Isnin, 3 Jun 2013

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Datuk Bridget Lai

Posted: 03 Jun 2013 01:37 AM PDT

Assalamu Alaykum and Dear Yang Mulia Raja Petra,

May you and your family are in the best of health and happiness.

I was visited by close friends and presented his relative whom I already knew years back, Datuk Bridget Lai.

She was shocked to read your website concerning the story of YB.Nurul Izzah: 

As a woman she was emotionally disappointed or confused that her name was brought into politic and asked my opinion what to do.

I advised her to lodge police report and will help her to clear her name. (please see below).

She asked me to inform you that she had nothing to do with politic at all and never meet or know Datuk Seri Anwar, Dr.Wan Azizah or YB.Nurul

Would you kindly posted her Police Report on your Malaysia Today?

Thank you very much for your understanding and we will be in touch.

Happy Birthday to Puan Marina and Wassalam Alaykum.

ADAM Mikail


Information about Datuk Bridget Lai:


Guan Eng warns against baseless allegations on Red Bean Army connection

Posted: 03 Jun 2013 12:57 AM PDT

(The Star) - Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng has warned that baseless allegations against investors can affect the investments into the country.

Lim criticised a report in a Malay daily on Saturday which implied that a Malaysian technopreneur had funded a cybertrooper group, the Red Bean Army which it claimed was affiliated to the DAP.

Lim said the Red Bean Army did not exist and DAP did not know about it.

"These unfounded accusations will hurt the country's investments and should be stopped," said Lim on Monday.

On Saturday, a businessman, Pua Khein Seng said in a statement that he would not hesitate to take legal action against the Malay daily.

"I honestly do not know how I should respond since it is an unfounded accusation," he said.

He also said he had no problem co-operating with the authorities.

The Malay daily also reported that the authorities would investigate the background of the Red Bean Army, which is believed to have received funding from a company in Taiwan established by a Malaysian.


Sirul Azhar claims mistrial, seeks acquittal

Posted: 02 Jun 2013 11:43 PM PDT

(Bernama) - Former police Special Action Unit personnel Sirul Azhar Umar, who was convicted for Altantuya Shaariibuu's murder, filed an application to the Court of Appeal here today seeking for his acquittal, claiming there was a mistrial by the Shah Alam High Court.

A notice of motion filed by legal firm The Chambers of Kamarul Hisham and Hasnal Rezua at the Court of Appeal registry here was in an attempt to include additional grounds of appeal.

In the application, former Corporal Sirul Azhar claimed that he was exposed to extensive "adverse publicity" during the trial which was misleading and prejudicial to him, thus denying him a fair trial. He is seeking for the Court of Appeal to declare the trial a mistrial, his conviction be set aside and he be set free.

Sirul Azhar, 39, claimed the adverse publicity he received had caused a probability that the high court judge was biased, rendering his conviction unsafe.

Sirul Azhar claimed he was exposed to adverse publicity through three statutory declarations, two made by private investigator the late P. Balasubramaniam and one by Raja Petra Kamarudin.

He said Balasubramaniam's first statutory declaration, made after the prosecution closed its case on June 23, 2008, contained matters prejudicial to him as those matters were not disclosed in his (Balasubramaniam's) testimony at the trial. He said Balasubramaniam had, on July 4, 2008, made another statutory declaration stating that he was withdrawing his first statutory declaration.

Sirul Azhar said the declarations were extensively uploaded in various websites and had been the subject of various speculation, debate and extensive commentaries from the general public, legal practitioners and leaders which were interpreted as questioning the veracity and authenticity of the declarations.

He said the principal questions hovering in the minds of readers having access to the materials would be, "What prompted the appellants to kill the victim" and "Who gave instructions to have the killing carried out by the appellants".

Sirul Azhar said Raja Petra had, on June 21, 2008, uploaded the latter's statutory declaration on an Internet website stating that three other people were also present when the victim was killed, which was interpreted to mean that he (Sirul Azhar) was the killer.

He claimed Raja Petra had also uploaded a copy of a caution statement believed to be his (Sirul Azhar's) stating that he (Sirul Azhar) had admitted to killing the Mongolian woman.

Sirul Azhar and former chief inspector Azilah Hadri were found guilty and sentenced to death by the Shah Alam High Court in 2009 for killing Altantuya, then 28, at Mukim Bukit Raja in Shah Alam between 10pm on Oct 19, 2006 and 1am on Oct 20, 2006.

Former political analyst Abdul Razak Baginda, who was charged with abetting them, was acquitted by the high court on Oct 31, 2008 after the prosecution failed to establish a prima facie case against him.

Their appeal against their conviction and death sentence is scheduled to be heard by the Court of Appeal on June 10.

Sirul Azhar's lawyer Kamarul Hisham Kamarudin said a copy of the notice of motion would be served to the prosecution.


Anwar vows to ignore King’s remarks

Posted: 02 Jun 2013 05:19 PM PDT

While the opposition leader "appreciates" the King's remarks, he however believes it is prepared by the government.

Anisah Shukry, FMT

Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim today announced a June 15 rally in Kuala Lumpur to protest the alleged fraud in the elections despite the King wanting Malaysians to accept the May 5 polls results.

In dismissing Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah's remarks, he claimed the text was prepared by the Barisan Nasional-led government, and not the King himself.

"While we do appreciate the remarks by the King, we understand that the text is prepared by the government desperate to solicit support from all areas possible," Anwar told a packed press conference at the PKR headquarters here today.

"The King's speech is normally prepared by the Prime Minister's Department, cleared by the prime minister, and submitted by the prime minister to the King," he added.

But Anwar said if necessary, he would write a letter to the King to explain how Pakatan Rakyat was compelled to hold the rallies due to the "excessive fraud" in the election.

On Saturday, Tuanku Abdul Halim said that the act of casting doubts on the Election Commission was "very dangerous and might cause a never-ending conflict".

"Don't weaken and destroy our constitutional monarchy system, parliamentary democracy and federal philosophy which all this while have formed the basic ingredients for Malaysia's success," the King said in a speech carried live by RTM that night.

Support is not waning

Anwar said the Pakatan secretariat would negotiate with Inspector-General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar and security forces to ensure that the June 15 rally would be peaceful.

He also rubbished claims that support for the protests had been waning, insisting that the post-general election rallies had attracted a "far larger and different set of supporters, particularly among the young" as compared to the rallies during the election.

"What makes you think [support] is waning? I was in Kuala Terengganu, I was in Alor Setar, Batu Kawan, Penang, Ipoh…it was phenomenal support," he told FMT.

But he added that the numbers were irrelevant, and the core issue was the "principle" behind the rallies.

Critics have urged Pakatan to end their rallies and focus on gathering evidences of election fraud and filing an election petition with the courts.

But Anwar said filing the petition was just "one method" to deal with the electoral fraud.

Meanwhile. PAS secretary-general Mustafa Ali said that the party would be filing 14 petitions, PKR 18 petitions and DAP three petitions.


Why wait until after GE13 to jack up car parking rates?

Posted: 02 Jun 2013 05:11 PM PDT

Dr Ching Eu Boon

PAKATAN Rakyat loudly bandies about lowering oil and car prices which attracted mass appeal from the urban crowd. However, Pakatan cleverly omits informing is that once power is retained, they have increased charges at the local authority level. The most recent one as reported by Utusan Malaysia (June 3, 2013) regarding the Shah Alam City Council hiking up car parking charges from 40 sen to 60 sen per hour.
This move is inconsiderate as Shah Alam being the state administrative centre houses many government offices be it federal or state government where Klang Valley residents irrespective of which constituency they belong to – be they from the Federal Territory or Selangor, will make a trip there. 
They will have a new financial burden each time they drive to Shah Alam to settle personal or business-related matters involving government departments like MyKad and passport applications or renewals, local council quit rent and assessment payments, shoplot billboard licences, land checks, etc. Civil servants and private sector employees working in Shah Alam will likewise be affected with the higher rates as will guests of patients warded in hospital in Selangor's capital.
Another issue that arises over the hiked car parking charges is that if the Shah Alam City Council has prepared sufficient car parking lots, and if those weighed down by wear-and-tear have been upgraded.
Pakatan touts itself as a government that cares for the people's welfare but it has glossed over day-to-day matters which impact ordinary Malaysians. If the Selangor Pakatan government was sincere about retaining people's votes, why did it not introduce these new charges before May 5, 2013, unless they feared losing votes?
BN sincere in reducing rakyat's burden
Barisan Nasional, on the other hand has proven our sincerity in alleviating the rakyat's burden. Even as early as Feb 17, 2011 (more than 2 years before the 13th general election), Prime Minister Dato' Seri Najib Abdul Razak had announced New Pantai Expressway toll rate between Petaling Jaya Selatan and Kampung Medan has been cut to RM1 from RM1.60. Before that, on Jan 28, 2011 the premier also announced no increase in toll for the next five years at the Karak and East Coast Phase One highways. Najib had announced toll rates at PLUS expressways would be frozen for five years when tabling the Budget 2011.
Dr Ching Eu Boon
MCA Selangor Youth Deputy Chairman

Opposition rapped for keeping mum over Facebook posting against King

Posted: 02 Jun 2013 03:32 PM PDT

(NST) - Kedah Barisan Nasional Youth today rapped the opposition for keeping silent over the slanderous remark in a Facebook posting against Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah.

Its deputy chief Haris Che Mat described the opposition's silence as very deafening and "as if they have something to hide."

"What is wrong with Anwar (Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim), Lim Kit Siang and Guan Eng (Lim Guan Eng)?

"They would normally bark at anything and everything BN do or don't do but now they are keeping quiet over a very serious matter that involved the king.

"Why are they keeping mum? Do they agree with the Facebook posting or what?" He asked after lodging a police report against the posting and its author at Kota Setar district police headquarters here.

Accompanying him were Kedah Gerakan Youth chief Tan Keng Liang and Kedah MCA Youth deputy chairman Tan Chee Hiong.

Haris said the opposition should explain their stance on the posting and its author.

"What was posted in the social media is downright "kurang ajar" (disrespectful).

"It has been three days since the posting appeared but the opposition or any of its leaders have not said a word about it.

"I wonder why," he said.

Haris urged the police to expedite its investigations into the matter and take stern action against those who made slanderous remarks  against the King and the country's constitutional system.


EC welcomes move

Posted: 02 Jun 2013 03:25 PM PDT

(The Sun Daily) - The Election Commission (EC) has welcomed the formation of an independent bipartisan parliamentary select committee (PSC) to oversee its functions.

EC deputy chairman Datuk Wan Ahmad Wan Omar described the move as a step in the right direction towards strengthening its credibility.

He was responding to the announcement by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak, in conjunction with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah's birthday celebration at Istana Negara on Saturday.

"The announcement was made with a clear objective to instil people's confidence in the EC as an independent and non-partisan body," he said today.

Wan Ahmad stressed that while EC's functions are carried out by civil servants who are bound by their terms of employment, its seven-member panel is appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, as provided for under Section 114 of the Federal Constitution.

"Many people have the misconception that EC (commissioners) are part of the government. The EC secretariat is separate from the seven-panel members and we cannot be removed from our positions," Wan Ahmad said.

Bersih 2.0 steering committee member Wong Chin Huat, however, said that EC's position as an independent body as laid out under the Federal Constitution must be respected by all, instead of placing it under legislative scrutiny.

"The present set of commissioners must step down and Najib should then call for a bipartisan consultation to find a constitutional solution to advise on appointment of future commissioners," he said.

Wong said that while the Federal Constitution provides the Yang di-Pertuan Agong the sole discretion to appoint EC commissioners, the selection has thus far been limited to retired civil servants.

"The PSC (to be set up) should not be a permanent body to 'control' the EC ... Its function should not be undermined by partisanship and requires the political will to push for necessary changes," Wong said.

PAS research director Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad echoed Wong's call for the EC commissioners to resign, stressing it was a "non-negotiable" demand from the people.

He urged that drastic action be taken to restore public confidence in the EC.


Pakatan to give EC special committee a miss

Posted: 02 Jun 2013 03:07 PM PDT

Pakatan Rakyat will not be playing a role in the special committee to oversee the Election Commission until its terms are met, says PKR's Tian Chua.

Alyaa Azhar, FMT

PKR vice president and two-term Batu MP Tian Chua today declared that Pakatan Rakyat will only be involved in the special committee to oversee the Election Commission (EC) if the current EC members were to resign.

Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak on Saturday said that to strengthen the EC's authority and credibility, the government would set up a special committee comprising members of parliament from the Barisan Nasional and the opposition to oversee the commission.

However, Tian Chua in his statement today said that Pakatan will stick to its stand and will not be playing a role as mentioned by the prime minister until its terms are met.

"The EC must resign and a new commission must be appointed with consentience from both parties.

"Also, re-election must take place in all the parliament and state constituencies, said to be won by fraud, after all necessary evidence is provided," he said.

He reiterated that Pakatan will not participate in any cooperation and efforts to improve the credibility of the current EC or amending of any electoral law until a new commission is appointed.

"The rakyat has had enough with the tricks the EC has been playing and they have clearly voiced out unhappiness to the previous elections.

"I urge the EC to listen to the calling of the rakyat and resign immediately before the rakyat chooses to show who holds the ultimate say," he said.



Tak percaya Umno, apa lagi ditunggu?

Posted: 02 Jun 2013 02:21 PM PDT

Umno menang pada kerusi di mana jumlah pengundi dalam kawasannya jauh lebih kecil berbanding jumlah pengundi dalam kawasan parti lawan. 

(FMT)) - Bedah siasat jumlah undi yang diperolehi Umno dalam Pilihan Raya Umum ke 13 (PRU-13) pada 5 Mei lalu mendapati prestasi Umno adalah lemah walaupun memenangi 88 kerusi Parlimen.

Ahli Parlimen Raub, Datuk Mohd Ariff Sabri Abdul Aziz yang membuat bedah siasat itu dalam blognya sakmongkol ak47 hari ini menulis, Umno bertanding dan menang pada kerusi di mana jumlah pengundi dalam kawasannya jauh lebih kecil berbanding jumlah pengundi dalam kawasan parti lawan.

Sekali gus beliau mempertikai kenyataan Perdana Menteri Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak yang membuat kesimpulan bahawa prestasi Umno adalah lebih baik kerana memenangi 88 kerusi Parlimen berbanding 79 kerusi pada PRU-12.

Najib yang juga Presiden Umno mendakwa partinya muncul sebagai parti yang paling popular pasca PRU-13 selepas mencapai kemenangan itu.

Ariff Sabri mempertikai bagaimana Najib boleh sampai kepada kesimpulan tersebut sedangkan menurut perangkaaan dari Suruhanjaya Pilihan Raya (SPR), Umno mendapat 3.2 juta undi.

"Jumlah ahli Umno sahaja sudah melebihi 3.2 juta undi. Bagaimana Najib boleh dakwa sokongan orang Melayu kepada Umno meningkat?" soalnya.

Beliau membuat justifikasi ini dengan menyatakan bahawa PAS bertanding dalam kawasan di mana jumlah pengundi secara purata berjumlah 77,000 manakala Umno bertanding dalam kawasan di mana jumlah pengundi secara purata adalah 36,000.

"Maka jika kita lihat dari sudut ini, dengan membuat penyamarataan, nilai 88 kerusi Umno itu hanya 44 kerusi parlimen. Ini kerana dua kerusi yang dimenangi oleh Umno bersamaan dengan satu kerusi PAS.

"Dan nilai sebenar 21 kerusi yang dimenangi oleh PAS itu ialah 42 kerusi. Ini bererti PAS dengan mudah menjadi parti pilihan selain Umno," jelasnya.

Demikian juga katanya dengan PKR di mana parti itu bertanding dalam kawasan di mana jumlah pengundinya secara purata ialah 75,000 dan menambah, "maka nilai sebenar 30 kerusi yang dimenangi oleh PKR ialah 60 kerusi. Jadi dimana letaknya kejayaan Umno?"



Christian takes helm at Islamic school

Posted: 02 Jun 2013 01:50 PM PDT 
Guiding principal: Dr Ray Barrett with some of the pupils at Malek Fahd in Greenacre. Photo: Peter Rae

(Sydney Morning Herald) - It is Australia's largest, oldest, and best-known Muslim school, but for the first time in its 23-year history, Malek Fahd has appointed a Christian to take on the full-time role of headmaster.


A career educationist and experienced private school inspector, Ray Barrett is supposed to be in retirement, but he has agreed to take on the top job and help the Greenacre school get back on track.


And while the appointment of Dr Barrett was a surprise choice for some, a spokesman for the school board said he was chosen for his qualifications and experience, and his religion didn't come into it.


When he first met parents, one asked Dr Barrett how he would deal with the issue of Islamic studies. He told the parents the same way he deals with HSC physics - another subject he knows nothing about - rely on the experts.

''This is a top-performing school and you will find graduates that are doctors, lawyers and dentists,'' said Dr Barrett ''The parents are aspirational. They want their kids to achieve and take the next step in life.


''This school is no different to any other, they have universal values and I want to help the kids to be the best they can.''

Read more at: 


Revolutionizing Malaysian Enlightenment through Critical Thinking

Posted: 02 Jun 2013 01:08 PM PDT 

Critical thinking is not the same as negative thinking. This is where many of us have not yet been able to come to terms with. 

Anas Alam Faizli

When Adam (AS) plucked the fruit from the forbidden tree in Heaven according to the revealed books of Abrahamic beliefs, he marked the first ever instance of man making a conscious choice by utilizing his thinking faculty and free will. That he was then descended upon earth in Sarandib Island (modern day Sri Lanka) while Eve in Jeddah, or that he was to grace the earth as caliph, was pre-destined. The plucking of the fruit could not have been avoided but the point is to take heed from the process that led to that decision. Descartes, famously claimed that humans exist because we think; "I think, therefore I am." The human being and thinking are inseparable.

What is the truth? Is there God? Throughout history, God has been asking us to think. God has been teaching us to think. God grants wisdom and intuition, while free will cultivates thought. The depiction of Moses (AS) attaining revelation in a thinking exile at ThurSina' circa 1200BC is an example of the journey for truth. So was that of Abraham (AS) circa 2000BC. Having received no satisfactory answer on questions of life and deity, the latter took to the night to discover in vain that the stars and the moon could not possibly have been God, as both disappeared when the day took over the night.

Thousands of years later, humanity's connection to God is no longer as direct. Questions of the purpose of life, divine will, foreordainment and predestination have been put on the backburner, or left to "daydreaming" philosophers. The pursuit of truth is no longer our main preoccupation.

More recently, the film Oblivion illustrated the attainment of truth stimulatingly, via thinking and curiosity in the modern world. Protagonist Jack Harper found "truth" from asking questions upon questions, prompted by an intriguing piece of reading. Philosophers and historical figures, the likes of Confucius, Siddhartha, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Avicenna, Farabi, Ghazali, Ibn Taymiyyah, Kant, Hegel, Locke, Bentham, Marx, Nietzche, Sartre, Ali Shariati and many more examined man and life by continuously asking questions and seeking truth. Albert Einstein once even mentioned that he has no special talent other than that he was passionately curious. The baton thus gets continuously passed down to other philosophers until the modern age. It was critical thinking that allowed humanity to engender and bear witness the greatness of ancient civilizations, the Renaissance, the Enlightenment period, the Islamic golden age, and the modern world.

Thinking as Tool to Achieve First World Mentality

The Annual International Conference on Critical Thinking and Education Reform in America summarized critical thinking as an intellectually disciplined process. It involves active and skillful conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and evaluating information of information gathered from observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication. This is a lot of big, conceptual words, but to understand this is to look at the core product of critical thinking, that is a guide to belief and action. It is the opposite of simply acquiring and retaining information, or a set of skills without being able to feel or empathize with the results of that skill set. It is only critical thinking that will enable us to extract the fruits of educating our citizens, from the belief that they consequently form and act upon.

Often we see that it is in developed economies where empathy towards the environment, animal rights, or cultural heritage is demonstrated. So too is the case for philosophy and thought. People of developing economies are too busy building economic wealth to occupy themselves with things like saving the environment, arts and literature and philosophy; in other words, intellectual wealth.

If we believe Malaysia is heading towards developed nation status, we must quickly recognize that going into the next step of development can no longer be just the "brick and mortar" Twin Towers, Sepang F1 and Putrajaya, economic, and empirical scientific kinds of "growth". We can't step into First World Status with a Third World mentality, severely underequipped in intellect and thought.

The Ironic "Trichotomy" of Thinking, Knowledge and Education

Engaging a Malaysia that thinks, we cannot run away from attacking the problem at its core, and that is education. In the past, education has focused too much on producing doctors and engineers, that the quality and development of the linguistic and literary sciences has been pushed back too. Even with commerce, natural and physical sciences, the critical thinking element is overshadowed by the pressing need to digest knowledge and facts.

Piecemeal, modern world-type solutions have been offered by the education ministry using jargon such as Creative and Critical Thinking Skill (KBKK). Unfortunately, it is limited to adding some relatively out-of-the-box math or science questions appended at selected pages within the text books, usually for better-performing students to attempt. The built and construction of the system remains the same. 15-year old Malaysians have consistently dropped in performance in the TIMSS (participated 1999) and ranked amongst third bottom percentile in the PISA. Both assessments tested the higher order thinking skills of our pupils.

What we need Malaysian students to empathize with is something very much deeper; like observing their local communities, questioning purpose, reason, logic, being creative, appreciating literature, language and music as sciences in their own rights, being critical, innovative, improvising and technological. In the ancient world, knowledge is achieved by scholarship from great teachers who guide students into discovering the fundamental truths of existence and purpose. Now, knowledge is unemotionally reduced to condensed and concise textbooks to be memorized. Malaysians who come out of such a system are limited to a narrow idea of success, rights, boundaries and purpose. We become so confined to pursuits of economic wealth and pleasure, thus rarely think beyond the default doctrines or syllabus.

This "trichotomy of thinking, knowledge and education" is plaguing not only us, but also much of the developed western world. For America, the battle is saving the new generation from societal doldrums, having tasted economic success. But for Malaysia, going too far down the wrong road may mean perishing even before reaching the peak. The victims, surely, are not us nor the policy makers in their glass paneled Putrajaya offices. It is our children, and Malaysia.

Rethinking Critical Thinking via Philosophy Education

My first humble proposition is to establish a faculty of philosophy in every tertiary institution. This is not new; leading Universities e.g. Oxford, Harvard, Cambridge and MIT all have a faculty of philosophy. The word philosophy originated from the Greek word philea and sophia which means love and wisdom, hence philosophy is the love of wisdom. In academia, often it is the study of basic fundamental nature of knowledge, reality and existence.
A faculty of philosophy will begin to help solve the dire need for thinkers and inculcate knowledgeable persons within our society. Philosophy opens our minds, pushes us to reason, question things, which thus prepares the perfect grounds for critical thinking. While some human capital is best placed in the industry to produce tangible economic outcomes, there must be space for those who are best to appreciate great works of past thinkers that built human civilizations, to research, explore and retrieve solutions to some of the most pertinent problems that plague society currently.

Secondly, I propose making compulsory the subject of philosophy to all tertiary level students. Even at its most basic level, philosophy is one of the best ways to get students of knowledge to reason, because it is the foundation for every subject which will lead to the understanding of philosophy of religion, philosophy of mathematics, philosophy of sciences, philosophy of social sciences, philosophy of economics, thoughts and the list goes on. Whatever his or her field of discipline is, credit hours on philosophy will provide basic tools to keep them grounded to the purpose of studying, and the purpose of the particular field they are studying.

Relentless economic pursuits have backfired. The lack of critical thinking is arguably why we lack innovation, and thus limited economic abilities. Even with disciplines which supposedly produce "returns on investment" such as medicine, sciences, engineering or business, students do not fully appreciate the philosophy behind them, and thus not many are incentivized to probe further. When knowledge is supplemented with thinking and translated into development and innovative capabilities, the economic bounty of an enlightened Malaysia is actually far larger.

Countering the Oppressed Mentality via Thinking

Ordinary Malaysians need to understand the meaning of words to modern nation states like Malaysia, such as freedom, justice and democracy. They need to question first, in order to understand the purpose of certain jurisdictions, rulings or systems. In fact, there must be encouraging mechanisms for Malaysians to be allowed to think out of the box defined by schools, societal norms, and the government.

On the surface, this may seem like encouragement to partake in unnecessary rebellious activities threatening public safety. But consider the reverse psychology and unintended moral hazard that prevails; it is often when oppressed that people side with the opposite, even when the opposing side may not be the truth or most ideal. The younger generations especially, will easily be influenced by any idea, regardless of its validity, purely because it is against the mainstream. This is not healthy. We need to liberalize intellectual discussions and arguments. The marginalized and the oppressed should be given room for dialogue and debate. Ideas should be contested in the public sphere.

Evidence has shown that liberalizing ideas and thoughts sparked Britain's Industrial Revolution. Malaysia too should embrace "Enlightenment" beyond superficial prosperity, through Critical Thinking. Because many authorities were never willing to embrace the idea of a freedom of thought, speech and expression that challenges the status quo, the internet and social media helped fuel waves of reform beyond imagination, such as the Arab Spring and the public show of solidarity against the results of the recent 13th General Elections.


Critical thinking is not the same as negative thinking. This is where many of us have not yet been able to come to terms with. There is such deep and engraved fear in questioning boundaries and rights as citizens of a nation that have been endowed with human rights, and on-paper sovereignty. Malaysians must begin to think. Thoughts have not only fuelled revolutions and counter-establishment movements, but have also shaped academia, society and influenced leadership, policy-making, and ultimately mankind's general livelihood.

If we allow thinking to flourish, it will turn into dividends for our small sovereign nation, still grappling to understand the true meaning of growth, modernity and human development. If we keep suppressing and fail to encourage thought, Malaysians will be left divided and haphazardly finding meaning amidst global external influences. 

I have always been a proponent of a reading culture as a crucial way to propel Malaysia into First World Nation-hood. This will only happen if Critical Thinking becomes the next step.

"The unexamined life is not worth living" – Socrates

*Anas Alam Faizli is an oil and gas professional. He is pursuing a post-graduate doctorate, Executive Director of TFTN and tweets at @aafaizli

Anwar says will ‘advise’ Azmin on purported discontent over Selangor job

Posted: 02 Jun 2013 01:00 AM PDT

Zurairi AR, TMI

Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim today dodged questions about the "uneasiness" raised by PKR deputy president Azmin Ali over a unilateral appointment at the Selangor Mentri Besar's Office, saying only that he will "advise" the latter on the matter.

Azmin was reported today to have expressed his unhappiness with the appointment of party secretary-general Datuk Saifuddin Nasution as political liaison officer in the office of Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim, citing "uneasiness" from the grassroots.

"I will advise him accordingly," said de facto party leader Anwar to reporters here, referring to Azmin.

Malay language daily Sinar Harian quoted Selangor PKR chief Azmin today as saying that the appointment has caused friction among grassroots leaders in the state.

According to Azmin, the issue has been hotly debated by party members since Anwar announced it during the Ninth PKR National Congress last week in Petaling Jaya.

Azmin had said the appointment was made without consulting the party, suggesting that a Selangor party leader has managed to win over the hearts of the state's residents.

Besides Azmin, PAS state commissioner Dr Rani Osman was also omitted from the state exco list, which saw DAP's Subang Jaya assemblyman Hannah Yeoh named the nation's first woman Speaker, and her deputy, PKR's Seri Setia assemblyman Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad, the youngest.

Selangor Mentri Besar Khalid has since explained Azmin and Rani's omission, saying that the two names were given low priorities by their respective parties during nomination for exco candidates.



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