SUPP President Sim Kui Hian failed big time although he is treated like a “conquering hero” to save MCA, Gerakan and even UMNO in the two by-elections in Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar

SUPP President, Senator Sim Kui Hian failed big time although he is treated like a “conquering hero” to save MCA, Gerakan and even UMNO in the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar parliamentary by-elections on Saturday.

This is the first time in 43-year Barisan Nasional history that the SUPP President is regarded like a “saviour” to MCA and Gerakan which had fallen on “bad times”, as the SUPP President had always been regarded by the MCA and Gerakan as a “little brother” and never as a “saviour” in BN history.

But Sim did not act like a “saviour” for MCA and Gerakan, or he should have spoken up for the MCA President, Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai and Gerakan President, Datuk Mah Siew Keong who are afraid of losing their Ministerial posts by making it clear to the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak that the Ministerial motion in Parliament on May 26 to “fast-track” Hadi’s hudud bill is a fundamental breach of 43-year Barisan Nasional policy and consensus that hudud violates the Malaysian Constitution and not suitable for a multi-religious Malaysia where Muslims comprise 62% and non-Muslims 38% of the population.

Sim should have spoken up in support of the proposal that the Prime Minister and all the leaders of the 14 Barisan Nasional component parties should make a joint declaration three days before polling day, i.e. by 15th June 2016, to reaffirm the Constitutional principle and the 43-year Barisan Nasional consensus to reject Hadi’s hudud bill, as well as to state in no uncertain terms that the Ministerial motion by the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said was a great mistake as it violated the Constitution and the Barisan Nasional consensus and to ask for her resignation from the Cabinet.

Sim should have warned that if the fundamental principles of the Malaysian Constitution, the 1963 Malaysia Agreement and the 43-year Barisan Nasional consensus are allowed to be violated with impunity, it could lead to the disintegration of the Malaysian Federation. Read the rest of this entry »

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IPIC Seeks $6.5 Billion From 1MDB, Malaysia in Arbitration

by Shamim Adam
Bloomberg
June 14, 2016

Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund, embroiled in a debt payment dispute with 1Malaysia Development Bhd., is seeking $6.5 billion from the troubled Malaysian state investment company as it moves the spat into arbitration.

1MDB and its sole shareholder — Malaysia’s Ministry of Finance — haven’t perform their obligations toward International Petroleum Investment Co. PJSC, the Abu Dhabi fund said in a London stock exchange filing on Tuesday. IPIC and unit Aabar Investments PJS submitted the request to the London Court of International Arbitration, it said.

The Malaysian investment fund and IPIC are locked in a tussle that spilled over to repayments on bonds issued by 1MDB. That led to a default in April, adding to the financial scandals for the Malaysian company that’s already a target of global probes into alleged money laundering and embezzlement. 1MDB has denied wrongdoing. Read the rest of this entry »

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Ismail Sabri, a book can wait, but let’s have one example a day until polling day – or five examples that I had been anti-Malay and anti-Islam in my 50 years in politics

Minister for Rural and Regional Development, Datuk Ismail Sabri Yaakob yesterday accepted my challenge to cite an example in my 50 years in politics to prove that I am anti-Malay and anti-Islam, and said that he can compile a whole book on the anti-Malay and anti-Islam speeches that I had made.

But he did not cite a single instance to back up his allegation.

Let me tell Ismail – a book can wait, but let’s have one example a day until polling day for the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections on June 18 or five examples that I had been anti-Malay and anti-Islam in my 50 years in politics.

He should have given one example yesterday. As he did not, he owes me one example. I await his one example a day until Friday i.e. five examples in all, which is not too much to ask, since he is talking about a book, presumably at least 100 examples!

I have been tickled to no end reading the fulmination of another UMNO Minister for Agriculture and Agro-based Industries, Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek, who said that Tun Dr. Mahathir was just the DAP’s latest “warhorse”. Read the rest of this entry »

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Nazri is avoiding the issue, going ahead to gazette the NSC Act without giving due consideration to the proposal by the Conference of Rulers is not only disrespect but contempt for the Rulers

Former Minister in charge of parliamentary affairs, Datuk Seri Nazri Abdul Aziz is avoiding the issue of disrespect to the Malay Rulers, for there is no doubt that going ahead to gazette the National Security Council (NSC) Act into law without royal assent, without giving due consideration to the proposal by the Conference of Rulers, is not only disrespect but contempt for the Rulers.

Nazri said any amendments to the NSC Bill could only be tabled as a new bill in the next meeting of Parliament, but the question is why the NSC Amendment Bill could not be presented to the May meeting of Parliament as the Conference of Rulers had returned the NSC bill to the Attorney-Generral’s Chamber for “refinement” on Feb. 17?

The Attorney-General Tan Sri Apandi Ali had then said he would review some sections of the bill while the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak said he took note of the rulers’ suggestion. Read the rest of this entry »

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Focus on reforms, not political hudud

— G25 Malaysia
Malay Mail Online
June 13, 2016

JUNE 13 — It is incredible that we have politicians and Islamic activists suggesting that only Muslims who are experts in religion have a right to discuss and comment on the shariah and hudud.

They should know it is normal in a democracy for citizens to take an interest in public affairs and to express their views freely.

As the recent tabling of the “hudud bill” is about amending an act of parliament and more importantly amending the constitution also, the public concern goes beyond religion and the Muslims.

This is a matter about the very foundation of our federation of 13 states and it is therefore an issue of grave concern to all races, including our citizens in Sabah and Sarawak.

The surprise manner in which the bill was allowed to be tabled has also alarmed the public that such an important matter was handled so frivolously.

The whole episode smells of a plot to take Malaysia on the road to an Islamic state. Read the rest of this entry »

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Pluralism remains critical to Malaysia

Opinion
Straits Times
JUN 10, 2016

Those fearing a creeping Islamisation of Malaysia reacted sharply when the government, led by the United Malays National Organisation (Umno), allowed Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS) to table a Bill on hudud – the controversial Islamic criminal code. The debate over its widespread application, if legislated, has divided Malaysia’s multi-religious landscape.

That PAS should push for hudud is hardly surprising. The party’s insistence on Malaysia becoming an Islamic state governed by syariah law, including hudud, has constituted its core political mission for decades. What is noteworthy about the hudud Bill being on the parliamentary agenda is the signal of a possible convergence of interests between Umno and PAS – two Malay-based parties whose erstwhile electoral rivalry expanded space for multi-religious politics. Nominally, the Bill seeks to only enhance the present powers of syariah courts. The larger purpose behind it is the Islamisation of the country through the induction of hudud into the body politic. Read the rest of this entry »

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Would voters who vote for UMNO’s Mastura in Kuala Kangsar or Budiman in Sungai Besar “sinned and be damned by Allah”?

Apart from refusal to be loyal to the Common Policy Programme of Pakatan Rakyat (PR) and his insistence to exercise a veto power overriding the decisions of other PAS leaders reached at the PR Leadership Council, there is another powerful reason why the PAS President, Datuk Seri Hadi Awang wanted to cause the disintegration of Pakatan Rakyat – his refusal to accept Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim as Prime Minister as he himself wanted to be Prime Minister.

When Hadi found that the other two parties in Pakatan Rakyat would not endorse him as Prime Minister of Malaysia, he had no use for the Pakatan Rakyat and decided on a new political course for PAS led by him, acting as “adviser” to the UMNO President and Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak – even when this required him to be blind to Najib’s two global scandals, the RM55 billion 1MDB and RM4.2 billion “donation” twin mega financial scandals.

Under the circumstances, it did not come as a surprise that Hadi was unmoved and not interested to rock Najib’s boat although former Prime Minister, Tun Mahathir met him three months ago to explain about Najib’s “wrongdoings”.

What Mahathir revealed at the Second Colloquium on the RM55 billion 1MDB global scandal in Kuala Kangsar yesterday was news to the whole country, that he had taken pains to meet the PAS President to explain to him about the 1MDB scandal and other “wrongdoings” of the Prime Minister, but although Hadi admitted that there was some truth in what Mahathir had told him, the PAS President decided to side with Najib.

Hadi’s reply to Mahathir was most revealing. Read the rest of this entry »

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Challenge to UMNO Ministers to cite just one case that I had been anti-Malay or anti-Islam in my 50 years in politics or they should stop their politics of lies and hatred and focus on how to unite and build an united, great, just and prosperous Malaysia

The statement by the UMNO Minister for Rural and Regional Development, Datuk Ismail Sabri Yaakob in Sungai Besar is typical of the lies and politics of hatred spouted by UMNO leaders, even in this holy month of Ramadan.

Ismail accused former Prime Minister Tun Mahathir of working with a group who wants to reject Malay special rights and Islam, and said that if Mahahtir is “with Lim Guan Eng and Lim Kit Siang that speak for itself”.

I challenge UMNO Ministers to cite just one case that I had been anti-Malay or anti-Islam in my 50 years in politics or they should stop their politics of lies and hatred and focus on how to unite Malaysians of diverse races and religions in the country to build a great, just and prosperous Malaysia.

I can cite a list of the racist speeches by Ismail and other UMNO leaders, including Ismail’s infamous call to Malays last year to boycott Chinese businesses, but can they cite just one instance of my being anti-Malay or anti-Islam in my 50 years in Malaysian politics?

I do not think there is another political leader who had suffered more sustained and greater demonisation in the past 50 years than myself, as I had been accused of all sorts of dastardly and evil deeds especially through the Barisan Nasional-owned and controlled mainstream media.

I have been accused of being anti-Malay, anti-Islam, anti-Malay Rulers, anti-Chinese-educated Chinese, anti-English-educated Chinese, anti-Indian, an agent of Russian KGB, agent of American CIA, agent of British M16, agent of Australian Intelligence Services, and a host of unimaginable allegations.

I had been accused of causing the May 13, 1969 riots in Kuala Lumpur, of having led illegal processions through the streets of Kuala Lumpur hurling anti-Malay slogans and provocations and even urinating in the house of the then Selangor Mentri Besar, Datuk Harun Idris, in Kampong Baru in Kuala Lumpur, as was portrayed in the film “Tanda Putera”!

But I was never in Kuala Lumpur during the May 13, 1969 days as I had flown to Kota Kinabalu early on the morning of May 13, 1969 to help in the belated election campaigning in Sabah and Sarawak and I learnt about the tragic events of the May 13, 1969 riots in Kuala Lumpur when I was whispered the shocking news while speaking at a massive public rally at the Sabah capital. Read the rest of this entry »

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Call for a “1MDB Giant Octopus Tribunal” as the RM55 billion 1MDB global financial scandal is like a giant octopus with its eight tentacles wrapped so tightly around the country’s personalities and institutions that Malaysia can only free and save itself if it could escape the strangling embrace of the giant octopus

The RM55 billion 1MDB global financial scandal, which included Najib’s RM4.2 billion “donation” scandal, is like a giant octopus with its eight tentacles wrapped so tightly around the country’s key personalities and institutions that Malaysia can only free and save itself if it could escape the strangling embrace of the giant octopus.

The Second Colloquium on 1MDB scandal is to explore how to bring a closure to the nation’s first global scandal, which had been hounding and haunting the country for the past six years.

I can envision the eight victims which are caught in the suffocating embrace of the eight tentacles of the giant 1MDB octopus, viz:

1. the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak;

2. UMNO whose leadership at the national, state and even divisional levels have been co-opted or compromised;

3. MCA, Gerakan, MIC and other Barisan Nasional component parties which is why no MCA, Gerakan or MIC Minister or leader dare to have a confrontation with the UMNO leadership over the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said’s Ministerial motion in Parliament on May 26 to fast-track Hadi’s hudud motion or to requisition an emergency meeting of Barisan Nasional Supreme Council with the dual objective to firstly, restore the status quo ante by reaffirming the Barisan Nasional’s 43-year consensus that hudud is against the Malaysian Constitution and not suitable for multi-religious Malaysia and secondly, to repudiate and sack Azalina for her Ministerial motion which violated BN spirit and consensus.

4. PAS President Datuk Seri Hadi Awang, the only opposition leader to come to the defence of Najib over the RM55 billion 1MDB scandal. As a result, Hadi has moved closer to Hadi, resulting in the Najib-Hadi plot of Hadi’s hudud bill in Parliament on May 26. Read the rest of this entry »

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If the 14 BN component parties cannot issue a joint statement by June 15 to admit that Azalina’s Ministerial motion to fast-track Hadi’s Hudud bill was a great mistake and violation of BN principle and consensus, MCA and Gerakan should end their electoral fraud and withdraw the by-election slogan of “Vote BN to stop Hudud”

In the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangar parliamentary by-elections, MCA and Gerakan Ministers and leaders are going around with the slogan: “Vote BN to stop Hudud”.

This is the greatest electoral fraud in the nation’s history after what happened in Parliament on May 26, where the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said moved the Ministerial motion to fast-track Hadi’s hudud bill motion.

Who did Azalina represent when she moved the Ministerial motion in Parliament? Herself, UMNO or the Barisan Nasional government?

MCA, Gerakan and MIC Ministers and leaders claim that Azalina moved the Ministerial motion in Parliament without MCA, Gerakan or MIC consent and that they never knew that Azalina was going to move the Ministerial motion.

Now Azalina has publicly said that she had not moved the Ministerial motion on her own initiative, but on the directive of the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak and the Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi.

Did the MCA, Gerakan and MIC Ministers and leaders confront Najib and Zahid and demand a satisfactory explanation from the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister why Azalina violated Barisan Nasional consensus and discipline to move a Ministerial motion in Parliament on May 26 to fast-track Hadi’s hudud bill when this violated the Barisan Nasional policy, principle and consensus since its formation in 1973 that hudud is not suitable for a multi-racial and multi-religious nation like Malaysia? Read the rest of this entry »

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Hishammuddin cannot be more wrong when he claimed that Mahathir’s “harping” on Najib was irrelevant as PM not contesting in twin polls

The Defence Minister, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein cannot be more wrong when he dismissed former premier Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s message as irrelevant to the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections because Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak isn’t contesting.

Hishammudin, who was reacting to Mahathir’s visit to Sungai Besar this morning to endorse Parti Amanah Negara’s candidate Azhar Abdul Shukur after the latter signed the Citizens’ Declaration petition calling for Najib’s ouster, said:

“What was raised by Mahathir in his ceramah in Sungai Besar is unrelated.

“I would like to remind that Najib is not contesting in the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections.

“What does issues touching on Najib have to do with Kuala Kangsar and Sungai Besar?”

The Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar parliamentary constituencies are among the 10th most marginal and most unsafe seats won by UMNO in the 13th general elections although they had been traditional UMNO strongholds since Merdeka, never before lost by UMNO in the past six decades.

However, if on June 18, UMNO/BN loses Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar and they indicate a trend that there will be a 5% fall in voter support for UMNO/BN in the 14th General Election, it would mean that UMNO/BN would lose up to 52 seats, leaving the UMNO/BN coalition with only 81 out of 222 parliamentary seats – evicting UMNO/BN from Putrajaya for the first time in the nation’s history. Read the rest of this entry »

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If Najib is given the same MACC treatment as Guan Eng in connection with corruption allegation for RM2.8 million bungalow, the Prime Minister would be questioned for 12.3 years for his RM4.2 billion “donation” scandal

When DAP PJ Utara Member of Parliament and Public Accounts Committee, Tony Pua, spoke just now about the failures of the various national institutions in the 1MDB scandal, whether Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), Bank Negara, the Police, Attorney-General’s Chambers or even the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), I thought about the three-day interrogation spanning some 23 hours of the Penang Chief Minister and DAP Secretary-General Lim Guan Eng by MACC officers in connection with the corruption allegations about his RM2.8 million bungalow.

If Najib is given the same MACC treatment as Guan Eng in connection with the corruption allegation for his RM2.8 million bungalow, the Prime Minister would be questioned 12.3 years for his RM4.2 billion “donation” scandal.

This is because Najib’s RM4.2 billion “donation” scandal is 1,500 times bigger than Guan Eng’s RM2.8 million bungalow allegation, and if Najib is given the same MACC treatment as Guan Eng where the Penang Chief Minister was questioned for three days, Najib will have to be questioned 1,500 x 3 days, yielding 4,500 days. This works out to 12.3 years – imagine Najib going in and out of MACC office to be questioned for 12 years and four months, from wake up in the morning to retirement for sleep at night, and doing nothing else!

Another panelist, journalist P. Gunasegaram spoke about the 1MDB embezzlement, money-laundering and corruption offences being instituted in foreign countries, and how it is most surreal that in Malaysia, we continue the pretense that these almost daily 1MDB developments all over the world do not exist.

This seems to be the success of the global cover-up of the 1MDB global financial scandal, but it is something which is not sustainable and cannot last. Read the rest of this entry »

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DAP and Pakatan Harapan are not enemies of ordinary UMNO and PAS members and we invite UMNO and PAS members to join in the “Save Malaysia” campaign to stop the country from sliding down the slippery slope of corruption and abuses of power to become a failed state

We are almost at the half-way mark of the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-election campaign.

At the beginning, the AMANAH/Pakatan Harapan candidates in these two by-elections were the true underdogs.

When I first went to campaign in Kuala Kangsar, I was asked by the press whether the AMANAH/Pakatan Rakyat candidate, nuclear physicist Professor Dr. Ahmad Termizi Ramli would lose his deposit in the by-election.

The situation in both by-elections is now clearer, that in both places, it is a contest between UMNO/BN and AMANAH/PH candidates, as a vote for the PAS candidate in both constituencies would be a wasted vote with no chance whatsoever that the PAS candidate can win in either one of the two constituencies.

In fact, I had said publicly that I expect the PAS candidate in Sungai Besar to lose by some 10,000 votes and in Kuala Kangsar to lose by some 5,000 votes as compared to the votes polled by the PAS candidates in these two constituencies in the 13th General Election in 2013, and no one in the PAS leadership has come forward to contradict me.

I want to make four points tonight:

Firstly, the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections are capable of creating political earthquakes in Malaysia. If Azhar Shukor is elected MP for Sungai Besar and Prof Termizi the MP for Kuala Kangsar on June 18, winning in traditional UMNO strongholds which no UMNO candidate had ever lost in six decades, the message is clear – either Datuk Seri Najib Razak steps down as Prime Minister or UMNO/BN will be defeated in the next 14th General Election. Read the rest of this entry »

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The DNA of the present MCA leadership is not only different from the DNA of DAP leadership, but have mutated and degenerated as compared to the DNA of the early MCA leadership

The MCA President, Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai made a very immature and uninformed statement in Jerlun in the Kuala Kangsar by-election campaign when he said that PAS and AMANAH “share the same DNA”, and asked the voters not be duped by DAP once again.

Liow said that liberal factions do not exist within AMANAH or PAS, claiming that “there are only two factions in PAS and AMANAH – extreme or more extreme”.

It is sad that we have national leaders in government in a plural society who do not understand the struggle that is ongoing, not only in Malaysia but world-wide, between an open, broad-minded and inclusive understanding of Islamic politics and a closed, narrow-minded and exclusive exposition of Islamic politics.

In Tunisia, the Ennahda or Renaissance Party, a moderate Islamist political party which is the largest in the Tunisian Parliament, just held a historic national congress under its President Rached Ghannouchi pioneering the development of Islamic politics by separating its religious activities from political ones. Ghannouchi described Ennahda as a “political, democratic and civil party” although its point of reference remain rooted in the values of ancient and modern Islam.

It is worth noting that Tunisia, whose population is 99.8 per cent Muslims, does not have hudud.

One of the leaders of Ennahda, Said Ferjani, in a dialogue with DAP leaders during his visit to Malaysia last August, said ensuring peace and freedom of religion should be the priority in politics, especially among Islamists, even more than implementing hudud.

He refuted assertions that the Islamic penal code should be a prerequisite of faith, relating that even Prophet Muhammad did not implement hudud during his time as a state ruler.

What do we have in Malaysia? A revival of the hudud debate following the success of the Najib-Hadi plot in Parliament on May 26 to distract national attention from Malaysia’s first twin global financial scandals – the RM55 billion 1MDB scandal and the RM4.2 billion “donation” scandal of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak. Read the rest of this entry »

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Rise of Malaysia’s ‘racist’ strain of Islam

By Lim Teck Ghee
9 Jun 2016, AM 10:05 (Updated 9 Jun 2016, AM 10:08)

COMMENT A recent article comparing the treatment accorded by the government and the larger Islamic community to two recent Muslim visitors notes that the question as to why preacher Zakir Naik and scholar Abdullahi An-Na’im and their messages are resounding differently with the Malay Muslim community is a crucial one for Malaysians to ask.

The contrast in the themes articulated by these two visitors in their lectures and public engagements cannot be more different.

That of the scholar is a vision of a more humanistic and intellectually more rational and defensible Islam. The other by the preacher stems from a conservative and extremist position. Based on advocacy of Islam as a superior religion, Zakir offers simplistic but popular – with the Muslim masses – opinions on topics such as dealing with lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgenders (LGBT) people and other non-Islamic minorities, apostasy, the treatment of other faiths in Islamic states, the evils of secularism, etc.

Similar questions have been asked by others as to why Islam in this country has taken a hard line position and turned its back on its traditionally moderate roots and associated Hindu-Buddhist values and mores. Read the rest of this entry »

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Call on Najib to give undertaking that National Security Council Act will not be enforced until concerns of Conference of Rulers addressed by way of amendments to be presented in forthcoming Parliament

Tuesday, 7th June 2016 is a black-lettered day in the history of Malaysia, because on this day the National Security Council Act was gazetted and became the first law in the country which was NOT given the Royal Assent.

Under Clause 4(a) of Article 66 of the Federal Constitution, a bill becomes law 30 days after it is presented to the Yang di Pertua Agong, even if the Agong does not give the Royal Assent.

The Conference of Rulers on Feb. 17 had returned the National Security Council (NSC) Bill to the Attorney-General’s Chambers asking for refinement.

The Attorney-General Tan Sri Apandi Ali then said he would review some sections of the bill while Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak said he took note of the rulers suggestion. Read the rest of this entry »

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What has Najib or PMO got to say on WSJ’s correction to say that the US$3 billion bond fund raised by Goldman Sachs went to BSI Bank in Switzerland and not Singapore, and part of it eventually landed in Najib’s personal bank accounts?

What has the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Raak or the Prime Minister’s Office got to say on Wall Street Journal’s correction to say that the US$3 billion bond fund raised by Goldman Sachs went to BSI Bank in Switzerland and not Singapore, and part of it eventually landed in Najib’s personal bank accounts?

The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) has issued a correction, stating that the US$3 billion bond fund Goldman Sachs raised for 1MDB went to BSI Bank in Switzerland and not Singapore as initially reported.

In its correction, WSJ said its article earlier had “incorrectly stated the money was sent to 1MDB’s account at the private bank’s Singapore branch”.

The WSJ stood by the allegation that part of the US$3 billion sent to Switzerland (and not Singapore) ended up in offshore accounts that eventually landed in Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s personal bank accounts. Read the rest of this entry »

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If AMANAH/Pakatan Harapan candidates can win in Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar, it will be an important signal that Malaysia is ready to become a normal democratic country where voters can change government through the ballot box like other developed countries

Sungai Besar is the most marginal and most unsafe parliamentary seat in the Peninsular Malaysia won by UMNO in the 13th General Election while Kuala Kangsar is eighth on the list of UMNO’s most marginal and unsafe seats in Peninsular Malaysia.

If the AMANAH/Pakatan Harapan candidates can win in Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar parliamentary by-elections, it will be a major signal that Malaysia is ready to become a normal democratic country where voters can change the government through the ballot box like other developed countries.

It will also mean that the AMANAH or Pakatan Harapan candidates stand a good chance to win the 10 most marginal and most unsafe parliamentary seats won by UMNO in Peninsular Malaysia, namely:

1. Sungai Besar
2. Kuala Selangor
3. Pasir Gudang
4. Bagan Serai
5. Ketereh
6. Machang
7. Jerai
8. Kuala Kangsar
9. Arau
10. Bera

Many people look at this list and conclude that these seats are not winnable, but I belong to those who look at the list and think of the ways Pakatan Amanah can win in these ten seats. Read the rest of this entry »

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Mah Hang Soon should not have used Wan Mohammad Khair-il’s name in vain or has he got the permission from Mastura’s approval to use her late husband’s name?

Since Nomination Day on Sunday, I have just made a tour of the Sungai Besar and the Kuala Kangsar constituencies where parliamentary by-elections are underway caused by the tragic helicopter crash during the Sarawak state general elections.

In both constituencies, the AMANAH/Pakatan Harapan candidate started as the underdog in the three-cornered fight in Sungai Besar and the four-cornered fight in the Kuala Kangsar by-elections, but after four days of the by-election campaigns, it is clear that the contest is between UMNO/BN and AMANAH/PH candidates, as a vote for the PAS candidate in both constituencies would be a wasted vote with no chance whatsoever for the PAS candidate to win in either one of the two constituencies.

In fact, I had said publicly that I expect the PAS candidate in Sungai Besar to lose by some 10,000 votes and in Kuala Kangsar to lose by some 5,000 votes as compared to the votes polled by the PAS candidates in these two constituencies in the 13th General Election in 2013.

To defeat the UMNO/BN candidate in Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar in the by-elections would cause quite a political earthquake as both constituencies had been UMNO strongholds, never won by any Opposition candidate in the past six decades.

But this political earthquake could only achieved by the AMANAH candidate and NOT the PAS candidate because of the demographic composition of the constituencies and from the voters’ reactions in the past four days. Read the rest of this entry »

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The evolution of the hudud debate

By Wong Chin Huat
1 Jun 2016, 7:55 am
Malaysiakini

What is misconstrued and misrepresented as hudud in public discourse in Malaysia may be better termed or understood as expansion of syariah law.

Syariah expansion has two dimensions: first, expansion of the jurisdiction of the syariah court to go beyond personal and family matters into hudud and qisas offences, so named after their punishments; and second, expansion of the court’s power to mete out hudud (fixed) and qisas (retaliatory) punishments.

Should syariah law cover non-Muslims?

While the second dimension has reduced the issue to ‘hudud’, the first dimension has defined the public debate so far because some hudud offences (theft and robbery) and all qisas offences (homicide and bodily injuries) may involve non-Muslims as criminals or victims.

This is where the dilemma lies: imposition of syariah law on non-Muslims would mean outright violation of non-Muslims’ religious freedom, while exclusion of non-Muslims would mean inequality by religion between Muslims and non-Muslims.
Read the rest of this entry »

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