Archive for June 19th, 2012

Do you trust them?

— Ali Kadir
The Malaysian Insider
June 19, 2012

JUNE 19 — Everything begins and ends with this question: Do you trust them?

Do you trust Khaled Nordin to look after the interest of Malaysians or do you believe that the Parliamentary Select Committee was set up to regurgitate information provided by Lynas and merely rubber stamp an investment already banked in by the Barisan Nasional government?

Please bear in mind that Khaled is also the minister who believed he was doing the right thing when he froze federal loans to students at Unisel in a show a political gamesmanship that he lost.

Do you trust Rais Yatim when he tells all and sundry that only 22,000 Malaysians attended Bersih 3.0?

Do you trust M. Kayveas when he says that urban Malaysians are navel-gazers and an ungrateful bunch who only know how to whine? Read the rest of this entry »


The Dark Passage to Lynas

Charles Santiago
MP for Klang

We welcome the report of the Parliamentary Select Committee which has produced its recommendations, including the upgrading of the standards used by the AELB. But while we appreciate the effort, this is clearly a document which has only looked at ways to keep the Lynas Advance Material Plant (LAMP) in operation.

The key area – returning the radioactive waste to Western Australia – has not been looked at although it was one of the earliest pre-conditions to the government granting Lynas a Temporary Operating License.

Violating pre-requisite to the Temporary Operating License (TOL)

Over a ten-year period of the plant’s operation, the total volume of wastes will amount to 2,766,600 cubic metro. Over a 20-year period, as Lynas continues to enjoy its tax break, the waste would presumably have doubled. And it is highly inconceivable that there will be enough soil and technology available to “dilute” the wastes and remove its radiation level to natural ground level radiation. This is especially crucial as Lynas plans to store the wastes onside in the Residue Storage Facility (RSF).

The PSC recommendation has noted that some of the regulations imposed by the Malaysian government are better than international standards. But according to the Lynas document which is under review, the management of radioactive residue generated from the decommissioning activities of LAMP upon cessation of operations after 20 years are not within the scope of the Lynas Radioactive Waste Management Plan or RWMP but presented in a separate document titled “Decommissioning Plan (Environ 2011b). This is certainly not in tandem with international standards.

Malaysia is still in the midst of cleaning up after the Asian Rare Earth factory was decommissioned at the cost of USD100 million, the largest in the rare earth industry. The rare earth factory was set-up 30 years ago and we are yet to wipe out all traces of residue. Lynas will produce 20,000 tonne of radioactive material, ten times more than the Asian Rare earth. Read the rest of this entry »


Malaysia’s next general election shaping up to be a battle of the coalitions

— Greg Lopez
The Malaysian Insider
Jun 19, 2012

JUNE 19 — Malaysia’s 13th general election, which must be held by April 2013, has been the most anticipated in Malaysian history, given the megatrends that are occurring in the country and the ability of the two main contenders to manage them.

Barisan Nasional (BN) and Pakatan Rakyat (PR) are the main contestants. BN — currently the longest-ruling coalition in the world — is a 13-party coalition based mainly around ethnic and regional interests. Umno is the single most important political party in the ruling coalition, dominating not only the coalition, but all major institutions in Malaysia except in the state of Sarawak. Najib Razak, son of Malaysia’s second prime minister, has led the coalition since becoming Umno president through an interparty compromise.

PR, in turn, is a new and informal coalition, set up in the euphoria of the opposition’s historical performance at the March 2008 12th general election. None of its three component parties has a clear majority, and all understand that their success is predicated on their ability to work together. PKR’s unelected leader Anwar Ibrahim leads the coalition by virtue of his ability to hold together three disparate groups — the Chinese-dominated DAP, the Islamists party PAS and his own band of largely ex-BN/Umno members. Read the rest of this entry »


An open letter to Datuk Kayveas

— Tan Zhong Yan
The Malaysian Insider
Jun 18, 2012

JUNE 18 — Dear Datuk Kayveas,

I, as part of a younger generation of Malaysians and a participant of Bersih 3.0, am totally disappointed with your statement which states that 99 per cent of those who went for the sit-in demonstration did not know why they were there and that they were paid. Your statement is not only absurd and irresponsible but also insulting.

If the people do not know the purpose of the sit-in demonstration, why would they want to waste their time? Were they there to get a taste of the tear gas, water cannons and how it feels to be beaten up by the police?

I would like to tell you that I was there; neither because my parents asked me to (in fact, I am the one who asked my dad to tag along) nor because I was paid. I was there because I was aware of the fact that elections in Malaysia are not clean, free or fair. I was there because I fully understand that we need clean, free and fair elections. Only clean, free and fair elections will guarantee a better future. Only clean, free and fair elections will make Malaysia a true democracy. Read the rest of this entry »