Archive for August, 2008

UMNO/BN – political dinosaurs irrelevant to Merdeka II aspirations of new generation of Bangsa Malaysia

In his 51st National Day message last night, the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said he hoped that every Malaysian could give importance to solidarity.

However, Abdullah had himself set the bad example of failing to give top priority to national unity and solidarity in plural Malaysia, or he would not have adopted a lackadaisical and irresponsible stance on the legitimate protests over the highly racist, divisive and provocative remarks by the Bukit Bendera Umno division chief Datuk Ahmad Ismail during the Permatang Pauh by-election campaign belittling the Chinese community in Malaysia as “orang tumpangan” who could not be trusted as Malaysians.

In defending Ahmad Ismail by claiming that the Penang Umno leader had not meant what he said, Abdullah was condoning Ahmad Ismail’s insensitive, offensive and racist remarks when he should have lived up to his pledge repeated many times before that he would be Prime Minister for all Malaysians and not of any one race.

The Prime Minister has again disappointed Malaysians with another breach of his many sweet-sounding pledges when he became Prime Minister five years ago.

In the past few days, various levels of the MCA and Gerakan (and even SUPP), and their youth and women wings, reaching as high as MCA Minister, Datuk Liow Tiong Lai, MCA Deputy Minister Dr. Wee Ka Siong and Acting Gerakan President, Tan Sri Dr. Koh Tsu Koon had been making public noises demanding disciplinary action against Ahmad Ismail.

With the Prime Minister coming out with such a weak, ineffective and useless response in virtually protecting Ahmad Ismail from having to face any disciplinary action, are the MCA, Gerakan and SUPP leaders again going to capitulate or will they pursue the matter in Cabinet next week as well as demand an emergency meeting of the Barisan Nasional supreme council for stern disciplinary action to be taken against Ahmad Ismail so as not to make a mockery of the 51st Merdeka celebrations?

The Ahmad Ismail episode is the latest example that Umno and the Barisan Nasional have become political dinosaurs irrelevant to and incapable of adapting to the Merdeka II aspirations of the new generation of Bangsa Malaysia who want to see justice, fair play, moderation and good governance. Read the rest of this entry »


10 highlights of Merdeka II for a new Malaysia

I rose up in Parliament last week, 21st August 2008, to point out that although the 51st Merdeka anniversary was ten days away, the country was never so devoid of National Day enthusiasm with so little cause for celebration.

This was because in the past six months since the March 8 “political tsunami”, what obsessed the ruling politicians were “ketuanan Melayu”, “kedaulatan Melayu” and “perpaduan Melayu” when the national focus after half-a-century of nationhood should have been “Malaysian unity”.

Who knows what is the theme of the official National Day celebrations this year? The overwhelming majority of Malaysians, including Barisan Nasional leaders, just don’t know.

The official National Day theme this year is “Unity, the core of success”. It is humdrum, pedestrian, uninspiring and even meaningless in the midst of keris-wielding and shouts of “perpaduan Melayu”.

If the official National Day theme is to touch the hearts of all Malaysians and be a binding and inspiring slogan for all citizens in the country, then it should be amended to: “Malaysian Unity, the core of success”.

The Barisan Nasional government has failed in its first fundamental task – to be the government for all Malaysians. Read the rest of this entry »


Chinese “squatters” in Malaysia – why no MCA/Gerakan ultimatum in PP by-election?

In the past three days, spokespersons and branches of MCA and Gerakan and their youth sections have been protesting in the media against the racist remark by the Bukit Bendera Umno division chief Ahmad Ismail during the Permatang Pauh by-election campaign making derogatory reference to the Malaysian Chinese as “squatters” in the country.

Daily protests are being made in the MCA and Gerakan, including calling for MCA and Gerakan to quit the Barisan Nasional, if top Umno leaders do not take strong disciplinary action against Ahmad.

Ahmad’s speech was reported in the Chinese media on Monday, 25th August 2008 – the eve of the Permatang Pauh by-election on August 26.

Why didn’t the MCA and Gerakan Ministers and leaders take a strong stand on Monday itself to issue an ultimatum that Ahmad apologise and withdraw the racist remark, failing which they would pull out of the Barisan Nasional by-election campaign in Permatang Pauh? Read the rest of this entry »


2009 Budget – Abdullah fighting for his political life

“Abdullah attacks ‘populist’ claims while presenting populist budget”

This thought occurred to me when the Prime Minister-cum-Finance Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi announced a string of goodies in his 2009 Budget in Parliament today, including the following:

“Those who use less than RM20 of electricity per month will not be charged.”

One would have thought that Abdullah is preparing to fight an early general election if one had not been held just less than six months ago from which Abdullah and the Barisan Nasional emerged badly mauled – followed by another blow to the solar plexus in the Permatang Pauh by-election only three days ago.

But Abdullah was fighting for his political life when he presented the 2009 Budget. Read the rest of this entry »


Permatang Pauh by-election – who is the silliest of them all?

1. The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi?

The loss suffered by the Barisan Nasional in the Permatang Pauh by-election should not be read as an emerging trend for other constituencies.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi stressed that while the loss was something to be concerned about, the situation had not reached a “worrying level” as Barisan Nasional still controlled 140 seats after the March 8 general election.

“We can still continue with the government. We are aware of the mandate given to us and we will work hard to deliver,” he said. (The Star 28.8.08)

“After all, the last general election gave us a strong victory. We are only eight seats short of a two-thirds majority, it is not that we lost by 20 or 30 seats, only eight seats. We have a very strong government.” (New Straits Times 28.8.08)

Comment: Barisan Nasional achieved “a strong victory” in the March 8, 2008 general election? Abdullah must be living in a completely different world, when he could console himself as having achieved “a strong victory” what had been described as a “political tsunami” with BN candidates falling like nine-pins, sending the BN into the Opposition in five states and ending the hitherto unbroken BN two-thirds parliamentary majority?

Abdullah is in double trouble – he has not woken up from his slumber and he is suffering from terminal denial syndrome. Read the rest of this entry »


101 East : The Anwar Comeback

From :

The Al-Jazeera channel will air The Anwar Comeback on the 101 East programme at 8.30pm (Malaysian time) tonight.

It will be repeated on

– August 29: 3.30am, 11.00am & 2.30pm
– August 30: 10.00pm
– August 31: 1.30pm
– September 1: 9.30am
– September 2: 6.30pm
– September 3: 3.30pm
– September 4: 2.00pm

Kit Siang et al will appear briefly as guests at the beginning, to be followed by anchor Teymour Nabili’s one-on-one with Anwar.


Pakatan Rakyat attracts new members because of its philosophy not money

by Dr. Chen Man Hin

Ex-Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir remarked that Pakatan Rakyat cannot attract Barisan Nasional MPs to join its party with money because they are rich and would not be influenced by bribes.

He is right on the mark as PR is not a party grouping with rich and wealthy leaders and therefore do not have the resources to resort to bribery.

Pakatan Rakyat is attractive because it has an ideology which is a winning formula to bring about reforms and changes for a better Malaysia.

There are many Barisan leaders who are disenchanted with Umno because of its corruption, cronyism and racial policies. These dissatisfied leaders are welcome to join Pakatan Rakyat on their own volition, if they accept PR’s policies of democracy, justice, freedom of religion , rule of law and transparency. Read the rest of this entry »


Malaysia Today blocked – MSC Bill of Guarantees Violated

In my interjection during the debate on the DNA Bill in Parliament this morning, I had raised the blocking of popular website Malaysia Today on the directive of the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) and the violation of the Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC) Bill of Guarantees as “a gift to the world” of no censorship of the Internet by the Malaysian authorities.

I quoted it as the latest example of the rampant abuses of power by the government which explains why there is so little public confidence in the independence, professionalism and impartiality of the various enforcement agencies with the vast powers as proposed in the proposed DNA bill.

Almost all key institutions of the state, whether the Attorney-General’s Chambers, the Police, the Anti-Corruption Agency or the judiciary have come under a grave cloud and lost the high respect and public standing they were held by Malaysians in the early years of nationhood.

The MCMC directive to block Malaysia Today and the violation of the MSC Bill of Guarantees must be roundly and unanimously condemned by all right-thinking Malaysians, and the reasons cannot be more eloquently summarised by Jeffrey in another thread: Read the rest of this entry »


How petty can you be, Shabery?

All the newspapers reported on the front pages that Anwar Ibrahim would be sworn in as MP for Permatang Pauh today and that the swearing-in will be telecast live over RTM, which airs the first 30 minutes of the daily parliamentary sittings from 10 am.

It will be no exaggeration to say that since the introduction of the 30-minute parliamentary live telecast by RTM since April, there has never been such greater national interest in the RTM live telecast as this morning to witness the historic return of Anwar to Parliament after a decade-long enforced absence because of political persecution and victimisation.

I did not realise that there was no RTM live telecast of Anwar’s taking his oath as MP until I was asked about it by the press when I came out of the Chamber about an hour later and I received angry reactions by Malaysians who felt “cheated” of the live RTM telecast.

How petty can you be, Information Minister, Datuk Shabry Cheek that you should indulge in such puerile tactics as to veto RTM from proceeding with its live telecast of Anwar’s swearing-in?

Why are the Barisan Nasional Ministers and leaders so afraid of one man that there should be a ministerial directive to veto the live telecast of Anwar taking his oath of office – after the live RTM telecast had been announced and reported in all the newspapers today? Read the rest of this entry »


Anwar takes his seat as Opposition Leader

Anwar Ibrahim has been sworn in as Member of Parliament for Permatang Pauh when Parliament met this morning following his historic win in Tuesday’s by-election.

The Speaker, Tan Sri Pandikar Amin welcomed Anwar’s return to Parliament after an enforced absence of a decade and announced his appointment as Parliamentary Opposition Leader with immediate effect.

Like the SAPP MP for Sepanggar, Datuk Eric Majimbun (who asked the first question this morning) and the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz, I took the occasion when putting up a supplementary question of Project Mahathir in Sabah to congratulate Anwar’s return to Parliament after being forced out of the highest legislative chamber of the land for a decade following a second political tsunami in the Permatang Pauh by-election.

I also remarked that Anwar’s return to Parliament is taking place at a time when the the Barisan Nasional ship of state is behaving like the Titanic before its unforgettable sinking into the bottom of the sea.


Rise of PP voters as pioneers of Bangsa Malaysia generation shaming Umno, MCA, Gerakan, MIC leaders for their race politics

The Permatang Pauh by-election and Anwar Ibrahim’s victory is a historic milestone in Malaysian nation-building and political development for three reasons.

It is firstly a ringing endorsement of the March 8 “political tsunami” where Malaysians transcended race, religion and political affiliation to vote as one people to demand an end to the decades of Barisan Nasional misrule, abuses of power, corruption and human rights violations.

It demonstrates that the 12th general election results which saw the establishment of five Pakatan Rakyat state governments and the end of the unbroken two-thirds parliamentary majority of the Barisan Nasional represented the deep-seated aspirations of Malaysians and not a fluke shot or fleeting phenomenon.

Secondly, it is an unmistakable verdict on behalf of 27 million Malaysians at their disappointment with the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, the Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak, the Cabinet and the Barisan Nasional component parties at their failure in the past six months after the March 8 general election to end the deepening crisis of confidence and restore public trust and faith in the government as well as a censure of Abdullah’s failure to honour his renewed pledges to implement wide-ranging reforms, especially the police, the judiciary and on anti-corruption.

Thirdly, the rise of Permatang Pauh voters as the pioneers of the Bangsa Malaysia generation rejecting and putting to shame Umno, MCA, Gerakan and MIC Ministers and leaders for their dirty, immoral and racist politics in the 10-day by-election campaign.

Until yesterday, there was nothing for Malaysians to celebrate in the forthcoming 51st National Day on August 31. Read the rest of this entry »


Permatang Pauh reinforces message of March 8th

by Dr. Chen Man Hin


Anwar Ibrahim won by a clear majority of 15,671 votes in a constituency representative of the multiracial composition in Malaysia.

It is a very significant victory for the Pakatan Rakyat philosopy of democracy, justice, racial equality, freedom of religion, rule of law and transparency.

It is particularly significant as Malays form 69% of the electorate (41,000) with a good mix of Chinese and other races.

This is particulary galling to UMNO to see that their traditional Malay ground has rejected their policy of ketuanan melayu, corruption and cronysm.

The people of Permatang Pauh have spoken for the people of malaysia. They want change for a new Malaysia where all Malaysians whether Malays, Chinese, Indians, and indigenous races of Kadazans, Ibans, Bidayuhs and others, have an equal and just place under the Malaysian sun. Read the rest of this entry »


FLASH NEWS (3) Official PP result

Anwar 31,195
BN 15,524
Ind 92
Majority 15,671


FLASH NEWS (2)! Anwar’s majority more than Azizah’s

Permatang Pauh by-election – history in the making. Anwar’s majority should be a few thousands more than azizah’s majority – in the 16,000 region.

[ sys admin – we are moving into strip down mode to cope with the increased load on the server ]


STOP PRESS! Latest! Anwar’s majority more than Azizah’s

Counting of the by-election result proceeding. From all indications, Anwar Ibrahim’s majority will be more than Wan Azizah’s majority in March 8 general election, which was 13,398 votes.


A Merdeka upside down?

by Azly Rahman

“Our Nation, Malaysia is dedicated to: Achieving a greater unity for all her people; maintaining a democratic way of life; creating a just society in which the wealth of the nation shall be equitably distributed; ensuring a liberal approach to her rich and diverse cultural tradition, and building a progressive society which shall be oriented to modern science and technology.

We, the people of Malaysia, pledge our united efforts to attain these ends, guided by these principles:

• Belief in God

• Loyalty to King and Country

• Upholding the Constitution

• Sovereignty of the Law, and

• Good Behaviour and Morality”

– From the Rukunegara, circa 1970

The words above constructed and proclaimed in 1970, after the bloody riots of May 13, 1969, contain internal contradictions if we are to analyse them today.

As we approach Aug 31, our independence or Merdeka Day, we read the following stories: Read the rest of this entry »


No smooth 2009 Budget presentation if Anwar is not sworn in as MP to become Opposition Leader

A spate of news reports quoting the Speaker, Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia as saying that the oath-taking ceremony to swear in the winner of the Permatang Pauh by-election today would most likely be held in mid-October and that he did not see any urgency to “fix a quick date” has raised eye-brows all round and thrown up a flurry of questions.

There can be no doubt that if the Barisan Nasional candidate Datuk Arif Shah Omar wins the Permatang Pauh by-election, he would definitely be sworn in as MP in Parliament this week, latest by Thursday if not tomorrow itself – so that it could be used by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi as a much-needed confidence-booster after the devastation suffered by the Barisan Nasional in the March 8 “political tsunami” relegating the Barisan Nasional to the Opposition benches in five states – Penang, Selangor, Perak, Kedah and Kelantan – and depriving for the first time in Malaysian history of its two-thirds parliamentary majority.

I believe nobody in Malaysia doubts that if Arif could win the Permatang Pauh by-election today, he would be sworn in as MP in Parliament tomorrow or latest by Thursday.

Why then should the position be any different if Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim is re-elected as MP for the constituency and storms back to Parliament with a historic majority?

Abdullah, the Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak who had spearheaded the Barisan Nasional Permatang Pauh by-election campaign to be a 4Ds campaign – the dirtiest and the most disgraceful, dishonourable and divisive election strategy – and other Barisan Nasional leaders may not want to see Anwar return to Parliament in triumph to take his seat as the Parliamentary Opposition Leader exactly opposite Abdullah for 2009 Budget presentation on Friday, but this is not for them but for the voters of Permatang Puah to decide today! Read the rest of this entry »


One Bangsa – 50 years on?

by Jeff Lim
Man on the Street

I am 51 years of age, Malaysian, a self made businessman, married with 3 adult children and living in Penang. I am just a down to earth man on the street earning a decent living and community service is part of my life. If there is RM50 to give away now. There are many individuals and families who would need it desperately just to get a square meal and get by a few days.

It saddens me to see disparity amongst the races and politicians fighting pitching against themselves and within themselves. This country is a mad house. A truly Malaysia context should be fighting for all Malaysians and energy and time should be use to address other priority issues.

The wealth indicators are often used to display the racial social standing status in terms of success and wealth. Chinese have much to be proud of. They could be better if not for the brain drain and political agendas. The others have only grievances to complain about one after another, simply because their living skills to help themselves is seriously lacking.

Yes, we lack true leadership in shaping the country. Singapore, our neighbour has forever been used as an exemplary example. Irrespective of who you are, be it a Malay, Chinese, Indian, whatever colour, meritocracy is the ONLY way of life. Nothing must stand in the way, nor politics nor religion nor corruption. In the days of P.Ramlee, we were all just one. Why must it be different now. Read the rest of this entry »


Permatang Pauh voters – tryst with destiny

Polling for the Permatang Pauh by-election has just started.

This a tryst with destiny for the voters of Permatang Pauh. They have the opportunity to make history for themselves, 27 million Malaysians and future generations for a new Malaysia.

Let the Permatang Pauh by-election mark the rise of a pioneer generation of Bangsa Malaysia to herald the beginning of the new politics of Bangsa Malaysia to liberate Malaysians from the divisive and negative politics of race and graft of the Barisan Nasional.

In the past 10 days, UMNO and Barisan Nasional leaders pulled out all the stops to conduct the dirtiest, most disgusting and dishonourable election campaign in the 51-year history of nation, breaking all election laws against money politic and violating all moral and ethical principles of a clean and honest election campaign.

As I said in two eve-of-polling ceramahs last night, there is no doubt of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim being re-elected as MP for Permatang Pauh and his return to Parliament after an absence of a decade.

The only question is Anwar’s majority. I will not be satisfied unless it is an even bigger majority than Datuk Seri Dr. Wan Azizah Wan Ismail’s 13,398-vote majority in the March 8 “political tsunami” – to trigger a mini political tsunami in Malaysia by itself!

Let us be a witness to PP’s tryst with destiny.


American-Style Crony Capitalism

by M. Bakri Musa

Beware of lecturing others; you may have to learn that same lesson. And sooner than you may think!

In 1983 when the Soviets shot down a Korean Airline 747 jet, there was outrage especially in America, and rightly so. How could those Russians be so barbaric? How could they not recognize a jumbo jet on a clear moonlit night? Barely five years later, an American missile cruiser shot down Iran Air Flight 655 on a clear morning, also killing hundreds of innocent passengers.

As an aside, the Soviet general who ordered the shooting was disgraced while the American commander was honored upon his retirement.

In 1997 with an economic contagion destroying much of Asia’s recently-gained prosperity, the ‘Washington consensus’ demanded, as the price for its much-needed assistance, greater transparency, end of crony capitalism, and “shock therapy” to wean citizens off subsidies.

A decade later, with America reeling from its humongous sub-prime mortgage mess that threatens its (and the global) financial edifice, there is little indication that America is willing to learn the very lessons it dogmatically preached earlier to Asia and the world. Read the rest of this entry »