Archive for March 23rd, 2008

Plight of JPA medical scholars

by Frustrated JPA scholar

I am a medical student sponsored by JPA to study in Ireland about to complete my studies. I write to you after reading your article on the rot of the Malaysian healthcare system. We JPA scholars here have been very frustrated with the JPA enforcing us to immediately return to the country upon graduation, barring us from continuing training as interns (equivalent of houseman) in the countries where we graduated from This would mean we cannot obtain the sufficient exposure that would make our training complete, and would off course, mean a waste of taxpayers money as there would have been no difference with studying locally.

JPA had announced recently that none of its medical scholars overseas will be allowed the opportunity to do further train overseas even at their own expanses, and are to return ASAP upon graduation. No scholar would be allowed to stay on regardless of the training posts they obtain upon graduation. To add to the spice of JPA’s foolishness, it seems that JPA gives priority to romantic relationships over the academic achievements of its scholars by giving exception to remain overseas to those who are married to a fellow JPA/MARA sponsored student who are still commencing studies in the foreign country concerned.

Till today, I have yet to comprehend the narrow minded policies set by the JPA. JPA seems to fail to understand that by allowing its scholars to stay on for postgraduate training, many will be offered positions in world-renowned healthcare institutions. The exposure and experience gained through these positions would be an invaluable asset to the country and the rakyat in the future. Unfortunately, JPA seems to be adamant in having fresh graduate doctors returning to receive Malaysian medical training, instead of allowing these fresh grads to further train themselves and one day return as first world specialists who will reform and infuse new uptodate skills in Malaysian Healthcare a few years down the road. Read the rest of this entry »


Siapa yang biadap sekarang

by Md Asmawi Md Nor

Saya bersetuju bahawa Saudara telah tersilap dalam isu majlis angkat sumpah MB Perak tetapi saya juga sangat hormat apabila Saudara dengan cepat menyedari kesilapan tersebut dan dengan segera memperbetulkannya dan melakukan tindakan yang tepat dengan memohon maaf kepada pihak istana secara peribadi. Tahniah atas tindakan anda tersebut.

Nah, sekarang Terengganu pula menghadapi isu yang sama dimana 23 Adun dengan segera mengumumkan untuk memboikot majlis angkat sumpah MB Terengganu yang dijangka akan diadakan esok sebaik sahaja ayam tambatan mereka Idris Jusoh tidak terpilih sebagai MB. Seperti biasa, media UMNO Utusan Malaysia akan bersikap ‘double-standard’ dalam menanggani isu ini. Maksud saya secara spesifik ialah bila mana Saudara mengeluarkan statement dalam isu MB Perak dulu, Utusan Malaysia dengan segera dan ‘bold’ terus dengan muka depan “DAP Biadap’, dan dikuti dengan pelbagai rentetan propaganda dan provokasi lagi. Saya sebagai rakyat Terengganu mahukan perkara yang sama kali ini dilakukan oleh Utusan Malaysia dalam menanggani isu 23 Adun yang biadap ini termasuk Idris Jusoh. Tajuk yang perlu keluar dimuka depan mereka sekurang-kurangnya ’23 Adun Biadap’. Mereka semua juga perlu memohon maaf seperti mana yang Saudara lakukan dahulu.

Saya amat berharap Saudara dapat memantau isu ini dengan diberi perhatian istimewa agar UMNO khasnya sedar jangan hanya pandai melihat orang lain biadap tetapi mereka sendiri boleh bersikap biadap dan bertindak sesuka hati mereka. Macamlah negara ini tiada undang-undang.



Penang housing development – comment

by Steven

I am a regular employee who works for an international company in Penang Bayan Lepas Free Trade Zone Industrial Area.

I have been working here close to seven years.

What I notice something seriously is the Penang landed housing property is going up tremendously.

I think that it is fair for the housing developers to buy the Penang lands and build whatever they like.

Realizing the Penang land price expensive, of course it is normal scenario to maximize the gain to build either luxury condominiums, three stories link houses or bungalows.

A quick check on the price is going to above RM600,000 and some could reach millions of dollars. As a result, only the upper income community or foreigners (who wants to utilize MMH2) can purchase these types of properties. Read the rest of this entry »


Farewell to the Homogenous Malay

(Note: This is the English version of the same article that will published soon as part of the compilation of articles by Dr. Farish A. Noor, entitled “Di Balik Malaysia: Dari Majapahit Ke Putrajaya”)

By Farish A. Noor

‘Takkan Melayu Hilang di Dunia’ (Never Shall the Malays Cease to Be): Hang Tuah’s legendary call to arms rings a note of defiance laced with anxiety and speaks volumes about the perennial angst of a people whose place and standing in the world was never a thing to be taken for granted. Read in its proper context the full meaning of the statement becomes clear: here was the call for unity by a fabled hero that came at a time of flux and change, when the shifting fortunes of Malacca was tilting on the side of impending defeat at the hands of the Portuguese.

Yet sadly, as is always the case, the story of Tuah has been misread and mis-appropriated for other ends that have more to do with politics and less to do with history. Beloved by the right-wing conservatives among us, the dissected figure of Tuah has been robbed of his pacifist, mystical and philosophical leanings, leaving us with only the static figure of a cardboard two-dimensional ethno-nationalist who surprisingly resembles many of the Mat Rempit-wannabe types who make up the rank and file of UMNO Youth today. We forget that at the end of the Hikayat Hang Tuah epic Tuah himself abandons his keris and turns his back on his king, renouncing the world and turning his attention to the salvation of his soul instead. Yet this sorrowful figure has been cut-and-pasted today to suit the ethno-nationalist agenda of the race-warriors and demagogues.

Today that fear of permanent loss and historical erasure has gripped the hearts and minds of many a right-wing Malay communalist in the wake of the 12th General Elections and the dismal (and deserved) failure of UMNO in particular. That Kelantan could have fallen to PAS was a somewhat different matter, for the conventional wisdom that takes the place of reason in this country of ours assumes that even if Kelantan was to fall under the heels of the Mullahs, they would still be Malay Mullahs, and that the sacred soil of Tanah Melayu would still be in Malay hands.

Rather the fear we see today has been directed towards the loss of the more plural and cosmopolitan states of the West coast, where the DAP has made great (and deserved) strides in Penang, Perak and Selangor. Already the pathetic spectacle of ethno-communal fear and loathing has been played out in the public domain: Demonstrations in Penang were organised with the calculated intention of scaring the Malays into thinking that their land was up for grabs and that the vainglorious notion of Ketuanan Melayu was being eclipsed. The vernacular Malay press in particular has gone into overdrive, harping on and on incessantly about every perceived slight and injury to Malay pride, their editorials littered with the recognised markers of discontent: ‘Biadab, kurang sopan’ are the accusations that have been levelled in no uncertain terms. Read the rest of this entry »