Ahad, 13 Oktober 2013

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Johor DAP chairman backs down, says shares Kit Siang’s Malaysian Dream vision

Posted: 12 Oct 2013 07:22 PM PDT

Eileen Ng, TMI

Johor DAP chairman Dr Boo Cheng Hau appears to have backed down from his earlier remarks on the Malaysian Dream Movement after coming under fire from party comrades.

Stressing that he shared party adviser Lim Kit Siang's vision of the movement, which is to stamp out racism and bigotry, Dr Boo said he was under the impression that Malaysian Dream was a form of declaration.

However, when it was later translated into various forms of activity, he felt the execution needed more input and coordination at various party levels to make it a bigger success.

He said since the movement is meant to focus on rural folks in the context of West Malaysia, cultural sensitivity is important to endear the Malaysian Dream to them.

"I believe cultural sensitivity should be cultivated among youngsters, including DAP members, and more deliberations and discussions should be encouraged in order to promote the Malaysian Dream Movement effectively at all levels of the party," he said in a statement today. He added that cultural traits should not be ignored and feedback should be gathered from the grassroots to attract more voters.

DAP publicity chief Tony Pua had slammed Dr Boo for his earlier comments on the movement, describing it as "irresponsible" and "unfounded'.

Dr Boo had reportedly said on Friday the Malaysian Dream Movement did not have the approval of DAP's central executive committee.

He also allegedly said certain figures had been given unchecked authority to raise funds using DAP resources and carry out activities which usurped the powers of other party organs.

Pua had said the Malaysian Dream was not mere rhetoric, as it spawned the "Impian Sarawak" campaign which was launched to urge all Malaysians to be agents of change and to bridge the divide between east and west Malaysia.

In defending his remarks on Impian Sarawak, Dr Boo said he did not raise any objections to the campaign due to the uncertainty of the party's central executive committee position when the Registrar of Societies directed the party to hold fresh internal polls.

He also said he did not give any opinion as Impian Sarawak is under the jurisdiction of the Sarawak DAP committee.



Tony Pua called RoS “running dogs” because it’s a Malay organisation, says Utusan

Posted: 12 Oct 2013 04:57 PM PDT

(TMI) - Malay daily Utusan Malaysia continued its attack on DAP national publicity chief Tony Pua today for calling the Registrar of Societies (RoS) Umno's running dog.

In its attack on Pua, the paper's columnist Awang Selamat took a racial approach, describing the RoS as comprising of mainly Malay staff.

Awang Selamat, the pseudonym for Utusan's editorial team, referred to a statement by Kedah PAS member Wan Johari Wan Omar chiding Pua.

"Wan Johari told Pua to stop calling the RoS, which comprised mainly of Malay workers, dog because it was only carrying out its duties," the column said in its weekend edition, Mingguan Malaysia.

"The message is clear, Pua's words are disgusting and racist. It is up to the Malays to decipher Pua's message and read between the lines," said Awang Selamat.

The column suggested that Pua thought it was more satisfying to call a "Malay organisation" as "dogs", and asked if he would have done the same to a Chinese-majority organisation.

"For Awang, it is no longer a question of moral inferiority but a very extreme racial symptom.

"The provocation and insults towards Malays are not something new among the leaders of this party. They are ungrateful.

"Awang recalls the May 13 racial riots, which everyone knows were caused by provocation towards the Malays. Is Pua trying to sow the seeds for a repeat?" said the column.



Islam under threat if Putrajaya buckles at Geneva review, Muslim NGO warns

Posted: 12 Oct 2013 04:53 PM PDT

(MM) - Islam will come under the threat of apostasy and secularism if Putrajaya caves to pressures from civil rights groups during its human rights review in Geneva this month, the Malaysian Muslim Lawyers Association warned today.

In a statement here, association president Datuk Zainul Rijal Abu Bakar urged the government to ignore the demands of Comango or the Coalition of Malaysian NGOs in the UPR (Universal Periodic Review), which had recently issued its list of recommendations ahead of the October 24 review by the Human Rights Council.

According to Zainul, the coalition of over 50 NGOs had recommended far-reaching proposals purportedly to improve the country's human rights record but this would also effectively usurp Islam and Malaysia's sovereignty.

Among others, the leader pointed out that Comango had sought for Malaysia to be signatory to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), a convention to protect freedom in religion that he said would encourage apostasy.

Zainul said Comango had also asked Putrajaya to sign Malaysia on as part of the International Covenant on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD), another human rights treaty that he claimed would infuse western laws into the local justice system, without offering any consideration to local cultures and values.

"Malaysia was asked to submit to the ICERD, which will force the country to follow the dictates of the secular West, as well as accede to universal values that are contrary to local norms and will threaten the country's sovereignty," he said in the statement.

Zainul noted that Comango had also urged Putrajaya to endorse SOGI (Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity) righs or rights of the LGBTIQ group, better known as Lesbians, Bisexuals, Gays, Transgender, inter-sexed and queer persons.

"In fact, there are also pressures calling for the elimination of, inter alia, Section 277A of the Penal Code, which criminalises consensual anal or oral sex, on the basis of human rights," he said.

"If these LGBT rights are permitted, then the first step that the Malaysian government has to take is to repeal laws on sodomy, allow same-sex marriages and many others," he warned.

Comango had also created "confusions" over the issue of freedom of religion in Malaysia, Zainul claimed, citing the coalition's stand on the controversial "Allah" legal tussle between Christians and Muslims here.

"PPMM insists that such claims not only challenge the position of Islam as the religion of the federation and the country's sovereignty, but it is also done through an invalid platform like Comango," he said, referring to the association by its Malay initials.

"PPMM urges the Malaysian government not to entertain or accede to Comango's demands as they had not taken into account the cultures, practices and religions of Malaysia.

"No religion in this world endorses adultery and homosexuality," he said.

"It is extremely important that the government does not cave to these pressures and defends Islam as the religion of the federation," he added.

Comango comprises NGOs like Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram), the Pusat Kesedaran Komuniti Selangor (Empower), Christian Federation Malaysia, Amnesty International Malaysia, KLSCAH Civil Rights Committee, Centre for Independent Journalism and others.

Malaysia is expected to face a beating for its human rights record when the government faces its second UPR this October 24.

The Malaysian Human Rights Commission (Suhakam) said in a recent statement that in particular, the government will come under grave criticism for approving the latest amendments to the Prevention of Crime Act 1959.

Among others, the amendments allowed the return of detention without crime, a highly-contentious element in the Internal Security Act that was done away with when the law was repealed recently by the Najib administration.

"(The) current legislative initiatives in the interest of public security ... in particular the amendments to the Prevention of Crime Act 1959, will open the country to scrutiny and criticism by the international community," its chairman, Tan Sri Hasmy Agam, said in a statement recently as quoted by The Sun daily.

Malaysia was first came under the UPR review on February 11, 2009, and consequently accepted 62 of the 103 recommendations issued by the UPR working group.

The UPR, according to media reports, is a United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council mechanism that was established in 2007 to improve the treatment of human rights in all 193 UN member states. 


Archbishop prays for ‘enlightened’ decision in ‘Allah’ appeal

Posted: 12 Oct 2013 04:45 PM PDT

(MM) - After meeting thousands of Catholics at a mammoth rally here, Archbishop Tan Sri Murphy Pakiam offered today a prayer of "enlightenment" for the decision-makers in tomorrow's highly-anticipated "Allah" case, a long drawn out dispute that has sullied religious ties between Christians and Muslims in Malaysia.

The Catholic Church head, when met on the sidelines of the country's maiden Marian Rally at the Kelana Jaya stadium, would not expound further on his prayer but only said he hoped for a "wise" decision from the court.

"Pray for words and the courage for the ones concerned to make an enlightened judgement.

"We pray god will enlighten the people and give them the courage to make a wise decision," he told The Malay Mail Online.

The Court of Appeal is expected to decide tomorrow on the protracted legal tussle between Catholic weekly The Herald and the Home Ministry over the use of "Allah", the Arabic word that many Muslim groups here have insisted should be exclusive to those who practice Islam.

Should the church lose the appeal, it can still challenge the decision at the Federal Court - its final avenue before all attempts to fight the case are exhausted.

The tussle over "Allah" first erupted in 2008 when the Home Ministry threatened to revoke the Herald's newspaper permit for its reference to God as "Allah", prompting the Catholic Church to sue the government for violating its constitutional rights.

The Church has argued in court that the word predates Islam and that Christians' right to use "Allah" in a non-Muslim context was affirmed by the government's own 10-point solution issued in 2011.

The 2009 High Court decision upholding the Catholic Church's constitutional right to use the word "Allah" had shocked many Muslims that consider the word to only refer to the Muslim God.

It also led to Malaysia's worst religious strife, with houses of worship throughout the country coming under attack.

Christians are Malaysia's third-largest religious population at 2.6 million people, according to statistics from the 2010 census, behind Muslims and Buddhists.

Today, more than 20,000 Catholics from all walks of life, locals and foreigners, filled the MBPJ Stadium in Kelana Jaya, the first of its kind in Malaysia, the Marian Rally of the Archdiocese of KL

There were no masses in churches today as this event brought all Churches of Archdiocese together.

The rally included a procession of the statue, the Rosary which was recited in 20 different languages, including Bahasa Malaysia and concluded with a Mass. 


Umno is mightier than Allah, says PKR’s Chua

Posted: 12 Oct 2013 04:31 PM PDT

Chua said that even the Prophet knew that the term 'Allah' predates the arrival of Islam

K Pragalath, FMT

Johor PKR chief Chua Jui Meng last night blamed Umno for the controversy over the use of 'Allah' because they considered themselves as being greater than the Quran, Allah and Prophet Muhammad.

"Almighty Umnoputra Muslims consider themselves greater than the Quran and its Prophet, and even God by banning Christians from using 'Allah',"said Chua via micro-blogging site, Twitter. Chua is a Christian by faith.

He added that even the Prophet knew that the term 'Allah' predates the arrival of Islam and is a common word referring to God by Muslims, Christians and Jews.

His statement echoes PAS' president Abdul Hadi Awang's announcement that non-Muslims are not committing an offence when they use 'Allah' as long as it is not misused.

"There is no law that does not allow other people to use the word 'Allah', but if they interpret it wrongly to Muslims, they need to answer because 'Allah' means He is the only God to be worshiped," said Hadi yesterday after launching a sharia seminar in Universiti Selangor, Shah Alam.

Both these comments favoring the use of 'Allah' by non-Muslims comes in less than 24 hours before the Appeals Court in Putrajaya decides whether the Catholic Church would be allowed to use 'Allah' in their weekly publication, the Herald Catholic.



6 corner fight for PAS vice presidency?

Posted: 12 Oct 2013 04:27 PM PDT

Speculations are rife that there may be 6 possible candidates vying for the vice presidency seats during party polls in November

K Pragalath, FMT

Three new personalities within PAS have been speculated to be making bids for the vice presidents' posts. However the trio are not known to have made a pact to unseat the incumbents.

The current vice presidents are Salahuddin Ayub, Husam Musa and Mahfuz Omar. Of the three, Salahuddin lost both the Pulai parliamentary and Nusajaya state seats in Johor during the 13th general election.

In an interview with FMT Salahuddin said that he would only defend his post if he received 70% support from the delegates.

Husam lost his bid to wrestle Putrajaya but increased his majority in his state constituency, Salor in Kelantan. He however was dropped from the exco line-up.

Only Mahfuz has maintained his political career in the national level. He is Pokok Sena MP and also the Kedah PAS commissioner currently; following the death of former commissioner and ex – Menteri Besar, Azizan Abdul Razak.

Salahuddin, Mahfuz and Husam are all aligned to the non-ulama faction.

One of the three newcomers is Bukit Gantang MP Idris Ahmad who is also a current PAS central committee member. Within PAS, he comes from the ulama faction and has a double degree in Islamic Studies.

Another PAS leader who is tipped to bid for the vice presidency is a lesser known figure outside the party – Abu Bakar Chik. He is currently a PAS central committee member and the party's education bureau chief.

There are speculations that Parit Buntar MP Mujahid Yusof Rawa would also be vying for the post. However he is not seen as campaigning hard for it now.



What’s your next move Nasrudin?

Posted: 12 Oct 2013 04:21 PM PDT

Will the newly minted Temerloh MP defend his current position or move on to contest the vice-president's position; is still left to be seen

K Pragalath, FMT

Currently there is uncertainty on whether PAS Youth chief Nasrudin Hasan Tantawi would defend his position or eye for one of the three vice president's post in PAS.

Nasrudin, from the ulama faction, is also the newly minted Temerloh MP who won during the 13th general election in May this year. He won the PAS Youth chief post uncontested in 2011.

Three weeks ago, Nasrudin lost to Suhaimi Saad in his bid to clinch the Indera Mahkota division's deputy head post in Pahang. There are also talks that he is eyeing for the vice president's post, but it is still unconfirmed.

Under the current circumstances, it would be difficult for Nasrudin to defend his Youth chief post, or even eye for a higher position.

"If grassroots members themselves can't accept him as a division leader, how is he going to be accepted by delegates from elsewhere?" said a local PAS member who did not want to be identified.

A contender for the PAS Youth chief's post is eyeing the position even as criticisms are rife that the movement have mellowed; resonating at the grassroots level.

There are talks that Johor's PAS Youth leader Suhaizan Kaiat would make a bid for the top youth's post. Yesterday the Batu Pahat PAS division nominated Suhaizan for the post.

Suhaizan is no stranger to the race, as he had attempted to contest for the PAS deputy youth post in 2011.

However he lost to Nik Abduh in a four cornered tussle with only 107 votes whereas Nik won with 260 votes.



Will that flickering flame ever shine more brightly?

Posted: 12 Oct 2013 10:44 AM PDT


Towards this end, See said it was opportune for Malaysians to voice out and tell the government to be serious about our children's education and the future well-being of our nation and state.


Peter Sibon and Phyllis Wong, The Borneo Post

THE Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has said it again — that the use of Bahasa Malaysia should be expanded on a larger scale at institutions of higher learning.


His statement comes at a time when the nation is beginning to see a glint of light on higher learning institutions putting on more emphasis on the use English; when private colleges and universities are gaining foreign recognition with the use of English in teaching as evidenced by the sizeable number of foreign students and when renowned universities are setting up campuses in Malaysia,


The Minister justified his statement by saying Malaysia could learn from China, Japan and Korea which are giving high priority to the use of their national language while mastering other languages in developing their respective countries.


However, by comparing Malaysia to Japan, Korea and China, Muhyiddin has failed to realise that these countries have fully developed their languages and that many academic journals and papers — be it literature, science, medical or technical — are also readily available in their respective languages.


In stark contrast, there is a miserable lack of academic papers and journals written in BM in Malaysia. So how will our students be able to compete globally when they cannot read or thoroughly understand all these papers written and presented in English?


On the international stage, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak has admitted Malaysia has lost some of its international competitiveness.

"We invest heavily on education and have decided to focus on the learning of science and mathematics," he told the recent Asia-Pacific Economic Corporation CEO Forum.


"We also realise that to compete internationally, our people must master the English language because when we switched to a fully Bahasa Malaysia education system in the 1970's, we lost some of our international competitiveness," he stressed.


Similarly, former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad revealed at the 12th Asian University Presidents Forum that 333 graduates of higher learning institutions were called for an information technology job interview but "only seven were recruited as the rest did not have a strong command of English."


He pointed out that some even requested that the questions during the interview, which was conducted in English, be translated to Bahasa Malaysia

Dr Mahathir lamented that the decision to revert to Bahasa Malaysia was politically motivated following protests from Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka in 2008 but it failed to translate into support in the recent polls.


Undoubtedly, English, as a medium of instruction, has become more than just about its effectiveness as it has been politicised to the extent that all kinds of claims have been thrown into the mix.


These include threats to national unity, the position of Bahasa Malaysia as well as the erosion of mother tongue, culture and education.

Are we not involving politics in education?


Are our leaders using the issue education to consolidate their positions in their party by playing to the gallery — or a select group of people?

Batu Lintang assemblyman See Chee How raised a salient point when he said: "It's clearly political propaganda to woo the Umno delegates ahead of the party assembly.


"It's political rhetoric because such a rear-ward proposition has not been included in the National Education Blueprint 2013-2025.


"But for as long as racial politics dominates and Umno remains the backbone of the federal government, we will continue to be entertained with such unintelligent propositions."


Making the call to "free our universities," See said: "It's the duty of all Malaysians to stop the rot in our education standard by vociferously and forcibly rejecting political rhetoric and interference which inhibit academic freedom."

Read more athttp://www.theborneopost.com/2013/10/13/will-that-flickering-flame-ever-shine-more-brightly/#ixzz2hYvX9oRI


KJ, Shahrizat, Mas Ermieyati confirmed as UMNO wings leaders

Posted: 12 Oct 2013 10:40 AM PDT


Astro Awani

KUALA LUMPUR: UMNO election committee  announced the victory of  UMNO Youth Chief Khairy Jamaluddin and Wanita UMNO Chief Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil who will continue to lead the wings for a second term. While Mas Ermieyati Samsudin emerged as the new Puteri Umno chief.

The committee chairman, Tan Sri Tajol Rosli Ghazali announced the results at a media briefing early this morning after each contestant obtained an easy majority vote of more than 96 divisions.

Since 3.35am, Khairy was said to have won in 97 divisions and Sharizat in 100 divisions whilst Mas Ermieyati won at 96 divisions.

Meanwhile, UMNO executive Secretary, Datuk Abd Rauf Yusof said, since this morning, there are still some 50 divisions that still has not finished counting their vote.

"This is the results that we have so far. The official results for other posts will be announced by UMNO headquarters today (Sunday)," he said.

The UMNO elections this year is the first time it involved grass root members in each division around the country and not only delegates who attend the UMNO General Assembly in Kuala Lumpur.

UMNO president Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the new process proves that UMNO is a democratic party.

It also proves the decision to amend the party's constitution in 2009 is relevant and is accepted by their members.

Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, KITA fellow analyst,Prof Dr Mansor Mohd Noor expressed that despite the brave transformation taken by UMNO, the feasibility of the changes need to be see further.

"UMNO has to see a change in its culture not its system, which is why you see the incumbents have won. The culture right now is the rich urban Malay conquering UMNO," he said, adding the change of culture was needed to see a difference.

However, Najib highlights that even though there were a few problems during the election at a few places, in general UMNO has carried out the election this year successfully.

"I, on behalf of the party and the Supreme Council want to express our highest appreciation and thanks to all parties who have worked hard in the background and until now have been unknown, he said.

The 3 wings UMNO election consisted of 33,012 candidates, 247,000 voting papers distributed at 572 voting stations and 20,000 election volunteers.


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