Archive for October 15th, 2008

Hindraf ban – retrogressive/vindictive hampering nation-building healing process

The banning of Hindraf by the Home Minister, Datuk Seri Hamid Albar must be deplored in the strongest possible terms.

It is a retrogressive, vindictive and petty step which will hamper the nation-building healing process vital for Malaysians to feel one and united people again.

Instead of reaching out to the Malaysian Indian community to resolve the root political, socio-economic, cultural and religious causes which have made Malaysian Indians an alienated and aggrieved community as the new underclass in the country, ham-fisted measures to ban Hindraf will only aggravate the disaffection among the Indian community.

Coming in his last five months as Prime Minister, the ban on Hindraf is also testimony to the failure of Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to take nation-building to a new and more mature level. Read the rest of this entry »


The RM2.3 billion Eurocopter fiasco – suspend Letter of Intent

The first thing Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi did as Defence Minister was to announce on 26th September that the Defence Ministry has agreed to acquire new helicopters from European helicopter manufacturer, the Eurocopter, to replace the Nuri.

This RM2 billion deal lacks accountability and integrity.

Four helicopters had been “short-listed” by the Ministry of Defence to replace the fleet of Sikorsky S61-A4 Sea Kings better known as the Nuri.

The four are the Eurocopter Cougar EC725, Sikorsky S92, Agusta Westland EH-101 Merlin and the Russian-made Mil Mi-17 Hip.

However, Abdullah shocked everyone with his announcement as the “short-listing” had not been completed and the pricing of the EC725 is not competitive compared with the other helicopters.

The pricing offered by the “short-listed” helicopters are:

Eurocopter Cougar EC 725 – Euro 463.44 juta (RM2.317 billion);
Sikorsky – US$427.20 juta (RM1.45 billion)
Canadian Kelowna Flightcraft Ltd. Model Kazan MI-172 buatan Russia
– US$312 juta (RM1.061 billion)

This means that there is a difference of RM1.256 billion between Eurocopter Cougar EC 725 with the lowest bidder, the Kazan MI-172 KF – in other words, with US$600 million the Royal Malaysian Air Force can buy 26 units of Kazan helicopters and not just 12 Cougar helicopters. Read the rest of this entry »


Salahlaku Ketua Polis Negara

1. Sewaan Helikopter. Pada pertengahan tahun 2007, Kementerian Keselamatan Dalam Negeri telah diarahkan oleh Perdana Menteri merangkap Menteri Keselamatan Dalam Negeri untuk menyewa 34 buah helikopter daripada syarikat Asiacopter selama 30 tahun.

Anggaran kos penyewaan ini ialah RM20 billion. Cadangan PDRM kepada kerajaan di bawah Rancangan Malaysia Ke-9 ialah membeli 8 buah helikopter dengan peruntukan sebanyak RM272 juta, dan saya difahamkan 8 helikopter adalah jauh lebih dan mencukupi untuk kegunaan PDRM.

Soalan saya ialah, apakah perlunya PDRM menyewa 34 buah helikopter daripada Asiacopter Sdn Bhd walhal cadangan PDRM kepada kerajaan pada asalnya hanya membeli 8 helikopter sahaja?

Apakah perlunya PDRM menggunakan wang sebanyak RM20 billion untuk menyewa 34 buah helikopter ini?

Kenapakah PDRM tidak menggunakan peruntukan ini dalam usaha pembasmian jenayah dan peningkatan gaji dan elaun anggota polis, tetapi ia disalurkan untuk menyewa 34 buah helikopter?

Kenapakah pihak KPN bersungguh-sungguh dengan projek ini sehingga menghantar surat bertarikh 12hb Febrari 2007 terus kepada Menteri Kewangan 2 untuk memohon kelulusan rundingan terus untuk perlaksanaan projek ini. Read the rest of this entry »


Parliament 14 October 2008 – 2009 Budget Debate

Junket to Taiwan, what have BN BBC learned?

Revise the obsolete 2009 Budget

(Post and Video)

HSBB – High Speed BroadBand, why subsidy to Tm Net? Why no open access?

(Post and video)

Eurocopter adding to the collection of defense purchase scandals; Scorpene Submarine, Sukhoi Jet

(post and video)

Police Helicopter Purchase and E-Police

(Post and Video)

Utusan again

(Post and Video)


The Myth of The Islamic State

M. Bakri Musa

Book Review: Islam And The Secular State: Negotiating The Future of Shari’a, by Abdullahi Ahmed An-Naim
Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA
324 pp, Indexed, US $35.00, 2008.

Every so often I would read a book that would profoundly affect me. I have yet however, to get two such books written by the same author, that is, until now.

In 1990 I came across a paperback, Toward an Islamic Reformation: Civil Liberties, Human Rights, and International Law,” by Abdullahi A. An-Naim. I do not remember what prompted me to browse through let alone buy the book. Its cover design was nondescript, and neither its author nor publisher (University of Syracuse Press) was exactly well known. But bought the book I did, after scanning only a few pages.

Despite being only 255 pages, it took me awhile to finish it. I have read it over many times since. It is not that An-Naim’s prose is dense (far from it!) rather that the ideas he expounds are breathtakingly refreshing. They also appeal to my intellectual understanding of my faith.

That book resurrected my faith in Islam. Brought up under the traditional teachings of my village Imam, I had difficulty reconciling that with the worldview inculcated in me through my Western liberal education. The certitudes that had comforted me as a youngster were becoming increasingly less so as an adult.

I knew however, a religion that gave my parents and grandparents (as well as millions of others) their anchoring stability despite the terrible turbulences in their life must have something substantive to offer. I took that as a matter of faith. It was just that I was not getting the message, until I read An-Naim’s book.

I discovered that many of the issues I had wrestled with were shared with and have been dissected by many great minds in Islam of the past. This realization reassured me. Far from weakening my faith, those doubts ironically strengthened it.

Shari’a: A Human Endeavor Read the rest of this entry »