked for a clarification on the PKR leader's ties with Raja Petra.

“Will gladly do so. Tell me time and place,” said Zaid in his tweet today.

On Saturday Hishammuddin said if Zaid was a responsible person, he would offer an explanation on his relationship with Raja Petra.

"Raja Petra is criticising the country abroad and making personal attacks on (our) leaders, it’s alright if he has the proof. But he says many things in his blog. When there are top opposition leaders with them, they have to explain the relationship between them and Raja Petra," he had said.

Here is a translation of Zaid's blog entry:

"Representatives of the people should speak up when they have ideas pertinent to national policy, and they must be courageous in criticising government decisions. These are the very duties and responsibilites that a Yang Berhormat must shoulder.

These burdens are especially compelling for a representative of the people who claims to be independent and who is so liked by PM Najib Tun Razak. Come on, surely we must maintain some standard. Or people will say we are mere bootlickers with nothing significant to bring up in the Dewan.

So, was I surprised to hear that my meeting with Raja Petra in Manchester last year has become such an issue to the YB of Bayan Baru! It's as if he has become a Special Branch agent, proud to reveal that I stayed at the Hotel Britannia with Raja Petra last year.

He says the MACC should investigate the meeting. So this is how our pro-BN Wakil Rakyat works these days. Nothing else to raise. If he had only asked me, I would have told him more than he knows. Listen YB, it is not wrong to meet Raja Petra. You too can go to his house Manchester.

Raja Petra and his wife Marina are my friends. I don't abandon friends who are in difficulty. That is why I meet the two every time I am in London. Last year, I took Raja Petra to a football match in Old Trattford; he is a fan of Manchester United. I paid for his ticket. That poor man, forced to flee his homeland because he sought the truth, gets precious litte entertainment. But then, it may be hard for our YB Bayan Baru to understand or appreciate a struggle like Petra's.

It is true that he booked the hotel for me, but he didn't stay there because his house is only 15 minutes away. The hotel was three-star, not like Zahrain's hotel in Washington. After all, I had to pay out of my own pocket.

I'm going to London next week and, insha Allah, I will see Marina and Petra. I'll give more details if YB Zahrain or MACC needs them. I hope to also meet Bala even if MACC doesn't want to."

Najib: Don’t trust Raja Petra

 
The prime minister said the people should not believe the claims made by the blogger who has fled the country to London.
(Bernama) PEKAN, July 4 — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said he leaves it to the authorities to take action against blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin.

The prime minister said the people should not believe the claims made by the blogger who has fled the country to London.

“If Raja Petra is funded by the opposition, it means that his statements are politically-motivated. We should weigh them carefully and not merely accepting them,” he told reporters after opening the Pekan Umno meeting here today.

He was asked to comment on the statement by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Aziz yesterday that the government had proofs that Raja Petra was funded by Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR).

On the appointment of Suraya Ramli and Rafidah Abdul Razak as syariah judges, the prime minister said it showed that women in the country enjoyed equalities.

Their appointments as the Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya syariah judges respectively were made following the consent by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin.

In case you have forgotten: Stunning claims linking Najib to Altantuya

Serang Anwar Tapi Enggan Putus Hubungan Apco

Dari TV Selangor

Media arus perdana terus memainkan kunjungan Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim ke Washington DC, dengan pemimpin BN berganding-bahu dengan media pro-Zionis untuk mengecam dan mencemar imej pemimpin Pakatan Rakyat itu.

Utusan Malaysia dan media pro-BN memetik laporan dan rencana asing untuk memaparkan Anwar tunduk kepada Washington DC selepas beliau dikritik hebat kerana kenyataan yang disifatkan anti-semitik oleh pertubuhan-pertubuhan pro-Israel.

Ketua Angkatan Muda Keadilan Shamsul Iskandar bagaimanapun berkata Anwar di Washington DC tempoh hari tidak sama-sekali memohon maaf kepada rejim Tel Aviv mahupun dan enggan menarik-balik kecamannya terhadap Rumah Putih dan mana-mana syarikat berkaitan Zionis.

Shamsul berkata demikian mengulas serangan media mutakhir ini yang mendakwa Anwar berlutut kepada komuniti Yahudi, yang berang dengan serangan Anwar terhadap persekongkolan Perdana Menteri Najib Abdul Razak dan firma rundingan berkaitan Zionis, APCO Worldwide.

Najib sebelum ini dikecam hebat kerana melantik firma kontroversi itu untuk membantu kerajaan Umno. Najib juga dikritik kerana bersekutu dengan Presiden Barack Obama dalam menekan republik Islam Iran.

Disebalik serangan terbaru terhadap Ketua Pembangkang ini, Shamsul berkata Najib, dan jemaah menteri Umno masih enggan memutuskan hubungan mereka dengan firma berkaitan Zionis, Apco Worldwide.

“Apa yang kita lihat Utusan ,seolah-olah Utusan memainkan berita bahawa Anwar ini pula agen Yahudi, dan kemudian kita dedahkan kerajaan barisan nasional dibawah Dato’ Najib melantik firma yang didokongi oleh orang-orang yang terlibat dalam tentera perisikan ini dan kita dedahkan dalam Parlimen dan kita dedahkan bukti bahawa barisan nasional sebenarnya kerajaan yang betul-betul menggunakan khidmat Israel dan zionism ini dengan bayaran RM77 juta, jadi ada bezanya antara BN yang menggunakan khidmat terus dengan Dato’ Seri Anwar yang menerangkan apa yang berlaku di Malaysia ini,” katanya.

Pemerhati politik menyifatkan Perdana Menteri Najib Abdul Razak kini berlumba-lumba untuk membina imej di luar negara, terutamanya untuk bergambar bersama Presiden Amerika Syarikat Barack Obama.
Najib juga membuat kejutan dengan mengambil pendirian untuk bersekutu dengan Washington DC dalam menekan republik Islam Iran.

Shamsul menjelaskan kewibawaan dan ketrampilan Anwar di persada antarabangsa tidak dapat disangkal mana-mana pihak, bahkan Ketua Pembangkang itu tidak perlu menikam belakang mana-mana negara Islam atau melantik mana-mana firma berkaitan Zionis untuk menjalin kerjasama dengan dunia luar.

“Itu adalah satu jemputan Woodrow, satu pertubuhan yang meminta ,beliau untuk memberi ucaptama mengenai Islam and democracy in southeast asia,itu adalah satu isu yang terus menerus diperjuangkan oleh Dato’ Seri Anwar,tokoh reformasi di rantau asia ini,mengungkapkan makna Islam dan demokrasi,dalam masa yang sama beliau mengambil kesempatan untuk bertemu dengan tokoh-tokoh penting di dalam negara Amerika,tidak timbul dia datang ke sana untuk memujuk,dan menagih simpati daripada mereka yang Yahudi dan jew dan sebagainya di Amerika,” katanya.

Shamsul berkata Anwar mengambil peluang dari jemputan Woodrow itu untuk menjelaskan bahawa penentangan masyarakat Islam Malaysia adalah terhadap ideologi Zionis, dan rejim Israel yang menjajah bumi Palestin.

Bantahan kepada pencerobohan perisik Israel ke Bukit Aman serta perlantikan firma perunding berkaitan Zionis adalah manifestasi kemarahan rakyat Malaysia yang menolak ideologi gasar itu.

“Saya yakin,penegasan yang dibuat oleh Dato’ Seri Anwar itu jelas Dato’ Seri Anwar menerangkan apa yang dimaksudkan dengan Zionism dalam konteks masyarakat Islam di rantau asia khususnya di Malaysia bahawa Zionism itu satu perkara yang bersifat ganas, satu fahaman yang membawa kepada penjajahan,dan penjarahan,satu fahaman yang membawa kepada agression,kepada keganasan dan ini yang diterangkan oleh Dato’ Seri Anwar,” katanya.

Kit Siang: Sabahans have become minority in Sabah

By Asrul Hadi Abdullah Sani | The Malaysian Insider

PETALING JAYA, July 4 — Lim Kit Siang said today that the lack of economic opportunities and development in Sabah had caused an exodus to Kuala Lumpur for greener pastures.

“After 47 years, Sabahans are now concerned that they have become the minority and strangers in their own land. How can Sabah’s population of 400,000 during the formation of Malaysia in 1963 be now multiplied to over three million today. Super producers in Sabah, where did they come from?” he said during Pakatan Rakyat’s first meeting of Sabahans in Klang Valley.

However, Lim pointed out that many Sabahans have been exploited with false promises which have left many to be unemployed and homeless.

He added that Sabah still lacked the basic infrastructure and necessities to accommodate the growing number of unemployed.

“Something has gone very wrong that Sabah has become so poor. The state is lacking the necessary infrastructure. The federal government had promised that all development in peninsular will also be in Sabah but now even electricity, water and broadband is lacking.

“That is why it is important to have a study and forum to discuss the problems affecting Sabahans. We cannot solve all the problems but we need to start so that we can begin to resolve them,” he said.

Lim also stressed that Sabah had been cheated by Barisan Nasional.

“All are Malaysians including the people of Sabah. It cannot be denied that the promises made when Sabah joined to form Malaysia in 1963 have been broken. For ordinary Sabahans, their economic and social status have not changed after all these years,” he said.

He said that Sabahans have the choice to change for a better future.

“We need to change the power equation in this nation. This cannot be said when Sabah and Sarawak still remain as fixed deposits for Barisan Nasional. If Sabah and Sarawak decides on change then Anwar can become our next prime minister,” he said.

Earlier only 80 people turned up for the forum held to discuss the wellbeing of Sabahans in the Klang Valley.

Speakers and spectators voiced their frustrations with the inability of Barisan Nasional to resolve the economic dilemmas affecting the state.

Participants complained that they were forced to come to Kuala Lumpur because there were no job opportunities in Sabah.

Father Valentine Gompok claimed that students had to resort to prostitution to pay for their debts and workers were misled into leaving their homes with false promises.

PKR president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail questioned how a state which is oil rich could become one of the poorest in the country.

“We must not let ourselves to be exploited. What can we do? We all can do something. We are the ones that can make a change and [don’t] let yourself become a spectator. If we begin now then we can be sure of change,” she said.

She added the federal government had taken everything from Sabah but has failed to protect its people.

Umno Needs Team Players, Not Prima Donnas, Says Najib

PEKAN, July 4 (Bernama) -- Drawing a parallel from the ongoing FIFA World Cup which sees the exit of several favourite teams, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said today Umno needs more team players, not prima donnas.

He said teams with strong teamwork would reap more successes compared to those with many prima donnas.

"In the world cup," he said, "even favourite teams lose."

"Can favourite Umno and Barisan Nasional (BN) be successful in the 13th general election?" he asked.

The Umno president said that there was danger in having prima donnas in a team because "they might attempt to score own goals".

"We should build a strong team. Talented individuals can become more successful if the team spirit is strong," he said when opening the Pekan Umno division meeting here Sunday.

Najib, who is also the Pekan Umno chief, said Umno members and leaders should go back to the basis of the party's struggle and put the party's interest above self interest.

He said that in a parliamentary democracy, political parties could not avoid going through ups and downs but those who failed to live up to the people's expectation would find themselves going on a downward spiral in the eyes of the people.

The prime minister said managing the success of a party which had done a lot of good deeds to the race, religion and country was more difficult than achieving the success itself.

Speaking to reporters later, Najib said his remark was a gentle reminder to party members and that it did not mean that Umno was now weak.

"It's more of an advice; my advice as party president to party members, including myself.

"It does not mean that the situation is bad. I just want the best for Umno because we are facing many challenges. We hope that from this process, we can become a party and leaders the people can be proud of," he said.

Najib said he used the World Cup analogy to drive home the point that it was important for party members and leaders to value team work rather than being individualistic.

"If we look at the World Cup, teams that work as one are more successful compared to those which rely on individuals," he said.

On the ongoing divisional meetings nationwide, Najib said the party's management committee was monitoring the progress based on reports submitted by state Umno liaison committees.

"So far, there are no negative reports. Everything goes on smoothly except for a division in Kelantan which is facing a problem. The state Umno and the management committee are addressing this," he said.

A first for women syariah judges

The New Straits Times 
By Alina Simon, M. Hamzah Jamaludin and T.N. Alagesh

KUANTAN: Two women made history recently when they were appointed as Syariah High Court judges at the Putrajaya and Federal Territory courts.

They are Suraya Ramli, 31, from Sabah, and Rafidah Abdul Razak, 39, from Penang.

Their appointments were announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak in his speech at the opening of a three-day national conference for syariah officials here.

His speech was read by the religious adviser to the prime minister, Datuk Dr Abdullah Mat Zin.

Suraya, who is single, was formerly a research officer of the Appeal Court while Rafidah, who is married, was a research officer for a syariah court judge at the Syariah Judicial Department in Putrajaya.

Both served in their posts for six years.

They received their appointment letters in mid-May after getting the consent of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

Najib said their appointments were part of the changes to transform the syariah courts to provide greater protection and justice for women.

Najib also said there was a need for the transformation, especially when it came to protecting the rights of women and children under the family institution.

"Many Muslim women felt they were being victimised and did not get the full justice owed to them, largely due to lengthy delays in settling their cases.

"Many even accused the syariah courts of practising gender bias. I hope our syariah officers can find the most effective and relevant methods to ease the backlog of cases."

Najib also revealed other changes, including the age limit for the chief judge to be extended from 58 to 66 years.

He also said RM15 million had been allocated for women who were left in a lurch after their husbands failed to provide alimonies as ordered by the courts.

The government had also introduced incentives to encourage syariah officers to do their masters or doctorates.

The incentives could help raise the expertise of syariah officers in their respective fields and enable them to handle the polemics and new, more complex syariah issues.

Najib said issues, such as the fight for custody involving couples from different religions and over the remains of deceased converts, validation of religious status, disputes over property inheritance between Muslims and non-Muslims, whether non-Muslim lawyers could appear before syariah courts and multi-million ringgit claims, required a high level of expertise and wisdom to resolve.

The Syariah Judicial Department required creative transformation and innovative leadership to uplift the image of the syariah courts and raise the integrity of syariah judges and officers, he added.

Both Suraya and Rafidah regard their appointments as a recognition for women.

They also said they would uphold justice in shouldering the responsibilities entrusted to them.

IKUTI TERJEMAHAN WASHINGTON POST INI, BENARKAH ANWAR MOHON MAAF ?

Kontroversi artikel The Washington Post

Oleh JACKSON DIEHL, Washington Post

Berikut terjemahan bebas MUHAMMAD NOR ABD SAMAD terhadap artikel bertajuk "Flirting with zealotry in Malaysia" yang disiarkan akhbar The Washington Post, Isnin 28 Jun 2010 yang menimbulkan polemik di Malaysia:

Anwar Ibrahim, pemimpin politik pembangkang Malaysia sejak sedekad yang lalu cukup terkenal sebagai pejuang demokrasi liberal di kalangan negara-negara Islam.

Di antara kawan-kawannya yang ramai di Washington, termasuk ahli pergerakan neokonservatif ternama seperti Paul Wolfowitz, bekas Presiden Bank Dunia dan duta Amerika Syarikat (AS) ke Indonesia dan juga tokoh demokratik ternama Al Gore. Akhir-akhir ini Anwar menjadi tumpuan atas sesuatu yang lain pula: retorik keras mengenai Israel dan dakwaan "pengaruh Zionis" di Malaysia.

Baru-baru ini beliau menyertai demonstrasi di hadapan Kedutaan AS di Kuala Lumpur di mana bendera Israel dibakar. Beliau mengecam kerajaan Malaysia kerana menggunakan perkhidmatan syarikat perhubungan awam Washington, Apco Worldwide yang "dikuasai Yahudi".

Terdapat satu cerita dalam era Obama - mengenai survival politik dan peribadi seorang ahli demokrat yang bermasalah dengan sedikit bantuan daripada Washington; mengenai peningkatan tekanan masyarakat antarabangsa terhadap Israel; dan mengenai peningkatan kesediaan sahabat-sahabat AS di beberapa tempat seperti Turki dan Malaysia untuk mengeksploitasikannya.

Pertama, sedikit mengenai Anwar: Sewaktu berkhidmat sebagai timbalan perdana menteri di bawah orang kuat Malaysia Mahathir Mohamad dalam 1990-an, beliau mula menekankan soal pembaharuan - tetapi berkesudahan dengan beliau ditangkap, dibicara dan dipenjarakan atas tuduhan yang direka-reka iaitu liwat.

Setelah dibebaskan enam tahun kemudian, beliau menubuhkan pergerakan pembangkang multietnik yang mengejutkan parti pemerintah dengan pencapaian yang diperolehinya dalam pilihan raya umum yang lalu. Pergerakan itu kini dilihat mempunyai peluang yang besar untuk memenangi kempen parlimen akan datang dan ini mungkin membolehkan Malaysia menyertai Indonesia dan Turki sebagai negara demokrasi majoriti Islam sepenuhnya.

Tidaklah mengejutkan, Anwar didakwa sekali lagi. Sekali lagi atas tuduhan melakukan liwat, yang mengikut undang-undang Malaysia merupakan satu jenayah yang perlu dihukum sebat dan penjara sehingga 20 tahun. Anwar, 63, berkahwin dan mempunyai anak menafikan dakwaan tersebut, dan bukti-bukti yang dikemukakan sekali lagi dicurigai.

Sipenuduh yang berusia 25 tahun mengaku menemui Perdana Menteri Najib Razak dan berbual melalui telefon dengan Ketua Polis Negara beberapa hari sebelum kejadian liwat tersebut didakwa berlaku.

Perbicaraan yang diadakan tidak berjalan dengan baik. Jika ia berakhir dengan Anwar sekali lagi disabitkan bersalah, masa depan politik dan gabungan pembangkangnya mungkin musnah, begitu juga dengan hidupnya: Kesihatannya tidak begitu baik.

Pemimpin pembangkang itu kali ini tidak mendapat sokongan sewajarnya daripada Amerika Syarikat, tidak seperti perbicaraannya yang pertama di mana timbalan presiden AS pada waktu itu, Al Gore bercakap bagi pihaknya. Obama tidak bercakap apa mengenai Anwar di khalayak ramai sewaktu menerima kunjungan Najib di Washington dalam bulan April lalu.

Selepas "dialog pegawai kanan" di antara dua kerajaan itu bulan ini, soal perbicaraan Anwar tidak juga dibangkitkan oleh Jabatan Negara kerana "isu telah pun dibincangkan dengan panjang lebar". Apabila menyentuh soal hak asasi manusia, pentadbiran Obama tidak mahu mengulangi perkara yang sama.

Anwar bagaimanapun menemui jalan untuk bertindak balas. Kalau selama ini beliau dihentam hebat oleh propaganda kerajaan mengaitkannya sebagai ejen Israel dan sahabat Amerika kerana berkawan dengan Wolfowitz, kali ini beliau menyerang dengan mengatakan Apco telah memanipulasi kerajaan untuk menyokong Israel dan kepentingan AS.

Beliau juga berkata ejen Israel telah menyusup masuk dalam pasukan keselamatan dan "terlibat secara langsung" dalam urusan kerajaan. Najib menyifatkan Israel sebagai "gangster dunia". Tetapi beliau cepat memusingkan kata-kata Anwar terhadapnya: Apco berusaha melibatkan diri dalam kenyataan anti-Israel di sekeliling Washington.

Anwar adalah seperti Perdana Menteri Turki Recep Tayyip Erdogan, yang disifatkannya sebagai kawan dan teman sepengembaraan. Kedua-duanya tahu bagaimana untuk melibatkan diri dalam perkara sebegini. Kedua-duanya telah pun memulakannya - setahun selepas pentadbiran Obama melahirkan rasa tidak senangnya terhadap Israel. "Jika anda kata kami sudah hilang sabar terhadap Israel, itu benar," Anwar memberitahu saya. "Jika anda kata saya tidak berhati-hati bila bercakap kadang-kadang, itu juga benar."

Anwar yang berada di Washington buat beberapa hari minggu lalu, menghabiskan banyak masa cuba menjelaskan kepada kawan-kawan lama, termasuk Pengerusi Jawatankuasa Hal Ehwal Luar Howard Berman dan beberapa orang pemimpin Yahudi.

Beliau berkata beliau kesal menggunakan istilah "pencerobohan Zionis" yang selalu digunakan oleh beberapa pemimpin seperti Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. "Mengapa saya perlu menggunakannya jika ia mendatangkan salah faham?" katanya. "Saya perlu berhati-hati."

Ramai di kalangan sahabat-sahabatnya di Malaysia bersedia memaafkannya. "Apa yang Anwar lakukan adalah salah, tapi memandangkan beliau sedang berjuang untuk hidupnya - secara fizikal dan politik - menentang kerajaan yang menyerangnya sebagai berkata 'boneka Yahudi', saya kira ia boleh dimaafkan," kata Wolfowitz memberitahu saya. Tetapi cerita Anwar perlu dibaca sebagai amaran. Perubahannya daripada seorang demokrat yang pro-Amerika kepada seorang fanatik anti-Israel merupakan sesuatu yang serius - dan ia kini mula menjadi trend. /Sumber: Detik daily

Komen Blogger:

Mengapa susah sangat pemimpin Umno untuk memahami bahasa mudah di dalam akhbar berkenaan? Kita ingat YB DSU Rais Yatim yang selalunya berbunga-bunga bahasa percakapannya itu arif tentang maksud bahasa, rupa-rupanya ada juga kejahilan di dalam pengetahuan bahasa MP dari Jelebu itu. Jika sudah kelulusan Oxford yang memegang jawatan Ketua Pemuda Umno yang tidak berjawatan di dalam kabinet itu pun tidak faham apa yang tertulis di akhbar berkenaan, apa lagi pemimpin Umno yang lain.

Di mana yang dikatakan DS Anwar mohon maaf? Secara jelas DS Anwar menyebut sememangnya beliau menentang keras dan hilang sabar terhadap Israel. DS Anwar dikatakan cuma kesal jika istilah yang digunakan itu menyebabkan silap faham di kalangan mereka yang tidak bersalah tetapi tiada satu pun ayat atau perkataan menyebut DS Anwar mohon maaf atau menarik balik kecamannya terhadap zionis Israel.

Apa yang menariknya, tulisan di akhir artikel tersebut menyebut bahawa perubahan DS Anwar dari seorang yang demokrat yang pro Amerika kepada fanatik Anti Israel merupakan sesuatu yang serius. Bukankah ini bermaksud bahawa Penulis artikel tersebut juga masih yakin dan percaya sememangnya DS Anwar anti Zionis Israel. Sekaligus, ini membuktikan bahawa DS Anwar tidak memohon maaf kepada puak yang menyokong zionis Israel itu.

Oleh yang demikian, mengapa pemimpin Umno menafsirkan benda lain dari yang dimaksudkan oleh Penulis itu sendiri? Mengapa tidak dihebohkan tentang tuduhan liwat yang direka terhadap DS Anwar di dalam artikel yang sama? Mengapa tidak diulas tentang pertemuan Saiful Bukhari dengan Najib sebelum tuduhan liwat 2 ke atas DS Anwar? Bukankah perkara itu juga ditulis oleh Penulis?

Kesimpulannya, ini bermakna pemimpin Umno masih lagi tercari-cari isu yang boleh mereka gunakan untuk menjatuhkan kredibiliti DS Anwar. Mereka sanggup dilabelkan bodoh asalkan rakyat mempercayai mereka. Masalahnya, adakah rakyat kesemuanya ingin menjadi bodoh seperti mereka? Jika Najib, KJ, Rais, Muhyiddin atau sesiapa sahaja yang merasakan mereka telah menjumpai keburukan DS Anwar, kita cabar mereka untuk berdebat secara terbuka dengan DS Anwar. Sekali lagi kita boleh memotong jari jika pemimpin Umno berani berdebat dengan DS Anwar. Mustahil, kerana Umno dulu, kini dan selamanya memang penikus.