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Saturday, January 15, 2011

Has 'Interlok' suitability ever been reviewed?

COMMENT (Malaysiakini)It would be tedious to go into the many comments on the controversy surrounding the adoption of the book 'Interlok' as a secondary school text book, for the main reason that the discussion missed the more important questions and issues involved. It is therefore necessary to put the work into perspective.

NONEAccording to the National Writers Association (Gapena) secretary, the novel won a literary award in 1967 and was subsequently adopted as a social history text book in the 197Os.

The reason for selecting a novel (“a story about imaginary people and events”, Oxford Dictionary) was that 10 years after independence there was the felt need to insert questions for national integration in the school curriculum for the fledgling new generation of Malayans.
Also, the book at that time was amongst the very few stories which supposedly included representatives of the three ethnic groups - Malay, Chinese and Indian - rather than discussing just one community at a time as in most contemporary works.

But, that having been said, the adoption of an impressionistic novel involving stories about imaginary people and their manners and morals, as a text book for required reading and now further adopted as a Malay literature examination text as well, does not meet the standards to qualify for such inclusion on methodological and academic grounds. 

This is not the place to go into details, but there is no question that the 'validity' (accuracy based on research generated tested facts) as well as 'reliability' (repeatedly tested against other references such as foot notes) is absolutely necessary before any book can be accepted as meeting the rigorous requirements for excellence and academic standards for inclusion as a text book.

gapena lodges police report 01This is not simply a “literature issue” such as pointed out by the president of Gapena in a statement explaining why some Malay NGOs plan to defend the book.
On the contrary, it concerns a presentation on race relations in the political context of how the Malays, Chinese and Indians supposedly managed to relate to each other under early colonialism, and accordingly has considerable significance for questions of national integration in the present-day context. 

Indeed, it cannot be overemphasised that such seemingly sociological observations and meanings, if properly presented, can be and are vital and pivotal towards a better understanding not only of the early process of social integration, but more especially how they led to social “disintegration” as well.

Ministry at fault

The author himself should not be blamed for the highly-charged negative criticism among certain Malaysians. Indeed, it has been pointed out that the Education Ministry officials directly involved should be made answerable for making an unacceptable decision that can be regarded as negligent. 

Indeed, this is all the more so, considering that the book had not been reviewed for its suitability for over 30 years and is now apparently being “upgraded” as required reading for another examination-based text book as well.

dewan bahasa dan pustaka building 250804The Dewan Bahasa Dan Pustaka is also partially responsible for not having this work reevaluated for publication.
Perhaps the officials, who seem particularly adept at doing this for less important works, do not have the capacity or capability to perform this function in the complex area of race and ethnic relations. 

Or alternatively, it might be the case of over emphasising other areas such as the sale of its books where, as I recall, even Dr Mahathir Mahathir is reported as saying the Dewan did very well indeed!

Finally, it is most regrettable that excellent work done for the doctorate degree thesis by Malaysians at local as well as overseas universities in race and ethnic relations do not seem to have been adopted for school text books instead.
It is not difficult to identify suitable work from the publications of some of these theses that are available at leading book shops.
COLLIN ABRAHAM can perhaps qualify as a product of 1 Malaysia - if ever there was one. Beginning a career as the first UM graduate to work as a field assistant in the Social Welfare Department, he moved on to become the director in Malacca and to social development consultant research postings in the Johor/Pahang Regional Master Plans, in Felda, and in rural development. He later joined USM to lecture on ethnic and race relations from where he retired as associate professor. He is the author of the 'Finest Hour: Malaysia-MCP Peace Accord in Perspective'.

India to cut forces in Kashmir

Most armed groups active in the Indian-administered part of Kashmir favour secession to Pakistan [AFP]

India plans to reduce its security forces by a quarter in the Himalayan region of Kashmir to ease conditions for locals in one of the world's most militarised areas, a senior official has said.
The announcement made by G K Pillai, India's home secretary, was intended to rebuild fractured public goodwill after a violent uprising by young  people in the Muslim-majority region last year.
Speaking at a university seminar in New Delhi on Friday, Pillai said the government was looking to cut troops by "25 per cent in 12 months from populated areas."
"If we can manage with local police, that would be the most ideal situation, and this is one of the confidence-building measures - that people don't get harassed by the over-presence of security forces," Pillai said.
"If peace comes, if violence is not there, people are comfortable, we can gradually reduce our presence and make sure that all forces are there only at the border for preventing infiltration."
The unexpected announcement was apparently intended at rebuilding fractured public goodwill after a violent uprising by young people in the Muslim-majority region last year.
Full withdrawal
But Syed Ali Shah Geelani, a Kashmiri separatist leader, dismissed the government's plan, and said India was trying to "hoodwink" the international community by announcing such things.
"I will be only satisfied when all the Indian forces stationed in Kashmir are withdrawn," Geelani said.
"The Indian government is always trying to fool Kashmiris by promising troop withdrawals but nothing changes on the ground. Violence and injustice continues in the valley."
The insurgency against Indian rule in Kashmir has plagued the restive region for almost two decades, claiming more than 47,000 lives, according to the Indian government.
Last summer, Kashmir was rocked by violent demonstrations that left about 114 people dead, mostly in firing by police and paramilitary forces.
However, violence in the region has declined since India and Pakistan began a peace process in 2004, aimed at resolving all pending disputes including Kashmir. The region is divided between the two rivals, who both claim it in full.
Kashmir is split along a UN-monitored line of control and has been the trigger for two wars fought between the neighbours since they declared independence in 1947.
The majority of armed groups active in the Indian-administered part of the region favour its secession from India to Pakistan.
'US involvement'
On Friday Zamir Akram, Pakistan's ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva, said the United States could get involved in finding a solution to the Kashmir dispute by helping to allay Pakistan's fears about India.
He pointed out Pakistan's concerns about its bigger neighbour, that stretch from nuclear weapons to energy supply, a strategic build-up in the region, and of being surrounded to the west and east by neighbours with which it has tensions, Afghanistan and India.
He said attempts by India and Pakistan to negotiate a settlement were derailed or lost momentum after 2006 because of Hindu and Muslim "extremist" groups in each country.
In December 2009, the Indian army said it had pulled out 30,000 troops from Kashmir, one of the biggest military drawdowns in a decade.
India also announced an eight-point confidence-building initiative in September to help calm the June protests, which included scaling back security, offering talks and giving compensation to families of dead protesters.
However, any lasting peace in the region is unlikely without the involvement of Pakistan; whatever solution India comes up with may only help douse the current round of protests and not resolve the separatist revolt.

Last Happy Ponggal for Sentul Shanmugam as his three generation cow farm is slated to be “ethnically cleansed”

untitled
And despite HRP’s letter of appeal to Prime Minister Najib Razak and Agriculture Minister Noh bin Omar over one year ago, Shanmugam and his family is yet to be given an alternative piece of land.
But 442,000 almost all malay muslim farmers had been granted a ten acre land in Felda, Felcra and Risda alone by the racist UMNO ragime.
Happy Ponggal to you too Prime Minister Najib Razak.
“Rights not Mercy”
P.Uthayakumar
New Scan-20110115142119-00001

NATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS CONFERENCE ON THE FUTURE OF MARGINALIZED & MINORITY COMMUNITIES IN MALAYSIA. 23/1/11 Kuala Lumpur

2075782158_052d436440 
For the first time in Malaysia, marginalized and minority communities are getting together to make a joint statement about the centrifugal forces in the race based majoritarian system marginalizing them and about how the time has come for the realignment of the forces to create a new and more vibrant Malaysia.


This conference is jointly organized by:

• Common Interest Group (CIGMA) of
  Sabah and Sarawak
• Borneo  Resources Institute (BRI)
Sarawak Dayak National Union (SDNU)
Sarawak Dayak Iban Association (SADIA)
• HINDRAF
• Human Rights Foundation, London


The express purpose of this conference is to review and assess  progress that has been made and not made in the protection and development of the marginalized and minority communities in Malaysia since independence and the root causes of these marginalizing tendencies.
Six papers will be presented along with live testimonies.
Notable personalities including Dr Jeffrey Kitingan, Dr John Brian,  Mr. Sambulingam (HINDRAF National Coordinator) and Mr.Mark Bujang will be delivering papers.

This is an open invitation to all to come and be part of creating

something uniquely Malaysian.

Venue: KL Chinese Assembly Hall     No participation fees
              1 Jalan Maharajalela,                                  
              50150 Kuala Lumpur          

Time :  9.00am to 3.00pm
             
Date: 23rd January 2011.                           
Further info: 010 277 4096

Be a participant in the making of Malaysian history. Watch the remaking of an aspect of Malaysian Society so far regarded as peripheral. Come and listen to and contribute to these groups as they come together to assume their rightful place.

“Rights not Mercy”

S.JAYATHAS

National Information Coordinator

HINDRAF Makkal Sakthi

Putrajaya denies order to lower azan volume


Jamil has dismissed online reports of the purported complaint by the 'MCA' lawyer as a political ploy - file pic
KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 15 — The federal government confirmed today that it did not issue any orders to stop loudspeakers from being used in a city mosque during the call for azan, after an “MCA youth member” had apparently “demanded” that the mosque lower the azan volume. 
Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom, who is Minister in the Prime Minister’s department in charge of religious affairs, admitted today that the ministry had received a complaint letter from the “MCA man”, who is a lawyer. 
The ministry, he said, had sent officials to the mosque to investigate but found that the individual’s complaint was a “non-issue.” 
“There have been no written instructions, it’s just that we received a complaint letter from the complainant. Upon receiving the letter, we went to the mosque to have a look for ourselves. 
“Actually, there is no issue here...no orders have been issued. The mosque committee did not do anything, and that’s the reality of the situation,” Jamil told The Malaysian Insider
He also dismissed online reports of the “MCA” lawyer’s complaint as “political tactic”. 
“This is a political game which is being spun by some people who want to create tension between Muslims and non-Muslims. This is political, we have not issued any orders on this,” Jamil told The Malaysian Insider
According to the minister, only the Federal Territory Islamic Department (Jawi) has the power to issue such an order. 
“Even Jawi has not issued anything on the matter,” added Jamil. 
Jawi director Datuk Che Mat Che Ali said recently that no directive was issued to the mosque here to lower the volume of its loudspeakers. 
The Malaysian Insider understands that the “MCA member” has now “moved away” from his own home in Pantai Hill Park, which is approximately one kilometre from the mosque. 
The “MCA member” has been accused of penning a letter to the Prime Minister’s office (PMO) on December 20 last year, complaining about the volume of the Muslim’s “azan” or the call to prayer blared every morning over the loudspeakers at a mosque near his residence. 
His letter had sparked an outrage among the Muslim community, leading to a protest by members of welfare group Pekida and Malay rights group Perkasa outside Masjid al-Ikhlasiah in Kampung Kerinchi yesterday afternoon. The group also called for the MCA man to be arrested under the ISA for threatening national harmony and demanded that he issued an open apology to the Muslim community. 
They distributed the fax purportedly sent by the MCA member to PMO where he revealed that he has been a party member since 1998. 
He also said that he has been living in Pantai Hill Park for five years and was roused in the mornings by the mosque’s call for prayers. 
“Several months ago, I hear the sound from the mosque to be very loud until that it woke me every morning at 5.45am,” the letter read. 
“I respect the position of Islam as the country’s official religion under the Federal Constitution but my right to sleep, rest and pray in peace should also be respected. 
“I am of the view that loudspeakers in any house of worship of any religion should be controlled by the authorities through clear and scientific rules like the calculation of decibels, and should not flout the law. 
“Like in my hometown of Seremban, the sounds from the mosque are softer and more controlled,” he continued. 
It is understood that the man identified had once worked for a former MCA president who was also a Cabinet member. 
The man could not be contacted for confirmation that he had written the letter, which was carbon copied to several ministers in PMO. 
The mosque concerned is situated near a new commercial development area called Bangsar South, and was first opened 30 years ago, while the lawyer only moved to the Malay-majority neighbourhood about five years ago. Pantai Dalam used to be dominated by squatters and low-cost flats but has seen the development of luxury apartments and commercial property in recent years. 
The Muslim call for prayer first became a political issue in 2008 when Selangor executive councillor Teresa Kok was arrested under the Internal Security Act (ISA) for allegedly asking a Puchong mosque to stop playing the azan over its loudspeaker. 
Kok, who was released a week after her arrest, denied the allegation while the mosque’ committee members also came forward to defend the Selangor DAP chairman

Koh warns against turning ‘azan’ dispute into ‘big issue’


KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 15 — Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon downplayed the ongoing “azan” dispute today, urging all parties not to turn the incident into a “big issue” as it was currently being addressed at the local level. 
The Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of unity however told reporters that he had not personally seen the letter purportedly sent by an MCA man to the government last month, urging authorities to lower the volume of the daily “azan” blared on loudspeakers of a mosque in Kampung Kerinchi. 
“I have not seen this letter. Let me look at it and then I’ll comment. 
“But on the ground, they are already working on how to settle it so if we can allow them to work rather than make it into a big issue and to start quarrelling in the media,” he said after launching a book by Gerakan secretary-general Teng Chang Yeow here this morning. 
Koh (picture) refused to divulge further information on the matter but expressed confidence that the angry parties in the dispute would eventually “settle down”. 
“This is one issue and most of the time, it gets settled. 
“Of course there are emotions but I am sure that after the initial emotions, people will settle down and both sides will accept. 
“This is the 1 Malaysia spirit — to accept differences and to be united. The issue should not be flared up,” he said. 
A Chinese lawyer, purportedly a youth leader from MCA, has been accused of penning a letter to the Prime Minister’s office (PMO) on December 20 last year, complaining about the volume of the Muslim’s “azan” blared every morning over the loudspeakers at a mosque near his residence. 
His letter had sparked an outrage among the Muslim community, leading to a protest by members of welfare group Pekida and Malay rights group Perkasa outside Masjid al-Ikhlasiah in Kampung Kerinchi yesterday afternoon. 
The group had also called for the MCA man to be arrested under the ISA for threatening national harmony and demanded that he issued an open apology to the Muslim community. 
During their protest, they distributed the fax purportedly sent by the MCA member to PMO where he revealed that he has been a party member since 1998. 
He also said that he has been living in Pantai Hill Park for five years and was roused in the mornings by the mosque’s call for prayers. 
“Several months ago, I hear the sound from the mosque to be very loud until that it woke me every morning at 5.45am,” the letter read. 
“I respect the position of Islam as the country’s official religion under the Federal Constitution but my right to sleep, rest and pray in peace should also be respected. 
“I am of the view that loudspeakers in any house of worship of any religion should be controlled by the authorities through clear and scientific rules like the calculation of decibels, and should not flout the law. 
“Like in my hometown of Seremban, the sounds from the mosque are softer and more controlled,” he continued. 
It is understood that the man identified had once worked for a former MCA president who was also a Cabinet member. 
The man could not be contacted for confirmation that he had written the letter, which was carbon copied to several ministers in PMO, including Koh. 

MCA leaders have since pleaded ignorance over the involvement of a youth member in the issue, many claiming that no formal complaint had been lodged against the man. 
The mosque concerned is situated near a new commercial development area called Bangsar South, and was first opened 30 years ago, while the lawyer only moved to the Malay-majority neighbourhood about five years ago. Pantai Dalam used to be dominated by squatters and low-cost flats but has seen the development of luxury apartments and commercial property in recent years. 
The Muslim call for prayer first became a political issue in 2008 when Selangor executive councillor Teresa Kok was arrested under the Internal Security Act (ISA) for allegedly asking a Puchong mosque to stop playing the azan over its loudspeaker. 
Kok, who was released a week after her arrest, denied the allegation while the mosque’s committee members also came forward to defend the Selangor DAP chairman.

‘Mandor’ Saravanan gets the cold shoulder

A deputy minister's visit to the Bukil Jalil estate turns ugly when the residents started to boo him.
BUKIT JALIL: Federal Territories and Urban Well-Being Deputy Minister M Saravanan yesterday paid a surprised visit to Ladang Bukit Jalil – and got a cold reception.
Saravanan, accompanied by Kuala Lumpur mayor Ahmad Fuad Ismail, came there with a good intention – to give the residents a verbal assurance that their houses will not be demolished although the eviction notice served on them expired yesterday.
But the residents were unimpressed and pressed him to give the assurance in writing. They were also annoyed that he came unannounced.
The estate’s action committee secretary, S Thiakarajan, said he only heard about the visit from outside sources.
“Why did you not inform us that you are coming?” Thiakarajan asked. But Saravanan said he came to visit the newly built school, and not the estate. This got the residents all riled up and they started heckling him.
Saravanan tried to placate them: “ I am here to assure you that you will be able to celebrate Ponggal (harvest festival) tomorrow without having to worry about Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) officers.”
But his message went unheeded. The residents continued to boo him until an exasperated Saravanan told them the reason for his sudden appearance: he did not inform them because they had called him a called “mandor” (supervisor) when they visited him at the DBKL heaquarters late last year.
Police report
Earlier, Saravanan told the residents that DBKL would not tear down their houses and had also agreed to retain the temple and the cemetary at its current location.
When asked whether DBKL will issue land titles to the cemetery and the temple soon, he said the titles would only be given when the structures are relocated.
On the newly-built school – Ladang Bukit Jalil Tamil – he said it “will be fully aided by the government”.
He also said that the Human Resources Ministry and his ministry would meet within the next two weeks to discuss the residents’ demands.
“I understand that the residents have been seeking compensation for the years they have been working in the estate and also for low-cost housing despite being offered flats,” said Saravanan.
But Thiakarajan dismissed the proposed meeting between the two ministries, saying the residents would not accept any decision made if the estate committee was not included in the discussion.
“Do not make any decisions without consulting us,”said Thiakarajan.
Meanwhile, Thiakarajan said he would be lodging a police report against certain individuals who accompanied Saravanan for allegedly verbally harassing girls in the estate.
“Why did he (Saravanan) bring MIC members and gangsters to this place? They are just creating problems,” Thiakarajan claimed.

Yet another political party for Indians

Former PKR secretary-general PS Jenapala is aiming for the first Indian-centric opposition party in the country.
KUALA LUMPUR: Combative former PKR leader PS Jenapala is starting a new party which will “truly defend the rights” of the Indians in the country.
To be called the Indian Justice Party (IJP), the organistion, according to Jenapala, will be the first opposition party that will represent the Indian community.
“At the moment, there is no single opposition party that fully represents the Indian community’s viewpoint or the issues affecting them.
“IJP is here to serve the Indian community,” he said.
Jenapala, the former PKR deputy secretary-general, who resigned from his post in 2008, confessed that IJP was yet to be registered.
“We have not yet got the approval of the Registrar of Society (ROS) but we hope to resolve this once the documentation is completed,” he said, adding that IJP will be officially launched tomorrow at Plaza Makmur, Taman Batu Caves, at 3pm.
Why another new party?
Speaking to FMT, Jenapala said there was a need for an Indian exclusive opposition party in the country because of the plight of the community.
“We will be the first fully Indian-based opposition party and will push the Barisan Nasional or Pakatan Rakyat coalition to ensure that they focus on Indian issues.
“Indians here must understand that BN or Pakatan makes no difference to us. Indians are being used to achieve the individual coalition’s goals,” he said.
Explaining further, he said the Malay community has three parties – Umno, PAS and PKR – to defend them and the Chinese has MCA, DAP and Gerakan.
“How about the Indians? They have no one. Do you hear the Indians? Who stands up for them? Forget MIC, they are just an Umno tool to control the poor oppressed Indians,” he said.
When asked about Pakatan’s multiracial philosophy, he dismissed it: “Forget it… Pakatan is a double-standard coalition.
“The same Pakatan leaders who are trying to create a multiracial party system in the peninsula is also encouraging race-based parties in Sarawak and Sabah,” he said..
Racist minds
Jenapala denied allegations that his intentions to form the new party was to break PKR and support Barisan Nasional (BN).
“No, I reiterate that we will never hold hands with BN in any situation.
“Since 2005 I have been thinking of forming a fully Indian-based opposition party. So, the question of IJP being pro-BN does not arise at all,” he said.
Jenapala said the party now has 5,000 members and the “numbers are increasing”.
He said the time had not yet come for Malaysia to have a multiracial party system.
“I can daringly say that not many Malaysians are open-minded. There are many racist minds among Malaysians.
“For example, how many Indians did you see protesting the death of Teoh Beng Hock? How many Malays did you see protesting A Kugan’s death? How many Chinese did you see protesting Aminulrasyid Amzah‘s death?” he asked.
IJP is the eighth Indian-dominated party in Malaysia after MIC, PPP, IPF, Malaysian Makkal Sakthi Party, Malaysian Indian United Party, HRP (Human Right Party) and the Malaysian Indian Justice Party.

Khairy has to debate someone of his level


The rank of Opposition Leader in Parliament would be equivalent to that of Prime Minister. How can Khairy Jamaluddin, the Umno Youth Leader not even with a Cabinet post, challenge Anwar Ibrahim to a debate? That is not following proper protocol and convention.
NO HOLDS BARRED
Raja Petra Kamarudin

 

DO NOT DOWNLOAD THE FILE. To play the recording, go to the link above and click the play button (RIGHT ARROW BUTTON) on the player icon (see sample below).

Press Conference by Malaysian Civil Societies Movement (MCLM), on behalf of Hormati Suara Rakyat Selangor

Raziah Raids Reserve Forest Lands and Taib Profits - Major Exclusive!

Bejewelled - Raziah's huge wealth owes to handouts of land titles and contracts from her brother the Chief Minister
We can reveal that Taib’s tycoon sister, Raziah Mahmud, has once again been seizing land from Sarawak’s people. And our investigations have exposed a clumsy cover-up that has lifted the lid on a massive land-grab that implicates the Chief Minister, Taib Mahmud himself.
Raziah’s attempts to conceal her involvement in plans to replace Reserved Forest Lands at Ensengei with yet another vast oil palm plantation have exposed a far wider scandal. We can now show the method by which she and Taib have extracted around a hundred thousand of hectares of state land – an area amounting to roughly half the size of Brunei - over the past decade alone!
Alienation of traditional Native Lands 
Ensengei, is one of the few remaining areas of Forest Reserve Land left in lowland Sarawak. The traditional Native Customary Land Rights of the indigenous tribes of the area were recognised by the British in 1947, but in 1984 Taib ruled that it should be acquired by the State as a Forest Reserve. However, in a series of deals between 2005 and 2008 he then handed on roughly twenty thousand hectares of this supposedly protected land to his own sister!  
As so often happens in Sarawak, the first the Bidayuh communities of the area knew about these secretive transactions was when a series of logging companies turned up in their foraging areas and fruit tree plantations waiving licences to cut them down. This is the way Taib and BN have chosen to run Sarawak. 
Disputed areas
However, thankfully, by 2008 human rights lawyers, like the PKR leader Baru Bian, had developed successful strategies for opposing Taib’s seizures of Native Lands in the courts. His team has launched a number of cases against these companies and also against the Government of Sarawak, who sold the land and issued the licences. Until these matters are resolved the loggers have been ordered to pause their activities in the contested areas.   
Raziah’s clumsy cover-up 
Hamid Sepawi - Taib's favoured cousin and major shareholder of Usiha Jasamaju
Meanwhile our investigations now demonstrate what few of the local people and their lawyers have been aware of till now, which is that the person behind the actions they are fighting is Taib’s own sister, Raziah Mahmud. Not only has she got close connections with the two largest palm oil companies to be awarded licences to destroy Ensengei, Lambang Sinar Mas and Usaha Jasamaju, but we have also established from the official records that she clearly secured and probably still controls their land titles. 
We can confirm that Lambang Sinar Mas is currently owned by the Yu brothers of the construction company Hock Seng Lee Bhd (HSL), well-known business cronies of the Taibs, while Usaha Jasamaju is owned by a number of companies of whom a major shareholder is Hamid Sepawi. Sepawai is the fabulously wealthy cousin of the Chief Minister, who has received numerous lands and favours from the State of Sarawak, to become one of Malaysia’s richest men.
Lambang Sinar Mas, owned by the Yu brothers
Usaha jasamaju, owned largely by Hamid Sepawi
However damming evidence in the Land Registry records reveals that the company which negotiated the issuing of the Ensengei land titles was in fact neither of the above, but Kumpulan Parabena, which is owned and managed by Raziah herself. You can tell this fact because the address and contact details given in the land registry (as shown above) is the same for both sets of land titles and it is the address for Kumpulan Parabena - 154/56 Jalan Sungai, Padungan, Kuching - and not the companies mentioned (see entry for Kumpulan Parabena in the Register of Companies below).
The address and telephone in the Land Registry matches that of Kumpulan Parabena
Sarawak Report can futher confirm that the two managers named as the contacts in the Land Registry concerning these two sets of transactions with Lambang Sinar Mas and with Usaha Jayamaju (whose concessions are next door to each other) work directly for Raziah Mahmud. Chia Hon Thin and Paul Yu Chee may appear to be representing the two other companies but they give the same Kumpulan Parabena address! Likewise Chia’sgiven telephone number Kuching 082 41 3877 matches Kumpulan Parabena’s number in the telephone directory.
Its all in the yellow pages!
Of even greater worry is that our exclusive research has shown that Chia has used these contact details in numerous other transactions that have been registered in the Land Registry. We will be detailing this further explosive material in later reports, but it means that land titles which have been handed out to dozens of apparently different companies worth hundreds of millions of ringgit were clearly in fact secretly owned and controlled by Raziah Mahmud!
Sarawak Report believes that the extent of these lands could amount to roughly half the size of Brunei, all acquired from the State of Sarawak at nominal prices by the sister of the Chief Minister!
Taib himself has profited!
Even more shocking than this fraud is the fact that we have recently proved that another major shareholder of  Kumpulan Parabena is actually Taib Mahmud himself! We have established that he personally owns shares in Mesti Bersatu, which in turn owns shares in Miri Properties,which in turn holds shares in Kumpulan Parabena! This directly implicates him in the profit that has been made in this fraudulent activity and raises even further questions about why he has chosen to hand out so much land to his own sister.
Raziah's daughter Elia Abas - rather young to be a Director of a major Oil Palm Plantation enterprise! Nevetheless she was one of two Directors of Lambang Sinar Mas when it was handed 16,000 hectares of Forest Reserve Land. Her Dad was the other and her Mum was the Secretary!
The remaining shareholders of Kumpulan Parabena are also members of the Mahmud family and Sarawak Report also intends to detail shortly the enormous number of profitable Sarawak State contracts and indeed Federal projects that have been handed to this company. This means that Taib has also been handing vast amounts of state money directly to a company that he owns himself! Is this what his Political Secretary Karim Hamza meant when he recently suggested there is nothing wrong with a politician taking advantage of ’business opportunities’ that come their way?