Archive for February, 2015

Will Najib survive the March 8 Umno divisional leaders’ solidarity meeting?

The single political issue in the country after the Federal Court’s 5-0 dismissal of Anwar Ibrahim’s appeal in Sodomy II on February 10, resulting his fourth incarceration in his 47 years of public life and struggle for freedom, democracy, human dignity and good governance should be: “Quo Vadis, Anwar?”

Instead, the question has swiftly become “Quo Vadis, Najib?”

National focus should be on the “March to Freedom” ceramah to restore freedom for Anwar Ibrahim on March 7, but attention has now suddenly swerved to whether Najib could survive the Umno divisional leaders’ meeting on March 8.

This is most extraordinary as the UMNO Division Meeting of March 8 is being called to show solidarity and support for Najib and not to ditch him.

Why is there such sudden change of political focus and climate in UMNO?

This is a reflection of the turbulent times in UMNO. Read the rest of this entry »


Arifin Zakaria should explain whether the Ayer Molek case is one reason why Justice Hishammuddin has been denied elevation to the Federal Court twice – a case of former CJ Eusoffe Chin exacting his final vengeance

Chief Justice Arifin Zakaria, who is also Chairman of the Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC), should explain whether the controversial Ayer Molek Rubber Company vs Insas Bhd case is one reason why Justice Mohd Hishamudin Mohd Yunus has been by-passed twice and denied elevation to the Federal Court, the first time in September 2013 and the second time in the latest batch of judicial elevations this year – a case of former Chief Justice Tun Eusoffe Chin exactly his final vengeance.

Arifin owes not only the local and international legal and jurist community, but the whole nation, a proper and satisfactory explanation as a series of recent cases and events have put the Malaysian judiciary in the dock as to its ability to uphold a truly independent judiciary with just rule of law.

The latest judicial shocker is the revelation by retired Court of Appeal judge Justice K.C. Vohrah who wrote in an in-house Malaysian judiciary publication last year to mark the Court of Appeal’s 20th anniversary that the former chief justice Eusoff Chin tried to influence a Court of Appeal judge who was about to hear the appeal of the controversial Ayer Molek case in 1995. Read the rest of this entry »


Pakatan Rakyat’s disintegration would mean Umno rules by default

― Liew Chin Tong
The Malay Mail Online
FEBRUARY 27, 2015

FEBRUARY 27 ― The potential disintegration of Pakatan Rakyat would mean Umno can continue its 60-year rule without challenge from a credible alternative or replacement. Umno has ruled the country since the first Federal Election on July 27, 1955.

The 2008 and 2013 elections have clearly shown that Malaysia is now in a 50-50 two-coalition competition, as far as elections are concerned. Yet the ruling coalition led by Umno is trying very hard to turn the clock back to a time when it was the sole power holder.

To turn the clock back, redelineation of electoral boundaries is high on the agenda of Umno leaders and the Election Commission. A constitutional amendment with two-thirds majority approval is required to increase the number of parliamentary seats. But Barisan Nasional has only 134 seats, which is 14 seats away from the two-thirds threshold.

So how can Umno do this? Read the rest of this entry »


Dear Ridhuan Tee

― Shafiqah Othman
The Malay Mail Online
FEBRUARY 17, 2015

FEBRUARY 17 ― Your blatant disrespect for other faiths (or people) increasingly infuriates me and I cannot help but finally pen this down. I have, in many occasions, dismissed your rude statements, but it has come to a point where I no longer can stand your nonsense.

Don’t get me wrong, I am all for freedom of speech. By all means, go ahead, run amok and pollute Malaysian minds with your ignorance, but that also means I should be able to speak against the trash that I think you are spouting.

First, what you said on women’s bodies was just plain disturbing.

You say that women’s bodies attracts rapists because “the logic is simple”. Women’s bodies are arousing and alluring. Then you go on to say “If it’s fated that many of those who cover their ‘aurat’ are raped, then it’s fate”, and the only reason loosely-clothed woman are more commonly raped is because their article of clothing is more easily removed as compared to tight clothing.

Are you serious? The fallacies in your logic are mind-blowing, sir! I don’t mean to be the one to point this all out to you, but please: Read the rest of this entry »


Baggy clothes didn’t stop my rapist, victim tells Ridhuan Tee

The Malay Mail Online
February 24, 2015

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 24 — Baggy jeans and a loose T-shirt did not prevent her sexual assault in 2001, rape survivor Rosheen Fatima told controversial columnist Ridhuan Tee Abdullah who claimed that women’s bodies attract rapists.

In an article titled “My body is not an invitation” published on the website of women’s magazine Elle Malaysia, Rosheen insisted that there is no justification for rape and said Tee was merely engaging in victim-blaming.

“Shame on you, Ridhuan Tee. Put the blame where it belongs. There is only one thing that causes rape: rapists,” Rosheen said.

“Rapists make a choice to rape. There is no invitation, no fate that intervenes. It is a choice to rape. A choice to brutally assault and traumatise a fellow human being. There is no justification. Ever,” she added. Read the rest of this entry »

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I didn’t ask to be sexually assaulted

Boo Su-Lyn
Malay Mail Online
February 27, 2015

FEBRUARY 27 — We were arguing over something and then, with a pen knife in his hand, my then-boyfriend demanded to get intimate with me.

I didn’t want to.

I said a hesitant “No.” But he kept asking me, in a low threatening voice, with the blade still in his hand, to let him do it. Over and over again, he asked.

So I relented and let him do what he wanted. I was afraid of what would happen if I said no. I had seen him punch walls before in anger. I didn’t know what he would do with a knife.

It wasn’t rape under Malaysian law as the law defines rape as the insertion of a penis into a vagina without consent. But it was sexual assault.

Columnist and lecturer Ridhuan Tee Abdullah said in a February 16 article in Sinar Harian that women’s bodies invite rape. He also claimed that wearing short skirts could lead to rape and sexual assault. Read the rest of this entry »


Ridhuan, if this happens to your little girl would you fault her body for rape?

― Zhu Mohammad
The Malay Mail Online
February 27

FEBRUARY 27 ― Su-Lyn, I read your column and am outraged by Ridhuan Tee’s comment that a woman’s body on its own is an invitation to rape. I feel compelled to tell my story; like you, I didn’t manage to report it to the police because it happened when I was 12 years old.

Like a lot of kids at that age who are attached to their grandparents, I was to my grandfather on my father’s side, who I think at that time was about 67 or so.

I was sort of his favourite grandchild, and I enjoyed his attention. We used to sleep together, with my other siblings too.

One thing that he used to do when i was laying down next to him was that he would fondle my intimate areas. But I didn’t understand any of it, and didn’t resist.

It was this particular night, when I was awakened as he was forcing himself on me. I froze, and let the whole thing go on until he was finished. I don’t know whether he was aware that I was awake at that time, because soon after he went to sleep. Read the rest of this entry »

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Racial supremacism

Syerleena Abdul Rashid
The Malaysian Insider
27 February 2015
There is nothing more man-made than the concept of race. Issues relating to race and ethnic relations are often regarded as highly controversial. As a result, communities are left making assumptions (usually the worst) about one another’s motives rather than openly discussing issues that can help us understand things better.

Malaysians are habitually “reminded” to tip toe around conversations that touch on the 3Rs – race, religion and royalty. To most, these are the three that must never show up in conversations, literature or even thoughts. To the rest of us, we find the lack of debates quite unsettling, given the increased animosity fellow Malaysians are starting to show one another.

Supremacism is best defined as a belief system that chooses to identify, divide and control others less informed about the ever-changing political and cultural climate of modern sophisticated civilisation. It is the worldview that a certain age, ethnicity/race, religion, gender, social class or culture is superior to others and warrants those who identify themselves with this blinkered view to tower above everything humane and rational. This mob mentality happens when political parties hijack the concept of culture and religion. Read the rest of this entry »

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KC Vohrah: Ex-CJ Eusoff tried to subvert judge

By Hafiz Yatim
Feb 27, 2015

In yet another expose of serious transgressions committed by the Malaysian judiciary, it has now now alleged that former Lord president and Chief Justice Eusoff Chin tried to influence a Court of Appeal judge who was about to hear the appeal of the controversial Ayer Molek Rubber Company vs Insas Bhd case in 1995.

The subversion has been alleged by a now retired Court of Appeal judge who made the claims in an in-house publication of the Malaysian judiciary last year to mark the Court of Appeal’s 20th anniversary.

Former Justice KC Vohrah – who sat on the panel hearing the Ayer Molek appeal – wrote in his article that one of the judges of the three-memer panel was asked to meet Eusoff.

Besides Vohrah – who was then a High Court judge co-opted to sit at the Court of Appeal – the other judges who sat for the case were Court of Appeal judges NH Chan and Siti Norma Yaakob, the latter who later rose to become the first female Chief Judge of Malaya.

Vohrah alleged in his article – titled – ‘In the Court of Appeal, during the winds of change’ that Eusoff called the judge into to his chambers before the appeal was heard and when the judge entered, the CJ pointed to a pile of files on his table. Read the rest of this entry »

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I never knew it is so easy to trap MCA and Gerakan leaderships into admitting their unholy subservience to UMNO by giving blank cheque agreement to UMNO Kelantan Assemblymen to support PAS hudud implementation in Kelantan State Assemby next month

I never knew it is so easy to trap MCA and Gerakan leaderships into admitting their unholy subservience to UMNO by giving blank cheque agreement to UMNO Kelantan State Assemblymen so support PAS hudud implementation in Kelantan State Assembly next month, although this will be a fundamental deviation from their founding party principles and the commitments of their founding fathers.

But first of all, let me express my amusement at the response of MCA and Gerakan leaders to my pre-Cabinet email Open Letter to the MCA President, Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai and the Gerakan President, Datuk Mah Siew Keong, asking whether they would notify the Cabinet that their resignations from Cabinet would instantly come into effect when the Kelantan UMNO State Assemblymen support PAS hudud legislation in the Kelantan State Assembly next month.

Without any sense of shame or mortification, one MCA national leader asked me to “show some guts” to emulate the late Karpal Singh.

No emulation of the past or present MCA or Gerakan Presidents?

How sad indeed! Even before they are dead, the MCA and Gerakan Presidents have ceased to be “avatars” even to the present generation of MCA and Gerakan leaders, and it has not occurred to any MCA or Gerakan leader to ask anyone to emulate anyone of the past MCA or Gerakan Presidents, whether Liow Tiong Lai, Dr. Chua Soi Lek, Dr.Ling Liong Sik, Tan Koon Swan or Dr. Koh Tsu Koon and Mah Siew Keong!

It is entirely different in DAP, for the late Karpal Singh continues to be the icon and standard for all DAP leaders to benchmark themselves – and the reason why the DAP had been able to stand tall in the Malaysian political arena despite five decades of trials and tribulations, ups and downs, is because DAP leaders are all as one, like Karpal, in our dedication and loyalty to our political principles and commitments.

I had previously offered the MCA and Gerakan Ministers and leaders a free tuition course in their party headquarters if they have difficulty understanding the political and constitutional implications of Kelantan UMO State Assemblymen supporting the PAS hudud implementation in the Kelantan State Assembly next month. Read the rest of this entry »


The IGP should be non-partisan professional top policeman to uphold law without fear or favour and not to act like the Security Chief of Prime Minister to harass and persecute dissent

I commend the Inspector-General of Police, Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar for his composure and being unfazed by a video of three men threatening to blow up his car with him inside it, which is expected of all holders of public office and trust when confronted with extremist threats to cow them from carrying out their public duties.

Khalid sets a good example in declaring that he is not intimidated by the death threat against him, his denunciation of the group known as “Anak Malaysia Anti Demokrasi” as irresponsible for not respecting parliamentary democracy and not knowing the real meaning of democracy.

All Malaysians will support the firmest actions taken by the authorities to punish severely those involved in IS-type videos to threaten violent acts, including murder the current IGP, as Malaysians must not allow such deplorable culture to take root in the country.

On Feb. 15, a video was uploaded under a You Tube account named ISIS Malaysia 69 which featured four masked men threatening to light up fireworks in courts across the country, which was followed by another one, featuring a group of three individuals that called themselves Anak Muda Anti-Democracy (AMAD) on Tuesday which threatened to kill Khalid, by blowing up his car with him inside it.

The last thing Malaysia needs is the introduction of IS-type of barbarities and atrocities on our shores.

A day before the IS-type video death threat to Khalid, I had issued a statement criticizing the IGP for a wrong sense of priorities, setting up the world’s first police special unit on sedition for him to twitter instructions to harass Pakatan Rakyat leaders and NGO activists while overlooking the bigger national threat of Islamic State extending its tentacles to vulnerable young Malaysians including 14-year-old boys and girls. Read the rest of this entry »

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The cracks in Islamic State’s business plan are starting to show

By Ora Szekely
February 20, 2015

Over the last year, Islamic State has presented the rest of the world with a steady stream of atrocities: An attempted genocide against the Yazidi people in Iraq, massacres and bombings of Shi’ite civilians in Syria, and gruesome executions of journalists and aid workers. Last week the militant group murdered — via mass beheading – 21 Coptic Christian Egyptians in Libya. But despite the bravado of Islamic State’s public statements, the Islamist militant group increasingly appears to have painted itself into a strategic corner.

Islamic State’s expansion so far has been based heavily on extortion and theft. Using revenue from the oil wells it captured in eastern Syria in June 2014, along with money raised by looting in Mosul, supplemented by funding from ransoms paid by governments for its hostages, Islamic State was able to hire lots of fighters very quickly by paying top salaries. But revenues from the oil wells have dropped (due both to U.S. bombing and falling global oil prices), and with the tragic death of American aid worker Kayla Mueller earlier this month, Islamic State has executed what is likely its last foreign hostage, potentially eliminating a key source of its funding.

The result may be that Islamic State has reached an important crossroads. The strategy that it has relied on so far to fuel its expansion is becoming increasingly untenable. If Islamic State is going to hold on to its recent gains, it has some policy changes to make. Read the rest of this entry »

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Why the Malaysian Government Has Reneged on Political Reform

Koon Yew Yin
26th Feb 2015

This morning I listened to a local business station which carried an interview with Tom Greatex. He is a British Labour Party politician who is head of the All Party Committee on Malaysia of the UK Parliament. In the interview, although cautious, Greatex expressed great concern with the recent human rights record of the Government, especially after all the big talk by the Prime Minister of doing away with the Sedition Act, of political reform and being moderate.

His visit follows the recent statement by the British Foreign Minister who, immediately after the Federal Court’s confirmation of Anwar’s conviction, said that “[Anwar’s] case raises worrying questions about the independence of the judiciary and rule of law in Malaysia….the integrity of the rule of law is a key part of its success, as are the values of moderation and tolerance. We encourage Malaysia to recognise the importance of international confidence in its judicial system and to restore trust in its commitment to human rights.”

This is diplomatic language for saying that there is little or no international confidence in our judicial system when it comes to dealing with the opposition. It is also a polite way of saying that the Brits do not trust our commitment to human rights.

The British are not the only countries that have expressed concern. Our printed media has tried to minimize or even suppress it but strong words have also come from European Union countries, the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, etc. Stronger criticism on the Anwar case have come from human rights groups such as Amnesty International and the International Federation for Human Rights which have called the verdict “disgraceful” and a “black day” for justice. Read the rest of this entry »

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I fought for all Muslims, says Borders manager after court frees her

The Malaysian Insider
26 February 2015

Borders Bookstore manager Nik Raina Nik Abdul Aziz said her legal battle with Islamic authorities over a charge of selling and distributing a book deemed to be against Islam had changed her and made her realise her larger role to ensure other Muslims are not harassed for doing their jobs.

Given a discharge not amounting to an acquittal by the Shariah High Court today, Nik Raina said she had been a shy and reserved person before the raid on May 23, 2012 on the bookstore where she worked, but her ordeal had turned her into a more outspoken person.

Along the way, she realised that she had a role to play in facing up to the charges against her.

Nik Raina said most of the management staff at Borders are Muslims, and she feared they could be subject to the same intimidation if she did not stand up for her rights in facing the charges.

“I stand here today not only for myself, but for all my colleagues, especially the Muslims who could face the same action by the religious authorities for merely doing our jobs,” she said outside the court today. Read the rest of this entry »

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What ISIS Really Wants

The Islamic State is no mere collection of psychopaths. It is a religious group with carefully considered beliefs, among them that it is a key agent of the coming apocalypse. Here’s what that means for its strategy—and for how to stop it.

By Graeme Wood
MARCH 2015
The Atlantic

What is the Islamic State?

Where did it come from, and what are its intentions? The simplicity of these questions can be deceiving, and few Western leaders seem to know the answers. In December, The New York Times published confidential comments by Major General Michael K. Nagata, the Special Operations commander for the United States in the Middle East, admitting that he had hardly begun figuring out the Islamic State’s appeal. “We have not defeated the idea,” he said. “We do not even understand the idea.” In the past year, President Obama has referred to the Islamic State, variously, as “not Islamic” and as al-Qaeda’s “jayvee team,” statements that reflected confusion about the group, and may have contributed to significant strategic errors.

The group seized Mosul, Iraq, last June, and already rules an area larger than the United Kingdom. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has been its leader since May 2010, but until last summer, his most recent known appearance on film was a grainy mug shot from a stay in U.S. captivity at Camp Bucca during the occupation of Iraq. Then, on July 5 of last year, he stepped into the pulpit of the Great Mosque of al-Nuri in Mosul, to deliver a Ramadan sermon as the first caliph in generations—upgrading his resolution from grainy to high-definition, and his position from hunted guerrilla to commander of all Muslims. The inflow of jihadists that followed, from around the world, was unprecedented in its pace and volume, and is continuing. Read the rest of this entry »


Elegant Silence is no option and Najib must break his silence on the PMO Statement attributing his expenditure, including the multi-million dollar purchases of his wife’s jewellery, to his inheritance

Elegant Silence is no option for the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak to the swirling national and international controversy since the New York Times report on Feb. 9, 2015 quoting a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) attributing his expenditure, including the multi-million dollar purchases of his wife’s jewellery, to his inheritance.

The PMO statement to New York Times said:

“Neither any money spent on travel, nor any jewellery purchases, nor the alleged contents of any safes are unusual for a person of the prime minister’s position, responsibilities and legacy family assets.”

Two weeks after the New York Times report, the four brothers of the Prime Minister expressed concern over news reports regarding inheritance said to be from their father, Tun Razak Hussein, the second Prime Minister of Malaysia.

In a rare private statement, Najib’s four younger brothers Johari, Nizam, Nazim and Nazir expressed worry that the name of their father, who was known for his frugality, would be tarnished by such talks of family assets. Read the rest of this entry »


UMNO decision to stay out of Chempaka by-election welcome but it should be forerunner to promote a virtuous cycle of national unity and reconciliation

The decision announced by the UMNO President and Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak after the UMNO Supreme Council meeting last night that UMNO will stay out of the Chempaka state by-election in Kelantan is most welcome although not for the reasons given.

Najib said that the decision was for the sake of Muslim “unity” as well as to allow the federal government to focus on its flood relief, rehabilitation and reparation works still in progress.

It is sad that 58 years after Merdeka, and six years after the launching of his 1Malaysia signature policy, Najib has retreated to talk about Muslim unity instead of Malaysian unity.

The UMNO decision to stay out of Chempaka by-election should be a forerunner to promote a virtuous circle of moderation, tolerance, national unity and reconciliation, after a most prolonged, cacophonous and divisive period where the rhetoric of hate, intolerance, extremism and bigotry whether of race or religion, have held sway in the public domain raising disturbing questions about the future of Malaysia. Read the rest of this entry »


Tun Arifin Zakaria is duty-bound as Chairman of JAC to satisfactory account for the by-passing of promotion to Federal Court of the country’s most respected serving judge, Justice Hishammdin

The Chief Justice, Tun Arifin Zakaria is duty bound as Chairman of the Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) to satisfactorily account for the by-passing of promotion to the Federal Court of the country’s most respected serving judge, Justice Mohd Hishamudin Mohd Yunus.

Arifin had previously tried to shirk from his duty of national accountability when he was asked in September 2013 why Justice Hishammuddin was by-passed from promotion to the Federal Court in the batch of judicial elevations at the time, claiming that the elevation of judges was made without the influence of anyone and that it was at the prerogative of the Yang di Pertuan Agong on the advice of the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Arifin is right that the elevation of judges is not 100 per cent the prerogative of the JAC, but it is beneath the dignity of the Chief Justice to hum and haw claiming that it is unfair for the media or anyone to question the fate of any particular judge.

It has been reported that Justice Hishammuddin’s name was omitted from the promotion list in 2013 as a result of a directive from the Prime Minister’s Office, after the recommendation of his elevation to the Federal Court had passed through the JAC.
Justice Hishamudin’s name was missing again on the promotions list released on Feb. 16 this year, this time by-passed in favour of Justice Zaharah Ibrahim. Read the rest of this entry »

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Will Liow Tiong Lai and Mah Siew Keong notify the Cabinet today that their resignations from Cabinet would instantly come into effect when the Kelantan UMNO Assemblymen support PAS hudud legislation in Kelantan State Assembly next month?

Open Letter to MCA President Datuk Liow Tiong Lai and Gerakan President Datuk Mah Siew Keong
25th February 2015 8 am

This is my third pre-Cabinet Open Letter for this month of February, but unlike the first two pre-Cabinet Open Letters to all Cabinet Minsiters, this is addressed specifically to the MCA President, Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai, the Transport Minister and the Gerakan President, Datuk Mah Siew Keong, the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department.

It is clear that the UMNO/BN strategists are taking full advantage of a possible change of political dynamics in Pakatan Rakyat with the death of Tuan Guru Nik Aziz and the imprisonment of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to refurbish and launch a devilish political plot to destabilize, divide and destroy the Pakatan Rakat which it rightly regarded as the greatest threat to the credibility and survival of the ruling coalition.

This latest UMNO/BN political plot has two phases, firstly and immediately to entice the PAS Kelantan State Government with UMNO support for the implementation of hudud legislation in Kelantan; secondly, the lure of “unity government” between UMNO and PAS.

This UMNO/BN political plot is a two-faced double prong one: on the one hand, UMNO promising and delivering support of UMNO Kelantan State Assemblymen to PAS Kelantan State Government in the Kelantan State Assembly on the implementation of hudud legislation in Kelantan next month; while on the other, MCA and Gerakan launching an intensive three-week publicity war against the DAP and PKR for “betraying the rights of non-Malays and non-Muslims” in supporting PAS Kelantan State Government in hudud implementation in the Kelantan State Assembly next month.

Top MCA and Gerakan leaders have started the political offensives and the MCA and Gerakan will intensify in the coming three weeks, focusing on the Kelantan PAS State Government’s stand in the Kelantan State Assembly on hudud implementation in Kelantan while totally ignoring the support of the Kelantan UMNO Assembly members to hudud implementation in Kelantan. Read the rest of this entry »


Bersih to seek injunction against hearings on new Sarawak electoral boundaries

The Malaysian Insider
24 February 2015

Electoral watchdog Bersih 2.0 will proceed to make good its promise to get a court injunction to stop Sarawak’s redrawing of the state’s electoral boundaries after Election Commission (EC) chairman Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Yusof snubbed a meeting with them.

Bersih’s vice chair for the southern peninsula, Thomas Fann said he had followed Abdul Aziz for 60km from Kuching, the Sarawak capital, to the market town of Serian, hoping to meet with and persuade the EC chief.

Bersih wants the EC to stop the local inquiries on the new electoral boundaries pending the outcome of PKR’s judicial review on the constitutionality of the EC’s proposal.

Abdul Aziz and the rest of the seven-member commission were in Serian to hear the objections of voters from the state seats of Triboh and Tebedu.

Fann, who managed to have a 10-minute meeting with Sarawak EC director Datuk Takun Sangguh at the Serian community hall where the hearing took place, said he was given a “flat ‘No’” on the grounds that Bersih had no capacity or locus standi to be part of the redelineation process in Sarawak.

Bersih had on Sunday warned that the EC’s refusal to halt its inquiry sessions, which are mandated by law on any proposed boundary redrawing, may result in application of injunctions.

“We’ll file the application as soon as possible. Before the inquiries end,” Fann said.

The application would not be in Bersih’s name, but that of a local voter. Read the rest of this entry »

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