Tuesday, May 21, 2013

The Midas Dilemma - The Mahathir Dilemma

Yes, that's right, the title of this post is not a typo, where I had erred in replacing 'Malay' with 'Midas' or 'Mahathir', who coincidentally is the author of Malaysia's most controversial book 'The Malay Dilemma', basically a printed rant of his twisted perceptions.

Wikipedia has this to say about his book:

In the preface of the book's 1st edition, its British publisher casts doubt on the accuracy of Mahathir's assumptions and facts. Mahathir has been rightly criticised for the lack of documentary evidence to buttress his many arguments and conclusions. His assertions and assumptions were based on his personal observations and experiences, with no empirical data to support them.

The phrase '... based on his personal observations and experiences' could also mean based on his personal prejudices.

The book was banned by the Tunku Abdul Rahman administration and the prohibition maintained through two subsequent administrations (Tun Razak's and Tun Hussein Onn's) until the author became the Prime Minister of Malaysia, wakakaka.

quite a leng chai

But my wakakaka is not so much directed at Dr Mahathir but rather at those sycophants who ooh and aah at 'The Malay Dilemma' the moment it was un-banned by Mahathir's own government, as if it was a hidden treasure of Asian wisdom, not unlike a socio-political version of a Malaysian Kama Sutra.

Okay then, this calls for a wee teng k'ooi-ish (chong hei) digression into the Kama Sutra, wakakaka.

Academics said that the Hindu love-making Manual was written by Vatsyayana (Dr Vatsyayana? wakakaka).

His delightful deliciously decadent tome contains 1250 verses in 36 chapters, which were then compiled as 7 parts, on subjects from amorous advances, sexual union, acquiring a wife (what, only one?), courtesans and their economics (economics of prostitution or prostitution of economics a la NEP? wakakaka), occult practices related to getting more of you-know-what, which are something SE Asian witchdoctors (bomohs)  are very good at.

some postures are more yoga-ish challenging

However, Hindu religious belief has it that the Kama Sutra, regarded as the oldest and most notable of a group of texts known generically as Kāma Śāstra, was initiated by Nandi, Shiva's sacred bull and also gatekeeper. I have a few stories to tell about Nandi but let’s leave those for another day.

Apparently Nandi, being Shiva’s gatekeeper, was in a fortunate or (depending on your morals) unfortunate position where it could easily hear the love-making moans, groans and whispered sweet-nothings of his master and lady (Parvati) when the two gods were at it. It was said he was so moved (???) by their ‘sacred utterances’ that he recorded those for the benefit of mankind in what has now become known as the Kama Sutra. Hallelujah for that blessing!

Nandi, Shiva's sacred vahana

Incidentally, The Kama Sutra rhymes with The Malay Dilemma, wakakaka. Thus I am wondering how to tie all these legendary stuff with The Malay Dilemma’s ‘sacred utterances’ and Shahrizat’s ‘bull’ about her missing cows, wakakaka ...

... which brings us to, firstly, Bhai Karpal's rant about the Senate. Bhai has been so incensed with Najib's (as well as his prime ministerial predecessor's) misuse of this convenient 'back door' to the cabinet that he proposed for the abolishment of the legislative institution. I don't agree with my hero as I think that's way too drastic.

As Gobing Rudra, a former editor of a newspaper wrote: DAP chairman Karpal Singh has gone overboard in asking for the Senate to be abolished. He’s throwing out the baby with the dirty bath water out of anger and disgust with the way that Umno-BN use the Senate for appointments to the cabinet.

I agree with Gobind Rudra's take on only that but most certainly NOT his other points in his article in FMT's Reform the Senate, not abolish it. I'll come back to Gobind later.

Needless to say, when Bhai Karpal called for the Dewan Senate to be abolished, DAP's former VP and current chief pest wakakaka, Tunku Aziz, disputed Bhai's call, stating most incorrectly that "... the Senate would unearth and develop more political and administrative talents for the good of the country" because that's not the purpose of the Senate, to 'unearth and develop talents'.

However, Tunku has been correct in saying the "Senate would give the government an opportunity to use a much bigger pool of talents to administer the country", though the only 'talent' the government had ever recruited via the Senate 'back door' into the cabinet was King Guz, better known as the late Tun Ghazali Shafie.

In Tunku and Tun Razak's days, Ghazalie Shafie was a superb (probably the best ever) civil servant, and it wasn't surprising the 2nd PM brought this 'talent' into the cabinet via the Senate.

But I can't name other 'back door' candidates for the cabinet, people like Koh TK, Waythamoorthy, etc, as 'talent' but more as 'mandores'.

Another senator, though wakakaka we cannot describe him as a Senate 'back-door' product* because he is NOT in the Malaysian cabinet (yet anyway), Senator Jaspal Singh, who is MIC treasurer-general wrote a letter to Malaysiakini about the call by his 'countryman'** to abolish the Dewan Senate.

* while being nominated to the Senate is a constitutionally legal process and a singular honour, taking a senator into the cabinet particularly one already rejected resoundingly by the voters, people like Koh TK and Shahrizat etc, or one who is hardly a representative of a minority group, like Waythamoorthy, is known as a 'back door' process, and an insult to the rakyat.

** if you're a Sikh, you'll know the flippant and humorous reference to 'countrymen', wakakaka.

Jaspal Singh's letter to Malaysiakini titled Karpal's pitch to abolish senate ill-considered has only one good point for us to share, while the rest of his letter consists of attacks against Karpal and DAP, which is okay since Jaspal is from MIC, wakakaka - now, surely you don't expect him to praise Karpal or DAP.

Jaspal wrote in his opening paragraphs:

The Dewan Negara plays a critical role in Malaysia’s democracy. It reviews laws passed by the raucous lower house. It allows minorities, like the Orang Asli, or for that matter, Sikhs, to have a voice in the legislative.

It also ensures representation for states. Senators comprise individuals of worth and if Karpal finds some of them unsuitable, his personal views cannot be confused for widely-held public opinion.

I may have some questions about his claim that 'senators comprise individuals of worth' wakakaka, but I would grant he has been partially right, considering not all senators have been cast-aside & recycled rubbish.

However, Jaspal Singh failed to put his above statement, though correct, in full context, and I suppose I can't blame him because I don't expect him to criticize Dr Mahathir for messing up the Senate as he (Dr Mahathir) had messed up most things he laid his hands on.

What would be this 'full context' I've just mentioned?

Without going into itsy bitsy teeny weeny details, during Dr Mahathir's tenure as PM, the Senate changed (through constitutional amendments - possible when the government has a two-thirds majority) from one which ensured the states and minorities could check and challenge the federal government's legislation which might not be in their (states' and/or minorities') favour into one which is controlled by the federal government - and in such a change, has thus lost its raison d'être, its ability to check & balance legislations passed by the Dewan Rakyat that are unfair to minorities or the states.

The Senate previously had more states-appointed senators than the King's (but in reality the PM) appointed ones, but the majority has now gone the other way.

The King's or federally appointed senators, having been increased through constitutional amendments from 16 to now 40, could easily overrule the states' and territories' maximum of 30 even if the impossibility exists of all 30 states-appointed senators being from non-UMNO parties.

Mohamed Suffian Mohamed Hashim

Mohamed Suffian Mohamed Hashim, former Lord President of the Federal Court, said that the amendments acted "contrary to the spirit of the original constitution which established the Dewan Negara specially as a body to protect in the federal Parliament, state interests against federal encroachments."

So what's new in Malaysia Boleh! Just another obscene molestation of the already much mutilated federal Constitution.

And that's the 'full context' within which Jaspal Singh should have made his comments on the Senate, namely, that it is currently one that can no longer protect the interests of minorities or the states, but just a rubber-stamping factory for the federal cabinet's legislations and a back door avenue for the PM to reward failed and rejected politicians like Koh, Shahrizat, etc.

Thus Jaspal Singh should appreciate why his 'countryman' Bhai Karpal has been so outraged by the 'unrepresentative swill'* that is the Dewan Senate today.

* the term 'unrepresentative swill' was first used by former Australian PM Paul Keating to describe the Australian Senate, though his words carried a different meaning to the one I have for the Malaysian Senate, where mine indicates that Malaysian senators are not directly voted into office by the rakyat.

Dr Mahathir was not unlike the fabled King Midas, though of a version which changed everything he touched into disaster (instead of gold).

You may wonder who's King Midas. Well, rather than write the story on my own, here's what I obtained from the web about Midas (slightly edited by kaytee for better reading and clarity):

Midas was a king of great fortune who ruled the country of Phrygia, in Asia Minor. He had everything a king could wish for. He lived in luxury in a great castle. He shared his life of abundance with his beautiful daughter. Even though he was already very rich, Midas thought that his greatest happiness could only be provided by gold. His used to spend his days counting his golden coins! Occasionally he used to cover his body with gold objects, as if he wanted to bathe in them. Gold was his obsession.

One day (to cut the story short) he did a favour to Dionysus  the god of wine and revelry, who passed through the kingdom of Midas. The god was very grateful to Midas for his kindness, and granted Midas any one wish the king desired. Midas though for a while and said: “I hope that everything I touch becomes gold”.


Dionysus warned the king to think carefully about his wish, but Midas was very firm about what he wanted. Dionysus could do nothing else but to grant the king his wish, that from that day everything he touched would turn into gold.

The next day, Midas woke up eagerly to see if his wish became true. He touched a table which immediately turned into gold. Midas jumped with joy! He then touched a chair, the door, his bathtub, a table, etc until he was exhausted yet happy at the same time with all the new gold objects he came into possession!

Then he sat at the table to have breakfast, and while waiting to be served, took a rose between his hands to smell its fragrance. When he touched it, the rose turned immediately into gold. "I will have to obtain the rose's fragrance without touching it, I suppose," he thought in disappointment.

When he tried to eat a grape it also turned into gold! The same happened with a slice of bread and a glass of water. Suddenly, he was afraid. Tears filled his eyes and at that moment, his beloved daughter entered the room. When Midas hugged her, she turned into a golden statue! In great despair and fear, he prayed to Dionyssus to take the curse of his magical touch away from him.

Fast forward, and do we recall someone had once cried in equal despair at the curse of what he erroneously imagined would be his magic touch?

And hasn't everything he touched turn into disaster? Forex, Sabah, Senate, the Pandora Box of religion, crooked bridge, etc etc etc, even his beloved NEP ended up with him (not someone else) criticizing his UMNO people for continuing to lean on crutches?

What about the recent elections in Pasir Mas, Shah Alam and the latter's domino effect in Selangor? Just another of his 'Mahathir' magic touch for UMNO!

But alas, unlike King Midas, King Mahathir is not repentant. He doesn't believe in the curse he has in his hands, changing every everything he touched into disaster, even and especially for those he favours.

Yes, I grant he wants to help the UMNO Malays, he wants to strengthen UMNO, yet he makes matters worse for them. That's the Mahathir Midas-like Dilemma.

But let's return to Gobind Rudra's proposal to reform the Senate. Gobind spoilt a serious proposal, for a start, by his rants against Singapore (which I have to admit I have been fond of too, though only against LKY, wakakaka).

However, Gobind behaved in an irrational angry manner, a behaviour which incidentally he had accused Karpal Singh of, when he wrote:

Karpal seeks to destroy what would be an institution that could strengthen democracy and the people’s interests. He is disgusted that P Waythamoorthy was made a deputy minister. So he says close down the the Senate.

But didn’t the DAP appoint Tunku Aziz Ibrahim as senator? And when he was appointed, didn’t the DAP trumpet the fact that he was the first DAP senator?

Yes indeed, DAP did appoint Tunku Aziz to the Senate as allowed by the Constitution, BUT NOT into the cabinet via the Senate 'back door'.

That has been the fundamental difference which unfortunately Gobind, in his anger against Karpal Singh wakakaka, failed to distinguish. Thus, Tunku Aziz was NOT a 'back door' appointment.

Then strangely for someone who claimed to speak for the rakyat, Gobind cast his anger at the Dewan Rakyat in saying:

Karpal’s suggestion for only one house, of a Parliament consisting only of the Dewan Rakyat, is a disguised appeal for the supremacy of parties and politicians, instead of the supremacy of the people.

For a start, to argue that the Dewan Rakyat is not an expression of the supremacy of the rakyat shows his somewhat confused understanding of parliamentary democracy, warts and all.

Additionally, he failed to explain how a Dewan Senate would be different from a Dewan Rakyat in terms of politicians and political parties, since we may be sure that the Dewan Senate would be filled mainly by apppointees from the same political parties in the Dewan Rakyat.

He was talking as if his reformed Dewan Senate will be completely divorced from the Malaysian political sphere. What was he smoking?

Or, has he been prejudiced against the Dewan Rakyat because there isn't in the legislative institution those he wants to see?

But nonetheless  let us examine what he has to offer:

What Malaysia needs is a reformed Senate as well as a reformed government and reformed politicians who believe in the principles of democracy and will uphold them. One of those principles is representation of the people. Another is separation of powers. And another is check and balance.

Okay, no problem, though all are motherhood statements thus far. But nothing enlightening. Let's read on.

A reformed Senate, if given due respect from reformed politicians and a principled government, would provide a check and balance against a house of MPs who believe their word should be law merely because they were successful in conning an unthinking and gullible rabble into voting for them.

Again, a motherhood statement with a wee ranting at the end wakakaka, though I question his particular rant against the Dewan Rakyat as not being the law maker. I'm getting worried about his understanding of parliamentary democracy.

Or, I am now even more convinced the people he supports haven't been (or couldn't be) elected into the Dewan Rakyat, hence his invincible prejudice.

A reformed Senate would give voice to ethnic minorities, to those sidelined by the political process, for example allowing all religions to be represented. A reformed Senate would provide a place for those who cannot, or will not, take part in the dirty business of winning votes. Technocrats could be appointed to represent industries and trades, artists and performers, sportsmen, maybe even journalists.

Some good points but I have a few questions for him:

(a) who, apart from ethnic minorities like the Aborigines and other (East Malaysian) natives, are those 'sidelined by the political process'? C'mon, don't be shy or oblique. Say it out aloud.

(b) who is an ethnic minority? How would we define an ethnic minority in Malaysia? One with less than 3, 2, 1 or x% of Malaysian population? Or perhaps one with less than 8%, wakakaka.

(c) what did he mean by 'those who cannot, or will not, take part in the dirty business of winning votes'? Is he advocating a departure from the (his) 'dirty business' of democratic elections? Is he suggesting imperious (note: not imperial, but perhaps Ah Jib Gor's) appointments instead of the choice/voice of the people?

I gather by now Gobind isn't exactly a man in favour of democratic elections, sneering at it as 'dirty business', but I suspect, only because those he supports couldn't get elected into Parliament, wakakaka.

A reformed Senate would have direct elections for people to represent the 14 states. It would also provide for royal appointment, by which minorities and other neglected groups could have a voice.

Again I have to ask who he meant by 'neglected groups'? As I urged before, c'mon Gobind, say it out aloud, or no one will hear you.

But I am now getting the sense he could be a Hindraf sympathizer or even is a member who wants a SARSI wakakaka.

An upper house would provide a place for unpolitical debate, for a calm rethink of what the rowdy politicians in the other place demand.

Unpolitical debate? There is no such animal when one deals with issues pertaining to, or involving the state or its government, in defining policies and legislations of a state. All these are political. I am afraid by now, I have to regrettably say he's talking SARSI cock. So goodbye Gobind.

had hoped someone would propose a Senate based on the powerful Australian version, to make amends to King Mahathir's 'Midas' touch on it, but let's leave that lengthy discussion for another day.


  1. Perhaps the Senate issue could be discussed in another topic?

    Mahathir was seen by UMNO as Midas with the golden touch. The person who has returned to help, and will help BN regain the seats it lost. Alas, it was not so. Senjata makan tuan. Mahathir made it worse for BN with his racially charged rethoric, support of Perkasa, IA, and Zuul.

    Not surprisingly, Mahathir has refused to accept his complicity in BN's poor showing.

  2. I wouldn't mind having appointed senators. In fact, I would not mind having ministers who are senators even if they are defeated in the recent election. One of them is Saifuddin Abdullah. Rather I would prefer the Prime Minister of the day to have some form of a council. You can call it a privy council of 11 lets says. Privy council comprises of distinguished peoples from all sectors including the civil servants. We should maintain it at 70 but we increase the no of senators from each state from 2 - 3. which makes it 42. That means that senators based on the recommendation of the privy council is restricted to 28. Furthermore, there shall be a convention that the max no of senators nominated as minister should be restricted to 9 which is roughly 1/3 of the 28 appointed senators

    1. looes matey, I too like Saifuddin Abdullah but I have a very strong stand against getting a politician already REJECTED by the voters into the cabinet again via the Senate.

      Rejected by the voters should be just that, meaning no more ministerial position. We must RESPECT the voters' decision. If we don't then we don't respect democracy.

      However, a good bloke like him could be appointed to an important government (but non-ministerial and non-political) post to continue using his talents.

    2. How do you really know that voters rejected Saifuddin because Saiffuddin is no good or is it because of the political party he represents

      One good example is George Yeo, Singapore former minister. He's one of the ministers who has never stayed out from the sight of battle. To the extent, the voters agreed because I have spoken to quite a number of residents there

      It's obvious that Karpal Singh's call for unicameral parliament comes from singapore. He studied in NUS......Hahahaha.....So does how he runs the party....Just like Toh Chin Chye

      One famous quote of Toh Chin Chye ( Taiping born just like me)

      "In this last term, I hope I will be of public service and not a wallflower in the chamber of parliament of a dumb cow.”

  3. I like it when queen of spade said quoted and agreed Mahathir's book lacks empirical data. Why not said it also lacks research and theory.
    Bloggers like you actually when write and whine I believe all based on well researched subjects and backup with full range of data either empirical or not. Common. Need to learn to basuh berak dengan air dulu after berak bro.
    The STAR reported RafiziLembugay told the press that 5 something people were not allowed to vote. You should tell Wong from The STAR before publishing this kind of news to conduct a thorough study first, come up with concrete empirical data first than only you print it.
    Since when personal observations does not count. You pergi belajar kat sekolah mana, VERnookelar!!!

  4. Dr M is a malay convert in the truest sense. He is now more melayu than the actual malays. Up till even when he was studying in the univerisity in Singapore, as a young adult, his name in all official documents and the documents in the university have his name spelled the usual indian manner, with a 'anak lelaki' (A/L) in his birth certificate. Prior to entering the field of politics, he actually had a very low opinion of the malays, ascribing their so-called low intelligence to what he opined as prevalent inbreeding among that race...cousins marrying cousins being a very common practice then, uncles marrying nieces, even some brothers marrying or having offspring with their own sisters, not to mention the offsprings from the rampant incest among the family members. We also are privy to the famous story of how he was humiliated and rebuffed by the chinese family whose daughter he was interested in........may be the course of the malaysian history would be vastly different had that nasty incident not occurred then and he was successful in marrying his chinese sweetheart :)

    As fate would have it for the unlucky malaysians, this midas with his un- golden touch bring much sorrow to all who live in this land of such vast natural resources......so very true as the blogger alleges....everything he touches turned to rotten-ness, not least the hordes of new, instant bumiputras running into the millions and will keep on increasing as we approach 2018 for the next election. I have met many "malays" who spoke tamil at home and among their close friends and make yearly sojourn back to their India homeland without fail. Now we have bangladeshis and burmese and filipinos who speak spluttering BM but all have blue ICs and are registered voters. And RPK at M2D was quick to claim that these people are Rumpun Melayu...???

    Dr M will NEVER admit to his failures and like his ilk, will turn to his favourite punching bag - the chinese - for scapegoating when things turn sour or events not turning out in their favour. For how long is the PM keeping silent about the current call for boycotting of chinese products just because the majority chinese spurned the chinese MCA party for the oppositon ?

    1. Everyone knows Mahathir never faults himself and he always justifies his actions in some way e.g. on the RCI on Sabah illegals.

      But there is a rare occasion he actually castigated the Malays and regretted being unable to change them, in an interview with Utusan ('Saya kecewa dengan Melayu"). Excerpt:

      "... Saya gagal (ketawa sinis). Saya gagal mencapai perkara yang lebih penting - bagaimana hendak mengubah orang Melayu...."

      The article is in Utusan archives has many gems of truth and worth reading to savour its polemics:


  5. the gaffe guy who know's9:53 pm, May 22, 2013

    The best talent the DAP and the senate ever tapped was Tunku Aziz.This was a man who could not accept the fact that he has oulived his usefullness and welcome.That his public outburst and uncivilised behaviour against his former party has made him into a 'pariah' in the eyes of the public.

  6. During my growing up years, Mahathir was my hero. I thought he was one of the greatest Malaysians.
    Malaysia's success has been the work of many, many people, but if you were to point to one single individual who made the most difference, it is him.
    I still have the highest respect for Dr. Mahathir.

  7. "...basically a printed rant of his twisted perceptions."

    You mean just like most of your ??


    1. I beg your pardon... how can Ktemoc be compared with the man with twisted perceptions?

      Your comparison lacks intellectual honesty. One is pembohong and the other is Ktemoc.

  8. You good friend is making his move in bashing DAP. Yes RPK. See even your matey bash your beloved DAP unless you really believe everything he says


    1. Mmmm......it would appear like RPK is on some sort of chinese rampaging trip for quite sometime now, and it doesn't appear to be letting up anytime soon.....in fact it's beginning to look like this anger against the whole chinese race is taking a permanent hold in his heart....his bitterness is spilling out every which way at every tiny opportunity to castigate, scold, blame and sneer at the chinese. Everything about the chinese is poison to him now....there's nothing good about the chinese now...they are corrupt, they betray, they are greedy, they have no sense of loyalty, they are the lowest of the lowest scum, hardly human.

      So what is the root cause for all this ? Methinks it all started with his split with Anwar Ibrahim. There is no hell like the fury of a man scorned. And coming in between the cross fire, SOME chinese who are ardent ABU supporters ( and who might or might not be DAP supporters too ), came to the defence of AI, accusing RPK of being a turncoat.

      Human nature being what it is....let's say A hates B.....and if C sided 100% with B, then you can bet that the first hatred A had for B pales even in comparison with A's new hatred for C. And RPK is a man with strong passsion, nothing is half measure with this man and many a times, he himself admitted that he could take anything but mockery...and he now views those who criticized him for his so-called turncoat-ing as an assault and a mockery of him. Once he is caught in this type of mood, it would appear he he is throwing caution to the wind and letting rip on all things chinese, as though unable to restrain and contain himself. Oh....what a waste...he's done a lot of good stuff.

    2. His wife is Chinese and his children are half Chinese. RPK has a habit of playing around with your mind so don't read too directly into what he says. And even if (say) he hates Chinese, let's find out why. Wakakaka

    3. Yes indeed....RPK himself never fails to remind his readers that his wife Marina is a Chinese...in fact, a Thai Chinese. For all its worth, he lately came out to say even his chinese wife hates the chinese ?

      Let's find out why he hates the chinese ( IF he indeed do hate the chinese ) ? Well, as mentioned before, his fatal flaw is his overweening pride.....he cannot condone being mocked at....and he is unable to accept the many who had once so admired him had left him in droves, with some remnants sparring with him in very cutting, hurtful words ( read : MOCKING of RPK ). A more level-headed blogger would have just cut his loses and continue on unperturbed, able to deflect all those accusations of being a sell-out turncoat if his conscience is clear. The current manner he's taking by ranting wildly at a whole race is not doing him any favour, even to the neutral reader. Again...what a waste...he really have done a whole lot of good stuff before all this. Now his writing is all about malay vs chinese and islam vs christianity.

    4. Just like Colonel Nicholson stubbornly hold on to his honour code to the extend of helping the Japs to complete the burma railway. Only to be realised towards the end. What the hell he's doing? You see in order to kick start reforms, something got to be destroyed. If BN is not dead, you can put in your ideals meh

  9. Opposition publications seized. Three opposition/NGO leaders arrested. Student activist charged. Allegedly for seditious acts or words.

    Would there be similar action for the ex-judge, the pro-chancellor, NGOs calling for boycott of Chinese, Utusan...?

  10. Another suspect is 'murdered' in police custody, again. Same ethnic origin. Its high time the IPCMC is established.

    Contrast this with the UK street murder of a soldier, where police officers shot the suspects, and their IPCC immediately reviews the incident and comments:
    "Police watchdog the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) said it is not pursuing any criminal or misconduct offences in relation to the officers who used their weapons.
    IPCC investigators have viewed CCTV of what happened, and said two officers fired guns and one discharged a Taser.
    They have given initial accounts of what happened.
    IPCC commissioner Derrick Campbell said: 'Our investigation is as a result of the tragic events yesterday and I would like to express my sincere sympathies to the family of Lee Rigby at this terrible time.
    'We have viewed CCTV footage of the police shooting. At this stage we are not pursuing any criminal or misconduct offences.
    'Officers have provided initial statements and we will be obtaining additional accounts.
    'The IPCC is independently verifying information regarding the circumstances of this incident and we can promise the Woolwich community, and wider public, that our investigation will be thorough.' ..."