Archive for category Social

Happy Chinese New Year


E-census error – how can it happen?

Letter by Chuah Siew Eng

Dear Editor,

I wish to draw to the attention of the public of a possible glitch in the e-census. An answer I clicked for the category “religion” revealed to be different in the PDF copy I printed. Thinking I may have made a mistake, I reviewed my answers and confirmed that it was not my error. When I sought an explanation, the supervisor of the census takers for my area confirmed receiving another complaint over the same problem two weeks ago, adding that she had reported the problem to the Statistics Department. If that were true, why wasn’t it corrected for a whole two weeks? How many more people would have unwittingly assumed the computerised process would record their answers faithfully, as I almost did were it not for a note at the final page prompting a PDF check before submitting the form?

While my problem was eventually rectified (I received a polite call from the Department asking me to try the e-census again and this time it recorded what I inserted), I wonder whether it has been truly corrected in a fresh form.
Read the rest of this entry »


Is new Medical Act responsible for dumped babies?

by Rudolf Tiller


The frequency of babies/ fetuses found dumped at doorsteps, garbage dumps, drains, rivers, some killed blatantly and buried, or flushed down toilets have been on the rise over the last two to three years. Media reports suggest that the incidences reported are just the tip of the iceberg.

Shahrizat has claimed more support be given to single mothers. A lawyer apparently by profession, her latest outrageous outburst has now been to reprehensibly execute the parents. Ali Rustam has this novel idea that special schools be built only for teenaged mothers but soon after decided that an expedient scheme would be to actually reduce the matrimonial age to a minor 15 years. Rosmah on the other hand, appears totally lost and doesn’t seem to know actually what to do. But at least she has not come out with some of the ludicrous propositions suggested by Shahrizat or Ali Rustam.
Read the rest of this entry »


Postal Hike and Social Problems

By Ganesh

The recent hike in the price of postal services is quite shocking.

The standard mail (up to 20g) tariff has shot up from 30 sen to 60 sen while the rate for letters weighing up to 50g soars from 40 sen to 70 sen. A 100% increase is a huge amount considering Pos Malaysia, for all intents and purposes, is a GLC (see breakdown) and the government should be thinking about the hardships that it would cause to its people with the new heavy postal fees.

The substantial shareholders of Pos Malaysia as at 15 March 2010 are:

  1. Khazanah Nasional Berhad 32.21%
  2. Employees Provident Fund Board 9.59%
  3. Permodalan Nasional Berhad 8.45%
  4. Amanahraya Trustees Berhad Skim Amanah Saham Bumiputera 8.18%

Read the rest of this entry »


Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all

Wishing all Christians and Malaysians Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

2010 is going to be a more testing time for all Malaysians than the previous two years.

Regardless of race, religion or region, let all Malaysians work together with one common objective for a better, more just, equal and democratic Malaysia.

DAP Christmas greetings


I am at Pulau Perhentian Kecil

Facebook friends are shocked that I am at Pulau Perhentian because they expect the region to be closed because it is monsoon period.

I was of similar feeling and I was surprised when it was proposed that the DAP hqrs break be held at Pulau Perhentian as I expected the area to be unhabitable because of monster monsoon season at this period.

But not to be a wet blanket I went along, despite grave reservations.

I was very surprised that there was no storm whatsoever. The sea was so calm and clear that it was like sheet of glass.

I am told that until the last few years, Pulau Perhentian was virtually a closed area because of public perceptions that monsoon in the East Coast begins in October.

But surprise of suprises, it is not so. According to the Bubu Long Beach Resort (Pulau Perhentian Kechil) operations manager, Zaidon Ismail, the climate calendar has changed. Maybe it is because of the global climate change. Read the rest of this entry »


Landmark achievement of Tawau “Don Quixote” case in defence of open spaces

I commend the Tawau Municipal Council (TMC) for admitting that the Sabindo development and encroachment of Tawau open spaces is illegal and invalid and I call on Sabindo developers, Jeramas Sdn Bhd and Aggasf Construction Sdn. Bhd to emulate the example of TMC to reach an amicable “win-win” settlement for the interests of the people of Tawau.

DAP leaders and I had attended several public meetings in Tawau over the scandal of the encroachment and deprivation of the open spaces in Tawau, subordinating the public interests of the people of Tawau to private profit-making in disregard of the law and public policy.

DAP MP for Seputeh Teresa Kok and I had also raised in Parliament the issue of the lack of municipal good governance as illustrated by the Sabindo open space scandal, with the Tawau municipality teeming with “Little Napoleons” defying the Prime Minister and the Sabah State Cabinet in depriving the fundamental right of the people of Tawau to open spaces and recreational grounds.

I was very uplifted when I was informed last night by Jimmy Wong (alias Tiger Wong of Tawau) – who together with nine other public-spirited Tawau ratepayers had taken the TMC to court on the unlawful Sabindo development project and the encroachment of the Tawau open spaces and recreational grounds – that the Tawau people had achieved a classic and landmark breakthrough in their long, arduous and uphill battle to protect the “open spaces” in Tawau not only for the people of Tawau but also for the people Sabah and Malaysia. Read the rest of this entry »


Insensitive, ignorant, deplorable and abhorrenst attack on the Disabled (OKU)

The three protests by Peter Tan (Independent Living Programme for People with Disabilities), Assoc Prof Dr. Tium Linga Ta (Society for the Orthopaedically Disabled) and Bathmavathi Krishnan (Malaysian Spinal Injuries Association) in the Letters’ Page in the New Straits Times today represents not only the views of the disabled community but all decent and right-thinking Malaysians.

As Peter Tan wrote:

AS a wheelchair user for the last 23 years, I am absolutely upset with Jerai member of parliament Datuk Badruddin Amiruldin for telling fellow-MP Karpal Singh that the latter’s use of a wheelchair is a punishment from God (“Kar-pal: Lawyer wrote part of judgment for civil suit” — NST, Oct 23).

Badruddin’s remark is an affront to all wheelchair users, implying that our condition is a punishment and that we are all sinners.

I have been using a wheelchair long enough to have experienced many times such drivel from holier-than-thou people. People must be educated that being disabled is one of the things that can happen to anybody. People can become disabled. People can become afflicted with diseases. It is part of life. Read the rest of this entry »


Putrajaya – Mahathir’s Fatehpur Sikri

by Z Ibrahim

I refer to the news regarding the various construction defects of buildings in Malaysia’s new administrative capital at Putrajaya. Putrajaya remains an architectural wonder in the forest with its gleaming, sometimes partially completed buildings and bridges. A megaproject during Malaysia’s days of excesses it is reminiscent of Akbar’s deserted capital of Fatehpur Sikri.

Fatehpur Sikri, located 40km west of Agra, was the political capital of India’s Mughal Empire under Akbar’s reign from 1571 until 1585. It shared its imperial duties as a capital city with Agra and is regarded as Emperor Akbar’s crowning architectural legacy. Construction of the new ceremonial capital, with its elaborate palaces, formal courtyards, reflecting pools, harems, tombs and a great mosque commenced in 1571. A large number of masons and stone carvers worked hard for 15 years on the construction of the city the size of which was larger than contemporary London. It served as the capital of his mighty empire for twelve years (1571-1585) and was abruptly abandoned thereafter shortly after the work was completed ostensibly because of the lack of adequate water supply. Read the rest of this entry »


First his wife and then his daughter taken away…

First his wife and then his daughter taken away...

Siti Fatimah was born in 1978 to an Indian Muslim couple. She was brought up by her grandmother who is a practising Hindu. She sees herself as a Hindu and declared herself as one on 21 Mar 2001 through a statutory declaration. She changed her name to Revathi Masoosai.

She is married to Suresh a/l Veerappan, a Malaysian Indian Hindu on 10 March 2004, against her family’s opposition. They could not register their marriage because of her religion.

She gave birth to a daughter on 19 December 2005 at the Malacca General Hospital. Two days later, just about when she was packing to go home, three men and a woman who introduced themselves as officials from Malacca Islamic Office came to ask her to hand over her daughter to them. She refused.

She was not able to register her daughter as a Hindu. In fact she had difficulty in getting her a birth certificate. She had to change her Muslim name to Hindu name in her identity card.

In January this year, Revathi was taken into custody and taken to Pusat Pemulihan Akidah di Ulu Yam, Selangor, for rehabilitation for 100 days. Her rehabilitation will be due by 18 April but her detention can be extended.

During her detention, Suresh and his mother took care of his daughter. On March 26, Suresh was told his daughter, now 15 months old, was taken away by a group of people which consisted of a policeman, a lawyer and Revathi’s mother. He lodged a police report the same day, stating that he had no knowledge of the whereabouts of his daughter. Read the rest of this entry »


RM9 billion double-tracking project – penny-wise and pound-foolish

RM 9 Billion Double-Track Project


I refer to the report stating that the Government now intends to go ahead with the RM9 billion double-track electrified railway which it earlier shelved 3 years ago. That this project is being revived so close to the elections only seems to increase rumors that the ruling party needs the money for the elections in the form of kickbacks. The project itself is poorly thought through.

KTM since British colonial times has been running services on meter-gauge tracks. Meter gauge tracks were basically designed at least during those days for industrial use and in Malaysia’s case — to transport tin.

However we failed to modernize and completely neglected our rail services in favour of road transport and continued using these meter gauges even for our passenger services.

In most parts of the world passenger services started running on standard or broad gauge.

To achieve decent transit times between KL and Penang etc, double tracking on a meter gauge will be slow and clearly will not be competitive.

Obviously this is a half measure as it seems the project is trying to avoid investing in rolling stock as would be the case if standard or broad gauge are adopted instead.

Simply put you cannot run a train fast if your tracks are not broad enough for stability at high speeds. For you to achieve speed and stability you need standard or broad gauge. Read the rest of this entry »


Stop glorifying Mat Rempits!

Stop glorifying Mat Rempits!
Azly Rahman

The (North Pole Free Fall) expedition is among the latest controversial moves by Umno to engage youths, especially mat rempit, in a series of baffling activities… . This includes a 50,000-strong carnival gathering which never took off, a road trip tainted by sex and booze allegations and a proposed programme to reward mat rempit for nabbing snatch thieves

— Malaysiakini newsreport March 10, 2007

Again and again we are sending a wrong message to the children of tomorrow concerning what good behavior for our youth should be. Wrong model.

Why are we allowing UMNO Putera to glorify Mat Rempits and reward them with something they do not deserve? Don’t these youth leaders know what education means and how to educate these ‘damaged’ youth? We do not understand what being “fair but firm” means in educating troubled youth. Worse, we do not understand the root cause of why children fail in school but graduate to become Mat and Minah Rempits or “Alongs” and all kinds of human beings alienated by the system we built together.

The 50,000 strong gathering, the name-change to Mat Cemerlang, the proposed drag race circuit, and now the North Pole jump — what are these for in the name of ‘education for good citizenship’? How many will 50,000 mat rempits multiply into in a decade? What will be the consequence for our nation already falling apart from corruption and mismanagement?

We need more than just quick fix solution to the issue of ‘juvenile delinquency’ that is getting out of control. We need a “zero-tolerance policy” on “rempitizing behaviors”.

Don’t the ministry of education know what the taxpayers want for the education system? Why not spend money preparing good teachers to prepare good curriculum and teaching strategies to deal with the children of the Millennium generation? Why not spend money making sure that all schools meet the minimum standards of technology, resources, safety, and teacher competency? Why not beef up the “rempit division” of the police force?

Why continue to arrogantly trumpet pseudo-humanistic approach to curing the disease of rempitism when there are better long-lasting ways we can employ to make sure students do not become what they shouldn’t be becoming? Read the rest of this entry »


How can such things happen with Pak Lah as PM?

Why are Klang Municipal Council (MPK) enforcement officers behaving so high-handedly with the ordinary public, as in the following clip from a camera phone on Star online report, “Fine mess, says tailor in MPK incident”.

What was all the hullaballoo about? Over parking ticket!

How can such things happen under the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi who has talked so much about a people-friendly, efficient and productive public service?

But nobody seems to be listenining as the situation is generally deteriorating from bad to worse, with more and more basic services – including basic courtesy to citizens – breaking down and getting out of control.

The following is the Star report of the deplorable episode in Klang yesterday: Read the rest of this entry »


Lift ban on Amir and Tsai Ming-liang films to give meaning to 50th Merdeka Anniversary

Cabinet Ministers should prove they are not “half-past six” — view Amir Muhammad’s Apa Khabar Orang Kampung and Tsai Ming-liang’s I Don’t Want to Sleep Alone to approve their release to demonstrate that the Abdullah administration is open and liberal and not an ostrich hiding its head in the sand.

The banning of both films when Malaysia is celebrating the 50th anniversary of nationhood sends out the clear message that Malaysia is not ready to have a “First World Infrastructure, First World Mentality” culture and mindset that the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi had proclaimed as his top agenda.

The problem is not so much the people of Malaysia as the government, which is clearly not prepared to “walk the talk” and honour Abdullah’s various commitments — including to listen to the truth and to respect and even celebrate diversity of opinions and dissent.

The reason given by the Censorship Board for its ban of Apa Khabar Orang Kampung in that it is “historically incorrect” is most ludicrous, for it is in communist systems that there can be only one version of history and where personalities can overnight disappear from history books to become “non-persons”.

The motive behind the Censorship Board ban of I Don’t Want to Sleep Alone that it would be detrimental to the Visit Malaysia Year 2007 is even more ridiculous, as tourists will not come to Malaysia to see the film when they can view it overseas where the Malaysian Censorship Board’s ban does not extend.

In fact, the Censorship Board’s ban will give I Don’t Want to Sleep Alone additional attraction when it is screened overseas. The film is slated for release in Taiwan on March 23, Japan at the end of the month and in Singapore and the United States in April. Read the rest of this entry »


Only one of 887 problem “schoolgirls” did not have sex – Khir and UKM psychologist flayed

Most Female Students With Disciplinary Problems Admit To Having Sex

On Tuesday (27.2.07), the mainstrream media carried screaming headlines: “Shocking find in UKM study on female delinquents” (Star) and “Study: Troubled teens having sex” (New Straits Times) for the Bernama report “Most Female Students With Disciplinary Problems Admit To Having Sex”.

This is the Bernama report:

Most Female Students With Disciplinary Problems Admit To Having Sex
By Syed Azwan Syed Ali

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 26 (Bernama) — A Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) study has revealed a shocking finding about high-risk female students with most admitting to have had sexual intercouse.

In the study conducted by UKM’s Children and Youth Psychology specialist Dr Khaidzir Ismail, all the 887 high-risk female students except for one confessed to have had experienced the “pleasure of the flesh”.

The three-month High-Risk Female Youth Profile Study which ended last December, had 20 students with disciplinary problems from each school, ranging from Form One to Form Five, as its respondents.

“It is sad and shocking to find all except one of the respondents admitted to having experienced sex. This is a painful finding but it is a reality that we have to accept,” he told Bernama at his office in Bangi, near here, today.

It is understood that the study was a state government initiative to deal with the deterioration of moral values among female youths in the state.

From the findings of the study, the state government aims to formulate a special training module to promote high moral values among girls.

Khaidzir said the study also found that the female students, aged between 15 and 16, were at a high risk of being involved in various disciplinary problems like trying to lose their virginity.

“The study also found that the problems committed by these students were due to external pressure like coming from broken homes where their parents were having difficulties in coping with life,” he said.

The study also revealed that apart from having sex, most of the respondents took drugs and were involved in pornography, secret societies, vandalism and truancy.

Khaidzir said most of these high-risk female students had low academic achievement and self-esteem, and poor communication skills, self-control and problem-solving capability.


The Selangor Mentri Besar, Datuk Seri Dr. Mohd Khir Toyo repudiated the UKM study, commissioned by the Selangor state government, the same day, calling it “rubbish”.

These developments have rightly provoked a very strong reaction and email from BPR, flaying Khir and condemning Dr. Khaidzir for violation of ethical code of conduct of a local psychologist, as follows: Read the rest of this entry »


Anatomy of a traffic disaster

by Z. Ibrahim

The Federal Highway, first envisioned in 1965 following separation of Singapore from Malaysia, became the main artery to serve the entire Klang Valley conurbation when Malaysia decided to make Port Klang its premier port then.

Opened in 1967, the Highway itself has undergone multiple metamorphoses to cater for the ever increasing population and industries on either side of the highway.

There was a period in the 80s’ when traffic jams to KL used to start at the Berkeley Gardens and a significant portion of Klang residents who worked in KL had to be on the road by 5am. The original 4-lane highway soon outlived its purpose despite the building of multiple interchanges in Petaling Jaya.

In 1992 Plus Expressway Berhad upgraded the entire highway to a 6-lane highway with toll plazas at Batu Tiga and Sungai Rasa. The highway handles such great volumes of traffic at any time of the day that jams can be quite difficult to predict as even minor mishaps have known to cause traffic to back-up on either side of the highway for miles. Read the rest of this entry »