Archive for May 22nd, 2009

5-minute finding (not judgment) of Ct of Appeal shot-gun session declaring Zambry lawful Perak MB – hydra-headed monster claims another victim

The hydra-headed monster of the Perak crisis has claimed another victim with the 5-minute finding (and not judgment) of Court of Appeal shot-gun session declaring Zambry lawful Perak Mentri Besar.

All who packed into the Court of Appeal in the Palace of Justice in Putrajaya to hear its judgment in the Nizar vs Zambry appeal could not believe that the whole shot-gun session was over in five minutes of delivery, not of a judgment, but findings of the Court of Appeal.

There was no reasoned grounds of judgment but mere findings of the Court of Appeal in an unanimous decision, i.e. 3 – 0.

As Professor Shad Faruqui had presciently written in his weekly newspaper column, the Perak crisis has become “a hydra-headed monster that cannot be eliminated by ding-dong judicial decisions”, and today, the hydra-headed monster has claimed another victim with the five-minute finding (not judgment) of the Court of Appeal shot-gun session declaring Datuk Zambry Abdul Kadir as the lawful Perak Mentri Besar.
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Hishammuddin should send the OCPDs of Brickfields and Ampang Jaya to a human rights sensitization course

Malaysians are shocked by the outrageous conduct of the OCPDs of Brickfields and Ampang Jaya, Wan Abdul Bari Wan Abdul Talib and Abd Jalil Hassan, whose boorish conduct are caught on video, serving as prime examples of police officers who have no notion or respect for human rights or even civil behaviour.

Both of them have brought shame not only to the country, but also to the Royal Malaysian Police Force, in their unprofessional conduct and excessive display of police power – showing utter contempt for elected representatives of the people and ordinary members of the public.

When police officers could summon massive police reinforcements to deal with a small and peaceful group of civic-minded Malaysians lighting candles to send their message of protest to the authorities over the unethical, undemocratic, illegal and unconstitutional power grab in Perak, something is very wrong with the training of police officers. In fact, something is very wrong with the direction the country is heading.
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Time for the government to be colour-blind and to end ethnic profiling for scholarships

If the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak is serious about his slogan of 1Malaysia, then the time has come for the government to be colour-blind and end ethnic profiling for scholarships.

The Barisan Nasional government had promised that there would not be a recurrence this year of the perennial problem of Public Service Department (PSD) scholarships selection creating grave injustices and public alienation but this is not the case.

I am very disappointed that after the Cabinet meeting on Wednesday, there had been no announcement whatsoever about the solution to this year’s nation-wide uproar at the unjust PSD scholarship awards, and the MCA President and Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat had been particularly quiet after various statements about a solution for the aggrieved students who failed to get scholarships despite clear merit in their results.

May be Ong is preoccupied with the RM12 billion Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) scandal, on the breach of his repeated promise to make public the PricewaterhouseCooper audit report on it. However, many are saying that the gross wastage of public funds and mega financial scandals are interconnected with issues of PSD scholarships and government services, as for example the RM12 billion squandered on PKFZ would have amply provided scholarships to all the over 8,000 applicants who applied for PSD foreign degree scholarships this year.
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Police must change or fail

by Tunku Aziz

MAY 22 — Criticisms of the PDRM (Polis Di-Raja Malaysia) have lately turned ugly: they have been reduced to what amounts to a hate campaign. I believe this attitude is totally counterproductive because as citizens we deserve the police service we get. In other words, unless we are prepared to work with them, they will not succeed.

That said, PDRM must change with the times, and change what is known all over the world as the police culture of impunity. Police training must naturally cover traditional aspects of policing, but in today’s terms nothing is more important than for our police to understand the issue of human rights and the rights of the individual to police protection without regard to race or colour. Officers at every level of the service must subject themselves and their actions to the closest public scrutiny. Members of the public today are no longer mesmerised by the shiny little badges of rank that elbow for space on their very crowded epaulette.

Members of the Royal Malaysian Police belong to an honourable profession that, in our country, is more than two centuries old. The PDRM is older than the London Metropolitan Police (1829) and the New York City Police Department (1843). They are the inheritors of a long and proud tradition of service to the people of this country. And we owe them an enormous debt of gratitude.
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Nation-Building Cannot Begin from Irrational Premises

By Farish A. Noor

It has become ever-so-trendy of late to talk about nation-building in the most inclusive and open-ended of terms. After assuming office more than a month ago, the Prime Minister of Malaysia Najib Razak began speaking at length about the notion of a ‘United Malaysia’ – which was in turn claimed by opposition parties in the country as their idea as well. In Thailand a slew of parties have claimed monopoly over the concept of a singular, united Thailand. While in Burma since the 1960s the aims of nation-building have been the same as they are now: to bring together the disparate array of ethnic, cultural and linguistic groups under the same banner of a singular Burmese identity.

Now there is nothing wrong with nation-building per se (for indeed one cannot imagine any form of governance without some semblance of a nation-building project accompanying it), and there is nothing wrong with wanting to bring different communities together. What has to be questioned critically, however, is this: What is the final aim of such nation-building projects; what are the premises upon which they are based; and can such projects ever get to their appointed destinations if the premises upon which they are laid are somehow faulty themselves? Read the rest of this entry »