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PEMANDU: 'Driving' down moral disaster

Posted: 01 Oct 2013 01:06 PM PDT

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The budget for the poor was spent to buy 15 vehicles fit for an Abang King's mistress.

Another Brick in the Wall 

This expose will definitely makes one's blood boil.

If it doesn't, there is something morally wrong with your upbringing because it is about money meant for the poor. It is about opportunity to generate income for the hardcore poor. It is about public money.

And it is about corruption, and collusion of the highest order.

Fellow blogger, Goh Wei Liang tried hard to dispel the perception against PEMANDU [read here].

He felt some 'senior bloggers' have not been fair to pick on Fara Intan's personal life and described it as "perception manipulation and deceptive."

He is wrong. There is nothing personal against Fara.

Goh has been long enough in the blogosphere. He should know that we write based upon our conviction. 

Recently, Dr Ong Kian Meng exposed McKinsey & Co.'s RM20 million consultancy fee to do the Educational Masterplan which Tun Mahathir sarcastically brushed off as anyone can write masterplan.

McKinsey is an accomplice of PEMANDU in fleecing government money for flimsy papers of little implementable value. Diverting the budget under MOE, the sum of RM20 million easily dispel Goh's proof.

PEMANDU has stationed officers in Government Ministries, Departments and Corporation. Supposedly these young, genius and highly paid professionals will guide government officers and staff to improve delivery and performance.

Bigdog is already at it with PEMANDU's centerpiece of excellence in FGV, CEO Emir Mavani.

In his latest expose here, he exposed another case of stealing from the poor settlers-farmers.

Before this, he exposed here FGV purchased a suspiciously over priced plantation and hotel in London here.   

This expose will prove our point further. It may have also by-passed Goh's radar.  


Our expose involved an NKRA officer in a Ministry which turned out to be "harapkan pegar, pegar makan padi."

It is is not about crooked politicians or politicians' assistant but government officers which PEMANDU is supposed to think on how to address. In this case, the government in-house consultant supposed to stem leakage was the one orchestrating the corruption and kickback.

Stay focus and not be diverted into politics. Crooked politicians can be thrown out in elections but it is not easy throwing out crooked civil servants. More difficult will be to throw out PEMANDU, the golden child of the present government. 

PEMANDU is so powerful and influential that their area of responsiblity have gone beyond their scope of work and area of expertise. For instance, failed former MAS CEO and PEMANDU head, Dato Idris Jala is heading the committee on crime prevention.

He could even get Ministry of Finance approval for a government corporation in which the Chairman himself couldn't. The chairman happen to be a former KSU. 

We'll quit stalling and get back to the story


This is about the 1Azam fund that got into public attention arising from the detention for 5 days of questioning of former Political Secretary to the Minister for Women, Family and Community Development (MWFCD), Dato Suhaimi Ibrahim.

According to their website here, 1AZAM serve to "menyediakan peluang menjana pendapatan kepada rakyat berpendapatan rendah. Jangkaan pendapatan antara RM760 hingga RM2,300 sebulan." 

Suhaimi denied in a press conference of his involvement [read here] but to be held for 5 days for investigation, it make him highly suspicious.

Thus, one cannot understand why he is going around the country in Dato Hishamuddin Hussein Onn's campaign entourage. Minta nyawa(seeking a lifeline) or lobbying for position?

Whichever it is, as in the past, Hishamuddin does not seem to be thinking of the implication and public perception towards him. 

Actually, just after Suhaimi gave his press conference, we had asked around and was brought to a small time contractor who was awarded contracts in the 1Azam program. From there, we were led to many other suppliers and subcontractors.

Read more at: http://anotherbrickinwall.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/driving-to-disaster.html 

Policies and the Constitution

Posted: 01 Oct 2013 12:30 PM PDT

http://www.thestar.com.my/~/media/Images/TSOL/Website/Columnists/col_AzmiSharom.ashx?h=140&w=140 

It makes no sense whatsoever if they can flout the Constitution with the excuse that they are making policy, not law. If that is the case, why have the Constitution at all since it won't be able to protect us against policies, only laws? 

Azmi Sharom, The Star 

A case can be made for policies, and not just laws, to be subject to constitutional requirements. An examination of the new Bumiputra Economic Empowerment Agenda gives an example of the grounds by which policies can be viewed as contravening the Constitution.

LET'S talk about the new Bumiputra Economic Empowerment Agenda (BEEA). From my understanding of the BEEA, it is a policy where the Government will actively direct business opportunities to bumiputra interests as well as a host of other endeavours, all with the purpose of boosting bumiputra economic presence.

I do not want to discuss the economic pros and cons of this new policy; I will leave that to the economists. Instead, I wish to examine this from the viewpoint of the Constitution. Specifically, I want to discuss if this policy can be deemed to be constitutional.

Before we begin, I wish to state here that I am in no way an economic liberal. I believe very strongly in affirmative action.

However, I believe that such affirmative action has to be properly justified, namely that it is designed to help those who are in need the most, specifically the poorer sections of a community.

Furthermore, any such action must be reviewable in an open and democratic manner in order to ensure that it is reaching its objective and that it is not abused nor implemented in such a way as to cause too great an imbalance to the principle of equality.

These basic guidelines are necessary because affirmative action is a type of policy which undoubtedly goes against the basic ideals of equality.

If we take equality as an ideal, then any deviation from it has to be done most carefully and for jolly good reasons.

Incidentally, I did not pluck these principles from out of my ear; they are found in a decision of the International Court of Justice in what is known as the Belgian Linguistic case.

Now, I am absolutely convinced that the founding fathers of this country understood and appreciated the ideal of equality.

They also understood the reality of Malaya in 1957, which is to say there was a massive economic divide in the country and that the majority of the populace, the Malays, were miles behind in terms of economic development.

It was unfortunate, but necessary therefore to take measures to correct that imbalance, although it was not something that was to be done in a blasé or light-hearted way.

In fact, the Sultans at the time stated in their comments to the Reid Commission that ultimately they envisaged a time when race did not enter the equation for governance.

This being the case, there was a delicate balancing act to be done and this balancing act can be found in the way the Constitution was drafted.

Firstly, the principle of Equality is enshrined in Article 8.

However, Article 8 also notes that there can be unequal treatment in the country, but, and this is a big but, such unequal treatment has to be specifically allowed for by the Consti-tution.

Don't take my word for it; here is that provision in full: "Except as expressly authorised by this Constitution, there shall be no discrimination against citizens on the grounds only of religion, race, descent, place of birth or gender in any law or in the appointment to any office or employments under a public authority or in the administration of any law relating to the acquisition, holding or disposition of property or the establishment or carrying of any trade, business, profession, vocation or employment."

And there is plenty of unequal treatment "expressly allowed by this Constitution".

They include things like the treatment of the orang asli, the holding of positions in religious institutions, personal law, membership of the Malay Regiment, and so on and so forth.

However, we are not interested in that here.

We want to see what it says about treating people unequally in economic terms.

For that we have to look at Article 153, which says there could be reserved for Malays and natives of Sabah and Sarawak a reasonable portion of permits and licences for the operation of trade or business as required by federal law.

Permits and licences: is that what the BEEA is all about?

If it is not, then surely such unequal treatment does not fall under the exception provided for in the Constitution, which says that breaching Article 8 can only happen if it is "expressly allowed by this Constitution".

The next question that arises is the nature of the BEEA. It is a policy and not a law.

An argument has been made therefore that policies are not subject to the Constitution.

Well, if that is the case then if we have an irresponsible government, we may very well find ourselves with all sorts of strange policies which cannot be challenged on constitutional grounds.

A government policy is something which the Executive has the power to create and enforce.

It is something which can affect the lives of the citizens. One of the purposes of having a Constitution is to check the power of the Executive so that it will not abuse that power.

It makes no sense whatsoever if they can flout the Constitution with the excuse that they are making policy, not law.

If that is the case, why have the Constitution at all since it won't be able to protect us against policies, only laws?

For example, in August, an American court held that the policy of New York police to racially profile people when conducting stop-and-frisk exercises was unconstitutional.

This shows that challenging executive power on constitutional grounds is not limited only to laws but also policy. As it should be.

Moderation

Posted: 01 Oct 2013 12:14 PM PDT

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Instead of focusing on how to make Muslims more resourceful and have a better economic life, they spend their days talking about how the enemies of Islam are causing the failures of Muslims. They will not admit that they are the real stumbling block to the growth of the Muslim community.

Zaid Ibrahim, TMI

The Prime Minister once reminded the world community in New York that moderation is the key to solving our many problems. He made particular reference to the Muslim community, within which sectarian killings and violence are taking a heavy toll on human lives.

Like other Muslim leaders, he took great pains to explain that Islam is a religion of peace and is moderate in its teachings. The question, then, is why the most violent and barbaric conduct is often being carried out by groups who call themselves Muslim, be it al-Shabaab , the Taliban or Al-Qaeda.

To answer this question, we have to examine the success story of Indonesia and the failing story of Pakistan.

Muslims form the biggest majority in Indonesia, yet after 60 years of independence their economic standing still lags behind that of non-Muslims in the country. Some sources say that as much as 70 per cent of the country's wealth is owned by non-Muslims. The Indonesian Government realised that in order for the economic situation of the country's Muslims to improve, Indonesia had to be a modern and viable democracy.

The Indonesian Government focused on building massive infrastructure projects as well as harnessing their human resources. Parliament did not waste time debating if Indonesia was an Islamic state or not, but on whether the lives of Muslims had improved. Economic matters took priority—although they did have to deal with occasional side issues like beauty contests and the publication of a local version of Playboy magazine.

The contrast with Pakistan is marked. The people spend all their money and resources on building nuclear bombs. They would rather go to war with India and other "Western stooges", burn buildings and kill Shiites. They much prefer blowing up schools and teachers than improving the lives of the people. The culture of hate and violence is rife among their community leaders and nothing is being done to stop this reign of terror. Pakistan is probably the most ungovernable Muslim country to date.

In Malaysia too, Muslims are economically weak despite being in power with absolute majority for over 50 years. We blame our history, our multiracial makeup and other silly reasons for our backwardness.

Read more at: http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/opinion/zaid-ibrahim/article/moderation 

The plot thickens in MCA leadership drama

Posted: 01 Oct 2013 12:10 PM PDT

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(fz.com) - Money is what was left of the MCA after the party suffered a disastrous defeat in the May 5 general election. Many would say, therefore the fight for party posts is a fight for the party assets. 

The landscape within the MCA did not undergo a sea change after the division elections concluded on Sept 22, as the party president Datuk Seri Chua Soi Lek continues to have tight control over about 70 per cent of the party's division chairmen.

However, there are small ripples that saw some new and young faces elected as central delegates. This category of central delegates may not belong to Chua's vote bank.

Currently, there are various forces in the party, which may not belong to deputy president Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai's camp but are anti-Chua, and they could get together to go against Chua.

Soon after the division elections, many division chairmen had openly stated their support for Chua to defend his presidency. There were 19 divisions out of 26 in Johor and 16 divisions out of 22 in Selangor and 21 divisions out of 24 in Perak which had called press conferences last week urging Chua to continue to lead the party.

This move struck many as déjà vu as the same plot has been playing out in almost every MCA party election, where leaders will openly state their support for a particular leader to go for the top post. This act is important at this juncture as Chua has not openly stated his wish to defend his post.

Although Chua had said that he will step down, as of now word circulating in the party is that he would defend his presidency.

A rough tally of Chua's support in the party after the division elections shows that he enjoys strong support in Johor, Selangor and Perak.

It is estimated that there are more than 2,700 central delegates that will cast their votes in the coming central committee election.

Going by the number of delegates at the 2010 party election, the three states form the biggest portion of the 1,136 central delegates. Citing a party source, Oriental Daily News reported that Chua controls about 70 per cent of these votes.

However, a few leaders who talked to fz.com had pointed out that control over the division chairmen does not equal to control over the central delegates. In some of the divisions, the president's man can only control half of the delegates or slightly more.

The latest requisition for an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) by Chua's camp to vote on a resolution to censure Liow for creating disunity in the party confirmed this view.

The requisition came as a surprise, but the resolution is unusual because of the lack of consequences accompanying it. If the resolution is passed, Liow will not have to face any consequences such as disciplinary action, but rather the moral judgment of the delegates.

One can read the action as a "motion of no confidence" against Liow if it is passed in the EGM, and Liow may then feel pressured to quit the race.

However, it is more than that.

Read more at: http://www.fz.com/content/plot-thickens-mca-leadership-drama 

With questions over RM1.3m in missing police assets, IGP pleads for time

Posted: 01 Oct 2013 12:06 PM PDT

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(MMO) - As the public wonders how guns are being smuggled across the border and onto our streets, the Auditor-General's Report 2012 released yesterday dropped a bombshell as it revealed the police lost 44 firearms between 2010 and 2012.

The question is, have the negligent officers been identified, and what is being done to recover these firearms?

The types of arms are not specified, but the report states they are among several police assets that have gone missing.

The audit found that overall, asset management at the police headquarters in Bukit Aman and at three police contingents (IPK) is unsatisfactory.

The police also lost 29 vehicles in the same period.

Apart from that, 156 handcuffs were reported to have gone missing, along with 26 walkie-talkies, a cellphone, six cameras, four computers, 22 radios, and 21 items filed under "others".

The missing assets amount to RM1.33 million, with Selangor recording the highest number of missing items, followed by Penang and Johor.

DAP's Seputeh MP Teresa Kok alleged that the police might know where criminals are getting firearms, citing the auditor-general's report.

Directing her criticism at  Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar, Kok asked him to take a good look at the apparent weaknesses in the police force instead of pushing for the Prevention of Crime (Amendment and Extension) Bill through Parliament.

Kok, who is also the DAP crime action taskforce chairman, insisted on finding out how the police lost the 44 firearms, adding that they must also reveal what types of arms had gone missing.

"These negligent cops should be sacked and prosecuted if the missing guns are used by criminals to commit crimes," she said.

Kok said 44 was a huge number and she wanted to know if the policemen responsible had been identified.

Khalid requested some time to study the report before he could comment.

"Allow us to take a look at the report first, we will respond soon," he told The Malay Mail.

Also mentioned in the report are the late detection of these losses and how officers did not bother to report the missing items to their heads of departments immediately.

This led to a delay in reporting the missing property.

In general, the auditor-general's findings reveal an overall delay in the handling of the police's missing properties.

In an earlier response to the auditor-general, which is published in the report, the police say they would form a system to enable the police headquarters in Bukit Aman to be alerted once a report has been filed regarding a missing property at each police contingent/formation.

The system will be set up by the information technology department and the logistics department, and is aimed at detecting missing items early.

The police say there is a conflict in the statistics on the number of assets missing as there is no secretariat assigned to manage the matter.

The report also states that only two cases out of 95 in 2012 were settled after some of the missing items were recovered.

The auditor-general says regular procedural checks by the police are needed to prevent the late detection of missing assets.

He also suggests that the cause of these losses be identified, be it theft or negligence, and those involved should face disciplinary action to prevent items going missing in the future. 

Discourse in Political Islam: Failures and (now) Challenges of Islamists.

Posted: 01 Oct 2013 12:02 PM PDT

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The last time I decided to call myself an 'Islamist Democrat' (for some good reason), i was 'ostracised' and almost 'crucified', regrettably, by none other than my own Islamist brethren from my own Islamist party. I am not as courageous but will continue to write without fear or favour regardless.

Dr. Dzulkefly Ahmad 

It would be preposterous for me to ever say that Tariq Ramadan is right again (who are we and who am I..hehe) and to write anything on this subject matter along the line of Tariq's, would expose me to be accused of intellectual plagiarism. Regardless, I am glad that my writings on the subject matter are not far off from Tariq's pieces as he shall continue to be our source of intellectual inspiration of sort. (Defining Moment for Political Islam – The Edge Malaysia and Arab Spring and Post-Islamism?).

Tariq is in Oxford and a visiting professor in many renowned universities. His intellectual audacity is his greatest strength and very admirable. The last time I decided to call myself an 'Islamist Democrat' (for some good reason), i was 'ostracised' and almost 'crucified', regrettably, by none other than my own Islamist brethren from my own Islamist party. I am not as courageous but will continue to write without fear or favour regardless.

Tariq's current piece would surely shed more light of the typology of Islamists – from 'Jihadist to Democrat' and more importantly, this very unfortunate term of 'Islamism' that we "Islamists" have to live with.

 Tariq has what it takes to extricate this ummah out of the intellectual rut we found ourselves in. His thesis is both compelling and insightful much as it 'unconventional' of the usual 'Islamists' narrative'. Tariq's Beyond Islamism (part 2) is asserting that perhaps it's time to review priorities, to shift the paradigm; perhaps it is time for political Islam to cease being intrinsically 'political'…is surely 'revolutionary' and ahead of many an Islamist thinker.

If only Islamists leaders throughout the Muslim world (apart from the pro-Western Monarchs of the Gulf) care to read and understand the many imperatives of his many theses, the perennial predicaments of this ummah, perchance stand a good chance of being correctly addressed and be eventually remedied…God willing..BiiznilLah!

Read more at: http://drdzul.com/2013/10/01/discourse-in-political-islam-failures-and-now-challenges-of-islamists/ 

Hijabi pole dancers and then some

Posted: 01 Oct 2013 11:55 AM PDT

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"Religion to me is very personal. What and how I practise are the result of my upbringing and my own readings/research. A wise imam once said, 'Listen to the religion, not the people.' 


Dina Zaman 

Meet Vixen.

And Moxie.

The two young hijabs in front of me are married, well-educated, love Sephora and cats. They are the best of friends, and adhere to Islamic teachings faithfully. They both are professionals, and have gone far in their careers.

They are also pole dancers.

"This," Moxie says, tapping her own hijab, "is a sign of respect. R-E-S-P-E-C-T. We nurture our bodies and minds. Our bodies are not for show."

But you pole dance, I say.

"Well, the classes are women-only. So we're not showing our bodies to men and the public."

"And our husbands like it," Vixen smiles. They have poles installed in their homes.

They both look at me. "Do you want to come for a trial class?"

I fend them off. No thank you, I hear pole dancing is brutal, I say.

How do the two reconcile their faith, aurat with their hobby of pole-dancing?

Why not? Again they reiterate, this has nothing to do with syirik. It's exercise, and conducted in a closed class full of women. They don't perform in public.

I have been speaking with and following a couple of young women of the new generation of hijabs, who are worlds apart from their mothers, and me. 

In the 80s, when more Malay women took to covering their aurat, many wore black, and some took to the niqab, which spawned off the Hantu Kum-kum myth. 

Beginning from the Nineties, modest fashion began to be more colourful, as women took to wearing floral baju kurungs with pastel coloured scarves (tudungs). 

However, in the last eight years, the young have made modest fashion their own. Yuna, the singer, who is now making inroads in the highly competitive music industry in the US, paved the way for many young Muslim women. The Internet also influenced young Muslim women, as they poured over blogs, fashion websites, and adapted the latest trends in modest wear.

There had always been this perception: Malay women in hijab are less educated, less exposed to the world and are conservative. They are also perceived to be at the lower rung of the wage scale. 

Maybe this could have been true 20 years ago, but today, the hijabi professional and hipster hijabi come from upper-middle class backgrounds, are well educated,  and tote the latest designer IT bag.

The pole-dancing hijabs sitting in front of me are proof that veils and modesty to not equate to low IQ.

Read more at: http://www.themalaymailonline.com/opinion/dina-zaman/article/hijabi-pole-dancers-and-then-some 

AG's Report: RM2b spent on school security favoured firms, not schools

Posted: 30 Sep 2013 09:33 PM PDT

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The audit on 35 schools uncovered that 129 security guards did not meet the minimum requirements of the contract, with nine security guards exceeding the age limit (59 to 72 years old), eight who were above 55 years old could not produce a health report by a government hospital to prove that there are fit for duty; and 76 were not cleared of criminal records by the police station or the Home Ministry.

 

Azril Annuar, Fz.com 
 
 
PETALING JAYA (Oct 1): The Auditor-General's Report 2012 has uncovered that the RM2 billion spent on nationwide school security seem to favour the security firms instead of the schools.
 
With the huge amount of money being spent by the Education Ministry to ensure the safety of the nation's school children and premises, one would expect far better record keeping and an airtight contract from the government.
 
Not only did the contracts seem lopsided, there was also a tremendous amount of poor record keeping by the schools and the security firms as well as undelivered services by contractors.
 
Up till the end of 2012, 795 security firms were engaged and awarded contracts to patrol and protect schools nationwide, with the total cost amounting to RM2.052 billion.
 
The findings of the report in three states – Selangor, Sabah and Perlis – involving 35 schools and boarding schools from June 2012 till Sept 2012 have pointed out the following:
 
* inconsistent contract management with late submission for the performance bonds, and contracts signed without the performance bonds;
 
* unclear contract terms without concrete specifications on equipment such as watchman clock, CCTV installation and alarm systems as well as the lack of security guard profiles since it would only be submitted upon request by the school authorities;
 
* non-compliance to contracts such as security personnel exceeding the age limit, non-submission of health and security reports on the personnel, lack of security guard daily attendance record, non-compliance on dress code, lack of equipment and damaged equipment;
 
* unsatisfactory services where there was no entry and exit control, inconsistent recording of the watchman clock, inadequate security guards and no punitive measures; and
 
* inconsistent payment claims where the implementation services report was incomplete but payment was approved and paid.
 
The report said the government should have warned or cancelled the contracts awarded to companies that have failed to submit their performance bonds.
 
"This non-compliance can result in the government's interest not being protected properly and can affect monthly payment claims." 
 
On security equipment such as the watchman clock, the audit has uncovered that there was no specified number of watchman clock that the security firms must provide, but it was an agreement between the respective schools and the respective contractors.
 
Generally, the companies agreed to provide four watchman clocks to be installed in strategic areas, disregarding the size of each school which could lead to inadequate patrols around the schools.
 
The audit also pointed out that the government should not have granted such freedom to the security firms regarding the watchman clock to ensure proper adequate patrols, especially for schools located in high-risk areas.
 
The report also found that the alarm systems and CCTVs provided to the schools can be determined by each security firm as the contract did not include in detail the quantity, brand, specifications and the location to install the systems.
 
Touching on the profiles of the security guards employed at the schools, the AG's Report revealed that out of the 35 school premises audited, 26 (74%) involving 18 security firms failed to produce the biodata of 76 security guards.
 
This entails a security risk for the schools as it cannot determine who will be safeguarding the school premises.
 
There were also breaches of contract regarding the age and physical health of the security guards.
 
Read more at: http://fz.com/content/ags-report-rm2b-spent-school-security-favoured-firms-not-schools#ixzz2gTOb3HVo

Malaysian police lost over $500k in assets in last 3 years: AG

Posted: 30 Sep 2013 09:25 PM PDT

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(AsiaOne) - Some RM1.3m (S$502,721) in assets, including firearms, vehicles and handcuffs were lost by police over the last three years, according to the the 2012 Auditor-General's report presented to Parliament Tuesday.

This was among the wastages highlighted in the report which also found the police's management of missing assets unsatisfactory.

It noted that there were also delays in discovery of the missing assets and in reporting losses to the department head and to the police and in preparing an initial report on the missing assets.

The report also stated that there were still many missing cases in 2010 and 2011 that had yet to be solved, as well as surcharges that have yet to be collected.

"Besides that, records in Bukit Aman and state police contingent headquarters containing information on missing assets and the status of investigations need to be coordinated," it added.

In another case involving the Customs Department, the report stated that RM602,089 worth of shoes bought for its staff were destroyed because of wrong specification.

The department destroyed the 7,659 pairs of new footwear purchased in 2009 for staff after finding that the quality of the shoes and boots had degraded after being kept in its store for three years.

The report said the sizes also did not meet the needs of the officers and sample tests conducted by the Science Technology Research Institute of Defence (STRIDE).

STRIDE found that the soles of the shoes had turned brittle and split, the report said.

It said that the goods were part of the department's uniform distributed to its staff with each person allocated two pairs of shoes before the end of April every year.

The role and significance of party elections

Posted: 30 Sep 2013 09:10 PM PDT

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Did the party election bring a significance that can be learned by others to enhance the country's democracy?

Or, is the party just marking time and even becoming more and more like the MCA which has been trapped in the quagmire of factional fighting, as some party outsiders criticised?

Soong Phui Jee, Sin Chew Daily

The DAP's Central Executive Council (CEC) leadership line-up elected in December last year was re-elected on 29 September. Although it had been expected that the number of votes received by some candidates would increase or decrease, it had at the same time reflected the subtle changes resulted by the party factional fighting.

An indisputable fact is, through the CEC re-election, the opposition faction has called for checks and balances for the strong leadership of Lim Kit Siang and Lim Guan Eng. Both the father and son had received lesser votes this time and Guan Eng had even dropped from the second place to the fifth in the ranking, reflecting the growth of forces of the opposition faction. The changes have received much concern.

In a democratic country, party election is also a very important part in the practice of democracy. Competition brought by a party election could indeed evolve into dispute and division, but there is also a positive side. If party election can really help the party elect a group of outstanding leaders, it will mean complementing a powerful force for the party's future. It provides not only new room for the party's democracy development, but also a very good opportunity for reform. However, the political field has always been filled with interest disputes. Once factional fighting turns over intense, party election will become a dispute of the vested interest group. The life-or-death battle among various factions will weaken the party's overall forces and become unfavourable to the party's growth and development.

How to have a high-quality party election should be the target of all political parties as it is also a crucial foundation for the party's growth and democratic politics.

The DAP party re-election was particularly noticeable partly because it has gained a brilliant victory in the general election this year, allowing party chairman Karpal Singh to have an extremely high expectation of seizing the Putrajaya in the future. Meanwhile, it is also because the re-election was held following an order from the Registrar of Societies (ROS) after finding irregularities in the original polls held on 15 December last year. In addition, Ladang Paroi DAP branch chief David Dass had applied on 10 September for an injunction to stop the special congress on grounds that it was illegal to call for a special congress to hold CEC elections, leading Guan Eng to describe the entire incident a "political revenge".

In any case, the DAP has finally held the re-election successfully. In addition to some arguments over the number of votes gained by some candidates, one point that should earn more concern is, did the party election enhance democracy in the party after going through a series of internal and external tests and controversies? Did the party election bring a significance that can be learned by others to enhance the country's democracy? Or, is the party just marking time and even becoming more and more like the MCA which has been trapped in the quagmire of factional fighting, as some party outsiders criticised?

READ MORE HERE 

‘We will continue fighting the ROS’

Posted: 30 Sep 2013 08:19 PM PDT

The party secretary-general also says the rise or drop in the number of votes is part of the electoral process, and that he respects the delegates' decision.

Anisah Shukry, FMT

DAP Secretary General Lim Guan Eng today downplayed the reduced votes he received in Sunday's party polls, saying that it was all part of the electoral process.

"We respect the decision of the delegates. Whether we receive more or less votes is part of the process. We are willing to listen to the delegates," he told reporters at a press conference at the Parliament lobby today.

"But (despite the reduced votes) my style of leadership will remain. We will continue to fight the Registrar of Societies (ROS)."

The Penang Chief Minister, who held the number two spot in the first Central Executive Committee (CEC) elections in December last year only managed to secure the fifth spot this time around with only 1,304 votes.

According to Lim, by voting in the same 20 members into the Central Executive Committee (CEC), the delegates had shown they were unanimous in believing that the party had been victimised by the Registrar of Societies (ROS).

"The delegates have spoken. They are saying "no" to the ROS," reiterated Lim.

The ROS had ordered the DAP to hold a re-election after disgruntled members reported they had not received notice of the CEC elections last year.

Last year's party polls also invoked controversy when a tabulation error was discovered where a recalculation of the results saw Zairil Khir Johari entering the CEC, making him the only Malay in the party's highest committee.

"I don't know what the ROS wants. Maybe they want to cause trouble in a bid to cripple us so that we are unable to carry out our main function, which is to topple BN and Umno in the next general election," Lim said today.

READ MORE HERE

 

Burning Embers of Change in DAP

Posted: 30 Sep 2013 08:01 PM PDT

Major Huan Cheng Guan (K)

The Central Executive Committee results have left behind burning embers fanned by strong winds of change indicating internal forces at work to dislodge the Lim dynasty's iron grip on DAP and bring about real change as espoused by their Ubah slogan.

The Iron Grip is Loosening
Regardless of whatever baloney pro-DAP media may spin, the heart of the matter is that that the delegates have sent a clear message to voice their discontent with Lim Kit Siang and Lim Guan Eng. Both of them had the BIGGEST drop in votes compared to the previous elections held in December 2012.

Lim Guan Eng tried to brush off the glaringly reduced number of votes that he received in the re-election today by a feeble proposition that it might be caused by a drop in the number of delegates who voted.

Last year during the CEC elections in Penang, there were 1,823 delegates present. This year, only 1,725 delegates voted. The reduction in attendance is only 5.3% whereas Lim Guan Eng's drop in votes secured in 17.2%, more than three times HIGHER than the drop in attendance!
In December 2012, Lim Guan Eng garnered 1576 votes but yesterday, he only secured 1304 votes –  a drop of 272 votes or -17.2%the highest decline of all twenty candidates.

Lim Kit Siang won 1607 votes in 2012 but only received 1436 votes yesterday – a decline of 171 votes or -10.64% decrease, the second highest drop in votes of all twenty candidates.
The fact that 1, 725 voters chose to vote this way instead of endorsing Lim Kit Siang and Lim Guan Eng via higher votes is indicative of DAP delegates rising to the clarion call that the Lim Dynasty must end.

READ MORE HERE

 

Is DAP heading for a constitutional crisis?

Posted: 30 Sep 2013 07:02 PM PDT

According to DAP's constitution, election of CEC members must be done at a national congress while there is no clear clause providing for the election of CEC members in a special congress. This appears to be the confusion surrounding the Sunday, 29th September 2013, re-election and whether it will end up invalid just like the 15th December 2012 election is a matter that is yet to be decided.

THE CORRIDORS OF POWER

Raja Petra Kamarudin

(The Star, 1 Oct 2013) - The Registrar of Societies (ROS) says DAP is barking up the wrong tree as the party's dispute was with its members, and not with the agency. An ROS spokesman said it was DAP members who were dissatisfied with the leadership, as they believed that the party constitution had been breached.

"We are merely acting on complaints lodged by DAP members. We received not one but many complaints," he said, stressing that the dispute did not involve ROS. He said this when asked to comment on DAP chairman Karpal Singh's threat to take ROS to court for allegedly oppressing the party.

The ROS spokesman said the agency too could take action against the party on various grounds. "But we want to help resolve this matter. If laws are interpreted according to perception, there would be no end to it," he said. He also called on DAP leaders to respect and observe their own party constitution. "They can't act as if they are not bound by rules," he said.

On July 30, ROS directed DAP to hold fresh polls following allegations of discrepancies in the polls held in December last year. ROS' subsequent advice to hold fresh polls in a national congress and provide 10-week notice to branches fell on deaf ears.

DAP held fresh polls in a special congress on Sunday after giving delegates three weeks' notice. The ROS spokesman said they would wait for DAP's report on its special congress and fresh CEC polls before deciding on the next course of action.

The spokesman also rebutted claims by DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng and special congress chairman Anthony Loke that ROS had refused to meet up with them to discuss the dispute. "No government office shuts its doors on the rakyat. If they want to come and discuss they are most welcome to do so," he said.

*********************************************

There appears to be some confusion as to what has been going on over the last nine months or so since mid-December 2012. The impression given is that this is a tussle between the Registrar of Societies (ROS) and the Democratic Action Party (DAP). According to a DAP insider who I spoke to, the tussle is actually between the anti-Lim and pro-Lim factions with the ROS being used as the catalyst to force the hands of the party.

This is the story I got from a DAP insider, more or less in his own words.

On 5th December 2012, that is ten days before DAP's party elections on 15th December 2012, letters were sent out to inform some of the members about the AGM. The bone of contention here is that the letters should have been sent out ten weeks and not ten days before the meeting and that not everyone eligible to attend the party election received their letters.

The reason this was done, say the disgruntled members who had lodged complaints with the ROS, is because after the 985 branch elections a few months before that, Lim Guan Eng's feedback was that more than half the delegates would not be voting for him. Hence he wanted an 'ambush' AGM so that he could exclude those hostile towards him.

Based on the 985 branches, 2,576 delegates would be eligible to attend and vote at the AGM. However, it is expected that 1,300 of the delegates would not be voting for him. Hence Lim Guan Eng would possibly get votes from only 1,276 delegates.

Hence invitation letters were sent to only 1,276 delegates and those who did not receive any letters, or were not in possession of these letters, were not allowed to attend the meeting. It was further alleged that 547 delegates were 'imported' although they were not eligible to vote. These 547 delegates were considered 'friendly parties' and added to the 1,276 would bring the figure up to 1,823.

Without the presence of these 547 'imported' delegates, Lim Guan Eng would be able to obtain only 1,200 or so votes, which would place him between number five to number seven and not number two on the list of winners. Further to that, they felt that the 'Five Tigers' (Teng Chang Khim, Chow Kon Yeow, Boo Cheng Hau, Nga Kor Ming and Ngeh Koo Ham) would have performed better had there been no manipulation of the delegates list.

The disgruntled members alleged that there was further manipulation of the votes of the 547 'imported' delegates who only marked six candidates (Lim Kit Siang, Lim Guan Eng, Karpal Singh, Chong Chieng Jin, Anthony Loke and Vincent Wu) while the rest of the names were left blank -- to be filled in by Pooi Weng Keong under the control of Anthony Loke, Vincent Wu and Jeff Ooi.

This was to ensure that those who got voted into the CEC were also friendly parties aligned to Lim Guan Eng. This will have a bearing on the candidates in the general election to be held in a few months from then, as it is customary for the winners in the party elections to be given a seat in the general elections.

Further to that, all candidates in the general election need the approval of the CEC and to ensure that your people are selected to contest the general election you need control of the CEC.

There was a lot of pressure from PAS/PKR that the elections gave the impression that DAP is a Chinese party because only one Indian and no Malay won a seat in the CEC.

Because they needed a Malay face in the CEC, say the disgruntled members, they manipulated the results to allow Zairil Abdullah (a.k.a. Zairil Khir Johari) to win by changing his votes from 305 to 893 thus changing his position from number 39 to number 20 -- to switch places with Vincent Wu, whose votes were changed from 1,202 to 659 -- and then blame this change on a computer glitch.

ROS says it took action based on complaints by the disgruntled members. First, many members who were eligible to attend and vote in the AGM were denied their right to do so. Secondly, many delegates compared notes and discovered that candidates who were not popular and did not receive much support ended up getting top score. People like Zairil is on example who could not have received such high votes, which he did not at first but did only after the figure was changed later.

The ROS interviewed many of these disgruntled members and it was proven that many who were eligible to attend the meeting were disallowed from doing so. Out of 40 delegates that the ROS interviewed, 32 confirmed that they did not receive letters for the meeting while the eight that did were not allowed to enter the hall because they could not produce a separate invitation letter. You need both a notice of meeting and an invitation letter to be allowed into the hall.

The ROS then sent DAP a letter dated 17th April 2013 informing the party that its AGM is invalid based on the events above. Furthermore, the validity of the office bearers is in doubt because Vincent Wu participated in the first meeting that confirmed the appointment of these office bearers. ROS asked DAP to address these two issues.

The following day, Lim Kit Siang and Lim Guan Eng publicised the ROS letter and alleged that the ROS intended to deregister DAP and disallow the candidates to use the party symbol in the general election, which the ROS denied. Hence DAP would have to contest the 13th General Election under another party symbol.

The impression given was that the ROS wanted to deregister DAP and not allow it to contest the election using its party symbol. That was why the DAP candidates turned up on Nomination Day with two Surat Watikah. DAP, however, was allowed to contest the general election using its own party symbol.

The disgruntled members further alleged that some of the candidates who had won in the previous general election but who were not in Lim Guan Eng's camp were dropped as candidates in the 13th General Election as part of the cleaning out process. Many accepted this although they were very bitter about it but some like G. Asoghan and Jenice Lee contested as independent candidates and were subsequently sacked and took their cases to court.

Their argument is that, since the CEC in invalid, hence the CEC decision to sack them is also invalid. Furthermore, the Surat Watikah signed by Lim Guan Eng for the DAP candidates would be equally invalid.

DAP, thus far, did not act to rectify its invalid party election. Hence, on 30th July 2013, the ROS sent DAP a letter asking the party to hold a re-election on the two grounds mentioned above. In fact, this is what the disgruntled members have been asking for since February 2013.

On 15th August 2013, the CEC met and decided to comply with the ROS demand to hold a re-election but this was opposed by Lim Kit Siang and Lim Guan Eng.

On 17th August 2013, Karpal Singh announced that DAP will comply with the ROS demand and will hold a national congress within ten weeks and said that the original 15th December 2012 delegates' list will be used and that all delegates would be allowed to attend, even those who have since been sacked.

On 22nd August 2013, Lim Guan Eng contradicted Karpal and announced that the re-election would be held on 29th September 2013 instead, which means there will be no ten weeks notice given as required by Clause 8(6) of the party constitution.

The argument given to justify this action is that the re-election is a special congress and not a national congress that requires only seven days notice and not ten weeks. In other words, the special congress is an EGM and not an AGM like the national congress.

According to DAP's constitution, election of CEC members must be done at a national congress while there is no clear clause providing for the election of CEC members in a special congress. This appears to be the confusion surrounding the Sunday, 29th September 2013, re-election and whether it will end up invalid just like the 15th December 2012 election is a matter that is yet to be decided.

The ball is now at the feet of the ROS and if the recent EGM is considered invalid then we may see DAP heading for a constitutional crisis and the party may end up like what happened to Umno back in the late 1980s.

 

Will Mukhriz fly?

Posted: 30 Sep 2013 05:30 PM PDT

Mukhriz, 48, seems to be pressing the right buttons so far in his seat at Wisma Darulaman. The last I heard the civil servants liked his fast-moving style and he has pleased many people by having religious forums and lectures at Seri Mentaloon, the MB's official residence.

Syed Nadzri Syed Harun, MM

Hardly four months into his big job, this could be the baptism of fire that Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir needs.

And it comes two in a row—his bid for Umno vice-presidency and the impending by-election on home soil in Sungai Limau.

Win or lose is not the sole point but rather it is going to be how Mukhriz, a budding political blueblood thrust into the laserlights by assuming the Kedah menteri besar position after the general election, handles the pressure in the coming weeks.

Both are tough propositions. A victory in one will be just opportune, in both he will fly.

However the terrain appears to be rough even with the star ratings he has been getting about his vice-presidency bid from pro-Umno bloggers.

But Mukhriz should know this game very well by now because in the last party election where he contested the youth chief post, he was very much the leading contender against Khairy Jamaluddin and Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo until the final results came out favouring Khairy.

This time Mukhriz has thrown his hat into the vice-presidency ring where the battle is stiffer and the stakes sky high. For one of the three seats, he is up against five other contenders—three formidable incumbents and two tenacious party veterans.

One thing in favour of him is the call for transformation in Umno. But that, as everyone knows, is what is only ringing out loud outwardly. What lies beneath is much more complex and sometimes knotting into intriques.

Yes, he has an influential father behind him. But there are always booby traps around. Already the whispers are being exchanged rapidly about the remarks being made by daddy, party elder Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, about many things, especially the one purportedly saying that Umno is filling up with stupid people as the younger and clever ones never get a chance to go up the ranks.

As reported in The Economist last week, there is also talk that Mukhriz would be a threat to party president and prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak if he becomes Umno vice-president as this could further push certain forces to oust Najib. Another poison arrow.

Mukhriz's camp has denied that he is a proxy for his father or anyone else. But that again is a perception that is hard to erase, especially in a high-stake battle against seasoned opponents some of whom have got a reputation of being "generous" on all fronts.

A menteri besar in the vice-presidency ring would enjoy big advantages 20 years ago when MBs carried so much bargaining power to secure votes. But now Kelab MB is no more and solidarity has faded among them.

As for the Sungai Limau by-election, Mukhriz who is likely to be field commander for Barisan Nasional by virtue of the fact that he is Kedah Umno chief, could score if he plays his cards right.

In the first place, this state seat, like Kedah as a whole, cannot be said to be a Pas stronghold although it is right smack in the padi heartland and not far from the big Pas complex in Kota Sarang Semut.

Situated about 35km south of Alor Star, Sungai Limau is in the Jerai parliamentary constituency and lies in the district of Yan where some of the Kedah's best known personalities and business people come from, including Tan Sri Sanusi Junid, Tan Sri Tajudin Ramli and the famous Hussein family of laureates Tan Sri Ismail, Datuk Abdullah and Datuk Ibrahim.

In the last round, Kedah Pas chief Tan Sri Azizan Abdul Razak won by a little more than 2,000. In a constituency of 25,000, the majority is not insurmountable for BN when the by-election comes.

Mukhriz, 48, seems to be pressing the right buttons so far in his seat at Wisma Darulaman. The last I heard the civil servants liked his fast-moving style and he has pleased many people by having religious forums and lectures at Seri Mentaloon, the MB's official residence.

Whatever it is, the going is still rough ahead, one coming on Oct 19 when the Umno election results are known and the other not long after that when he leads the  troops in his first by-election battle.

 

Now Zahid says PCA Bill open to changes

Posted: 30 Sep 2013 05:24 PM PDT

(MM) - The controversial proposed amendments to the Prevention of Crime Act (PCA) can still be changed, Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said today, amid rising criticism against the return of preventive detention.

The Home Minister said Putrajaya was open to making a few amendments at the committee stage after the second reading of the PCA (Amendment and Extension) Bill 2013, but he refused to specify if the clauses allowing detention without trial would be amended.

"Don't close the door and claim that the government is not willing to listen and have discussions with those who feel that this law is something that must be rejected 100 per cent," Ahmad Zahid told reporters at Parliament here this afternoon.

The PCA bill has come under fire from Malaysia's three Bar associations, opposition lawmakers, and human rights activists, who say that the Bill is a resurrection of two colonial-era laws — the Internal Security Act (ISA) and the Emergency Ordinance (EO) — that were repealed by the Najib administration in 2011.

Several PKR lawmakers said later today that they would press for the Bill to be sent to a parliamentary select committee before the second reading.

"If we rush through 11 Bills in three days, the time for debate is too short," Gombak MP Azmin Ali told reporters here today, referring to other Bills to amend related laws such as the Penal Code, Security Offences (Special Measures) Act, the Criminal Procedure Code and the Evidence Act.

"One bill is very important, but it is taken lightly by the government that is trying to bulldoze this Bill through," added the PKR deputy president.

Subang MP R. Sivarasa said Putrajaya had also made some amendments to the PCA Bill, such as extending detention under remand to 59 days, before detention without trial for two years.

Putrajaya maintains that preventive detention does not signal a return to the days of the ISA and EO — both of which are said to have been abused to quell dissent — but critics remain adamant in their fears that such a law would lead to a repeat of previous abuses.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said yesterday in New York that preventive detention would be used against violent criminals, not political dissidents.

The PCA Bill was tabled in Parliament last week amid an ongoing crackdown by the police against the criminal underworld, after a recent spate of shootings and violent crime. 

 

Rumblings among the thinkers

Posted: 30 Sep 2013 05:05 PM PDT

The top-down push for a status quo at the Umno vice-president level has not gone down well with the party grassroots who resent being told who to vote for.

The feedback is that delegates resent being told what to do or who to vote for. They said the new election system is meant to give the party grassroots greater say on who they want as their leaders.

Joceline Tan, The Star

KELANTAN Umno politician Datuk Alwi Che Ahmad used to be known for his witty oratory but he has been likened to the actors of the Malay movie Tanda Putera ever since he changed spectacles to the sixties-style, black rimmed glasses.

As a result, Alwi who is vying for a seat in the Umno supreme council, has adopted a unique campaign line: "Think of Tanda Putera, think of me."

Last week, Alwi who is deputy Ketereh Umno chief, was in Shah Alam with the three Umno vice-presidents (VPs) at a function for the Selangor delegates to meet the VPs.

Alwi seems to be one of those who support a status quo at the VP level and he has accompanied the three Datuk Seri's – Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Hishammuddin Tun Hussein and Shafie Apdal – on a number of their state rounds.

They have been well received everywhere they have gone.

At the Shah Alam event, Zahid who spoke on behalf of the trio said: "If re-elected, we will look after Selangor. Menteri Lori" (Hisham­muddin is also acting Transport Minister) will handle the transport problems in Selangor. Menteri Luar Bandar (Shafie) will handle the rural areas. And Menteri Sekuriti will handle the gangsters."

Everyone had a good laugh, especially when Zahid claimed that some of the gangs are trying to escape into Thailand.

"Don't worry, we will stop them at the border, ask them to remove their shirts to check their tattoos," he said to more laughter.

The trio have been campaigning as a team despite denying being a team and there have been calls to maintain the status quo at the VP level.

But laughs aside, the status quo campaign line for the VPs has not gone down well among the Umno delegates, especially those in the urban states.

There have been rumblings among Federal Territory Umno delegates after secretary-general Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Mansor reportedly asked them to retain the three VPs.

Some felt that as the secretary-general, Tengku Adnan should stay above the fray.

But it has since been claimed it was only a "suggestion" on Tengku Adnan's part.

There was also an attempt by a state chief to get his division leaders to take a stand to endorse the incumbents. But the move failed after some of the division chiefs refused on the grounds that it would not go down well with their grassroots.

More recently, a macho division warlord from Perak had wanted to issue a statement that his division wants to endorse Zahid, Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir and Tan Sri Mohd Isa Samad for the VP post.

But he had to abort his plan after receiving phone calls from top leaders telling him not to do that. He toed the line but was quite cheesed-off.

It is quite clear by now that the three incumbents do enjoy the backing of the top leadership.

The three incumbents are all closely linked to Umno president Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak. Zahid and Shafie were in the Youth wing with Najib during his time as Umno Youth leader.

As for Hishammuddin, blood is thicker than water.

Najib feels comfortable with them and they have worked well together.

More important, none of the three look like the sort who will go against him should the going get rough in the years ahead.

In the past, this sort of endorsement from the top would have guaranteed a win. But times have changed.

The Umno ground especially in the urban divisions, has grown more discerning and demanding of what they want out of their leaders.

Their assessment of a leader is not based solely on what the top man says but also based on how they view the performance and personality of the those vying for posts.

"It is no more like the old days where you tell, they follow. The more you pressure, the more people will be unhappy.

"You can give hints but people don't like it if you tell them do this, don't do that," said deputy Kapar Umno chief Datuk Faizal Abdullah.

Some of the delegates even have their own KPIs for the VP candidates who are ministers and not all of them have passed.

Another important factor is how well candidates have defended the party, the Malays and the religion.

Finally, the candidates are assessed on how friendly and approachable they have been.

This is where the ministers come under great scrutiny because even though they are up there they are expected to be accessible to the Umno rank and file.

The push to maintain the VP status quo looks like it is on the point of backfiring.

The feedback is that delegates resent being told what to do or who to vote for. They said the new election system is meant to give the party grassroots greater say on who they want as their leaders.

The more thinking delegates said that such instructions from the top "insults our intelligence".

"It's very hard to read the VP race. All I can say is that my friends inside and also outside Umno are looking at Zahid and Mukhriz but anything can happen," said Faizal.

The official road show for candidates to meet the delegates begins tomorrow.

These party-organised affairs have been criticised by some as undemocratic but the rules were made with good intentions.

They are aimed at reducing the opportunities for money politics.

But the focus of many candidates are on the four big states – Johor, Sabah, Perak and Selangor.

The big four have a total of 97 divisions, which is more than the total tally of 94 divisions in the rest of the states.

Those hoping for hints on the eventual outcome of the VP race will be closely following the road show.

 

DAP barking up the wrong tree, says ROS

Posted: 30 Sep 2013 05:02 PM PDT

(The Star) - The Registrar of Societies (ROS) says DAP is barking up the wrong tree as the party's dispute was with its members, and not with the agency.

An ROS spokesman said it was DAP members who were dissatisfied with the leadership as they believed that the party constitution had been breached.

"We are merely acting on complaints lodged by DAP members. We received not one but many complaints," he said, stressing that the dispute did not involve ROS.

He said this when asked to comment on DAP chairman Karpal Singh's threat to take ROS to court for allegedly oppressing the party.

The ROS spokesman said the agency too could take action against the party on various grounds.

"But we want to help resolve this matter. If laws are interpreted according to perception, there would be no end to it," he said.

He also called on DAP leaders to respect and observe their own party constitution.

"They can't act as if they are not bound by rules," he said.

On July 30, ROS directed DAP to hold fresh polls following allegations of discrepancies in the polls held in December last year.

ROS' subsequent advice to hold fresh polls in a national congress and provide 10-week notice to branches fell on deaf ears.

DAP held fresh polls in a special congress on Sunday after giving delegates three weeks' notice.

The ROS spokesman said they would wait for DAP's report on its special congress and fresh CEC polls before deciding on the next course of action.

The spokesman also rebutted claims by DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng and special congress chairman Anthony Loke that ROS had refused to meet up with them to discuss the dispute.

"No government office shuts its doors on the rakyat. If they want to come and discuss they are most welcome to do so," he said.

 

Lims urged to step aside gracefully

Posted: 30 Sep 2013 04:54 PM PDT

Sunday's party polls an indication that delegates wish to see father and son make way for more capable leaders to helm DAP, says Huan Cheng Guan.

Athi Shankar, FMT

A political commentator today called on Lim Kit Siang and his son, Guan Eng, to step down from DAP leadership following damaging decline in their popular votes in Sunday's party polls.

Sensible and Ethical Malaysian United Team (Semut) president Huan Cheng Guan said both father and son should heed the message sent out by delegates and gracefully make way for other capable leaders to run the DAP.

Huan said both Lims suffered biggest drop in popular votes among newly elected top 20 central executive committee (CEC) members.

Instead of stepping aside for others to take over, the father and son had reinforced their rule with the latest CEC appointments despite the decline in their popularity, added Huan.

He said the Lims should walk their talk just as how they lambasted Barisan Nasional for losing the moral ground to rule after it lost its popular votes in the 13th general election.

Only 1,725 of the eligible 2,576 delegates voted in party polls on Sept 29, which was lower by 5.3% from the 1,823 delegates who attended the CEC elections in Penang on Dec 15, 2012.

Party secretary-general Guan Eng's 1,304 votes this time compared with 1,576 votes secured last year was a huge decline by 17.2% or 272 votes.

'Are the warlords listening?'

Party parliamentary leader Kit Siang received 1,436 votes, which was a drop of 171 votes or 10.64% from the 1,607 votes he garnered in 2012.

"Both father and son suffered the two biggest drops in votes among all top 20 winners. Delegates have sent a clear message of their discontent with both of them. The Lims have clearly lost popularity among DAP members.

"They should set an example in accordance with the same standard they set for BN. They should step down immediately and pave way for new leaders to take over," said Huan in a statement here today.

READ MORE HERE

 

Liow turns tables on Chua for GE disaster

Posted: 30 Sep 2013 04:49 PM PDT

MCA deputy president Liow Tiong Lai blames party president's "lack of moral values" for party's disastrous performance during national polls.

Lisa J Ariffin, FMT

The fight for MCA's presidential post intensified today when deputy president Liow Tiong Lai blamed incumbent chief Dr Chua Soi Lek for the party's disastrous performance during the general election in May.

Liow turned the tables on Chua following news yesterday that 20 central committee members had called for an extraordinary general assembly to censure the deputy president for failing in his duty as the chairman of the general election preparation committee.

"This loss was because we have a president with moral issues. The president has made the members ashamed to face the people, especially the women," Liow told a press conference here.

It was understood that Liow was referring to Chua's sex-tape scandal in 2008 which forced the latter to relinquish his post as Health Minister and party positions. He later made a political comeback to become the party president.

"During house to house campaigns, we were hurled with abusive words, and the people insulted our members for having such an immoral leaders.

"There were also BN leaders who did not want our president to campaign in their respective constituencies as they were afraid (the scandal) would affect voting in the area," he said.

"Therefore, claims that I did not perform my duty as election chairman and did not give publicity to MCA is not true. I stress that a lot of issues regarding the party's strategy are determined by the party president himself," he added.

 

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