- Malaysia’s Multiracial Promise Marred by Bigotry and Political Persecution
- Move to ensure bumis have assets
- The battle for democracy continues
- The world will laugh at us, says ex-top cop who negotiated 1989 peace treaty with Chin Peng
- Malaysia as I see it
- Mukhriz’s VP bid first step towards new Dr M era?
- Accused soccer match-fixers scared of alleged ringleader Segaran 'Gerry' Gsubramaniam, court told
- ‘Mukhriz gave me his blessing’
- Mahathir: Reject corrupt candidates
- WWW 15 Reasons Why Liow Tiong Lai Should Not be the MCA President
- 146,500 delegates to decide Mukhriz fate
- Chin Peng Deserves a Place in His Country
- Wee Ka Siong: Papers have no intention of turning bumi agenda into racial issue
- Don’t upset Malays with Chin Peng issue, Perkasa warns MCA
- Time to cut the Umno cake differently?
- Bersih will back tribunal ‘witnesses’
- ‘What harm can Chin Peng’s ashes do?’
- Anwar next PKR president?
- What Tun wants, Tun gets?
- MEB vs DEB (Bhg 1)
- UM wants tie up with NUS on research to improve world ranking
- Malaysia's last push for affirmative action
Posted: 20 Sep 2013 12:12 PM PDT
(Time) - Race-based incentives, crackdowns on opposition figures, and an exodus of non-Malays: how Malay supremacists are creating a divided and fearful society
The return to court on Tuesday of 66-year-old opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim — who has spent the last five years fighting "sodomy" charges that he insists are politically motivated, and now awaits the verdict of a government appeal against his acquittal in January — is the latest fissure in the nation's fractious politics. Others include the announcement of $9.4 billion worth of race-based incentives and a worsening climate of racial bigotry and hate speech that has seen Malaysia declared one of the world's least tolerant societies.
General elections on May 5 saw the incumbent National Front coalition government of Prime Minister Najib Razak returned to power despite only getting 47% to the opposition's 50% of the popular vote. But this translated to 133 to 89 parliamentary seats due to the "first past the post" electoral system, alleged electoral irregularities and apparent widespread gerrymandering.
The opposition Pakatan Rakyat (People's Alliance) coalition, led by Anwar, complained bitterly and tens of thousands took to the streets to demand an investigation. In response, several opposition figures were arrested amid a crackdown that saw democracy take "significant steps backward," according Bridget Welsh, an associate professor in political science at Singapore Management University.
Posted: 20 Sep 2013 12:07 PM PDT
(Bernama) - The Government will build more affordable housing to ensure the bumiputra do not lag behind in non-financial assets, said the Prime Minister.
Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said this would be implemented under the third focus of the Bumiputra Economic Empowerment measures.
"The affordable housing will be increased through Syarikat Perumahan Rakyat 1Malaysia (PR1MA), Syarikat Perumahan Negara Berhad and state governments nationwide," he said.
Last Saturday, Najib announced new measures and strategies to strengthen the bumiputra's economy under the Bumiputra Economic Council, to be established and chaired by him soon.
That council will replace the Bumiputra Agenda Action Council in implementing the five main strategies of the empowerment measures.One of the strategies is to handle the issue of bumiputra who still lagged behind in ownership of non-financial assets such as homes, industrial premises and commercial complexes.
Posted: 20 Sep 2013 11:53 AM PDT
Firstly, all Malaysians should respect the emotions of those who lost relatives during our various conflicts (including the Emergency), and more generally pay tribute to those who died defending our land throughout history (including members of the Malayan People's Anti-Japanese Army).
Tunku Abidin Muhriz, TMI
The death of a polarizing figure can harden opinions held while the person was alive. When Baroness Thatcher passed away earlier this year, some Britons celebrated in the streets with the ditty 'Ding Dong! The Witch is Dead', while others solemnly sang 'I Vow to Thee, My Country' as they followed her ceremonial funeral'.
History is replete with leaders who can be viewed as heroes or villains, even centuries later.
Similarly, the death of Chin Peng in Bangkok on September 16 has triggered a reprise of arguments about the man and his legacy. I'd like to reiterate four points I've made before.
Firstly, all Malaysians should respect the emotions of those who lost relatives during our various conflicts (including the Emergency), and more generally pay tribute to those who died defending our land throughout history (including members of the Malayan People's Anti-Japanese Army).
Secondly, Merdeka for Malaya was achieved on Aug 31, 1957 with a democratically legitimate government in place, but the Communist Party of Malaya continued to wage a campaign of violence in the independent Federation of Malaya. Responsibility for many of the acts of terror and resultant deaths ultimately lay with its leader, Chin Peng.
This is important, because those who claim a parallel to the forgiveness towards Germany or Japan for past transgressions fail to distinguish between a national or institutional collective responsibility and individual responsibility.
There are very different leaders in those countries today, and even the present Communist Party of China is hardly like it was under Chairman Mao (symmetrically, Umno today is hardly like it was under Tunku Abdul Rahman), but individuals remain even if institutions change: last month, a nonagenarian former Nazi bodyguard was awaiting trial for acts committed 70 years ago.
Having said that, and thirdly, emotions should be separated from the legal aspects. If the government of Malaysia made an agreement with the CPM concerning the right of party members to live in Malaysia, it should have been honoured. A democracy that fails to practice this basic element of rule of law tarnishes its reputation and damages its institutions. Worse still is the selective application of the agreement, especially on racial grounds.
Fourthly, much of today's distortion and polarization stems from ever-increasing political interference in the teaching of history. Some astonishing obituaries label Chin Peng a national hero simply because of his fight against the Japanese that got him appointed an OBE, completely ignoring his post-Merdeka record.
Posted: 20 Sep 2013 11:44 AM PDT
Chin Peng, flanked by C.D. Abdullah and Tan Sri Rahim Noor, during the signing of the Peace Accord in Haadyai in 1989.
"I do not know why it should develop along this line (Chin Peng versus government). The fact is that good or bad - whatever Chin Peng was - the background is a peace treaty had been signed. We got to jolly well honour the terms and conditions," he said.
(TMI) - A former top cop has warned that Malaysia will be made a laughing stock if the government is adamant about its "naïve" decision to refuse to allow Chin Peng's ashes to be brought back to be interred.
Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Mohd Noor, a former inspector-general of police, said this would also help turn the ex-communist leader into an icon and that it was a step backwards in the government's attempts to win back Chinese support following the poor performance in the last general election.
"There is a hue and cry from the public not to even allow his ashes (back into Malaysia). My God... this is stretching the argument a bit too far. It's a bit naive I think.
"If the government succumbs to this public pressure not to allow Chin Peng's ashes to be brought back, I think, we are making Malaysia a laughing stock to the whole world," he said in an interview from the United Kingdom that aired on BFM yesterday.
Abdul Rahim, who was Special Branch director at that time, led the peace talks which culminated in the Haadyai Peace Treaty 1989. It officially ended the Communist Party of Malaya's armed struggle against the government.
The refusal to allow Chin Peng into the country even when he was alive, he said, also made a mockery of the 1989 treaty.
He said he convinced the government at that time to engage with the communists in talks, more than 30 years after the failed 1955 Baling negotiations.
He said that even though the 12-year Emergency was lifted in 1960, security forces were still battling communist remnants in the 1980s, but the decline of communism in the region was an opportunity for renewed peace negotiations.
At that time, there were still around 2,000 communists along the Malaysian-Thai border, with the two largest groups being the North Malayan Bureau and the 10th Regiment, which largely comprised Malays, he said.
He said that with the backing of then prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, the Special Branch secretly initiated negotiations with the communists at the end of 1987 and early 1988 on Phuket Island over five rounds of talks.
As a result, the 1989 treaty was signed in Haadyai comprising two agreements, one containing the core terms and the other administrative details on how the terms would be implemented.
"I was involved in the drafting of both agreements, so I know full well that under the terms of the agreements, all the agreements applied are binding on every CPM member, from the highest topmost to the bottom.
"So if you say that Chin Peng, as secretary-general of the party (CPM) is the highest most member, then he qualifies to get all the privileges, advantages or whatever promises made in the agreement, which includes for him to be allowed to come back (to Malaysia)," Abdul Rahim said.
He said, according to the agreement, in the event these former communist members were not allowed to permanently return to Malaysia, they should be allowed to enter the country on social visits.
"But in the case of Chin Peng, he was not allowed both. To me, it's absurd, totally absurd. It's unfair, grossly unfair... There were other ex-communists who were allowed to come back and they were mainly Malays," he said.
"Abdullah CD (CPM chairperson) was allowed to come back to Malaysia and was even given an audience with the current sultan of Perak. Rashid Maidin (CPM central committee member), I was told, performed his pilgrimage through KL with the help of the Malaysian authorities. What's all this?"
Posted: 20 Sep 2013 11:37 AM PDT
I wonder if ROS is also watching over the Umno elections. There is so much speculation on possible deals to influence the election. I would not be surprised if eventually, the top 2 positions would not be challenged. If so, then the change in rules to involve more than 146,000 members (instead of only 191 division leaders) in choosing them would be meaningless.
When is the right time to forgive and forget?
Wan Saiful's background was checked and his 16 years in UK, at least initially funded by our government, was made out to be a case of 'kacang lupakan kulit'. Rocky Bru and others have commented that those who oppose the continuation of NEP and its improved versions are the ones who benefited from them, like Wan Saiful and Zaid Ibrahim.
But if we were to leave our prejudices aside, are we not expecting to be educated, especially when overseas, to be more open-minded and acceptable of universal values? Unless, universal values are considered Western and therefore those who advocate them are deemed brain-washed.
Dr. Mahathir had repeatedly criticised such Malays as ungrateful because they were beneficiaries of the NEP. But are they to be eternally grateful for that despite knowing that the government had been unfair to the other races?
That the Chairman is Karpal Singh and there are many Indian MPs and ADUNs make no difference?
Posted: 20 Sep 2013 11:10 AM PDT
(MMO) - Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir's entry into the Umno vice-president's race portends his father, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad's desire to reassert a hold over the Malay nationalist party, said a political analyst.
According to Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia's Professor Datuk Dr Shamsul Amri Baharuddin, this was because Umno — the dominant party in the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) — was seen as holding the keys to the country's economy.
"With billions of dollars in the offing, nothing is better than being in the centre of Umno," Shamsul was quoted as saying by the Astro Awani portal in a report yesterday.
On Thursday, the Kedah mentri besar ended speculation on whether he would aim for one of the three VP spots when he came out to announce his candidacy in Alor Setar. Days before that, Dr Mahathir warned Umno of a pressing need for new blood in the party, saying in party mouthpiece Utusan Malaysia that the older generation of leaders should not overstay their welcome.
"... they have to realise how important it is not to exceed their time. Sooner or later people will feel bored, even get disgusted of leaders that are outdated but still don't want to accept the truth," the country's longest-serving prime minister wrote in his column in Utusan Malaysia on Monday.
Observers suspect, however, that call was a pre-emptive volley for his son's then-unannounced campaign.
The Malay Mail Online previously reported that Mukhriz's bid for ascendancy was symptomatic of a desire from Umno's "old guard" to preserve the right wing leanings in the party.
"A win or lose is not the point. The point is to signal their presence," Shamsul said further in the report.
The emergence of Akhramsyah Sanusi, the son of Tan Sri Sanusi Junid and loyal ally to Dr Mahathir, to challenge Khairy Jamaluddin for the post of Umno Youth chief further bolstered perception that an orchestrated effort was being conducted to entrench the conservatives' hold over Umno.
When announcing his candidacy today, Akhramsyah was forced to deny he was a stand-in for Dr Mahathir's camp in the Umno Youth race.
"I deny that I belong to any faction… if you say I am a proxy I would say yes I am. I am a proxy that represents the aspiration of grassroots members that want change," he said here yesterday.
The contest for a seat of power in Menara Datuk Onn also has bearings in faraway Putrajaya.
A victory by Mukhriz in the vice-presidency race would put him on the path to mount a challenge for the number two spot in the party ahead of the 14th general election, which, if successful, could make him Malaysia's next deputy prime minister.
Already, the Umno-linked blogs that rose to prominence during Dr Mahathir's vitriolic — and successful — campaign to unseat successor Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi have begun to promote Mukhriz's bid for the vice presidency, introducing a #MM4VP hashtag to generate grassroots support for him on social media sites.
In him, they see the promise of a return to the days of Dr Mahathir's uncompromising rule over Malaysia and a reverse of the reforms and policies that they allege have allowed the special position of the Malays and the sanctity of Islam to be challenged.
Dr Mahathir was prime minister from 1981 to 2003, but has remained active in Malaysian politics despite his retirement.
Still, Mukhriz, the "young" 48-year-old politician, will not have an easy task to win one of the three coveted spots, even with the support of his father and the latter's loyalists.
He faces a crowded field that includes powerful incumbents Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein and Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal; and aspirants Datuk Seri Ali Rustam and Tan Sri Abdul Isa Samad, both wily old campaigners.
Adding to the uncertainty of the race this time around is the enlarged voter pool.
This year's election will see some 146,500 delegates directly elect their top leaders after the party amended its constitution to allow more members to vote, up from the previous 2,500.
Nominations for the Umno supreme council elections will be held on September 28 and voting on October 19.
Posted: 20 Sep 2013 11:04 AM PDT
Posted: 20 Sep 2013 11:03 AM PDT
Akhramsyah (in brown) being flanked by his supporters during a press conference.
(The Star) - Umno Youth chief aspirant Akhramsyah Sanusi said he has received endorsement from Kedah Umno chief Datuk Paduka Mukhriz Tun Mahathir to contest the post.
And, I am not being a proxy to any leader, including Mukhriz, to take on incumbent Khairy Jamaluddin, he said.
"Mukhriz has given me his endorsement, just as he has given other candidates from Kedah who will be contesting in the party election," said Akhramsyah.
"I am grateful for the support and at the same time, I will also throw my support behind him as the candidate for the vice-presidency.
"But this does not mean that I am a proxy. If I am, I want to be one to the grassroots and those who vote for me."
The contest for the Umno Youth chief post is expected to be a four-cornered fight. Apart from Akhramsyah, it has been reported that a relatively unknown wing member Karim Ali, who is Merbok division Youth chief, and Syed Rosli Syed Harman Jamalullail from Pandan Umno division will be joining the fray.
Akhramsyah, 39, who has a masters degree from London's Imperial College in chemical engineering and son of former Kedah Mentri Besar Tan Sri Sanusi Junid, admitted to being an "underdog" in the race.
"Khairy has an advantage, being the incumbent and a minister. The party leadership has taken great pains to carry out political transformation so I should use this opportunity to take part in a healthy contest," he added.
His decision to have a go at the post was prompted by the realisation that many at the grassroots level felt that the movement was no longer playing its role as a pressure group to fight for the Malay agenda.
He observed that the past years saw Malay-based non-governmental organisations emerging to champion the Malays but did so with no political clout.
"I may not be that well-known, but support for me will come from like-minded people who wants Umno Youth to champion for them, to look after their interests and to ensure that well-intended Government policies reach the grassroots," he stressed.
Should he be successful, Akhramsyah pledged to revive what he believed was the movement's responsibility – defend the Malay cause.
However, he stressed that his plans for the movement should not be seen as practising right-wing politics.
"What I am offering is based on Islamic principles. The Malays have led the country for decades and what Umno is doing is just a continuity," he said.
With his campaign motto "Hidup Melayu" (Long Live the Malays), Akhramsyah will be touring the country to introduce himself to Umno Youth members.
Posted: 20 Sep 2013 11:00 AM PDT
(The Star) - As Umno goes into election mode, former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has called on the 146,500 delegates to reject corrupt candidates.
He said voting in corrupt leaders would be detrimental to the party, as they risk facing the brunt of the electorates in the next general election.
"If we choose corrupt leaders, they would have no qualms selling out the race," he said on his blog.
Dr Mahathir also called for the weeding out of deadwood and replacing them with young blood in order to rejuvenate the party.
He said Umno should get as many youths with nationalist spirit to join the party.
He also took a swipe at detractors who claimed that he was trying to remain in power by proxy through his son Mukhriz, who is vying the vice-president post.
"If I want to help my son, I would have done that when I was the Prime Minister.
"But I did not do that," said Dr Mahathir.
Mukhriz, meanwhile, said that if his father had any intention of creating a dynasty, he would have allowed him to be active in politics while he was in power.
"But my father only allowed his kin to be active in politics after his retirement," he said.
Posted: 20 Sep 2013 10:58 AM PDT
- Liow Tiong Lai Supporting Pro Opposition Media
- Before GE 13 you hardly even released much press statement to fight Pakatan Rakyat and DAP. After GE 13 you keep released press statement to attack your own party leader and President?
Read more at: http://1sya.com/?p=7405
Posted: 20 Sep 2013 10:56 AM PDT
(Bernama) - Kedah Menteri Besar Mukhriz Tun Dr Mahathir said that he had his parents' blessings to contest for one of the three Umno vice-president seats at the party election next month.
"I have met with them and my dad (Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad) left it to me to make the final decision, but he did give his advice and opinion based on his experience in contesting for the vice-president post.
"However, this year's election will be decided by 146,500 delegates. No more nomination system. There's a big different between his (Tun Dr Mahathir) time and the current situation," he said.
Mukhriz, who is Kedah Umno Liaison Committee chairman, was met at the ceremony to introduce Jerlun Umno candidates for the divisional elections at Wisma Umno Jerlun, 30km from here today.
Apart from Mukhriz, former Melaka Chief Minister Mohd Ali Rustam and Felda chairman Isa Samad are also vying for the Umno vice-president post, while the three incumbents – Mohd Shafie Apdal, Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and i Hishammuddin Tun Hussein – have made it clear that they will defend their seats.
Mukhriz said if he won the contest and joined the other two vice-presidents, they would definitely have something to offer to the party based on their experience in solving people's problems at the grass roots.
"It's not about policy or policy-making, but it's a responsibility to solve the people's problems, as well as poverty and employment issues depending on financial ability, human capital and the many aspects that have to be taken into account.
"In this aspect, my experience as a Menteri Besar, although only four months, is really needed at the central level.
"I'm confident that I can contribute by sharing my opinions and experience because I have came across many situations that demanded immediate decision," he added.
Posted: 20 Sep 2013 10:51 AM PDT
Imagine this. Police personnel stationed at every entry point into Malaysia from Thailand, including at airports, going through the bags of everyone coming in. As if they have nothing better to do. But then, for all we know, the ashes might have been sent to someone in, say, Indonesia instead, and this person comes into Malaysia with it, unchecked. How stupid can it get?
Kee Thuan Chye
The pettiness of the Government has not been so clearly exposed as it is now over the issue of whether the former Communist leader Chin Peng's ashes should be allowed into Malaysia to be buried in the land he loved and fought for. Even the police – who should have better things to look out for like the increasing incidences of crime – are putting out alerts to prevent the ashes from being brought back from Thailand, where he died. As if these ashes were lethal and could, by some preternatural means, maim the Malaysian populace.
Imagine this. Police personnel stationed at every entry point into Malaysia from Thailand, including at airports, going through the bags of everyone coming in. As if they have nothing better to do. But then, for all we know, the ashes might have been sent to someone in, say, Indonesia instead, and this person comes into Malaysia with it, unchecked. How stupid can it get? Perhaps even now, the ashes are already in the country.
Meanwhile, the authorities still quibble over the trivia that Chin Peng was not Malaysian because he could not produce the necessary documents to prove he was so, but it seems more likely that they did not want to let him return, full stop.
He first applied, under the guarantees of the peace agreement, to resettle in Malaysia in 1990, but his application was rejected the following year. In 2004, he wrote to then prime minister Abdullah Badawi, but got no reply. That year, he received instead a letter from the Home Ministry's secretary-general saying that his request to enter Malaysia had been rejected. No explanation was given.
He took the matter to the courts. But in 2005, the High Court rejected his application to enter Malaysia on the grounds that he had to show identification papers to prove his citizenship. Chin Peng, however, said he could not do so because his birth certificate was seized by the police in 1948. In 2008, the Court of Appeal upheld the ruling.
Just a few days ago, Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Khalid Abu Bakar reiterated that Chin Peng was never a Malaysian citizen and, as such, the question of his being buried in Malaysia should not arise.
But documents are only stuff on paper. They are no match for what a person feels for his country and the things he does in respect of that feeling. Whatever you call that feeling – patriotism if you like – it is far and above more meaningful than a piece of paper.
The fact is, Chin Peng fought against the Japanese when they invaded Malaya and the British retreated. If this alone does not automatically qualify him to be Malaysian, what will? Entering the country illegally and agreeing to vote for Barisan Nasional, like the immigrants in Sabah who have been given identity cards for doing just that? In the latter case, in fact, having documents doesn't mean diddly squat.
More tangible than this, the Malaysian Government signed a peace treaty in 1989 with the Communist Party of Malaya (CPM), of which Chin Peng was its head. And in that agreement, the CPM agreed to disband and cease all armed activities while the Government agreed to allow the CPM's members to settle down in Malaysia. Since then, many have been allowed home, including leaders like Rashid Maidin and Shamsiah Fakeh. But why not Chin Peng? Why was he discriminated against?
The other favourite argument of the Government's against Chin Peng's return to Malaysia is that he was a terrorist and the head of a terrorist organisation that had caused the deaths of thousands. But when you hold this up against the terms of the agreement, you can straight away see that the argument is unfair. The man and his comrades had given up the fight, they would no longer "terrorise". It was time for both sides to put the past aside and move on. For the sake of peace. That's what an agreement is about. So how could the Government sign an agreement and still call the other signatory a villain? Might as well not sign the agreement in the first place!
Why does the Government want to behave in such bad form over this? Because it thinks maintaining Chin Peng as a bogeyman is worth its tarnishing its honour?
But even on the issue of Chin Peng being a terrorist, the lines are not clear-cut. To some, he was one, but to others, he was a freedom fighter. When he served the British cause in fighting against the Japanese, he was awarded the OBE (Order of the British Empire), but when he consequently fought against the British to gain independence for Malaya, he was a terrorist.
True, his Communist ideology was not everyone's cup of tea and the CPM did kill many people to fulfil its mission, for which it should be condemned, but Chin Peng has also taken responsibility for the CPM's taking of thousands of lives. In an interview with history professor Cheah Boon Kheng in 1998, he said, "This was inevitable. It was a war for national independence."
That this was so is affirmed by our first prime minister, Tunku Abdul Rahman, in his book Lest We Forget: "Just as Indonesia was fighting a bloody battle, so were the Communists of Malaya, who, too, fought for independence."
The Japanese, on the other hand, were invaders, and they tortured and killed thousands more of our countrymen during their invasion, and yet we have forgiven them their atrocities. In fact, the Japanese are now our friends, and they are a people we look up to, thanks to ex-premiere Mahathir Mohamad's Look East policy. So why is it that we cut them more slack?
Is the Government hard on Chin Peng because it feels embarrassed that Umno, the party that it has heaped so much credit on for winning independence, did not fight any bloody battles for it, like Chin Peng and the CPM did? And that, also, one of Umno's revered leaders of the past, Abdul Razak Hussein, actually worked for the Japanese?
Well, in the book Tun Abdul Razak: Potret dalam Kenangan, a collection of reminiscences by people who knew the country's second prime minister, there is a mention of his having been an administrative officer for the Japanese. It is in the chapter entitled 'Saya Mendayung, Dia Mengemudi' (I Rowed, He Held the Helm), written by former Cabinet minister Ghazali Shafie.
And in a study called 'Sejarah Penubuhan Universiti Teknologi Mara UITM' (http://coredev.fsktm.um.edu.my/servlet/sreport.sReportShow?report_id=154&xslFile=all), there is a photograph of Razak with three others dressed in Japanese uniform with the rising sun insignia pinned on their shirt pockets. This apparently depicts the time he was being trained by the Japanese.
To be sure, Ghazali also mentions in his chapter that he and Razak were actually nationalists. "We felt that since we had known the British much longer … it was easier to stand up to them than the Japanese, whom we had not got a full measure of yet … Therefore, we felt we had to master [the] Japanese [language] and at the same time, we had to look for channels to contact the British … so as to obtain their assistance in fighting the Japanese."
From his account, it looks like the strategy adopted by him and Razak was a pragmatic play-both-sides one that is different from the direct warfare approach opted for by Chin Peng.
In view of this, do we still say that Chin Peng doesn't deserve to even have his ashes brought home to the country he wanted to return to and die in?
Well, I would say that he has more right to be buried in Malaysia than many people I could name. For example, those who have been behind the giving of illegal identity cards to illegal immigrants in Sabah are certainly not as worthy as Chin Peng in claiming this country as their home. He never sold out his country; in fact, he wanted it to be free. His problem was, his ideology was not accepted. And he was on the wrong side of history.
I think it's time to set the history right.
Bullshit, now available in bookstores.
Posted: 19 Sep 2013 10:48 PM PDT
(The Star) - It is unfair to blame the Chinese newspapers of turning the Bumiputra Economic Empowerment Agenda into a racial issue when they are only reflecting the views of the Chinese community, says Datuk Dr Wee Ka Siong.
The MCA Youth Chief said the Chinese media had always been the mouthpiece of the Chinese community by accurately reporting and analysing their sentiments and aspirations.
Posted: 19 Sep 2013 10:37 PM PDT
Hasbullah Awang Chik, TMI
Perkasa has warned the MCA not to upset the Malays by insisting that Putrajaya allow Chin Peng's ashes to be brought back here.
The Malay rights group pointed out that many Malays and Chinese died at the hands of the communists, led by Chin Peng, during the insurgency.
Perkasa secretary-general Syed Hassan Syed Ali questioned why the MCA was so adamant about the Chin Peng issue.
"Don't upset the Malays. Respect the feelings of others," urged Syed Hassan.
Perkasa chairman Datuk Ibrahim Ali also got into the debate and suggested that the communist leader's ashes should just be "tossed into the air", adding that the people should just forget about Chin Peng.
"We are better off discussing the problems faced by the living. He is dead. His ashes should be tossed into the air," he said.
MCA had called on the government to allow Chin Peng's remains to be brought back into the country, putting the Chinese party on a collision course with Putrajaya which is against the move.
MCA publicity bureau chairman Datuk Heng Seai Kie had said there was no law in the country which forbids anyone from either having their last rites or being buried in Malaysia.She also pointed out the remains of terrorists Dr Azahari Husin and Nordin Mohamad Top were allowed to be buried in Malaysia, questioning if Putrajaya was taking a racial stand when it came to Chin Peng.
Posted: 19 Sep 2013 10:26 PM PDT
The candidacy of just two Sabahans - federal minister Shafie Apdal and Kota Belud MP Abdul Rahman Dahlan - is telling of the frailty in Sabah Umno.
Jude Wang, FMT
Things have not been going brilliantly for Sabah Chief Minister Musa Aman. For one he's been forced to concede that he will not be contesting for the vice-president's post in the Umno elections next month.
That zinger came on Sept 15, on the eve of Malaysia Day, when Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak was here to launch the 50th anniversary celebration and Musa was questioned on his plans following hints that he would contest for a top post or defend his Supreme Council seat in the party.
His statement just days before party nominations closed that he had deliberated much before deciding not to go for both posts was viewed as suspicious.
Adding to the incredulity was his explanation that much still needed to be done to further develop and improve Sabah which begged the question what he had been doing over the last 10 years he 'ruled' the state.
Earlier this year there was talk that he would step down as chief minister of the state next year. Speaker Salleh Said Keruak is said to be the leading contender to take over in a pre-election deal worked out with Kuala Lumpur.
The about turn raises speculation about what was offered in return for opting out of the VP race. A full term as chief minister perhaps?
In which case Salleh, who was cheering him on as a potential veep candidates, is now left dangling.
To maintain a firm hold on the party and by extension Sabah, a strategy can be seen emerging through the number of Umno leaders said to be aligned to the 62-year-old Musa as they position themselves to contest or re-contest their divisional posts.
In the past few months minor-league Umno leaders here have been sending out a flurry of signals at divisional level and this may well tell more about Sabah's future.
The first thing revealed is that the Umno leadership in the state is not as unassailable and steady as many believe and it is only a matter of time that their hold loosens.
Posted: 19 Sep 2013 10:21 PM PDT
Bersih co-chairperson assures the people that the NGO would fully back the "witnesses" if they were to be sued for defamation.
Alfian ZM Tahir, FMT
Bersih co-chairperson S Ambiga has firmly stated that legal aid will be provided to any "witnesses" who "testified" during the People's Tribunal should they receive any defamation suit.
The prominent lawyer also highlighted that Bersih would back the "witnesses" on what was said during the tribunal.
"We will provide legal aid. I believe we have said this even before the tribunal started. If anyone receives a defamation suit, Bersih will assist those in need," Ambiga told FMT.
Ambiga then continued by saying that the best move was to tell the truth and she was hoping that the tribunal would create greater awareness among the public whom she believed had more proof of what transpired during the general election.
"I'm aware about the possibility of defamation suit. But it is all about telling the truth and that is the best defence.
"The tribunal is a good avenue for ordinary citizens to air their dissatisfaction and allegations," she said, referring to P Rajamah who bravely spoke up about her son's death in yesterday's proceeding.
FMT earlier reported that those "testifying" before Bersih's People's Tribunal could spark a legal backlash of defamation and other civil suits, and possibly charged with sedition as according to legal experts.
Civil Liberties lawyer Syahredzan Johan and legal expert Dr Azmi Sharom concurred that unlike the Royal Commission Inquiry (RCI) and Suhakam inquiry, the Bersih's tribunal was without any legal standing, and the "witnesses" were without immunity.
Posted: 19 Sep 2013 10:17 PM PDT
An MCA leader supports the return of Chin Peng's ashes, contrary to party president Dr Chua Soi Lek's position.
Lisa J. Ariffin, FMT
Despite his death a week ago, former Communist Party Malaya (CPM) leader Chin Peng continues to stir controversy – this time in MCA.
MCA Publicity Bureau chairman Heng Seai Kie today said the ashes of Chin Peng should be allowed to be brought home, contrary to party president Dr Chua Soi Lek's statement on Tuesday that Chin was a "personality who undermined national security for decades".
Chua had not directly dismissed Chin Peng's return, but acknowledged the call by former special branch deputy director Yuen Yuet Leng and had said: "I don't have (any reasons). He (Yuen) may has his information which is not made available to me."
"Whether Chin Peng is a hero or not is not an issue here. In fact, you do not need to be a hero to be allowed a burial in Malaysia," Heng said in a press statement.
"The BN government does not need anymore bad publicity of being seen as making decisions based on racial lines," she added.
Heng justified her statement with the "decent burial" of suspected terrorists Dr Azahari Husin and Nordin Mohamad Top – two individuals wanted by the Indonesian governments for several deadly bombings – in Jasin and Pontian, respectively.
"Born and bred in Malaya, everyone, including Chin Peng has the right to be interred in Malaysia. On humanitarian grounds, we should honour this nonagenarian's last wishes," she said.
"On the other hand, there are no laws in this country which forbids anyone who intends to have last rites and his resting place here," she added.
"After all, what harm can his ashes do to the country?" she asked.
Heng further said the government should honour the clauses agreed upon in the Haadyai Peace Accord "so as to uphold the integrity and credibility of our government".
"Since other Communist Party of Malaya leaders like Syed Hamid Ali and Shamsiah Faekah were allowed to return to reside in Malaysia, why not the same be applied to Chin Peng?" she questioned.
Posted: 19 Sep 2013 05:31 PM PDT
Party source reveals that a check-mate situation is brewing steadily in favour of Azmin Ali and Nurul Izzah to oust Khalid Ibrahim from presidential contest.
B Nantha Kumar, FMT
PKR may witness a major change as its de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim makes his way into the president's seat next year, revealed a party source.
The party insider hinted that incumbent president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail will make path for her husband for the top post to avert a possible fracture in PKR.
"At the moment there are three top personalities vying for the president's post, as Wan Azizah plans to retire from politics," said the PKR man who wishes to remain anonymous.
Wan Azizah has been the party president since its inception.
According to the sourse, the three are party deputy president Azmin Ali, vice president Nurul Izzah and Selangor Menteri Besar Abdul Khalid Ibrahim.
Speaking to FMT, he further claimed that the trio are planning to wrest the seat in the party presidential election scheduled to be held next year.
"All three have respective strengths in the party level. While Azmin is well known as Anwar's loyalist, Nurul Izzah who is also the Lembah Pantai MP, is backed by the younger generation in PKR," he said.
Khalid, being the Menteri Besar of Selangor and has the most number of members in the party wants to take a shot too at the presidential seat.
Nevertheless it is highly speculated that there will be no contest for the said position if Anwar opts for it; basically to avoid internal bickering and conflict.
The party insider also highlighted that Anwar has picked Azmin as his deputy, while Nurul agrees to remain as vice president.
"Basically, the game plan is very simple. It is a plot to checkmate Khalid who apparently does not have a cordial relationship with the party leadership," he said.
"There is rumour lurking that Khalid has isolated himself from the top PKR leaders and is running the state merely with the blessings of the DAP and PAS."
Posted: 19 Sep 2013 01:44 PM PDT
There are a thousand and one possibilities involving Zahid, Khairy or who's who in the party for that matter, from now until Umno goes to the polls. Or should that be "endless possibilities"?
Posted: 19 Sep 2013 01:39 PM PDT
DEB telah diabaikan dan dasar baru diwujudkan semata-mata kerana hendak melakukan segala-galanya di zaman pemerintahan beliau (Mahathir). Perancangan Pembangunan tidak lagi tersusun mengikut agenda dan semangat DEB itu walaupun tempoh DEB itu belum pun tamat semasa itu.
Mahu tidak mahu kita mesti akui yang keadaan politik negara dan pentadbiran pelaksana Dasar Negara sudah sampai ke tahap yang amat membimbangkan. Keadaan sekarang ini begitu dirasakan. Ratusan, malahan ribuan manusia memberikan sebab kenapa keadaan menjadi sebegini buruk.
Sudah bertahun-tahun UMNO di berikan peluang untuk memperbaiki diri tetapi keadaan semakin buruk hari demi hari. Boleh lah kita mengambil pendirian yang 'conclusive' yang UMNO itu tidak akan dapat diperbaiki lagi. Apa juga tindakan membaik-pulih UMNO yang dilakukan oleh pucuk pimpinan dan barisan Pimpinan Tertinggi UMNO itu semuanya sentiasa tidak kena. Hasil dari tindakan dan pengumuman perancangan kerajaan itu adalah 'predictable'.
Pada hari ini kita wajar berterus terang dan jujur dalam memberikan pandangan. Pimpinan UMNO sekarang sudah tidak mempunyai apa-apa kebolehan lagi selain dari menjahanamkan 'fabric' politik tanah air dan amat membebankan rakyat. UMNO betul-betul sebuah parti yang menghadapi penyakit tua. Kos untuk mengubatinya terlalu tinggi. Itu pun belum tentu sembuh lagi.
Rakyat sudah kenyang dengan pengumuman berbagai-bagai perancangan dan belum pun satu dari banyak-banyak perancangannya telah nampak kejayaannya. Yang terakhir ialah perancangan tentang Pembangunan Bumiputra dan Melayu dan apa yang di umumkan itu semuanya merupakan ulangan dari apa yang telah di umumkan semasa pelancaran Dasar Ekonomi Baru (DEB) dahulu.
Perancangan yang di umumkan tidak terancang dengan baik. Kali ini pengumuman itu tidak lari dari sebab hendak menghadapi pemilihan dalam UMNO untuk memperagakan yang beliau adalah pemimpin Melayu yang efektif. Seperti perancangan yang puluhan jumlahnya yang telah Najib umumkan selama ini, peranangan MEB (Memperkasakan Ekonomi Bumiputra) beberapa hari lalu adalah 'predictable'. Bagi siapa yang menilai betul-betul dan jika di asaskan kepada pengalaman beberapa tahun Najib menjadi PM ini, MEB akan gagal juga.
MEB laungan Najib itu tidak lain tidak bukan, ialah dasar yang sama seperti DEB dahulu. DEB dahulu diwujudkan dengan persetujuan semua kaum dan ianya di rancang begitu rapi dengan bermatlamatkan satu matlamat sahaja, iaitu perpaduan kaum. Apa-apa perancangan sesuatu dasar penting negara ia mesti di rundingkan dahulu dengan semua pihak. Untuk merundingkan itu ia memerlukan pimpinan atau barisan pimpinan yang sebenar-benarnya di hormati oleh pimpinan rakyat semua kaum yang mendiami negara ini sebagai rakyat negara.
Ini amat perlu kerana sesuatu dasar itu mesti difahami dan diketahui sebagai dasar yang boleh membawa perpaduan kaum di negara ini. Masalahnya sekarang ini pimpinan negara tidak mendapat penghormatan rakyat secara keseluruhannya dan masalah untuk membawa kemeja perundingan untuk penggubalan dasar itu tidak dapat dilakukan dengan baik. Kerajaan boleh mengumumkan apa-apa dasar tanpa merujuk kepada semua rakyat tetapi inilah jadinya seperti yang kita alami sekarang.
Pimpinan kerajaan perlu memberi kefahaman kepada semua kaum melalui pimpinannya betapa pentingnya pengimbangan dan pembahagian kekayaan negara untuk menjamin kesejahteraan negara dalam jangka panjang. Katakan dan fahamkan semua pihak bahawa kita terpaksa melalui proses-proses yang drastik dan jelas untuk mencapai matlamat Perpaduan Nasional itu.
Katakan dan fahamkan yang ekonomi merupakan faktor terpenting dalam usaha pencapaian matlamat itu, maka dasar-dasar yang 'affirmative' perlu dilaksanakan bagi mencapai matlamat tersebut. Jika majoriti rakyat itu berada dalam keadaan kemurungan, kedudukan ekonomi matlamat pencapaian Perpaduan Nasional itu akan tidak tercapai sampai bila-bila.
Itulah yang dilakukan oleh pimpinan terdahulu khususnya Tunku Abdul Rahman dan Tun Razak. Setiap bangsa dalam negara ini dibawa berunding maka hasilnya setiap bangsa telah memberikan dukungan kepada DEB semasa itu. Bangsa-bangsa bukan Bumiputra telah bersama-sama berusaha menjayakan matlamat itu dengan menerima DEB sebagai proses pencapaian Perpaduan Nasional itu.
Semua kaum telah merasakan betapa pedihnya keadaan semasa berlakunya peristiwa 13 Mei 1969 telah di ketahui umum ketidak seimbangan kedudukan dan tahap ekonomi setengah kaum itu merupakan salah satu faktor terjadinya peristiwa itu. Kemiskinan merupakan faktor yang sangat mudah bagi kegelisahan rakyat untuk wujud dan akhirnya membawa sebuah negara itu terjebak dengan peperangan saudara dan perselisihan diantara mereka (rakyat).
Itu sebabnya DEB itu wujud diatas matlamat yang begitu luhur kerana ia telah difikirkan dengan mendalam bukan sahaja oleh pemimpin Melayu tetapi juga oleh pemimpin semua kaum. Ia berlaku sebegitu kerana semua kaum sedar yang keseimbangan kedudukan dan tahap ekonomi itu sangat penting untuk diselesaikan.
Posted: 19 Sep 2013 01:34 PM PDT
(TMI) - Universiti Malaya (UM) wants to work more closely with Singapore's National University of Singapore (NUS) in scientific research in its bid to raise its profile among the world's top academic journals, the Singapore Straits Times reported.
This plan was presented to the island republic's president Tony Tan Keng Yam, who visited UM yesterday on his three-day state visit to Malaysia.
On September 10, the QS World University rankings list revealed that UM ranked at number 167 while NUS stood at a strong 24th position in the world.
QS had said Malaysian universities did not produce enough cited research although they have quality academics and produce employable graduates.
UM's efforts in the intended collaboration with NUS will be propelled by the Malaysian government-funded High Impact Research (HIR) scheme aimed at boosting UM's chances to be among the world's top 100 universities in two years.
As it stands, about 10% of the 192 projects under HIR involve NUS, the Genome Institute of Singapore and Tan Tock Seng Hospital, in areas like cancer and HIV/Aids.
The plan is to double this to 20%, said HIR consultant Emeritus Professor Lam Sai Kit, during the visit by Dr Tan, who is also the chancellor of NUS.
Just the day before, Dr Tan had spoken about how the bond between NUS and UM was an example of how the two countries can build on its historical ties.
This resulted in UM vice-chancellor Ghauth Jasmon suggesting for a dual PhD programme with NUS and UM students spending time at both institutions.
Posted: 19 Sep 2013 12:56 PM PDT
.. and soon they will have to compete on their own.
Despite rolling back some of this assistance in the past, Prime Minister Najib Razak announced this month that "stronger" policies are needed to help "Bumiputra"... a term for ethnic Malays or indigenous Malaysians.
Ethnic Chinese-Malaysians have traditionally done much better in business... but the Government's efforts to give Bumiputras a helping hand has sent many Chinese-Malaysians looking for a fair go overseas... and some say the brain drain holds Malaysia's economy back.
Presenter: Liam Cochrane
Speaker: Khairy Jamaluddin, Malaysia's Minister of Youth and Sport
JAMALUDDIN: Well I think it's important to recognise that the Malay and Bumiputra community in Malaysia are still far behind in terms of economic achievement, whether it's in terms of corporate equity ownership, in terms of ownership of property, whether it's the numbers of professionals and senior executives. So I think the program of affirmative action as far as economic empowerment is still very relevant, because the Bumiputra community is the majority community in Malaysia and we want to ensure that there is not just growth, but also equity and social justice as far as economic development is concerned. And when the Prime Minister announced a new program to uplift and empower the Bumiputra economic agenda, it's not to take away anything from any other communities, but rather it's targeted assistance for Bumiputras especially those at the lower income level and those at the medium income level, those who are involved in business, those who are entrepreneurs, to ensure that there is a sustained effort, which is market friendly, which encourages meritocracy within the Bumiputra community and which sends the message that this has to be done transparently and that one day you have to compete and that day is coming very soon, but this is the large big push to ensure that we get it right this time.
COCHRANE: You say one day you'll have to compete, this is the last push. Can you give a time frame for when these race-based policies will no longer be necessary?
JAMALUDDIN: Well, the time frame will be very much dependent on the success and efficacy of this program that we've put in place.
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