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Thursday, April 5, 2012

Penjejak Piramid Episod1-1

Bersih 3.0: 'Duduk Bantah' 28 April di Dataran Merdeka

Family beats up mother of two girls pregnant with ‘girl child’

A 30-year-old mother of two girls in Andhra Pradesh is battling for life in hospital after a miscarriage in her sixth pregnancy following an alleged beating from her husband and in-laws who want her to bear them a male child.

Munni’s married life of eight years has been lorded
over by a soothsayer who has predicted that only the seventh child in her womb will be a son.

Police have arrested her husband Allahbaksh and in-laws, Rahman and Fathima, from the weaving town of Tenali in Guntur district for tying her to a pole and beating her on the stomach.

Munni fourth and fifth pregnancies had been aborted and one daughter had died soon after birth.

Since no doctor was willing to do the third consecutive abortion, given Munni’s delicate health, Allahbaksh and his parents took charge, said police circle inspector Shaikh Usman.

Munni's neighbours in Balajipeta heard her cries and admitted the profusely bleeding woman to a government hospital on Saturday, where doctors advised shifting her to a private facility.

Munni’s plight came to light on Sunday after she was admitted to a private hospital at Mangalgiri — where her parents live — following complications.

Munni’s family said she had tolerated the torture because she did not want to burden her poor parents. But after the harassment became severe, Munni sent her elder daughter to stay with her parents.

Assembly speaker N Manohar has visited Munni and asked doctors to provide all the necessary care to save her life.

The three accused were produced in a local court and sent to jail. There is no official word on whether action will be taken against the soothsayer.

Gaddafi 'raped countless women during years in power', claims new documentary

Victims: It is alleged that Gaddafi's female bodyguards were the targets of his attacks (file photo)

Late Libyan dictator Colonel Muammar Gaddafi raped countless women during his years in power, according to an explosive new documentary.

German broadcaster RTL is set to screen the controversial programme - which includes interviews with his inner circle - next Monday.

Reporter Antonia Rados said; 'There were many women in Libya spellbound by Gaddafi who wanted to meet him. And when they did he raped them.'

She said that his female bodyguards, who were supposed to lay down their lives to protect him, were also victims.

A prominent Libyan psychologist Dr Seham Sergewa said he knew of at least five of his Amazonian bodyguards who were raped by him.

Rape as a means of subduing the population was also passed on to soldiers and loyal militias who were provided with condoms and Viagra to encourage their assaults.

It has also been claimed that businessmen who traded in Libya for were expected to provide 'escort girls' for the dictator during their meetings
 In June last year Luis Moreno-Ocampo, the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, said there was evidence that Gaddafi had instructed his troops to rape women who had voiced opposition to his regime.

Ms Rados goes on to say in the report that many women were abused by him within moments of meeting.

And he made a point of forgiving rebellious elements in his tribal society if they made 'gifts' of young women to him.

Ms Rados said she met many injured women who, along with their families, were sworn to years of silence over what Gaddafi had subjected them to.

A female Koran teacher told the programme; 'None of these girls at the time would have dared say what happened to them. They would have been killed.'

The reporter also said that businessmen who traded in Libya for fantastic sums knew what their host was about and they were expected to provide 'escort girls' for the dictator during their meetings.

It is also alleged that Ukrainian nurses who were flown in, ostensibly to work in Libyan hospitals, actually ended up aborting the babies of his rape victims.

Gaddafi died during the NATO-backed uprising in Libya on October 20 last year when he was shot after being taken prisoner by rebels. He was 69.
Accusation: The documentary claims many women were abused by him within moments of meeting

Shocking revelations: A reporter for RTL claims there were many women in Libya spellbound by Gaddafi who wanted to meet him, but were raped when they did so 

Pakatan says will back Bersih 3.0

KUALA LUMPUR, April 4 — Pakatan Rakyat (PR) lawmakers said today it would support a third rally for free and fair elections by Bersih after accusing the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) of not showing its full commitment to electoral reforms.

They told The Malaysian Insider that after the findings of Parliament’s polls panel were passed yesterday without debate and a minority report dismissed outright, they would have to increase public awareness of alleged electoral fraud.

“This is not the end. If there is no firm action, Bersih 4 and 5 may happen,” PAS vice president Salahuddin Ayub said.

PKR vice president Fuziah Salleh also agreed with the Kubang Kerian MP that the federal opposition would have no problems backing Bersih’s rally at Dataran Merdeka on April 28 as the question of “masterminding” the electoral reforms movement did not arise.

“You think we can control someone like (Datuk) Ambiga (Sreenevasan)?” the Kuantan MP said, referring to the Bersih chief who is also former Bar Council president.

Fuziah, who has led PKR’s taskforce on spotting dubious registered voters, said that the opposition “must create more awareness” as the government has refused to acknowledge the weaknesses in the electoral roll.

“If more people are aware, then we may get a higher voter turnout and minimise the impact of fraudulent voters,” she said.

Bersih confirmed today it will hold its third rally for free and fair elections on April 28 saying it was necessary to warn Malaysians that the country is about to face its “dirtiest” polls to date.

The 84-member coalition expressed its disappointment in the parliamentary select committee on electoral reforms that was formed following the July 9, 2011 rally for free and fair elections which saw tens of thousands flood the streets of the capital.

But Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz told reporters in Parliament today the historic square, where the Malayan flag was hoisted for the first time after independence, is not a lawful gathering point under the recently passed Peaceful Assembly Act.

“Dataran Merdeka has not been gazetted as an area for peaceful gatherings,” the de facto law minister said.

DAP Youth chief Anthony Loke, who sat in the parliamentary select committee on electoral reforms, said his party had yet to officially support the April 28 sit-in but “we support their objectives in principle.”

“The main question here is what is the Election Commission’s (EC) commitment to reform? Has it acted on our interim report or the 42,000 dubious voters highlighted last year?” the Rasah MP said.

The opposition also backed the July 9, 2011 Bersih march despite accusations from certain quarters that the demonstration was masterminded by PR.

Police fired tear gas and water cannon to disperse the crowds in chaotic scenes which saw over 1,500 arrested, scores injured and the death of an ex-soldier in a clampdown that earned condemnation for the Najib administration in the international press.

Reveal plans for Indian poor, Pakatan told

Hindraf wants to know the opposition bloc's plans for the Indian poor in the first 100 days should it form the next government.

KUALA LUMPUR: Pakatan Rakyat must explain its plans for the poor Indians if the opposition bloc forms the next federal government, said Hindraf.

“What do you have in store for the Indian underclass in the first 100 days should you take over Putrajaya? We want to know this before the general election to enable the people to decide on their political direction,” said the movement’s de facto leader P Uthayakumar.

Currently, he said, there was a lack of plans for Indians in the Pakatan-administered states of Kedah, Penang, Kelantan and Selangor.

In view of this, Hindraf invited Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim, DAP adviser Lim Kit Siang and PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang for a gathering in Klang on April 22 to outline their plans.

Uthayakumar said that Hindraf and Pakatan had several things in common.

“We are for a two-party system and a change of government,” he said, adding that the movement was also opposed to “Umno’s racism” and the segregation in the public and private sectors.

“No way are we supporting the Barisan Nasional-Umno regime,” stressed the former Internal Security Act detainee.

New STPM: UK reaction worries Hindraf

The government has not given a satisfactory response to a query about whether foreign institutions will recognise the certificate, says an official of the Hindu rights movement.

GEORGE TOWN: The government has failed to relieve fears that the change in the STPM format will reduce the opportunities for students to continue their education overseas.

According to Hindraf national coordinator W Sambulingam, the Higher Education Ministry has not given a satisfactory answer to his letter seeking clarification from it.

Sambulingam did not give details of his communication with the ministry, but he told FMT that he had also written to foreign embassies and the reply he received from the British High Commission was discouraging.

“Based on the UK reply, I am convinced that foreign institutions are unaware of the changes, let alone willing to recognise the new STPM formula,” he said.

He added that he was still waiting for replies from the foreign missions of India, Australia, New Zealand and the United States.

The change in the STPM examination format was announced last March 6 by the chairman of the Malaysian Examination Council, Mohd Noh Dalimin. Instead of the certificate being awarded on the basis of performance in the examination held at the end of the two-year pre-university course, the evaluation will now be based on performance in three school-based examinations spread out over the two years.

Hindraf has described the change as an extension of a racist policy aimed at “further marginalising the already institutionally victimised non-Malay students”. Most Form Six students are non-Malays who cannot gain admission into institutions running matriculation courses for local universities.

“The matriculation examination, considered much less gruelling than STPM, is out of bounds for non-Malay students, thanks to racist Umno,” Sambulingam said.

But he also expressed disappointment with Pakatan Rakyat, saying it had not looked into the issue seriously, “perhaps because the new system will only hurt the poor Indians most”.

‘Separate politics and education’

The newly formed DAP Indian Cultural Bureau has called for all parties to de-politicise education

GEORGE TOWN: Political parties in the country should stop politising education policies and aid provided to the poor.

The Penang DAP Indian Cultural Bureau chairman Harvinder Singh said an overdose of politics in such issues threatened whatever progress made to offer basic education to all Malaysians.

He said education should be open to all, and every poor student should be guided and helped.

“Aid or education policies should not be adopted by playing politics, or by relying on race or religion to polarise students here.

“We must separate education and politics if the country wants to move forward and compete on a global scale, ” Harvinder said, adding that if the poor can be helped in education then it is one way to overcome the widening income gap between the rich and the impoverished.

He said the same principle should be applied to aiding the Chinese and Tamil vernacular schools.

All should be helped irrespective of whether they are national or religious schools.

Harvinder was peaking to the media before presenting RM3,000 worth of aid to 10 students, who come from poor Indian families here.

The bureau, which was formed last year to help the poor and promote culture to the younger generation, raised the aid via a donation drive during the recent Thaipusam festival here.

Umno disagrees

Penang Umno Youth, however, disagrees with Harvinder’s stand on education.

The wing’s chief, Shaik Hussein Mydin, said Harvindar may have the best intentions, but as a whole, Pakatan Rakyat which manages Penang does not know the limits to its desire to politicise everything.

“Everything that Barisan Nasional does is evil and Pakatan can do no wrong. Isn’t that a plain and simple form of politicking?”

Shaik Hussein said it was Pakatan which first began to politicise education in this country by preying on the ignorance of Chinese and Tamil school activists over public policies on education.

It has reached a stage where Pakatan officials are heckled, intimidated or jeered upon, he said.

Shaikh Hussein pleaded with Pakatan to stop its constant politicking, as it comes at the expense of nation building and mutual respect.

“Whenever BN points out Pakatan’s shortcomings, the latter refused to admit it and instead threaten its critics with legal suits.”

How can a state be progressive if the government of the day refuses to heed criticism whether it is constructive or negative, he asked.

This leads to a belief that the present state government is afraid to accept criticism, he alleged.

“This is tantamount to having a dictatorial policy,” Shaikh Hussein said.

Bersih to EC: Get cracking or resign

Commission continues to bear the burnt of criticism for its lack of initiative to clean up the electoral roll.

KUALA LUMPUR: Electoral watchdog Bersih 2.0 today kept up its criticism of the Election Commission (EC) for its lack of initiative in looking into fraud in the electoral roll.

Bersih, which organised a mammoth rally last July demanding for free and fair election, announced today its plans to hold another rally on April 28.

One of the pertinent demands Bersih is making this time around is for the EC to resign.

Bersih co-chairperson S Ambiga said that the EC has failed in its duties.

“Their duty is to the rakyat, not to serve the government of the day and they have failed. Hence we are asking that they step down,” she said.

While scrutinising the electoral roll, Bersih officials spotted several cases of irregularities which have yet to be explained by the National Registration Department (NRD) or the EC.

Earlier, at a press conference, political scientists Ong Kian Ming of UCSI University and Wong Chin Huat (Bersih Steering Committee member) showed evidence of numerous irregularities in the voter roll.

These irregularities were spotted from the latest voter roll as of December last year.

Bersih said that it found at least 560 cases where people shared the same old IC numbers in the roll.

Wong highlighted and raised doubts over several cases of phantom voters, where he found persons of the same name and similar IC numbers but voted in different constituencies.

Ong highlighted irregularities in the postal voting and pointed out cases where the spouses of army men or police were of the same gender.

Bersih said that these could be clerical errors but it did not rule out a more sinister reason behind these irregularities.

Ambiga said the main question was not of corrections but the integrity of the roll.

“The EC only cleans up the roll when it is pointed out to them. They have to understand that cleanliness alone is not enough; there needs to be integrity of the roll.

“How can we hold an election when the state of the electoral roll is in this condition?” she asked.

She repeated that if the EC was not ready or was short on resources to look at these irregularities, civil society was ready to do so.

Over the past several weeks, the opposition has also been making many allegations about cases of irregularities in electoral roll.

The EC’s response to these allegations is that it has been cleaning them up but was not working quick enough to the standards of “some parties”.

Show your independence, Ambiga

Bersih coalition co-chairman S Ambiga must ban Pakatan Rakyat's top leaders from participating in the April 28 peaceful assembly.

GEORGE TOWN: Bersih 2.0 may have its constitutional right under Article 10 of the Federal Constitution to hold a third peaceful assembly on April 28 at Dataran Merdeka, but its co-chairman S Ambiga must first clarify whether the rally is at the behest of opposition Pakatan Rakyat, said Gerakan politician Baljit Singh.

He said it appeared that the Bersih 3.0 gathering was a pre-planned rally to trigger an election momentum for Pakatan Rakyat.

He raised suspicion that the imminent rally was being organised for Pakatan to gain political mileage. But he is also open to any clarification by Ambiga to assuage his doubts.

The lawyer has reservation on why the Bersih 3.0 rally was announced almost immediately after Pakatan leaders had expressed discontent over the 22-point electoral reforms recommended by the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC).

He wondered whether the rally was being hurriedly arranged to rally and galvanise Pakatan leaders and supporters in the wake of the fast approaching general election.

He suggested for Bersih to “ban” Pakatan top leaders from taking part in Bersih 3.0 to show proof that the coalition was an independent and non-partisan movement genuinely seeking to improve the country’s democratic process.

“Its chairperson owes a public duty to clarify that Bersih 3.0 would not be a platform for Pakatan leaders to flex their political muscles,” Baljit, who heads Penang Gerakan legal and human rights bureau, told FMT here today.

Ambiga has said that apart from the movement’s original eight demands, Bersih 3.0 would focus on three key issues. The issues are the resignation of the Election Commission, the presence of international observers to monitor the general election and that the electoral process be cleaned up before the next general election.

Meanwhile, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Nazri Abdul Aziz has already objected to the venue, saying that Dataran Merdeka was not a gazetted area for peaceful assemblies.

‘Cry babies’

Yesterday, Dewan Rakyat Speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia approved the PSC report on electoral reforms without calling for a debate and gave three opposition MPs the marching orders.

The Speaker ordered PKR MPs R Sivarasa and Azmin Ali, and PAS MP Dzulkefly Ahmad to leave the House for questioning his stand on not allowing a minority report to be attached with the existing report.

Baljit said Pakatan MPs and Bersih should not behave like “cry babies” as it was not compulsory for the PSC to accept all their recommendations on electoral reforms.

He said that the 22 accepted recommendations looked credible and progressive, though there were still room for improvement.

During the PSC fact-finding mission across the country, he said he had also proposed for a anti-hopping law to ban elected political frogs.

Although his recommendation was not included in the PSC report, Baljit said he was not crying foul.

“It’s so disturbing that the moment Pakatan MPs cry foul, Ambiga swiftly announces another rally.

“Is it coincidence or pre-planned?” asked Baljit, who attended the Bersih 2.0 rally last July.

Malaysian Reform Group Says It's Back to the Streets

They might be back
Disappointed with the pace of electoral reform, and with elections looming, Bersih 2.0 calls on its followers to march in April

With the Malaysian election watchdog Bersih planning a third rally for Apr. 28, the stage appears set in Kuala Lumpur for another war of tactics between the government and reformers, who are dominated by the opposition parties.

Ambiga Sreenevasan, the former head of the Malaysian Bar Council who now co-chairs Bersih 2.0, as it is known, told reporters Wednesday that if the government cracks down on protesters, as it did on July 9, 2011, it can expect another massive backlash from voters. That backlash caused Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak’s personal popularity to fall to 59 percent. His approval rating has since climbed back to 69 percent, according to the Merdeka Centre polling apparatus.

Interestingly, however, Najib’s personal popularity doesn’t appear to extend to his party or the Barisan Nasional, the ruling national coalition. The Merdeka poll found that as many as a third of respondents who said they were satisfied with the prime minister said they were inclined towards the Pakatan Rakyat opposition coalition.

Malaysia is now in the throes of preparing for national elections, expected to be called sometime in May or June. A member of the United Malays National Organization told Asia Sentinel that preparations for the election are now in “full swing,” with Prime Minister and UMNO head Najib and his colleagues sifting through the party to find new candidates. As an indication of the collapse of the Chinese votes for the Barisan, the source said seats in Malay areas which were previously allocated to parliamentarians for the Malaysian Chinese Association would be taken back and given to ethnic Malays.

Sreenevasan said she is “assuming that sensible advisers of the prime minister will tell him to refrain from using the same tactics.”

However, it is possible that there will be another confrontation. Mohamed Nazri Abdul Azis, minister in the prime minister’s department and de facto law minister, told reporters later that if the Bersih leaders go through with a plan to sit in at Kuala Lumpur's Dataran Merdeka (Freedom Square), it would be classified as an illegal assembly under the newly-passed Peaceful Assembly Bill.

In the July 2011 confrontation, authorities blocked streets to attempt to foil marchers and used tear gas and water cannons in an effort to disperse them. Some 1,600 people were arrested, with the international media and human rights groups universally condemning the crackdown. It appears there is strong sentiment inside UMNO to do it again.

“If Bersih want to have a street rally, the police will crack down,” an UMNO source told Asia Sentinel “A street rally that can disrupt traffic and get followers from off the street is much preferable to them. It has a better psychological effect to create tension. They definitely will not obey the law and will definitely go for street protest and the government will definitely clamp down and the western media will definitely slam the Malaysian government for being oppressive to its people. (Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim) and opposition leaders will be the Aung San Suu Kyi for May.”

The source accused the rallies of being funded “by foreign NGOs, which are now being frowned upon worldwide. If Anwar thinks that the Arab Spring momentum given by (the US-funded National Democratic Institute) etc., is a good thing and popular with the people, he got it wrong. People are wary of the effects of Arab Spring, street rallies, foreign funded NGOs, and ‘democracy.’"

Najib is a canny political leader, however, and it has to be assumed that he would discourage such a crackdown. He has sought to bill himself as a “transformative figure” in Malaysian politics, telling the country in the wake of the Bersih 2.0 rally and the international opprobrium the government earned that he would seek to repeal several of the most draconian colonial-era laws that have been used against Malaysian citizens, including the infamous Internal Security Act, which allows for what amounts to indefinite detention without habeas corpus. He also promised reforms of the election laws that led to the formulation of Bersih in the first place.

Some reforms have been put in place including repeal of the Banishment Act of 1959 and the Restricted Residence Act of 1933 and discarding three proclamations put in place by the British during the Communist insurgency of the 1950s. Some electoral reforms called for by Bersih 2.0 have also been put in place.

The Peaceful Assembly Bill, as it was named, is not one of them. The bill, characterized by Najib as a reform of the country’s previous laws on assembly, imposes an outright ban on street protest without a license from the police. Written notice of 30 days must be given, thus outlawing spontaneous gatherings. A total of 11 different provisions have been added that the police must approve before a street protest would be allowed.

Among Bersih’s objections to the 22 recommendations for electoral reform promulgated by a select parliamentary committee is a requirement that overseas voters have to return to qualify. Anywhere from 700,000 to 1 million Malaysians are living overseas, many of whom, particularly Indians and Chinese, who left because of religious tensions or lack of opportunity, the majority of whom could be expected to vote against the government. There is also considerable concern about the existence of false or duplicate identities, and about the registration of thousands of Indonesian Muslim émigrés as voters, who could be expected to vote for the government.

Bersih is also asking that the minimum campaign period to be extended from 10 days to 21 to allow overseas voters to receive, mark and return ballots and to allow all candidates, but particularly opposition ones who are stifled n the country’s mainstream press, to get their message out. Bersih is asking for fair and equal coverage of the campaign and parties with no bias. Identification documents for the police and military should be checked for duplicates. They suspect widespread fraud in the electoral rolls. The electoral commission must be strengthened and made less partisan. Gerrymandering of electoral districts should be reformed.

The election is liable to be a close-run thing although the Barisan is believed likely to pull it out on the sheer weight of the ethnic Malay vote. Malays make up more than half of the population. Najib himself, in interviews, has cast doubt on whether the government can reclaim its historic two-thirds margin in parliament. The government lost its margin in 2008 national elections in which it fared the worst since independence.

Najib kata jangan tukar pemandu tengah jalan

Aspan Alias - The Malaysian Insider

4 APRIL — Hari ini Najib Razak mengingatkan semua supaya tidak menukar kerajaan yang merbahaya dalam pilihanraya ini. Katanya “jangan tukar pemandu dipertengahan jalan”. Maksudnya jangan tukar kerajaan dalam pilihanraya ini kerana itu adalah tindakan merbahaya.

Setiap kerajaan bertukar tangan dalam perjalanan. Parti Conservative dan Liberal Democrat telah mengambilalih kerajaan Britain dari Parti Buruh dalam perjalanan. Mana ada kerajaan yang sudah tiada untuk ditukar? Tentulah kerajaan yang sedang berkuasa yang selalu ditukar dan mereka ditukar kerana bersebab, bukan saja-saja untuk ditukar.

Perjalanan mentadbir negara adalah tugasan yang berterusan kepada siapa yang diberikan mandat. Ibarat sebuah bas yang dalam perjalanan jauh, ia disyaratkan supaya mempunyai pemandu gantian (spare driver).

Banyak kemalangan berlaku kerana pemandu itu terlena sambil memandu kerana telah memandu terlalu lama. Maka itulah undang-undang mensyaratkan setiap bas ekspress mesti mempunyai seorang lagi pemandu gantian supaya bas itu dipandu bergilir-gilir supaya tidak merbahayakan penumpang yang sedang tidur lena itu.

Dalam kes kerajaan pimpinan Najib, penumpang-penumpangnya sudah bangun dari tidur dan telah merasakan yang pemanduan Najib sudah cukup merbahaya. Najib memandu dengan tidak mematuhi undang-undang memandu.

Maka penumpang menuntut supaya pemandu ditukar supaya bas tidak terhumban kedalam gaung yang dalam. Pemandunya bernama Najib telah memandu bas itu dengan begitu bahaya kerana penumpang nampak yang pemandu bernama Najib itu sudah nampak hendak terlena.

Najib telah terlena kerana keletihan memandu atau pun tidak bijak memandu. Mungkin pemandu (Najib) ini merasa mengantuk kerana makan terlalu kenyang. Apa pun sebabnya dia mengantuk, pemandu gantian itu perlu sangat untuk mengambilalih pemandu yang lalai itu. Kali ini bas yang tidak berapa baik keadaannya itu wajar dipandu oleh pemandu gantian untuk keselamatan penumpang yang ramai itu.

Pemandu sekarang sudah terlalu lemah dan jika tidak diganti ia mungkin merbahayakan penumpang-penumpang dalam bas panduan Najib ini kedalam gaung yang dalam. Sekarang inipun sudah nampak bas yang dipandu Najib itu sedang terhuyung-hayang kekiri dan kekanan sehinggakan selalu memakan jalan dan lorong bertentangan.

Selama ini kita telah mendengar bas-bas ekspress yang telah melanggar jambatan, “toll-gate” dan kenderaan yang berhenti dan sebagainya yang telah menyebabkan penumpang terbunuh bergelempangan ditepi lebuhraya-lebuhraya kerana pemandunya yang keletihan dan tidak ditukar.

Kita juga banyak mendengar pemandu-pemandu bas yang tidak jujur membuat “duit luar” dengan menjual “spare tyre” serta menjual banyak alat-alat gantian yang ada didalam bas itu serta lari mencuri minyak petrol dan dijual kepada orang luar.

Kita jangan dengar nasihat pemandu yang sedang memandu kita sekarang kerana bas yang dipandunya telah hampir rosak dan tidak berfungsi dengan baik lagi. Cari sahaja pemandu lain supaya bas-bas itu dijaga dan mendapat “maintenance” yang lebih baik. Lagi pun pemandu yang sekarang ini selalu makan sambil memandu.

Jika pemandu sekarang masih memandu maka “premium” insurannya akan terlalu mahal kerana “loading” kepada premiumnya terlalu tinggi, “loading” kepada insurannya itu menjadi tinggi disebabkan risiko yang terlalu tinggi dan merbahayakan bas-bas yang akan dipandunya itu. —

Ruckus seen to pave way for Bersih 3.0

The Sun

KUALA LUMPUR (April 3, 2012): Barisan Nasional MPs criticised the opposition over the ruckus created in the Dewan Rakyat today over the rejection of a motion to debate the inclusion of a minority report in the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) for Electoral Reforms report.

A government MP said the commotion showed the opposition's ill intention and suggested it was a way to "spur" the next Bersih 3.0.

"The way we see the report, (it seems) they have been on an opposing mode from the beginning," said Datuk Idris Haron (BN-Tangga Batu).

"It is their ill intention to portray the committee and the government as not playing their roles effectively, so it's an ill intention and they did it (here) to perhaps bring out to the streets."

Hulu Selangor MP P. Kamalanathan said the pandemonium deprived MPs who wanted to debate the matter.

At a news conference later, Pakatan Rakyat leaders condemned Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia for his decision to pass the report without a debate.

Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim (PKR-Permatang Pauh) said PR MPs had come to debate the report, despite its motion to include a minority report being rejected earlier.

"They refuse to endorse the minority report because it exposes the fundamental issue of a flawed electoral roll," he said.

Civil society leaders welcomed the tabling of the report on electoral reforms, and hoped to see it implemented before the next general election.

Malaysians for Free and Fair Elections (Mafrel) chairman Syed Ibrahim Syed Noh said the recommendations were welcome if they could be implemented before the next general election.

He said some, like the recommendation of a caretaker government might not be implementable.

Syed Ibrahim said he expected more forceful recommendations to clean up the electoral roll.

Malaysian Centre for Constitutionalism and Human Rights community mover Edmund Bon praised the recommendations, but said their details and implementation timeline should be revealed.

He said some of the recommendations could require either new laws, rules or constitutional amendments such as the recommendation for pre-registration for 20-year-olds, which he said contravened Article 119 of the Federal Constitution.

Similar views were voiced by Bar Council Constitutional Law Committee chairperson Syahredzan Johan, who called for details as to how the problems identified by the PSC would be overcome.

The Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections (Bersih) called for the immediate implementation of the PSC's recommendations.

In a statement, Bersih said issues such as electoral roll manipulation, citizenship for foreigners and election offences were not dealt with or in sufficient depth.

It called for a minimum 21-day campaign period, free and equitable media access and monitoring of the electoral roll, including inspecting the electoral roll for multiple-voter addresses. -- theSun

Free legal service for detainees

The New Straits Times

EFFECTIVE Monday, Malaysians arrested and remanded are entitled for free legal service under the National Legal Aid Foundation, said the Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Liew Vui Keong (BN-Sandakan).

Previously, only those with a household income of less than RM25,000 were eligible for financial assistance from the foundation.

The foundation was launched by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak on Feb 25 last year to ensure all accused persons got a fair hearing in court.

The foundation will provide legal aid and advisory services to all Malaysians for all crimes, except those which carry the death penalty, from the time of arrest to remand and to release on bail.

Last year, 37,597 Malaysians were brought to magistrate's courts and 17,637 were without legal assistance.

A total of 4,436 cases involving underage criminals were brought to the courts but only 515 had lawyers.

Muhyiddin: Stop Politicising Chinese Education Issue

KUALA LUMPUR, April 4 (Bernama) -- Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said today all quarters should stop politicising Chinese education issues and instead concentrate on efforts to enhance the educational quality and development in all schools.

Muhyiddin, who is Education Minister, said this was crucial so as to strengthen the country's competitiveness in facing the challenges ahead.

On the shortage of teachers in National-type Chinese Primary Schools (SJKC), he said, the government was truly committed and serious in tackling this issue in a prompt and effective manner, and that among the measures taken was the setting up of a special committee headed by Deputy Education Minister Datuk Dr Wee Ka Siong to address the shortage of SJKC teachers, last month.

"The move was taken not because of pressure from any quarters," he said in a statement Wednesday.

He added that as a government that cares, it has implemented systematic measures as well as streamlined and continuous policies to address the shortage of SJKC teachers.

"I hope, therefore, that the Chinese community would welcome the short-term and long-term measures announced by the committee on March 20 because the national-type primary schools are never separated from the country's education system," he said.

Muhyiddin said it was important to explain this issue so that the true pictures can be given to counter baseless claim and accusation against the government and the ministry.

"To ensure the smooth running of learning and teaching in SJKC nationwide, the Education Ministry has been striving each year to fill up the vacancies for SJKC teachers," he said.

He pointed out that in 2009 there was a shortage of 4,991 SJKC teachers. The figure dropped to 3,043 in 2010, and to 2,720 in 2011 while for this year, the number was 1,874, he said.

"Of the 1,874, the Education Ministry has appointed 1,482 interim teachers to fill up the vacancies. The shortage of SJKC teachers now stands at 392, and headmasters are allowed to propose the appointment of interim teachers to the state Education Departments to fill up these posts," he said.

Muhyiddin said the ministry allocated 38,047 posts for SJKCs and that until end of January this year, 36,173 trained teachers have been posted in all SJKCs.

"A total of RM1.8 billion is spent annually to pay the salary of teachers and manage the operations of SJKC schools nationwide," he added.

He said the special committee met with Chinese educationist associations and other trust holders on five occasions -- on March 5, 8, 16 and 23 and on April 2 -- to overcome the problems faced by Chinese schools.

He pointed out that during the meeting on March 5, the committee met the Planning and Policy Research Division (BPPDP), Teacher's Education Division (BPG), Education Services Commission (SPP), Malaysian Institute of Teachers' Education (IPGM), School Daily Management Division (BPSH) and SJKC Headmasters Association.

The committee also held a joint meeting with Dong Zhong, Jiao Zhong, HuaZhong and the National Union of the Teaching Profession (NUTP) on March 8, 16 and 23 as well as last Monday, he said, adding that Dong Zhong only attended two of the meetings.

"To ensure all decisions of the committee are implemented as agreed, a follow up coordination meeting was held by the committee on March 27 together with the BPPDP, BPG, IPGM and the NUTP, with the BPSH acting as the secretariat," he said.

Muhyiddin said to overcome the shortage of teachers in SJKCs, a total of 1,482 interim teachers have been deployed to all states, while headmasters have been given the greenlight to propose the appointment of the remaining 392, on April 1.

"These interim teachers will serve until the deployment of trained teachers can be carried out, depending on the actual vacancies based on the approved Personnel Management Expenditure Estimate."

He said on March 27, the Education Ministry issued an extension of service for the SJKC's interim teachers, and that to implement this agenda, SJKC headmasters were allowed to nominate those with qualifications to become teachers, with the appointment to be made by the respective state education directors.

On the issue of remedial teachers who have no bilingual capability, and the move by SJKC board of governors to transfer 100 such teachers because of their inability to communicate in Chinese, Muhyiddin said, the ministry s study showed that there were among these teachers who obtained a credit in Chinese language.

"Seven of them are found to have Chinese language qualification, namely two in Melaka (SJKC Chabau and SJKC Pay Hsien), two in Sarawak (SJKC Chung Hua, Sibuti and SJKC Chun Hua, Serian), one in SJKC Hin Hua, Selangor and two in Johor (SJKC Sengkang, Kulai Jaya and SJKC Ban Foo)," he said.

Muhyiddin said that the ministry decided that these teachers who have Chinese language qualification, would remain in these schools while other teachers would be redeployed to national schools starting April 16 as decided by the special committee at its meeting on Monday.

To overcome the shortage of teachers with social studies option, who have no Chinese language qualification, he said, 17 of them with Malay language minor have been posted in Kelang, Selangor, and one of them, who has Chinese language qualification, will remain in existing school, SJKC Chung Hua, while the rest would be move to national schools.

A teacher at SJKC Chabau Melaka has been replaced with a Chinese studies teacher.

On the teaching of Malay and English languages at Level 1 of SJKC Grade A and B, he said, these would be taught by teachers who have Chinese language qualification at least at the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia level.

Muhyiddin said in terms of long-term initiatives, the BPG and IPGM were currently drawing up an option intervention programme for teachers who have not opted for the Malay and English languages, and taught subjects other than Chinese language for more than five years.

These courses are expected to start at the latest by end of this year so as not to affect the teaching and learning process in classes, he said, adding that the government has come up with plans based on the needs of SJKCs, and the mechanism to train not only teachers for the Chinese language but also to deploy more Chinese studies lecturers.

Muhyiddin said at the moment, there are 72 Chinese studies lecturers at IPGMs nationwide, and that the ministry has agreed to take in 30 more to enhance the teacher training capacity.

"The application to become lecturers at IPGMs, including for Chinese studies lecturers, was opened between March 13 and 30. At the moment, the secretariat at the ministry is processing these applications and intake will be made on June 1 this year.

"Intake of lecturers will be made continuously," he said.

To increase the number of trained SJKC teachers, the ministry has also consulted the Education Services Commission and found that among the bachelor degree holders who were interviewed from public institutions of higher learning, 105 of them had Chinese language qualification at the SPM level.

"The ministry, therefore, agreed to appoint them to serve in SJKCs in the near future," he said, adding that the move taken by the government showed that it is sincere in resolving the issue.

"Nevertheless, I've instructed the committee to continue holding discussions and to obtain inputs from all stakeholders, to look into all views and take into consideration all aspects, and find a solution if there are other issues being raised," he said.