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Uthaya! don't mention Indian, a 'dirty word' in Malaysia!

Posted: 01 May 2013 12:34 PM PDT

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Why didn't Hindraf think of the others, especially the Orang Asal who have stood with them since 2008 not only in Malaysia but at numerous international forums? The Hindraf-BN MOU is a Judas-like betrayal of the Orang Asal who have been left out.  

Joe Fernandez 

Let's hope that De Facto Hindraf Makkal Sakthi Chief P. Uthayakumar, educated in law in the Christian west, stops mentioning Indian during his ongoing political campaign.

Indian is a 'dirty word' in Malaysia.

MIC is a dirty term.

Tamil is an even dirtier word unless confined to the Tamil language which is a sacred cow in Malaysia along with Tamil schools, Tamil films and Hindu temples.

For that matter, except for the Malay language created by the Hindus and Buddhists, Malay is a 'dirty word' too, as the imminent downfall of Interlok Pariah (shit carrier) Umno indicates.

Kaka from Kerala and hara kiri advocate Mahathir Mohamad who now claims to be a lawyer without a law degree, Ibrahim Ali, Pariah (shit carrier) Keling Zulkifli Nordin and noted shit-stirrer Perkasa are all already dirty words.

Mahathir claims that Dap and Lim Kit Siang are racists because they are only standing in Chinese-majority seats. Isn't Umno standing only in Malay-majority seats in Malaya and Muslim-majority seats in Sabah while seeking to further divide and rule the Orang Asal in order to marginalise and disenfranchise them and steal their country? Not racist?

Robber baron Petronas is a dirty word in Sabah and Sarawak.

The Chinese, being pragmatic, apparently don't mention race although they are accused of being closet racists, whatever that means. Indians and others should emulate -- not the closet part -- them.

Only Orang Asal is not a dirty word because historical, ancestral and traditional land rights and Adat are involved.

I have been urging this issue-based non-racist line since 2008.

Uthaya wouldn't hear of it. He added that his work was to highlight Indian problems and not solve them. "It's not my work to solve Indian problems. I don't have the resources. Only the Gov't has the resources to solve problems," said Uthaya. "I want to be in Parliament just to make noise (on Indian problems)."

Waytha said from the Christian west, where he was educated in law, that if he's going to be tagged a racist just because he's fighting for a place in the sun for Indians, "so be it". He reckons that it's not his work to fight for non-Indians, an approach which will be seen by many as definitely racist, unChristian, uncharitable and most unWaytha-like.

It was at this juncture that I got Hindraf and the Orang Asal working together to give the NGO a more non-ethnic public image. Even then, I was castigated by hardcore Hindraf activists who belabour in the misconception that Christians do charity work just to convert others. "We don't care for Jeffrey Kitingan and the Christians," they said defiantly in Facebook. I have never come across such insolence and ingratitude.

I reminded the Hindu fanatics that they can't keep away from charity works just to ignore the suffering of people and attribute them to their bad karma or whatever. In that case, I ask them, why not accept your fate under Umno as your bad karma and wait to be reincarnated with good karma?

Hindus, swearing by karma, believe in the superstition that no one must interfere with the bad karma of others lest they suffer the same tragic fate -- that's why they stay away from doing any charity -- and neither should anyone interfere with the good karma of others.

Is it any wonder therefore that rich Indians, MIC included, don't help poor Indians? Tony Fernandes of Air Asia has helped many people of all races, but what good has Ananda Krishnan done for anyone? His son, having seen the light, is at a Buddhist monastery to mitigate for the sins of the father! Meanwhile, the man himself is packing Astro with advertisements after solemnly promising that his pay TV channels will be ad-free.

Chinese, likewise, will especially ignore Chinese beggars and obviously fear the same fate befalling them but will contribute generously to schools to maintain the Mandarin language control of the retail economy.

The Chinese approach to Chinese beggars shows the extent to which the ancient Indians, or rather Hindus, poisoned them with their superstitious hogwash which was passed off as divinely-inspired philosophies based on pearls of wisdom. The Chinese, being a superstitious lot even to this day, swallowed the Indian bullshit hook, line and sinker despite having long deluded themselves into thinking that "all Indians -- because of their known capacity for abstract thought -- are snakes", whatever that means.

Karma, if it does exist, is neither good or bad, not beautiful, or ugly or beautiful but neutral.

It's our human perceptions that makes us see karma as good, bad, evil, ugly and beautiful.

Christians believe in knocking on the door so that it will be opened, asking so that they will receive, seeking so that they will find.

There's much to be said for looking for the silver lining in the clouds, considering everything that happens as a blessing in disguise, seeing problems as opportunities in disguise and counting one's blessings and being thankful and grateful for the little mercies in life so that one will have even more reasons to be thankful and grateful.

We have to get back to our roots and get our politics and relationships right.

Uthaya can mention displaced estate and other workers, stateless persons everywhere in Malaysia, squatters, the marking system in public exams being a state secret to cover up the Gov't fiddling with the marks of students for political reasons, quota system for even critical disciplines at govt universities instead of going for the brightest and best, denying top scorers entry into Gov't universities for political reasons (so Umno can hand out free degrees to morons), the civil service lacking in diversity and not reflecting the demographics in the country because it's packed with Umno members and supporters, corruption in the award of government contracts, lack of openness, transparency and accountability and Umno/BN politicians taking government contracts for themselves instead of making it open and available for all.

I have also said that you don't need Indians in Parliament, elected by non-Indians, to claim to represent Indians.

That's political mandoreism, a point raised by Hindraf Makkal Sakthi.

Indians in Parliament must represent all citizens. But if they swear by karma and reincarnation, they should not aspire to be legislators. Better spend their days at the nearest temple washing away their sins which created their bad karma.

We have a Hindraf-BN MOU on stateless Indians, among others, through Himas (Hindraf Malaysia Association).

Why didn't Hindraf think of the others, especially the Orang Asal who have stood with them since 2008 not only in Malaysia but at numerous international forums?

The Hindraf-BN MOU is a Judas-like betrayal of the Orang Asal who have been left out. The Orang Asal and this writer were also supposed to be in the Hindraf delegation to meet with unelected caretaker Malaysian Prime Minister, Najib Abdul Razak, but were conveniently left out.

What about the other stateless people in Malaysia especially in Sabah and Sarawak, including among the Penan?

What about the other people living below the poverty line? Must they be left to their bad  karma?

What about the people in Sabah displaced by the Mamut Copper Mine and others in the two Borneo nations displaced by dam building projects and plantation development by Malayan companies?

Are they going to get a MOU too like Hindraf to neutralise their bad karma brought about by Umno/BN and others?

Everyone is supposed to be equal under the law, not some people more equal than others. We don't need to promote the undemocratic anti human rights Brahmins (priest scholar) v Pariahs (shit carriers), and everybody else in between, dismal theory of life.

I am disappointed in Hindraf after all that I did to get the Orang Asal to back them.

If not for me, the Orang Asal wouldn't touch Hindraf with even a ten foot pole.

Sometimes, I think that the Orang Asal backed Hindraf not because they really wanted to back these people in Malaya but more because they didn't want to hurt me. Besides, they trusted instinctly in my judgment. Most Orang Asal can count on their fingers the number of Indians they know and still have fingers to spare.

I reminded them (Orang Asal) that the enemy (Hindraf) of my enemy (Umno) is my friend.

As requested by Hindraf Makkal Sakthi chairman P. Waythamoorthy, I even arranged for Hindraf activists to stand under the Star symbol in Malaya.

Now, both enemies -- Hindraf and Umno --have embraced and hugged each other because they see Pakatan Rakyat as their common enemy. They have kissed and made up.

The neo-colonialist parti parti Malaya are sworn enemies of the Orang Asal for squatting on their nations, Sabah and Sarawak.

How will Hindraf redeem itself in the eyes of the Orang Asal in particular and Malaysians in general?

Uthaya, on his part, should openly apologise to all Malaysians for anything that he may have done or said in the past to give them the impression that he was a rabid racist in the Himas mould.

Uthaya must pledge that if elected, by some miracle, he will work for all Malaysians especially the poor. It's not enough to make noise. Anyone can make noise.

He should also openly apologise to the Orang Asal on behalf of Hindraf Makkal Sakthi for Waytha making no mention of them (Orang Asal) in the Himas MOU and abandoning the idea of a Ministry of Orang Asal and Minority Affairs (Moama) which was endorsed by them in Kota Kinabalu.

Interlok Pariah Umno has managed to drive a wedge between Hindraf and the Orang Asal through the Himas MOU.

It will take much work, indeed superhuman effort, to rebuild the trust between Hindraf and the Orang Asal as 3rd Force allies facing common foes bent on doing them in through internal colonisation in Malaya and continuing the colonisation of Sabah and Sarawak.

By that time, Hindraf will realise that Umno/BN and/or PR will use its MOU as shithouse paper -- a leopard cannot change its spots --although the NGO no doubt meant well for the underclass Indians in particular and acted in good faith. I am already working on my "I told you so" masterpiece. He who laughs last, laughs the hardest, and the longest.

The Indians will have to start all over again with its 3rd Force allies for the 14th General Election if their historical window of opportunity hasn't slipped away.

An evening with Ong Tee Keat

Posted: 01 May 2013 12:27 PM PDT

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Mr. Ong, at the outset of the session, said that he and his team are on their own, as even his party is not supportive of him and his work, and many members do not dare appear to be too close to him. 

Daniel Teoh Tzu Yong

Looking at the bustling service centre, it will be difficult to believe that the person who is responsible for all of it – the staff, the posters, the visitors – will not be defending his constituency.

Dato Sri Ong Tee Keat is the living embodiment of the classic Chinese siew cai (scholar) success. Growing up in a Chinese area in downtown Kuala Lumpur, he was known for his writing prowess in Mandarin, contributing to newspaper columns and writing drama scripts. Upon obtaining an engineering degree, he ventured into politics and won his maiden fight for the Ampang Jaya Parliamentary seat. The modern siew cai rose quickly despite being outspoken against his own party and coalition, eventually helming the Malaysian Chinese Association and securing the Cabinet post of Transport Minister.

Things are no longer rosy for the veteran politician now. He lost the party leadership to Mr. Chua Soi Lek and was eventually dropped from Cabinet as well in a reshuffle. The last knockout blow was when he did not make it to the Barisan National's candidate list, replaced by a much younger person from the MCA.

Having only done a Google search on him, it was with excitement and expectation that I entered Mr. Ong's office to see for myself, the politician who is held in high esteem by the Malaysian Chinese public and what he has to offer to Pandan folks and national politics now that he is leaving the mainstream arena.

Freedom in Malaysian politics

Mr. Ong did not think that Malaysian politicians have much freedom in articulating their own views. He described most Malaysian political parties to be 'Leninist' in nature, having in place restrictive party whips.

Taking into account his maverick reputation and outspokenness, it should have been frustrating during his time in power to want to say something badly, but could not.

New Politics

When asked whether he has heard of this term and his views on it, his reply was most cutting-edge.

He stated that voters should have a fair picture of a politician's sincerity. Thanks to his decade-old habit of keeping newspaper clippings, he remarked that some of our current politicians are saying things which they stood against some time ago.

Refusing to provide an example, Mr. Ong cited the case example of fighting corruption. While it is easy to see people standing up to fight unjust enrichment and power abuse by the other side, he said that to stand up against one's own allies is more difficult as it requires more courage and as a consequence, less seen. These people, according to Mr. Ong, are the better breed of politicians as they hold a uniformed yardstick, against which they measure both friend and foe.

I found that to be something, coming from the man who rattled the cages of powerful people when he started investigation into the billion-ringgit Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) scandal, to the extent of even threatening to reveal names when the issue was raised in a debate between Lim Guan Eng and Chua Soi Lek.

New and young voters

Mr. Ong has this to say to this vibrant and upcoming group: beware of politicians.

It is important for voters to know who they are voting for, or against, and there is no better way to do this than taking the time to visit history. Mr. Ong does not believe that any politician can shed his colours overnight, and will only do so for perks and privileges.

Therefore, if the young voters were to believe in a 'parti malaikat' (angelic party), it is they who would be disappointed when the truth is found to be otherwise.

Mr. Ong urged young Malaysians to be critical-minded and not simply buy into the arguments for or against any side.

When asked about the disillusionment of certain people towards politics, the veteran politician encouraged them to once again take part in active discourse, as he thought that bystanders do not have the right to moan and groan about the state of things.

Penang and the undersea tunnel

It is only natural to seek the views of a former Transport Minister on the controversial project, and on the argument of the caretaker Penang state government that public transport licensing is under federal purview.

Mr. Ong confessed to having a soft spot for Penang, as his wife is a Penangite.

The former MCA President mentioned that the Penang Port had been reluctant to dredge the Penang seabed, and this was during his tenure as Transport Minister. He compared the depth of Port Klang, which he estimated at about 17 metres, to the 10 metres of Penang Port's.

This, according to Mr. Ong, is a crucial aspect when considering the feasibility of the project.

Assessment of Pakatan Rakyat Selangor

Mr. Ong is said to be extremely familiar with the Pandan constituency. When asked to assess, he replied that they could have done better.

What was interesting was the following comment. Malpractices and mismanagement from the previous Barisan National is not to be inherited, especially in appointed municipal councilors.

Sounds like the change was for the better.


The man himself

As we neared the end of the interview, the conversation touched upon more personal topics, like his recommended choice of reading.

Mr. Ong professed to be a fan of Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. Sun Yat Sen. The reason given was simple: they were revolutionary.

The two figures perhaps contributed to his personal driving force. Mr. Ong painted himself as an idealist realist, saying that his engineering training helped him to get things done, instead of merely conceiving ideas.

He recommended the book 1984 by British writer George Orwell, and said he derived great pleasure by reading A Lone Sail in the Sea, a Mandarin book by a 70s writer.

Conclusion

Mr. Ong, at the outset of the session, said that he and his team are on their own, as even his party is not supportive of him and his work, and many members do not dare appear to be too close to him.

In his firm and unwavering way, he vowed to continue giving and doing the best for the Pandan folks.

The mobile Chinese medicine van outside his service centre, dubbed Tabib Cina Mobile, surrounded by many elderly uncles and aunties looking for cure, played strong witness to those words.

 

Dam battle in remote Sarawak constituency

Posted: 01 May 2013 12:22 PM PDT

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"Use your vote to pick a party that will respect your native land rights"

Leonard Lim, Straits Times 

THE words "Stop Baram Dam, Save Our River" are painted in black across the rear of Mr Roland Engan's beige four-wheel- drive vehicle.

It sums up the Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) candidate's message to voters as he traverses this vast and remote federal seat in north-east Sarawak.

A government proposal in 2008 to build a hydro-electric dam across the Baram River will submerge some 25 villages. More than 20,000 non-Muslim bumiputeras, known collectively as Dayaks in Sarawak, would be displaced from the land they have cultivated and lived on for decades.

The ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) says the dam will generate cheap electricity to attract foreign industry, which in turn will create new jobs, towns, roads and a better life.

But for the Dayaks - who have long resented the leasing of native land to logging and oil palm firms by the state - the dam is the latest in a long list of grievances. Their growing resistance makes Baram a battle to watch.

"Use your vote to pick a party that will respect your native land rights," Mr Engan, 39, tells residents during rallies at their longhouses.

The lawyer, whose childhood village Long Je'eh is among those which could be inundated by the dam, tells voters the pace of development in their backyard could be much faster if not for graft.

"We don't need a dam," he adds. "We need better roads."

Travelling around in Baram, which is the size of Pahang but has just 29,500 voters, remains difficult.

Many villages are hours away from the nearest highway and are linked by narrow gravel tracks.

This gives the better-funded BN, which can afford to hire helicopters - said to cost about RM6,000 (S$2,400) an hour - an advantage in campaigning.

As for Mr Engan, he keeps a portable stove in his vehicle to cook instant noodles while on the campaign trail.

Read more at: http://www.stasiareport.com/the-big-story/asia-report/malaysia-elections/features/story/dam-battle-remote-sarawak-constituency-2 

Malaysia's social media election

Posted: 01 May 2013 12:21 PM PDT

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(Al Jazeera) - Who will win Malaysia's "first social media election"? The web's become a major battleground between the opposition and the ruling party in what is being considered as the closest election since independence. The Oxford Internet Institute ranks Malaysia sixth worldwide in terms of information production via Twitter. Facebook users have increased by more than 12 million over the last five years. As voters prepare to cast their ballots on May 5, we examine how social media is influencing political campaigning and discourse in Malaysia. Join us at 1930 GMT.

On Thursday, May 2 at 19:30 GMT 

It's one bumpy ride in Sarawak

Posted: 01 May 2013 12:16 PM PDT

http://www.stasiareport.com/sites/straitstimes.com/files/imagecache/story-gallery-featured/llsuv01e.jpg 

Money is king in these rural areas – I witnessed at least one shirtless villager, perhaps slightly drunk, jabbing his finger at Mr Engan's team and saying: "You pay me, I vote for you."

Leonard Lim, Straits Times 

Probably the most gruelling part of an election campaign in Singapore is climbing up and down dozens of flights of stairs in an HDB block to reach residents on every floor.

Deep in the heartlands of Borneo, where roads are undeveloped and some 29,000 voters are scattered across mountains and rainforest, it is a different story.

Try hitting the campaign trail in Baram, a constituency in north-east Sarawak that is nearly the size of Pahang.

I spent three days following opposition Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) candidate Roland Engan as he canvassed for votes, and endured hundreds of kilometres of bumpy and dusty rides on narrow logging tracks.

Fortunately it is not the rainy season – I was told that the tracks get muddy during such months, opening up the possibility of getting mired for hours.

The longhouses we visited were, for the most part, just a few hours' drive from the nearest city, Miri.

Those in the far interior can be an eight-hour drive away or accessible only by boat along the 466 km-long Baram River.

Government infrastructure in the rural areas is basic, and many villages get water from the river, streams or the rain.

And with longhouses and supplies sometimes hours apart, Mr Engan packs a portable stove in his four-wheel drive vehicle, to cook instant noodles when he gets hungry.

Photojournalist Kevin Lim and I did not have any desires to relive our army days by cooking in the Sarawak jungles, and relied on canned sardines and mackerel.

Campaigning in the rural parts, however, has its perks, especially when it rains.

Mr Engan usually holds a rally at the longhouse he visits. On the nights that I was with him, it began to pour soon after he stopped at one.

But unlike urban voters who would have to endure getting wet, the villagers listened to him in the comfort of their home, leaning against pillars and walls while sipping a drink.

Many had just finished dinner, and ventured out of their living rooms to the ruai (the covered communal area in front of the homes) to show support, or for some entertainment.

The ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition has for decades enjoyed strong support from residents in such rural areas. The residents find that pledging their loyalty comes with benefits.

A staunchly pro-BN longhouse I passed on Sunday was freshly painted a bright pink, while one just five minutes down the road that flew a giant PKR flag was rickety and run-down.

"That longhouse that supports BN? They get a new colour of paint every year," my Dayak driver, Mr Anyie Lah, tells me.

Money is king in these rural areas – I witnessed at least one shirtless villager, perhaps slightly drunk, jabbing his finger at Mr Engan's team and saying: "You pay me, I vote for you."

Read more at: http://www.stasiareport.com/the-big-story/asia-report/malaysia-elections/opinion-blogs/story/its-one-bumpy-ride-sarawak-20130501 

Will PAS betray its voters’ trust?

Posted: 01 May 2013 10:03 AM PDT

Chinese voters taking a cue from DAP have been urged to vote for PAS. But will PAS 'betray' its voters and impose its brand of hudud, effectively shackling the non-Muslims, if the Islamist party comes to power together with its allies?

Baradan Kuppusamy, The Star

A GROWING number of DAP leaders are speaking up, questioning the party's staunch support for PAS, a religious party that wants to turn Malaysia into an Islamic state.

PAS also wants to implement its brand of hudud, the ancient Islamic criminal code that stones one to death for adultery and have limbs chopped off for stealing, among other punishments.

These leaders are worried that their party's alliance with PAS is helping PAS to grow, win over non-Muslim support and become powerful enough to impose the PAS-style of intolerant Islam on the people.

These policies include no alco­hol, Friday as the day off instead of the universal Sunday, a ban on entertainment and singing, moral policing, a ban on cinemas and numerous other instances of how non-Malays have been made to live through when PAS is in power.

These leaders are understandably worried that DAP, of which they have been an integral part for decades, is helping PAS win big in this most crucial of all elections.

They are worried that after winning, an emboldened PAS will start imposing its creed on society as it has already done in Kedah, where a pig abattoir was demolished in 2008, and in Selangor, where PAS shared power with DAP and PKR, and banned the sale of alcohol.

All this while DAP chairman Karpal Singh was alone in opposing PAS' plans for hudud and for an Islamic state.

But he stops short of telling voters not to vote for PAS and thereby advances PAS' dream of turning the country into an Islamic theocracy.

That's exactly what another DAP leader has bravely said, enraging PAS leaders, by urging voters not to vote for PAS.

Johor DAP deputy chairman Norman Fernandez, an outspoken lawyer, said voters "cannot gamble and risk their future with PAS".

He warned voters of the grave danger and risk in voting for PAS because PAS has sought to change its true colours.

PAS has always been consistent as a religious party, he said, adding that it was always propelled by Islamic concerns.

They appear moderate and progressive but their core is always intolerant fundamentalism.

In his article last week, Fernan­dez said: "I, for one, have finally made up my mind and am convinced that PAS does not deserve my vote" and he urged voters everywhere not to vote PAS and advance their cause.

He was prompted to speak up and risk censure from his own colleagues because PAS leaders, in recent weeks, started to speak up for hudud implementation and Islamic state.

They were speaking up in order to shore up support for their party but their speaking up had angered DAP leaders.

Norman was supported by his colleagues and one of them – Kedah DAP committee member S. Neelamekan – also spoke up, saying the Federal Constitution was clear in that Malaysia was a secular state and not an Islamic theocracy.

He said PAS' incessant calls to implement hudud law was "disturbing" and that such open calls were indeed "dangerous" for Malaysia.

"The only way we can stop this is to stop PAS," Neelamekan said.

"I will certainly not vote for PAS and I urge DAP members and Malaysians to do the same."

In Kelantan where they rule, it is common to see separate lines for men and women, women hairdressers are barred from cutting men's hair and having Friday as a day off.

In Selangor, PAS tried to ban cinemas, police places of entertainment and stop 7-Eleven from selling alcohol, among other things.

These are small missteps but indicate the larger things to come if PAS ever captures Federal power, in alliances with DAP and PKR.

Chinese voters are eager to vote PAS, taking their cue from DAP. It has been urging them to vote PAS as part of the Pakatan Rakyat coalition and change the government. DAP has even come up with the ubah (change) slogan.

But will PAS eventually betray the Chinese voters by resorting to intolerant policies on grounds that Chinese voters support it and therefore support its policies?

The Chinese voters, who make up about 25% of the 13.3 million voters, are keen to throw their votes for PAS as well, besides voting for DAP.

But Chinese voters form the majority in about 40 parliamentary seats and winning these at best they can be an effective opposition.

Will they be sending a wrong message to PAS that Chinese, too, welcome hudud law and also all the intolerance that goes with it?

PAS is already saying that DAP was willing to use its moon symbol when the DAP's rocket ran into problems with the Registrar of Societies.

They are saying that DAP was accepting hudud and the Islamic state when it agreed to use the moon symbol.

DAP leaders like Norman had to make a clear stand between cooperating with PAS and supporting PAS' many policies.

They just can't stomach the idea of their party working hand in hand with PAS, which has resolved to imposing its intolerant values on others.

 

What Malaysian voters want

Posted: 01 May 2013 09:58 AM PDT

They also want a change in the disastrous way in which Barisan Nasional has messed up our race and religious relations to their lowest level ever.

By Koon Yew Yin, FMT

In the past week since the election date was announced, I have taken part in and attended numerous rallies held by the Pakatan Rakyat parties in Perak.

During these ceramahs attended by thousands of Malay, Chinese, Indians, Orang Asli and other supporters of the opposition in the large and small towns and at the grassroots level, I had the opportunity to watch at close quarters and to see for myself the response of ordinary Malaysians who are throwing themselves into the political battle, many for the first time in their life.

I can honestly say that of the elections which I have participated in or observed since 1957, I cannot recall any election that has stirred up so much energy and excitement among opposition supporters and the fence sitters attending these rallies.

Based on crowd behaviour and conduct, it seems to me that there is something extraordinary that is taking place in the Malaysian electorate. This is the building up of a strong multiracial unity and solidarity amongst ordinary Malaysians attending these rallies or viewing them through you tube and other media channels.

What Malaysian voters want

Malaysians want not only regime change and to throw out the crooks and cronies who have been in power and looted our national treasury for so many years.

They also want a change in the disastrous way in which Barisan Nasional has messed up our race and religious relations to their lowest level ever according to most observers.

This transformation in the Malaysian collective mind set is visible in several ways. It can be seen in the way in which the Pakatan's message of trust and faith in the ability of ordinary Malaysians to rise above racial and religious differences is resonating with audiences.

Equally moving is the fervour and cheers from all sections of the crowd when the Pakatan speakers – including PAS – call for the rejection of racial and religious extremism.

This is such a contrast to the BN's inclusion of notorious racial and religious extremists such as Ibrahim Ali and Zulkifli Noordin in their slate of candidates; and Dr Mahathir Mohamad's insistence that Umno is better off with the support of Perkasa and other extremist elements.

In rally after rally I attended, the solidarity and unity of the multi-racial audience, and the enthusiasm and passion with which they are echoing the need for change in the country is truly a sight to behold.

It is so different from the triple cocktail offered by the BN emphasising racial and religious differences of the PR parties and seeking to instill fear and insecurity amongst voters should they vote for the opposition.

BN's dirty tactics on hudud and fear

It is not surprising that the dominant message – beside the portraits of Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak and the local candidate – in the sea of BN buntings and posters that have sprung up in their millions all over the country is "kestabilan".

This is a crude threat aiming to strike fear in voters that all hell will break loose should they vote in the opposition.

Besides fear, the two other key BN messages playing on race and religion are visible in the way in which the government supportive media, especially Utusan Malaysia, the Star and New Straits Times, have been playing up the hudud issue.

Some of the dirtiest political front pages are now appearing in the Star which has repeatedly focused on the hudud issue and election violence to frighten and coerce its primarily non-Malay readers to voting to vote against Pakatan.

READ MORE HERE

 

Social media comes of age

Posted: 01 May 2013 09:53 AM PDT

ONLINE RECRUITMENT: Both coalitions are reaching out to voters

Santha Oorjitham, NST

IN May last year, Shamsul Fariz was one of the first 10 to respond when Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin tweeted for volunteers in his Rembau parliamentary constituency.  Khairy tweeted back with his thanks.

A week later, Shamsul was one of the members of the core batch who met Khairy at his personal office. And today, he is one of 10,000 Barisan Nasional Youth Volunteers (BNYV) across the country -- of whom an estimated 80 per cent were recruited through social media.

Since the 2008 General Election, both the BN and the opposition have used social media not only to get their message across to voters, but to persuade them to commit their time and efforts to the cause.

Both have been cautious, however, and have learned some lessons. Lesson number one might be: never rely on the kindness of strangers.

In Singapore's 2011 polls, the opposition Singapore Democratic Alliance went online to appeal for proposers, seconders and assenters for its bid to stand in the Tanjung Pagar Group Representation Constituency against Lee Kuan Yew's People's Action Party team.

Residents volunteered -- but the team of candidates was disqualified in the end because their seconder did not show up and they missed the deadline. It was the only walkover on nomination day.

"This year, under the rules and conditions for nomination day here, if a candidate's proposer says he or she didn't sign in front of the candidate, the nomination is rejected," says a PKR campaigner. "So we were afraid to ask people we didn't know, whether via social media or other channels."

BNYV national command centre director Zaidel Baharuddin is equally firm on this point: "No one dares to get proposers and seconders for nomination day via social media."

However, some candidates are signing up polling and counting agents online for the 13th General Election (GE13). Fahmi Fadzil, political secretary to former Lembah Pantai member of parliament Nurul Izzah Anwar, says she has found between 400 and 500 agents via Facebook, her website, leaflets and phone calls.

BNYV's Zaidel says social media is neither an effective nor an efficient way to recruit agents: "The best way is the local machinery in each division, which has a list of 'white' supporters -- party members and those who join BN programmes. The local leaders know them...."

Both coalitions also recognise that social media works best through constant, two-way engagement. "It's no longer top down," points out communications strategist Tan Sri Lim Kok Wing. "It is an interactive audience now. They respond. Today, they have a voice."

Tun Faisal Ismail, Umno Youth's new media unit chairman and chairman of the BN Youth Cyber team, says new media has helped politicians to engage voters and bring them into the process. Their favoured tool is Twitter, "the easiest for politicians to use and for people to access in comparison with Facebook".

"Nurul Izzah's team engages constantly through her blog and Facebook," notes Praba Ganesan, PKR's social media strategist. "They don't just announce a date, venue and event. When they wanted to turn the Lucky Garden roundabout into a garden of flags, they asked for comments on social media and, when people responded positively, asked them to help. At least 30 to 50 people came to plant the flags."

BNYV's Shamsul recalls that at their first meeting with Khairy, "we shared our opinions. Most of our ideas were used in the programmes". But, stresses Zaidel, "for social media, we need to give a general idea of what we want to do and what we can do. If it's purely bottom-up, it gets messy."

The major difference between the coalition's social media strategies relates to fund-raising. Basically, the opposition does it and the BN doesn't.

Back in 2008, PKR de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim had no online donation feature although offline donations were welcome via bank-in, says Ganesan. The blogs just provided a bank account number.

In the run-up to GE13, the party's "Demi Rakyat" website had iPay88 payment features, but the credit card feature was disabled in early April. The bank-in information is still there, however.

But for the BN, says Tun Faisal, raising money through social media is "not in our job description".

So far, reckons PKR's Ganesan, political parties are not fully utilising social media to engage voters.

"We've trod very carefully along the lines of what worked before, to add value," he says. "I believe we will see the full impact in GE14."

 

Why politics is not the answer

Posted: 01 May 2013 09:42 AM PDT

Politicians are trained to sell, not to speak the truth. And we, being the emotional consumers that we are, fall for the sales pitch especially when there's a promotion. 

Jonson Chong, TMI

If you think changes in the political arena will bring about changes in our lives, you're right and wrong. There will certainly be changes but not the real changes that matter.

I'm talking about the things that make our lives meaningful and worth living, not about things becoming more affordable or us having higher incomes. Of course, the latter things help to make our lives easier, but they are not the things that give meaning to our lives.

I am talking about the relationships that we have with others and, most importantly, with ourselves. Our dignity and sense of worth should come from ourselves, not from a position or title, or the number of possessions we have in our storeroom. 

Today, I wore three watches on my two wrists. It didn't make time more meaningful to me. But the laughs I shared with my wife certainly made my day.

Well, if politics is not the answer, what is? Good question. To me, the answer is education. Let me tell you why.

Politicians are trained to sell, not to speak the truth. And we, being the emotional consumers that we are, fall for the sales pitch especially when there's a promotion. 

Why use old technology (BN) when there's a new one (PR). Believe me, if PR wins this round, we will be complaining about them in a couple of years, if not months. 

In contrast, education speaks the truth. Well, at least good education. It's about equipping us for life, not about propaganda that will make us vote or buy a certain ideology or brand. 

Unfortunately, education has also become a business. Indeed, the contents of today's education perpetuate the mindset in which we are caught.

Alas, we don't often remember what Albert Einstein said: "We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them."

The education system that exists today (to be fair, not only in Malaysia) is a relic of the past. Indeed, it was designed for a previous age. The age of industry.

In the information age, we need a different kind of education. One that equips and prepares our children for the reality of a fast and furious world. It must enable our children to think fast but also to stay calm in the face of speed. In the ferocity of today's reality, they must also learn to be kind, gentle and patient.

If IQ were all we needed for success, we'd be all very happy beings. Unfortunately, only a very small percentage of us are. And if you investigate what else they have, it's much more than IQ. It's EQ plus SQ (spiritual quotient), and God knows what else.

READ MORE HERE

 

PAS to stand firm against any ties with Israel

Posted: 01 May 2013 09:34 AM PDT

(The Star) - PAS would block Pakatan Rakyat from establishing any sort of ties with Israel should it form the federal government.

The party's Ulama wing chief, Datuk Harun Taib, said PAS would continue the current policy adopted by Barisan Nasional of not having any diplomatic ties with Israel.

"PAS is opposed to any relationship with Israel.

"If we form the government, we will ensure that our foreign policies will be based on Islamic values," he told online portal The Mole.

Harun was referring to a 17-minute video showing a group of Christians from various nationalities praying from a church located in Jerusalem for a Christ-friendly government to be elected in this general election.

In the video uploaded on YouTube by Karen Dunham, leader of the non-denominational Living Bread International Church based in Jerusalem and the United States, the Christians prayed for "righteous leaders to be raised" with a prophecy that Malaysia would be "with the Lord".

One of them had also prayed that a new government would establish ties with Israel.

According to The Mole, Harun, however, said that the new leadership spoken of in the video did not necessarily refer to Pakatan.

"It can refer to any party which wins the elections," he said.

He also said that the matter would not be a religious issue in Malaysia as everyone was free to practise their religion.

"We respect the Christians and vice versa, as what is taught in Islamic principles. There should not be any problem about it," said Harun.

 

Pua left out facts over DAP’s adverts, says The Star

Posted: 01 May 2013 09:26 AM PDT

(The Star) - The Star has run DAP advertisements on its radio stations 988 and Red FM but only an advertisement for its newspaper was rejected because the party refused to add its logo onto it.

According to a spokesman, a statement made by DAP's publicity chief Tony Pua had conveniently left out that the radio advertisements were accepted and aired.

He said the rejected print advertisement was not attributed to any individual, party or group.

The spokesman said the company was uneasy with the design of the advertisement as it clearly violated the Malaysian Code of Advertising and Home Ministry guidelines.

It showed independent candidate Datuk Ibrahim Ali holding a keris with the words "a vote for MCA is a vote for Umno and Perkasa".

He said it appeared to incite racial sentiments and that DAP itself was unable to explain in what capacity or function was Ibrahim kissing the keris.

"The DAP could not tell if Ibrahim was holding the keris at a silat or political gathering, and in what context," he said, adding that the party could not even verify where the picture was taken.

The spokesman said this in response to a statement by Pua that The Star had turned down the print advertisement which showed Ibrahim holding a keris with Barisan Nasional candidate for Shah Alam Datuk Zulkifli Nordin.

The spokesman said DAP also refused to put its logo on the advertisement, adding that the party finally agreed to substitute the picture of Ibrahim with the keris.

"But by that time, it was already past the booking and printing deadline. It looks like the DAP planned all this to have its advertisement rejected, before submitting a so-called compromise version, and to attack The Star" he said.

He said normally, advertising material should be handed over to the office three days in advance but the rule was waived with DAP being given 24 hours to do so.

He regretted that the DAP statement had omitted to show that the 998 radio station had run its advertisements.

"Under normal circumstances, the radio advertisement material needs to be given seven days in advance but we accepted last-minute changes and material.

"The DAP was also given hefty discounts for its advertisement spots on a sister radio station, Red FM, a fact which Pua also did not mention. He will probably say he was not aware of these," the spokesman said.

He said advertisements in any political form can be accepted, even if deemed controversial or offensive as these were merely opinions, but cannot be accepted if deemed to be inciting racial tension.

The spokesman said The Star had carried news and photographs of DAP on its main pages and Metro Central. In Metro North, a whole page was dedicated to the DAP mega ceramah in Penang.

He said even Pua had been given coverage in the newspaper and its online portal since the campaigning started.

Over the past one week alone, The Star has carried two reports and a picture of him even though he has been away from his PJ Utara constituency busy campaigning elsewhere.

"He was even invited to have a video interview to be carried over The Star Online with over 40 million page views.

"We regret that he has not been thankful to what The Star has done for him. We also regret that he has not been truthful," the spokesman added.

 

PAS leader Ustaz Abdul Hamid Derani pulls back support for Pakatan

Posted: 01 May 2013 09:22 AM PDT

(The Star) - Kelantan PAS information officer Ustaz Abdul Hamid Derani has withdrawn his support for the party, saying that if they win, leaders of the Pakatan Rakyat coalition would fight each other for ministerial posts as they did for seat allocation.

Abdul Hamid, said this became clear to him on nomination day with multi-cornered fights involving Pakatan allies.

He said although the matter had since been resolved, tension remained high at grassroots level.

"The war with each other over seats shows a clear sign of fractures in the coalition. Imagine what will happen if they are chosen by the people and have to form a government," he said.

Abdul Hamid said even if Pakatan won, it would only be with a slim majority of 53% and seats equally distributed among the three parties.

"There will be conflict over three issues. First, who becomes prime minister as PAS and PKR have differing views?

"Next is, who gets to be deputy prime minister? DAP will demand the post because its leaders cannot be PM and other parties will have to bow to this because the party can withdraw from Pakatan and cause their slim majority to crumble.

"And after that, the question of which party members become Cabinet members," he said, reiterating Umno's statements that Pakatan would plunge the country into chaos if given the mandate.

Abdul Hamid said he wished to remain a PAS member, though he understood that his open statements could cause him to be kicked out.

"I am confident I will be (punished) and I will leave it to the central committee. But that is not important. What is important is I need to tell the truth," he said.

Abdul Hamid, who was surrounded by Barisan Nasional officials at a press conference in PWTC, added that he felt PKR would not agree to PAS' plan to implement hudud law if Pakatan formed the government.

"They all have different ideologies and are still fighting over it this close to polling day," he said.

Abdul Hamid is a former Umno speaker who served as religious assistant to International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed before he joined PAS in 2007.

 

Dr M says ‘racist’ Kit Siang wants to pit Chinese against Malays

Posted: 01 May 2013 09:15 AM PDT

Syed Jaymal Zahiid, TMI

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has dubbed Lim Kit Siang "an extremist racist", saying last night the DAP strongman was trying to sway the Chinese to hate the Malays in a bid to shore up support ahead of the May 5 general election.

Speaking before a Malay crowd here, the former prime minister said Lim and the DAP have been "poisoning" Chinese minds in the polls campaign by telling them the community are victims of discrimination by a Malay government.

"I will say it out as vocal as possible. Lim Kit Siang is a racist. Lim Kit Siang is a racist. Lim Kit Siang is an extremist racist," the country's longest-serving prime minister told a crowd of about 3,000 adoring Barisan Nasional (BN) supporters.

Dr Mahathir said that Lim's move to contest in Gelang Patah, a Chinese-majority federal seat in Johor, was the clearest evidence of the DAP's racism, an accusation he has repeatedly made in his campaign to help the ruling coalition defend the BN fortress state from an opposition onslaught.

"Why am I calling Lim Kit Siang a racist? It's because he has gone to contest in Gelang Patah where the majority there are Chinese. There, he will persuade the Chinese to hate the Malays," he said.

The Chinese form the majority in Gelang Patah at 52 per cent followed by the Malays and Indians at 34 per cent and 12 per cent respectively. There are 106,726 registered voters there for Election 2013.

Lim faces four-term incumbent Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman in the fight for the federal seat.

Dr Mahathir claimed the Chinese have enjoyed political and economic freedom under BN rule and dismissed allegations of racial discrimination.

He pointed out that most of Malaysia's richest people are non-Malays, naming tycoons like Tan Sri Ananda Krishnan and Tan Sri Vincent Tan as examples of BN's success in ensuring equitable development among all races.

READ MORE HERE

 

Beware of DAP's cyber troopers

Posted: 01 May 2013 09:04 AM PDT

(NST) - Beware of the DAP-sponsored cyber troopers, known as the Red Bean Army, who are ready to wreak havoc in the cyberworld.

The core group was said to comprise of between 2,000 and 3,000 members who could easily reach 60,000 people by sending out postings via social networks.

The members were said to be employed full time with a salary of between RM3,000 and RM8,000 each and they have been told to launch attacks on pro-government websites and social networks, spreading lies about the government and prevent any effort to connect with the people via the net.

Media analysts said the group, which was formed between four to six years ago, were also directed to "kill off" pro-government comments in alternative media and disrupt programmes that lent credit to the government.

They said this "army" would manipulate information and widen their attack on the government.

One of their duties was also to create feelings of hatred towards the government.

"Remember sometime back when a KFC customer was abused by a staff? This case almost became a racial issue after it was picked up by pro-opposition portals that received thousands of comments," said an analyst.

"The news was also picked up by foreign wires that portray Malaysia as unsafe.

"The presence of thousands of cyber troopers should not be taken lightly as the ethnic cleansing of Rohingya in Myanmar started as a flood of information on the Net."

The analyst said DAP would go to the extent of threatening people to achieve its objectives.

Another analyst said artistes were also threatened for showing their support to Barisan Nasional. "Datuk Michelle Yeoh was threatened for openly supporting BN and there are also others in the same boat."

It was learnt that they operated from an office tower in Penang and a hotel in Kuala Lumpur.

 

Bloger Milo Suam ditahan polis

Posted: 01 May 2013 02:16 AM PDT

(Harakah Daily) - Bloger Milo Suam dilaporkan telah ditahan pihak polis malam tadi dan kini telah dibawa ke Ibu Pejabat Polis Bukit Aman.

Makluman itu dinyatakan dalam satu kenyataan ringkas oleh Biro Komunikasi PKR kepada media lewat malam ini.

Menurut kenyataan itu, pihak polis juga kini berada di hadapan Ibu Pejabat PKR di Merchant Square di Petaling Jaya.

Bagaimanapun tiada sebarang makluman oleh mereka berkaitan sebab penahanan tersebut.

"Blogger Milo Suam baru telah ditahan oleh pihak polis dan dibawa ke Bukit Aman. Polis juga sekarang berada di hadapan Ibu Pejabat Keadilan di Merchant Square ," kenyataan itu dipetik.

Sebelum ini dua laporan polis dibuat terhadap pengendali blog Milo Suam yang sebelum ini menyiarkan artikel dan gambar mendakwa anggota Polis Diraja Malaysia (PDRM) mengundi lebih awal dari tarikh sepatutnya.

Laporan itu dibuat Jabatan Siasatan Jenayah Komersial (JSJK) Bukit Aman dan Suruhanjaya Pilihan Raya (SPR).

 

BN and opposition supporters clash

Posted: 01 May 2013 02:13 AM PDT

Four motorcyclists were injured and a pick-up truck was damaged during an altercation at Jalan Tenggiri in Seberang Jaya last night.

In the incident which occurred at about 6.30pm, some 18 motorcyclists, believed to be PKR supporters, on ten motorcycles, surrounded a pick-up truck belonging to Seberang Jaya BN candidate Datuk Mohammad Nasir Abdullah's team.

The group were honking and touting at the three supporters of Mohammad Nasir in the truck, and did not allow the truck to move.

The pick-up truck proceeded to ram down the four motorists as the remaining motorcyclists gave chase until they reached Mohammad Nasir's service centre in Lorong Tenggiri.

State police General Elections spokesperson ACP Roslee Chik said the motorcyclists then took out iron rods and helmets to damage the truck's windscreen and side windows.

"A team of light strike force (LSF) officers and police personnel present at the area came to defuse the situation," he said when contacted by the media.

He said both groups have lodged police reports on the matter at the Seberang Jaya police station.

The case is being investigated under Section 43 of the Road Transport Act 1987 for dangerous driving and Section 427 of the Penal Code for causing mischief.

Roslee added that based on the current scenario, police are increasing security in the state.

 

Former IGP chides Md Hashim for likening himself to a monkey

Posted: 01 May 2013 12:28 AM PDT

(Bernama) - Former Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Noor today described it as "inappropriate" for former army chief General (Rtd) Tan Sri Md Hashim Hussein to liken himself to a "monkey freed from captivity" following his retirement from government service.

He said such a statement could hurt the feelings of more than one million civil servants nationwide.
 
"In that case, when he was the army chief, he was a monkey. Monkey or not, he got four stars and was able to head the army, and then made an ambassador abroad," Rahim told a press conference, here.
 
Md Hashim, who is standing as the PKR candidate for the Johor Baru parliamentary seat against BN's Datuk Shahrir Abdul Samad, was alleged to have made such a statement in a ceramah last week. 
 
Rahim said Md Hashim should realise that he still had his family members in the government service.
 
"This means his family members who are still working with the government are monkeys, and I too, because I used to be a public servant, am also a monkey," he added.
 
He said Md Hashim, who had been in government service for more than 30 years, should not hurt other people's feelings by making such a statement.
 
He also described the former general's statement as politically immature.

 

Malaysia prepares for general election

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 10:13 PM PDT

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(BBC) - The government has spent money in villages ... and there just isn't the hunger for change felt by so many younger Malaysians in the cities.

A general election is being held in Malaysia on 5 May, in what is seen as a major test for Prime Minister Najib Razak's ruling coalition

The governing party has been in power for a 56-year period. However, the opposition has been gaining ground on a pledge to end corruption.

In 2008, the ruling National Front lost its two-thirds parliamentary majority for the first time.

Jonathan Head reports. 

Watch at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-22362918 

Scared or not?

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 10:00 PM PDT

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These are the real fears of the people. These are the issues that people feel strongly about. And if you were to get off your arrogant high horses and actually think about us, the people, instead of yourselves, you'd know our fears too – I'm voting for a government that does. 

Gan Yue-Li, TMI 

People were rightly scornful of the series of print advertisements by MCA. Just like the false threats that spewed from the lips of our Prime Minister and his minions at their ceramahs. It is obvious that all these fear-mongering tactics are in the hopes of subduing and frightening a nation that is hopeful for a new dawn.

But I am not afraid of the possibility of hudud. Instead, I am afraid that our young Malaysians will grow up without being properly taught to think, or speak, or debate. I am afraid they will, one day, have no choice but to leave the country because they are unable to find a better job, or a place in university.

I am not afraid that my right to enjoy a drink with friends will be curtailed. I am afraid for my dad every time he takes our dog out for a walk. I am afraid for my female friends every time we say goodnight and walk back to our own cars. I am afraid for my aunts, uncles, cousins, neighbours, and everyone else, every night even after we've locked our doors, turned on the alarm and imprisoned ourselves in our homes.

I am not afraid that my church will be forced to close by PAS. I am afraid that our children will one day think it's ok to tell their non-Malay friends to "balik Cina" or "balik India" because they saw or heard adults screaming it. I am afraid that more people will think it's ok to insult other religions because our Home Minister defended a few that did.

I am not afraid that I won't be able to have my hair cut by a male hairdresser. I am afraid that my gay friends will be beaten up when they walk outside tomorrow, because the government of today is spreading and inciting the message that being gay is a sin or a disease.

I am not afraid of the possibility of another May 13 if Barisan Nasional loses. I am afraid that my friends will get hurt when they attend Opposition ceramahs that are disrupted by paid gangsters and Mat Rempits. I am afraid for the many prisoners in police or MACC's custody who are tortured, beaten and who lose their lives while in the hands of the very people who should be protecting us.

Read more at: http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/sideviews/article/scared-or-not-gan-yue-li/ 

 

PKR: Membership not approved for Saiful's dad

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 09:44 PM PDT

http://mole.my/sites/default/files/images/mole-Saiful-Bukhari-Azlan-Mohd-Lazim-Anwar-Ibrahim.jpg 

(fz.com) - Despite being paraded at PKR's headquarters in party cap and vest less than two months ago, Azlan Mohd Lazim, the father of the Mohd Saiful Bukhari, had not been approved as a member, PKR supreme council member Datuk Johari Abdul said today.
 
At that time, Azlan had claimed that the sodomy charge by Mohd Saiful against PKR adviser Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim was part of a political conspiracy and announced that he was joining PKR.
 
Earlier today, Azlan made a U-turn and said that his son was indeed sodomised by Anwar and subsequently, withdrew his PKR membership.
 
Johari, who had claimed previously that Azlan had sought him out to expose the conspiracy against Anwar, reiterated today that the party had never approached or forced Saiful's father to make any statement.
 
"We would like to clarify here that Azlan Mat Lazim was never a member of PKR. His application to join PKR was not yet approved. I would also like to clarify that Azlan Mat Lazim had asked to meet us and not vice versa.

"He himself had offered to make a confession that all allegations against Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim were a political conspiracy," Johari said.

Read more at: http://fz.com/content/pkr-membership-not-approved-saifuls-dad 

Saiful's dad retracts apology to Anwar, says sodomy case was not a plot

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 09:41 PM PDT

 

(ST) - The father of Mr Saiful Bukhari Azlan, the alleged victim in Mr Anwar Ibrahim's second sodomy trial, has retracted his apology to the opposition leader, saying his son's sodomy complaint was not a plot.

Mr Azlan Mohd Lazim said on Wednesday that "certain quarters" had influenced him to apologise to Mr Anwar and say it was a political conspiracy in a closed-door press conference on March 8, The Malaysian Insider reported.

"Today, I retract my apology to Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and stress that my son's sodomy case is true.

"It isn't a political conspiracy," he told a press conference here.

Mr Azlan's retraction comes just four days before polling for the 13th general election, but the 60-year-old said the timing was a mere coincidence and that he had not been coerced by any party.

"I step forward to make the statement voluntarily and am not forced.

"I also was not offered any reward to retract my apology," he said.

Mr Azlan, who was alone at the hastily-convened news conference, said he realised he had made a mistake and added that his action was bereft of reward.

"After evaluating and rethinking, I admit I made a mistake for apologising to Datuk Seri Anwar.

"I have realised and want to apologise to my whole family especially my son Saiful," he said, adding that Mr Saiful was aware of today's news conference and that both father and son had no quarrel with each other.

Mr Azlan said he did not fear being labelled a liar or any negative backlash as a result of his reversal today, adding that people were free to draw their own conclusions.

"It's up to the people; I don't mind," he said.

He also said he will serve written notice of his resignation to Parti Keadilan Rakyat soon.

 

Cops to see Raja Petra over post

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 04:01 PM PDT

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CLAIMS: Blogger implies opposition leaders involved in Lahad Datu incursion

(NST) - KUALA LUMPUR: A POLICE team will leave today for Singapore to interview controversial blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin over a  posting he made in relation to the Lahad Datu incursion.

Federal Criminal Investigation Department director Datuk Seri Bakri Zinin said Raja Petra had implied in his April 25 post on the Malaysia Today news portal that several local opposition leaders were involved in the incursion.

"The blogger is quite well known in Malaysia, although he is not based here. We need to record his statement to facilitate our Ops Daulat and Lahad Datu investigations," he told the New Straits Times.

In a post titled "The untold story of the Lahad Datu incident", Raja Petra claimed that an opposition leader had flown to Jakarta in July last year to meet with Nur Misuari and military commanders from the Moro National Liberation Front.

Raja Petra claimed that the meeting, which was held at Crowne Plaza Hotel in Jakarta, had been arranged by an Indonesian member of parliament at the opposition leader's request.

He also claimed that a second meeting to finalise and seal the agreement was held in Manila in August last year. The opposition leader had allegedly sought Misuari's help to win in the 13th General Election.


 

The Star rejects advert from DAP

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 03:57 PM PDT

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(Malaysiakini) - Two other newspapers - Harian Metro and Kosmo! - refused to even provide a quotation, stating outright that advertisements from opposition parties will not be entertained, said Pua. 

DAP has accused The Star of barring the party from publishing advertisements in the daily.

The party had produced an advertisement in response to a series of MCA advertisements claiming that a vote for DAP is a vote for PAS.

According to DAP publicity chief Tony Pua, his party had produced an advertisement in the same vein, claiming that a vote for MCA is a vote for Umno, and thus a vote for Perkasa.

NONEA mock-up of the advertisement depicted Perkasa president Ibrahim Ali and the group's vice-president Zulkifli Noordin.

"We have no media access even if we want to pay... even if our content and theirs (MCA's) is quite similar," he said.

Read more at: http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/228644 

Towards The Final Countdown

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 02:52 PM PDT

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A coalition requires 113 to rule (112 majority plus a speaker). Give the one you prefer, say, 123 with an extra 10 MPs for political stability. We must avoid giving any coalition or party a 2/3 majority again. 

KTemoc Konsider 

I love science fiction stories especially when one comes in a good movie, like Alien with yummy Sigourney Weaver as the heroine or, as my post title alludes to, The Final Countdown.


The Final Countdown is an oldie science fiction film about a modern aircraft carrier that travels back through time to a day just before the 1941 Japanese naval air attack on Pearl Harbour.

I love the story-line on how the captain of the aircraft carrier deals with his unusual predicament. 'Twas about decision-making under extreme pressure, namely, the pressure of war as well as the pressure of known history and that challenging question, should he interfere with it?

But for this post, The Final Countdown would be obvious to be my dear readers as Malaysians 'multi-task' by holding their breath for who will emerge with the majority of federal parliamentary seats in GE-13, while somehow (indeed miraculously, wakakaka) continuing to vent their spleen and spew out bile against anyone they consider as the competitor or non-supporter.

Poor Michelle Yeoh was one such victim of feral cyber-fascist attacks. Some Malaysians can't handle democratic differences. I dread to think of those intolerant cyber-bullies ever coming into power.

Other unjust victims might have been 3 PKR office holders in Kedah, S. Manikumar (the incumbent for Bukit Selambau), Lim Soo Nee and Tan Joon Long, who were not re-nominated by their party as candidates for GE-13 but, to add insult to injury, weren't even informed of being dropped. So they decided to relinquish their office-appointments and remain as just ordinary members in PKR instead of office bearers. Nonetheless, they were cursed, lambasted and excoriated for being frogs, traitors, rubbish and whatnot - all this vicious bile piled against them despite their remaining in PKR as non-office bearers - see Malaysia-Today's Three Kedah PKR executive councillors quit all posts in party, which tells us:

The trio will remain as PKR members but would not participate in party matters, including attending meetings. Manikumar said they were disappointed because they were not given any explanation by the PKR top leadership why they were dropped as candidates.

He said they were among the five top state leaders and were also in the state leadership council. Even the Kedah PKR chairman Datuk Wan Salleh Wan Isa himself was not notified about their being dropped, ...

RPK has been more than spot on when he had on several occasions sneered at those moronic mindless Malaysian myrmidons for their lack of basic reading skills, or they would have known the 3 didn't resign but merely, and quite within their rights, chose to relinquish their office appointments after expressing their frustration at not being duly informed.

don't fret darling, kaytee still loves you, wakakaka
Yessirree, there's lots of tension, wakakaka.

The most interesting events to watch have been those intra-party squabble brought about by members'  dissatisfactions for being omitted from the candidate nomination list as well as those back-stabbed like PKR party president Dr Wan Azizah and PKR member Chegubard (Badrul Hisham Shahrin) - wah, the gnome had been very busy in the noxious depths of his malodorous putrid subterranean cavern, wakakaka.

Just imagine, a party president's candidature was decided by her party subordinate, sheeesh!

Of course PKR is not the only party having internal strife as Johnny, Jimmy and Jenice (no pun intended, wakakaka) merajuk over their omission from the party candidate list and decided to do their own things.

PAS is also getting excited as its ulama see the pending fruition of their dreams, making Malaysia an Islamic State, even though such an event has never been part of the Pakatan Agreement.

In their usual 'amnesia' brought about by their anticipated spiritual 'ambrosia', they have conveniently forgotten or ignored coalition agreement on the non-event of hudud.

Like sharks sensing blood, the PAS ulama heedlessly move aggressively forward to stake their pet claim and are already licking their chops at the thought of implementing hudud, a legal move which I suspect has more to do with consolidating their power than any pious piety and which will render their positions impervious to questioning by the hoi polloi as they know they, the majlis ulama, will be the only ones who will be 'untouched' by the harsh penal code of the hudud.

Why? How? Because they will the ones who decide who shall be prosecuted for whatever and who will be found guilty, wakakaka.

Additionally, they decided to go for broke and grabbed as many seats as possible, even and especially from their PKR ally, wakakaka. Like thugs, they even attempted to violently prevent Chegubard from submitting his papers for the Sungai Acheh state seat. Alhamdulillah, they weren't successful.

Chegubard
Five more days to go! What other peccadilloes and political atrocities will we witness? wakakaka.

Poor Dr Mahathir has worked himself into a frenzy of racist spewing even unto saying untrue stuff like Lim Kit Siang was responsible for May 13. One of UMNO's kitchen sink wakakaka.

The son of the late Gaffar Baba stepped in to tell the truth, that while Lim Kit Siang was actually in Sabah at the time of the tragic May 13, it was Dr Mahathir himself who had supported UMNO (Tun Razak) engineering of the tragic May 13 incident to depose Tunku. Good work by Mohd Tamrin Abdul Ghafar and DAP advisor, Zaid Ibrahim - for more, see Malaysiakini Ex-Umno man defends DAP against May 13 charge.

Najib and Mahathir have been playing good cop, bad cop all along, with each selecting the role he prefers. It's a shame that Bapa Bangsa Malaysia has become Bapa Bangsat Malaysia.

In each of us, two natures are at war – the good and the evil. All our lives the fight goes on between them, and one of them must conquer. But in our own hands lies the power to choose – what we want most to be we are - Robert Louis Stevenson

It's not only UMNO throwing in the kitchen sink. I have NOT been impressed at all by the wife of the world's best private investigator coming in at this juncture to tell us of alleged recent nefarious interference in her life, with predictable (or desired?) outcomes.

There have already been so many inconsistencies demonstrated by her husband and she has now added to that list of inconsistencies, for example, first informing us she didn't know what her husband was doing, then asserting her husband didn't do this and that. But really, the timing of her media interview sucks.

Anyway, on that evening of 05 May 2013, we'll know one way or other which coalition gets to govern Malaysia for the next five years (or less, as our political system is that of a Westminster democracy where a PM can, with the approval of HM the Agong, dissolve Parliament early and call for a new election), indeed, with or without the 'help' of the EC, or with or without the use of the so-called 'indelible' ink, wakakaka.

Meanwhile down in Oz, friends who went to Canberra to process passport renewals and whatnot, came back relating stories gleaned from fellow Malaysians at the High Commission that BN was doomed, wakakaka.

Another case of counting the chooks before the eggs have been hatched? Bet you the UMNO will not lie down quietly on its back and accept the long overdue screwing it should get. Things are likely to get even more vile, vicious and violent as we get nearer 05 May 2013, inclusive of self-planted and detonated devices for sympathy votes, wakakaka.

Note I've underlined 'which coalition' (no single party will emerge with a election majority) because I'm disappointed by the way campaign events have moved along, deliberate or unwitting, towards a presidential style election as a choice between Najib Tun Razak or Anwar Ibrahim (though many PAS members would silently disagree with the latter, wakakaka).

There is no denying that the reputation, personality and charisma of a coalition leader is important and can attract or/and sway the opinions of voters, but I would have loved to see the election fought over policies and of course the governing track record of a coalition, which alas, we Malaysians have been less than fortunate in that throughout our nation's independent political experience, we have only experienced one ruling political coalition. Besides, what's there to choose between Najib and Anwar? wakakaka.

Read more at: http://ktemoc.blogspot.com/2013/05/towards-final-countdown.html 

‘Remove anti-Christian billboards’

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 02:50 PM PDT

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(FMT) - A Christian organisation wants the EC to remove such billboards and the authorities to investigate those responsible for erecting them.

Billboards containing anti-Christian messages have been appearing in election campaigns – and this is making a Christian organisation jittery.

The Christian Federation of Malaysia (CFM) wants the Election Commission (EC) to remove these billboards which CFM fears may pose a danger to Christians.

"We strongly urge the EC to immediately remove such billboards and materials and the authorities to investigate and charge the person or persons responsible," CFM chairman Reverend Eu Hong Seng said in a statement today.

The billboards bear the message "Do you want to see your grandchildren praying in this Allah's house?", with two pictures of churches with the cross and the words "Gereja Allah".

"These billboards may pose a danger to Christians and churches because we use the word 'Allah'. These fears are real given the recent history of Church burnings and threats to burn the Bible in Bahasa Malaysia," said Eu.

"The message pits one community [Muslims] against Christians by spreading fear through scare tactics using the issue of 'Allah'.

"It is extremely mischievous and malicious to pit Muslims against Christians who have always enjoyed good relationships, to gain political points with such blatant misinformation," he said.

Eu also urged all Malaysians to denounce such billboards.

Read more at: https://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/nation/2013/05/01/remove-anti-christian-billboards/ 

Kadazans (KDMs) to Decide the Course of Malaysian History

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 02:40 PM PDT

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As you may be aware of, it was the KDMs in PBS-UPKO-PBRS who slavishly propped up the UMNO led Sabah government for the past decade. It will largely be the KDMs in those parties who decide if UMNO continue to rule Sabah and, or help ensure BN secure an overall majority nationwide. 

Jaikol Situn, Barrister-at-Law (Grays Inn); LLM; LLB; BA(Hons)

I happened to bump into this West Malaysian friend of mine a couple of days ago at an airport terminal while waiting for my flight to KL. Having renewed our acquaintance, our topic quickly moved to politics, although we picked our words carefully for fear of giving away our true political identity, as it were, lest the other was on the opposite side.

We tried to be professional about it as we both took a somewhat neutral stance or can't-care-less attitude so that our conversation remained pleasant and civil. My friend then told me something that has dwelt in my mind ever since. He said:


"Jack, it looks like the Kadazans will decide the course of Malaysian history this election."


What? A mere 2% of the Malaysian population with the ability to do that? On second thought, the Kadazans, at this present moment, are in an astonishingly rare position to determine which way Malaysian politics and governance are headed. By the way, whenever I mention Kadazans, I also mean  to say Kadazandusun-Murut or KDMs which include all the 40 or so Dusunic tribes totalling more than half a million or about 30% of the "official" population of Sabah


Recent developments seem to corroborate my friend's assessment. For the first time in a decade, the leaders of the three KDM-based parties of PBS, UPKO and PBRS in Sabah BN came out together to proclaim their full support for BN and Najib's continued leadership. Then, Najib's last week's visit to Sabah covered predominantly KDM areas underscoring the crucial role this community now plays in politics and nation building.


As you may be aware of, it was the KDMs in PBS-UPKO-PBRS who slavishly propped up the UMNO led Sabah government for the past decade. It will largely be the KDMs in those parties who decide if UMNO continue to rule Sabah and, or help ensure BN secure an overall majority nationwide. On the opposition side, again, it will be the KDMs who determine if the locally-based parties of STAR and SAPP fare well in the election, and should they do well, they would go on to press for new terms and conditions for Sabah's membership in the Malaysian federation. So you see, the KDMs now command formidable clout on both sides of the political divide.


What about the more than 800,000 illegal immigrants in possession of genuine Mykads on the electoral rolls? We know they have been traditional BN and UMNO supporters, but after the Lahad Datu conflict, nobody is so sure which party they would be voting for in this election. The opposition particularly STAR and SAPP would like to think that many would now support them while those in BN and UMNO are confident their loyalty remains intact.  However, due to some damming revelations during the now adjourned Royal Commission on Inquiry (RCI) on illegal immigrants, political parties are for the time being, taking a cautious approach on this issue to avoid any suggestions that they are in cahoots with these newcomers.


We would know which party or parties these so-called illegal immigrants supported come May 6th.  Should BN and UMNO retain many seats, we would know that these people are quite happy with the status quo. If STAR and SAPP managed to wrest control of seats in traditional UMNO strongholds, we would know these illegals have switched sides, thus setting a trend for an unlikely Sabahans/KDMs-illegal immigrants' alliance against the "neo-colonial power" in the years ahead. This would cause shivers down KL's spine.


So how would KL prevent the possibility of a Sabahans/KDMs-illegal immigrants' link up in the not so distant future? KL cannot just drive away hundreds of thousands back to the Philippines and Indonesia as they are now Malaysian citizens in their own right with genuine Mykads. KL might carry out various measures to ensure that the discord and enmity between them persist and try to convince Sabahans that these illegals are the enemy and KL are the ally. At the same time, KL would endeavour to placate the KDMs by whatever means and manner necessary thus, creating a win-win-scenario for KDMs again. Whatever happens, you can bet your life that it will mainly be the KDMs with overriding native rights who would serve as the catalyst for any geo-political change in Sabah that would have far reaching consequences in neighbouring Sarawak and subsequently throughout Malaysia.


There have been quite a few derogatory remarks that are annoyingly true about the KDMs, such as, "Dusun senang disusun" (Dusuns are easily fixed) or "Orang KDM macam kerbau kena tarik hidung" (KDMs are like buffaloes that can be pulled by the nose). In the light of recent developments, these demeaning remarks no longer hold much water. Indeed, the KDMs will be the sculptors, navigators, and kingmakers of Malaysian politics in this election and beyond. So for once, if you are a KDM, be proud of your roots. Search your soul and use your wisdom to decide the course of Malaysian history on 5th May 2013.

 

My Response to Chua Soi Lek's Rants about Hudud

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 02:36 PM PDT

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Who decides what Hudud is? In 56 years of rule by Umno-BN, has there been a decision? And if there is, why aren't Soi Lek and his allies referring us to it?
 
write2rest 
 
The recent rants by Chua Soi Lek of the Malaysian Chinese Association (MCA) and his mouthpiece, the Star tabloid, about Hudud reminded me of the time my team was in the state-level field hockey finals.

We were playing in Johor Bahru (JB). My team, Pontian, was playing against JB, on their home turf.  We were losing.  I was a fullback.  My job was to defend my teams own goal.

In the final 10 minutes, I was metres away from the JB team's goal post.  I was far away from where I should've been.  Fullbacks are not supposed to cross into the other side!  Fullbacks are trained to prevent goals, not score them!

I was "in the wrong place" because desperate times call for desperate measures: we were losing very, very badly.  And that, I think, is what Soi Lek is demonstrating when he seeks to scare us with "Hudud."

Fortunately for me, the skills required to score goals were simple: I couldn't make a fool of myself.  Soi Lek however succeeds only in revealing his foolishness.

Soi Lek says we should vote for Barisan Nasional (BN), his alliance with Umno, because to vote for the alternative Pakatan Rakyat, which includes the Islamic Party (PAS) is to open the door for Hudud in Malaysia.

What is Hudud?  I've not been able to locate any clear statements by Soi Lek.

Soi Lek leaves it to our imagination. Hudud means our worst nightmares: stoning women caught in adultery, caning women who consume alcohol, prohibiting the sale of alcohol, cutting off the limbs of those who commit crimes, imposing the death penalty on apostates, etc.

Who decides what Hudud is? In 56 years of rule by Umno-BN, has there been a decision? And if there is, why aren't Soi Lek and his allies referring us to it?

I live my life according to this rule: "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and soul and mind; love your neighbour as yourself" (Matthew 22:37-40).  This means I seek to learn what my neighbours believe and if I think they believe wrongly, I correct them.  This means if my neighbour thinks it's safe to drink raw water from the Ganges, I try very hard to persuade her she's wrong.

In my search for understanding about Hudud, I found some helpful statements:

"HADD (HUDUD).  Mandatory punishments imposed in classical Islamic law in cases of adultery, fornication, and false accusation of adultery, as well as for theft, highway robbery, apostasy, and drunken-ness.  For these offenses, punishments are fixed and details as to their execution specified in the Traditions or the Koran.  For example, the punishment for adultery is stoning or one hundred lashes for fornication, but strict rules of evidence require either a confession from the culprits or the testimony of four male witnesses.  The amputation of a hand for theft requires either a confession or two witnesses.  Furthermore, the stolen property has to exceed a certain value and the theft must not be between relations.  The punishment for wine drinking, not mentioned in the Koran, is 80 lashes according to the Traditions.  Because of the severity of had punishments, they have not been imposed in most parts of the Islamic world.  Only in Saudi Arabia and in the self-described "Islamic States" of Pakistan and Sudan, and most recently in Afghanistan, have had punishments been exacted."  (Adamec, Ludwig W.  Historical Dictionary of Islam.  Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2001.  106)

In case you're wondering why I begin by quoting a non-Muslim source, I'll tell you.

I've found many Muslim writers so preoccupied with citing Arabic texts and listing Arabic authorities that I'm left wondering if even they understand what they write.  I've said before that they remind me ofpeacocks, birds which cannot fly.  There are many opinions about what Islam actually teaches, and Muslims know it.

 

Najib, what happens after 5 May? How do Malaysians survive?

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 02:35 PM PDT

http://i2.wp.com/aliran.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/BR1M-recipients-at-Bayan-Baru-Penang.jpg?resize=520%2C373 

P Ramakrishnan asks Najib what will happen to the poor until the next BR1M they receive. How do the poor carry on with their lives in the meantime?

You have bribed the entire country with your BR1M. You have thrown money recklessly and wantonly.

You did it not because you suddenly became generous; not because you genuinely felt the suffering of the poor; not because you are compassionate and caring for the disadvantaged.

You did it to win the elections! That is all!! That is the simple truth!!!

What will happen to the poor suffering people after the election is over? How are they going to survive without your BR1M?

You promised them RM1,200 next year to induce and dupe them into voting for you. But how do they carry on with their suffering and struggling lives from 6 May until they receive your promised RM1,200 next year? 

Kredit: www.malaysia-today.net

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