Archive for January 16th, 2008

Hishammuddin sets worst example for sensitivities in plural Malaysia?

I have received and put on my blog another complaint by a parent against a school principal – of SMK Bandar Utama 4 Damansara – about the lack of understanding and respect for the sensitivities and rights of diverse races, religions, languages and cultures in plural Malaysia which are the real assets of the country.

It is most shocking that the never before in the 50-year history of Malaysia have there been more “Little Napoleons” who have become school principals and administrators who lack the most elementary understanding and respect for the rights and sensitivities of diverse races, religions, languages and cultures of plural Malaysia. Read the rest of this entry »


Is MIC politics the most violent of all political parties – and if so, why?

I received SMS from Malaysian Indians expressing alarm at the statement by Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu yesterday (reported in the Sun) that he wanted to be MIC President for another ten years.

I do not know whether Samy Vellu was serious about wanting to be MIC President for another ten years but the alarm he created among Malaysian Indians to have him around for another ten years as the MIC President and sole Indian Cabinet Minister is very real and serious indeed!

This is because the Malaysian Indians have never felt more deprived, alienated and marginalized from the mainstream of national development after Samy Vellu’s more than 28 years as the MIC President and sole Indian Cabinet Minister – a fact which Samy Vellu had stubbornly refused to concede.

The investigations into the gangland-style murder of Johore MIC Deputy chief and Tenggaroh State Assemblyman, Datuk S. Krishnasamy last Friday seems to have taken a totally strange and surprising twist. Read the rest of this entry »


Abdullah’s shortest-lived guessing-game for any Prime Minister

Will the 12th general election be held in March this year or next year?

This is the guessing game the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi tried to provoke from Spain yesterday, but it is a guessing-game initiated by any Prime Minister which must go down in the Guinness Book of Records as having the shortest life-span, expiring the moment it was ventilated – as nobody is biting!

Abdullah, in Madrid for the First Alliance of Civilisations Annual Forum, had announced that he would be in Senegal in March to hand over the chairmanship of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference.

He raised the possibility of the next general election being held either this March or next March when asked if polls would be held before or after the OIC Summit. (The OIC website gave March 13-14, 2008 as the Islamic Summit Conference in Dakar, Senegal).

If Abdullah is serious that the next general election is not around the corner, then he should send out a clear and urgent message to the Cabinet and the whole administration to return to normalcy, as the whole government has ceased to operate normally but is on an election footing – making decisions and approvals “on-the-run” solely with voter support in mind although such decisions may only last for a few weeks until the next general election is over.

One good example is the announcement by the MCA President, Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting which made Chinese front-page headline news today but totally ignored by all English and Bahasa-language media, of a new Finance Ministry guideline to open school and other government contracts for supplies from RM10,000 to RM50,000 to all Malaysians when previously, all such contracts for supplies below RM50,000 were reserved only for bumiputras. Read the rest of this entry »


Yet Another Report on Reforming Higher Education!

By M Bakri Musa

It is a sure sign that local leaders are way over their heads (or refuse to make the tough decisions) when they start calling in expensive international consultants. This is the case with Higher Education Minister Mustapa Mohamad’s commissioning (together with the Economic Planning Unit of the Prime Minister’s Department) the World Bank that resulted in its report: Malaysia and the World Economy: Building a World-Class Higher Education System.

You can be certain that the report, 18 months in the making, was not cheap. That would be just the beginning. Consultants have a knack of making themselves indispensable, so expect even greater expenses when they are called in to help implement their recommendations.

Yet for all the expertise, wealth of data, and impressive comparative statistics presented in this 285-page report, its recommendations are nothing new or original. These include, among others, granting greater autonomy, meritocracy both in admitting students and recruiting faculty, rationalizing the role of the private sector, and emphasis on science, technology, and research.

What we lack is the political will to make the tough necessary decisions to implement them. Unfortunately no foreign experts no matter how skillful their powers of persuasion are can help in this arena. My only hope is that as those recommendations now carry the World Bank’s imprimatur, the natives are more likely to listen. Read the rest of this entry »


BU4 Damansara – another case of “Little Napoleon” and school principal “insensitivity”?

by MB

I would like to bring to your attention, the latest happening in SMK Bandar Utama 4 Damansara (near Ikano Power Centre). This school has about 85% of its students who are Chinese. Its first HM is a Chinese and followed by a Malay lady. All this while, the school has a proud tradition of good old days where students can wear shorts for PE lesson, celebration of major Chinese festival like Chinese New Year, cheerleading team and secular school type of school assembly.

Unfortunately, all these good times are gone with the coming of a new Malay headmistress who is a religious bigot. With 10% Muslim students, she is now imposing “bacaan doa” during assembly, banning of the cheerleading team, not more wearing of shorts for PE and the worse of all is that for the coming CNY, the school can have a lion dance performance by WITHOUT the DRUM.

This is really absurd because the Chinese drums are very noisy. How can a minority group in the school imposed their values on the majority group – another case of insensitivity among the Muslims