Archive for October 2nd, 2014

What is Najib and Muhyiddin going to do about the crying shame and national disgrace that not a single Malaysian university could get into the THE Top 400 World University Rankings 2014?

Today the media of all countries with higher education masterplans and strategies to take their people and economies to greater heights are focussing and debating the Times Higher Education (THE) World University Rankings 2014, and the performance of their universities – with the exception of Malaysia.

Not a word in the Malaysian mainstream media owned or controlled by the Barisan Nasional parties about the THE World University Rankings 2014 and the dismal performance of Malaysian universities.

The reason is simple. For the fifth year in succession, since the launching of the THE World University Rankings in 2010, not a single university had made it into the THE Top 400 University Rankings.

The Education Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin maintains a conspicuous silence about the continued exclusion for the fifth year of Malaysian universities from the THE Top 400 Universities, just as he had continued to maintain a conspicuous, inelegant and infamous silence about Malaysia’s poor performance in the 2011 TIMSS (Trends in International Maths and Science Study) and 2012 PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) both of which fell during his term in the education ministry.

Muhyiddin is only good in eating sour grapes with regard to the ranking of Malaysian universities in international university rankings. Read the rest of this entry »


Gani Patail should explain why the sedition blitz has stepped up in pace and intensity after his Sept. 9 pledge to review the slew of sedition prosecutions

The Attorney-General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail should explain why the sedition blitz to invoke a climate of fear and repression has stepped up in pace and intensity in the past three weeks since his pledge to review the slew of sedition prosecutions.

Gani had said on Sept. 9 that those charged under the Sedition Act, including law professor Dr. Azmi Sharom, were “currently having their cases reviewed”, and he described the review “a normal procedure”.

Is Gani also implying that the intensification of malicious and selective sedition prosecutions and investigations against Opposition leaders and activists during the tenure of such a review is also “a normal procedure”?

Gani said on Sept. 9 that the final decision on the review of sedition prosecutions will be made “soon”.

Can Gani explain how soon is his “soon”? Could it be as long as months and even years, until he steps down as Attorney-General?
Read the rest of this entry »


Why Indonesia banned ISIS

— Dominic Berger
The Malay Mail Online
October 1, 2014

OCTOBER 1 — Like in all democracies, the proscription of terrorist groups in Indonesia is a politically delicate and legally ambiguous process.

It requires the government to articulate convincing justifications for a ban, as well as provide adequate legal mechanisms for its implementation.

An examination of both suggests that when Indonesia banned ISIS in August 2014, it did so for much more complex reasons than fear of violent terrorism.

When ISIS captured large swathes of territory in Syria and northern Iraq and images of shocking violence made news around the world, the Indonesian public, and the government, remained largely pre-occupied with its most fiercely contested presidential election campaign in a decade. Despite signs throughout the first half of 2014 that Indonesia would eventually be forced to address the ISIS threat, the government and the public remained relatively uninterested. Back in March, even a public demonstration by ISIS supporters at the Hotel Indonesia roundabout in central Jakarta drew neither the media’s nor the government’s attention. It took the appearance of a video on YouTube, titled Join the Ranks, in which an Indonesian ISIS fighter in Syria urged fellow Indonesians to join ISIS, to sharply focus the government’s attention on the growing ISIS-threat to Indonesia. Read the rest of this entry »

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After two court victories, Mkini still denied permit

Oct 2, 2014

The government has yet again rejected Malaysiakini’s application for a publication permit for a daily newspaper despite the courts twice ruling that the independent news portal has the right to publish.

In a letter received by Malaysiakini chief executive officer Premesh Chandran last week, the Home Ministry said the rejection was because the news portal “often causes controversy” by publishing news that could “distress” the people.

Home Ministry’s Publications Control and Al-Quran Text Division head Hashimah Nik Jaafar also stressed that the reports “could cause hatred towards national leaders”.

“The ministry had decided not to approve the application for a publication permit on the basis that the news published by Malaysiakini’s online portal often causes controversy and is not neutral…

“Such news, if published in the print format, will cause shock and distress among the public. Sensitive issues are also published in the form of news, commentary, opinions and readers’ comments which could cause hatred towards national leaders,” she said. Read the rest of this entry »