Archive for February, 2007

Blog kink with IE6 & 7 resolved

Internet Explorer 7

Thanks to Chengkhoon, the blog kink with IE6 & 7 has been resolved.

This is Chenkhoon’s solution:

“Line 38 of the css file (style.css) contains the following line:

“filter: Shadow(color:white, strength:0, direction:0);

“This is proprietary IE6 code. Removing the line will solve the problem.”

Many thanks Chengkhoon, on my part as on behalf of so many visitors who had faced problems of accessing the blog with IE6 or 7. Most appreciated. Also thanks to all who given their suggestions to resolve the problem.


Anatomy of a traffic disaster

by Z. Ibrahim

The Federal Highway, first envisioned in 1965 following separation of Singapore from Malaysia, became the main artery to serve the entire Klang Valley conurbation when Malaysia decided to make Port Klang its premier port then.

Opened in 1967, the Highway itself has undergone multiple metamorphoses to cater for the ever increasing population and industries on either side of the highway.

There was a period in the 80s’ when traffic jams to KL used to start at the Berkeley Gardens and a significant portion of Klang residents who worked in KL had to be on the road by 5am. The original 4-lane highway soon outlived its purpose despite the building of multiple interchanges in Petaling Jaya.

In 1992 Plus Expressway Berhad upgraded the entire highway to a 6-lane highway with toll plazas at Batu Tiga and Sungai Rasa. The highway handles such great volumes of traffic at any time of the day that jams can be quite difficult to predict as even minor mishaps have known to cause traffic to back-up on either side of the highway for miles. Read the rest of this entry »


“Neo-bumiputeraism” – clarification

Clarification on an idea called “neo-bumiputeraism”
(Follow-up to article “Let’s de-segregate our schools”)

– Azly Rahman

‘Bumiputera’ is a problematic word. A word that conveniently equates race and religion as inseparable. To say that a Malay is generally a Muslim and hence a ‘bumiputera’ and therefore have special rights and privileges is an imprecise way of explaining a concept. It is an old-school approach to defining that word.

We must find ways to enrich the concept better so that it will become inclusive. Who toils for the soil? Labour, more than language, seems to be more a more linguistically just way to look at the definition of bumiputera and how we will go about the peaceful evolution process.

We need a premise for this process though. Let’s begin with this phrase:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident and Divine-ly sanctioned that All Malaysians are created equal and that they are endowed by their Creator the inalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, happiness, justice and social equality… and we shall resoundingly declare that from now on we will be constructed as equal and be called ‘the new bumiputera’…” Read the rest of this entry »


Zulkipli and Ramli’s date with Parliamentary Select Committee – March 12

Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA) Director-General Datuk Seri Zulkipli Mat Noor has responded to very serious allegations of “being a very corrupt senior police officer who had amassed substantial property and assets through corrupt means” made against him by a former top ACA officer, Mohamad Ramli Manan while still in service in July last year before his retirement on December 8, 2006.

Zulkipli told New Straits Times: “Let the law take its course”.

He said that the allegations were “part and parcel of the agency’s operations”

He added:

“There are a lot of challenges in our line of work. Some (people) may be happy, some, of course, may not. The bottom line is justice must be done.

“In this context, certainly I do not want to get involved in matters, issues or allegations that have the tendency to belittle or tarnish the good image of an individual.”

Apart from the “Let the law take its course” statement, Zulkipli’s comments are not helpful at all in throwing light on the very serious corruption allegations which had been made against him by Ramli. The ACA head seems to have mastered the art of making statements which mean nothing at all.

While the law must undoubtedly be allowed to “take its course”, the immediate concern of all Malaysians serious about the pledge of the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi when he became the fifth Prime Minister and during the 2004 general election campaign to give top priority to anti-corruption is whether Zulkipli can continue to helm the ACA with these serious corruption allegations hanging over his head. Or whether the ACA will be further incapacitated with such a person as its head. Read the rest of this entry »


Blog cannot be viewed from Internet Explorer 7

TJY emailed to say that this blog cannot be viewed from Internet Explorer 7. There have been other complaints which seem to zero down to the same cause, such as the following from Shirley of UK:

“Still unable to access your blog. Managed to access the main page but only part of it. Even then unable to read as only the top of page is visible.”

Later Shirley emailed: “Internet Explorer was the problem. Problem solved when switched to Mozilla Firefox.”

Anyone with any ideas as to how the problem can be resolved with Internet Explorer 7?


Let’s de-segregate our schools

Let’s de-segregate our schools
Azly Rahman

“School is not preparation for life, but school is life,” wrote American pragmatist philosopher John Dewey.

We need to begin a national project of desegregating schools. I propose that all schools and educational institutions now catering to one particular race – be they Malay, Chinese, Tamil, Kadazan or Iban – must be integrated systematically and reorganised along the principles of multi-cultural education.

We must create a new breed of bumiputera – the neo-bumiputera class.

I do not see any other way we can become a truly multi-cultural nation and create an egalitarian society based on the way we currently organise our educational institutions. We may have a grand design that will take to the year 3000, but without a conscious effort to educate students to become critical, creative, ethical and futuristic radical human beings, we will drown in the wave of globalisation.

We may have a hardware worth RM23 billion and a software plan in hand, but without a mind-ware powerful enough to help develop governors of a future republic of virtue and social justice, our schools will continue to be better camps for totalitarianism.

However, as the great Brazilian educator Paulo Freire might say, there is a philosophy of hope, we can all explore.

I want to share the beauty of an effective philosophy of education that ought to now be experimented at a different level – true to our nation’s commitment to create a Bangsa Malaysia.

It is a system that has benefitted many and produced excellent individuals that are now the movers and shakers of our economy. We have great professors, politicians, scientists, lawyers, corporate figures, surgeons, entertainment gurus, and even rocket scientists from a system that has helped the poorest of the poor ‘bumiputeras’. I am talking about the Maktab Rendah Sains Mara (MRSM) system. Read the rest of this entry »


ACA Zulkipli must establish his integrity or be removed immediately

The Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA) director-general, Datuk Zulkipli Mat Noor should appear before the Parliamentary Select Committee on Integrity to clear all doubts that he is qualified to continue to helm the anti-corruption agency.

I will propose at today’s meeting of the Parliamentary Select Committee that Zulkipli be summoned to appear at an emergency meeting to respond to various serious allegations which had been made against him, ranging from corruption to sexual crimes, which must not remain unrebutted so as to salvage the credibility, legitimacy and authority of the ACA.

If Zulkipli is not prepared to appear before the Parliamentary Select Committee to establish his integrity in an emergency meeting, he must be removed as the ACA head. The Cabinet should put this item on the top of its agenda at its meeting tomorrow.

Malaysiakini yesterday reported these allegations which were filed last year by former ACA officer Mohamad Ramli Manan to the then inspector-general of police Mohd Bakri Omar.

In the July 4, 2006 report, Ramli named the ACA chief – who is a former top cop – and referred to him as ‘B1’.

“As you are aware, B1 was a member of your police force and his last appointment there was as Sarawak chief police officer. It has come to the knowledge of the ACA that B1 was a very corrupt senior police officer and had amassed substantial property and assets through corrupt practices,” he told Mohd Bakri in his report.

Ramli claimed that in 1997 – when Zulkipli was Johor police chief – the ACA had then learnt that he was “in possession of properties disproportionate to his known source of income” and had indulged in “immoral and criminal” activities.

Apart from this, Ramli also disclosed that the police had allegedly investigated Zulkipli in connection with a sexual crime following a report filed by a housewife with the Dang Wangi police station in Kuala Lumpur. Read the rest of this entry »


Judicial accountability – will the Altantuny murder trial be brought forward from March 2008?

Last week, when making his controversial, ill-advised and ill-considered comment likening the proposal for an independent judicial commission on appointment and promotion of judges as akin to nudity rather than transparency, the Chief Justice Tun Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim claimed that he was both an advocate and practitioner of judicial accountability and transparency.

Ahmad Fairuz said: “I started (as the Chief Justice) in 2003 with accountability and integrity. We have been transparent.”

I have three questions for Ahmad Fairuz concerning accountability and integrity of the Chief Justice.

Firstly, will the Altantunya Shaariibuu murder trial set for hearing in March 2008 be brought forward in line with the maxim that “justice delayed is justice denied” as well as his earlier statement that the March 2008 trial date is “too far off”?

The Star in a front-page headline of 6th January 2007 “March 7, 2008: Altantunya murder trial — TOO LONG A WAIT” quoted the Chief Justice:

“The date is too far off. But we are appointing 16 new judges. Hopefully the trial can be brought forward.”

Secondly, what has happened to his public undertaking on his appointment as Chief Justice some four years ago in 2003 to recast the Judges’ Code of Ethics to restore public confidence in judicial independence, impartiality and integrity. Read the rest of this entry »


How Samy Vellu can transform from Dracula to saint

Works Minister and MIC President, Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu is both incensed and very hurt.

This came across powerfully in the exclusive interview he gave for New Sunday Times today, “‘Works Minister, still smarting over being accused of ‘going for blood’, says… ‘I’m no Dracula'”.

He showed his feelings in the very first question of the interview, when he was asked about his “outburst about not being ‘the bad boy’ of tolls”, as follows:

Q: Your outburst about not being “the bad boy” of tolls took many by surprise. All kinds of allegations have been levelled at you over the years regarding toll hikes, so why did you react that way?

A: There’s pressure being applied now by the opposition. They were trying to paint a picture that I make all these decisions to bring hardship to road users and the people, which is not true.

I had wanted to say it for a long time, so I did it on that day (Feb 11), because, the previous day, Lim Kit Siang (the Opposition leader) had used a word which was really hurtful.

Lim Kit Siang said I was going for blood. He was indirectly saying I’m a Dracula. Only a Dracula goes for blood. A man and politician of his age and experience should be more cultured when he talks about other people.

First, let me state that “Dracula” had never entered my mind when in my statement of 3rd February I had demanded to know why Samy Vellu was “suddenly so ‘bloodthirsty’ as to want four Opposition leaders, namely Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim and Tian Chua of PKR, Ronnie Liu of DAP and Dr. Hatta Ramli (PAS) jailed for at least a year under the Official Secrets Act (OSA) for revealing that the government had guaranteed profits to Litrak in the Lebuhraya Damansara-Puchong (LDP) concession agreement?”

My statement continued:

What have the four done that they must be treated like ‘highway robbers’ and must be made to suffer the most severe form of punitive punishment, of being jailed for at least one year, if they are charged under the OSA and found guilty of unauthorized communication of an official secret?

Have they done anything akin to sabotage or imperil the national economy, subvert the national security or undermine national stability?

I do not believe that Samy Vellu, even in his most creative best, would be able to make out a prima facie case that the four Opposition leaders had done any of these terrible things in connection with the publication of the Litrak LDP concession agreement. Read the rest of this entry »


Arsenal training at Brickendonbury — Did Najib lie?

After chairing the meeting of the Cabinet Committee for Sports on February 8, 2007 Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced a RM68.7 million “refurbishment” of the Tun Abdul Razak Research Centre (TARRC) in Brickendonbury, London into a high-performance sports training centre to be fully operational in April.

Najib said agreement “in principle” had been reached with Arsenal to train the national under-16 football team, which will be the first to use the London centre.

The Weekend Mail, in its first issue after its suspension, carried a report raising the question whether Najib had lied.

This is the report, “TRAINING STINT FOR NATIONAL UNDER-16 FOOTBALL TEAM – Arsenal says it’s unaware of proposal” by Rizal Hashim:

THE proposed Malaysia-Arsenal joint-venture to equip the country’s young footballers with the necessary weaponry to raise their game has been thrown into doubt after it emerged that no formal discussion had been held between the two parties.

This was confirmed through an e-mail response from the communications department of Arsenal to Mailsport on Friday.

“I am afraid we are not able to provide you with answers to your questions or an official club comment, however, I can confirm that the club does not know about the proposed arrangement and furthermore, we have no involvement in any such project,” the statement said.

Upon further investigation, Mailsport discovered the only discussion on the subject was held at Arsenal’s state-of-the-art training centre in Hertfordshire, between a five-man recce team from Kuala Lumpur and the centre manager, Sean O’Connor, just before the Cabinet Committee on Sports Development’s announcement on the proposed stint on Feb 8. Read the rest of this entry »


A kink to login to the blog

A regular poster emailed the following complaint:

It seems impossible to login into your blog (for posting of comments) by reason of technical difficulties ie the recurrent appearance of message : ‘Your session has expired.ERROR: Invalid Username – Username: xxx'”

I also had this problem at first when the temporary blogsite, was switched back to two days ago.

I was advised to clean up the cache. If using Explorer browser, for instance, go to Tools, Internet Options, Delete Cookies, and Delete Files. The problem vanished.

I emailed back to the poster suggesting he try out the same method. This is his reply:

“Your suggestion to clean up the cache, via Tools, Internet Options, Delete Cookies, and Delete Files actually worked! I can’t believe or understand it.

“Now no more recurrent appearances of the message : ‘Your session has expired.ERROR: Invalid Username’ – Username, which paved the way for username and password to be log-in resulting in the ‘login’ window for postings for each thread to appear below it. Read the rest of this entry »


Why the difference of RM6.4 billion or RM9.85 billion in MITI and UNCTAD figures for 2006 FDIs

For the past two weeks, Malaysians had been fed with the news that good economic times are back, with the country drawing a record RM20.2 billion in foreign investment in manufacturing, a record 2006 trade volume breaching RM1 trillion, rocketing share prices, a strong ringgit and rising foreign reserves.

The Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi had denied that an imminent general election is on the cards because of the slew of good economic news to generate a “feed good euphoria” reminiscent of the period before the 2004 general election.

Although the next general election will not be held in the next few months, everyone would expect the holding of early general elections in the next eight to 14 months before April 2008, when Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim would regain his civil liberties including the right to stand for elections at the end of his five-year disqualification from the date of his prison release.

But are the good economic times back for the people of Malaysia? If so, a little-noticed announcement on Chinese New Year’s Day has sent out a very different message.

On February 18, 2007, Bernama reported that the government had scrapped its earlier plan to extend the textbook loan scheme to all school students, both at primary and secondary level, from next year. Deputy Education Minister, Datuk Noh Omar was quoted as saying that the move was scrapped as the ministry would incur an extra sum of over RM100 million yearly.

When the government has to cancel the textbook loan scheme for all students because it cannot afford the additional expenditure of RM100 million, it strains credibility to believe that the government and the country is aflush with funds.

Malaysians have been told in the past fortnight that the country is back on the global investment map, in reversal of the gloomy news in the past few months that Malaysia is in danger of dropping out from the radar of foreign investors because of increasing lack of international competitiveness, whether in efficiency of public service, quality of education, good governance, transparency and integrity. Read the rest of this entry »


14 RM70,000 Ops Sikap XII watchtowers worth only half or less?

Works Minister, Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu has denied the allegation of the Inspector-General of Police, Tan Sri Musa Hassan that five of the 14 traffic watchtowers are unsafe for use — with one each in Selangor, Penang, Perak, Malacca and Negri Sembilan.

Sin Chew Daily reported with photograph on Thursday that the watchtower built at Tampin-Gemas Road 16km was so fragile and unsafe that it had been abandoned for the safety of the traffic policemen on duty.

It was first reported on 12th February 2007 (with photograph) that 14 manned watchtowers will be built in accident-prone stretches of federal, state and municipal roads for use durings Ops Sikap 12.

Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy had announced that the Cabinet had approved close to RM1 million to build the first 14 watchtowers in Peninsular Malaysia on roads where nine out of every 10 fatal accidents occur, and that each tower is expected to cost the Public Works Department about RM70,000.

On the same day, I received the following SMS from someone from the construction industry:

“Today’s NST page 8 prime news says 14 watch towers to cost government RM70k each is grossly over-priced. “

When I SMSed back to ask what would be the proper price range for such watchtowers, back came the reply:

“25 — 30k with transport and installation costing 5k a piece.” Read the rest of this entry »


Snoop squads – remove Rosol as Terengganu Exco and Islam Hadhari Committe Chairman

The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi went out of his way during his visit to Indonesia to “shoot down” a move by the Terengganu state government to set up a “snoop squad” or “informers” who would be rewarded for reporting “immoral activities”.

Stating his disapproval of such moves by religious authorities, Abdullah told them to stop policing the morals of Muslims and concentrate on tacking various urgent issues facing them.

The issue at stake is not so much about Terengganu state government attempting to set up a moral “snoop squad” or “informers”, but the credibility and legitimacy of the Prime Minister’s authority.

Why there is yet another attempt at moral policing, and this time under the auspices of the Terengganu Islam Hadhari Committee, despite the previous attempts in Malacca and Selangor to have either volunteer “snoop squads” or Mat Skodeng which were disbanded after the federal government had made known its disapproval as well as the international furore following the scandalous khalwat raid of an elderly American couple in Langkawi in Kedah?

From the statements given by the Terengganu Islam Hadhari Committee chairman, Datuk Rosol Wahid in the past two days, it is clear that the Terengganu state government or at least Rosol is not very convinced by Abdullah’s directive or reasons. Read the rest of this entry »


CJ Fairuz’s poor taste in equating Judicial Appointments Commission to “nudity”

The response of Chief Justice Tun Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim likening proposal for an independent judicial commission on appointment and promotion of judges as akin to nudity rather than transparency is ill-advised, in poor taste and reflect badly on the office of Chief Justice.

Ahmad Fairuz may be unhappy with the proposal of an independent judicial commission to oversee the selection and promotion of judges, but he should realize that this proposal pre-dates his appointment to the top judicial post in the land and meant to enhance public confidence in the system of justice and in that context, there is nothing personal against any personal holder of the office.

Ahmad Fairuz should not have questioned the motives of those who had made the proposal, such as the Bar Council and several prominent lawyers, posing the rhetorical question:

“Are we to allow whoever has cases in court and who lost to decide on the fate of judges?”

He ignores the support of retired judges for the proposal.

While claiming to welcome any memorandum on the proposed independent judicial commission, Ahmad Fairuz made clear his opposition when he told the New Straits Times in Kota Baru after chairing a meeting with Kelantan judges yesterday:

“I started (as the Chief Justice) in 2003 with accountability and integrity. We have been transparent.

“But transparency should have its limits. Don’t tell me when we are transparent, we have to be nude. That is not transparency, that’s nudity.

“You want everything to be absolute? There is no such thing as absolute freedom or absolute transparency.

“That’s the way I look at things.”

In the first place, it is absolutely wrong and inapt to categorise the proposal of an independent Judicial Commission as an exercise in nudity rather than transparency, especially when this judicial reform had been adopted by other countries such as Canada, New Zealand, South Africa and the United Kingdom.

Secondly, the proposal for a Judicial Appointments Commission was not made only during Fairuz’s tenure as Chief Justice. Read the rest of this entry »


HPAIR Conference 07 in Beijing


Email from Sri Ram Krishnan: “Wishing you a happy CNY. Hope all is well during this period. I need a small favour, again. HPAIR 07 (the conference which you helped me publicize last year) has just been finalised and I have forwarded the publicity flyer with this email. I would appreciate if you could put it up on your blog so that Malaysian students can be part of the two conferences again.

“Btw, last year we had quite a number of Msian students! Much better than 05..thanks partly to you and other bloggers out there!

“p.s : I am not the chairperson anymore but helping the organising committee at harvard and in china as much as I can. as usual, any questions out there regarding hpair can be forwarded to me. – Sriram Krishnan


DATES: August 17-20, 2007

The Harvard Project for Asian and International Relations (HPAIR) invites you to participate in our annual summer student conference in Asia.

HPAIR is a partnership between the students and faculty of Harvard University, offering a sustained academic program and a forum of exchange to facilitate discussion of the most important economic, political, and social issues relevant to the Asia-Pacific region.

HPAIR’s international conference has emerged as the largest annual Harvard event in Asia and the largest annual student conference in the Asia-Pacific region, attracting a wide variety of distinguished speakers and future leaders as Harvard’s student outpost in Asia. Past speakers at our conferences include former South Korean President Kim Dae-jung, Singapore President S.R. Nathan, Secretary-General of ASEAN Ong Keng Yong, and former Japanese Finance Minister Heizo Takanaka.

Both delegates and papers are welcome! Applications for both are online and located at

The theme will be Engaging Asia: Discourse and Dialogue

Our HPAIR 2007 workshops will focus on the following six topics:
-Economic Growth in Asia and its Effects on Society -Comparative Notions of Leadership -Understanding Security Issues in East Asia -Inequality and Social Policy in Asia -Asia’s Information Society -Popular Culture in Asia Read the rest of this entry »

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Police afflicted by “close-one-eye” syndrome

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan made a shocking confession when he spoke on “Crime and Changing Social Values in the Malaysian Society” during a seminar at the Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (DBP) in Kuala Lumpur yesterday — that the Police is afflicted by the “close-one-eye” syndrome.

Musa lamented that in the war against crime, the police are at times frustrated by some politicians who want the police to “keep one eye open and one eye closed”. (Sin Chew)

This is most shocking. Musa should not be lamenting about the “close-one-eye” syndrome in the police frustrating the campaign against crime. He should have declared as the Inspector-General of Police that he would no more tolerate such “close-one-eye” syndrome, whether caused by interfering politicians, corruption or rogue policemen.

Musa should have gone one step further — publicly name the police officials and the “interfering politicians” who had acted against the public interest in their “close-one-eye” conspiracy to frustrate the forces of law and order.

Both parties in the “close-one-eye” syndrome, whether the police or the interfering politicians, are breaking the law and committing serious offences in frustrating the police war against crime.

Musa’s lament proved that the Royal Police Commission entrusted with the task of making proposals to create an efficient, incorruptible, professional and world-class police service had been both a waste of time and public resources as well as a great letdown of public expectations — that some 21 months after the Royal Commission Report, public confidence have reached a new crisis point. Read the rest of this entry »


RM69 mil London Sports Centre – proof of shambolic Abdullah government?

The bursting of the London High Performance Sports Training Centre balloon in less than a week raises concern whether the highly-regarded Abdullah administration had in three years degenerated into a shambolic and incompetent government.

Last Thursday, Deputy Prime Minister and the Chairman of the Cabinet Committee on Sports Development, Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced a new lease of life for the controversial London Sports Centre, originally slated to cost RM490 million until it ran into quite unanimous opposition in the country including from Members of Parliament from both sides of the House.

Najib assured that “no additional costs will be incurred” in turning the Tun Abdul Razak Research Centre (TARRC) in Brickendonbury into a sports training centre as “we will be using existing facilities”.

Yet the cost for turning the TARRC into a sports training centre instead of a sports complex will be a walloping big bill of RM69 million for “refurbishments” – which will include building accommodation for athletes and upgrading the fields and equipment all to be ready by April.

However, a Sun exclusive “Sports centre plan stalled” by R. Nadeswaran reported that despite Najib’s announcement that the London training centre will be full operational by April, it is likely to be a non-starter.

This is because the East Herts Council, under whose jurisdiction the Brickendonbury centre falls, holds the position that issues covering planning and development encountered in previous applications remain relevant to new proposals to converting existing buildings to provide accommodation for athletes, installing a football pitch, and extending an existing swimming pool on the site.

The council’s communications officer Nick White told the Sun in an email response to queries that the Brickendonbury site is within the green belt, surrounded by protected woodland. Some of the buildings are listed. As all these will need to be taken into account when planning application comes in, the council expect it will be a couple of months before a planning application is submitted.

In view of the stand taken by the East Herts Council, it is unlikely even if planning permission is approved, renovations can be completed by April. Read the rest of this entry »


Anti-corruption just a PR problem?

The Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz gave a very novel explanation about the anti-corruption campaign of the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi — saying that the government had done a lot to fight corruption but such information was not properly channeled to the public.

Speaking at the World Ethics and Transparency Forum on Monday, Nazri said a public relations blitz to outline the national drive against corruption and the promotion of integrity is in the offing.

He said the government did not have a good public relations unit to counter criticisms that not enough was being done to stamp out corruption and improve integrity.

If Nazri is right, then the only problem of Abdullah’s anti-corruption campaign is one of P.R rather than one of lack of political will, but Nazri would belong to a very tiny number of people who would resort to such a novel way to wish away the grave problem of corruption in the country.

How will Nazri explain Malaysia’s plunge of seven places from 37th to 44th position in the last three years during the Abdullah premiership from 2003 to 2006 in the Transparency International (TI) Corruption Perception Index (CPI) when the five-year National Integrity Plan launched by Abdullah in April 2004 had targeted improvement to at least 30th position in 2008? Can this shocking plunge in Malaysia’s TI CPI to 44th position (when Malaysia was ranked No. 23 in 1995) be attributed to poor PR? Read the rest of this entry »


Happy Chinese New Year – Stand up for reforms

This should be a meaningful and historic Chinese New Year as it coincides with the 50th Merdeka Anniversary of the nation and possibly with the 12th general election.

Let all Malaysians stand up categorically in the next general election to be held in the next eight to 14 months for national reforms to make Malaysia a world-class competitive nation with the hallmarks of excellence, meritocracy, accountability, transparency, integrity, democracy and justice for all.

These were the hopes and expectations of Malaysians in the past three years since the March 2004 general election but they have not been fulfilled. In many important areas, there were not only no new starts, the country had gone backwards.

The world will pass Malaysia by if the country cannot find the political will to change course to create world-class institutions especially Parliament, judiciary, electoral system, local governance, civil service, police, anti-corruption agency and universities; inculcate among the government and people a first-class mentality and mindset and produce towering Malaysians and not just leading personalities of one race or community.

Wishing all Chinese Malaysians as well as all Malaysians a Happy Chinese New Year.