Archive for April, 2007

The Machiavellis in Malaysian politics

The Machiavellis in Malaysian politics

The Machiavellis in Malaysian politics
Azly Rahman

Against my will, my fate,
A throne unsettled, and an infant state,
Bid me defend my realms with all my pow’rs,
And guard with these severities my shores .

– from Machiavelli’s The Prince, Chapter XVII

Another quote:

‘But it is necessary to know well how to disguise this characteristic, and to be a great pretender and dissembler; and men are so simple, and so subject to present necessities, that he who seeks to deceive will always find someone who will allow himself to be deceived. One recent example I cannot pass over in silence. Alexander VI did nothing else but deceive men, nor ever thought of doing otherwise, and he always found victims; for there never was a man who had greater power in asserting, or who with greater oaths would affirm a thing, yet would observe it less; nevertheless his deceits always succeeded according to his wishes, because he well understood this side of mankind.

‘Therefore it is unnecessary for a prince to have all the good qualities I have enumerated, but it is very necessary to appear to have them. And I shall dare to say this also, that to have them and always to observe them is injurious, and that to appear to have them is useful; to appear merciful, faithful, humane, religious, upright, and to be so, but with a mind so framed that should you require not to be so, you may be able and know how to change to the opposite. – from, Machiavelli’s The Prince, Chapter XVIII

One of the best strategies to keep a political party in power is to keep the voters ‘educated’ only to a certain level of intelligence, and to give them enough goodies for them to want more at every cycle of election. Give them money, ‘kain pelika’t, ‘kain batik’, rice, cigarettes, Kentucky Fried Chicken, McDonalds, RM200 and instant ‘development packages’ — new roads, new playgrounds, new schools, new promises, etc, so that they will be happier voters. Let them corrode their own moral character and let the children of these voters learn that this are what democracy, politics, and elections is all about. Read the rest of this entry »


Subashini, Revathi, Marimuthu cases – Tunku will be most distressed if he is still alive

Subashini, Revathi, Marimuthu cases - Tunku will be most distressed if he is still alive

I have today sent an urgent fax to the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi asking for a meeting with DAP MPs and leaders on pressing sensitive issues of national unity, religion, family and human rights highlighted by recent heart-rending controversies like the Subashini, Revathi and Marimuthu cases.

There are great and increasing concerns in our plural society about inter-religious tolerance and harmony as illustrated by the recent week-long prayers by Buddhists, Christians, Hindus, Sikhs and Taoists to seek divine intervention to spread awareness of the importance of upholding the fundamental provisions of the Malaysian Constitution with regard to Article 11 on freedom of religion and Article 4 on the Constitution as the supreme law of Malaysia.

In a written reply to the DAP MP for Ipoh Barat, M. Kulasegaran on Wednesday, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Nazri Aziz said that the Prime Minister had an open attitude and discussed matters of religion with religious-based non-governmental bodies. It is in this spirit that we are asking for this meeting with the Prime Minister.

Ever since the founding of the nation, Bapa Malaysia and the first Prime Minister of Malaysia, Tunku Abdul Rahman, set the example of an open, tolerant and accommodative attitude on religious rights and sensitivities which had spared the multi-religious country from religious conflict, discord and even misunderstanding in the best part of half-a-century of nationhood.

If Tunku Abdul Rahman is still alive, I am sure he will be the first to be very distressed by the spate of heart-rending cases affecting religion which split up families — in the Marimutu case, the couple had been married for 21 years with seven children – apart from causing inter-religious strain and national disunity as well as giving Malaysia a bad name internationally. Read the rest of this entry »


Abdullah must work trebly hard in next few months to have credibility to talk about Mission 2057

Yesterday’s New Straits Times front-page was completely taken up by two quotes of the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s speech on the National Mission for the next 50 years, viz:

“I have not forgotten about Vision 2020. It is a target for us to achieve. But why can’t we think beyond that? We are well placed to envision a century of success… ”

“All those rumours that I’m resigning in July, who is saying this? Some have said I am a one-term prime minister. We will see about that… “

I had three immediate questions when I saw the NST front-page yesterday.

Question 1: This was a speech which Abdullah had delivered as Umno President in a meeting with the “Umno political machinery and Umno psychological warfare unit” (Bernama 19.4.06) at the Putra World Trade Centre last Friday.

Why was such a speech and message delivered to the Umno propaganda and psychological warfare unit aired on RTM1? Is this an open and blatant admission that RTM is nothing more than the propaganda and psychological warfare unit of Umno?

Is this further proof of Malaysia going further down the slippery slope where important distinctions among the three separate entities of government, political party and personal interests have been completely blurred and eradicated among those vested with public trust, whether government power or charge of public funds — when the strict maintenance of such distinctions are the fundamental prerequsities to foster a culture of national integrity and to carry out a successful campaign against corruption?

The Machap by-election and the current Ijok by-election have seen such blurring and eradication of distinctions among the three entities of government, political party and personal interests reaching an unprecedented level in the past 50 years. Read the rest of this entry »


Democratisation in Burma – sanctions mechanism in new ASEAN Charter

Democratisation in Burma - sanctions mechanism in new ASEAN Charter

At the end of March, a delegation of Members of Parliament from Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore including MP for Seputeh Teresa Kok and MP for Permatang Pauh Datin Seri Dr. Wan Azizah went to the Thai-Burma border to visit Mae La refugee camp and meet with some of those who have been forced to flee the abuses and the ravages of civil war in Burma.

For more than fifty years, civil war has cast its dark shadow on this beautiful country. In the course of the past ten years, about 3,000 villages have been destroyed in eastern parts of the country and hundreds of thousands of people have been forced to flee. Burma is now the third largest producer of refugees in the world, after Iraq and Afghanistan.

Thailand has received the largest number of refugees and migrants from Burma. But an increasing number of Burmese are also coming to Malaysia. At the end of March, a seven year old girl, Dally, went missing in Cheras on the eve of the day she and her family were to leave for resettlement in the U.S.

Malaysia and other governments in ASEAN must take responsibility for the protection of refugees from Burma. They share in the blame for having allowed the situation to drag on for so many decades.

The Malaysian Parliamentary Caucus on Myanmar calls on the Malaysian government to ensure that the authorities act promptly in the murder of Dally and to adopt policies and practices that will ensure that future crimes, not only of this nature, towards unprotected refugee children do not recur.

However, we all know that the root causes of the refugee and migration problems from Burma lies with the Burmese regime. If the junta does not stop its abuses, end the civil war and solves the country’s political and economic problems, refugees will continue to flee the country.

If we are to provide lasting protection to the people of Burma, this tragedy cannot be allowed to continue. We call on the Malaysian government to plan an active role in order for ASEAN to take strong steps at a regional and international level to stop the abuses that are forcing people to flee their homes and that are splitting up families. Read the rest of this entry »


Marimuthu Periasamy files habeas corpus writ for release of wife and six children

Marimuthu Periasamy files habeas corpus writ for release of wife and six children

Rubber tapper Marimuthu Periasamy, 43, has today filed habeas corpus writ for the release of his wife Raimah Bibi a/p Noordin and six children, Yoogneswary 12, Paramila 11, Hariharan 8, Ravindran 5, Shamala 5 and Keberan 4 from detention by the Selangor Islamic Religious Department for the past 17 days.

Periasamy, who filed the action through DAP National Chairman Karpal Singh as counsel, is seeking to be reunited with his wife and six children who were forcibly separated from him on 2nd April 2007 on the ground that they were Muslims.

Periasamy has filed a supporting affidavit stating that he and his wife were at all material times of the Indian race and they practiced and professed the Hindu religion. They brought up their chileren in the Hindu religion and beliefs.

Their children were given Indian names and they had lived in peace without interruption even though they earn a modest living.

Things changed in the morning of 2nd April 2007 when seven officers acting on behalf of the Jabatan Agama Islam Selangor (JAIS) raided their residence in Kampung Baru Tambahan, Ulu Yang, Selangor, detaining his wife and six children and forcibly took them away from their house. Marimuthu was threatened with “khalwat” if he attempted to stop them. Read the rest of this entry »


Ijok by-election: Khir Toyo arrested and charged for corruption if ACA independent

Khir Toyo arrested and charged for corruption if ACA independent

Selangor Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohd Khir Toyo would have been arrested by the Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA) and charged for corruption in connection with the Ijok by-election in Selangor if the ACA is an independent and professional body.

This is because even before the Ijok by-election nomination tomorrow, money politics to buy votes have started with the announcement by Khir Toyo of RM36 million for various development projects in the Ijok constituency.

Instead, the ACA had acted “blind, deaf and mute” to such money politics and corrupt practices to buy votes in the by-election.

This is what I said in Parliament this evening during the winding-up of the Prime Minister’s Department in the committee stage debate of the 2007 Supplementary Estimates.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Nazri Aziz disputed my charges as being unfair to the ACA and openly asked the ACA officers on duty in Parliament to take note of my strictures. I stood my ground. Read the rest of this entry »


Continuing family tragedy of trio forcibly separated in three different locations

Continuing family tragedy of trio forcibly separated


Revathi Masoosai/Siti Fatimah’s 100-day detention for Islamic rehabilitation which ends today has been extended by the Malacca Syariah Court for another 80 days.

Revathi’s husband, Suresh Veerapan was informed by Malacca Syariah Court officials that her detention at the Faith Rehabilitation Centre in Ulu Yam has been extended by 80 days.

When Suresh Veerapan asked for the reasons, an official told him “she did not cooperate during the 100-day stay” which ended today.

His demand for a copy of the court order on the extension was denied. Revathi was not brought to the Malacca court from Ulu Yam in Selangor. Dozens of relatives were waiting to see her.

Revathi, who suffers from asthma, had told her husband last week that she was not taken to a doctor although she was sick.

It is sad and tragic that this heart-rending tale of the father, mother and baby girl being forcibly separated into three different locations by law and religion had not been resolved today, despite a memorandum by DAP MPs to the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi last week.

The following Associated Press report furnishes a backgrounder to this continuing tragedy: Read the rest of this entry »


Another din and pandemonium in Parliament because BN Ministers/MPs cannot stand “hard” questions

Another din and pandemonium in Parliament this morning during question time simply because Barisan Nasional (BN) Ministers and MPs cannot stand hard questions.

The original question was from a BN Sabah MP, Edmund Chong Ket Wah (Batu Sapi) who asked the Higher Education Minister “to state that out of the 20 local public institutions of higher learning, how many are listed on the Academic Ranking of World Top 500 Universities”.

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Higher Education Ministry, Datuk Dr. Adham Baba gave a tepid and colourless reply, who dared not address the problem of higher education in the country, failing to mention a single international university ranking.

This was followed by two supplementary questions by BN MPs which only enabled Adham to skirt the problem of decline and fall of academic quality of Malaysian universities.

In my supplementary question, I said that while Adham had said that Malaysia will use the National University of Singapore as a benchmark for public universities in the country, I pointed out that the University of Malaya had started out at par with the University of Singapore until the seventies in terms of international recognition for academic excellence and university quality.

However, Malaysia has slipped back to the international academic backwaters, as illustrated by the following international rankings: Read the rest of this entry »


Hishammuddin’s keris-wielding disqualifies him as a symbol of national integration

Hishammuddin keris-wielding disqualifies him as a symbol of national integration

The Sun is the only English and Bahasa Malaysia newspaper to report my questioning the Education Minister and UMNO Youth leader, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussin for his infamous keris-wielding in Parliament yesterday.

Hishammuddin was answering the query during Question Time on “the effectiveness of Students’ Integration for Unity programme since it was put into practice and whether the programme has achieved its objective”.

I had prefaced my supplementary question with the observation that Hishammuddin was “well-known” for his keris-wielding incidents in the context of extremist and communal demands in utter disregard of the rights and sensitivities of all races in a plural nation to the extent that he had been asked when he was going to use the keris, forfeiting his credibility and legitimacy as a symbol of national integration; and whether he would apologise for the keris-wielding incidents.

This set off a pandemonium in Parliament with Umno MPs creating a din to drown out my question, leading me to observe that UMNO MPs dared to defend the “keris-wielding” in the context of extremist and communal demands but dared not be questioned on the rightness of their actions in Parliament. Read the rest of this entry »


Forcible separation of Marimuthu from wife and six children – habeas corpus writ

Forcible separation of Marimuthu from wife and six children - habeas corpus writ

DAP National Chairman Karpal Singh will file habeas corpus application for rubber-tapper Marimuthu a/l Periasamy to be reunited with his wife, Raimah Bibi a/p Noordin and six children (Yogneswary 12, Paramila 11, Hariharen 8, Shamala 5, Ravindran 5 and Kuberan, 4) who had been forcibly separated from him for two weeks by Jabatan Agama Islam Selangor (JAIS).

On 2nd April, 2007, seven officers from JAIS came to his house in Kampung Baru Tambahan Ulu Yam Lama, Selangor and told him that his wife of 21 years was a Muslim and that she and the six children must be placed in a rehabilitation centre.

Marimuthu, 44, had no choice but to let the officers take his family away.

He said an “ustaz” told him to convert to Islam or threatened to charge him for khalwat with Raimah.

Raimah, who returned to help him with the rubber tapping work two days later, told him that Jais had placed the family in the nearby Kampung Melayu Liga Emas, a Muslim Malay populated area, so that the neighbours can keep an eye on her daily activities and prevent her from meeting with any outsiders, particularly her Hindu husband. Read the rest of this entry »


The NEP has been abused to help the rich

The NEP has been abused to help the rich

The NEP has been abused to help the rich
by Richard Teo

How long can the govt continue with its NEP policy? If the govt’s denial that ASLI’s report “of 30% bumiputra equity ownership had already been exceeded ” then it’s incumbent upon the govt to provide a clear official methodology as to how corporate equity is measured.

Earlier, the centre for public studies headed by Dr, Lim Teck Ghee had made a statement that its findings had established bumiputra equity ownership had exceeded 45%. In order to rebutt this findings by ASLI and to deny further credence to the findings that “corporate equity distribution was narrowly based, unrealistic and has resulted in an underestimation of the true volume and value of bumiputra equity”, the govt must reveal the official methodology to measure corporate equity. Based on its
calculation it must provide clear irrevocable proof that bumiputra’s equity has regressed to a lowly 18% in 2006.

At that time when the ASLI’s findings was published many UMNO leaders including the P.M called the report “baseless, inaccurate and irresponsible”. UMNO vice-President Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin went even further and called it “rubbish”.

There was a beacon of hope to establish the truth when DPM Najib gave an assurance that the methodology used to calculate the Bumi’s corporate equity would be publicly revealed.That assurance was given almost six months ago and it appears quite likely that the DPM has reneged on his word.

NEP in its present form has been abused and lost its initial noble objectives of helping the poor and the needy instead of the rich of one single race. Instead of affirmative action based on poverty it was exclusively based on a policy of helping just one race irrespective of the wealth of that person. Read the rest of this entry »


KDM the new underclass in Umno’s Sabah Baru

KDM the new underclass in Umno Sabah Baru

Sabah is in the throes of a political crisis although it is publicly
denied by the Umno and Barisan Nasional leadership, whether state or national.

There is for instance a lot of play-acting over the shock abrupt resignation of Tan Sri Chong Kah Kiat as Sabah Deputy Chief Minister and State Tourism Minister on Friday, with the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi fully endorsing the Sabah Chief Minister, Datuk Musa Aman, in saying that Chong’s resignation was “not really a loss” because it would not weaken the Barisan Nasional state government.

In other words, although Chong was Deputy Chief Minister and one of the key digits in the in the conspiracy and strategy to establish Umno hegemony in Sabah in the early nineties, he is now completely irrelevant and expendable.

It is no surprise therefore that Chong had expressed his “hurt” at the Prime Minister’s dismissive comments about his resignation, telling Oriental Daily News today that the Prime Minister’s comment had wounded his dignity and offended the people of Sabah and the Chinese.

Kah Kiat had maintained that he was quitting the Sabah Cabinet “as a matter of principle” — implying basic and fundamental differences with the Sabah Chief Minister.

The media have reported that ties have been strained between the chief minister and his deputy for some time over numerous issues like Musa’s plans to develop Pulau Sipadan island off Sabah’s east coast, with Malaysiakini citing as ” the final straw” their differences over Chong’s proposal to build a huge statue of the Goddess of Mercy in Kudat as a tourist attraction.

It is clear however to astute political observers that Chong’s resignation is only the tip of the iceberg of what is politically wrong and even rotten in Sabah after Umno’s entry in Sabah and 13 years of Umno and Barisan Nasional control of the Sabah State Government and that the issues at stake are even bigger than Chong’s differences over “principle” with Musa.

What is the cause of the Sabah malaise and crisis? Umno has successfully made its foray into Sabah and established its unquestioned political hegemony in the state in less than a decade, but in the process, it has broken every pledge it had made on entry into Sabah. Read the rest of this entry »


Memories of the colony

Memories of the colony

Memories of the colony
Azly Rahman

En route from Amsterdam to London for the Oxford Roundtable, on board a Boeing 737 on March 25, my mind scanned memories of my childhood as the plane ascended.

Memories of my beloved grandfather who died more than 20 years ago took shape in my “mind’s eye”, as Jungian psychologists would say.

Like Irish poet James Joyce’s “stream of consciousness” these images played out like a slide-show at intervals of several minutes.

My grandfather, a bicycle-riding government messenger for the royal court of Sir Sultan Ibrahim, taught us how to make kites. Born in the British Military Hospital in Alexandra Road in Singapore and growing up in Kampong Melayu Majidee in the late 1960s, my activities included kite-making.

Grandfather would patiently and meticulously guide me through the process: how to cut bamboo, make the frame, carefully refine its shape with special paper, and finally put designs on it. He was a man, though without much material wealth, imbued with good ‘ol Johorean ethics which he passed down to his children and grandchildren.

He was a man who wept for hours beside his radio-gram the day a man named Tun Abdul Razak died. Perhaps the Bugis blood in Grandfather saw the connection between the leader and the commoner in a time when life was not yet complicated – a time when you did not hear of murder cases involving C4 explosives. This was a time when the Internet was not yet supreme. Read the rest of this entry »


Kah Kiat’s resignation as Sabah DCM no real loss?

Kah Kiat resignation as Sabah DCM no real loss

Tan Sri Chong Kah Kiat’s resignation as Sabah Deputy Chief Minister is “no real loss” to Barisan Nasional. With or without Kah Kiat, it makes no difference to the BN in Sabah.

This is the clear message from the public reaction of the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi as reported by the Star today:

Chong’s exit not really a loss, says Abdullah

The resignation of Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Chong Kah Kiat is “not really a loss” because it will not weaken the Barisan Nasional state government, said Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

The Prime Minister said Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Musa Aman had informed him of Chong’s intention to step down, saying he wanted to rest.

He added that there was no other reason than that given by Musa.

“So as far as I am concerned, he will get his wish. Let him rest,” he told reporters yesterday after launching the Conference to Improve the Delivery System of Government Services To Improve the Development Process As Well As Property Management.

Abdullah said Chong’s resignation was not unexpected because the latter had expressed his desire to step down a number of times.

On whether the resignation was a loss, Abdullah said; “Not really a loss in the sense that I don’t think the government of Sabah is going to be weakened with him not being around. But anyway we would like to say ‘thank you’.”

Has Kah Kiat become so irrelevant and inconsequential in Barisan Nasional and Sabah politics as to be shrugged off so ignominously by both the Prime Minister and the Sabah Chief Minister? Read the rest of this entry »


Suspend LKIM chairman and DG until probe of mutual corruption allegations

Suspend LKIM chairman and DG until probe of mutual corruption allegations

The Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi had pledged an “all-out war against corruption” when he succeeded Tun Dr. Mahthir Mohamad in October 2003, but his actions had never belied his word.

Ironically, Abdullah gave two illustrations of the vast gap between his rhetoric and action on the anti-corruption front when he spoke to the press at the launching of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Academy (MACA) on Thursday.

Firstly, Abdullah lashed out at the Chairman and Director-General of the Malaysian Fisheries Development Authority (LKIM) for their public quarrel over allegations of corruption.

LKIM Chairman Adam Abdul Hamid had lodged a report with the Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA) that the agency’s top management had spent RM55 million for its Kg Geluncur complex in Kuala Kedah without open tender.

Adam told New Straits Times (10.4.07) that the complex in Kg Geluncur, completed last year at a cost of RM29 million was unable to be used as the jetty was 10 metres from shore.

As a result, the same contractor was awarded a sand-dredging project to allow sea water to reach the jetty. The fee — RM100 per cubic metre of sand removed when PWD rate is RM30.

There was also a RM8 million land-levelling contract and a RM17.8 million contract to build a 1.8 km access road to the complex — all awarded without open tender.

The LKIM management, under its director-general Datuk Annas Khatib Jaafar, had on its part lodged an ACA report against Adam, who is also chairman of Majuikan Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of LKIM, for secretly giving an offshore loan of 10 million euros (RM46 million) last year.

Abdullah should have suspended both the chairman and director-general of LKIM until outcome of investigations into the mutual allegations of corruption instead of asking them to sweep their differences “under the carpet”, wanting the duo to “sit down and resolve the matter among themselves” rather than going public and making “the public lose confidence in the government”. Read the rest of this entry »


Chua – have a heart

by LKN

Perhaps Lee Kuan Yew is right and we should indeed pay Ministers more if we are to expect a better dose of governance.

I read with bewilderment the MOH’s appeal to private hospitals to provide affordable heart surgery to the poor failing which it will invoke the Private Healthcare Facilities and Services Act 1998 (PHFSA) to direct these hospitals to carry out “their social responsibility.”

Chua appears to have been suddenly inspired with this brilliant idea following his visit to the Narayana Hrudayalaya Institute of Cardiac Sciences in Bangalore and speaking to its “world-renowned director” Dr Devi Shetty where 14 Malaysians have been treated.

He further reasoned that the MOH may “arrange for the poor to be treated in Bangalore at a minimum rate if presumably prices in Malaysian private hospitals are not “reasonable”.

The Health Minister appears to demonstrate either inconceivable fiduciary irresponsibility or complete economic ignorance as to why cardiac costs and its concomitant services are high in the private sector.

He further seems oblivious as to why the government’s own hospitals cannot be more efficient in treating these patients ignoring completely that costs in government hospitals are probably the same if not more save for the fact that the tax-payer instead actually pays the same bill for government patients. Read the rest of this entry »


Machap by-election – the real victors

Machap by-election - the real victors

(Press Conference Statement By DAP Secretary-General Lim Guan Eng In Melaka On 13.4.2007)

Machap Voters Are The Real Victors In Getting Tens Of Millions Of Ringgit In Development Projects And Endorsing DAP Call For Democracy By Giving DAP A Moral Victory In Reducing BN Majority By 481 Votes Despite Fighting The Entire Machinery Of The Malaysian Government

The 9,623 registered Machap voters are the real victors in yesterday’s by-election. Not only were Machap voters promised or given tens of millions of ringgit in development projects and benefits, they were also able to endorse DAP’s call for democracy by giving DAP a moral victory in reducing BN’s majority by 481 votes.

This is a substantial achievement when DAP increased our votes at the expense of BN despite the benefits to the people of:-

a) Newly paved roads all over Machap;

b) Hundreds of new street lamps;

c) A RM 1.2 million recreational area near the Durian Tunggal Dam;

d) 102 grants for housing lots for second-generation settler families at Felda Tun Ghafar Machap;

e) RM3.7 million will be allocated to Felda Machap with RM3 million for upgrading water pipes, RM600,000 for the construction of a multipurpose hall and RM100,000 to repair the mosque;

f) approved the application for 7,000 square feet of land by 50 second-generation Chinese settlers with a 99-year lease and a low premium of RM12,500;

g) approved the 20-year-long demand of Machap Baru villagers to build 80 units of low- and medium-cost houses, which will be sold at price below RM60,000 each;

h) Ministry of housing and local government’s special allocation of RM650,000 to upgrade roads and drainage system and to build a new air-conditioned hall;

i) RM 400,000 to relocate the telecomunnications tower in Machap Umboo to build a new replacement and unspecified amount to extend the land grant lease to 69 years from the present 34 years with reasonable land premiums;

j) Health ministry will spend RM160,000 to upgrade clinics in Machap; and

k) Education Ministry will give no less than RM50,000 to each of the three Chinese primary schools in the constituency.

Further BN’s tactics of fear, intimidation and vote buying were successful, especially in Tebong where BN’s votes increased to 1,037 votes from 992 votes whilst DAP remained almost unchanged at 165 votes from 162 votes in the 2004 general elections. Clearly BN’s victory is without honour as they would still have won (though perhaps not by 4,081 votes) without needing to resort to such dirty tactics. Read the rest of this entry »


Johari-Police public spat – Abdullah must assume full responsibility as Internal Security Minister or relinquish post

Abdullah must assume full responsibility as Internal Security Minister or relinquish post

The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi cannot just shout “Stop bickering” to the Deputy Internal Security Minister, Datuk Johari Baharum and the Police about the actual crime statistics in Sentul district, Kuala Lumpur but must assume full personal leadership and responsibility as Internal Security Minister to tell the nation the true facts about the runaway crime situation in the country or relinquish the key portfolio to a hands-on Minister.

On Saturday, Johari said the crime index in Sentul had risen by 82.2% in the first quarter of 2007 compared with the same period last year. He also said snatch thefts shot up by 600%, making the highly populated area one of the most troubled spots in the city.

Three days later, Federal CID Director Comm Datuk Christopher Wan Soo Kee said snatch theft cases in Sentul had dropped by 142 cases or 36.6% in the first three months of this year. As such, the crime rate in Sentul for that period increased by only 10.1%.

On Wednesday, Johari countered that his figures were given to him by the police themselves and that he had not made them up or taken them from blogs.

Yesterday, Deputy Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Abdul Najib Abdul Aziz came out in defence of Wan, saying that the CID Director’s numbers were accurate.

Najib said Wan’s crime figures “is the final, audited version” and that there is “no cover-up, no manipulation”, adding: “We have nothing to hide from the public”.

However, Najib said the conflicting figures could be due to the auditing process and re-classification of several case.

This is most ridiculous. Police credibility is not served with such a glib explanation. Can Najib explain how the reclassification of snatch-thefts could result in such a humongous difference between the 693.5% increase in the first three months in Sentul as stated by Johari in contrast to the drop of 36.6% for the same period as stated by Wan and the Police?

One version is not correct and either Johari or the Police is wrong. Why is Abdullah as the Internal Security Minister unable to publicly declare which version is correct, or whether both versions are wrong?

Or is it too difficult and complex for Abdullah to ascertain the true situation? Read the rest of this entry »


My worst fears confirmed – Abdullah does not read letters sent to him

My worst fears have been confirmed — the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi does not read letters sent to him or get a briefing on them and these letters disappear into the “black hole” of the Prime Minister’s Department.

When Abdullah was asked yesterday about a Japan Times report which allegedly implicated Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Taib Mahmud in a 1.1 billion yen (RM32 million) timber export kickbacks, he said no formal reports had been presented to him.
However, he said, he had asked the ACA to investigate the matter.

This is most shocking indeed as it was exactly a week ago that I had sent him an urgent letter to draw his attention to the Japan Times report asking him to personally reply in Parliament on Monday in the winding-up on the Royal Address debate in view of the recent snowballing of serious corruption allegations against high-profile leaders in his administration.

If the Prime Minister does not read and is not bothered to get briefed about an urgent letter from the Parliamentary Opposition Leader on serious corruption allegations against high-profile leaders in his administration appearing in the international media, gravely undermining Malaysia’s image and international competitiveness, who will expect the Prime Minister to have time for anyone who send him letters, petitions or appeals as their hope of last resort for justice? Read the rest of this entry »


Crime escalation – public spat between de facto Police Minister and Police

Crime escalation - public spat between de facto Police Minister and Police

The “war” between the Internal Security Ministry and the Police is definitely more warlike than the “all-out war against crime” or the earlier “all-out war against corruption” announced by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

The “all-out wars” against crime and corruption were just empty rhetoric but the “war” between the Internal Security Ministry and the Police have already sent sparks flying all over the country.

However, on a day when Malaysians are thoroughly disgusted and ashamed to read in the media of the RM200 million havoc at the grandiose Immigration Department headquarters at Putrajaya, where a burst pipe caused a torrent of thousands of litres of water flooding seven storeys of the building, forcing its closure and the evacuation of over 1,000 people thronging the immigration counters and the 600 immigration officers, the people are not amused at all by the ugly spectacle of the “cat-and-dog” fight between Internal Security Ministry and the Police.

Both incidents are disgraceful testimony that public service culture, standards and benchmarks have plummeted drastically in the 41-month premiership of Abdullah, with the “First-World Infrastructure, Third-World Mentality” Malaysian malaise becoming even more deeply-rooted and terminal instead of it being eradicated and replaced with a “First-World Infrastructure, First-World Mentality” mindset and ethos. Read the rest of this entry »