Minister, who really is ISIS?

KJ John
Malaysiakini
Aug 19, 2014

Malaysia is not an Islamic state or a Muslim nation-state, but a Muslim-majority country which is well regarded by most of the world for our unity-style moderate government and our consistent principled stand on global issues; within the larger paradigm and context of a Muslim world which appears often confused or inconsistent on universal issues and values; mostly internal but some global inaction as well.

While it is not my purpose to highlight any failures of our Foreign Affairs Ministry, we have to manage Malaysia’s reputation which had been put on a global scale which is still much respected for our principled position, as exemplified by the late Tunku Abdul Rahman, especially on the issue of a racist South Africa.

Today however, we appear somewhat inconsistent in a number of foreign policy issues and global actions. For example, for me it is still not very clear if and whether the government of Malaysia did pay a few hundred millions for the release of our cockpit recorders for the downed MH17. Is then negotiating with International terrorists’ part of our new foreign policy?

For another instance, we have not ratified many international agreements and conventions; can the minister please explain the delay especially since we are now fighting so hard to sit not only on the UN Human Rights Council but also seeking to occupy one of the UN Security Council’s non-veto seat. Read the rest of this entry »

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Air safety: Flying blind

By Andrew Parker
Financial Times
August 18, 2014

The downing of flight MH17 has revealed gaps in the policing of air space that could endanger passengers

Trouble below: airlines’ access to and interpretation of security assessments in the countries they fly across vary widely

On July 14, Ukrainian officials issued an updated “notice to airmen”. The bulletin instructed commercial pilots to increase their altitude but stopped short of telling them to avoid an area where pro-Russia rebels had began shooting down Ukrainian military aircraft.

The final line read “FM FL260 up to FL320” – technical guidance to increase the minimum height for flights passing over the country’s eastern flank from 26,000ft to 32,000ft.

Three days later, Malaysia Airlines’ Flight MH17 followed the instruction and flew at 33,000 feet en route to Australia from Amsterdam via Kuala Lumpur. By early afternoon, the Boeing 777 went out of contact and crashed, killing all 298 people onboard and sparking international outrage.

While investigations continue, western experts point to overwhelming signs that the flight was struck by an anti-aircraft missile with a range of more than 32,000ft.

The MH17 disaster has “changed everything”, says Sir Tim Clark, president of Emirates Airline, the world’s largest operator of long-haul aircraft, who wants wide-ranging reforms to air space management. “It amounted to premeditated mass murder.” Read the rest of this entry »

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Dr M’s tirade will not result in Najib’s downfall, say analysts

The Malaysian Insider
By Eileen Ng
20 August 2014

Despite Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s stinging criticism of Datuk Seri Najib Razak, there is little chance of any revolt against the prime minister from his Umno comrades, say political analysts.

And this, they told The Malaysian Insider, is because there is no one in the Malay party who is either suitable or willing to take the nation’s top job.

As such, they believed the retired prime minister’s latest rebuke against Najib will not see a repeat of the groundswell which made it untenable for Najib’s predecessor, Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, to remain in office.

“The ability to mobilise support within the party to unseat Najib now is a bit of a stretch. Najib’s position is safe for now,” said respected pollster Ibrahim Suffian. Read the rest of this entry »

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Najib’s Cabinet must not skirt issues raised by Dr M

COMMENTARY BY THE MALAYSIAN INSIDER
20 August 2014

Datuk Seri Najib Razak has been the Malaysian prime minister for more than five years now but going by what his Cabinet colleagues say, the Pekan MP’s only success is handling the flight MH17 incident.

His cousin, Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein, said as much when defending Najib against stinging criticism from Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Malaysia’s longest-serving prime minister, who stepped down in 2003.

Hishammuddin cited accomplishments, such as the handling of the remains from the MH17 incident, saying Najib succeeded where US President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin had failed.

But the defence minister hastened to add that he respected Dr Mahathir’s views, similar to some of his Cabinet colleagues, who straddled the fence in saying that Najib and the blunt political veteran should be equally respected. Read the rest of this entry »

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The trouble with Wan Azizah is…

By Mariam Mokhtar
Malaysiakini
Aug 18, 2014

The people who doubt Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail’s suitability as Selangor menteri besar (MB) and who claim that Malaysia is not ready to accept a woman to govern either the state, or the nation, are wrong. Step forward, the self-appointed ‘First Lady of Malaysia’ (FLOM), Rosmah Mansor.

In the past, many people, especially those from Umno Baru, despised the FLOM because they believe that she was masquerading as the FLOM when she was really the prime minister. Najib Abdul Razak, they said, is her proxy. So, are the critics of Wan Azizah afraid that the top echelons of political power will become too crowded with women? So, who are the groups which are sabotaging Wan Azizah?

Many people claim they want change, but when faced with opportunity for change, which is to have Wan Azizah as the MB, they develop cold feet. They fear uncharted waters. Dr Wan Azizah is not unfit to be MB, but Malaysians are afraid of change.

The trouble also lies with the indecisive politicians, in Umno Baru, BN, Pakatan and PAS, and the conservative people who want to retain our patriarchal society.

The people who currently hold the reins of power know that when Wan Azizah turns the country around, they will be in trouble. They know they will lose power, status and wealth, and be punished for their past crimes. Read the rest of this entry »

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Pakatan Rakyat leadership must meet urgently and frequently to map out and implement strategies to restore public confidence in the coalition badly damaged by the prolonged Selangor MB crisis

In the three temple functions I attended in Lima Kedai and Taman Sri Skudai in Gelang Patah last night, members of the public showed great and keen interest and concern about political developments in the country, especially about the future of Pakatan Rakyat as a result of the prolonged Selangor Mentri Besar crisis.

Undoubtedly, like Malaysians all over the country, the people of Gelang Patah had been following closely with great concern the worst crisis faced by Pakatan Rakyat in its six-year history, and by last Saturday, uppermost in the minds of many would be the question whether there would continue to be a Pakatan Rakyat in the next 24 hours, a question nobody could answer with any confidence.

The Selangor MB crisis had been the despair of many Malaysians. Read the rest of this entry »

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‘Kajang Move’ is ready to go to Shah Alam

– Dr. Tan Eng Bee
The Malaysian Insider
17 August 2014

Finally, PAS has sealed the fate of Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim with its concluded meeting on today that the party is not concerned with Khalid but has endorsed either Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah or Azmin Ali as the next menteri besar of Selangor.

While some would think otherwise, I have maintained that PAS’s decision was expected as its continuous political survival lies in its affiliation with Pakatan Raayat, failing which, the party may face a backlash at GE14, had the party chosen to support Khalid.

For PAS to leave the the coalition partnership is a sure political suicide as the coalition was given a strong mandate at GE13.

This is another episode which shows that when it comes to the core issue of survival of the coalition party, DAP, PKR and PAS have no alternative but to close rank and opt for a compromise that will see to their continuous survival in the political arena where only the fittest will survive. Read the rest of this entry »

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Well done, Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim!

by Ong Kian Ming
Star Online
17 Aug 2014

The fluid political situation in Selangor, being the way it is, may make this column obsolete by the time it is published on the internet. As events unravel, what cannot be denied is the fact that Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim (TSKI) has created numerous political precedents in his desperate and increasing futile attempt to remain as the Mentri Besar of Selangor.

In many ways, TSKI has succeeded in accomplishing what Barisan Nasional failed to do. At the end of the day, when this crisis is over and a new MB is installed, I hope TSKI can ask himself this simple question – “Was it really worth it?”

Was it really worth almost breaking up Pakatan Rakyat? Was it really worth forcing the PAS excos stand by while you sacked their colleagues from PKR and DAP? Was it really worth it to mislead the Sultan when you clearly knew you did not command the confidence of a majority of the Selangor state assembly representatives? Was it really worth it to say that the government you led was never really a Pakatan government since it is not a registered entity? Was it really worth it to turn Pakatan colleagues against one another and to push things to breaking point within PAS? Was it really worth it to create divisions within NGOs and civil society that were previously united in fighting for human rights, media freedom and free and fair elections? Read the rest of this entry »

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Selangor a Pakatan Rakyat family fight

By Bridget Welsh
Malaysiakini
Aug 17, 2014

COMMENT The ongoing Selangor crisis has riveted the Malaysian public for weeks and called into question the ability of the opposition to govern as a coalition.

From attacks on each other to sackings and perceived party betrayals, the Selangor crisis has revealed underlying tensions among Pakatan Rakyat partners and showcased the fierce competition for power and positions within the national opposition itself.

This dynamics has overshadowed principles and escalated in tit-for-tat moves that reflect a family caught in battle. Emotions of anger and motivations of revenge have come to the fore, blinding many participants to the substantial deterioration of support among the public at large and to the shared struggles to strengthen Malaysia.

Most analyses to date have focused on the power contests among personalities and discussions of the steps taken in the crisis itself and their legal status. A number of commentators have highlighted the cost to public support and negative impact on governance.

This piece centres on developments within Pakatan. The argument developed below is that responsibility for the Selangor crisis must be shared across parties and leaders, and new approaches within Pakatan itself are needed to win back public trust and forge the common ground within the national opposition coalition. Read the rest of this entry »

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Khalid now required by law to resign, says law professor

The Malaysian Insider
17 August 2014

Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim is now required by law to tender his resignation following PAS’s announcement of its support for PKR president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah‎ Wan Ismail and her deputy, Azmin Ali, to take over as Selangor menteri besar, a law professor said today.

The decision was a clear sign that the Islamist party had rejected him as MB, said Professor Gurdial Singh Nijar of the University Malaya law faculty.

If Khalid refused to step down, his MB post and the state executive councillors’ posts would be deemed to be vacated, he said, adding that there was no need for the Sultan of Selangor to dismiss him and the exco.

Gurdial added that this was the essence of the judgment in the Federal Court case of Nizar vs Zambry over the Perak crisis, where the court had said: “Once the MB is made to know that he has lost the confidence of the majority of the members of the legislative assembly, he should take the honourable way out by tendering his resignation and the resignation of the executive council. Read the rest of this entry »

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Pakatan stronger after Selangor MB debacle, now focus on leadership

NEWS ANALYSIS BY THE MALAYSIAN INSIDER
17 August 2014

Was there any doubt that PAS would come through and support PKR’s proposal for its president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail to take over as Selangor Menteri Besar from Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim?

The short answer is yes. And for the past 24 days since PKR officially proposed her name, the coalition of three parties – PKR, PAS and DAP – have been held hostage to the idea that the Islamist party might have other ideas about the Selangor menteri besar issue.

But the PAS leadership came through today, deciding that Dr Wan Azizah and her deputy, Azmin Ali, can replace Khalid – the second-term MB sacked last week for disobeying party orders to resign from the job.

Component party leaders and officials agree that the Islamist party’s decision has strengthened the pact that came about after Election 2008 and won more seats in the 2013 general election. Read the rest of this entry »

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Khalid’s clinging on as Selangor MB although he has lost majority support in State Assembly different and separate from his expulsion by PKR as member and the two issues should not be linked at all

Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim has put himself beyond the pale of an honest, decent, principled and respected Pakatan Rakyat political leader when he is prepared to join forces with the darkest forces in the country which would not spare any scruples to destroy the people’s aspirations for change when he enlisted the support of the Registrar of Societies by filing a complaint over the manner of his sacking, threatening the deregistration of PKR.

However, Khalid’s clinging on as Selangor Mentri Besar although he has lost majority support in the Selangor State Assembly is different and separate from his expulsion as member of PKR and these two issues should not be linked at all.

Khalid is entitled to exhaust all avenues and resources with his team of lawyers and advisers to challenge his expulsion from PKR, whether through the party processes or the courts but he has crossed the Rubicorn when he initiated an action which could lead to the deregistration of PKR.

I can understand and share the outrage of the Bersih chairperson Maria Chin Abdullah at her “disgust” over such an action. Read the rest of this entry »

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Did Khalid lie to the Sultan?

— P.Ramakrishnan
The Malay Mail Online
August 16, 2014

AUG 16 — PKR president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail has established beyond any doubt that she has the numbers to claim support from the majority of state assembly members.

She has 30 signed statutory declarations from the state assembly members backing her bid to be the next Menteri Besar of Selangor replacing Khalid. This has very effectively debunked Khalid’s bogus claim that he enjoys the majority support of the assembly.

In light of this irrefutable evidence, it would appear that Khalid must have lied to the Sultan. He must have deceived the Sultan into believing that he had the majority support of the state assembly members.

If he wishes to extricate himself from this damning situation, he must name names (of the assembly members) and reveal the number of assembly members supporting him. Without such fool-proof evidence, his claim of majority support cannot be taken seriously. His honesty is now in serious question. Read the rest of this entry »

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PAS veep’s final nail on Khalid’s MB coffin

– Koon Yew Yin
The Malaysian Insider
16 August 2014

When I first wrote on the Selangor Menteri Besar saga a week ago, I said that Khalid Ibrahim was singlehandledly doing what Umno, MCA, MIC and Gerakan have not been able to do: to bring down Pakatan Rakyat’s position in the state and even nationally.

I had also written that “Khalid is now being seen as the trojan horse introduced to destroy the unity and solidarity of PAS, and indirectly that of Pakatan, by his attempt to get the support of PAS leaders to ensure he remains in power”

Since then, Khalid has been upping the stakes by claiming that he has the support of the majority of the states’s assemblymen in his attempt to remain as MB. As a result he has been able to get the support of the Selangor Sultan in remaining as MB and also get His Royal Highness’ agreement to his sacking of the PKR and DAP members of the Selangor executive council.

These early successes enjoyed by Khalid have no doubt emboldened Umno and Barisan Nasional to predict the quick break-up of Pakatan and even to entertain hopes of a snap elections in Selangor, so as to take advantage of the disarray within Pakatan.

But slowly and surely, the tables are being turned against Khalid. Firstly, he is accused of deliberately misleading the Sultan on the extent of the support from the state assemblymen. Instead of the majority support that he claimed he got, at most count, he had the minority support of the 11 Umno assemblymen only. Even the limited PAS support that he has been alluding to in a sneaky and indirect way is suspect. Read the rest of this entry »

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Khalid cannot hide behind the Selangor Sultan but must come forward as an honest, honourable and accountable political leader to explain why he deliberately misled the Sultan on August 11 that he still commanded the majority in the Selangor state assembly when this was not the case

Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim cannot hide behind the Selangor Sultan but must come forward as an honest, honourable and accountable political leader to explain why he deliberately misled the Sultan on August 11 that he still commanded the majority in the Selangor State Assembly when this was not the case.

It is pointless for Khalid to pass the buck and suggest that those accusing him of misleading the Selangor Sultan to write to the ruler himself for an explanation.

The question is not an explanation from the Sultan but an explanation from him as the issue is not whether the Sultan was satisfied on August 11 that Khalid had the confidence of the majority of the Selangor Assembly representatives but why Khalid had made false representation to the Sultan that he had the majority support in the state assembly when clearly he did not have it.

Is Khalid seriously suggesting that after he was sacked as a member by PKR on 9th August, he still commanded support of the majority in the Selangor State Assembly? Read the rest of this entry »

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Khalid’s bluff called that he still commanded majority support in Selangor State Assembly after expulsion from PKR last Saturday

Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim should have gracefully and honourably resigned as Selangor Mentri Besar when he was sacked as a member of PKR last Saturday (August 9), as his appointment as Selangor MB stemmed from the trust and mandate given to him by PKR and the Pakatan Rakyat coalition after the 13th General Elections last May, and once this mandate was withdrawn by PKR by his expulsion from the party, his continued tenure as Selangor Mentri Besar became completely untenable.

Article 53(6) of the Selangor Constitution is very clear as it states: “If the Mentri Besar ceases to command the confidence of the majority of the Legislative Assembly, then, unless at his request His Highness dissolves the Legislative Assembly, he shall tender the resignation of the State Executive Council.”

The only way for Khalid to continue as Selangor Mentri Besar under these circumstances – although it would have been a dishonourable and unethical act – was for him to establish that he still commanded the support of the majority in the State Assembly despite his expulsion from PKR and to make such a representation to the Sultan of Selangor.

But Khalid misled the Sultan of Selangor in the royal audience on Monday that he still commanded the majority in the State Assembly when clearly this was not the case – and Khalid dared not undertake any verification from the Selangor State Assembly members before meeting the Sultan of Selangor, knowing fully well that he would not be able to demonstrate that he enjoyed the majority support among the State Assembly members. Read the rest of this entry »

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Khalid has committed the grave wrong on Monday of misleading the Selangor Sultan into believing that he still commanded the majority of the state assembly when he knew that this was not the case

Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim had committed the grave wrong on Monday of misleading the Selangor Sultan into believing that he still commanded the majority of the Selangor State Assembly members after being sacked as a PKR member last Saturday, when Khalid knew that this was not the case.

Before his audience with the Sultan on Monday, , Khalid was duty and honour-bound, whether morally, politically and constitutionally, to verify that he still commanded the support of the majority of the State Assembly members to continue as Mentri Besar before making any representation to the Sultan that he still commanded the majority of the State Assembly, so that he would not be guilty of the grave wrong of misleading the Sultan as he had done on Monday.

But despite of being in the midst of a political crisis from being sacked as a member of PKR, Khalid never tried to verify from the Selangor State Assembly representatives, particularly from the 43 Pakatan Rakyat State Assembly persons from PKR, DAP and PAS who had given him the mandate to be the Pakatan Rakyat Mentri Besar of Selangor after the 2013 General Elections, whether he still commanded their support simply because he knew that he could not get such a majority support.

This is one major consequence of the declaration by 30 of the 56 Selangor State Assembly representatives today (15 from DAP, 13 from PKR and 2 from PAS) that they have lost confidence in Khalid as Selangor Mentri Besar and support Datuk Seri Dr. Wan Azizah as the new Selangor Mentri Besar. Read the rest of this entry »

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Quo Vadis, Pakatan Rakyat?

It is unbelievable that Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim could claim that the Selangor government is not a Pakatan government after he himself had said, both in the Selangor State Assembly and outside, for six-and-a-half years that it is a Pakatan Rakyat state government.

But what is even more unbelievable is Khalid’s ridiculous claim that the Selangor government is not a Pakatan government is endorsed by the four PAS Excos who appeared with Khalid in the media conference today – after condoning and endorsing Khalid’s arbitrary sacking of five Pakatan Rakyat Exco members from DAP and PKR by attending the Exco meeting.

Would the four PAS Excos be elected as Selangor State Assemblymen in the first place if they had not represented Pakatan Rakyat in the 2013 general elections? Read the rest of this entry »

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What happens in the next 24 hours in the Selangor MB crisis may upstage the August 17 PAS leadership meeting and set the seal for the irretrievable break-up of Pakatan Rakyat

The meeting of the PAS national leadership on August 17 will have a critical bearing on the future of the six-year-old three-party coalition Pakatan Rakyat.

However, the August 17 meeting of PAS may be upstaged by what happens in the next 24 hours in the Selangor Mentri Besar crisis which may set the seal for the irretrievable break-up of Pakatan Rakyat.

The break-up of Pakatan Rakyat will cause consternation and even despair among Malaysians over the betrayal of their high hopes that change has finally come to Malaysia after more than half a century of political stagnation and even regresson but welcomed as a boon and relief by Umno/BN leaders and apparatchiks as a “salvation” to spare them from political rejection and repudiation in the country.

This is the reason why the Deputy Prime Minister and UMNO Deputy President, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, had been so fast in declaring unconditional support of 12 UMNO/Barisan Nasional State Assembly representatives in Selangor to Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim as Mentri Besar of Selangor although he has lost the mandate of Parti Keadilan Rakyat and Pakatan Rakyat to continue as Selangor Mentri Besar. Read the rest of this entry »

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Why Khalid must go

Nik Nazmi
The Malaysian Insider
12 August 2014

PKR has sacked the menteri besar of Selangor, Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim, from the party.

This has caused a great deal of shock to many.

Everybody – whether it was my relatives over Hari Raya, constituents at mamak stalls or my friends over WhatsApp – wanted to know why we wanted him out.

Quite a number were critical and this was not surprising.

Having known and worked with Khalid for some time, I personally found the deterioration of his relationship with the party and his removal very sad.

Nevertheless, PKR has made the right decision.

Khalid had to be removed from the party.

He must also be made to leave the MB’s position. Read the rest of this entry »

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