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Najib not doing what he promised the artistes

Posted: 05 Nov 2013 09:14 AM PST


KKMM and his officers do not listen to his speeches. Najib promised to extend the Dana Industri Kreatif Negara (DIKN) by pumping funds into it, but after the elections, the DIKN was scrapped


During the last general elections or PRU-13, Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak called a group of artistes to the official residence of the Prime Minister, Sri Perdana, where he said that the then Kementerian Penerangan, Komunikasi dan Kebudayaan (KPKK) had a fund totalling RM112 million for the ministry to offer to deserving artists in grants or loans to realize their artistic quests.

And KPKK had organized many pitching sessions by inviting artistes from all branches of the arts whose proposal had been shortlisted.

And Najib had the audacity to inform the group of artistes at his official residence, should KPKK run short of funding, the government would pump in more, if necessary.

Unfortunately, this did not happen.

The Budget 2014 which he presented to parliament on 25 October did not mention this.

Worse, KPKK now known as Kementerian Komunikasi dan Multimedia (KKMM) has totally scrapped the DIKN, when its predecessor the KPKK had launched the scheme by spending a lot of money to announce the introduction of such a scheme.

One would certainly find it odd or strange for KPKK or any ministry to organize a media event which costs a lot of money where they brought in some officers from the ministry and other departments to explain the DIKN.Yet, barely a few months later, DIKN is scrapped, and there has not been any official announcement on this.

So those who were invited to attend the pitching session were left with letters saying that their proposals could not be approved as KPKK does not have the funds now.

Najib must have known that many people in the film and entertainment industry have personal and independent views on the goings-on in the country, so he had taken the initiative to invite them to Sri Perdana for a pep-talk and also to get their support during the general elections, which the artistes would later give to him, for without which Umno and Barisan Nasional would suffer even worse results.

Everybody in the entertainment industry is baffled as to how Najib could be so crass as to not remember what he had promised to the artistes, and how the officers in the ministry concerned had also not bothered to highlight this matter when the budget committee at the ministry of finance were working on the details of the budget.

The truth is, the officers in the budget committee did not even listen to what Najib says, so they went on their own to devise a budget to include items which are obviously dramatic in nature, which can draw the most attention from the media.

Of course KKMM and the officers at the prime minister's department do not ask what KPKK had done with the scores of millions of ringgit that they had given as loans and grants for artists to create their works and also films as none of them had ever created waves thrusting the artists onto the world stage.

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) too does not seem to care. In fact, even SPRM does not seem to care even if there might be elements of corrupt practices in the offering of the loans and grants to many who do not seem to be qualified or who had underperformed.

And not surprisingly, the arts association has not bothered to inquire about this with Najib or to express their displeasure in the media or other public forums. 


Extreme Right Policies of UMNO is Failing

Posted: 05 Nov 2013 09:08 AM PST


Going by UMNO's intended plans, they should have won the by-election easily 

Not fulfilling the HINDRAF-BN MOU signed document which is heading to an eventual HINDRAF pullout is going to severely expose Najib's 'Mr. Hyde's' character. 

Paraman Subramaniam

UMNO's recent gain of winning 88 parliament seats in the last General Elections, 9 more than the 12th GE, has given it a false sense of security–cum-identity that its sole power base remains with the Malay voters only. Ever since then, UMNO has embarked on extreme right-wing policies to consolidate its Malay vote base. It has also unleashed ultra Malay leaders to polarize the nation.

From shoot to kill directives, cow slaughtering in national schools, banning the use of the term 'Allah' by the Catholic weekly 'The Herald', the return of corrupt and tainted UMNO leaders to positions of power to trampling the rights of press freedom and civil society. PM Najib himself has unashamedly been projecting a 'Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde' character image. 'Dr Jekyll' before the 13th GE and 'Mr. Hyde' post GE.

The clearest example for all to see was his 'Nambikei' policy to win back the Indian votes by having a public signing ceremony and promising to implement the HINDRAF-BN MOU agreement on April 18th 2013. Fast forward 6 months after the GE, almost nothing has come out of it. To add salt to the wound, Najib had borrowed the term 'marginalization of the minority Malaysian Indians' and used it in a CNN interview with Christiane Amanpour, saying that one 'must not marginalize the majority'!

Najib had also backtracked on a needs-based policy he advocated in 2010 (New Economic Model) and metamorphosed it to the race-based Bumiputera Economic Empowerment agenda post GE. All these were geared to the one direction of an extreme right policy of gaining popularity among the Malay voters and ignoring the rest.

So the recent by-election in Sungai Limau which constitute a 93% Malay majority was an interesting testing ground for all to see if these extreme right policies will bear any fruit. Going by UMNO's intended plans, they should have won the by-election easily as they were not only supported by the embarking of these recent extreme right policies catering to the Malays but was also aided by powerful party machineries concentrating in one area as well as backed by the BN's state and Federal Government might.

What turned out was quite ironic. PAS not only won the by-election but had increased its percentage total polled votes from 48.7% (13th GE) to 51.9%. These extreme right UMNO policies had failed in a predominantly Malay majority constituency.

Not fulfilling the HINDRAF-BN MOU signed document which is heading to an eventual HINDRAF pullout is going to severely expose Najib's 'Mr. Hyde's' character. Whatever 'Dr Jekyll' promises that he rolls out thereafter is not going to save UMNO ever again.


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