Archive for September 1st, 2015

Bersih 4 and 1MDB: Cleansing Malaysia and cleaning out Malaysia

— Koon Yew Yin
Malay Mail Online
August 31, 2015

AUGUST 31 — Two big issues have taken up the national attention during the past few weeks. One is the Bersih rally or what can be called the cleaning of Malaysia organised by civil society activists. The second is the 1MDB scandal which can be called the cleaning up of Malaysia organised by Putrajaya.

The first one cost taxpayers — or rather donors —several millions of ringgit. Though the full accounts are not in yet, we know that thousands of ordinary Malaysian dipped into their own pockets to pay for this activity. Much of the money is in small change – tens to hundreds of ringgit. The funds will be used to defray the costs of organising rallies held throughout the country to demand the cleaning up of our political system as well as to save our economy. The objectives of Bersih 4 in summary are as follows:

Clean Elections (#PilihanrayaBersih);
Clean Government (#KerajaanBersih);
Save Our Economy (#SelamatkanEkonomi); and
Right to Dissent (#HakMembantah). Read the rest of this entry »

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The Sarawak Bersih 4 fiasco

Dr Kelvin Yii
1st September 2015

The Bersih 4 rally has been catching headlines for the past few days with the crowd in KL swelling to a record number reportedly at 500,000 over the weekend, an unprecedented amount of people willing to stretch it out for 34 hours and sleep on the streets to protest against the corrupt regime as well demand for clean and fair elections, among others.

This commands great pride for me and many other Malaysians who are sick and tired of how corruption and bad governance has wrecked our country. I as a Sarawakian have seen and experienced how corruption and money politics have ravaged our state, and oppressed our people.

The urging for Bersih wasn’t a foreign agenda, neither was it a Malayan concept. We in Sarawak need it more than ever, to stand up against corruption, electoral fraud and bad governance that has left Sarawak as one of the least developed state even though we blessed with the abundance of natural resources.

So I was really devastated reading the news on how Sarawak Bersih 4 turned out and was instead used as a platform to attack the different opposition parties. The organisers have since retracted the statement allegedly blaming Sarawak DAP for the premature end of the rally, and claimed they was misquoted, however this did not stop it from being circulated on social media and blogs, and leaving a bad taste in our mouth. Read the rest of this entry »

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Bersih 4 was not a feel-good picnic

Kee Thuan Chye
1st Sept 2015

COMMENT When Bersih 4 ended at the midnight of Aug 30, it ended on a high note. The rally defied expectations. Those who had thought it would not be able to sustain 34 hours of street protest without experiencing police harassment and violence sparked by agitators were proven wrong.

An incredibly huge crowd celebrated Bersih 4’s success at the grand finale with an impassioned rendering of the national anthem when the clock struck 12.

Mingguan Malaysia accused the rally of having been controlled and dominated by the DAP. That’s utter bullshit. The DAP could not possibly command this kind of turnout on any given day.

In saying so, the pro-Umno newspaper also insulted the rally’s organisers, Bersih 2.0. It denied them the credit of having done a marvellous and exceptional job of putting together the event and making sure it remained peaceful. Read the rest of this entry »


Najib should not set a negative tone for the 16th IACC on “Ending Impunity: People. Integrity. Action” by last-minute pull-out which is tantamount to defiant declaration that Impunity is Order of the Day in Malaysia

Just checked the official website of the three-day 16th International Anti-Corruption Conference (IACC) on “Ending Impunity: People. Integrity. Action” in Putrajaya from tomorrow till Friday.

The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak is still in the distinguished guest-list for the Opening Ceremony, which includes Datuk Paul Low, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Tan Sri Kassim Mohamed, MACC Chief Commissioner, Akere Muna, IACC Chair, Datuk Akbar Satar and President of Transparency International Malaysia, Jose Ugaz Chair of Transparency International.

Despite Najib’s last-minute pull-out from the opening ceremony and delivery of a key-note address for the 16th IACC, will Najib have a last-minute change of plan to honour his earlier promise to open the 16th IACC together with a key-note address?

Ironically, Najib’s absence because of the last-minute pull-out will be the most momentous event at the 16th IACC, overshadowing all the speeches to be delivered, for it would in fact set the negative tone for the international anti-corruption conference on “Ending Impunity: People. Integrity. Action” – as his pull-out and absence will be tantamount to a defiant declaration to IACC and the international community that Impunity is the Order of the Day in Malaysia!

Najib’s absence will be as good as throwing down the gauntlet to the IACC and the international community that they could congregate for impotent global conferences of ending impunity among top leaders in the battle against corruption, but what could they do when a head of government like him defies them and act with utter impunity despite the swirling rumours and allegations about “grand corruption”, or specifically in his case, the RM50 billion 1MDB (according to Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin his last speech as Deputy Prime Minister to the Cheras UMNO Division on July 26) and the RM2.6 billion “donation” twin finance scandals. Read the rest of this entry »

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Has the Najib government learnt nothing from the two-day 500,000-people Bersih 4 overnight rally in KL, Kuching and KK demanding for good governance and free, fair elections?

History was made in the last two days when 500,000 Malaysians, regardless of race, religion, region, gender, age or even politics converged into Kuala Lumpur, Kuching and Kota Kinabalu demanding for good governance and free, fair elections to prevent Malaysia from becoming a rogue and failed state.

Has the Najib government learnt nothing from the two-day 500,000-people Bersih 4 overnight rally in KL, Kuching and KK demanding for good governance and free, fair elections?
Do the Prime Minister and his Cabinet Ministers really regard the 500,000 literate and idealistic Malaysians who came from all over the country to support Bersih 4 as bad-hats, trouble-makers and anti-national elements out to destroy the country and therefore should be ignored and marginalised?

If so, then the country is in deeper trouble than anyone realized and underlines the urgency and relevance of a change of government, which has not lost touch with the ground, and to really understand the truism of what Najib had said when he first became Prime Minister six years ago in April 2009 – that the era where the government knows best is over! Read the rest of this entry »


Najib should speak up, tell police to “hands-off” Bilqis Hijjas and show Malaysia and the world that his government is not obsessed or afraid of yellow colour, T-shirts and balloons

The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak should speak up, tell the police to “hands-off” dancer/performer Bilqis Hijjas and show Malaysia and the world that his government is not obsessed or afraid of yellow colour, T-shirts and balloons.

Najib is still talking about accomplishing Vision 2020 objective of Malaysia becoming a fully developed nation although the father of Vision 2020, former Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir has already passed judgment that Vision 2020 is not achievable.

Najib should therefore be reminded of the nine “strategic challenges” for Malaysia to accomplish the Vision 2020 objective of a fully developed nation, and the second “strategic challenge” is creating “a psychologically liberated, secure, and developed Malaysian Society with faith and confidence in itself, justifiably proud of what it is, of what it has accomplished, robust enough to face all manner of adversity. This Malaysian Society must be distinguished by the pursuit of excellence, fully aware of all its potentials, psychologically subservient to none, and respected by the peoples of other nations.”

Malaysia has failed miserably to achieve this second “strategic challenge” when the Malaysian government sees an enemy behind every bush and tree, and even worse as demonstrated by recent days, obsessed and even afraid of the yellow colour, T-shirts and now balloons!

Surely, Najib and his sycophants are not thinking of enacting a form of lese-majeste legislation to create a crime of offending the dignity of the Prime Minister and his wife? Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysia’s anti-government protests: What’s next?

Ansuya Harjani
August 31, 2015

Malaysia’s mammoth civil disobedience campaign has heightened pressure on scandal-ridden Prime Minister Najib Razak but is an imminent departure on the cards? Unlikely, analysts say.

The 61-year-old leader, who is no stranger to controversy, has most recently been accused of pocketing almost $700 million from troubled government fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). Najib says the allegations are part of a malicious campaign to force him from office, while his cabinet ministers claim the funds were campaign donations from unnamed sources in the Middle East.

“[The] protests will pile on public pressure on Najib to resign. But unfortunately he’s in quite a strong position,” said James Chin, director of the Asia Institute at the University of Tasmania. Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysia’s political crisis in 5 numbers

Michael Peel
Financial Times
August 31, 2015

A marathon 34-hour rally in Malaysia at the weekend drew tens — perhaps even hundreds — of thousands to the streets of Kuala Lumpur to call for the resignation of Najib Razak, the scandal-hit prime minister. Mr Najib on Sunday vowed not to quit and accused the protesters of showing “poor national spirit” by demonstrating on the eve of the country’s National Day. The protest, known as Bersih — meaning “clean” in Malay — highlighted growing faultlines in the Southeast Asian country, as allegations of official corruption and abuses of power swirl. Here is the crisis in five numbers:

$675m : total of March 2013 transfers to accounts in Mr Najib’s name Read the rest of this entry »


We are still not merdeka… from the Jews

Zurairi AR
Malay Mail Online
August 30, 2015

AUGUST 30 — When artist Mun Kao included a “blame the Jews” card in his delightful card game Politiko, I wonder whether he had any idea how often the card actually gets played in actual politics.

Especially when other cards in the same category are “cash giveouts” and “phantom voters”, you have to admit that playing the “blame the Jews” card can be construed as a final act of desperation.

(In case you haven’t figured it out, Politiko is a satirical card game that takes the piss out of Malaysian politics.)

Yet, it was the exact card played by Deputy Transport Minister Aziz Kaprawi, who claimed last week that the RM2.6 billion for Prime Minister Najib Razak was made by the still unnamed Middle East donors to help Umno fight off DAP, which he claimed was backed by the Jews. Read the rest of this entry »

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The colour of patriotism

Kamal Amzan
Malay Mail Online
August 28, 2015

AUG 28 ― I will be wearing yellow this weekend.

And before you jump to conclusions, and it is not just because Arsenal won the FA cup in May wearing yellow, I’m wearing it for luck after a colleague showed me a news article which said (what we already know) the houses in KL are “very unaffordable.”

Do you know that the ringgit is close to RM4.3 at the moment of writing? And while mainstream media is all about “cut down on overseas travel”, “low ringgit makes our products more competitive so it’s good for the economy”, “the other countries are also facing the same problem”, they forget that a lower ringgit makes us poorer.

I wonder whether that is the same reason they stopped talking about us becoming a high income nation. Read the rest of this entry »

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Merdeka negara tapi tidak di jiwa

– Mohd Tajuddin Mohd Rasdi
The Malaysian Insider
31 August 2015

Dalam coretan ringkas ini saya ingin menanam satu persoalan dalam benak pemikiran orang-orang Melayu yang tinggal di sebuah negara bernama Malaysia.

Soalannya mudah sahaja. Negara yang kita kenali sebagai Malaysia dan pada suatu ketika dahulu dinamakan Tanah Melayu pun merdeka lebih separuh kurun, persoalannya sudahkah jiwa orang Melayu itu merdeka?

Dalam coretan sejarah dan tulisan dokumen tercatat negara ini merdeka daripada orang Inggeris, dalam julangan bangunan yang bercakar-cakar melonjak dari bumi dapat kita lihat kemerdekaan ekonomi dari aspek usaha keringat kita sekalian. Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysians reclaimed the spirit of Merdeka

– Anura Bird
The Malaysian Insider
31 August 2015

There is a legend surrounding the significance of the mooncake in Chinese history. Apparently, during the Yuan Dynasty (a Mongol dynasty founded by Kublai Khan), resistance was growing in pocket across the vast lands.

A rebel leader trying to send messages to his followers cleverly hid them in pieces of paper concealed in mooncakes usually distributed among the local Chinese during the Mid-Autumn Festival.

These messages eventually reached the intended masses and the story goes that it led to the uprising that eventually forced out the Mongol invaders and heralded the coming of the celebrated Ming Dynasty. Read the rest of this entry »

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