Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Lynas to be relocated?

Lynas will be relocated. New site unknown.

That's the info I got when I was at the PM Dept on Monday. Don't ask me who. As a journalist, I was trained to protect my informer (hahaha!) but the info has to be of a Grade A material.

"No letter (from PM or the Cabinet). Only an instruction to Pahang MB Adnan (via his top officer) to work it out. Relocate (Lynas) elsewhere. Bla... bla... bla (politics). Adnan to work things out on the ground, find a more suitable and objection-free site."

But where else would be a more suitable site and free from the opposition? Gunung Tahan? A no-people island? Or shift it back to Australia?

(There were also questions - if its safe enough, why have it on our compound and not Down Under itself where land is abundant?) I told them this is a big investment, meant to put Malaysia on the world map, provides jobs for the locals and helps boost our economy. After all, it is declared safe!

I am not sure as to whether Adnan has or was already discussing the matter with his officers. If a new site is agreed upon, it will be back to the PM's desk and the Cabinet to accept it. However, a few will be the best options.

But after 'scanning' Pahang's map (thanks Google), I can't find any area of 'no orang'. Unless we choose Pulau Bidong in Terengganu (the Hai Hong refugess had long ago left it) or a few islands off Sabah coast.

However, we still cannot avoid Anwar Ibrahim and his gang. How about shifting the plant to one of Pakatan states? Kelantan, for instance. But if we keep on bowing to the Opposition, nothing can be done to develop the country, right?

We need such an investment. While countries like Australia and China are fast becoming the key players for rare earth products - to the extent that other countries are seeking solace in them - we need to keep up with the pace.

No untoward incident such as radioactive emission was reported from any of such plants around the world. While the plant in Gebeng has been given a clean slate by the IAEA, the only unsettled issue is finding a dump site for its wastage. Its a small problem.

Amid a global supply shock for critical hi-tech inputs, Australia is looming as a unique source for such materials. Widely used in modern communications and entertainment devices, the once obscure market for rare earth materials has experienced a dramatic tightening over recent years.

In the face of rising demand, China, the world's dominant supplier, has imposed export restrictions. Subsequently, prices have surged 10-fold on average and, in response, pioneering Australian companies are poised to fill the deficit.

The most advanced is Lynas Corporation (LYC), which commands a valuation north of $2 billion as first product from Mount Weld in Western Australia nears reality. Another local rare-earths leader, Alkane Resources (ALK), has delivered a fivefold investment return as it develops a 100-year mining operation in Dubbo, New South Wales.

At a much earlier stage of development, the coming float of Tabora aims to mirror their success. The company has procured a portfolio of exploration licences covering 753sq km in the East African nation of Tanzania. As the projects are absent of proven mineral resources, float proceeds from Tabora's listing are flagged for exploration.

There is also a similar plant in Tabora, Tanzania.

So, to relocate Lynas or not, is not the issue. What's important is, we need such investments!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

What else can I say...

A-ahhh! That Amhari is actually one of PM's special officer in-charge of the new media. Young, in his early 30s, he was just delivering what was consigned on him. Let's just forgive this delivery guy.

However, the person who prepared the reports on 'social media network' for Amhari to brief the Cabinet on February 22nd (of course that made Amhari appeared like a secretary of state) has a novice mind about the topic.

Around the world, social media network is an entirely different subject than that of mainstream media. It comprises of blogs, news portal, twitter, etc.

But the Cabinet had on that particular day listened to comparison made between agencies under the Ministry of Information, Communications and Culture - namely RTM, Information Dept and JASA - and Astro and the vehicles under Media Prima Group.

What did they compare? The number of followers on RTM, Astro and Media Prima Facebook (FB). And since RTM recorded the least (about 80,000) as compared to over 1 million for Astro and Media Prima, the minister in charge of RTM was deemed as not performing.

The person who prepared the report also failed to attribute blogs, news portal, twitter and FB as the main elements under social media network.

I am not sure what was the reason behind that 'school boy' report but I believe it has something to do with one's political ambition. To replace someone, you must be smart in your maneuvers. As general election is around the corner, this is the perfect time to undermine the person whom you like to replace most.

And I am equally petrified with the fact that four years after the last general election, the issue of 'how the Opposition new media works', took center stage. What a farce!

I believe Barisan Nasional has the most well-equipped propaganda machinery. We have all the money and the means but we seemed to be far from well-prepared to take up the challenges of the national poll. Otherwise, we won't be wondering at how the Opposition media performs.

My fellow pro-BN bloggers would also be equally frustrated if BN loses the battle. 'Alpha-bloggers' like Rockybru, Big Dog, A Voice, Syed Akbar and a few more have thrown whatever they had to help BN (although nobody had ever asked us to).

We don't take a single sen from BN or Umno. That makes us owing nothing to the people at the top but we will continue giving the support, unless the 'bosses' tell us to stop. Then, we will delete our blogs and news portal.

Aren't we part of the social media network?

I better stop here. Thanks to the deputy minister whom I met at the PMO yesterday, and of course to a senior officer who told me straight in the face that 'we don't need too many bloggers around'.

However, I remember how Mr Prime Minister had, in a Cabinet meeting last year, told each and every minister to set up his/her own new media unit to assist the ruling party in the next general election.

Monday, February 27, 2012

My friendly message to PM Office

(7.20pm - Just got home from meeting 2 PMO officials, including a deputy minister. Interesting. Will continue tomorrow...)

I don't like what I just found out a few days ago. It puts me in a great dilemma. Should I write about it or should I not...

It may cause PM Najib and his Cabinet a great deal of embarrassment. The good relations between pro-government bloggers and news portal operators with the ruling party too may turn sour. The SB may also pick me up anytime.

But I don't have any other channel. My calls and text messages to a few PM's officials went unanswered. The only person who answered is Fatmi Salleh. I wanted to see him but he is too busy. Also couldn't get through Tengku Sharifuddin and Sahalan.

Take this as a friendly message to YAB PM and his Cabinet. I hope any official at the PM Office who reads this posting will alert him. Nope, I don't expect Mr PM to see me but I do need some answers pertaining to a Cabinet briefing on Wednesday, February 22 about 'social media network'.

A UK-grad by the name of Amhari (hope I got it right) gave the briefing which in the end saw a minister left the meeting red face. He was made a perfect scapegoat. The report was also jointly-prepared by a Media Prima big gun said to be vying for an Info Minister position or its secretary-general, at least.

I hope someone from the PMO or the Cabinet calls a meeting with key pro-government bloggers and news portals ASAP. I am a nobody, I know that but I believe people like Datuk 'Rocky', Syed Akbar, Zakhir, Sallehudin and others would like to know about it.

I am waiting for the calls.

To Datuk Seri Najib - four years after we had the last national poll, your people are still not prepared, not well-informed and are still fooling around. I want BN to win. Don't you? Please address this. Thank you, sir!

PS - Did someone say "I cannot sack my press secretary just like that!"?

Sunday, February 26, 2012

A moderate MCA, a Malaysian Chinese society

Congratulation to MCA on its 63rd anniversary today.

In giving my opinion as a Malaysian (not as a Malay), I think the Chinese party has done well in forging better understanding and cooperation among multiracial Malaysians. Its moderate approach in attending to some delicate racial issues has earned the party a certain degree of respect and appreciation from other races, particularly the Malays.

True enough, its collaboration within Barisan Nasional is paving the way for the Chinese to be more Malaysians in the sense that the country's upkeep is for them to shoulder with the Malays, Indians, Sikhs and others.

And by feeling 'Malaysians', the Chinese have all the while helped develop the nation, socially and economically. With more Chinese-Bumiputra companies are established to grab the abundant of opportunities in the fast moving economic sector, the level of prejudice among races reached its thinnest level ever.

Of course there are hiccups here and there but those who incited racial disharmony represent just a drop of water in the ocean, so to say.

Whether its done by the Malays, Chinese, Indians or others, Malaysians are getting more absorbed with it to the extent that nobody would want to exaggerate it anymore for one common reason - Malaysian unity will not be rattled by such foolish doings. Racial and religious extremists are always there to batter our national stability, as we all had understood.

I don't care what others think about the MCA and the moderate Chinese inside MCA. I never encountered any problem with my Chinese friends in my own neighborhood or elsewhere. In my kampung, we still practice what we have been doing since the 1960s - to joint hands in every ceremony and events (they include DAP members too).

When it comes to prejudice, I am willing to take criticism from my-fellow Malay bloggers and friends by saying that its the Malays who are more prejudice toward the Chinese, than the Chinese toward the Malays and Indians.

Why? While the Chinese understand Bahasa Malaysia, almost 95 per cent Malays do not understand Mandarin or Cantonese.

In many instances, I saw and overheard how a group of Malays seated at a table next to some Chinese at a restaurant, made similar remarks, 'I think they are mocking at us' when in fact, it was not the case.

I remember while having dinner with Fong Chan On and the Star boss Wong Chun Wai last year, the former MCA minister agreed to my suggestion that our primary schools should introduce Mandarin classes for interested Malay students. The argument is simple - in the years to come, more Malays will be conversant in one of the Chinese dialects and this would erase their prejudice towards their own countrymen.

And as such, more Chinese companies will be open to such Malays. Furthermore, the language is becoming more important as China takes over the US and Japan as the world's major economic power.

Yes, there some Malays who enrolled at Chinese schools but the number is too small. To learn the language, they have to take up language courses elsewhere.

Language is always a barrier to better racial understanding. It is common in many countries. An absolute Malaysian unity can be achieved if the Malays, Chinese and Indians understand each others' language. I am not sure if the government likes the idea but I hope MCA will take up the effort, at least by setting up Mandarin classes for free to those who are willing to acquire it.

Under Dr Chua Soi Lek, MCA has improved its position as a party for the 'moderate Malaysian Chinese'. While the DAP is also getting strong support, as had been the case for Penang, MCA over the past few months saw progress in convincing the Chinese that radical mind does not augur well for a multi-racial Malaysia.

MCA has proven that politic of the moderates is most suitable in the Malaysian context. The DAP, which self-proclaimed as being a demoractic party, turns out to be a party owned by its top executives. I don't remember the last time DAP called for its AGM and had a party election.

The DAP today, which is a Pakatan Rakyat ally, is different from the DAP of yesteryear. It is not just working together with its Pakatan allies PAS and PKR to win seats but is also set to change the fate of the Malaysian Chinese.

As CSL mentioned recently, a vote for DAP is also a vote for PAS. Its a eunuch to PAS, just like Perak case. Even within the BN framework, Umno too is trying to run down PAS - its main foe in the past and coming general elections.

There is also a sign of renewed optimism among the Chinese over MCA. The recent debate between CSL and Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng has somewhat restored the party's pride and dignity. It is a rare occasion that an MCA leader 'takes the bull by its horns'. However, CSL did it.

MCA, under CSL, is also free from internal tussles. The leaders and members are more forward-thinking and are willing to settle whatever differences within the concept of party spirit. No more is heard about domestic bickering. Even words of disgruntled has subsided.

I believe this is how former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad put Umno under control (except for the 1987 party election which saw Umno declared illegal by the court). CSL's minor 'confrontation with his predecessor Ong Tee Keat has also been put far behind.

From being too defensive, MCA is now going more on the attack. Although the 2008 general election saw the party lost half the number of seats it won in 2004, predictions for the next national poll are more positive. Some political analysts dared to say that the party could help Umno defeat Pakatan Rakyat in Penang.

As MCA celebrates its anniversary, its top leadership should find ways to make changes for the betterment of the party and to Barisan Nasional. Although it looks like a slalom, more aspects of the party's approach in nation-building should be improved if it wants to stay relevant.

Just like Umno, MCA needs reform to its style, approach, attitude and senses. Staying close to Malaysians - irrespective of race - will augur well in making MCA the most sought Chinese party in the country. This will ensure it stays relevant.

The founding fathers of MCA had long subscribed to moderate politics. MCA, under CSL will remain that way. Malaysia is a unique place, and any politics of radicalism and extremism will only tear the country apart.

To my Chinese friends, please remember this - the road to ruin is always kept under good repair. MCA is always there for you.

Friday, February 24, 2012

PwC gets a new MD


Some people at PriceWaterhouseCoopers, the Securities Commission and conglomerates like Maxis and Felda are sighing in relief over rumors that the top most position at PwC will change hand soon.

PwC, embroiled in so many disputes with some of its major clients, including a case still pending at the High Court, should also see changes to its key personnel as a restructuring is also in the pipeline.

"It's not always gloom and doom here, despite the evidence to the contrary.

"We are happy to share the news that Sridharan Nair has been picked as the new Managing Director for PwC Malaysia, and that he will officially take the helm on the 1st of June, 2012.

"This is a great opportunity for everyone to start afresh, and for PwC to once again be a name to be reckoned within the auditing fraternity," according to Zarinahtakesapaycut.

What makes the news even better, is the fact that Sridharan was chosen by consensus, and that the other candidate vying for the same position sportingly gave way to Sridharan, to make him a choice for all of PwC Malaysia.

Let's hear to what Johan Raslan got to say about this. I thought some people at PwC want him to resign?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Let's listen to Kanang

Those who used to worship the Communist Party of Malaya (PKM) and politicians who attributed our Independence to their struggle, read this.

Dato' Kanang anak Langkau, the hero who dedicated 21 years of his life for some famous battles against the insurgents, including Konfrontasi (1962-1966) and the Second Malaysian Emergency (1968-1983) has volunteered to speak the truth about who and what PKM was all about.

I strongly recommend Mat Sabu and his friends to attend the talks and debate with Kanang.

Fully-organised by the Ministery of Information, Communication and Culture, the Colloquium on Malaysian History will also feature former IGP Tun Hanif Omar. Others are Dato' Ramlah Adam, Dato' Seri J. J. Raj and Dr Leon Comber.

Let's listen to Kanang and the other speakers this Saturday, Feb 25 from 9am to 5pm at the Experimental Theater, University Malaya.

If you still believe that PKM played a role in our Independence, please produce your facts and stand by it, if you can. You may enter a debate with them if u like.

I will be there.

It would be interesting to have people like Mat Sabu and his PKM sympathizers at the function. Whether they are pro-government or not, let's put politics aside as among the objectives of the colloquium is to provide a better insight of the PKM and why we didn't recognise their struggle.

To KPKK, its a good effort. I hope it doesn't stop just there. We need to clear the air before our present and future generation are given the wrong impression about PKM and our Independence.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

'Let's kill all the lawyers!'

I remember reading Shakespeare’s Henry VI in which Dick the Butcher famously said: “The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers!" I believe many people have read it, some would agree while some would cling to the joke that those who practice law are the first 'to go to hell'.

But of course, to the practitioners and those who have benefited from the legal profession, they look at lawyers as a group of 'perfectionist'. Even when lawyers flouted the law and refused to pay highway tolls, they are deemed to be doing the right thing.

Some lawyers may think that the profession is so special that the practitioners must be given special treatments and deserve a full respect from all parties, including the government. And some are of the opinion that the Bar Council is the most powerful embodiment in any country, so powerful that at anytime it supersedes the executive power of the government.

In Malaysia, the Bar Council is fast turning into a political forum rather than a legal platform. They've got their hands in almost everything - from deciding on toll rates to determining who should become the next prime minister. Gone are the days when lawyers were so engrossed with serving the clients and protecting their fundamental rights.

Our Bar Council is now a political platform for those who are oppose to the government. The Council itself is turning its back on the legitimate government by launching a series of attacks to undermine the administration and denying the people of their rights to be legally-represented. Apart from the exorbitant legal fee imposed, some clients will die before having their case settled.

As lawyers are so busy trying to help the Opposition 'run down the government', the process to get a court settlement for many cases have been delayed, resulting in the clients having to bear more cost in-waiting. And lawyers are getting choosy nowadays, attending to only those with the real bucks, thus depriving others (especially the lower income group) of legal impartiality.

And that's how they have been going around, campaigning about human rights, freedom and absolute democracy, failing to realise that the kind of freedom they sought would be disastrous in the context of a multi-racial and multi-religious Malaysia.

I wonder if Pakatan Rakyat wins the next general election and Anwar or Hadi or Guan Eng becomes the prime minister, will they stop the role of being an opposition platform? Should Barisan Nasional becomes the opposition, will they still tag themselves along with it? Or will they keep on supporting PR should the president of the Bar Council is made a Senator for the Law Minister portfolio?

Most lawyers are of the perception that since the law is 'in their hands', they are untouchable. The Bar Council is like a 'corporate and legalistic entity' - that nothing is wrong in its all doings. The president is deemed to hold the executive power of a prime minister or a sultan. Whatever decision made shall not be contested, even by the government.

We need good lawyers around. As human, lawyers and judges must be aloof and impartial but in some cases, they are easily mounted by politicians and used by those with money.

Talking to lawyers too is not easy nowadays without them having to drop for a while all the legal jargon used in court. Its boring!

But I can bear such a boredom rather than seeing them being a political tool for irrelevant course.

Since Malaysia is a delicate country, the Bar Council should well admit the fact that any move or decision it makes should be in tandem with the spirit of multi-racial and multi-religious society. They can do anything they wish in the US, UK, Germany or Japan but in Malaysia, a minor error could lead to a disaster.

If our Bar Council members are willing to compromise to such facts, then they really are special people who deserve full respect. As for now, I personally see them as trouble-makers!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Another bloody fool!

I sometimes wonder why people like to associate Anwar Ibrahim with the coming general election, that anything about Anwar will be the legitimate scale to either outweigh the ruling party or the Opposition.

Strangely, most of the people who made comments about Malaysia and its politics and economy are foreigners who never knew how 'nasi lemak', 'coti canai' or 'hainan chicken rice' taste like. Some of them don't even know our history or whether Kuala Lumpur or Putrajaya is the capital city.

This Vikram Nehru (pic) is another 'moron in the making'. Had not for his writing about 'Political tensions escalate in Malaysia', he would at least has emerged as one of the most prolific writers in Asean politics.

But he dumped himself into believing that Malaysia could turn into another chaotic nation. Which nations? India, perhaps. Or could it be like Thailand, Indonesia or Myanmar? Has Vikram ever been to Myanmar when he wrote about Suu Kyi and the junta?

The writer is being carried away by his emotion and a bit of his 'anti-Malaysia' sentiment. I don't really know this guy (and I don't care if he doesn't know me at all). Is he a Malaysian or just another passer-by from India, Pakistan or Israel who happens to show his poor taste over what is taking place in Malaysia and the region?

Again. Why must Anwar's factor decides on the outcome of our general election? I want him to answer this - why must the kidnapping and murders of politicians in India decided that Manmohan Singh should become the boss?

Anwar is just another politician. Being an opposition leader, of course he has to subscribe to different set of politics. The SodomyII case was not planted by anybody. No proof at all. Only Anwar and God know about the truth.

The outcome of the elections, YES, depends on how the ruling party and opposition play their cards. Whoever holds the extra ace will win. The extra card consists of strategy, economic planning for the nation and people, the acceptance of the voters and of course, the rate at which both parties deliver what was promised in 1998.

Anwar is not the factor here. While the Barisan Nasional government is not 100 per cent perfect, the opposition too is not 100 per cent competent in translating words into reality. The could, if they have the power but they need to fight for it in a clean national poll.

The country has been comfortable with BN since its Independence. Unless if the voters decide to change it, they will change it.

However, there in no tension. I am not sure what 'tensions' was Vikram referring to. Is is racial tension (as described by some other writers who played God by saying the next general election will spell disaster for Malaysia in the form of riots and other chaotic events)?

Please lar. If you know nothing, stop your prophecy. If you know little fact, try dig up for more to enhance your knowledge before putting your words on paper.

There is nothing special about Anwar. He used to be with BN, so he knows how BN operates. Similarly, BN leaders are also familiar with Anwar's politics.

It's not Anwar who will decide on the outcome of the national poll. It's the rakyat - the Malaysian voters. So, stop fooling yourself and the readers by going around telling others that Anwar is the dominating factor. How well do you know Anwar?

You are just like any other international analysts - either you are in support of Anwar or not - who don't really understand what you wrote and said! Or, you've got a specific agenda?

Friday, February 17, 2012

Aliran agrees Dr M 'a half past six PM'

Aliran did not say it but the fact that they published a letter that batters Tun Dr Mahathir, Umno, Barisan Nasional, MCA and Chua Soi Lek and the government indicates how they support the allegations.

Furthermore, the letter can be put to question. Was it written by 'someone' outside Aliran or by Aliran's proprietor themselves? I have read many Aliran's postings and news and I found the style of writing more of inside job.

And this Open Letter To Chua Soi Lek is also very, very dangerous. It incites the non-Malays, especially the Chinese to reprise against the government and the Malays in order to 'get back what was taken away from them since Independence'.

It accuses the MCA of forming a cahoot with Umno to sideline the Malaysian Chinese by depriving them of so many things, including their low percentage in the public sector, in the Cabinet and for government tenders.

However, those who wrote this should answer themselves as to why not many Chinese joined the police and armed forces, the diplomatic corp and the judiciary. I bet the writer/s know the answer but simply didnt want to admit the reasons behind it.

To Soi Lek, the article asks: "You claim to fight for ‘Chinese rights’. Very often, you say that the government must build more Chinese schools and train more Chinese teachers.

"This is ridiculous! What is the ethnic Chinese representation in the civil service, the police, the army, navy and air force, the diplomatic corps, and the judiciary? You have settled for tokenism in all areas of national life..."

Reading it from A to Z, something very peculiar pops up. It was actually written by a DAP politician as a 'curtain raiser' to Soi Lek and Lim Guan Eng debate.

I also believe the writer wrote it out of his nose, his political-obsession, stupidity and anti-Malay sentiment.

The part about former PM Dr Mahathir is more stinging.

"The MCA supported Mahathir, a real half-past six PM, when the Constitution was amended to set up Syariah courts. This half-past six leader was later to say that he was lucky to get away with that amendment. The MCA cabinet ministers behaved once again like political eunuchs.

"Look at the problems this has created for non-Muslims in conversion cases. Soi Lek, have you heard of the Lina Joy case? Now some religious lunatics are claiming that the civil courts are subordinate to the Syariah courts! Why have you not had the courage to condemn such claims? Where in the world is the federal constitution subordinate to state enactments as in Malaysia?"

It was written on hatred and racism with the intention of helping Pakatan Rakyat wins the next general election.

However, the manner it was written presents a deadly inciting agents that could rip the nation apart, especially if the Chinese take it as everything right and true.

And Aliran is fast becoming a threat to national peace and stability... and yet they retain its logo 'Aliran For Unity'!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

'Songkok' does not symbolise Islam

On February 10, Perak Mufti Harussani Zakaria slammed Prime Minister Najib Razak’s attendance of Thaipusam celebrations at Batu Caves as 'sacrificing his faith' and was not Islamic.

He was also dismayed when Najib wore the 'kurta' when attending the festival.

However, he took a 360 degree turn yesterday after 'listening' to the prime minister. And finally, Harussani agreed that what Najib did was not against Islamic doctrine.

Mufti pun boleh cakap lepas ke? I don't know why must it took Najib to explain for Harussani to understand. He should have given it a deep thought before making such statements.

Wrong perception and adverse impression always lead to bad words. As I mentioned in my few postings, if we keep on getting the picture from people who are against somebody, the subject will remain rotten forever.

Now, back to the 'kurta'. I think mostly each and everyone of us is aware that kurta is a traditional attire. In India, the Muslims also wear it, just like our 'baju Melayu' which is well-accepted among our multi-racial society.

In Indonesia, for instance, a drive from Medan to Lake Toba will take us through Prapat where pig sellers along the road wear the traditional 'songkok'.

I don't think 'songkok' symbolises a religion. Its more of a traditional patch in the Nusantara. The 'jalabiyah' among the Arabs does not reflect Islam as the non-Muslim such as the Jews and the Erithrean Christians also wear it.

Even the 'cheongsam' does not signifies a religion as it is only a part of the Chinese culture attire.

I am sad that so many people made so many unfair statements about issues pertaining to attire, festivals and processions. In a Malaysian context where we are proud of our multi-religion, multi-racial and multi-culture society, we have long accepted each other's tradition as a common heritage.

Najib attended the function as a leader of a multi-racial and multi-religious nation, who respects other religions and faiths (as encouraged by Islam) and in showing appreciation for the contribution of the Hindus toward nation building.

And what is wrong if he enters the temple?

Hassan al-Turabi, the Sudanese ulama whom I stayed with in Khartoum in 1996, used to say that even non-Muslims can walk into a mosque to seek shelter from his enemy or from the rain. However, it is sad to note that most Muslims are ignoring such an Islamic reality nowadays.

I hope we don't make such a 'silly' mistake anymore.

'Lakum dinukum waliyaddin'...

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Stateless 'Malaysians'

Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak is the first prime minister to take action to resolve documentation problems involving the Indian community. Such a move and approach was well lauded by the Indians and the MIC (here).

Kudos, Mr PM.

However, I don't recall any effort by the PM and his Cabinet to find solution to about 500,000 'statelessness' people in Malaysia, of whom 90 per cent Malays (and Muslims) of Indonesian origin.

While Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein can boast 'the success' of his ministry in processing 219,485 backlogged documentation cases such as citizenship and birth certificate applications in the past two years, this stateless people have been long ignored.

I am not sure what system is applied when considering one's application for a birth certificate, PR or citizenship but I believe we have defied the rights of some people who are supposed to be the legitimate Malaysian citizens!

I have been to Sabah and Sarawak, met and talked to 'Malaysians' with no status, no citizenship whereas they were born, brought up, studied, work and STAY in the country.

And since the day they were born, they never left the country even for a single day. Most of them are above 20 now, some even above 30. Their biological parents are Indonesians who came to Malaysia decades ago to work and die here.

So, shall we just chase them out of the country when by international convention and our immigration law, they deserve to be Malaysians. And by being Malaysians, they have the rights to vote. I am sure if they are given such a title, they will be more than happy to vote for Barisan Nasional.

Also, in Kelantan where the descendants of 'Siam' mostly stay, study and work. They too were born in our compound and never left the country.

In Johor where many Javanese from Indonesia migrated many years ago, their Malaysian-born children are deprived of all rights enjoyed by other Malaysians.

I met and know many of them, who found it difficult to work and feed their family as they do not carry any identification card. If you may ask them, they will choose to stay in Malaysia since they were born here, speak Bahasa Malaysia which Najib, Hisham and other speak. Aren't they not Malaysians?

To the Home Ministry, they must find the right mechanism to solve this issue. If we can simplify other procedures pertaining to PR and citizenship application by foreigners, then why can't we attend to this people without any citizenship status?

They are not even refugees whom we treat much better in some aspects.

Or, we just need to ignore them!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Ramasamy sues; Karpal defends the Star

Rivalry between Karpal Singh and Dr Ramasamy will eventually see both of them settling it in court. However, its not about their differences.

Karpal is expected to take up the position as a defense lawyer for The Star newspaper which is being sued for 'defamation' by the plaintiff, Ramasamy who is also Penang Deputy Chief Minister.

Both, from DAP, will turn the case as a showdown about 'who holds supreme' in the party after the spat which saw Rama facing the party's disciplinary action soon.

Karpal is hoping for Rama to be sacked from the opposition party while his 'enemy' is said to have launched an 'anti-Karpal' campaign nationwide - should the party expels him, his few thousand supporters would quit from DAP.

Looks like The Star is a perfect scapegoat for the two. But why didn't Ramasamy take similar action on Tamil Osai newspaper which was accused of making 'irresponsible stories' about him and his supporters?

Compared with The Star reports, Tamil Osai was more blunt in criticising him which led to the spat with Karpal during a party convention in Penang late last year!

Opppsss... Maybe I've forgotten the fact that the editor of Tamil Osai has come up with an apology but according to The Star's reporter who interviewed him in Penang, everything that appeared in the newspaper was what Rama actually said, and it was verbatim.

So, why is he suing The Star for RM10 million if there is no chance for him to get that money? Karpal is not a low-tier lawyer as he is one of the most sought after in the country!

Remember Karpal's famous words?

"Jangan main sama saya!"

Sunday, February 12, 2012

MCMC - too much power and autonomy for the boss

Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) is among the government's largest entities and perhaps the most 'glamorous' in terms of scope of duty and the ranks of people who come under its business jurisdiction.

Ananda Krishnan of Maxis and Astro, Shazalli Ramly of Celcom, Digi, the Media Prima Group of Companies and Axiata, to name a few.

They are very much 'attached' to the MCMC regulatory body as to ensure hiccup-free services to their respective clients. As communications and multimedia business generates tonnes of money annually, relations with the MCMC must be kept intact.

MCMC is really in power. As it comes under direct supervisory of Information, Communications and Culture Minister Rais Yatim, its most senior executives do report to him... or to ministry's sec-gen Kamaruddin Siarap.

But do Rais and Kamaruddin 'really are the bosses' to those few people at the helm of MCMC? And does Rais really keep track on the on-goings at the Commission?

So 'powerful and glamorous' is the MCMC that the executive chairman also holds the chief operating officer position. This '2 in 1' is not something recommendable in any government's agency and institution.

Why is such a situation?

I am not sure if the person in charge is given the power to hire and fire or being paid handsomely for that two positions but the management of the Commission is said to be in the hands of a few, including someone who recently was brought in from another Commission to deal with MCMC most important matters.

Important matters could be a say in issuing out contract to companies deemed close to the inner circle.... or other things.

Is it so difficult to find a COO among the MCMC top guns or someone from outside who has the knowledge and experience in communications and multimedia? I think its not a difficult task to find such a brain as there are abundant of them.

Power and authority should be put to a limit. Those in power, especially the appointed ones, should bear in mind that they are there for a temporary basis and sooner or later, others will take up their positions.

Or is this 'temporary' status that prompted them to wrest whatever opportunity at stake, knowing there won't be a second chance once they are out of the organisation?

I do not wish to comment any further as those at the top should understand the whole situation and evaluate it before it eats up on certain individuals.

There are times when the ones we appointed will in the end turn their back on us!

Friday, February 10, 2012

MAMPU endorse Google Translate?

My text messages to a Mindef senior official today got a shocker kind of reply.

"Bro, not Mindef mistake (for the 'bahasa rojak' on the ministry's official website). People, including the media and blogs attack and blame us for the error.

"It was MAMPU. The people at MAMPU are the ones who endorsed Google Translate. However, when stupid errors on the website are discovered, they quickly rectified it and cancelled such a decision."

MAMPU? I don't believe it! I thought MAMPU (Malaysian Administrative, Modernisation and Management Planning Unit) is so particular and sharp when it comes to quality. Who are the people responsible for the endorsement?

If we could afford to purchase defense equipment worth billions of ringgit, why not engage a small group of professional translator for the job. And why not we utilise the Government's Translation Department?

MALU lah!

The translations ranged from the painful sounding 'Clothes that poke eye' to the more serious safety connotation of the 'Malaysian Government take drastic measures to increase the level of any national security threat'.

Defence Minister Zahid Hamidi admitted that his ministry had utilised the free Google online translator. He subsequently ordered the site to be removed temporarily.

Well. Its easy for anybody to blame Google but doesn't anyone at the Ministry and MAMPU realises how important good translation is for the ministry and the government? I am not blaming Zahid but his officials should monitor the translated version of the website.

Are we familiar with movie/film subtitle? Those in charge of it seldom watch the movie but work on the subtitle based on its audio. That is why we can still read 'Api! Api!' for 'Fire! Fire!' in a combat film!

Balancing blogs and mainstream media...

"Readers must not believe that everything is gospel truth in the blogs. It may make an interesting reading on some sensational stories that you find in the social sphere but let us not allow our emotions cloud our judgement... To separate truth from spins and half truths, Malaysians should read, decipher and analyse from every source - from the print media to radio, television, and bloggers - to make an educated and informed conclusion." - MCA President Chua Soi Lek.

I must agree with him. Some blogs are deceiving, some produce half truth stories and many become popular for the lies and slanders.

However, some are really good and quality news material. Whether its politics, economy, sosial, world affairs, sports and others, some blogs provide a better insight on certain issues. The writers, normally journalists and professionals like lawyers, doctors and politicians, do not simply sell their soul to the devil over what they write.

But blogging is not journalism although some of the postings are being subscribed by the mainstream media, especially newspapers. I have noticed some good blog postings gained front-page headlines for its precision.

Blogs are personal domain. The owners are free to pen their thoughts and perception as to how and when they wish. And they are the ones responsible for what they write. If it contains elements of defamation and lies, the subject of the posting can sue them for libel. As to date, no laws protect such bloggers.

Just like newspapers, blogs too have niche readership. Those who are fond of sociopolitical issue will read sociopolitical blogs. Those who look for leisure will go for leisure blogs and for those who like reading 'colorful and abusive' blogs, there are many around. And certainly the ones with vulgarity, slanderous and immodest words will gain popularity fast. The hits are theirs.

Yes, some blogs are very invigorating in the sense that readers would make full assessment of the facts and figures. Readers can learn from it; even the mainstream media sometimes fail to reach out to special issues and hence have to depend on blogs feed.

The only thing that separates blogs and the print and electronic media is timing. While blogs provide readers with the latest information at high speed, television and radio will only carry it during news airtime and special segments. Worse is newspapers - it appears the next day or many hours later when people are already talking about it.

And what Chua said is true. Readers must be able to distinguish the truth and 'news sense' by not only referring to blogs. They must also turn to newspapers and the electronic media as this will avoid them from making their own judgement over specific issues.

So, there must be some collaborations between selective bloggers and the mainstream media to enable both sides gain benefit from the 'open news dissemination'. I wonder what has the Press Council set up last year involving the Information, Communication and Culture Ministry, the Home Ministry and representative of the media - formulated thus far!

In some countries like the US, South Korea, Japan and even Cambodia, Vietnam, Sri Lanka and South Africa, the government pools senior journalists and selected bloggers into a special task force to help the Cabinet in news monitoring and info gathering.

As blogs get more readers' attention, there is a potential for both sides - blog writers and mainstream media - to work together in many aspects of news 'reporting'. And I personally don't think most reporters attached with the leading newspapers today can produce good 'scoops' as some bloggers do...

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

'Turkish Delights' for Malaysia Spring...

Arab Spring - the label created by Recep Tayyib Erdogan, and 'Malaysia Spring' by Anwar Ibrahim.

The Turkish Prime Minister, among US strongest allies in the Mediterranean (apart from Israel) and the only Muslim leader who openly supported Nato's massacre on the Libyans, is now in a cahoot with Washington, Britain, France and others to run down Syria.

When the US and Britain launched a military attack on Iraq in 2003 and Afghanistan a year later, Erdogan gave permissions to US aircraft to utilise two air base in Turkey to facilitate the 'war against terrorism'. Erdogan shares the pride in seeing more than 2 million innocent Iraqis and Afghans died.

In his own country, Erdogan faces amounting pressure from his opponents. His 'gripping democracy', the one subscribed by Anwar, is taking its toll on his politics. Some of Turkish opposition leaders are put behind bars.

Across Turkey, thousands of people had died in bomb attacks on government's places of interest. While I was in Istanbul in 2007, seven people were killed in a bomb blast about one kilometer from the Conrad Hotel I was staying, in Besiktas district. Erdogan blamed it on the opposition.

So, is Anwar emulating Erdogan or the Turkish opposition?

Emulating Erdogan will mean that Anwar too is an American stooge, and indirectly agrees to Israel atrocity on the Palestinians. The Turkish PM is known for his chummy approach when it comes to gaining attention and political support from US and the West.

There is no absolute freedom in Turkey. Talk to the opposition and you will get a true picture of Erdogan's democracy. While the pro-govt newspapers and other media thrive, the opposition's media operators are only bound to discreet circulations.

I think Anwar is confused between choosing Erdogan or the Turkish opposition. Erdogan has to be close to Anwar for the latter's intimate relations with the US. His statement about 'supporting all efforts to safeguard the security of Israel' - as published by the Wall Street Journal recently - is also in parallel with Erdogan's 'free the Arabs' campaign.

Erdogan is much a happy man. With the presence of US and Nato forces in Turkey, he feels safe and politically-secured. He was among the first Muslim leaders who condenmed the late Muammar Gaddafi - murdered by Nato - as a dictator without realising that he himself is worse than a 'Hitler of the modern days'.

The Arab Spring is a plan to allow the US, Western Europe and Israel to dictate the Arabs. As the world's largest source of 'black gold' or petroleum, Erdogan hopes his role in adding support to Washington's economic imperialism would augur well for his politics.

Iraq, now declared cleared of any weapons of mass destruction (WMD) - which was used by the US to attack the country and hanged Saddam Hussein and other leaders - has seen bitter rivalry with Turkey for so many decades over the autonomy of the Kurdish. And now, without Saddam and the new pro-US puppet regime in Baghdad, Erdogan can sigh in relief that a few Turkish oil companies are gaining entry to his neighbor.

Erdogan and Anwar share a distinctive similarity - both are good liars.

While Erdogan lies to the Arab world that his country will stand firm in liberating the Palestinians, Anwar too lies about the truth why he was sacked by Dr Mahathir. His claims to Turkish Today's Zaman that he was sent to jail for criticising his boss then, was a mere lie. I don't think Erdogan and most of the Turks buy that story.

And for Anwar to subscribe to Erdogan's Arab Spring is his Malaysia Spring quest is nothing but a political propaganda. Unless if he approves the mass murder and insurgency that took place in Libya, Oman, Syria, Algeria and a few Arab nations since two years ago!

If such an insurgency movement is what Anwar prefers, he is a the most dangerous man to Malaysia and its citizens. But I think Anwar and his supporters like it. They already set a precedent on January 9 when a few home made bombs were detonated outside the Kuala Lumpur High Court.

Was that the beginning of the opposition's uprising?

I think so. As Anwar is so fond of the 'Turkish Delights', he has forgotten his political roots and the 'Asian renaissance' he once propagated when he was Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance.

Erdogan? I don't think he will last long. He shook hands with Ahmadenijad of Iran and Assad of Syria but these are the two countries he wants to see the US & Allies 'neutralise' - just like Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Libya and Palestine!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Dont be 'busy body'

To Umno, MCA, MIC, Gerakan and other BN components, better stop being a 'busy body' to Pakatan Rakyat. We must, from now on, concentrate on efforts to woo voters for the next general election.

No need to play supporting actors to DAP, PAS and PKR. We should know by now that whatever differences that occur between them are just part of their mind game and drama to gain publicity and sympathy from Malaysians.

So, its best attending to our domestic problems first rather than meddling with theirs. BN leaders must stay focus in steering their respective parties to stay clear of post-1998 national poll disaster. Stop making too many statements on Hassan Ali, Anwar, Hadi, Guan Eng and others.

Don't you know that they simply dramatised their 'bad relations on hudud' to give the implication that there is a big split in the Opposition? Can we buy that?

Don't walk straight into their political trap. I remember posting about 'Just Ignore Anwar' when Sodomy II erupted two years ago. However, its an Umno 'tradition' that when the Prime Minister speaks or comments, the rest - ministers, deputy ministers, MPs and even Umno branch heads will also join him, feeling awkward if they fail to verbally bash up Anwar.

And then, came various and 'stupid' statements from some of them. Some statements even mocked Anwar as being the 'dumbest' person on earth. Are we underestimating him after what PR had achieved in PRU12?

Consider this. If Anwar is such a bloody fool, no ulama, Islamic scholars and professionals would join him. But the fact that he gains support from many foreign leaders and organisation, including scholars of al-Azhar University, makes him somebody 'special'. Think about it!

Latest, Hadi Awang's decision not to contest or to take up only one of his two seats in the next national poll.

We could have left the issue to PAS and PKR. No point throwing a challenge to DAP to leave Pakatan Rakyat or severe its ties with PAS, or vice versa. They know each others very well enough to disregard their inter-relations.

They are never at odds over hudud. DAP will not be bothered to understand hudud. Their top priority is to see PR takes over Putrajaya. Differences can be settled after that.

Don't tell me Anwar, Kit Siang, Karpal, Nik Aziz, Hadi, Mat Sabu and others are still strangers to us, for us to ignore their cunning act?

So, its proper for only a few top BN leaders to comment. Others should keep their mouth shut. But even so, I've heard top leaders making 'uncalled' statements about the Opposition, especially in Hassan Ali case.

I believe its time to leave the guns and ammo to the BN's 'unit media baru'. Some of them are much better with the kill.

The bloggers and the new media are your frontliners now. The leaders - as our commanders - should strategise plans to keep the fort intact!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Thaipusam & 'Nambikei'

As a child many years ago, I used to join the Thaipusam procession in my kampung. I was not alone as many other Malays, young and old, walked the ceremony with our Hindu friends. And we remained Muslims.

The Hindu chief priest at the Kuala Sungai Baru Estate never failed to invite the kampung folks - Malays and Chinese - to join the glorious event. We participated as friends. In our kampung, we were one in many other celebrations - Hari Raya, Chinese New Year, Deepavali and even 'kenduri kahwin'.

So intact were we that parents treated each others' kids like theirs - with every rights to tell and advise you when you were in the wrong.

The kampung folks always met at the Sekolah Rendah Kebangsaan Tamil football field for a free 'wayang treat' from Jabatan Penerangan or sponsors like 'Minyak Chap Kapak' and 'Minyak Angin Chap Dua Singa'. That's how we came to know about MGR, Nagesh, P Ramlee, Tompel, Rajesh Khana, Lata Mageskar, Nora Miao and others.

I believe Malaysians in the era of 60s, 70s and early 80s were very much 1Malaysia. We mingled very well, lived a happy and harmonious life... and without prejudice. I wish of having a time-machine which can bring me back to that era - with Rama, Pankej, Suresh, Loga and others.

Its already 2012! As we celebrate Thaipusam together, please be reminded that there is no religion, race and color in friendship. Had we tagged ourselves along the line, there wouldn't have been incidents like attacking mosques, churches, kuils and tokongs.

In his Thaipusam message, Prime Minister Najib Razak has called on Malaysian Hindus to continue to place their "nambikei" in the government.

With this trust, he said, the government would be able to effectively engage with and help the community overcome challenges and achieve personal visions for a better life.

"We remain committed to fulfilling all our promises to the community and we'll do what's needed to help people achieve their dreams," he said in his message in conjunction with the Thaipusam festival posted on his blogsite

A-aaahhhh... Looks like we will need more of such calls in the coming years...


Sunday, February 5, 2012

Maulidur Rasul

Sabda Rasulullah SAW, mafhumnya:

"Sesiapa yang bersalawat sekali ke atasku, nescaya Allah akan bersalawat 10 kali ke atasnya..."


Friday, February 3, 2012

The police and a school boy...

I did not go to KL Police HQ (IPK KL) this morning to act as a 'lawyer' for a 16-year old schoolboy accused of raping a girl of his age last year. The officer in charge of the case told the boy's mom that the case is postponed to 'sometimes in March'.

Without a man in the house, the duo are trapped in a dilemma over the case. People around them are not even helping. The headmaster and other teachers too are not offering any words of comfort to them.

I don't care if the boy is guilty or not but until full investigation is conducted and a verdict is reached, he remains innocent. Furthermore, there was already signs for the case to be settled outside the court.

What flabbergasted me is the manner the case runs.

A few months ago, the father of the victim (from Bandar Tun Razak, Cheras) lodged a police report at Kepong Police Station over her daughter's remark that the accused (from Cheras Baru) raped her.

A week later, a few officers from IPK KL went to pick up the boy from his classroom when an examination was in progress.

Hey! I am not against the police. I am always in support of the police when others badmouth the whole organisation for corruption, bias, racist, etc. In fact, I've never written anything adverse about the police force.

However, a big force such PDRM is not free from some misconduct and wrongdoing committed by some of its personnel. And who says the MACC is free of corruption.

The issue I'm putting to question now is the 'mishandling' of the boy's case. As one of the persons involved in preparing the 'Laporan Suruhanjaya Diraja Mengenai Penambaikan Perkhidmatan Polis' in 2004, among key elements mentioned in the report was 'penggunaan budibicara dalam menangani kes juvana' (applying good jurisdiction on juvenile case).

But there was no good jurisdiction when the police took away the boy from his classroom before his own teachers and colleagues. It was embarassing. If the boy is produced in court, there will be no point to put him on trial behind close door as too many people already know who the accused is.

And what if he is acquitted?

You may call this a remote case. But still, the officers who 'snatched' him from school should bear in mind the legal repercussion the might face if the boy's mom knows her right to sue the Force for all the embarrassment caused.

Why didn't they wait for him to go home first and pick him up from there instead of arresting him at home?

He was even intimidated to confess of rape or they 'will put him in a dark room and bashed up', according to him and his mom. What's all this? Is it necessary to scare him to death for a crime he could not have commit?

I hope this posting serves as a friendly advise from someone who always appreciate the job of PDRM. The police is one of the most important force to our security. However, in carrying out our duty, we must not act overboard.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Umno members get dirty again

In Kota Bharu, people talk about who should represent Umno/BN as its candidate in the next general election.

In my own division Masjid Tanah, members are already forming their teams - one which supports the reigning division head (Abu Seman), another for his deputy Kapt Karim and the others for 'none of the above'.

In Kluang the other day, there were words that Sembrong MP Hishammuddin Hussein will face a new challenge from few of his comrades in the constituency, apart from Pakatan Rakyat's strong candidate.

I am not concern over who are the Opposition candidates to take on Umno/BN nominees in PRU13 but the unpleasant atmosphere in Umno in preparing for the national poll, triggers an alarm.

There is no stopping to this factionalism each time when chosing the right candidate matters most. Some drip extra sweat by meeting the chief minister and mentri besar to accept their proposed man for the 'wakil rakyat' job.

And that is not enough.

Some factions are already submitting suitable names should Ali Rustam (Melaka), Ghani Osman (Johor), Mohd Said (Trengganu) and others are defeated or 'shifted' to the Federal after the general election.

This is actually the time we can observe for ourselves how 'filthy' politics of the Malays are. They couldn't care less if their action causes split to the division as long as their nominee makes it for the poll.

Forget about the pledge to support the elected division or branch heads as it does not count anymore. What's most important is to ensure their future 'will be well taken of' if their candidate is endorsed and wins.

I find all this sickening! I shouldn't write more...

Sama-sama faham la!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

"Gay tourism - we must learn from Israel"

A simple note from a gay leader:

"Well, everybody knows I am a gay. So what? There are millions of us around the world. The US, UK, France, Israel almost every country in Europe, Latin America and Africa allow same sex marriage.

"But I am unique. I am married to a woman, and that makes me so special. I have kids and massive political support unlike you orthodox and conservative Malaysians who only enjoy man-to-woman sex.

"Oppss... Israel. Do you know why I support the Jewish state? Maybe you people are blind, so let me tell you this. Despite its confrontation with the Palestine, Israel receives more tourists than Malaysia and any other countries. Tourism is economy, and economy means revenue for the country.

"Tel Aviv is internationally-recognised as a center for gay tourism, far ahead of Amsterdam, Brussels, Stockholm and any other western cities. Tel Aviv is now an oasis for gay tourism in the Middle East, contributing to its purse and wealth.

"At the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial (in Jerusalem), gays also listen to speeches and talks about the Nazi persecution of homosexuals.

"Tel Aviv is a city in which everyone can be proud of who they are. As the number of gays worldwide increases, we must accept the fact that they are also part of the community. And that is part of the reasons why I supported liberalisation of the laws that ban us.

"What do you Malaysians have in KL and other cities and towns? You expect tourism to contribute to our revenue but you forgot one thing - that gays rule.

"We should have more clubs and pubs for gays. Like Tel Aviv, there are more bars than synagogues, God is a DJ and everyone's body is a temple. So, vote for me. I will turnaround the country's economy in just one day. Israel has shown us the way..."

When Israel choses US President...


All this while the Israelis got the say in deciding who should be the US President. No wonder their bond is unbreakable!

How is that foreign politicians endorse a US president? Well, if the foreign politicians happen to be Israeli, it apparently isn't a problem.

I could go on and on, but I have just one question. Am I now allowed to say that Israel controls America? Because if the Obama campaign can produce this masterpiece of propaganda with one clear audience in mind, I and every other anti-zionist should be free to state the obvious.

Zionists and their money control the world political process. There I said it. The end.

But then, there is already signs that one or two Malaysian politicians are waiting for the honor as well... to join Israel in making such decisions!