Archive for category Penang Government

IGP has single-handedly reduced to shambles in less than 24 hours Najib’s three 57th Merdeka Day messages on unity, confidence and prosperity

31st August 2014 should go down in history as the 57th Merdeka Anniversary for the nation’s independence in 1957 when the country rose from more than a year of drift and polarisation since the 13th general elections in May last year and the unprecedented twin air disasters of MH 370 and MH 17 which claimed a total of 527 lives from all over the world to forge greater national unity and purpose and build a model successful multi-racial and multi-religious nation which is united, harmonious, confident, progressive, competitive and prosperous.

But this was not the case. Instead, 31st August 2014 would go down in Malaysian history as one of its “black letter” days where one man, the Inspector-General of Police, single-handedly reduced to shambles in less than 24 hours the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s three 57th Merdeka Day messages on unity, confidence and prosperity.

Najib tried to create history this Merdeka Anniversary when he broke with the tradition of pre-recorded Merdeka speeches and spoke “live” on Merdeka Eve on Saturday night to make “eye-to-eye, heart-to-heart” connection with all Malaysians to show the spirit of patriotism. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Penang effect

The Economist
Apr 28th 2013, 6:53 by Banyan | SINGAPORE

THE story of Lim Guan Eng, chief minister of the Malaysian state of Penang, tells much about how Malaysian politics has been transformed in recent years. Mr Lim heads the Democratic Action Party or DAP, a member of the three-party opposition coalition hoping to wrest power from the ruling Barisan Nasional in a general election on May 5th.

This is the first time since independence from Britain in 1957 that the opposition has a genuine—if still outside—chance of winning a federal-government election. That follows its startling advance in the previous general election in 2008, when, as this year, 12 of Malaysia’s 13 states held simultaneous elections. One of the opposition’s triumphs was to win the thriving state of Penang, an island off the west coast famous for its electronics and tourism industries. Read the rest of this entry »

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Penang dances to opposition’s tune in poll battle

By Jeremy Grant in Penang
Financial Times

When Korean rapper Psy performed at a Chinese New Year concert in Penang recently, it was not only a sign of the singer’s crowd-pulling power in Malaysia.

The gig was hosted by the Penang branch of Barisan Nasional, the country’s governing coalition. Barisan clearly hoped to inject some “gangnam style” into its campaigning as the political temperature heats up ahead of a general election in this multi-ethnic nation of 28m, expected within weeks.

The poll will be the closest fought since Malaysian independence from Britain in 1957. Psy’s appearance has helped thrust Penang, on Malaysia’s western coast, into the limelight as Barisan faces an intense, and many believe unwinnable, battle to take it back.

For Barisan’s dominant member, the United National Malays Organisation (Umno) of prime minister Najib Razak, Penang was a painful loss at the last election in 2008, when it was snatched by the Democratic Action Party, the opposition’s ethnic Chinese party. Read the rest of this entry »

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The question of housing (Part 1): Understanding the problem

By Zairil Khir Johari | July 16, 2012
The Malaysian Insider

JULY 16 — As far as Penang is concerned, housing has become a hot button issue. Critics are aplenty and everyone, from the locals at the kopitiams to the expatriates at the cocktail bars, seems to have an opinion on it. However, before lamenting about the housing situation in Penang, one first needs to understand it.

The general grouse is twofold. Firstly, it is said that housing prices are exponentially increasing with no signs of a slowdown. Secondly, complaints are heard that there is not enough housing to cater for the lower-income groups. The fear is then raised that the shortage of low-cost housing coupled with ever-increasing property prices will eventually drive people out of the state, especially from the island.

Now, the first contention is admittedly true. There is no denying the fact that property prices are on the rise, having averagely increased by 50 per cent over the past five years. However, the causes of this phenomenon are often misunderstood. On the second count, to say that there is an undersupply of low-cost housing is inaccurate. In fact, it is a statistical fallacy. Both require further explanation.
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Guan Eng: Cops failed to protect me from Perkasa

Malaysiakini
Jul 1, 2012

Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said the police have once again failed to protect him from Perkasa activist, who often hound him in public.

Refering to the incident at the Teluk Bahang markets yesterday, Lim said the police took action too late, thus allowing Perkasa members to hurl projectiles at him.

“The inaction by the police probably emboldened a Perkasa member to suddenly charge up behind me and succeeded in brushing hard against me.

“I escaped injury. But if not for a PR local leader bravely dragging the Perkasa member away, I could have been injured,” said Lim in a press release today.

Lim said that while it was bad that the police failed to protect him, it was more disappointing that the police did not arrest the would-be assailant.

“Just imagine how harsh police reaction would have been if this had involved the Prime Minister and not the Chinese Pakatan Rakyat chief minister,” said Lim. Read the rest of this entry »

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Guan Eng wins second defamation suit against Utusan

By Shannon Teoh
The Malaysian Insider
Jun 22, 2012
UPDATED @ 03:45:31 PM 22-06-2012

KUALA LUMPUR, June 22 — The Penang High Court today found Utusan Malaysia guilty of defaming Lim Guan Eng, the second such ruling in six months, and ordered the Umno daily to pay him RM200,000 in damages and RM20,000 in costs.

The Penang chief minister had claimed a March 12, 2008 article headlined “Tiada Lagi DEB (No More NEP)” in the Malay-language newspaper which said he would abolish the New Economic Policy was inaccurate.

The DAP secretary-general said he had merely said his administration would be free from the “cronyism, corruption and systematic inefficiency” stemming from the policy.

The Bagan MP claimed damages as the article implied that he was an “irresponsible and unworthy” leader. Read the rest of this entry »

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Sun setting on Penang’s factories?

By Zairil Khir Johari | May 30, 2012
The Malaysian Insider

MAY 30 — With the general election closing in, the Penang Barisan Nasional (BN) leadership is certainly not short on promises.

Having recently assumed the hot seat, newly-minted state BN chairman Teng Chang Yeow has been eagerly peddling the coalition’s “alternative blueprint” for Penang, an election manifesto that includes a plan to restore free port status to the island while turning it into an international tourism hub, along with plans for an international financial centre, innovation park and aquaculture hub in mainland Seberang Perai.

And then, as if to prove that his fancy labelling actually carries some philosophical substance, he goes to great lengths to explain his vision of a post-industrial future for Penang, where he promises to transform the services sector into an engine of growth as a replacement to the manufacturing industry.
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Stop slandering land tender, Lim tells Umno leaders

Malaysiakini
Feb 14, 2012

Umno leaders have been warned to stop claims that the tender of state land in Bayan Mutiara by the Penang Development Corporation (PDC) was done through a negotiated tender.

The tender was carried out via an open tender system, Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said, and therefore enemies of the state should stop their claims that the developer, Ivory Properties Group Bhd, only needs to build affordable houses in Batu Kawan as part of the deal.

Lim, who is DAP secretary general, described the remarks by Umno leaders as “slanderous”.

He said the 102 acres of land south of the Penang bridge was sold via an open tender in 2010 and the developer was bound by the terms of the sale) to build affordable houses, schools and places of worship.

“The sale was conducted via a request for proposals and the open tender was advertised in the newspapers in 2010. The highest bidder was chosen, it was not negotiated,” Lim said in a statement. Read the rest of this entry »

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As UMNO President and Prime Minister, will Najib apologise for Utusan Malaysia’s racist and defamatory attacks on Lim Guan Eng and rein in Utusan’s extremist and anti-1Malaysia rampage of lies and falsehoods?

Today there is a complete blackout in Utusan Malaysia of yesterday’s Penang High Court judgment against the UMNO-owned newspaper for defamation against Penang Chief Minister and DAP Secretary-General Lim Guan Eng for its article “Kebiadaban Lim Guan Eng” published on 20th December 2010 and the order by the judge Justice George Varughese that Utusan pay general and aggravated damages of RM200,000 plus costs of RM25,000.

Who would have doubted that it would be front-page headline story in Utusan Malaysia today if Utusan had won the defamation suit against Guan Eng?

Although the Utusan Malaysia’s irresponsible blackout of the Varughese judgment because it was not in its favour is not unexpected, it serves to confirm how irresponsible and trashy a newpaper Utusan Malaysia has become in the past three years.

Isn’t the UMNO President, Datuk Seri Najib Razak to be responsible for how extremist, unprofessional, racist and anti-1Malaysia the UMNO newspaper Utusan Malaysia had degenerated to in the past 32 months since he became UMNO President and Prime Minister in April 2009, coining his “1Malaysia, People First, Performance Now” slogan?

As UMNO President and Prime Minister, will Najib apologise for Utusan Malaysia’s racist and defamatory attack on Lim Guan Eng and rein in Utusan’s extremist and anti-1Malaysia rampage of lies and falsehoods? Read the rest of this entry »

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Malays feel Penang under Chinese rule, survey shows

By G. Manimaran, Bahasa Malaysia Editor | November 17, 2011
The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 17 — Malay voters in Penang say the state is being run by the Chinese despite backing Lim Guan Eng over other leaders.

A survey of 720 Malay voters by researchers Ilham Centre found that when the island was under a Gerakan-led administration until 2008, Malays saw the Barisan Nasional (BN) government as being led by Umno.

“Lim Guan Eng (picture) is popular and respected for being humble, approachable and being on the ground. But because of the sentiment and prejudice from Umno, he is seen as a Chinese who is threatening Malays,” said the study on perceptions of Malay voters towards Penang and its Pakatan Rakyat (PR) government.

It said this showed the media has indoctrinated Malays to see the current administration as “a Chinese or DAP government.”

“It is seen as a DAP, not a Pakatan Rakyat government,” the study concluded, despite nearly 30 per cent of respondents picking current Chief Minister Lim as the most popular and respected leader in the state.
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Malaysia Losses From Racial Law Exposed

By Chong Pooi Koon | Oct 20, 2011
Bloomberg

Lim Guan Eng turned Malaysia’s second-smallest state into the nation’s biggest economic success after he bumped into two National Instruments Corp. (NATI) executives at the local airport in 2008.

Elected in March that year as Penang’s first chief minister from an opposition party in 36 years, Lim was struggling with the prospect of federal funding cuts. He convinced the managers to set up a research and production center in the state, and within two years the former British trading post was Malaysia’s top destination for foreign manufacturing investment.

“The deal was struck very quickly,” said Eugene Cheong, a director at the local unit of the Austin, Texas-based maker of industrial testing and automation equipment.
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The dynamism of Penang

By TAY TIAN YAN
Translated by DOMINIC LOH
Sin Chew Daily
2011-08-16
Opinion

To get the attention of international media, in particular someone in the likes of The Economist, is not anything we can buy with money.

The Economist recently reported the transformation of Penang and its dynamic economy.

Penang is nothing more than just a tiny dot in our enormous world, and to fall into the limelight of international media and receive very high acclaims would be more like holding a winning lottery ticket in hand.

We need sheer luck to win the lottery, but a lot of effort and real strength to gain global recognition. Read the rest of this entry »

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Transforming Penang By Building A Future For Our Youths And Building Our Youths For The Future

By Lim Guan Eng | 12 August, 2011
Speech at Foreign Correspondents Club, Singapore

Ladies and gentlemen thank you very much for inviting me here to speak. I come here as the Chief Minister of Penang, one of four states led by Pakatan Rakyat or the People’s Pact, the opposition coalition in Malaysia. I am from the Democratic Action Party, one of three coalition partners. I am extremely proud to be given the opportunity to govern the beautiful vibrant state of Penang and delighted to have the opportunity to speak to you. I hope by the end of my remarks you will consider coming to visit and invest in Penang, as it continues to be an attractive location for business and pleasure alike.

It is wonderful to be in Singapore. We have so much in common; shared history and people. Our bonds are deeply intertwined, culturally, politically and economically. I would like to highlight some of our common features. We are both small states that have punched above our weight economically through the hard work and creativity of our people. We have both been successes despite our size and obstacles we share. Today, more than 25% Malaysia’s exports in terms of value and volume come from Penang – more than half of the country’s electronics are produced there – Read the rest of this entry »

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Getting back its mojo

Malaysia’s Penang state
Getting back its mojo
After a slump, an early engine of globalisation is thriving again
Aug 13th 2011 | The Economist

IF YOU are going to have a heart attack, have it in Penang. So one might think, to the see the hospitals in George Town, the capital of this north-western Malaysian state. Patients are flocking in. Ted Mohr, the head of the venerable Penang Adventist Hospital says that he will admit 70,000 medical tourists this year. The hospital specialises in heart procedures and it will perform roughly 23,000 of them this year, including 550 open-heart operations. Such is the demand that the hospital is doubling its number of beds.

Mr Mohr gives two main reasons for Penang’s success with the coronary crowd. First, it is relatively cheap. Open-heart surgery that would set you back $100,000 in America costs only about $10,000 in Penang. Second, Penang’s hospitals are as well-equipped as many in the West.
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Malay contractors call MCA racist, defend Penang government

By Yow Hong Chieh
August 02, 2011 | The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 2 — The Malay Contractors Association of Malaysia’s (PKMM) Penang branch has defended the state’s open tender system as fair and warned Penang MCA to stop politicising contracts awarded to Bumiputeras there.

Acting Penang PKMM chief Datuk Izham Merican today condemned what he said was Penang MCA’s “ignorance” for failing to understand that open tenders allowed the state government to select the best and most competitively priced contractors, regardless of race. Read the rest of this entry »

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Guan Eng: Penang approved 11,596 affordable homes since 2008

By Clara Chooi | August 01, 2011
The Malaysian Insider

GEORGE TOWN, Aug 1 — Lim Guan Eng today denied accusations that the Penang Pakatan Rakyat (PR) government has never launched affordable housing projects for the poor, revealing that a total of 11,596 medium- and low-cost units have been approved since 2008.

“Since taking over the administration in 2008, the state government has approved the construction of 11,596 medium- and low-cost homes, and this immediately refutes the statement that the state has never built affordable housing for the people,” he said in a statement.

The Penang chief minister said the initiatives were a mix of state government and private-funded housing projects involving housing units worth an estimated RM42,000 (low cost) each or RM72,500 (medium cost).

Of the 11,596 units, he said, 8,175 (2,612 low-cost and 5,563 medium-cost) units were built by private developers while the government and its agencies constructed 3,421 (1,194 low-cost and 2,227 medium-cost) units.
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Lim Guan Eng zalim!

Komentar Roketkini
2 July 2011

2 JULAI – Sekumpulan penyokong UMNO, Perkasa dan segolongan India Muslim telah mengadakan demonstrasi haram di ibu negeriPulau Pinang pada petangJumaat laludi mana mereka turut menyerang dua jurugambar.

Tujuan mereka mengadakan perhimpunan haram berkenaandengan membawa sepanduk “Pulau Pinang Hak Kami”, “Guan Eng Dalang Perpecahan Melayu” dan “Jangan Berani Bangkitkan Komunis”, adalah membantah dan mengecam pentadbiran Ketua Menteri Lim Guan Eng.

Selain mengadakan perarakan dalam bandar ke pejabat KetuaMenteri di Komtar, Georgetown, mereka juga berarak hingga ke Jambatan Pulau Pinang yang mengakibatkan kesesakan lalulintas serta kedai-kedai di bandar ditutup.

Sepanjang demonstrasi haram itu, pihak polis hanya membiarkan sahaja mereka yang terlibat bermaharajalela di jalanan. Read the rest of this entry »

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Mosque polls: King’s name being used, says don

By Hazlan Zakaria
Jun 18, 11 | MalaysiaKini

While the Agong has purview over Islamic matters in ruler-less states like Penang, renowned constitutional law expert Abdul Aziz Bari fears that the Agong’s name is being used to criticise the Penang government’s policies.

“Only after Pakatan Rakyat took over Penang that suddenly the Agong became a significant figure. Read the rest of this entry »

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Penang aims to emulate Hong Kong’s openness

By Shannon Teoh
June 17, 2011 | The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, June 17 — Lim Guan Eng said today Penang will “learn more” from Hong Kong in embracing change and openly engaging regional neighbours.

The Penang chief minister told foreign correspondents in Hong Kong that the two “small states… have so much in common,” sharing a joint appreciation of open discussion and successfully putting “ourselves on the map internationally.”

“Here in Hong Kong, when the 1997 turnover happened, you embraced a new future. In 2008, in Penang and other Pakatan Rakyat-run (PR) governments, we also embraced the future and continue to do so,” he said, comparing the transfer of Hong Kong’s sovereignty from Britain to China with the March 2008 election in Malaysia when PR won five states. Read the rest of this entry »

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Umno ‘welcomed’ to sue Penang on mosque polls

By Susan Loone
Jun 17, 11 | MalaysiaKini

Penang state executive councillor for religious affairs Abdul Malik Abul Kassim has challenged groups protesting the elections to mosque committees in the state to sue the government.

Abdul Malik said the election would go on despite the fierce protests from Umno as the procedure was in compliance with Section 22(4) of the Penang Islamic Religious Council (MAIPP) enactment.

“So if anybody wants to challenge this, you are welcome,” said Abdul Malik, the assemblyperson for Batu Maung.

“Those who cannot accept improvements that benefit the people and the Muslim community surely cannot accept this change,” he added. Read the rest of this entry »

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