Archive for May 21st, 2011

Fleeing Syrians say too late for reforms, Assad must go

By Yara Bayoumy
BOQAYA, Lebanon | Sat May 21, 2011

(Reuters) – Syrians who fled for their lives from a security crackdown in the border town of Tel Kelakh say violence has hardened attitudes toward President Bashar al-Assad and unrest will not end until he steps down.

Assad had lost credibility and it was too late to implement reforms since security forces laid siege to the town, raiding homes and arresting and killing dozens, they said.

“The first words my year-old son will learn to say are: ‘We don’t want Bashar’,” said Ahmed, who fled from Tel Kelakh, where security forces, the army and irregular Assad loyalists known as shabbiha had cracked down on earlier this week.

“Are these his reforms? To oppress people? Until when will we be downtrodden?” he said. Like other refugees interviewed by Reuters in the Lebanese border village of Boqaya, he asked that his surname not be used to protect his family still in Syria. Read the rest of this entry »

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S’pore gains from M’sia’s brain drain

Patrick Lee | May 21, 2011
Free Malaysia Today

Malaysia’s brain drain is both heavily Chinese and concentrated just below the border, says a report by the World Bank.

PETALING JAYA: A large portion of the best and the brightest Malaysia has to offer have taken root in Singapore.

According to a 2011 World Bank report entitled “Malaysia Economic Monitor: Brain Drain”, 121, 662 highly-skilled Malaysians migrated to the island nation by 2010.

This accounted for nearly half of the 276, 558 Malaysians registered as “brain drain” individuals by 2010.

Additionally, the report said a total of 385, 979 Malaysians were residents of Singapore in 2010.

“Singapore alone absorbs 57% of the entire (Malaysian) diaspora, with most of the remainder residing in Australia, Brunei, United Kingdom and the United States,” the report added.

On top of that, it said that 88% of Malaysians residing in Singapore were ethnic Chinese, with Malays and Indians accounting for 6% and 5% respectively.

It has been estimated that there are more than one million Malaysians residing overseas. Read the rest of this entry »


DAP mocks PSD over scholarship oversight

By Boo Su-Lyn
The Malaysian Insider
May 21, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, May 21 — The DAP questioned how the government could make a “silly” mistake in not granting scholarships to top students despite spending billions on information technology.

Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin reportedly ordered the Public Service Department (PSD) yesterday to investigate complaints that some SPM top scorers were not offered scholarships.

“Isn’t spending billions of ringgit on computerisation a waste of public funds when the federal government cannot even correct the simple but silly mistake of not granting scholarships to top students?” DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng said in a statement today.

Muhyiddin, who is also education minister, stressed that his ministry was not to blame as its list of scholarship candidates had already been forwarded. Read the rest of this entry »


Remember the 2009 speech, Najib?

Teoh El Sen | May 21, 2011
Free Malaysia Today

During a speech that year, the PM stressed on fair and responsible reporting. But the current controversy surrounding Utusan sends a different signal.

PETALING JAYA: Three days after taking office as the nation’s sixth prime minister on April 3, 2009, Najib Tun Razak attended the Malaysian Press Institute (MPI) awards night.

During his speech, Najib had stressed on the importance of the media’s role in nation-building, underscoring the need for responsible and fair reporting.

“We need world-class, fact-based reporting in Malaysia. The media must be fair and responsible in reporting. I believe we can move beyond those offering journalism of conspiracy theories and rumors,” he had said.

Najib had added that the media was powerful in lending credibility to stories and rumours that percolate up from the grassroots and the internet.

Two years on, the Umno president was now drawing flak for allowing his party-owned newspaper Utusan Malaysia to publish reports that critics claimed were not only seditious, but threatened national security. Read the rest of this entry »


Umno wants Guan Eng

The Malaysian Insider
May 21, 2011

MAY 21 — Many people have ridiculed former Biro Tatanegara chief (BTN) Tan Sri Nordin Kardi for suggesting that the Democratic Action Party (DAP) is a good fit for Barisan Nasional (BN).

According to the one-time advisor to Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, Lim Kit Siang and company should join BN because their aspirations for a “Malaysian Malaysia” can be achieved under the prime minister’s 1 Malaysia.

That is a mixture of hyperbole and rubbish by the man who, as head of BTN, nurtured the chauvinism we witness in Umno today.

On the face of it, DAP joining BN is like the US Democrats teaming up with the Tea Party or the new reformers in Egypt joining up with Hosni Mobarak’s gang — an idea best kept in the category of impossible dreams. Read the rest of this entry »


Discovering the real Hussein Onn

Zainah Anwar
May 21, 11

These are excerpts from a speech by the writer at the launching of ‘Legacy of Honour’ – a pictorial biography of three Johor leaders.


When the Noah Foundation approached me to write about Ja’afar Onn, Onn Ja’afar and Hussein Onn (right), I jumped at the opportunity. I knew much about these three men, because my father, the late Anwar Malek, was a comrade of Onn from the 1920s when they were young government servants in Muar.

In 1946, my father, Onn who was then the district officer of Batu Pahat and Noah Omar, then a magistrate in Batu Pahat, and with three other friends spent 24 hours huddled together to discuss the formation of a United Malays Organisation, to fight against the Malayan Union.

Together they drafted the seminal letter sent to Utusan Melayu in Singapore, making a clarion call for all state-level Malay associations to come together under one umbrella to oppose the Malayan Union, which would have transferred the sovereignty of the Malay States to the king of England.

This book has been 16 long years in the making! It was a journey of blood, sweat and rewrite. But I thoroughly enjoyed the research, the interviews, the writing. Read the rest of this entry »


Defend the truth, not Utusan Malaysia

May 21, 11

‘They must defend Utusan at all costs as it is an Umno launch pad to attack its opponents both in and outside the party.’

Protesters issue call: ‘Defend Utusan at all costs’

David Dass: Why the need for these fierce demonstrations? Why are these people behaving as if they are under siege? Who are they trying to intimidate?

No one is demanding closure of the Utusan Malaysia. No one is questioning the rights of the Muslims. No one is questioning the place of Islam as the religion of the federation.

The complaint by many is that the editors of Utusan acted irresponsibly by publishing unsubstantiated allegations of a provocative and inflammatory nature, which if believed could cause tension between Muslims and Christians.

Is it wrong to complain when someone does something that is clearly wrong? Are these groups defending Utusan despite its wrongdoing?

Are the rights of non-Muslims going to be subject to the dictates of the mob? Are non-Muslims, as taxpaying citizens of this country, also not entitled to protection? Read the rest of this entry »

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Pua: Reform failure behind economic ranking slip

By Boo Su-Lyn
The Malaysian Insider
May 21, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, May 21 — The Najib administration’s failure to implement economic reforms was to blame for Malaysia’s recent six-place drop on a global competitiveness scale, DAP’s Tony Pua said today.

The DAP publicity chief also disputed International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed’s claim that the results were largely due to the perception of the business community.

“Both the prime minister and minister of international trade and industry must recognise that it is the government’s failure to implement the necessary reforms as well as its repeated U-turns in policy-making which have caused the stark drop in global competitiveness rankings,” said Pua in a statement today.

The Petaling Jaya Utara MP said the business community and the public had realised that “real change” was not forthcoming, despite hearing “transformation” rhetoric from Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s administration for more than two years. Read the rest of this entry »


Ibrahim Ali a clear and present danger

May 21, 11

‘Ibrahim, you specifically used the term ‘perang salib’ in your speech, don’t deny it now. Anyway, we know that he and his mentor are immune to ISA.’

‘Don’t use ISA or sedition laws against Ibrahim Ali’

Atan-Toyol: Perkasa chief Ibrahim Ali said that “Islam is being ridicule”. Give me one example, Ibrahim. If Islam is being ridiculed at all, it is you who is doing the ridiculing by your uncalled for calling for a crusade against Christians, when they have not even provoked you.

Ibrahim, you are just doing this so as to appear like a champion and hero to the rural Malays, and ‘protector’ of Islam. Islam does not need protection, Allah will protect his religion, as He says of the Quran also. So, start growing up, and be like a mature Malaysian. Read the rest of this entry »


Lynas says paid Putrajaya for toxic waste cover

By Debra Chong
The Malaysian Insider
May 21, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, May 21 — Lynas Corp has revealed it deposited money with Putrajaya as an indemnity for potentially dangerous residue that may result from processing its radioactive rare earths in its Pahang plant, which is now under review.

However, Lynas did not elaborate on the deposit. It also did not disclose the sum paid to the Atomic Energy Licensing Board (AELB) under the purview of the science, technology and innovation ministry in charge of approving and monitoring radioactive industries.

“Lynas has also agreed to place funds with the Malaysian government to ensure safe management of any remaining residues as required by the AELB,” the Australian miner told The Malaysian Insider in a statement.

But AELB’s director-general Datuk Raja Abdul Aziz Raja Adnan denied his agency had made the deposit a requirement. Read the rest of this entry »


10 Days in May (23)

Tweets @limkitsiang:-

TBH RCI shld re-open public hearing 2probe MACC cover-up conspiracy on TeohBengHock’s death rt from beginning – inc MACC record inquest/RCI

Especially RCI shd probe whether MACC involved in “black blog” appeared 1wk after TBH death 2throw off attn to its role

Claiming 2b “Truth 4TeohBengHock”, “black blog” blamed DAP 4murder of TBH. “Black blog” mastermind admit TBH murdered. Who murdered TBH?

How cld documents only in MACC hands appear in “black blog” if MACC not implicated? Lies agnst DAP leaders in “black blog”. Y n what motive?

Major RCI omission if “black blog”/MACC’s role not publicly probed. TBH death destroyed Najib’s 1st 100 Days as PM. RCI credibility @ stake. Read the rest of this entry »

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M’sia needs more Paul Tans and Mat Zains

May 21, 11

‘Unfortunately it is the very existence of the Mat Zains that some see it as the source of disunity in the Malay community.’

Bishop hails ex-cop’s exoneration of Christians

Cala: Of course, there will be many amongst us who would like to see more of the type of former CID chief Mat Zain Ibrahim to speak the truth for the sake of national unity, peace and stability. Read the rest of this entry »


BN must respect next GE result

by John Inbaraj
The Malaysian Insider
May 21, 2011

MAY 21 — Great Men talk of Ideas, Average Men talk of Things, and Small Men talk of other Men. If I choose to be kind, I can best rate the Malaysian government as average.

In the days of old, our leaders were visionaries, people who talked of great plans and ideas for the country. They had quality — the likes of Tunku Abdul Rahman and Tun Hussein Onn.

Whether or not their visions and policies achieved their desired goals, they were genuine Malaysians with a heart for the nation. There were others on the sidelines who stood strong to ideals and contributed unselfishly to nation building.

However, the prime minister after that, the great Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamed, began the systematic dismantling of the principles of democracy and the downward slide of an entire nation. He is widely seen as the man who almost single-handedly destroyed the basic instruments of parliamentary democracy. Read the rest of this entry »


10 Days in May (22)

Tweets @limkitsiang:-

Day 15 – Y Hisham-CSL duet still silent on seditious/treasonous Utusan “Christian Msia” bogey? Hope everybody forget abt it? Fat chance.

Utusan “Christian Msia” bogey multiple test 4Najib as PM – 1Msia, GMoM call, whether BN leaders r extremists moderates or opportunists

This is Y on 1st day Parliament 13June asking Najib abt bona fide of GMoM when extremism reign supreme w Utusan case/jihad agst Christians

Will KTK tell Najib no point 2continue as National Unity Minister when Msia never more divided despite 1Msia slogan bcos of uMNO extremists?

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DAP reaches out to Malays online

By Shannon Teoh
The Malaysian Insider
May 21, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, May 21 — Unable to shake off its tag as a Chinese chauvinist party, DAP is now hoping to make a splash in the Malay online media landscape with a news portal, a step it says it should have taken “a long time ago.”

Just days after vice chairman Tunku Abdul Aziz Tunku Ibrahim’s admission that the party has failed to attract Malay support, DAP will launch a Bahasa Malaysia language website — — in the hopes of making itself heard among Malays.

“Right now, there is a huge void for us in the Malay media. You don’t hear anything about DAP except for us being attacked,” said political secretary to the party’s secretary general Zairil Khir Johari.

The largely Chinese party has been repeatedly accused by the Umno-led Barisan Nasional (BN) and Malay media of practising racial politics. Read the rest of this entry »