Archive for October 19th, 2012

The Choices Before Us – Emigration, Encampment or Engagement

By Thomas Fann

I had an interesting conversation with a friend this week about some of the choices made by people we know.

Over dinner, my friend related to me about his brother who had worked and lived in France for many years and how he had decided to return to Malaysia for his retirement only to find out that his citizenship has been revoked. He tried to appeal to the government but was turned down and he returned to France dejected.

He also related about his sister’s family who also wanted to return but after coming back for a holiday and looking over the socio-political environment and inequality here, changed their mind. My friend further told me that many people he knows are making plans to emigrate to Singapore or Australia. Read the rest of this entry »


Call to extend deadline for consultation on education blueprint

Oct 19, 2012

The Centre for Policy Initiatives urges leaders from both sides of the political divide to pay heed to the urgent concerns expressed by educationists and civil society organizations with regard to the National Educational Blueprint 2013-2025.

Since its release more than a month ago on Sept 12, the blueprint has drawn markedly little response from our politicians either those in Barisan Nasional or in Pakatan Rakyat who are supposedly representing the interests of the stakeholders.

This lack of response is inexplicable and irresponsible given the importance of education to the future of our young generation and our national interest.

There is a genuine fear by Gerakan Bertindak Malaysia – a non-political, multiracial and multi-religious coalition of over 25 NGOs including CPI – that this blueprint will be hastily finalized before its many weaknesses are fully discussed and ironed out.

We share GBM’s view that the current deadline of October 2012 for the blueprint implementation is too short notice for public scrutiny of a plan that attempts to undo the damage inflicted on our education system over the past three decades and that will be in force for the next 12 years.

Extension of the period of public consultation and feedback must also be accompanied by the disclosure of key expert inputs and research data that have so far been denied to the public for reasons that cannot be justified. Read the rest of this entry »

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Nazri tying himself up in contradictions when he said it was HK’s ICAC and not MACC which cleared Musa Aman of corruption in the RM40 million “smuggled” cash from Hong Kong

The Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz has tied himself up in contradictions when he said in Parliament yesterday that it was Hong Kong’s Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) and not the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) which cleared the Sabah Chief Minister, Datuk Seri Musa Aman of corruption in the case of RM40 million “smuggled” cash from Hong Kong in August 2008.

In answer to supplementary question by the DAP MP for Cheras, Tan Kok Wai, Nazri said in Parliament yesterday:

“Yang Berhormat bercakap tentang wang yang dibawa masuk daripada Hong Kong. Saya hendak sebut di sini itu bahawa siasatan yang dijalankan bukan daripada SPRM. Siasatan dijalankan oleh ICAC iaitu Hong Kong yang terkenal dengan penyiasatan without fear or favor. ICAC telah pun menyatakan itu bahawa tidak ada kes rasuah di sini. Soal sumbangan kepada mana-mana pertubuhan pun tidak ada kesalahan. Kalau macam mana-mana parti pun hendak menerima wang tidak ada kesalahan, boleh terima orang hendak sumbang bagilah, apa salahnya.”

However, Nazri gave a very different story in his written answer on the same subject to the PKR MP for Batu, Chua Tian Chan last week, viz: Read the rest of this entry »


MCA: After Mega Dinner, Mega Disaster Awaiting

By Koon Yew Yin

It was reported in the Star that several thousand people attended the mega dinner in the Ipoh Stadium, organised by the Perak MCA on 14 October. In his speech, Dr Chua Soi Lek, the MCA President, urged the guests to vote for the Barisan National because it had established a solid foundation dating back to independence. He also said that DAP would not be able to defend the Chinese even if Pakatan Rakyat took over power because it is subservient to PAS and Parti Keadilan.
At the function, Dr Chua presented RM 500,000 to 44 Chinese primary schools and 6 national type secondary schools or Rm 10,000 for each school.

Various thoughts come to my mind on reading the report of the mega dinner. One is of disbelief that the MCA leaders can stoop so low in using public funds for Chinese education in their attempt to win a few seats in the coming elections. But we should not be surprised especially when we look at MCA’s track record in the 2008 general election in Perak where they won only one state and three parliamentary seats.

A Chairman of one of the Chinese schools told me that he did not attend the dinner because he did not want to appear so stupid as to accept the Rm 10,000 bribe to vote for the MCA. Learning from the senior partner, electoral bribery appears to be the main item in the standard operating procedure manual of MCA for the coming election. But unlike UMNO in the Peninsula, and Taib and Musa Aman in Sarawak and Sabah who have billions in their political slush funds, MCA can only throw out crumbs – such is the party’s impotency and poor standing in the BN and governmental system.
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Privatising power – in the people’s interest?

By Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah | 12:52PM Oct 18, 2012

COMMENT I have chosen this subject because the privatisation of power, as an economic policy, is a reflection of a fundamental change in our political economy which will have a significant impact on the future of our economy.

In the 1990s, following the lead of the Reagan and Margaret Thatcher policies of encouraging privatisation as an economic policy, it had a very significant impact on Malaysia’s political economy (I have explained this in my speech on Feb 16 at the Selangor Club).

It shifted the role of government as a guardian of public good which has been institutionalised in various public bodies like the Tenaga Nasional Berhad, to private corporations of selected companies.
Read the rest of this entry »