Wednesday, November 30, 2011
I was offered a position in the Youth wing for Masjid Tanah division in 1987, thanks to a close aide of Rahim Tambychik. However, I declined for two simple reasons. First, I was residing in Kuala Lumpur and only went back once or twice a month; and secondly, I didn't have the money to move my politics. So, it was better to help the party from the sideline.
I am of the opinion that a candidate for any divisional position must me chosen among those who resides, works and moves actively within his division. He has to be popular among the constituents for his personal character - a heart winner, humble and easy to access. He has to be a person who has the will to listen and find outlets to domestic problems, someone whom the grass root members can trust and confide.
At that time, few journalists made it successful in politics. My seniors, Ruhanie Ahmad or Ron and Ashaari Ibrahim were among them. Some also tried but faltered.
It is not practical having someone who works in KL or Penang to become our branch and division head, unless the members agree to it. In most cases, grass root members would not allow such a practice, especially when the office bearer is someone they don't know and not familiar with.
During the 2007 party election, I was an observer to votings at my branch. A prominent Datuk who resides and works in KL was booted in his first attempt to lead the branch although he was born and brought up in our kampung. However, he got a job in KL and seldom make it 'home' after that. My kampung buddies finally chose a primary school teacher for the post.
Since Dr Mahathir became prime minister in 1981, Umno 'regulated' another provision - that those who want to contest any party positions must be qualified professionals, i.e doctor, lawyer, engineer, accountant, etc. It didn't matter if they are close or not to their constituents and it was not important if the members like him or not.
If the members refused to endorse him, someone from the Supreme Council or the Chief Minister's rep will come down to convince them that the State's leadership was giving them the right division leader, and as such they must support him. And when he won the State or Parliamentary seat in the general election, he 'disappeared' for good.
And so, you need some money for politics. Enough or not, any amount has to suffice. A Terengganu politician whom I helped campaign for a Supreme Council seat in the early 1990s, failed to make it because he only got RM1,200 in his pocket. How much do you expect a general assembly's delegate ask? However, he made it at the next party election.
I have seen money changing hands at the PWTC, Pan Pacific and other hotels each time Umno held its election. Former Bernama editor-in-chief Jaafar Hussein and NST reporter, the late Azran Aziz were once offered cash and a wrist watch to usher some delegates to certain hotel rooms. If not for Datuk Jef's warning that we could face the music, I would have taken that RM5,000 'upah'.
As a journalist, I was bound to travel throughout the country for various assignments. One of the usual thing I liked to do after every Umno general assembly was to take a few days leave to conduct a 'grass root survey' in some chosen areas. My common question to them is - how has the party general assembly and election affected them? We will come to this part in my final (part 3) posting on Friday.
The general assembly is when politicians become so chummy with reporters and members of the media. Umno general assembly often becomes a beano for some opportunists. Each and every Umno leader and delegate attending it will look like a grandee. Everybody wants to show off something, if not in their long and bric-a-brac' speech, at least in their attire and their cars.
When Dr Mahathir was deputy prime minister (I was already in college), I did follow my uncle to an Umno general assembly at Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (DBP). He was not a delegate but as a member eager to watch the proceedings. Not many cars were parked in that area as most delegates took the public transport. Speeches were centered at efforts to uplift the Malays' standing, economically and socially. No rhetoric, no unduly sycophant speeches.
Compared to the present time, speeches are deemed not complete without rhetoric, bombastic words, hadith and a 5 to 10 minutes 'full of praise and support' for the party's top leadership, namely the president, deputy president and the three vice presidents. The delegates chosen to speak or enter a debate too will try to impress others, notably the leaders, with their well-colored-sweetened words.
After covering and attending dozens of Umno general assemblies, I can't recall anybody praising the grass root members for choosing and staying with Umno... or at least a simple attribution for their support all this while!
to be continued...
Umno became a brand to me ever since. I shared the pride and excitement each time my mom (a branch Wanita chief) brought me to some of her meetings. I remember seeing Ghafar Baba coming to our kampung to deliver a speech and officiating the 'balai raya', and also chief minister Ghani Ali shaking hands with students (including me) when he visited our school.
Mom told a lot of things about Umno, its history and how it fought for Independence. When curfew was imposed as a result of the May 13, 1969 communal riot (I was already in Standard 3), a few cars belonged to Umno, MCA and MIC members were allowed to ferry us to and from school. And mom said the riots in Kuala Lumpur, Ipoh and other parts of the country were done by 'stupid and evil people'.
In fact, I still met my Chinese and Indian friends, studied together and played at day time and none of us talked about the incident. We are very much intact. Mok Kian Tong whose family supported the DAP said, 'biarlah dia orang gaduh, kita tetap kawan!' (Mok joined MCA in 1981 when I became a member of Umno).
One thing which puzzled me each time Umno wanted to choose its office bearers for a branch and division was that, almost nobody wanted to take it up. Even my mom refused to become a branch Wanita head until she was persuaded by members to take it up. When somebody nominated her, everybody raised their hands, no contest and no objection. She held the position for three terms until mid-1970s.
And so were others who were 'forced' to become Umno branch heads and committee members. At one of the meetings, (the late) Tun Ghafar said, "Takkanlah tuan-tuan nak saya pegang jawatan semua ketua cawangan dan bahagian untuk satu negeri Melaka ni! Tolonglah saya!"
Those were the days when a 'cikgu', a 'kerani' and anyone with strong grass root support got the ticket to such positions. At that time, most of the Malay doctors, lawyers, engineers and other professionals in Umno today were still studying in colleges and universities, locally and abroad.
As time flies and Umno entered a challenging era of post-1969 and with Tun Razak launching the New Economic Policy in 1971, the Malays' interest in Umno suddenly increased. When Tun Hussein became Prime Minister and Umno president, the quest for positions in Umno was overwhelmed by the fact that those who became State Assemblymen or Members of Parliament could access government's contracts.
During that particular era, Malay entrepreneurship was on the rise and Malay contractors were already given priority to government projects. This made branch and division heads more important. A lot of people would go to them, seeking political support for this and that contract. To me, it was the NEP that changed the whole scenario in Umno.
Tussles began to flare at some branch and division elections. Tug-of-war games among various factions wanting to push up their candidates, began to take up its toll when some members left the meetings and voted for the Opposition in the general elections. I know some Umno members in my kampung and in Masjid Tanah division who sent out SMS during the 2008 general elections, asking the Malays to vote for PAS or PKR. Why? Their candidate lost in Umno divisional election or he or she failed to become a Yang Berhormat.
When I became a journalist in 1981, I made it a point to 'balik kampung' at least twice a month, noting not much changes had taken place. Some of the poor folks remained poor - the Malays, Chinese and Indians. Our 'wakil rakyat' seldom paid them a visit, the JKKK committee members were difficult to talk to while the people who worked with the 'wakil rakyat' were a snobbish lot.
But there were changes. The YB brought new water irrigation project that totally dried up the whole 'sawah padi'. It failed! And of course, the narrow 'jalan tanah merah' to Solok Limau Nipis (where Rocky's Bru parents stayed) was paved with a thin layer of bitumen (I learnt in school that it was John McAdam who introduced such roads).
The balai raya Allahyarham Pak Ghafar officiated is still there, as a 'kandang kambing'.
Apart from that, nothing. I sometimes wondered what is the actual function of the JKKK (Jawatankuasa Kemajuan dan Keselamatan Kampung) if they failed to do a simple job of identifying the poor family in their kampung, and report it to the YB for further actions. Unless the YB is not doing his or her job!
Frankly, I'm ashamed of TV3' Bersamamu program. It reflects much of JKKK, Aduns and MPs failures in attending to such a minor social problem in their respective constituency, especially where Umno has its reps. Had proper attention was given to the group, there won't be any hardcore poor in the country and TV3 will have to go to Papua New Guinea or Africa to find footage for that program.
Umno should have stopped attending to such a social issue had the party - via its 'wakil rakyat' and JKKK - addressed it 20 years ago. It's time to concentrate on our bigger agendas. After 54 years of Independence, we should be ashamed of letting some rakyat still having not enough to eat and not enough to wear before our very own eyes.
And some of our newly-elected Umno State Assemblymen and MPs are already making rounds in their constituencies - not to listen to the rakyat but to show their new cars, bodyguards and guns on the coffee shop's table!
to be continued...
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
"What rubbish is this council trying to prove (by drawing an alternative Bill)? That they are better or bigger than Parliament? Bar Council should have respect for Parliament, which is the highest law-making body comprising government and opposition elected representatives!"
And again, Ambiga is on the forefront, carrying out the Opposition's plan to ransack the country's harmony and plunge it into religious and racial crisis. I think they really want that to happen, taking into consideration the kind of 'freedom' they want.
And this lady (I am not sure if Marina Mahathir was among the crowd) who likened Malaysia's situation to that of Myanmar, is actually opening up the country to foreign intervention. With just a basic knowledge that Myanmar is under the junta, she wished the superpowers or Nato will interfere in our domestic affairs.
Who knows if she has already sent out SOS to Washington or London to step a foot in Malaysian affairs. Worse still, a military intervention like what they did in Libya and Pakistan, with Syria, Yemen and Egypt on the list.
Yes, the Opposition is all out to ruin the country by inviting foreign intervention. Just read Rocky's Bru DAP seeks New Delhi's intervention about how two Opp MPs, namely M Manogaran and S Ramakrishnan tried to get the Baharatiya Janata Party to 'rule' Malaysia!
In fact, the protest was timely held on the opening day of Umno General Assembly which simply marks a cahoot between the Bar Council and the Opposition to undermine Umno and Barisan Nasional strength and capability to pass the new Act.
This shows how much the Bar Council is above any law. The Council is also turning into a political party, playing God to everybody. Sad to note how members of the Council are becoming copycats of Western culture - all about the West must be practiced here!
What will become of Malaysia - a multiracial country - should total freedom is adapted? What will happen if people of various race and religion start to abuse each other in a freely and openly manner, without any law to drag them to court should it lead to communal disaster?
Unfortunately, Ambiga, Kit Siang, Karpal, Anwar and the rest couldn't care less about the consequences. What the Bar Council does is to make Anwar the new prime minister, by hook or by crook, after the next general election. And should the fail, they are more than prepared to stage a nationwide street demonstration. That's why they are opposing the Peaceful Assembly Bill.
They have forgotten what caused May 13, 1969. Or Ambiga, in comparing Malaysia to Myanmar, was challenging the police and the military to take over the government. By doing so, of course Malaysia will become another Egypt like what Anwar said.
And of course, the Human Rights Watch is supporting them, placing Malaysia on the world map as another conservative and orthodox regime to topple.
Their 'human rights' calls for absolute freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom of sex, freedom of same-sex marriage, freedom of racial hatred, etc. After all, they dont like the police. So, should anything happens, let the rakyat take the law into their own hands. Its also part of freedom.
Fellow-blogger Big Dog who has been writing about FGVH listing and spending his precious time with Isa, has got this to tell (read the red bold part, especially:
"Jai, I was there in the crowd when Tan Sri Isa Samad said this in the last of the five road show series where he, FELDA DG Dato' Dzulkifli A Wahab and FHB/FGV CEO Dato' Seri Sabri Ahmad met representatives of the FELDA settlers, on the FGVH listing.
"Background; FGVH listing is Prime Minister Dato' Seri Mohd. Najib Tun Razak's agenda and baby for FELDA. He announced this in his 2012 Budget Speech, 7 Oct. As part of the listing program his office wrote to FELDA for Isa to be appointed Chairman of Koperasi Permodalan FELDA on 15 August. Lembaga FELDA which met on 25 August, made a decision based on the explicit instruction.
"It means that FELDA DG Dato' Dzukilfli A Wahab needed to relieve himself from the FELDA Chairmanship immediately.
"It was an in-depth briefing and there were Q&As where Isa took all the Qs and offered answers, all the five briefings. Same roadshow, same presentation in Kuantan 26/10, K Terengganu 27/10, Melaka 29/10, Trolak 31/10 and K Pilah 12/11.
"The purpose is for the settlers to understand and buy-in the proposal that Koperasi Permodalan FELDA be used as the vehicle for the post listing ownership. Straight forward and across the board.
"Even this Shamsuddin "Pak Sam" Osman was on stage with the trio in the roadshow in Melaka on 29 Oct, for settlers in Melaka/Johor region. He said he was agreeable and fully supportive of the program.
"TV3 went on to interview Pak Sam at his home and he said the same thing; fully supportive. However, he organized separate briefings for FELDA settlers around Johor, to reject the proposal!
"The following is what Isa Samad said verbatim when asked during Q&A in Kuala Pilah on 12 November:
"Kita tengok, ada gak lepas kita terang, balik dia buat perjumpaan lak. Katalah Pak Sam, says dapat laporan (saya blum jumpa dia ni!), kita jumpa kat Melaka, terang(kan) dalam board (BOD). buat perjumpaan lagi! Masih lagi tak paham. Kalau budak budak, saya lempang aja! Ini dia dah tua, tak elok. Kita tak nak macam ini, tak elok. Dia kata, "Terpaksa buat statement kat TV". Apa macam dia cakap macam itu? Perbetulkan! Benda ni (cakap sini lain, kat kg cakap lain) tak elok. Kita dah tua tua ni. Tak usah la membohong. Itu semua tak elok. Saya tak nak Tuan Tuan macam tu, kat sini beriya iya. Balik, cerita lain. Jangan kita jadi nilai nilai munafik la, dak? Tak elok!".
"Isa was saying that this 'Flip-Flop' business and back-stabbing is no good and is damaging. Had it was youngsters, he would deal with it in the crude manner.
"I think some people are really sensationalizing this for some sinister purpose which include to derail the listing of FGVH. And top of the agenda is to discredit Isa. Why? Someone had to vacate his FELDA KPF Chairmanship, for PM's choice which is Isa.
"Read The Mole, Rocky's and my posting. On top of his Staff 3 civil servant pay, the FELDA DG also have been enjoying RM 700k p.a. extra income sitting in 34 different Kumpulan FELDA companies BOD. This is not taking into consideration other perks.
"All of these will be gone when he is no longer KPF Chairman.
"Back to the issue: Isa is right. Pak Sam was briefed about this several times, even at board level. He had all the opportunities to set things right. In all these meetings, he did not oppose.
"So how do you deal with persons like this?
"They back-stab you, for some sinister agenda. Then they sensationalize the matter, as if Isa is a really bad fellow.
"I ask you personally; wouldn't you want to slap for back-stabbing two-faced person like this, if it happened to you?"
November 29, 2011 1:30 AM
PS: Thank you, Big Dog bro
Monday, November 28, 2011
Last week, a man slapped an Indian minister whom he accused of being incompetent and corrupt. I posted about it and also 'Malaysianised' it under the heading 'Which Politician Would You Like to Slap Most!'
Many responded, some even named a few, both from the ruling BN and the Opposition.
Without me realising it, this slapping (in Bahasa means tempeleng, lempang, tampar... is cepuk included?) phenomena is already getting popular, at least among Felda settlers.
Felda settlers head Shamsuddin Othman has given Tan Sri Isa Samad 14 days to apologise for allegedly insulting him at a briefing in Kuala Pilah earlier this month.
Shamsuddin aka Pas Sam who heads the Settlers Negotiation Committee (JKPP), said the Felda chairman should not have called him a 'liar', 'hypocrite' and claimed “if he (Shamsuddin) were a small boy, I’d have slapped him”.
“This is the first time a Felda chairman has insulted a settlers head... I think all settlers were insulted by Tan Sri Isa’s statement,” he told reporters in Kuala Lumpur today.
Isa was also alleged to have said that Shamsuddin did not understand Felda Global Ventures’ planned listing despite being briefed many times. Is that the reason?
'Apo ceghito ni, waghih?'
Sunday, November 27, 2011
It's haram or forbidden for human kind to wage war against each other, killing or getting involved in any kind of confrontation.
So, it's unlawful to fight during this month.
However, I doubt it. In Malaysia, I am sorry to say that the spirit of Awal Muharram is not really observed, except for the public holiday.
Let's see who will break the 'rules'...
SELAMAT MAAL HIJRAH
Saturday, November 26, 2011
Read Sanggah Tok Janggut about it.
And for that reason, Zul said ISA was used to contain it. In fact, the contents of the new act to replace ISA will remain relevant in view of DAP racist politics which is turning our inter-racial relation into a time-bomb.
"Saya mahu baca semula daripada laporan MAGERAN, laporan rasmi yang dibentangkan menceritakan tentang peristiwa 13 Mei membawa kepada perisytiharan darurat tersebut adalah kerana kebebasan bersuara yang sudah di luar kawalan. Tindakan racist yang melampau dan ini antara tindakan yang didalangi oleh Yang Berhormat Ipoh Timur dan parti beliau pada masa itu.
"Saya mahu baca, biar rakyat dengar semula apa yang mereka kata pada tahun 1969 membawa kepada peristiwa 13 Mei. Slogan yang dibawa pada masa itu ialah 'Malai si'. 'Malai si' ini maknanya 'Mati Melayu'. Kemudian kita lihat dalam himpunan-himpunan dan perarakan-perarakan yang mereka buat. Ini antara kenyataan yang mereka keluar pada 11 Mei, "Apa polis boleh buat, kita raja. Buang sama polis Melayu."
The report said that among the chants shouted by those taking part are:
"Mati Melayu, sakai pergi masuk hutan."
"Melayu balik kampung, Melayu sekarang tiada kuasa. Sekarang kita Cina sudah control".
"Semua Melayu kasi habis, kasi halau semua polis."
"Apa ini Melayu, kita sudah perintah dia negeri, ini negeri bukan Melayu punya, mata-mata lancau."
"Butuh Melayu, Malai si, pergi mati Melayu."
I have not read the Mageran report but I believe Zul was aware of its content.
(Terima kasih Sanggah Tok Janggut)
Frankly, I never wanted to know anything about him because he is not in the same pier as (at least) Tian Chua or Tony Phua who sometimes come up with foolish-yet-popular statements. And I've never found any other dumber than the duo until I read what Shamsul said in Johor yesterday.
Throwing a challenge for Umno to amend the Constitution in ensuring that only a Malay will become the prime minister of Malaysia, is actually not a challenge. And I personally do not think any Umno leaders will heed the call, which can be deemed as 'the most foolish statement of the year' since it came from 'the most stupid Malay' on earth.
This guy is nothing actually. He is so naive about politics of the Malays, especially Umno. What he does is attract attention by saying something which he himself is not certain of.
However, since he tries to become popular, I believe he needs to be reminded that the challenge he made was actually a political trap that would undermine the whole PKR (and Pakatan Rakyat) to the eyes of Malaysians. And he himself is digging his own grave!
There is not provision in the Constitution which states that only a Malay can become a prime minister. Umno would never make any alteration to it. The reason being, the founding fathers of Malaysia (and long before Independence) had realised that the time will come for a non-Malay to hold the position.
However, as long as Umno is the domain party in Barisan Nasional, it's candidate will take up the position. This does not only applies in Malaysian politics but elsewhere around the globe - any majority party in a political pact will have that prerogative rights, unless a consensus allows otherwise.
Now. Such a statement is anomalous. I don't think PKR and PAS will agree for the Constitution to be amended. Why? They have a strong DAP presence in Pakatan Rakyat. While hudud is already leading to dissension between PAS and DAP, what makes this moron to think that DAP will agree to it?
If you are confident that PR will take over Putrajaya after the next general election, why didn't he turn such an idea as a motion to the PKR general assembly, instead of challenging Umno to do it?
Stupid moves are easy to detect. He was contemplating an internal crisis in BN should Umno takes up his challenge. He is too young to play with political sentiments and I don't see him fits well into his position. Perhaps, people like Azmin Ali should provide him with a good 'tarbiyah' on how to become a popular politician.
Let me ask him this question - will PKR make similar amendment to the Constitution?
So, please do not speak through your nose. Who told you to make such a suggestion to Umno? Anwar Ibrahim? I don't think so because he himself knows the repercussion of it. Then, who? Hang Tuah?
The challenge is already making him a stigma to the Malays. He is not that shrewd after all (as a youth chief). What a heinous! PKR will be ashame of him.
(Mengikut pelat orang Melaka pantai - Kalau cakap pun tak begapa nak lancau, elok diam aje ler! Buat malu orang Melaka je!)
Friday, November 25, 2011
But that was the 1980s and late 1990s. However, when they formed a political cahoot with PAS and Semangat 46, they lost respect among the Chinese 'hardcores'. And once again, the Pakatan Rakyat which groups DAP with PAS and PKR does not augur well for its self-reliance.
DAP is seen as following too much of PAS and PKR influence in the political pact. Once doubted as a mediocre 'democratic party' for having so many Malay members, DAP is now losing the Malay support, not because of its alignment with PAS and PKR but for the manner in which its leaders carry themselves.
They fall into PAS and PKR's 'vulgarism and foul language' political traits. Almost each and every DAP leader now subscribe to such a method. Even Nik Aziz once gained respect from among the Malays, including Umno for being a polite and vulgar-free leader.
However, the Tok Guru has lost that respect when he himself joins PKR trend of using foul language against his political enemies. I had respected him as an ulama and a pious leader although he is not with the BN pool.
And yesterday, MCA called on the new generation of DAP leaders not to turn their party into a party of foul language.
Wanita MCA secretary-general, Senator Chew Lee Giok said the earlier generations of DAP leaders, such as current DAP life advisor Dr Chen Man Hin and former secretary-general C.V. Devan Nair, had shown the virtue of rationality in the field of politics.
"But the actions of this current batch of DAP leaders who tend to utter foul words frequently, and worse, are actually proud of it, has corrupted the party's principles," she said in a statement.
DAP elections preparations publicity chief Hew Kuan Yau (pic), she said had used rude words, scolding and cursing MCA leaders, as well as their family members, while Perak assemblyman Nga Kor Ming followed suit by uttering the words, 'political prostitute' during the state legislative assembly sitting.
"Describing someone as a prostitute is very insulting indeed, and Nga Kor Ming should not have done that despite having differences of opinion with anyone," she added. Chew also challenged DAP women leaders such as Teresa Kok, Chong Eng and Teo Nie Ching to stand up and condemn the discriminating and insulting statements made by Nga against Perak state legislative assembly Deputy Speaker Datuk Hee Yit Foong on Wednesday.
But bad habit is hard to die. As far as politics are concern, DAP and its Opposition partners will go on with their abusive approach.
Thursday, November 24, 2011
And if you are given the chance to vent it on someone, especially a minister or a politician (BN or PR), who would you choose?
In India, Indian agriculture minister Sharad Pawar (pic) has been slapped at a public function by a youth who claimed he was angry with corruption and price hike, local media reports.
Harvinder Singh, a transporter in his thirties, had been sentenced for assaulting former telecom minister Sukhram on Saturday, before the latest assault took place at a public auditorium on Parliament Street on Thursday.
Later, Pawar reacted to the incident calling it stupid and that he did not make much out of it, NDTV said.
"I was answering some questions by a group of journalists when I saw this man coming towards me and I thought he wanted to ask me a question. I don't know what his intention was. It is up to the police whether they want to press charges against him or not.
Prime minister Manmohan Singh and finance minister Pranab Mukherjee have condemned the attack on Pawar.
Reacting to the assault on Pawar, anti-corruption campaigner Anna Hazare asked, "...only one slap?"
I don't recall any similar incidents took place in Malaysia, except for former PM Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad who was 'attacked' by chilly powder at a Kelantan airport a few years ago.
It also reminds me of Iraqi journalist Muntazar al-Zaidi who threw shoes at George Bush during the US leader's visit to Baghdad in 2008.
Well, leaders and politicians alike should stay clear of such assaults, don't you think so? If they are nice, good and performing, they should be okay, I suppose...
Now it is clear that they are also shying away from Anwar & Gang, thus providing a strong testimony that Barisan Nasional under Najib Razak is the only option for the rakyat to stay on the path of progress.
Not only that Pakatan does not have good economic formulators to manage the country, they also don't have the right moral to lead us.
US diplomatic cables to Washington DC have reported that a Pakatan Rakyat win the next general election would be a disaster to Malaysia. The US envoys in Kuala Lumpur have told their bosses that Pakatan Rakyat simply does not have economic formulators.
In short, according to Stopthelies, it means if the Pakatan Rakyat forms the next federal government, the whole nation is in for a real serious economic disaster.
This information was obtained from a leaked US Department cable by Wikileaks, which added that the lacked of economic expertise in Pakatan 'weighs on them as a coalition'. It also said that this was due to 'Pakatan’s failure to give them high wages' and that 'politics' could have driven them away.MCA President Dr Chua Soi Lek while commenting on the report, said Pakatan’s alternative budget was hastily prepared and contained only populist promises that were unrealistic.
“Their budget is rhetoric in nature,” he said, adding that even Pakatan’s leaders had stopped talking about it. He also urged the public to reconsider their support for Pakatan, cautioning that its lack of expertise might not bode well for the nation’s future.
While acknowledging the presence of leaders with strong religious credentials in Pakatan, Chua said they were not too concerned about issues in modern economics and management.
“I understand the sentiments of some voters who are against the government, but they must ask themselves whether Pakatan is a viable alternative to BN,” he said.
Yes, they have Anwar who was Finance Minister but he himself was not trained in economic or accountancy. When Dr Mahathir made him Finance Minister, many friends went to his aid. I remember a senior journalist giving him some good economic books for his reference.
So, how to manage a progressive and dynamic economy like Malaysia when you don't have the set of economists to formulate something better than that of Barisan Nasional? The best thing for them to do is spend whatever we have to the list dime!
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
The four-year probe centered on payments made by Alstom Network Schweiz AG to middlemen termed as 'commercial agents' by the company, in return for securing government contracts to build power stations in 15 countries since the 1990s.
Alstom was awarded a RM2.8 billion contract by Tenaga Nasional earlier this year to provide key power generation equipment to Southeast Asia’s first 1,000-megawatt (MW) supercritical coal-fired power plant Manjung, besides winning turnkey contracts in 1994 and 2000 to build four power plants including the 1,300MW Lumut and the 670MW Kuala Langat plants and deals in 2003 and 2004 to install environmental control systems for the Tanjung Bin and Jimah coal-fired power plants.
It was also appointed by Tenaga to supply two 125MW hydro power turbines, a generator and ancillaries for the 250MW Hulu Terengganu hydro power plant in 2010.
In July, a former Alcatel employee was charged in the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court with giving a RM25,000 bribe to a Telekom Malaysia (TM) officer, in a case linked to the French company’s admission last year that it had bribed government officials to win a US$85 million (RM255 million) contract.
That's how some business are done.
However, what attracts my attention is the Summary Punishment Order by the Swiss Office of Attorney-General about the case for Malaysia.
Among the contents, it mentions:
"At the end of the 1990s, the state-licensed TTPC (Teknologi Tenaga Perlis Consortium Sdn Bhd) had major contracts for the delivery and maintenance of gas turbines to award for the Perlis project in Malaysia. At the end of 1999, the then existing ABB Alstom Power (Schweiz) AG, Baden signed various consultancy agreements to this end with various offshore companies...
"... because the original consultants were individuals, the use of an established company was chosen in order to comply with internal control. However, other internal regulations (no offshore companies, no companies with accounts outside the project country, no success fees over 3% of the contract value) were disregarded; distributing payments to different offshore companies with the same financial beneficiaries knowingly exceeded the last of these provisions.
"Both Chee Liang Ti and Abdul Hamid Pawanteh were leading executives of TTPC at the time, and the latter was also a local politician in the constituent state of Perlis where the power station was to be built. It is obvious that the Alstom employees involved in this case wished to influence TTPC decision-makers with payments to award contracts to Alstom. There is also indication that an Alstom employee involved illegally and without the knowledge of Alstom personally enriched himself.
"The parties to the contractual agreement to deliver, operate and maintain gas turbines were Alstom Schweiz AG and Alstom O&M AG on one side and TTPC on the other side. TTPC consisted of the consortium members Tenaga Nasional Berhad, TNB (20%), Landmark Sdn Bhd (20%), Alpga Intercontinental Sdn Bhd (30%), Gerang Sutera Sdn Bhd (20%) and Yayasan Islam Perlis via Infostaas Eng Sdn Bhd (10%)...
"...after a deduction of a commission of about 5%, these payments were channeled through the accounts of additional offshore companies to the two executives of TTPC, Chee Liang Ti and Abdul Hamid Pawanteh, with accounts in Switzerland..."
update 6.22pm - Two Indonesian plantation workers have been arrested for allegedly killing at least 20 endangered orang utans and proboscis monkeys as a means of 'pest control'. So, I was right about it. They killed their own orang utans and put the blame on Malaysians, all because they lost the football game to us. What a shame!
Gosh! I thought they have stopped but they didn't, and perhaps they will go on battering us. Their failure to grab the 'mother of all gold medals' at the Sea Games are taking its toll on our diplomatic relation.
This is one of thousands 'more-or-less' similar comments posted by Indonesians on their local media. It also appears on Tweeter.
"Those malaysian people are really something else, aren't they? First, they've successfully tried to annex Sipadan and Ligatan and then Ambalat, been claiming that reog, batik, cendol, pendet dance and rendang are their own, then they've paid hush money to the referee assistant to raise his freaking flag to indicate Ferdinand was in an offside position in the Sea Games grand finale and now they think they have to decimate orang utans as well? What next? They'll claim Koteka too?"
A Jakarta Post pic of the demo in front of our embassy in Jakarta
On the day they lost in the soccer final to Malaysia, a group protested in front of our embassy in Jakarta, accusing us of killing their orang utans.
Members of the Center for Orangutan Protection also protested in front the Presidential Palace in Jakarta demanding that the President support the legal protection of orangutans following widespread news of the torture and killing of the animal in East Kalimantan.
“Orangutans have never been given serious attention. The proof is in front of our eyes. In Kalimantan a lot of orangutans have been found tortured, injured and killed,” said Daniek Hendarto of the Center for Orangutans.
He added that on Nov.3 an adult orangutan was found battered in a farming district in East Kalimantan, belonging to a Malaysian firm.
“We suspect the orangutan was tortured and suffered from broken bones,” he said
I personally don't think Malaysians killed any of the orang utans. Yes, there are Malaysian companies doing business there but they also employ thousands of locals. They could have killed the orang utans and blamed it on a few Malaysians there.
What else should we do to repair such a damage? The Games was supposed to be free of politics but the Indonesians are venting their anger and frustration in a wrong way.
The reason is the jingoism expressed by the Indonesian government, media and even members of the public. Jingoism, in its colloquial sense, is a demonstration of excessive nationalism and patriotism.
This attitude has gripped Indonesia over the past few years, and has been displayed in various ways, including calling Malaysia 'Malingsia' (maling means thief), to the “New7Wonders” debate, where some people say they don’t care if the contest is legitimate or not, as long as Indonesia can expect good news and always win!
So, what's next?
Tuesday, November 22, 2011
Salam. Saya Zul Azhar Cha, Yang Di Pertua 1AGENDA. Untuk makluman semua rakan2 dan para sahabat, KMS1M adalah program NGO yg bukan diinisiatifkan oleh Kementerian. YB Dato' Mohd Sharkar dilantik Pengerusi kerana beliau adalah EXCO IT Negeri Pahang merangkap Ahli Kehormat Kelas Pertama 1AGENDA.
Program ini adalah insiatif 1AGENDA. Saya mengaku terdapat keciciran di dalam menyaraipendekkan tetamu jemputan. Kebanyakan yang dijemput (rakan2 Blogger) adalah melalui sms dan bbm.
Saya sendiri selaku Pengerusi Jawatankuasa Peserta dan Pendaftaran, terlibat secara langsung dengan kehadiran Peserta dan Tetamu.
Saya memohon maaf jika terdapat keciciran dan inisiatif Melancarkan MyVo1ce adalah untuk memastikan mesej dan networking jentera perlaksaan 'psiwar' pro BN digerakkan secepatnya.
Tidak terlintas untuk 'sideline'kan sesiapa dan mengakui ianya adalah kesilapan dan salah faham semata-mata.
1AGENDA mengiktiraf Semua rakan Penulis dan penggiat media sosial terutama rakan-rakan yang telah lama berjuang menulis untuk membantu mempertahankan dasar-dasar Kerajaan BN yang kita kasihi.
Kehadiran YB Menteri Penerangan adalah di atas jemputan kerana Program ini berkait dengan Kementerian berkaitan yang mengawalselia media sosial.
Saya akan membuat kenyataan akhbar untuk membetulkan kekeliruan ini.
Harap Maklum. Sekian dan Wassaalam.
My comment to his:
Terima kasih Sdr Zul. Saya sebenarnya menghargai dan memuji usaha pihak Sdr menganjurkannya tetapi saya masih berpendapat adalah lebih baik ia diusahakan secara bersama dengan KPKK kerana sebagai kementerian yang bertanggungjawab, ia perlu memikul fungsi utama atau 'lead role' dalam apa jua bentuk penyaluran maklumat. Saya juga sengaja 'menjentik' isu ini agar dijadikan sebagai 'wake up call' untuk semua pihak - KPKK, badan penerangan negeri, blogger dan pengamal media pro-kerajaan agar bersatu di bawah satu badan saja dan bukannya terlalu banyak badan yang mendakwa mewakili blogger tertentu. Bukankah lebih baik KPKK memikul tanggungjawab ini daripada membiarkan wujudnya pelbagai puak yang berkepentingan sendiri menjadi penyelianya? Alangkah elok jika semua badan dan kumpulan blogger ini bergerak seiring di bawah KPKK. Jika kita benar-benar berhasrat membantu BN dan Umno, maka tidak ada masalah bagi KPKK menghimpunkan penulis laman blog ini di bawah sayapnya agar memudahkan proses perbincangan diadakan sebelum strategi tertentu dikongsi untuk memperkukuhkan lagi fungsi media baru ini. Apa pun, bukan niat untuk menyinggung sesiapa. Usaha yang baik tetap dipuji, cuma ia sepatutnya boleh menjadi lebih baik lagi dengan kerjasama KPKK. Syabas kepada pihak Sdr.
PS: Thanks also to Jebat Berkokok
"Come on, man! This is about Barisan Nasional, about winning the next general election. A blogger like Bru is not a 'chekai'... everybody knows and acknowledges his role in battling the Opposition.
"If Rais doesn't want such a good support for the government, he must be out of his mind. Personal things aside, please! This is for Umno, BN and the rakyat!"
Wow! I was only able to say 'hello' when answering that call about midnight. He was angry for the way MyVoice was organised.
However, I am not in the position to answer him. Leave it to Rais or Najib or whoever is in-charge of the BN cybertroopers. I don't want to be seen as bias. My personal opinion is that, we need all the support to help Barisan Nasional through in the next national poll. Let's be professional about it.
But before others get nastier on their blogs, I think its proper for Rais himself comment on the issue... or his reps like the Sec-Gen and Ketua Pengarah Penerangan.
PM launched MyVoice during the 1Malaysia Social Media Convention held at the Putra World Trade Convention centre on Sunday.
Convention chairman Datuk Mohd Sharkar Shamsuddin said the club was open to all social media practitioners who rejected false politics and supported politics based on true information and facts.
"Those who have joined MyVoice are from the grassroots to famous bloggers, who will rebut all criticisms hurled by the opposition through blogs, Facebook, Twitter and so on."
Famous bloggers? Who are they?
Monday, November 21, 2011
However, let me be the first to comment on Hishammuddin's statement today - that the new Act to replace the Internal Security Act (ISA) will retain 'detention without trial'.
Good move by the Home Ministry. Indeed, such a provision has been very effective in keeping our home 'clean and tidy' from the elements of subversive, money laundering, drug trafficking and religious deviates.
And I am confident most bloggers, politicians and Malaysians are giving their thumbs up for the decision. With unforeseen domestic and outside threats that may cripple our democracy, detention without trial has been opted by many countries as a preventive measure to curb them.
Detention without trial was also being practised in some countries in the fight against terrorism, such as through the Patriot Act in the United States and Anti-Terrorism Act in the United Kingdom and Australia.
"The US, UK and Australia all champion human rights, but they realised that when dealing with militancy and terrorism, they needed to have acts of that nature.
"In fact, there are some Malaysians who are being detained by the US in Guantanamo without trial for many years now. So, please don't have double standards and we don't want hypocracy in this matter," Hisham said in Putrajaya.
So, to Hisham, just go on with it. We cannot discount on security matters, neither can we fall under pressure from any groups, including the Opposition.
This is our country, our homeland. What we do is for the benefit of the country and rakyat. Compared to the US, our set of preventive law is very 'mild and transparent'.
No need to listen to the Opposition, no need to succumb to the NGOs pressure as they have a stinky agenda if they wins the next general election. If they win, the country would be open up to any foreign onslaught as their 'free and total freedom concept' will destroy Malaysia.
There will be more foreign intervention under Pakatan Rakyat's government. Why? Their 'human rights' label will stay and our stability and harmony would go down the drain. To them, human rights is a new religion to worship, and don't be surprise if Malaysia under them signs a diplomatic treaty with Israel.
Furthermore, we need not listen to foreign pressure groups because their leaders are mainly from the US and Europe who are a bunch of coward for not trying their own governments to dismantle own set of laws.
I bet people like Kit Siang, Karpal, Anwar, Nurul, Guan Eng and perhaps Ambiga and Marina will blast the Home Ministry tomorrow but again, just ignore them because they don't know what are they fighting for!
and... TAHNIAH MALAYSIA, for defending the Sea Games soccer gold!
They need more time for two simple reasons - to proof to the rakyat that Pakatan Rakyat is a better choice; and to consolidate the problematic political pact.
Yes, they got problems. When LGE announced his objection to 'an early general election', DAP Karpal Singh on the other hand said the national poll must he called before mid-2012 because a simultaneous Parliamentary and State elections could save the Opposition (and the government too) a lot of money.
And Tian Chua, whose many statements and allegations turned to be a pact of political lies, is a mice since last week. When the Dewan Rakyat rejected his motion to cut Najib's salary for one month, he switched to mocking the BN of covering the Fidlot 'scandal'. And again, Khairy Jamaluddin shot him down.
The 'try-to-be-smart' Tony Pua, meanwhile, keeps mum over Kedah decision to to push for hudud laws. And the whole DAP is silence over Selangor claims about the solar powered Bibles.
"This has become the classic DAP approach – see no evil, hear no evil and talk no evil. For DAP leaders who spend their entire political career drafting daily press statements to win votes instead of doing some decent work – it has been quite a radical transformation.
"Suddenly, these outspoken heroes have nothing to say. Tony Pua, the failed economist, is busy visiting 1Malaysia grocery shops to compare prices while the mullahs in PAS are swiftly implementing hudud laws in Kelantan and Kedah," according to Stopthelies.
Well, DAP has to support the hudud for the sake of keeping the coalition intact for the general election. That's why they are so numb.
And they remain tight lips about Taiping MP Nga Kor Ming who has come under heavy shelling for using a Chinese school to campaign for the general election. Parents and teachers alike are fuming mad over such a blatant and despicable act.
Even PAS, with a hobby to exploit the mosques for campaigning, seems to be approving what DAP is doing. PKR? No comment so far. So, PAS rules!
Sunday, November 20, 2011
Reading Wong Chun Wai's On The Beat makes us wonder why are the Indonesians' hatred towards Malaysia gets thicker and thicker. The sports meet is being turned into a diplomatic bandwagon to incite the whole country to despise Malaysians at its utmost.
"The Malaysian team has accepted the fact that the Indonesian crowd would openly show their contempt and disrespect to our national anthem by refusing to stand up when it is played. But it’s gone beyond that – whenever the Negaraku is played, the crowd would blare horns, shout and jeer.
"There have also been instances where Indonesian fans held up their middle fingers, in a symbolic “up-yours” protest, to photographers whenever Malaysians compete.
"This lack of finesse and unsporting behaviour reached an outrageous level when Malaysian newsmen were banned from covering the last day of the swimming event," Chun Wai wrote.
Yes. true indeed. They hate us so much that the effigy of Prime Minister Najib Razak was burn to symbolise their displeasure at us. Read Mazidul's Boneka Perdana Menteri Malaysia Dibakar to understand more about our neighbors' true feeling for us.
No. I do not hate the Indonesians. They are our close neighbors. However, their attitude of late reminds me of Sukarno's Konfrontasi to 'Ganyang Malaysia' after Sarawak and Sabah decided to join Malaysia.
I think most Indonesians still can't accept the fact that it was the choice of the Sarawakians and Sabahans to join the newly formed Malaysia in 1963. And they are still sore when Malaysia won Sipadan island over decades of legal battle.
Some recent developments also didnt reflect the true spirit of 'serumpun' (brotherhood) between the two countries. As Chun Wai wrote:
"Let’s not even consider the part of being the gracious host, or Asean solidarity. But forget about the much touted “bangsa serumpun” (same racial group) and the so-called commonality of a close neighbour? All of these flew out of the window at the Games."
We host about 3 million Indonesians who work in various sectors. Sometimes I overheard their 'provocative' remarks about Malaysia on the LRT, KTM Komuter and even buses. They are here to earn a living but they harbor the intention to run us down.
Come Dec 1, about 80,000 Indonesian maids will come to Malaysia since Jakarta lifted the 3-year moratorium. And how do we treat them? If the Indonesians think Malaysia is full of hooligans, may as well they don't come here. In fact, 3 million of them are already posing us with a lot of problems.
Why are they so hostile towards us? And what do they actually want from us?
To launch another Konfrontasi and make Malaysia part of their territories like what they did to Timor Timur and Irian Jaya? No wonder they don't respect our flag and national anthem! They might already have plan with their 3 million who are in Malaysia!
Sometimes it doesn't really pay being nice!
Saturday, November 19, 2011
The petition revealed that the project was awarded on Develop-Operate-Transfer basis and the consortium was given 18 months to build two more berths in Kakinada Port, the second largest port in Andhra Pradesh.
However, the consortium failed to fulfill its commitment and the construction work of another berth only started five years later in 2004, and due to the delay, the state exchequer was alleged to have lost about RM33mil between 1999 and 2007.
Mirzan, 51, had secured the project during the tenure of the state's former chief minister, Chandrababu Naidu.
The 2,424-paged document revealed that a Mirzan-led international shipping consortium won the deep-water seaport expansion venture in 1999.
The affidavit was filed by the late Andhra Pradesh chief minister Y.S.Rajasekhar Reddy's (YSR) wife Y. S. Vijayalakshmi last month in the state's High Court. YSR was killed in a helicopter crash in 2009.
Based on the court documents filed, the High Court has now directed the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) to probe all allegations against Naidu and his associates.
Naidu, president of the Telugu Desam Party, was chief minister of Andhra Pradesh from 1994 to 2004. He wrested the party from his late father-in-law, N. T. Rama Rao, once an iconic Telugu film actor.
There are already some signs at the Pakatan Rakyat camp to exploit the issue, especially when their attacks on the government's Nidlot project was shot down.
I bet Lim Kit Siang, Tony Phua, Anwar Ibrahim, Tian Chua and others are preparing statements to batter not only Mirzan but Umno. Not leaving our Lim Guan Eng whose ambitious tunnel and project in Penang drew criticism from various quarters, including environmentalists.
If they read this report, the Opposition will realise that the petition was to unearth Naidu's weath, while Mirzan and friends are being petitioned to feed the authorities with more details. The project delay was not attributed to his company but the strict provisions imposed by the Naidu's government.
Naidu and other respondents are being accused of committing various offenses including those under the Prevention of Corruption Act, the Indian Penal Code, the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, FEMA, the Representation of the People Act, the AP Land Grabbing Act and the Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Act.
Almost all the contracts like Kakinada Sea Ports, Raintree Park at Hyderabad, GMR International Airport, Ascendas IT Park, AP Gems and Jewellery Park and Emaar township were awarded to international companies from Malaysia, Singapore or UAE during Naidu’s regime.
Although Mirzan got the contract under a lawful procedure, his company was put in a very tight situation by Naidu's senior officials, according to sources. This is among why he was petitioned to reveal everything.
Mirzan was the chairman of the International Seaports Consortium and even has a majority stake in the said company which got the Kakinada sea port contract under Public-private partnership basis.
Well, the best thing still is for Mirzan to clarify it.
Pity Shahrizat for being the subject of political attack by the Pakatan Rakyat. Although she denied any hanky-panky in the deal, nobody seemed to believe her, including some BN backbenchers who found some 'personal advantage' in it.
Only a few stood for Shahrizat, especially Umno youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin who said the allegations against the government and Shahrizat were 'a wild political attack' and 'weak in terms of facts'.
First, their accusation that NFC was given 5,000 acres (2,023 ha) of land in Gemas, Negri Sembilan, for free is false. NFC has never been given that much land. As an integrator of Pusat Fidlot Negara (PFN), KJ said it was offered 1,500 acres on lease by the Negeri Sembilan Menteri Besar Incorporated (MBI), and this was confirmed by the Menteri Besar himself.
This means the land is not just 70 per cent smaller as claimed but it is also on lease.
So, the claims that raw beef from the farm was sold to major restaurants in Singapora, namely Meatworks, Senor Santos and Brawn were also unfounded because any imports of raw beef to Singapore is impossible because the Republic prohibits the import of raw beef from Peninsular Malaysia due to fear of foot and mouth disease.
And again, the Opposition 'jenglots' who made the allegations did not do any homework to support their claim.
The NFC project also did not fail to reach its target under the Ninth Malaysia Plan (9MP), which is 60,000 cattle a year although it only started in late 2008, a two-year delay after the commencement of the 9MP.
In fact, it was stated on page 138 of the Auditor-General's 2010 Report that the target of producing 8,000 cows in 2010 was achieved.
And the government did not hide anything pertaining to the RM250 million soft loan for NFC. Actually, not all of the amount paid for NFC's usage but the Opposition made the allegation based on NFC's financial report for Dec 31, 2009 which was already outdated.
Looks like the Opposition is losing much ammo in this 'campaign against the government'. Their jenglots (or their living dead) are all over to continue belittling the government and undermining all development policies.
I think this 'jenglots' should go speak to the 'lembu' at Fidlot for the whole truth!
Also read Rocky's Bru...
Thursday, November 17, 2011
However, Penang Chief Minister and Koh's successor Lim Guan Eng was quick to politically lucre from the decision by accusing Umno of having a major role in forcing Koh out of the picture.
What a silly and stupid idea it was!
However, LGE intention and motive is very clear. By showing sympathy for Koh, he expects the Chinese in Gerakan will rally behind DAP in the next national poll. He is also keeping his fingers crossed for Gerakan to demise and Koh and members would hop over to DAP.
“It is an orchestrated campaign to remove him and they (Barisan Nasional and Umno) have succeeded. What Umno wants Umno gets,” he told reporters in the Parliament lobby today.
Lim said Koh was forced to leave as it was obvious that the latter still had intentions to contest in the coming elections as Koh retained his other positions as a federal minister and party president.
What a crap!
Actually LGE tries to be chummy with Penangites, especially the Chinese. By accusing Umno of 'chasing out' Koh, the Malays too would be divided, just like what happened during the 2008 general election.
His sympathy for Koh did not mean anything. After taking over from Koh, he battered his predecessor by saying that it was the end for Koh and Gerakan. Maybe LGE should refresh his mind.
So, what is the sympathy for?
Dr Koh announced earlier today that he will not contest in the next general election, saying the announcement is the first step towards driving transformation and renewal in the party.
He said, however, that he will retain the posts of party president, Penang BN chairman and Minister in the Prime Minister's Department, adding that he will decide whether to give up the party presidency after the next general election.
As for the ministerial post, he said the decision to retain him rested with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
We produce our own rice, mainly from our 'rice bowl' State of Kedah. There are padi fields everywhere. During my school days, I enjoyed helping my parents, my grandparents and the other relatives in the padi field - from planting to harvesting.
However, modernisation has lured the youth to the cities, leaving only the old folks to attend to the padi field. And many years later, I can only hide the frustration to see the padi fields became small jungles where monkeys and other creatures dwell. Not only in my kampung in Malacca but also in many parts of the country.
As urbanisation, market capitalism and industrialisation took away much of the padi fields, we began to import it, not in small volume but quite significant. It costs the country billion of ringgit to import rice from some countries like Thailand, Cambodia, India and others.
And as such, more padi fields are turning to jungle.
Personally, I was elated with a news from Manila yesterday that the Philippines will reach its self-sufficiency in rice production in a year or two. President Aquino was all proud in making that announcement, and so were the 94 million Filipinos.
It means the republic will be able to save about USD1.3 billion a year in rice import, and such an amount can instead be utilised for other development projects. I admire what the country is doing in order to stop its dependency on imported rice.
So, how about us? We import more and more rice. Local production is not enough to support the ever-increasing demand while the quality of local rice (admit it!) is still below satisfactory. What is lacking in us as compared to Thai or Cambodian rice? We share the same climate, similar soil and more or less the same fertilizer.
After 'Malinja' and 'Mahsuri', did we produce any other hybrid? And what happens to the research conducted by our genius, scientists and professors at UPM, USM, Mardi, Fama and the rest.
We keep on reading about their achievement of 'winning so many trophies' in innovation competition abroad - golden award in farming, technology, etc. However, we failed to apply it to our own good. Our research is only for competition.
Fifty-four years after Independence, we still cannot improve our rice production by one per cent a year. Had we started back some 20 years ago, our local production could by now exceeds 60 per cent or 70 per cent, and much money can be saved.
It was quite recently that one of our ministers announced that our rice supply is sufficient, and that the major flood in Thailand will not force up the price of the commodity. However, the FAO issued warning late last month that rice price could go up by 10 per cent to 20 per cent due to reduced in production in Thailand and other exporting countries.
The shortage pushed up benchmark rice prices to a three-year high of $650 a tonne last month, triggering fears of a spike in food inflation in Asia.
The rice market saw its last big rally during the 2007-2008 crisis, when the commodity changed hands at more than $1,000 a tonne after key producers such as India, Vietnam, China and Egypt imposed export bans while importers, particularly in the Middle East, hoarded supplies. Before the crisis, rice traded at $200-$400.
And global rice prices may move up further in the next few months as flooding in Thailand continues to affect the crop and damage existing inventories.
Importers are looking for alternative supply, but the perception gaining ground is that despite cheaper rice available from sources such as India and Pakistan, they won't be able to do without any supply from Thailand and Vietnam. The two control more than half of the rice moving in global trade, which amounts to around 32 million tons a year.
Vietnamese prices have moved up in tandem with Thailand's, hitting three-year highs with more expected. The price for a ton of Thai 5 per cent broken grade rice, currently about $600, free-on-board—up 20 per cent since the start of the second quarter—is forecast to hit $700 to $800 by the end of the year.So, until when will Malaysia stop importing or at least reduce it's import volume?
Some people make a simple conclusion - if we don't import, some senior politicians and government servants will not make that 'extra' income... is it true? I believe there are some truths in it. How about you, readers?
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Many have supported the 'merger' while not few opposed it on the ground that Airasia, being a private-owned airline, will dominate one of the government's largest GLC. If the swap deal was everything proper, there won't be any opposition.
And what matters most now is for full investigation be conducted on the deal, including the brains behind such a 'complicated and intriguing' business agreement.
The Dewan Rakyat felt the heat yesterday when Kinabatangan MP Bung Mokhtar Radin called on 'Amok' to be investigated by graftbusters after the state investment agency exchanged 20.5 per cent of the national carrier for a 10 per cent stake in Asia’s top-performing budget airline.
“The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) must call Tan Sri Azman ... all of them ... if there is any misappropriation, stuff them into jail,” the Barisan Nasional (BN) backbenchers deputy chief told Parliament. “How can Khazanah be fooled? Azman Mokhtar, how can he be so stupid, to be ‘tuned’ by Tony Fernandes. If I was in such a position, I would resign rather than troubling others.
“Maybe they are not stupid. Maybe they get huge profits by squeezing and grabbing money from the public,” he said, referring to the AirAsia CEO’s company Tune Air which now owns a fifth of MAS.
Sri Gading MP Mohamad Aziz also accused AirAsia of 'clearly cheating the public and now trying to cheat MAS'.
“If this kind of man (Fernandes) can control us, God forgive us,” he said while debating Budget 2012.
Accusing the government of being scared with Fernandes, Bung Mokhtar said: “Whatever he wants, we give. He wants to overcharge for excess baggage and suck the blood of poor villagers. Now I hear he has a plan in the future to take over all domestic flights and MAS will only have international flights. If we give this to him, the country will be in ruins. It will be the end of the world for us,” he said.
And if the government could not provide a satisfactory answer, it meant that 'government officials colluded with AirAsia and has vested interests'.
The MAS-AirAsia swap has come under fire from both sides of the political divide as well as employees of MAS who believe the deal will affect their careers. The Finance Ministry said earlier this month the deal is being investigated by Bursa Malaysia and the Securities Commission for insider trading despite the swap being agreed on three months ago.
MAS’s poor financial performance of late had resulted in the share swap with AirAsia on August 9. This allowed Fernandes to sit on the MAS board, ostensibly to help turn the ailing airline around. However, both airlines have separate advisers.
MAS had announced in August a net loss of RM527 million for the second quarter of 2011 due to higher fuel costs despite recording a better yield and a nine per cent growth in passenger revenue from the same period last year.
This brings total losses in the first half of the year to RM769 million even as the airline said that profit outlook for the second half of the year appears bleak.
Critics have accused the budget carrier’s boss of taking advantage of the loss-making national airline to fuel his personal ambitions, the latest being the acquisition of English Premier League club, Queens Park Rangers (QPR).
The national carrier will sponsor QPR’s home jersey for the next two seasons, while AirAsia’s logo will be emblazoned on the team’s away and third kits in a 'multi-million pound' deal.Fernandes also revealed on Monday a plan to start a new super-premium regional airline in partnership with national carrier Malaysia Airlines.
"Here is another idea that has come out of AirAsia which will create more more value, more jobs and more business. If an idea like this does materialise... it will definitely involve Malaysia Airlines," he told reporters.
Fernandes said the proposed short-haul carrier would cater largely to business travellers, among others, who need to travel across the region quickly. "For me as a traveller, time is very precious. If you can create a product where you do not need to wait one hour before you check in and fly out and Malaysia can be the home of this idea."
Monday, November 14, 2011
MCA Youth chief Wee Ka Siong today chided DAP chairman Karpal Singh's support for PKR de facto leader to be the prime minister should the Pakatan alliance take over the Federal Government after the next national poll.
"It should be remembered that when Anwar was planning for his failed Sept 16 takeover of the Federal Government in 2008, Karpal had demanded that Anwar resign as the opposition leader.
"This back-pedalling demonstrates that in order to win Federal administration, DAP will easily switch their position and go against their own principles," Wee said in a statement.
"If an Opposition stalwart like Karpal Singh who wields strong influence among his loyalists can simply change his position to back Anwar as prime minister, this clearly signals that DAP is willing to make any U-turns and go against their own principles just so to woo public support in their aim to wrestle Putrajaya," he said.
Agree. That is what DAP is all about.
Amid it's racism and admitting the lack of Malay support, DAP has made a promise to field more Malay candidates in the next general election. That is impossible. After the late Ahmad Nor, the party has no credible Malay leaders.
Meanwhile, MCA National Organising Secretary Tee Siew Kiong in a separate statement said Karpal's stand on Anwar was only made to deceive the people as their claims were never supported or approved by PAS.
Most of those who attended a DAP ceramah by Hew Kuan Yau - political education director and organising secretary of DAPSY - on October 22 were not amused at all with his dirty approach. It was disgusting instead.
This 'education' director was fiercely attacking the PM, his wife and MCA president Chua Soi Lek.
He called Ng Yen Yen a “nightclub mummy” while loudly branded Soi Lek a “soh hai” which literally mean a “stupid cunt” in Cantonese. He went on to curse Chua and his family or in Cantonese “ham kah chan” (death befalling on the whole family).
There are enough evidence in the form of video to book this little political worm and sue his pants off, according to Stopthelies.
A police report has also been lodged by the Perak MCA Youth against Hew, who is obviously looking for such publicity and controversy.So, this is DAP new campaign tactic. However, there was no cheer from the crowd. They were confused!
Sunday, November 13, 2011
It does not matter if Ambiga, Marina and their pressure groups oppose it on 'human rights' ground but when it comes to Islamic Law and the future of our generation, there shouldn't be any compromise.
We better build more schools, mosques and churches rather than erecting too many hospitals to treat HIV and AIDS patients.
Unless Ambiga and Marina feel that same-sex marriage is allowed by religions other than Islam, they may fight for them but not for Muslims. When Islam prohibits and despises gay and lesbians, the rules must be observed, just like the 'haram' on alcohol, adultery, gambling, etc. And I personally believe no religion allows it.
Human rights should be applied only for good and healthy life. Freedom too has its limitation. If rights and freedom lead to social decay and deteriorating lifestyle, the proponents should give it a lengthy thought.
Go on, Malacca and Pahang! Set the pace before it's too late. We don't belong to the socially-corrupt and immoral Western society. We only emulate the positive values. Not everything is good about the West.
Saturday, November 12, 2011
Do you know why some projects in the Pakatan States are either abandoned, aborted or even failed to start? Because of too many red tapes.
And do you know why so many contractors in the Pakatan-controlled States refused any project, including the major ones? Because they are made to comply to sickening terms and conditions.
Okay. All this are inter-related. Money, contracts and contractors.
We only know that the bosses of the State GLC are highly paid, much higher than what the Prime Minister and Fed Govt GLC top circle are getting, the Mentri Besar, Chief Minister and most of the Pakatan state assemblymen are believed to be enjoying some perks extra perks.
States' GLC are imposing exorbitant 'fees and commission' for any projects awarded to the contractors and consultant.
I was told, for instance, that Selangor government imposes a compulsory 'kickback' of between 25 per cent to 35 per cent on big projects. Worst still, such a percentage is charged from the value of project and not from profit before tax.
I don't think any contractor enjoys a profit margin of more than 25 per cent for projects such as road maintenance or construction. At Federal level, such projects seldom passes the 12-20 per cent profit margin.
So, if a contractor undertakes a Selangor project, his company will have to bear heavy losses after making 'settlements' with the State officials, expecially the GLCs. And who controls the state GLCs? The Mentri Besar or Chief Minister and their 'team'.
And where do this 'kickbacks' money go? Not to the state govt purse but being shared among the lawmakers. So, an increase of 10 per cent to the monthly allowance is not a big deal; chicken feed!
Some contractors are squeezed to the last penny of profit. So, they eventually stop going after State projects and turn to Federal tenders instead.
Now you know...
Friday, November 11, 2011
However, here comes Tengku Fakhry again.
The Kelantan prince today filed a defamation suit against The Malay Mail, its journalist, editor in chief and its printer the New Straits Time Press (M) Bhd, seeking RM50 million in damages. It was filed through Messrs A.S.Dhaliwal at the Kuala Lumpur High Court registry. He was present with his lawyer Davinder Kaur Dhaliwal.
The plaintiff named Malay Mail Sdn Bhd - the owner of the Malay Mail newspaper and Malay Mail online, its chief news editor Yushaimi Maulud Yahya and reporter identified in the suit as Nurhalim Abbas (he once mentioned Datuk RockyBru should be added to the list as he was Adviser to the paper then).
In the statement of claim, Tengku Fakhry said on May 5, 2010, Malay Mail published a report, which violated his good name and reputation, and directly affected his position and career.
He said the contents of the article gave the impression that he was a person who has no principles, is untrustworthy, a person with criminal tendencies, betrayer and a person, who has no integrity.
Tengku Fakry said the portrayal damaged his dignity in all aspects of his life and caused ruin to his reputation and financial loss.
"The plantiff's title as Tengku Temenggong had been stripped off by the Pemangku Raja," the statement said.
Tengku Fakhry is a director to Syarikat Madani Millenium Auto Sdn Bhd and Vistana Autmobile Sdn Bhd. He is also executive chairman for Petraz Holdings Sdn Bhd and Liquid Gold Sdn Bhd. The prince is also involved in several charities works and is the chairman for the Kelantan Tourism Society, president for Kelantan Shooting Club and chairman for the Tengku Temenggong Kelantan Foundation.
The statement of claim said: "The plaintiff states that all the words, which were published in the article are not true and are not based on any shred of evidence. The article was simply created or was relied upon rumours which do not exist," it said. The alleged article is about an attempted murder on a Kelantan Palace guard.
Tengku Fakhry stated that he did not take immediate action as he was waiting for the decision of the Coroner's Court regarding the death of security guard Ramli Mohamed.
He said the decision of the Coroner's Court clearly shows that he was not involved in any criminal activity as alleged in the article.
The statement also said that since the publication, the plaintiff's family bond had been tense as he had been blamed by the Raja Perempuan of Kelantan for giving the Kelantan Royal Family a bad name. The relationship between the plaintiff and family back to normal only after the decision of the Coroner was given, it said adding that the plaintiff had also received many embarrassing and reviling phone calls.
Apart from RM50 million, Tengku Fakhry is seeking for the defendants to be ordered and instructed to issue and publish an apology, which is acceptable for Tengku Fakhry, in every single media, where previously the publication and defamatory words were published.
Tengku is seeking for an injunction from further publishing the said article. He is also seeking for exemplary and aggravated damages, interests, costs and any other reliefs deemed fit.
Wishing him good luck...
However, it's just another day for me. Nothing extraordinary, except for its binary. It's also Friday where Muslim males must perform the Friday prayer.
If you hope for something good to happen, there is absolutely no scientific basis for this belief. There are no known logical premises for this belief. The belief that something good will happen is based solely on spiritualism, faith, and/or innate optimism. This belief is not necessarily a bad thing; we don’t know everything; the probability is not zero.
And if you think something bad will happen, you are being superstitious. Also, no scientific basis for this belief. There are no known logical premises for this belief. The belief that something bad will happen is based solely on pessimism of reality.Well... what matters is what we do!
Thanks God that we are still here...