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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

25 Nov 2007 Hindraf Rally Remembered

Anwar likely to face censure over APCO-Israel jibe

Anwar had claimed that APCO was behind both the 1 Malaysia and 1 Israel concepts. — file pic
KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 24 — Barisan Nasional (BN) is expected to use its majority to strike a blow against its Pakatan Rakyat (PR) rivals ahead of possible snap polls next year, by suspending Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim from Parliament next month. The Malaysian Insider understands that on the final day of the ongoing parliamentary session this December 15, the opposition leader will be made to answer for his APCO-Israel jibe from earlier this year, under recommendation from the House’s powerful Rights and Privileges Committee.
The committee is expected to recommend a suspension order against PR’s de facto leader, said to be a thorn in the side of the ruling government which suffered severe losses in the last general election.
In Election 2008, Anwar had led the opposition pact in sweeping up five states and denying BN its customary two-thirds parliamentary majority.
It is believed that Anwar will be suspended for at least six months from the House but will continue to receive his MP’s salary.
Najib was initially leery over the move to suspend Anwar.
The Malaysian Insider
understands, however, that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had initially been against the idea of meting out such a punishment to the opposition leader for fear of public backlash, but had relented after being convinced by his BN aides.
The prime minister is also scheduled to meet with Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia over the issue today.
The move is believed to be a strategic attempt by the ruling BN coalition to throw the opposition momentarily off guard ahead of an expected general election, believed likely to be held in the first quarter of next year.
It is also believed to be a form of reprisal by the federal government, after similar moves by PR administrations in Selangor and Penang to suspend BN opposition leaders from its state assemblies.
Last July, the Selangor state assembly had suspended former mentri besar Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo and four other BN assemblymen from the House for one year and six months each, respectively. Their privileges as assemblymen were also revoked for the period of their suspension.
According to news reports, the state assembly’s Rights and Privileges committee had recommended Khir’s suspension for failing to attend the Select Committee on Competency, Accountability and Transparency’s (Selcat) inquiry for allegedly making disparaging remarks against the committee in the media.
The other four BN assemblymen — Datuk Warno Dogol (Sabak Bernam), Datuk Mohd Idris Abu Bakar (Hulu Bernam), Mohd Isa Abu Kassim (Batang Kali) and Datuk Marsum Paing (Dengkil) — were also suspended for the same reason.
Earlier this month in Penang, state opposition leader Datuk Azhar Ibrahim from Umno, who is also the Penaga assemblyman, was suspended for six months from the assembly after he refused to retract allegedly seditious remarks regarding the May 13 racial clash in 1969.
His suspension, effective August 17 to February next year, had also sparked a walkout by all the 11 BN assemblymen in the state legislature.
BN state opposition leaders had been suspended in Selangor and Penang.
The lawmaker had apparently, during a speech to the assembly by Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng on May 7, warned of a likely repeat of the May 13 racial riots and had suggested the armed forces take over the functions of the police if the latter had lost the confidence of the people. Azhar was referred to the assembly’s Rights and Privileges Committee after a motion tabled by DAP’s Jagdeep Singh Deo was accepted. The suspension order was subsequently conveyed to the state assembly and allowed.
In Anwar’s case, the fiery opposition leader had been summoned to the House’s committee on June 8 after he claimed that the supposedly Israeli-linked public relations consultancy APCO Worldwide employed by the Najib administration was behind both the 1 Malaysia and 1 Israel concepts.
His remarks had dominated the previous parliamentary session earlier this year and had been used incessantly by opposition leaders as campaign fodder during the Hulu Selangor and Sibu by-elections.
Anwar’s hearing before the committee was, however, put off when the leader insisted on being accompanied by legal counsel — former Bar Council president Datuk Ambiga Sreenivasan.
He was later allowed to be accompanied by Ambiga under strict instructions that the latter would not be allowed to speak during the proceedings.
Despite this, Anwar’s hearing was put off and the matter has not been raised since then.

'Give us some light and water, please'

By FMT Staff
KOTA KINABALU: Listening to Gum-Gum assemblyman Zakaria Edris' volley of demands at the recent State Legislative Assembly sitting is telling of the situation in Sabah. He was asking for better enforcement, clean water, electricity, and police and fire stations in his constituency which is barely 45 minutes from Sabah's second largest city, Sandakan.
Rolling off his list of grouses, Zakaria said villagers living along Sungai Memanjang in his constituency were struggling to make ends meet following a steady decline in aqua life in the river as a result of toxic effluence from a neighbouring oil palm mill.
The once "fish-rich" river is now “dead”, he said, adding that complaints to the State Environment Protection Department and the Federal Environment Department have fallen on deaf ears.
"We have highlighted the issues to the two departments but there had been no action. Nothing has been done to stop the mill operators and help the villagers.
"If the mill continues to dump its toxic waste into the river, the ones who will suffer are the locals.
"These villagers depend on the river for their livelihood. The government cannot go on ignoring this It must take immediate action. It must issue a stop order to the mill, " he said.
No water, electricity
Describing clean water as a “basic necessity”, he said several kampungs in his constituency were dependent on well water.
"Many kampungs in my constituency still don't have clean water and electricity... this is a basic necessity. The state government must look into this urgently," he said.
Kampung Ulu Dusun, Kampung Sungai Kapoor, Kamung Jaya Bakti, Kampung Lalason and Kampung Tanjung Pisau are among the villagers which still depend on well water. During the dry spell, the water dries up leaving the villagers without clean water.
Kampung Pulau Libaran and Kampung Pulau Pemaguan have no electricity. The community is dependent on power from a generator. Since the increase in petrol prices, villagers have been unable to afford electricity.
Zakaria has proposed that the state government take urgent action to provide rural villagers with water and electricity.
"I propose that solar energy be introduced in these villagers since petrol is expensive and generators are not practical," he said.
Rising crime
Early last year, a 16-year-old student was raped, brutally murdered and dumped in the nearby forest in the constituency.
The incident sent shockwaves through the constituency which was also riddled with a rising crime rate, said Zakaria.
"We urgently need a police station and a fire station. We don't have any now. The nearest stations are in Sandakan... 45 minutes away.
"This is too far in case of an accident or emergency. A few years ago we had a big fire and the by time the firemen came, 30 houses were burnt down," he said.
Sandakan, on Sabah's east coast, is a known gateway for immigrants. Over the years shantytowns have emerged creatinga whole range of socio-economic problems for the state.
In the recent Batu Sapi by-elections, the 16-year-old Barisan Nasional state government's lack of commitment to infrastructure development came to the fore when opposition candidate Ansari Abdullah twice plunged into the sea after the jetty and bridge he was standing on collapsed.
Early last week, the World Bank Report 2010 reaffirmed a commonly held belief when it reported that Sabah was the “poorest” state in Malaysia and is unlikely to move ahead if current policies do not change.

Appeal quashed, Anwar owes Dr M RM70,000

By G Vinod - Free Malaysia Today,

PUTRAJAYA: The Federal Court today dismissed Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim's preliminary points that court judgments written in English were invalid.
In dismissing the appeal, the apex court also ordered Anwar to pay the respondent, former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad, RM70,000 in costs citing the seriousness of the case.
A livid Anwar then exclaimed, “This is a heavy load. Where am I to find the money?”
Delivering the judgment, Chief Justice of Malaya Ariffin Zakaria said judgments written in English do not contravene Article 152 of the Federal Constitution and Section 8 of the National Language Act though the court understood the importance of the Malay language.
“Plus, provisor of Section 8 allows application by either party to use the national language or English in the interest of justice. However, the court does view the national language seriously,” he said, citing a circular in 1990 by then chief justice of Malaya Hashim Yeop Sani calling for at least one judgment to be written in the national language.
Ariffin said that while judgments were delivered in English, all the necessary paperwork filed in court was done in the national language.
The three-member bench also ruled that all parties must understand the difference between judgments and grounds of judgments.
“All parties can appeal against the court's judgment but not on the grounds of judgment,” said Ariffin, who was flanked by Federal Court judges James Foong and Suriyadi Halim Omar.
In September, Anwar's lead counsel, Karpal Singh, raised a preliminary point on the judgment made by the Court of Appeal on the opposition leader's RM100 million defamation suit against Mahathir.
Speaking to reporters later, Karpal said the Federal Court's judgment had far reaching legal implications.
“The judge made a distinction between judgment and grounds of judgment. He also relied on provisor Section 8 of the National Language Act for his judgment.
“We will think about (filing for) a review,” he added.

Sarawak – a state of independents

By Maclean Patrick - Free Malaysia Today,

COMMENT It cannot be faulted if we all agree that it is human nature for people to group together within familiar circles. We see this in family units, communities, villages, towns, cities, states, countries and (the obvious) political entities.
Read: Taib dapat inspirasi tarikh pilihanraya
It’s a comforting effect – to be able to huddle together in a tight unit either for warmth or security. A habit born from prehistoric times since the days the human species branched out to populate the world.
Human beings are herding creatures, much like the rest of nature.
And as Sarawak approaches its state election, we are presented with a tantalising option: which herd will we join?
Direct membership is nothing new to the Barisan Nasional (BN). Yet there should be a caveat as proposed by Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) president James Masing.
“Direct BN membership should not be a sanctuary for party dissidents or rejects of any BN component party. If BN accepts those characters, it will create a destabilising precedence and open the floodgates for unruly personalities to come in,” he told a local daily.
Rightly so, we do not want to go against Darwin’s Theory of Natural Selection. Bad genes in the herd gene-pool would only spell doom for the herd at large. Leave out the dissidents or rejects and all is fine. And BN will be stronger and better, more able to lead the state of Sarawak.
Pakatan Rakyat is not fairing any better, with the Batu Sapi PKR branch calling for Zaid Ibrahim’s sacking before his Dec 16 resignation. Another call in line with many, these past few weeks, for Zaid to be punished. Cull the herd of these dangerous characters, less the herd at large strays from its migration to Putrajaya.
Vote for independents
Darwin would give two thumbs-up and a big toe to these turn of events because it validates his findings with finches (a small bird) in the Galapagos Islands.
But let’s be honest here. Leave the herds to themselves and ponder for a little while. What does Sarawak have to gain from all these political drama?
Either herd presents its own set of evils, and no matter how much you stomp about, asserting your proposed dominance in the savannah, it is just going to be a mere show of hooves and dust and grunts.
To which, many are suggesting that come the next election, vote for the independents. Make Sarawak a state of independents.
Why not? We do have a right to nominate and vote a candidate of our choice.
Allow me to digress a little and take us back to the basic idea of democracy, all the way to the rule of the Etruscan who came up with the idea of the citizen vote.
Not much is mentioned about the Etruscans, for which we can thank the Romans for wiping out much of the historical records of the Etruscans.
Yet we owe the Etruscans for the birth of Western civilisation and democracy itself. For the Romans did not invent the ideas of democracy; they took the ideas of the Etruscans and created a working model for all of us to copy.
The Etruscans had a form of monarchy-democratic system in place. There was a king yet the people could vote in representatives to sit in a council of sorts.
When the Romans overthrew the Etruscans, they kept the voting and representative system but created a dual leadership system to replace the monarchy, so that no one person had absolute rule over Rome.
The dual leaders both ruled for a set period and made decisions collectively. So no one person exerted total control over government.
The early democratic system was put in place so neither person nor entity had total rule over government.
Fast forward a few hundred years, and we find the Sarawak democratic system much like the early Etruscan system.
We have leaders who believe they are monarchs and the vote of the people is reason enough to lord over the land for as long as they want. And come state election, the people of the land are forced to pick sides because our vote keeps these parties in power.
Lone straggler
There is no place for the herd mentality, so prevalent in today’s politics, in a democratic-ruled nation.
Whatever BN or PKR decides, in order to boost their membership or strengthen their herds, the lay person has to think as an individual and decide for themselves; what action would best serve them and their communities.
Even if it means, not voting at all for any herd but to trust the lone independent straggler.
There is talk that come the next election, many would come forward to stand as independents (against Chief Minister Taib Mahmud and his herd).
A unlikely solution but one that seems more in line to the fundamental idea of what a democratic system is like – the people’s right to vote for anyone they deem right to lead and represent themselves and their community.

Maclean Patrick is a webmaster based in Sarawak.

Amnesty International Youth Gathering

DATE:            26th November 2010, 8.00 PM
THE EVENT RUNS FROM 8.00PM TILL 12.00 AM
VENUE:  The Bee, Jaya One, 2A-G, Block K, Jaya One No.72 Jalan
Universiti, Section 13, 46200 Petaling Jaya, Malaysia.
http://harismibrahim.files.wordpress.com/2010/11/poster-for-youth-gathering-copy.jpg26th November marks the start of 16 days of activism which culminates in the worldwide celebration of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, also known as World Human Rights Day on 10th December. 16 days of activism commemorates the Mirabal sisters who were activists in the Dominican Republic during Rafael Trujillo’s dictatorship. The sisters were assassinated for their involvement in attempting to overthrow the fascist government. The sisters were clubbed to death and their car pushed over a cliff to make it seem like an accident. However, this spelt the end of Trujillo’s era as the assassination then lead to massive revolt which ultimately overthrew his government.
Throughout this 16 day period, some other noteworthy dates are as follows:
29th November: International Women Human Rights Defenders Day
1st December: World AIDS Day
6th December: Anniversary of the Montreal Massacre.
Thus, Amnesty International Malaysia would like to invite the youth to join us in solidarity in commemorating this historic date. The gathering carrying the concept of an open mic night/ gig will provide the youth with a forum to express themselves, meet like minded youths and most importantly find out how they can get involved in human rights. Performers include singer-activist Meor Yusof Aziddin, Ray Cheong, Noris Ali, Priscilla Xavier, Rebecca Yau, Josh Hong, Fitri, Prof. Dr Wan Zawawi (poet-singer cum anthropologist) and others.
For any enquiries please contact:
Adeline Choo, Tel: 603-79552680, Email: aimalaysia@aimalaysia.org

Malaysians Abroad Are Also Keeping an Eye on The BN gov’t

By Sydney Sasson

Have things really changed at all?

You claim that ‘irresponsible people are tarnishing the good name of Malaysia’. We beg to differ. In our opinion, the only one tarnishing the good name of Malaysia is the Malaysian government itself. The only traitors in this whole saga, are the politicians who have betrayed the citizens who elected them. And this is why Malaysians abroad are standing in solidarity with their fellow citizens back home to demand good governance, justice, accountability and transparency. Till then, please let Prime Minister Najib and his cabinet know that you are all under watch.

Dear Deputy Foreign Minister Pillay,

We read with interest your latest statements in the Dewan Rakyat today that the Malaysian government is keeping Malaysians abroad under watch.

Guess what? Malaysians abroad are keeping the Malaysian government under watch too. Its encouraging to know that a number of civil society initiatives and solidarity actions taken by Malaysians overseas in the past year have been noticed by the Malaysian government.

It means that all those days of braving the cold and rain to protest against the archaic Internal Security Act and government corruption, and writing to various overseas Members of Parliament and lobbying politicians, the United Nations Human Rights Council, the Commonwealth Human Rights Council, the overseas press and international civil society organisations to alert them to the worrying state of human rights in Malaysia has not been in vain.

When will we stop protesting, letter writing, lobbying, campaigning and keeping the Malaysian government under watch?

When the Malaysian government starts listening to the voice of the people and restoring social justice and democracy to the citizens of Malaysia.

When the Malaysian government starts behaving like elected and paid servants of the rakyat, rather than lawless, corrupt political masters.

When the Malaysian government stops spending RM1.8 million of the Malaysian tax payers money on luxury holidays to Disneyland.

When the Malaysian government abolishes the Internal Security Act and stops using it to suppress freedom of thought, speech and association.

When the Malaysian government stops using the University College and Colleges Act to penalise students who choose to observe or participate in the socio-political life of our nation.

When the Malaysian government stops arresting peaceful candle light vigil protestors and throwing grandmothers in jail.

When the Malaysian government stops exerting absolute control over the media and using the Press and Printing Act 1985 to stamp out free speech.

When the Malaysian government stops stripping the judiciary of its independence and autonomy.

When the Malaysian government stops torture and murder in detention.

When the Malaysian government starts to recognise and uphold the rights of migrant workers and refugees.

When the Malaysian government stops institutionalised racism.

When the Malaysian government stops recklessly threatening that a challenge to their 53 years of BN rule will result in “crushed bodies” and “lost lives”.

Listen – loosing an election is not the worst thing in the world. This is politics — some days you win, some days you loose. When you don’t win, you retreat gracefully to the sidelines, show some statesmanship and rebuild and strengthen your team. You reflect on why you may have lost the popular support of the people and you try to adapt and improve accordingly. You form a shadow cabinet, you develop progressive policies and wait for the next election to once again capture the imagination and hearts of the people.

So get real and grow up, BN. No one party can rule for over 50 years and not be considered a despot.

When the Malaysian government stops plundering and cheating our brother and sisters in Sabah and Sarawak of their native customary rights and rich and beautiful heritage.

When the Malaysian government stops throwing cartoonist in jail.

Dear Deputy Foreign Minister Pillay, why do you think over a million Malaysians abroad choose to reside overseas?

Because they cherish their basic civil liberties and human rights which are all too often trampled on back home. Because they hold dear the fact that the most important ingredients to success are in fact talent and hard work, not the colour of your skin.

Because they acknowledge that any truly developed and civilised society emphasises the importance of high quality education, healthcare and social equity, not merely the senseless pursuit of obscene wealth and 100-storey vanity projects.

You claim that ‘irresponsible people are tarnishing the good name of Malaysia’. We beg to differ. In our opinion, the only one tarnishing the good name of Malaysia is the Malaysian government itself. The only traitors in this whole saga, are the politicians who have betrayed the citizens who elected them. And this is why Malaysians abroad are standing in solidarity with their fellow citizens back home to demand good governance, justice, accountability and transparency. Till then, please let Prime Minister Najib and his cabinet know that you are all under watch.

The Maguindanao Massacre Revisited

Image
Andal Ampatuan Jr
(Asia Sentinel) A year ago, the biggest massacre of journalists anywhere occurred in the Philippines.


One year ago today, 57 people including 32 journalists and other media professionals were murdered in the southern Philippine province of Maguindanao. It was the biggest massacre of journalists anywhere, at any time in history, according to press organizations.

It is questionable, however, if anybody will actually end up being punished for an astonishingly brutal action in which the journalists and others belonging to a convoy carrying the wife and two sisters of a local political candidate were marched out onto a hillside and shot down.

The trial, involving 196 defendants who allegedly were ordered to intercept a convoy carrying the wife and sisters of Esmael Mangagudadatu to register him as a political opponent of Governor Andal Ampatuan and kill everybody in it, is expected to last for years. At least 700 people are to be called to testify, including 200 prosecution witnesses and 300 defense witnesses.

The lead defendant is the Ampatuans' son and the former mayor of Datu Unsay, Andal Ampatuan Jr. The trial has been called "a major test for the rule of law and the fight against impunity in the Philippines" by Reporters Without Borders. Indeed. After Iraq, the Philippines remains the second-most dangerous country in the world for journalists. Since 1992, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists, 68 have been killed in the Philippines. Of those, 63 have never been solved. Two more – Joselito Agustin of DZJZ and Desidario Camangyan of Sunrise FM – two radio stations – have been killed so far in 2010. Thus if history is any guide, the Ampatuans and their fellow defendants may well walk free. The government in Manila has been roundly criticized for allowing Andal Jr. the luxury of an air-conditioned cell with many comforts.

Despite the shocking nature of the Maguindanao massacre, a year later, " the Ampatuans remain a powerful and dangerous force with which to be reckoned. For more than two decades, the Ampatuans operated unchecked by the national police, the military, and the Department of Justice," according to a report titled "They Own the People" which was released last week by Human Rights Watch.

According to the report, the Ampatuan private army is one of as many as 100 scattered around the Philippines. The armies have been condoned by successive national governments as a method of perpetuating themselves in power. However, the report notes, former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo allowed them to flourish as never before. Other reports have noted that in particular that voter fraud in Maguindanao played a major role in her second victory as president.

"Despite an initial flurry of activity after the November 23 killings, including some arrests, 126 suspects remain at large and the government's prosecution remains woefully slow and limited," the report continued. "Senior police and military officers who failed to act upon knowledge of Ampatuan crimes have not been investigated; investigations into the source of the family's weapons have lacked transparency and independence; and the national institutions responsible for accountability—the Justice Department, the Ombudsman's Office, and the Commission on Human Rights—have done nothing significant to address the situation. "What can we do?" asked one police officer. "This is an influential family."

Indeed, according to the report, the Ampatuan family and the private army they controlled have continued to kill almost with impunity. One member of the family's militia told Human Rights Watch he had killed a witness to the shootings with a grenade launcher. After he gave is statement, the militiaman was shot and killed on June 14, while awaiting inclusion in the government witness program.

"Amidst fears the perpetrators of this atrocity may escape justice, family, colleagues and media and human rights groups both in the Philippines and around the world are mobilizing to ensure the world remembers what happened," wrote Elisabeth Witchell, an impunity campaign consultant for the Committee to protect Journalists.

In an investigation titled Impunity On Trial in the Philippines and written by Shawn A. Crispin, the CPJ "has uncovered a disturbing repetition of the pattern seen in previous cases, one that has allowed the killers of Philippine journalists to go free time and again. Even as the Maguindanao case is being described by a top government official as a "litmus test" for the judicial system, CPJ has found that victims' families have been approached with bribes, witnesses have been intimidated and subjected to deadly violence, law enforcement officials have failed to coordinate activities, and forensic investigations have been deeply flawed."

President Benigno Aquino III, who was elected to replace Arroyo in June, has asked the court to allow live media coverage of the trial, saying that live media coverage of the Maguindanao massacre hearing would "be educational for the rest of the people to find out what actually transpired, the reasons behind the atrocity, and what steps should be done to prevent the same from happening again." Aquino also issued a proclamation declaring Nov. 23 as a National Day of Remembrance for the victims.

"I call on the Filipino people to solemnly bear the departed in their thoughts, and for all the citizens from all walks of life to commit, in solidarity, to the quest for justice for the victims," Aquino said.

Cabinet to query A-G over ‘black-eye’ case

The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 24 — The Najib administration has instructed two Cabinet ministers to question Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail over his alleged involvement in the infamous 1998 “black-eye incident” involving Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

The Malaysian Insider understands that the Cabinet’s decision came after former police officer Datuk Mat Zain Ibrahim claimed to have new information on the 12-year-old case that implicated Abdul Gani, the current Attorney-General.

“I’ve now been instructed (as a result of the Cabinet meeting), Datuk Rais (Minister of Information, Communications and Culture) and myself, to meet and speak to the Attorney-General and we are now waiting for him to come back from Mekah,” Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Aziz told The Malaysian Insider today.

Mat Zain, the former Kuala Lumpur CID chief, had, in an open letter on Monday to Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Ismail Omar, called for a full closure of the alleged police assault on Anwar, volunteering information that could “restore” police image and credibility.

Nazri said Cabinet wanted to hear what Abdul Gani had to say before taking action.

“We want to hear from the Attorney-General (regarding the contents of the open letter),” he said.

“This is a serious matter. If he (Mat Zain) is telling the truth, we would have to go into the details… but until then, there is no decision yet.”

In a statement yesterday, DAP leader Lim Kit Siang said he had met Nazri on the matter.

Nazri, who is minister in charge of Parliament, had told Parliament two weeks ago that he would refer the claims against the A-G to the Cabinet as soon as possible after the Dewan Rakyat rejected Lim’s motion to deduct RM10 from Abdul Gani’s salary for “failure to discharge his duties”.

“I said to him (Lim) that I would bring this matter up to the Cabinet two Fridays ago, which I did, with the support of Datuk Seri Utama Rais Yatim,” Nazri (left) said.

Mat Zain, the policeman who investigated the assault on Anwar, claimed that an independent panel that cleared Abdul Gani and former IGP Tan Sri Musa Hassan of fabricating evidence in the incident was unconstitutional.

In his statement, Mat Zain accused the country’s top lawyer of deceiving Cabinet over the independent panel.

He said there was no need for any royal commission of inquiry on the matter as the police were capable of resolving the case themselves.

Mat Zain also revealed that there had been an agreement between former IGP Tan Sri Rahim Noor, former Deputy IGP Tan Sri Norian Mai as well as Mat Zain on October 8, 1998, at 2.30pm that there would be “complete closure” to the black-eye case.

“It is important that I note that Rahim Noor was ready to take full responsibility in the black-eye incident, and his decision was made of his own accord,” said Mat Zain. “The closure of the case had been agreed to be done professionally, above board.”

Mat Zain said that Rahim was prepared to step down after the closure of the black-eye incident.

“But I found out that about 5-5.30pm on the same day, Allahyarham (the late) Tan Sri Mohtar Abdullah, along with the then Datuk Abdul Gani Patail (now Tan Sri), had met with Rahim Noor at his office. At 6pm, I was then told by Tan Sri Norian to ‘continue investigations like normal’.

“I then understood that the agreement that we had reached mere hours ago had been cancelled. I was shocked and upset, but who was I to say anything at the time,” said Mat Zain.

The former policeman also accused Abdul Gani of falsifying testimonies relating to the black-eye incident.

He said the longer the case remained unresolved, the longer innocent officers would be accused of being involved in a cover-up of the case.

In July 2008, Anwar filed a police report accusing Abdul Gani, Mat Zain, Musa (then a senior investigation officer in 1998) and Dr Abdul Rahman Yusof of falsifying a medical report on his black-eye case.

Rahim, the IGP in 1998, had admitted he assaulted Anwar following a royal commission of inquiry probe in 1999.

Perhalusi definisi hasutan

Utusan Malaysia 
Oleh ABDUL RAZAK IDRIS

HASUTAN ibarat cipan, tapir dan tenuk kerana walau di mana sahaja ia wujud, sama ada di dunia siber dan di dunia nyata ia tetap perkara yang sama.

Oleh yang demikian hasrat Kementerian Dalam Negeri untuk memperkenalkan garis panduan bagi menerangkan definisi kesalahan hasutan secara terperinci khasnya dalam konteks dunia siber perlu mengambil sama faktor kebebasan hak asasi rakyat negara ini untuk mendapatkan maklumat dan meluahkan pendapat selagi ia tidak mencetuskan keresahan kaum, agama dan kelompok tertentu.

Peruntukan perundangan sedia ada seperti Akta Percetakan, Akhbar dan Penerbitan 1984, Akta Penyiaran 1988, Akta Hasutan 1948 dan Akta Rahsia Rasmi secara umumnya membataskan maklumat-maklumat yang boleh dicetak dan diedarkan kepada orang ramai.

Namun zaman letusan teknologi maklumat bak Gunung Merapi yang memuntahkan debu beratus-ratus meter ke udara dan lelehan laharnya ibarat maklumat yang 'panas' sesungguhnya telah mewujudkan satu dunia baru dalam satu aspek kehidupan kita.

Dunia yang dipanggil dunia siber atau dunia maya sekali imbas saling tak tumpah seperti dunia realiti cuma bezanya dalam dunia baru ini semua orang bebas bercakap apa sahaja tanpa sekatan tali pita merah dan suntingan pihak tertentu.

Kebebasan dan 'keseronokan' ini sudah pasti akan hilang, apabila garis panduan baru diperincikan oleh Kementerian Dalam Negeri dengan kerjasama Kementerian Penerangan, Komunikasi dan Kebudayaan, Jabatan Peguam Negara dan Jabatan Perdana Menteri.

Penulis-penulis blog (blogger) dan pengguna laman sosial di dunia siber sudah mula membincangkan garis panduan yang sedang digubal. Pandangan bernas blogger mengenai isu ini sepatutnya turut diambil kira kerana definisi hasutan terlalu subjektif untuk ditafsirkan.

Sekadar memberi pendapat dalam sesuatu isu rasanya tidak salah kerana dalam dunia realitinya jika hasutan bersifat propaganda parti politik secara hakikinya ia lebih merbahaya.

Apabila kita di dunia siber, perbincangan dan luahan rasa hati terhadap sesuatu isu sudah pasti akan terpapar di skrin komputer. Apa yang menjadi masalah, jika luahan rasa itu dibaca oleh pihak ketiga dan penerimaan beliau menganggap ia sebagai satu bentuk hasutan kepada diri, organisasi, bangsa dan agamanya.

Ini yang perlu diperhalusi oleh pihak terbabit kerana sejak Koridor Raya Multimedia (MSC) diperkenalkan pada hujung milenium pada faktanya pihak berkuasa menjamin tidak menapis dunia siber. Ini termaktub dalam rang undang-undang jaminan yang dijanjikan oleh kerajaan Malaysia dengan syarikat-syarikat MSC.

Seksyen 3(3) Akta Komunikasi dan Multimedia 1998 juga mengisytiharkan bahawa tiada suatu pun peruntukan di bawah akta tersebut yang membenarkan sebarang penapisan maklumat berlaku.

Prinsip ini adalah berdasarkan pendapat bahawa pengawalan maklumat hanya akan memberikan kesan yang negatif kepada perkembangan teknologi komunikasi maklumat (ICT) yang canggih ini.

Hasutan di dunia nyata dan di dunia maya pada masa ini sama naik semakin membimbangkan atas dasar pihak terbabit memperjuangkan sesuatu dengan wadah masing-masing.

Kerajaan Barisan Nasional (BN) sedaya upaya meminimumkan kesan hasutan mengenai hak-hak Perlembagaan dan kontrak sosial dengan perkongsian kuasa yang bijak.

Langkah BN mewujudkan keahlian terus sebagai ahli BN adalah langkah proaktif mengelakkan hasutan secara hakiki dan maya. Semua pihak pasti akan didengar suara mereka di bawah satu bumbung BN dan diharap setiap perkara yang bersifat hasutan sebelum ini mampu dibincangkan secara akademik dan sistematik.

Dengan adanya garis panduan ini, ia akan mengelakkan mana-mana pihak daripada mengeksploitasi serta mempolitikkan sesuatu isu yang akhirnya akan mengakibatkan masyarakat berbilang kaum di negara ini berlaga angin sesama mereka.

Mungkin garis panduan dapat diperjelaskan oleh pihak kerajaan apakah bentuk, kaedah penyampaian maklumat yang mampu merosakkan fikiran orang awam secara keseluruhan dan tidak hanya melindungi kepentingan kumpulan tertentu semata-mata.

Apa yang penting hak kebebasan bersuara sedia ada sepatutnya tidak disalahgunakan. Jika wujud penyebaran maklumat palsu ataupun pihak pembangkang sesuatu kerajaan dan penyokong-penyokongnya menggunakan dunia siber untuk menyebarkan ideologi mereka, ia sebenarnya bukannya satu bentuk ancaman yang perlu dirisaukan.

Pihak kerajaan masih ada cara lain untuk mengatasinya, contohnya adalah dengan cara meningkatkan ilmu pengetahuan rakyat (e-pengetahuan) di dunia siber dan menyebarkan berita yang sahih di media bercetak seperti di akhbar Utusan Malaysia ini dan saluran televisyen yang lebih luas dari dunia siber yang hanya mampu diakses oleh rakyat yang mampu.

Dengan cara ini rakyat akan dapat mempertimbangkan kebenaran hakiki secara lebih matang lagi.

Sebaik-baiknya definisi hasutan ini diperbincangkan di forum selayaknya, kerana sikap tidak berhati-hati menangani bentuk garis panduan baru ini akan memberi kesan kepada jualan gajet teknologi yang semakin bercambah dewasa ini.

Gajet-gajet seperti komputer riba, telefon bimbit, pembantu digital peribadi (PDA) dan lain-lain gajet teknologi ICT sesungguhnya terdedah dengan perkara hasutan ini kerana dengan satu dua sentuhan di skrin 'kerja menghasut' mampu dilakukan dengan santai.

Terma hasutan dalam bentuk pernyataan hingga mencetuskan rusuhan antara kaum dan kumpulan tertentu perlu diperhalusi oleh pihak berkuasa dari saat ini agar keamanan negara secara total berjaya dikekalkan.

Apa yang penting setiap kaum di negara ini perlu menjaga sensitiviti masing-masing. Perbuatan menghasut hingga berlaku perkara yang buruk hanya akan merugikan kita semua. Kesan kepada hasutan amat buruk, kerana bukan sahaja dunia realiti akan musnah malahan dunia siber yang menjadi keseronokan berhubung itu sendiri hilang entah ke mana. Berkubur tanpa nisan.

South Korea president warns North

South Korea's president has threatened retaliation against North Korea if there is any further aggression against his country, just hours after scores of northern artillery shells hit a disputed island.

At least two soldiers were killed, and another 19 people injured, on Tuesday in what appeared to be one of the most serious border incidents since the 1950-53 Korean war.

"Given that North Korea still maintains an offensive attitude, I think our army, navy and air force will have to retaliate against any additional provocation with multifold firepower," Lee Myung-bak, South Korea's president, said after his government had convened in an underground war room during the incident.

"I think enormous retaliation should be made, to the extent that [North Korea] cannot make provocations again."

At least two of the people wounded in the artillery fire on Yeonpyeong island, close to a disputed maritime

border on the west of the Korean peninsula, were civilians, according to local media.

The South Korean military was placed on its highest state of alert and troops fired back with their own artillery. Sporadic firing by each side continued for more than an hour, according to the South's military, and fighter jets were deployed to the area.

'No additional forces'

However, the United States, a close ally of South Korea with about 28,000 military personnel stationed there, said it was too early to consider any military response to North Korea's attack.

"At this point it's premature to say that we're considering any action," Colonel Dave Lapan, a US defence department spokesman, said.

He said no additional US forces had been deployed to the region as a result of the North Korean artillery barrage.

"We're still monitoring the situation and talking with our allies," Lapan said, adding that Washington was "mindful" of which actions might exacerbate or cool tensions on the peninsula.

John Hemmings, a Korea expert from the Royal United Services Institute in the United Kingdom, told Al Jazeera that there was very little pressure that could be brought to bear on Pyongyang.

"In terms of sanctions, I think they have have ramped them up as far as they are prepared to go," he said.

"There is also no chance of taking any harder sort of military action as Seoul is within artillery range of the border.

"So I think at the moment it is going to be diplomatic pressure, they'll [South Korea and its backers] probably put their heads together and find some sort of reaction that is a hard one, but doesn't push them too far towards conflict."

Up to 70 houses and other structures on the island were set ablaze by the artillery shells forcing residents into underground shelters.

"It was like a war. My house has burned down," one resident said.

The Yellow Sea border was the scene of deadly naval clashes in 1999, 2002 and last November.

The two Koreas are still technically at war and tension rose sharply early this year after Seoul accused the North of torpedoing one of its navy vessels, killing 46 sailors. Pyongyang has angrily rejected the charge.

In late October, North and South Korean troops exchanged fire across their Cold War border, coinciding with a state of high alert for the South's military in the buildup to the G20 summit of world leaders in Seoul earlier this month.

North blames South

North Korea has blamed its southern neighbours for initiating the exchange of fire.

"Despite our repeated warnings, South Korea fired dozens of shells from 1pm ... and we've taken strong military action immediately," the North's official KCNA news agency said in a brief statement.

It did not elaborate whether North Korea had suffered any damage from the exchange of fire.

North Korea's supreme command later vowed "merciless military attacks with no hesitation if the South  Korean enemy dares to invade our sea territory by 0.001 mm".

South Korea said it was conducting military drills off the west coast, but that its firing exercises were not aimed towards the North.

"We were conducting usual military drills and our test shots were aimed toward the west, not the north," a South Korean military official said.

Yeonpyeong lies just south of the border declared by United Nations forces after the inconclusive war six decades ago, but north of where Pyongyang considers to be its sea border.

Don Kirk, a Seoul-based reporter with the Christian Science Monitor newspaper, told Al Jazeera that after the initial shock of the news of the artillery exchange life largely returned to normal in the South Korean capital.

"People are going about their business, this is a very commercially-inclined culture here, it is also a very high-tech culture ... they don't really like to focus on North Korea.

"They sort of think that problem is far away ... the general sense is this will calm down, life will go on as usual its just another episode.

"Whether that is true or not we're not totally sure as the South Koreans are supposed to stage more exercises out there in the Yellow Sea and its possible North Korea will choose to attack again."

Leadership succession

The firing comes after Kim Jong-Un, the little-known youngest son of Kim Jong-Il, was officially recognised as number two in North Korea's political system, clouding outsiders' view of its military and nuclear intentions.

Professor Kim Yong-Hyun of South Korea's Dongguk University said North Korea had staged an "intentional provocation to heighten cross-border tensions" and to unify its people during the leadership succession.

"It is also sending a strong message to the United States and the international community that the peninsula urgently needs a peace regime," to replace the uneasy 1953 armistice, he said.

The latest crisis also erupted as a US special envoy headed to China on Tuesday to seek its help in curbing North Korea's new nuclear project, revealed to US experts who described a sophisticated programme to enrich uranium.

Check 'hot money' inflow, urges MP

Will the DAP Government provide adequate land for Tamil Schools in Penang or will it just provide land to get off the hook?

(Malaysiakini) Several parents of children who study at a Tamil school in Batu Kawan handed over a memorandum to Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng today, asking for additional land to cater for the increasing number of students.

NONEThe parents want the state government to allocate another three acres so that the school can sit on five acres, which is the minimum for a fully functional and quality primary school, they said.
They lamented that the school - SJK (T) Ladang Batu Kawan - lacked proper facilities and space, and is so dilapidated that its 130 students are studying in 'barn-like conditions'.
Represented by K Kalaiselvam, the three-page memorandum stated that the Batu Kawan township, once fully developed, will have a population of 150,000, of which 20,000 are expected to be Indians.
"Given this, it is time to plan for a school large enough to cater for such a population; we believe that the student numbers will range from 800 to 1,000," said Kalaiselvam, who is also pro-tem state chairperson of the Human Rights Party.
"It is our belief that if the school is well built and well equipped, the student numbers will far exceed expectations," he added.
Education Ministry team
It is learnt that today the Education Ministry is sending a team from Putrajaya and along with local administrators, will be expediting the transfer of land allocated by the Penang Development Corporation in 2008 to the school trustees.
NONELast month, a Penang Education Department spokesperson told The Star that if the state government claimed that the land had been given for the purpose of constructing a school, then the state had to liaise with the federal government.
Batu Kawan MP P Ramasamy (right), who is also Deputy Chief Minister II, however said the land had already been handed over to the school's trustees in 2008.

He added that since the school was fully aided, it is under thejurisdiction of the federal government, and it is now up to them to decide when a building needs to be constructed.
The parents, however, have declined to meet with Ramasamy although he is their parliamentary representative and state exco for education.
Kalaiselvam said that politicians and civil servants of the entire spectrum have been "dangling this carrot" for far too long and the parents has had enough of all the playacting.

"They want to see some positive developments; enough of talk is what they are effectively now saying," he added.
NONEN. Ganesan, HRP advisor (right in photo), who accompanied the parents, said that about 100,000 young Indian children attend schools like SJK (T) Ladang Batu Kawan, and that is 50 percent of the future of the Indian community.
"In asking for a quality primary school, we are not talking here about funding or hardware, we are talking about the entire future of the Indian minority community in Malaysia," he said.
"If we allow these schools to remain in dilapidated condition, can you imagine the what impression it will make on the students?"

Ganesan said the state government often claims that it takes care of the needs of all citizens regardless of ethnicity.

"Here is a concrete situation, now please show in action what you say in words,"he added.
He added that HRP is currently conducting research to find out how many parents in the area would sent their children to the Tamil school if it was in good condition. "To date, 300 signatures and details of parents who said 'yes' have been collected."
Education's federal government's responsibility
Meanwhile, Komtar assemblyperson Ng Wei Aik who received the document from the group on behalf of Lim, said that education comes under the jurisdiction of the federal government.
penang attack on anti isa forum 211110 ng wei aik pcNg (left), who is Lim's political secretary, said that it is the federal government which approves the construction of the school.
"I hope the group does not press us too much, if they do, it shows they might have an extra agenda; they should also pressure the federal government," he added.
Ng said the state would look into the matter but urged for 'realistic' demands.
"There is a possibility that we can acquire the land for them but we need to justify it, there is no issue of us neglecting their plight," he added.

Anwar has lost the people's trust, says Dr Mahathir

KEMAMAN: Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the international community is beginning to doubt Anwar Ibrahim and as such the government should not worry or prevent him from going abroad to stop the opposition leader from continuing to insult Malaysia.
Furthermore, said the former prime minister, if Anwar were prevented from going abroad, it would create anger against the government, and the government would be facing various allegations.

"We should not prevent him from going abroad. I don't think we should be scared of him. (If) we do that, people will be more angry with us, hate the government. Then, people will say all kinds of things against the government.

"It's all right, I think the other people too no longer trust him, who wants to believe. To me, I don't care. They are not the ones who will be voting, the voters are the people here," he told reporters after visiting the Eastern Pacific Industrial Corporation (Epic) Berhad, at the Kemaman Supply Base, Teluk Kalong Industrial Area, here today.

Mahathir earlier gave a lecture entitled "Challenges Faced by Muslims Currently" at the Diamond Hall, Kemaman Municipal Council, organised by the Terengganu Development Institute in collaboration with the Terengganu Community Development Agency, attended by almost 5,000 civil servants and members of the community in the area.

Also present were Menteri Besar Ahmad Said and his wife, Norliza Mahmud and state legislative assembly speaker Tengku Putera Tengku Awang.

PKR should be dissolved
During the debate at the Dewan Rakyat yesterday, several backbenchers suggested that Anwar be barred from going abroad to prevent him from continuing to criticise Malaysia.

Commenting further, Mahathir said the more often Anwar went abroad to criticise his own country, the PKR advisor would create a more negative image for himself.

Mahathir said it was time that PKR supporters and members joined Umno because it was proven that the PKR was created merely for the interest of certain individuals instead of championing the interest of the people.

He said the party should be dissolved immediately because its existence would only divide the Malays and Muslims in the country.

"Whoever is responsible for dividing the Muslims should be totally rejected instead of making him a leader to the extent that he would create problems among the Muslims themselves.

"Muslims should unite in a mammoth party (Umno) which had been playing its role all this while to develop the country and champion the cause of the people.

"Surely we don''t want a leader who does not know how to serve the people but only wants to become a prime minister," he said.

There's time still for general election

Mahathir also said that the success of the Barisan Nasional in the by-elections in Galas, in Kelantan and Batu Sapi in Sabah recently should not be used as a yardstick for the government to hold a general election in the near future.

He said the Barisan Nasional government still had a lot of time to plan a strategy to win the support of the people so that more people would return to the party.

"Our victory in a particular area cannot be used as a measure (of support). Are the factors for the BN victory in that area the same as in the other areas?

"So, I think the leadership knows about this matter," he said.

On talks that the 13th general election might be held simultaneously with the Sarawak state election next year, Mahathir said the peninsula had a lot of time and there was no need to rush and have the elections at the same time.

"If I were the prime minister, I would wait first," he said.

He said Sarawak had no choice because it must hold the state election next year when the mandate for the present government ended.

"But here, we have a choice," he added.

- Bernama

PAC sings a different tune: 'Sime Darby not our problem'

By Patrick Lee - Free Malaysia Today

KUALA LUMPUR: The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has washed its hands of the RM2.1 billion Sime Darby fiasco because it considers the GLC's investments as a private matter.

This about-turn came after the PAC had earlier said that it would be looking into the huge losses suffered by Sime Darby.
"Sime Darby is a subsidiary of PNB (Permodalan Nasional Berhad), and its primary stakeholder is EPF (Employee Provident Fund).

"Both cannot be classified as government bodies as their finances come from individual investors," said PAC chairman Azmi Khalid.

"EPF's funds come from its shareholders while PNB's funds come from private investors.
"Therefore, PAC is not qualified to investigate Sime Darby's colossal losses," he said, adding that the PAC arrived at this decision at its Oct 27 meeting.

The decision comes as a surprise, especially after the PAC had said in June that it would be talking to Sime Darby officials, citing it as a matter of public interest.

Sime Darby suffered losses up to RM2.1 billion, incurred by its energy & utilities division (E&U) this year. It said it would resort to civil suits to recover these losses.

However, it did not mention who it would be suing. Sime Darby is also being investigated over the matter by the MACC and the Securities Commission (SC).

Tuna scandal


In an unrelated development, the PAC has questioned both the Ministry of Higher Education and the National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN) over irregularities listed in the 2009 Auditor General's Report.
Azmi said the PAC talked to officials from the ministry over the Additional Food Programme and will also be speaking to the Malaysian International Tuna Port's (MITP) management next week over its RM80-million loss.

While, Azmi, who is also the Padang Besar MP, promised a PAC report soon, he was tight-lipped on the outcome of the investigations as he said the full report was not ready.

Umno hadapi krisis kepercayaan serius

(Harakah) - Naib Presiden PAS, Datuk Mahfuz Omar mendakwa tindakan BN membuka keahlian langsung dan bersekutu membuktikan parti itu berdepan krisis kepercayaan rakyat yang serius.

Mengulas 'perubahan' baru dalam BN itu, Ahli Parlimen Pokok Sena itu juga yakin ianya tidak membantu BN memulihkan semula imej mereka.

"Itu bermakna bahawa BN telah mengaku parti-parti komponen mereka termasuk Umno, berdepan dengan krisis kepercayaan dari pelbagai kaum khususnya generasi muda," katanya kepada Harakahdaily semalam.

Beliau mengulas demikian berdasarkan pandangan Ahli Majlis Tertinggi Umno, Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah, yang mendakwa perubahan itu bagi membolehkan pertubuhan atau individu yang tidak suka kepada parti komponen BN, menyertai BN sebagai ahli bersekutu.

Namun katanya, adalah mustahil jika satu pihak itu tidak menyukai mana-mana komponen BN, akan menjadi ahli bersekutu BN.

"Sebab dia tak suka pemimpin Umno, bagaimana dia nak sertai BN yang Umno sendiri terajui.

"Kalau dia tak suka Chua Soi Lek, macam mana dia nak masuk BN sedangkan dia tahu Chua ada dalam tu," katanya.

Selain itu, beliau juga tidak melihat perkara tersebut satu ancaman kepada Pakatan Rakyat khususnya kepada PAS.

Ini kerana, NGO atau individu yang mahu menyertai BN sememangnya menyokong parti itu dari asal, dan bukan pertambahan sokongan baru kepada BN.

"Kita tengok Tan Sri Rozali Ismail bila dia menyertai BN, dia tu Umno dah, bukan pertambahan baru pada BN," tambahnya mengulas pengumuman Rozali membawa Gabungan Wawasan Generasi Felda (GWGF) menyertai BN.

"Ini tidak tambah kekuatan BN, dan tidak mengurangkan kekuatan Pakatan," katanya.

The Third Force: Crisis or opportunity?

If the Third Force also has the good intention of ending BN’s rule, Pakatan Rakyat should by all means engage with them to field good candidates in the coming General Election. By good candidates, it means that they are morally upright and financially sound. They must also be honourable citizens who are well-known for their contributions to the well-being of society.

Selena Tay, Harakah

John F. Kennedy once said, "when written in Chinese, the word ‘crisis’ is composed of two characters – one represents ‘danger’ and the other represents ‘opportunity’".

This applies to the current situation facing Pakatan Rakyat (PR) as there has been talk that a 'third force' will be contesting in the coming 13th General Elections. Talk is also rife that candidates from this Third Force group will contest under the Pakatan banner but they will be Independent if voted in as MPs in Parliament.

So, is this going to be a crisis or opportunity for Pakatan?

Frankly speaking, this writer is of the view that although this is not really too good for Pakatan, it is not too bad either if the Third Force candidates are Pakatan-friendly. This is because if they are candidates of good-calibre, why not? After all, a few of the opposition candidates who contested in 2008 have been proven to be inefficient and coupled with their numerous personal problems have turned BN-friendly.

In situations of war, we must not be too rigid in our thinking. This is aptly illustrated in the famous military classic history summarised below:

In Romance of the Three Kingdoms, there was a cruel and powerful warlord named Cao Cao who had great military might. Another warlord named Liu Bei had just lost a great battle to Cao Cao and was feeling very down and dejected. His advisors then advised him to seek out the counsel of the master strategist called Zhuge Liang. Zhuge Liang who believed in the cause of justice and freedom from oppression advised Liu Bei to forge an alliance with another warlord called Sun Quan. Liu Bei did not really like Sun Quan but he had no choice as he was short on resources. To cut a long story short, the alliance of Liu Bei and Sun Quan finally defeated Cao Cao in the famous Battle Of Red Cliff.

In over 1,600 years of war in Ancient China, many military strategies have been recorded for posterity as military treatises for future references and study. One of the greatest lessons learnt in war is that situations on the battleground are very fluid, changes occur very quickly, unexpected problems crop up and therefore we have to re-adapt and re-adjust accordingly. Many times too, plans needed to be changed at the 11th hour and alliances must be forged whether we like it or not.

There is a well-known saying which goes like this: ‘the enemy of my enemy is my friend’. In simpler terms it is summed up as thus: ‘we must unite to fight against the same common enemy’.

If the Third Force also has the good intention of ending BN’s rule, Pakatan Rakyat should by all means engage with them to field good candidates in the coming General Election. By good candidates, it means that they are morally upright and financially sound. They must also be honourable citizens who are well-known for their contributions to the well-being of society.

While the Third Force is busy looking for potential candidates, I would like to advise Pakatan Rakyat to be doing the same now. If PR has good candidates, it will have stronger bargaining power with the 3rd Force. We don’t want last-minute opportunists using the Pakatan banner to contest in the elections only to serve their own selfish interests after gaining victory.

By negotiating with the Third Force to field their candidates under the PR banner in strategic locations in a one-to-one fight with BN, Pakatan have much to gain from this alliance.

There is no point for PR to be stubborn in fielding their own candidate if the quality of the candidate is pathetic resulting in a 3-cornered fight which will only benefit BN. Therefore, this writer thinks now an opportunity has presented itself for PR to have access to a larger pool of able and credible candidates by forging an alliance with this Third Force.

At the end of the day, the end result must be a victory for the Pakatan side and in order to achieve this there must a certain amount of compromise from the Third Force and also from Pakatan which will result in a win-win situation for both and a win against BN.

Perhaps those who read this article will not agree with this writer but this is as sound a military strategy as can be hammered out considering the circumstances of the current political scenario.

Selena Tay is a member of PAS Supporters Congress (DHPP).

Sorry no news

On Saturday, 27th November 2010, we shall be holding a MCLM committee meeting to brief the committee members about the latest development. After that I can then announce what it is we are up to.

NO HOLDS BARRED

Raja Petra Kamarudin

My normal two articles a day have been reduced to no articles in two days. Even my series in The Corridors of Power about the Shah Alam hospital has been temporarily halted.

Sorry about that. As I had mentioned earlier, Haris Ibrahim, who arrived on Saturday morning, is staying with me for about ten days and we are going though the strategic planning and the Mission and Vision of the Malaysian Civil Liberties Movement (MCLM).

There have been some exciting developments, which I will brief you later once things firm up a bit more.

On Saturday, 27th November 2010, we shall be holding a MCLM committee meeting to brief the committee members about the latest development. After that I can then announce what it is we are up to.

There shall be no secrets and things will be done with the utmost transparency. This is the commitment I give you.

Till then stay tuned and I shall keep you abreast of developments as they unfold.

Till later.

DNBN Kuburkan BN : Returning the judiciary to the rakyat

By Haris Ibrahim,

As a young 7-year old child, sitting on the stairs of a double-storey government quarters and listening to legal practitioner-uncles narrate their tales, no doubt embellished, that would put many a Bollywood drama today to shame, of court room battles , my imagination was fired.

Still too immature to fully understand notions of justice, yet childishly grappling with a somewhat unrefined understanding that words, buttressed with raw, unpretentious passion, could inspire men and women to greater things, I saw these uncles, not as men of the law, but as gladiators reminiscing past battles to set right many wrongs.

From then on, there was no doubting what I wanted to do with my life.

Last Saturday, that 7-year old, now a greying 51-year old man, flew into London where, some 22 years before, he had taken tutelage to ready himself for the gladiator’s role he had long dreamed of.

Those 22 years, though, had taught him an important lesson : that in the arena in which the gladiators of the law sought to right the wrongs of the land, one component was indispensable.

The impartial judge.

The judge who could rise above his or her own prejudices, honestly evaluate the evidence, faithfully interpret and apply the law, and, most importantly, in full knowledge that he or she, too, must one day be judged, endeavour to do justice, without fear or favour.

Since the case of the 4 apostates in the Kota Baru High Court in February, 2001, I have become increasingly conscious that our courts lack this vital ingredient.

In July, 2004, representing the women NGOs in the Shamala case, I sat dumbfounded as Justice Faiza ordered that the two children, then aged 2 and 4, be placed in the custody of the Hindu mother and, in the same breath, ordered the mother that as she raised and nurtured those two young lives, she was not to in any way howsoever, expose them to her Hindu faith.

I cannot imagine that there was anyone in court that day who, understanding the full purport of the order, did not envisage that before the same could be drawn up and affixed with the seal of the court, Shamala would leave the jurisdiction of the court, with children in tow, in search of justice and compassion.

She and her children found none in Justice Faiza that morning.

On 12th November, 2010, cross-appeals from both Shamala and her husband from the several decisions by Justice Faiza came before the Federal Court for consideration and determination.

Also before the Federal Court was the matter of the husband’s objection to Shamala’s appeals being heard, he contending that she having committed contempt of the orders of Justice Faiza by her having removed the children from the jurisdiction of the court, thus depriving him his visitation rights, she ought not to be heard on her appeals.

The husband’s argument was that none of Shamala’s appeals ought be heard until she has purged her contempt.

She should not have the ears of their Lordships whilst she was still in contempt of Faiza’s orders by remaining outside of jurisdiction, so the argument would have been.

Malaysiakini reports that by a unanimous decision, the Federal Court allowed the husband’s preliminary objection.

I do not know what arguments were taken to counter the stand of the husband, but I want to ask the five judges of the Federal Court and Justice Faiza this.

Please ask your mothers, your wives and your daughters if they would have done any differently from Shamala if they had been at the receiving end of an order like that of Justice Faiza’s?

If they had been allowed custody of their young children but ordered never to expose them to their respective way of lives, would they have submitted to the full force of such orders?

Or would they, too, like Shamala, have taken flight in search of justice elsewhere?

Malaysiakini reported on 12th November that, in the Federal Court, Chief Justice Zaki said :


“To grant her further opportunity would encourage persons like her to commit contempt against the court, with the hope that the court will give him or her the opportunity to correct it. There is no reason to defer any more time. The law and order of the court is meant to be respected, and complied with, and not to be looked down or disdained”.

The pronouncement of the Federal Court in Shamala’s case has served to confirm what I have felt for some time now : the average citizen can no longer look to the courts for justice.

I am convinced that the judiciary can only be returned to the people as their final bastion when an alternative government, led by a prime minister who is not motivated by hopes of re-election at the next polls, but by the need to put in place vital reforms during his tenure, is installed after the next general election.

I have therefore decided to hang up my robes, cease legal practise, and devote myself to working with the rakyat in the coming months to establish a new government and have installed a reform-minded prime minister after the 13th General Election.

12 Buses of “Protesters”, “PKR Members” or “Tourists” At PKR HQ ???

Will Selangor Speaker Teng Be Ousted From Selangor DAP?

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 23 (Bernama) -- After the highly-charged Perak DAP Convention recently, Sunday's Selangor DAP polls will be keenly watched by political observers as two rival factions battle for control of the party in the state.

Over 1,000 delegates will decide the fate of the contenders led by Selangor State Executive Councillor Teresa Kok and another group headed by Selangor State Assembly speaker Teng Chang Khim.

Party sources said they were keen to see whether Kok, who is said to be backed by the state leadership and national leaders, would be able to wipe out Teng's supporters, who are mostly party veterans and those deemed "sidelined" by the national leadership.

"It will be interesting to see how many of Teng's supporters are able to be retained in the state committee. While we don't see any problem for Teng to be picked, the question is how many of his supporters will make it," said a division leader who declined to be identified.

During the state convention on Sunday, members will elect 15 people to the state committee, who in turn will elect among themselves the office bearers for the next two-year term.

At the recent Perak Convention, state deputy chairman and Ipoh Barat MP Kulasegaran was booted out from the state committee along with his supporters.

The current Selangor state committee is headed by Ean Yong Hian Wah while the deputy is Tony Pua. The vice chairmans are Kannan Thangarasu and Charles Anthony Santiago.

Party insiders said Kok's faction comprises Ean Yong, Pua, Lau Weng Sang, Tiew Way Keng, Lee Kee Hiong and Ronnie Liu while Teng's camp includes Ng Suee Lim, M. Batumalai and T. Kannan.

"Only Santiago, the Klang Member of Parliament Santiago and assemblyman and lawyer M. Manoharan and assemblywoman Hannah Yeoh are neutral. This explains why their names appear in the candidates list of both camps," a leader said.

Previously, former state organising secretary Tee Boon Hock was on Kok's group, but following his sacking from the party, his supporters, who called themselves as the Justice Reform Group, have thrown their support behind Teng.

Last month, a group aligned to Tee swept various posts during the Klang DAP divisional election as well as other division posts in the state, a clear signal that "more is in-store" during the state election this Sunday.

According to National DAP publicity chief Pua, Sunday's election would be particularly interesting as there had been an increase in the number of delegates following DAP's branches in Selangor increasing from 40 to 140 after the last general election in 2008, where the opposition pact of Parti Keadilan Rakyat-DAP-PAS took over the state government.

"In term of delegates, it has increased by more than 700, with total delegates for this Sunday's polls now reaching about 980 delegates," he said, adding that each branch would be sending seven delegates.

However, Pua, downplayed the intensity of Sunday's election, despite heavy campaigning on ground and through social networking sites such as Facebook, blogs and more traditionally, leaflets, apart from face-to-face meeting sessions through dinners.

"It's a friendly contest. It's just a continuation every two years. After that, we will work together again," he said.

Parliament leak an “act of God”: Nazri

The leak in Parliament – yet again – is an act of God, says Nazri, pointing out that the building is old. Actually it just reflects the lack of a culture of maintenance or worse, plain incompetence.


 



Go ask the JKR, Nazri says, after being repeatedly questioned by journalists. Part of the problem, he said, is that the building was not designed for air-conditioning.
Aiyah, if the government cannot stem the leaks in Parliament, how to build a nuclear power plant? Too bad they can’t use the OSA to plug these parliamentary leaks!
Isn’t it poetic justice that the lack of a culture of maintenance has come back to haunt these BN law-makers?