Archive for October 10th, 2011

Economists uneasy over sugary Budget

By Lee Wei Lian
The Malaysian Insider
Oct 10, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 10 — Economists said today that the 2012 Budget risks committing Malaysia to the path of unsustainable spending at a time when the global economic outlook remains uncertain.

Bank of America director of global research Chua Hak Bin noted that both Malaysia’s public and household debt levels were at worrying levels, and said the government appeared to be kicking the debt can further down the road by not addressing it in the Budget.

“Will debt dynamics increase and will Malaysia face a year of reckoning?” he asked at the post-Budget dialogue organised by the Malaysian Economic Association and University of Malaya here.

Chua said there was a chance government revenues would be hit by a recession, which would make it harder to meet the commitment to trim the deficit to 4.7 per cent next year from 5.4 per cent now.

“The deficit is extremely sensitive to the state of the economy,” he pointed out. Read the rest of this entry »


The Premier’s Mistake

By Mat Zain bin Ibrahim

We all make mistakes. It’s only natural as human being, that we have our own weaknesses and that we get things wrong from time to time.

Prime Minister Dato Seri Mohd.Najib Tun Razak,like any other ordinary human being, naturally has weaknesses and do get many things wrong from time to time, albeit not ready to own-up to any of them.However, with due respect, I am of the opinion, that one of his greatest misjudgement was retaining Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail as the Attorney General.

PM Najib knew all along, well before he assume the Premiership, that the AG have been proven to be involved in some criminal wrongdoings. Despite being warned, that retaining the AG would be an added liability to himself and a big risk to his administration, he chose to let the AG not only to remain in office, but gave the latter wider space.

I know for certain, that the PM was fully advised on this matter. The possibility of the PM not being able to fathom the seriousness of the issue should not arise at all.
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Adopt Zakat, Not Hudud

By M. Bakri Musa

Malay politicians fall all over themselves in advocating hudud, the Islamic penal laws. That is less an expression of their commitment to Islam, more blatant pandering to Muslim voters.

If these leaders are truly committed to advancing the cause of Islam, there is a more productive strategy: make zakat mandatory. Being one of the pillars of our faith, zakat is more defining of Islam. It is even ahead of performing the Hajj. Adopting zakat would bring the country closer to an Islamic state symbolically and operationally, certainly much more so than implementing hudud.

Creatively managed, zakat could be a formidable force for economic and social development; it would also highlight what is right about Islam. Currently in Malaysia and in many Muslim countries, mobilizing zakat remains only a potential. As the Halal Journal noted, “…[I]n the context of the Malaysian economy, zakat has not played a significant role ….” There is also a dearth of economic research on zakat. The recently convened United Malay Economic Action Council, presumably comprising luminaries in commerce and economics, has not even explored the issue.
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