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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Malay groups want Scorpene lawyers barred from M'sia

Saif Ali Khan, Kareena Kapoor now married !

Mumbai : Bollywood star couple Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor today tied the knot here in a quiet affair after a five-year courtship.

Saif, 42, son of late Nawab of Pataudi and former Indian cricket captain Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi and actress Sharmila Tagore, sealed his relationship with Kareena, 32, at his residence in suburban Bandra through a registered marriage.

"It was a registered marriage with three witnesses – Kareena's father Randhir Kapoor, her mother Babita and Saif's mother Sharmila," marriage Registrar Surekha Ramesh said.
The couple who started dating in 2007, married in the presence of close friends and family this afternoon.

The couple had officially declared their intention to tie the knot in the beginning of 2012 after the release of their film 'Agent Vinod' in March.

Randhir and his elder daughter Karisma later waved to the waiting fans and media from the balcony of the house.

Kareena wore a green salwar-kurta with a heavy embellished red dupatta wrapped around her. She teamed it up with minimal jewelry, red bangles and left her hair open.

Saif, simply dressed in a grey kurta and white pajamas, came out with his new wife to greet fans from his balcony.

There is a buzz that a reception will be held tomorrow at a city hotel. This will be followed by another reception in Delhi on October 18 and a ceremony at Saif's ancestral Pataudi Palace in Haryana.

Although Saif and Kareena had maintained silence on their much awaited wedding, it was Saif's mother Sharmila who came out with the October wedding date.

Saif has two children - son Ibrahim and daughter Sara - from his previous marriage to actress Amrita Singh. Kareena was in a relationship with Shahid Kapoor earlier.

Saif and Kareena featured together for the first time in the 2008 movie 'Tashan', followed by 'Kurbaan'. They were last seen in Khan's home production 'Agent Vinod' in March this year.

The actor duo, popularly called 'Saifeena', have appeared in several advertisements also.

Sharmila had converted to Islam after her marriage to Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi. Earlier during an event, when asked if she would convert to Islam, Kareena had said, "It is a very personal question and I cannot answer it."

After the death of his father, Saif was anointed the new Nawab of Pataudi.

Malala Yousafzai: Pakistan girl 'strong' - doctors

The medical director of the UK hospital where Pakistani girl Malala Yousafzai is being treated has said doctors are "impressed with her strength and resilience".

Dr David Rosser said she was making good progress, but has a long way to go and is not out of the woods yet.

The 14 year-old schoolgirl was shot in the head by a Taliban gunman for her campaign for girls' education.

Pakistan's president described it as an attack on "civilised people".

Speaking in Azerbaijan on Tuesday, President Asif Ali Zardari said: "The Taliban attack on the 14-year-old girl, who from the age of 11 was involved in the struggle for education for girls, is an attack on all girls in Pakistan, an attack on education, and on all civilised people."
'Right direction'

Malala was flown to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham on Monday night for treatment.

Security is tight at the hospital, with a police presence in place to deal with any unauthorised visitors.

On Monday night a number of well-wishers turned up hoping to see her but were turned away by West Midlands police.
 Pakistani student holds a picture of  Malala Yousufzai during a tribute at the Pakistani Embassy in Abu Dhabi, Oct. 15, 2012.  
Malala is being treated in the UK after being shot in a Taliban assassination attempt

Dr Rosser described the incident as "irritating", but said the hospital and its partners are "comfortable with security arrangements".

The Taliban have threatened to target Malala again and she was given tight security for her journey to the UK.

Dr Rosser said the team of specialists working with her have been pleased with the teenager's progress.

"There's a long way to go and she is not out of the woods yet... but at this stage we're optimistic that things are going in the right direction," he added.

Once Malala recovers sufficiently, it is thought she will need neurological help as well as treatment to repair or replace damaged bones in her skull.

She was flown to the UK from Pakistan by air ambulance on Monday, almost a week after she and two other schoolgirls were attacked as they returned home from school in Mingora in the Swat Valley.

The gunman who boarded the van in which she was travelling asked for her by name before firing three shots at her.

Malala became widely known as a campaigner for girls' education in Pakistan as a result of a diary she wrote for BBC Urdu about life under the Taliban, when they banned all girls from attending school.

Christian Missionary run Nirmala School in Kerala rejects admission to Muslim students

By TCN News,

Aluva (Kerala): Nirmala School of Aluva, which came under scanner for prohibiting head scarf to Muslim students despite an order from the district ADM, has been found rejecting applications from Muslim students for enrolment to the next academic year.

The school started admissions to the next academic year, a month back and the interviews are underway.

However, many parents from the Muslim community have alleged that even studious and meritorious candidates fulfilling all criteria have been denied admissions.

A parent, who tried to contact school administration to know the reason for the rejection of his ward candidature, was told bluntly: You people can enrol your kids in your own schools.”

Civil rights groups and Muslim organisations in the state are already protesting against the prohibition of wearing head scarves to Muslim female students despite an order from the district administration.

School’s decision to keep away Muslim students from the next academic year onwards has further sullied the institution name in controversies.

When TCN tried to contact the school administration, Principal was out of bound and other were unwilling to talk.

Meanwhile, many parents are planning to take legal actions against the school.

Pembela wants ‘Christian conspiracy’ claims probed

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 16 — Muslim pressure group Pembela today urged the authorities to probe the validity of renewed claims of a conspiracy between DAP leaders and clergymen here to turn Malaysia into a Christian state.

In a statement here, the conservative group pointed out that since the allegations first hit media headlines last year, a police report has been lodged and several lawmakers have also come forward claiming to have knowledge of the matter.

“To determine the validity of the accusation, which was preceded by a police report last May 13, Pembela urges the authorities, particularly the police and the state religious councils, to conduct thorough probes.

“Action should be taken to ensure this matter is handled appropriately within the scope of the law and the Federal Constitution,” Pembela chairman Aminuddin Yahaya said.

He also urged for appropriate action from the National Unity and Integration Department in the Prime Minister’s Department, saying it was necessary to ensure that all religious leaders in the country receive “intensive explanation” on the “implications of the privileges of Islam in the Federal Constitution as well as the position of other religions”.

“Pembela [also] urges all Islamic NGOs and Muslims not to act outside the confines of the law when faced with matters like these, and should instead stand united to solve it,” he said.

PAS MP Nasharuddin Mat Isa recently revived the “Christian conspiracy” allegations against the DAP, an issue that has been used repeatedly by Malay right wing groups and hardliners in Umno purportedly to warn away the Malays from supporting Pakatan Rakyat (PR).

In a speech at Putra World Trade Centre, the former PAS deputy president was reported to have alleged that DAP leaders had led prayers seeking to turn Malaysia into a Christian state during a thanksgiving dinner held after the Sarawak state election in April last year.

Last week in Parliament, a former PR lawmaker appeared to back Nasharuddin’s allegations when he revealed in the House what he claimed was photographic evidence of an alleged plot by party leaders and foreign clergymen to turn the country into a Christian state.

Kulim Bandar Baharu MP Zulkifli Noordin, a former PKR lawmaker, said he was in possession of photographic proof of a thanksgiving held in Penang last year on May 5, shortly after the Sarawak state election on April 16, where DAP leaders and a group of local and foreign clergymen had prayed to install a Christian Prime Minister and turn the country into a Christian state.

Listing those in attendance, which he said included priests and pastors from United Kingdom and South Africa, Zulkifli said it was also admitted during the dinner that foreign churches were willing to channel funds to help the opposition’s political struggle here.

“The priest from South Africa said he was invited to observe the Sarawak polls, and that he was disappointed in how the Christians have been sidelined in Malaysia, especially on the AlKitab Malay language bibles issue.

“He requested that something is done to help spread Christianity here and said that money is not a problem and that the churches in Africa are ready to help.”

Zulkifli’s revelation was first exposed in May last year in a front-page article on Umno-owned daily Utusan Malaysia headlined “Malaysia negara Kristian? (Malaysia a Christian country?)”.

The Malay daily reported that “Malam ini pula akan diadakan satu majlis di Pusat Kristian (Katolik) Pulau Pinang di sini dan satu ceramah perdana pula dianjurkan esok. Pertemuan itu dikatakan dianjurkan setiap tahun”.

[In English: “Tonight there will be a function at the Penang Christian Centre (Catholic) here and the public lecture will take place tomorrow. The convention is organised every year.”]

Witch-hunt exposes BN’s phony reforms

Twenty three years ago, as a result of the vindictive and repressive 'Operation Lalang', several human rights activists including myself formed Suaram, says Kua Kia Soong.

By Kua Kia Soong

When this political farce started over the government’s attempt to demonise Suaram as a “foreign agent”, it happened to coincide with our planned annual holiday. I am always reminded of these words by my old friend, the late K Das in his foreword to my 1989 book on Operation Lalang, “…but we must not spend our days and nights living in silent fear of the thieves who stole Kua’s freedom.” Whether beholding the stars above the Scottish highlands with my loved ones or the stars above Kamunting detention camp, the oppressors can imprison our bodies but our spirit will always roam free…

So what the six government agencies uncovered?

When I told my friends in the UK that the government had commanded no less than six government agencies to investigate Suaram to try all means to pin a charge on us, they were incredulous and asked if Malaysia was still a banana republic where the civil service can be ordered by the regime to act against legitimate organisations. “Haven’t they got more important things to do?” they asked.

As Malaysian citizens we ought to know exactly how much of our taxpayers’ money is being wasted on such extraneous side activities of our police, special branch and other government agencies in the name of “national security”.

A month has now elapsed since the start of the rigorous CCM investigations that included many days of 1-1 questioning with at least 20 people and which have revealed nothing questionable within their remit.

Indeed, I was reassured when we went to the CCM interrogation and one of their staff came over to congratulate me on the good work Suaram was doing. Now the buck seems to have been passed on to the AG’s Chambers. We were also summoned to the Perkeso offices to explain Socso payments to our staff dating back 10 years or more. When we got there, the officer in charge didn’t seem to know what we were there for. Obviously, these summonses have all been ordered by people above them.

As for the Registrar of Societies coming in on the act, they were made a laughing stock when their Wikipaedia source of information meant that even the recently departed Fan Yew Teng was also summoned to their office to make a 112 statement. How Fan must be laughing at the fools from up there. Various people associated with Suaram from years back have also been called to the ROS for questioning all because some far-right crackpot individual and insignificant Ah Pek made a police report against Suaram.

Meanwhile, no government agency appears to be investigating all the reports about Perimekar and Terasasi and the suspected selling of national defence secrets and commissions paid in the Scorpene deal uncovered in two years of investigations by the French.

And has Bank Negara uncovered any whiff of money laundering by Suaram all these years? I am sure all the Harvard trained economists in Bank Negara must be laughing at the preposterous presumption in government circles that there could be such a possibility. Nevertheless, the well-oiled propagandists in the mainstream press seem to be spinning merrily for the same idiotic thinking in government.

Ah, and as soon as they mentioned money laundering, some money launderers were actually caught in the act with RM40 million in Hong Kong soon after. There was no need for a six-agency posse – it was uncovered by the Hong Kong police. The government explained it away as funds for Sabah Umno but we’ll wait for the MACC and Bank Negara and the AG’s Chambers to do the needful.

The government’s “foreign plot” ploy has blown up in their faces. The subsequent exposes of Dr Mahathir and Najib’s recent close encounters with George Soros have certainly embarrassed the spin doctors. Furthermore, by allowing nuclear-armed US warships to visit Port Klang a few days ago, the government has exposed their duplicitous (not non-aligned) foreign policy and raised the question of who are the US foreign agents in Malaysia.

The latest attempt to implicate Suaram in “destabilising Indonesia” is perhaps the most comical. Organising the second Asia-Pacific Conference on East Timor (APCET II) with other Malaysian NGOs on Nov 9, 1996 was one of Suaram’s proudest moments. It was the last important international effort at achieving independence and peace for East Timor. As a token of the appreciation by the East Timorese for our efforts, Suaram was invited to the Independence celebrations in East Timor soon after.

In contrast, the BN government put the country to shame by orchestrating a mob from BN Youth organisations to violently tear down the partition of the hotel where the conference was being held and holding the organisers and foreign guests to ransom. This made international headlines and made us a laughing stock in the world. And instead of apprehending these fascist thugs, the police proceeded to arrest and detain some 59 participants, some (like me) for six nights and seven days. We subsequently sued the government and the police for wrongful detention and we won our case after nearly 15 years.

The APCET debacle should therefore be seen as a case of the BN government’s complicity with the Indonesian government in the repression of the East Timorese. Who were the agents of a foreign government then, and who stood by the East Timorese in their hour of need? Once again, it was another feather in Suaram’s cap of steadfastly defending human rights, justice and democracy. Hasn’t Malaysia recognised East Timor’s independence now?

The Scorpene scandal – fact and fiction

Another story being spun to try to discredit Suaram is the statement by French prosecutor Yves Charpenel that there is no on-going trial in France over allegations of corruption in the Scorpene submarine. When has Suaram ever said that there is an on-going trial in Paris? This is what I wrote on May 30, 2011, “Suaram starts legal fund to probe submarine commissions in French courts.”

“Unlike the British (and Malaysian) system, the French inquisitorial system has an examining or investigating judge. The examining judge can conduct investigations into serious crimes or complex enquiries. As members of the judiciary, they are independent of the executive branch. The judge questions witnesses, interrogates suspects, and orders searches or other investigations. The examining judge’s goal is to gather facts, and as such their duty is to look for all the evidence. Both the prosecution and the defence may request the judge to act and may appeal the judge’s decisions before an appellate court.

“Suaram’s latest application, once approved by the court, would allow it to become party to the enquiry and have official access to every element of the enquiry, including access to the evidence which allegedly links DCNS to the issuing of commissions to government officials. The case is still at the enquiry phase and the new application is to upgrade it to the ‘instruction phase’ where an investigative judge would be appointed.”

More recently, after I had been interviewed by the investigating judge in the Paris Tribunal de Grande Instance, I wrote ‘The Paris papers on the Scorpene scandal – The Malaysian government must tell us about the role of Terasasi’ (May 5, 2012).

“Since Suaram lodged its complaint with the French courts for a judicial review of the Scorpene contract in November 2009, the French judiciary has certainly been busy with their investigations. They have interviewed officials in the French state company, DCN and related companies such as Thales as well as officials in the French ministry of defence. They have looked into bank vaults and scrutinised contracts, memoranda of understanding, memoranda of intent, invoices, bank accounts of various people including Abdul Razak Baginda. There are also some rather telling internal confidential reports of DCN and the French ministry of defence…”

At no point in my articles did I say that we had reached the trial stage when criminal charges can be pressed against any officials. This will be the prerogative of the investigating judges, Roger Le Loire and Serge Tournaire. The spin doctors in the BN-controlled mainstream press should take note.

Born out of BN’s vindictiveness, repression

We seem to have come full circle. Twenty three years ago, as a result of the vindictive and repressive “Operation Lalang”, several human rights activists including myself formed Suaram. There was a dire need for such a human rights organisation that would not only defend human rights in Malaysia but also coordinate other organisations in civil society to fight corruption, injustice and repression.

Twenty three years later, our achievements are evident. We have among others:

Established a human rights centre for victims of human rights abuse and their families;

Established an instant international ‘Urgent Appeal’ hotline in the event of any human rights violation;

Published a Human Rights Annual Report of Malaysia every year since 1998;

Nurtured young human rights activists;

Provided human rights education and training;

Kua Kia Soong is Suaram adviser.

Kadar inflasi di Sabah lebih rendah

Faktor penyumbang kepada kenaikan kadar inflasi telah dikenalpasti dan langkah bersesuaian telah diambil.

Sekitar Dewan Rakyat

KUALA LUMPUR: Timbalan Menteri di Jabatan Perdana Menteri Datuk S K Devamany menafikan bahawa kadar inflasi di Sabah lebih tinggi berbanding dengan kadar inflasi nasional.

“Dalam tahun 2011, kadar inflasi nasional ialah 3.2%, bukan 2.2% seperti yang dikatakan. Di Sabah kadar inflasi ialah 2.9%.

“Walau bagaimanapun kami mengakui inflasi di Sabah tinggi sedikit bagi tempoh Januari hingga Ogos 2011 di tahap 2% berbanding kadar inflasi nasional di tahap 1.8%,” kata Devamany ketika menjawab soalan Ahli Parlimen Tawau Datuk Chua Soon Bui dari SAPP.

Chua menyoal faktor-faktor yang menyumbang kepada kenaikan inflasi di Sabah dan langkah-langkah pihak berkuasa untuk mengatasi masalah inflasi.

Menurut Devamany, kos pengangkutan yang tinggi, keluasan kawasan, peratusan keuntungan tinggi dan sistem pengagihan barangan yang rumit menyumbang kepada kadar inflasi di Sabah, Sarawak dan Labuan.

Untuk mengatasi masalah ini, Devamany berkata pihak kerajaan mengekalkan harga petrol RON95, harga dipantau oleh pihak penguatkuasa, subsidi pengangkutan disediakan dan sebanyak 57 Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia akan diwujudkan di Sabah.

Beliau menjelaskan bahawa KR1M akan ditubuhkan mengikut keperluan dan bukannya mengikut kawasan parlimen.

Chua turut membangkitkan samada sistem dasar kabotaj diambilkira dalam usaha mengatasi kadar inflasi kerana ia mengakibatkan peningkatan kos sebanyak 20 hingga 40 peratus.

Ketika ditemui selepas sesi Dewan Rakyat, Devamany memberitahu FMT bahawa RM386 juta diperuntukkan di dalam belanjawan untuk mengatasi kos kabotaj.

Speaker backs down from MP’s challenge

BN MP dares Ronald Kiandee to punish him for an insulting remark.

KUALA LUMPUR: Deputy Speaker Ronald Kiandee today backed down from a BN MPs’ challenge to take action against him for insulting one of his colleagues in the opposition.

Kiandee instead defended the offending MP, Pasir Salak’s Tajuddin Abdul Rahman, against protests from the opposition bench.

Tajuddin’s insult came in the midst of an uproar over Deputy Women Minister Heng Seai Kie’s refusal to reply to questions.

Heng even defied Kiandee’s order to respond to the queries.

As Pakatan MPs continued with their protests, Tajuddin stood up to say that The Star had described a “woman MP” as someone who “walks and talks like a man”, referring to Ampang MP Zuraida Kamaruddin (PKR).

The remark provoked more protests, with Subang MP R Sivarasa (PKR) citing a standing order and demanding that Kiandee rebuke Tajuddin.

Tajuddin responded: “Why should I apologise? I won’t apologise. Ask The Star to apologise. You can take any action against me. You are dealing with the wrong man.”

Kiandee then said Tajuddin meant no harm in his statement, but Batu Gajah MP Fong Po Kuan (DAP) protested, saying: “He meant what he said. That’s why he said it in Parliament.”

Sivarasa insisted that the statement was insulting to women, but Kiandee refused to instruct the Pasir Salak MP to retract his statement.

“That’s enough, Yang Berhormat,” he said. “Let’s move on.”

At this point, Zuraida stood up and told Tajuddin: “At least I don’t rob the country like you.”

Pakatan not totally against Rapid

Contary to what its Johor chief Chua Jui Meng says, Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim paints a different picture.

KUALA LUMPUR: Pakatan Rakyat clarified that it is not rejecting outright the Petronas Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development (Rapid) in Pengerang, Johor, but rather its implementation, which is said to affect the livelihood of residents there.

“We have had some confusion over this matter, and our combined decision policy-wise is that we do not reject any development, but the implementation of Rapid has gone against our principles,” Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim told reporters after chairing the weekly Pakatan leadership council meeting.

Anwar explained that Pakatan simply wanted a stop work order on the Rapid project, pending the settlement of several issues.

“We need a re-settlement plan that is fair, you don’t demolish existing villages and graveyards. We also have to ensure safety and environment. The Detailed Environment Impact Assessment was not fully observed…,” he said.

Anwar’s clarification comes after PKR Johor chief Chua Jui Meng vowed during a protest in Pengerang that Pakatan would abolish the RM60 billion project should it come into power after the next general election, a stance apparently not shared by all of his Pakatan allies.

“There is an alternative site available, why are you going ahead with it now? They are still destroying exiting villages. We are not confident with the health studies. This project must be postponed,” Anwar said.

Chua, while addressing some 3,000-strong crowd during the Himpunan Hijau Lestari in Pengerang on Sept 30, had said a Pakatan federal government would not allow the petro-chemical project to continue.

“Anwar (Ibrahim) has asked me to convey this message to everyone here today, that we will reject the project and rebuild the livelihood of the locals ,” he told the cheering protesters.

Chua also had said the decision was made in PKR’s political bureau meeting chaired by Anwar.

While PKR had made the strong stand against the project previously, PAS in the meantime had said that it was not against the project as long as it did not affect the local villagers.

Pakatan’s latest stand on the project is not expected to sit well with the local residents who want the petro-chemical project to be stopped.

Review AES

Meanwhile, Anwar said that Pakatan was also proposing that the Automated Enforcement System (AES) go through a review.

“For the AES, we don’t want something that burdens the rakyat and benefits cronies,” he said.

His views were echoed by Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng and PAS Pokok Sena MP Mahfuz Omar.

“There are many areas where I have observed that these cameras are not placed at accident hotspots but more like traps purposely to make money. We want the government to review the agreement with these contractors,” said Mahfuz.

In latest tirade, MCA warns against principles of 'Koran' in national culture

"...They will use the principles of the Koran [sic], and Islamic ethics and values into the nation’s economic, social, and political culture," he wrote, using the archaic English spelling for the Muslim holy book.
(Harakah) -  Chinese-only party MCA has launched a scathing attack on any attempt at inculcating Islamic values in governance, and warned non-Muslims that Quranic principles and Islamic ethics would form national culture if Pakatan Rakyat comes to power.
The warning was made by deputy chairman of the party's publicity bureau, Loh Seng Kok, in a statement condemning an advisory by the Alor Setar Municipal Council that models on billboard should not appear scantily dressed.
Claiming that such a ruling was "detrimental to both the nation’s economic policies and competitiveness", Loh went on to suggest that it also trampled on non-Muslim rights.

"It is preposterous for the Pakatan state government to come up with such guidelines, ignoring the rights of the Chinese community and other non-Muslims," he said, adding that the instruction from Alor Setar mayor Mat Noh Ahmad was made "even without any amendments to the Constitution", in an apparent reference to the argument that the Federal Constitution must be amended if Islamic criminal laws were to be introduced.

"This is against the interest of the non-Muslims, and will even affect the state’s economic development," he added.

But the focus of the party's latest attack appears to be Islamic values, and Loh did not mince his words voicing displeasure over a statement by PAS president Tuan Guru Abdul Hadi Abdul Awang encouraging the incorporation of Islamic values in governance.

"...They will use the principles of the Koran [sic], and Islamic ethics and values into the nation’s economic, social, and political culture," he wrote, using the archaic English spelling for the Muslim holy book.

"Thus I urge the Chinese community to not be fooled by PAS, and to not think that DAP representatives can prevent PAS from achieving their goal of hudud law if Pakatan takes over Putrajaya," the statement added.

TV3 akan menghadapi nasib yang sama seperti Utusan? — Aspan Alias

16 OKT — TV3 sedang merudum “rating”nya. TV3 yang termasyhur sebagai lidah Umno dan BN kini sudah mula tidak mendapat sambutan ramai. Sebelum 2010, TV3 telah mendapat “rating” yang tertinggi sehingga mendapat 3.5 juta penonton sehari dan kini jumlah tontonan dari rakyat telah jatuh sehingga 1.2 juta sehari. Kejatuhan bilangan penonton lebih dari 60 peratus ini tentu bersebab dan sebabnya boleh diagak oleh kita semua. Kejatuhan ini akan akhirnya membawa padah kepada pendapatan syarikat dan menjejaskan prestasi kewangan syarikat televisyen itu.

Selalunya kejatuhan penonton sesebuah syarikat penyiaran seperti TV3 itu adalah kerana kejatuhan keyakinan penonton terhadap kredibiliti saluran itu. Dalam sejarah banyak syarikat penyiaran dan saluran TVnya telah jatuh kerana tidak mendapat sokongan ramai. Keadaan ini tidak mengecualikan TV3 yang kini sudah menampakkan keadaan seperti itu akan berlaku ke atas syarikat televisyen itu.

Kejatuhan penonton yang dialaminya sekarang sudah mula menampakkan apa yang dialami oleh banyak syarikat TV yang terpaksa ditutup di negara-negara yang lain itu akan berlaku ke atas TV3 jika saluran televisyen itu tidak menjaga kredibilitinya di mata penonton yang sedia ada sekarang.

Ramai di antara pengiklan-pengiklan barangan dan perkhidmatan telah mula memikirkan untuk mengiklankan barangan dan perkhidmatan mereka di saluran-saluran yang lain kerana TV3 tidak menjadi saluran sukaramai rakyat lagi. Kejatuhan jumlah penonton untuk saluran ini masih menurun dan dijangkakan yang ia akan melewati bawah dari 1 juta penonton setiap hari.

Keadaan ini berlaku bukan kerana apa….tetapi kerana TV3 sudah menjadi alat pembohongan BN dan Umno dan rakyat yang berfikiran “professional” tidak menganggap saluran TV3 ini sebagai saluran untuk rakyat. Sikap “tidak professional” TV3 ini menjadi persoalan ramai kerana orang ramai tidak gemar dengan sikap condong yang keterlaluan terhadap sesuatu pihak dalam politik ini adalah tindakan yang dianggap tidak jujur.

TV3 tidak yakin terhadap professionisma kewartawanan dan berita. Ia sudah menjadi seperti pentarama jabatan penerangan dan propaganda kerajaan di zaman peperangan melawan komunis dahulu. Rakyat sudah jemu dengan tingkah laku TV3 ini kerana menjadi penghasut bagi membenci setengah pihak dalam masyarakat secara keterlaluan dan ia amat menjijikkan ramai rakyat yang mahukan berita-berita yang seimbang dan professional dalam penyebaran maklumat kepada rakyat.

Saya sudah tidak membuka saluran ini sejak tujuh atau lapan tahun dahulu. Saya sendiri sudah tidak melanggan dan membaca Utusan Malaysia sejak sepuluh tahun dahulu kerana sebab yang sama. Hanya beberapa orang yang rapat dengan saya memberikan apa-apa keratan tulisan Utusan itu jika ia bersangkut dengan isu-isu panas yang dicetak oleh akhbar lidah rasmi Umno itu.

Sebenarnya rakyat memahami yang mana-mana saluran TV dan akhbar itu mempunyai “inclination” masing-masing terhadap sesuatu pihak. Tetapi apa yang dilakukan oleh TV3 dan Utusan itu adalah keterlaluan sehinggakan membelakangkan professionalisma kewartawanan. Tidak bergunalah belajar bidang kewartawanan sehingga ke peringkat yang tinggi tetapi mentaliti dan sikap tidak professional itu ditunjukkan dengan terlalu jelas kepada rakyat yang sudah pandai berfikir ini.

Kerana tindakan TV3 ini maka mereka yang tidak menyebelahi mana-mana pihak terpanggil untuk memberikan sokongan kepada pihak yang dianiayai oleh saluran TV itu. Sesungguhnya apa yang disiarkan oleh TV3 ini merupakan satu yang “counter productive” terhadap kerajaan itu sendiri dan pemantau-pemantau berkaitan dengan berita dari JPM itu tidak dapat merasakan rasa menyampah dan bosan penonton yang ramai-ramai balik ke rumah untuk bersantai dengan keluarga dipaparkan berita-berita yang berbentuk hasutan oleh media massa seperti saluran TV ini.

Bagi pembangkang yang menjadi korban fitnah ini, mereka sepatutnya berterima kasih kepada TV3 dan Utusan kerana kedua-dua saluran berita ini memberikan impak buruk terhadap BN dan tentulah PR yang mendapat keuntungan daripada tindakan mereka itu. Sebahagian besar daripada tanggungjawab pihak pembangkang untuk berkempen itu sudah pun disempurnakan oleh Utusan dan TV3 ini. Seorang yang benci kepada saluran ini menambah seorang yang menyokong kepada pihak pembangkang. Matematiknya senang.

Sikap memecah-belahkan rakyat oleh TV3 ini bertanggungjawab terhadap pembinaan kebencian rakyat kepada pihak yang berkuasa dan tidak adil jika dipersalahkan rakyat memberikan sokongan kepada pihak pembangkang kerana rakyat sentiasa berharap untuk hidup tenang di rumah setelah seharian bekerja kuat untuk keluarga masing-masing.

Apabila sampai di rumah rakyat mahu relaks dengan isteri dan anak-anak dan mereka tidak mahu berhadapan dengan hasutan pihak saluran TV3 sentiasa memaparkan keburukan pihak lain. Rakyat sudah merasakan yang “intensity” pembohongan dan fitnah yang dilakukan oleh TV3 ini membuatkan ramai yang secara automatik membenci saluran itu dan seterusnya kepada pihak yang disokong oleh saluran itu.

Saya telah berjumpa dan bercakap dengan beberapa ketua syarikat yang saya kenali dan mereka memberitahu saya yang mereka sedang menimbang untuk memberhentikan pengiklanan barangan mereka melalui saluran ini jika saluran penyiaran ini meneruskan sikap buruk mereka itu. Jika hilang sokongan dari pihak industri ini TV3 akan hilang pendapatan syarikat yang berkurangan dan segala “glamour” yang dialami oleh saluran TV3 yang terkenal itu.

Jika itu berlaku ia merupakan pengalaman yang sedang dialami oleh Utusan Malaysia yang tidak lagi mendapat sokongan dari pengiklanan yang besar-besar dan itu pun sebabnya Kumpulan Utusan Melayu itu telah kerugian sejak beberapa tahun yang lalu. Jangan terkejut jika TV3 akan menghadapi tindakan rakyat untuk memboikot saluran ini secara menyeluruh. Di zaman dunia tidak bersempadan ini rakyat boleh memilih saluran TV lain yang tidak membina kebencian di antara rakyat di negara ini.

Kita cuba untuk tidak menonton TV3 buat dua tiga hari ini... Saya yakin anda akan biasa dengan pemboikotan itu dan jiwa akan lebih tenteram dan aman tanpanya. Menjaga ketenteraman hati dan jiwa kita itu adalah satu ibadah kerana kita wajib menjauhi musuh-musuh secara baik, tanpa melakukan perkara-perkara yang ganas yang juga ditegah oleh agama dan juga adat kita. —

* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of The Malaysian Insider.

Free legal aid only for criminal cases

Malay Mail
by Andrew Sagayam

THE free legal aid will focus on representing Malaysians in criminal cases and not other areas of the legal matters.

Malaysian Bar Council president Lim Chee Wee said for the time being, providing free legal aid for cases such as divorce, property purchase or employment, were not part of their plans because they wanted to concentrate on criminal cases.

"This has always been our target even before the National Legal Aid Foundation (NLAF) was established.

"We might consider handling other types of cases later on but not any time soon." he said, commenting on whether the NLAF would extend its free services to other areas following the RM20 million allocated for the foundation under the 2013 Budget.

Lim said the Legal Aid Department, under the Prime Minister's Department, is currently providing free legal aid for personal cases.

"Because the department is already providing free legal aid for such cases, NLAF will only concentrate on criminal cases." he said.

When asked if there were enough lawyers to handle criminal cases nationwide, Lim said it was sufficient and he expect the number of those who signed up for the pro bono work could and should increase over time.

"The three Bars of the Peninsula, Sabah and Sarawak now have a trained pool of 777 lawyers volunteering in the scheme, and to date, 8,500 Malaysians received legal representation.

"Between April and July this year, NLAF lawyers assisted 13,046 persons in remand hearings and 254 criminal files were opened."

Lim said NLAF scheme nationwide had extended to 68 out of 163 police district headquarters and 70 out of 99 remand courts.

"However, one incentive will be to increase the present nominal sum they are paid, to at least match that of an equivalent jurisdiction, such as Taiwan.

"It is notable the fees paid to lawyers in the United Kingdom and Australia under their legal aid schemes are many times higher than those paid here."

He said the Bar looked forward to the government's continuing support to ensure the success and sustainability of the programme for those ensnared in the criminal justice system.

He said those who are hauled to court for criminal cases would be given free legal aid if they earn an income of less than RM25,000 per annum while those earning between RM25,000 and RM36,000 a year will need to pay a token RM300 for the service.

Lawyers under NLAF, he said, can earn up to RM250 a day handling remand cases and probably make RM2,000 to RM3,000 a month.

The NLAF, which was launched by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak on Feb 25 last year, suffered a setback when the Attorney-General’s Chambers and the legal profession were locked in a disagreement over the number of volunteer lawyers needed for it to be successful.

Attorney-General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail had lamented that the scheme into which the government had allocated RM5 million initially had only 300 lawyers when it needed at least 1,000 to 1,500 lawyers.

To this, NLAF alternate director Ragunath Kesavan and Lim claimed 500 lawyers were trained and the number was enough to get the service going.

Legal observers questioned why it was difficult to get lawyers into the service when there were 15,400 lawyers in the country.

The NLAF finally commenced operations on April 2.

PAS Gains From Partnership With DAP - Hadi Awang

KUALA TERENGGANU, Oct 13 (Bernama) -- PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang today reiterated that the party had gained a lot through its partnership with the DAP.

He said the cooperation with DAP had helped PAS gain support from non-Malays which resulted in the party getting to administer two states in the federation.

"Through our close cooperation with the DAP, we also got to administer Perak (before the Opposition pact lost the state to the Barisan Nasional (BN)). In fact, we also had gained when we were cooperating with the BN before we pulled out of the ruling coalition (at the Federal level) in 1978," he told reporters after delivering a talk at Maahad Tahfiz Tok Jiring in Kampung Tok Jiring here.

Yesterday, PAS' spiritual leader Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat had said PAS needed the DAP to secure support among non-Malays in the upcoming 13th general election.

Meanwhile, asked to comment on Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak's statement yesterday that the opposition's shadow cabinet was just a ploy to confuse the people for political gain, Abdul Hadi said PAS did not need this (shadow cabinet) to increase its political strength.

Shot five times single mom sues cops, govt.

Ex-IGP Musa withdraws suit against Anwar

(Malaysiakini) Former inspector-general of police Musa Hassan has today withdrawn his defamation suit against Anwar Ibrahim over the opposition leader's police report on fabrication of evidence in the Sodomy I trial.

NONEThe withdrawal of the former police chief's suit was recorded before Kuala Lumpur High Court judicial commissioner Asmabi Mohamad.

Musa's (right) lawyers Kamarul Hisham Kamaruddin and Hasnal Rezua Merican informed Asmabi of the withdrawal before a packed court room filled with Anwar's supporters.

Anwar’s lawyer N Surendran said as a result of the withdrawal, they are not seeking costs.
“The court then struck out the suit following this application,” he said.
Musa filed the suit following Anwar’s police report against him, attorney-general Abdul Gani Patail, former Kuala Lumpur CID chief Mat Zain Ibrahim and Hospital Kuala Lumpur pathologist Dr Abdul Rahman Mohd Yusof in 2008 alleging fabrication of evidence in the Sodomy I trial.

NONEAnwar (left), who was arrested on Sept 20, 1998 on allegations of abuse of power and sodomy, was assaulted by former IGP Abdul Rahim Noor while being detained at the lock-up.

The police report led to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) investigating Musa and Abdul Gani - the investigating officer on the two cases against Anwar and chief prosecutor respectively - on allegations of possible abuse of power, where a three-member panel led by former Federal Court judge Abdul Kadir Sulaiman was called in to conduct a probe.

However, the panel in a majority ruling ruled that Musa and Abdul Gani were not guilty of abuse of power. Abdul Kadir was the only one dissenting in the panel.

Despite the panel’s clearance of Abdul Gani and Musa which was announced by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Nazri Abdul Aziz in Parliament, the allegations on the duo persist.

This follows revelations by Mat Zain, the investigating officer in the black eye incident, over the duo’s role in allegedly fabricating evidence in various open letters which he had posted to the media, with copies sent to the IGP and Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak.
Surendran told Malaysiakini that Mat Zain, along with former Commercial Crime Investigation Department director Ramli Yusuff, are among the slated witnesses to testify in the defence. Ramli was in the cell with former inspector-general of police Abdul Rahim Noor.

Initially, the court had set a three-day hearing for Musa’s defamation suit, with the former IGP taking the witness stand today.
Conflicting versions

Outside court, both Musa and Anwar gave a different take on the withdrawal.

NONEMusa (left in photo), in commenting on his decision to withdraw the lawsuit, said there was a “misunderstanding” on his role in the black-eye incident.

“We have discussed and revisited the point of contention in this civil suit. I am made to understand there is a misunderstanding brought by certain people, resulting in this case related to the black-eye incident being brought to court today.”

“Hence, I accept the settlement outside court as proposed by them (the defendants).”

Musa said the discussion on the withdrawal had been made since yesterday.
Kamarul Hisham, commenting on what took place, said the party has spoken there has been a misunderstanding on Musa’s role and that this has been cleared up and the parties are prepared to put the matter behind them.

“The air has been cleared so we are withdrawing the suit from the court,” he said.

Musa denied that he is withdrawing it for fear of being grilled in court by Anwar’s lawyers.

Kamarul Hisham said it works both ways as Anwar would also be grilled if put on the stand.
Anwar wants tribunal against AG

Anwar, who was present in court, noted that Musa has admitted the misunderstanding over the matter and he forgave Musa for what he did.

“I am pleased Musa has withdrawn his suit, my allegation remains unrebutted especially on the (present) attorney-general’s (Abdul Gani Patail) role and I believe a tribunal must be set-up to establish our case that there was conspiracy on the fabrication of evidence in the Sodomy I and the black-eye case,” he said.

“I have lodged a police report, he (Musa) contended on that particular aspect. Musa and I respect that he shows an understanding to withdraw and we will move on and now we will focus on the AG,” he said.

The Permatang Pauh MP said his police report still stands and it was Abdul Gani who had led (to the fabrication) and we must concentrate on those responsible.
NONEWhen asked whether he may consider filing a legal action against Abdul Gani, Anwar said that we have done everything possible against Abdul Gani, including lodging a police report.

“The system is very biased and oppressive. I do not think Prime Minister Najib (Abdul Razak) wants to establish the truth. At this stage we recommended for a tribunal as this is a long-drawn-out case with the allegations against him. If you look at my report, he (Abdul Gani) is the main player in the report,” he said.

Quizzed whether he will move a motion in parliament for a tribunal against Abdul Gani, he said it would not be up to him, but the opposition will consider this.

“I have taken this in good spirit that Musa has chosen to withdraw,” he said.

When it was pointed out that Musa had admitted he took Anwar’s blood sample, Anwar said there are a lot of things which Musa had admitted  and now it was important to put the episode behind them and focus on Abdul Gani.

“Its not easy for me, Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, the family and lawyers. It has been a painful experience that we have gone through, but I think we have to move on and I believe we have to move on. We have an agenda to reform and a country to govern,” he said.
Musa had, in an exclusive interview with Malaysiakini, admitted that he took Anwar’s sample meant for HIV tests during the black-eye case and had used it to conduct a DNA test.