Wednesday, January 31, 2024

Report: Najib’s jail term reduced to 6 years in partial pardon

Report: Najib’s jail term reduced to 6 years in partial pardon

FORMER premier Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s 12-year corruption sentence has been reduced to six years by Pardons Board following its meeting on Monday (Jan 29), sources including senior government officials told CNA.

The RM210 mil fine was also reduced to unspecified amount, according to three separate sources who spoke on condition of strict confidentiality.

However, Najib’s lead counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah said he has yet to be informed of any decision by the Pardons Board.

Najib, convicted in the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) case, served less than two years before the pardon. The decision suggests his release in August 2028, potentially sooner in August 2026 after serving two-thirds of the new jail term with parole for good behaviour.

Moreover, speculation intensified after a board meeting confirmed by Federal Territories Minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa. The meeting was one of Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin’s last tasks as King, concluded before Johor Ruler Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar 
succession. – Jan 31, 2023

Saifuddin Nasution: Cabinet told of Najib’s pardon bid, but has no say

Saifuddin Nasution: Cabinet told of Najib’s pardon bid, but has no say

Home Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail speaks during a press conference at the Home Ministry, Putrajaya, January 31, 2024. — Picture by Miera Zulyana

Wednesday, 31 Jan 2024 6:41 PM MYT

PUTRAJAYA, Jan 31 — The federal Cabinet today discussed former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s pardon application but has no power over the matter, said Home Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail.

Instead, he said it was solely the Pardons Board’s purview to decide Najib’s 12-year prison sentence from his conviction for the misappropriation of SRC International Sdn Bhd’s RM42 million.

“Today, in regards to him (Najib), we were informed briefly. But it is not the Cabinet that has jurisdiction. Because the Pardons Board, as in the (Federal) Constitution, is clearly stated under the jurisdiction of who its members are, and how.

“So, we discussed it, but we understand that this is under the jurisdiction of the board itself,” he said in a press conference at his ministry, here.

Yesterday, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Federal Territories) Dr Zaliha Mustafa, who attended the Pardons Board meeting, was quoted by Berita Harian as saying that the board is expected to issue a statement on Najib’s application for a royal pardon.

On Monday, local daily Utusan Malaysia reported that the Pardons Board would meet on that day itself and that the meeting would be chaired by the then Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Al-Sultan Abdullah Riáyatuddin Mustafa Billah Shah, and with one of the meeting’s agenda to be regarding Najib’s pardons bid.

The Pahang ruler ended his reign as the country’s 16th Yang di-Pertuan Agong today.

Johor Ruler Sultan Ibrahim Almarhum Sultan Iskandar was inaugurated as the 17th Yang di-Pertuan Agong for a five-year term today.

Najib has been jailed since August 23, 2022, after the Federal Court upheld his conviction for criminal breach of trust, power abuse and money laundering in relation to funds of RM42 million from SRC International, a former subsidiary of 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

To date, Najib has been in prison for more than one year and five months.

Najib filed his application for a pardon on September 2, 2022, which was just days after he started serving his 12-year jail term at Kajang Prison.

As Najib’s SRC offences were allegedly committed in the Federal Territories, the Pardons Board tasked with considering his application is the Pardons Board for the Federal Territories.

Under the Federal Constitution, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong chairs the meetings of the Pardons Board for the Federal Territories, which comprises the attorney-general, the Federal Territories minister, and a maximum of three other members appointed by the Agong.

To know how the royal pardon process works in Malaysia, read here for a summary by Malay Mail.

Immigration to deport Bangladeshi politician in spite of court order

Immigration to deport Bangladeshi politician in spite of court order

The Immigration Department has signed off on an order to deport Bangladeshi opposition politician MA Quayum.

This is despite the Kuala Lumpur High Court granting a stay of deportation to the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) leader, who turns 61 in three days.

Quayum is a United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) card-holder.

According to documents sighted by Malaysiakini, the deportation order was signed on Jan 24, six days after the High Court’s decision.

Quayum's family and lawyers were only informed of the order today. It is unclear if he is still in the country or has already been deported.

Lawyer Kee Shu Min told Malaysiakini that he had scheduled a visit to see Quayum at the Immigration detention centre in Semenyih tomorrow.

Meanwhile, lawyer Edmund Bon said they would also be sending a notice to the Immigration Department to not deport the Bangladeshi politician.

He said the deportation was a clear violation of the court order and was likely to be considered contempt of court.

The legal team has also written to the courts to get Quayum's bid for freedom heard sooner.

The stay of deportation was granted pending a court hearing scheduled for April 5 to hear Quayum's application for habeas corpus to challenge his unlawful immigration detention.

Suaram executive director Sevan Doraisamy previously said that Quayum was apprehended in a joint operation conducted by the Malaysian police and the National Security Intelligence (NSI) of Bangladesh on Jan 12 at his residence in Ampang.

He alleged that Quayum's detention request was part of a systematic crackdown by the Bangladeshi government against political opposition.

Quayum has reportedly been under the Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) programme since 2015.

However, the documents show that his MM2H pass was revoked after he was detained one day after the stay order was issued.

Maintaining relevance and control in the political arena at any costs! At any age!

Hussein Abdul Hamid

Maintaining relevance and control in the political arena at any costs! At any age!

The political landscape in Malaysia has been marked by uncertainty since Mahathir's departure from his 22-year tenure in office. Despite stepping down, Mahathir remains a prominent figure, positioning himself as the kingmaker with the ability to influence the selection of the next prime minister. This enduring influence is facilitated by enablers who manipulate public opinion in Malaysia through various means, including journalists and professional such as prominent lawyers who are active in social media.

In addition to political maneuvering, Mahathir's strategy to stay relevant involves a significant emphasis on financial influence. Money politics has become synonymous with Mahathir, and he ensures that his supporters, including cronies and family members, have access to substantial financial resources. This financial backing not only secures loyalty but also enables those aligned with him to exert influence within the political arena.

The recent crackdown on individuals attempting to undermine the PMX government underscores the dynamic relationship between power, money, and influence in Malaysian politics. It reflects Mahathir's ongoing efforts to maintain relevance and control, showcasing the intricate interplay of political forces in the country.

The public is grateful to MACC for proactively addressing issues related to TDM and Daim, without direct political interference from PMX, by scrutinizing their associates like Naimah, Mohzani , and Mirzan.

Kamsiah Haider

Rising Prices & A Still Clueless Government

Rising Prices & A Still Clueless Government

Dennis Ignatius

Ask the average Malaysian what the number one issue is for him and he’ll very likely tell you it’s the rising cost of living. Prices are surging; income is falling. Taxes are increasing too along with utility charges and transport costs. For B40 and M40 consumers, the pain is very real and getting worse with each passing day.

When people complain, politicians are quick with glib answers. Consumers are told that the increase in water tariffs, for example, is a “good investment”. Grumble about the rising cost of basic essentials and you’ll get a lecture about how fortunate we are to have one of the lowest inflation rates in the region. Talk about the falling ringgit and they’ll go into a song and dance about the war in Ukraine. Or they’ll blame consumers for eating out too often or not shopping around enough in search of bargains.

Whatever the reasons may be, at the end of the day, it is the people not the politicians who suffer the most. What everyone wants to know is what their government is going to do to ease their burden.

After promising for over a year to bring down food prices and failing miserably, the Prime Minister has now turned to a Bersatu turncoat – Syed Abu Hussin Hafiz – to head a government committee on rising food prices and cost of living. To say it is a ridiculous move would be an understatement. It looks like he’s outsourcing what two finance ministers, an economy minister, a minister in charge of food security and a minister whose portfolio includes the cost-of-living issue were unable to do in over a year. How well do you think that’s going to turn out?

If the government needs help it would do well to listen more to people who really know how to get things done and who won’t be afraid to speak truth to power – like Ameer Ali Mydin, Managing Director of the MYDIN chain of supermarkets. Thus far his advice and his pleas for action have fallen on the deaf ears because our politicians always think they know better than everyone else.

The Prime Minister seems to love appointing committees and recruiting advisers. He already has five economic advisers, a National Action Council on Cost of Living (Naccol) and the National Economic Action Council (MTEN). What are they there for? Are they all clueless?

When will he learn that committees and advisers and gimmicks like mega sales are not a substitute for sound policies? What is needed is structural reforms – especially the removal of monopolies which distort prices and disrupt supply chains. Soon after he came to power, the Prime Minister criticised the rice monopoly held by one of Malaysia’s biggest tycoons but it was just for show, something to impress the masses. The rice monopoly remains in place; the price of rice continues to remain higher than neighbouring countries.

Until the government commits itself to meaningful structural reforms, all these committees and appointments must be seen for what they are – pure political theatre, empty gestures that are unlikely to make a difference. What’s worse, its making the government look inept and completely clueless.

Many Malaysians fervently supported Anwar Ibrahim in the hope that he would bring about meaningful change and make life better for all Malaysians. It is not happening and people are growing increasingly disenchanted. If living conditions don’t improve soon, the Prime Minister shouldn’t be surprised if people turn against him in the same way as they turned against his predecessors.

Daim vs Anwar is an opportunity


Daim vs Anwar is an opportunity

Former financial czar turns first court appearance into high stakes theatre.

From Terence Netto

“A clash of doctrines is not a disaster; it is an opportunity,” said the philosopher-mathematician Alfred North Whitehead.

Former finance minister Daim Zainuddin decided on Monday to turn his much-awaited first court appearance into high stakes theatre by aiming for the jugular of Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim.

Daim, in a prepared statement at the end of his arraignment, argued that Anwar’s government is engaging in selective prosecution by indicting him for non-disclosure of assets while causing to free deputy prime minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi from a host of corruption charges.

By starkly accusing Anwar of selective prosecution – though those were not the words Daim used – and by portraying Anwar as a poseur masquerading as a reformer, Daim has put a blowtorch to the prime minister’s trail.

No weasel words can help Anwar parry the brusqueness of Daim’s comments.

Essentially, Daim is saying that Anwar is living in a glasshouse and trying to throw stones; and that this won’t wash.

Anwar’s position may well be that just because there may be a mote in his eye, it doesn’t mean he cannot point to the speck in Daim’s.

Meanwhile, the Malaysian public can be glad for the opportunity to find out if the French novelist Honore Balzac was right about his observation that “behind every great fortune there lies a crime.”

From the list of 71 properties held by Daim that was revealed in court on Monday, we can see that these holdings constituted “great fortune.”

Whether these were illicitly acquired or not remains to be seen.

Suffice open court disclosure is the first step towards determining criminality.

That is why Whitehead’s opinion that a clash of doctrines is not something that should be avoided simply because it provides the chance for the observing public to figure out how much of the truth one contender has over the other.

Democracy thrives on the determination of such relative positions.

In a sense, Daim’s high stakes theatre in court on Monday with its warning that Anwar’s path is a prelude to tyranny is something the prime minister should keep in mind even as his government supposedly pursues the malefactors of great wealth.

And if such types fight their corner with gusto – as Daim promises he would – there won’t just be great theatre.

There will be the truth that makes all of us free.

Terence Netto is a senior journalist and an FMT reader.

RPK: Zahid in a no-win situation whether Najib is pardoned or not; Anwar’s reputation is also at stake

Focus Malaysia:

RPK: Zahid in a no-win situation whether Najib is pardoned or not; Anwar’s reputation is also at stake

DEPUTY Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi faces a lose-lose situation regardless of whether incarcerated former premier Datuk Seri Najib Razak receives a royal pardon or not.

That is the view of fugitive blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin (RPK) as the country is swept up with rumours of the former Pekan MP receiving a royal pardon for his 12-year jail sentence after being found guilty of all seven charges related to the misappropriation of RM42 mil of funds belonging to SRC International Sdn Bhd (he was also fined RM210 mil).

If Najib was pardoned, RPK reckoned that this could pave the way for the disgraced ex-prime minister’s (PM) return to lead UMNO – the lynchpin of Barisan Nasional (BN) – which had ruled for 61 years prior to be defeated in the 14th General Election (GE14) in May 2018.

“Najib is more popular. Even for kampung folks who are not UMNO members, they support Najib more. Najib’s pulling power is far better than Zahid whom many see as a traitor to the Malay race,” the opposition-slant mercenary blogger pointed out in his latest video clip.

On the contrary, if Najib’s application for pardon is rejected, Zahid could remain as UMNO president but this would not placate UMNO members who had been promised that Najib would be released by the Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim administration.

Elaborating, RPK said UMNO leaders like Datuk Lokman Noor Adam had promised UMNO grassroots that Najib would be released one week after the formation of the unity government in November 2022. But that time-frame kept being postponed.

“There were promises that Najib would be freed in 2022. It’s already 2024 and UMNO grassroots’ patience is running thin,” warned editor of the Malaysia Today news portal which is not accessible in Malaysia.

Should Najib’s pardon application be rejected, UMNO grassroots would become even more infuriated, leading to a possible mutiny against Zahid. And should Zahid be ousted from UMNO, the fate of the unity government could hang in the balance considering BN has 30 MPs in the Dewan Rakyat, including 26 from UMNO,

As for Anwar, RPK cautioned of the damage to his reformist credentials should Najib be freed.

After Zahid received his DNAA (discharge not amounting to acquittal) for the 47 corruption charges pertaining to his Akalbudi Foundation and the action against twice former premier Tun Dr Mahathir and former finance minister Tun Daim Zainuddin, having Najib freed made bad optics, according to RPK.

“What reformasi are we talking about? If there’s reformasi, Zahid and Najib should be behind bars. This sends the wrong signal and shows that Anwar is not sincere. It shows that `all my enemies are jailed while my allies are freed from jail’,” observed the self-exiled blogger from his Manchester, UK home.

Yesterday (Jan 30) the country was swirling with rumours of Najib’s release following a royal pardon. This was fuelled by an article in Utusan Malaysia which claimed that the Pardons Board had decided to grant a pardon following its meeting on Monday (Jan 29). The Malay daily later pulled out the article from its website and apologised.

Following this, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Federal Territories) Dr Zaliha Mustafa who attended the meeting has asked the public to wait for an official statement from the Pardons Board. – Jan 31, 2024

MACC freezes Tan Sri’s bank accounts


MACC freezes Tan Sri’s bank accounts

Officers raid the businessman’s office and home looking for financial documents related to a contract to supply the government’s fleet of vehicles.

According to an MACC source, the agency froze the businessman’s bank accounts as part of its investigation into a contract awarded to a government vehicle supplier in July 2023.

PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has frozen several bank accounts believed to hold tens of millions of ringgit belonging to a businessman with a Tan Sri title, an agency source said.

According to the source, the action was taken following MACC’s investigation into a contract awarded to a government vehicle supplier in July 2023.

MACC also said it raided the businessman’s residence and company, retrieving financial documents that could aid the investigation.

“More than 100 private accounts and companies, worth millions of ringgit under the control of the Tan Sri in question, have been analysed to observe trends in fund transfers to specific individuals.

“Of this total, MACC has frozen several accounts holding what is estimated to be tens of millions of ringgit,” the source said.

MACC said it had also recorded statements from several key witnesses, including people from the government agencies and companies involved in securing contracts to supply and manage the government’s fleet of vehicles, the source said.

MACC senior director of investigation Hishamuddin Hashim confirmed that the accounts had been frozen and said the case would be investigated for giving or accepting gratification under Section 17 of the MACC Act 2009.

Tuesday, January 30, 2024

King’s sole discretion whether to pardon Najib - minister

King’s sole discretion whether to pardon Najib - minister

Amid speculation on the outcome of yesterday's Pardons Board meeting, Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Chang Lih Kang said the matter was not discussed in cabinet meetings.

“I really don’t know (the outcome). Pardons are the Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s sole prerogative. There is no need to listen to the prime minister’s advice or to discuss it in the cabinet,” he told reporters when asked.

He added that Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim did not attend the Pardons Board meeting and it was Federal Territories Minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa who was there instead.

Chang (above) also clarified that the notion that one must serve three years of imprisonment before applying for a pardon is just a convention and not explicitly stated in any regulation.

Earlier today, Zaliha’s aide confirmed to Malaysiakini that the board has met to discuss former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak’s application for a royal pardon but declined to provide details.

Najib has been serving a 12-year prison sentence at Kajang Prison for the RM42 million SRC International corruption case and is still facing trial for several 1MDB-related charges.

Amid the media frenzy, several publications have published reports citing sources claiming that Najib has been pardoned or had his jail sentence reduced, followed by a slew of retractions of such articles.

Communications Minister Fahmi Fadzil advised the media to wait for the Pardons Board to issue its official statement before reporting on their decision.

U.S. Forces Take 37+ Casualties in Drone Strike on Frontier Mideast Base: How Will Escalating Hostilities Evolve?

Military Watch:

U.S. Forces Take 37+ Casualties in Drone Strike on Frontier Mideast Base: How Will Escalating Hostilities Evolve?

U.S. Military Personnel Honour Fallen Soldiers

On January 28 U.S. forces at the Tower 22 military facility on the Jordanian-Syrian border took over 30 casualties in an overnight drone attack, with three U.S. Army soldiers killed in the strike. This represents the highest casualty count for an attack on American forces in the region since an Iranian missile strike on military facilities in Iraq caused over 100 U.S. casualties on January 8, 2020. 

The latest count for the most recent strike places casualties at 37 personnel, rising from an initially reported “under 30,” with strong precedents remaining for a further increase in announced casualties. The number of reported casualties from the January 2020 attack, for example, steadily rose from under 30 to over 60 before being confirmed weeks later at over 100. 

The party responsible for the attack remains uncertain, and while the Iranian government had before the end of the day denied responsibility, U.S. President Joe Biden stated that the strike “was carried out by radical Iran-backed militant groups operating in Syria and Iraq.” 

U.S. forces in the Middle East have come under escalating attacks since early October, when the country significantly escalated its regional military presence and alongside other Western states began to provide significant support to an Israeli war effort against Palestinian militia groups in the Gaza Strip.

U.S. Army Black Hawk in Syria

Although prior attacks on American military facilities in both Syria and Iraq were not reported to have caused any deaths among serving U.S. Military personnel, they did cause injuries and lead to a reduction in the American presence at some facilities in Syria. 

Drone strikes and rocket artillery attacks from October 17-24, for example, caused 24 casualties among American forces in Syria but no deaths.

American forces in Syria have been involved in mass appropriations of Syrian oil, which has been sold on abroad to finance the U.S. occupation of Northeastern Syria. While these appropriations have been widely condemned as acts of pillaging, the very presence of American forces on Syrian soil has also consistently been characterised as illegal by sources outside the Western world due to its lack of authorisation from either the United Nations or the Syrian government. 

In parallel to attacks on its ground forces, continuous violations of Syrian airspace by American military aircraft in 2023 began to face unprecedented resistance from Russian fighter planes based in the country, which in July caused serious damage to an American MQ-9 Reaper drone by launching flares in its flight path. 

Alongside attacks, U.S. forces in Syria have also taken casualties in a number of accidents, with the most notable being a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter crash in June 2022 which caused 22 casualties and required 15 personnel to be moved to higher care facilities outside the country.

The use of drones in the latest strike on January 28 notably also follows the first reported deployment of single use ‘kamikaze’ drones by the Iranian-backed Lebanese militia group Hezbollah to destroy Israeli Iron Dome air defence systems, which was reported on January 26 and marks the latest major development in months of skirmishes between the two parties. 

It has been speculated that Washington may attribute blame to Hezbollah for the latest attack, as it remains by far the most capable non-state military force in the region.

RPK continues to sing tune favouring unity gov’t by concurring with Agong, gives thumbs down for PN

Focus Malaysia:

RPK continues to sing tune favouring unity gov’t by concurring with Agong, gives thumbs down for PN

ONE wonders if there is a fall-out between fugitive blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin (RPK) and the opposition pact as he is seemingly going on the offensive against Perikatan Nasional (PN) by exposing the latter’s weaknesses.

After he blatantly whacked Bersatu over the weekend by comparing the fate of UMNO splinter party, Semangat 46, with the former, the mercenary blogger has suddenly sided with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (YDPA) by echoing His Majesty’s message that “it is not justifiable to change the government for the sake of changing just because the law or the constitution allows it”.

“The Agong is already fed-up with the so many attempts to topple the government of the day via the Dubai Move, London Move, Chow Kit Move and various other sub-Moves,” berated RPK in his latest video clip.

“There were already three changes of government in the aftermath of GE14 (14th General Election) and if another change were to happen as planned in December last year, the lifespan of the unity government (13 months) will be even shorter than the previous administrations of Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob and Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.”

Raja Petra Kamarudin (RPK)

“If we don’t understand the Agong’s message, then something is wrong … one reason for the Dubai Move to fail is that the Agong didn’t consent or wasn’t happy with the move to change the government.”

RPK went on to use the analogy of an old car which rampantly goes in and out of the workshop till it spent more time in the workshop than on the road to describe PN’s incessant push for a change in government.

“If that’s the case, then we ought to change our car … But then again, if we only change to another old car which regularly breaks down, then we must ask the question why we are changing our car for another dysfunctional car” pointed out the self-exiled blogger from his Manchester, UK residence.

“If the current government is not working out and is potentially worse than the previous government, then there is justification to change the current government for a better government so that the country can improve.

“But currently, the Agong doesn’t see that happening … Even if the opposition claimed that the current government is weak, handicapped and full of flaws, the Agong doesn’t see that the alternative offered by the opposition is any better … PN simply has to prove that they can be a more viable alternative.”Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah (left) will be officially succeeded by Johor ruler Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar tomorrow (Jan 31)

RPK further expressed “extreme disappointment” over the Budget 2024 tabling whereby the opposition “didn’t do their homework and failed to come out with an alternative budget which is far better than that of the Madani government’s budget to prove to the Malay rulers and people that PN indeed has better ideas and substance”.

“They are only seemingly good at condemning others but don’t you underestimate the Malay rulers for they are university graduates who know how to think and know what they are doing … in fact, they are far more intelligent than many of our politicians,” chided the Malaysia Today news portal editor.

“Moreover, the Agong didn’t make his decision unilaterally but discussed (at least) thrice with his brethren rulers over the past five years (on matters pertaining to change of government) … and the decision was arrived at unanimously.”

Added RPK who himself has ties with the Selangor royalty: “So don’t unduly blame the failure to change the government on the Agong for he will not consider party interest but that of the nation as his top priority.

“Remember that the incoming Agong who is the Johor ruler is even a tougher Sultan and will not tolerate all the nonsense (of gutter politics) … the gist is to allow the unity government to administer for one full term.” – Jan 30, 2024

Najib's pardons bid: Wait for Pardons Board's statement, says minister

Najib's pardons bid: Wait for Pardons Board's statement, says minister

Najib filed his application for a pardon on September 2, 2022, which was just days after he started serving his 12-year jail term at the Kajang prison. — Picture by Firdaus Latif

Tuesday, 30 Jan 2024 2:44 PM MYT

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 30 — The Pardons Board is expected to issue a statement regarding former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak's application for a royal pardon over his conviction and 12-year jail sentence involving the misappropriation of SRC International Sdn Bhd’s RM42 million, a report said today.

Local daily Berita Harian cited Minister in the Prime Minister (Federal Territories) Dr Zaliha Mustafa as confirming that she attended a Pardons Board meeting yesterday at Istana Negara, and said she did not give further details regarding the matter.

"Wait for the official statement from the Pardons Board," she was quoted saying after launching the draft Kuala Lumpur Local Plan 2040 draft.

Yesterday, local daily Utusan Malaysia reported that the Pardons Board would meet on that day itself and that the meeting would be chaired by the then Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Al-Sultan Abdullah Riáyatuddin Mustafa Billah Shah, and with one of the meeting's agenda to be regarding Najib's pardons bid.

The Pahang ruler ends his reign as the country’s 16th Yang di-Pertuan Agong today, while Johor ruler Sultan Ibrahim Almarhum Sultan Iskandar will be the 17th Yang di-Pertuan Agong for a five-year term starting tomorrow.

Najib has been jailed since August 23, 2022, after the Federal Court upheld his conviction for criminal breach of trust, power abuse and money laundering about SRC’s RM42 million.

To date, Najib has been a prisoner for more than one year and five months.

Najib filed his application for a pardon on September 2, 2022, which was just days after he started serving his 12-year jail term at the Kajang prison.

As Najib’s SRC offences were allegedly committed in the federal territories, the Pardons Board would be tasked with considering his pardons bid is the pardons board for the federal territories.

Under the Federal Constitution, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong chairs the meetings of the Pardons Board for the federal territories, which comprises the attorney general, the Federal Territories minister, and a maximum of three other members appointed by the Agong.

To know how the royal pardon process works in Malaysia, read here for a summary by Malay Mail.

Eating meat makes you fat? Student workbook sparks social media debate

Eating meat makes you fat? Student workbook sparks social media debate

Netizens have since urged the relevant authorities to look into this and ensure the quality of education for children.

The correct answer was the fat woman - which has since upset many netizens - The Vibes, January 29, 2024

NETIZENS are shocked and puzzled over workbook exercises for young children which was highlighted by clinical psychologist Prof Dr Siti Raudzah Ghazali (@sitiraudzah) on X recently.

Professor Dr Siti Raudzah from Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) shared a page from what is believed to be a book used for Higher Order Thinking Skills more commonly known as Kemahiran Berfikir Aras Tinggi (KBAT).

The question asked students to pick which character was a woman named Liza based on her eating habits.

The question stated that Liza likes eating meat and dislikes vegetables. The choices were a skinny old lady, a sparkly young woman, a fat woman and a sickly-looking one.

The correct answer was the fat woman - which has since upset many netizens.

"What kind of logic is this? Eating meat is going to make you fat?" asked one netizen.

Another questioned what children were supposed to learn from questions like this.

"Are we teaching our kids to discriminate against overweight people?" asked another netizen.

Netizens have since urged the relevant authorities to look into this and ensure the quality of education for children. - The Vibes, January 29, 2024

‘Arrogant top 4’, the reason Bersatu 6 supporting Anwar?


‘Arrogant top 4’, the reason Bersatu 6 supporting Anwar?

A parliamentarian says Bersatu risks more defections unless its leaders can ensure that their MPs receive allocations for their constituencies.

A source alleges that Bersatu’s top leadership has been unwilling to meet with the party’s MPs about their grouses.

PETALING JAYA: The six Bersatu MPs who declared support for Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim allegedly did so due to the refusal of the party’s top leaders to entertain or listen to its parliamentarians, according to a source.

Speaking to FMT, a parliamentarian who asked to remain anonymous said around the middle of last year, several MPs had started highlighting the need for Bersatu and Perikatan Nasional (PN) to discuss the issue of allocations, after Anwar opened the door to negotiations.

According to the source, this was especially as first-time MPs lack the resources to operate service centres and provide emergency assistance for their constituents.

“When these issues were raised with the top four, they were not entertained… so a decision (on whether to support Anwar) had to be made,” claimed the MP.

“Moreover, when they contacted the president, he did not respond at all.

“Bersatu and PN need to resolve this issue of allocations immediately. The MPs can’t rely on Bersatu’s financial resources which are limited,” said the source, who also claimed that MPs from PN were not informed of the progress in negotiations for allocations.

Bersatu is led by former prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin. The deputy president’s seat is held by former Perak menteri besar Ahmad Faizal Azumu, with former ministers Radzi Jidin and Ronald Kiandee serving as vice-presidents.

In October 2022, Rafiq Naizamohideen, who won one of the three deputy president seats in the party election, left Bersatu, a month before the 15th general election.

Bersatu’s Syed Abu Hussin Hafiz Syed Abdul Fasal (Bukit Gantang), Iskandar Dzulkarnain Abdul Khalid (Kuala Kangsar), Suhaili Abdul Rahman (Labuan), Azizi Abu Naim (Gua Musang), Zahari Kechik (Jeli), and Zulkafperi Hanapi (Tanjong Karang) have all declared their support for Anwar, citing the welfare of their constituents.

Anwar urged PN in March last year to negotiate allocations for its MPs with the government, similar to what was done during the administration of Ismail Sabri Yaakob, who signed a memorandum of understanding on political transformation and stability.

Eight months later, however, PN chief whip Takiyuddin Hassan said the coalition had stopped negotiations after the government sought certain assurances.

The source who spoke to FMT said MPs from PAS were now viewing their Bersatu colleagues in a negative light.

“Without knowing the real problem, PAS blames Bersatu MPs and accuses them of being disloyal and not committed to the party’s ideology,” the source said.

When asked what might happen if top Bersatu leaders continued to ignore their MPs, the source said: “Logically, there will be (MPs) who join (in supporting Anwar).

“But the most damaging thing will be during the next general election. People won’t see Bersatu, except when they play up Malay and Islamic sentiments.”

FMT has reached out to Bersatu information chief Razali Idris for comment.

Daim has fallen and facing his deserved fate in the Dock. All that is now left is the reckoning...and he will be done!

Arguably the richest man in Malaysia. Probably the most sinister finance minister that ever prowled the corridors of power. Without doubt, the most prolific user of proxies in and out of government. A man who have made others who have done his bidding rich, but made himself much much richer. The man who had served Umno and our nation when called to do so, but never failing in the process, to served himself better. And in doing all this and more, Daim Zainuddin has kept his deeds, misdeeds and devious instructions, shrouded in mystery and ultimately hidden from prying eyes by the ingenious means of penciling his instructions and then having those incriminating self serving instructions erased forever.

Like his devious exploits in the financial arena, this slight, short and quiet man was no slouch when it comes to matters of the sexual kind. Numerous marriages, possible dalliances with delectable sweet young things and enough goings on in his confusing matrimonial merry go round to make us all wonder whom he was married or not married to, and who was his first, second, third or maybe even fourth spouse!

Some may see, in this man, the makings of a financial genius who was able to achieve almost legendary status given what he has amassed in his lifetime from initial failed business beginnings. Some may even think Daim to be a Malay hero able to give the Chinses a run for their money when it comes to business undertakings. There may or may not be some truth in all of these tales BUT in truth, this diminutive small man, is nothing more that a greedy, conniving bully who went about the business of taking for himself and taking from others, what ever he can, to make himself filthy rich. Never having any regard for the welfare or suffering of others whom he had exploited and used for his own financial gains. Daim Zainuddin is a financial Machiavelli of the worst kind...successful in his endeavors of stealing, scamming and simply taking for himself, what he wants from other to sate his unbridled greed.

And on Monday January 29th 2024, all his yesterdays caught up with him.

For reasons that escapes me, he was NOT dressed in orange with the legend "LOKUP SPRM" boldly emblazed on the attire he was wearing. He was not handcuffed nor did he arrived in a Black Maria. Instead we saw a frail old man in a wheelchair, being pushed by his minder, into the court room. Not only was one of his eye missing, but what was obviously missing was the Daim who once thought himself invincible against all comers, untouchable and above the law.

And what was he in court for?

Kesalahan Daim simple aja. Pada bulan February, MACC minta Daim declare asset. Dia minta lima kali extension. In November 2023 final extension. Daim submit asset declaration to SPRM tampa memasoki asset yang amat jelas: WISMA ILHAM bangunan 60 tingkat jelas dalam nama Neamah dan anak Daim. Dia tak declare!

Ini tidak ada kena mengena dengan PMX. So kenapa Daim marah kapada PMX? Dan di kaitakan ini dengan keadaan ekonomi dan kadar matawang! Kadar ringgit jatuh kerana US$ very strong dan Bank Negara Malaysia refuse to increase OPR. US interest rate is now 5.5 %. Ringgit interest rate only 3%. Tak ada kena mengena dengan PMX!

Daim, do not worry too much about the state of our country. Worry about the coming days that will see you in the Dock stripped off all of your past positions, glory and any respect that old age should accord you. You will be at the mercy and deliberation of the court who surely uncover, expose and perchance, convict you for the wrongs that you have inflicted upon so many others and upon our nation.

Enough said.

Jakarta museum says junk in UPM paper not from its collection

Jakarta museum says junk in UPM paper not from its collection

Museum Bahari in Jakarta said the model of a Malay junk, which Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) researchers said is displayed at its museum, is not part of its catalogue.

Instead, the museum told Malaysiakini the photograph included in the journal article by UPM researchers Rozita Che Rodi and Hashim Musa “more resembles a Chinese junk”.

The researchers also used another wrong photo to refer to a model of a Javanese jong built based on a relief from the Borobudur complex.

“The photograph on page 2317 (of the journal) is not part of Museum Bahari’s Javanese jong miniature model collection,” it said.

It also provided a photograph of the actual model of a Javanese jong, which was based on the Borobudur relief, displayed at the museum.

“We hope this information provides clarity for Malaysian researchers and journalists on the issues which relate to Museum Bahari,” it said in an email.

Photo of model misattributed in UPM paper (left), actual miniature model of Javanese jong at Museum Bahari (right)

The Museum Bahari holds a collection related to Indonesia’s maritime history and was founded in 1977.

The museum’s clarification comes as the Royal Greenwich Museum in London confirmed that the photograph used by the UPM researchers as an example of a Malay junk is in fact a photograph of a Chinese-made miniature of a junk from 1938, held in its collection.

The issue made headlines after French researcher Serge Jardin in a viral social media post pointed out the error in the UPM paper, as proof of poor standards in academia.

Rozita and Hashim have not responded to requests for comment while UPM has defended the paper, saying it has undergone peer reviews.

The International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences, which published it, said it is investigating the matter.

‘Hybrid South China Sea junk’

While Museum Bahari uses the words jong and junk interchangeably, historians’ understanding of the origins of the English word “junk” has different conclusions.

Universiti Putra Malaysia

Some, like renowned scholar of Southeast Asian history Anthony Reid, said it comes from the old Javanese word “jong”, which means ship, while others say it is derived from the Chinese word “chuan” which means ship or boat.

However, Reid said Chinese records listed it as a Malay word, while the old Javanese word “jong” was found in an old Javanese inscription of the ninth century.

Portuguese records from the 1500s noted that Chinese vessels were made of softwood connected by nails while Javanese junks were made of teak wood, joined by dowels.

Reid said by the 16th century, the large cargo ships had various influences and can be referred to as a type of hybrid “South China Sea” junk, with ships showing “features predominantly Southeast Asian but with Chinese admixture”.

Wrecks of ancient vessels from the Malay world have only been found in fragments, like the 10th-century Intan wreck, which was excavated in 1997 in the Java Sea.

Most of the structure of the Intan wreck had disappeared but historians used fragments to estimate that the hull would have been 30m long and that the construction was different from Chinese or Arab vessels.

Thousands of artefacts of various materials found in the Intan wreck were traced to the Southeast Asia region, China and the Middle East.

Political pressure builds on Biden to strike Iran after US deaths


Political pressure builds on Biden to strike Iran after US deaths

January 29, 2024

WASHINGTON, Jan 29 (Reuters) - The killing of three U.S. troops and wounding of dozens more on Sunday by Iran-backed militants is piling political pressure on President Joe Biden to deal a blow directly against Iran, a move he's been reluctant to do out of fear of igniting a broader war.

Biden's response options could range anywhere from targeting Iranian forces outside to even inside Iran, or opting for a more cautious retaliatory attack solely against the Iran-backed militants responsible, experts say.

American forces in the Middle East have been attacked more than 150 times by Iran-backed forces in Iraq, Syria, Jordan and off the coast of Yemen since the Israel-Hamas war erupted in October.

But until Sunday's attack on a remote outpost known as Tower 22 near Jordan's northeastern border with Syria, the strikes had not killed U.S. troops nor wounded so many. That allowed Biden the political space to mete out U.S. retaliation, inflicting costs on Iran-backed forces without risking a direct war with Tehran.

Biden said the United States would respond, without giving any more details.

Republicans accused Biden of letting American forces become sitting ducks, waiting for the day when a drone or missile would evade base defenses. They say that day came on Sunday, when a single one-way attack drone struck near base barracks early in the morning.

In response, they say Biden must strike Iran.
"He left our troops as sitting ducks," said Republican U.S. Senator Tom Cotton. "The only answer to these attacks must be devastating military retaliation against Iran's terrorist forces, both in Iran and across the Middle East."

The Republican who leads the U.S. military oversight committee in the House of Representatives, Representative Mike Rogers, also called for action against Tehran.

"It's long past time for President Biden to finally hold the terrorist Iranian regime and their extremist proxies accountable for the attacks they've carried out," Rogers said.

Former President Donald Trump, who hopes to face off against Biden in this year's presidential election, portrayed the attack as a "consequence of Joe Biden's weakness and surrender."

The Biden administration has said that it goes to great lengths to protect U.S. troops around the world.
One Democrat openly voiced concern that Biden's strategy of containing the Israel-Hamas conflict to Gaza was failing.

"As we see now, it is spiraling out of control. It's beginning to emerge as a regional war, and unfortunately the United States and our troops are in harms way," Democratic Representative Barbara Lee said, renewing calls for a ceasefire in the Israel-Palestinian war.

U.S. President Joe Biden delivers a prime-time address to the nation about his approaches to the conflict between Israel and Hamas, humanitarian assistance in Gaza and continued support for Ukraine in their war with Russia, from the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, U.S. October 19,... Acquire Licensing Rights, opens new tab Read more


Democratic Representative Seth Moulton, who served four tours in Iraq as a Marine, urged against Republican calls for war, saying "deterrence is hard; war is worse.”

"To the chicken hawks calling for war with Iran, you're playing into the enemy's hands—and I’d like to see you send your sons and daughters to fight," Moulton said. "We must have an effective, strategic response on our terms and our timeline."

Experts caution that any strikes against Iranian forces inside Iran could force Tehran to respond forcefully, escalating the situation in a way that could drag the United States into a major Middle East war.

Jonathan Lord, director of the Middle East security program at the Center for a New American Security, said striking directly inside Iran would raise questions for Tehran about regime survival.

"When you do things overtly you represent a major escalation for the Iranians," Lord said.

Charles Lister of the Washington-based Middle East Institute said a likely response would be to go after a significant target or high-value militant from Iran-backed groups in Iraq or Syria.

"What happened this morning, was on a totally different level than anything these proxies have done in the past two to three months... (but) despite all of the calls to do something in Iran, I don't see this administration taking that bait," Lister said.

A U.S. defense official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said it was unclear what the second and third order effects would be in going after Iran.

"Unless the U.S. prepared for an all out war, what does attacking Iran get us," the official said.

Still, Lord and other experts acknowledge that Israel had hit Iranian targets in Syria for years, without dissuading Iran, including four Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps officials in Damascus on Jan. 20.

The United States has also struck Iranian-linked targets outside of Iran in recent months. In November, the U.S. military said it struck a facility used not only by Iran-backed group but also by the Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps.

But Lister said the U.S. had gone after Iranians outside of Iran in the past, like the 2020 strike against top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani, and only yielded a response during a limited period of time.

"So to an extent, if you go hard enough and high enough, we have a track record of showing that Iran can blink first," Lister said.

Monday, January 29, 2024

No info on Pardons Board meeting, says Najib’s lawyer


No info on Pardons Board meeting, says Najib’s lawyer

Former prime minister Najib Razak’s jail term was purportedly set to be discussed at today’s board meeting, the last to be chaired by Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah.

Former prime minister Najib Razak is serving a 12-year prison sentence after the Federal Court upheld his conviction and sentence for the SRC International case in 2022. (Bernama pic)

PETALING JAYA: Former prime minister Najib Razak’s lawyer says he does not have any information about a purported Pardons Board meeting today.

“No, nobody knows,” said Shafee Abdullah in a Berita Harian report when asked about the meeting.

Earlier today, Utusan Malaysia reported that Najib’s jail term would be discussed at today’s meeting, which will be the last chaired by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah before his reign ends tomorrow.

On Jan 10, Shafee dismissed a Channel NewsAsia (CNA) report that said the Pardons Board will meet this month to discuss Najib’s application for a royal pardon.

He stressed that the board’s sittings are considered top secret, with the identities of its variable members and dates of meetings not publicised.

On July 28, 2020, Najib was convicted by Justice Nazlan Ghazali, then a High Court judge, for abuse of power, money laundering and criminal breach of trust in the SRC International case, involving funds amounting to RM42 million.

His appeal to the Court of Appeal was dismissed on Dec 8, 2021.

Najib began his 12-year prison term on Aug 23, 2022, immediately following the Federal Court’s dismissal of his final appeal.

On March 23, the apex court refused his application for leave to have its decision in the appeal reviewed.

Where will Tun M be in five years’ time?

Focus Malaysia:

Where will Tun M be in five years’ time?

THE next five years will be a time for lots of popcorns and movie blockbusters for most Malaysians while twice former premier who reigned for of 22 years and 22 months, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, faces the prospects of a jail sentence if he faces trial and convicted for sedition or corruption.

There are likely to be several court cases involving both himself and his family members.

As in the case of disgraced former prime minister (PM) Datuk Seri Najib Razak, five years – plus and minus – would be the length of time that Malaysians will have to wait as the court process takes time.

But one thing is for sure: the 98-year-old does not have many more years to go. Unless he lives till 103, he is very likely to escape a jail sentence just like his contemporary, the late President Suharto of Indonesia who died before he could be charged for corruption.

Regardless of whether it is now or five years later, Dr Mahathir has the Sword of Damocles hanging above his head.

After exhausting all his legal channels, if he is convicted of any crime punishable with a jail sentence, it is unlikely that he will obtain a royal pardon from the soon-to-be installed Agong, Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar.

After all, Sultan Ibrahim has put it in no uncertain terms that he wants the present government to go after “a certain nonagenarian who reaching his one hundredth birthday.” Although the Johor ruler did not name the nonagenarian, it is obvious that he was referring to Dr Mahathir.

Dr Mahathir’s lawyers may appeal for mitigation because of his age; after all, he would not be able to languish behind bars like the other ordinary criminals.

Like Najib, he may be allowed to be placed in Kajang prison where based on feedback from former prisoners, it is believed that certain privileged prisoners are placed in a special complex instead of the common prison cells.

One may call this karma but the universal law of God is a warning for all: “Whatever a man sows, that he shall also reap.”

Some of Dr Mahathir’s contemporaries such as former Tenaga Nacional Bhd (TNB) chairman Tan Sri Ani Arope and former federal judge Tun Mohamed Suffian Mohamed Hashim may not be able to see the retribution to the wrongs committed against them but judging from the current development – the price that Dr Mahathir and his children may have to pay is very high. This is the first scenario.

A second scenario is where Dr Mahathir and his entire family will disappear to another country. Just like the fugitive Jho Low and the Marcoses of the Philippines, they will go into hiding for a moment until it is safe to return home.

They will be able to continue living in luxury in their new host country. Whichever country it is, it is highly unlikely to be India. For someone who has denied his Indian descent altogether, even if he returns to the home country of his ancestors, he will probably rile them up and very soon, their whereabouts would be known to all.

His other choices would have to exclude the US, UK, Australia and Singapore; otherwise, the former Langkawi MP will once again create more controversies, bringing about further embarrassment to himself and his family on why they are not in Malaysia to face the trials.

In short, any place that Dr Mahathir goes, the ghosts of his past will continue to haunt him. If only he would remain elegantly silent after Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim was picked as the country’s 1oth Prime Minister, he could very well die as a statesman.

But Dr Mahathir being Dr Mahathir, he would remain the country’s most controversial figure but this has unfortunately damaged the country’s reputation. – Jan 29, 2024

Opinion: Why Anwar will not be able to lead the country for another 10 years

Opinion: Why Anwar will not be able to lead the country for another 10 years

29 Jan 2024 • 2:00 PM MYT

Writer. Seeker. Teacher

Image credit: NST

Malaysia Today’s Raja Petra Kamaruddin (RPK) is predicting that Anwar will defeat Mahathir and Daim and reign strong for two terms, or 10 years.

I respectfully disagree.

I believe that Anwar will defeat Mahathir and Daim, but I believe when they are gone, Anwar will also have to go, not long after they are gone.

Since the seizure of Ilham tower, Anwar has been steadily moving the pieces to bring Daim and Mahathir to account. Mahathir and Daim are today, a pale shadow of their former selves. Their attempts to counteract Anwar’s move, through such initiatives as the Dubai Move, was predictable and it has fallen flat. Anwar on the other hand, has been able to charge Daim’s wife and is most likely going tocharge Daim in the very near future. He will also likely be soon moving against Mahathir’s children.

The signs are such that Anwar will indeed succeed in bringing Mahathir and Daim to their knees in the near future. However, once Mahathir and Daim are gone, Anwar’s relevance will likely disappear with them.

While the next Agong, the Johor sultan, will likely back Anwar against Mahathir, for it is an open secret that the Johor Royals have a long frowned against Mahathir, once Mahathir is down, Anwar might not be able to count on the support of the Johor Sultan any longer.

Anwar’s supporters might be standing behind him today because they see him acting concretely against the Mahathir-Daim inner circle, but once Anwar has brought Mahathir and Daim down, they are likely going to expect Anwar to move the country forward, and this is where Anwar will falter.

Anwar does not possess the seed of the future. Malaysians will only support him for as long as prepares the ground for the future, by acting against the forces of the old world, but when it is time to plant the seed of the future, Anwar will likely be found wanting.

Anwar, for all intent and purpose, belongs to the past. Just because he is currently engaged in battle with the ancien régime of Mahathir and Daim, it doesn’t mean that he is not also a part of the old order.

That RPK went on to speculate that former Mahathir–Daim business cronies like Tan Sri Vincent Tan Chee Yioun, Tan Sri Francis Yeoh Sock Ping and Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Albukhary are likely to abandon Dr Mahathir and Daim and give their allegiance to Anwar is a further sign that Anwar belongs to the past.

Developing the country and the economy through cronyism is a feature of the old order. That Anwar is showing signs that he is going to continue the practice of the old order, by getting elements of the old order to switch their allegiance towards him, is a sign that Anwar also intends to develop the country and the economy in the same way that Mahathir and Daim used in the past.

Just like Mahathir, Anwar will most likely attempt to become a salesman for Malaysia and travel all over the world to persuade foreign investors to invest in Malaysia. Just like the Mahathir-Daim inner circle before him and Najib, he will likely also use the nation’s resources to start megaprojects, which he will promote as a necessary investment, to turn Malaysia into a developed nation.

The problem, however, is that Malaysia today, unlike Malaysia in the past, is no longer an attractive destination for foreign investment. Malaysia in the 80s and 90s provided value to foreign investors. There were very few countries in the world that could offer them what Malaysia could offer them.

Today, there are many countries that can offer foreign investors what Malaysia can offer. No matter how good a salesman you are, you can only promote the country if it has a competitive value in the global market. Unlike the 80s and 90s, Anwar will likely have a difficult time selling Malaysia as an attractive destination for foreign investment.

The concept of developing the country and the economy via megaprojects is likely also no longer suitable for the times. Najib has already tried that, but the response has been lukewarm. In today’s world, such game-changing features as Artificial Intelligence are going to be the main drivers of the economy. Anwar however, is ill-equipped to deal with the realities of the modern world.

Anwar’s main relevance to Malaysia is as a force for reforms. His ability to reform the country will likely end the minute he has brought the old order to its knees.

Other than bringing the old order to account, Anwar will likely also attempt to tilt the economic imbalance in the country, which favours the rich much more than it does the working class. According to a study by the National Economic Action Council, at least 40 per cent of government subsidies are benefiting the rich or the T20 group. The dependence of our economy on foreign workers is also a feature of our economy that benefits the rich to the detriment of the B40.

Anwar is already attempting to re-balance our economy, through such actions as removing the electricity tariff for the T20 household and starting the PADU initiative, which will target subsidies towards the B40 group, but these actions, although necessary, will likely cause upheaval in the market before its benefits can be realised.

There is also a question as to whether they will be implemented in a well enough manner for the benefits to be realised.

Once Anwar tames the old order, the focus will be on the economy, and this is where Anwar will be found wanting.

Once Anwar defeats Mahathir and Daim, Anwar’s attempt to develop Malaysia through the old ways, as well as the upheaval he will face in his attempt to re-balance our economy, will cause Malaysians to start seeing Anwar as a Mahathir 2.0, and yearn for a leadership that will be able to lead us towards a future, instead of a leader who is only equipped to deal with the realities of the 80s and 90s.

As Eric Hoffer once observed, “In times of drastic change, it is the learners that will inherit the world, while the learned will find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.”

We are living in a time of drastic change.

Anwar is the learned who is beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.

He might be the most able person to fight against the old way of the old order, but once he succeeds in pacifying the old order, it is those who are able to learn the new ways of the new world, that Malaysians will pin their hopes on to lead them forward.

If Anwar is able to accept the reality, he will start the process of handing over his reign, once he has tamed the old order.

If not, he himself will be a part of the old order, that the learners who will inherit the world, will have to topple, in order to move the country forward.

Nehru Sathiamoorthy is the author of “While Waiting for the World to end”. He was a columnist at FMT and a frequent contributor to the South China Morning Post, Malaysia-Today, MalaysiaNow, MalaysiaKini and Focus Malaysia.