Archive for October 11th, 2010

Questions thrown out, opposition MPs cry foul

By Rahmah Ghazali
Free Malaysia Today
Mon, 11 Oct 2010

KUALA LUMPUR: Some issues are political potatoes too hot to handle or so it seems when the Dewan Rakyat got down to business today.

The wealth of Sarawak Chief Minister Taib Mahmud, Perkasa, Biro Tata Negara (BTN) and 1Malaysia concept were all brought up but were never debated.

When the bell rang for the session to begin, 16 Opposition MPs, mostly from the DAP, and an Independent MP, stood up to protest that their questions were thrown out. They claimed the questions on these “hot” issues were rejected “without any apparent reason”.

The ball started rolling when outspoken veteran leader Karpal Singh (DAP-Bukit Gelugor) said that his question, asking Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak to state his stand whether he is a “Malaysian first or a Malay first” was rejected.

“Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin had once said he was a Malay first and Malaysian second, while Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Nazri Abdul Aziz said he is a Malaysian first and a Malay second.

“I don’t understand why my question was rejected. Why give special protection to the prime minister? Can I get an explanation from the Speaker?” he asked.

His colleague, Lim Kit Siang (DAP-Ipoh Timor), also suffered the same fate when his question on “racist” BTN (National Civics Bureau) was not entertained by Najib.

“I asked the prime minister why, after 18 months since 1Malaysia was introduced, a senior civil servant has failed to embrace the unity concept?” he asked, apparently referring to BTN assistant director Hamim Husin. Read the rest of this entry »


Parliament rejects questions on Utusan, Sarawak

By Adib Zalkapli
The Malaysian Insider
October 11, 2010

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 11 — Questions on Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud’s wealth and the Umno-owned Utusan Malaysia were among 28 questions from 17 opposition MPs rejected today.

Two DAP MPs from Sarawak, Wong Ho Leng and Chong Chieng Jen, had earlier asked the government to explain if the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has started investigating allegations on Taib’s property ownership overseas, as published on an anonymous website.

“My question is valid. I want to know if an investigation has started because of the report on the website,” said Chong when protesting the Parliament’s decision to reject the question.

“Why was the question rejected? Are we afraid of the CM?” he added. Read the rest of this entry »


New mega project: Mega question mark over procurement

by Koon Yew Yin
Centre for Policy Initiatives
Monday, 11 October 2010

I refer to the article ‘Transparency in MRT Planning’ by Risen Jayaseelan which appeared in a major newspaper recently on Oct 5. The purpose of my writing this piece is to forewarn the public and the government that the way this proposed project is being considered by the government is basically wrong and may well end up with taxpayers having to pay a much higher toll rate than justifiable.

This warning is not only for the MRT project but for all 131 projects that are being envisaged under the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP) which is supposed to transform Malaysia into a high-income nation.

Basically I see no change at all in the current procurement procedure which has been used before in large concessions. The results of the evaluation and bidding procedure for mega projects such as the current MRT, the power provided by IPPs, toll roads, and the Selangor water supply have seen the consumers being forced to pay unreasonable rates because the bidding and tender process has been riddled with opportunities for rent-seeking, corruption and wastage.

Besides, cheaper and more efficient alternatives have not been fully considered by the Government. Read the rest of this entry »


Opposition bench queries rejection of questions

by Joseph Sipalan
Oct 11, 10


Opposition MPs were up in arms today as the August House rejected 28 questions from 17 Pakatan Rakyat parliamentarians, forcing speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia to promise he will look into their complaints as soon as possible.

Right after the end of question time, Karpal Singh (DAP-Bukit Gelugor) (right) cited the standing orders to ask why his question, asking Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak if he is a Malay or Malaysian first, was rejected.

Karpal said a letter he received from the speaker’s office which said his question was rejected on the grounds that he was asking for the premier’s opinion and was a hypothetical question.

“The deputy Prime Minister had said he was a Malay first and Malaysian second, and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Nazri (Aziz) said he was a Malaysian first and Malay second.

“… I am not asking for his opinion. I am asking for him to state his stand as prime minister. Why this special protection for the prime minister?,” he said. Read the rest of this entry »


Racist slurs by two school principals – impotence/irrelevance of MCA/Gerakan/MIC Ministers highlighted

My urgent motion in Parliament to debate the controversy of the two racist school principals in Johore and Kedah who made racial slurs against students in schools was rejected by the Speaker, Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia on the ground that he had been informed that the Education Ministry and the Public Services Department had begun initiating disciplinary action against the duo.

However, Pandikar Amin was unable to enlighten Parliament what form of disciplinary action was being initiated by the Education Ministry and the PSD.

The inability of the Deputy Prime Minister and Education Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin to lay this issue to rest after nearly two months since its first occurrence by convincing Malaysians that proper and commensurate disciplinary actions had been taken against these two errant principals stands out as a sore point highlighting the lack of commitment and even loyalty of the Deputy Prime Minister and Education Minister to the Prime Minister’s “1Malaysia. People First. Performance Now” policy.

This has now become even more serious as Muhyiddin has been delegated the task by Najib to ensure the success of the Government Transformation Programme (GTP). This was revealed by Muhyiddin himself when speaking in Melbourne yesterday – disclosing that the Prime Minister had handed to him the responsibility to ensure the success of the GTP through various initiatives in the National Key Results Area (NKRA). Read the rest of this entry »