Hornbill Unleashed

April 24, 2014

Our concept of ‘state’ within constitution

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:00 AM
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What is a ‘state’ in this new federation, after our 1963 federal constitution? I believe there is some lack of clarity and therefore the so-called ‘state’ can be variously interpreted both as the Malay states of the federation of the peninsula and the Borneo states of Sabah and Sarawak.

In some provisions, it appears to only refer to the 11 constituent states of the older Federation of the Malay states, and yet in others it specifically refers to Sarawak and Sabah as the original four partners of the newer Federation of Malaysia; inclusive of Malaya, Singapore, Sabah and Sarawak.

Which is which and why is it not so clearly defined? Conceptually, it would not be difficult to understand the differences by using the concept of, ‘units of analysis’. For example, Malaysia, the nation-state recognised by the United Nations, is the largest group within what we call ‘home or our nation-state’. We are but one of the ‘Bangsa-Bangsa Bersatu’. (more…)

Vernacular schools have existed since pre-Merdeka, so what’s the problem?

Filed under: Education,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:00 AM
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theantdaily team

He not only doesn’t like “huge” statues being built at places of worship for non-Muslims but he also does not want Tamil or Chinese schools to exist anymore.

Former Court of Appeal judge Datuk Mohd Noor Abdullah seems to enjoy courting controversy with his statements. His recent remark on vernacular schools has hit a raw nerve as the subject is close to the hearts of the Chinese and Indian communities.

Mohd Noor was reported to have called for the abolition of vernacular schools, saying that Mandarin and Tamil could be taught at national schools instead. (more…)

No GST on salmon and lobster


Selena Tay

Blame frivolous government spending for the nation’s financial woes, not the subsidies for the people.

The federal government has announced that the GST (Goods & Services Tax) will not burden the poor. Really?

This columnist finds it difficult to believe when various types of salmon and lobster are exempted from GST while canned sardines, baked beans and instant noodles will bear the full brunt of the GST.

The food products given the GST waiver include Pacific salmon, Atlantic salmon and Danube salmon while the lobsters are Norway lobster and rock lobster. Trout, crayfish and oysters too are among the food products to be given the GST waiver. (more…)

What next in Anwar sodomy II?

Kim Quek

Despite 85 pages of rhetoric, the Court of Appeal’s written judgment (the “Judgment”) convicting Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim of sodomy has failed to establish the only corroborative evidence of the charge – the DNA evidence.

This is a case of one man’s word against another, with no eyewitness to the incident.

Without establishing the DNA evidence beyond reasonable doubt, the Court of Appeal has no business to overturn the High Court judgment acquitting Anwar on ground of doubtful integrity of the DNA samples. (more…)

On the impracticalities of hudud in Malaysia

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:00 AM
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Islamic leaders have been saying that non-Muslims will accept hudud if they can understand the beauty of hudud, and so efforts should be made to explain hudud properly to non-Muslims.

I have no problem with religious laws per se. For example zakat for the poor is noble. So I respectfully invite Muslim scholars and ordinary Muslims alike to explain the following and explain how my perceptions of the hudud laws are wrong. Please note I am not attacking Islamic laws per se, but respectfully ask for their “dakwah” explanation.

Under hudud laws, murder is a capital punishment, yet if the victim’s family is agreeable for the murderer to pay “diyah”, or blood money, to compensate the family, the murderer can escape the mandatory death sentence. (more…)

Accelerated Anwar Case Seen as Insult to US

John Berthelsen

Numerous opposition figures also under intense court pressure as Obama heads to KL

Malaysian prosecutors are expected to ask the country’s highest court this Friday to increase the prison sentence meted out to opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, who was judged guilty by an appellate court last month on sodomy charges.

The case is being taken to the Federal Court just two days before the arrival of US President Barack Obama on a state visit, an action seen as an insult to Washington. (more…)

Can Noah be banned for being un-Islamic?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:59 AM
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One of the posters for the filmDing Jo-Ann

AS Russell Crowe himself anticipated, the film Noah has been banned in Malaysia, where about 60% of the population are officially Muslim. The film portrays Noah, mentioned in both the Bible and the Quran, carrying out his God-given task of building a giant boat to save a sampling of humans and animals.

In citing reasons for the ban, Film Censorship Board chairperson Datuk Abdul Halim Abdul Hamid said it was “un-Islamic for anyone to act out any characters of a prophet”.

But can a movie be legally banned in Malaysia on the basis that it is un-Islamic? What is the appropriate criteria to apply when restricting freedom of expression, which is a constitutionally guaranteed fundamental liberty? (more…)

April 23, 2014

The ugly Umno Baru Muslim

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:00 AM
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Some cynics claim that the crocodile tears shed by Karpal Singh’s former political foes, and their equally effusive tributes, sound insincere.

Perhaps, but their actions cannot be as bad as the disgusting behaviour of the Umno Baru Malays, who have heaped shame on respectful Muslims and at the same time, made ordinary Malaysians bristle with disgust. Karpal’s tragic death has brought out the best and the worst in people.

Umno Baru Muslims are crass and crude. They are intolerant and indelicate. They do not know the meaning of honour and values. They are champions of hypocrisy.

Who are they? (more…)

No rest for putra pests


It’s becoming increasingly and excitingly evident these days that perennial campaign by the members, cronies and supporters of the criminal BN regime to pose as the ‘defenders’ of Islam, the Malay people, the Malaysian constitution and even Malaysia itself is, as always, nothing but a cynical sham.

Or, in other words, a preposterous scam by a coterie of poisonous self-styled putras to cling to power for the sole purpose of feathering their nests at the expense of the rest.

And especially at the expense of Malaysia’s brightest and best, as currently following the tragic death of legal tiger, political titan and towering and tireless opponent of all that’s rotten about the BN regime, Karpal Singh. (more…)

Different but equally significant

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:00 AM
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Karpal SinghWinston Way

The late Karpal Singh and former Sarawak deputy Chief Minister Dustan Endawie are highly contrasting characters who have each earned their place in Malaysian politics.

When Malaysia’s political stalwart Karpal Singh died in a road accident last Thursday, few realized that he was the second great politician to have passed within a week.

While Karpal was distinguished throughout Malaysia and even internationally,  former deputy chief minister Dunstan Endawie Enchana, was mostly known and remembered in Sarawak.

Karpal was an active politician at the time of his tragic death, while Endawie had retired from political life decades ago. (more…)

Can Islam be used to subjugate the rights of non-Muslims?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:00 AM
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Khoo Kay Peng

In the case of S Deepa versus Izwan Abdullah over the custody of their two children Sharmila, 9, and Mithran, 6, who were converted to Islam without her knowledge in April last year, it is clear that the authorities have acted in bad faith for the failure to act against Izwan for kidnapping his son from his ex-wife after she was granted legal custody of their children.

It is understandable why the Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar has come under fire for his reluctance to enforce the civil court’s decision and arrest Izwan for his offence.

Khalid’s refusal to act cannot be taken lightly. His decision is going to have a deep repercussion on the police force. It is putting the force, the enforcers of law and order, into a constitutional jeopardy. Since independence, it is clear that the Federal Constitution is the supreme law of the land and the civil courts act as an important balance of power in a parliamentary democracy. (more…)

The Coroner’s Court is old wine in new bottle

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:00 AM
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Eric Paulsen

Imagine my surprise when I read Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Nancy Shukri’s sudden announcement of the commencement of the Coroner’s Court to replace the inquest system (New Straits Times, April 3, 2014 – “Nancy: Coroner’s Court starts April 15”) when there was no consultation with the Malaysian Bar or civil society on a much needed reform and controversial issue.

The primary function of any inquiries of deaths irrespective of what they are called – whether Coroner’s Court or Inquest is to independently inquire into how, when and where the person died and deliver the finding and verdict. (more…)

Time for parliamentary select committees to scrutinise the government

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:00 AM
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Viktor Wong

When the Auditor-General’s (AG) Report was released recently, it again exposed how government ministries, departments, agencies as well as government-linked companies (GLCs) embarked on many kinds of multi-million ringgit projects and procurements that resulted in wastage of public funds.

In most cases, there were no clues as to where the money ended up.

It has become a yearly affair and efforts by the AG to curb all this mismanagement within the government have been in vain. What went wrong actually? The AG’s report has been tabled in Parliament and debated by the MPs every year, and yet nobody could decide how these financial fiascos should be stopped once and for all. (more…)

Campaigns, sloganeering will not stop graft; stern action will

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:00 AM
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V Shuman

To the perpetual optimists, Malaysians can look forward to a drastic drop in corruption now that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has done a three-kilometre “Anti-Corruption Run: Do not give, do not accept”.

Seriously, what does the premier hope to achieve by attending an event that everyone knows is just pomp and glamour, and would not meet its intended goal in the long run? (pun intended).

How is 3,000 people running while pledging “don’t give, don’t take” going to overcome corruption, which has been plaguing the nation for years? (more…)

Hudud: Mind your own business is still the best policy

Ng Kee Seng

When you point a finger, there are three fingers pointing back to you. This is infinite wisdom.

Since Merdeka in 1957, Malaysians of different faiths have been doing just that to one another over “Hukum Hudud” or the implementation of hudud laws.

Non-Muslim politicians, especially those from DAP, MCA and Gerakan, have been fiercely voicing objections against hudud.

Both sides of the political divide and Malaysians of different faiths claim to be championing freedom of speech and religion. (more…)

April 22, 2014

Education Blueprint: When the poor don’t ask, no answer is given

Filed under: Education,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:06 AM
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Sonia Ramachandran

Scientia potentia est (sometimes written as scientia est potentia) is a Latin maxim often said to mean “knowledge is power”, and is commonly attributed to 16th century English philosopher Sir Francis Bacon.

This “lack of knowledge” seems to be one of the main issues faced by the poor when it comes to national schools, resulting in them not being aware of initiatives to help them move out of poverty and also of education transformation taking place.

On April 16, the Institute of Democracy and Economic Affairs (Ideas) released a policy briefing paper outlining the main findings of its nationwide education survey of the bottom 40 per cent. (more…)

‘Teachers need legal protection against students’

Filed under: Education,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:05 AM
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teacherWinston Way

Students have neither fear nor respect for teachers, says Sarawak Teachers Union president Jisin Nyud.

A teachers’ union here has decried the current system which does not provide any legal protection for teachers to heavily discipline errant students.

Sarawak Teachers Union (STU) president Jisin Nyud said students today took teachers for granted and have neither fear nor respect for the system. (more…)

‘Hudud Bill will not see the light of day’

Filed under: Human rights,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:01 AM
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Tian ChuaG Vinod, Ng Suzhen and K Pragalath

PKR leader Tian Chua is confident that BN will be the stumbling block in parliament for PAS to table its Hudud Bill.

There is no way for the private member’s bill on hudud to be debated at the parliament, said PKR vice president Tian Chua confidently.

In an interview with FMT, Tian Chua said that the Barisan Nasional-dominated parliament will not allow the bill to be presented in the August house.

“I can say this with conviction,” he said. (more…)

Two native groups win appeal over NCR cases

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:00 AM
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The Star Online

Two groups comprising minority folk from this division have triumphed in the Court of Appeal, which has affirmed that they have Native Customary Rights (NCR) over their land based on inherited customs or adat.

The Kedayan and Jati Mirik groups were represented by prominent land rights lawyer Baru Bian, who described the ruling handed down on Thursday as a “historic” one.

The first case involved three farmers of Kampung Selanyau in the Sibuti district, namely Abu Bakar Pungis, Salim Ebrahim and Sapur Ismail, who sued Tung Cheong Sawmill, the division’s Land and Survey superintendent and Sarawak government for trespassing on their NCR land. This came after the Land and Survey Department had issued a provisional lease to the sawmill to operate in their village, without their consent and without mention of compensation. (more…)

Hudud was never agreed on when Malaysia was formed

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:00 AM
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Tan Keng Liang

I refer to the recent announcement by PAS where they intend to table in Parliament a motion to allow Kelantan to implement hudud laws. This may happen as early as June which is just over a month away.

The move by PAS would result in two sets of criminal laws in our country and would lead to a constitutional crisis. There’s no provision for hudud laws under our Federal Constitution and the matter was never agreed on when Malaysia was formed.

In the event there are any flaws in our current criminal laws and procedures, it would be better to legislate a law just to rectify that particular flaw. It’s not practical to implement a total revamp of the whole system for that purpose. (more…)

LESSON FOR UMNO: You can bully, sideline, humiliate but Karpal, PR are still OUR HEROES

Christopher Fernandez,

In death, Malaysia’s fearless opposition politician and lawyer, Karpal Singh, has become a legend. The outpouring of grief and tributes to him is astounding and continues to flow from all corners of the world especially in his home state of Penang.

The idyllic island has been cast in gloom ever since the tragic death of Karpal Singh in a car accident on the North-South Expressway was announced to the general public. Many Malaysians are trying hard to get over the shock and suddenness of his demise. (more…)

As nation mourns Karpal, Najib goes on ‘SANDIWARA’ 3km anti-graft run

HOW IRONIC! As nation mourns Karpal, Najib goes on 'SANDIWARA' 3km anti-graft run J. D. Lovrenciear

Indeed, the fifteen to twenty thousand Malaysians who jam-packed the streets to pay tribute to the ‘Tiger of Jelutung’ in Penang speaks volumes; indeed too the tremendous amount of tributes filling every on-line media sends a loud message; and indeed too, the fact that certain main stream media were giving front-page tributes including several pages in days running saluting the principle-centered lawyer and unwavering politician also registers the greatness of this son of Malaysia.

It is not even an exaggeration to state that there were millions more Malaysians who would have wanted to be there in Penang but circumstances were not in their advantage. Hence, it is understandable when you witness coffee shops and market places filled with news exchanges and shock expressions at the loss that many Malaysians felt and shared openly on hearing of YB’s passing on. (more…)

Borneo teachers want end to double standards

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:00 AM
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GuruNg Suzhen

Housing allowances have not been reviewed in 25 years, but the bigger resentment is the disparity in allowances between Peninsular and local teachers.

Teachers in Sabah and Sarawak have had enough with the double standards and want the Putrajaya-led Education Ministry to standardise and review their housing allowances.

For the past 25 years, despite rising costs of housing and living, teachers have not seen an increase in their allowances.

According to Sarawak Teachers Union president (STU) Jisin Nyud said there has been “no positive feedback” from the public service commission (PSC) despite promises to look into the matter. (more…)

PKR questions if Najib interfered in RM100 million grant to company

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 6:00 AM
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PKR has today questioned Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s alleged interference in the approval of a RM100 million research and development (R&D) grant to a company for a commercial project.

PKR strategic director Rafizi Ramli (pic) said Putrajaya had approved the grant application by NSE Resources Corporation (M) Sdn Bhd through a letter signed by Science, Technology and Innovation Minister, Datuk Dr Ewon Ebin, on January 21.

According to Rafizi, the grant was for the development of a gasifier steam boiler plant.

The approval letter from the ministry apparently referred to a letter from Najib’s office dated November 21 last year, after NSE Resources wrote to the prime minister on November 15. (more…)

April 21, 2014

Ensure foreign prisoners have access to legal representation too

Filed under: Human rights — Hornbill Unleashed @ 10:35 AM
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Ian McIntyre

Five in every 10 prisoners in Malaysia are listed as foreigners, according to a recent news report. That is to say half of those in our jails are not Malaysians.

Foreign prisoners are said to comprise low-skilled labourers and petty criminals, while of late, it has apparently expanded to include African drug lords as well as white collar criminals who had masterminded the get-rich schemes hatched through the Internet.

Most are, however, caught for basic immigration offences. (more…)

MH370: Is it really a mystery or a hide-and-seek conspiracy?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 10:16 AM
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Ng Kee Seng

Is the Malaysia-led Search and Rescue/Recovery (SAR) really interested in locating the MH370 jet?

If so, why is it that there are so many flip-flops in the release of information and so many unanswered questions, like why is the MH370 cargo manifest classified as “Top Secret”?

Even technical aviation-related questions raised by the public are left unanswered.

theantdaily has received a letter from a Malaysian reader who wanted it delivered to associate editor Lokman Mustafa whose sister is a passenger of the ill-fated MH370. (more…)

Najib must stand up against all forms of extremism

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 10:14 AM
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Cecilia Jeyanthi Victor

Datuk Seri Najib Razak is not a popular leader these days or is he? In fact, the prime minister’s popularity rating has remained stagnant at a low 52 per cent over the first three months of this year, according to a Merdeka Center report.

In its yearly evaluation on Najib’s leadership which the centre recently released, Naijb’s public image is not something to be proud of.

Asked to comment on the report, former Transparency International Malaysia president Tan Sri Dr Ramon Navaratnam said: “I think most people who are neutral or non-partisan would like the prime minister to be more firm and intolerant towards extremism and unfairness.” (more…)

April 20, 2014

Misery awaits Malaysians with ‘business as usual’ government administration

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:44 AM
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Ng Kee Seng

Two recent revelations by the Auditor-General’s Annual Report and alleged abuse of government grants are neither new nor shocking.

What is of immediate concern is how long more can such abuse in financial management be sustained?

For years, the AG’s reports have been revealing abuse and mismanagement of public funds but no significant action had been taken, especially those involving hundreds of millions of ringgit linking to high officials.

In short, the AG has been highlighting the country’s annual bleeding of its coffers. (more…)

May the spirit of Easter shine to bury the hatred of men

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:41 AM
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theantdaily team

Today is Easter Sunday and for Christians, it is an auspiciously holy day and one of joy and celebration. Christians from all denominations come together today in joyous celebration of the resurrection of the Lord, Jesus Christ.

There is a mistaken myth among non-Christians that Christmas is the most important event in the Christian calendar. In fact, it is not.

The merry-making, commercialisation of Christmas coupled with the year-end holidays tend to turn the Yuletide season into a well-celebrated event in Malaysia. This is well and good for the birthday of Jesus, like everyone else, is reason enough for celebration. However, the real religious fervour of Christianity lies in Easter. (more…)

Easter and the age of heroic leadership

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:38 AM
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Jennie M. Xue

Easter is approaching, a special day for Christians worldwide. It is the day that Jesus Christ was resurrected three days after his crucifixion at the Calvary. Jesus was the ultimate activist, who defended the poor, the sick and the weak. His exemplary leadership has inspired billions of people worldwide for more than 2,000 years.

Today, Christ’s heroic leadership has been the model of Pope Francis’s leadership.

His face was on the covers of Time and Rolling Stone magazines. He was Time’s 2013 Person of the Year. It seemed that Pope Francis has won people’s hearts, regardless of their religious affiliations. He has bridged Christianity with the world. (more…)

More seats will check gerrymandering, says opposition

(From left) Serdang MP Dr Ong Kian Ming, Subang MP R. Sivarasa, Bridget Welsh, Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah and PAS election director Dr Mohd Hatta Ramli at the forum titled ‘Legislative seat increase: should we have larger Parliament and assemblies?’ at the Bar Council today. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Afif Abd Halim, April 19, 2014.EILEEN NG

(From left) Serdang MP Dr Ong Kian Ming, Subang MP R. Sivarasa, Bridget Welsh, Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah and PAS election director Dr Mohd Hatta Ramli at the forum titled ‘Legislative seat increase: should we have larger Parliament and assemblies?’ at the Bar Council today. 

While Pakatan Rakyat supports the creation of more parliamentary seats in the next redelineation exercise as a means to check malapportionment, academics and non-governmental organisations have warned that it will not necessarily improve the quality of elected representatives.

PAS election director Dr Mohd Hatta Ramli said the opposition pact was agreeable to having more seats, but that would depend on the redelineation plan proposed by the Election Commission (EC). (more…)

Three months on, Mais still probing Bibles

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:29 AM
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The Selangor Islamic Religious Council (Mais) says the probe on the Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM) has yet to be concluded as the attorney-general had requested for more information.

“It is still under investigation, just wait. We have met the public prosecutor’s office and it is now up to them,” Mais chairperson Mohamad Adzib Mohd Isa was quoted as saying in an Utusan Malaysia report today.

Mais oversees the Selangor Islamic Affairs Departments (Jais) which had on Jan 2 raided the BSM in Damansara and confiscated over 300 Malay and Iban language Bibles which used the word ‘Allah’ in reference to god. (more…)

April 19, 2014

Karpal’s roaring spirit lives on

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:27 AM
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Like many, I belong to the generation who grew up hearing the great name and deeds of Karpal Singh who fought tirelessly for a just Malaysia that would adhere to constitutionalism at all costs.

The fact that I had never met the man personally did not stop me from developing a profound admiration for his fighting spirit. In the past 15 years especially, the borderless Internet has made access to news and information far easier, and I enjoy thoroughly watching Karpal’s public speeches and listening to his uplifting messages that he was hammering home.

Most importantly, coming from a generation when legal practice was highly respected and in which lawyers and judges must work strenuously, arduously and judiciously to prove their worth, Karpal has clearly left a deep imprint in Malaysian society. (more…)

One of modern Malaysia’s great men

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:23 AM
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Taking an overview of his own tempestuous life, Karpal Singh believes he has been able to achieve more via the law than he has as the perennial hardball opposition DAP politician.

- author Tim Donoghue in his book, ‘Karpal Singh, Tiger of Jelutong.

It seems like he has been in politics forever but it was in law where he made his mark first. History will likely remember him more for his achievements in that arena and the truly tireless efforts he made towards the cause of human rights and equality, the last nine years in a wheelchair. (more…)

April 18, 2014

Bible Society jumps from frying pan into the fire?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:26 AM
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Hazlan Zakaria

When the Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM) announced its move from Selangor to Kuala Lumpur, some saw it as political theatrics. Others deemed it a desperate act of desperate men, but perhaps it was jumping from the hot frying pan into the burning fire.

The society believes that the federal government may or can provide better protection to religious minorities, but it may have moved under a false sense of security.

Looking at it from another perspective, perhaps not all the hue and cry lamenting the organisation’s “self-exile” is for BSM but is by those seeking to profit from its woes. (more…)

Education Ministry urged to monitor funds

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:21 AM
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FMT StaffSabah student

Abuse of the Supplementary Food Programme fund has left school children hungry and parents complaining.

The Education Ministry is urged to monitor the funds channelled to schools for the Supplementary Food Programme.

PKR national women vice-president Voon Shiak Ni said she had received complaints from parents of students from several schools in Padawan and Bau stating that the food portions served was not enough.

“Parents said the food portions were too small and their children got hungry faster instead of being better taken care of by the programme. (more…)

Muslims not encouraged to use ‘RIP’, says National Fatwa Council

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:15 AM
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Mourners paying respect to the late Karpal Singh at his house in Jalan Utama, Penang, today. The National Fatwa Council says Muslims should not use the phrase ‘Rest in Peace’ (RIP) to a non-Muslim because the term had Christian connotations. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Hasnoor Hussain, April 17, 2014.MOHD FARHAN DARWIS

Mourners paying respect to the late Karpal Singh at his house in Jalan Utama, Penang, today. The National Fatwa Council says Muslims should not use the phrase ‘Rest in Peace’ (RIP) to a non-Muslim because the term had Christian connotations.

Following the death of Karpal Singh and the outpouring of grief, Muslims were reminded by the National Fatwa Council today that they were not encouraged to use the phrase “Rest in Peace” (RIP) to a non-Muslim because the term had Christian connotations.

In a statement issued on its website, www.e-fatwa.gov.my, the National Fatwa Council said Muslims could express their condolences to non-Muslim families. (more…)

Karpal lived, and died, for Malaysia

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:12 AM
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The Tiger of Jelutong will roar no more as a sombre silence falls upon Malaysia at the death of a loved son.

News of the sudden tragic death of veteran DAP leader, parliamentarian and litigation lawyer Karpal Singh has sent shockwaves across the country and fans of the affable Karpal around the world into a state of mourning.

His admirers are found everywhere, those who respected and loved this rare individual and irreplaceable man, the true ‘people’s politician’ and a lawyer for those with lost hope and a last resort for justice, who defended the underdogs and victims of injustice.

They all, friends and strangers alike, will be in silent grief and like I feel, a sense of  loss and grieve with Karpal’s family. (more…)

A fighter and a gentleman

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:08 AM
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Karpal Singh was as fierce as a tiger when taking on his opponents in the legal and political arena but the private person in him was soft-spoken, courteous and a true gentleman.

ON Wednesday afternoon, Karpal Singh had called to say he was leaving for Penang that night and that he would only be coming back on Tuesday.

“You can come by this evening, if you like,” he said.

I phoned Mr Karpal, as all of us call him, a few days ago to say I would like to interview him about the Kelantan government’s plan to introduce hudud law, an issue which the DAP leader had been uncompromising about throughout his political career. (more…)

April 17, 2014

Enough of politics and start leading country

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:01 AM
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img-mansharesbreadwithneedyshutterstock_171948830617.jpg_item_largeVisnu Natesan

We have lost the plot in the search for a better country.

Our society has become pessimistic without much thoughts or critical thinking. Many disagree for the sake of disagreeing.

Many argue for the sake of arguing. Many oppose for the sake of opposing. We are accumulating madness without intellect.

We are accumulating hatred instead of empathy. Negativity has taken the figurative role and as days pass by nothing much could be done. Day by day, we are becoming what most civilization fear off, backward-thinking society. (more…)

Seremban church says council directive to use Malay banners, not about propagating faith

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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The banner that a Muslim non-governmental organisation found so offensive in Seremban. – Pic courtesy of Isma, April 16, 2014. JENNIFER GOMEZ

The banner that a Muslim non-governmental organisation found so offensive in Seremban.

A Pentecostal church in Seremban said it was following the law to put banners in Bahasa Malaysia to promote an Easter musical, a language that a Muslim rights group believed should not be used by non-Muslims in Malaysia.

Agape Community Church assistant pastor Tan Szet Anne said their promotional material for the annual Easter musical was in Bahasa Malaysia because of a directive by the Seremban city council that banners and posters must be in the national language.

“We have been organising this musical to commemorate Easter with a musical every two years for the past 20 years and there was never an issue. (more…)

Media a problem in democracy? 

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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The decline of newspapers is a problem for democracy and for an informed public.Ignatius Haryanto

Maybe in the next five to 10 years many local and foreign observers will look at Indonesia’s 2014 elections as one of the most celebrated tales in the country’s media history.

Both conventional and social media hosted much discussion and criticism, as political parties used the media for their campaign platforms as well as using social media for campaigning.

Among the contestants of the 2014 general elections, three figures are media owners who also lead political parties: presidential candidates Surya Paloh of the NasDem Party and Aburizal Bakrie of the Golkar Party and vice presidential hopeful Hary Tanoesoedibjo of the Hanura Party. (more…)

Two mysteries in one – MH370 and Scorpene submarines

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM

Ng Kee Seng

The Umno-led Barisan Nasional (BN) government doesn’t seem to learn. As long as there is a chance to splash out on multi-billion-ringgit projects, nothing else matters.

Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein must be propagating this line of thinking when he said “there is a need to upgrade the country’s defence system to strengthen its security in the future”.

Coming on the heels of the controversial breach of air space by MH370 in which the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) detected but failed to act, is Hishammuddin admitting that the country’s defence is inadequate?

Is any Malaysian surprised if that is so? (more…)

When Civil Court and Syariah Court collides

Filed under: Human rights,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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68ce2-courtJimmy Puah

It is a cardinal rule of law, that all laws enacted should be clear and unambiguous in terms. The reasoning for this is that everyone should know their legal rights and when not to step out of the legal boundary.

It is for this reason that especially in criminal law, great effort is made to scrutinise every wording of an Act.

The recent custodial dispute involving S. Deepa and Izwan Abdullah has brought this issue to the forefront.

The significance of this case not only highlights the need for certainty in law but it also examines the legal quandary involving rights of Muslims and non-Muslims when their legal rights cross path. (more…)

The IGP must resign

Filed under: Corruption,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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Maybe I am confused, but is this not the inspector-general of police (IGP); our chief criminal law officer of the federation speaking about lack of authority to resolve the issue of the kidnap of his son by a Muslim convert? Is not our IGP also the chief police officer for execution of civil and criminal law in this country? Since when did Malay-state-enacted syariah law and all related enactments come under the executionary jurisdiction of the police?

I am very serious, and can anyone help with an answer, including the Bar Council or any professor of the constitution.
In similar reverse of this logic, then, is the Agong (our king), also then the chief religious matters officer of the Federation of Malaysia? Where does it say this in the federal constitution about either such jurisdictional oversight or moral responsibility  or authority? Maybe I am simply too confused but below is my converse argument for my questions. (more…)

‘We do not instigate natives’

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:55 AM
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peter-kallang-Baram-DamWinston Way

Save Rivers Sarawak said they only provide Baram blockaders with legal advice and connections with lawyers, NGOs and other protesting communities.

An NGO here has denied accusations that they are instigating Baram natives into prolonging blockades which they began last year in a bid to stop preparatory works on the proposed Baram hydroelectric dam in the Miri Division.

“What do they mean we are instigating these people? We do not instigate anyone. If some people encroach into their (the natives’) lands, then those should be illegal acts. (more…)

April 16, 2014

The meltdown of Malaysian institutions

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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There was a time Malaysia's civil service was the envy of many, playing an important role in the country's rapid industrialisation. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, April 15, 2014.THE MALAYSIAN INSIDER

There was a time Malaysia’s civil service was the envy of many, playing an important role in the country’s rapid industrialisation.

There was a time when Malaysia was known for its institutions – a civil service that facilitated rapid development from an agrarian economy to an industrialised one, a judiciary that was held in high esteem of the Commonwealth, and a military that defeated a communist insurgency.

Today, more than 50 years as a nation spanning from Perlis to Sabah, we see ineptitude and incompetency, a complete meltdown of Malaysian institutions. (more…)

Leadership in schools is critical to transformation

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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educationCfBT Education Malaysia

Not-for-Profit education consultancy CfBT Education Malaysia is publishing a series of ground-breaking reviews to commemorate its 35th Anniversary year. This month’s report focuses on the critical role of school leaders in establishing outstanding schools. It was produced in partnership with Oxford University and the University of Nottingham.

The evidence examined by the CfBT Education Malaysia review indicates that strong school leadership is important to school transformation but that on its own it is not sufficient.  However, school leaders are uniquely well positioned to ensure the necessary synergy between different variables, to produce a quantum leap in the quality of learning and teaching. It is in this context, as the binding agent, that school leaders add most value. (more…)

A-G report shows M’sia ‘bleeding itself to death’

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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auditor generalFMT Staff

Public fund wastage and the lack of political will must be corrected in order to move the fight against corruption.

The repeated wastage of public funds and the lack of political will to make the corrections will slowly lead the nation to its demise, the Center to Combat Corruption and Cronyism (C4) cautioned in a statement today.

“The Auditor-General’s report (2013) fundamentally demonstrates how this nation is bleeding itself to death. (more…)

Use legislation to resolve overlapping jurisdictions between Syariah and civil courts

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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Alyaa Alhadjri

The ongoing custody battle between Muslim convert Izwan Abdullah and his ex-wife S Deepa has highlighted the need to harmonise laws to prevent conflict of jurisdictions between the Syariah and civil courts.

The case of Izwan, formerly known as N Viran, and Deepa has turned ugly with his alleged abduction of their six-year-old son Mithran after the Seremban High Court on April 7 granted her custody of Mithran and daughter Sharmila, 9.

The Negeri Sembilan Syariah Court had last Sept 19 granted Izwan custody of the two children. (more…)

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