Thursday, June 29, 2006

Anwar's view on Mahathir vs Abdullah sensible

Dato Seri' Anwar Ibrahim's view on the issue of Tun Mahathir Mohammad attacking Dato Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi as reported in the Malaysiakini today is clearly a sensible one compared to those of the Barisan Nasional leaders be it from the UMNO, MCA, Gerakan or MIC.
I agree with him, for which I had also said that in the Astro Chinese talk show "Talking Issues" 2 weeks ago, that what Mahathir had recently said was more of personal attack rather than of reform of the present system which Mahathir himself was one of the makers.
If the present system were to remain, it would not matter who becomes the Prime Minister. The only hope for change is a thorough revamp of the present system. Bring back the spirit that upholds the rule of laws, doctrine of seperation of powers, and supremacy of constitution, then and only then, we would able to see the light of hope.
Mahathir's outburst will not bring about change to the system. That is not his intention and will never be. While some people may enjoy the spat, they must always remind themselves that Mahathir is no hero even if he were to win in the present spat. He is to responsible for what that has happened today for this is part of his "legacy" which his succesor has obediently inherited.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Tajuk Modal boss knows nothing

It is not surprising that the director of Tajuk Modal Sdn Bhd, the RM2 company which bought over Perangsang International Sdn Bhd (PISB) for RM2 to have it wound-up, confesses to Malaysiakini's reporter that he knows nothing about the deal.
Obviously, Tajuk Modal was used as a vehicle to help the Selangor state investment arm to escape from the Federal Government's claim of RM159.8 million for the defects and late delivery of Matrade Building.
While PISB which carried a huge net liabilities and faced with claims of hundred of millions of dollars from the Federal Government was disposed of to the shell company, other revenues payable to PISB were diverted elsewhere so that PISB's parent companies could still make profit at the expense of the Federal Government. This is the area which the Securities Commission (SC) and Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM) should pay more attention to in order to put things in order, namely getting the Selangor state government to pay back and prosecuting the masterminds behind the whole scheme.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Nothing new on Matrade by Samy except finger pointing

Dato Samy Vell, Works Minister, spoke again on the Matrade Building fiasco but nothing new was said in Parliament today except that he now pointed his finger at the Ministry of Finance led by Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim then, reported Malaysiakini today.
Samy Velly said that although PISB, the contractor, had been wound-up, the government wanted to go after the company's bosses. Why can't Samy Velly be a bit more direct by pointing out that PISB's bosser are SAP Holdings Bhd (SAP), Kumpulan Hartanah Selangor Bhd (KHSB), Kumpulan Perangsang Selangor Bhd, Kumpulan Darul Ehsan Bhd (KDEB) and finally the Selangor state government led by Dato Seri Dr Khir Toyo. Make it simple. Why did he need to beat about the bush?
I will have something new for him. Let's wait and see.

Shameful shut down of call-in program by MCA

The Malayan Chinese Association (MCA) is believed to be the culprit that causes the shutting down of the Mandarin call-in program "Ai Kai Mai Wu Zhang Ai" of the government radio station beginning from July 1, 2006 as reported by Merdekareview and Malaysiakini.
Although the directive is said to have been issued by the UMNO Minister of Information, Dato Zainuddin Maidin, the MCA is the most likely suspect to have lodged complaint as the last broadcast of the program on Friday morning had seen numerous callers severely criticizing the MCA Deputy Minister of Education, Dato Hon Choon Kam, for his failure to resolve the problem arising from the recent directive of the Selangor State Education Department to reduce the classes resulting in increase of number of student per class to 45 students in the Chinese Primary schools.
Instead of tackling the issues at hand, the MCA blames the popular Mandarin call-in program and make it the scapegoat for allowing the public to speak up. The MCA leaders should be ashamed of their attitude, incapabiliy and action.
Last year, the MCA had also quietly observed the closure of another popular Mandarin call-in program, Wa FM, runned by NTV-7 which was also blamed to have been critical against the MCA.

Friday, June 23, 2006

ACA, SC and CCM started investigation into Perangsang International

The Anti Corruption Agency (ACA), Securities Commission (SC) and Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM) had instituted their respective investigations into the the case of Perangsang International Sdn Bhd (PISB), the main contractor of the Matrade Building fiasco.
The ACA had seized all the Tajuk Modal's files from its accountant's office in Taman Maluri, Kuala Lumpur. The said chartered accountant was also appointed as provisional liquidator for Tajuk Construction when Tajuk Construction attempted to initiate a voluntary winding-up proceedings.
Tajuk Modal is a RM2 company which bought over PISB for RM2, changed its name to Tajuk Construction, let it be wound-up and thus saved Kumpulan Hartanah Selangor Bhd (KHSB) which owned PISB through SAP Holdings Bhd (SAP) approximately RM159.8 million being damages and liquaidated ascertained damages payable to the Federal Government for the defects and late delivery of Matrade Building by PISB.
The Company Secretary of KHSB, Pn Norlida Jamaludin, was inteviewed by officers from the Companies Commission of Malaysia yesterday.
The Securities Commission has also initiated their investigation by meeting KHSB officer and attempted to obtain the relevant files from the officers in-charge.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Petaling Jaya now a city, MBPJ

Petaling Jaya becomes a city today. It will be the second city in Selangor after Shah Alam and the first "second-city" in a state in Peninsular Malaysia and probably an exception for many years to come.
Not many people know that I was probably the first person who raised in the Selangor State Assembly that Petaling Jaya was more qualified to become the first city in Selangor than Shah Alam in 1996 or 1997 when Tan Sri Mohamad b. Mohd Taib, the then Menteri Besar, informed the house that Selangor was making application to the cabinet to make Shah Alam a city. Shah Alam eventually became a city in 2000.
Mohamad was honest to agree with me then. He explained that the state would have to make Shah Alam a city ahead of Petaling Jaya for Shah Alam was the state capital. In fact, Shah Alam was deliberately created and expanded to meet the requirement of a city. The reason is political.
Petaling Jaya is not the first product in this respect. Kuching in Sarawak was the first. It has to be divided into Kuching North City and South City in order to accommodate a Chinese plus a non-Chinese mayors.
It is sad to note that after years of indepedence, our political leaders are still haunted by racial politics. We have yet to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Anyway, for the time being, congratulation to Petaling Jaya folks. Syabas!

Friday, June 16, 2006

Astro Talking Issue: Mahathir hits Abdullah

I have been invited to "Talking Issue", Astro live telecast Chinese TV talk show (Channel 19), to discuss on the recent Mahthir's attack on Abdullah, on this Sunday at 8.30 p.m. See you.

Follow-up report on KHSB and PISB

A follow-up report on Kumpulan Hartanah Selangor Bhd (KHSB) and Perangsang International Sdn Bhd (PISB) is published by Malaysiakini today.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Evasive Kumpulan Hartanah refuses to answer

Kumpulan Hartanah Selangor Bhd (KHSB) was evasive when quiried by the press over the issue of winding-up of its fomer subsidiary, Perangsang International Sdn Bhd (PISB), the main contractor in the Matrade Building fiasco.
KHSB Managing Director, Dato Karim Munisar, refused to answer all questions related to PISB posed by the press after the annual general meeting of shareholders of KHSB in Shah Alam this morning on the flimsy ground that the matter was now under investigation of the Securities Commission.
There is nothing in law to prohibit any company under investigation to clarify or offer to explain matters to the public especially when a public listed company is involved. In fact, a public listed company is duty bound to keep the public especially the investors informed of the development of the company so as to maintain the public confidence in the company.
Karim was doing a disservice to the investors and the public at large by evading the quiry concerning public interest. It only confirms the public suspicion over the affairs in the Selangor state investment arm. There is something very fishy in it.

(Photo by courtesy of Malaysiakini)

Kumpulan Hartanah holds AGM today

Kumpulan Hartanah Selangor Bhd (KHSB) will hold its annual general meeting this morning at Kayangan Ballroom of Quality Hotel in Shah Alam today. Let's see what the board of directors has to say to the shareholders and the press about PISB/Tajuk Construction.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

More questions about Tajuk Modal and Perangsang International

I have more questions for Dato Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo, Selangor Menteri Besar, to answer over the sale of Perangsang International Sdn Bhd (PISB) to Tajuk Modal Sdn Bhd for RM2.00 on 19.7.2004:-
(a) Why did Kumpulan Hartanah Selangor Bhd (KHSB) through SAP Holdings Berhad (SAP) which directly owned PISB decided to sell PISB, which possessed a Class A contractor license, to Tajuk Modal Sdn Bhd bearing in mind that Tajuk Modal was only incorporated on 23.3.2004, less than 4 months before it acquired PISB on 19.7.2004, and had an insignificant registered capital of RM100,000.00 and a paid-up capital of RM2.00 only?
(b) What made KHSB think that the RM2.00 Tajuk Modal owned by 2 unknown Chinese men were able to absorb the liabilities of over RM 7 million accumulated by PISB as at 31.12.2003?
(c) What made KHSB think that Tajuk Modal could absorb the estimated losses suffered by PISB in the Matrade Building project as much as RM33 million as at 15.7.2004 as disclosed in the sale and purchase agreement of PISB?
(d) Why did the business address of PISB remain at Lot 1A, Level 1A, Plaza Perangsang, Shah Alam, the address of all the companies under Kumpulan Darul Ehsan Bhd, the holding company, after the disposal of PISB although its registered address had been changed to Kuala Lumpur?
(e) Why did SAP remain the sole shareholder of PISB holding 14.5 million shares in PISB/Tajuk Construction after its alleged disposal to Tajuk Modal for RM2.00? Does it mean that it was a only scam and that there was no sale at all?
We need an answer from Khir Toyo.

Report against KHSB and PISB lodged

I lodged a report with the Securities Commission against Kumpulan Hartanah Selangor Berhad (KHSB) over the issue of Perangsang International Sdn Bhd (PISB), the main contractor of Matrade Building fiasco yesterday.

The event was reported by Malaysiakini yesterday, and by New Straits Times and Nanyang Siang Pau today.

It's time for the chairman of Kumpulan Darul Ehsan Berhad (KDEB), the holding company of KHSB, Dato Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo, Menteri Besar of Selangor, to tell the truth now, and to instruct the Selangor state investment arm to pay the due to the Federal Government.
(Photo by courtesy of Malaysiakini)

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Selangor GLC: To lodge report with Securities Commission

After compiling all the documents, I am going to lodge a report with the Securities Commission this morning at 11.30 am for suspected falsification or misrepresentation of accounts in the Kumpulan Hartanah Selangor Berhad Annual Report 2004 especially in respect of its former and now wound-up subsidiary, Perangsang International Sdn Bhd, the contractor involved in the Matrade Building fiasco.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Between the first and the second choice

One of the cruel and ruthless things a predecessor can do to this successor is to claim that the successor was his second choice.

Lee Kuan Yew (picture, left) did it to Goh Chok Tong in Singapore and now Tun Mahathir had emulated by doing it to Abdullah.
This is indeed, on prime facie, a shrew way to exonerate the predecessor from the blame of picking the wrong successor. He can easily say that "after all, he is my second choice. I should have picked the first choice who can do better but I cannot undo it now".
Only God knows if it is true.
Nevertheless, it also has a smack of feudalism and authoritarian. In a mature democracy, the supreme leader should be selected either by consensus or by the majority through election. No one, however influential or great he were to be, should be the sole authority to decide the successor.
When a predecessor-to-be expects his successor-to-be to be grateful to him upon being selected, that is the moment cronyism sets in.
Having leaders with such mindset, our democracy has a long way to go.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Pas must learn to see things from the non-muslims' perspective

My friends in the Pas (Parti Islam Malaysia) attending their national conference these two days have mooted the 'new' idea of opening up the party's membership to the non- muslims. They are certainly very excited over the idea.
Two days ago, the Pas also launched their new publication in Chinese hoping that by doing so, it would bring the non-muslims close to the party.
Well, the Pas has always missed an important point which I always offer to advise them, that is, "do not try to make others understand you before trying hard to understand others".
To my friends in the Pas, Islam is everything. That is perfectly alright for them to believe so and I will definitely defend their right to so believe. However, to the non-muslims including me, such religious belief is a situation of "so be it".
As far as the non-muslims are concerned, Islam is not everything because the non-islamic religions have their own beliefs and theories that explain the universe. To the muslims, such non-islamic beliefs and theories should also be regarded as "so be it" by them. Unfortunately and sadly, that is not the case in this country.
I read an enlightened article by Wan Saiful Wan Jan who works for the Commonwealth Policy Studies Unit and the British Conservatives Party’s Research Department, both in London, published in the Malaysiakini today. I would certainly recommend my friends in the Pas, and also not to forget my friends in the Umno, to peruse the same.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

What has Keng Yaik got to say?

The former Tenaga Nasional Berhad chief, Tan Sri Ani Arope said in an interview by the Star that "the way the IPP contracts were awarded was 'morally wrong and not fair".
Apart from the DAP, another person and a very important one in this issue has also made noise. What has Keng Yaik got to say now?
Ani Arope had even pin-pointed that the former Prime Minister, Tun Mahathir, should answer why were the one-sided contracts for supplying power were given to those independent power producers.
Read further in the Malaysia Today posting today.

Mahathir strikes again

Mahathir strikes again.
Referring to Dato Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, Prime Minister, Tun Mahathir was reported in Biznews DataBank today to have accused Abdullah of betraying his trust.
He seems to be going after Abdullah's blood this round by revealing that Najib had more support in cabinet than Abdullah to succeed him although he was the one who picked Abdullah as his successor.
This is certainly something more than embarrassment to Abdullah.
Mahathir seems to be very personal in his attack on Abdullah. He is obviously still very hurt by the accusation that he had "finished all government money and the government was bankrupt because of mega-infrastructure projects that marked his time in office".
One thing Mahathir has yet to realize is that as far as the people are concerned, such is the belief of the general public even if that accusation does not come from Abdullah's administration.
Mahathir should comment more on the national policy issues rather than the specific issues in a more statesman-like manner befitting his stature as the former premier. Repeatedly making scathing statements against his hand picked successor barely two years of succession only exposes his own failure to pick the right man which he ironically admitted.
(Update: Read also Malaysiakini today: Pak Lah not my first choice, posted at 7.05 pm)

Monday, June 05, 2006

Power tariff hike: Keng Yaik should learn the Supp's lesson

I am quite surprised to read the statement of the Energy, Water and Communication Minister, Dato Seri Lim Keng Yaik as reported in Malaysiakini today that only the DAP is making noise over the issue of electricity tariff hike by 12% from June 1, 2006.
Keng Yaik must have had forgotten the lesson learnt by the Supp in the recent Sarawak state election on May 20, 2006. It was exactly the same arrogance demonstrated by the Supp when dealing with the people's wrath over the inflation ignited mainly by the price hike in petroleum that caused the defeat of the Supp.
Had Keng Yaik annonced the electricty tariff hike before May 20, not only Supp but all other Barisan Nasional component parties would have had lost more than 9 seats as they did. Obviously, Keng Yaik was ignorant about it.
Keng Yaik must have had thought that the general election was still long way from now that it would be safe for him to make fun at the DAP and conveniently ignored the suffering of the people.
He will soon learn his lesson.

Friday, June 02, 2006

We want IPCMC and not votes from police in exchange

The police had threatened to vote for the opposition in 2008 if the government were to proceed with the establishment of the Independent Police Complaints and Mismanagement Commission (IPCMC).
This is probably the first time in the Malaysia history that the Royal Police had rebelled against the government of the day.
I am not very certain if the Barisan Nasional government led by Dato Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi is worried about the threat but, if he were, then I would tell him in no uncertain term that we want IPCMC and not votes from the police in exchange. The police has no right to bargain with the government in this respect.
If anyone of them feels that IPCMC would demoralise the police, he or she should immediately leave the force. The exit is always open to those who resist the IPCMC.
The unprecedented rebellion of the police against the IPCMC simply exposes the ugly face of the indisciplined Royal Police.