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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Delhi High Court ordered to probe on “Shariah for Hind” and its Anti Indian rally on 3rd March.

Delhi court asks police to investigate Islamist website.

The Delhi High Court Wednesday sought a status report from the Delhi Police commissioner on a public interest litigation (PIL) seeking a ban on a Islamist website as it allegedly threatened communal harmony in India.……….

A bench of Acting Chief Justice A.K. Sikri and Justice Rajiv Shah Endlaw directed police chief to submit the report on website within a week.

The PIL filed by Tajinder Pal Singh Bagga, president of the Bhagat Singh Kranti Sena, alleged that the website brings constitution of India and its secular feature into disrespect and disrepute.

“Extreme Islamic groups are planning to organise a huge rally in Delhi propagating Islamisation of Indian subcontinent and enforcement of Shariah law all over India and hence this may result into communal clashes and disruption of public peace and order in State of Delhi and other parts of India,” the petition said.

It sought the court’s direction for the central and Delhi government to conduct detailed inquiry into the
claims of Shariah4hind that a public rally shall be organized in Delhi March 3.

Appearing for Bagga, advocate Vikas Padora also sought the central and state governments be directed to include the group into the list of banned organisations, “as the group works against the integrity and sovereignty of India”.

Police asked to examine plea against website promoting shariat.

New Delhi, Feb 22 (PTI) The city police commissioner was today asked by the Delhi High Court to examine a plea, made to it to ban a website for allegedly encouraging communal hatred between the Hindus and the Muslims, and apprise it of his findings within a week.

A division bench of Acting Chief Justice A K Sikri and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw asked the police chief to treat the contents of the plea to the court as a complaint and verify the website and file his report.

In a petition, filed through advocate Vikas Padora, Tajinder Pal Singh Bagga, president of an organisation called Bhagat Singh Kranti Sena, alleged the website violates the secular feature of Indian Constitution.

According to the petition, two USA-based persons named Anjem Choudhary and Omar Muhammed Bakri have recently launched the organisation Shariah for India and also launched the website with an object to campaign for enforcement of Shariat Law all over India.

The plea said the website”s objectives, if met, would would result into communal disharmony.
The plea also sought an order to restrain the group from holding a rally and conference on March 2 and 3 here.

“The extreme Islamic groups are planning to organise a huge rally in Delhi to propagate Islamisation of the Indian subcontinent and enforce Shariat law all over India and hence this may result into communal clashes and disruption of public peace and order in Delhi and other parts of India,” it said.

The petitioner”s counsel submitted that the court should pass an order directing the Union and the Delhi governments to include the ”Shariat for Hind” into the list of banned organisations, as the group works against the integrity and sovereignty of India.

Belgian woman receives death threats after posing in bikini - burqa combo

An-Sofie Dewinter: "Freedom or Islam - You Choose"
An-Sofie Dewinter: "Freedom or Islam - You Choose"

20-year-old An-Sofie Dewinter doesn't seem all that concerned about threats to kill her.

After posing in a combination bikini/burqa combination that proclaimed "Freedom or Islam - you choose" the model has reportedly received death threats.

In regards to threats to her life, Fox News is reporting that the model and daughter of Belgian nationalist politician Filip Dewinter as stating:

“I don’t think they’re serious. I hope not.”

The Belgian media giant Het Laatste Nieuws (English - The Latest News) has also quoted the younger Dewinter:

"Death threats and criticism no longer scare me off."

The Daily Mail of London is reporting that Mr. Dewinter claims the Muslim organization Shariah4Belgium has called for him to be killed for expressing his pro-Belgian views.

Recently, Shariah4Belguim was fined 550 Euros ($730) for "inciting hatred towards non-Muslims".

Peneroka kecewa dihalau Isa Samad

Angry imam chucks shoes at judges in top court

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 22 — An imam threw his shoes at three senior judges in the country’s highest court today after they struck out his bid to challenge an eviction order from a city mosque here four years ago.

Hoslan Hussin, 46, stunned the judges, lawyers and members of the public that packed a courtroom at the Federal Court this morning when he stood up, took off both his shoes and lobbed the pair right at the Bench.

Video frame grab of the infamous shoeing incident involving President George W. Bush (left) during a news conference in Baghdad December 14, 2008. — Reuters file pic
Even more astounding perhaps was that the three-man Bench, chaired by Chief Judge of Malaya, Tan Sri Zulkefli Ahmad Makinuddin, let the imam go without a fuss. They could have cited him for contempt of court.

Zulkefli was flanked by Datuk Suriyadi Halim Omar and Datin Paduka Zaleha Zahari.

An eyewitness to the incident, who did not want to be named, told The Malaysian Insider the judges were likely embarrassed.

“Ya. I did it. I chucked my shoes at the judges,” the father of 11 admitted to The Malaysian Insider when contacted.

The incident happened about 10am. The imam’s case was the fourth to be called for hearing this morning.

Hoslan, who was formerly an imam at the Al-Rahimah Mosque in Kampung Pandan here, said he did it because he felt sorely vexed with the judges who took less than half an hour to throw out his case.

“The courts have failed to uphold justice,” he told The Malaysian Insider.

“I am an imam. How can I keep quiet? I threw my shoes because I could no longer stand it. How can an imam keep quiet when he sees injustice being done? I am not a coward,” he said, and added that former chief justice, Tun Dzaiddin Abdullah, was right when he said the judiciary was now cowed by the executive branch of government.

Hosland, who was not represented by a lawyer, said he was trying to explain his case to the judges but they did not appear to want to listen.

“They said I lost because I did not file an affidavit in reply to the respondents, the Federal Territory Islamic Affairs Council (MAIWP) . They said my case should be heard before a Syariah court,” said the unhappy man.

He said the judges made their decision after listening only to MAIWP’s lawyer, Zulkefli Che Yong, who argued that Hoslan’s case had exceeded the allowed timeframe, and had not given him a fair chance to plead his case.

He said the police officers on duty in the court had moved to usher him out, and he left without further incident.

Hoslan, who says he is now an imam with a mosque at Jalan Cochrane in Cheras, said he was too incensed to collect his shoes and left the Palace of Justice barefoot.

He told The Malaysian Insider that even though the court took no action, he lodged a police report at about 3pm today.

The throwing of one’s shoes is considered a grave insult in the Muslim community and calls to mind US president George W. Bush being “shoed” in a December 14, 2008 press conference by an Iraqi reporter.

‘EC using legal loophole to change roll’

PKR claims that EC is using legal means to move voters illegally into a different voting constituency.

PETALING JAYA: PKR today alleged that the Election Commission (EC) has new ways to manipulate the electoral roll.

This new method, they claimed, used the legal means of creating “divisions” (Belah Bahagi) to move voters illegally into a different voting constituency.

There are fears that these additions will be to the benefit of the Barisan Nasional as this practice was allegedly rampant in Pakatan Rakyat-held Selangor.

PKR vice president Fuziah Salleh revealed this at a press conference today when highlighting EC’s “illegal gerrymandering” in the Subang parliamentary constituency.

According to the Election’s Act 1958, divisions were conducted in order to make marginal changes concerning the voter’s state constituency.

The division method is usually used to consolidate dispersed voters into voting districts. One voting district must have a maximum of 3,850 people and one polling station.

However, according to the law, the movement of these voters must be made within the same state constituency.

Fuziah today highlighted several cases in the Subang constituency where the division method was used to shift voters from their state constituency to another constituency.

In one case highlighted, there were seven voters who were registered in the Kota Damansara state constituency in the 2008 electoral roll but were moved to Bukit Lanjan state constituency in the 2010 electoral roll.

“There are cases where the movements have caused some voters to shift to a new parliamentary constituency as well,” she said.

She highlighted a few cases where voters were registered under the Kelana Jaya parliamentary constituency in 2008 but were registered under the Subang parliamentary constituency in 2010 electoral roll.

“The EC is using legal provisions to do illegal things,” she said.

Furthermore, she added that the EC can only conduct divisions once the delineation exercise is announced.

Increase of voters in Subang

The EC has denied rumours of on-going delineation exercise adding that it will only take place after the 13th general election, expected to be held anytime soon.

Fuziah, who is also the Kuantan MP, said that this was merely the tip of the iceberg and PKR will reveal more in a series of exposes.

She also raised doubts over the dubious 35 percent rise of voters in the Subang constituency since 2007.

She said the additions were inexplicable as voters appeared “from nowhere” into the gazetted electoral roll.

“The number of voters (in Subang) as of the third quarter of 2011 was 110,614.

“When the list is made public, there is usually an objection period. So, rationally speaking, the 110,614 is the maximum voters (in Subang, after the third quarter),” she said.

But the gazetted electoral roll according to the third quarter, stated that (Subang constituency) contained 113,978 voters, 3,000 more than the previous list.

“Where did the extra 3,364 voters come from,” she asked.

She said that the division method could be used to explain this irregularity.

She added that all the information was gathered when the electoral roll was scanned thoroughly.

Fuziah said the matter will be brought up to the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) overseeing electoral reforms.

Also at the press conference today was Subang MP R Sivarasa, who said he will take EC’s alleged abuse of power to the MACC next week.

Refugees fear mass deportation

They fear being caught up in the impending crackdown on illegal workers.

PETALING JAYA: Refugees and asylum seekers have been allegedly sacked by their bosses with the introduction of the 6P amnesty programme, and they fear an impending crackdown.

Myanmarese asylum seeker Patrick Sang claimed that local employers didn’t want to go through the trouble of registering this group with the Immigration Department.

“Since the news of the major crackdowns and accompanying measures, many of the refugees and asylum seekers and their families have been fired by their bosses.”

“They lost their jobs…because employers didn’t register them under the 6P programme,” he told reporters today at Tenaganita’s office.

Sang was referring to the government’s 6P amnesty programme which started last June to legalise illegal foreign workers.

Thus far, only 379,020 illegal foreign workers have been legalised by the Immigration Department.

One million undocumented individuals, however, have either no work permits or have seen them rejected thus far.

A total of 94,856 migrants have been deported to their home countries since the programme’s inception.

Refugees and asylum seekers at risk

Some have speculated that the programme, which has been extended to April 10, will see a crackdown on migrant workers who have not yet been legalised by the government.

Refugees and asylum seekers are especially at risk, as they are not recognised as such in Malaysia. Instead, they are classified by the government as undocumented individuals.

They are especially concerned with the federal government boasting a four-million-enforcement-agent deployment against illegals after programme’s deadline.

This, according to Sang, was a very real fear for asylum seekers like him who face detention and deportation.

“It seem like there’s going to be huge crackdown (after April 10). Why don’t they just postpone the crackdown? If they want to exercise it, do it after all the refugees and asylum seekers are recognised.”

“If the registration for the refugee does not take place before April 10, all the refugees and asylum seekers are going to be in big trouble.”

“It heightens our fear. (If they register us) we don’t have to live with this fear daily,” he said.

Even a registration in March for nearly 100,000 refugees would be too late, Sang added. He said that it would take two or three months to fully register and legalise an individual.

Tenaganita executive director Irene Fernandez called for an immediate halt on the impending crackdown on migrants and refugees.

She also asked for migrant and refugee detainees to be released, as well as the government to stop deporting them.

Criticising the 6P programme, Fernandez said that a systematic plan was needed to address the “structural flaws” in the country’s migration system.

Ananda Krishnan plans $2b sale of power assets

The tycoon has put out his entire power portfolio for sale.

SINGAPORE: Malaysian tycoon Ananda Krishnan has put his entire power portfolio in Malaysia, South Asia, the Middle East and Egypt up for sale in a deal that could raise more than $2 billion, three sources familiar with the matter told Reuters on Wednesday.

Standard Chartered Plc has been hired to run the sale of stakes in about a dozen power plants in Malaysia, South Asia, Egypt and the Middle East with a net generating capacity of nearly 4,000 megawatts (MW), the sources said.

The sources requested anonymity because they were not authorised to speak to the media.

Ananda Krishnan owns his power assets through Tanjong Energy Group, which, according to Tanjong’s website, owns and operates eight power plants and has investments in five power plants in Malaysia, Egypt, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and the United Arab Emirates with a total net generating capacity of 3,951 MW.

Standard Chartered and Tanjong declined to comment.

- Reuters

Another ‘we don’t need you’ syndrome

My question to RPK and his cohort, which I voiced before: WHO ART THOU THAT THE OPPOSITION LEADER MUST ANSWER TO YOU? You are merely NGO activists who use all sorts of changing platforms -- Saya Anak Bangsa Malaysia, People’s Parliament, MCLM, etc., now trying to “hijack ABU”? -- to suit your agenda and think you are at the same level and status as an Opposition Leader? Hey, you are not even at the same level as Tian, at least he is a current MP, and had served as PKR information and strategy chief capacities, now an “elected” Vice-president.
Raja Petra Kamarudin

Remember when Umno Penang told the Chinese that they do not need Chinese votes? The Chinese can go back to China, they said, because with just the Malay votes they can win the election and form the government.
And remember Ali Rustam telling the non-Malays at the PPP convention in Melaka the same thing? The non-Malays are not crucial and they can leave Barisan Nasional, said Ali Rustam, because Umno can win the election and form the government without the non-Malays.
Both those incidences caused a huge brouhaha and Barisan Nasional may have to pay dearly for that in the next general election.
Sometimes Umno and Barisan Nasional never cease to amaze me. Their arrogance is so thick you can cut it with a knife. I wonder whether they have a death wish or what. If this is not harakiri then I don’t know what is.
But Umno can afford to be arrogant. They are, after all, the federal government and they are pretty confident they will remain the federal government for a long, long time to come. With the Elections Commission (SPR), police, army, civil service, PEKIDA, PERKASA, etc., on their side, how can they go wrong? And with more than two million postal and ‘phantom’ votes already in the ballot box, Pakatan Rakyat needs to garner two million votes just to break even.
And even breaking-even is not enough because even if Pakatan Rakyat wins 50% of the votes that still only give them 40% of the seats. And with two million votes already in the bag it is an uphill battle for Pakatan Rakyat to garner 60% of the votes to give them a simple majority in Parliament. Yes, even then it will still be a simple majority and not a two-thirds majority.
As I said, I can understand why Umno is so cocksure and arrogant. They can afford to be arrogant because they are so sure of retaining the government. But can PKR also adopt the same attitude as Umno? Is PKR also that cocksure it is going to take the government come next election?
This is what ‘Suara Tian Chua’ a.k.a. Malaysia Chronicle said today:
My question to RPK and his cohort, which I voiced before: WHO ART THOU THAT THE OPPOSITION LEADER MUST ANSWER TO YOU? You are merely NGO activists who use all sorts of changing platforms -- Saya Anak Bangsa Malaysia, People’s Parliament, MCLM, etc., now trying to “hijack ABU”? -- to suit your agenda and think you are at the same level and status as an Opposition Leader? Hey, you are not even at the same level as Tian, at least he is a current MP, and had served as PKR information and strategy chief capacities, now an “elected” Vice-president.
Amboi! Sombongnya Cina pendek YL Chong ni! Ini macam kacang dah lupa kulit!
Hello…..who am I? I am the rakyatlah, bangang! And the rakyat decides whether you get to become, as you said, ‘THE CURRENT MP’ or not. Of course the Opposition Leader must answer to the rakyat. Even the Prime Minister must answer to the rakyat. Baru jadi Opposition Leader, belum jadi PM, dah angkuh. ‘WHO ART THOU THAT THE OPPOSITION LEADER MUST ANSWER TO YOU?’ konon.
If this is how you PKR chaps think then it is going to be a tough election ahead of you. The Malay voters are already shunning the ‘Chinese clique’ in PKR. In fact, many Malays prefer DAP to the Chinese in PKR. Even when DAP opposes Hudud and the Islamic State the Malays still prefer DAP to the PKR Chinese. And no need to even mention the Chinese voters. They prefer DAP even more and have nothing nice to say about the Chinese in PKR.
It has taken a long time to convince the Malays that they should not vote along racial lines. What’s wrong if the Malays vote for Chinese candidates? In fact, what’s wrong even if Islamic parties like PAS field non-Muslim candidates?
Yes, we have come a long way -- from 1978 to 2008, to be exact, 30 years. It took us 30 years to convince the Malay voters to set aside parochial and racial interests in the interest of a united non-race based opposition coalition (I do not even want to use the word ‘multi-racial’, which is still racial).
Yes, we know of the existence of the ‘Chinese clique’ in PKR. Even DAP and PAS know of it. And do you know what is very ironical? The DAP people prefer the Malays in PAS to the Chinese in PKR. Don’t believe me? Then ask them!
I have been told by many of my Chinese friends that they have no problems voting for PAS in spite of all this talk of Hudud and Islamic State. But if the have to choose between a Chinese candidate from PKR and a candidate from Barisan Nasional, they will either vote Barisan or will not bother to vote at all.
So, janganlah bongkak sangat. WHO ART THOU THAT THE OPPOSITION LEADER MUST ANSWER TO YOU? Even Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak does not dare say that.

The Rape of Sarawak

That jungle over there won't be there long
Environmental organization says Malaysia is destroying its rainforest, particularly in Sarawak, at a frantic pace
A Netherlands-based environmental organization, Wetlands International, is charging in a new report that Malaysia is destroying its tropical rainforest at a rate three times faster than the rest of Asia combined, particularly in the East Malaysian state of Sarawak, with the expectation that “expansion of oil palm plantations may lead to the complete loss of these vast, unique forests by the end of this decade.”

Sarawak’s chief minister, Abdul Taib Mahmud, has come in for international criticism on charges that he has sold off vast tracts of the state to international loggers to enrich his family. The Taib family has interests believed to be in the billions in Canada, the United States, Australia and the United Kingdom as well as in scores of companies in Malaysia, according to The Sarawak Report, a UK-based NGO.

Malaysia has been largely shielded from criticism by the world’s environmental organizations, who have concentrated their firepower on Indonesia. However according to the report, “Official government figures state that only 8 to -13 percent of Malaysia’s palm oil plantations were situated on carbon rich peat soils; 20 percent for Sarawak. Two studies; one conducted by global environmental organization Wetlands International and one by the remote sensing institute Sarvision show that a rapidly increasing proportion of Malaysian palm oil is produced on peat lands, leading to deforestation and degradation of organic soils. Wetlands International and Sarvision used satellite images combined with existing data and field surveys to complete the picture.

The new studies conclude that 20 percent of all Malaysian palm oil is produced on drained peat lands, with 44 percent produced on drained peat lands in Sarawak. “For recently established plantations, the percentage on forested peat swamps is even higher. “

According to the Wetlands International report, Malaysia is responsible for 45 percent of global palm oil production. The new plantations in Malaysia are almost all established in the State of Sarawak, the report indicated. Two thirds of the state’s peat lands were until recently covered by thick, biodiversity-rich rainforest.

“Between 2005-2010 almost 353,000 hectares of the 1 million hectare peat swamp forests were opened up at high speed; largely for palm oil production,” the report notes. “In just five years’ time, almost 10 percent of all Sarawak’s forests and 33 percent of the peat swamp forests have been cleared. Of this, 65 percent was for conversion to palm oil production.”

Marcel Silvius, the program head of Wetlands International, said that as the rainforest has fallen to the axe for timber extraction, the timber companies are replanting the area with oil palm, “completing the annihilation of Sarawak’s peat swamp forests.”

Malaysia has never provided verifiable information on land use in relation to soil type or deforestation, the report notes.

Niels Wielaard of Sarvision said the new report “is the first time that detailed and verified figures on deforestation and peat swamp conversion have come available for Sarawak. Free availability of satellite imagery and tools such as Google Earth are revolutionizing forest monitoring.”

Loss of unique species

Malaysia’s peat swamp forests, the report notes, are home to many endangered and endemic species and subspecies including enigmatic species such as the Borneo Pygmy elephant, the Sumatran Rhino, the Bornean Clouded Leopard, the Malayan Tapir and the Proboscis Monkey as well as lesser known endangered species such as the Storm’s Stork, False Gharial and the Painted terrapin

“The peat swamp forests of north Borneo represent a unique vegetation type characterized by the Alan tree as well as the valuable but endangered timber species,” the report notes. “This forest type has been wiped out in Sarawak and the only remaining examples now remain in Brunei. The peat swamp forests have not been intensively studied, and many undiscovered species are feared to have been lost.

Malaysia’s original peat land forests totaled some 2.5 million ha. Conversion and drainage of these natural carbon stores has causes rapid decomposition and subsidence of the organic soil leading to huge carbon dioxide emissions, lasting for decades, the report notes.

“Very cautious and conservative estimates put greenhouse gas emissions from palm oil plantations on peat at 40 metric tons of CO2 per hectare per year, the report says. “Using this very conservative estimation, the 510,000 ha of peat lands in Malaysia drained for palm oil production thus cause the release of some 20 million tons of/CO2 annually. However, twice this amount is more likely.

The rapid expansion of oil palm plantations is a result of the global increase in demand for vegetable oil for food and for a large part also for biofuels.

European targets to increase the use of biodiesel are causing a rapid increase of the global demands for vegetable oil crops. This growth in demand leads to a massive (indirect) land use change; especially in Southeast Asia, including in carbon rich peat swamp forests. The conversion of these areas increases greenhouse gas emissions and thus fuels climate change. Biodiesel use that does not prevent these indirect land use impacts is far from sustainable and may cause much larger emissions than the use of fossil fuel diesels.”

Call for action

“The production of palm oil is welcome only if expansion can be done in a sustainable way. Wetlands International calls for a complete ban of palm oil production on peat lands and for a halt on further conversion of natural areas for this crop. Instead development should focus on the millions of hectares of degraded (non-peat) areas in South-east Asia. Companies that use palm oil should demand for this. In addition, Wetlands International calls for an end to incentives for biofuels in the EU that result in direct and indirect land use change like we now see in Malaysia.”

Perak Abu

DAP milik siapa?

Apabila orang Melayu dilihat mendekati atau pun menyertai DAP, antara komen-komen yang biasa didengar adalah, “Apalah sertai DAP, kalau ya pun mahu sertai pembangkang, masuklah PAS atau PKR.”

Secara peribadi komen seperti ini sudah beberapa kali saya dengar secara peribadi daripada kalangan rakan-rakan, saudara-mara dan juga bekas-bekas pensyarah saya. Seolah-olah tanggapan orang ramai adalah DAP sebuah parti untuk orang bukan Melayu sahaja dan jika orang Melayu ingin turut serta dalam perjuangan DAP ia bagaikan sesuatu yang amat pelik seperti makhluk asing mendarat di bumi.

Memang tidak dinafikan bahawa orang Melayu sememangnya minoriti dalam DAP, sebagaimana kaum bukan Melayu minoriti PKR dan hampir tiada bukan Melayu dalam PAS.

Tetapi yang lebih teruk lagi, UMNO hanya membenarkan orang Melayu menyertainya, walau pun ada ramai keturunan India semakin menguasai parti itu. Begitu juga MCA dan MIC yang masing-masing hanya membolehkan kaum Cina dan India sahaja bersama mereka.

Kita harus bertanya dan mengkaji mengapa andaian yang bersifat kaum (tidak semestinya perkauman) ini terjadi apabila Melayu bersama dengan DAP.

Dua perkara yang menjadi punca salah faham

Saya melihat ada dua sebab yang utama.

Yang pertama adalah kerana biasanya jika orang-orang Melayu menyokong parti pembangkang, sebahagian besar menyertai PAS yang mana hampir kesemua ahli mereka merupakan Melayu-Islam. Sejak 1999 pula, PKR turut menjadi pilihan untuk orang Melayu.

Mungkin barangkali itu adalah pilihan dan keselesaan individu masing-masing. Jadi ada yang menganggap sesiapa yang “keluar” dari ruang selesa itu telah melakukan sesuatu yang pelik dan ganjil.

Yang kedua adalah kerana propaganda-propaganda yang bersifat jahat dan fitnah daripada jentera UMNO-BN yang menggambarkan pada umum bahawa DAP merupakan parti anti-Melayu, anti-Islam, dan anti-Raja, menyebabkan orang Melayu menjauhi dan tidak sama sekali mahu mendekati DAP.

Ini sangat jelas apabila jika orang Melayu menyertai DAP, merekalah paling dihentam, dikritik dan dilabel seperti ‘pengkhianat bangsa’ dan sebagainya. Ahli-ahli PAS dan PKR yang berbangsa Melayu, walau pun truut dicerca dan dihentam, label ‘pengkhianat bangsa’ itu sudah pun disimpan khas buat ahli-ahli DAP dari kalangan Melayu sahaja.

Hairan juga kerana label ‘pengkhianat bangsa’ itu pula tidak pernah digunakan untuk para pemimpin Melayu yang pecah amanah atau mencuri wang Baitulmal, Tabung Haji, Amanah Ikhtiar Malaysia, projek perumahan kos rendah dan sebagainya untuk kepentingan diri dan keluarga mereka sehingga sanggup membiarkan umat Islam, khususnya mereka yang miskin dan berpendapatan rendah, hidup merana dan melarat.

Berbeza keadaannya apabila fitnah dilemparkan kepada beberapa Melayu yang berani menyertai DAP atas dasar mahu mereformasikan negara dan memperjuangkan kebajikan dan hak semua anak bangsa tanpa mengira kaum dan agama.

Ujian-ujian yang sukar seperti ini juga menyebabkan orang Melayu tidak terdorong untuk memilih DAP sebagai wadah perjuangan.

DAP hanyalah sebuah parti politik

Namun demikian, apa yang diperjuangkan oleh DAP tidak pernah pro mahu pun anti mana-mana kaum atau agama. Ia hanyalah sebuah parti politik berbilang bangsa yang tidak berteraskan kaum (dan bebas untuk sesiapa sahaja menganut apa-apa agama) serta memperjuangkan demokrasi sosial.

Mungkinkah demokrasi sosial yang memperjuangkan keadilan dan peluang saksama serta memastikan mereka yang paling miskin dan berpendapatan rendah diberi keutamaan, amat ditakuti oleh UMNO-BN?

DAP sepanjang sejarahnya tidak pernah menghalang mana-mana individu menyertai perjuangan mereka berdasarkan warna kulit mahu pun kepercayaan agama. Malah ia amat menggalakkan penyertaan masyarakat pelbagai lapisan. Tidak seperti kebanyakan parti lain yang telah mengkhaskan parti mereka untuk kaum-kaum tertentu.

Fitnah paling besar bahawa DAP sebuah parti cauvinis Cina amat tidak masuk akal sama sekali. Sejak awal penubuhannya, para pemimpin dan ahli DAP kebanyakannya berpendidikan Inggeris (selaras dengan sistem pendidikan pra dan pasca-Merdeka) dan tidak memilih kaum sebagai asas perjuangan. Sudah ada pemimpin dan ahli Melayu pada saat kewujudan DAP 46 tahun lalu.

Sepanjang zaman pula, hari ini Pengerusi DAP ialah Karpal Singh manakala Naib-naib Pengerusinya terdiri daripada Tunku Abdul Aziz dan M. Kulasegaran. Isu-isu yang diperjuangkannya menjangkau apa yang boleh diperjuangkan oleh kombinasi UMNO, MCA, dan MIC, malah meliputi isu-isu yang gagal ditangani oleh PBB, SUPP dan PRS di Sarawak serta UPKO, LDP dan PBS di Sabah. Bukankah ini melambangkan kepelbagaian masyarakat Malaysia? Di mana cauvinis Cinanya?

Persepsi masyarakat hanya boleh dibetulkan dengan mencari kebenaran. Namun setelah indoktrinasi generasi ke generasi bahawa DAP ini parti orang cauvinis Cina, segala yang palsu telah diangkat sebagai kebenaran.

Fitnah pemimpin UMNO

Antara fitnah paling jahat adalah beberapa dakwaan pihak tertentu yang masih dipercayai segelintir masyarakat Melayu adalah kononnya DAP merupakan pencetus tragedi 13 Mei 1969. Ada yang sanggup memfitnah kononnya Lim Kit Siang telah mengucapkan kata-kata ‘Orang Melayu pergi mati’ di Kuala Lumpur pada ketika itu, walhal beliau sudah pun berada di Kota Kinabalu kerana membantu kempen pilihan raya di Sabah.

Segala rekod dan bukti menunjukkan bahawa beliau tidak berada di Kuala Lumpur ketika 13 Mei, tetapi fitnah yang maha dasyat itu tetap disebarkan. Malah Kit Siang tidak pernah menyebut kata-kata hasutan itu. Itulah kebenarannya.

Semua pihak sedia maklum bahawa UMNO-BN hanya bergantung kepada kebencian kaum untuk mengekalkan kuasa. Apa-apa hal, mereka memerlukan objek kebencian dan mereka memilih DAP (sebagai ganti nama Cina) sebagai kambing hitam.

Jika di negara lain, kerajaan yang korup dan hanya mementingkan kroni serta sanggup membiarkan kaum sendiri melarat sudah lama akan dicampakkan. Namun di Malaysia, dengan kekalnya undang-undang berat sebelah dan zalim, UMNO-BN mampu mengekalkan kemandiran parti mereka dengan menanam perasaan lemah diri atau inferiority complex di kalangan Melayu dan mengugut untuk menakutkan kalangan bukan Melayu.

Tawaran DAP

Di sini DAP menawarkan alternatif untuk rakyat Malaysia termasuklah orang Melayu. Sesiapa jua boleh menyertai DAP tanpa diskriminasi warna kulit mahu pun agama. Alternatif yang disediakan DAP dalam arus perdana perjuangan politik di Malaysia adalah jelas dari dulu sampai sekarang iaitu perjuangan demokrasi sosial dan sebuah Malaysia untuk Rakyat Malaysia.

Malah, jangan terkejut, suatu hari nanti Melayu akan menjadi majoriti dalam DAP, asalkan Melayu itu adalah dari kalangan mereka yang demokrat, adil, tidak perkauman dan tidak sempit agama, serta memperjuangkan peluang saksama untuk semua.

Bukan warna kulit atau kepercayaan agama yang menjadi ketentuan. Hanya prinsip dan perjuangan yang menentukan kejujuran, keikhlasan dan hati budi seseorang insan.

Saya fikir bahawa perjuangan demokrasi sosial adalah sesuatu yang amat baik diwajar diterima oleh rakyat Malaysia. Ia menjamin kebajikan sosial golongan masyarakat yang memerlukannya di samping kemakmuran ekonomi yang dibawa oleh sistem pasaran yang dipantau oleh kerajaan yang cekap, akauntabel dan telus.

Ini lebih jauh lebih baik daripada apa yang kita ada sekarang, iaitu ekonomi monopoli untuk kroni dan campur tangan kerajaan dalam ekonomi demi kepentingan diri dan keluarga sedangkan peruntukan dan projek entah ke mana, rakyat terus terseksa. Yang menderita itu termasuk mereka dari kalangan Melayu.

Oleh kerana DAP sebuah parti yang memperjuangkan semua bangsa di Malaysia, maka ia sentiasa menjemput dan menggalakkan semua kaum untuk menyertai perjuangan demi keadilan dan demokrasi. Jemputan ini tentunya ditujukan kepada orang Melayu juga. –

Government's Transformation Plan Now Showing Positive Results

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 22 (Bernama) -- Ever since the government embarked on its transformation programmes almost three years ago, the results are beginning to show on many fronts.

The positive facts and figures from the many initiatives speak for themselves and have even confounded the harshest of sceptics as far as the country's administrative reforms and economic governance are concerned.

What is even more heartening is that progress has been made against the backdrop of a dismal global economy and chilly headwinds, especially from Europe.

It just goes to show that the government has been right on track and working overtime to tweak the economy to make it even better, like inducing a better business environment.

The more conducive environment has also benefited investment institutions like the Employees Provident Fund, which recently declared one of its highest dividend payouts at 6.0 per cent to its 13 million members.

The government's primary focus has been on delivery and outcomes to benefit the rakyat. And the latest indicators are clearly evident: people's lives have been positively impacted, business activities are up, investor confidence is high, trade and investment are at record levels, economic growth is healthy and deficit is down.

All this did not happen by accident. This has been done through deliberate government policies and implementation of people-oriented programmes.

Red tape has been cut and several sectors liberalised, leading to Malaysia improving its ranking by five places to 18th spot in the World Bank's Ease of Doing Business survey. The country also moved up five rungs in the World Economic Forum's Global Competitiveness Report to the 21st most competitive position.

In a short period of just three years, the government had implemented numerous projects and offered assistance to the poor and needy, including pensioners, widows of uniformed personnel, taxi drivers, school children and university students.

With free education at primary and secondary government schools, all Malaysian children now have fair and equal access to education. It is undoubtedly the foundation for the future as education is the best investment to develop talent to propel further development.

Dilapidated homes have been repaired, better and affordable housing offered to others, public transport has been improved with additional plans in the pipeline, crime has been reduced, outdated laws are being replaced, and there is more openness, transparency and greater room for expression.

Rising global food prices, for example, sugar, are absorbed by the government so that lower income earners are not adversely affected.

Medical facilities are brought to the doorsteps of many in the low-income groups with the 1Malaysia clinics; basic food items are made available with savings of up to 41 per cent at Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia. Relatively cheap basic items are also available at Kedai Ikan Rakyat 1Malaysia and Menu Rakyat 1Malaysia.

These initiatives have helped to improve the quality of life for more Malaysians, put a smile on the faces of many in both the rural and urban areas, brought hope and eased the burden of the lower income groups.

Plans and policies have also been put in place to facilitate businesses and small enterprises and generate employment.

The domestic economic environment, even in the face of a challenging external environment, remains attractive to foreign and local investors. This is clearly evident from the record RM148.6 billion investments in the manufacturing, services and mining sectors registered last year, up 40.7 per cent from 2010.

Foreign direct investments, which indicate the confidence level of the hard-nosed business and investment community in government policies and the future of the economy, climbed to RM32.9 billion last year, surpassing the pre-crisis level of RM29.1 billion in 2007.

Gross domestic product (GDP) growth for 2011 was 5.1 per cent, an achievement in line with the government's forecast, with domestic demand being the main driver of growth.

As of November 2011, about 53 per cent of the 131 targeted entry point projects have taken off. Of the total value of RM171 billion in committed investments, an estimated RM15 billion had been realised by end-2011.

Credit Suisse has cited that Malaysia's GDP growth would continue to outperform that of other export-oriented economies and Singapore's Business Times said that Malaysia's "economy looks to be region's outperformer".

The positive outlook and confidence are not misplaced as many other economic indicators are also moving in the right direction. Government revenues increased to RM185.4 billion last year while the fiscal deficit fell to 5.0 per cent and the trend is towards further reduction this year.

Total trade at RM1.27 trillion last year was a record, accounting for 120 per cent of GDP and representing one of the highest percentages in the world.

Activity on Bursa Malaysia was also encouraging with market capitalisation rising to RM1,284.54 billion last year from RM663.82 billion in 2008 while total turnover rose to RM438.17 billion from RM313.09 billion in 2008.

With the impending listing of Felda Global Ventures, the local bourse will be given a boost and investors more investment choices.

Consumer prices are expected to stay in check as Kenanga Research says that the country's inflation is expected to ease to 2.9 per cent this year from an estimated 3.2 per cent in 2011 despite the rise in global oil and food prices.

Besides the Malaysian economy being quite insulated because of fuel subsidies, the research house also expected the ringgit to further appreciate in 2012 and help reduce imported inflation.

The government's initiatives are all designed to meet the needs of the people in mind in keeping with the "People first, Performance now" philosophy, especially with regard to their three main concerns -- state of the economy, job security and rising food prices.

And it does not come as a surprise that these concerns are being addressed with increasing vigour under the Government Transformation Plan and the Economic Transformation Plan to bring more benefits to the rakyat.

Ruling on Seksualiti Merdeka on March 1

The New Straits Times

KUALA LUMPUR: The government is challenging a judicial review leave application by the organising committee of Seksualiti Merdeka, who claimed that the banning of the event in November last year was illegal.

Senior federal counsel Noor Hisham Ismail said he submitted to High Court judge Datuk Rohana Yusuf in chambers yesterday that the application had become academic.

Lawyer Honey Tan, who representing  the applicants, however, disagreed, saying it was not clear how long the ban was effective.

The applicants are  members of the Seksualiti Merdeka organising committee.  They are Pang Khee Teik, 38, Angela Marianne Kuga Thas, 48, Thilaga Socky Pillai Sulathireh, 25, Siti Zabedah Kasim, 49, and Md Nor Ismat Selamat, 29.

 The court has set March 1 to deliver its decision on the leave application.

The applicants stated that deputy Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Khalid Abu Bakar had acted illegally when he banned all functions and events relating to Seksualiti Merdeka on Nov 3.

They also alleged that the ban directly affected the Constitutional rights guaranteed to all Malaysians.

They  added that they were not given an opportunity to be heard  before Khalid announced the ban.

In the application, they named Khalid, Dang Wangi deputy police chief Superintendent Nor Azman Muhammad Yusuf and the Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Ismail Omar, as respondents.