Khamis, 11 Julai 2013

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Malaysia Today - Your Source of Independent News

Indian shops to close on Tuesday in protest against trade fairs

Posted: 10 Jul 2013 06:09 PM PDT

The traders say the Indian trade fairs and shopping carnivals are robbing them of their business. 

(Bernama) - Local Indian traders at major shopping spots nationwide are to close for business on July 16 in protest against Indian shopping carnivals and trade fairs in the country participated in by foreigners.

President of the Malaysian Indian Textiles and General Stores Association (MITA), R. Moorthy Ramasamy, said these trade fairs and shopping carnivals organised during the festive season were taking away the good business enjoyed by the local traders, particularly from the 'Little India' enclaves of shops run by the Indian community.

"MITA wants an immediate stop to such carnivals and we have sent many memorandums, including to the prime minister, to resolve the matter but they have not been fruitful.

"As such, as a last resort, local textile merchants and costume jewellery shop and restaurant owners have unanimously agreed to close their business operations for one day on July 16 in protest against the matter.

"Even the vegetable sellers who are badly affected by the foreigners are supporting us," he told Bernama.

He said Indian trade fairs organised by local event management companies were originally meant to be participated in by manufacturers from countries like India, Pakistan and Bangladesh to introduce their products to local traders.

However, he said, the objective had changed along the years as foreign traders involved in these trade fairs started doing retail sales to local customers.

"The foreigners in the trade fairs are making a huge profit at the expense of local traders ," he said.

MITA secretary Maheswary Ramasamy said it was bad for the country's economy to have foreign traders at trade fairs as this would result in the outflow of money.

She said many small-scale Indian traders found it difficult to break even due to such trade fairs and, worse still, some of them were forced to close shop.

Meanwhile, a saree shop owner, Surendran Subramaniam, 39, from Sungai Petani, Kedah, said the issue of foreign traders taking away the business of locals had become a national issue and needed to be addressed quickly by the government.

Malaysian Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Penang branch president N.

Vasantharajan had said that 120 traders in 'Little India' in George Town would close for business on July 16 in protest against an Indian shopping carnival scheduled to be held next month.

Vasantharajan was reported to have said that the carnival, which also involved the participation of traders from India, had caused the 'Little India' traders losses to the tune of RM10 million. 


MP questions need for Islamic subject in private universities

Posted: 10 Jul 2013 03:05 PM PDT

Md Izwan TMI

An opposition MP today called on the education ministry to re-think its move to make Islamic Civilisation studies compulsory for local students in private universities.

DAP Kampar MP Dr Ko Chung Sen said the ministry will make the subject compulsory from Sept 1.

"We strongly urge the education ministry to reverse the ruling and let the individual universities decide on the needs of their courses," he said during a press conference today.

"If you look at the renowned universities in the world, there is no subject on religion that is made compulsory for its students.

"How will this subject help a student studying medicine, engineering or law?" he asked.



Church right to say Allah describes God, says Vatican’s first envoy to Malaysia

Posted: 10 Jul 2013 03:01 PM PDT

Jennifer Gomez, TMI

In his first interview with the Malaysian media, the first resident diplomat sent by the Vatican to live and work in this country spoke on the controversial issue of the use of the Arabic word "Allah" to describe God in any religion.

Archbishop Joseph Marino said he supports the stand of the Catholic Church in Malaysia.

He applauded the arguments made by the Christian Federation of Malaysia to use "Allah" in its texts to refer to God as very well done.

Archbishop Marino is the Apostolic Nuncio to Malaysia. This position, also often known as a papal nuncio, is the Vatican equivalent to an ambassador.

This is the first time the Vatican has opened what is the equivalent to an embassy in Malaysia.

The diplomat said the only way to stop deterioration in race relations in Malaysia is through dialogue, saying it would work out if people sat down and talked.

On his experience being the former nuncio in Bangladesh, Archbishop Marino said the people in that Muslim country have great respect for Christianity.



5 states allow unilateral conversions

Posted: 10 Jul 2013 02:51 PM PDT

DAP's Nga Kor Ming urges the AG Chambers to advise these states to amend their Islamic laws in line with the federal constitution. 

Leven Woon, FMT

Although the government has withdrawn the controversial Federal Territories Islamic Bill which would have allowed for unilateral conversion of minors to Islam, this specific provision is still effective in five other states, a DAP lawmaker pointed out today.

The five states which allow for unilateral conversions of minors are Perak, Kedah, Negeri Sembilan, Sarawak and Malacca, Taiping MP Nga Kor Ming told a press conference in the Parliament.

Laws on Islamic issues fall under the prerogative of the respective states. The FT Islamic Bill – Administration of Islamic Law (Federal Territories) Bill 2013 – however fell under the purview of the parliament as it involved federal territories.

Nga today urged the Attorney-General's Chambers to advise the five state governments to amend their respective state enactments so that they would uniformly reflect the definition of "parent" as stipulated in the Federal Constitution.

Enactments in the five states were passed between 2001 and 2008. These state Islamic laws stated that a non-Muslim aged 18 and below can embrace Islam with the consent from one of his/her parent.

Nga noted Islamic enactments in Selangor, Terengganu, Pulau Pinang, Sabah, Perlis and Johor however required consent from both the father and mother for a minor to be converted to Islam.

"How come there are two systems in one country?" he asked.



‘Sulus will return better armed’

Posted: 10 Jul 2013 02:44 PM PDT

ESSCOM deputy commissioner Ahmad Nadzer believes that the numerous water villagers along the ESSCOM stretch are breeding growns for 'arriving' terrorists. 

LAHAD DATU: If the Sulus return they will be eliminated at sea, even before they breach the security net in eastern Sabah, assured Eastern Sabah Security Command (ESSCOM) Director of Intelligence, deputy commissioner Ahmad Nadzer Nordin (picture, right).

Ahmad Nadzer, who confessed that the February intrusion at Kampung Tanduo here was a result of a 'slip-up', believes the Sulus will return and this time it will be with vengeance on their mind.

"We believe they will return. We expect them to come better armed, but we will be ready and waiting for them and they will not get to land at our shores," he said.

He said they expected the terrorists to sneak into the area using other routes and take refuge among the water villages along the 1,784 km ESSCOM coastline.

He said although the long coastline covering 10 districts from Kudat to Tawau were "well secured" there were still "pockets" which did not fall within the range of the eight radars

He said once these terrorists slipped pass the security net they took refuge in the many water villages which litter the ESSCOM coastline.

"These villages must be demolished and residents resettled elsewhere.

"All this while our (police) intelligence indicated water villages were used as hide out for criminals and smugglers, they hide their fire arms, contraband include drugs there.

"I strongly believe it is high time for us to eradicate such threats once and for all," he said.

Ahmad said ESSCOM has been exploring and adopting all possible measures to improve its security network and its intelligence collecting process.

He said cooperation with the Philippines and Indonesia security forces had also strengthened even as ESSCOM fostered closer ties with residents within the range.



Saudis target Iran and Israel at missile base

Posted: 10 Jul 2013 01:09 PM PDT
Image showing two circular launch pads, #1 pointing in direction of Israel, and #2 pointing in direction of Iran. A vehicle-mounted ballistic launcher drives to the launch pads and directs itself along thick dark line pointing at ten o'clock. At the bottom of the image an underground bunker built into the hillside with two entrances, one 12 metres wide and the other 15 metres wide, can be seen, where missiles and their warheads are stored. Administrative and residential buildings are shown at the centre of the image. 

(The Telegraph) - Saudi Arabia is targeting Israel and Iran with powerful ballistic missiles, new satellite photography suggests.

Images analysed by experts at IHS Jane's Intelligence Review have revealed a hitherto undisclosed surface-to-surface missile base deep in the Saudi desert, capable of hitting both countries.

The Chinese-made missiles are not remotely guided and have to be aimed at their target before firing. 

The analysts spotted two launch pads with markings pointing north-west towards Tel Aviv and north-east towards Tehran. They are designed for Saudi Arabia's arsenal of lorry-launched DF3 missiles, which have a range of 1500 to 2500 miles (2400 km to 4023 km) and can carry a two-ton payload.


The base, believed to have been built within the past five years, gives an insight into Saudi strategic thinking at a time of heightened tensions in the Gulf. While Saudi Arabia does not have formal diplomatic relations with Israel, it has long maintained back-channel communications as part of attempts to promote stability in the region.


The two countries also have a mutual enemy in Iran, which has long seen Saudi Arabia as a rival power in the Gulf. Experts fear that if Iran obtains a nuclear weapon, Saudi Arabia would seek to follow suit.


Analysts at IHS Jane's believe that the kingdom is in the process of upgrading its missiles, although even the DF3, which dates back to the Eighties, is potentially big enough to carry a nuclear device.

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How I sought police help first - by man suing Home Minister

Posted: 10 Jul 2013 01:04 PM PDT 

(TMI) - Amir says the IGP refused to see him. "I was instead referred to the IGP's secretary. And even she did not want to see me."

A question surrounding the case of the businessman who was allegedly assaulted by Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi is why did the police take no action.

That is the question that even led to a shouting match in Parliament two days ago between opposition member for Puchong, Gobind Singh Deo and the Home Minister.

Businessman Amir Bazli Abdullah, the man suing Ahmad Zahid, laid out his version of the events after the alleged assault in 2006, to The Malaysian Insider: "I first lodged a report at the Dang Wangi police station the day after I was assaulted but was referred to Kajang police.

"I met a chief inspector where my statement was recorded over three days."

Amir said he was then admitted to a hospital in Cheras but was later transferred to a hospital in Kelantan upon his request as his family was there.

Three police officers, he said, went to see him in Kelantan and they obtained his medical report.

"Some three to four months later, the chief inspector informed me that my case was classified 'no further action'. I questioned him why this was happening as he had promised he would investigate fairly.

"The officer was apologetic and said his hands were tied as the instructions came from above."

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Can PPP be saved?

Posted: 10 Jul 2013 12:55 PM PDT 

(The Star) - "PPP is ready to sacrifice its existence as should other parties if it's for the progress of the country. Because of current political reality a merger seems to be inevitable. The question is when."

The 13th General Election saw some big winners and losers, with both coalitions claiming triumphs, but for a number of smaller political parties the message was clear ... adapt or die!

The People's Progressive Party (PPP) has a history that is glittering and turbulent in equal measure, but the party is now at a crossroads and the thumping defeats it experienced on May 5 make its very survival and relevance an issue of concern.

"To move forward, we have to think collectively," said PPP assistant secretary general Datuk Simon Sabapathy, acknowledging that the party may have to consider the option of merger. 

"The struggle for all Malaysians could well be under the umbrella of a single party."

In late June, party president Datuk Seri M. Kayveas announced that Sabapathy was to head a special committee to look at reforms within the party to ensure it continues to remain relevant and progressive. 

The issue is twofold. Firstly internal restructuring within the party and secondly greater co-operation with its Barisan Nasional counterparts.

Sabapathy said there would be a brainstorming session with all Barisan component parties on the direction and future of BN.

"We will push for a merger to make ourselves more relevant collectively," he said. "It will be painful to abolish a party that has existed since 1953 but we are ready to make that sacrifice for the good of the nation. 

PPP is ready to sacrifice its existence as should other parties if it's for the progress of the country. Because of current political reality a merger seems to be inevitable. The question is when."

Sabapathy dismissed the notion that PPP were not relevant because the party lost all five seats (one parliamentary and four state seats) it contested in the recent elections.

He said that all those seats contested by PPP were tough seats in the first place and that any Barisan component party would have lost them as well.

"It's not fair to say that we did badly because any Barisan party would have lost. It's not a reflection of PPP's strength but rather Barisan's weakness," he said.

At the same time Sabapathy did not think it likely that PPP would pull out of BN. "It will be tough to step out of BN because of sustainability as the party does not have much funding."

He said that BN should not have individual parties taking care of individual groups and that they should share their resources for the good of the people.

"We should move beyond this race-based mindset. If there is a Malay student who is doing well but is financially deprived, it should not be an Umno problem, but a Malaysian problem," he said.

He however acknowledged that it would be an uphill task because those in power would not want to relinquish their positions and posts easily. 

The PPP was found in April 1953 by celebrated brothers D.R. and S.P. Seenivasagam. 

The party was particularly strong in Perak, almost helming the state government following the May 1969 general election.

However, after joining BN in 1973, it went into decline and was only revived under the helm of Kayveas in the 1990s.

Over the past decade both Kayveas and Datuk T. Murugiah served in the cabinet as Deputy Ministers although the latter left the party after losing a power struggle.

PPP claims an impressive membership of 775,000 people with 43% Indians, 28% Chinese and other races. 

Unfortunately, these numbers have not translated into electoral strength.

Political analyst Khoo Kay Peng believes that there is very little to suggest that PPP is still relevant.

He said the party was not active in the national political discourse and were probably given token seats in the election to contest by BN just to show they were still alive.

 "As a political party, winning elections are very important. If not, there is not much legitimacy to it. They are a small party in a matured coalition. This might not be to their advantage," he said.

He believes it would be quite difficult for BN to become a single component party.

Khoo said that given the current scenario, PPP and other like-minded smaller parties could merge and play a bigger role in the next elections.

"I believe there are always opportunities for a third force to emerge and PPP could work with parties on a common cause," he said. 

Police still top list of complaints lodged with Suhakam

Posted: 10 Jul 2013 12:09 PM PDT 

(The Star) - The police have once again topped the list of complaints lodged at Suhakam against law enforcement agencies for violations of human rights.

According to Suhakam's 2012 annual report, of the 202 complaints made against the Police, Prisons, National Registration and Immi­gration departments, cops clocked in a total of 126 for inaction (44), abuse of power (43), and use of excessive force (39).

It was similar to the preceding two years: 113 out of 156 in 2011 and 125 out of 212 in 2010.

The report said the complaints against cops related to assault of arrested persons during interrogation to compel them to confess.

Other complaints included allegations of unlawful arrest, that is re-arresting those who had been freed; extending remand by producing the arrested person in magistrate's courts in several districts; intimidating complainants to withdraw reports against the police; and bias.

Asked why cops topped the list consistently and whether there was greater pressure to perform, Suhakam commissioner James Nayagam said the police dealt with the public more and that there "might be more pressure on them because of public expectation to solve crimes."

The annual report also shows that complaints about Emergency (Public Order and Prevention of Crime) Ordinance (EO) 1969, Dangerous Drugs (Special Preventive Measures) Act (DDA) 1985 and Internal Security Act (ISA) 1960 had dropped last year.

There were only 10 last year (EO-five, DDA-three, ISA-two) compared with 54 in 2011 (EO-44, DDA-six, ISA-four) and 82 in 2010 (EO-69, DDA-11, ISA-two).

The EO was revoked in 2011 and the ISA repealed in 2012.

Asked whether the fewer complaints could be because some detainees were released after the laws were annulled, Nayagam said that could well be the case.

After the report was released on Tuesday, vice-chairman Datuk Dr Khaw Lake Tee reiterated Suhakam's recommendations to fit every interrogation room with a CCTV, a doctor to examine the suspect before and after interrogation, and for every report against an officer to be investigated by Bukit Aman or the state police headquarters. 

Bersih probe: Hanif disappointed not many witnesses came forward

Posted: 10 Jul 2013 11:57 AM PDT,P20ZAHID,P20MEET,P20HANIF,P20OTHMAN1_SAM.JPG.pagespeed.ic.liBRb70vZT.jpg

Zahid (left) shaking hands with Tun Hanif. Also present is Home Ministry secretary-general Datuk Alwi Ibrahim. 

( - "The main actors refused to cooperate because they doubted the credibility of the panel," he said, alluding to the apprehension directed at the panel as he, a former Inspector-General of Police, headed it.

Chairman of the Independent Advisory Panel on Bersih 3.0 Tun Hanif Omar today expressed disappointment that not many members of the public came forward as witnesses during its investigation into disturbances sparked by the Bersih 3.0 rally in April last year.

The panel handed its report on the rally held last year to the government today.
Hanif said while he was satisfied with the 500-page report, he was saddened that not many members of the public came forward as witnesses.
"The panel had invited all parties to come forward, but there were those who had been persuaded by certain quarters to not aid in the investigation," he told reporters after meeting Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi this evening.
The panel had been formed to probe the disturbances sparked by the Bersih 3.0 rally in April 2012.

Malaysian Stocks First From Worst on Lowest Volatility

Posted: 10 Jul 2013 11:46 AM PDT 

(Bloomberg) - At a time when slowing economic growth and political protests from Brazil to Turkey are spurring capital flight from emerging marketsMalaysia has turned into a refuge for equity investors.

The FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI Index (KLCI) was the biggest loser in Asia just four months ago as the closest elections in 55 years threatened the ruling coalition's plans to spend $444 billion on infrastructure. Now the $478 billion stock market is the region's best performer, after Prime Minister Najib Razak's May 5 poll victory sparked a 4.2 percent rally in the KLCI index.

The gauge will probably rise 15 percent in the next 12 months and maintain the lowest volatility among the world's biggest markets as Najib boosts spending to reach developed-nation per-capita income levels by 2020 and the nation's $165 billion pension fund buys stocks, according to Samsung Asset Management. Malaysia has already weathered the 13 percent drop in the MSCI Emerging Markets Index (MXEF) as violence erupted from Sao Paulo to Istanbul to Cairo and economists predicted the weakest Chinese expansion since 1990.

"We have been adding" to Malaysia stocks, Gerald Ambrose, who oversees the equivalent of $1.7 billion as managing director at Aberdeen Asset Management Sdn., said by phone from Kuala Lumpur on June 28. "When the market falls, low volatility is a good thing."

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