Saturday, August 24, 2019

New Malaysia? Podah!


Criticising New Malaysia seems even more difficult

This is really strange. In “New Malaysia”, I am beginning to feel more unease when expressing issues that I am not happy with.
Suddenly, I sense that all the social advocates, the champions of people’s interests and abrasive politicians have vanished into thin air.
Suddenly, I feel that the various state apparatus are behaving as if they are under the old administration.
With the opposition in disarray or uninterested, I have the inkling that the government is acting on its whims and fancies without much consideration for the overall good of Malaysia.
Sometimes, I just don’t quite understand what is going on. Why must those going around belittling, insulting and encroaching into the rights of others continue to be tolerated and protected?
On the contrary, those who stand up to defend their rights from being encroached or trampled upon are being harassed.
When the government makes arbitrary decisions or formulates policies without consultation that do not make sense, why can’t the people protest or ask for justification?
It is obvious some of the decisions made by the government are self-indulgent, parochial and even on the fringe of stupidity. So, why can’t the people express their displeasure?
If we accept Malaysia is multiracial and multicultural, I think it is high time we cut the crap on the dominant and subservient mentality that is always lurking under the surface. Why must the majority dominate and the minority acquiesce?
A good government is a government that is able to restrain the abuse and arrogance of the majority and protect the legitimate interests of the minority.
A government that irrationally and perversely appeases the majority is a government that chooses the easiest way out to govern. It has no fair play, moral fibre and good conscience.

Amanah supports Anwar as 8th PM

Finally, Amanah for Anwar

By James Chai

Despite the fact Mahathir has all the powers in his hands, PKR and DAP with their combined strength of 92 seats still have the biggest say. Even the most indecisive party should know which side to stand on

Photo courtesy: Bernama

Amanah has been hesitating for some time now whether to support or not to support Anwar Ibrahim.

After the election victory, Amanah's direction has been rather inconclusive.

Since the very first day of putting up his new cabinet, PM Mahathir had wanted to divide Pakatan Harapan into two different camps, and to make them see PKR, the biggest party in the coalition, as their biggest rival.

Mahathir's bait was top government posts that would put both DAP and Amanah on his side, offering them the highly priced finance and defense portfolios respectively

These top posts would allow Mahathir to have a free hand in many matters. Indeed, by offering some privileges and powers, he could easily buy loyalty.

The good news is: DAP quickly saw Mahathir's intention, and was doing everything it could to stop the PM from getting what he had wanted.

After a finance minister was picked, Mahathir subsequently made provisions for a new economic affairs portfolio which would take away some of the finance minister's duties, and powers. He said this was to palliate the uneasiness among the Malay voters, but actually he was doing this to consolidate the power of Malays in the cabinet.

DAP was well aware that PPBM had been constantly strengthening itself in recent months, and would invariably make DAP the party's rival.

PPBM's acceptance of former Umno members has not only contravened PH's reform spirit, but has also significantly weakened the public's support for the ruling coalition.

DAP is maintaining a professional distance from Mahathir. While they appear to be in a team in the cabinet, they are actually two separate camps in politics.

When Mahathir dropped the two bombs on DAP -- one each for Jawi and Lynas -- the latter's skepticism was substantiated, that Mahathir never treated it as an ally that would go through the thick and thin together.

It was not difficult for DAP to realize the hidden agenda behind Mahathir's plan, but for Amanah, it was not that easy.

Amanah was fully submissive to Mahathir from the very beginning, as if a spell had been cast on the party. Out of 11 elected reps in the parliament, the party managed to get 10 posts, big or small, making it apparently the biggest beneficiary in the coalition.

After getting the defense portfolio, Mat Sabu seemed to have changed into a different person. The erstwhile reform spirit vanished into thin air, and he has become more serious today than he was humorous in the olden days.

Some members of PH components felt Amanah had betrayed them. They accused Amanah ministers of getting too close to Mahathir whom they once saw as big bandit, loyally supporting every decision their big boss was making and every now and then slamming their PH allies for not being grateful.

The temptation of power has rendered their reform spirit valueless, and all their past efforts are now completely brushed aside.

Another good news is: Amanah has finally seen the truth. On a rare occurrence the party's president Mohamad Sabu freely talked about politics, arguing that Pakatan could not afford to strengthen only one single party but should instead focus on fortifying the coalition as a whole.

Mat Sabu said smaller parties like PPBM and Amanah needed the support of stronger parties like PKR and DAP to win the next election, implying that PPBM had the ill motive of splitting up PH.

The party's vice president cum agriculture and agro-based industry minister Salahuddin Ayub subsequently reiterated the importance of honoring the coalition's 2018 succession agreement. Amanah grassroots generally feel that it is necessary for Mahathir to hand over the baton, and the only person to take over is Anwar Ibrahim.

The remarks by both Mat Sabu and Salahuddin speak volumes of the party's support for Anwar, rendering Mahathir's plot a complete failure now.

Amanah has for some time been undecided over whether to side Mahathir or Anwar. The party might be indecisive, but it is definitely no traitor.

In the end the party will still go for Anwar, because majority of the party's leaders, especially the more senior ones like Mat Sabu himself, once suffered heavily alongside Anwar and Lim Guan Eng during Mahathir's previous premiership, including unjustified jail sentences. This alone should be powerful enough to negate the short-term benefits handed out by the old man.

Amanah is also aware that without the undivided support of PKR and DAP, there is no way for the party to win even a single seat, less so to get a few places in the cabinet.

The newly established party, with its tiny membership, inadequate funds and lack of capable people, managed to clinch a handful of parliamentary seats in GE14 thanks to the support of their much more powerful allies.

Strategically speaking, despite the fact Mahathir has all the powers in his hands, PKR and DAP with their combined strength of 92 seats still have the biggest say. Even the most indecisive party should know which side to stand on!

(James Chai is a Think Tank Chief Researcher and Legal Advisor.)

Kerala Kerbau on deportation of Zakir Naik

Extracts from Malaysia Chronicle:


Controversial preacher Dr Zakir Naik will continue to remain in Malaysia for now, according to Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

Asked during a press conference in Putrajaya this afternoon if he had changed his mind about deporting the Indian-born preacher, the prime minister replied, “At this moment, there is no change.”

Previously, Mahathir said Zakir had crossed the line when he touched on racial politics.

“Religious teachers can preach, but he was not doing that. He was talking about sending Chinese back to China and Indians back to India. That’s politics,” he had added.

Not unexpected, Mahathir has long been notorious for his Machiavellian mafulat-ish manoeuvring, saying one thing when under pressure and then resiling on that when he believes the pressure is off.

Don't ever trust Mahathir - just recall what he said about manifesto promises, to wit, "Please remember manifesto is not a bible. It's a guide."

And he has been the worst in meeting the pre-election pledges, for example, taking in frogs from UMNO which he had sworn he won't. And then trying to be the Education Minister which was a pre-election no-no - it had to take some vigorous objections form PKR and DAP before he rescinded from his pompous belief he was the best choice for the education portfolio - mind, he picked a lemon from his own Party as his substitute which has subjected Malaysians to baffling perception and angst on his so-called "new" Malaysia - Podah.

Friday, August 23, 2019

Mahathir, how long are we going to wait for you to deport Zakir Naik?


Why still no action against Zakir Naik, Ramasamy asks Dr M

Penang Deputy Chief Minister II P Ramasamy.
PETALING JAYA: DAP’s P Ramasamy has questioned the prime minister’s lack of action against Dr Zakir Naik, a day after the controversial Indian preacher lodged a second police report against him accusing him of defamation.
Ramasamy, who is Penang deputy chief minister II, said Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s lack of immediate action against Naik, who recently courted controversy over his statements on Malaysian Indians and Chinese, might give the impression that the preacher has some degree of immunity in the country.
“Naik, with his combative style of preaching, has hurt the feelings of non-Muslims, particularly the Hindus and Chinese,” he said.
“Malaysians have all kinds of differences that sometimes appear to be in conflict with each other, but in the post-independence period, even extremists have not really questioned the loyalty of Indians let alone accused them of being pro-India.
“Similarly, no extremists have questioned the loyalty of the Chinese, or gone to the extent of asking them to leave the country as they are considered ‘old guests’.”
Ramasamy was referring to remarks made by Naik in a recent series of public lectures in Kelantan.
Naik said Hindus in Malaysia have “100 times more rights” than the Muslim minority in India but that they support the prime minister of India more than the prime minister of Malaysia.
He was also quoted as saying that Chinese in Malaysia are considered “guests”, and should be asked to leave before he is.
His remarks sparked criticism from various quarters, including by Ramasamy, Klang MP Charles Santiago, DAP assemblyman Satees Muniandy, Human Resources Minister M Kula Segaran and former ambassador Dennis Ignatius.
Naik subsequently lodged a police report against the five, who have stood by their criticism of the preacher. Yesterday, he lodged a second report against Ramasamy, accusing him of uttering defamatory words in an interview with Indian news channel India Today.
Putrajaya has so far resisted India’s request for the extradition of Naik, who faces charges of money laundering in his home country.
However, Mahathir said last week that the government would revoke Naik’s permanent resident status if his actions were found to be detrimental to the country’s well-being.
Yesterday, he said he had not changed his position on the matter.
In a statement, Ramasamy said Mahathir’s lack of immediate action against Naik was disappointing, adding that the prime minister had promised a new Malaysia for all, irrespective of race or religion.

However, he said Mahathir’s statement that Putrajaya would not deport Naik for now meant that the prime minister has not completely ruled out action against the preacher.
“Mahathir might think that arresting and deporting Naik might not endear himself to some sections of Muslims, in particular those supporters of Umno and PAS.
“But he should remember that he is the prime minister for all Malaysians not just for the Malays or non-Malays.
“I agree with Mahathir that police investigations must be done before action can be taken against Naik. But how long are we going to wait?”

DAP Perak - Intra-party or external sabotage?


Power struggle with federal DAP leaders led to rape report in Perak, say sources

by Minderjeet Kaur

Tronoh assemblyman and Perak exco member Paul Yong Choo Kiong

Bernama pic

PETALING JAYA: Rivalry between rival DAP factions at the federal and Perak state levels is believed to be behind events leading to a Perak executive councillor being charged with rape today.

Sources said the rivalry began after the 2008 general election when Pakatan Rakyat won control of the Perak state assembly.

The party was thrilled with their success and leaders, who are now at the federal level, wanted to place their own people in the party’s divisions to expand their power in the state.

A DAP leader told FMT that two Perak DAP leaders objected to any interference from these federal-level DAP leaders.

“This is really when the political rivalry started. The two Perak DAP leaders made sure the federal party leaders could not get their men to become state division chiefs.

“This tug of war became uglier until some Pakatan Rakyat leaders, fed up with the rivalry, decided to become BN-friendly.”

He said BN took the opportunity to take over the state by wooing those who they felt were unhappy with the situation in Perak.

plus two PKR ADUNs 

In 2009, the contest for control of the state erupted when three state assembly members, from the 32 that were from the Pakatan coalition, became BN-friendly independents, thus changing the balance of power in the 59-member legislature

The source further told FMT that since then the political rivalry has been on-going and this led to Perak exco Paul Yong Choo Kiong being charged this morning in the Ipoh Sessions Court with raping a 23-year-old Indonesian maid.

Last night, the media reported that Perak state speaker Ngeh Koo Ham had lodged a police report that the man who took the maid to report the rape had received RM100,000 for his efforts.

Ngeh also said the man was threatened with a gun to do so and wanted police to reopen the rape case. The Star reported that Ngeh believed a plot had been hatched against Yong, 49.

Last night, Perak Menteri Besar Ahmad Faizal Azumu advised the Tronoh assemblyman to take leave from his duties in view of the case.

Yong told reporters today, after being charged, that he had not been convicted and there was no reason for him to take leave. He was also unhappy with the way police conducted their investigations.

The source told FMT that there are some who are defending Yong while others in DAP are urging that action be taken.

The source further said that Yong may have been close to two top Perak state DAP leaders and could have been the target of the federal group.

He said those who are aligned to the federal level are the target of state-level leaders and vice versa.

“Both sides still want their men to be the exco members or division chiefs,” he said.

“The two state DAP leaders want the federal-level DAP members to leave them alone but the federal-level leaders feel that they should have control of all states.

“As such, the tug of war for power is far from over.”

Tony Yong sabo by own party colleagues? DAP? I wonder???

Here are the 18 DAP ADUNs in Perak. You guess who's aligned with the federal DAP leaders and who's with Ngeh and cousin Nga?

1. N17 Pokok Assam Leow Thye Yih
2. N18 Aulong Nga Kor Ming
3. N22 Jalong Loh Sze Yee
4. N25 Canning Jenny Choy Tsi Jen
5. N26 Tebing Tinggi Dr. Abdul Aziz Bari - EXCO member
6. N27 Pasir Pinji Lee Chuan How - EXCO member
7. N28 Bercham Ong Boon Piow
8. N29 Kepayang Ko Chung Sen)
9. N30 Buntong Sivasubramaniam Athinarayanan
10. N31 Jelapang Cheah Poh Hian
11. N32 Menglembu Chaw Kam Foon
12. N33 Tronoh Yong Choo Kiong - EXCO member
13. N37 Pantai Remis Wong May Ing - EXCO member
14. N38 Astaka Teoh Yee Chow
15. N41 Malim Nawar Leong Cheok Keng
16. N42 Keranji Chong Zhemin
17. N55 Pasir Bedamar Terence Naidu
18. N57 Sungkai Sivanesan Achalingam - EXCO member

Problem is Perak's DUN is near to a hang-parliament, with 30 on the Pakatan side and 29 on the BN side.

On Pakatan side the DAP has 18 ADUNs, Amanah 6, PKR 4 and Pribumi (initially 1 but with a post GE14 frog) 2.

Why Azumu (Pribumi) gets to be MB with his party having only (originally) 1 ADUN, well, beats me. Best to ask MenHEN Lim KS, wakakaka.

Personally I doubt the DAP would have intra-party sabotage a la PKR. Either the dictatorship or discipline in the DAP would have prevented that.

Think of other Pakatan saboteurs, wakakaka.

Also read following extracts from FMT (wakakaka):

DAP’s CEC will decide on exco man’s fate, says Loke

Perak executive councillor Paul Yong Choo Kiong was charged in Ipoh, Perak, today with raping an Indonesian woman

Bernama pic

GEORGE TOWN: DAP national organising secretary Loke Siew Fook said the party has yet to decide on the fate of Paul Yong Choo Kiong, the Perak executive councillor who was today charged with raping an Indonesian woman.

Loke said any decision on whether Yong should go on leave from his exco duties until his trial is over would come from the party’s central executive committee (CEC), which has yet to meet on the case.

“We will let the legal matter take its course and, ultimately, the CEC will decide on this,” the transport minister said on the sidelines of an event here. Also present was party vice-chairman Chow Kon Yeow

Paul Yong framed???

Star Online:

Ngeh: Man paid RM100k to take maid to lodge rape report against Paul Yong


Ngeh Koo Ham

on declaration of assets to MACC, he is currently the 'richest' politician, but we know "otherwise", don't we, wakakaka

IPOH: The man who brought the Indonesian maid to lodge a police report over her alleged rape by a Perak executive council member received RM100,000, claims Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham.

The Perak State Speaker said the new information was obtained after a meeting with the man at a hotel here on Thursday (Aug 22) at about 6pm.

“I’ve met the man face to face, in the presence of other YBs.“He said he received RM100,000 and was also threatened by a man with a gun not to tell anyone about it,” Ngeh told reporters after lodging a police report at the district police station here on the same night.

“Based on this new information and report, I hope the police will investigate the matter further, ” he said.

State exco member Paul Yong, who was alleged to have raped the 23-year-old maid, is set to be charged at the Sessions Court on Friday (Aug 23).

Ngeh said with the new information, he believed a plot was hatched against Yong.

“We will only bring the man and disclose further information during police investigation.

“We also want to protect him and hope the truth will be upheld, ” he said.

“It is only when the case is fully investigated that we know the agenda behind the accusation, ” he added.


KT notes:

Paul Yong's lawyer, Ramkarpal Singh, said that based on this new information, the AG should withdraw the charges against Yong.

Ramkarpal Singh 

Legally that could be so but I doubt politically the AG will, as the action will invite accusations of 'siapa raja', wakakaka.

damn it Ramkarpal, can't you ask me something simpler, like steps for the rumba? 

Meanwhile, the mafulat-ish MB of Perak advises Paul Yong to take leave, but Paul ignores him, saying he hasn't been found guilty and would continue working, another wakakaka.

eff those farmers, my footballers need the land
... to play football ...?

eff those aborigines, there's no such thing as aborigine ancestral land

besides, a RM2 company needs to work the timber

Mahathir's BN 2.0?

MM Online:

What we have now is BN 2.0 — Ragunath Kesavan

I remain just one thing, and one thing only, and that is a clown. It places me on a far higher plane than any politician — Charlie Chaplin 

AUGUST 18 — We were euphoric on May 9, 2018; after slightly more than one year later, we are a state of flux following the mishaps, missteps, confusion, the unacceptable direction of the nation and what the future holds for us.

Within a few weeks of taking over, the politicians and their handlers distanced Harapan and the government from the promises made to the people in the Harapan Manifesto.

It is not cast in stone

We promised but there is no timeline to deliver

We did not promise anything

We can’t deliver because of Najib

Is this not arrogance? At the very least they owe us a duty to provide an explanation as to when the promises will be fulfilled or why they cannot be fulfilled.

Our biggest concerns are related to the economy. Whilst cutting expenditure and reducing waste is good start, beyond that, where is the economic blue print to kick start or provide stimulus to the economy?

Talking down to the rakyat by asking them to work harder or to cultivate bamboo is condescending and incredulous!

If cutting expenditure is the first major step towards a leaner economy, how does one explain the third car venture? No government funds involved?

Mokhzani driving proton? 

Is there a mandatory open tender system in place for government procurement? Is there transparency and accountability for public scrutiny of government tenders and awards?

What has happened to the review of the lop sided and/or, “illegal” contracts or the “unsafe” projects? Rimba Kiara? Lynas? The current crop of Ministers appears now to be strong advocates and apologists for such projects.

Education reform? Black shoes? Khat? Swimming lessons in hotels? Matriculation places? Amongst others!

Zakir Naik?

These decisions and their implementation reflect poorly on the leadership; they lack consultation; they demonstrate no cohesion in the decision-making process; and they are in complete disregard of sensitivities of the people.

Where is the education blueprint? PPSMI or not? Khat or not? If such decisions were explained and disclosed as part of a road map prepared after consultation with stakeholders, there would not have been such a hostile reception to these issues.

The previous government operated on a similar knee-jerk basis with ad hoc decision-making manner. Regrettably, this is continuing! These decisions appear to be the result of politicking to cover weaknesses in carrying out entrusted responsibilities.

Common ground of acceptance on fundamental issues even by BN are no longer sacrosanct. The proposed amendment to the conversion law in Selangor and the denial of rights of ancestral land for Orang Asli and Orang Asal.

Azumu: No such thing as Orang Asli ancestral land 

What more with the fundamental promises on the accountability and collective decision-making process to limit the powers of the PM? Law reforms and human rights?

What we have now is BN 2.0 with continued political cronyism, abuse, compromise with scant regard to the groundswell of opposition and sensitivities of the Malaysian multi-cultural society.

On the “sex scandal” there has been no closure. Was there a cover up? Who were the masterminds? Who were the person(s) in the video clip?

Succession to the next PM? Is there a plan? How is it going to pan out?

These shortcomings must be addressed quickly and comprehensively by PH. Blaming Najib for every “wrong” and the present inability to perform is a poor excuse and an approach that is sure to back fire.

The popularity of the “BossKu” campaign by Najib reflects poorly on PH. The groundswell Malay support for Najib is in effect a “default” reaction by a segment of society who are tired with the inability of PH to deliver on its promises.

PH must accept their electoral win was by default. Fed up with the abuses and corruption of the BN government, voters voted in favour of the default option! Now, unhappiness and dissatisfaction with the present administration are the prime movers for the recent support garnered by Najib.

The Institutional Reforms Committee was formed with much hope and support from the people. The Report produced with much hard work appears to have gathered dust. The Report has been embargoed. It has not seen the light of day purportedly on the basis that it involves official secrets. Sadly, this is a throwback to the BN era.

It is about time that politicians drill down, engage stakeholders, work on and generate road maps for the economy, education and law reform.

Limits on the powers of the PM, MBs, CMs and Ministers must be introduced and implemented as soon as possible.

There must be cohesiveness in leadership governed by fundamental principles of the rule of law, accountability and mutual respect for all of us.

If at any time your position in Cabinet or leadership is compromised, you must resign for the greater good of democracy and accountability. Principled resignation is a matter of honour and it serves only to enhance our democratic system.

*Ragunath Kesavan was Malaysian Bar president from 2009 to 2011.