Archive for category Mahathir
At least five Tuns think Najib should step down as Prime Minister – how many Tan Sris are of such thinking?
Yesterday, the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said Umno needs more leaders and prospective leaders who are likeable and adaptable so that they can suit themselves to the environment and the people to ensure the party’s victory in the next general election.
As a result, I specially went through the 19 UMNO leaders in the 37-strong Najib Cabinet, and it is difficult to find more than one person who might qualify to be “likeable and adaptable” who can save UMNO from doom in the 14GE – the Minister for International Trade and Industry Datuk Mustapha Mohamad, but who is so sidelined from the centre of UMNO power politics that he cannot even save UMNO from PAS in Kelantan state general elections.
Until three months ago, second Finance Minister Datuk Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah might have qualified to be a “likeable and adaptable” UMNO leader to win back UMNO support, but he has proved to be so malleable as Cabinet spokeman for the RM50 billion 1MDB scandal (according to Tan Sri Muhyiddin in his last speech as Deputy Prime Minister to the UMNO Cheras Division on July 26, 2015) that he blotted his copybook and his credibility as a honest and trustworthy politician is in tatters.
It is indeed ironic that Najib is now talking about the need to have “likeable and adaptable” UMNO leaders to win back popular support for UMNO in 14GE when in his recent Cabinet reshuffle after sacking Muhyiddin as DPM and Shafie Apdal as Rural and Regional Development Minister, he promoted into the Cabinet or increased their public profile and importance in the Najib government people who are the very antithesis of his definition of “likeable and adaptable” leaders who can win back lost popular support for UMNO. Read the rest of this entry »
By JAMES HOOKWAY
Wall Street Journal
Aug. 28, 2015
Malaysian police were bracing Friday for what is expected to be a massive weekend protest in Kuala Lumpur against Prime Minister Najib Razak’s management of the economy and the growing debt problems at a state investment fund.
Authorities said the planned protest is illegal while the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission, a government agency, said in a statement it would block websites promoting or encouraging the demonstration, which is set to begin near Merdeka, or Independence, Square in the center of Kuala Lumpur on Saturday. The government also announced that it was against the law to wear yellow T-shirts in support of the rally.
The moves reflect Mr. Najib’s growing resolve to stay in power after it emerged that nearly $700 million was deposited into his bank accounts shortly before 2013’s national elections. Last month he sacked then-Deputy Premier Muhyiddin Yassin after Mr. Muhyiddin called on Mr. Najib to explain the worsening situation at the investment fund, 1Malaysia Development Berhad, or 1MDB. Mr. Najib also promoted four members of a parliamentary committee investigating 1MDB to the cabinet, meaning they could no longer stay on the panel. The following day, he replaced the country’s attorney-general, who was also involved in an investigation into 1MDB, ahead of his scheduled retirement date in October. Read the rest of this entry »
David Pilling in Kuala Lumpur
August 26, 2015
Behind the political crisis engulfing Najib Razak, prime minister of Malaysia, lies nearly $700m that somehow made its way into his personal bank account. Behind that, according to leaked documents, lies a state development fund with $11bn in debts. Behind everything, however, sits a 90-year-old, for two decades the unassailable leader of this erstwhile Southeast Asian success story, who is doing all in his power to topple the present prime minister.
That at least is the claim of those around Mr Najib, who accuse Mahathir Mohamad, Malaysia’s forceful former prime minister, of mounting what they describe as a coup d’état. “He has abused his position and done everything he can to undermine his successors just because his list of personal demands is not being met,” says a person close to government.
Mr Najib strenuously denies any wrongdoing or accepting money for personal gain. The funds in his account, he says, came from an unnamed Middle Eastern benefactor — an explanation endorsed by the country’s anti-corruption commission. Read the rest of this entry »
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 »
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 »
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 »
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 »
Although Najib has succeeded in frightening off Mahathir in not talking about 1MDB scandal, there are still enough patriotic and public-spirited Malaysians who still insist on their rights to demand proper accountability and not to be fobbed off by Najib’s delaying tactics
I fully agree with former Cabinet Minister and Kedah Mentri Besar, Tan Sri Sanusi Junid that Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s reshuffled Cabinet is unashamedly a 1MDB Cabinet, imbued with the “Charge of the Light Brigade” spirit of “Theirs not to make reply, Theirs not to reason why, Theirs but to do and die, Into the Valley of Death” to give blind support and loyalty to Najib on the 1MDB scandal.
We can already see a trio of Najib’s Cabinet Ministers, two of whom are newly brought into Najib’s Cabinet, who have taken the position as Najib’s vanguard to resort to all means, whether fair or foul, to shield and cocoon Najib from demands of accountability, transparency and good governance principles on the 1MDB scandal.
Although Najib has succeeded in frightening off former Prime Minister, Tun Mahathir, from further talking about the 1MDB scandal, it is fortunate that there are still enough patriotic and public-spirited Malaysians who refuse to bow down to Najib’s strong-armed tactics and are still insisting on their rights to demand proper accountability on the 1MDB scandal and not to be fobbed off by Najib’s various delaying tactics, including: Read the rest of this entry »
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 »
– 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 »
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 »
– 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 »
1MDB has become 1Malaysia Disaster Bhd, consuming UMNO/Barisan Nasional Federal Government but it must not be allowed to destroy Malaysia!
When the Home Minister, Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi issued a statement on Saturday night that he was mulling action against Sarawak Report editor Clare Rewcastle-Brown, including calling for her extradition from United Kingdom for the “crime” of foreign interference in the internal affairs of Malaysia, he was rightly mocked for his presumption in expecting the British government to “play ball” with such a silly notion merely because Claire had exposed a multi-billion dollar financial scandal in Malaysia.
As DAP MP for Segambut Lim Li Eng has pointed out, this is a “big bluff” when those involved in least four high profile cases were now abroad – sex blogger Alvin Tan, Facebook activist Ali Abdul Jalil, Malaysia Today operator Raja Petra Kamaruddin and former policeman Sirul Azhar Umar, who was convicted for murdering Mongolian Altantuya Shaariibuu.
But apart from the ludicrousness of Zahid’s extradition suggestion, I see a more sinister aspect – the thoughts behind such a ridiculous idea, as the Home Minister cannot be so dumb as to believe that his extradition proposal would have any traction with the UK Government.
The question all discerning Malaysian should be asking is whether a plot is being hatched to launch as wide a dragnet as possible to implicate the maximum number of critics of the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak and the biggest financial scandal in the country, the RM42 billion 1MDB scandal, to rope them in and even charge them for participating in an international plot to topple the elected Prime Minister of Malaysia?
Talk of seeking extradition of Clare is just an icing for the cake of the allegation of an international conspiracy to topple the elected Prime Minister of Malaysia, as for advocates of this extreme option, it is not important whether the extradition request succeeds or not, but suffice for it to provide the “international character” to justify the wild allegation of an international plot to criminalise Najib Razak and topple the elected Prime Minister of Malaysia.
And into such a “plot on a plot”, all the critics of the Prime Minister and 1MDB scandal could be lumped together for allegedly committing “activities detrimental to parliamentary democracy”, sabotage or treason for consorting with foreign elements in criminalising Najib and seeking to topple the elected Prime Minister – such as the Edge Media Group owner Tong Kooi Ong, Edge publisher and Group CEO, Ho Kay Tat, MPs Tony Pua and Rafizi Ramli, even the former Prime Minister, Tun Mahathir, the Opposition leader in Sungai Buloh prison Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and Najib’s brother Nazir Razak?
Far-fetched? We are living in dangerous times. Read the rest of this entry »
With three-month suspension of The Edge Weekly and The Edge Financial Daily, Malaysia in free fall to become a failed state
Three days ago, I warned: “A darkness is descending on Malaysia.”
Two days ago, DAP MP for Petaling Jaya Utara Tony Pua was barred from leaving the country to fly to Yogyakarta, Indonesia and may be investigated under the new-fangled offence of “activities detrimental to parliamentary democracy” which could send him to jail up to 20 years.
Today, the Home Ministry suspended the publishing permit of The Edge Weekly and The Edge Financial Daily for three months from July 27, for reporting on the RM42 billion 1MDB scandal which were regarded by the Najib premiership as “prejudicial or likely to be prejudicial to public order, security or likely to alarm public opinion or is likely to be prejudicial to public and national interest”.
Darkness is swiftly descending in Malaysia.
Malaysia has become a topsy-turvy world. Read the rest of this entry »
For his best self-interest, Najib should immediately direct MCMC to stop blocking access to Sarawak Report or he is transforming 1MDB scandal from a local into an international scandal of first magnitude
What a Hari Raya “gift” from the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak – blocking access to the Sarawak Report website and overnight undergoing three transformations for Malaysia’s “Father of Transformation”, viz:
• Transforming the RM42 billion 1MDB scandal and the posts on the Sarawak Report website from a local scandal into an international scandal of the first magnitude;
• Transforming Najib from a Nothing2Hide to Everything2Hide Prime Minister, all in a matter of 45 days from June 5, 2015 – the date of Najib‘s ill-fated and aborted 1MDB “Nothing2Hide” forum at Putra World Trade Centre, Kuala Lumpur.
• Transforming Najib from the most Internet-savvy Prime Minister of Malaysia into Malaysia’s most frightened-of-Internet Prime Minister, even violating Tun Mahathir and the Malaysian Government’s 17-year-old Bill of Guarantee of “No Censorship of Internet”.to the world.
Asia Pacific Editor
July 18, 2015
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has been under political siege for the two years since support for his UMNO-led coalition, which has ruled since independence in 1957, slid to less than 50 per cent at the last election.
The attacks — from outside and from within his own political camp — have intensified in recent months, becoming increasingly more personal, with a series of claims of corruption.
He has now begun to fight back, launching — and threatening to launch — defamation cases within Malaysia and overseas, including against Fairfax newspapers in Australia and The Wall Street Journal.
The opposition grouping led by Anwar Ibrahim attracted more voters at the 2013 general election, but failed to win power due to the gerrymander that gives rural ethnic Malay voters an overwhelming advantage. Read the rest of this entry »
July 17, 2015
The ageing dictator thinks the decay in Malaysian politics is all about personal failings.
On Eid al-Fitr, the most festive day of the Islamic calendar in South-east Asia, Nurul Izzah Anwar should be celebrating with her family and visiting her famous father in jail. But Malaysia’s politics are now so combustible, and the name of Anwar Ibrahim so potent, that the family has been barred from resuming its conversation about the future of Malaysia until the fifth day after the breaking of the fast.
But Nurul Izzah, like the rest of middle-class Malaysia, already knows exactly what her father thinks.
“For the first time in our history, a sitting prime minister is under investigation for the misappropriation of funds,” said her father in a statement released by his lawyers this week, referring to a report that showed how $920 million was siphoned from a sovereign wealth fund into a bank account in the name of Prime Minister Najib Razak. “From behind these prison walls, I feel a great concern and worry for my country,” said Anwar Ibrahim. “Corruption, abuse of power, arrogance and appallingly poor governance has brought Malaysia to this state. The utter collapse of the Greece economy is a warning of what can yet happen.” Read the rest of this entry »
The special task force into allegations of PM misconduct by Najib has zero credibility and legitimacy when DPM and Cabinet Ministers completely in the dark about its establishment, composition, terms of reference and latest change of Chairmanship
The special task force investigating into allegations of Prime Ministerial misconduct by Datuk Seri Najib Razak, in particular into Wall Street Journal (WSJ) report and allegation on July 3 that US$700 million (RM2.6 billion) were deposited into Najib’s personal accounts in AmBank in March 2013, shortly before the dissolution of Parliament on April 3, 2013 and the holding of 13th general elections has zero credibility and legitimacy.
How can the “special task force” have credibility and legitimacy when Cabinet Ministers, and even the Deputy Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, do not know about its establishment, composition, terms of reference and the latest change of Chairmanship of the special task force?
Yesterday, former Attorney-General Tan Sri Abu Talib urged the Attorney-General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail to disassociate himself from the special task force, saying this would help enhance public perception and integrity into the probe.
Abu Talib’s views were also shared by lawyers who said the top government lawyer should not be part of the investigation or else his office would not be seen as being independent.
Talib and the lawyers said Gani’s immediate disassociation from the task force would enhance public confidence and integrity over the three investigating bodies – police, MACC and Bank Negara – in executing their duties.
The principle of check and balance between investigation agencies and the public prosecutor must be observed to ensure justice to all parties, including the public.
Talib, who was A-G from 1980 and 1993, said it was not desirable for Gani, as the public prosecutor, to be a member of the task force. Read the rest of this entry »
Malaysia is going through “the worst of times”. Are there enough Malaysians to make it “the best of times”?
Never before has Malaysia been in such a mess.
What is devastating is that there is no light at the end of the tunnel.
Malaysia’s spirit cannot soar and reach for the skies, to seek and attain an ever-higher level of national achievement and human excellence.
Instead, we are daily bogged down by the mundane and sordid details of one scandal after another, as if we need constant reminders as to how far Malaysia has fallen from grace from the era of Tunku Abdul Rahman, Razak and Hussein Onn.
Dominating the landscape of scandals is the 1MDB “mother and mother of all financial scandals”, a hydra-headed monster capable of unending combinations and permutations to unveil the gravity of the collapse of an ethical government and the principles of accountability, transparency and good governance in the country. Read the rest of this entry »
by Niluksi Koswanage Shamim Adam
July 9, 2015
As Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak fights claims aired in a Wall Street Journal report that about $700 million in funds connected to a state investment company allegedly ended up in his personal bank accounts, here’s a guide on the key players in the furor and what to watch for.
Q: What is 1Malaysia Development Bhd. or 1MDB?
Najib chairs the advisory board of the debt-ridden state investment company. The Wall Street Journal reported July 3 that money may have moved through government agencies and companies linked to 1MDB before apparently appearing in Najib’s personal accounts. A task force investigating the claims visited 1MDB’s Kuala Lumpur headquarters on Wednesday and left with documents.
1MDB had its origins in the Terengganu Investment Authority, which was created in 2009 to invest oil royalties from the state of Terengganu. When Najib became prime minister that year it was renamed 1MDB, became a national entity and its funding source was changed to government-backed debt.
The company has courted controversy, accumulating $11 billion of debt in less than five years, paying a premium in the acquisition of energy assets, and criticized for overpaying Goldman Sachs Group Inc. to manage its bond sales.
1MDB flirted with default when it missed a loan repayment late last year and eventually settled it in February. It announced plans the same month to wind down, with asset sales or an initial public offering of its energy unit, and the spinning off of its property businesses. Its purpose was to serve as a catalyst for projects of strategic importance, it said Feb. 18, and it’s “achieved this.”
The auditor-general has been probing 1MDB’s finances since March. It is set to hand its interim report on Thursday to a parliamentary committee. Read the rest of this entry »