Archive for category Anwar Ibrahim

Najib Razak puts Malaysia’s reputation at risk over mind-boggling donations scandal

EDITORIAL
Sydney Morning Herald
February 2, 2016

It’s almost a year since Malaysia’s highest court upheld the five-year jail sentence of former opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim on a dubious charge of sodomy.

So, from the spartan jail cell with a squat toilet and a thin foam mattress on the floor as described by his lawyers, Mr Anwar is not in a position to comment on the deteriorating state of democracy in his country.

We can’t know whether he shares the dismay and despair of many ordinary Malaysians at the wave of repression that has occurred since his jailing. We don’t know what he thinks about the government’s attempts to keep a lid on the mind-boggling scandal in which a $US681 million no-strings-attached gift attributed to the Saudi royal family found its way into Prime Minister Najib Razak’s personal bank account. But we could guess.

This week Attorney-General Mohamed Apandi Ali issued a “move along, nothing to see” order to anyone worried about the donation of such a princely sum to a sitting Prime Minister’s personal bank account in a country claiming to be a representative democracy. Read the rest of this entry »

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Release Anwar from Sungai Buloh prison; drop all politically-motivated charges against Zunar, Azmi, Maria Chin and others; withdraw NSC Bill; suspend GST and fully account for Najib’s twin mega scandals before anyone talks about “Let bygones by bygones”

Christmas is five days away, and there is already a lot of talk about forgiveness and forget about the past.

I support the philosophy of being prepared to forgive and forget past transgressions to promote greater amity, understanding and tolerance among individuals and groups of people, not just because it is a teaching by all great religions but a good philosophy of life.

However, it is indeed odd to talk about forgiving and forgetting another political party’s past transgressions when the other party had never confessed or owned up to any past transgression or wrongdoing.

It is all very good to adopt the religious teaching or philsophy of “Let bygones be bygones” to construct a new relationship and to build a new future, to forget all the sins and transgressions of the past.

However, this readiness to forgive and forget all the sins and transgressions of the past must be accompanied by the readiness and resolution to right all current wrongs, injustices and transgressions or it is totally premature for any talk about “Let bygones be bygones”.

Is such a possibility on the cards? Read the rest of this entry »

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The five government scandals this year which show that UMNO/BN Federal Government is utterly insensitive to the rights and concerns of all Malaysians regardless of race, religion or region

This is the 43rd parliamentary constituency I am visiting as part of the “Solidarity with Lim Kit Siang & Mana RM2.6 billion?” nation-wide campaign since I was suspended from Parliament on Oct. 22, 2015 for six months – – not because I had stolen, robbed or killed anyone, but because as elected representatives, we have the right and obligation to demand full accountability from the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak for his RM2.6 billion “donation” and the RM50 billion 1MDB twin mega scandals.

Although it will not be possible for me to visit all the 222 Parliamentary and 576 State Assembly constituencies in the country during the period of my six-month suspension from Parliament, I will try to visit more than 50 per cent of the 222 Parliamentary constituencies in the country by the time I am allowed to return to Parliament – with a strong and unmistakable mandate from Malaysians from all over the country, embracing all races, religions and regions in the country, to demand that Najib must fully account for the twin mega scandals.

Undoubtedly today, one of the greatest concerns in everyone’s minds, even to the Malay Rulers who even issued a rare joint statement on the 1MDB scandal on Oct. 6, are the two questions: where the RM2.6 billion “donation” in Najib’s personal banking accounts came from, and where they have gone to.

For six weeks during the budget parliamentary meeting, Najib and the Ministers had taken MPs from both sides of the House for a ride, giving the promise that the government would be completely forthcoming and answer all questions relating to the RM2.6 billion “donation” scandal on the last day of Parliament, only to renege on the last sitting of Parliament on Dec. 3 with a three-minute Ministerial Non-Statement by the Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi disclosing absolutely nothing at all.

Did Najib, Zahid or any government minister offer any apology or express any contrition to Members of Parliament and the nation for the government being caught so red-handed in breaking its promise and breaching its trust to Parliament and the country?

None at all. In fact, the Ministerial benches seem quite proud of such perfidy! Read the rest of this entry »

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Let 2015 be another historic milestone in Baling, marking not only the formation of DAP and AMANAH in Baling, but the beginning of the Pakatan Harapan campaign to win Kedah state government in 14GE

DAP State Chairman and Assemblyman for Derga, Sdr. Tan Kok Yew just now regaled us about the three historic milestones of Baling, viz:

*the 1956 Baling Peace talks featuring Tunku Abdul Rahman, David Marshall and Chin Peng;

*the 1974 Baling hunger strike by peasants protesting against poverty, featuring Anwar Ibrahim and resulting in his detention under the Internal Security Act;

*the 1985 tragic Memali Incident which left 18 dead.

Let us make 2015 a fourth historic milestone for Baling, for it is in this year that two political parties were formed in Baling – Parti Amanah Negara and DAP.

Even more significant, let the formation of Parti Amanah Negara and DAP in Baling in 2015, together with the establishment of Pakatan Harapan, mark the beginning of the Pakatan Harapan campaign to win the Kedah state government in the 14th General Election which must be be held within 30 months in 2018. Read the rest of this entry »

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Enough is enough, stop playing politics to make a mountain out of a molehill over Nurul’s unplanned meeting in the Philippines as if the country does not have weighty matters on hand

Enough is enough, stop playing politics to make a mountain out of a molehill over PRK Vice President and Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar’s recent visit to the Philippines and unplanned meeting with Jacel Kiram, as if the country does not have weighty problems on hand.

If Nurul has traitorous intent, she would have ensured that there would be no photographic evidence of her meeting with Jacel, let alone allowing the photograph to be to be uploaded on FaceBook for the whole world to know.

This bolstered Nurul’s statement of innocence, her expression of regret over her photograph with Sulu “princess” Jacel Kiram and reiteration of her sympathies and support for the fallen heroes from the army, military and the public who perished as a result of the Lahad Datuk intrusion in 2013. Read the rest of this entry »

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Anwar can be treated overseas – if the authorities agree!

by P Ramakrishnan
Aliran
15th Nov 2015

Is it a fact that Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim cannot receive medical treatment abroad?

Is it a fact that the law does not allow prison inmates to do so?

Utusan Malaysia has reported quoting Supri Hashim, the Prisons Department deputy director in charge of prison policy, as having stated “that Section 37 (1) of the Prisons Act 1995 clearly stated that a prisoner could only be treated in government hospitals, and not private hospitals, let alone overseas.” (Malaysian Insider, 10 November 2015)

But Section 37(1) does not seem to support his contention. At best, it is only his opinion and it is a matter of his interpretation of Section 37 (1). That is all – and nothing more! Read the rest of this entry »

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Some of the unthinkable scenarios which Malaysians must think about and even face in the extraordinary political circumstances Malaysia is in today

I have been suspended for six months for pointing out in Parliament that the Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia did not have the power to bar the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) under the Deputy Chairman Dr. Tan Seng Giaw (Kepong) with the proper PAC quorum from continuing its investigations in August into the RM50 billion 1MDB scandal.

My suspension, and the two questions that are being asked all over the country as to from whom and to whom the RM2.6 billion “donation” in Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s personal banking accounts have gone to, are just symptomatic that Malaysia is very “sick” where a proper parliamentary system and the principles of accountability, transparency and good governance cannot function normally and effectively.

Malaysia is in very abnormal political times – in the interregnum between the fall of an UMNO-led government coalition which had been in power for 58 years but have led the country into a rut after losing its moral compass and sense of responsibility as a government and its replacement by a new coalition committed to defend the democratic freedoms and human rights enshrined in the Malaysian Constitution.

This is the time for Malaysians to think unthinkable scenarios and face up to extraordinary challenges in entirely new political circumstances taking place in Malaysa today.

Before the 2008 elections elections, it was unthinkable that the UMNO/Barisan Nasional government in Malaysia could be replaced, but after the 12th general elections in 2008, nobody doubts this question as it was no more “whether” but “when” the UMNO/BN Federal Government in Putrajaya would be replaced.

Similarly, Malaysians must think of what appears to be unthinkable scenarios and be prepared to face the new political challenges presented by them, including the following: Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysia’s prime minister is a questionable ally

By Editorial Board
Washington Post
September 18, 2015

THE OBAMA administration has made a heavy bet on the Malaysian government of Najib Razak, whose majority Muslim nation collaborates on several key U.S. national security initiatives: counterterrorism, counterproliferation and balancing against China’s regional ambitions. In December, President Obama invited Mr. Najib to a round of golf during his Hawaiian vacation, a rare show of friendship for a foreign leader.

Since then, however, Mr. Najib has been evolving into an increasingly unseemly pal. In February, the country’s opposition leader, Anwar Ibrahim, was imprisoned on blatantly trumped-up charges, just under a year after the coalition Mr. Anwar led won the popular vote in national elections. That was the tip of a broader campaign to suppress the opposition; key leaders were indicted under a sedition law that Mr. Najib once promised to repeal, and a leading cartoonist was prosecuted for tweets. Mr. Anwar’s daughter, parliament member Nurul Izzah Anwar, was recently told she was being investigated under an anti-terrorism law. Read the rest of this entry »

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Call on UMNO/BN Ministers and leaders not to wear blinkers about Mahathir – regarding all he said now as wrong when during his 22-year premiership, idolising all he said as right even when he was wrong

Former Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad today told the police to go ahead and arrest him for attending the Bersih 4 rally when he returned to the Subang Airport from the Czech Republic.

I would be disappointed if Mahathir had said otherwise or disappeared from Malaysia to escape any police dragnet.

As political leaders, we must stand up for the rights of the people and do not run away from the police if we have done no wrong.

I was advised against returning to Kuala Lumpur during the May 13, 1969 riots as I had flown to Kota Kinabalu on the morning of May 13, 1969 to campaign for the Independent candidate in Kota Kinabalu, but I returned to Kuala Lumpur although I was warned that I was on the blacklist of Internal Security Act arrests, as I felt that my place was with the people of Malaysia in their hour of need and trouble and not to seek personal refuge and safety abroad. I was then 28 years old. Read the rest of this entry »

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Are there at least 35 UMNO/BN MPs who are prepared to join with Opposition MPs in October Parliament on a “Save Malaysia” agenda including a no-confidence motion on Najib?

The universe seems to be conspiring against Malaysia, as there is no surcease of daily bad news for the country.

Yesterday’s, it was disclosed that Bank Negara’s international reserves have declined further to US$94.5 billion (RM356.4 billion) as at Aug 14 compared to US$96.7 billion (RM364.7 billion) on July 31.

At this rate of shrinking international reserves to stem the ringgit slide against the US dollar which yesterday stood at RM4.17 to a US dollar, the BN international reserves could fall to some US$92 billion on Merdeka Day on August 31 and by Malaysia Day on Sept. 16, might be struggling not to fall below the US$90 billion level.

The news yesterday of the flip-flop by the new Attorney-General, Tan Sri Mohamed Apandi Ali, forming a new task force to investigate the RM42 billion 1MDB scandal, after disbanding the earlier multi-agency Special Task Force to investigate into the twin scandals of 1MDB and the RM2.6 billion in Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s personal bank accounts, but now excluding the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), is only calculated to further undermine and not restore a very shaken public confidence in the key national institutions in the country.

In this context, the “interesting proposition” by former Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir that the Opposition support a no-confidence vote in Parliament against Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak while still retaining Barisan Nasional as government has opened up a Pandora’s Box about the directions Malaysia should be heading in the coming years. Read the rest of this entry »

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Call for release of Anwar Ibrahim to fully participate in a National “Save Malaysia” Summit to prevent Malaysia from becoming a rogue and failed state

The plethora of political and economic crisis plaguing the country is symbolized by the ringgit falling to over 4 to a US dollar and 2.84 to a Singapore dollar today when 50 years ago the Malaysian ringgit was at par with the Singapore dollar.

There is gloom on the economic front, as apart from the worst devaluation of the ringgit in 17 years since August 1998, the stock market has continued to plunge across-the-board, foreign-exchange reserves have dropped below US$100 billion for the first time since 2010 and foreign capital is exiting the country at an unprecedented rate.

But economic woes are not Malaysia’s only problems.

Malaysia is also suffering from the worst crisis of confidence and the government with a minority Prime Minister has never been so fractured today as at any period in the nation’s 58-year history – evident from the ugly stand-off between the Police and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (which I had described as the “nine days of madness in Putrajaya), the sacking of the Attorney-General and the Deputy Prime Minister, the reshuffle to produce a 1MDB Cabinet and a new wave of attack on the independence and professionalism on the key national institutions.

There is not only a fractured government, but also a fractured UMNO, for nobody believes that Datuk Seri Najib Razak has the support of three million UMNO members, although he has the support of the UMNO party machinery! Read the rest of this entry »

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Cabinet should convene a National “Save Malaysia” Summit before or on Merdeka Day involving all political parties and NGOs to form a national consensus on a blueprint to save Malaysia from becoming a rogue and failed state

Open Letter to Cabinet by DAP Parliamentary Leader and MP for Gelang Patah Lim Kit Siang on Wednesday, August 12, 2015:

To the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister and Cabinet Ministers.

I will not beat about the bush and get to the point straightaway for this Open Letter for your Cabinet meeting today.

Never before has Malaysia been faced with such a grave national crisis as today, with a minority Prime Minister helming the most fractured government ever – as evident from the ‘Nine Days of Madness in Putrajaya” when there was a confrontation between the Police and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), compelling the latter to hold a solat hajat to seek divine intervention to match the force and might of the police – and a full-blown economic crisis illustrated by foreign-exchange reserves dropping below US$100 billion for the first time since 2010, the rapid and unchecked deterioration of the Malaysian ringgit, the plunge in the stock exchange index and the exit of foreign capital.
Malaysia’s ringgit has fallen the most in the past seven weeks, retreating for a fifth day of losses to 3.9605 dollar , the lowest level since August 1998, and is down almost 20 percent in the past 12 months. Read the rest of this entry »

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Mahathir exaggerating when he said “democracy is dead” but there is no doubt that Najib would shed no tears to kill democracy and even launch a bigger “Operation Lalang 2015” than Mahathir’s 1987 Operation to save his political life

Former Prime Minister, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad said yesterday that democracy in the country is dead.

Mahathir is exaggerating though there is no doubt that the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak would shed no tears to kill democracy and even launch a bigger “Operation Lalang 2015” than Mahathir’s 1987 Operation to save his political life.

Mahathir’s Operation Lalang in 1987, which unleashed a multi-faceted assault on democracy, human rights and the independence, impartiality and professionalism of key national institutions involving the Press, Parliament, Judiciary, key agencies like the Police, the anti-corruption agency, the election commission, the universities, entire civil service, brought the fragile plant of Malaysian democracy to the brink of ruin and disaster.

But Malaysian resilience, the spirit and love for freedom, justice and the nation, did not wilt or capitulate to Mahathir’s iron-fisted policies, but sprang back not only to recover lost ground during the Mahathir decades, but to achieve new democratic breakthroughs as in the 13th General Election when 52% of popular vote sought the first change of national government with new Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, but the people were denied the fruits of democratic victory because of undemocratic gerrymandering of parliamentary constituencies.

Democracy in Malaysia is facing another crisis, and undoubtedly an even bigger one than under Mahathir’s premiership. Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysia will not be in throes of a bumper political, economic and leadership confidence crisis if Anwar is Prime Minister of Malaysia today

Malaysia will not be in the throes of a bumper political, economic and leadership confidence crisis if Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim is the Prime Minister of Malaysia today.

Firstly, there will not be a 1MDB crisis, which for the past five years, had sapped national and international confidence in the economic and investment climate in Malaysia.

Secondly, there will not be the scandal of RM2.6 billion deposited into the personal banking accounts of the Prime Minister, whether from 1MDB or any other source, as the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act 2009 has made it very clear that the definition of gratification in the Act included donations and that any form of gratification was presumed to have been corruptly received, unless proven otherwise.

Thirdly, there will not be the Goods and Services Tax (GST) which has caused great economic hardships to the people, small businesses and traders, causing Hari Raya sales this year to drop by some 50% and even the closure of shops and businesses. Read the rest of this entry »

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What Can Ensure a Real Political Breakthrough

Koon Yew Yin
3rd August 2015

Recently I wrote of developments on the opposition side that had the potential to lead to a political breakthrough for the country. I was referring to the formation of a new party led by Pas moderates and progressives.

I had also written on the need for the new Islamic party to adhere to the Common Policy Framework and reject a hard line and extremist Islamic ideology; oppose the move to introduce hudud in Kelantan and the federal parliament; support the constitutional position on democratic and human rights and the equality of all citizens, irrespective of race or creed and to fight racial and religious extremism wherever it comes from.

But in politics it is not enough to have the right manifesto or ideology. To win power, it is equally – if not more important – to have the right leaders. Today we have a clear political leadership crisis in the country in both government and the opposition. Read the rest of this entry »

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Mahathir On Anwar, Islam, Malays In Business And The Press

Chris Wright
Forbes
JUL 28, 2015

These days, feeling that the press is no longer marching to his tune, Mahathir communicates to the world through a blog, Chedet.com – a name taken, he tells me, from a childhood nickname conferred upon him by his sisters.

It is a consistently strident piece of work, as one would expect, with a tag-line: “Blogging to unblock”. In it, until recently beneath the incongruous herald of a pizza delivery ad, he rails against the issues of the day, from Kuala Lumpur traffic to intervention in Syria, from the nature of modern Islam to racial polarization and the endless question of the Malaysian national car. The English language entries alone in the second half of 2014 have taken on deforestation and the logging trade, the nature of state education, monetary handouts and national economics, ISIS, American foreign policy, British jihadists, the bombing of Gaza, Malaysian tourism, Formula One, the privatization of Malaysian Airlines, censorship of the internet, the Jews and the history of Israel, the oil price, the nature of an Islamic state, and Joe Biden (a piece that concludes: “America is a land stolen from the Red Indians through genocide. Americans should really bow their heads down in shame forever”).

They take an ordered, numbered form, not always reaching an obvious conclusion but never short of a boisterous opinion. Thus does Mahathir put his country and faith to rights, shouting not from a rooftop but from a desktop, to the masses of the net. The top-flight Malay establishment tolerates him politely, accepting the voice of a man who is part of much of their history even if no longer directly relevant to its present. Read the rest of this entry »

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Can the prime minister survive?

– Greg Lopez
The Malaysian Insider
30 July 2015

The president of Umno is always the prime minister of Malaysia. It is Umno who decides who becomes the prime minister. Leadership crisis in Umno always has serious implications to national leadership and Malaysia.

The leadership crisis within Umno occurs almost every decade. The outcomes of these leadership crises are balanced as the context is important in determining the survival of the incumbent.

The first leadership crisis happened almost as soon as Umno was established.

Leaders from Umno’s Islamic Department left in 1951 to form the Pan Malaysian Islamic Party of Tanah Melayu, now known as the Pan Malaysian Islamic Party or PAS. Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysia’s mess is Mahathir-made

Dan Slater
East Asia Forum
29 July 2015

At least embattled Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak is right about one thing. The current mess in Malaysian politics is the making of his greatest nemesis, Mahathir Mohamad, who led the Southeast Asian nation with an iron fist from 1981–2003. What Najib fails to fathom is that Mahathir has not produced this mess by criticising his leadership, but by paving Najib’s path to power in the fashion he did during his decades in office. Mahathir may believe that he can end the crisis by bringing Najib down. But history should judge Mahathir himself as the author of a long national decline that has culminated in this latest crisis.

To be sure, Najib’s fingerprints are all over the current mess. The proximate source of the crisis has been the collapse of Najib’s pet sovereign-investment company, 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). This has caused Malaysia’s stock market and currency, the ringgit, to plummet in turn. All this has transpired amid credible allegations that the prime minister siphoned an eye-popping US$700 million into his personal bank account.

But this road toward ruin commenced with Mahathir, not Najib. Read the rest of this entry »

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Why sacking Muhyiddin riskier than sacking Anwar Ibrahim

– Shahrul Yusof
The Malaysian Insider
28 July 2015

I remember it was in early September 1998, when TV3 broke the news about then prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad sacking his deputy, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

It was during my summer holiday and I was back home with my family. Immediately after that I rang my friend Yazid in the UK and told him about the news.

Surprised he certainly was, and immediately conveyed the message to my other friends who were in England, and within a few days news reached everyone in the mosque there.

Six hours ago, I woke up at 6am in Manchester and grabbed my phone and to my surprise, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin was out.

My Facebook timeline flashing with news after news about the sacking. Here in the UK, at the same time, Malaysian’s were already in chapter 4 of the chronological discussions, and it was less than an hour after Najib’s press statement. Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysia’s Growing Opposition Can’t Be Silenced

By ANWAR IBRAHIM
Wall Street Journal
July 23, 2015

Why I’ve chosen to stay and continue the fight for peaceful, democratic reform from my prison cell.

COMMENTARY

Since Prime Minister Najib Razak’s 2013 electoral victory, which was plagued by widespread allegations of gerrymandering, fraud and voter intimidation, Malaysia has taken a turn for the worse. Mr. Najib, who once promised democratic and economic reforms and pledged to allow “the voices of dissent” to be heard, has doubled down on political repression.

A former deputy prime minister of Malaysia and leader of the opposition, I am now in the fifth month of a five-year prison sentence that has been roundly condemned by governments and human-rights groups around the world. I spend my days in solitary confinement in meditation and in the company of the few books that are allowed into my cell. Meanwhile, allegations of corruption at the highest levels of Malaysian government have surfaced.

In 2012, the draconian Internal Security Act was repealed by the Najib government with much fanfare, only to be replaced by the Prevention of Crime and Prevention of Terrorism Acts, which are equally, if not more, repressive. Beyond encroaching on Malaysian citizens’ fundamental liberties, these new laws rob judges of their discretionary sentencing powers. Read the rest of this entry »

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