Archive for May 11th, 2007

Ketuanan Melayu – are students taught that this is mere history which contradicts Bangsa Malaysia and Vision 2020?

History students must be taught that “Ketuanan Melayu”is a concept pertaining to a past historical era but not pertinent to Malaysia of today as it contradicts the Bangsa Malaysia concept of Vision 2020

Parliament has set up the Select Committee on unity and national service to grapple with difficult and hard issues pertaining to national unity and nation-building.

The task and challenge of the Select Committee is to wrestle with these great issues and give its considered recommendations “and not just transmit the government’s stand or views.

I find that on many issues raised by those who attended the public hearings of the Select Committee, the Select Committee took the easy way out by responding either with “take note” (ambil maklum) or “acknowledges comment” (memperakui ulasan) based on the relevant Ministries’ official replies.

This is utterly useless as this is not the role for which the Select Committee had been set up by Parliament and it should not shirk from its duty to take a stand on the issues pertaining to national unity and integration which had been brought to its attention.

Let me give one illustration.

I refer to the submission by the DAP Secretary-General Lim Guan Eng to the Select Committee on 29th April 2005 on education . The topic, as noted in page 88 of the report, is to “eliminate racist concepts” in Form 3 and Form 5 history textbooks which dwelt on the concept of “Ketuanan Melayu”. Read the rest of this entry »


Is there not a single woman BN MP who will stand up for Po Kuan and women dignity and condemn the sexist BN MP duo?

Click PLAY to watch for Video of sexist BN MPs in action

FLASH video of sexist BN MPs in action (1) youTubegoogle

Click PLAY to watch for Video of sexist BN MPs let off the hook (2)

video of sexist BN MPs let off the hook (2) youTube (Part 1) & (Part 2)google

The Speaker, Tan Sri Ramli Talib did not instantly reject the privilege motion under Standing Order 26(1)(p) when it was tabled by DAP MP for Batu Gajah Fong Po Kuan who had stood up in the Dewan Rakyat when it started its meeting yesterday at 10 am to refer the two sexist Barisan Nasional (BN) MPs for making crude, derogatory, sexist and offensive remarks directed at Po Kuan in particular and women in general.

Instead, Ramli asked for time for him to announce his decision at 2.30 pm.

This could only mean that Ramli was convinced of the strength and merit of Po Kuan’s complaint — which was indeed very serious with sexist MPs abusing their parliamentary privilege to denigrate a woman MP, which is also a slur to all Malaysian women — that he did not immediately dismiss Po Kuan’s application.

It is both wrong and unfortunate that in the end, Ramli decided to “knock out” Po Kuan’s privilege motion on a ground of technicality, ignoring the substantive complaint and leaving unresolved two issues:

  • The public dishonouring and humiliation of Po Kuan because she is a woman MP by two sexist BN MPs;
  • The misuse and abuse of their parliamentary privilege to besmirch and dishonour Parliament in demeaning and degrading the highest political and legislative chamber in the land to make crude, vulgar, sexist and offensive remarks.
  • The insult not only to Po Kuan but to all Malaysian women, making this year’s Mother’s Day the most meaningless one, when Parliament could be exploited to make vulgar, derogatory and sexist remarks.

I am particularly disappointed that no woman BN MP had stood up in solidarity with Po Kuan and all Malaysian women who were insulted by the two sexist BN MPs.

Is there not a single woman BN MPs who will stand up to speak up for women dignity and condemn the two sexist BN MPs for their derogatory, crude, sexist and offensive remarks about Fong Po Kuan? Read the rest of this entry »


Grim and bleak Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day on Sunday in Malaysia this year has become very grim and bleak because of gender-insensitivities of Barisan Nasional (BN) MPs as well as increasing incidence in the country of family break-ups because of religion.

I will not go into the disgraceful episode in the last two days of two BN MPs dishonouring women and Parliament with their crude, sexist and gender-offensive remarks.

There is also the other heart-rending development of increasing incidence of families being broken up because of religion, whether Subashini, Marimuthu, Revathi, Benedict Gopal or Magendran – all very cases.

Take the case of rubber-tapper Marimuthu who was happily married to Raimah Bibi a/p Noordin for 21 years with seven children but who was forcibly separated from them on the ground that his wife was a Muslim. Although Marimuthu has got back all his children, the family is broken up as the children do not have a mother with them in the house and Raimah Bibi is separated from the husband and children — although there can be no doubt that they would want to be reunited as one family again but religion is standing in the way.

All religions inculcate good values of family love, compassion and unity and no religion would work to disrupt happy families.

This trend is most unhealthy and disruptive of family unity and development, national integration and inter-religious understanding and harmony and warrants the most urgent attention for a solution to be found to stop more and more break-up of families because of religion. Read the rest of this entry »


Last-minute ban on international Muslim-Christian diagloue – big blow to Malaysia’s reputation as model multi-religious nation

When tabling the motion for the House to accept the interim report of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Unity and National Service, the Select Committee Chairman and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Dr. Maximus Ongkili said the government encouraged inter-religious dialogue to promote inter-religious understanding and national integration.

The latest development in this field questions the seriousness of the government’s commitment to inter-religious dialogue.

I have here the London Times report today headlined “Summit on religious harmony is thrown into discord by Malaysia” which reads:

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, has suffered a serious setback in his attempts to foster Muslim-Christian dialogue after the Malaysian Government banned an interfaith conference he was due to be chairing this week.

Christian and Muslim scholars from around the world had bought air tickets, written papers and begun to pack their bags for the Building Bridges conference, the sixth in a series intended to foster dialogue between the two religions. It was cancelled with just two weeks notice. Read the rest of this entry »


Let off despite ‘sexist’ remarks – media reports

(1) Motion over ‘menstruation’ remarks rejected
Ooi Kelly and Bede Hong
May 10, 07 6:47pm

The Dewan Rakyat today rejected a motion by Opposition MP Fong Po Kuan who wanted two BN members of Parliament censured for making comments about her menstruation.

Amidst pandemonium that broke out during the afternoon’s debate over the leaks in Parliament yesterday, Bung Mokhtar Radin (BN — Kinabatangan) had stood and made off-mike comments over the Batu Gajah parliamentarian’s menstrual cycle.

His comments were carried today by Utusan Malaysia, China Press and Sin Chew Daily.

Mohd Said Yusof (BN — Jasin) was also named for censure making similar remarks.
This morning, Fong called for a motion under the Standing Order 26 (1P) to refer the two BN MPs to the Committee of Privileges.

However Speaker Ramli Ngah Talib shot down the motion, with reason that the issue was not raised at the time of incident.

Technical knock out

DAP MPs protested that they had not heard the comments made by the two BN MPs due to the commotion in the House.

“During the incident at 12:37 pm yesterday, the offending remarks were uttered. The YBs have a chance to voice their displeasure (then). However, this issue was put forth only this morning,” said Ramli.

“As the matter must be raised at the time of the incident, and the issue occurred yesterday, I must reject the motion for the Standing Order,” he added.
Opposition leader Lim Kit Siang protested: “… the remarks were not heard yesterday. There was chaos and pandemonium. The earliest that we knew of the remarks was this morning when the comments were published [by several national dailies].”

“Do we allow this sexist, offensive remarks to pass. They are celebrating, that the motion is rejected,” said Lim, pointing at BN MPs who were thumping at their desks.

De-facto law minister Nazri Aziz, who read out the bills of the day, left the Dewan Rakyat at this juncture.

Insulting to all women

In a press conference later, Fong expressed her regret over the decision: “I feel sad that no woman MP in the Dewan just now voiced their objection to the comments that were insulting to all women.

DAP MP Teresa Kok said the matter was not new: “Each time a gender sensitive issue comes out … each time derogatory remarks were made against women, there is no action taken by the speaker.”

Lim said, “The Kinabatangan MP (Mokhtar) behaved as though he has no mother, or daughters or sisters. And the BN can thump unashamedly at the rejection of the motion on technical ground.”

Lim called on the prime minister to “discipline the two BN MPs.”

Both MPs did not deny making the comments. Read the rest of this entry »