Selasa, 13 Ogos 2013

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Malaysia Today - Your Source of Independent News

Criminology team warned of violent crime surge

Posted: 13 Aug 2013 11:45 AM PDT

Criminologist Prof Dr P Sundramoorthy led a research commissioned by the government to study the condition of crime and policing in the country.

( - "We recommended that there is a need to retain the EO, but we clearly spelt out that it needs to be amended to give zero room or zero tolerance for any abuse or error," Sundramoorthy said.

Sometime in June, before the public alarm over criminal attacks reached its current peak, a research team from Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) had warned of a "significant surge" in violent crime.
Citing its studies, the team head, criminologist Prof Dr P Sundramoorthy especially cautioned of crimes involving gangs and recidivist, or repeat offenders.
In particular, he pointed to the repeal of the Emergency Ordinance (EO) last year, said to have allowed some 2,000 criminals to be released.
Emphasising the need for such a preventive law, Sundramoorthy said: "If we don't decide soon to act on it then be prepared to see further disruption of peace and safety."
This was before the shocking shootings of MyWatch chairman R Sri Sanjeevan on July 27, and of Arab-Malaysian Development Bank founder Hussain Ahmad Najadi two days later; and before the series of highly publicised gunfire and explosive assaults in Penang over the last week, and one more death involving a bomb in Tumpat, Kelantan.
Since these attacks, which have gripped the nation, Sundramoorthy has stood his ground.
"I don't think there is any other period in the history of Malaysia since after the insurgency (which ended in the 1960s) that there has been so many shootings," he said when met by
Need to retain EO for public safety
In 2010, the criminology team from USM was commissioned by the government to study crime and policing, with emphasis on trends and patterns as well as strategies for crime control.
The team analysed reported crime data up till 2009, before the National Key Result Areas (NKRA) on crime was introduced.
One of its major findings was that from 2000 to 2009, there was an average annual growth rate in violent crime of about 13.4%.
However, the percentage of murder cases remained about the same – two to three cases per 100,000 people – from the 1970s to 2009. (Interestingly, rape cases rose from two to three cases in the 1970s, to eight to nine cases by 2009.)
"We recommended that there is a need to retain the EO, but we clearly spelt out that it needs to be amended to give zero room or zero tolerance for any abuse or error," Sundramoorthy said.



Use of CPA soon to curb crime

Posted: 13 Aug 2013 11:37 AM PDT

(The Star) - "The question of new preventive laws does not arise at the moment and those accusing the Government of attempting to enact new draconian laws are jumping the gun.

The Government will invoke the Crime Prevention Act 1959 (CPA) soon to counter gangland and underworld syndicate-linked serious crimes that are currently on the rise.

Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Paul Low Seng Kuan said the use of the CPA comes in light of the absence of preventive laws specifically meant to deal with secret society members being investigated by inquiry officers.

"We are looking at existing laws such as the CPA and how best to use them effectively to deal with the rise in crime," he said.

Low added that the appointed inquiry officers, who are not from the police force, must also be given a platform to justify the suspects' detention.

He said the move follows a pending study by the Government to determine if new preventive laws were needed.

"For the time being, we are looking at existing laws such as the CPA and Security Offences (Special Measures) Act (SOSMA) 2012 to see how these can be effectively enforced by the police," he said.

The CPA, applicable in peninsular Malaysia, will allow for suspected gang members to be detained for 14 days and an additional 28 days if required for further investigations.

Inquiry officers will be appointed during this time to determine if there are grounds for the suspects' detention and if they are indeed gang members.

The inquiry reports would then be forwarded to the Home Minister for endorsement with the remanded suspects having the right to appeal against their detention orders.

Last month, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak announced that the Government was mulling over tabling new preventive laws in Parliament.

A special committee, headed by Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Idris Jala, was formed to study the need for new preventive laws following Najib's announcement.

Other members in the committee are Low, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Nancy Shukri and Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

Meanwhile, Low chided certain quarters for "jumping the gun" when accusing the Government of attempting to enact draconian preventive laws.

"The question of new preventive laws does not arise at the moment and those accusing the Government of attempting to enact new draconian laws are jumping the gun.

"Nothing has been finalised yet," he added.

However, he said that any new preventive laws to be enacted must strike a balance between safety, security and liberty.


In crackdown on religion, activists see a nation in fear

Posted: 13 Aug 2013 11:28 AM PDT

(The Malay Mail) - Malaysia will become a nation shrouded in fear and intolerance if the authorities continue its harsh persecution of religious offenders, human rights activists and an analyst have said.

Such a show of intolerance by the country's leaders, they warned, could drive an even deeper wedge between Muslims and non-Muslims here and result in a nation more divided than ever before.

Civil liberties lawyer Syahredzan Johan suggested a possible future scenario where non-Muslims find themselves thinking twice before inviting a Muslim into their homes, fearing that even this would upset them.

"We might think it's a bit extreme, but we never know. The list of sensitive things is growing," he told The Malay Mail Online when contacted.

Citing the recent crackdown by religious authorities in a string of cases, the lawyer said that harsh action would only render interfaith efforts difficult as the country's many religious groups may stop daring to speak their minds.

"I think this is going to create a climate of fear in which people would not want to say what they want to say," said Syahredzan.

Since last month, a string of religious incidents have incurred the wrath of the authorities just ahead of the country's 56th Merdeka celebration on August 31.

Four Muslim girls were barred last month from contesting the Miss Malaysia World 2013 beauty pageant as Islamic authorities cited a 1996 fatwa (religious edict) against their participation.

Two Chinese bloggers — Alvin Tan and Vivian Lee — were charged last month with sedition after they posted a mock "Selamat Berbuka Puasa" (breaking of fast) greeting on their Facebook page that showed them eating "bak kut teh", and describing the soupy pork dish as "wangi, enak, menyelerakan" (fragrant, delicious, appetising).

Maznah Yusof, a Muslim dog trainer, is also being investigated for sedition after a video of her bathing and walking her three dogs resurfaced recently on YouTube.

The latest case is of a resort manager who was arrested yesterday after several newspapers reported on a YouTube video, which was uploaded last week, showing a surau (Muslim prayer room) in the Johor resort being used by Buddhist tourists for worship.

The police are investigating the Singaporean Muslim man, who is also a permanent resident in Malaysia, under Section 295 of the Penal Code for "injuring or defiling a place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class".

"Will we come to a stage when even eateries have to close if it's Ramadan?" Syahredzan questioned.

"It's not incredible to think it'll come to that one day. We are moving towards that. Everything must conform to Muslim sensitivities, must respect Muslim sensitivities, even if those sensitivities are unreasonable," he said.

Syahredzan said that such incidents would also put a stop to inter-religious discourse involving Muslims.

"That's the end of it. It will happen, but excluding the Muslims, since apparently anything can offend us," said the lawyer.

A reader called Patricia Anne Martinez also wrote on her Facebook page last Monday about a TV warning calling for "viewer discretion" on a documentary about Pope Francis on the Astro History channel.


"The disclaimer — if it can be called that — was shown FOUR TIMES throughout the programme," added Martinez, who is also Roman Catholic.

Syahredzan said that such a disclaimer indicated "self-censorship because of state pressure".

"More and more disclaimers are going to be put out. Anything which is even remotely religious in nature, it's going to be shielded," he said.

Dr Lim Teck Ghee, director of the think-tank Centre for Policy Initiatives (CPI), said that non-Muslims are alarmed at the "growing trend of religious fundamentalism".

"An increasing intolerant and narrow-minded Islam dependent on its interpretation and policing by religious bigots that want to extend their sphere of influence and are out of touch with modern trends is perhaps the biggest threat to the character and well-being of our country," he told The Malay Mail Online via email yesterday.

"It will only divide our communities; undermine moderation and tolerance; and breed prejudice, hate and suspicion," added Lim.

Lim also noted that businesses would become more wary about Muslim sensitivities, such as not having dogs around at sports events or not organising lunches during Ramadan, the Muslim fasting month.

"This will only pander more to the religious right found in government agencies and political and social organisations that are increasingly the arbiters of what is correct social or religious behaviour and norms — not only among Muslims but also among non-Muslims," said the political analyst.

Lim Ka Ea, chief of human rights group Malaysian Centre for Constitutionalism and Human Rights (MCCHR), said the recent religious incidents would not cow activists into silence, but pointed out that "those who are less aware or less empowered, they would definitely be threatened".


'Guns Are Cheap, It's The Courier Fee That Costs More'

Posted: 13 Aug 2013 11:26 AM PDT

(Malaysian Digest) - Firearms are relatively easy to smuggle into the country from Thailand, according to a source from Gang 04.

According to him, pistols are available for as low as RM300, and can be smuggled into the country for RM2,000 to RM4,000 per firearm.

"It is the bribe or the price you pay to smuggle it in that is expensive, depending on the type of gun you purchase.

Asked whether a gang leader's orders to his followers to participate in gang fights had to be complied with, the source said: "Triad members are people who can be considered brave enough to risk their lives above anything else."

He added that once a gangster displayed his capabilities, he would earn the right to lead.

"It all then boils down to money. The more you have or manage to make, the more powerful and fearsome you become.

"Most are, of course, illegal activities because it is hard for gangsters like us to earn money the right way.

"The risk is definitely high, but drug pushers will be rewarded with a handsome return," he said.

Some gangs even resort to robbery or abduction for fast money.

"Murder is also among the top underworld jobs to earn some cash. You can end someone's life for as low as RM3,000 and a more professional job comes with a higher price," the source said.


Lee Kuan Yew

Posted: 13 Aug 2013 11:17 AM PDT

It's obvious to me that we need to give up the present culture of race-based policies, not because LKY said so, but because they simply don't work.

Zaid Ibrahim

Lee Kuan Yew (LKY) became an easy target for our national and Pakatan Rakyat leaders when he recently commented on how Malaysia was suffering from the effects of its race-based politics.

Their response was typical of Malaysian politicians from both sides of the divide: they hurled personal insults at the ageing Singaporean leader that offered little insight into the real issues.

The Opposition's Karpal Singh and Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim put it as A) mind your own business and B) your ideas are no longer useful.

As for the Barisan Nasional, they pointed out that Singapore is also racially biased and therefore unqualified to speak on the subject.

UMNO leaders then loudly proclaimed that the "Malays first" policy is here to stay and that the Malays are not ready for any change. End of story.

I am reluctant to defend LKY as I think he was heartless when he was in power and he punished his opponents too harshly for my liking.

However, I do admire his pragmatic approach to public policies. His strength of conviction and willingness to be unpopular is well known, and it was firmly rooted in his belief that his policies were good for the people.

Like China's Deng Xiaoping, he favoured policies that were practical and useful to the general public.

Deng's famous saying, "It doesn't matter whether a cat is white or black, as long as it catches mice" cleverly encapsulated this practicality.

He understood that a market economy was crucial for his country's survival and competitiveness and gradually guided China away from the ideals of Mao Tse Tung.



Sabah DAP questions Hiew’s move to quit as state party adviser

Posted: 13 Aug 2013 12:51 AM PDT

(The Star) - Sabah DAP is questioning Luyang assemblyman Hiew King Cheu's move to quit as the state party adviser.

Describing the move as an overreaction to the party's disciplinary action against him, Sabah DAP chairman Jimmy Wong questioned why Hiew could not wait until the party's state committee meeting on Monday to voice his grouses.

Asked about talk that Hiew's resignation was a prelude to him quitting DAP altogether, Wong said: "I don't want to speculate but I hope and pray he does not have a personal agenda."
Wong said the disciplinary move against Hiew was an internal party matter and no action had been taken against him (Hiew) as yet.

"These things could have been sorted out internally and I don't understand why he had to go public with it," he added.

Hiew announced his resignation on Monday after the DAP disciplinary committee issued him a show cause letter for backing a proposal for Tamparuli assemblyman Datuk Wilfred Bumburing to be the state assembly Opposition leader.

(The job eventually went to Klias state assemblyman Datuk Lajim Ukin, the Sabah PKR chief.)

Hiew said he was quitting as Sabah DAP adviser as he was disappointed with the party's four elected state representatives for seeking disciplinary action against him over the issue. 

He said he felt he was no longer required as an adviser as important party matters were no longer brought to his attention and discussed by members before decisions were made.


Nine years on

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 10:32 PM PDT

Today, there is really no longer any need for Malaysia Today. Today, there are thousands of Blogs and news portals that are doing the job that Malaysia Today has been doing over the last nine years since 2004. In fact, with the so many other sites around, Malaysia Today can actually be considered redundant.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

Exactly nine years ago, on 13th August 2004, Malaysia Today was launched. That was about ten years after I discovered the Internet in 1994.

Actually, the idea to start Malaysia Today was not mine. It was my wife's idea. Those of you who personally know my wife, Marina, will also know she is very persistent and quite a fighter. And once she has made up her mind it is very difficult to get her to change it.

She bugged and nagged me for months after the March 2004 general election to start my own site. At that time I was running the Free Anwar Campaign website, which I launched in 2000. Marina wanted me to get out of Anwar Ibrahim's 'shadow' and 'go solo'.

After five months of non-stop nagging, I finally gave in and started Malaysia Today. That was the only way to get Marina off my back. I suppose, as they say, behind every man there stands a woman. And Marina was that woman who was standing behind me and who kept pushing until I agreed to start Malaysia Today.

I suppose the March 2004 general election -- a disaster for the opposition as far as I was concerned -- was the wake-up call that showed we needed to reach out to the urban voters. The urban voters, in particular the non-Malay voters, were very complacent and appeared to be resistant to change.

The rural voters were not so bad. They appeared more open to change. In fact, back in 1990, they had already opted for change when they voted for the PAS-Semangat 46 coalition in the East Coast. The same went for the voters in Sabah who gave the state to the opposition PBS.

In 1999, the rural voters gave both Kelantan and Terengganu, the two Malay heartland states, to the opposition. The opposition did well in Kedah as well, another Malay heartland state. In urban states like Penang, Perak and Selangor, however, the opposition took a beating and even taikos like Karpal Singh and Lim Kit Siang were defeated, a shameful track record for the Chinese voters of Penang.

Clearly the urban voters, in particular the Chinese and Indians, were still sleeping. They needed to be woken up and woken up with an utmost rude shock as well. And that was why Marina felt we needed a website like Malaysia Today. If not, come the next general election expected around 2008/2009, the opposition was going to get totally wiped out.

Marina's instinct was proven correct and Malaysia Today managed to a certain degree reach the urban voters. It also helped spawn many other blogs and independent news sites.

Today, there is really no longer any need for Malaysia Today. Today, there are thousands of blogs and news portals that are doing the job that Malaysia Today has been doing over the last nine years since 2004. In fact, with the so many other sites around, Malaysia Today can actually be considered redundant.

I may run Malaysia Today for another year until 2014. Then, on Malaysia Today's tenth anniversary, we shall see whether there is still a need for Malaysia Today. Probably with so many sites doing the job that Malaysia Today is doing I can retire Malaysia Today and, in turn, myself retire as well. Let's see what happens a year from now.

I find that nowadays I have very little work to do. With deep throats all over the place and popping out of the woodwork, I do not need to tell so many untold stories. And I really don't want to just repeat what so many other people are already reporting. It becomes quite boring when 65 people talk about the same thing.

Anyway, Malaysia Today's ninth anniversary is a very quiet affair. There is no cake or blowing of candles. I am just sitting all alone in my corner in Gossip on Broadway, Manchester's first Malaysian kopitiam, writing this article and wondering where I go from here.

My youngest son has gone back to Malaysia to get married. He will be getting married in about two weeks but I will not be attending his wedding, mainly because I cannot go back to Malaysia.

I feel quite sad that I cannot attend my own son's wedding but I suppose that comes with the territory. It is a sort of occupational hazard. If I do return to Malaysia I will still not be able to attend the wedding anyway since they would probably pick me up the instant I land in KLIA.

As they say, when you laugh, the whole world laughs with you, but when you cry, you cry alone. In 2008, many people joined me to laugh when Pakatan Rakyat won 82 Parliament seats and five states. But when you cannot attend your own son's wedding you will just have to sit in the corner of Gossip on Broadway and cry all alone.

It makes you wonder why the hell you want to go on doing this.


The need to quantify racially-weighted vote manipulation – an informal response to Clive Kessler

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 09:10 PM PDT

The most telling of these is the finding by the Merdeka Centre, as reported by Malaysiakini, that 'only 11 percent of Malays polled just before the 13th general election said the protection of Malay community interests and the community's political clout was a concern'; the economy was their dominant preoccupation.

Charis Quay Huei Li, Guest Contributor, New Mandala

Clive Kessler's recent article, 'Malaysia's GE13: What happened, what now?', is a plausible and insightful account of what was going through UMNO's collective mind with respect to their GE13 strategy. In particular, his observation that rather different and even contradictory messages were delivered to international and domestic audiences is crucial to understanding UMNO's general mindset and the campaign as a whole, and it is indeed a pity that these audiences do not seem to have compared notes.

Nevertheless, while understanding how UMNO thinks may be important and interesting, in the long run it is much more important to understand what was and is going through the minds of the voters themselves.

Kessler's main argument in this direction is that, having first malapportioned the rural Malay vote in West Malaysia into disproportionate importance, UMNO won this vote – and the election – by creating a 'Malay siege mentality', to the detriment of PAS. This claim is based mainly on the increase of UMNO and the decrease of PAS seats in Parliament; one could also argue that it is supported by Thomas Pepinsky's quantitative analysis, showing positive correlation between the percentage of 'Malay' voters and the percentage of votes for Barisan Nasional for West Malaysian parliamentary constituencies. These analyses are necessarily incomplete, as they do not study in any detail the kingmaker in GE13: East Malaysia, with its 57 parliamentary seats (out of 222 in total). Moreover, important data exist which contradict Kessler's story.

The most telling of these is the finding by the Merdeka Centre, as reported by Malaysiakini, that 'only 11 percent of Malays polled just before the 13th general election said the protection of Malay community interests and the community's political clout was a concern'; the economy was their dominant preoccupation.

In addition, Wong Chin Huat argues in a data-based analysis that GE13 malapportionment was partisan rather than rural/urban or based on race. (See also related articles on from June/July of this year). For example, he points out that the urban constituency of Alor Star has many fewer voters than Baling, which is rural, but is inclined to vote for the opposition and has a history of social activism. Wong points out further that the three Pakatan Rakyat parties – PKR, DAP and PAS – received similar numbers of votes; however, for reasons which remain unclear, PAS 'paid' the most votes per seat, followed by PKR then DAP. This led to the imbalance in the number of seats won by each party. So PAS did not lose votes in GE13, but they lost seats. In fact PAS's share of the total vote increased from 14.05% to 14.77% while UMNO's remained roughly constant (29.45% vs. 29.33% in 2008).

I would like to suggest that a hitherto neglected factor in GE13 analyses – the fact that the 'manipulability' of the vote is far from race-blind – will go some way towards reconciling several superficially contradictory analyses, such as those cited above, and yield additional insight into the thought processes of Malaysian voters.

It is easy to see that racially-weighted vote manipulation was a potentially significant factor in GE13. After decades of institutional racism, most public institutions, including the civil service and armed forces are now almost entirely made up of Malaysians officially classified as 'Malay'. Other government-linked, centrally-controlled institutions engineered to be 'Malay-dominated' include Federal Land Development Authority (FELDA) settlements and public universities, particularly 'bumiputera-only' UiTM (which has 120,000 students). These institutions provide both means and opportunities for UMNO/BN to introduce pressure mechanisms operating on large blocs of voters who 'just happen' to be disproportionately 'Malay'. Depending on the efficiency and extent of these mechanisms, they could significantly affect quantitative psephologic analyses such as Pepinsky's: 'statistical inclinations' of voters labelled as 'Malay' to vote for UMNO/BN may exist for reasons quite unrelated to any function of their free will – or even their 'ethnicity' or 'ethnic (siege) mentality' as such – but simply because, by design, they formed the overwhelming majority of voters who were 'in the wrong place at the wrong time', e.g. in a naval base on (early) polling day. In other words, analyses such as Kessler's may be naive in assuming that the only 'racial' levers UMNO/BN have are diffuse 'ethnic psychological' ones. In general, analyses of GE13 have neglected the effects of vote manipulation, whether racially-weighted or not, taking the official results at face value.

To be more specific, when one speaks of 'vote manipulation', there is most obviously outright fraud. Almost 400 000 civil servants and armed forces personnel and their spouses participated in advance or postal voting, which is seen as being easier to manipulate than regular voting. For instance, ex-armed forces personnel have alleged that votes were cast 'on their behalf'. It was also recently reported that some Election Commission officers (almost always drawn from the civil service even though this does not in principle have to be the case) were offered RM100 for their ballots. Thus, given the large number of voters involved, efficient and discreet manipulation of early and postal voting by itself may already account for a large part of any difference in voting patterns between different 'races', and may have even won the elections for UMNO/BN.

In addition to fraud, civil servants and armed forces personnel (~1.5 million voters out of a total of 13.3 million) face pressures of various kinds to vote a certain way – or not to vote – and never to oppose 'the government', which in certain contexts is code for the BN coalition. The 'Akujanji' that all civil servants have to sign is an explicit example of such pressure. In the Bersih 2.0 preliminary report on the elections, it was noted that 'a military personnel, Major Zaidi was demoted for making a report about the ineffectiveness of the indelible ink'.

The fear-mongering has been so successful that well-educated, middle- and high-ranking civil servants have been known not to vote, fearing repercussions for their careers 'if they find out that I voted for the opposition'. Even long-standing loyalties can be weakened by hierarchical pressures: Recently, after the school magazine had been printed, the principal of a school in my area went through every copy and tore out a page sponsored by the local Member of Parliament, 'dengan ingatan tulus ikhlas'. The principal and the MP are (or perhaps were) childhood friends. (The MP is, obviously, from the federal opposition).

Just before GE 13, while visiting friends in a neighbouring village, I was asked by a university graduate in complete seriousness whether they, as a civil servant, were allowed to vote for the opposition. Such stories are legion. One also needs to bear in mind the existence of spillover effects on retirees and family members who are not included ~1.5 million figure above, especially spouses participating in early or advance voting. As another example, for a certain period of time my grandparents on one side (who were peasants) felt that they 'should vote for the government' (i.e. the BN in their minds) as many of their children were 'working for the government'. This partly the result of continuous, long-term efforts by UMNO/BN to create a one-to-one identification in the minds of Malaysian between themselves and 'the government', e.g. by putting up signs saying 'Satu Lagi Projek Kerajaan Barisan Nasional' next to road works.

Pressure mechanisms in place in other 'Malay-dominated' public institutions (including FELDA and public universities) as well as the possibility that other vote manipulation strategies (such as vote-buying and closing polling stations early) were racially-weighted will also need to be addressed in a full analysis of the situation.

What would have happened, and what might happen in future elections if these various vote manipulation techniques had been removed or at least rendered much less effective? On a global level, considering only postal and advance votes, a recent Merdeka Centre study strongly suggests that the BN would have lost GE13. As a case study, the parliamentary constituency of Lumut, where Malaysia's main naval base is located, could be of interest to inquiring journalistic or academic minds. During the last elections, rumours on the ground had it that the PKR candidate, retired admiral Mohamad Imran, as an ex-Navy insider was able to effectively counter vote-manipulation strategies usually employed for the Navy vote. He won his seat with 55.6% of the vote against BN/MCA's Kong Cho Ha, the incumbent since 2004. In 2008, Kong Cho Ha had won in Lumut with 50.3% of the vote. Dare one suggest that the main reason for this upset might be fraud- and intimidation-minimisation rather than 'racial concerns'? Dare one further suggest that other non-racial, non-religious factors may have also played important roles? One notes for instance well-organised local opposition to development projects in the Lumut area, based on environmental concerns. In addition, Mohamad Imran is seen by many locals as cleaner, more sincere, 'truly religious' (this from a non-Muslim local) and as having less baggage compared to Kong Cho Ha.

A Malaysian at Sciences Po recently wrote a fine article on public suicides in France, in which the reluctance of the SNCF (France's national state-owned railway company) to 'profile' railway suicides was noted. One official was quoted as saying, 'It's a taboo subject. We don't have any study on the profile – so to speak – of people who kill themselves….It is delicate to interpret this. We should avoid hasty interpretations.'

One sometimes wonders if a small dose of this caution would not be salutary in analyses of Malaysian elections, especially race-based ones hastily done the day after the polls.

If one must nevertheless conduct race-based analyses of Malaysian elections, given the large number of voters potentially involved, it would only be intellectually honest to try to take into account the effect of racially-weighted vote manipulation – both in the form of fraud as well as undue influences through the institutions mentioned above (and likely others that have escaped my attention). Most commentators, if not all, have neglected to do this.

Apart from numerically estimating what the election results might have been in the absence of various forms of racially-weighted vote manipulation, among the questions one might attempt to answer is whether, as suggested by Wong Chin Huat, the electoral map was drawn with purely partisan interests in mind (in which case one might have expected all three PR parties to have had similar vote/seat ratios), or whether – more sinisterly – mechanisms were put in place to create a perception of racial polarisation for casual observers and 'day after the polls' analysts, reinforced by well-timed talk of ethnic tsunamis and 'reconciliation'. Or perhaps both.

Before leaving this topic, I note another possibly statistically important factor for 'race-based' analyses: allegations that some voters, especially indigenous peoples, were prevented from voting [Read the following linkes:  Link 1. Link 2. Link 3. Link 4]. This could also lead one to ask to what extent the perception that East Malaysia is a BN fixed deposit is well-founded, and whether there was similar 'orientally-weighted' vote manipulation and to what extent this was effective. The upcoming Bersih 2.0 People's Tribunal on GE13, and any evidence this might yield, will be of great interest for developing these lines of thought.

It is, I admit, rather bad form to throw out ideas in this fashion without having done some of the number-crunching and on-the-ground investigation suggested. In my defence, my appointment is in physics and I have very limited time to work on Malaysian issues. These ideas are thus 'up for adoption' and I hope they will find good homes.

Coming back to Kessler's article, he further suggests that his insights were missed by foreign journalists as well as the Malaysian pundits they had access to, the latter tending to be city slickers disconnected from the rural reality and fond of using words such as 'discourse' and 'narrative'. Speaking only for myself, as someone who may have let slip even 'hermeneutic' on occasion, I am for the record from Malaysia's rural agricultural heartland, where my family has lived and tilled the land for generations. One school I attended had a dropout rate of 50% and was classified as 'sekolah perintis' – a euphemism if there ever was one. When I was a child, food was rationed in our home – and I am not talking about meat, which we almost never saw. So, some of us rural folk are out there, saying things, even if we do not always mention our roots.

Speaking therefore as your friendly neighbourhood country bumpkin, while it may be the case that many city-dwellers are disconnected from life in the country, the reverse is not necessarily true. Many rural families have children or other relatives who live and work in the city and through them news, goods and ideas make their way out into the country; this is increasingly the case as Malaysia continues to follow a trend of rapid urbanisation. (72% of the population lived in urban areas in 2010, with an annual rate of increase of 2.4%. In addition, ~1 million Malaysians live abroad, about half of these in Singapore). It was precisely to make use of these ties to the city and the outside world that Haris Ibrahim has been running a 'balik kampung, bawa berita' campaign. Proportionally fewer rural folk may be able to wax lyrical on notions such as 'separation of powers' and 'independence of the judiciary'; however, ideas such as justice, honesty, kindness, generosity, openness and solidarity are universal values which can be understood by all. Some even say that these values are more present in the countryside, with its strong social networks, than in urban contexts. Let us not forget that, after all, the Baling Incident of 1975 happened in rural Baling and not urban Alor Star.



Four Himpunan Hijau organisers to be charged

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 08:51 PM PDT

(The Star) - Four organising committee members of last year's Himpunan Hijau Raub rally will be charged in court next week under the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012.

It is learnt two of them include the Anti-Cyanide Gold Mining Committee chairman Wong Kin Hoong and Raub PAS deputy commissioner Tengku Shahdan Tengku Jaafar.

According to Raub OCPD Supt Wan Mohd Samsudin Wan Osman, the police had just received a directive from the Attorney-General's Chambers to press charges against the four.

Supt Wan Mohd Samsudin said investigations into the case had been completed some time ago and submitted to the Deputy Public Prosecutor for further action.

"We are only in charge of investigations into violation of the laws and it is up to the DPP to decide whether to proceed with the case," he said.

Pahang DAP deputy organising secretary M. Selvarajah @ Raju confirmed that both Wong and Tengku Shahdan had informed the party that they would be charged on Aug 19 under Section 15 (3) of the Act.

Selvarajah said the move was politically motivated and questioned why the two were being charged nearly a year after the event.

"The charge is related to bringing underage children to attend the rally in Padang Milo, Jalan Bukit Koman on Sept 2, last year.

"Prior to the rally, we had already informed the public not to bring children through various mediums such as social media and news reports," he said, adding that it was beyond their control if the public did not adhere to the advice.

Selvarajah, who is also the publicity secretary of the rally, urged the people to turn up in green attire to give moral support to the committee members facing charges.


Anwar’s unity govt talk ‘just a ruse’

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 05:05 PM PDT

Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim is now at the crossroads and claims to have received overtures from Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak on forming a "national unity" government

Hawkeye, FMT

Two social activists here believe that the move by Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim to hint at forming a national unity government is "just a ruse to revive his sagging political fortunes".

Islam activist Mohammed Hafiz Nordin was responding to online reports after Anwar was quoted as confirming that he has received overtures from Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak on a "unity government."

Hafiz said Anwar would not stop until he secured the prime ministership because he had already reached the crossroads after failing to win federal power.

When Pakatan Rakyat could not deliver Putrajaya, Anwar first accused the Election Commission of alleged fraud and when that momentum frizzled out, he is now talking about "national unity," Hafiz said in an interview.

He said the people were fed up because there were macro-economic issues to contend with, such as the rising cost of living and household debt.

The former Penang PAS Youth head said it was rather unsettling why Anwar would confirm an online report that he was receiving "feelers" from Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak's camp about the prospect of a "national unity" government.

The "unity" proposal was floated by former vice-president of Indonesia Jusuf Kalla, who is counted as a personal friend of both Malaysian leaders.

Hafiz said the timing of the report quoting Anwar was also interesting as it came when the country was just about to witness party elections in PAS, MCA, Gerakan, MIC and Umno.

DAP, meanwhile, has been directed to hold fresh elections for allegedly violating the guidelines under the Registrar of Societies.

Only PKR seems to be spared from the blushes of party elections, he said.

Secondly, Hafiz said it was an open secret in Pakatan that Anwar's political clout had apparently nose dived since the general election after he went on record to boast that Pakatan would win, but instead lost.

"Why must Anwar talk about a unity government when in 2008, he had convinced PAS to reject Umno's desire to discuss Malay unity," he said.



‘Religious people are less intelligent’

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 04:53 PM PDT

A research done by the University of Rochester also finds that intelligent people are more likely to be married and be successful in life, which means they "need" religion less.


A team led by Miron Zuckerman of the University of Rochester found "a reliable negative relation between intelligence and religiosity" in 53 out of 63 studies. Even in extreme old age, intelligent people are less likely to believe, the researchers found and the reasons why people with high IQs shun religion may not be as simple as previously thought.

Previous studies have tended to assume that intelligent people simply "know better," the researchers write. But, the reasons may be more complex.

For instance, intelligent people are more likely to be married, and more likely to be successful in life and this may mean they "need" religion less.

The studies used in Zuckerman's paper included a life-long analysis of the beliefs of a group of 1,500 gifted children – those with IQs over 135 – in a study which began in 1921 and continues until today.

Even from 75 to 91 years of age, the children from Lewis Terman's study scored lower for religiosity than the general population – contrary to the widely held belief that people turn to God as they age. The researchers noted that data was lacking about religious attitudes in old age and say: "Additional research is needed to resolve this issue."

As early as 1958, Michael Argyle concluded: "Although intelligent children grasp religious concepts earlier, they are also the first to doubt the truth of religion, and intelligent students are much less likely to accept orthodox beliefs, and rather less likely to have pro-religious attitudes."

A 1916 study quoted in Zuckerman's paper (Leuba) found that, "58% of randomly selected scientists in the United States expressed disbelief in or doubt regarding the existence of God. This proportion rose to nearly 70% for the most eminent scientists."

The paper, published in the academic journal Personality and Social Psychology Review said, "Most extant explanations (of a negative relation) share one central theme – the premise that religious beliefs are irrational, not anchored in science, not testable and therefore, unappealing to intelligent people who "know better."

Long term benefits

The answer may, however, be more complex. Intelligent people may simply be able to provide themselves with the psychological benefits offered by religion such as "self-regulation and self-enhancement," because they are more likely to be successful and have stable lives.

"Intelligent people typically spend more time in school – a form of self-regulation that may yield long-term benefits," the researchers write.

"More intelligent people get higher level jobs (and better employment [and higher salary]) may lead to higher self-esteem and encourage personal control beliefs."

"Last, more intelligent people are more likely to get and stay married (greater attachment), though for intelligent people that too comes later in life. We therefore, suggest that as intelligent people move from young adulthood to adulthood and then to middle age, the benefits of intelligence may continue to accrue."

The researchers suggest that further research on the "function" of religion may reveal more.

"People possessing the functions that religion provides are likely to adopt atheism, people lacking these very functions (such as the poor, the helpless) are likely to adopt theism," the researchers wrote.


Read more here:

Bourdon: Jasbir’s statements do not count

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 04:53 PM PDT

Only statements made under oath before the judges count, says Suaram lawyer William Bourdon.

Alyaa Azhar, FMT

Any statements made by Scorpene deal middleman Jasbir Singh Chahl do not count. This is the opinion of Suara Rakyat Malaysia's (Suaram) France-based lawyer William Bourdon.

"Currently, hearing Jasbir as a witness [in the Scorpene submarine deal] is still ongoing. As a consequence, only statements made under oath before the judges count," he said in a press statement.

According to Suaram director Cynthia Gabriel, Jasbir has given a 270-page long testimony in the French court.

Bourdon also gave assurance that findings of the investigations will be shared when the inquiry is completed, "which is not at the moment, as some more researches are still being made by the two French judges."

"As a consequence, the investigations on Perimekar are also underway. No statement regarding the outcome of the proceedings and the evidence gathered by the judges can be made at the moment and information will be shared when results are known," he said.

In a statement, Jasbir had said the Scorpene contract award was made on a transparent basis to the technically most qualified party on a commercially competitive price on a negotiated basis.

According to Jasbir the contract between the Malaysian government and Perimekar Sdn Bhd for a value equivalent of Euro 115 million for a defined scope of works and provision of such services was within commercial norms.

Bourdon meanwhile added that the question of slain Mongolian national Altantuya Shaariibuu's murder was also meant to be processed by the French judges.

Bourdon said even if the French judges saw no link between Altantuya's murder and the Scorpene deal, the French judges will still question the circumstances of her death.

"Accordingly, the testimony of Americk Singh Sidhu should help to reveal the different connections that should be made with corrupt activities, as well as other testimonies that would likely be received by the judges soon," said Bourdon.

The next witness in line to the case is lawyer Americk Sidhu.



Perkasa shields Dr M against Pak Lah’s swipes

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 04:36 PM PDT

(MM) - Malay supremacist group Perkasa leapt to the defence of former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad (picture) today over his successor Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi's stinging criticism published in a book recently.

Responding to media reports on a book of the former prime minister's years in power, Perkasa lashed out against Abdullah's claim that the country would have succumbed to the 2008 banking crisis had he not cancelled Dr Mahathir's earlier projects.

It also denied that the group is encroaching on the rights of other races in its struggle for Malay supremacy.

"Would our country go bankrupt if we had gone on with the projects planned by Tun M? Was our country that rich before Tun M's times? Have the mega projects completed by Tun M made our country bankrupt?" Perkasa secretary-general Syed Hassan Syed Ali asked in a statement here, referring to Dr Mahathir.

"The most 'malang' (ill-fated) years for Malaysians were during Pak Lah's time as the prime minister between October 2003 and April 2009," he added, referring to Abdullah by his popular moniker.

"Awakening: The Abdullah Years in Malaysia", a book on his short reign as the prime minister who succeeded Dr Mahathir, features an exclusive interview where the usually quiet man finally speaks out against his detractors.

In the days following its release, the book dominated headlines in the media with heavy focus given to Pak Lah's words on Dr Mahathir and what the former prime minister described as "unwarranted attacks" on his person that eventually led to his ouster.

The previously cordial relationship between the two turned sour when, after coming to power, Abdullah discontinued the double-tracking rail mega project approved during Dr Mahathir's time, citing the country's weak finances.

Dr Mahathir had then taken the cancellation, as well as that of the controversial "Crooked Bridge" to Singapore, as personal affronts, saying these insinuated he had mismanaged the country's finances.

Today, Perkasa revisited the double-tracking project, saying that the country has suffered a bigger financial setback when Abdullah decided to resurrect the project years later despite cancelling it earlier.

"The people know who had really dried up the nation's coffers. The people also know who had developed this country. They know who had made the country respected by other developing and foreign nations. They know who had provided many job opportunities," said Syed Hassan.

"They know who had made this country well-known, making more tourists come every year. Every year, more than RM50 billion of foreign funds flowed into the country from the tourism industry, surely it was not the result of Pak Lah's efforts."

Perkasa also railed at Abdullah for accusing the group of encroaching on the rights of the non-Malays, insisting that it is only retaking the "rights" allegedly snatched away from the Malays.

The group also told the former Kepala Batas MP that Barisan Nasional's (BN) dismal win in Election 2008 was due to already waning support from the non-Malays, despite Perkasa not being around at that time.

"The Chinese already rejected BN in 2008 because the government led by Pak Lah was incompetent in managing the economy, making it hard for them to do business," Syed Hassan claimed.

"The Chinese rejected BN in 2008 because they were ashamed of a PM who was not smart and had become the butt of jokes by sleeping in meetings and events."

In an earlier excerpt, Abdullah lashed out at Dr Mahathir for accusing him of sleeping on the job despite the latter knowing that Pak Lah's bouts of public napping were due to a now-corrected disorder of sleep apnoea.

Perkasa's offensive today follows pro-Umno bloggers who have since accused Abdullah of being a "mouthpiece" of the opposition with the release of the book, painting its editors Prof Bridget Welsh and Prof James Chin as alleged anti-BN dissenters.

The Singapore launch has since been cancelled, according to the book's editors yesterday, who earlier postponed a companion event in Kuala Lumpur due to the growing controversy over the tome.

On Saturday, the editors decided to postpone the launch here, citing concerns over its "politicisation" and sensationalisation by media organisations in their reportage of certain portions of the book.

Despite the postponement of the launch, the duo said the book will remain available at book stores nationwide. 


MyWatch chief’s dad wants Bukit Aman to probe shooting, fears bias in Negri

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 04:32 PM PDT

(MM) - The father of R. Sri Sanjeevan today requested for the federal police to investigate the shooting of the MyWatch co-founder last month, saying the crime watchdog's previous allegations against Negri Sembilan state police created a risk of bias.

Sanjeevan (picture) was shot in Bahau, Negri Sembilan on July 28 a day after he tweeted of an alleged threat on his life by a police officer.

Accompanying Sanjeevan's father, P. Ramakrishnan, in lodging the report, fellow MyWatch co-founder S. Gobi Krishnan said the request was a precaution to avoid "conflict of interests" in the state police department.

"Sanjeevan made reports against police officers and members in Negri Sembilan," Gobi said outside the Travers police station here where Ramakrishnan lodged the request today.

"The investigation paper must be handed over to Bukit Aman; they should take over and the father is hoping that the investigation can be concluded very fast," he added.

Gobi said they will try to meet with Bukit Aman's CID director Datuk Hadi Ho Abdullah as soon as possible to receive updates on the investigation.

"But what is most important now I think is the health condition of Sanjeevan, we just want him to come back as soon as possible," Gobi said.

"The surgery is not of importance now, the bullet is in a place where it is not harmful to the body... maybe the surgery might be even more risky."

When asked about Sanjeevan's condition in Serdang Hospital, Ramakrishnan only said that his son was still in critical condition.

"I have full confidence of the police... to safeguard my interest, my families' interest and my son Sanjeeevan," he added while holding back tears.

Prior to the shooting, Sanjeevan also posted a message on Twitter alleging corruption in the upper echelons of the police force.

"Seriously thinking to expose on a top leader of @PDRMsia where his son is under payroll of kingpins and some syndicates. Interesting piece!", referring to the Twitter account of the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM).

His shooting on July 27 and the brazen assassination of Arab-Malaysian Development Bank founder Hussain Ahmad Najadi in Kuala Lumpur two days later drew the nation's attention to the apparent surge in gun violence.

Last week, Gobi also alleged a gun-for-hire scheme in which drug gangs rented out firearms, primarily Glock handguns, for as little as RM300 for several hours while bullets were sold for 80 sen each.


Thief steals gun, bullets from sleeping police officer

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 04:32 PM PDT

(The Malay Mail) - A 48-year-old serious crimes officer was robbed of his gun with 15 bullets today as he lay sleeping in his car in Section 7, Shah Alam.

The sergeant-major was returning home after attending his father's funeral in Klang at around 1.45am when he stopped his car by the side of the road for a short nap, said the Star online news portal.


He had wound down the car window halfway, the report said.

Halfway through his nap, he felt something tugging at his thigh and woke up to find a man trying to pull out his Walther semi-automatic gun from its holster.

The thief escaped in a red Honda motorcycle before the officer could react, the Star said.

The officer was also believed to have been relieved of his passport, smartphone and RM600 in cash.

Selangor acting police chief Datuk A. Thaiveegan confirmed the incident after the officer lodged a police report.


Read more here:


A 48-year-old serious crimes officer was robbed of his gun with 15 bullets today as he lay sleeping in his car in Section 7, Shah Alam.

The sergeant-major was returning home after attending his father's funeral in Klang at around 1.45am when he stopped his car by the side of the road for a short nap, said the Star online news portal.

He had wound down the car window halfway, the report said.

Halfway through his nap, he felt something tugging at his thigh and woke up to find a man trying to pull out his Walther semi-automatic gun from its holster.

The thief escaped in a red Honda motorcycle before the officer could react, the Star said.

The officer was also believed to have been relieved of his passport, smartphone and RM600 in cash.

Selangor acting police chief Datuk A. Thaiveegan confirmed the incident after the officer lodged a police report.

- See more at:


Buddhist group apologises to Muslims over prayer in surau

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 04:26 PM PDT

(MM) - A group representing Malaysian Buddhists today apologised over a worship session by foreign adherents of the faith held in a Muslim prayer room in Johor that angered followers of Islam.

In a brief statement by the Buddhist Maha Vihara, Chief High Priest of Malaysia Datuk K. Srï Dhammaratana expressed his group's regret while urging followers of the religion to be mindful of others in their worship.

"We would like to apologise to our Muslim brothers and sisters for the actions of a certain Buddhist group from Singapore in having their meditation session at the surau of a resort in Kota Tinggi.

"I advise Buddhists in Malaysia and Singapore to respect the religious sensitivities of other religionists while carrying out our own religious obligations and responsibilities," Dhammaratana said today.

Yesterday, media reports surfaced of a video uploaded to YouTube last week allegedly showing a surau in the Johor resort being used by Buddhist tourists for prayers.

This later led to the arrest and remand of the resort manager under section 295 of the Penal Code, which comes under the heading of "injuring or defiling a place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class".

The 85-second-long video titled "Surau dijadikan tokong???" (A surau turned into a temple?) begins with an external shot of a small building and a close-up of what appears to be a sign in Arabic script over a doorway.

The video's maker then approaches the building to record what appears to be a prayer session by a dozen white-clad people led by a monk in red and saffron.

Yesterday, Berita Harian reported the resort owner as saying he did not expect the offer to lead to the controversy now.

"I do not think the action of giving permission to believers of other religions to use the surau is wrong. This is because they only wanted to use the surau for meditation.

"I have no intention of hurting anyone's feelings. My intention is to show that Islam is universal and tolerant," said the Singapore-born Muslim. 


Malaysia Mulls Return of Detention Without Trial After Shootings

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 04:24 PM PDT

(Bloomberg) - Malaysia may restore its ability to detain people without trial following a wave of violent gun crime, two years after the practice was abolished to prevent political abuses, Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said.

The government may designate a panel of police officers, judges and lawyers to determine who gets detained rather than leave the decision to the home minister as in the past, Hamidi told the Mingguan Malaysia newspaper yesterday. The interview was posted on Ahmad Zahid's web site and the remarks were confirmed by a spokesman who was not authorized to be named.

The decision would be aimed at fulfilling Prime Minister Najib Razak's vow to introduce new legislation to tackle the surge in crime, which included the July 29 slaying of AMMB Holdings Bhd. (AMM) founder Hussain Ahmad Najadi. In the interview, Hamidi said the decision in 2011 to abolish Malaysia's 1969 Emergency Ordinance, which led to the release of 2,600 people from detention, was partly to blame for the crime wave.

"The surge in violence is related to gangs and the drugs trade," P. Sundramoorthy, a professor of criminology at Universiti Sains Malaysia, said in a phone interview today. "The Emergency Ordinance was necessary, though we acknowledge there were problems with it with regards to human rights and democracy. It was an effective tool."

The law allowed suspects to be detained for as many as two years with the minister's consent. Najib also scrapped the 1960 Internal Security Act, which gave police wide-ranging powers to detain suspects indefinitely. Opposition leaders including Anwar Ibrahim had been held under the ISA.


Read more here:


Despite goodies, Indian vote dropped by 6% in past polls

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 03:55 PM PDT

(TMI) - Going into GE13, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak was confident that the Indian vote was firmly with Barisan Nasional after nearly two years of doling out cash and other goodies to Indian groups.

He and other BN politicians were also boosted by the signing of a memorandum with Hindraf just before the general election, promising Waythamoorthy the position of deputy minister.

Guess what? BN lost the Indian vote to Pakatan Rakyat. The percentage of Indian support for BN dropped from 51.1% in 2008 to 45.1% this year.

This information was culled from a study by Merdeka Center of the voting patterns in 222 parliamentary seats.

Support for BN from Indian votes only increased in Kedah (11%) and Pahang (3.1%). It dropped sharply in the urban seats in Penang, Kuala Lumpur, Selangor and Johor, where Pakatan Rakyat found traction with its focus on BN's spotty record on fighting corruption, abuse of power, and unhappiness over unresolved issues involving minorities.

The swing away from BN was strong in Penang (14.9%), where Indians formed 10.9% of the electorate, in Johor (13.6%) where Indians were 6.6% and in Kuala Lumpur (10.2%) where 10.8% of voters were Indians.

The Merdeka Center survey also confirmed the trend of the Chinese swing away from BN. Only 24.4% of Chinese voters supported the ruling coalition, a drop of just under 20% from 2008.

Following BN's inability to win two-thirds control of Parliament for the second consecutive election, Najib and other BN leaders accused the community of betrayal, coining the phrase "Chinese tsunami" to explain BN's poor electoral performance.

The Chinese swing away from BN was strongest in Johor, which the DAP targeted as a frontline state by fielding a few of its national leaders, including Lim Kit Siang.

The Chinese were 39.4% of the voters in Johor. In 2008, BN obtained 52.7% of their vote. On May 5, this figure dropped to 21.3%.



Kalau Mohd Najib masih peduli

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 03:51 PM PDT

A Kadir Jasin, TMI

Mungkin saya ketinggalan zaman. Mungkin saya haiwan purba (dinosaur) yang tidak pupus. Mungkin kerana itu dari awal-awal lagi saya mementang pemansuhan Akta Keselamatan Dalam Negeri (ISA), Ordinan Darurat (EO) dan Akta Buang Negeri.

Saya berpegang kepada falsafah bahawa undang-undang tahanan perlindungan terbukti berguna. Ia bukan sahaja melindungi 99 peratus rakyat jelata yang mematuhi undang-undang dan hidup aman damai malah ia juga melindungi penjenayah, ahli kongsi gelap, samseng jalanan dan anarkis daripada membunuh satu sama lain.

Cuba tanya, berapa banyakkah ahli kongsi gelap, samseng jalanan dan anarkis yang mati atau cedera kerana saling tembak menembak ketika dalam tahanan perlindungan?

Bandingkan pula dengan bilangan mereka yang dibunuh dan membunuh selepas Perdana Menteri Mohd Najib bin Abdul Razak dan Parlimen dengan begitu gembira sekali memansuhkan undang-undang perlindungan di atas pada tahun 2011.

Saya rasa Mohd Najib, ahli Kabinet beliau dan Ahli Parlimen yang menyokong pemansuhan ISA, EO dan Akta Buang Negeri wajib bertanggungjawab ke atas rakyat jelata yang menjadi mangsa tindakan mereka.

Alhamdulillah, nampaknya sebahagian daripada mereka yang ikhlas, peduli dan berani menyedari "folly" mereka dan, secara tersurat atau tersirat, mula mengakui bahawa pemansuhan undang-undang berkenaan membawa mudarat kepada negara dan rakyat jelata yang cintakan keamanan.

Ahmad Zahid bersuara

Yang terbaru "menyalahkan" pemansuhan EO sebagai punca peningkatan mendadak jenayah adalah orang kuat Mohd Najib sendiri, Ahman Zahid Hamidi, Menteri (Keselamatan) Dalam Negeri.

Cuma saya hendak tahu, apakah yang Ahmad Zahid buat waktu cadangan pemansuhan itu dibentangkan dalam mesyuarat Kabinet?

Beliau dilaporkan oleh akhbar Mingguan Malaysia sebagai berkata pemansuhan EO berpotensi menghasilkan 260,000 penjenayah. Mengikut unjuran beliau, tiap seorang daripada 2,600 tahanan EO yang dibebaskan mempunyai purata 10 pengikut yang apabila dicampurkan menjadi 26,000 dan mereka ini pula mencari 10 pengikut setiap seorang bagi menjadikan jumlahnya 260,000. Masuk akal.

[Mingguan Malaysia dibaca oleh ahli dan penyokong Umno, oleh anggota polis dan tentera dan oleh orang Melayu yang banyak jadi polis dan tentera.]

Laporan akhbar The Star 12 Ogos pula mengatakan kongsi gelap, kumpulan samseng dan geng jenayah mencari ahli baru ketika mereka di bangku sekolah lagi.

Seorang pemandu India yang pernah bekerja dengan saya berkata "perang kawasan" sangat sengit di kalangan bekas tahanan EO keturunan India. Katanya, yang keluar tahanan cuba mendapatkan balik kawasan operasi mereka dan yang diambil alih oleh lawan mereka. Maka berlakulah serang menyerang, bunuh membunuh.



Resort owner arrested for allowing use of surau by Buddhists

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 03:47 PM PDT

(TMI) - The owner of the resort in Kota Tinggi who had allowed a group of Buddhists to meditate in a surau there has been remanded for four days.

The Star Online reported that Kota Tinggi Sessions Court registrar Hairul Azhar Mohamad issued the remand order today against the resort owner who is a Singaporean with Malaysian permanent resident status.

The 45-year-old man was arrested on Sunday afternoon at the Tanjung Sutera Resort and is currently being investigated under Section 295 of the Penal Code for defiling a place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class.

His arrest came after a YouTube video portrayed a group who looked like monks conducting religious prayers in a surau, leading a group in meditation in front of a portrait of Buddha.

The 63-second video called "Chinese Buddhist pray in surau: surau becomes temple" was uploaded on August 10 and has generated more than 10,000 views.

It was reported in Berita Harian yesterday that the resort owner  defended his action saying that he did not think the action of giving permission to believers of other religions to use the surau was wrong.

He was quoted as saying: "This is because they only wanted to use the surau for meditation.

"So we allowed them to use the surau in the resort but their bringing other religious items into the surau was done without my knowledge." 


MAS should be sold but not at a loss, says Idris Jala

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 03:41 PM PDT

Ranjit Singh, TMI

Putrajaya should consider selling flag carrier Malaysian Airlines System Bhd (MAS) but not at a loss, its former boss Datuk Seri Idris Jala (pic) said today.

The Minister in the Prime Minister's Department said MAS was trading at RM6.00 when he was at the helm but currently the share price of the compay has tanked to 30 sen.

The government's state asset manager Khazanah Nasional Bhd is the majority owner of MAS, which has posted losses for its last six quarterly results.

Idris  was speaking at the Global Malaysia Series at the Securities Commission today. AirAsia group chief executive Tan Sri Tony Fernandes was also a speaker at the event.

The government should minimise its participation in business and should play the role of a facilitator to businesses rather than have direct involvement, said Fernandes.

He said Malaysian companies should be bold in going global and that AirAsia woud have been "gobbled up" by competitors if it remained inward looking and had not expanded beyond Malaysian shores.

"Malaysian companies should challenge the norm, remove structures that inhibit innovation and have a relentless quest for  excellence," added Fernandes.



Tony Fernandes: Change is important

Posted: 12 Aug 2013 03:26 PM PDT

Air Asia founder believes Malaysians enjoy being "spoon-fed" by the government and "do not like change".

Lisa J. Ariffin, FMT

Tony Fernandes believes that most Malaysians rely on the government too much and are not susceptible to change.

The Air Asia Group CEO said today that organisations – whether political or private companies – need frequent change in leadership in order to progress.

"The problem with Malaysia is that when people stay too long in their positions. They think they're invincible," Fernandes said today at Pemandu's Global Malaysia Series LIVE here.

"Organisations need to refresh, whether it's political or a company. Letting go is important to ensure there is strong succession planning," he added.

Fernandes said the difference between governments and private companies is that the latter easily adapts to change.

"If somebody (in a company) screws up, we change them immediately," he said.

"We got to have people that can adapt to change. Malaysians don't like change," he reiterated.

Fernandes also urged the public to speak out when they feel that they are being marginalised.

"Don't moan about not getting help from the government and say 'Pemandu is not doing enough to help the people', go out and do something about it," he said.

"Don't just complain behind their backs," he added.

Government should stay out of businesses

The founder of Tune Group also believed that the government should "facilitate business" and "not be involved in them".

"At the moment, we have civil servants sitting on the board of GLCs (government-linked companies). The big fear is that the government will get more involved in businesses," he said.

Fernandes said the country "needs to be honest with itself" and acknowledge constructive criticisms, especially on a global level.

"We should embrace change and we need to be honest with ourselves; and where are we in the global league in transparency and accountability," he said.

"Take education for example. We got to make sure that we are producing the best students to remain competitive. But I'm not sure if we have improved. That's why honesty is important," he added.




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