- 'Bak Kut Teh' means 'meat bone tea' and not offensive to Muslims, Court hears
- Pas will never agree to GST - Mahfuz
- Tycoon Halim Saad fails RM2b court bid against government
- Ex-supreme councillor: Yes, there is money politics in Umno
- Anwar: Pakatan would roll out GST, but only if fiscal position solid
- Stop being meek, Anwar tells goverment after spy scandal exposé
- Malaysia Building Major Business District In Kuala Lumpur Amid Fiscal Struggles, Raises Doubts
- Khalid-Azmin tussle for real
- New Act allows Government to tap our phones
Posted: 30 Oct 2013 05:09 PM PDT
(The Star) - The word "Bak Kut Teh" means "meat bone tea" and the usage of the terminology does not cause humiliation to Islam, counsel Chong Joo Tian submitted to the High Court Thursday.
Chong, who is representing controversial sex bloggers Alvin Tan Jye Yee and Vivian Lee May Ling, said the feeling of humiliation was only caused by confusion and lack of knowledge.
He said Section 298A of the Penal Code was basically a legal provision to control, manage and ensure smoothness of the practice of Islam among its followers.
Chong argued that the prosecution's claim that the words used by Tan and Lee were an insult to Islam was not logical and baseless.
He said the allegation showed prejudicial thinking towards other ethnicities in Malaysia.
"Section 298A is basically and substantively not a law to control public order as claimed by the prosecution," he said.
Chong was giving his submission in a hearing to strike out a charge under Section 298A(1) of the Penal Code faced by Tan and Lee before High Court judge Justice Kamardin Hashim Thursday.
Meanwhile, Deputy Public Prosecutor Wan Shaharuddin Wan Ladin said Lee and Tan's act in inviting Muslims to break fast with Bak Kut Teh during the Ramadan month was clearly an insult to all Muslims.
Wan Shaharuddin said it would surely stir hatred, anger and cause disunity.
He said Section 298A was not exclusive to Muslims and was established to ensure harmony and unity among the multi-racial communities in Malaysia.
"The application by Tan and Lee is an attempt to prevent legal action against their act which threatens the harmony among the ethnicities in the country," he said.
Justice Kamardin adjourned the matter to Nov 14 for the decision.
On July 18, Tan, 25, and Lee, 24, were jointly charged under Subsection 5(1) of the Film Censorship Act 2002 (Act 620), Section 4(1)(c) of the Sedition Act and Section 298A(1) of the Penal Code.
They were charged with displaying pornographic images on their blog between July 6 and 7.
For the second charge, they were accused of uploading content that could possibly stir hostility among those with different beliefs at a restaurant in Jalan Dang Wangi here between July 11 and 12.
They also faced a charge of publishing a seditious photograph and inviting Muslims to break fast with Bak Kut Teh, together with a halal logo.
The Facebook page was later shut down.
Tan and Lee later apologised for the posting in a 1:22 minute video on YouTube, and said that it was done in humour.
Posted: 30 Oct 2013 05:02 PM PDT
(NST) - Pas vice president Datuk Mahfuz Omar today took a contradictory stand over opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's positive view on the Goods and Services Tax (GST) due for implementation in April 2015.
Mahfuz said Pas would never agreed to GST implementation as they felt the taxation system would create a massive leakage in the country economy.
Posted: 30 Oct 2013 04:55 PM PDT
(MM) - The High Court threw out today tycoon Tan Sri Halim Saad's RM2 billion case against Putrajaya and state investment arm Khazanah Nasional over a deal on the Renong-UEM shares.
In explaining her decision, the judge found that there was no basis to say that there was fraudulent misrepresentation by former minister Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop over the compensation to Halim.
Posted: 30 Oct 2013 04:51 PM PDT
(MM) - Amid a storm of claims and denials of money politics in Umno, Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah has confirmed its practice in the party's last election campaign as a tool to shore up support, but said its prevalence was "understandable".
The former Umno Supreme councillor said the revamp of Umno's electoral process in the Malay party's previous internal polls was meant to deter money politics, but had failed in its first execution and greater measures were needed to prevent repeats.
Posted: 30 Oct 2013 04:47 PM PDT
(MM) - Pakatan Rakyat (PR) would consider rolling the controversial goods and services tax (GST) should it be elected to power, but only if the country's fiscal position is solid while Malaysians enjoy higher income, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said today.
The opposition leader was responding to allegations that the federal opposition bloc is against the consumption tax after they were seen opposing its implementation.
Posted: 30 Oct 2013 04:41 PM PDT
(MM) - Putrajaya's delay in protesting against the US and Australia for eavesdropping on its Malaysian ally does not bode well for the country's sovereignty, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim suggested today.
The opposition leader chided Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Anifah Aman for their silence towards the two global economic giants who were recently exposed as having spied on their allied nations, including Malaysia, though their diplomatic missions here.
Posted: 30 Oct 2013 02:00 PM PDT
(International Business Times) - Malaysia is building an enormous business district in the capital city of Kuala Lumpur, but its shaky finances raise doubts on whether the Southeast Asian nation is capable of such an ambitious undertaking just now.
Najib, who also serves as finance minister, is well aware of the fiscal challenges his administration is facing, and last week promised to begin tackling the government debt problem by introducing a new consumption tax and trim subsidies. Even so, the problem will take time to address, and analysts are concerned that the government is overextending itself with the project, which is now inviting bids from developers and investors.
Aside from being taxing on the nation's already weak finances, the project could also worsen the oversupply of office space in Kuala Lumpur in the medium term, analysts from CIMB, a major Malaysian bank, told theFinancial Times. Occupancy of office space in the Klang Valley, which includes central Kuala Lumpur, fell for the fifth straight year in 2012.
Posted: 30 Oct 2013 01:31 PM PDT
(MM) - The tussle between two Parti Keadilan Rakyat strongmen — Selangor Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim and deputy party president Azmin Ali — is for real despite attempts to play it down and the straight-faced denials by both of them.Khalid's administrative style, dubbed "stingy" by quarters close to Azmin, is said to be the crux of the problem, which is compounded by Azmin's hard-nosed style of politicking and support-gathering.
The issue has been around since last year when talk surfaced that Azmin, the state assemblyman for Bukit Antarabangsa, might take over the helm in Selangor.
He is known to be loyal to Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and is understood to be getting directives from the PKR de facto leader, although Anwar has denied this.
Anwar, who is Selangor economic adviser, also has anr "eye" in the menteri besar's office as he had appointed party secretary-general Datuk Saifuddin Nasution as the state government's political liaision officer.
It is understood that it was through this that Anwar came out to make strong comments regarding Khalid's administration which failed to spend more on state development from the estimated RM2.8 billion resources available.
Using the salvo, Azmin made two "enthusiastic" bids for the coveted position but he seemed to have lost on both counts with Khalid having the backing of PKR president Datuk Seri Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.
It is a position he has been in since March 2008 when Pakatan Rakyat captured Selangor from BN and he was picked by Anwar to be state party chief as well as party general secretary.
He also received support from the other Pakatan Rakyat allies — DAP and PAS — and the Selangor Sultan.
During that time, Azmin made a vain attempt to lobby for the post but he failed to get enough support from state assemblymen.
This time the scenario could be different as it is believed that all 14 PKR assemblymen had lost hope in "stingy" menteri besar Khalid who, they claim, is only supported by his political secretary Faekah Husin.
Even Seri Setia assemblyman Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad — a loyalist and former special officer to the menteri besar — is said to be against him, just like PAS commissioner Dr Abdul Rani Osman and state DAP chief Lau Weng San.
Meanwhile, a state PKR insider threw further light on the tussle, saying it signalled a plot for next year's party polls which could possibly see Azmin taking on Wan Azizah for the party presidency.
He said the move to vote against Khalid to be replaced by Azmin may also materialise next year.
Posted: 30 Oct 2013 01:27 PM PDT
(fz.com) - Alarmingly, section 6(6) treads directly on Article 5 of the Federal Constitution no less - which deals with the fundamental liberty of a person – by asserting that it is to have effect notwithstanding anything inconsistent with Article 5.
While the European Union (EU) raged against the US last week following revelations that the National Security Agency (NSA) had tapped the phones of 70 million people across the continent, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, back home, the Government is trying to sneak in laws that will allow it to spy on its own citizens legally.
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