The Malaysian Insider
Monday November 23, 2015
KUALA LUMPUR, 23 Nov — Wujud gerakan dari dalam Umno sendiri untuk mendesak Presidennya Datuk Seri Najib Razak meletakkan jawatan, dedah setiausaha agung parti.
Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor berkata gerakan “orang dalam” parti itu sedang mengumpulkan 300 cawangan bagi tujuan tersebut, lapor Utusan Malaysia hari ini.
“Kita tahu ada dalang yang berlegar dalam Umno yang ingin melihat ada percanggahan dan kekeruhan berlaku dalam parti kerana sehingga kini mereka tahu bahawa Umno adalah sebuah parti yang kukuh.
“Dalang ini merupakan orang yang kecewa dengan parti. Kita tiada masalah, Umno mempunyai 25,000 cawangan seluruh negara, walaupun 300 cawangan dibayar untuk membuat kenyataan sedemikian, ia langsung tidak akan menjejaskan parti.
“Tindakan cawangan parti yang telah mengeluarkan kenyataan juga tidak mengikut saluran yang betul,” Tengku Adnan, juga dipanggil Ku Nan, dipetik berkata.
Beliau bagaimanapun tidak menjelaskan siapa di belakang gerakan tersusun itu. Read the rest of this entry »
Special for USA TODAY
November 22, 2015
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — As the summit of Southeast Asian nations ended here Sunday, much of the focus was not on the leaders’ discussions with President Obama but on a corruption scandal dogging the summit’s host and his government’s crackdown on civil liberties.
Prime Minister Najib Razak, who told Obama that he is “committed to reforms,” stands accused of shifting nearly $700 million from a government-owned development fund into private bank accounts.
The fund, 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB), is under investigation in Malaysia, the United States, Singapore, Abu Dhabi and Switzerland. Opposition leaders in parliament filed a formal no-confidence vote against him in October. Read the rest of this entry »
Birth of AMANAH and formation of Pakatan Harapan re-ignited the lost hopes of Malaysians for political change in 14GE which had been dampened or destroyed in the past two years by a mutinous PAS in Pakatan Rakyat
The birth of Parti Amanah Negara and the formation of Pakatan Harapan in the past three months have re-ignited the lost hopes of Malaysians for political change in the 14th General Election which had been dampened or destroyed in the past two years by a mutinous PAS in Pakatan Rakyat.
Despite the treasury of the then secret RM2.6 billion “donation” in Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s personal banking accounts for the general election campaign (breaking all election laws in the country on money politics), the 13th General Election in May 2013 was held with highest-ever public hopes for political change in Putrajaya in the nation’s 13 general elections since Merdeka in 1957.
This was borne out by the 13GE results, as for the first time in the nation’s electoral history, the Opposition coalition of Pakatan Rakyat secured the majority of total votes cast while the UMNO-led governing coalition since Merdeka secured only 47% of the popular votes.
However, because of the undemocratic and unfair delineation of parliamentary constituencies, which translated UMNO/BN’s 47% of the national votes into 60% of the 222 seats in Parliament, Datuk Seri Najib Razak continued as the country’s first minority Prime Minister who failed to command the support of the majority of the voters in the country.
Public disappointment and disillusionment with the cohesion, unity and sense of purpose of Pakatan Rakyat set in swiftly after the 13th General Election when one of the three component parties, PAS, decided to play rogue and refused to abide by the PR consensus principle as well as the PR common policy framework, resulting in the final disintegration of Pakatan Rakyat in the middle of this year. Read the rest of this entry »
Apart from saying “yes” or “no” as to whether he is being investigated as a “kleptocrat” by FBI, there is still a third answer by Najib
Last night, at the DAP Nibong Tebal “Solidarity with Lim Kit Siang and Mana RM2.6 billion?” ceramah, I asked for the umpteenth time when the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak will stand up in Parliament and inform the nation whether for the first time in the 58-year history of the nation, the country’s Prime Minister is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigations in the United States as to whether he is a “kleptocrat” in connection with his RM2.6 billion “donation” and RM50 billion 1MDB twin mega scandals?
Since the publication of the New York Times “scoop” on Sept. 11 of FBI and US Department of Justice investigation of Najib under the DOJ’s Kleptocracy Assets Recovery Initiative 2010, Najib had been avoiding the subject like the plague.
However, Najib cannot continue to keep mum and run away from this subject especially after his meeting with United States President Barack Obama, who subsequently said he had raised the importance of transparency, accountability and rooting out corruption with Najib, though he would not comment on investigations against Najib as he would not touch on ongoing probes even on the US soil.
It is most demeaning and degrading for the Malaysian Prime Minister to be “lectured” by the US President on the importance of transparency, accountability and rooting out corruption – something Obama would never dream of doing in his meetings with the Prime Ministers of Japan or Singapore for instance. Read the rest of this entry »
M. Bakri Musa
23rd November 2015
[Foreword to Zaid Ibrahim’s latest book, Assalamualaikum. Observations on the Islamization of Malaysia, published by ZI Publications and launched on November 20, 2015 by former Prime Minister Tun Mahathir.]
Muslims believe the Koran to be a guide from God; “for all mankind, at all times, and till the end of time.” That is a matter of faith.
The essence of the Koran is Al-amr bi ‘l-ma’ruf wa ‘n-nahy ani ‘l-munkar. That message is repeated many times in our Holy Book. The approximate translation is, “Command good and forbid evil;” or in my Malay, “Biasakan yang baik, jauhi yang jahat.” Succinct and elegant in both languages as it is in the original classical Arabic!
This central message is often missed in the thick tomes of religious scholars, erudite sermons of bedecked ulamas, and frenzied jingoisms of zealous jihadists. Meanwhile in Malaysia, Islam is reduced to a government bureaucracy manned by control-freaks intent on dictating our lives. Yes, they are all men.
Their mission has little to do with that golden rule. Theirs is an exercise of raw unbridled power, all in the name of Allah of course. Not-too-bright and self-serving politicians are only too willing to ride this Islamic tiger. Once ridden however, it is mighty difficult to dismount, as the Afghanis and Pakistanis are finding out. Read the rest of this entry »
One Lim Kit Siang can be suspended from Parliament for six months, but let tens and hundreds of thousands and even millions of Malaysians stand up and declare “I am also Lim Kit Siang” to ask the same question: “Najib, Mana RM2.6 billion?”
I thank the DAP in Nibong Tebal for this “Solidarity with Lim Kit Siang and Mana RM2.6 billion?” ceramah and the large crowd tonight despite intermittent rain which shows the nation-wide concern transcending race, religion, region or even politics about government accountability, transparency and good governance – especially over Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s RM2.6 billion “donation” and RM50 billion 1MDB twin mega scandals.
The message central to the nation-wide “Solidarity with Lim Kit Siang & Mana RM2.6 billion?” campaign is to let the Prime Minister know that one Lim Kit Siang can be suspended from Parliament for six months, but tens and hundreds of thousands and even millions of Malaysians will rise up and declare “I am also Lim Kit Siang” to ask the same question: “Najib, Mana RM2.6 billion?”
Leaders of over 20 Asian-Pacific leaders are in South-east Asia for the Asian Pacific Economic Co-operation (APEC) Summit in the Philippines and the ASEAN Summit in Kuala Lumpur to exchange views about the future of the region and the world, but there is one thing that Malaysian Prime Minister Najib has outclassed all the world leaders from the Asia-Pacific region, whether President Xi Jingping of China, President Barack Obama of the United States, Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan, President Joko Widodo of Indonesia, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull of Australia or President Vladimir Putin of Russia.
No other leader in APEC, ASEAN or in the Asia-Pacific region would have RM2.6 billion in his personal banking account, and what is worse, refusing to explain where the RM2.6 billion came from and to whom the RM2.6 billion went to, although Najib claims full commitment to the principles of accountability, transparency and good governance. Read the rest of this entry »
Five ways for Members of Parliament to send a clear and unmistakable message to the world that they do not want to a “cari makan” PAC or a “cari makan” PAC Chairman and to redeem the esteem, integrity, honour and good name of Malaysian Parliament
There are five ways for Members of Parliament from both sides of the House to send a clear and unmistakable message to the world that they do not want a “cari makan” Public Accounts Committee or a “cari makan” PAC Chairman and to redeem the esteem, integrity, honour and good name of Malaysian Parliament.
Without these five measures, Members of Parliament from Malaysia will be the butt of jokes at international conferences as “cari makan” MPs – whether at Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) conferences, International Parliamentary Union (IPU) gatherings or other international meetings, whether directly in their face or from their backs.
These five measures are:
1. Sack Datuk Hasan Arifin as PAC Chairman if Hasan does not have the humility and good sense to realise that he had committed an inexcusable and unpardonable parliamentary sin when he said that he had to “cari makan” as the reason why the PAC will not summon Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to its 1MDB investigations, and compounding his egregrious mistake by blaming the media for it instead of apologizing and owning up to his faux pax. This is a classic example of a public office holder mistaking his personal idiosyncrasy as a public imperative, the start on the road of corruption of public responsibilities for personal or private gain. Read the rest of this entry »
By DIONNE SEARCEY, ADAM NOSSITER, CARLOTTA GALL and SOMINI SENGUPTA
New York Times
NOV. 21, 2015
BAMAKO, Mali — The terrorists chose carefully: There are nearly always French, Russian and even a few American visitors to be found in the hotel restaurant, around the pool, in the health club or on the thin black-leather sofas of the glass-fronted lobby, now shattered by gunfire.
With its marble floors, open atrium and lipstick-red lounge, the Radisson Blu Hotel served as a lifeline to the world, a gathering place where diplomats, contractors and others doing business in Mali, one of the poorest countries on earth, could all be found.
Now, bullet holes pockmark the walls and blood is pooled on stairs. The hotel, once a symbol of the international presence in a country trying to emerge from years of upheaval, is the site of a massacre in which terrorists killed 19 people, storming in at breakfast on Friday as terrified diners sprinted into an elevator whose doors did not close in time to save them. Read the rest of this entry »
by Kamel Daoud
New York Times
NOV. 20, 2015
Black Daesh, white Daesh.
The former slits throats, kills, stones, cuts off hands, destroys humanity’s common heritage and despises archaeology, women and non-Muslims.
The latter is better dressed and neater but does the same things.
The Islamic State; Saudi Arabia.
In its struggle against terrorism, the West wages war on one, but shakes hands with the other.
This is a mechanism of denial, and denial has a price: preserving the famous strategic alliance with Saudi Arabia at the risk of forgetting that the kingdom also relies on an alliance with a religious clergy that produces, legitimizes, spreads, preaches and defends Wahhabism, the ultra-puritanical form of Islam that Daesh feeds on. Read the rest of this entry »
Nov. 20, 2015
A leaked memo sounds warning on the eve of a major summit to be attended by President Obama
Ten prospective suicide bombers are at large in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia’s capital and largest city, according to a leaked police memo cited by the Guardian. Another eight thought are in the western part of the country. Read the rest of this entry »
By Anthony Faiola, William Booth and Emily Badger
November 21 2015
PARIS — The government abruptly shut down the metro system in Brussels, canceled sporting events and warned shoppers to stay away from malls as Belgium placed the capital on maximum alert early Saturday, citing a “serious and imminent” threat of attack.
Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel said Saturday morning that officials had identified shopping centers, public transportation and major events as targets of a possible attack, involving multiple assailants, similar to the deadly assault that struck Paris last Friday.
In Brussels, armed troops stood guard in front of hotels and at major intersections. There was a scattering of shop closures. At least four of the Islamic State militants who attacked Paris came from the same immigrant neighborhood of Molenbeek in the Belgium capital.
Police continue to hunt for one of the Parisian attackers, Salah Abdeslam, a 26-year-old French national who lived in Brussels and may have returned after the attacks.
The new threat alert in Brussels comes after European countries agreed Friday to new steps aimed at securing Europe’s frontiers, as further evidence emerged that extremists in the terrorist attacks in Paris were using the region’s porous borders to slip between the continent and the battlefields of the Middle East. Read the rest of this entry »
Parliament must take a stand on Monday whether it wants to have a “cari makan” Chairman of PAC, especially as it is poised to continue its “derailed” investigations into Najib’s RM2.6 billion “donation” and RM50 billion 1MDB twin mega scandals
The Malaysian Parliament must take a stand on Monday whether it wants to have a “cari makan” Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), especially as it is poised to continue its “derailed” investigations into Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s RM2.6 billion “donation” and RM50 billion 1MDB twin mega scandals.
PAC Chairman Datuk Hasan Arifin has compounded his faux pax with a ban on all PAC press conferences on the ground that he is victim of a diabolic plot by the media to present him in the worst possible light.
Why should the media have such an animus towards him and not others, as no other UMNO/BN leader, whether Minister or other parliamentary personality, had ever lodged such a serious complaint of collective bias against the parliamentary media.
Does the fault lie in the media or in Hasan himself? Read the rest of this entry »
The latest development in the decades-old tragedy of the Tamils in Sri Lanka was the one-day hartal last Sunday in the whole of the entire northern province of Sri Lanka, an area mainly inhabited by Tamils, which was brought to a standstill in support of about 300 Tamil prisoners in Sri Lanka who had renewed their hunger strike for the immediate release of all prisoners of war and political prisoners involved in the Tamil war of independence.
All private and public activities, except for medical services, came to a standstill. Students did not attend schools. Roads remained deserted except for the army and police.
The 300 Tamil political prisoners had suspended their hunger strike launched on Oct. 13 demanding freedom for all prisoners at the request of Tamil National Alliance members of parliament, who had urged them to give the government more time to respond to their demand for freedom.
The “War of independence” refers to the armed campaign by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam for an independent Tamil homeland in the north and east of the island of Sri Lanka. The LTTE was defeated in 2009, but alleged LTTE members are still being held in prison, many of them detained without trial. Some have been detained for up to 20 years. Read the rest of this entry »
Malaysian Parliament should not make world Parliament history by producing the first PAC Chairman with a Press Conference-phobia when his KPI should be to uphold government financial accountability and integrity starting with the RM2.6 billion “donation” and RM50 billion 1MDB twin mega scandals
The Malaysian Parliament should not make world Parliamentary history by producing the first Public Accounts Committee (PAC) Chairman in the world with a press conference-phobia, when his KPI should be to uphold government financial accountability and integrity starting with the RM2.6 billion “donation” and RM50 billion 1MDB twin mega scandals.
In his first month as PAC Chairman, Datuk Hasan Arifin (who was elected Member of Parliament only in May in the Rompin by-election) has also already carved out a place for himself in the Malaysian Parliamentary pantheon of well-known personalities, though not in any laudatory sense.
How can Hasan discharge his principal role as PAC Chairman to uphold government financial accountability and integrity when he is afraid of the press, to the extent that he has declared a total ban on press conferences.
Hasan has already given a rather knavish connotation to his position as PAC Chairman when he disarmingly admitted that the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak would not be called as a witness to the PAC as he himself has to “cari makan”, but which he subsequently aggravated trying to deny he had made such remarks although it was captured on videotape by several journalists. Read the rest of this entry »
Education Minister Mahdzir Khalid should declare whether he had a hand in setting the immoral questions in the SPM Moral Education paper and if not, who are the officers responsible for such irresponsible conduct and whether they would be penalised
The Education Minister, Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid should declare whether he had a hand in setting the immoral questions in the SPM Moral Education paper and if not, who are the officers responsible for such irresponsible conduct and whether they would be penalized.
SPM students for the Moral Education paper were asked to answer questions based on a notice and a picture.
The notice states that civil servants are not allowed to participate in anti-government protests; the picture is of two students speaking to each other.
Student A is putting up a poster promoting an anti-government rally, saying that he would receive RM100 after he finishes putting up the posters. Student B advises Student A against doing so.
(a) Why students should not participate in anti-government rallies?
(b) How should schools prevent students from participating in anti-government rallies?
(c) We should support Student B’s stance. Why?
The blatant attempt to brainwash students with politically-loaded questions in the SPM Moral Education paper is most reprehensible and must be condemned in the strongest possible terms, especially as it involved a not-so-subtle attempt to tell lies and demonise protest gatherings as anti-government and anti- national, even suggesting that those who participate in them are not high-minded idealists but “mercenaries”. Read the rest of this entry »
19th November 2015
Of the nine people believed to have been involved in Friday’s terrorist attacks in Paris, eight are now dead. Here is what you need to know about all of the suspects, including the one still at large, Salah Abdeslam.
Still at large
Abdeslam, 26, is the brother of one of the suicide bombers in the Paris attacks. He was last spotted Saturday, when police stopped him at the French-Belgian border but then let him go after questioning, the Associated Press reports.
According to the New York Times, Abdeslam is French and has been living in Belgium. He is believed to have visited Syria and committed previous crimes. Abdeslam’s other brother, who is not believed to have been involved in the attack, has urged him to turn himself in. “We’re family, we’re thinking of him, we’re wondering where he is, whether he’s scared, is he eating,” Mohamed Abdeslam told French television station BFMTV. “The best outcome would be for him to turn himself in so that judicial processes can shed light on this story.” Read the rest of this entry »
Woman believed to be Abdel-Hamid Abu Oud’s cousin Hasna Aitboulahcen and as yet unidentified man dead after raid on St-Denis apartment
19 November 2015
French forensic teams are investigating whether the body of a man found dead after a massive firefight with police in a St-Denis apartment is that of the alleged mastermind of last week’s Paris terror attacks, Abdel-Hamid Abu Oud.
At least two people died in the assault targeting Abu Oud but neither the 27-year-old Belgian extremist nor another fugitive sought in connection with Friday’s shootings and suicide bombings, Salah Abdeslam, were among the eight people arrested.
One of the dead was a woman, believed to be Abu Oud’s cousin, Hasna Aitboulahcen, who blew herself up with an explosive vest, and the second an as yet unidentified man killed by police sniper fire or a grenade whose body was recovered in rubble from the flat in a rundown house in the rue du Corbillon.
Media reports quoting sources have suggested Abu Oud was killed in the assault but French officials have so far said in public statements that they do not know. Identification was proving difficult because the bodies had to be pieced together, Paris prosecutor François Molins said, and may take “longer than expected”. Read the rest of this entry »
M. Bakri Musa
18th Nov 2015
In an earlier commentary I gave high marks to our leaders for their enlightened ways and sophisticated strategies in the pursuit of our independence. Malaysia could have easily gone in a very different direction following the Japanese defeat. It could have just as quickly been turned into a permanent British Dominion.
The man responsible for sparing the country that terrible fate was Datuk Onn Jaafar. He was a former senior civil servant, a significant and rare achievement for a native. Had he been a Hang Tuah, ever loyal to his sultan and the British, there would be no limit to the height of his personal achievement within the colonial civil service. He could have been the first native Governor-General of the Dominion of Malaya. Read the rest of this entry »
Johor will head the list of states Pakatan Harapan aims to win and form State Government in the 14GE on the way to Putrajaya
The launching of Parti Amanah Negara (AMANAH) in Gelang Patah parliamentary constituency a week after AMANAH’s official launch in Johor is a sign of AMANAH’s thrust and momentum in preparation for the next general elections which must be held in less than 30 months.
In the 14th General Election, Johor will the front-line state and Johor will head the list of states Pakatan Harapan aims to win and form the State Government on the way to Federal power in Putrajaya.
Until the 2008 General Election, Johor was the impregnable and invincible state of Umno/BN, so much so that UMNO/BN leaders boasted about making Johore a zero-Opposition state in the 12th GE in 2008.
However, the political landscape in Johor underwent a drastic and fundamental change in the 12th and 13th General Elections, and Johor politics will never be the same again as compared to the first five decades after Merdeka in 1957.
In the 13th GE in 2013, Pakatan Rakat comprising DAP, PKR and PAS achieved the “Great Leap” forward in Johor with PR representation in the Johor State Assembly tripled from six to 18 seats, one seat short of denying the BN its two-thirds majority in the Johor State Assembly.
If there was a fair and democratic “one man, one vote” delineation of constituencies, PR should have won another eight seats, i.e.26 out of a total of 56 State Assembly seat in Johore as PR secured 46% per cent of the total votes cast for the Johore State Assembly seats.
The Opposition parties are not asking for another trebling of State Assembly seats in the 14th GE, but only to double our seats from 18 to 36 seats, which will see the formation of a Pakatan Harapan state government in Johor. Read the rest of this entry »
Honour requires Hasan to resign as PAC Chairman for his obnoxious “cari makan” remark or he should be referred to the Committee of Privileges to determine whether his “cari makan” remark had brought shame, disrepute and dishonour to PAC and Parliament
Honour requires Datuk Hasan Arifin to resign as Public Accounts Committee (PAC) Chairman for his obnoxious “cari makan” remark or he should be referred to the Committee of Privileges to determine whether his “cari makan” remark had brought shame, disrepute and dishonour to PAC and Parliament, and therefore a gross breach of parliamentary privilege.
Compounding his egregious breach of parliamentary privilege, Hasan has added insult to injury by resorting to the final ruse of a desperate and dishonest politician – blaming the media for reporting what he had actually said.
Hasan messed up a very bad situation with his subsequent clarification attempting to do the impossible – to deny and to admit with qualification, one at the same time, which is an impossible job of trying to square the circle!
On the one hand, Hasan denied the quip when he claimed that he literally meant ‘looking for food’ when he uttered, ‘Saya pun cari makan’.
But in the same breath, he admitted the quip but tried to excuse himself with extenuating circumstances, blaming the reporters as unethical in undermining his reputation as PAC Chairman and a politician in publishing his quip as he had informed the media that it should not be reported as it was “just a joke”.
Further admitting that he had actually made the offensive remark, Hasan said it was off the record as it was made in jest with the intention to be friendly with the media, for whom he provided lunch. Read the rest of this entry »