Thursday, August 28, 2014

A bit snobbish

“We know how to solve our problems ourselves. We do not need outsiders to come and dictate to us...” - Sarawak Chief Minister Adenan Satem

I found the statement a bit 'snobbish'. As a senior politician and whose party forms part of Barisan Nasional, it reflected an 'anti-Peninsular' standpoint.

Umno had and will never set foot in Sarawak, unlike Pakatan Rakyat's DAP, PKR and PAS. Only DAP has had a long establishment in the state although it was a Peninsula political party. Sarawak will forever remains for Sarawakians, just like 'Sabah for Sabahans'.

So, why make a big issue out of it? Putrajaya government is Umno-led, the same government Adenan's administration is working with. Ditto... no need to avow it every now and then about rejecting Umno, whose leaders had many times reassured Sarawakians that there will be no Umno in the state.
Tan Sri Adenan Satem said he supported Sarawak DAP chief Chong Chieng Jen’s call for Sarawak’s Barisan Nasional component parties to work with the opposition and keep Umno out of the state.
However, the Sarawak chief minister said it was conditional support.
Chong , Adenan said, needed to add DAP and its coalition partners in the opposition Pakatan Rakyat (PR) – PAS and PKR – to the list of parties to be banned from the state.
He was referring to Chong's call last February for a formal understanding when speaking of political interference from the peninsula in the Sarawak assembly.
“I'll wholeheartedly support (Chong's suggestion for a formal agreement on the ban) to keep Umno out of Sarawak, provided PKR is banned, PAS is banned and DAP is also banned, together with Umno,” he said at the Amanah Khairat Yayasan Budaya Melayu Sarawak (Sarawak Malay Cultural Foundation and Charitable Trust) raya gathering in Kuching last night.
“That I doubt he would agree on.”
Sarawak, Adenan said, “doesn't need political parties from the peninsula, and that included Umno”.
“We know how to solve our problems ourselves. We do not need outsiders to come and dictate to us,” he added.
He said Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB), the main component party in the state BN coalition and which he leads, could do a better job looking after the needs of the Malays in the state than Umno.
The four-party state BN coalition consists of PBB; Dayak-majority parties, Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) and Sarawak Progressive Democratic Party (SPDP); and the Chinese-based Sarawak United People's Party (SUPP).
I can't help but questioning the motives behind all these Umno-and-Peninsula bashing. And I suddenly remember a drive motivated by a few Sarawakian NGOs and politicians who said Sarawak should leave Malaysia, and that the 1965 Agreement does not hold any legal standing.

And then came allegations how Putrajaya has been 'robbing' Sarawak of its oil revenue and assets.

'Where' is Sarawak, actually?

Thank you, Ping!

Not many people, especially foreigners would defend our national carrier Malaysia Airlines from 'badmouthing varieties'.

After two incidents (MH370 and MH17) that almost sunk the company, we kept reading and listening to negative reporting and prophecy about its future. Even some Malaysians would like to see the demise of the national carrier.

Yes, good hearts are hard to come by these days. There are, a few.

We found a 'darling' in 2014 Masterchef UK winner Ping Coombes, whose photo onboard a MAS flight was adversely-manipulated by a few news portals to give the impression that 'nobody wanted to fly with the airlines'.
KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysian Airlines (MAS) have today come out to express their gratitude to 2014 Masterchef UK winner Ping Coombes for defending them against attacks by the media.
Ping originally posted a photo to Twitter on 18 August after her flight was upgraded by MAS. She wrote:
“Omg! We got upgraded on @MAS. I was excited now I’m beyond ecstatic!”
The specific photo was captioned:
“Thank you @MAS it is an amazing surprise!”
However a few news portals had used the photo to report that the national airliner is facing mass losses in revenue by pointing out the empty seats as shown in the photo.
Ping responded to the reports via her Instagram posting, explaining that the picture was taken before other passengers had boarded the flight.
“Woke up to this picture in the media! For anyone who has been on a plane knows, Family with children get boarded first, the flight was not empty, it was in fact full.”
She added:
“It’s really sad that a thank you on a kind upgrade that I was offered is being used to attack an airline which has had such a difficult time. We should be offering support and compassion.”
When contacted, MAS reacted to the news reports by saying there are always two sides to every story. “Our way of telling the story is by encouraging our passengers to share their photos on board MAS flights via our social media platform. The results have been very encouraging.”
They also thanked Ping for her defence of the airline. “MAS appreciates that Ms. Coombes has come out to defend us. It is unfortunate that her photo was misused by others to create untruths about MAS. We thank her for taking time to set the record straight. MAS feels very touched for the ongoing support of our loyal guests.”
MAS also stressed that they strive to provide world-class service via their warm hospitality and through this experience they believe will create loyalty among their respected guests.
The actual passenger number on board on that particular flight was 464. It was MH01 from London to KL on 17 Aug 2014.
Thank you, Ping.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Name the 40, Anwar!

Who are the 40, Anwar?

If you could single out Anifah Aman as one of Barisan Nasional MPs who sought your 'assistance' to join Pakatan Rakyat in 2008, naming the others is a small deal.

Just name them; we just want to see their reaction and comment. Otherwise, we can say that you lied!
Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim told the High Court today that he will not name the 40 Barisan Nasional MPs who were willing to cross over to Pakatan Rakyat in 2008, saying it would be unfair to reveal them now.
Under cross-examination by counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, Anwar also denied the suggestion that he did not have the numbers he claimed he had to move a motion of no-confidence against former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi in the September 16 move six years ago.
Anwar testified that he had written to the prime minister at that time asking him to convene a special parliamentary sitting to test if he commands the confidence of the majority of MPs.
Anwar was testifying in his defamation suit against Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Anifah Aman.
Anwar said Anifah had linked his name to an alleged offer of a top cabinet post during a news conference in Washington with former United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Shafee: One of the methods you employed was to say you have got the numbers when in actual fact you did not?
Anwar: If I did not have the numbers, I would not have written to the prime minister asking him to convene a special parliamentary sitting.
Shafee: Another strategy you used was to make promises to leading BN MPs that if they crossed over, you can make them ministers and deputy prime minister?
Anwar: I do not agree.
Shafee: I put it to you that because your strategy was based on facts that did not exist, you kept postponing September 16 several times?
Anwar: I disagree.
No harm at all in naming them. We need to know who our 'enemies within' are. This is politics, Malaysian-style!

Hijab and no alcohol on MAS flights...

Its all about Islam and 'aurat' now.

After Kelantan state government 'haramise' males from a netball tournament next month, there were calls for Malaysia Airlines to regulate its Muslim flight stewardesses to wear 'tudung' or hijab.

Good...but no further comment (some people had said the two incidents, MH370 and MH17 were due to our 'negligence' in promoting Islamic service to the national carrier... what do you think? Macam-macam lah!)
KUALA LUMPUR: Muslim female flight attendants working with Malaysia Airlines (MAS) should be given the option to wear the hijab, suggested Umno Youth.
“Those who wish to cover their aurat should be allowed to do so,” said the movement’s head Khairy Jamaluddin while chairing an Umno Youth exco meeting yesterday.
A local daily reported that Umno Youth exco member Dazma Shah Daud had urged MAS to make it compulsory for Muslim female flight attendants to wear the hijab, and that the airline should stop serving alcohol.
Dazma, however, clarified his earlier statement, saying what he had meant was that those who want to wear the syariah compliant attire should be allowed to do so as some Muslim flight attendants were already donning the hijab when they were not flying.
He said the practice of banning the hijab for Muslim female flight attendants was discriminatory.
He also suggested that MAS alter the uniforms for Muslim female flight attendants so that they could wear the hijab with it.
Dazma also said Muslim flight attendants should be allowed to opt out of serving alcohol to passengers.
He said that the job of serving alcohol could be handled by non-Muslim flight attendants.
But what about alcohol?

I have flown many Arabs and Muslim carriers and they do serve alcohol as part of the service. It also attracts non-Muslims customers.

My good friend, Ghafar Abu Bakar, the chief steward who died in MH17 had been promoting 'non-alcohol flights' over the last 20 years. However, MAS and the government never paid any attention to his proposal.

What's wrong with non-alcohol flights, anyway!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

You can't watch this!

Kelantan state government has banned male officials, supporters and spectators from a netball tournament next month, drawing protest from politicians and sports organisers nationwide.

The tournament, scheduled for September 6-October 25 in all Parliamentary constituencies in the state, must also free from females under 18.
Members of Parliament from Sabah and Sarawak are baffled by Kelantan’s decision to ban men from becoming spectators at an up-coming netball tournament.
Calling on the PAS-led state government to reconsider the decision, Santubong MP Datuk Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said he could not understand the need for gender segregation in a sporting event.
“I’m from Sarawak. We have a different attitude towards things there. I don’t understand all this. What else are we going to segregate – shops, buses, railways, towns and islands? There is no end. Integration is happening everywhere and yet, we are not moving forward,” he said when contacted here yesterday.
Dr Wan Junaidi said there should be more focus on inculcating better religious values and understanding, rather than teaching people physical and ritual practices alone.
“There should be more focus on avoiding drugs, HIV, AIDS, smuggling and crime. Show good examples, accept and practise good universal values.
“People will then respect Islam more,” said the Deputy Home Minister.
Kota Belud MP Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan urged PAS to consider the fact that sports was a unifying factor which brought Malaysians together.
“We Malaysians are prone to bickering over just about anything but we all unite for sports. For instance, Kelantan people unite to cheer on their football team.
“I hope PAS will consider this factor before making the final decision,” he said.
I am still waiting for comments from Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin...

Did she lie?


I am not sure if she spoke the truth or whether it really 'happened' to her. She accused a Malaysia Airlines cabin crew of 'raping her with his finger' during a recent flight.

She told the TV station about it. However, netizens Down Under doubted her allegation, that it was a total 'made up' instead.
Social media users have lashed out at Laura Bushney, the Australian woman who went on TV, accusing a Malaysia Airlines (MAS) chief steward of sexually assaulting her while on a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Paris on August 4, claiming that her story sounds far-fetched.
In comments retrieved from the Facebook page of Sunday Night – the programme on Australia's Channel 7 where Bushney had appeared in – many expressed doubts over her story, questioning how she had managed to record the act on her mobile phone.
"It's really rubbish. She did it for one thing. Money. Besides ruining the reputation of an innocent man," said Jessica Greenhill's comment, which was followed by more than 300 others in the Facebook page.
The 26-year-old Bushney had said in the programme that the steward had "begged me not to report the incident, while we were still in the air, as he had a wife and a child".
She said the steward took advantage of her fears about flying on MAS following the MH370 and MH17 incidents by sitting next to her and first massaging her legs, then placing her legs on the lap. She alleged that he was aroused at the time.
She doesn't have that 26-year old look, sorry to say.

However, give her the chance to substantiate her claims, and I believe MAS was investigating the case.


Monday, August 25, 2014

French government resigns over 'U-turn'

French President Francois Hollande asked his prime minister on Monday to form a new government, looking to impose his will on the cabinet after rebel leftist ministers had called for an economic policy U-turn.

The surprise move came the day after outspoken Economy Minister Arnaud Montebourg had condemned what he called fiscal "austerity" and attacked euro zone powerhouse Germany's "obsession" with budgetary rigour.

In a terse statement, Hollande's office said Prime Minister Manuel Valls (pic) had handed in his government's resignation, opening the way for a reshuffle just four months after it took office.

"The head of state asked him to form a team that supports the objectives he has set out for the country," the statement said, suggesting Valls would continue trying to revive the euro zone's second largest economy with tax cuts for businesses while slowly reining in its public deficit by trimming spending.

France has lagged other euro zone economies in emerging from a recent slowdown, fuelling frustration over Hollande's leadership, both within his Socialist party and further afield.

The new cabinet will be announced on Tuesday and there was no immediate word on who would stay and who would go.

NOTE: PAS was making a U-turn in Selangor, forcing PKR and DAP to take another look at the plan to oust Mentri Besar Khalid Ibrahim, who is expected to have an audience with the Sultan tomorrow.