Archive for category Anwar Ibrahim
Malay Mail Online
January 14, 2017
JANUARY 14 — Happy New Year! Since we are still in the month of January, it is probably not too late for me to wish everyone a happy and prosperous new year. I can’t help believing that 2017 can only bring much hope after what seems to be an awful 2016.
The last year was an eventful one for me, not just because I completed my Master’s degree in International Studies and Diplomacy but because I also made great friends from all over the world.
It helped that my college, the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, has such incredible diversity. Although I enjoyed my break from politics while pursuing my studies, I am also glad to be back in Malaysia just as our political alignments suffered a groundbreaking shift.
When Pakatan Rakyat broke up, many Malaysians (certainly more than half who voted in the last general election) felt their hopes shattered. Infighting gripped the coalition partners, all of whom appeared to be more interested in criticising each other rather than the BN regime. Read the rest of this entry »
Koon Yew Yin
31st December 2016
As we enter into 2017, I am hopeful that the new year will finally bring positive change to Malaysia. But this positive change must begin with voting out the BN government and the installation of a new government.
For now, we see the BN big guns using the media to criticise the opposition for being divided and lacking cohesion. They also allege that there is no agreement on who is to be Prime Minister if the opposition wins. Or which opposition party will take over which portfolio.
Frankly, I do not see these as being big issues or problems. In fact by raising them, it shows how frightened the BN is over the prospect of losing power so that they will use all kinds of scare tactics.
Don’t forget that in the last GE the opposition won more than 51% of total votes. BN ended up with more state and parliament seats because most of the Malay rural areas voted for UMNO. But in the next GE, we have Pribumi, headed by Dr. M, Keadilan headed by Anwar and Amanah headed by Mat Sabu and the PAS moderates.
I believe PAS will eventually work with the opposition when they realise UMNO is making use of them to win. In any case we will definitely have more Malay parties competing for the rural seats. Read the rest of this entry »
Anwar’s “Malaysia at the crossroads” article in Guardian should be compulsory reading for all Malaysians who care and are concerned about the nation’s future
Pakatan Harapan’s Prime Minister-designate Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s “Malaysia at the crossroads” article in the Guardian newspaper in the United Kingdom should be compulsory reading for all Malaysians who care and are concerned about the nation’s future.
Malaysia’s choice is stark and dire. In Anwar’s own words:
“Two decades ago Malaysia was arguably the bright spot of progress in the Muslim world. We believed then that our combination of economic growth and improving democratic engagement would be an example for other Muslim-majority countries. The past 20 years, however, have seen our country go from bad to worse politically and economically, driven by compromised democratic institutions and years of systematic abuse by the ruling elite to maintain their grip on power…
“This has put Malaysia at a crossroads: it can either return to its rightful place as a shining political and financial star in a developing world desperate for such successes; or it can descend to the role of yet another Muslim-majority country with a failing democracy and economy. Internationally, support for fundamental political reforms in Malaysia can help create a south-east Asian bloc of Muslim governments that will be a model for the rest of the world.”
Contrast Anwar’s article with the Prime Minister’s Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s UMNO Presidential speech on 1st December – the former infused with patriotic concern about Malaysia’s future despite its potential for greatness and capacity for good in the international society and the latter a small-minded and spiteful oratory reminiscent of Nazi-style “Big Lie” propaganda to pander to the most primordial sentiments by provoking the most elemental emotions of fear, hate and intolerance totally inimical to the objective of a democratic, harmonious and peaceful plural society. Read the rest of this entry »
Tuesday 13 December 2016
My country is at a crossroads: it can either return to freedom and transparency, or it can become just another failing Muslim-majority country
Winston Churchill once famously paraphrased: “Democracy is the worst form of government except for all the others.” Recent anti-progressive electoral upsets in the US and UK, combined with potential successes looming for similar sentiment in upcoming European polls, are conspiring to give democracy a bad name in some circles.
Yet despite the challenges, we must be globally resolute in our commitment to accountable representative governments, with reinforcing systems of transparency and accountability.
In the Muslim world in particular, real democracy is essential to confront the threats to life, peace, security, freedom and human dignity that have become virtually epidemic from Africa to east Asia. Failure to address political grievances allows extremists the opportunity to pounce on the disenchanted and marginalised with their brand of deviant Islam.
Earlier this year my long-time friend, Rached Ghannouchi of Tunisia, challenged his Islamist peers by boldly pronouncing at the Ennahda party convention, “We are leaving political Islam … We are Muslim democrats.” Read the rest of this entry »
By Anwar Ibrahim
October 12, 2016
Sungai Buloh Prison, Malaysia — Yesterday, Malaysia’s Federal Court heard my final appeal to reverse the injustice of my politically-motivated detention at the hands of the Malaysian government. It won’t likely issue a final decision on my case for many months. What is really at stake in Malaysia, however, is a catastrophic slide to authoritarian kleptocracy by a country that was set to be the shining example of pluralistic democracy in a multi-religious Muslim majority country. My last appeal could well be the final opportunity for Prime Minister Najib Razak and the judiciary he cynically controls to set Malaysia again on a path of restoring its much tainted reputation on the global stage. But without the support of the international community and President Obama’s help, my fate is pre-determined.
I have struggled my entire life for the betterment of my country and the improvement of the lives of Malaysia’s citizens. I am coming up on having spent 10 years of my adult life over the course multiple imprisonments in jail. I am grateful for the strong support of the United Nations and organizations like Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, which have concluded I am illegally detained and have urged my immediate release. Although this has been particularly hard on my family, I am most worried about the unprecedented existential threat to Malaysia’s democracy and stability. We are at a crossroads where we can either emerge as a pluralistic democracy in Asia and in the Muslim world or where our nation will implode from grand corruption and different religious and ethnic groups being pitted against each other fighting for limited resources.
Najib’s overreach is even bringing my former political foes from the ruling party, including my political benefactor and later jailer Mahathir Mohamed, to defect to the opposition. But most democracies around the world have remained totally silent, and none have taken concrete measures to censure Najib and his government before the damage done by their corruption and authoritarianism is irreversible. Read the rest of this entry »
The Mahathir-Anwar reconciliation is creating waves in Indonesia, and is the subject of inquiry of the many political leaders and public intellectuals I met during the four-day visit to Jakarta and Yogyakarta.
This is the third overseas visit by DAP leaders to learn and update on the latest political developments with regard to Islam and democracy, particularly in Moslem-majority nations.
The countries first visited were Jordan and Egypt in April last year, followed by visits to Tunisia and Turkey last October. Read the rest of this entry »
Call for Anwar Ibrahim to be given the royal pardon and freed from Sungai Buloh prison on Malaysia Day as a first step to make Malaysia Day a National Day for all Malaysians and not just in Sabah and Sarawak
The time has come for the Malaysian Government to make Malaysia Day on September 16 a National Day in the genuine sense of the term for all Malaysians and not just in Sabah and Sarawak.
What is being done by the Federal Government to make Malaysia Day a National Day of solidarity for the reaffirmation of the unity, integrity and sovereignty of Malaysia at two levels – firstly, of the diverse races, religions, languages and cultures which have come together to make Malaysia their home and an “Instant Asia” and secondly, the union of Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak into a new nation in South-east Asia in 1963 by smoothing out the knots and kinks of nationhood in the past five decades – in particular the legitimate grievances felt by Sarawakians and Sabahans about their neglect and underdevelopment in the past half century?
Malaysia Day last year was hijacked and desecrated by the UMNO-inspired “Red Shirts” rally when it should be an occasion for all Malaysians to strengthen national integration and counter the divisive and centrifugal forces seeking the division and disintegration of the nation.
Not only Malaysia Day, but Sabah and Sabah were virtually forgotten on Sept. 16 last year when national and international attention were riveted on the Red Shirt “Kebangkitan Maruah Melayu” rally in Kuala Lumpur.
More is expected of the Federal Government to give greater substance to the import and significance of Malaysia Day not only to the people of Sabah and Sarawak but also to the people in Peninsular Malaysia. Read the rest of this entry »
South China Morning Post
12 Sep 2016
Two years ago, Mahathir Mohamad, the former prime minister of Malaysia, visited Hong Kong. At the time, the Umbrella Movement was in full swing. Mahathir had been invited to address a pro-establishment gathering of political figures and business elites at the convention centre in Wan Chai. Few in the audience seemed to know much about Malaysia. But they knew about Mahathir. And in appreciating the managerial fist that he had wielded during his long tenure, they paid high fees to come and take heart.
Mahathir didn’t disappoint. Though 90 years old, he held the floor for an hour, without notes or nary a stumble. His central theme was that mainland China, in contrast to the meddlesome West, was beneficent and nobly intentioned, with Malaysia uplifted by its investment. The audience nodded on in agreement. But what they really wanted to learn from Mahathir was how to stamp out the Umbrella Movement.
So, during the Q&A, local notables clamoured for the mike. A loyalist member of Legco implored, “Can you give us some of your precious advice?” Mahathir pursed his lips, then sagely intoned, “the best way to handle it is to handle it before the occupying” – intimating that Hong Kong’s police had been tardy and soft. At this, Mahathir was thunderously applauded. A Malaysian guest at my side thumped the table top. “I’d like to bring the Malaysian police in here,” he growled. “They’d teach these kids something.” Read the rest of this entry »
UMNO leaders are jittery and some panic-stricken about political developments in UMNO and Malaysia – particularly with the formation of a new political party by Mahathir and Muhyiddin
Although UMNO leaders put up a bold external front and feigned indifference and even contempt for the new political party being formed by former Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad and former Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, there is no doubt that they are quaking internally.
This is not without basis as illustrated by today’s developments in Johor UMNO, where two Johor UMNO veterans quit the party – the Gelang Patah UMNO permanent chairperson and former State Assemblyman Baharom Abdul Ghani and the Kulai UMNO deputy chief, Tosrin Jarvanti – at their respective UMNO division annual meetings on the ground that UMNO has deviated from its political struggle and could not be salvaged any more as it had become the property of the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
Equally eloquent are the speeches early today by two UMNO Ministers at the various UMNO divisional meetings in the country which show that UMNO leaders are jittery and some panic-stricken about political developments in Malaysia, particularly in UMNO – the quite hysterical speech by UMNO Supreme Council member and Minister for Rural and Regional Development, Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, who said that UMNO members should torpedo Mahathir’s boat before he sinks UMNO and the speech by the UMNO Youth Leader, Khairy Jamaluddin beseeching UMNO member to remain loyal to the party and cannot be fence-sitters.
The historic meeting between Mahathir and Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, the first in 18 years, has added to the sense of gloom and doom among UMNO membership, despite the brave front put up by some UMNO leaders – like the UMNO Secretary-General Tengku Adnan who said that “Mahathir can have Anwar, UMNO has the rakyat” and the outburst of the Communications and Multimedia Minister, Datuk Seri Salleh Syed Keruak who likened “Mahathir’s kiss is a kiss of death”. Read the rest of this entry »
First Mahathir-Anwar meeting in 18 years an example for all Malaysians to act as patriots to rise above all differences to save Malaysia from being a global kleptocracy heading towards a failed state
The historic meeting between Tun Mahathir and Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, the first in 18 years, should be an inspiring example for all Malaysians to act as patriots to rise above all differences to save Malaysia from being a global kleptocracy heading towards a failed state.
Never before had Malaysia fallen so low in international esteem in the nation’s 59-year history as to have our credibility, honour, reputation and good name soiled and stained when we are regarded as an overnight global kleptocracy or suffered the shame and dishonor as the centerpiece of the US Department of Justice (DOJ) single largest kleptocracy lawsuit for the forfeiture of over US$1 billion of assets from US$3.5 billion ill-gotten gains derived from the theft, embezzlement, misappropriation and money-laundering from the Malaysian national sovereign wealth fund, 1MDB.
This is the time for the convening of a National Patriotic Summit for all Malaysians leaders and individuals, as well as organisations, whether political, civic, religious , commercial or even communal and clan associations, to come together to take a common patriotic stand in a national and international campaign to save Malaysia from worldwide infamy and to purge and cleanse Malaysia of the international shame of being identified as an overnight global kleptocracy.
Malaysia is presenting a sorry international spectacle.
Read the rest of this entry »
If Anwar had become Prime Minister in 2013, Malaysia would have been spared the agony of the protracted 1MDB scandal, there would be no DOJ lawsuit derogatory of the nation’s international reputation and Malaysia would be spared the latest label as a global kleptocracy
We are here outside the Sungai Buloh Prison walls to honour and celebrate the 69th birthday of a foremost Malaysian leader and patriot, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
If the 2013 General Elections had been fair, democratic and reliable, the Prime Minister of Malaysia today would be Anwar and not Datuk Seri Najib Razak, and the country would have been spared the agony of the protracted 1MDB scandal, there would have been no US Department of Justice (DOJ) lawsuits for the forfeiture of over US$1 billion of 1MDB-linked assets in the United States, United Kingdom and Switzerland stolen, embezzled, misappropriated and money-laundered from some US$3.5 billion meant for 1MDB and belonging to the people of Malaysia, the so-called mystery of “MALAYSIAN OFFICIAL 1” in the 136-page DOJ lawsuits.
Even more important, Malaysia would have been spared the infamy and ignominy of being labeled as a global kleptocracy – the contempt and laughing stock of the international community. Read the rest of this entry »
Koon Yew Yin
17th July 2016
COMMENT So far, if we go by the mainstream and official media reports, it appears as if Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak is the big victor in the 1MDB and personal donation double scandals.
But is this such a certainty? Have the Umno rebels and the Umno revolt been crushed? Has Najib been cleared of his alleged political sins and crime, just because the attorney-general (AG) has declared that there will be no charges against the PM and that the RM2.6 billion political donation and RM42 million from SRC International transferred into Najib’s personal bank accounts cases are closed?
Has his nemesis, Dr Mahathir Mohamad, met his Waterloo? Will Najib be leading Umno and BN to another five more years of rule after the next election? Read the rest of this entry »
4th July 2016
COMMENT The plot thickens in the final lap towards GE14. If PAS is aiding Umno Baru to recapture Selangor, the arrest of the chief minister of Penang will be the precursor to the retaking of Penang by Umno Baru. These two moves are part of a bigger Umno Baru plan to regain control of Penang and Selangor, the most valuable jewels in the Malaysian crown, in GE14.
PAS’ role in the twin by-elections was crucial. Its hudud bill caused uproar and drove people towards the devil they know, Umno Baru. What choice did they have? PAS and hudud? The untested Amanah, a splinter group from PAS?
Umno Baru conceded that they would need more work to recapture Penang. So, why do you think that the Pahang mufti, Abdul Rahman Osman, stated that kafir harbi ought to be slain? Worse still, he equated DAP with kafir harbi, traditionally viewed as the people who oppose Islam.
The mufti’s remark was no coincidence. His motive was political, and delivering this message during Ramadan is sacrilegious. Gullible Muslims with closed minds had the message that DAP is kafir harbi etched in their heads for 10 days.
When the arrest warrant was issued for Lim Guan Eng, who is also the secretary-general of DAP, Umno Baru did not want the Muslims to support him; but they underestimated the rakyat’s intelligence.
The story about Lim Guan Eng is a story of triumph and tragedy. When he became chief minister, he dared to do the impossible and did away with the old Barisan Nasional work ethics. Read the rest of this entry »
April 20, 2016
In the court of domestic and international public opinion, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak is guilty of a level of corruption and abuse of office not seen in Southeast Asia since the days of the dictators. Najib’s rule evokes memories of Marcos’ Philippines and Suharto’s Indonesia. The parallels include a family bent on amassing vast wealth.
There is now enough evidence in the public domain to warrant the removal of Najib from office. But will he go?
Najib did consider resigning last year when the scandals over the plundered sovereign wealth fund, 1 Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), split his cabinet according to a source familiar with discussions at the time. The condition Najib set was that he and his wife were granted immunity from prosecution.
But talk of an early departure has now dissipated. It appears likely Najib will try to stay in office and fight for re-election in 2018. Read the rest of this entry »
Guan Eng is an open book prepared to answer all questions about his RM2.8 million bungalow purchase while Najib is a closed book running way from questions about his twin mega scandals!
There are many reasons why Datuk Seri Najib Razak should step down as Prime Minister.
The first is of course the imposition of Goods and Services Tax (GST) which has caused great hardships to low-income Malaysians sandwiched between falling incomes and rising cost of living.
There are many other reasons why Najib should step down as Prime Minister, including:
• Catapulting Malaysia to the stratosphere and internationally regarded as among the top ten nations in the world infamous for global corruption because of the RM55 billion 1MDB and RM4.2 billion “donation” twin mega scandals.
• Refusal to come full and clean in accordance with the principles of accountability, transparency, democracy and good governance about the twin mega scandals, and even Parliament cannot be a venue to ask questions about Najib’s RM4.2 billion “donation” scandal. After a year of adverse international publicity, Malaysians and the world still do not have answers to basic questions like: Where the RM4.2 billion “donation” in Najib’s personal bank accounts from 2011 to 2014 came from and where the monies have gone to.
• Failure to sue international publications, especially Wall Street Journal and Australian Broadcasting Corporation, the former for the revelation of RM2.6 billion donations in Najib’s personal banking accounts and the latter for the latest revelation that donations deposited into Najib’s personal accounts were not just RM2.6 billion but exceeded RM4.2 billion from 2011 to 2014. Read the rest of this entry »
Muafakat Selamatkan Malaysia must go back to the fundamentals of the 1957 Merdeka Constitution and 1963 Malaysia Constitution to ensure democratic and institutional reforms especially just rule of law and truly independent judiciary
The launching of the nation-wide Pakatan Harapan “Muafakat Selamatkan Malaysia” campaign tonight is line with the historic Citizens’ Declaration on March 4, 2016 to Save Malaysia by demanding the resignation for Datuk Seri Najib Razak as Prime Minister and the carrying out of meaningful democratic and institutional reforms to stop Malaysia from hurtling down the slope of a failed and rogue state.
The Save Malaysia campaign must go back to the fundamentals of the 1957 Merdeka Constitution and the 1963 Malaysia Constitution to ensure democratic and institutional reforms especially to ensure a just rule of law and a truly independent judiciary.
The Save Malaysia campaign can only succeed if Malaysians, regardless of race, religion or political affiliation, are prepared to take a common national patriotic stand to oppose rampant corruption, massive abuses of power, undemocratic practices and widespread socio-economic injustices in the country.
For this reason, all Malaysians, whether in the component parties of DAP, PKR and Parti Amanah Negara in Pakatan Harapan, or the 3.5 million UMNO members and one million PAS members, should come together on a common national platform to ensure that Malaysia becomes a world-class nation respected by the international community because of our accomplishments and achievements in various fields of human endeavor – political, economic, respect for human rights, good governance or nation building of a plural society of diverse races, languages, religions and cultures – not because we have become among the world’s top ten countries in corruption. Read the rest of this entry »
— Manjit Bhatia
Malay Mail Online
March 15, 2016
MARCH 15 — In hounding Malaysia’s scandal-plagued Prime Minister Najib Razak from office, the autocratic Dr Mahathir, his old foes and others have moulded a union — of sorts. Hailed a “realignment” of Malaysia’s politics, some analysts immediately claimed Najib and his clique can’t ignore its peerless example. But is this unholy alliance all that it’s cracked up to be?
Awfully doubtful. Cracks surfaced even before this “political force” is properly forged. A little over a week later and its legs are buckling already.
Parti Keadilan Rakyat wants Anwar Ibrahim, its jailed founder, symbolic head and one-time Mahathir protégé, unconditionally released from prison, to which Mahathir must agree as part of the overall agenda. And elections reformist group Bersih wants Mahathir to admit and apologise for his past sins.
Mahathir has sneered at these tangents. No doubt the alliance’s champions will paper over the cracks. Time will prove that utility. But time is shorter than 90-year-old Mahathir thinks. Read the rest of this entry »
– Koon Yew Yin
The Malaysian Insider
13 March 2016
During the past 10 years I have written a great deal about our national politics and the country’s leadership. In particular I have focused on our prime ministers. What I have written has really been in response to the policies they have initiated and the way they have managed the key issues and challenges of our multi-racial society and developing economy.
Besides writing on the three prime ministers – Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Tun Abdullah Badawi and Datuk Seri Najib Razak – that we have had during the past 30 years I have also written extensively on two political figures who could have become prime ministers but never quite made it – Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah.
Readers will note that my view of Dr Mahathir has not been charitable. In fact, it will be considered unkind. He – and most Malaysians, including a majority of Malays today, will agree with me – is a failed leader who has let down the country badly.
Malaysians of my generation with longer memories than the current generation who know of the stability, harmony and prosperity that we enjoyed as well as experienced the high standards of governance inherited from the British, see the son of Mohamad Iskander Kutty, Dr Mahatir, as the principal cause of our badly dysfunctional economy and society. Read the rest of this entry »
By Yang Razali Kassim
MARCH 9, 2016
Malaysia’s rambunctious politics has entered an even more unpredictable phase with political foes Mahathir Mohamad and jailed Anwar Ibrahim joining hands to unseat Prime Minister Najib Razak and push for systemic change. Where will all this lead?
The unthinkable is happening in Malaysian politics. It is triggered by the deepest political crisis the country has ever known, at the centre of which is Prime Minister Najib Razak. Forced by a common desire to end the turmoil by unseating Najib, two bitter foes – former premier Mahathir Mohammad and his jailed former deputy Anwar Ibrahim – have joined hands in what has long been thought an impossible alliance.
Aptly described as a sea-change in Malaysian politics, never before have such sworn enemies buried their hatchets for a common cause – and never before had that been a joint cause celebre to sack a sitting prime minister. By launching his rainbow “core group” of concerned citizens of various political stripes and leanings to “Save Malaysia”, Mahathir has once again thrust himself into the eye of the storm to redefine the political landscape. In the same vein, with Anwar in jail, all the disparate forces that have aligned themselves against Najib over the 1MDB investment fund scandal have finally found someone of stature to rally around in a marriage of convenience. It is ironic that the man who crushed the opposition while in power has remade himself in retirement as the de facto leader of what in essence is a citizens’ revolt. Read the rest of this entry »
9th March 2016
COMMENT Any prime minister in the 21st century who admits to receiving US$680 million in his personal bank account will immediately resign or be removed because it so offends public morality and good governance.
When multiple versions are given of the source of monies of that scale and magnitude, the reasons for payment to him and what happened to the money, his credibility is so destroyed that it is impossible for him to continue leading. Yet Najib Abdul Razak remains Malaysia’s prime minister nearly one year after the world discovered the unbelievably healthy state of his bank accounts.
Indeed, Najib’s decision last July to sack the deputy prime minister and attorney-general, and to intimidate hundreds of bureaucrats from discharging their duties in various governmental agencies charged with investigating the 1MDB scandal and the receipt of US$ 680 million, has had the effect of temporarily covering up the crimes committed and silencing Malaysians on pain of detention and prosecution.
A climate of fear has succeeded to a large extent, but the scandal is too deep and too huge to simply vanish as the prime minister desires. Read the rest of this entry »