Selasa, 5 November 2013

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Malaysia Today - Your Source of Independent News

TNB negligence may have led to Bertam Valley flood, claims engineer

Posted: 05 Nov 2013 09:27 AM PST 

(MM) - Dharm Pal Singh, who worked at the Cameron Highlands hydro scheme between 1992 and 1994, said it would take only minutes to clean the intake screen at the Sultan Abu Bakar hydroelectric dam reservoir. 

A former Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) senior civil maintenance engineer has hinted at negligence on the part of the electricity utility, leading to the mud flood in Bertam Valley on October 23 which killed three people and destroyed countless homes and more than 100 vehicles.

Dharm Pal Singh, who worked at the Cameron Highlands hydro scheme between 1992 and 1994, said it would take only minutes to clean the intake screen at the Sultan Abu Bakar hydroelectric dam reservoir.

He was commenting on a recent news report in which TNB said the intake screen had clogged due to rubbish on Oct 22, which forced the four generators at the Sultan Yussof hydroelectric power station to stop working.

"TNB should be well aware that once the power station is no longer able to operate between 50 per cent to 100 per cent, water level in the reservoir will rise rapidly," he said.

"It will then be forced to release the water to avoid the possibility of triggering a spilling.

"TNB staff might have caused a blunder by releasing too much water from the dam's big gated spillway to downstream of Bertam Valley."

Dharm Pal said that clogging due to rubbish is a daily occurrence at the dam even when he was working there.

Read more at: 

Use of 'Allah' Sparks Legal Fight in Malaysia

Posted: 05 Nov 2013 09:25 AM PST 

(Wall Street Journal) - "We do not want to run to the ministers every time they seize our books," the Rev. Dusing said, adding he hopes for a court ruling that says, "This is our fundamental constitutional right" to have church materials contain "Allah."

A church is seeking a court declaration that it can use religious materials that refer to the Christian God as "Allah".

A protestant church in Malaysia's eastern state of Sabah is seeking a declaration from a court that it can buy and use Bahasa Malaysia or Bahasa Indonesia translations of the Bible and other religious materials that refer to the Christian God as "Allah," saying it needs clarity after a court decision and conflicting comments by cabinet ministers.

"The declaration which we are seeking… [is] to once and for all put the matter out of question," said the Rev. Jerry Dusing, the president of the 80-year-old Borneo Evangelical in Sabah.

The Rev. Dusing's request isn't academic.

On Oct. 25, customs officials temporarily stopped some 2,000 copies of a Catholic newspaper from being distributed in Sabah. The newspaper, the Herald, is at the center of a court battle being appealed to Federal Court, the nation's top court. The court of appeals ruled on Oct. 14 that the Herald can't use "Allah" in the Bahasa Malaysia editions to refer to the Christian God, saying the word is reserved to Muslims in the predominately Muslim country. The stopped Heralds in Sabah were released after the home ministry concluded they didn't contain the word "Allah."

The Herald ruling prompted government officials to weigh in on its expansiveness, including on whether it applies in Sabah, which is located on the island of Borneo and agreed to become part of present-day Malaysia in 1963.

"We do not want to run to the ministers every time they seize our books," the Rev. Dusing said, adding he hopes for a court ruling that says, "This is our fundamental constitutional right" to have church materials contain "Allah."

Read more at:



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.

One man’s deviant is another man’s truth

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 10:09 PM PST

Actually, both Sunni and Shia Muslims share most fundamental Islamic beliefs and articles of faith. The differences between these two main sub-groups within Islam initially stemmed not from spiritual differences but from political differences. Over the centuries, however, these political differences have spawned a number of conflicting practices and positions, which have transformed into spiritual differences.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

Jamil Khir: Don't be influenced by deviant teachings

( - Muslims should be wary of the spread of deviant beliefs which could destroy traditional Islamic practices, said Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom. 

He said Muslims in Malaysia needed to follow Islamic teachings based on the Ahli Sunnah Wal-Jamaah, in terms of faith, syariah and personality.

According to Jamil Khir, the policies set were suited to the 'maqasid syariah' concept (the objectives of Islamic law), which placed preservation of religion as its main objective.

"In a country, the responsibility to protect the sanctity and holiness of a religion lies on the ruler, and here, the Malaysian Government acts to carry out the principle of protecting the religion and governing the country based on maqasid syariah," he said.

He was speaking at the National Maal Hijrah Celebration ceremony at the Putrajaya International Convention Centre (PICC) here today.

He said this year's celebration, themed 'Wasatiyyah Tonggak Kesatuan Ummah' (Moderation The Pillar To Unite The People) focused on the moderate approach practised by Prophet Muhammad, and Malaysia was a Muslim country that had long practised the principles of moderation.

Jamil Khir said the principles were contained in the teachings of Ahli Sunnah Wal-Jamaah since Islam first came to the country; and the religion spread without force, war, fight or any difficult method.

"Instead, Islamic teachings were delivered by missionaries with moderation so that it can be accepted by all levels of society."

He said complete national unity could not be achieved without 'ijmak' (consensus of syariah experts) in religious principles, in addition to never-ending polemic which in the end, brought losses to all parties.

Jamil Khir added that 'hijrah' not only referred to changing for the better, but also related to sensitivity, creativity and innovation of matters for implementation.


First of all, what does Ahli Sunnah Wal-Jamaah mean?

Ahl or ahli means 'member of', 'the people of', 'those in the group', 'belonging to', etc. Hence ahli PAS would mean member of or belonging to PAS.

Sunnah means the traditions or actions of Prophet Muhammad.

Jamaah means 'the congregation', 'the party' or 'the group'.

Hence those who are in the congregation of the tradition of Prophet Muhammad -- meaning members of the Sunnah -- are called Sunnis.

Now, Sunni Islam is the branch of Islam that accepts the first four caliphs as rightful successors of Prophet Muhammad. And that is why those who reject the first three Caliphs and instead accept only Ali, the Fourth Caliph, is not a Sunni but a Shia (which is short for Shiatu Ali  -- or congregation, group, followers, faction, party, etc., of Ali).

Now, what is the difference between Shia and Sunni Islam?

Actually, both Sunni and Shia Muslims share most fundamental Islamic beliefs and articles of faith. The differences between these two main sub-groups within Islam initially stemmed not from spiritual differences but from political differences. Over the centuries, however, these political differences have spawned a number of conflicting practices and positions, which have transformed into spiritual differences.

The Minister in the Prime Minister's Department, Jamil Khir Baharom, warned Malaysian Muslims today to be wary of the spread of deviant beliefs which, he said, could destroy traditional Islamic practices.

And this is where the confusion begins to set in.

When Jamil said 'deviant beliefs' could destroy 'traditional Islamic practices', what does he mean here? What 'beliefs' and what 'practices' is he talking about? This is the part that needs further explanation.

Both Sunnis and Shias share the same fundamental beliefs as far as doctrine goes. They may, however, disagree whether Ali should have been the Fourth Caliph -- after Abu Bakar, Umar and Usman -- or whether he should have been the First Caliph -- ahead of Abu Bakar, Umar and Usman.

This has been the great Sunni-Shia divide for 1,381 years since Prophet Muhammad died on Monday, 8th June 632. Both Sunnis and Shias accept Allah as God and Muhammad as the last Prophet. They do not, however, agree on who should have been the successor to Prophet Muhammad.

And when Ali eventually became the Caliph (the word Caliph means successor) in 656, the anti-Ali faction opposed his appointment and this triggered the first civil war that was fought between Muslims and Muslims. And the Sunnis and Shias have been fighting ever since not over matters of doctrine but over the issue of succession.

I remember when I went to Mekah in 1982 there was a fatal stabbing incident. Four Iranians had attacked one of the mosque guards when he confronted them over what he considered an act of heresy.

It seems the Iranians had uttered the proclamation of faith -- 'La Ilaha IllAllah Muhammad-Ur-RasulAllah' (There is no god but God, Muhammad is the messenger of God) -- but had added 'Khomeini Akbar' (Komeini is great) at the end of that proclamation of faith.

I found out about this incident because I was detained at the airport as I tried to leave the country. The police thought I was an Iranian trying to escape using a Malaysian passport since I looked Iranian and not a bit like the many Malays in our group.

The Sunni-Shia rivalry is still strong until today, as I had personally discovered.

Many Sunnis consider the Shias as deviants, and vice versa. This is not unlike the Protestant-Catholic divide of 500 years ago when the Puritans killed the Anglicans and the Anglicans killed the Catholics and the Catholics killed anyone and everyone who was not Catholic because each considered all the others as heretics and apostates.

At the end of the day, who are the deviants and who are the true followers of the faith? I suppose only God knows that answer.

Malaysian law says that Malaysians born into a Muslim family may not leave Islam. Malaysian law also says that Malaysian Muslims must follow the Ahli Sunnah Wal-Jamaah.

That is well and fine. In short Malaysian law says Malaysian Muslims may not become Christians or follow Shia Islam. That is all that Malaysian law says.

So, if you remain a Muslim and belong to the Ahli Sunnah Wal-Jamaah, who is Jamil Khir Baharom to decide whether you are a deviant or not? Malaysian law does not stipulate what you should and should not believe in your heart. It just says you should not become a Christian or a Shia. The rest should be up to you to decide.

Let me put it this way. During the Prophet's time they used kayu sugi to clean their teeth (see below). Let's say you don't believe that this is hygienic and instead believe that you should brush your teeth with Colgate. That means you are not following the Prophet's Sunnah or example. So will this make you a deviant?

Just a simple question; so give me a simple answer.


After the win, PAS seeks palace intervention

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 09:15 PM PST 
Mohsin Abdullah, 
AT THE HEIGHT of campaigning for the just concluded Sungai Limau by election, PAS had "revealed" numerous "malpractices" and "abuses" allegedly carried out by the Barisan Nasional in wooing voters.

Now that PAS has won, what has become of the allegations? Is PAS keeping mum and "let by gone be by gone "with victory in the bag?
"It will definitely be pursued, in parliamentary debate, Bersih election reform, and even though the courts although we don't put too much hope in the latter", said Dr Hatta Ramli, PAS elections director. 
His colleague, PAS strategist Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad had this to add: It would be important to get the PAC involved as abuses of public funds must seek for accountability. No better place than parliament. This money was never budgeted for. So how did they manage to spend?
Off budget or off balance sheet spending again. For Sungai Limau, allocated RM15 million. That's abuse of public fund".
Hard words indeed. And that's not all. On the eve of polling, PAS information chief Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man issued a statement hitting out at the Election Commission (EC) and Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) for being "dead wood" in "allowing widespread corruption in Sungai Limau."    
Tuan Man alleged that handouts in cash and in kind were handed out "openly by government leaders as well as the usage of almost the entire government machinery" - adding on sarcastically, "except for the Meteorological Department which was not seen". 
"MACC which is supposed to be an anti-corruption agency and the police stood still and became observers", said Tuan Ibrahim, going on to say: "We keep hearing stupid excuses like the handouts were not given by the calon or wakil calon so it is not rasuah". 
According to Hatta the "abuses" have been highlighted and "the authorities including the EC are in the know and the rakyat have been informed'.
But said Dzulkefly, "Umno callous disregard for the law, yet the EC continue to do nothing, as the custodian for a free and fair election".

Read more at:

Any chance of a meaningful solution in ‘Allah’ furore?

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 08:36 PM PST

If the rule of law and not the whims and fancies of the government is to be upheld, the contradiction between the court judgment and the government's 10-Point Agreement must be resolved, says Dr Ronnie Ooi.

Dr Ronnie Ooi, Aliran 

Malaysia's 'Allah' controversy is fundamentally a political issue about how different communities relate to one another. It is not a legal issue. The Catholic Church needs to take account of the Malay community's majority view before deciding on the next step.

If unrestricted use of the word Allah is not acceptable to the moderate Malay community, then the Church, together with others, should search for a compromise that will preserve the religious practices of Christians in East Malaysia as well as that of the Sikhs, who also refer to their God as Allah.

The concept of "what is integral to a religion" may provide the framework for such a compromise. It is hoped that all sides will approach the issue in a spirit of goodwill and with a desire to find a solution.

The Court of Appeal's decision on the use of the word "Allah" has angered and worried the Christian community and other segments of society. But if the decision had gone the other way, it would have angered segments of the Malay community.

This shows that the issue fundamentally is not a legal issue but a political one about how the communities relate to one another. It is only a political settlement that will allow both communities to feel satisfied and secure.

Many place their trust and hopes on the social contract reached by our forefathers and enshrined in the Malaysian constitution. It is certainly a good place to start, but constitutions are subject to differing interpretations.

Governments appoint judges who favour their political outlook. Just look at the different outlooks of Supreme Court judges appointed by American Democratic and Republican presidents.

If the majority race is united, they could command the two-thirds majority necessary to change the constitution. Just as marriage vows cannot guarantee a lasting marriage and relationships have to be worked on, so too a country has to work on its relationships, that is, in politics, and not rely entirely on its constitution.

Interpretations of the Court of Appeal decision

There are three possible positions that the mainstream Malay community can take:

  1. That the Court of Appeal decision is completely wrong and the use of the word Allah should be unrestricted. This is certainly the view of the MP for Sepang and Pas central committee member Mohamed Hanipa Maidin, expressed in a very well written article for Malaysiakini, and of Professor Abdul Aziz Bari.
  2. That the decision applies to The Herald only and not to East Malaysia. This appears to be the position of Muslim Lawyers' Association of Malaysia president Zainul Rijal Abu Bakar, Ikatan Muslimin Malaysia (Isma) deputy president Aminuddin Yahaya and the Malaysian government.
  3. That the decision implies a blanket ban on the use of the word Allah by all non-Muslims including in East Malaysia and presumably in the Sikh holy books as well. This appears to be the view of the lawyer for The Herald and is demanded by Perkasa. It seems to be implicit in what Pas syura council deputy chief Haron Din wants when he says the "holy name is exclusively for Muslims only".

Views of the mainstream Malay community

In assessing what the strategic objectives of its next move should be, surely the Roman Catholic Church should take the mainstream Malay community's view into account. This is because the judgment of the full bench of Federal Court, the final appellate court, will most likely mirror the Malay community's view.

Secondly, it is quite clear that certain quarters in Umno and groups such as Perkasa are fanning distrust and fear of Chinese and Christians as a means of holding on to or gaining power. We must guard against unknowingly and carelessly giving ammunition to such people.

It seems incredible that in his judgment, Justice Mohamed Apandi Ali could write: "It is my judgment that the most possible and probable threat to Islam, in the context of this country, is the propagation of other religions to the followers of Islam."

As far fetched as this claim is, surely Church leaders must ask themselves if they could have done more to prevent this perception of Christians taking hold?

What is the Malay community's majority view or, put another way, what does the silent Malay majority want? The evidence I am aware of is not too promising. I remember reading a survey which found that a high percentage of Malays (70 per cent) considered the thought of another religion using the word Allah "disturbing".

What is also highly significant is that Pas leader Abdul Hadi Awang's initial stand that Islam cannot forbid other religions from using the word Allah, provided it is not abused, was reversed by a revolt of its syura council, led by Haron Din. This would seem to indicate strong opposition at the grassroots level.

However, we should not depend on past history and should assess the Malay community's majority position again, in particular whether it can be changed by arguments. The picture is not completely dark.

Apart from the two prominent Muslims who have come out against the decision of the Court of Appeal, there are others who have said that the decision only applies to The Herald and not to East Malaysia, such as the president of the Muslim Lawyers' Association of Malaysia and the deputy president of Isma.

Others, such as former Perlis mufti Asri Zainul Abidin, former Pas syura council member Wan Ji and Angkatan Belia Islam Malaysia (Abim) have come out against the extreme position taken by the adviser to the Johor Islamic Council that all Muslims who question the court's ruling become infidels.

Dialogue with such individuals and organisations will help to clarify what is and what is not acceptable to the mainstream Malay community.

Strategic choices for the Catholic Church

If MP Hanipa Maidin and others of his thinking can deliver a united Pas in favour of the unrestricted use of the word Allah, and dialogue indicates that this is acceptable to the mainstream Malay community, then clearly the Church should make unrestricted use of the word Allah its strategic objective.

But if Pas as a party comes down on the side of Haron Din and dialogue indicates that unrestricted use of the word Allah is not acceptable to the mainstream Malay community, then the Church must consider whether it is in its best interests to pursue what is almost certainly a lost cause or switch to an acceptable compromise.

The important battle surely is not to achieve unrestricted use of the word Allah, but to counter groups like Perkasa, whose demands for a blanket ban on the use of the word Allah by all non-Muslims will lead to chaos for Christians in East Malaysia and for Sikhs.

To win this battle, we need the support of the moderate Malay community. And if a necessary condition of such support is recognition of their sensitivity by accepting restrictions on the use of the word Allah, then it seems to me to be an honourable compromise.

A compromise that springs to mind is to restrict the court's decision to The Herald, thus excluding East Malaysia. But does this mean that another publication called (say) Church Times can use the word Allah? If not, the restriction must apply to Peninsular Malaysia and not just The Herald.

In that case, what happens to the Sikhs, whose Holy Book contains the word Allah?

The question of the Sikhs has been pushed to the side, but should be brought centre stage as it is of great help in framing a solution. Firstly, to counter those like Haron Din, who claims that the "holy name is exclusively for Muslims only", we do not need to point to Arabia but to the Sikhs on our own doorstep.

Secondly, note that one of the main grounds for the Court of Appeal decision is that "Allah is not essential to or an integral part of Christianity" but in the Sikh religion, Allah is clearly "essential to or an integral part of" the religion as it is found in the Holy Book.

Therefore, clearly the court must protect the right of the Sikh religion to use the word Allah. Once the precedent has been established that one religion can use Allah, surely it becomes less difficult for mainstream Malay community to accept its use by East Malaysian Christians.

How then can we frame a rule that allows the word Allah to be used in the Sikh religion and East Malaysia but not in the Christian community of Peninsular Malaysia? I think the solution lies in the concept of "an integral part of the religion".

The word Allah is integral to the Sikh religion because it is found in their Holy Book. It is integral to Christianity in East Malaysia and the Malay-speaking church congregations in Peninsular Malaysia. It is not integral among Christian communities who use the English or Mandarin Bible.

The concept must be applied to objective, verifiable facts, such as the number of Malay-speaking Christians, and not to a judge's subjective assessment of what is integral to a religion that is not his, which clearly he is not competent to do. 


Is Dr M to UMNO what Samy Vellu is to MIC?

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 06:57 PM PST

I suspect DAP's attempts to link PAS victory in its traditional stronghold of Sungai Limau to 'evidence' of Mahathir's waning influence (or even the end of the so-called Mahathirism) as merely a psychological campaign to demoralize the pro Mahathir forces in UMNO and Perkasa.

KTemoc Konsiders

(a) Malay Mail Online = BN loss in Sungai Limau signals Dr M's waning influence, says DAP

"It is clear that Mahathir's influence has receded with this win," Zairil, the son of a former Umno minister, told The Malay Mail Online last night after the official results announced a PAS victory by a lowered 1,084-vote margin.

(b) TMI - Sungai Limau by-election results: Is this the end of Mahathirism?

When Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad descended on Sungai Limau during the last hours of campaigning on November 3, one longtime PAS activist from Alor Star described it as a "relief".

"Many people in Sungai Limau come from a religious education background," said the activist, referring to the community of teachers, students and parents involved in the area's clutch of private and public Islamic schools, which are nationally renowned.

"They still remember how Mahathir used to run down PAS and our Islamic state concept," said the activist of the former prime minister's endless tirades against PAS in the few years before he resigned in 2003.

Personally I don't agree with the the DAP view that PAS' victory in Sungai Limau spells the end of Mahathirism or the waning of Mahathir's power.

Sungai Limau has long been a PAS stronghold thus one could even argue, if one wants to, that Mahathir's campaigning there helped slash the majority PAS had enjoyed in the May 2013 state election by half, thus indicating he is still influential.

I suspect DAP's attempts to link PAS victory in its traditional stronghold of Sungai Limau to 'evidence' of Mahathir's waning influence (or even the end of the so-called Mahathirism) as merely a psychological campaign to demoralize the pro Mahathir forces in UMNO and Perkasa.

However, as written two paragraphs above, I stated that "one could even argue ... yadda yadda ...", which incidentally I'm not, because while I believe Mahathir's political influence in UMNO has indeed waned as indicated in Mukhriz loss in UMNO's VP race, it has nothing to do with the expected PAS victory.

Indeed, no matter how influential Dr Mahathir might still have been, it'd have been unlikely his campaigning in Sungai Limau could topple PAS in the Islamic party's stronghold  especially when the previous PAS ADUN had recently passed away and would be a factor in ensuring the PAS by-election candidate receive sympathy votes.

My aim in disputing DAP's claim is principally to show it had not been a correct assumption but rather, as I suspect, a psychological strike against Dr Mahathir's supporters in UMNO and Perkasa.

In fact I wonder what brought about the quite substantial reduction in majority in the PAS victory as compared to the May 2013 results.

But I suspect the local Chinese have been disenchanted with PAS because its previous state government had through its religious-based policies, intruded offensively into Chinese affairs like dress codes for the Chinese very non-Islamic festivals - see my February 2013 post More power to koe-tai - and perhaps also the PAS state government's increase in reserved housing for Malays in the state from 30% to 50%, and who knows, even the abattoir cerita.

Also, PAS' Kelantan state government has troubled many Chinese by their similar (legislated) intrusions into Chinese affairs, as an example, in the hair-dressing salon incident.

Then, PAS Youth Chief Nasrudin Hassan made stupid statements that abandoned babies (through illicit births) were the result of non-Muslim events like Valentine's Day and New Year's Day celebrations.

Malaysiakini reported in 2010 in its Valentine's Day blamed for baby dumping that Nasrudin Hassan had blamed the festivity celebrations on those two days as encouraging free sex that led to ... yadda yadda yadda ... culminating in baby dumping.

Nasrudin claimed: "It's an indication that the 'mating season' occurred during the New Year's Day celebrations."

Balderdash, my dear Yang Amat Alim, New Year's Days and Valentine's Days have been celebrated all over the world, yet we don't see our kind of baby dumping in those foreign countries. Why?

Tell you a bloody secret mate ..... because their societies are far more humane, compassionate, caring, supportive and most important of all, less misogynistic.

Misogynistic? Please read my 2006 post Wives not satisfying husbands are abusive!

And incidentally Nasrudin, what about those numerous cases of incest which occurred more frequently in Kelantan and Terengganu than any other states? Have you yet backtracked them 9 months to either New Year's Days or Valentine's Days, or more likely, Budu Days wakakaka - see Has Aphrodisiac Budu Been Responsible?

Stoning women to death, blaming non-Islamic celebrations on baby dumping, blaming women for everything, wanting to punish women – really I dread to think of such leaders for our nations. But 'tis the nature of the beast.

Early last year I had written in Valentine's Day's wild sex romps & orgies:



Increase in Chinese support for BN in Sungai Limau, says Najib

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 06:50 PM PST

(Bernama) - The result of the Sungai Limau state by-election, at a glance, shows an increase in the Chinese support for Barisan Nasional (BN), Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said.

He said the results from the two ballot boxes where the majority of voters were Chinese, showed that they were in favour of BN candidate.

"At a glance, there is an increase, but we have to look further," he told a press conference after attending the national Maal Hijrah celebration at the Putrajaya International Convention Centre (PICC) today.

The official result of the by-election yesterday saw PAS retaining the state seat with a 1,084-vote majority after its candidate, Mohd Azam Abd Samat, garnered 12,069 votes against BN candidate Dr Ahmad Sohaimi Lazim's 10,985 votes.

Najib said despite having lost the contest, BN had displayed encouraging performance because it managed to reduce PAS's majority in Sungai Limau which was regarded as a PAS stronghold.

"Previously, we lost the contest for the seat by 2,774-vote majority, but now, we have reduced it to 1,084-vote majority. It shows that there is a trend of increased support for BN.

"We know that the constituency is PAS's stronghold because we have failed to win the seat in five general elections. However, in the by-election, we managed to penetrate 10 polling centres compared with PAS, which only managed nine," he said.

"The result also shows that democracy and transparency are still alive in Malaysia and that the by-election process and result cannot be questioned," Najib added.

The prime minister also thanked the BN election machinery at the national level led by Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, at state level led by Kedah Menteri Besar Datuk Mukhriz Tun Dr Mahathir and divisional level led by Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Jamil Khir Baharom.

"I would also like to thank the representatives of Kedah BN, Wanita, Youth and Puteri. It reflects a good teamwork between the state and divisions. These people have worked hard and displayed a good performance for BN," he said.


Chinese still the kingmaker

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 06:15 PM PST

This would mean (if it was 10,722 Malay votes for PAS versus 10,655 Malay votes for Umno) the Malays are still split 50:50 like what Nazri Aziz told me five years ago. And this would also mean that PAS won the Sungai Limau by-election yesterday with a 1,084 majority because of the 97% Chinese support representing 1,347 Chinese voters.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

Nazri Abdullah, the Editor of Harakahdaily (the online version of PAS's party newspaper), wrote his analysis today, Sg Limau: Mengapa majoriti PAS merosot? (READ HERE). Basically, he explained why the majority for PAS in yesterday's Sungai Limau by-election got reduced from 2,774 votes to just 1,084 votes.

Around five years or so ago, I had dinner with another Nazri -- the Minister Nazri Aziz -- and he told me that the Malays are split 50:50 between Barisan Nasional and Pakatan Rakyat. It could be 51:49 one election and 49:51 the next. Nevertheless, the Malays are split about 50:50 between the government and the opposition.

I suppose the recent general election in May this year more or less proved what Nazri Aziz said. The ruling party won more seats where the voters were majority Malay while the opposition won more seats where the voters were not majority Malay.

And if you were to analyse the popular votes that the ruling party won, it can be seen that it won about half the Malay votes but lost almost all the non-Malay votes, in particular the Chinese votes, 97% who voted opposition. Hence the ruling party won more seats against the backdrop of lesser votes (just 47%) -- and mainly in the Malay-majority constituencies.

To be fair, I do not yet have my hands on the details of yesterday's voting pattern according to saluran. So at best I am merely making an 'educated guess' based on the fact that the Malays are still split 50:50 since five years ago until today. Of course, I could be wrong and once I see the details according to saluran it may prove otherwise.

Anyway, this is my opinion before I see the detailed breakdown of the saluran.

About 85.5% or 23,249 of the 27,222 registered voters in Sungai Limau turned out to vote.

Out of these 27,222 registered voters, 1,842 are Chinese. (There are only 15 Indians and 42 'others' so we can ignore this group because the numbers are too small to swing the results either way).

Let us assume that 85.5% of the Chinese voters turned out to vote as well. That means about 1,575 of the 1,842 Chinese voters voted yesterday. (This is the part that I cannot confirm yet since I do not have the details of the saluran)

Now, in the recent general election, 97% of the Chinese voters voted opposition. So let us assume that the Chinese support for the opposition has remained the same and in yesterday's by-election 97% of the 1,575 Chinese voters voted opposition as well. That would mean 1,347 Chinese voted for PAS yesterday.

(As I said, I am still working on the basis of 'educated guess' and not backed with the details of the saluran).

PAS garnered 12,069 votes versus Umno's 10,985 (giving PAS a majority of 1,084).

Now, if the 12,069 votes that PAS won includes the 1,347 Chinese votes, that would mean the Malay votes that PAS won was only 10,722 versus Umno's 10,655 (10,985 minus the 3% Chinese votes that Umno won based on the assumption that 97% of the Chinese voters voted opposition).

This would mean (if it was 10,722 Malay votes for PAS versus 10,655 Malay votes for Umno) the Malays are still split 50:50 like what Nazri Aziz told me five years ago. And this would also mean that PAS won the Sungai Limau by-election yesterday with a 1,084 majority because of the 97% Chinese support representing 1,347 Chinese voters.

Hence the Chinese (if 97% continue to vote opposition until the next general election) are the kingmaker. And it also means that the Chinese have not swung back to the ruling party and continue to support the opposition until today.

And it furthermore means that if Barisan Nasional wants to remain in power it has to garner more than just 50% of the Malay votes. Umno will need to increase the Malay support to at least 60% or so to stay in power since it can no longer depend on the Chinese support.

My conclusion?

Umno will need to be more Malay- and Islam-centric if it wants to increase the Malay support from just 50% to 60% or thereabouts. And Perkasa, Malay rights, the NEP, the Allah word issue, etc., will need to be played to the hilt for this to happen.

Is that why Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak just announced today 'Najib vows to defend use of Allah as exclusive to Muslims' (READ HERE)?

Interesting, is it not?


Najib vows to defend use of Allah as exclusive to Muslims

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 04:45 PM PST

Eileen Ng, TMI

Putrajaya has pledged to defend the use of the word Allah as the exclusive right of Muslims, even as the debate continued following the October 14 Court of Appeal ruling banning the use of the word in a Catholic weekly.

In his message marking the Islamic new year or Maal Hijrah today, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said while Malaysia upholds the Federal Constitution and the position of Islam, it also subscribed to the concept of moderation, or Wasatiyyah, saying it is the foundation of the country's harmony.

"To appreciate the wider meaning of migration, we still uphold our religion and defend the name of Allah for religion, race and our beloved country.

"Malaysia which upholds the Constitution and Islam as the official religion of the country, will remain steadfast in defending the position of Islam in the country in line with Maqasid Syariah and the concept of Wasatiyyah," Najib said in his message posted on his 1Malaysia blog today.

Several Muslim groups have insisted that the word Allah belonged exclusively to Muslim, although Christians and other faiths have argued otherwise.

This followed the recent Court of Appeal decision not to allow Catholic weekly Herald to use the word Allah in its Bahasa Malaysia section, after a long legal battle over the usage of the word.

The decision overturned an earlier ruling by the High Court in  2009, which said that Allah, the Arabic word for God, was not the exclusive right of Muslims, and allowed the Herald to use it.

The ruling was challenged by the Home Ministry in its appeal in January 2010.

The Court of Appeal noted the Home Ministry's prohibition on the Herald from using the word was justified, arguing that Allah was not integral to the Christian faith.

The church has 30 days to file the leave application to appeal against the Court of Appeal decision.



After ‘Allah’ rebuff, Karpal demands de-registration of Muslim groups and political parties

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 04:40 PM PST

(MM) - DAP chairman Karpal Singh said today all religious and race-based professional or political bodies should be de-registered, singling out the Muslim Lawyers Association (MLA) as an example.

The vocal politician said the MLA should not have been allowed to be formed in the first place as the existing Bar Council was already an adequate professional body that represents all lawyers in the country.

"The Bar Council represents all lawyers in the country, the government should not allow a professional body to operate based on religious lines such as the MLA," he said in a press conference at Air Itam here today.

He said MLA's registration should be revoked, insisting it was a serious matter that Muslim lawyers are allowed to form separate associations based on religion.

"We don't want a situation where others want to do the same, we don't want a Hindu Lawyers Association or a Buddhist Lawyers Association," he said.

The Bukit Gelugor MP claimed that even Muslim lawyers do not support MLA as it was purportedly an association set up by just a handful of troublemakers.

His criticisms against MLA today come in light of the association's recent threat against the Malaysian Bar Council when it warned the body against backing Catholic weekly Herald's appeal against the Court of Appeal ruling that banned it from using the word "Allah".

MLA president Datuk Zainul Rijal Abu Bakar had cautioned the Bar Council against taking a partisan stand in the spat that is deepening a gulf in multi-religious Malaysia.

He reminded the Bar Council that the majority of its members were Muslims, and stressed that the views of a "few scattered Muslim members" in support of the Church did not represent the sentiments of its mainstream that number in the "thousands".

"The Muslim Lawyers Association, whose considerable members are also members of the Malaysian Bar, wholeheartedly supports the decision of the Court of Appeal.

"Our Association strongly oppose [sic] any partisan action by the Bar Council over the issue," he said in a statement.

"The Bar Council should lodge a police report against MLA for issuing this threat and not be intimidated by them," he said.

Responding yesterday, the Bar Council urged the authorities to stop turning a blind eye to threats after a Muslim law group warned it against backing the Catholic Church's court appeal for the right to call God "Allah".

Council president Christopher Leong also stressed that the Malaysian Bar and the Bar Council are secular bodies that are not partial to any religious beliefs.

"It unfortunately appears that some parties or segments of our society deem it appropriate to resort to issuing threats or fear-mongering as a means of getting their way," Leong said in a statement today.

"The Malaysian authorities for their part should cease pandering to, or legitimising such practices, as it only serves to encourage those who resort to threats or violence as a means of getting their way or silencing others. Such behaviour also seeks to stifle discourse, growth and understanding," he added.

Apart from the MLA, Karpal added today that all other political and professional bodies that operate along religious or racial lines should also be de-registered.

"Such organisations operating along religious and racial lines is dangerous for a multi-racial society and a threat to unity," he said.

"Unfortunately, this includes PAS but they have taken the first step by setting up a unit for non-Muslim supporters," he said.

This means Umno, MCA and MIC, and all Barisan Nasional (BN) component parties that are race-based, should also be de-registered, he said.

On whether this was against freedom of association, Karpal said freedom of association doesn't mean racist associations can be set up as there should be certain limits in place. 


In Sungai Limau loss, Najib sees swing to BN

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 04:35 PM PST

(MM) - PAS's reduced majority in yesterday's battle for Sungai Limau showed increasing support for Barisan Nasional (BN) in the rice-bowl state of Kedah, despite the pact's failure to wrest the seat, Datuk Seri Najib Razak said today.

He noted that the farming constituency had always been a stronghold of PAS, which had held the seat since 1995, but the results showed that BN had made major inroads.

"We knew the area is a PAS stronghold, but we managed to win in 10 voting centres compares to nine for PAS," he said at a press conference after attending the national Maal Hijrah celebrations here.

In yesterday's by-election, PAS candidate Mohd Azam Abd Samat won by a 1,084-vote majority, securing a total of 12,069 votes over BN's Dr Ahmad Sohaimi Lazim's tally of 10,985 votes.

The late Tan Sri Azizan Abdul Razak, whose recent death paved way for the contest, retained the seat for a fifth straight term during the 13th General Election last May with a 2,774-vote majority.

Najib said there were a few positive indicators that BN has gleaned from yesterday's results, not least being the apparent increase in Chinese support for the ruling coalition.

He said there was a clear uptick in Chinese support in at least two polling streams where there was a visibly larger base of Chinese voters.

"Looking at the snapshot, it is an increase in support. But this needs a deeper study. The result was largely due to good teamwork and the national and state machinery have to work together as a team," said the prime minister.

Najib, who is also BN chairman, added that the outcome of the Sungai Limau contest should lay to rest any complaints the opposition Pakatan Rakyat have about the country's electoral system.

The electoral system and the Election Commission (EC) have long been the opposition's whipping boys for allegedly giving the BN an unfair advantage in any contest, with the latest being the results of the May 5 national polls, when the ruling party emerged victorious for a 13th straight time despite losing out on the popular vote.

The results led to a spate of protest rallies, dubbed Black 505, and the arrest and subsequent charging of several people from the opposition for allegedly failing to meet requirements under the Peaceful Assembly Act.

"I believe that with the results, the opposition won't blame the EC which is what they usually do when they lose... this is proof that democracy is fresh and transparent in Malaysia," he said. 


Karpal: Sungai Limau loss a slap in the face for Dr M and son

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 04:30 PM PST

(MM) - DAP's Karpal Singh dismissed today the reduced majority for political ally PAS in the Sungai Limau polls, insisting the victory was clear-cut and signalled the waning influence of Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad in Malaysian politics.

The DAP national chairman said Barisan Nasional's (BN) loss in the farming constituency in Kedah, despite having parked its entire election machinery there for the duration of the campaign, was a clear rejection of the former prime minister and his son Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir, who is currently the state's mentri besar.

"So, this win by PAS is certainly a slap in the face for both Mahathir and Mukhriz," he said in a press conference here this morning.

Karpal added that he hoped that with this loss, Dr Mahathir would quit interfering with the affairs of the country.

On PAS retaining the seat with a reduced majority, the Bukit Gelugor MP insisted this was no major sign of any shift in support.

"A reduction in majority doesn't mean PAS has no support as we must take into account the millions spent by BN during the campaign period," he said.

The Sungai Limau state seat was vacated after the late PAS leader Tan Sri Azizan Abdul Razak, who has been the state assemblyman there for five terms since 1995, passed away on September 26.

Azizan's protege, Mohd Azam Abd Samat, retained the seat for PAS with a 1,084 majority votes in the polls yesterday, a drop of 1,690 votes as Azizan had obtained a 2,774 majority during the May 5 polls.

During campaigning, BN had announced various allocations and funding for the mostly agro-based village that PAS had claimed were more than RM15 million in total.

Karpal's party colleagues had echoed the same views when weighing in on PAS's victory last night, insisting the reduced majority took no skin off the Islamist party's nose but spelled a setback for the ruling BN that had been banking on Dr Mahathir and his son to win the polls.

DAP Kedah interim chief Zairil Khir Johari and the opposition party's adviser Lim Kit Siang insisted that PAS's success in retaining the Kedah state seat was a major blow to the BN's mighty machinery under the leadership of Mukhriz, whom they claimed had followed his father's style and pulled out all the stops in his bid to wrest Sungai Limau.

"It is clear that Mahathir's influence has receded with this win," Zairil, the son of a former Umno minister, told The Malay Mail Online last night after the official results announced a PAS victory by a lowered 1,084-vote margin.

He alleged BN was free with its wallet on the campaign trail but claimed such tactics had failed to dent Sungai Limau's support of PAS despite the ruling coalition's hopes.

"Considering all the carnivals, programmes and resources they have put into the campaign, any kind of victory by PAS, against all odds, even with a lesser majority, is considered a great success," Zairil said.

When contacted, Lim reiterated his previous statement that PAS's latest win in Kedah was the third and probably final, setback to the election playbook he named "Mahathirism" in the six months after the May 5 general election.

"This is his third setback in six months and this showed that he has failed to make any mark even in this by-election in Kedah," the Gelang Patah MP told The Malay Mail Online.

The veteran opposition politician alleged that Dr Mahathir had mounted a campaign of "lies, falsehoods and character-assassination", which he added, had formed the staple tactic ahead of polling day in Sungai Limau.

Lim noted that it was similar to the campaign his 88-year-old arch foe had initiated against him ahead of the 13th general election, citing Dr Mahathir's accusations that he was contesting in Gelang Patah to make the Chinese "dislike and hate the Malays", and claiming that the DAP wanted to remove the Malays from political dominance to set up a Christian state.

Out of the 27,222 registered voters in that constituency, only 23,249 or 85.5 per cent voters turned out to cast their votes yesterday compared to 89.43 per cent voters during the 13th general election in May. 


Musa predicts more PKR defections in Sabah

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 04:27 PM PST

(MM) - Datuk Seri Musa Aman predicted today more defections from Sabah PKR after Kadamaian assemblyman Jeremy Malajad's departure yesterday, fuelling speculation of more troubles for the peninsula-based party in its east Malaysian chapter.

In a report on The Star Online here, the state Barisan Nasional (BN) chief said the defections were to be expected as many members in the peninsula-based PKR have begun to lose confidence in the party's leadership, post-Election 2013.

"There is a realisation among the PKR leaders that only by cooperating with Barisan Nasional can they help their constituents," he said after the Maal Hijrah gathering in Kota Kinabalu, the English news portal reported.

Yesterday, Malay daily Utusan Malaysia reported Malajad as saying at a press conference that he quit all his party posts and relinquished his PKR membership to become a BN-friendly independent state assemblyman.

Party insiders who were contacted by The Malay Mail Online confirmed that the issue had long been brewing in PKR's state leadership, with both Malajad and Matunggong assemblyman Jailani Hamdan said to have been unhappy over the lack of representation of the KadazanDusun-Murut at the state's top leadership.

Jailani is also speculated to drop out of the party soon.

Jailani confirmed with The Malay Mail Online that Malajad's departure was long expected, and said that it is not long before he does the same.

"All the stories you heard about us being unhappy over the absence of the KDM at the top are true. We even raised this with Datuk Seri Anwar and Lajim, but they treated it as a small matter," he said, referring to opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

"It's confirmed that Jeremy is out, and I will officially announce my decision to quit this weekend either in Kota Kinabalu or in my constituency of Matunggong... my resignation is expected, but I will be springing a surprise during my announcement," he said, declining to give anything away.

Malajad is the second opposition assemblyman to go the way of a BN-friendly independent.

The first to do so was Luyang assemblyman and former Sabah DAP chief Dr Hiew King Cheu, who resigned as state party advisor after it was long speculated that he was going to leave the party. 


Syariah for Malaysia

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 04:10 PM PST

Malaysia is ready for syariah laws with the condition that the various enforcement bodies must be seen executing the basic tenets first among Muslims here.

Narinder Singh, FTM

The official religion of Malaysia is Islam as enshrined in the Federal Constitution. As a Malaysian, born, bred and educated here without once leaving the shores to gain formal knowledge, it has dawned upon me that it is utmost important to self-educate in issues pertaining to Islam.

The triggering and motivating factor stems from the fact that only in having an open mind can one stretch his tolerance and acceptance to others in terms to their religion, culture and beliefs.

Nevertheless, in as much as Islam and its syariah laws are admired and should be integrated in our society as it encompasses our very existence in every sense, what baffles and astonishes me is the ignorance displayed by some Malaysian Muslims.

In the discovery and continuous learning, I was made aware that syariah laws are divine and outlines in detail every aspect of life a Muslim must adhere to: from his behaviour, dressing, foods, gestures, hygiene, prayer and almost every facet being human.

Thus I am baffled and taken aback that in the push for syariah laws to be implemented in our society, we should be the least resistant as it also addresses issues surrounding economy, politics and social platforms.

Today Malaysia stands atop as a leading nation in Islamic financial management, earning a role model status even for other Muslim nations globally. The greater Europe and even Americans have acknowledged our beyond par excellence in Islamic banking and financial systems that have captured customers from all walks of life regardless of religion.

Syariah compliant financial tools and exchange board have made many a fortune without complaints even with international banks. The non-Muslims have welcomed the Islamic financial world with open arms. Then why the fuss and grumble when other syariah aspects are being discussed?

So, it is perfectly fine if syariah makes money for one but a big 'NO' if it does not. Does not that reasoning fit perfectly into hypocrisy and unfounded substance for negating the proposal to implement syariah laws to the full extend? Why be selective?

Nevertheless, the Islamic authorities must also be aggressively proactive in practical education to both the Muslims and non-Muslims on syariah laws.

In my opinion, the Islamic enforcement agencies at federal and state levels have failed un-forgivingly and miserably in aligning the basic tenets of Islam among the younger generations.

Some life experiences

These are some experience and questionable practices observed in public. I wonder if the following antics are allowed in Islam in public; in specific for Muslims, and even the non-Muslims per se.

Let me narrate a few incidents that got me intrigued in begging for clarifications from fellow Muslim friends and experts alike.



Batalkan parti politik berasaskan kaum dan agama-Karpal

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 04:05 PM PST

(Bernama) - Pengerusi DAP Karpal Singh mencadangkan parti politik atau persatuan yang berasaskan kaum dan agama dibatalkan pendaftaran atau diubah suai agar boleh disertai oleh semua rakyat tanpa mengira batasan kaum dan agama.

Beliau berkata cara tersebut merupakan jawapan kepada konsep perpaduan yang  menjadi amalan selama ini.

"Masanya sudah tiba bagi semua parti berasaskan kaum dibatalkan pendaftarannya termasuk, malang sekali, PAS, kita perlu bersikap praktikal jika kita mahukan sebuah negara yang bersatu-padu.

"Sepatutnya parti politik dan mana-mana pertubuhan profesional berasaskan kaum  atau agama ini tidak boleh dibenarkan memandangkan perkara ini merupakan suatu yang serius dan bahaya," katanya dalam sidang media di sini hari ini.

Beliau berkata demikian ketika menyelar kenyataan Presiden Persatuan Peguam  Muslim Malaysia (PPMM) Datuk Zainul Rijal Abu Bakar baru-baru ini yang mengingatkan Majlis Peguam supaya tidak menyokong isu penggunaan kalimah Allah dalam edisi bahasa Malaysia majalah katolik The Herald.

Karpal berkata pendaftaran PPMM sebagai sebuah persatuan juga tidak sepatutnya dibenarkan memandangkan Majlis Peguam membuka penyertaannya kepada semua peguam tanpa mengira kaum dan agama.

"Persatuan seperti itu hanya pencetus masalah di negara ini,  kerajaan juga tidak sepatutnya membenarkan persatuan seperti ini," katanya.


Hijrah in Reverse, Part 1

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 03:56 PM PST

Azly Rahman

I took time today to reflect upon the story of Prophet Muhammad's (Peace be upon Him) exodus/migration from Mekkah to Madinah in 622 AD, signifying the beginning /Year One of the Islamic calendar.

I posted notes on my Facebook page; a forum I utilise primarily as a tool for intellectual engagement, somewhat like a digital/electronic platonic cave or as a virtual salon of the French Revolutionary period, to discuss anything under the sun with view of deconstructing dominant ideas of the day.

islam religion muslim mosque 1Yes, "hijrah" is the beginning of the new year of the people of the Islamic faith but my questions were these: has the Islamic intellectual paradigm evolve since the 1900s? Has religion courted philosophy? What is still ailing the "Muslim mind" and what fundamental shifts need to be engineered?

These are questions that came to me spontaneously that asked to be posted for members of my Facebook forum I now call the Trishakti salon.

I posted a thought: perhaps the Quran is too personal and personalising of a text to be transformed into a hegemonising and universalising text for an "Islamic state"; perhaps an Islamic state exists in its impossibility, still an "imagined community" ruled by perfect people over perfect people they govern.

Perhaps the Quran is too vague of a grand narrative for political philosophy and that any interpretation of it as one, will run into the unresolvable problem of getting entangled into the complexity of praxis (ideology to practice) of the various "mazhabs/schools of thought", each competing with each other on what truth is.

And we have not yet talked about the nagging problems of the use and abuse of the sayings of the prophet (the hadiths)

Sense and meaning

I thought perhaps the Quran is meant only for personal reading, best done hermeneutically, in that as many as there are souls in this world, therein lies the number of possible ways to make sense and meaning of how one ought to live his/her life as a "Muslim" or a "person at peace" or have submitted to a life of peace and peace-making.

I don't know ... as Socrates would say ... the world of Islam is at best, politically messy, grounded in the triumph of the disabling influences of culture.

I thought, ala the Jeffersonian (American philosopher-statesman) ideal, had the Malaysian constitution clearly separated religion and the state, Malaysians would probably have a less complicated scenario of race-religious relations and class. Rather, race issues would predominate, making resolutions easier.

Countries claiming to be Islamic states are either ruled by dictators or despots, prone to perpetual revolutions due to its internal contradictions.

Like an evolving self and an evolving soul, liberal democracy may still be a useful political philosophy better than theocracy, as Man essentially are not born-sinners to be cleansed by the pepper spray of the state nor born to suffer to be robbed of his rights and be happy suffering.



Reply to "BSN, Affin and Muamalat remain at Grade F"

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 03:41 PM PST

To the Editorial Desk

Reference is made to your report/article of Monday, 4th November 2013, (READ HERE) on the test results on online banking sites on BolehVPN. 

Thank you for highlighting this report.  The test results have been noted (including the report that AFFINBANK's Corporate Internet Banking - scored an "A").  We have reviewed and taken the necessary action on the consumer/retail online banking system and the latest test result is a Grade "A" as per the attached report.  We would appreciate if you could update your report on AFFINBANK.  

Thank you & Regards
May HT Kong
Head, Corporate Communications
Affin Bank Berhad
Tel (O)     : +603-2055 9428
Fax           : +603-2026 1104
Email       :
Website   :



Laugh, Perkasa, and Be Effing Happy!

Posted: 04 Nov 2013 03:19 PM PST

By Kee Thuan Chye, Yahoo News

The disclaimer at the beginning of the show tells it all: "This programme is intended for immature audiences only. This programme is NOT intended for educational purposes, merely to stimulate FUN. If you are easily offended, mudah tersinggung or terkeliru, probably best to close the window right now."

This is That Effing Show, described by its producers as "a satirical news show that laughs, pokes fun and points out the (often) obvious and not-so-obvious absurdities of Malaysian socio-political life". Created by a bunch of clever, creative and concerned young people, it has been coming out regularly on the web TV network PopTeeVee since 2010.

By its own description, the show is a parody of Malaysian life, done in good humour, which means it is not to be taken seriously. Those who are easily offended or confused are warned not to watch it. This being clear, the show should therefore not expect any complaints against it except aesthetic ones – like perhaps it failed to generate fun or to entertain, or that the technical production was sub-standard, or that its actors performed badly.

Perkasa, however, is taking it very seriously. The Malay rights organisation has taken exception particularly to the series' recent segment, 'That Effing Show #95: Allah, Apa Lagi?', and its complaint is not on aesthetic grounds. Perkasa has even made not just one but nine police reports against it!

Selangor Perkasa chief Abu Bakar Yahya says show #95 insults the recent ruling made by the Court of Appeal, which banned the Catholic weekly newspaper The Herald from using the word 'Allah' to refer to God. He says the show has also offended the Islamic community. No kidding?

I have since viewed the six-minute video a few times, and I still can't fathom how it could be an insult to the court's verdict. At no point does any of the performers in the video question the verdict, either directly or obliquely, let alone show it any disrespect. What one of them does say is that Muslims need not fear getting confused if others used the word 'Allah'; it should be the other users who would be confused. Besides, Islam is the official religion, so what's there for Muslims to be worried about?

The video gets funnier in the next skit, which features a banter between two Malays on one side and two Indians on the other.

The Malays (played by Ezra Zaid and Faiq Syazwan Kuhiri) emphasise that now the court has given its ruling, other religions should use words other than 'Allah' for their God – like 'Tuhan' or 'Jesus' or 'Yahweh' – and leave 'Allah' solely to the Muslims. The Indians (played by Kubhaer Jethwani and Umapagan Ampikaipakan) retort, "OK, if you want to play like that, if you Muslims want to take back words, we also can take back words!"

At this, the Malays shrug and pull funny faces to mock what they've heard. Until the Indians tell them, "You think Bahasa Melayu is so original? There are actually many words in it that originated from Sanskrit, Tamil, Portuguese, Persian."

"Hah!" scoff the Malays. "Original or what, take back lah what you want! We have 'Allah', what more do we need? Go ahead!"

"Confirm?" ask the Indians.

"Confirm," say the Malays.

Then the Indians say that the first word they want to take back is rokok (smoke/cigarette). The Malays are taken aback. "Where did the word come from?" they ask.

"It's Dutch," say the Indians.

The Malays are a bit flustered by this, but they say, "OK, take it back. Surely, that's all. Anyway, we still have 'Allah'."

But the Indians reply, "There are many more." Then they rattle off a few other words – bahasa, budaya, bumiputra, raja, negara, pahala, puasa, cinta. As the Indians savour each word, the Malays agonise. They can't stand it now. "These are favourite words of the Malays!" they cry. "From the time we wake up in the morning, we use all those words!"

The Indians try to console them. "We are merely concerned. We don't want you to be confused. Because so many words in Malay originated from Sanskrit, when you guys use them, we don't want you to 'terHindu'!" (terHindu = accidentally become Hinduised)

The Indians continue: "Because that would be a ter-rible problem."

The Malays ask each other, "What do we do now? We surely don't want to 'terHindu'!"

"I know, I know," says one of them. "We'll call on our big back-up ... we'll call Uncle Ib … we'll call Ibrahim Ali."

"He's from Perkasa, right?" ask the Indians.

"Yes," say the Malays.

"Perkasa …," reply the Indians, "… that word sounds Sanskrit."

This is too much for one of the Malays to stomach. He launches into a manic mimic of that famous moment caught on video of Perkasa President Ibrahim Ali blustering in an interview with Al-Jazeera, "I … I … I … I … Don't talk shit! I tell you … three times! Don't talk shit! Don't talk shit!"

Hahaha! Perhaps this is the part that offended Perkasa the most! And drove its members to make the police reports!




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