Hornbill Unleashed

October 1, 2014

Resolve MA63 or dissolve Malaysia Partnership

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jeffreyJames Sivalingam

Jeffrey Kitingan wants restoration of Malaysia as an equal partnership of Sabah, Sarawak and the peninsula.

Star Sabah Chief Jeffrey Kitingan wants a new Malaysian Constitution to replace the Federal Constitution, as the way to resolve Putrajaya’s non-compliance on the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63), the basis on which Sabah and Sarawak entered into a federation on Sept 16, 1963 with the peninsular. The MA63 is a constitutional document.

The alternative, warned Jeffrey, was to dissolve the Malaysia partnership.

He was speaking at a public forum, Revisit Malaysia Agreement 1963, in Kuala Lumpur. (more…)

‘Malaysia Agreement should be abrogated after S’pore’s departure’

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aylaa @ Mkini

Former Human Rights Commission (Suhakam) vice-chairperson Simon Sipaun believes that the Malaysia Agreement should have been abrogated following the separation of Singapore from Malaysia.This is because Singapore, being one of the five signatories, had ceased to be a party to the Agreement, said Simon at a forum titled ‘Revisiting the Malaysia Agreement 1963′.

The Malaysia Agreement was signed in 1963 between United Kingdom, Malaya, Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore whereby the four latter parties formed a union named Malaysia. Two years later, Singapore left Malaysia to become an independent state.

“Some say the Agreement is [still] valid, some say it is not. I personally think it should be abrogated,” said Simon at the forum organised by Negaraku, which was attended by around 60 people. (more…)

MOE messing with our children

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parents300

Ishmael Lim

The Napoleons in the ministry continue to confirm parents’ suspicions that our education system is chronically ill.

All doting parents feel that their children are extensions of themselves. Although we may deny it, our children are our alter egos. They become vessels for the dreams we never realised. We try to give them what we ourselves never had. It gets terribly personal when the best course we can chart for them gets diverted. So when you mess with our children, you are really messing with us parents.

According to the Ministry of Education, Form Five students may no longer use the results of the SPM trials to gain entry into colleges and institutions running pre-university and foundation courses. The MOE has informed colleges and institutions through a circular that the forecast results will not be admissible as qualifying criteria for enrolment, and that only actual SPM results will suffice for admission purposes. It is understood that the trial SPM exams are not standardised and that secondary schools set their own exams to prepare their students for the real thing. (more…)

Social media and the age of sedition

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hc-social-media-icons-istock-23515213Scott Ng

Are we allowed to have ideas and opinions? Or must they be state-endorsed to be valid?

The rise of social media has been uneasy in more ways than one. From privacy concerns to ethics, there are many shades of gray that need to be explored before we truly come to understand and integrate it in our daily lives. One such complication is very prominent here in Malaysia – freedom of speech in a semi-democratic society.

Autocratic regimes such as China have long been wary of social media, a useful tool for organising and disseminating information, but one that could spread news of a government’s missteps within seconds of their happening. (more…)

Azmin has to do things very differently

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Azmin

Cecilia Jeyanthi Victor

Former Selangor Menteri Besar Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim during his tenure as the MB had failed to deal with the Bible issue in the state that resulted in angry and disappointed Christians.

When Jais raided and seized some 300 Malay and Iban language Bibles from the Bible Society Malaysia (BSM) on Jan 2 for using the term “Allah”, Khalid merely told BSM to write to the Attorney-General for his feedback.
A show of what may seem as a “lack of interest” in affairs affecting the minority groups had cost Khalid to lose popularity in the state.
With Khalid gone and new MB Azmin Ali taking over his administration, Selangorians, especially those who were upset with Khalid, have placed high hopes in Azmin to tackle issues relating to local government, race and religious affairs, areas where Khalid failed.

(more…)

  SUPP will upstage UPP, but with Najib’s help

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From left: Wong and Najib

Jimmy Adit

It was reported earlier in the month that United People’s Party (UPP)’s pioneer committee chairman Datuk Seri Wong Soon Koh has ruled out taking a confrontational stand against his former party Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP).

His reason: “We are all in the same Barisan Nasional (BN) family. We do not criticise SUPP members and we hope SUPP members would not criticise us.”

For someone who had tried to kill SUPP and not knowing his own real strength (UPP is in the midst of forming branches), does he seriously believe SUPP will buy that? (more…)

Integrity in the civil service

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imagesDr I Lourdesamy

Our emphasis seems to be on producing competent civil servants, not civil servants of integrity and high moral fibre.

The recent leaks in the UPSR exam papers are symptomatic of the general malaise in the civil service. It reflects a general decline in ethics and integrity in public bureaucracy and a lack of leadership and supervision in the management and delivery of public services.

The UPSR leak is not an isolated incident. Similar incidents have happened in the past. There are just too many cases of unethical behaviour on the part of civil servants which underscore a more serious moral and ethical problem in public service. (more…)

Another varsity lecturer faces sedition charge

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If charged, Dr Aziz Bari, who now teaches at Universiti Selangor, will be the second academician to be hauled up in Putrajaya's crackdown under the Sedition Act. – The Malaysian Insider pic, September 30, 2014.ANISAH SHUKRY

If charged, Dr Aziz Bari, who now teaches at Universiti Selangor, will be the second academician to be hauled up in Putrajaya’s crackdown under the Sedition Act

Police will question law professor Dr Abdul Aziz Bari tomorrow in Putrajaya’s ongoing sedition sweep which has seen many opposition lawmakers and activists investigated or charged under the colonial-era law.

The police told The Malaysian Insider that almost 100 reports were lodged against the constitutional law expert nationwide for allegedly insulting the Sultan of Selangor. (more…)

A short history lesson of the spat between Mahathir and Anwar

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Mariam Mokhtar

We all know what Malaysian politicians say, but what do they mean? We are aware of the bitter rivalry between former PM Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and his former deputy, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim. Their public spat has been brewing for at least thirty years.

Even after Mahathir’s retirement, the battle between the two, has not abated. Malaysia is desperately trying to move forward and discard the divisive ploys and unfair affirmative action policies which have split the nation, but Mahathir refuses to leave the limelight.

He has taken potshots at his successor, Tun Abdullah Badawi and the current PM Datuk Seri Najib Razak. Like a man possessed, Mahathir also sees fit to ensure Anwar’s destruction, before he dies. (more…)

Drop ‘Umno-tainted’ sedition charges now, PKR tells A-G

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TMI

The Attorney-General (A-G) must drop the slew of “Umno-tainted” sedition charges, a PKR leader said, noting that the dragnet had only begun after he and the inspector-general of police met with Umno leaders in August.

“In a meeting held between 60 Umno division leaders and the A-G and IGP on 14th August, both IGP and the A-G were told to act on the police reports made against government critics,” PKR central committee member Latheefa Koya (pic) said in a statement last night.

“Clearly soon after, the sedition charges started and opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim’s lawyer N. Surendran (who is also PKR MP for Padang Serai) was charged over a statement made regarding the Fitnah 2 court judgment,” she said, referring to the second sodomy charge against Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim. (more…)

Is PAS a friend of Pakatan?

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MARIAM MOKHTAR

With ‘friends’ like PAS’ president Hadi Awang creating distrust and sowing seeds of confusion and discord, there is little need for Umno Baru to plant moles in Pakatan.

In the end, it was Umno Baru which stuck the knife in Hadi’s back. In the Pengkalan Kubor by-election, Umno Baru capitalised on his derogatory remarks about two PAS assemblypersons, in his mishandling of the Selangor menteri besar saga. The irony is that during the hustings, Hadi had warned against treachery.

Contrary to popular belief, the people of Selangor are not the ‘losers’ in the appointment of the MB; Selangor remains under Pakatan and the coalition is still made up of three parties, PKR, DAP and PAS, although their unity is extremely fragile. (more…)

September 30, 2014

Mahathir: Umno lacks guts to criticise its leaders

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Mkini

Umno needs to be reformed so that it can criticise its leaders more courageously, said former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad today.

At present, the former Umno president claimed that the party’s culture is to support its leaders without question.

“Yes, because the leader must be told about other views. A leader cannot just do whatever he likes,” he told reporters in Putrajaya.

Mahathir said this when asked to comment on former New Straiuts Times(NST) group editor-in-chief A Kadir Jasin’s statement that Umno is too weak to oust its current president Najib Abdul Razak. (more…)

UPP happy with BN Plus Formula

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SARAWAK BNJoe Fernandez

The Barisan Nasional has already declared that it would only field winnable candidates in the next state election due in 2016.

SIBU: The United People’s Party (UPP) sees its place in the Sarawak Government assured under the Barisan Nasional (BN) Plus Formula after a meeting in Putrajaya last week with Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

Pro tem chairman of UPP Wong Soon Koh said in a statement that there were 40 party leaders with him when he met with the Home Minister.

According to him, it was a courtesy call to thank Zahid for registering UPP as a political party. (more…)

As Azmin takes over, what legacy has Khalid left behind?

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Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim was a popular menteri besar, especially with many of Selangor's civil servants. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, September 29, 2014.SHERIDAN MAHAVERA

Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim was a popular menteri besar, especially with many of Selangor’s civil servants.

To get an idea of how popular and refreshing Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim’s initial administration was, all you had to do was go to the countless ceremonies everywhere in Selangor where residents got land titles and lease renewals for only RM1,000.

The programme was how Selangor residents, particularly in rural areas, got to witness the kind of leadership and governance that Pakatan Rakyat (PR) wants to offer this country, and how better it was compared to Barisan Nasional (BN). (more…)

Don’t give crumbs to the Dayak, gov’t told

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Mkini

Were the Dayak community, who constitute about 50 percent of Sarawak’s population, forcibly handed over by the British colonial government to another master through the formation of Malaysia?

“This is the question often asked by the Dayak, as to whether they have been transferred from one colonial master to another.“This is natural given the predicament they are today, in after 51 years in the federation of Malaysia,” the Dayak National Congress (DNC) said in a statement yesterday.

The DNC is an influential non-governmental organisation, with its membership made up of retired army and police officers, retired civil servants, businessmen, activists and other like-minded people from the community. (more…)

Tighter security for UPSR exams, resit not optional, says Education Ministry

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Members of parent groups such as the Parent-Action Group for Education (PAGE) have slammed the Education Ministry over the UPSR leaks and asked that the resit be scrapped. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, September 29, 2014.TMI

Members of parent groups such as the Parent-Action Group for Education (PAGE) have slammed the Education Ministry over the UPSR leaks and asked that the resit be scrapped.

The Education Ministry has assured that there will be tighter security when some 500,000 UPSR pupils resit the examination papers tomorrow, while stressing that the pupils have no option and will have to resit the four papers.

Education director-general Datuk Dr Khair Mohamad Yusof said that fewer people were involved in preparations for the resit of the UPSR examination in a bid to tighten security of the papers. (more…)

Kajang Lessons 1: Feudalism cannot defeat feudalism

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NATHANIEL TAN

The Kajang Move has come to a close, whether or not the Selangor crisis continues.

The outcome has caused many to deride Anwar Ibrahim and Rafizi Ramli for making their own worst nightmare a reality – the ascendancy of the individual most likely to end their political careers.

I think this is not however the time to gloat or kick people when they are down. Whatever their mistakes, including the ones that led directly to their own downfall, there is no doubt that Anwar and team have played a significant role in Malaysian politics.

I think the wiser thing to do at this point is reflect on the Kajang Move as a whole, and try our best to learn the lessons that it teaches. (more…)

Sabah and Sarawak, better together in Malaysia?

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Wong Chin Huat

Last Thursday, Scotland voted by a clear margin 55.3% to 44.7% in her independence referendum to affirm the unionists’ vision: Scotland and the rest of the UK are “better together”.

If given a choice, will Sabah and Sarawak say the same, “we and Malaya are better together”?

To me, that perhaps explains the paranoia of some Malayan politicians amid the growing cries for separatism and independence, or even just autonomy, from the other shore of South China Sea.

These politicians simply do not have the confidence that Sabahans and Sarawakians will think they have a better future within Malaysia than if they leave. Perhaps these politicians themselves don’t believe in that possibility. (more…)

Selangor exco portfolios may determine PAS’s future in Pakatan

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Speculation is rife that PAS's run-ins with its Pakatan Rakyat partners may result in smaller role for the party in the Selangor government. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, September 29, 2014.TMI

Speculation is rife that PAS’s run-ins with its Pakatan Rakyat partners may result in smaller role for the party in the Selangor government.

The three PAS state executive council (exco) members in Selangor are expected to be assigned their portfolios today, in what will likely decide the Islamist party’s future in the state government amid speculation that its excos would be given less important roles.

A senior PAS leader said the party’s future in Pakatan Rakyat now hinges on the allocation of exco portfolios to its three exco members in the state administration led by Menteri Besar Mohamaed Azmin Ali. (more…)

September 29, 2014

Anwar: MB to expose those getting millions

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Susan Loone

New Selangor Menteri Besar Azmin Ali has been asked to expose the list of companies and individuals benefiting millions of ringgits from the water deal signed by his predecessor Khalid Ibrahim, before he left his post on Sept 22.

PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim said in the interest of transparency, Selangorians should know who is benefitting from these huge contracts worth hundreds of millions of ringgit.

Anwar said Azmin had been told to list the individuals or shareholders behind the companies.

“I do not care if people are profiting from the deal but who is paying for it? It is the Selangor rakyat,” he said, when met after the anti-Sedition Act ceramah in Seberang Jaya last night. (more…)

Rakyat or EC not mature enough for live telecast?

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Hazlan Zakaria

The job of the Election Commission (EC) is to ensure the smooth running of the election process and not to measure how mature the rakyat, political parties and candidates are nor is it the EC’s mandate to worry more about its public image then electoral transparency.

According to Article 113 of the Federal Constitution, it is charged to “conduct elections to the House of Representatives and the Legislative Assemblies of the States and prepare and revise electoral rolls for such elections”.

For if maturity is the true gauge, I can name quite a few politicians that should have been rejected from being candidates and some parties which are just a waste of time to put their logos on the ballot. (more…)

‘Frog’ is for politicians and ‘corruption’ is for government

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Hazlan Zakaria

While it should have been clear from the get go as something that is just mere common sense, a legal precedent has been set two days ago that it is okay to call a politician who jumped between parties a “frog” or “political frog”.

At the moment I read that, the line by Patrick Teoh playing a judge in the 1998 Hollywood movie set in Malaysia Return to Paradise echoed in my mind.

“My faith in humanity has been restored,” his character said after witnessing the real offender in a drug case returning to Malaysia to face trial after his friend was left holding the bag so to speak and facing a possible death penalty. (more…)

With one misstep after another, Education Ministry seems a roadblock to excellence

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The Education Ministry's decision to disallow colleges from taking in students using their SPM forecast results has drawn flak from parents and lawmakers. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, September 29, 2014.ANISAH SHUKRY

The Education Ministry’s decision to disallow colleges from taking in students using their SPM forecast results has drawn flak from parents and lawmakers.

Less than a month after the UPSR leaks fiasco, parents are again furious with the Ministry of Education – this time over its shock decision to bar Form Five students from applying for pre-university programmes using forecast results of the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM).

Parent groups said the ministry was preventing students from wanting to excel, and without giving any reason for it. (more…)

Re-sit of UPSR papers to preserve integrity, says exam board

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All these UPSR candidates will join their fellow Primary 6 students in having to go back to school on September 30 and October 9 to re-sit at least 3 of the subjects. - The Malaysian Insider pic, September 28, 2014.Bernama

All these UPSR candidates will join their fellow Primary 6 students in having to go back to school on September 30 and October 9 to re-sit at least 3 of the subjects.

The re-sit of Ujian Pencapaian Sekolah Rendah (UPSR) papers for four subjects which was leaked must be held to preserve the credibility and integrity of the examination.

The Malaysian Examinations Board (MEB) said the move was made after receiving the views of several quarters related to the re-sit of the Science, English, Mathematics and Tamil subjects. (more…)

No place for Sedition Act if we are to be a progressive democracy, say lawyers

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Mukhriz's comment asking those against the Sedition Act to prove its weaknesses has come under fire from lawyers. - The Malaysian Insider pic, September 28, 2014.V. ANBALAGAN

Mukhriz’s comment asking those against the Sedition Act to prove its weaknesses has come under fire from lawyers.

The Sedition Act must be removed from the statute book as it unfairly punishes individuals whose thoughts are against the views of the establishment, lawyers said.

The law is also the anti-thesis of democracy, rule of law, justice and human rights, they said in response to Umno supreme council member Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir’s statement yesterday that those who were for repeal of the Sedition Act had yet to explain its weaknesses. (more…)

What not to do in Malaysia…

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Never question Putrajaya, remember the government is always right. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, September 28, 2014.THE MALAYSIAN INSIDER

Now that we know that it is a chargeable offence to refer to a cop as a monkey in a Facebook post or Twitter feed, here is a list of other out-of-bound markers for Malaysians and visitors to Malaysia, Truly Seditious.

* Never vent your anger on any social media platform against a policeman who stops you and then proceeds to ask for RM to let you off for speeding.

Why? Because it is a bigger offence to call a uniformed officer an inappropriate name than it is to burst a spleen talking about corruption.

So remember, refer to cops as Boss, Tuan, even Datuk. (more…)

Highway to heaven or to hell for Azmin in Selangor?

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Azmin (right)

Cecilia Jeyanthi Victor

While highways usually help travellers to arrive at their destinations after they are built, in the case of Selangor Pakatan and their shiny new menteri besar, how they handle the issue of new highway constructions versus protests by the public may determine the outcome of their survival as the powers that be.

Public outcry over possible adverse environmental impact of poorly planned highway projects seem to have fallen on deaf ears as Works Minister Datuk Fadillah Yusof announced that the authorities will go ahead with several new highways with construction set to begin next year, despite ongoing protests. (more…)

Courts slammed for aiding ‘punishment’ of Ali Jalil

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Mkini

The judiciary has been blasted for not stopping the government from allegedly “punishing” activist Ali Abd Jalil with repeated arrests.

Ali was arrested for the fourth time yesterday immediately following his release at the Johor Baru Magistrate’s Court, after the police secured an additional three-day remand.

“It is clear that the multiple remands have been done in bad faith in order to punish Ali rather than any bona fide attempt at investigation. (more…)

September 28, 2014

My anti-BN booster

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DEAN JOHNS

After eight years of rashly exposing myself to BN disease, the deadly plague of political germs and parasites so chronically and so far incurably plaguing Malaysia, I am pretty sure I am immune to it by now.

But, on the principle that it can’t hurt to play doubly safe, I’m in the process of boosting my resistance to BN’s festering democracy with some massive protective doses of Sydney’s second annual Festival of Democracy.

Staged by the Sydney University-based Sydney Democracy Network, the Festival is featuring the first ever exhibition of paintings by exiled pro-democracy Chinese artist-activist Wang Xu entitled ‘The Silenced: From 1957 until Today’, and four days of presentations and symposia on topics such as ‘Power, People and Democracy’, ‘The Case for Deliberative Democracy’, ‘Zombie Democracy’, ‘The New Despotisms’, and ‘Religion, Hate Spin and Democracy’. (more…)

Dayak place in the sun

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artJoe Fernandez

The onus is on the Sarawak and Federal Governments to do something about the Dayak plight in Malaysia.

Dayaks are increasingly coming around to the view that Malaysia in Borneo was a bad British idea degenerating into a situation where they have exchanged one colonial master for another.

They want the Sarawak and Federal Governments to ensure that they as a nation in Borneo have a place in the Malaysian sun before they decide that “enough is enough”.

“Putrajaya should drop its empty rhetoric that there’s a place for everyone in the Malaysian sun,” said the Dayak National Congress (DNC) in a statement on the 51st anniversary of the Federation of Sabah and Sarawak with the peninsula. (more…)

Parents mull skipping UPSR test resit, want pupils absolved

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Parents say it is unfair to ask pupils to resit the UPSR papers that were leaked as this will cause them additional stress and trauma. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, September 27, 2014.ELIZABETH ZACHARIAH

Parents say it is unfair to ask pupils to resit the UPSR papers that were leaked as this will cause them additional stress and trauma.

Several parent groups are asking for their children to be exempted from resitting leaked USPR test papers, saying it places unnecessary pressure and causes them stress and trauma.

The parents said the pupils should not be penalised for not retaking the papers and wanted to know if the score of the original test would be used. The authorities have ordered a resit for Science, English, Mathematics and Tamil test papers.

“What will they do to students who don’t want to resit?” asked Malacca Action Group for Parents in Education (MAGPIE) chairman Mak Chee Kin. (more…)

Walk the talk, social media users tell Najib over his UN speech

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Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had urged the United Nations to defeat violent extremism and religious intolerance. – Reuters pic, September 27, 2014.JENNIFER GOMEZ

Barely hours after Datuk Seri Najib Razak condemned the Islamic State militants (Isis) and religious extremism at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, social media users were quick to remind the prime minister to practise what he preached at home.

Twitter user Nash, using the handle @nash_71, did not mince his words when he posted: “@NajibRazak such a pity your words and deeds dont (sic) match where it matters most… at HOME… Malaysia… cld hv (could have) been known a great statesman.”

Lawyers for Liberty executive director Eric Paulsen also hit out at the PM’s remarks at the UN assembly, by tweeting: “@NajibRazak says the right thing at UN but fails miserably back in Msia – Umno, Isma, Perkasa, Utusan, Jakim, Jais extremism for all to see.” (more…)

DAP and PKR must review Hadi-led PAS status in Pakatan

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Hadi

Ng Kee Seng

PAS’ wider majority loss in Pengkalan Kubor clearly shows party president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang must step down as the leader of the Islamist party.

If he refuses to resign, then PAS’ political future is extremely bleak as Hadi is solely responsible for incurring the wrath of Pakatan Rakyat supporters.

There is no excuse for PAS to lose Pengkalan Kubor by a bigger majority simply because it is also in control of the state government machinery. (more…)

Winners and losers in the Selangor saga

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Ram Anand

With the swearing in of PKR deputy president Azmin Ali as the new Selangor menteri besar on Tuesday, a curtain comes down on an infamous political move for which the consequences had dragged on for more than eight months.It was called, at the height of its popularity, the ‘Kajang move’.

It was the easiest way one could coin a political manoeuvring that had such far-reaching implications.

The plan for the Kajang move was to consciously trigger the resignation of Kajang assemblyperson Lee Chin Cheh to force a by-election and then have PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim contest in the seat, and if he wins, become the Selangor MB. (more…)

September 27, 2014

Penan are not our tools, say NGOs

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Dukau Papau

Was the recent visit of Deputy Chief Minister and Minister of Rural Development Alfred Jabu anak Numpang to the upper reaches of Baram River by helicopter ‘official’ or to fish for Malaysia’s most expensive fish – the empurau.

This is what Save Rivers Sarawak Network (Save Rivers) demands to know.

“Based on ground reports and from timber workers, Jabu seemed to enjoy fishing for the empurau,” Save Rivers chairperson Peter Kallang (left) said today.

The empurau in the Kuching market, fetches between RM600 and RM800 per kilogramme. (more…)

Selangor group backs state constitution reform

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Mkini

A pro-democracy group, Kembalikan Selangorku, has supported calls for Pakatan Rakyat to reform the state’s constitution for democratic principles to prevail, citing the example of the appointment of the menteri besar.

“We criticise Pakatan Rakyat for deserting democratic principles and switching its support from PKR president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail to her deputy Azmin Ali in a very short period.

“The action of Pakatan Rakyat silently endorsed intervention of the monarchy in appointment of menteri besar,” the NGO said in a statement today. (more…)

Sedition Act: the one law to rule them all?

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Government leaders say the Sedition Act is necessary to prevent chaos and maintain harmony in Malaysia. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, September 26, 2014.THE MALAYSIAN INSIDER

In his own words, Senator Datuk Paul Low went to the lion’s den yesterday and bravely defended the government line about the necessity of the Sedition Act to prevent chaos in Malaysia.

“Some are insecure while others are aggressive. How do you maintain harmony?” he said in response to a question by former Bar Council chairman Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan, at the International Malaysia Law Conference in Kuala Lumpur on whether the colonial-era law should be repealed.

Low, who was with four others in a panel discussion, also refuted allegations that the government was trying to instil fear or prevent people from being critical of the establishment. (more…)

Baru lauds CM’s stand on Maths, Science

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Jonathan Chia,

Ba Kelalan assemblyman Baru Bian is very encouraged by Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Adenan Satem’s statement that Mathematics and Science should be taught in English.

Baru, who is state PKR chairman, said he supported Adenan’s statement as he believed that globally, the sources of reference and materials for both subjects were mostly available in English.

“I think we would gain much if the subjects are taught in English,” he said, adding that former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was correct to implement the teaching and learning of Science and Mathematics in English. (more…)

What Malaysians may expect from Budget 2015

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

Once again, we all look forward to the annual Budget and the secrets it will unfold, and any goodies that we can get.

As usual, Malaysians will want to know what is it for them, as individuals and for their families.

They may not be interested so much in the macro issues like the budget deficit, the national debt, the balance of payments, or even the gross national product. Bank Negara’s latest estimate that Malaysia’s gross domestic product (GDP) could exceed 5.5% this year will not impress the low-income groups. They will ask, who benefits most from higher growth, the rich or the poor?

But, the recent rise in the overnight policy rate to 3.25% and the prospects of the interest rates going higher can cause problems to their borrowing to go up, and inflationary pressure to firm up. So Budget 2015 will have to strike the balance with higher economic growth and price stability. (more…)

Fair trial in sedition cases a misnomer, say lawyers

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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V. ANBALAGANLaw lecturer Dr Azmi Sharom flanked by lawyers Gobind Singh Deo (left) Malik Imtiaz Sarwar, in court to challenge the constitutionality of the Sedition Act, yesterday. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Afif Raiezal, September 26, 2014.

Sedition law creates an uneven playing field as the courts’ narrow interpretation of the law almost always favoured the prosecution, lawyers say.

They expressed alarm by the lower standard of proof required in sedition cases, and over judges accepting submissions by the prosecution before imposing jail terms, even on first offenders.

As such, the lawyers told The Malaysian Insider that it was imperative that judges interpret federal laws like the Sedition Act with the Federal Constitution, in particular Article 10, which guarantees freedom of speech and expression. (more…)

September 26, 2014

Baru Bian sounds clarion call for unity in Sarawak

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:01 AM
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Terence Netto

The resolution of the Selangor crisis has brought the need for PKR to close ranks and switch its focus to issues of ultimate and recurrent import.

The ultimate issue was PKR’s perennial focus on justice, and, said PKR Sarawak chief Baru Bian, the readiness for the coming Sarawak state elections should be given attention.

“PKR should use this – hopefully, ended and over – phase of internecine feuding within the party and with the Pakatan Rakyat coalition over the Selangor menteri besar issue to gain insight for tougher battles to come,” said Baru, who is renowned in the state for legal fights waged over native customary rights. (more…)

Arrest Dr M for sedition? Dream on Malaysians!

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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From left: Khalid and MahathirNg Kee Seng

The grand old man of Malaysian politics, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, has challenged the police to arrest him if he has committed sedition.

What now Mr Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Zahid Hamidi and Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar?

According to a Sept 24 Malaysiakini report, Mahathir said that he had no qualms being arrested if he had broken the law.

He was commenting on a police report lodged by DAP’s Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng, accusing the former premier of sedition.

“I can quote many more extreme statements by everybody, but I don’t want to do that. As a politician, I don’t expect people to please me all the time but (to) condemn …,” he said. (more…)

Parliaments for Sabah, Sarawak

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sabah-sarawak-flagJohn Joseph

Jimmy Wong pushes for equal partnership for Sabah and Sarawak with the peninsular and for greater decentralisation and devolution.

Kota Kinabalu MP Jimmy Wong Sze Phin has called on Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak, in the wake of a Referendum in Scotland, to emulate his British counterpart David Cameron in handling differences in a civilised and democratic way.

There was no resort in Britain, as in Malaysia, to archaic laws like the Sedition Act to stamp out dissent.

“Scotland should be taken as an example to honour the federal system for Sabah and Sarawak,” said Wong who is also the DAP Sabah chairman in a statement. “Let’s debate federalism in Malaysia and the future of Sabah and Sarawak during the coming parliament session.” (more…)

PBB eyes clean sweep in polls

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

Douglas Uggah says the party will keep championing important causes so that the people can live a better quality of life.

Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB), the backbone of the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) Sarawak, is confident that it can retain all its 35 state seats at the next state election to be held by mid-2016.

However, this expectation hinges on the party resolving issues on Native Customary Rights (NCR), dealing with rising communalism in the state and various other issues facing specific groups.

PBB vice-president Douglas Uggah sketched this scenario in a statement after a party seminar here yesterday. (more…)

Who needs lawyers? For some legal work, you may soon be able to do it yourself

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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Edmund Bon speaks to Malay Mail Online at his office in Kuala Lumpur on September 18. — Picture by Saw Siow FengBOO SU-LYN

Dread going to the lawyers for a simple sales-and-purchase agreement? Ever wish you could divorce your spouse from the comfort of your living room? If so, then you’re in luck.

A lawyer is attempting to make his profession “obsolete” — in certain matters — by developing template agreements and apps that people can use themselves instead of relying on lawyers to handle property purchases, divorces, or the preparation of wills.

Edmund Bon explained that documents such as sales and purchase (S&P) agreements for property purchases, uncontested wills and probate, accident claims, divorce petitions as well as mitigation and bail in criminal cases are not as complicated as imagined. (more…)

Sarawak not bowing to new threat on its oil palm policy, says Masing

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

Sarawak will not bow to any threats from multinational companies over its palm oil policy after another multinational company has declared it would reconsider buying crude palm oil (CPO) planted in the state’s deforestated areas, declared its Land Development Minister Tan Sri Dr James Masing (pic).

“Sarawak will continue to cultivate on its land and make it productive for its people in a sustainable manner,” Masing said in reaction to the statement made by the president and chief executive officer of the American privately-held multinational Cargill Incorporated, David W. MacLennan, who insinuated in his interview with CNN on Wednesday that as deforestation is the main cause of climate change, Cargill would reconsider buying CPO from deforestated areas.”I am disturbed by the statement,” Masing said. (more…)

‘Making English must pass subject not enough’

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

Samuel Aubrey

PBB veteran Dato Peter Minos does not think making English a compulsory pass subject for students is sufficient to increase proficiency in the language.

He stated that until and unless it is made a medium of instruction from primary to tertiary level, one cannot speak and write in English well because it is a tough language to master.

“Even that (making English as a medium of instruction) is not sufficient – English must be spoken at home and workplaces. Teaching English on a piecemeal and ad hoc basis, as done now, will not work and will not make graduates proficient in English. It is now for the policy-makers to re-think and make a new decision,” he said yesterday. (more…)

EC denies it will table motion on delineation

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

The Election Commission (EC) has denied a claim by a PKR MP that it would be tabling a motion on delineation in Parliament.

PKR’s Bayan Baru MP Sim Tze Sin had said earlier today that he expected the EC to table a motion for an electoral delineation exercise when Parliament reconvenes next month.

But EC chairperson Abdul Aziz Yusof dismissed the claim.

“Not true,” he told Malaysiakinitoday when asked if the EC would table such a motion. (more…)

Is Pakatan Rakyat Sarawak breaking up?

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

Is Pakatan Rakyat in Sarawak breaking up?

This appears to be so after DAP issued its Pakatan Rakyat partners in Sarawak an ultimatum on July 21 this year, threatening to quit the coalition if PAS and PKR refused to declare their stand on the implementation of hudud in Malaysia.

While Sarawak Pakatan chief Baru Bian did declare PKR’s stand on the issue, not only outside as well as in the state assembly, PAS refused to do so. In fact PAS is said to be not bothered if DAP quits the coalition.

Now, three months have passed since the ultimatum was issued, and the situation in Sarawak Pakatan is very quiet. (more…)

Azmin is the new Selangor MB. End of Pakatan crisis?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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File picture of Sultan Sharafuddin at the opening of the State Assembly in Shah Alam. Second and third right are Azmin and Wan AzizahAlyaa Alhadjri

While the appointment of Bukit Antarabangsa assemblyman Azmin Ali as the new Selangor menteri besar today may end the political impasse in Selangor, it is undeniable that the “damage has been done” to Pakatan Rakyat and work must be done to control its impact and ensure survival of the three-party coalition.

Yesterday morning started with all concerned parties remaining tight-lipped over the candidate to replace Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim, but all signs started pointing towards Azmin later in the day, culminating in him obtaining the full backing from his own party, as well as from PAS and DAP very late in the day.

The PKR deputy president will be sworn in to office during a ceremony at Istana Alam Shah, Klang, this morning. (more…)

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