BN MP who signed petition revealed

BN MP who signed petition revealed
Andrew Ong
Oct 25, 08 5:16pm

Billy Abit Jol is the sole Barisan Nasional MP to have signed the petition urging the prime minister to prioritise the debate on the Internal Security Act when Parliament reconvenes on Wednesday.

The petition signed by 85 MPs – 81 from Pakatan Rakyat, three independents and one from BN – was delivered to Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s office yesterday morning.

Billy Abit is a five-term MP for Hulu Rajang and vice-president of Parti Rakyat Sarawak.

His signing of the petition was revealed by Ipoh Timor MP and DAP stalwart Lim Kit Siang when the latter officiated the DAP Jalong branch this morning.

Contacted later, Lim said that Billy Abit’s identity was not revealed before the submission out of “courtesy” to the prime minister.

“I would like to praise Billy Abit for his principles and courageous stand in putting national interest ahead of party interest,” said Lim.

Other MPs intimidated?

He said that he hoped Billy Abit’s act would serve as an example to other Barisan MPs and ministers.

Lim also took a swipe at MCA and Gerakan’s newly elected top leaders for refusing to sign the petition, despite having calling for and passing resolutions on the ISA during their respective annual party meetings earlier this month.

“I want to ask these leaders whether their MPs, ministers and deputy ministers have been intimidated into not supporting the petition,” he said.

“If their MPs are not allowed to support the call for a debate, which does not mean they are committed to a repeal or review, then all their brave talk at their respective conferences that they want to be articulate and outspoken is just hogwash”.

Both MCA and Gerakan spoke feverishly against abuse of the ISA and called for a review of the controversial law. Abdullah however has ruled out reviewing the law in the near future.

  1. #1 by yhsiew on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 8:06 pm

    I wish that Billy Abit Jol is another Zaid Ibrahim.

  2. #2 by pulau_sibu on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 8:13 pm

    From the different news, it appears that Parti Rakyat Sarawak will be out of BN? Who else in Sarawak dares to criticise Taib for bullying the rest of component parties? SUPP has been seriously bullied by Taib, especially SUPP Sibu, and yet the SUPP leaders are still holding Taib’s bijis. Parti Rakyat is quite close to Pakatan Rakyat, almost identical, in writing.

  3. #3 by whattheheckman on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 8:22 pm

    Billy is brave and has principles.
    MCA. Gerakan, MIC, PPP who talk so much against the ISA but refused to sign the petition means they are just liars.
    Malaysians are generally matured, educated and aware of current events around the world, yet a sizeable population of malaysians still support the BN.

  4. #4 by Loyal Malaysian on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 8:33 pm

    Good for him!
    Sad to say MCA and Gerakan MP’s have again showed their spineless character – they do not dare to stand up for what is just and fair.
    Hmm.. looks like all the earlier speculation of many Barisan MP’s from sabah willing to join PR is really a lot of hot air.

  5. #5 by butul on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 8:34 pm

    Most honorable Billy

    I am from Sabah and I salute you!! Our BN MPs in Sabah are all hopeless – only have eyes for money and self interests. What can we expect from many of these who were voted in by the legalised illegals!!

  6. #6 by human1 on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 8:40 pm

    I salute Billy for his courage and conscience on recognizing the basic human rights of the ISA detainees.

  7. #7 by kentutoyol on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 8:48 pm

    Billy is from Sarawak, right?

    What happen to the others Sarawak MPs?

    Why they do not dare to sign?

    I think their balls will be squeezed if they sign…..

    Sarawak voters will vote for representative like Billy.

  8. #8 by mata_kucing on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 9:04 pm

    I knew that it wasn’t a MIC, MCA or Gerakan rep. They are just a bunch of cowards who are forever sucking up to Umno. Afraid of losing the scraps thrown to them from Umno. All the talks on flexing their muscle within the BN are just noise for the purpose of party elections.

  9. #9 by mauriyaII on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 9:10 pm

    It is during moments of great importance people like Billy show their courage even at the expense of being castigated by their superiors and ketuanan masters in the BN.

    Unfortunately we don’t have such leaders in the main component parties of the Barisan Neraka. The KTK, OTK, SV and others are just yesmen of the UMNOputras.

    They go on a barking spree prior to their party elections. Once elected and being assured of cabinet posts and the privilege of being on the gravy train with the UMNOputras completely emasculates them.

    They realize which side of the bread is buttered. They know they will be immune to any power grab until the next elections. So they prostitute their principles, scruples and moral values to go along with their UMNO brothers and sisters to amass wealth and titles.

    The rakyat must deny these assholes during the next elections and show them the exit. If they can’t stand up and be counted as leaders, they do not deserve to be elected.

  10. #10 by wanderer on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 9:20 pm

    What is so wrong to have a healthy debate on a revolting law which is despised by majority of the citizens.
    MCA, MIC and Gerakan you are a disgrace and unfit to represent the voters…you chicken when tested of your worth. Don’t your conscience ever prick you?
    Shame on you, loud mouths!

  11. #11 by wanderer on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 9:22 pm

    sorry, should read, you chicken out….

  12. #12 by Hue on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 9:26 pm

    Billy is from Sarawak. Only today I read that the publicity officer of PRS, a Sarawak component party of BN, agrees that UMNO is a bully.
    Wow, what’s happening in Sarawak? Are the Dayaks in Sarawak rising to the occasion seeing as their leaders won’t? As a Sarawakian, I say, well done, fellow Sarawakians. I want to see more action. If we don’t fight for ourselves nobody else will.

  13. #13 by Godfather on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 9:42 pm

    Sarawakians should talk less about UMNO and more about the White Hair Rajah.

  14. #14 by luking on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 9:46 pm

    tis mca and gerakan leaders.just look at their faces will tell us,they r cowards and unreliable in their words.
    anyway,a blessing in disguise for PR as actions would helps in the trashing of bn in the next GE.they r digging their grave now.3 sure votes here for u PR.

  15. #15 by All For The Road on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 10:08 pm

    Bravo to YB Billy Abit Jol from PRS of Sarawak! His honourable decision to support the petition should open the eyes and ears of those MPs in MCA, MIC and Gerakan that talking only is just not good enough for ACTION SPEAKS LOUDER THAN WORDS. Maybe they are thinking of their self-interests and positions in not putting their names on the dotted lines to support the petition. To offend and irk their ‘taikos’ is the last thing they will want to do!

  16. #16 by CSKUEH on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 10:09 pm

    A salute to Billy for showing the way
    For the other BN MPs who kept away
    To achieve the goal and to save the day
    More BN MPs should have joined the fray

  17. #17 by kftang on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 10:18 pm

    Those MPs in BN should practise what they preach and not otherwise. What have they got to say now? It’s better to remain dumb and be condemned all the same!

  18. #18 by Damocles on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 10:26 pm

    Uncle Lim, you showed up the principled and the bullshitters!

  19. #19 by Anak Msia on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 10:31 pm

    Ong TK talk so much, saying that he will raise whatever issues that is not fair, my foot!!

  20. #20 by bentoh on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 10:42 pm

    I think it is very important that MPs can independently do what they think suitable to the rakyat… They are elected by people into the highest legislative body in the nation, putting shackles on their mind is an utter insult to the rakyat who voted them, and the house of representatives…

  21. #21 by Oppressed from Sarawak on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 10:53 pm

    Billy, I know you as the real gentleman from Hulu Rajang. You are a true man of great principles, and you make all true Sarawakians proud !!!

    I hope your bravery will serve as a call to all those Sarawakian politicians or so called leaders of their races to stand up to your principles and raise your heads now !!! You have been oppressed for too long !! Wake up and stand up to the oppressors, the money and power crazes like most of those in PBB, and SUPP !!!
    While you still have your last conscience, do something not for yourselves but your children and grandchildren…..plsss….

    I am proud of you, Billy !!!

  22. #22 by abunsui on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 11:09 pm

    Uncle YB Kit,

    Note for ALL : The sole signatory from BN is Datuk Billy Abit Joo.

    Please take note when spell his name. TQ.

  23. #23 by wifeejane on Saturday, 25 October 2008 - 11:58 pm

    They refuse to sign because it was initiated by the opposition. But to me that shows they still have the pre tsunami’s kow-tow to UMNO mentality. If this will to be continued it wont get them any further. They will be another political dinasours. Thus no matter who was voted into MCA, MIC or Gerakan is inmaterial now as they r only interested in their own self presevation not really keen in fighting for the rakyat and not interested on presenting the wishes of the rakyat. Sufficient chances and warning is given and enough is enough. PLEASE REMEMBER TO VOTE THEM OUT THE NEXT ELECTION, OK.

  24. #24 by pangwl88 on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 12:30 am

    MCA and MIC are just DOGS of BN, what can they DO?

    The chinese has a old saying :

    “its easier to move a mountain then to change the character of a person”.

    MCA…MIC…. yoooo hooo… come here boy… have a bone…!

  25. #25 by Tonberry on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 1:19 am

    Lim also took a swipe at MCA and Gerakan’s newly elected top leaders for refusing to sign the petition, despite having calling for and passing resolutions on the ISA during their respective annual party meetings earlier this month.

    When it comes to face-to-face with Umnoputras, these eunuchs show [deleted]. Hope their respective members realize what type of leaders they are having. Talking so damn loud behind Umno’s back but act like a mouse before Umno.

    With this failure, BN, especially Gerakan, can kiss goodbye to Penang forever.

  26. #26 by Samuel Goh Kim Eng on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 1:25 am

    After all the politicians’ sound and fury
    Come the non-politicians’ turn to bury
    Without the politicians saying ‘Sorry!’
    We’re too familiar with same old story

    We are all too familiar with ‘No Action Talk Only’
    While all the time some try to project as being ‘Holy’
    When in reality it’s just another case of ‘Hello! Dolly!’
    Being far worse than ‘the putting on of the kettle by Polly’

    (C) Samuel Goh Kim Eng – 261008
    Sun. 26th Oct. 2008.

  27. #27 by just a moment on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 1:34 am

    Right on, Billy Abit Jol. You are a man today, truth will set you free. Im running out of words for MCA, MIC, & Gerakan. No words will ever sufficently described what they trully stand for and what they really are.

    I supppose I need new ways to described them. They are [email protected]>?*!! & *)}[##@!!! & krefcus, trdarbsas, tihvse, bagsucm, finally… They do not represent any Malaysian chinese and Indians. They represent themselves only.

    I will have nothing nor any association with MCA or Gerakan, and do not used the word ‘for chinese’ I disown this organization! I don’t want you to represent me, for you bring shame to me and all generation of Chinese living in Malaysia. Bring this message back to MCA and Gerakan as feedback. Need no further surveys. You have already established what you really are. Stick to your immoral sinful ways for I have nothing to do with you.

  28. #28 by voice on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 1:54 am

    If your cow get into the ISA camp, they will be detained as well, and you need to pay RM100 to free them out!
    From SinChew

  29. #29 by draken001 on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 2:06 am

    Even in the US of A , Republicans do sometimes come out and criticize Bush if they think he’s not doing the right thing. Hats off to Billy.

  30. #30 by Jeffrey on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 7:08 am

    At party level, MCA & Gerakan would dare to speak out against ISA. Here petition calling for debate is opposition-initiated and they don’t want or fear to be sesn supportive of anything opposition-initiated because of the “party whip” tradition to support BN and not support anything raise by the opposite side irrespective of merits of issue as it impacts on nation.

    So the real issue is the merits and demerits of this party whip (party discipline) system in our parliamentary system.

  31. #31 by chengho on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 7:23 am


    sila tulis dlm bahasa Malaysia can?

  32. #32 by ctc537 on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 7:55 am

    Yes, Jeffrey, the real issue is the merits and demerits of this party whip (party discipline) system in our parliamentary system. Unless they are prepared to be sacked or taken action against, MCA/GERAKAN/MIC, or any component party for that matter, can’t rebel within the BN. But what we can’t understand is that the other minor component parties don’t seem to take opportunity presented itself to pressure for change like the repeal of the ISA, judiciary reform, etc. The BN party whip can’t act so freely now, as seen from outsiders.
    Ulu Rejang MP Datuk Billy Abit Joo is as good as in the Opposition now. The country needs more MPs like him and Zaid Ibrahim.

  33. #33 by Tonberry on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 8:34 am

    Jeffrey Says:
    So the real issue is the merits and demerits of this party whip (party discipline) system in our parliamentary system.

    The party whip is just a lame excuse for not supporting any move initiated by the opposite side. For trivia matters, maybe it could still acceptable. But for major decisions, especially when their parties have been talking like mad about abolition of ISA in their annual party meetings, conscience rules here. They must walk the walk.

    draken001 was right. In the USA, the Democrats were the one supported President Bush USD700b bailout, whilst the Republicans voted nay.

    To sum it up, MCA, Gerakan, MIC etc have had their chances blown away. They lost the golden opportunity to show their supporters there’s a party reformation.

  34. #34 by toyolbuster on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 9:04 am

    Billy has become The Last Eunuch of BN or they might just do a Bala on him as they sing “Billy don’t be a hero……”
    As a prerequisite of joining BN (Bola Nahi), all members must not be in the possession of more than 1 ball left hanging. Those with both would be outcasted or castrated, Soilek was no exception.

  35. #35 by Jeffrey on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 9:40 am

    Tonberry says “the party whip is just a lame excuse. It may or may not be – depending on arguments – but the principle of it is embedded deep within our parliamentary tradition (even in UK), and the exceptions to it are not clear.

    Even if BN MPs think that ISA is bad for the country, and ought to be made an exception based on national interests overriding partisan concerns, they will think that the call for review should be at BN component parties’ initiative at their convenience, expedience and timing.

    For if they support the opposition initiated petition, any good – in terms of rakyat, electors/voters goodwill – that will be reaped from the popular repeal of or amendment to the unpopular ISA should go to BN and not Pakatan Rakyat (PR) or YB Lim Kit Siang.

    This is politics and political strategy lah, not just a simple equation of lacking guts or inconsistency between MCA/Gerakan delegates’ resolutions against their MPs/ministers actions.

    Let us look at the converse situation of a PKR’s Kulim Bandar Baharu MP (Zulkifli Nordion) who first protested against the Bar Council forum on “Conversion to Islam” in August, where he was accused of barging into the forum and making an inciteful speech, accusing the Bar Council of supporting apostasy and later on, in a parliamentary session on 25th Oct, had an outburst attacking various quarters for challenging Islam, saying that the Faith was being attacked from “the left, right, above, below, behind or in front, whether from the ruling party or from this side,” referring to the opposition benches.

    Supposing according to his conscience and beliefs, he really believes and meant the position he took represents national interest and that he ought not to toe party’s line.

    Will the PR tolerate this dissent? Will its top decision makers not either discipline him or at least block his ascendancy within the party/coalition?

    Already PKR’s partners in PR said that Zulkifli Nordin is “dancing to Umno’s tune after the MP’s outburst on insults against Islam in Parliament on Oct 25th. “He has fallen into their trap and is dancing to their tune,” Selangor Pas deputy commisioner Khalid Samad told The Malaysian Insider. “It hurts our credibility. He seems to think he is the only defender of Islam,” Khalid said adding that if Muslims insist that everything is taboo, it would be difficult for non-Muslims to respect and be attracted to the faith.

    DAP vice-chairman Tan Kok Wai also expressed his regret over the matter, agreeing with Khalid that Zulkifli was playing into Umno’s hands and that his action was damaging Pakatan Rakyat’s credibility. “It is very straightforward that it hurts our credibility. Many members of the public are unhappy with PKR for not taking action after Zulkifli’s behaviour at the Bar Council forum,” he said.
    (Source : The Malaysian Insider report of Oct 26th )

    The only difference in Zulkifli Nordin’s stand/action is that his was not the considered and common stand of his party (PKR) as none of his party members have echoed the same sentiments : whereas in the case of Billy Abit Jol and the others in MCA & Gerakan who are not as brave/defiant as Billy Abit, it was the common party stand of MCA & Gerakan (as confirmed by party delegates resolutions) as may well be that of Billy’s Party Rakyat Sarawak’s stand, that ISA should be reviewed, amended or repealed!

    The trouble is within BN these component parties consider UMNO as “big brother” (much as they would publicly repudiate otherwise) and they look to UMNO’s position on ISA as reflective of the collective BN’s stand by which component parties must toe the line based on “Party whip” spirit (if not letter) in this larger context, notwithstanding a contrary stand at individual component party level had been made.

    What it all proves is that whatever the protests to the contrary these component parties treat UMNO as “taiko”, dominant party, big boss, and the day they want to be treated equally with equal say will be the day they are prepared to leave the BN’s political firmament.

  36. #36 by pakmang on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 9:44 am

    To ask MCA, Gerakan & MIC MP to sign the petition urging the prime minister to prioritise the debate on the Internal Security Act when Parliament reconvenes on Wednesday and yet they don’t dare to sign it, so we can apparently see what kind of parties they are….how to represent the Rakyat of Malaysia??? Not even know how to differentiate Black & White!

  37. #37 by patriotic1994 on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 10:02 am

    It is not a crime for BN MPs to sign petition against ISA. The Prime Minister would not feel angry about it. It is ONLY the other hard-core UMNO ministers who will go after those that signed. BN is split.

  38. #38 by Jeffrey on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 10:09 am

    As what ctc537 alluded to, if the MCA/Gerakan have the guts to sign the Opposition initiated petition, then in their minds, they should already be prepared to leave their party within BN conforming to BN’s Whip.

    If they were so prepared to leave, then this decision, taking into all factors into account, will just not hinge on the narrower issue of just the ISA, and they would leave by now whether or not there is a petition on the table to debate the ISA’s repeal or amendment.

    Then the other corollary question is what happens if they leave since they might have no political future within their party for so long as it remains within BN.

    Is the Pakatan Rakyat or any of its component parties offering an alternative landing pad if they were to be as brave as Billy Abit???

    YB LKS and PR may inspire MPs from Govt benches to be idealistic, sign petition and vote against the ISA for national interest and standpoint of conscience but do you give them a committed, open invitation to “definitely” join you for bearing the consequences of takingh that brave stand and risk ostracising by their party or the larger BN’s (read UMNO’s) Whip????

    Do you PR provide a launching pad when you ask others to jump BN’s Titanic?

    This is persistently the issue that has doggedly hampered DSAI’s plan of takeover that has been rescheduled and rescheduled infinitum!

    When you ask people to jump the BN’s Titanic, have you in the first place organised the inherently difficult situation so well that the landing pad at your side is securedly anchored and fastened so that they could fall safely on your pad instead of the treacherous waters?

    You do have the responsibility, you know.

    Take the case of RPK, if he boldly says things thinking that you would take over on 16th Sept – and you fail to do that – what do you think RPK now faces?

    It is not just loss of personal freedom or dog’s diet. It is depression because sanity is reposing on hope based on your promise and your promise has no finality date as to execution and success : it is indeterminate, with the best of luck, December or otherwise maybe 50 years from now! If you had not made that first promise then people will not make calculations and moves based on it and suffer consequences of that promise unfulfilled.

    For PKR it is a question of credibility as well which has to be borne in mind when you ask BN’s detractors whether from MCA or Gerakan ranks to attack BN’s moribund policies, to cut their lifeline, break discipline, countenance retribution or ostracism on account of your appeal to patriotism, ideals, national interest and principles!

  39. #39 by monsterball on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 10:31 am

    Yes! Billy is brave.
    Just look at the bunch from MCA…Gerakan and MIC.
    Speak….out the grievances of Malaysians..but dare not act.
    Always…taking signals from their masters….UMNO.
    Those are stray dogs….waiting fiorv their master to happily give them so projects…to make few millions…each one of them.
    Petronas is so full of money….billions taken out for enrich UMNO’s kitty and trustees…and then …announce 15 sen reduction in petrol price..knowing majority Malaysians are simple minded…so be contended…while the game of corruptions…stealing and plundering…very much alive.
    “Money is power”….so said Mahathir….that started the smart “commission”.. by hundreds of millions…all legal.
    But every Malaysian knows..the said commissions are bunkum…and full of lies.
    YES!!..Billy is brave .righteous and cannot be bribed.

  40. #40 by mata_kucing on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 10:59 am

    The BN component parties complained that they are treated as step-sons by Umno. The problem is they themselves are too chicken to stand up to Umno. Like on the issue of ISA, they have been shouting from the rooftop that they are opposed to it but when it comes to supporting the abolishment, the cowards just kept quiet, except for a single rep. If they all have the courage to come out and support it openly, this will send a message to Umno to respect their opinion and that they (Umno) are not given a blank cheque to ride roughshod over their partners. So you BN minions, next time don’t wimp and try to get public sympathy that Umno doesn’t listen to you. You are too weak to stand up like a man for yourselves. You’ve lost public trust, the very people who supported you.

  41. #41 by just a moment on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 11:39 am

    Thanks for Jeffrey’s wonderful insight as usual. Now I see the reasons why the reluctance to sign the petition and perhaps the ever changing dates for take over.

    I totally agreed on the responsibility of DSAI’s part because Im sure potential jumpers needs to know what and how safe the landing pad is too. Though it is ideal, but I think these jumpers ought to know this is a ‘life&death’ situation, therefore there are certain amount of risk they must prepare to take too. I believed DSAI’s is doing his best too. It not not going to be easy.

    In fact, I like to view this petition excercise as a filtering process for forming the new Goment. The ‘jumpers’ must also know, while safe landing pad will be available there’s no such thing as under calm water. Time can only tell, if any of these ‘jumpers’ is worth their salt, let it show now.

    In short, assuming all areas of concerns (risk free) mechanics are in place for jumpers, my thinking then should be:

    1. What difference and special about these individual as compare to all ISA detainees?
    2. Do I need these kind of ‘leaders’ who are not prepare to take any ‘risk’ Im not talking about individual risk, Im talking about the country risk – Staying Status Quo is a risk. Risk of degredation.

    If this signing of petition are so scary for these ‘jumpers’, then it just show one thing. None of them are worth their salt (other than Billy) It shows personal interest above rakyat and even principles. Never mind, this is not the only opportunity these ‘jumpers’ may have but time does not equate infinity as well.

    If this thing drags on too long, we all might as well wait for next GE, afterall we don’t need ‘chicken leaders’ when new Goment is formed. Let the real rakyat power speak!!

  42. #42 by Dr.Ken on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 11:55 am

    Bliiy Abit Jol is truly a Statesman , a politician & a Rakyat representative. If there are 20-30 BN MP like Billy , malaysia will be in good shape.This a show case of the maturity of Malaysian Politicians. This is one of the reasons why Malaysia still very of Ideas/opinions are not encourage. everyone just obey their Leader even they know it is a mistake. again Freedom of speech/press barely exist in Malaysia.

    MCA , MIC , SUPP, PBS, GERAKAN JUST SIDELINE TO SEE THE FREE SHOW. All these are puppets of UMNO. The next GE will tell.

  43. #43 by daryl on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 12:07 pm

    The problem with BN now is it is all money politics and if you are in the government ou get kick back. It will be a lot of loses and withdrawal syndrome if they follow the master. So, PRU-13 please remember what you need to do. Throw these scumbags to the street. Take the next four years to strengten the connections in PDRM and military and be ready to kick them evil empire out.

  44. #44 by Jeffrey on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 1:13 pm

    The whip’s task is to prevent acts by coalition’s or party’s MPs contrary to party interests, policies and platform.

    The party whip system exists by convention in Westminister’s style parliamentary system in Commonwealth counties eg UK and in all former British colonies, especially in India, Malaysia, Australia, and also Canada.

    Outside Commonwealth, it is also not uincommon for countries’ parliamentary system (even in case of new countries like Croatia) to use the Whip system. In the so-called ” citadel of democracy” – the USA – they too have the majority (governing party’s) and minority (opposition’s whip).

    Breach of discipline invariably invites in some cases no penalties depending on circumstances and in other cases penalties whether rebuke, suspension, or expulsion.

    In the real world of realpolitik the occasions by which party members vote according to conscience, and with the side opposite remain extremely low. You can vote acording to conscience if the Party allows you but not otherwise.

    So when we speak here of Malaysian MPs (esp BN’s Gerakan & MCA “cowardly” MPs) having no soul or conscience to sign the petititon and then when debated in Parliament speak and vote with the Opposition against the ISA ( isn’t this expecting too much? ), and we should bear in mind that what is happening in Malaysia is hardly exceptional, in terms of world wide comparison!

    Like I posed earlier, would the Pakatan Rakyat allow its MPs the liberty, free from fetters of PR’s policies, to sign any petititon on any issue supported by the BN and then speak and vote in tandem with BN’s MPs in Parliament based on “consceience” and national interest without discipline, censure of other penalties???

    What’s the position?

    Surely what is source for the goose is a souce for the gander – no “double standards” as PR accuses enough of the BN, and now put back the other way.

  45. #45 by Food for thought on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 2:42 pm

    What happened to MCA, Gerakan and MIC members? As usual, ALL TALK and NO ACTION from them. What is so wrong about debating the ISA, it’s only a debate for the betterment of the country.

    To give just 1 man, what more a man that is known to be a complete idoit in the eyes of the people and world with so much power to take away the liberty and freedom is TOTALLY obscene and wrong.

  46. #46 by on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 2:57 pm

    My strong wish is to see ALL MPs (whether from BN or PR) be allowed to vote on conscience, especially the very important issues.

    The problem with and the need for the ISA debate is that the ISA has clearly been abused by the authorities, not just once but repeatedly. Lately, we hear the silliest of reasons proferred such as “She is detained under ISA for her own protection” or “We are detaining her under the ISA for questioning”! For BN to use Party Whip to reinforce such repeated acts by BN government is simply despicable! This party must be condemned harshly for doing so!

    If Parliament does not debate this “moral crime” committed by the BN government, then, what is the point of having a democratic system where the government is free to abuse its powers with no checks and balances?

    Any government (whether BN or PR) which abuses its powers should be made to answer to a higher authority, regardless of the Party Whip. This should be the wishes of all right thinking human beings in this planet, regardless of history. It is entirely up to us individually and collectively to ensure that this happens. Let us not forget this in the next GE.

  47. #47 by on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 3:11 pm

    Food for thought Says:

    Today at 14: 42.36 (14 minutes ago)

    What happened to MCA, Gerakan and MIC members? As usual, ALL TALK and NO ACTION from them. What is so wrong about debating the ISA, it’s only a debate for the betterment of the country.


    I agree. The recent ISA “executions” are plain wrong. No one should be detained under ISA “for their own protection”. No one should be detained under ISA “for questioning because they lodged a police report”. It is obvious that RPK is simply not a national security threat and his detention under ISA is simply wrong. There should be better laws to deal with RPK and many of the past ISA detainees.

    Let’s not forget BN component parties have been following Party Whip for not just one occasion, but for repeated “crimes” spanning decades. I used the word “crime” in quotation marks because it is obvious to the layperson that these are crimes, but for some reason, they seem to get away with it over the last 2 decades. BN component parties are obviously willing to look the other way when such “crimes” are committed. So, despite knowing it is wrong, they obviously cared more about self interests and vested interests.

    BN has absolutely no moral standing. For change to happen, only PR can bring about change.

  48. #48 by pulau_sibu on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 3:13 pm

    A family full of domestic violence, yet the wives (not just wife) dared not to separate from the husband. This is the kind of situation in Barisan Nasional. I don’t know what are they afraid of. Pakatan Rakyat is willing to save their lives. They are afraid of divorcing their husband because they afraid they may lose a man and they cannot live on their own, because they are not capable and attractive enough to be independent or find another man. I could not find a better example than domestic violence in describing about UMNO and its component parties.

  49. #49 by bclee on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 3:22 pm

    where is the OTK talk too much but can’t even act?

    shame of u MCA.

  50. #50 by ctc537 on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 5:31 pm

    Malaysians who want see change must put themselves in DSAI’s and LKS’s shoes. To anyone of us, it’s perceptively simple – 30 MPs or more from the BN jumped over to PR and the next thing happens is having DSAI sworned in as the Sixth PM of Malaysia.

    A few weeks back, PAS leaders expressed their worry that a PR federal government formed with a majority of non-Muslim MPs will not go down well with the country’s Malay and Muslim majority population. Think further, and we find that the Islamic party was not pouring cold water on the idea of forming the PR federal government nor were they having other motives.

    Whether you like it or not, the prevailing political reality in Malaysia is that it is essential the make-up of the first federal government minus-Umno must have majority of Muslim MPs in order to be viable. The PR must not overlook this vitally important fact. Failing to woo enough Muslim MPs would mean the PR government would face problems and pressures from Day One, and we can expect the Opposition BN component party UMNO to exploit this situation to its full advantage. If not, most probably a PR federal government formed by a majority non-Muslim MPs, even if it is only a majority of one, would be a short-lived one. DSAI and Uncle Lim must have mulled over how to clear this biggest Malaysian political hurdle years ago. That’s why we continue hearing DSAI say that what he wants is a peaceful change of government.

    Among the problems that DSAI/LKS will have to face is explaining to the Malays the bigger percentage of non-Malay content in the cabinet, the necessity of a brand-new education policy in order for the country to make a quantum leap in all fields, etc. To the non-Malays, it is mainly how to convince them and support the new government’s policy of giving priority to helping rural Malays as well as natives in Sabah and Sarawak and the Peninsula, not forgetting the poor Malaysians irrespective of race and creed throughout the country.

    So, I think it is quite unwise for many of us to scold MCA/MIC/Gerakan for not fighting for the rights of non-Malays. Let some of them to forever remain in BN so that the two-party political system will realize sooner than envisaged. Let’s not assume that MCA/MIC/Gerakan MPs are idiots. Contrary to what we think, they might have studied the political situation more thoroughly than most people do, and know the situation better. They could have come to the conclusion that change could only come in stages and not abruptly like the overnight change of government like what the PR would have us believe. Also, they could have been reminded repeatedly that without prevailing peace in the country, there can never be development and progress in the country. Which is true, and we often hear this universal truth being spread by BN.

    On the PR side, the truth is that if they can’t succeed in convincing a number of moderate BN Malay MPs and possibly Ministers to cross over, then they have to give up the idea of toppling BN for the time being.

    However, there is a silver lining now. Malaysians, especially Malays, are exposed more and more to the wider world. The advent of the Internet and Cellular Phone have enabled them to see social and economic developments in other countries taking place at a fantastic pace, they too want to see drastic changes back home. So, it is not difficult for us to grasp what the sincere PR politicians have to say regarding the state of our country and what need to be done urgently and correctly in order to save the country that we call our home.

    To many of us, change will come only when the majority Malays in the vast rural interior change their mindset and can see the bigger picture, and thus immune to racial and other propaganda out to win their support. Change will gather pace if we become more and more rational in our thinking.

  51. #51 by oknyua on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 5:59 pm

    Who is Billy Abit? Where is his constituency?

    1. Ulu Rejang produces thousand metric ton of timber.
    2. It is where infamous and uncompleted Bakun is located.

    3. The displaced longhouses, the absence of proper roads and amenities – all added up to his discontentment.

    4. Now the environment there has been destroyed and the livelihood of the locals disrupted. Clear pristine water is only TV advertisement “cuti-cuti” Malaysia, because now that place is mud-covered.

    5. I learnt recently that the displaced locals are “squatters” on government. Any time they can be evicted.

    Sadly Billy Abit’s constituency is not the only one facing such problem. Billy could be followed by more and so someone in Petra Jaya Kuching is frantically awarding timber licences/contracts to pacify discontentment. Financial turmoil has reduced Federal allocation to Sarawak, but cutting trees (and destroying environment) is a state matter.

  52. #52 by KennyGan on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 6:21 pm

    Come on now, Jeffrey. This is just a petition calling the PM to prioritise debate on the ISA in parliament, not a policy matter which clash with big brother Umno. The fact that the component parties who have called for abolishment or review of the ISA dare not get their MPs to sign shows their subservient mentality and the fact that they were playing to the gallery with useless statements which they are not prepared to act on.

    Given that this is happening when the BN whip is weak and unable to take any tough action against any BN MP, we have an inkling of how deeply ingrained the subservient mentality of MCA, MIC and Gerakan are.

    Hiding behind the party whip in refusing to support this very reasonable petition means these lapdog parties are admitting that they have no conscience and no independent voice except for play acting in front of party members and the rakyat while furiously winking at Umno to convey their true intent. Why then should voters elect these MPs in to be rubber stamps for Umno?

    If these parties are so scared of the BN whip to even step the slightest degree out of line, they should just shut up instead of bravely criticizing the ISA or any govt. (i.e. Umno) policy and giving people the false impression that they are able to act as a counterweight to Umno or as the conscience of BN which is clearly an attempt to deceive the voters as to their real impotence.

    And I repeat, the system of the BN whip is NO EXCUSE for the spineless attitude of the component parties especially MCA and Gerakan who have spoken out against the ISA. I hope an intelligent person like Jeffrey will not see fit to justify their cowardly behaviour.

  53. #53 by lofuji on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 7:09 pm

    MCA,MIC and Gerakan semua bo lampa.By right,Gerakan,oredi who lost the state of Penang and nearly got wiped out nationwide should take the stand right now:NO MORE ISA.This is to show the rakyat that you are committed to a true democracy.Like that also cant ah. you might as well chup pau fok come GE13.You simply cannot win,la.Same goes to MIC.Useless bunch or twits.

  54. #54 by isahbiazhar on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 7:28 pm

    It is difficult to be brave after being slave for a long time!

  55. #55 by Jeffrey on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 7:33 pm

    Party Whip is a parliamentary practice and convention to clarify/explain the apparent disjunction between MCA/Gerakan delegates’ resolutions against the ISA and the relunctance of their MPs to lend their signatures to the petition in support of a mere parliamentary debate on ISA’s review.

    It also serves as an excuse – in reapolitik terms. I have tried to show how it could aply to both BN MPs as well as PR MPs as well.

    However is it a good excuse? This is matter of debate depending on whether one looks solely from point of view of (1) ethical principles or (2) realpolitik principles.

    However I have no beef whatsoever with KennyGan (or anyone from our perspective as rakyat) taking approach in (1) and denouncing it as either poor excuse or no excuse.

    From perspective (1), I can also offer no defence to the charge of what KennyGan calls the “spineless attitude of the component parties especially MCA and Gerakan who have spoken out against the ISA”.

    Dear Kenny,

    If I were to believe that politics to politicians is really about fighting and achieving things like truth, justice and benefit of the very people who place them in that high public position of trust, I am with you all the way that what MCA/Gerakan MPs are duplicitious (I like the part that you describe that “they have no conscience and no independent voice except for play acting in front of party members and the rakyat while furiously ‘winking’ at Umno to convey their true intent”).

    Sadly politicians as a class anywhere are (except for very few) exceptions) not inclined to making principled stands of the kind above mentioned, and we have reason to think MCA’s or Gerakan’s politicians hold higher claims than the average.

    Political ambitions make cowards of most, and compromise is the order of the day.

    In Gerakan & MCA cases, one can’t even remember the first time – probably decades ago – when principles that ran against their professed convictions began to win the day and compromises were made in exchange for “power sharing” ie sharing of what proportionately are crumbs in the process, selling out the expectations of their constituencies leading to what eventually happened on 8th March when the latter rejected them.

    I therefore do not have high expectations. I always admit my expectations are several notches below.I certainly don’t expect them to suddenly experience a spinal cord regeneration and protrude a spine after 30 years of being political invertebrate.

    I have assumed their subserviance as an accepted truism – of which there can be little contention in this regard – and have pursued the discussion more along practical real politik terms than the strict ethical line that you seemed to have taken (with no problem on my part). :)

  56. #56 by Jeffrey on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 7:37 pm

    Sorry for typo omission corrected in capitals – “…. am with you all the way that what MCA/Gerakan MPs FAILED TO DO (SIGNING)WAS duplicitious….”

  57. #57 by Jeffrey on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 7:38 pm

    “….we have NO reason to think MCA’s or Gerakan’s politicians hold higher claims than the average….” as well.

  58. #58 by KennyGan on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 8:06 pm


    I can’t blame your jaded view of politicians but bear in mind there are some in the opposition parties who genuinely want to serve the people and make the country a better place. Among them are Teresa Kok, Hannah Yeoh, Tony Pua, Lim Guan Eng and of course our stalwart Lim Kit Siang.

    Take Kit Siang for example. Why does he persevere over decades fighting the system in the opposition when there was scant chance of a change of govt before 2008? His motivation is certainly not personal interests or he would have joined the ruling regime and have an easy ride like Lee Lam Thye instead of spending time in jail.

    So rest assured there are really politicians who are sincere in wanting to improve the system and not out to gain wealth and power but sadly, they are a rare breed in BN.

  59. #59 by Jeffrey on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 8:24 pm

    I have always considered Kit an exception. It is based on many personal sacrifices made, he spoke even as the voice in wilderness for the Malaysian Cause for which Malaysians owe him a debt of gratitude difficult to repay.

    As for many other politicians in Opposition camp, the acid test is not what they say now as much as what they do when they come to power. Like they say the “proof of the pudding is in the eating” ie the true value or quality of something can. only be judged when it’s put to use or tried and tested…

    When discussing about BN’s politicians – whose trepidations – are known, discussion is probably more useful if sometimes proceeded upon real politik terms factoring also their practical points of view and operating conditions on ground level.

    In idealistic terms of moral absolutes, there is nothing much to discuss – except they are wrong, they are wrong and they are wrong and the discussion gets us no where by which we could influence them or their advisers to another course of action.

  60. #60 by StevePCH on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 10:53 pm

    He’s got my vote for the next election.

  61. #61 by chengho on Sunday, 26 October 2008 - 11:15 pm

    BN only need 8 seats to form 2/3 majority . i heard by march 2008
    more than 10 MP will crossover .

  62. #62 by kerajaan.rakyat on Monday, 27 October 2008 - 12:04 am

    Police said that they were being investigated for allegedly being members of the outlawed Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf).

    “What has that law got to do against sending a letter? We refused to give our statements (to the police) and answered ‘we will answer in court’ to all their questions,” said Jayathas when contacted.


  63. #63 by bclee on Monday, 27 October 2008 - 1:16 am

    free all detained under ISA, abolish ISA once and for all.

    Free RPK Free RPK

    Free RPK Free RPK

    stupid ISA

  64. #64 by human1 on Monday, 27 October 2008 - 8:41 am

    Happy Deepavali to all fellow Hindu Malaysians!

  65. #65 by js on Monday, 27 October 2008 - 9:35 am

    Must get the Media to interview our MCA MP on this issue WHY they did not support the petition raised by Kit.
    Do you think MCA will still get support from rakyat for their chicken attitude?

  66. #66 by CSKUEH on Monday, 27 October 2008 - 10:02 am

    js, not only to interview MCA but all the other BN component parties as well.

  67. #67 by Anak_Penang on Monday, 27 October 2008 - 11:16 am

    Happy Deepavali and happy holidays (:

    by :)

  68. #68 by Jeffrey on Monday, 27 October 2008 - 11:26 am

    Is ISA justified? Should Dr CSL hold public office or Zaki, the top judge post?? Should MCA/Gerakan remain cowardly not to sign the Petition?

    When discussing these political issues especially within context of Malaysian politics, how useful it is to examine them from purely absolute moralistic standpoint?

    The fact is that people discussing politicians’ behaviour as well as politicians themselves as human beings do have a moral sense – of differentiating what is right from wrong. When it is wrong, our moral sense is outraged as things done or omitted to be done do not conform to what we believe is right. So we have to criticize and even condemn.

    Which is natural, but how useful is that if it is done without considering and factoring in two caveats here:-

    The first caveat is that there are few issues that are absolutely right or wrong in an unambiguous, unequivocal and certain sense.

    Like for example some feel that those with tainted sexual scandal of the past should not hold public office whilst there are some like me who think that private morality should be separated and kept distinct from public morality where breach of the first does not translate automatically to breach of the second.

    Even take the issue of UMNO’s hegemony and BN component parties’ deference to its ideology “Ketuanan” the one who suffers it will repudiate it as bad and immoral whilst a section of populace with the deepest convictions regarding the “Social Contract” will uphold it as right and moral! There are few issues like for eg ‘torture” that all can agree in absolute moral terms that it is cruel immoral and bad…..Hence the application of moral sense is also “situational” depending on where we stand and how certain issue affects us, well or badly rather than good or bad in the purely abstract sense.

    The second caveat is that politics also has and operates its own two parallel sub set of rules, one idealistic and aspirational as a benchmark and the other, realpolitik in the realistic and practical sense.

    It is not just the first set of agreed institutional rules that there should be separation of powers, rule of law, will of the people as expressed via their elected candidates in the ballot box to hold public office and discharge its duties with governance and transparency without abuse of power and corruption. These represent a set of aspirations of what ought to be proper politics.

    There is however another subset of realpolitik rules whether acknowledged or not. Under this subset, the end of politics is power, and Machiavellian rules, often amoral and sometimes even immoral, apply to preserve and maintain power….

    Can we discuss meaningfully a political issue based on the first subset of rules representing the aspiration of what ought to be the case in total disregard of the second sub-set of realpolitik considerations and rules representating what (based on actual lived experience) is really the case operating realistically at ground level, shorn off all hypocrisy???

  69. #69 by Jeffrey on Monday, 27 October 2008 - 11:38 am

    Take this concept – that those who have power will and ought to wield it to the best interest of the people – this precept is but an ideal, an aspiration, a kind of benchmark that we always fall back on when commenting judging this or that but is it realistic, not just in local politics but anywhere?

    Yes politicians sometimes do it (act in best interest of their constituency) but it is only in order to secure votes to hold on to position and power but in other times they would also “steal” and engage in public corruption to enrich themselves if they think they can do so without getting caught, costing loss of votes if not ACA investigations.

    Now we say it is immoral and wrong but they say it is higher duty to take care of their families well being including financial and turn around and say that we are hypocrites because given half the opportunity to sit in where they are sitting, we their critics, would personally not have rejected the temptations and benefits that power brings or conducted ourselves at a higher moral plane. Is that denied???

    Now we say that there are politicians that are committed to moral politics and that they are in Opposition camps. That is true.

    It is trite that if they were not so committed, they would have otherwise joined the government/ruling party benches.

    However is their commitment to moral politics judged just by this?

    It is submitted that it is better adjudged when the same opposition politicians were in position of power as when the Opposition takes over control of government, and then give them a bit of time to settle in before evaluating if they are as good as what they said. The “proof of the pudding is in the eating” and whether they are really “committed” to moral politics is better judged when they are in power than in Opposition’s camp.

    (I am speaking of politicians in general, discussion of such nature requires, not talking of rare exceptions that exist).

    Which brings us to the original question in this post: when evaluating and discussing the political issues – and taking into consideration the two caveats raised in preceding posting – is it useful or practical to do so from absolutely idealistic and moralistically absolute point of view as if every issue can be resolved by an answer available somewhere that is absolutely good or right and in another case, absolutely bad and wrong???

    Even if whole point of morality is to lay down the ground rules of aspiration for a society and its members to strive for the “best”, it is, based on lived experiences, doubtful, that the best prevails here or anywhere else and that this over emphasis on morality without factoring in the equation the wider arc of realpolitik aspects and concerns – will help substantially to clarify or resolve, in practical sense, many of the complicated issues of politics abound.

    This is perhaps the reason why I stand guilty of what KennyGan has described as my “jaded view of politicians” that infects what I say.

  70. #70 by cemerlang on Monday, 27 October 2008 - 10:14 pm

    You want to know what makes a man ? Then look to Billy Jol. Why should a debate incur unwanted consequences ? Malaysia is a democratic country and therefore it is your basic right to comment. Malaysians did not elect their politicians to keep quiet.

  71. #71 by Danniel on Tuesday, 28 October 2008 - 8:49 am

    Maybe the MCA and Gerakan MPs can sign a different document called N.A.T.O. — No Action Talk Only

  72. #72 by CSKUEH on Tuesday, 28 October 2008 - 9:05 am

    “Malaysians did not elect their politicians to keep quiet”- cemerlang.
    Or at times they didn’t keep quiet but are N.A.T.O (No Action Talk Only) as what Danniel said.

  73. #73 by abunsui on Tuesday, 28 October 2008 - 3:07 pm

    to ALL VOTERS,

    Please be reminded that, the leader @ representative or MP you vote in should be the one who SPEAK and ACT for you.

    Make sure in the future election these NATO club leaders will not be voted in again if they are elected as candidate!

    Or we can conclude that UMNO/BN leaders are NATO therefore they should not be voted again. Let us BURY them all.

  74. #74 by ktteokt on Wednesday, 5 November 2008 - 10:04 am

    This is one BN MP who “DARED TO BE DIFFERENT!”

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