Archive for category Najib Razak

Najib should explain how he could appoint Isa Samad as SPAD Acting Chairman when he should have thick dossiers about Isa being a problematic candidate for any top public post because of his controversial role as FELDA and FGV Chairman raising grave issues about integrity, breach of trust and abuse of power

The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak, owes Malaysians a full and proper explanation as to how he could appoint Tan Sri Mohd Isa Samad as Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) Acting Chairman when he should have received thick dossiers about Isa being a problematic candidate for any top public post because of his controversial role as Felda and FGV Chairman, raising grave issues about integrity, breach of trust and abuse of power.

Mohd Isa was arrested by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) yesterday in its investigations into corruption and abuse of power in the purchase of two hotels, one in London and the other in Kuching, by Felda Investment Corporation (FIC).

The MACC said that it has “strong basis” to arrest Isa and is considering a bid to freeze all assets owned by Mohd Isa. Read the rest of this entry »

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Is Abdul Rahman Dahlan regretting having admitted at the BBC interview last September that “MO1” is Najib Razak and that only idiots do not know that ”MO1” is Najib?

Is the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department and Director of Barisan Nasional Strategic Communications, Datuk Seri Abdul Rahman Dahlan regretting having admitted at the BBC interview last September that “MO1” is Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak and that only an idiot does not know that “MO1” is Najib?

I am sure all the other Cabinet Ministers, who have virtually been condemned as “idiots” by Abdul Rahman, are gleefully condemning the BN Strategic Communications Director as a real idiot for having made such an admission, now that the US Department of Justice (DOJ) has asked the Los Angeles court to put on hold civil forfeiture lawsuits against 1MDB-linked assets to allow criminal investigations into the 1MDB scandal to proceed without any hampering.

In the DOJ‘s court filings to stay its civil forfeiture suits on 1MDB-linked assets, there is no mention of Malaysian Official 1 (MO1), his spouse, or any transfers or gifts made to them.

The BN Strategic Communications Media team under Abdul Rahman immediately pounced on this yesterday and was the first to come out with a response, virtually claiming that the DOJ’s action to stay its civil forfeiture lawsuits to permit criminal investigations to continue unhampered was virtually a victory for the Malaysian government on the baseless ground that the DOJ’s latest action was tantamount to admission that its earlier 250-page civil forfeiture suits were baseless and groundless.

I do not know how the BN Strategic Communication team under Abdul Rahman could come to such a ridiculous conclusion, as the DOJ’s announcement has in fact brought DOJ investigations into the 1MDB scandal to a more serious level, requiring the putting on hold of the DOJ’s civil forfeiture actions so as not to hamper the DOJ’s criminal investigations. Read the rest of this entry »

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Various global developments of the 1MDB scandal coming to a head and it may not be possible for Najib government to continue with national and international charade pretending the 1MDB scandal does not exist

Various global developments of the 1MDB scandal, which made Malaysian overnight into a global kleptocracy, are coming to a head and it may not be possible for the Najib government to continue with the national and international charade pretending that the 1MDB scandal does not exist.

Firstly, there is the news report from Los Angeles that the billions of US dollars of stolen 1MDB funds are now the focus of United States criminal investigation and that the US Justice Department has asked a judge in Los Angeles to put on hold civil forfeiture lawsuits against assets acquired by Malaysian financier Jho Low and others involved with 1MDB to prevent any hampering with the criminal investigation.

The US investigation is part of a global effort to track how much of the US$6 billion that 1MDB raised for development projects were stolen, embezzled or involved in money-laundering and used to pay for luxury real estate in New York, London and Beverly Hills, film productions, private jets, yachts and more – all for personal aggrandizement.

What is now the stand of the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Mohd Apandi Ali as it was only in June after the third kleptocratic suits by US DOJ to forfeit 1MDB-linked assets money-laundered through American banks that Apandi reiterated that “there has been no evidence from any investigation conducted by any law enforcement agency in various jurisdictions that show that money has been misappropriated from 1MDB; and that there have been no criminal charges against any individual for misappropriation of funds from 1MDB”?

No ostrich has dug it head so deep in the sand, despite Apandi’s exoneration of Najib of any wrongdoing or crime in the 1MDB scandal in January 2016 which had become increasingly ridiculous and unbelievable with the deluge of information and data on the 1MDB international money-laundering scandal, especially from the US Department of Justice kleptocratic suits. Read the rest of this entry »

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Stolen 1MDB Funds Are Focus of U.S. Criminal Investigation

By Edvard Pettersson
Bloomberg
August 11, 2017

The U.S. is moving forward with a criminal investigation into money stolen from a Malaysian state investment fund that allegedly was used to acquire about $1.7 billion in real estate, art, jewelry and other assets.

Court filings by the Justice Department Thursday show the U.S. is escalating its probe in a worldwide effort to track how much of the money that was raised by 1Malaysia Development Bhd. was used to pay for luxury real estate in New York, London and Beverly Hills, film productions, private jets, yachts and more.

Justice Department officials asked a judge in Los Angeles to put on hold civil forfeiture lawsuits against assets acquired by Malaysian financier Low Taek Jho, also known as Jho Low, and others involved with 1MDB because pursuing these cases may hamper the criminal investigation.

The U.S. investigation is part of a global effort to track how much of the $6 billion that 1MDB raised for development projects was allegedly embezzled or involved in money laundering. Switzerland, Singapore and Luxembourg are among the countries also investigating the roles played by banks and individuals. Read the rest of this entry »

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Call on voters in Pagoh and the rural areas to emulate the example of Muhyiddin to speak truth to power to launch a political tsunami in the rural areas to match the urban tsunami in the 13GE to save Johor and Malaysia from a global kleptocracy

We have with us Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who was Deputy Prime Minister until some two years ago when he was sacked from the Cabinet and Government by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

What was Muhyiddin’s crime or great and unforgivable mistake?

Was Muhyiddin guilty of grand corruption causing Malaysia to be known overnight as a global kleptocracy, which I had defined in Parliament to BN Ministers and MPs as a government of three Ps – Pencuri, Perompak and Penyamun?

Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad had added a fourth P in a global kleptocracy – Penyangak!

No!

Was Muhyiddin sacked as Deputy Prime Minister because he had told lies or had abused his powers as DPM?

No! No!

Muhyiddin was not sacked for any corruption, crime, wrong or mistake but because he was too honest and too principled in speaking truth to power to save Johor and Malaysia from a global kleptocracy.

Muhyiddin was not prepared to shut his eyes, close his ears and seal his lips over the largest financial scandal in the nation’s history, the international multi-billion dollar 1MDB money-laundering scandal, which had made Malaysia overnight into a global kleptocracy!

I call on voters in Pagoh and all the rural areas in Malaysia to emulate the example of Muhyiddin to speak the truth to power and to launch a political tsunami in the rural areas to match the urban tsunami in the 13GE to save Johor and Malaysia from a global kleptocracy. Read the rest of this entry »

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Haris Ibrahim and other political activists invited to work with Pakatan Harapan secretariat to prepare the Pakatan Harapan reform agenda to save Malaysia

Haris Ibrahim, a political activist, told Free Malaysia Today news portal today his concern that the reform agenda of the opposition may be set back if PPBM chairman Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad is chosen as prime minister in the event that Pakatan Harapan wins the coming general election.

Haris Ibrahim, a longtime advocate of political reform, said it was becoming more and more likely that Mahathir would be prime minister again should Barisan Nasional be toppled.

He was commenting on a recent assessment of Malaysia’s political situation by Global Risk Insights, a publication for political risk news and analysis founded at the London School of Economics.

According to the assessment, Mahathir’s leadership of Pakatan and the fallout from the 1MDB affair could turn the tide against BN in the 14th general election. Read the rest of this entry »

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Why have Speaker Pandikar and Minister Azalina failed to provide MPs with the opportunity to review the Speaker’s rulings which denied MPs the right to hold the Executive to account on the 1MDB scandal?

Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia broke the Speaker’s gavel at a time when he was mightily displeased that his decisions are being challenged in court.

But is the Speaker aware that conscientious and hard-working Members of Parliament are mightily displeased with his many 1MDB-related decisions, such as rejecting questions on the 1MDB scandal by over 30 Members of Parliament in the current parliamentary meeting, and virtually banning 1MDB from being debated in Parliament, with no meaningful recourse to the Standing Orders to review the Speaker’s ruling?

The Minister in the Prime Minister’s Deparment in charge of Parliamentary Affairs, Datuk Azalina Othman Said said Pakatan Harapan MP for PJ Selatan, Hee Loy Sien, had undermined Parliament’s independence and sullied Parliament’s good name when he sued Parliament Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia.

Azalina cannot be more wrong.

I fully endorse Loy Sien’s legal action and the statement by the Pakatan Harapan MP for Padang Serai, N. Surendran who, together with Latheefa Koya act as Loy Sien’s lawyers, said that the suit against the Parliament Speaker was intended to uphold the dignity and role of Parliament to be the scrutineer of the actions of the Executive.

Loy Sien’s legal recourse is in fact a reflection of Azalina’s failure to uphold the parliamentary conventions in keeping with a first-world Parliament, where Parliament has not lost the powers and the independence intended by the Constitution and the doctrine of separation of powers among the Executive, the Legislature and the Judiciary.
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The 1MDB-IPIC London arbitration “settlement” is a financial scam against the people of Malaysia – why did Speaker Pandikar become part of it by refusing a parliamentary debate on it?

The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak said yesterday that 1MDB is able to pay Abu Dhabi’s International Petroleum Investment Co (IPIC) the US$602.5 million as part of a settlement struck in April, giving an assurance that 1MDB was facing a “technical matter” and not a question of being unable to pay (IPIC).

The DAP MP for Segambut, Lim Lip Eng’s emergency motion today under Standing Order 18(1) on 1MDB’s failure to meet the deadline to pay IPIC was rejected by the Speaker, Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia, on the ground that the Speaker “difahamkan oleh pihak Kerajaan bahawa 1MDB telah mengambil tindakan seperti yang telah di umumkan pada 1Ogos 2017 berkenaan dengan Pelan Rasionalisasi 1MDB bagi menyelesaikan isu yang dibangkitkan dalam usul” Lip Eng.

I rose in Parliament just now and said that the 1MDB-IPIC London arbitration “settlement” is a financial scam against the people of Malaysia and asked why the Speaker wanted to be part of this financial scam to deceive Parliament and the people of Malaysia by rejecting a parliamentary debate on it.

The 1MDB failure to pay IPIC has been attributed to misappropriation of 1MDB fund or being symptomatic of “bad financial planning”.
I think it is more serious, as the whole so-called 1MDB-IPIC arbitration settlement is a financial scam against the interests of Malaysian taxpayers.

The second Finance Minister, Datuk Johari Abdul Ghani is on record as saying that he had studied the documents of the 1MDB-IPIC dispute and he was confident that 1MDB would win the case in going for London arbitration.

Why then did the Ministry of Finance and 1MDB ended up “surrendering” to IPIC claims in toto in reaching the 1MDB-IPIC London arbitration “settlement” where 1MDB had to pay IPIC twice, and now we have the new problem of 1MDB unable to meet the deadline for the a first payment? Read the rest of this entry »

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Was Dzulkifli given two specific tasks on his appointment as MACC Chief – don’t allow any investigation affecting Najib’s political survival and free mandate to abuse the MACC to hound the Opposition?

Datuk Dzulkifli Ahmad thanked the heavens for having completed his first year as Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Chief Commissioner.

He said yesterday: “Alhandulillah, I survived.”

In his first year as MACC Chief Commissioner, the MACC had admittedly been very active when compared to previous chiefs whether of MACC or its predecessor, the Anti-Corruption Agency, in pursuing actions against corruption and the corrupt except in the biggest case of kleptocracy not only in Malaysia but in the world – the international multi-billion dollar 1MDB money-laundering scandal, which had even transformed Malaysia overnight into a global kleptocracy!

In fact, when on January 26, 2016 the Attorney-General Tan Sri Mohamad Apandi Ali cleared the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak of any wrongdoing on the RM2.6 billion found in the latter’s personal bank accounts, Dzulkifli was seated next to the chief prosecutor during the press conference, in his capacity as director of the Attorney-General’s National Revenue Recovery Enforcement Team.

It is clear that Dzulkifli had played a major role in the Attorney-General’s decision that Najib had not committed any wrongdoing on the RM2.6 billion “donation” in the Prime Minister’s personal bank accounts.

Dzulkifli should explain whether his appointment as Chief Commissioner of MACC came with two specific tasks – firstly, not to allow any investigation affecting Najib’s political survival, in particular the 1MDB scandal, and secondly, a free mandate to abuse the MACC to hound the Opposition? Read the rest of this entry »

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Parliament Speaker Pandikar should take a cue from the AG’s refusal to send lawyers to US to observe the US DOJ’s civil forfeiture suits of 1MDB-linked assets to revoke his ridiculous ruling banning MPs from asking questions or debating the 1MDB scandal in Parliament

The Parliament Speaker, Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia should take a cue from the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Mohamad Apandi Ali’s refusal to send lawyers to the United States to intervene or observe the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) civil forfeiture of US$1.7 billion 1MDB-linked assets to revoke his ridiculous ruling banning Members of Parliament from asking questions or debating the 1MDB scandal in Parliament.

It is ridiculous for the Attorney-General to adopt the stance that the US DOJ forfeiture suits were unfounded, misconceived and baseless as there is no evidence that any 1MDB funds had been misappropriated or money-laundered, while on the other hand the Speaker of Parliament adopted the equally ludicrous stance that he has “extra-territorial” powers under the sub judice rule to protect the integrity, independence and impartiality of the American system of justice while completely impotent to protect the integrity, independence and impartiality of the Malaysian system of justice!

I had last week challenged Speaker Pandikar to cite an instance from another Commonwealth Parliament where the Speaker used sub judice rule to stop parliamentary question, debate or scrutiny of a local financial scandal because of court proceeding in another country but the Speaker has not been able to cite an instance so far and must be busy looking for such a precedent in another Commonwealth Parliament. Read the rest of this entry »

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1MDB Misses $603 Million Payment to Abu Dhabi Sovereign Wealth Fund

By Elffie Chew
Bloomberg
August 1, 2017

1Malaysia Development Bhd. failed to make a $603 million payment to Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund as part of a settlement over a debt dispute, according to a person with knowledge of the matter.

International Petroleum Investment Co. is expected to make an announcement in London on Tuesday, said the person who asked not to be identified as the information isn’t public yet.

The obligation, which was due on July 31, is half the amount 1MDB and the Malaysian finance ministry agreed to make to IPIC, with a second payment by the end of 2017. 1MDB and the Ministry of Finance didn’t immediately respond to emails seeking comment on the non-payment. Read the rest of this entry »

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Height of government irresponsibility and professional negligence not to have legal representation in the US DOJ kleptocratic suits to forfeit US$1.7 billion of 1MDB-linked assets money-laundered from US$4.5 billion through American banks

It is the height of government irresponsibility and professional negligence on the part of the Cabinet and the Attorney-General’s Chambers not to have legal representation in the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) kleptocratic suits to forfeit US$1.7 billion of 1MDB-linked assets in the United States, United Kindom and Switzerland from money-laundering of US$4.5 billion misappropriated from 1MDB.

The answer from the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Azalina Othman that the Attorney-General’s Chambers has no plans to send lawyers to the US to observe the DOJ’s civil forfeiture suits on 1MDB-linked assets is most shocking indeed.

If the Najib government is consistent, isn’t the Attorney-General’s Chambers seeking an intervention in the US DOJ proceedings to prove that the US DOJ civil forfeiture proceedings are completely misplaced, as both the Malaysian government and the 1MDB had not lost a single sen and that no 1MDB funds had been money-laundered through Americans banks to the tune of US$4.5 billion with US$1.7 billion of 1MDB-linked assets the subject of kleptocratic assets forfeiture proceedings?
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Ban on G25 Book on “Islam in a Constitutional Democracy” marks Najib’s break with five previous Prime Ministers and the rising influence of PAS President on government policy

I am very disappointed that the Cabinet had again proved to be an utterly incompetent and useless outfit, incapable of addressing the great issues of the nation.

I had suggested that the Cabinet meeting last Friday should speak up for a moderate Malaysia for a change, suspend the Home Minister’s ban on G25 book on “Breaking the Silence –Voices of Moderation: Islam in a Constitutional Democracy” and form a high-level committee to hold public hearings whether the book should be banned.

But the Cabinet, the latest personification of the traditional three monkeys with eyes that see not, ears that hear not, and mouths that speak not, completely ignored the issue and there was no statement post-Cabinet on the corrective measures on the shocking, ridiculous and illogical ban on the G25 book.

The ban on G25 Book on “Islam in a Constitutional Democracy” in fact marks Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s break with five previous Prime Ministers – Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak, Tun Husein, Tun Dr. Mahathir and Tun Abdullah – on the basic cornerstone of the nation as enshrined in the Malaysian Constitution and reiterated in the Malaysia Agreement 1963 and the rising influence of PAS President, Datuk Seri Hadi Awang on government policy, with regard to Islamic matters. Read the rest of this entry »

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Najib should clarify whether it is true Xi Jinping, President of China will not be visiting Malaysia this year, removing the programme from his 14GE plans

One of the hottest topics in the country is speculation on the timing for the 14th General Elections and the possible outcomes.

Only a month ago, there was considerable unanimity among the psephologists and political soothsayers – that the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak would win hands-down in the next general election as the Opposition is too weak and divided, especially after the break-up of Pakatan Rakyat as PAS President Datuk Seri Hadi Awang embarked on his new political journey to prop up and champion Najib despite his 1MDB kleptocratic scandal.

One journal even published an article entitled “The Unsinkable Najib Razak”.

Even Najib believe all these hypes.

But a fortnight night ago, there had been a start of a political hurricane in the country.

Now all the bets about the outcome of the 14GE are now off, and Najib and the top UMNO/BN leaders, propagandists and cybertroopers have been in panic in the last two weeks about the possible outcome of the 14GE, which may see them ejected from Putrajaya! Read the rest of this entry »

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Challenge to Speaker Pandikar to cite an instance from another Commonwealth Parliament where the Speaker used sub judice rule over court proceeding in another country to stop parliamentary question, debate or scrutiny of a financial scandal

The Speaker of Parliament, Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia, likes to quote back to me one observation I had made in Parliament, that a good Speaker does nspeak much.

Pandikar is not only a very talkative Speaker, he even holds media conferences to justify his decisions and rulings, some of which are quite high-handed and most indefensible from the standpoint of impartial and independent interpretation of the parliamentary standing orders.

The best place for Pandikar’s justification of his arbitrary and indefensible rulings and decisions, the most recent of which were the rejection of questions from over 30 MPs on the 1MDB scandal and refusal to allow the 1MDB scandal, which had turned Malaysia overnight into a global kleptocracy, to be the subject of debate in Parliament, is in Parliament itself and not in media conferences where the Speaker cannot be rebutted by MPs.

DAP MP for Puchong, Gobind Singh Deo, who also had questions on 1MDB rejected by the Speaker, had given notice on Wednesday of a substantive motion to review the Speaker’s rulings which in first-world Parliaments, would have come up for debate and decision in Parliament after a 48-hour notice.

Will Gobind’s motion to review the Speaker’s rulings come up for debate in Parliament next week? Read the rest of this entry »

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Challenge to Najib to emulate Lee Hsien Loong and have a no-holds barred debate in Parliament on the 1MDB scandal where he would answer all questions raised by MPs on the scandal

Earlier this evening, CNN carried the following news item from Islamabad:

“Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif resigned Friday after he was disqualified from office by the country’s Supreme Court.

“The court ruled Sharif has been dishonest to parliament and to the judicial system, and is no longer deemed fit for the office of prime minister.

“The panel of five judges announced their unanimous decision Friday afternoon, with the election commission ordered to issue a disqualification notice to Sharif. With the ruling, Sharif’s cabinet has also been dissolved.”

The question that immediately comes to mind is whether the same thing can happen in Malaysia, whether the Malaysian Parliament and judiciary can remove a Prime Minister from office for corruption and dishonesty to Parliament and the judiciary.

South Korea had recently provided another example of the strength of its national institutions when the South Korean Parliament passed an impeachment motion against President Park Geung-hye, followed by an unanimous decision by eight judges of the South Korean Constitution Court which dismissed Park as South Korean President for corruption – putting Park in prison during her corruption trial.

Could this happen in Malaysia if the Malaysian Prime Minister is corrupt and abused his powers? Read the rest of this entry »

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Cabinet today should speak up for a moderate Malaysia for a change, suspend the ban on G25 book and form a high-level committee to hold public hearings whether the book should be banned

The reported ban on G25 book on “Breaking the Silence –Voices of Moderation: Islam in a Constitutional Democracy” is so extraordinary and unbelieveable that the Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister, Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi must confirm whether he had authorized such a ban and why.

This book is produced by G25, comprising former high-ranking Malay/Muslim civil servants, civic leaders and politicians first formed in December 2014 to call for a rational dialogue on the position of Islam in a constitutional democracy as they are deeply concerned over developments regarding race relations, Islam and extremist behaviour in Malaysia.

In the Open Letter in December 2014 signed originally by 25 prominent personalities, including former secretaries-general, directors-general, ambassadors, judges and prominent Malay individuals who have contributed much to Malaysian society, their spokesperson, Datuk Noor Farida Ariffin, former Malaysian Ambassador to the Netherlands, said she and the others were “deeply concerned about the state of the debate on many issues of conflict on the position and application of Islamic laws in Malaysia”.

Stressing that it was time for moderate Malays and Muslims to speak up, and that “extremist, immoderate and intolerant voices” do not speak in their name, she said:

“Given the impact of such vitriolic rhetoric on race relations and political stability of this country, we feel it is incumbent on us to take a public position and urge for an informed and rational dialogue on the ways Islam is used as a source of public law and policy in Malaysia”.

She also urged more moderate Malaysians to speak up and contribute to “a better informed and rational public discussion on the place of Islamic laws within a constitutional democracy and the urgency to address the breakdown of federal-state division of powers and finding solutions to the heart-wrenching stories of lives and relationships damaged and put in limbo because of battles over turf and identity”.

Now with the ban of G25’s book, what does it imply?

Will G25 itself, comprising former top prominent Malay/Muslim civil servants and public servants and which has since expanded to double its original number but has decided retain the name of “Group of 25” or “G25”, as this is the name that the Malaysian public is familiar with, be next to be banned, signifying a major setback for the cause of a moderate Malaysia and the triumph of extremist and intolerant forces in the country?

Does the ban of G25’s book signify a far-reaching and even seismic transformation in the nation-building directions in the country, where what had been regarded as being in the “out-boxes” for the past six decades have made a grand entrance into the “in-boxes” and what had been in the “in-boxes” under five Prime Ministers from 1957 to 2009 under Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak, Tun Hussein Onn, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad and Tun Abdullah Badawi have now been relegated to the “out-boxes”? Read the rest of this entry »

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Will Malaysia have a kleptocratic Prime Minister as well as an unconstitutional Chief Justice next week?

International reaction to the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s keynote address at the 13th Invest Malaysia Kuala Lumpur on Tuesday came quick and fast – that it does not buy the Prime Minister’s latest PR exercise to trot out the Malaysian government’s handling of the political economy in very upbeat and promising terms while trying, for the first time for any Malaysian Prime Minister, to demonise the Opposition, which includes the longest-serving former Prime Minister and two former Deputy Prime Ministers.

This international reaction came in the form of an Opinion piece in yesterday’s South China Morning Post by William Pesek in his article: “Why Mahathir Mohamad is Malaysia’s best hope, and Najib’s worst nightmare”.

The depth of failure of Najib’s “Punch and Judy” speech at the 13th Invest Malaysia conference could be gauged from the fact that the article by William Pesek, author of “Japanization: What the Wolrd can Learn from Japan’s Lost Decades” and columnist/journalist on Asian and global economics, business markets and politics, came out within 24 hours of Najib’s speech with the following six thrusts: Read the rest of this entry »

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Why Mahathir Mohamad is Malaysia’s best hope, and Najib’s worst nightmare

William Pesek
South China Morning Post
26 July, 2017

OPINION

William Pesek says the newfound Mahathir-Anwar Ibrahim coalition could lead Malaysia out of economic stagnation and, even if Najib Razak plays tough, the good news is it can no longer be business as usual

Twenty years after the financial crisis that devastated Asian economies, Malaysia’s Mahathir Mohamad still hates currency traders. But the deputy prime minister he fired, and later jailed, during that chaotic period? Not so much.

Mahathir’s 180-degree turn on Anwar Ibrahim is as disorienting as any bromance Asia has seen. What otherworldly force was enough to reunite the 92-year-old firebrand who ruled Malaysia for 22 years and his nemesis? A shared disgust for current Prime Minister Najib Razak, whose corruption scandals have Malaysia in the global headlines for all the wrong reasons.

Since 2009, Najib hasn’t just tarnished the national brand at every turn – he has pursued an agenda ensuring a lost decade for a resource-rich economy that should be booming. Cronyism isn’t new to Malaysia; there was plenty during Mahathir’s 1981-2003 tenure. When Malaysia hit a wall in 1997 along with Thailand, Indonesia and South Korea, its culture of patronage, political ties over merit, and weak institutions sent currency speculators, including George Soros, pouncing on the ringgit. Read the rest of this entry »

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Setting up integrity unit in GLCs and government business meaningless “PR” exercises unless Prime Minister and entire Cabinet have the political will to set example of zero tolerance for corruption starting with a RCI into 1MDB scandal

The setting up of an integrity unit in all government-linked companies and ministry-owned business entities to curb graft announced by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak at the 13th Invest Malaysia Kuala Lumpur conference yesterday will only end up as meaningless “PR” exercises unless the Prime Minister and the entire Cabinet have the political will to be examples of zero tolerance of corruption.

This political will to ensure “zero tolerance for corruption” should start from the very top from the Prime Minister downwards, and should begin with comprehensive investigations and satisfactory accounting of the international multi-billion dollar 1MDB money-laundering scandal, which had transformed Malaysia overnight into a global kleptocracy. Let a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the 1MDB scandal be established.

The Prime Minister should know better than anyone that Malaysian leaders have lost the moral high ground, whether at home or in the international arena, to talk about ethics, morality, integrity and good governance so long as Malaysia is tarred and tainted with the odious appellation of a global kleptocracy and the Malaysian government is unable to do anything to clear or cleanse Malaysia of such infamy and ignominy.
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