Hornbill Unleashed

April 6, 2014

Is government trying to take people for a ride to benefit cronies?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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Ng Kee Seng

As Malaysians struggle daily to make ends meet amid rising costs of living and the country is in a terrible MH370 crisis that is going to be costly, a minister is still trying to take citizens for a ride.

Works Minister Datuk Fadillah Yusof told Parliament on April 2 that it would cost RM400 billion to reacquire all the tolled highways in Malaysia.

How the hell Putrajaya arrived at that figure is just mind boggling. Contrast that to the country’s unofficial federal debt of RM800 billion, isn’t it amazingly ridiculous? (more…)

Zaid losing the plot

Filed under: Human rights,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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JOSH HONG

Acutely aware that Pakatan Rakyat is full of rotten apples and characters obsessed with ambitions, I have long remained silent despite the series of public spats between the opposition camp and Zaid Ibrahim since they fell out. Sometimes, the tit-for-tits between the two are so trivial and ridiculous that one wonders how Malaysians have been able to put up with childish politicians for so long.

Having said that, the former law minister did win my respect when he resigned from the government in protest at the blatant use of the Internal Security Act back in September 2009. But that was then, and this is now. How sad it is to know that the once feisty leader is fast becoming a national joke himself. (more…)

Remarks on Petronas’s role in the country

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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petronas logoTengku Razaleigh Hamzah

I am honoured at having been invited by Anas Alam Faizli to launch his book, “Rich Malaysia, Poor Malaysians”, a collection of essays reflecting his thoughts on energy, the economy and education of our beloved country. I applaud Anas for his intellectual discipline to pursue writing which demands mental toughness, quiet tenacity and absolute patience. Indeed, he deserves our admiration.

He deserves our respect given that Malaysians are notoriously apathetic to reading, let alone writing. I respectfully submit that we do not write enough, both fiction and otherwise in comparison to, say, our sprawling archipelagic neighbour to the south. It is in this context that our author deserves our commendation – my commendation in particular – for a task well done, even though the themes are serious and difficult. Well done, Anas. (more…)

Giving sanctity to unholy contracts?

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

The Oxford Dictionary defines sanctity as this: “The state or quality of being holy, sacred, or saintly”. In terms of contracts then, that begs the question of what contracts are holy, sacred and saintly and whether the term “sanctity” is being used in vain by those who want to preserve them.

At a time when the taps of some seven million people in the KL/Klang Valley area are running dry for two days and then are on for two days and dire forecasts are being made for the coming months, one can be forgiven for thinking that at least some contracts which contribute to this sad state of  affairs are unholy and therefore not to be sanctified. (more…)

April 5, 2014

Patronage, cronyism must end to remove rent seekers, says Ku Li

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah at the launch of the book ‘Rich Malaysia, Poor Malaysians’ in Kuala Lumpur yesterday. The Umno lawmaker says Malaysians must start demanding that politics be practised with a high level of integrity. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Nazir Sufari, April 4, 2014.V. ANBALAGAN

Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah at the launch of the book ‘Rich Malaysia, Poor Malaysians’ in Kuala Lumpur yesterday. The Umno lawmaker says Malaysians must start demanding that politics be practised with a high level of integrity.

Malaysians must have the will to stop political patronage and cronyism in order to cut off the rent seekers, former finance minister Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah said last night.

However, there would be difficulties in doing that, the Umno veteran lawmaker said of the issues that had been at the centre of criticism in Malaysia the past two decades. (more…)

Worrying state of our nation

Filed under: Anak Sarawak Bangsa Malaysia — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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Economy-Malaysia-300x202CT Ali

Our people, our businesses and our government are fueling growth by unsustainable borrowing.

On the economic front Malaysia is in crisis. Cars and houses are literally burying Malaysians under a sea of debt.

Easy credit and low lending rates from our banks mean that our household debt to GDP has been growing at a rate of 12 percent annually since 2008 – making Malaysia household debt to GDP ratio at 83 percent, Southeast Asia’s highest.

Forty-seven percent of Malaysians are now in “serious debts” having to spend 30 percent of their gross income paying for their car, house and credit card debts. (more…)

Justify the need for new radar system

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

Kua Kia Soong

The public is given an impression that the Malaysian military’s radar capability is inadequate.

As the Global Day against Military Spending (GDAMS, April 14, 2014) approaches, it is wise for Malaysian taxpayers to scrutinise the next big budget military procurement of the government’s.

Apart from the multi-role combat aircraft and other multi-million weapons of war the Defence Ministry plans to acquire, the Defence Minister and Acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Tun Hussein is now talking about “a need to strengthen the nation’s military assets” following the disappearance of the Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370. (more…)

Malaysia Government Approval Dives

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

Respected poll says a plurality thinks the country is going in the wrong direction

Malaysia’s government, beset with inflation, political infighting, faltering attempts to find a missing airliner and other problems, continues to face serious headwinds in public opinion, with only 38 percent of the electorate saying the country is going in the right direction against 49 percent who say it’s not, according to the latest poll by the respected Merdeka Center polling organization.

The poll of more than 1,000 voters across the country was taken between March 7 and March 20. It found that at least 15 percent of voters said the country was going “strongly in the wrong direction,” primarily because of rising costs from the termination of subsidies last year for a wide variety of consumer goods including sugar, gasoline and electricity in an effort to corral the government’s fiscal debt, which had come close to 55 percent of gross domestic product. (more…)

Giving sanctity to unholy contracts?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:00 AM
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P Gunasegaram

The Oxford Dictionary defines sanctity as this: “The state or quality of being holy, sacred, or saintly”. In terms of contracts then, that begs the question of what contracts are holy, sacred and saintly and whether the term “sanctity” is being used in vain by those who want to preserve them.

At a time when the taps of some seven million people in the KL/Klang Valley area are running dry for two days and then are on for two days and dire forecasts are being made for the coming months, one can be forgiven for thinking that at least some contracts which contribute to this sad state of  affairs are unholy and therefore not to be sanctified. (more…)

Of Marxist media theory and MH370

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:00 AM
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Azly Rahman

Thinking of the still missing Malaysian airplane, contemplating on a Marxist theory of informational diffusion, I came up with these random notes on media oligopoly I am sharing in this week’s column:

Information wants to be free and wishes to leave the shackle of control and the kingdom of officialdom.

Marx once said that whoever owns the means of production owns/controls (re: Vladimir Lenin’s classic essay on ‘commanding heights’,) and control the production of consciousness, and further controls the evolution of the act of knowing and the contents of what is to be known because what is known is produced as artifacts with politics of control structuring them. (more…)

April 4, 2014

LESSON FOR M’SIA: World respect & ‘taiko stripes’ are EARNED, NOT GIVEN like Malay-Bumi ‘crutch rights’

J. D. LovrenciearLESSON FOR M'SIA: World respect & 'taiko stripes' are EARNED, NOT GIVEN like Malay-Bumi 'crutch rights'

It is understandable when after a grueling over-three weeks into the fruitless search and rescue efforts of the still mysteriously missing aircraft Boeing 777, the Defense Minister of Malaysia dares a finger at Boeing and Rolls-Royce.

Faced with quick criticisms from various fronts and coupled with a whole team of leaders from his own turf who make a mockery in this tragic episode with U-turns and denials and foot-in-mouth appearances, any leader like Hishammudin will show signs of duress.

His recent pouncing on the media world is already being frowned upon by many and as we all know media never forgives nor forgets. To make matters worse his own teammates are not giving up on threatening with law suits on media too. (more…)

Sarawak’s RM559Million ‘Schools For Votes’ Scandal!

Sarawak’s RM559Million ‘Schools For Votes’ Scandal! EXCLUSIVE EXPOSE

Sarawak Report

Sarawak Report has acquired damning evidence of a deliberate vote-buying ploy to approve 15 new schools in Sarawak, rushed through just before the last General Election by BN.

The project was approved both by the Prime Minister, Najib Razak and by the Deputy Prime Minister and Education Minister Muhyiddin Yassin.

Directly implicated was the then Energy Minister and Sarawak SUPP President Peter Chin, working in clear collaboration with a company called One BU Redha Services Sdn Bhd, which is closely linked to the now Governor and then Chief Minister, Abdul Taib Mahmud. (more…)

Reform the education system

Filed under: Education — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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61883-pelan2bpembangunan2bpendidikan2bmalaysia

Tan Eng Bee

Together with many concerned parties and as one who is passionate about education, I am hugely disappointed over our students’ performance in maths, science and reading at the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2012, which revealed we are not doing well at all.

Compared with other nations such as Vietnam and other developing countries, Malaysia ranked 52 out of 62 countries, a very disturbing placing where countries which we thought were lagging behind were actually doing very well indeed.

Though the Deputy Minister of Education, Datuk Mary Yap has acknowledged Putrajaya is not suffering from “denial syndrome” or hiding the state of affairs which PISA has revealed, I dread to think of the massive work that has to be done to correct this awful situation so as to bring our students to the level comparable with international standard. (more…)

Sarawak keeps ‘Allah’ issue awkward for Putrajaya

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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Malaysia Allah Ban

Khairie Hisyam Aliman

As far as the “Allah” issue is concerned, the change in Sarawak’s chief minister had not brought any changes to the state’s stance. The awkwardness for Putrajaya remains.

Last weekend. newly-minted Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem promised that Christians in the state would be free to use the word “Allah” for as long as he remains in office.

“There is no law in Sarawak that says you (Sarawakian Christians) cannot use the word ‘Allah’, and I will not permit such a law in Sarawak as long as I am the chief minister,” Adenan was quoted as saying. (more…)

Denial syndrome not helping M’sia at all

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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MH370Jeswan Kaur

With just hours to go before MH370′s black box batteries die out, the government has to stop being petty and show that it’s capable of solving the mystery of the plane’s disappearance.

The Malaysian government’s denial about its shortcomings and inept performance is now classic, going by the manner in which it tackled the entire episode concerning the missing MH370. It has to-date only added to the confusion surrounding the disappearance of the Boeing 777-200ER.

From PM Najib Tun Razak to Defence Minister and Acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein to the Inspector-General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar, they have as the MH370 adversity revealed, been consistent in flabbergasting everyone with their inconsistent statements about the missing aircraft. (more…)

No more Mahathir, please

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

G Vinod

Zaid Ibrahim’s proposal for the re-employment of the former PM is preposterous.

Zaid Ibrahim, whose reputation as a politician is built partly on his strident criticism of Dr Mahathir Mohamad, recently suggested that the government appoint the former prime minister as Minister Mentor to help it deal with rising racial and religious tension.

He did not have his tongue in his cheek. In fact, he anticipated criticism for the suggestion, which he made in a blog posting. (more…)

April 3, 2014

Sarawak PKR to go to court over entry ban on its national leaders

swak pkr_3Ng Ai Fern

Sarawak PKR says it will challenge in court the state government’s directive to bar the party’s national leaders from entering the state.

State PKR chairperson Baru Bian said a judicial review application will be filled after this month’s party elections.

“We have discussed on the point of law and we are trying to get the statements of our leaders and get ready the papers.

“At least one of them (banned leaders) would suffice to prove that the state is wrong, and I am confident that this case could get through,” Baru told reporters. (more…)

Sarawakians alarmed over ‘race-based voting’ idea

Filed under: Anak Sarawak Bangsa Malaysia — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:00 AM
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Dukau Papau

A Bidayuh leader has warned that minority races will be further marginalised if the proposal by a federal minister – that Malaysians should vote along racial lines – is implemented.

“Race-based voting would give the Malays 60 percent of the seats, while the other races would have to share the rest,” said Edward Luak, who heads the DAP Serian division.

“Smaller groups like the Bidayuh, Orang Ulu, Melanau, Rungus, Murut and Lun Bawang would have no chance to be represented. It would lead to greater ketuanan among Malayss, while minority races would be further marginalised.” (more…)

Education Ministry followed guidelines in hiring of security services for schools, says PAC

Filed under: Education,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:00 AM
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JENNIFER GOMEZ

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) is satisfied that the Education Ministry followed finance guidelines when awarding contracts to companies providing security for schools after the Auditor General’s Report said it did not.

PAC chairman Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed (pic), speaking to reporters after a meeting today attended by Education Minister 11 Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh and secretary-general Datuk Dr Madinah Mohamad, said that the ministry did not need to give any further explanation on the matter.

The 2012 Auditor General’s Report in his report last October said the Ministry had spent RM2 billion on beefing up security at schools and public institutes of learning nationwide, but had not followed proper guidelines and procedures, leading to poor implementation. (more…)

Media statement in response to Selangor MB 

Filed under: religion — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:00 AM
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Bible Society of MalaysiaWho’s the fool now?

After making many promises to return the bibles seized by JAIS, Selangor State EXCO washes their hands off the problem and tries to pass the buck to Attorney-General. Read Menteri Besar Khalid’s statement here.

Here is my response on behalf of Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM):

BSM will not write to the Attorney-General.

BSM was raided by Jais, a Selangor government department. The bibles are held by JAIS in their office in Shah Alam, a stone’s throw from the Menteri Besar’s office. (more…)

Truth matters: Who is lying?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:00 AM
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KJ JOHN

How is it that Thai satellites can pick up debris in the ocean while RMAF satellites/radars cannot even warn us about a possible intrusion into our airspace? Now again, lo and behold the Australian government announces that the actual location has moved or shifted, based on yet new findings.

In the meantime, Inmarsat disavowed any role in these new findings. And, the acting transport minister is still acting; now holding out hope for the families who have yet to receive any concrete evidence and were previously advised to give up all hope!

Who therefore speaks for truth these days? Do we even know what is truth about the Flight MH370 any more? (more…)

Sarawak biggest challenge: NCR issues, court rulings

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FMT Staff

Borneo Resource Institute said although NCR was recognised by the state government under the Sarawak Land Code, there were weaknesses in the definition of terms.

The continuous conflicts over land in the state is because of the vague and weak definition of  native customary rights (NCR) and the Sarawak Land Code, said Borneo Resource Institute (Brimas).

According to Brimas executive director Mark Bujang, this is also the reason why more than 300 NCR land related cases are pending in court. (more…)

‘Shahidan’s call reinforces gerrymandering claim’

Filed under: Human rights,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:00 AM
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Ram Anand

The proposal by a BN minister for Malaysians to vote according to race only reinforces fears that the Election Commission (EC)’s redelineation exercise is being carried out on the same basis.

Shahidan Kassim, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, had mooted the idea. He also has oversight of the EC.

“(The suggestion) is ridiculous and (it is) very shameful that we have a minister saying this because it perpetuates the race issue,” Bersih chairperson Maria Chin Abdullah  said. (more…)

Bible Society criticises Selangor for ‘washing its hands’ off confiscated Al-Kitab

Filed under: Human rights — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:00 AM
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TMI

The Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM) has criticised the Selangor government for asking the society to write to the Attorney-General’s office for the return of 300 Bibles in Bahasa Malaysia (Al-Kitab) and the Iban language (Bup Kudus).

Claiming that the Selangor exco had made many promises to return the Bibles that were seized by the Selangor Islamic Affairs Department (Jais) in January, the BSM considered the latest statement from Selangor Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim as the state “washing their hands off the problem”.

“The BSM will not write to the AG,” the society said in a statement released in response to the state government’s request. (more…)

School-Based Assessment system implemented despite reservations

Filed under: Education,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:00 AM
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Alyaa Alhadjri

The School-Based Assessment (SBA) which was temporarily halted for review was implemented at all secondary schools nationwide on April 1 although certain issues raised by its detractors have yet to be addressed.

One area of concern yet to be resolved is the high number of students in a class which might render the system ineffective.

Suara Guru Masyarakat Malaysia (SGMM) chief Mohd Nor Izzat Johari maintained that while there are improvements in the revised SBA system, it should not be implemented before a pilot study is conducted for a minimum of three years.
(more…)

‘Little to show for RM16bil spending on defence’

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:00 AM
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Mkini

DAP’s Raub MP Mohd Ariff Sabri Abd Aziz has demanded answers why Malaysia has not sent its two Scorpene submarines to assist in the search and recovery operation for the missing Malaysian Airlines (MAS) Flight MH370.

Mohd Ariff - who blogs under the handle ‘Sakmongkol 47′ - raised questions as to what the country has to show for its expenditure on defence, which has gone up from RM13.8 million in 2011 to RM16.1 billion in 2014.

“How is our defence spending structured? Is it structured to enrich a few Umno cronies or is it structured to strengthen our defences?” (more…)

April 2, 2014

Judges dancing to tune of Umno

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Anwar-Ibrahim-2011-mantan-PMAnwar Ibrahim

It has to take one stupid, perverse and farcical court to agree with another stupid, perverse and farcical court.

Talking about political winds, it appears that lately, the Malaysian judiciary, particularly the judges of the superior courts, are caught in the whirlwind and are frantically racing against each other to please the powers that be of the day.

In the frenzy to curry favours from their political overlords, these minions have stopped at nothing to ensure that they will be the first to reach the finish line.

Pots of gold await the backscratchers and lackeys. And where financial gratification may appear a tad blatant, there’s always elevation to the higher rungs of office to whet the appetite. (more…)

Was someone sleeping on the job?

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MH 370 RadarP Ramani

With the capabilities and systems that Malaysia has in place, our authorities should have been able to track MH370′s path after it veered off its course.

Deputy Defence Minister Abdul Rahim Bakri deserves commendation for being honest enough to admit he was wrong when he told Parliament the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) had assumed Flight MH370 was under orders to return to KLIA and therefore did not react to the extraordinary blip on its radar.

But his candour, though admirable, cannot stop concerned Malaysians from harbouring doubts about the integrity of the country’s national defence system. (more…)

Opposition cannot compete on equal terms with BN, reveals US report

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

Gerrymandering and unfair delineation exercises are criticisms often levelled against the Election Commission (EC).

But when another country is the one criticising Malaysia, does this not mean the nation’s credibility in the eyes of the world takes a beating?

On Feb 27, US Secretary of State John Kerry officially released the Country Reports on Human Rights Practices to Congress.

The reports, which are in their 38th year, document human rights violations and abuses in almost 200 countries and territories, including Malaysia, in 2013. (more…)

Could Najib’s take on subsidies be an April Fool’s Day joke?

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

As today is April Fool’s Day when pranks are played on friends, one may be tempted to think that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak was clowning around during this morning’s question time in Parliament.

Najib reportedly said that his administration will reduce public funds wastage via subsidy rationalisation, value-based management and awarding of contracts through open or limited tenders.

First and foremost, none of the measures he mentioned is anything new, but are principles which have been in practice in one form or another, though their implementation has been problematic because of rampant abuse of power and graft. (more…)

Mahathir’s evil birds have come home to roost

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Mariam Mokhtar

Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad dismissed the foreign media for criticising Malaysia and MAS for their poor handling of the missing MH370; but underneath their concern, he must have realised that they are criticising his legacy of corruption. His ego must have been jolted when his accomplishments were exposed in such a terrible fashion.

Years of mismanagement, incompetency, misrule and false pride, all of which were allowed to fester during Mahathir’s regime, have now come home to roost. Do we feel sorry for Mahathir? No! Our hearts only go out to the families of the passengers and crew of MH370 and the MAS employees who have been let down by their senior management. We also feel for our country, which has been exposed to ridicule, because it has been mismanaged for several decades.

(more…)

April 1, 2014

Anwar and PKR placing too much faith on BN’s ‘fair play’ conscience

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

For a party that has been denouncing the alleged institutionalised corruption of the BN government, PKR does not appear to take the “worst case scenario” into account and is putting too much faith in the impartiality of a federal agency.

A recent string of charges (and convictions) against PKR and Pakatan Rakyat leaders were labelled as attempts by the judiciary at practising “political prosecution” on behalf of the federal government, despite repeated denials by the authorities.

These charges and convictions include offences that could disqualify a person from being an elected representative or officer bearer of a registered society.
(more…)

Oil royalty: New mechanism needed

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

Federal Minister Abdul Rahman Dahlan also asked if state governments were willing to accept a smaller developments in exchange for higher oil royalties.

Minister of Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Abdul Rahman Dahlan said an all-encompassing and comprehensive discussion is needed if the issue on the proposed increase of Sabah’s oil royalty is brought up.

Abdul Rahman who is also Umno Supreme Council member said as a local leader of Sabah, he agreed on principle with the suggestion to increase the oil royalty but at the same time, various aspects had to be discussed and ironed out.

(more…)

Perkasa’s Ibrahim Ali on Sarawak’s blacklist, says chief minister

TMI

Ibrahim Ali (pic) is the latest politician to be put on the list of those barred from entering Sarawak, said Tan Sri Adenan Satem.

“Don’t ever try to enter Sarawak,” the Sarawak chief minister told Ibrahim, after reports that the Perkasa president had slipped through Immigration checks into the state recently.

In a veiled threat to the Malay rights group chief, Adenan said: “He (Ibrahim) will find out what happens next time he comes to Sarawak”.

Adenan was answering questions today why the state barred opposition leaders from the state for the Balingian by-election, but allowed Ibrahim in. (more…)

Kassim Ahmad: One Christian response

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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Allah - hand upRama Ramanathan

Dr Kassim Ahmad is a Muslim. I am a Christian. Kassim Ahmad is a Malaysian. I am a Malaysian. Kassim Ahmad is a human. I am a human.

Kassim Ahmad has been controversial. Some of his views about Islam are not approved by the religious authorities in Malaysia.

Now frail and in his eighties, the one-time leader of PSRM (Parti Sosialis Rakyat Malaysia) has held his controversial views for decades – in 1981 he was released after 5 years of detention without trial; Kassim later joined Umno. (more…)

Time for Sabah and Sarawak to twist federal government’s arm?

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

Talk of Sabah and Sarawak being shortchanged by the federal government is not new. Nevertheless, calls for the two states to demand a better deal from the federal government seem to be gaining momentum.

But has anybody thought of using the two Borneo states’ electoral strength now to twist the arm of the federal government?

Maverick politician Datuk Jeffrey Kitingan certainly has. He challenged the state governments of Sabah and Sarawak to seize the opportunity to force the federal government to concede to the 20% royalty the people in the two states are demanding.

(more…)

PTPTN education lifeline abused

Pauline Wong

The National Higher Education Fund Corporation (or PTPTN by its Malay acronym) has served as a lifeline for many students seeking tertiary education since it was established in 1997.

The loan is especially helpful for those who are not born with a silver spoon. They rely on the PTPTN loan to take them through university and earn a degree, which is crucial in securing a job and eventually a steady income. In short, the fund is there for them in their hour of need, providing them the opportunity to complete their studies.

However, many treat it as a grant and fail to repay when they graduate, thus depriving others from enjoying the same benefits.

(more…)

‘Petronas, Putrajaya have no rights in Borneo waters’

Najib Petronas BorneoWinston Way

Pakar secretary-general Zainnal Ajamain claims that when premier Najib Razak lifted the Emergency proclaimation on Nov 23, 2011, three governing laws ceased to have any effect on Sabah and Sarawak.

All the oil and gas in the territorial waters of Sabah and Sarawak belong to the respective state governments and not Petronas, claims Parti Kerjasama Rakyat Sabah (Pakar) secretary general Zainnal Ajamain.

Zainnal, who is one of the six plaintiffs who took Petronas and the Sabah State Government to court in Sep 25, 2012 also asserted that 100% of the offshore petroleum and gas found in Sabah and Sarawak territorial waters actually belong to the people in Sabah and Sarawak.

(more…)

March 31, 2014

A critical virtue to good governance

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:00 AM
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Anwar Ibrahim

CT Ali

Umno-BN is bankrupt despite its once vast reserves of goodwill and Pakatan, with or without Anwar, will do well to never forget that power is dangerous without humility

Pakatan Rakyat (PR) has promised good governance through transparent and genuine democracy; driving a high performance, sustainable and equitable economy; social justice and human development; federal-state relationship and foreign policy.

All these are contained in its ‘Buku Jingga’ which outlines polices to be undertaken when in Government. We will hold them to these promises. The coalition is committed to the rights and demands of each citizen to be treated equally, and as I have said before, the devil is in the details.

Election of individual partners in the coalition leaves much to be desired but its saving grace is that this weakness is being discussed and debated openly and, refreshingly, by even its own party members.

(more…)

‘Allah’ ban hurting prayer services

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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William Mangor bolly  lapok

Bolly Lapok, who is the Association of Churches Sarawak chairman, said the community had ‘gone the extra mile’ on reconciliation efforts.

Prohibiting the use of the word ‘Allah’ by Christians is “affecting” the practice of the faith in Sabah and Sarawak where Bahasa Melayu is an integral language.

Association of Churches in Sarawak (ACS) chairman, Archbishop Bolly Lapok said the ban is hurting the prayer process and wants the federal government must recognise Sarawak Christians’ cultural heritage and constitutional rights without undue interference and intervention.

(more…)

‘M’sia needs new gov’t, not new radar system’

Filed under: Anak Sarawak Bangsa Malaysia — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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Susan Loone

Malaysia does not need a new radar system for its royal airforce, rather it needs a new government, said PAS Parit Buntar MP Mujahid Yusof Rawa in Penang last night.

He dismissed the idea of the Royal Malaysian Air Force needing a new radar system to detect unidentified airplanes, as it failed to act when a blip that could have missing MH370 plane showed up.

The plane, enroute to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur, vanished on March 8, with 239 people on board.

(more…)

BN tail-spin and tale-spin

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

Let me first make it very clear than any criticisms I have about the (mis)handling of disappearance and probable crash of MAS flight MH370 is directed, not at Malaysia itself or the majority of the Malaysian people, but specifically at Malaysia’s ever-incompetent, corrupt, criminal and above all deceitful Barisan Nasional regime.

That this distinction has to be made is a damning criticism in itself, of course, in that it highlights the fact that BN is arguably an illegitimate government, as it was only by means of its massive gerrymandering of electoral boundaries that it clung onto a majority of seats in the May 2013 general election with only 47 percent of the national vote.

And then there’s the even more damning fact that even BN’s 47 percent minority vote was achieved by every dirty trick in the book, from blatant, barefaced bribery to its illicit co-option of support from the mainstream media, police, judiciary, civil services and the very organisation whose sworn purpose is supposedly to ensure clean and fair elections, the Electoral Commission (EC).

(more…)

March 24, 2014

Let’s reject extremism: Time to build bridges, not walls

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 10:00 AM
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Sonia Ramachandran

It takes years to build friendship and understanding, but just a careless or callous act to destroy it. In the current atmosphere of religious and racial tensions, it is clear that the free reign given to extremists is doing the damage.

It is hard to dispute that the actions of these unscrupulous individuals and groups were calculated to destroy the bridges of friendship, peace and tolerance between the people of various races and religions in the country.

Constitutional expert Emeritus Professor Datuk Dr Shad Saleem Faruqi put it succinctly when he said that extremism existed everywhere but what made Malaysia unique was that extremists are not allowed to be condemned. (more…)

A bittersweet victory in Kajang?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 10:00 AM
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Bridget Welsh

As expected, the opposition PKR won the Kajang by-election. It did so with a smaller majority in number of voters, 5,379, but a larger share of the overall vote, up from 56.8 percent to 59.1 percent.

This was an important win for the opposition. Yet, the results did not send the decisive signal of a growing groundswell of support for Pakatan Rakyat nor did it send a signal of gains for the incumbent BN government, which ordinarily in a time of national crisis would have won stronger support.

Rather it points to minor shifts in voting behaviour that suggest both sides need to improve their strategies of engagement with voters. (more…)

‘Kajang move’: Back to square one for PKR?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 10:00 AM
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Andrew Ong

In January, PKR took the country by surprise by forcing Kajang state assemblyperson Lee Chin Cheh to resign to make way for party de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim’s entry as a Selangor lawmaker.

This was dubbed the “Kajang move” by PKR, described to be a “game changer” that would catapult the party towards Putrajaya and present options for the state administration if there needs to be a change in leadership.
But no amount of sugar coating could hide the fact that the “Kajang move” was part of an elaborate plan to replace Abdul Khalid Ibrahim as menteri besar and put an end to his tiff with PKR vice-president Azmin Ali. (more…)

March 23, 2014

Does the Quran really permit child marriage?

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

One of the biggest misconceptions about Islam is that it permits child marriage, and is therefore looked down upon as medieval, oppressive and illogical by non-Muslims.

Shockingly, instead of viewing this as a downright tarnation and disgrace to Islam, Muslims in complete ignorance of the Quran actually defend and support this point of view! If Muslims, themselves, are going to portray such an image of their religion, then I really don’t see why they would get agitated with the criticism on Islam.

I say this with my deepest regrets, but Muslims have become their own worst enemies. Practically abandoning the pivotal commandment of Islam on independent reasoning, they have substituted it with an unprecedented trust in the “authorities” on Islam. And yet again, they have succeeded to bring shame to us all. (more…)

Not the time to point fingers

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

MH370Alfian ZM Tahir

The ruckus sparked by upset relatives on Wednesday was just a minor part of a huge crisis.

Wednesday’s chaos in the media room at the Hotel Sama Sama was unprecedented. No one from the local or international press could have seen it coming.

Several individuals from among the relatives of Chinese passengers on board the MH370 stormed into the room with banners and screamed in agony and shouted in anger as they demanded clearer information about the fate of loved ones, which was still unknown although 26 countries were involved in the world’s largest search and rescue mission. (more…)

Just admit, apologise and move on

Filed under: Anak Sarawak Bangsa Malaysia — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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Stephen Ng 

The last thing that one would expect coming from Deputy Home Minister Wan Junaidi Wan Jaafar is the rebuttal from one of his secretaries, Wan Hamzah Wan Paie.

Apparently, Wan Hamzah is trying to do the damage control but the damage has already been done. It is no point now crying over the spilt milk or like most other politicians, they will try to blame it on the opposition.

I, for one, did not even read any article quoting Bandar Kuching MP Chong Chieng Jen, until Wan Hamzah pointed it out. Nonetheless, I was p***ed off by what went into theHansard, where Wan Junaidi was quoted as saying: (more…)

Retired judges should stay out of politics, say lawyers, ex-judge

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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V. ANBALAGAN

Retired judges must refrain from making remarks of a political nature or get involved in politics as such conduct touched on their integrity, said lawyers and a former judge.

They said unlike retired civil servants, the public still expected retired judges to have the traits of serving judges.

Their response came following the revelation that retired Court of Appeal judge Datuk Mohd Noor Abdullah had campaigned for Barisan Nasional in the Kajang by-election.

On Wednesday, Noor (pic) told a group of Umno members at a ceramah in Taman Koperasi, Kajang that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak did not have absolute power to influence the judiciary to set aside the sodomy acquittal of opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim. (more…)

March 22, 2014

Hijacking humanity

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

As I write this on the evening of Thursday March 20, the latest Malaysian government press conference is being shown live on the round-the-clock TV news channel ABC24.

And aside from the fact reported earlier elsewhere that debris that may be from an aircraft has been sighted by a satellite, and aircraft from the US, New Zealand and Australia are proceeding to the area to examine it, Hishammuddin Hussein and several attending lackeys appear as much in the dark as ever.

Not just figuratively, but literally in the dark, as the lighting of all the MH370 press conferences I’ve seen has been so dim and murky as to seem almost deliberately symbolise the shadiness of the ruling Malaysian Barisan Nasional regime. (more…)

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