Archive for September 20th, 2013

Cry, My Beloved Malaysia

by Aerie Rahman
The Malay Mail Online
September 16, 2013

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 16 — The framers of our Constitution envisaged Malaya as a nation infused with lofty values. They wanted a secular nation with Islamic characteristics. Provisions were made within this sacred document to safeguard individual liberty.

Equality is enshrined but tempered with Article 153 to reflect the social realities of Malaya. However, the original intention was to make this article temporary and subject to review – which was not to be.

These are the fundamental values that Malaya shared with any other progressive nation: liberty, equality and secularism. Read the rest of this entry »


What more does RoS want?

by Teresa Kok
Sep 20, 2013

Yesterday (Sept 19), a RoS ( Registrar of Societies) spokesman was reported in The Star as saying that DAP has failed to deliver to the Registrar of Societies (ROS) original letters from the 500 delegates who were allegedly unable to participate in last year’s party polls.

The spokesman said it has been a month since the DAP leadership claimed to have the letters that will help clear the air on allegations that 753 delegates were denied of their right to vote but DAP has yet to submit them.

I want to first ask a question which reflects the indignant sentiment of many DAP members and supporters – “What more does RoS want?”

When RoS directed the DAP to hold fresh Central Executive Committee’s (CEC) election, does it not mean that he has completed the investigations into complaints against the party, despite the fact that the complaints are baseless and malicious?

By asking for the letters, is the RoS saying that the department has not completed its investigation? Then why was the instruction to DAP to order a fresh CEC election? Read the rest of this entry »


Fed-up of broken promises, threats, Orang Asli men speak their mind at Tribunal

By Elizabeth Zachariah
The Malaysian Insider
September 20, 2013

Broken promises, deplorable living conditions and threats have spurred six Orang Asli from villages in Kuala Lipis, Pahang, to travel for at least 12 hours to Kuala Lumpur to testify in the Bersih People’s Tribunal.

Norman a/l Kong took two hours from his village – Kampung Pos Senderut – to the nearest tarred road, for a bus, then another eight hours from the road to KL while Kampung Regang’s Sani a/l Sobang took longer.

They are one of hundreds of villagers from deep within Kuala Lipis, which comes under the Cameron Highlands constituency, who are disheartened with the lack of amenities that were promised to them time and time again by the Barisan Nasional (BN) candidates before every general election.

Worse, the villagers claim that they were “threatened” and “forced” to vote for BN. Read the rest of this entry »


One positive statement regarding Umno please

Zan Azlee
The Malaysian Insider
September 20, 2013

My colleague, Dzulfitri Yusop, a fellow journalist, asked me yesterday if I could make one positive statement about Umno or name one positive member of Umno.

I laughed. Too many people like to assume that I am anti-establishment just for the sake of being anti-establishment all of the time without being rational.

So I thought really hard to come up with a positive statement to show that I was not one of those ABU (Asalkan Bukan Umno, or Anything But Umno) people. We have to always keep an open mind, right?

Quite some time passed by and I still could not think of anything positive to say about the party aside from it being formed in my home state of Johor. Read the rest of this entry »


Déjà vu

Kapil Sethi
The Malay Mail Online
September 19, 2013

SEPT 19 — Enforcement officers attempt to demolish parts of a Hindu shrine. The row over the use of the word Allah intensifies. Sermons proclaim that the social contract is non-negotiable. More travellers die in express buses. A headmistress in Shah Alam asks her Chinese pupils to go back to China. The prime minister hopes that Utusan Malaysia continues to prosper. It comes to light that some schools are installing CCTVs in toilets.

Rewind to approximately three years ago. A temple is to be relocated. People bring a cow’s head and desecrate it. A High Court judgement allows Christians to use the word Allah and a firestorm erupts. The NEM is revealed, roundly criticised for diluting the social contract and promptly shelved. More travellers die in express buses. A headmistress in Johor asks her Chinese pupils to go back to China. Utusan Malaysia continues its rhetoric. There are calls in Terengganu for 1 Malaysia toilets to be used by both sexes.

While it looks like that in addition to road safety and privacy, in the area of race and religious relations there is no change, in reality it points to a deterioration rather than stasis. Instead of broad social cohesion punctuated by a few incidents of chauvinism, the situation seems to be turning on its head.

Instead of a gradual levelling of the playing field and an emphasis on merit and needs over communal privilege given the steady economic rise of Malaysia, what is being witnessed is growing stridency in asserting the permanence of majority privileges fuelling rising discontent among the minority.

But is this deterioration in race and religious relations in Malaysia mirrored elsewhere? Are the economy and public policy impacted by this, even the wider political system? Read the rest of this entry »