Archive for November 23rd, 2016

Call on all MPs, including from BN, to reject five-year extension of Sosma police powers to detain a person for 28 days for investigation with the pernicious abuse of powers in Maria Chin’s detention, which is vengeful, vicious, vindictive

It is no wonder that the Malaysian education system and standards are so atrocious when Puad Zarkashi, who was the Deputy Education Minister when the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act was passed in Parliament in April 2012, can now talk such rubbish that Bersih chairperson Maria Chin’s “misdeeds” fit Sosma perfectly.

Puad, who is UMNO supreme council member, cannot be so dumb as not to know that the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz, who piloted the Sosma legislation through Parliament in April 2012, made a categorical assurance in Parliament which binds all Cabinet Ministers and Barisan Nasional leaders that Sosma legislation was meant to deal exclusively with the threat of terrorism and not meant for legitimate democratic activities like Bersih rallies, the first of which was held on 10th November 2007, Bersih 2 rally held on 9th July 2011, and the Bersih 3 rally held some ten days after Sosma was passed by Parliament on 28th April 2012.

I believe that if Nazri as the Minister responsible for the Sosma legislation had been asked pointedly in Parliament at the time in 2012 whether Bersih leaders, at that time led by Datuk Ambiga Sreenivasam, were likely to be targets and victims of Sosma detention, the answer will be a clear and categorical “No”, as even Barisan Nasional Ministers and MPs would know that the Bersih coalition of NGOs was neither a violent nor terrorist organization but committed to a peaceful, non-violent and democratic campaign to raise national consciousness for clean, free and fair elections. Read the rest of this entry »


Malaysia’s 1MDB scandal – Nothing to see here

Nov 19th 2016

Billions are stolen; only a whistle-blower goes to jail

IT IS more than two years since Malaysians began asking awkward questions about 1MDB, a state-owned investment firm from which billions of dollars are missing. But Malaysia has yet to prosecute anyone in connection with the scandal, perhaps the gravest in its history. Instead, on November 14th a local court handed a prison sentence to Rafizi Ramli, an outspoken opposition politician who has done much to educate the public about the affair. If Mr Rafizi’s appeal is rejected he will spend 18 months in jail.

Mr Rafizi’s offence was to leak details from a report into 1MDB’s dealings which had been produced by Malaysia’s auditor-general, but which the government had declared classified. Mr Rafizi had publicised a brief passage from the report to support speculation that the state firm’s massive losses could have delayed certain payments to Malaysian veterans (the organisations involved reject this claim). The government had initially promised that the auditor-general’s report would be released to the public in full, as is the convention. Now it is using the Official Secrets Act to silence those who refer to it.

Mr Rafizi’s conviction may prevent him from defending his parliamentary seat at the next general election. It adds to a string of legal battles hampering the opposition, which is readying for polls that may be called next year. Anwar Ibrahim, the opposition leader, has been imprisoned since 2015 on flimsy sodomy charges. A corruption case is presently being pressed against Lim Guan Eng, the chief minister of Penang (an opposition stronghold). Read the rest of this entry »

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Who Is the Woman at the Heart of Malaysia’s Anti-Corruption Protests?

Yenni Kwok
23rd Nov. 2016

On Wednesday morning, hundreds of women in yellow T-shirts marched to the parliamentary building in the Malaysian capital, Kuala Lumpur, demanding the release of activist Maria Chin Abdullah, who was arrested last Friday. They carried banners and placards that said: “Women 4 Maria” and “Free Maria.”

The march marks the fifth day since Chin, chairperson of Bersih 2.0, a pro-democracy and anticorruption coalition group, was arrested last Friday, on the eve of a massive Bersih protest in the Malaysian capital.

Along with Chin, Malaysian authorities also nabbed her Bersih colleague Mandeep Karpal Singh and at least 12 other activists. All have been released, except Chin, the only one detained under the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act, or SOSMA, an antiterrorism law that allows detention for up to 28 days without trial. The 60-year-old activist — who suffers from hypertension, high blood pressure and osteoarthritis — is reportedly being held in solitary confinement in a cell without windows and with lights kept on around the clock.

“This amounts to torture,” says a statement from the Joint Action Group for Gender Equality, which organized the women’s march Wednesday.
Rights activists say Chin’s detention is unprecedented. “It’s the first time that a woman human-rights defender has been detained under SOSMA,” Lee Wei San, program coordinator at the All Women’s Action Society (AWAM), tells TIME. Read the rest of this entry »

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Nur Jazlan’s statement that Maria Chin’s arrest under SOSMA was not because of terrorism is irrefutable proof that Najib is the undisputed “U-turn King” and Malaysia’s most untrustworthy Prime Minister whose promises and pledges, even in Parliament, are not worth a single sen

Deputy Home Minister, Datuk Seri Nur Jazlan’s statement yesterday that Bersih chairperson Maria Chin’s arrest under SOSMA was not because of terrorism is irrefutable proof that Datuk Seri Najib Razak is the undisputed “U-turn King” and Malaysia’s most untrustworthy Prime Minister whose promises and pledges, even in Parliament, are not worth a single sen.

In fact, the extraordinary scenario where the Najib administration through one Minister makes a solemn pledge about a new law in Parliament is contradicted when the law is implemented by another Minister was foreseen by the DAP MP for Seputeh Teresa Kok during the winding-up debate enacting the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 (SOSMA) in the Dewan Rakyat on 17th April 2012, when she posed the question:

“Teresa Kok Suh Sim (Seputeh): Yang Berhormat Menteri, kenapakah selepas rang undang-undang ini di luluskan di Dewan ia akan dilaksanakan oleh Kementerian Dalam Negeri, tengok Kementerian Dalam Negeri semalam kebanyakkan masa tidak ada, tidak mendengar keluhan daripada pihak di sebelah sini dan juga macam mana dia boleh melaksanakan apa yang dicadangkan oleh Dewan ini.”

At the time, the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Nazri Aziz, who was responsible for the passage of the SOSMA bill in Parliament, ridiculed Teresa Kok’s concerns boasting:

“Tuan Yang di Pertua, Yang Berhormat Seputeh, saya ini Menteri yang menjaga Parlimen dan ditambah juga dikatakan sebagai de facto Menteri undang-undang. Ini ada kaitan dengan Parlimen dan ada kaitan dengan undang-undang……kalau saya hendak, saya boleh menjawab bagi mana-mana pihak oleh sebab saya dalam keadaan yang emergency kalau sekiranya ada orang yang tidak dapat hadir, tidak melanggar apa-apa peraturan untuk saya menjawab bagi pihak mana-mana kementerian.” Read the rest of this entry »

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