Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Nor Hayati unperturbed

Senator Nor Hayati seemed to be unperturbed over the controversy of "bicameral proximity".
The Nanyang Siang Pau (Dec 3, 2006) reported that she attended a cooking competition organized by the Klang Municipal Council (MPK) on last Saturday and was seen jovial and had joined the guests to dance.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Legal suit threat for bicameral photo

The Star reports today that I may be sued for posting the photograph in "Bicameral Proximity: MP and Senator".
Read also the New Straits Times.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Police report by senator's husband

Mohd Suffian bin Abdul Aziz, husband of Senator Nor Hayati, lodged the following police report on Oct 8, 2006, at the Shah Alam police station:-

Umno Supreme Council to discuss bicameral proximity

The Star today reports that Umno Supreme Council will discuss the photograph of the "Bicameral Proximity: MP and Senator" posted in this blog in its meeting today.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

The subject matter is hypocrisy

Some people opined that I should not have had put up the photograph of the “bicameral proximity” on the grounds, among others, that it is a private matter even if it is true; that there are more important matters to discuss and etc.

Well, let me say it loud and clear.

It is an exposure of hypocrisy. Hypocrisy of the leaders of the ruling party who have staunchly, and perhaps hysterically, supported the laws of moral policing to the extent that couple holding hands in public are now liable for offence of indecency.

The political leaders in the government of the day, including all the agencies and institutions, have enacted moral policing laws, regulations and rules to uplift morality to the level they themselves have not been able to maintain. Thus, the inconsistency of their own behavior with the standard and principle they preach. That is what I have exposed, not merely a photograph taken in an enclosed private place. Is that not an important issue for public discourse?

Equally hypocrite are those who have visited this blog for the first time merely to have a peep at the photograph to satisfy their own curiosity but immediately deplore it in pretence.

Clues to bicameral proximity

Read the Star and the New Straits Times today. Clues are there.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Senator's dad: it's in Syariah Court now

Tan Sri Dato Oon bin Ismail, UMNO Permanent Chairman cum Speaker of the Selangor State Legislative Assembly, who is also father of Senator Datin Paduka Nor Hayati binti Onn Ismail, said "the matter is now in Syariah Court".
That was Oon's justification when attempting to stop Ng Suee Lim, DAP Selangor State Assemblyman for Sekinchan, from deliberating on the photograph (or rather its negative) posted here yesterday entitled "Bicameral Proximity: MP and Senator" in the State Assembly budget meeting this morning.
When Oon said so, he must have had referred to Nor Hayati's family affairs rather than Rahman Ismail's. That would also seems to be contradicting Nor Hayati's denial statement in the Star today.

Bicameral denial

MP for Gombak, Datuk Dr Rahman Ismail and Senator Datin Paduka Nor Hayati Onn Ismail have both denied that they are connected to the photograph that I posted here yesterday (The Star Nov 28, 2006).
Let's wait and see who else will come forward and clarify.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Bicameral proximity: MP and Senator

I was one of the recipients of the above photograph. The man, apparently wearing a bathrobe, is a Member of Parliament at the lower house (Dewan Rakyat) and the woman in his chest is a Senator. Both are married but not to each other.

The scene seems to be a typical hotel bathroom where a towel rack and a clothes-line box can be seen on the upper left of the photograph.

What could they possibly be doing in the room or bathroom of a hotel in such a romantic atmosphere?

Whatever could it be but in a country where the political leadership emphasizes so much on moral and values based on religion, the two members of Parliament will certainly have to openly justify their close proximity.

They can either admit it or deny it by claiming that the photograph was super-imposed. Whatever. The point is that the public has a right to know since they are political leaders subject to public scrutiny.

Let's give them a chance.

Note: "Bicameral" means a system of government having 2 chambers of Parliament.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Bingo! Sivalingam's restaurant closed

Dato Sivalingam Karrupiah announced yesterday that the restaurant operated by his wife and son in an illegal structure erected on his land will be closed pending the approval of the building plan.
Dato Sivalingam might accuse me, as he did yesterday, of having political motive in exposing that he had allowed an illegal structure erected on his land to run a restaurant but the indisputable fact remains that that is an illegal structure and he has no choice but to close the business until he obtains the building plan approval from the Shah Alam City Council (MBSA).
Did I have a political motive? Yes , of course. For every case of corruption, malpractice and abuse of power perpetrated by any leaders of the ruling party, I, being an elected representative entrusted by the people, am duty bound to bring it to the knowledge of the people. I am duty bound to tell the truth that the leaders of the ruling party are corrupt, decadent and untrusworthy when I have the proof and to tell the people that they have elected the wrong representatives to run the country.
This is the rule of the game in the political system. It is only right that I have political motive. It will be disastrous if I have commercial motive, financial motive or any other motive for personal gain and not political motive.
Leaders of the Barisan Nasional, including Dato Sivalingam, have to wake up and realize that they can no longer fool the people by using phrases like 'political motive' to cover up their wrongdoing.
Sivalingam is caught red-handed. He has admitted to it. Bingo!

Thursday, November 23, 2006

MPK councillors swearing in tomorrow

Last minute change.

For reasons best known to itself, the Klang Municipal Council has changed the date for the swearing-in ceremony of the councillors back to tomorrow again from Nov 30 as announced yesterday.

Bye! DZ Satay House

Yes, finally the "DZ Satay House" owned by Zakaria bin Deros and his son, Zainuri, is demolished!
The Klang Municipal Council (MPK) began its operation at about 10 a.m. this morning and spent about 2 hours to finish off the infamous and illegal structure erected on the road reserve.
Present at the scene were the journalists and members of public, including about 30 Zakaria's supporters. To avoid any untoward incident, I have decided to stay away.
Be it as it may, the dust is not settled yet. I still look forward to seeing the demolition of the "Istana Zakaria". If the Selangor state government refused to demolish the "Istana Zakaria", it would lose its moral authority to demolish any other illegal structure in Selangor in future.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Selangor exco member flouts law

An Indian restaurant, Sri Muthiara, situated beside Selangor Road Transport Department (JPJ)in Padang Jawa, Klang has been operating in an illegal structure since 2004 and no action has been taken by the Shah Alam City Council. The reason must be that it belongs to Dato Sivalingam a/l Arumugam Karuppiah, the Selangor State Executive Council member.
I brought the journalist to the site this morning and was told that Dato Sivalingam just left the restaurant minutes before my arrival.
The illegal structure sits on a triangle land between the JPJ and the Klang-KL Federal Highway. The original land registered under the proprietorship of Syarikat Kerjasama Nesa Pelbagai Sdn Bhd was partly acquired by the government in 1991.
On August 7 2006, the land was transferred to Sivalingam. However, Sivalingam's relative has been operating the restaurant illegally on the land since 2004.
A land search result shows that the category of land use was not stated in the land title. Under normal circumstances, if category of land use is not stated in the title, the local government will not consider any building plan application even if it is submitted.
Sivalingam has admitted my allegation to the Malaysiakini today. (The Star)
Let's see what Khir Toyo has to say about it now.

Satay House to be demolished tomorrow

DZ Satay House owned by Zakaria Deros and his son, Zainuri, will be demolished by the Klang Municipal Council tomorrow morning.
The illegal structure is situated on the Federal road reserve.
However, until and unless the "Istana Zakaria" is also demolished, nobody will be convinced that there is no double standard in the enforcement of laws in this country, especially in Selangor.

Councillors swearing in postponed again

The swearing-in ceremony of the Klang Municipal Councillors has been postponed again, for the 3rd time, to Nov 30, 2006.
The councillors were initially supposed to take office on Oct 19, 2006. However, it had to be postponed to Nov 8 as a result of the exposure of the "Istana Zakaria". After the intervention of the Sultan who wanted a full clean list of councillors, the ceremony was again put off to Nov 24.
Obviously, the Selangor state government has failed to produce a full clean list of councillors to be sworn in by this Friday and thus the postponement again.
This is another achievement of the first developed state in Malaysia as proclaimed by Dato Seri Dr Mohd Khir bin Toyo, Menteri Besar of Selangor.

Centrepoint: Another Zakaria & Sons project

I called a press conference yesterday and exposed another project belongs to Dato Zakaria bin Deros and his 2 sons, Zainuri dan Zaidi in Pandamaran Jaya, Klang. (Malaysiakini November 21, 2006).

Friday, November 17, 2006

Muhammad Taib sworn in as senator

Former Menteri Besar of Selangor, Tan Sri Muhammad bin Mohd Taib, sworn in as senator in Parliament today.
Muhammad Taib resigned as Menteri Besar of Selangor on April 14, 1997, on the morning when I was supposed to move a no confidence motion against him in the Selangor State Assembly.
He was earlier arrested in Brisbane for failing to declare the currency worth approximately RM2.4 million at the Brisbane Airport upon his arrival in December 1996. He resisted for almost 5 months but eventually had to quit to avoid the no confidence motion which would cause embarrassment to UMNO and the government.
His return to the government is actually a belated one. Dato Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi had wanted him to come back to the cabinet through the appointment as senator in the last cabinet reshuffle to strengthen his power base especially in Selangor. However, Abdullah's plan faced strong objection from Mahathir and Abdullah gave in then.
The real fight is now on.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Income Tax replies

At last, my letters to the Inland Revenue Board (IRB) dated 27.2.2006 and 11.1.2006 on Zakaria Deros had received a reply from Pn Hasmah binti Abdullah, CEO of the IRB today, a copy of which had been faxed to me last week.
Well, at least there is an official, albeit bureaucratic, answer to a complaint. I have yet to hear from our Director General of the Anti Corruption Agency. Probably, his interview in the New Straits Time on Sunday was an indirect reply.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Zakaria must pay back his gratuity and pension

The Sun reported today that Dato Zakaria bin Md Deros, Selangor State Assemblyman for Port Klang, was a undischarged bankrupt when he held the office of senator from Sept 10 to Nov 24, 1992.

Zakaria was appointed a senator on July 30, 1991 and served two terms until July 31, 1997. He was adjudicated a bankrupt on Sept 10, 1992 but discharged on Nov 24, 1992.

Article 48(1)(b) of the Federal Constitution provides that “a person is disqualified from being a member of either House of Parliament if he is an undischarged bankrupt”.

Article 50(1) of the Federal Constitution further provides that “if a member of either House of Parliament becomes disqualified for membership of that House his seat shall become vacant”.

The two articles of the constitution read together would mean that Zakaria’s seat as senator had become vacant on Sept 10,1992 with immediate effect. There is no provision in the constitution that allows him to resume the office when he subsequently obtained the discharge order on Nov 24, 1992, unless there was a stay of execution.

Therefore, Zakaria’s term of office from Sept 10, 1992 until the expiry of his first term in the senate was unconstitutional and unlawful.

Consequently, he had unlawfully received the remuneration and allowances as senator during his first term after Nov 24, 1992. He has also been unlawfully enjoying the gratuity and pension all these years from the said unlawful tenure until today.

The Parliament should take cognizance of Zakaria’s said unlawful tenure and take action to revoke his pension and further demand that all benefits that he had received during the said unconstitutional and unlawful tenure be returned.

Zakaria stumbles but not down

It is not time for celebration yet.

Zakaria may have to let go his municipal councillorship, but that does not end his political career in Klang and Selangor under the present decadent political culture in the UMNO and the Barisan Nasional.

I said in my press statement today:-

"Zakaria’ issues are far from over

Although Dato Zakaria bin Md Deros, Selangor State Assemblyman for Port Klang, has announced yesterday that he declined the re-appointment as the councillor of the Klang Municipal Council (MPK), all issues related to him are far from over.

In fact, the UMNO Supreme Council which advised him to give up the appointment should have ordered him to resign as the state assemblyman as well for a person who is unfit to be appointed a councillor cannot be fit to be an elected representative. It is irreconcilable when one is found to be unfit for a lower public office can at the same time be fit for a higher public office.

Zakaria’s departure from the MPK does not mark the end of Zakaria’s era in Klang and Selangor. With his positions as the UMNO Klang Division Chief, the State Assemblyman and the Chairman of the Land Committee in the Selangor Economic Development Corporation (PKNS), he will still wield substantial influence in Klang and Selangor. In Klang itself, he still has his alter ego, his son and daughter-in-law, to represent him in the MPK.

His arrogance and habitual abuse of power and position are evident from the construction of his bungalow without permission, construction of a restaurant known as “DZ Satay House” on road reserve without permission and the approval of land application where he wore two hats simultaneously as the chairperson of the applicant and the approving authority.

His departure from the MPK shall not absolve him from all other necessary actions whatsoever to be taken against him should he be found to have transgressed the boundary of laws, including the following:-

(i) demolition of the illegal structure of “Satay House”;
(ii) demolition of the unlawful “Istana Zakaria”;
(iii) full investigation into all land dealings of the Land Committee of the PKNS chaired by him;
(iv) full investigation against all complaints against him by the public; and
(v) full investigation by the Anti Corruption Agency and the Income Tax Department to ascertain his incomes and sources of income.

Another important aspect of the whole Zakaria episode that requires public scrutiny is the decadent system of appointment of the local governments by the state authority. The episode is not an isolated case but a phenomenon in the country that needs immediate attention and remedial actions. The only available option is to re-introduce local government election which has been suspended for 40 years for which the government of the day is indefensibly evading. "

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Zakaria was a bankrupt?

I received information that Dato Zakaria bin Md Deros was once a bankrupt when he was appointed a senator. He took a few months to discharge himself to save him the senatorship.
However, I have yet to receive the relevant documents to verify it and without which I am unable to assess that in the event it was true, would it affect his appointment then and the subsequent entitlement of pension which he is now enjoying.

Nothing to quit for Zakaria, Mazlynoor and Faizal

I have sent a letter to Selangor Menteri Besar, Dato Seri Dr Mohd Khir bin Toyo, this morning highlighting a legal point on the position of Dato Zakaria bin Md Deros, Mazlynoor bin Abdul Latiff and Faizal Abdullah as councillors in the Klang Municipal Council as I have pointed out in my press statement on 31.10.2006.
I have said that the tenure of the trio had expired on 3.9.2006 and their new appointments have not take effect as they have not sworn in to take office.
Section 11 of the Local Government Act 1976 provides as follows:-
“A councillor shall not act in the office of Councillor unless he has made and subscribed before a local authority a declaration of acceptance of office in Form A of the First Schedule hereto and such declaration shall be free from stamp duty.”
Form A as stipulated in the said Act is as follows:-
“I….. , having been appointed a Councillor of the ….. of ….. declare that I take the said office upon myself and that I will duly and faithfully fulfil the duties thereof according to the best of my judgment and ability.”
As such, the issue of resignation by Zakaria, Mazlynoor and Faizal does not arise at all. Khir Toyo should either revoke their appointments or advise them to decline the appointment honorably.
As Khir Toyo has misled the Sultan of Selangor and the people on the position of the councillors and as he is proven to be so ignorant of the power provided by the Local Government Act 1976 on the appointment of professionals as councillors, I have urged him to resign.

Oh! Zakaria Deros again

Dato Zakaria bin Md Deros is again in the limelight.
This time he is found to be the chairman of the Land Committee of PKNS (Selangor Economic Development Corporation) which has approved the land application from the Selangor Badminton Association for which he is also the president. (NST Nov 2)
This is what we call a powerful man.

Faizal resigns as councillor

One has resigned.

Faizal Abdullah, Klang Municipal Councillor, one of the three councillors in Klang who constructs bungalow without building plan announced his resignation last night. (NST Nov 2 and The Star Nov 2)

What about his fellow councillors, Dato Zakaria bin Md Deros and Mazlynoor Abdul Latiff, who commit the same offence?

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

People are not fooled, Zac

Port Klang State Assemblyman, Dato Zakaria Deros, shed crocodile tears at a press conference yesterday.
After the reporters left his house, his supporters cheerfully congratulated him for his fantastic performance and called him "P. Ramlee".
All the press have correctly pointed out that he evaded important points that the people are entitled to know.
He did not know that he cannot fool the people for all his untenable execuses for blatantly abusing his power and position.
For today, I just want to do one thing. I have sent a reminder to the Chief Executive of the Income Tax Board and the Director of Anti Corruption Agency requesting for response to my letter dated 27.2.2006.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Was that the last straw on the camel's back?

Ng Sue Lim, DAP Selangor State Assemblyman for Sekinchan, and I held a demonstration in front of "Istana Zakaria" on Oct 28. Joining us were Dato Dr Hassan Ali, Vice President of PAS, Dr Shafie Abu Bakar, former PAS Selangor State Assemblyman for Kajang (1999-2004), party members and local residents in Kampung Idaman and Pandamaran.
Although there were attempts to disrupt the gathering with noises and complaints of traffic jam, the supporters of Dato Zakaria Deros kept their cool and the event was peacefully conducted (Malaysiakini Oct 28).
Before Oct 28, we also held a demonstration in front of the DZ Satay House owned by Zakaria in protest of the illegal strcture erected on the state land meant for road reserve and the double standard in the enforcement of law where another hakwer stall within a stone throw fron the Satay House building was torn down by the MPK on the ground that the owner did not obtain the permission. Attended by almost 300 local residents, the event was also peaceful held.
However, violence took the center stage on Oct 29 when the DAP Selangor held another demonstration at the same place (Malaysiakini Oct 29).
Was the second demonstration in front of the Istana Zakaria the last straw on the camel's back?

Shame on you, Khir Toyo

Khir Toyo is caught with his pents down when he desperately and shamelessly attempts to salvage his badly damaged image by, firstly, saying that he had asked Zakaria bin Deros to give up the post of councillor before his audiece with Sultan of Selangor and, secondly, suggesting that the Local Government Act 1976 be amended to enable the appointment of professional as councillors (NST and The Sun).

I have issued a press statement today calling for his resignation as follows:-

"Selangor Menteri Besar, Dato Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo, has shamed the Selangor people by his sheer ignorance of the law regarding the appointment of the local councillors.

He suggested yesterday that the Local Government Act 1976 be amended to allow appointment of professional as councillors without realizing it had long been so provided by section 10(2) of the said law, as follows:-

“Councillors of the local authority shall be appointed from amongst persons the majority of whom shall be persons ordinarily resident in the local authority area who in the opinion of the State Authority have wide experience in the local government affairs or who have achieved distinction in any profession, commerce or industry, or are otherwise capable of representing the interests of their communities in the local authority area.”
Khir Toyo had attempted to salvage his image badly damaged as a result of his incapability to take decisive action against Dato Zakaria bin Deros when the issue of the infamous “Istana Zakaria” and “DZ Satay House” were exposed and had to wait until the Sultan of Selangor advised Zakaria to relinquish his post as councilor before he gave Zakaria the deadline of November 8, to do so.

In fact, Khir Toyo had misled the Sultan of Selangor for Zakaria’s tenure as councillor had expired in September and he has yet to swear in for the new appointment even if he might have had received the letter of appointment. Legally speaking, Zakaria is no longer a councillor and therefore there is nothing for him to quit.

Further, even if he had already received the letter of appointment, it could be revoked at anytime by Khir Toyo for which Khir Toyo had failed to do.

The whole Zakaria controversy has not only exposed Zakaria’s arrogance and abuse of powers in the local authority but also, more significantly, the ignorance and incapability of Khir Toyo as the head of the state government. Khir Toyo should resign honourably."

Monday, October 30, 2006

I'm back, Zakaria is out

I'm back after 2 months. And Zakaria is out, soon.
If I claimed I was too busy in the last two months to blog, people would say that is a lame excuse. But if you look at what has been happening in the past few weeks (and some more in the next few weeks) on Istana Zakaria, you would probably see the clue.
Let me tell you the latest. The Majlis Perbandaran Klang (Klang Municipal Council)(MPK) had convened an emergency meeting today and decided to demolish the DZ Satay House belongs to Dato Zakaria bin Deros. However, the MPK had only the guts to make the decision. It will not enforce it until it gets the endorsement from the Menteri Besar, Dato Seri Dr Mohd Khir bin Toyo.
I guess Khir Toyo will not give his endorsement for he is a "Zakaria-fearing MB". He will refer it to the State Exco weekly meeting which is normally held on Wednesday.
That is the dismal political leadership of the Menteri Besar of the self-proclaimed "developed state".

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Najib's wife, Rosmah Mansor, will be chancellor of Unisel

Najib's wife, Rosmah Mansor, is going to be proclaimed as the chancellor of Universiti Industri Selangor (Unisel) on Augsut 21, 2006!
I have received the invitation to attend the proclamation ceremony to be held at the Grand Lagoon Ballroom, Level 15 of the Sunway Lagoon Resort Hotel.

But I am puzzled.
What academic credentials and achievement does Rosmah Mansor have, besides being the wife of the Deputy Prime Minister, to become the chancellor of Unisel, a university owned by Kumpulan Darul Ehsan Selangor (KDEB) which is Selangor state investment arm?
According to the agenda of the ceremony, Selangor Menteri Besar, Khir Toyo, will deliver the appointment speech after the proclamation is made and followed by the acceptance speech by Rosmah Mansor.
I was informed that the Selangor state executive council (Exco) was not informed of the choice of the chancellor and of course did not discuss it although decision had been made and invitation sent out.
If this were to be true, that would mean Khir Toyo, who is also the chairman of KDEB, had approved it without even informing the state exco.
Why is Rosmah Mansor? Is it because she is the wife of the next Prime Minister Malaysia?
How would Rosman's appointment enchance the quality and image of tertairy education in Malaysia? Let's Khir Toyo tell the people.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

PSM lost in Court of Appeal

Tommy Thomas, Ragunathan Kesavan and I were unable to convince to Court of Appeal to allow the Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) led by Dr Mohd Nasir Hashim to be registered as a national political party.
Dato Gapal Sri Ram in his judgment, as concurred by the other 2 judges, ruled that the Registrar of Societies was not unreasonble to request that 7 representatives from different states were required in the pro-tem committee in order to register as a political party at the national leve.
However, the court ruled that the second ground of national security as alleged by the Minister of Home Affairs, was unsupported by any evidence and as such the ground of national security was bad in rejecting the application.
As the ground of national security was not the overriding factor that refused the application, the decision of the Minister of Home Affairs to reject the application on the first ground was upheld .

The Malaysiakini reported as follows:-

No injustice has been occasioned in the government’s refusal to register Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) as a national political party, the Court of Appeal ruled in an unanimous decision today in dismissing an appeal from the pro-tem party.

Justice Gopal Sri Ram said that, “it is crystal clear that the reason advanced on grounds of national security was not the predominant reason for the minister’s decision”. This was one of two main points of contention, the other involving registration criteria which the court upheld.

“It (national security) stands as a separate and distinct ground for refusing registration at the national level. It is not entangled and mixed up with other reasons. It did not therefore materially affect the decision based on grounds of departmental policy,” he told a courtroom packed with PSM supporters.

“Accordingly, this is a case in which the minister’s decision to deny PSM registration at the national level may be upheld, and I would do so.” He dismissed the appeal with costs.

Party supporters were visibly upset on hearing the unanimous decision of the three-member bench, which also comprised Justices Mohd Ghazali Mohd Yusoff and Hashim Yusoff.

Elaborating on the government’s argument that “national security” was at risk if registration were granted to the socialist party, Gopal said there was “not a scintilla of evidence” to show that issues of national security were involved.

“All we have is the mere ipse dixit (unsupported assertion) of the minister based on information given by the police to him, nothing else. On the authorities this is insufficient, the appellant’s complaint is therefore justified,” he said.

The appellant, PSM pro-tem chairperson Dr Nasir Hashim, had sought to set aside the home minister’s written order rejecting the application for registration and to direct for a registration within seven days.

Seven representatives

In his 34-page judgement today, Gopal said he was satisfied with the departmental policy stated by the Registrar of Societies (ROS) in relation to the requirement for the registration of a national political party.

The ROS requires a national-level political party to have representatives in at least seven states, failing which the party will only be registered at the state level. The appellant had contested this, saying the requirement is baseless and exceeds constitutional provisions regulating freedom of association.

Gopal, however, ruled that it was not unreasonable exercise of the statutory power conferred upon the ROS under Section 7 of the Societies Act.

“Since Malaysia has 13 states, the ROS probably had in mind that a political party seeking registration at the national level must seek to represent 50 percent plus one state in the federation,” said the judge.

“There is nothing unreasonable about this. Some policy is necessary to guide conferred by Section 7 (of the Societies Act), otherwise it may become an unprincipled discretion.”

The judge stressed that no injustice had been occasioned in the refusal to grant PSM registration. “The ROS granted PSM registration in the state of Selangor. As advised by counsel on both sides, this does not prevent PSM from contesting in national elections, neither is PSM prevented from seeking registration at the national level if it is able to meet the ROS’ requirement.

“So, even if the ROS and the minister were wrong in refusing PSM national level registration - and I hasten to add that they were not - no injustice has been occasioned. This underpins the nature of judicial review.

“It is not enough that a decision of a public decision maker is not in accordance with law. The error must be one that has caused an applicant for judicial review some harm or injustice in a broad and general sense.”

The appellant was represented by Tommy Thomas, Ragunath Kesavan (photo) and Teng Chang Kim while the government was represented by senior federal counsel Mary Lim, who was recently promoted as the industrial court president.

Watching briefs are being held for the Bar Council by Amer Hamzah Arshad, M Vengkatraman for the Malaysian Human Rights Society and Edward Saw for local human rights watchdog Suaram.

‘We’re not disheartened’

Outside the courtroom, Nasir vowed to fight on. With him were some 80 PSM members and supporters, some of whom had arrived from Perak and Seremban this morning.

“We will appeal, we are not disheartened. We feel sad but this is not the end. We know we will face all these problems but we will never stop fighting or be affected by this, we will go on to do what is right,” Nasir said.

He said he would re-submit seven names to the ROS, to meet the criteria of representation in the states. PSM has claimed that it complied with this requirement earlier but that the ROS did not clarify such representation should be based on addresses based on place of birth or work.

Pro-tem secretary-general S Arutchelvan said the verdict was a minor victory as it cleared a major hurdle for the party - over the national security threat - ahead of its next appeal to the federal court.

But he registered disappointment with the decision, saying: “Article 10 (freedom of association) is a fundamental right. By not allowing PSM to be registered, what is the state implying? Do they want us to go underground? It doesn’t make sense at all.”

Ragunath, meanwhile, described the reason for dismissing the appeal as based on a “feeble reason”, since it did not go into the merits of the application.

Since the formal application in April 1998 which was rejected in September 1999, PSM and its supporters have persisted on a long-haul struggle to be registered and recognised. The home minister then was Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, who is now the prime minister.

In a judgment on Jan 13, 2003, the Kuala Lumpur High Court agreed with the government’s policy of non-compliance and national security to reject PSM’s application for judicial review.

The case is the first time a political party has sought judicial review of the government’s rejection of an application to register itself.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Forum on Mahathir vs Abdullah in Kota Baru

(Tian Chua)
I attended the forum on "Mahathir versus Abdullah" as speaker organized by Keadilan together with Keadilan Publicity Director, Tian Chua, in Kota Baru on Aug 12, 2006.
About 100 people attended and respoended warmly to our speeches and the answers to their quiries from 8.15 pm to 10.30 pm.
Before the forum, the Kelantan Pas Non-Muslims Liaison Committee Chairman, P.K. Foo, offered us a "bak-kut-teh" (pork with herbal soup) dinner in the Kota Baru downtown, once propagandized by the MCA as the no-pork zone after the PAS took over the state government in 1990.

(From the left, P.K. Foo, myself and Tian Chua having "bak-kut-teh" in Kota Baru)

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

RM12 million diverted from PISB

I held a press conference on Monday on Perangsang International Sdn Bhd again. Below is the report by the Malaysiakini today.
RM12 mil ‘missing’ from PISB records
Kuek Ser Kuang KengAug 9, 06 11:31am

Did the Selangor government divert RM12.11 million in revenue from Perangsang International Sdn Bhd (PISB) to other channels after the subsidiary company was sold? Teng Chang Khim, the DAP assemblyperson for Sungai Pinang, has claimed to have obtained new information showing that the sum was due to PISB from completed projects. However, the revenue was not recorded in relevant documents, he told malaysiakini.
This, he said, has raised suspicion that moves were made to relieve PISB of financial liability and to divert its revenue before it was sold to a ‘shell company’. It was then renamed and liquidated in 2004, apparently in order to free the state government of creditors and losses.

Teng said he has submitted the information to the Securities Commission (SC). It is already investigating issues linked to delayed construction of the Malaysian External Trade Development Corporation (Matrade) building, for which PISB was the original contractor.
Explaining, Teng said PISB could have claimed a retention sum and performance bond amounting to
RM12,110,937.98 this year from two unrelated projects.
The first was the Sungai Selangor Water Supply Scheme Phase 3, for which the performance bond and retention sum amounted to RM3,330,468.99. It was completed in June 2004.
The second project was a distribution piping system in Bukit Badong Phase 1 and 2, for which the retention sum was RM5,450,000.00. This was completed last year. (A performance bond and retention sum are deposits paid by a contractor when it is awarded a government project.
Both deposits are only refunded when the project is completed without defects.)
‘Allegation proved’
PISB - a subsidiary company of the Selangor government’s investment arm Kumpulan Hartanah Selangor Bhd (KHSB) - was awarded a contract in 1994 to construct the Matrade building by 1997.
By the time the building was completed last month by other contractors, the cost had shot up to RM287.5 million, with RM64.8 million being spent on repairs and another RM95 million owed in late delivery charges.
In the meantime, PISB was sold to RM2 ‘shell company’ Tajuk Modal Sdn Bhd, which was later renamed and wound up before it could be forced to pay off its debts. This not only freed the company from paying a penalty of RM159.8 million imposed by the federal government, but also a debt of
RM22 million to creditors.
Teng claimed that the sum was not recorded either in the KHSB financial report 2004 or the acquisition agreement between KHSB and Tajuk Modal.
In fact, the acquisition agreement states that all projects handled by PISB had been completed and that there would be ‘no further revenue’ to be claimed by PISB.
“This information proves my allegation that this was a plan premeditated since 2003 by the state government,” alleged Teng, He had earlier questioned if the sale, renaming and winding-up process was intended to ‘cheat’ the federal government of compensation.
The Anti-Corruption Agency and Companies Commission of Malaysia are other agencies involved in investigations, following Teng’s reports lodged in June.
Work Minister S Samy Vellu has pledged to get to the bottom of the matter and take action against the PISB directors.
The KHSB management has remained tightlipped, while one of the two directors of Tajuk Modal has claimed that he knows nothing about the deal.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Penang UMNO Youth wants CM post rotated

Penang UMNO Youth raised an old issue today (Malaysiakini). They wanted the Penang Chief Minister post to be rotated among the state Barisan Nasional component parties. There are a few state BN component parties in Penang, namely, the Gerakan which presently holding the CM post, UMNO, MCA and MIC.
There is nothing wrong in their reasoning, on the face of it. However, if one peruses further, the UMNO Youth, like their forefathers in UMNO, are only interested to take all major political posts to satisfy their shameless political greed.
The UMNO Youth loves to take about and always holds tightly to racial quota systems. But then, on the same token, why can't they allow only 1 out of 13 chief minister posts to be held by a non-UMNO leaders in the BN?
When UMNO attempted to win power in Sabah, they promised and subsequently implemented the rotation system for the chief minister post in Sabah. But not for too long after that, UMNO's greed for power and racist instinct rear their ugly heads and now the chief minister post belong to UMNO solely. No more rotation, fairness or sharing of powers.
They always uphold the racial quota system based on the racial proportion in the country. But at the same time, they have no complaint when none of the vice-chancellorships of the local universities have ever been given to the non-Malays since independence. They have never questioned why, after we took over from the British, non-Malays in this country have never been qualified to be appointed to the highest offices in the judiciary (except for the first one), army, security force, public service and etc.
I have no qualm if a non-Chinese were to be the Penang Chief Minister. After all, why should the post be reserved for the Chinese only? The same applies to other states in Malaysia governed by the BN where only UMNO-Malays seem to be qualified. I am talking about meritocracy and nation building. Discard the racial policy. Get the best man or woman to do the job.
The present episode again manifests the fact that the UMNO Youth does not seem to have grown up since the 1940's although they are now led by the Cambridge, Oxford and other British graduates. That is sad, for the UMNO, and the country.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Monorail and second bridge for Penang, no credit to Gerakan

As the New Straits Times today succintly put it, "[t]he long suffering people of Penang, held ransom by taxi drivers and poor bus service, will get an alternative — the monorail.", the monorail and the second bridge project have certainly been overdue.
A businessman, Swaran Singh, told the New Straits Times that the "people have been tolerating on the traffic jams on the existing Penang bridge for the last ten years".
All point to the same direction, the governments have been slow to response to the needs of the people in Penang.
As usual, we will see that soon after the Prime Minister is highly praised for his vision on the Penang development, the Gerakan will launch a campaign to praise its state government led by Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon for bringing development to Penang.
This is imperative for the Gerakan. Koh Tsu Koon's 16-year record as Chief Minister for Penang since 1990 has been dismal compared to his predecessor, Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu.
Chong Eu was proclaimed the leader who had brought new lease of life to Penang by bringing in the electronic industry after Penang lost its status as the free port in the 1970s'. The Komtar skyscraper and the Penang bridge have been known as the landmarks for Chong Eu's contribution to the state. They were the contents and missions of the Gerakan's election manifesto accomplished.
The subsequent question is: what has Tsu Koon done for Penang for the past 16 years?
Tsu Koon or the Gerakan did not pledge anything concrete to the people in the past election since 1990. As such, they did not achieve anything concrete.
The Gerakan has to rely heavily on the monorail and the second bridge to boost Tsu Koon's image in Penang not only because Tsu Koon needs to be seen to go over to the federal cabinet with a big bang after Keng Yaik's retirement but more importantly both the projects will help the Gerakan retain its power in Penang considering the poor performance the Gerakan has in Penang under Tsu Koon's leadership.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

DAP Kuching dinner attracted 1500

DAP Kuching branch organized an open-air dinner last Saturday evening and attracted a crowd of 1,500 supporters, a record for the DAP Kuching.
This was the first dinner organized after the DAP Sarawak won its historic 6 seats in the Sarawak state election on May 20. All the 6 DAP elected representatives attended the dinner and spoke to the jubilant crowd.
Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader, and I attended the dinner as speakers from the DAP Central Executive Committee (CEC).

Where is Mahathir's moral authority?

While speaking in Kota Bahru last Friday, Tun Mahathir again hit at Abdullah, his family and his advisors, as reported by Malaysiakini today.
No one would say Mahathir did not do the right things by raising those issues. However, if one looked closely, it would be discovered that those were some of the issues raised against Mahathir himself during his tenure as Prime Minister for as long as 22 years.
What did mahthir do when the similar accusations were hurled against him? He did not do anything special to address those issues.
In short, although those issues were of public interest and required Abdullah's response, Mahathir had lost the moral authority to raise them and claimed hero for so doing.
Mahathir said there was freedom of press during his time as Prime Minister but he had forgotten that the Printing and Publication Act has been hanging over the heads of the press every days all these years. What is the difference?
He accused Abdullah's son for his involvement in business. This sound familiar when his son was similarly accused of not too long ago.
Mahathir has not, until today, suggested a revamp in the system to which he was once part of it. The present poor governance is a continuation of a system tightly controlled by him for 22 years. Unless Mahathir is prepared to admit that, he cannot be percieved as being honest and genuine in his criticism.
(Photograph by courtesy of Malaysiakini)

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

New PJ court house on the way

On March 20, I wrote on the condition of the Petaling Jaya court house and I quote:-
It may be a surprise to many but the cruel fact is that there is no civil court in Petaling Jaya! All civil matters within the jurisdiction of subordinate courts, namely the Sessions Court which has the jurisdiction to adjudicate matters involve disputed sum below RM250,00.00 and the Magistrate's Court which has the jurisdiction to try matters below the sum of RM25,000.00, will have to be filed in Shah Alam courts. I have yet to come across any city in the world that does not have a civil court within its local jurisdiction.
The present court house for criminal matters is in a pathetic condition. The Sessions Court and Magistrate's Court (1) and Court (2) are housed in the main court house with court (1) in a container-like structure and court (2) at the first floor of an old buiding within the same compound. Magistrate's Court (3) is in the Federal House building about 500 meters away and the Municipal Court is being housed under the MPPJ multi-level car park next to the hawker centre also about 500 meter from the main court house.

I attended Petaling Jaya court this morning and found that the government had started to construct a new court complex at the car park adjacent to the present court house. According to the signboard at the site, the work is expected to be completed by August next year. That is a good news!

Friday, July 28, 2006

Mahathir sprayed with mace but no alarm

Tun Dr Mahathir was sprayed with mace after he arrived at the Kota Baru airport this morning.
While not condoning such act which tantamounts to criminal assault and intimidation, it should not be perceived as an incident causing alarm to national security and public order. It was an isolated case in view of the intensively publisized trip filled with all kinds of speculation.
The Star online reported as follows:-
Update by The Star Newsdesk
KOTA BARU: A man sprayed Mace at Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad moments after the former Prime Minister arrived at the airport here Friday morning.
In Putrajaya, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said he was angry over the incident and ordered the police to conduct an immediate investigation and to take stern action against those responsible for the act.
According to police, former Umno strongman Datuk Ibrahim Ali took the brunt of the spray on his face while Dr Mahathir and his bodyguard were also affected.
The 11am (0300GMT) incident took place just as Dr Mahathir was entering a 4WD vehicle together with Ibrahim.
Dr Mahathir, who was seen taking off his glasses and wiping his eyes, was rushed from the vehicle by his other security personnel to a car nearby, which then drove away.
Dr Mahathir being escorted after the attack at the Sultan Ismail Airport in Kota Baru.Deputy Inspector General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan told The Star that his officers have identified the man who sprayed the mace and expect to make an arrest soon.
Musa said the police were investigating the incident under Section 328 of the Penal Code.
The section reads: "Whoever administer to or causes to be taken by any person any poison or any stupefying intoxication or unwholesome drug or other things with intent to cause hurt to such person or with intent to commit or facilitate the commission of an offence or knowing it to be likely that he will thereby cause hurt shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 10 years and shall also liable to fine"
Later at a press conference, Dr Mahathir described the attack as an attempt to stop him from speaking out.
Describing how he felt, Dr Mahathir said: “It felt something like a sore throat, my eys were stinging, I could not see clearly and removed my glasses.”
The former premier said he would continue with his scheduled talks Friday.
Dr Mahathir was on a one-day visit to Kelantan and was scheduled to attend a dialogue and dinner organised by the Kelantan People’s Action Council headed by Datuk Paduka Ibrahim Ali.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said he was angry over the incident and ordered the police to conduct an immediate investigation and to take stern action against those responsible for the act.
"I regret and am very angry such an incident has happened," he said, adding that those responsible for the incident should be severely punished.
He said the matter should be immediately resolved to avoid negative implications and misconception among the public.
The Prime Minister also feared that certain quarters would take advantage of the incident by disseminating rumours, especially through the Internet.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

UPM refused to accept memorandum

(From the left) Mohd Rifaudin Abd Wahab, Chang Lih Kang and Zainul Faqar Yaakob representing the 23 NGOs at the UPM campus yesterday.
I am unable to apprehend why had the Vice-Chancellor of Universiti Putra Malaysia refused to meet up with the representatives of 23 NGOs and to receive their memorandum yesterday.

The news was not reported by the non-Chinese main stream newspapers today. However, all the Chinese newspapers covered the event and Sin Chew Jit Poh had even put it up in the front page.

Probably the Vice-Chancellor felt that being a high ranking civil servant, it was not in accordance with the protocol for him to meet up with the unknown figures of the unknown NGOs. He was of course not totally wrong in terms of the official protocol.

However, he had probably forgotten that living in a democratic society, it was part and parcel of his job, namely the caretaker of a higher education institution, to listen to all views and criticisms especially when there were imminent crisis within the institution he was in-charge of. Perhaps, it’s time for him to take sabbatical leave to further his study on democracy.

In their memorandum, the 23 NGOs had, among others, called for the sacking of the Assistant Vice-Chancellor (Students Affairs), Azali Mohamed, on a few accounts of allegations against him including his failure to handle the violence in the campus on July 17, 2006.

(Photograph with courtesy of Sin Chew Jit Poh)

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

DAP Sarawak roars

Proceedings in the Sarawak State Assembly has certainly turned lively with the emergence of the DAP 6 elected representitives.

The Sin Chew Jit Poh reported today that the 6 DAP representatives refused to wear the ceremonial dress, commonly known as No. 1 suit, while attending the opening ceremony of the assembly yesterday.
It has been the DAP policy not to wear the No. 1 suit which comes with a songkok. I have never wore one since 1995.
I had even protested when the invitation cards to attend the swearing in ceremony of Tan Sri Abu Hassan Omar as the Selangor Menteri Besar at Alam Shah palace in 1997 stated, unprecedently, that all the guests were required to wear songkok. Upon my protest, the directive was withdrawn.
However, the palace had later imposed again the ruling after the present Sultan came to the throne. Since then, I had never attended any official functions that required the wearing of songkok.
Another incident in the Sarawak State Assembly meeting yesterday was the walkout staged by the DAP representatives after the ruling of the speaker that disallowed them to debate on the supplement supply bill, an additional allocation not approved during the yearly budget. The Star reported as follows:-
Unhappy DAP reps stage a walkout

SHARON LING at the Sarawak State Assembly on Monday
KUCHING: Speaker Datuk Mohd Asfia Awang Nasar disallowed debate on the Supplementary Supply (2005) Bill 2006 to seek approval for additional development expenditures, angering DAP assemblymen.
The Bill, tabled by Second Finance Minister Datuk Wong Soon Koh, was later approved with objections from the opposition. The six DAP assemblymen then left the chamber.
Kota Sentosa assemblyman Chong Chieng Jen had earlier sought clarification on the payment of some RM2.4mil as consultancy fees, as contained in the command papers.
“No debate is allowed,” Asfia told him. Chong retorted: “Why are you covering up all these?
He said he wanted to know to whom and for what the consultancy fees were to be paid.
Speaking at a press conference after the walkout, Chong said he had filed a notice to debate on the Bill, alleging some “questionable and unaccountable spending”.
Expressing his party’s regret over the Speaker’s decision, which he described as “unfair and undemocratic”, Chong said: “We are allowed under the Standing Orders to debate on the supplementary Bill.”

Monday, July 24, 2006

MCA use govt's fund to support MCA-owned Nanyang

The rumour was rife when MCA Deputy Education Minister launched the national "Reading Newspapers Campaign" in SJK (C) Lick Hung, Subang Jaya recently followed by a series of the similar program in various parts of the country.
Now it is reported by Malaysiakini today, that MCA has used the annual government allocation given to each of the consituencies held by MCA to sponsor the ailing Nanyang Siang Pau.
The ACA should immediately institute investigation. If it were true, it would be a strong case of corruption.
The Malaysiakini reported as follows:-
Use ‘gov’t funds to buy Nanyang’
Kuek Ser Kuang KengJul 24, 06 3:00pm

MCA leaders have been urged to use about RM1 million of government-allocated funds to buy copies of the ailing party-owned newspaper, Nanyang Siang Pau.
According to a letter obtained by malaysiakini, party leaders with ministerial posts are asked to contribute RM20,000 each to the Chinese-language newspaper for a joint MCA-Nanyang programme to promote the reading habit among students.
For MCA deputy ministers, the contribution should be RM15,000. As for parliamentary secretary, it is RM12,000, and for members of parliament, RM10,000. Senators and leaders who hold government posts at the state level are also asked to make contributions.
"Sponsorship can be paid to Nanyang through the annual government allocation (for elected representatives)," said the letter from Nanyang, which was sent to MCA leaders early this year.
The government has allocated RM2 million each to ruling Barisan Nasional MPs for the “development of their constituencies” this year.
The allocation was increased from RM500,000 last year, but opposition-held constituencies do not get any of the money.
According to the two-page letter, copies of the newspaper bought by MCA leaders are to be distributed to the schools in their respective constituencies for free.
Media observers have however cried foul. They alleged that the programme was to boost the circulation of the troubled newspaper by using taxpayers’ funds. The letter gives details of the proposed scale of sponsorship for MCA leaders based on their respective posts.
The total sum works out to RM923,000. The letter described MCA representatives as a “supporting unit”, and urged them to use the government allocations to uphold Chinese education.
A reply slip is attached for the leaders to list the sponsored sum, constituency and other details. Replies are to be sent to Nanyang’s reading programme head Fun Tiong Heng and the MCA headquarters.
‘Others also involved’ When contacted, Fun said representatives from other ruling parties such as Gerakan and MIC as well as business people have sponsored this programme previously.
"This is a very good programme as it cultivates the reading habit among pupils," he said, adding that it has been carried out since the 1990s. When asked about why government funds are to be used to support the programme, Fun said it was a decision was made by MCA.
He added that the question regarding government funding should be directed at the party leadership. The letter also states that the programme will be carried out for 124 schooldays from May 5 to Nov 17.
Under the sponsorship scheme, the newspaper is priced at 80 sen, compared to the regular cover price of RM1.30. Based on the figures, the total sponsorship will work out to 9,304 newspapers per day.
Observers claimed that the daily is using this programme to increase its circulation, which has been falling in recent years. In the 1980s, Nanyang was the country’s leading Chinese newspaper.
Its problems heightened after MCA took over the daily in 2001 amidst strong objections and concerns over its editorial independence. It is currently ranked third among the four Chinese newspapers with a circulation of 131,297.

Friday, July 21, 2006

6 DAP rep in Sawarak Assembly

This was the hostoric moment of DAP in the Sarawak State Assembly.
From the left, Chew Chiu Sing (Kidurong, Bintulu), Chong Chieng Jen (Kota Sentosa, Kuching), Wong Ho Leng (Bukit Assek, Sibu), Violet Yong Wui Wui (Pending, Kuching), Ting Tze Fui (Meradong, Bintangor) and Voon Li Shan (Batu Lintang, Kuching) posed for a photographic session after the swearing in ceremony held in Kuching yesterday.
None of the newspapers in Peninsular Malaysia reported the news. If the campaign of the Sarawak state election on May 20, 2006 could be so important that it occupied major pages of the newspapers in Peninsular Malaysia during the 11-day campaign period , there was no reason why the swearing in ceremony was so insignificant that not a line was mentioned now.
I believe the blow would be too severe for the Barisan Nasional if the news was published. Was there a blackout? Prime Minister, Dato Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, will have to answer.

Blackout of news on Sarawak State Assembly swearing in ceremony?

Is there a blackout of news on the Sarawak State Assembly swearing in ceremony, which was held yesterday, in the Peninsular Malaysia newspapers?
The news was not published in all the major newspapers in Peninsular Malaysia today. I have to go to the webpage of International Times, a Sarawak Chinese newspaper, to confirm that the ceremony was held yesterday where all the 71 state elected representitives elected on May 20, 2006 had sworn in yesterday. 6 DAP candidates were elected setting a new record for the DAP in Sarawak.
I have just called the editor of Chinese Rocket of the DAP, Ng Wei Aik, who was covering the event yesterday in Kuching to send me a photograph of the event as soon as possible to be posted in this blog.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

UPM campus politics may turn racial

I viewed with despair a video clip by Merdekareview purportedly depicting the harrassment and violence inflicted by a group of Malay students on a few Chinese students in the 12th hostel of Universiti Putra Malaysia, the university that drew a controversy over the past few days for its ethnic relations testbook which was eventually directed to be withdrawn by the cabinet.
The incident had been published by the local Chinese press but little seemed to have been done by the relevant authorities. It was alleged that one of the assistant vice-chancellors of the university was behind the scene.
The authorities must act swiftly to resolve the matter before it turns racial.
(Photographs with courtesy of Merdekareview)

Draw a line with Mahathir

In the Part 3 of Malaysiakini's interview with Anwar Ibrahim, Anwar said that it was dangerous to support Mahathir at the moment. A line must be drawn. I fully agree.
In fact, while responding to a question from the floor during a talk organized by Parti Keadilan Rakyat last week in Kuala Lumpur, I had expressed the view that Pas leaders should be criticized for being seen to be too close with Mahathir when they attended a talk held by Malaysia-Today a few weeks ago.
I said that the opposition supporters would be confused when they saw the Pas leaders who had not too long ago called Mahathir "Firaun" but now suddently stood side by side with Mahathir simply because Mahathir was now at loggerhead with Abdullah Badawi.
Any politician who believes that enemy's enemy equal friends, he is not only too simplistic, naive but foolhardy.

Mustapa proven wrong, textbook withdrawn

I had advised Dato Mustapa Mohamed, Higher Education Minsiter, to admit mistake on the controversial ethnic relations textbook used by the Universiti Putra Malaysia yesterday. Earlier, he was adamant to defend that the textbook was a product of academic freedom.

Mustapa was proven wrong when the cabinet did not accept his defence and directed that the textbook be withdrawn yesterday. His deputy, Dato Ong Tee Kiat, as usual, attempted to claim credit with an afterthought statement. MCA President, Dato Seri Ong Ka Ting, also rushed to claim that the MCA cabinet ministers had done their part by raising the matter in the cabinet.

Well, Ong Ka Ting again failed to realize that the matter needs no effort from the MCA to bring it up to the cabinet. It had been condemned by the Ngos in the chinese press for the past few days, and brought up in Parliament by Chong Chieng Jen, DAP MP for Bandar Kuching, by way of an emergency motion when Ong Tee Kiat was still sitting side by side with his superior in the press conference held in the Parliament House and other MCA ministers were still hesitating to use strong words against the textbook.
Minister for Prime Minister Department in charge of Parliament, Dato Nazri, who had openly said that the contents of the textbook were seditious, would have had brought the matter up in cabinet because he was the minister whose duty was to report the proceedings in Parliament to the cabinet. I would rather trust the UMNO minister whose stand was clear in public than the MCA minister was silent and dilly-dally in public but claimed later to have been heroic in the closed door cabinet.
It is interesting to note that Dato Seri Samy Vellu, Works Minister cum MIC President, was also silent on the issue when the Indian youths were blamed for the Taman Medan riot. Was that because such view was actually opined by Dato Dennison, the chairperson of the MIC think-tank, himself in one of his working papers?
When controversy of such nature erupts, true and ugly faces of the politicians surface.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Population Census in 2000

I was asked where did I get the figure that Chinese Malaysians consists of 26% of the Malaysian population which I quoted at the RTM1 live telecast forum, "Debat Perdana" on July 9, 2006. My reply was that I got it from the news report. Today, the Sin Chew Jit Poh's report confirmed it .

As reported, Prime Minister, Dato Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, in his written reply to the question tabled by Karpal Singh, MP for Bukit Gelugor, in Parliament disclosed the result of the census conducted in 2000 as follows:-

Malay: 11.68 mil (53.4%)
Other Bumiputra: 2.57 mil (11.7%)
Total Bumiputra: 14.25 mil (65.1%)

Chinese: 5.69 mil (26.0%)
Indian: 1.68 mil (7.7%)
Others: 0.27 mil (1.2%)

Malaysian: 21.89 mil (94.1%)
Non-Malaysian: 1.38 mil (5.9%)

Total: 23.27 mil (100.0%)

Admission of mistake is a virtue, Mustapa

I must tell Higher Education Minister, Dato Mustapa Mohamed, that the great educationist, Confucius, had said that admission of mistake is a virtue. So, please admit the blunder caused by the authors of the ethnic relations textbook used in the Universiti Putra Malaysia and close the chapter graciously.
It is indefensible to blame the Indians for the riot in Taman Medan, to accuse the DAP for triggering the 1969 racial tragedy and to label the Suqiu (Committee for Appeal formed by the Chinese Associations and NGOs prior to the 1999 general election) as extremists purely from the standpoint of UMNO wrapped up in the form of academic module purportedly meant for fostering national unity.
Mustapa's dismal performance in Parliament yesterday as reported in Malaysiakini had tarnished his 'so-far-so-good' image as a rare rational intellect in the UMNO when he attempted to justify the views in the controversial textbook as academic freedom.
Equally disappointing is his deputy, Dato Ong Tee Kiat, Vice-President of the MCA, who had failed to speak up but had to show his solidarity to his boss by attending together with Mustapa in the press conference in Parliament House yesterday when his MCA comrades had spoken strongly against the textbook.
Political survival reigned over conscience, as far as the duo were concerned, yesterday.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Bar Council's proposal on definition of rape

Another must-read article is the letter from the President of Bar Council, Yeo Yang Poh, published in the New Straits Times today. I am in full support of the Bar Council's view on this issue, contrary to the view of my party comrade, Teresa Kok, who is a member in the Select Committee of Parliament that proposes the amendments currently debated in Parliament.
The net is cast far too wide
18 Jul 2006
THE amendments to the Penal Code and the Criminal Procedure Code proposed by the Parliamentary Select Committee are being considered in Parliament.The vast majority of the proposed changes are positive.
The Bar Council commends and congratulates the select committee for introducing these progressive changes. An area of change concerns the widening of the definition of "rape" in Sections 375 and 376 of the Penal Code, with the objective of addressing custodial rape, offences committed by "spiritual healers", as well as by persons in authority or persons holding positions superior to the victims.
It is in this regard that the Bar Council has expressed reservation, and urged caution, in relation to the current proposals. The Bar Council agrees that (among other things) issues concerning custodial rape and offences committed by persons who abuse their superior positions of authority must be adequately addressed.
However, the wording of the proposed provision, in the Council’s view, is unsatisfactory, for the reasons that follow.
The proposed new sub-section 375(f) deals with new categories of rape, where sexual intercourse with the consent of a woman will become rape if:
(a) her consent was obtained by the offender "using his position of authority over her", or
(b) her consent was obtained "because of professional relationship", or
(c) her consent was obtained because of "other relationship of trust in relation to her".
The Bar Council appreciates the objective behind this new proposal. It is necessary to nab offenders who abuse their positions or trust in circumstances that would vitiate the consent and, therefore, amount to rape.
However, in the same breath, the new provision as it is at present drafted will be capable of "catching" situations in which consent should not be treated as vitiated.
This unintentional effect is due to its general and broad wording. For example, consent given "because of professional relationship" will have such a wide ambit; and making the "use of position" (rather than abuse of position) an element of the crime of rape causes concern.
It is important not to cast the net so wide or sweepingly that persons who should not be assigned the same type or degree of culpability might be "caught" by such laws.
The Bar Council suggests that sub-section 375(f) be re-worded in the following manner:
"375. A man is said to commit ‘rape’ who, except in the case hereinafter excepted, has sexual intercourse with a woman under circumstances falling under any of the following descriptions:
(f) With her consent, when the consent was obtained by duress, coercion, threat, inducement or promise made by an accused:
• Who was a public servant having authority or control over her, or who was responsible for her protection, safety, welfare or well-being; or
• Who was a public servant, officer, agent, employee, or person who works at any place of detention, custody or training, or who was responsible for her protection, safety, welfare or well-being at such place; or
• On whom she relied for religious or spiritual guidance, teaching or practice; or for cure or treatment of herself or any member of her family; or
• Who was in a position of power, authority or trust in relation to her, and who abused his position to obtain such consent; provided that if such consent was obtained by threat, inducement or promise, it shall be a defence if the circumstances were such that there was reasonable opportunity for her to have refused consent."
Similar amendments are applicable to sub-section 376(2)(f).

Anwar's candid view on Mahathir versus Abdullah

Malaysiakini posted its Part 1 exclusive interview with Anwar Ibrahim, today. I would say that it is a must-read article. Anwar candidly gave his views on Mahathir, Abdullah, Najib and some UMNO financial affairs.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Parliamentary Secretary misled the house and the people

I am quite perturbed to learn that the Parliamentary Secretary of the Prime Minister Department, Masitah Ibrahim, had said in the Dewan Rakyat today that “ it was stated more than 20 times in the Federal Constitution that Islam was the official religion of the country”, as reported in the Malaysiakini today.

The Parliamentary Secretary has obviously misled the house and the people.
Firstly, Article 3(1) of Federal Constitution stipulates, in verbatim, that “Islam is the religion of the Federation; but other religions may be practiced in peace and harmony in any part of the Federation.”
Article 3(1) does not say Islam is the “official” religion. It is “official” by way of implication and interpretation.
Secondly, it is, as a matter of fact, not true that the Federal Constitution has stated more that 20 times that Islam is the official religion of the Federation. It states only once.
Thirdly, the fact that “Islam is the religion of the Federation”, whether it is stated once or 20 times, does not make the Federation an Islamic state. Otherwise, the Federal Constitution would have had expressly stated so.
Fourthly, the phrase “Islam is the religion of the Federation” in Article 3(1) does not end with a full-stop. It is followed by a semi-colon and the phrase “but other religions may be practised in peace and harmony in any part of the Federation”.
The construction of Article 3(1), therefore, clearly implies that Parliament has only intended to position Islam to be first among equals in the Federation. Nothing more and nothing less.
The full report of Malaysiakini is as follows:-

Secular M'sia: Ex-PMs' personal views
Vanmala SubramaniamJul 12, 06 5:02pm
The classification of Malaysia as a secular nation by the first three prime ministers was based on their personal opinions, the Dewan Rakyat was told today.
Parliamentary secretary of the Prime Minister’s Department Masitah Ibrahim said this in response to a supplementary question from Karpal Singh (DAP-Bukit Gelugor). The opposition leader wanted to know the present administration’s stand on Malaysia’s religious classification.
“It is a well-known fact that Tunku (Abdul Rahman), Tun Abdul Razak and Tun Hussein Onn did not categorise Malaysia as an Islamic nation.
“Does the present government consider Malaysia an Islamic country or a secular
one. I want an answer from the parliamentary secretary,” said Karpal.
Masitah replied that it was not an issue since it was stated more than 20 times in the Federal Constitution that Islam was the official religion of the country.
“The opinions of the former prime ministers that Malaysia was a secular nation were purely personal,” she said.
'Sensitive issue'
Following this, Karpal came under fire from backbenchers Badruddin Amiruldin (BN- Jerai) and Mohamed Aziz (BN-Sri Gading) for raising a ‘sensitive’ issue and ‘straying’ from the original discussion.
Their rebuke was met by jeers and shouts of ‘bahaya’ (dangerous) from the opposition MPs.
The issue arose when the phrasing of Badruddin’s question on the implementation of Islam Hadhari in ministries and government agencies came under scrutiny.
In his question, the backbencher had referred to Malaysia as an Islamic nation.
The Islam Hadhari or Civilisational Islam concept was mooted by Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and focused on cultural and moral integrity of society.
Former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad had also previously declared Malaysia an Islamic state drawing flak from the opposition, namely DAP.