Rabu, 25 September 2013

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Malaysia Today - Your Source of Independent News

Another typical leak at Treasury

Posted: 24 Sep 2013 12:24 PM PDT

Last week, UMNO President Dato Najib Tun Abdul Razak announced plans for economic empowerment of Bumiputera. [Read again here]

Every other person was complaining of nothing new. One of our concern was no serious effort to address past problems of leakage, inefficiency and sabotage on past empowerment programs. Leakage and inefficiency tend to be blame on government machinery.

Najib's intention to improve delivery is understood and appreciated. Only problem is the PEMANDU outfit. The other choice to PEMANDU is to leave it to the civil servant to independently run government machinery.

True, we have been a strong advocate to abolish PEMANDU and return the role to EPU, but it is not a blanket endorsement for all because had there not been for privatisation, JKR would still not complete the North-South Expressway yet.

The case we like to bring up is a case of leakage involving a recent tender for a Ubiquitous System for Jabatan Kastam dan Eksais Diraja (Customs). The underlying problem is clear and it is ubiquitously morally wrong.

MACC should be alerted because it has corruption, kickbacks, collusion and abuse of power written all over.

When we exposed how policies and procedures was abused by big names being bandied to be associated to Najib in the tender for Accrual Accounting System for Accountant General Office [read here], wonder whether MACC have made a raid on Ministry of Finance.

If not, this Customs tender involved some big names, big money and abuse have been allowed to go on for too bloody long time. It is killing competitiveness, making a mockery of market friendly affirmative action, and any rhetorics along capacity or nation building.

One way to address is to raise level of morality and sense of responsibility. As our late sifu used to say, one cannot operationalise morality but only set policies and procedures. 

Customs have an on-going system, doing well since 1992, and can be upgraded, but decided to change it into a system called Ubiquitous system. Not sure the technical meaning but ubiquitous means "present in all places and at all times".

The tender is Pembangunan Projek Sistem U-Customs for jabatan Kastam dan Eksais Diraja Malaysia. Tender date closed on March 11, 2013.
As usual in any IT tender, interested companies would shop around the world for systems solution. Everyone involved could basically know who has been shopping for what. With some effort, one can know how many have approached the most powerful solution Artiquator, the only use in France Bull system, Korean Posco and Microsoft.

Before awarded, the user, Customs would determine which system and technical package meet their requirement and interest them.

They would also ascertain company knowledge and ability to understand the Customs process, have technical experience, and capacity and commitment level. Having a Artiquator system solution but no technical experience in the Customs process is not necessarily an advantage.

There are also issues of financial capability and obviously cheapest tender price.

Then all these is passed to Ministry of Finance. Prior to reaching the Tender Committee chaired by  Najib, the papers and documents have to be sent to a committee of Little Napoleans.

The Little Napoleans will would vet through Customs review and make their own recomendation. It would be usually strange for user comment to be far different from the Little Napoleans'.

Usually Najib and the Committee of top level government officers sometimes including MoF II would merely approve as recommended by the Little Napoleans. No story of Rosmah interference through husband or politician making a quick buck.

Members of the Tender Board are:

1. YAB Dato' Sri Mohd Najib Tun Hj Abdul Razak (Chairman)
2.  Tan Sri Irwan Siregar (KSU)
3.  Dato' Mat Noor Nawi (TKSP-Dasar)
4.  Datuk Nozirah Bahari (TKSP-Pengurusan)
5.  Dato' Fauziah Yaacob (TKSP-Sistem & Kawalan)
6.  Dato' Hashimuddin Mohamad (Setiausaha Bahagian Perolehan Kerajaan)



The UMNO elections

Posted: 24 Sep 2013 11:37 AM PDT

All the interest in the upcoming UMNO elections is understandable because the party's President becomes Prime Minister of the country. It's usually a boring affair, especially when there is no contest for UMNO's top two positions. Cynics will say it's the same routine, with the oligarchs who have ruled for decades taking their turns to rule and, at the same time, deciding who is next in line to succeed them. It's like a game of musical chairs being played by a small and very elite group.

What I find laughable is the contention that Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir's challenge for the Vice-President's post is an attempt by the old, conservative guard to cling to power. Some even say that the challenge is an attempt to bring Mahathirism back into  Malaysian politics, without even bothering to explain what that really means.Before we get carried away, let's be clear about one thing: there is no right or left wing in UMNO. There is only the business wing. There is hardly any division within the party that is based on ideological or philosophical differences. The contestation is never about political ideas or about the fate of the nation, but about control over power.

The  focus of this year's party elections will probably be the same. This time we have a new policy to empower the Bumiputera and during the speeches there will probably also be an adequate supply of  Chinese-bashing and tonguelashing against "ungrateful" Malays. No faction or group will talk about corruption or abuse of power or take an interest in the country's finances. Clearly, the fate of other Malaysians who do not carry the Bumi tag does not matter.

This time around however, there is a significant difference to the proceedings: Dato' Sri Najib Tun Razak has opened up the party by allowing more contests at the divisional and Supreme Council levels. This is a positive development. It shows that the President is reasonably confident of his position and that he is trying to create more choices for the party,  whether for political or business positions. Mukhriz's candidacy for the Vice-President's post is important in this regard. UMNO will rule this country for quite a while longer, at least for as long as race-based politics hold sway and until the Opposition are able to get their collective act together. Mukhriz is a member  of UMNO's elite group and only from this group will we find the leaders who will rule Malaysia. If there  choices within UMNO's elite, then all the better for the country. The present crop of top leaders does not inspire confidence so adding a few more from the elite group is good.

Read more at: http://www.zaid.my/?p=965 

Honouring the memory of Corporal Zal Azri Abd Somad

Posted: 24 Sep 2013 11:02 AM PDT

The previous Home Minister, Hishammuddin Hussein has shamed us in many ways. I will mention only five of them here.
  1. Hisham waved the keris at several Umno meetings from 2005 – 2008 in the context of Malay nationalism, commonly viewed as Malay Supremacy. Many political commentators linked Hisham's keris waving to the political tsunami in 2008 when Umno-BN lost its two-thirds majority in the Federal Government.
  2. Hisham rose to the defence of a brazen group of about 50 Muslims who marched with the head of a cow from a mosque in Shah Alam to the Selangor state government headquarters, then stomped and spit upon it to show how they felt about a proposal to build a Hindu temple at a site in Section 23, Shah Alam.
  3. Hisham defended the police when six members of the Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) were immorally detained in 2010 for 28 days and were maliciously accused of many falsehoods including attempts to use force to attempt an insurrection.
  4. Hisham defended the police use of tear gas, acid-laced water and various kinds of brutality upon peaceful protesters during the BERSIH marches.
  5. Hisham even had people arrested because they wore yellow!
The current Home Minister, Zahid Hamidi has been in the job for only 3 months, but has also shamed us in many ways. I will again restrict my recall to five shameful things:
  1. Zahid was ordered by the Court of Appeal to answer charges that he assaulted businessman Amir Abdul Bazli on 16 January 2006 in Kajang.
  2. Zahid, in one of his first statements as Home Minister, said those who are not happy with the government (which means the majority of those who voted in the 13th General Elections this year) should leave the country.
  3. Zahid, without any investigation, said the police were not complicit in the attempted assassination of Sanjeevan who heads the MyWatch anit-crime watchdog group.
  4. Zahid watches idly as the police detain close to 6,000 alleged gangsters for up to 72 days through "Ops Cantas," but charge only a minute number of them.
  5. Zahid who lives in fear of Chin Peng's ashes, says Chin Peng did not take two chances given to him to return to Malaysia, while Chin Peng's lawyers say all of Chin Peng's applications to return were denied.
We have no respect for the Home Ministers who are responsible for the police force. (You can add much to my list, including their terms as Education and Defence Ministers.)

We have no respect for the top echelon of the Police Force because we have too often seen them lying about deaths in custody. In fact, in Malaysia, many consider it dangerous to go to police stations. Even an ex-cop like P.I. Bala disappeared after voluntarily going to a police station. And Teoh Beng Hock, Ahmad Sarbani, Darmendran and many more.

Read more at: http://write2rest.blogspot.com/2013/09/honouring-memory-of-corporal-zal-azri.html 

Kredit: www.malaysia-today.net

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