Hornbill Unleashed

August 26, 2016

Tengku Adenan’s response prompts Baru to ask if govt serious in curbing corruption

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:03 PM

Baru BianDatuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor’s statement that he is in fear of being targeted by criminals if he declares his assets publicly, is unacceptable and a poor excuse for the lack of accountability and transparency that many public officials and politicians are guilty of.

State PKR chairman Baru Bian who is Ba Kelalan assemblyman, said Tengku Adnan’s statement gave the impression that this country was overrun with gangsters and criminals, which did not reflect well on our law enforcement bodies.

However, he said that was not the point. “The issue here is whether the government is serious in its effort to curb corruption, and if it is, the starting point is with exemplary leadership.

“It is difficult to insist that all public officials declare their assets publicly when the No 1 public official, the prime minister, does not do so, unlike the top public officials in USA and Hong Kong. (more…)

‘We want Petronas to be sensitive to local needs’

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:02 PM

Dennis (centre) with NGO members. Sarawakians are not telling Petronas how to run its organisation but are merely asking the national oil and gas corporation to be sensitive enough to the needs of the locals.

In making this statement, PKR Baram secretary Dennis Along said its operations are in Sarawak and are not highly technical at all, therefore positions in its operations can easily be filled by Sarawakians.

“The current state of Petronas staffing is a good indication and a clear reflection of the end product, of the failure by Petronas HR (Human Resource Dept) to recruit more Sarawakians progressively over the years,” claimed Dennis, who was informed on the present situation in Petronas by its former employees who wished to remain anonymous.

According to Dennis, the intake of Sarawakians into Petronas since its presence in the state has been disappointing and consistently low. (more…)

DiCaprio urged to return 1MDB money he allegedly received

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

International NGO Bruno Manser Fund (BMF) has urged Hollywood actor Leonardo DiCaprio to return all funds that he and his eponymous foundation allegedly received from 1MDB-linked individuals.

In a letter to the actor, BMF asked DiCaprio to disclose and return any funds that he may have received from Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s stepson Riza Aziz, his associates Jho Low and Tan Kim Loong as well as Riza’s production company Red Granite Pictures.

“We are deeply disturbed that Leonardo DiCaprio and his foundation accepted assets that originate from the proceeds of corruption in Malaysia.

“This is a disgrace and in total contradiction with the declared aims of the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation. (more…)

Task force on child protection laws to include AGC reps

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM


Azalina said the task force would comprise representatives from the Attorney-General’s Chambers as well as the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry.

“The task force will also have members from all sorts of background, including parliamentarians, the Malaysian Shariah Legal Association, academicians, and other women-centric NGOs.

“(They will be chosen) based on their expertise and qualifications on the subject,” Azalina said in a statement today.

She added that the task force’s first meeting would be conducted in the near future. (more…)

Stop playing politics with religion

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

MCA Religious Harmony Bureau deputy chairperson Ng Chok Sin is supposed to be a man of peace who promotes religious harmony, but his actions call into question his own integrity, with regard to an issue that is apparently blown out of proportion.

In an article which was published in The Heat Malaysia on Aug 24, 2016, Ng accused the Kajang Municipal Council (MPKj) of trying to demolish a church in a former plantation known as Braemar Estate.

So much so that, immediately after his article appeared, even the office of the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur has to immediately issue a press statement to appeal to certain individuals “to respect the lawful right of the council to carry out their duty” to demolish the remains of an old chapel.

What the public need to know is that, according to the same press statement, the decision “to demolish the unused chapel was made after due process was followed”. (more…)

‘Amend constitution for civil courts to be obeyed on civil marriages’

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

Gerakan Youth deputy chief Andy Yong has urged the government to make an amendment to the Federal Constitution to ensure that the judiciary will be obeyed in matters related to civil marriages.

While Yong applauded the recent decision to amend the Law Reform (Marriage and Divorce) Act 1976 (LRA), he said that there should also be an amendment to Article 121(1) of the Federal Constitution.

He explained that before 1988, the courts derived their powers from Article 121 of the constitution but after the constitution was amended in 1988, they derived their powers from Parliament instead.

“In addition to the amendment of the LRA, I think it is also necessary to amend Article 121(1A) as one may still argue that the supreme law takes precedent over the LRA. (more…)

Make public officials declare assets to Malaysians

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

Image result for Make public officials declare assets to MalaysiansFederal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor’s excuse for not declaring his assets publicly ― fears of his family getting kidnapped or robbed ― is incredulous, but there is actually no reason to expect him to do so when we don’t have the necessary laws and systems in place for the public disclosure of assets.

Malaysia needs to enact legislation to require high-ranking public officials like Cabinet ministers and state executive councilors, as well as elected lawmakers, to disclose their assets to the general public.

Tengku Adnan says he declares his assets directly to the prime minister every year. According to the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS), the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chief commissioner can access such asset disclosures.

Members of Parliament, however, are not required to declare their assets. According to MACC, Regulation 10 of the Public Officers Regulations (Conduct and Discipline) 1993 requires all public officials to declare their assets upon their appointment, as well as when they acquire new assets. The asset disclosure also includes information on properties owned by the officer’s spouse and dependent children. (more…)

M’sian students hold ‘Tangkap MO1′ protest Down Under

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

Some 20 Malaysian students in Australia held a ‘Tangkap MO1′ protest ahead of the gathering slated to be held in Kuala Lumpur tomorrow.

The students gathered at the Australian National University in Canberra to demand the arrest of the Malaysian Official 1 (MO1), who was mentioned 36 times in the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) court filings related to the alleged abuse of 1MDB funds.

“The gathering was organised by the Malaysian Progressives in Australia (MPOZ) in solidarity with the ‘Tangkap MO1’ rally in Kuala Lumpur,” said MPOZ in a statement.

Most of the participants were from cities around Australia such as Canberra, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth, it added. (more…)

Three Tan Sri Must clear their name

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

zahrainThe three former Malaysian senior government officers who are alleged to have been involved in a conspiracy to topple Prime Minister Najib Razak must clear their names by issuing statutory declarations, said Malaysia’s Ambassador to Indonesia Zahrain Mohamed Hashim.

They have to do so because the allegations against them were “very serious” and involved national security and an attempt to interfere with the democratic system of the country, he said.

He said that by remaining silent, the three Tan Sris could cause Malaysians to believe that they were involved in the conspiracy.

“The three Tan Sris were appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to safeguard the integrity of civil servants to serve the ruling government, and they should not get involved in any plot to topple the Prime Minister,” he told reporters here yesterday. (more…)

Dr Mahathir apologises for amending Federal Constitution

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

Tun Dr Mahathir MohamadFormer prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has apologised for making an amendment to the Federal Constitution which makes it no longer necessary for the approval and signat
ure of Yang di-Pertuan Agong in legalising an act of Parliament.

The amendment to the Federal Constitution was passed in 1994, to allow any law that has been passed by both Parliament and Senate to become law within 30 days, irrespective of the Agong giving his assent.

Dr Mahathir, who was prime minister for 22 years from 1981 to 2003, said it would seem that due to the amendment, the new National Security (Council) Law had become operational even though the Yang di-Pertuan Agong had not signed it.

“However, I would like to point out that the amendment is not for all laws. Some laws passed by Parliament will still need the consent and signature of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong. In fact, there are more than 30 proceedings listed in the constitution that still need the Agong’s approval, frequently without the advice of the prime minister. (more…)

Women victims of gaps in laws, policies

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

women_law_600The gaps in laws and policies allow women and girls to fall through the cracks, warned the Joint Action Group for Gender Equality (JAG) in a statement in conjunction with Women’s Day. “They don’t have access to justice.”

There are more insidious forms, cautioned JAG in a statement by Natasha Dandavati, Advocacy Officer, Women’s Aid Organisation (WAO). “This includes the low rate of participation of women in decision-making positions.”

As a result, said the coalition, women and girls continue to suffer from violence and discrimination. “It’s time to close the gaps.”

The gaps obstruct the elimination of violence against women and girls and the achievement of gender equality, it added. (more…)

Fahmi: How many students could have benefited from 1MDB’s RM42b?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

PKR communications director Fahmi Fadzil said a good number of students could have benefited from 1MDB’s RM42 billion had its fund not been allegedly misappropriated.

He said this amid the move by National Higher Education Loan Fund (PTPTN) to no longer offer 100 percent loans due to dwindling funds.

“In just five years of operations, 1MDB’s debt stood at more than RM42 billion without profit.

“How many education aid the people could have received from 1MDB if money was not wasted on gambling and alcohol parties?” he said in a statement today. (more…)

Child sexual abuse: Only one in 10 reported

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

child-abuseA paediatrician said that for every one case of child sexual abuse reported, nine go unreported.

This is precisely why any information, Dr Zahilah Filzah Zulkifli, said was good information.

At a forum titled “Child Sexual Abuse – What Are You Doing To Stop It”, Dr Zahilah emphasised the importance of training both adults and children on this matter.

“We need to talk about it so there will be awareness as, at the moment, there are still many who don’t know what child sexual abuse is,” she told the forum at Tengku Bainun Children’s Creative Centre here last night. (more…)

Aren’t our children safe even in school?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

When we drop off our children at the gates of their schools and see them walking in, we expect them to stay safe until we pick them up again.

Usually, we drop them with loads of do’s and don’ts, especially when they are in primary years.

Only the most imaginative of us parents would advice,”Do not follow strangers inside the school compound”, for we do not expect a school of hundreds of students and teachers with security guards  to not to notice a stranger walking around preying upon the children.

Yet, this has happened in a school in Terengganu and it could have been a tragedy had the girl not had her wits about her and screamed. It was also a good thing that there was a CCTV installed in the school. (more…)

Where do we stand on burkini ban?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

We register our protest when ultra-conservative enforcement officers take down posters of a model who is not wearing a tudung in Kota Bharu. We see it as an infringement of non-Muslims’ rights when a shop owner was fined over a poster featuring Bollywood star Aishwarya Rai, which we do not see one bit objectionable.

What about when armed French police confronted a woman on a beach in Nice and made her remove some of her clothing because there is ban on the burkini? The burkini is a full-body swimsuit designed according to Islamic standards of modest dressing.

Do we stay silent over this infraction of religious rights because it is not happening in our backyard? Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere, said civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. To quote another activist, Desmond Tutu, if you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. (more…)

Bersatu in for setback in Sarawak, Sabah

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

Former premier Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad would by now have been advised that his Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) could be in for a real rough baptism of “non-Malaya” politics if it is to contest for seats in Sarawak or Sabah in the next general election.

Let’s look at this party that was formed with the objective to remove 1MDB scandal-tainted Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak at the next general election.

First and foremost Bersatu is Malay-based and in the words of Mahathir, the party “is Malay-based because the majority of Malaysians in the rural and semi-urban areas are comfortable with Umno-type racism”.

Yes, secondly its “Umno-type”. (more…)

Only Putrajaya can decide to repatriate baby panda, minister tells Zoo Negara

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

A zoo employee carries a three-month old female giant panda cub, born to mother Liang Liang and father Xing Xing, on display to the public for the first time at Zoo Negara in Kuala Lumpur, November 17, 2015. — Reuters picZoo Negara has no control over the placement of Nuan Nuan, the offspring of panda couple Xing Xing and Liang Liang, Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said today.

The natural resources and environment minister said he was surprised to hear complaints regarding the baby panda’s purportedly high costs, adding that Zoo Negara officials never raised the issue with the government.

“If this is the case Zoo Negara will have to speak to us. Any idea of returning the baby panda after two years will not be decided by zoo or even my ministry.

“I have to refer to the government for this,” he told Malay Mail Online when contacted, stressing that the pandas were a vital part of Malaysia’s diplomatic ties with China. (more…)

Dr M apologises for making Agong’s approval for laws unnecessary

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad stressed that the Federal Constitution’s amendment did not apply to all legislations and that some laws passed by Parliament would still require the King’s express consent and signature. ― Picture by Yusof Mat IsaTun Dr Mahathir Mohamad apologised today for amending the Federal Constitution by removing the need for the Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s signature and approval in lawmaking.

The former prime minister stressed, however, that the amendment did not apply to all legislations and that some laws passed by Parliament would still require the King’s express consent and signature, such as the controversial National Security Council (NSC) Act 2016 that came into force earlier this month.

“The consent and signature is still needed if the Act impinges on the authority and position of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

“And the National Security Act certainly impinges and makes the power of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to declare a state of emergency superfluous and unnecessary. For this Act the assent and signature of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong remains necessary,” Dr Mahathir wrote on his blog. (more…)

Bersih: Freedom of expression jailed

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

Bersih 2.0, the Coalition for Free and Fair Elections, has condemned the conviction of Mohd Fakhrulrazi Mohd Mokhtar by the Kuala Lumpur Sessions court earlier today. The Youth Vice-chief of Parti Amanah Negara was sentenced to eighs months’ jail under the Sedition Act 1948 for calling for the release of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim during the #KitaLawan rally last year.

It says the conviction is another huge step backwards for freedom of expression in Malaysia. In the first place, the Attorney-General should not have initiated the charged under the flawed Sedition Act, it adds.

Since Tan Sri Mohamed Apandi Ali took office, majority of the sedition cases had to do with criticism of the government or the administration of justice which had been repealed under the 2015 amendments, says a statement issued by Bersih.

Besides Fakhrulrazi, eight other activists which includes Bersih2.0 Chairperson Maria Chin Abdullah and BERSIH2.0 Manager Mandeep Singh were also charged for participating in the #KitaLawan rally last year. (more…)

What being a Malaysian patriot means

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

Singers can leave their mark even when they are long gone. Their iconic songs can be remade by others, even done well, but often pale in comparison to the original. Man In The Mirror forever reflects the tragic genius of Michael Jackson, whilst Dendang Perantauproves that Tan Sri P. Ramlee can still make grown Malaysian Muslims cry every time Hari Raya rolls by, especially if they are abroad.

For Malaysians, August inevitably leads us to remember another local talent gone too soon: Datuk Sudirman Arshad. He left us in 1992, but his contribution to the nation’s Merdeka celebrations in the form of Tanggal 31 is still as infectious and stirring as ever. Within the space of two short minutes, his evergreen composition will get citizens vociferously waving flags faster than a local politician backtracks from a silly statement.

And yet, as anyone who has lived within the last 60 years can observe, things are not quite the same anymore. Whereas the first 40 years had seen the anniversary of Malaya’s independence celebrated with gusto and vigour, the past decade and change has seen a visible apathy creep in. The fireworks are a shadow of the joyously raucous bangs that used to be. Schoolkids no longer get all excited and even the adults tend to be less enthusiastic. (more…)

No conflict as constitution grants AG sole prosecution powers, court told

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

The Malaysian Bar had on March 14 filed its application for leave for judicial review against the Attorney-General and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC). — Picture by Saw Siow Feng The choice to prosecute or not is granted solely to the Attorney-General (AG) under the Federal Constitution and cannot be challenged in court, lawyers for the government’s top legal officer asserted today.

There can be no conflict of interest for the AG as alleged by the Malaysian Bar when he acted in accordance to his constitutional role and decided not to pursue legal action after clearing the prime minister of any wrongdoing over an alleged transfer of funds from 1 Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), according to senior federal counsel Amarjeet Singh.

“They are saying that he’s appointed Attorney-General [by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong] on the advice of the Prime Minister and therefore there’s a conflict of interest.

“We are saying there’s no conflict of interest on the grounds that Article 145(3) has committed in the hands of the Attorney-General the sole power exercisable at his discretion to institute or not to institute criminal proceedings. (more…)

August 25, 2016

Sarawak appoints first woman deputy state secretary

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:02 PM

Sarawak has set a milestone by appointing Dr Sabariah Putit as Deputy State Secretary (Administration) – the first woman to hold such a position.

The Borneo Post reported that Sabariah, in her new post, would focus on performance and service delivery transformation in relation to issues such as state civil service transformation, educational attainment of students, state public relations strategy, welfare and sports.

She will be working with the state’s two other deputy state secretaries – Ismawi Ismuni and Jaul Samion.

Sabariah, who was appointed to the post on August 8, paid a courtesy call on Chief Minister Adenan Satem Wednesday. (more…)

1MDB: Investigators eye DiCaprio’s favourite Vegas clubs

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

caprioTwo Las Vegas nightclubs where Leonardo DiCaprio and his “Wolf of Wall Street” friends like to party are being investigated by the authorities.

The New York Post reported Wednesday that the probe is in connection with the alleged theft of billions from 1Malaysia Development Bhd.

Investigators are looking at the spending of the Hakkasan and Omnia clubs and those who partied there. The clubs, at the MGM Grand and Caesars Palace, respectively, are owned by the London-based Hakkasan Group.

The Post said DiCaprio often partied at Hakkasan with party animal Jho Low who allegedly gave DiCaprio millions of dollars that originated from 1MDB to gamble with in Vegas, according to US investigators. (more…)

Zaid: Only the stone-hearted will deny 1MDB scandal

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

Zaid-IbrahimThose who claim that they do not understand how the Prime Minister could be at fault over the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) saga or that the state-owned investment arm did not incur losses are “stone-hearted” individuals.

The same could also be said of those who alleged that the United States Department of Justice’s (DoJ) decision to file a 1MDB-related civil suit was to attack the Malay leadership, Zaid Ibrahim said at a forum on the 1MDB scandal in Kuala Lumpur last night.

“Investigations by the Federal Bureau of Intelligence clearly show how 1MDB monies disappeared. Read it first before claiming you don’t understand,” Zaid said, targeting his words at Umno and PAS specifically.

He posted his speech in his blog today. (more…)

Has Interpol M’sia requested for Lee Chee Kiang’s extradition, Baru asks

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:03 AM

Baru BianState PKR chairman Baru Bian wants to know whether Interpol Malaysia has requested for the extradition of Lee Chee Kiang (also known as Dato Stephen Lee), who is wanted by the Malaysian police for the murder of former PKR Miri branch secretary Bill Kayong.

Baru, who is Ba Kelalan assemblyman, also asked whether the Malaysian government had made a request for Lee’s extradition, especially now that the people had been informed that the Australian police were aware of his whereabouts.

“The information we have received is that the suspect is not in the Interpol wanted list, and we would like the police and the Attorney General’s Office to update us on the status of the case.

“Bill Kayong’s family and friends are still waiting for the arrest of the alleged mastermind behind the killing of Bill and they should be assured that all the necessary is being done to bring the suspect back to Malaysia, notwithstanding the provisions of the Australian Extradition Act 1988,” he said in a press statement yesterday. (more…)

Baru wants update on Kayong murder suspect

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:03 AM

baru-bian-bil-kayongThere are reports the police had sought assistance from Interpol Malaysia to track the alleged mastermind behind Bill Kayong’s murder, noted Sarawak Opposition Leader Baru Bian in a statement.

The information he had received was that the suspect was not on the Interpol wanted list.

He urged the police and the Attorney-General’s Chambers to update the public on the status of the case.

For starters, Baru would like to know whether Interpol Malaysia has requested for assistance from Interpol Australia.

He also wants to know whether the Malaysian Government has requested for the extradition of the suspect. “We have now been informed the Australian police know the whereabouts of the suspect.” (more…)

‘Federal Govt singing same old tune on development allocations’

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:03 AM

baru-bian-2Sarawak Opposition Leader Baru Bian has noted a declaration by Deputy Finance Minister Lee Chee Leong that the Federal Government gives the main priority to Sarawak’s development.

“He said the Federal Government will continue to take proactive measures to develop rural areas.”

He also referred to a statement by Deputy Chief Minister James Masing that the Federal Government had pledged RM24 billion to link all places in Sarawak by road by 2030.

Sadly, said Baru who is a senior lawyer in private practice, he has heard the same tune being sung by the Federal Government since the very beginning.

It goes back to 1963, when Sarawak and Sabah formed Malaysia together with Malaya, he recalled. “It has been a string of empty promises since then.” (more…)

Opposition calls for system on declaration of assets

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:03 AM

baru-bian-asset-1The reluctance of certain public figures to declare their assets was not surprising, said Sarawak Opposition Chief Baru Bian in a statement.

“This goes back to the system of patronage.”

He referred to development projects being used to support the cronies of those in power. “These unjust methods of the government authorities breed corruption.”

That’s the heart of the matter, stressed Baru.

He does not see the situation changing as long as the Umno/Barisan Nasional (BN) Government was in power. (more…)

Sarawak cops in the dark over Aussie sighting of brains in PKR man’s murder

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:02 AM

Bill Kayong, an activist and PKR candidate during the May 7 Sarawak election, was shot dead at a traffic light in Miri on June 21. ― Picture taken from Bill Kayong's Facebook pageSarawak police have no confirmation from their Australian counterparts or Interpol regarding an Australian high commissioner’s revelation that the mastermind in Bill Kayong’s murder has been located.

Commenting on Australian High Commissioner to Malaysia Rod Smith’s remarks to the effect during a press conference in Kuching yesterday, Sarawak Police Commissioner Datuk Mazlan Mansor said they needed corroboration to proceed.

“The disclosure was made by Smith, but we are still waiting for official word from the Australians. Investigations are still ongoing but there has been no update from Interpol either,” he was quoted as saying by The Borneo Post news portal.

He also denied that authorities here have frozen the bank accounts and assets of the fugitive, a “Datuk”, but said the move was being considered.

When asked about the possible issues with extraditing the man said to have planned the murder of the Sarawak PKR leader, Mazlan said the police will work within the constraints of existing laws, both domestic and international. (more…)

End to Petronas-Sarawak controversy ?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:02 AM

Top management : (from left) Petronas executive vice-president & Group CFO Datuk George Ratilal, Wan Zulkiflee, chairman Tan Sri Mohd Sidek Hassan, executive vice-president & CEO downstream Md Arif Mahmood and executive vice-president & CEO upstream Datuk Mohd Anuar Taib at the press conference of the national oil company’s Q2 resultsPetroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas), embroiled in a controversy with the Sarawak Government over the issue of non-Sarawakians working in the state’s oil and gas industry, believes that the issue will be resolved amicably with all parties able to work something out.

Petronas chief executive officer and president Datuk Wan Zulkiflee Wan Ariffin said the company’s leadership team has been in continuous engagement with the relevant authorities over the matter.

“We’re very hopeful and we’re confident that this will be resolved soon, taking into account the interests of all parties and stakeholders,” he said at a media briefing to announce the company’s second quarter ended June 30 financial results.

The Sarawak Government had on Aug 7 issued a moratorium on all new applications for work permits of Petronas personnel from outside Sarawak. It was reported that the state government’s decision was prompted by complaints from Sarawakian Petronas officers whose services were terminated or who were retrenched. (more…)

CM: Sarawak will again see development-oriented 2017 budget

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:02 AM

adenan sarawakChief Minister Adenan Satem has envisaged that the state budget for 2017 will again be largely development-oriented like this year.

He said in the 2016 Budget, amounting to RM5.97 billion, 74 per cent of it has been allocated to development expenditure.

“I believe that the 2017 Budget will largely retain the same theme as in the previous year and continue to be development biased, especially for (Sarawak) rural areas.

“It is important that the infrastructure focused policies continue on until 2020 and even beyond,” he said when officiating the one-day Malaysia Development Bank’s Infrastructure Forum 2016, attended by some 100 participants here today. (more…)

Australia keen to work closely with Sarawak

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

Smith (right) responds to questions during the press conference. With him is Ting.The Australian government is keen to work closely with Malaysia, particularly the Sarawak government, in various fields to further strengthen cooperation and ties between Australia and Sarawak.

Australian High Commissioner to Malaysia Rod Smith said while both Australia and Malaysia enjoyed a strong foundation in relations and cooperation, they could still further strengthen cooperation in many fields.

In Sarawak, he said, oil and gas, goods and agriculture, vocational education and training as well as healthcare sectors were among new areas that had considerable potential for Australian businesses to invest in.

Smith said these were areas he was actively encouraging Australian businesses to explore in Sarawak, given the considerable economic potential apart from the very strong historical ties between Australia and Sarawak. (more…)

Scorpene data leak has ‘no bearing on Malaysia’

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

Ahmad KamarulzamanThe massive leak of secret data on Scorpene submarines, will not affect the “integrity” of KD Tunku Abdul Rahman and KD Tun Abdul Razak owned by Malaysia.

Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) Chief Admiral Ahmad Kamarulzaman Ahmad Badaruddin said this to FMT when asked whether the leak will impact Malaysia’s submarines.

The leak hit French defence contractor DCNS (which supplies the vessels) and details the combat capabilities of the Scorpene-class submarine designed for the Indian navy.

Malaysia and Chile have variants of the vessel and Brazil is set to deploy it from 2018. Australia has also awarded a contract to DCNS to build submarines.

“The Malaysian submarines, although from the same class (as the Indian navy’s), have their own set of features and different capabilities. It (the leak) will not affect our submarines,” Ahmad Kamarulzaman said. (more…)

Steven: Malaysian Bar’s job not confined to ‘bread and butter’ issues

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

Malaysian Bar president Steven Thiru said that to solely care for the welfare of Malaysian Bar members above all other matters would be an assault on the Legal Profession Act itself. — Picture by Saw Siow FengThe Malaysian Bar has a public role to play and cannot be limited to managing lawyers’ livelihood issues, president Steven Thiru said today.

“This is important because when people talk to me about the Bar being political, they don’t understand this, but where does that societal role come from?

“Look at Section 42, in particular Section 42(1)(a) of the Legal Profession Act, it says, in no uncertain terms, that the Malaysian Bar is to uphold the cause of justice without regards to its own interest or that of its members, uninfluenced by fear or favour. That is what we call a rule of law mandate,” Steven said in a forum discussing the repercussions of the controversial proposed amendments to the Legal Profession Act (LPA) 1976.

Though not explicitly naming anyone, he appeared to be criticising de facto Law Minister Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said’s remarks last month that the proposed amendments to the LPA would also be able to address “bread and butter” issues for legal practitioners. (more…)

French submarine supplier to Malaysia reported hit by secret data leak

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

Royal Malaysian Navy's Scorpéne-class submarine KD Tunku Abdul Rahman. — Wikipedia picFrench defence contractor DCNS has been hit by a massive leak of secret data on its submarines likely to alarm India, Malaysia and Chile which use the boats, The Australian newspaper reported today.

The 22,400 leaked pages, which the newspaper said it had seen, detail the combat capability of the Scorpene-class submarine DCNS designed for the Indian navy, variants of which are used by Malaysia and Chile.

Brazil also due to deploy the vessels from 2018.

The leak could trigger concern in Australia, which in April awarded DCNS a A$50 billion (RM 153.8 billion) contract to design and build its next generation of submarines.

The leaked documents were marked “Restricted Scorpene India” and gave the combat capabilities of India’s new submarine fleet, according to The Australian. (more…)

Court ruling sends clear message to PDRM

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

In deciding that the government cannot use the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 (PAA) to institute claims for the damage during a Bersih rally, it showed that it is the duty of the state to safeguard those who assemble peacefully and to prevent those who are out to cause trouble, says a human rights lawyer.

Lawyers for Liberty director Eric Paulsen further says that the Court of Appeal decision reaffirms the people ‘s right to assemble peacefully in accordance with the constitution.

The Court of Appeal in a landmark decision today affirmed that the government and police have no right to institute a claim under the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012, following damages allegedly incurred in the 2012 Bersih 3 rally.

In affirming the Kuala Lumpur High Court decision, the three-member bench dismissed the appeal by the police and government against the Bersih steering committee members, including its then chairperson Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan. (more…)

Our mamak restaurants here

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

If we had a Fair Work Ombudsman in Malaysia as that of Australia, we may see our fair share of what happened to the popular Malaysian food chain in Sydney.

And it would not be only those mamak restaurants that would get it, but also many of those who hire migrant workers, as that is the majority of workers in the restaurant industry in Malaysia – from the cooks to the washers to the waiters.

It was recently reported that an Australian court has fined a popular Malaysian food chain in Sydney A$300,000 (RM920,747) for short-changing its employees and using false records to disguise the underpayment.

The Star quoted Business Insider Australia, stating that the Australian Federal Court ruled that Mamak Restaurant on Goulburn Street, Haymarket (a suburb of Sydney), had conducted “informal market research into pay rates on the black market” and had underpaid its workers deliberately to maximise profits. (more…)

S’wak DAP: Scrap Channel Maintenance Recovery Charges

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

Chong Chieng JenBandar Kuching DAP MP Chong Chieng Jen has welcomed the Kuching Port Authority’s (KPA) announcement that proposed Channel Maintenance Recovery Charges will be deferred.

“The people will save an estimated RM11 million for the one-year period from June 1 this year,” he said in a statement.

He called on the Sarawak Government to cancel the Channel Maintenance Recovery Charges altogether and not just defer it.

“There’s no justification for KPA to start collecting the charges from June 1 next year.”

The KPA should also refund the “Channel Maintenance Recovery Charges” collected from forwarding and shipping companies, he added. (more…)

Altantuya’s family to serve court papers on killer Sirul

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

ramkarpal-sighThe family of murdered Mongolian model, Altantuya Shaariibuu, is considering getting an agent to serve court papers on Sirul Azhar Umar, one of her convicted killers. He’s currently being held at the Villawood Immigration Detention Centre in Sydney.

“We will get a ‘process server’ to deliver to him,” said Ramkarpal Singh, the family’s lawyer.

The lawyer was denying a report that he will fly to Australia to personally serve a copy of court documents on Sirul. “I did not say so (flying to Australia),” he said.

Previous reports quoted Ramkarpal as saying a court officer had been roped in to expedite the legal process.

The lawyer had also tried last year to enlist the Foreign Ministry to serve the court papers on Sirul but it did not respond. (more…)

Husam pens letter to Agong, seeks blessings for 1MDB-linked suit in US

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

Salor assemblyperson Husam Musa has penned an open letter to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu’adzam Shah, seeking His Majesty’s blessing for the class action that he and Matthias Chang have initiated in the United States.

In the open letter dated Aug 17, Husam also included a copy of the class action in relation to the funds allegedly misappropriated from 1MDB.

The former PAS leader also hoped that Tuanku Abdul Halim would pray that this action would receive divine assistance.

“I know that this action is difficult but I think it is improper for Malaysians not to do anything over something that has created a huge loss for the country.

“I hope Your Majesty would also pray for the success of the suit for Malaysia,” he added. (more…)

Calculated move to stop Tangkap rally

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

There will be chaos if the #TangkapMalaysianOfficial1 (TMO1) rally protesters and the Red Shirts were to march on the same day. It is wishful thinking to say there will be no problem if both rallies were held at the same time on Aug 27.

TMO1 rally group’s spokesperson, Anis Syafiqah Md Yusof, says the black-and-white themed rally would take place from 2pm to 5pm on that Saturday. She anticipates a crowd of 5,000.

Throwing their support behind this group of protesters are electoral watchdog Bersih 2.0, Pakatan Harapan’s Youth wing, Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram), Lawyers for Liberty, Persatuan Hak Asasi Manusia Kebangsaan (Hakam) and Sisters in Islam.

Anis Syafiqah welcomes the counter rally announced by Gerakan Merah president Mohd Ali Baharom, also known as Ali Tinju. “If possible, maybe we can even assemble together to call for the arrest of MO1,” she says. (more…)

Callous bid to destroy church at night

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

The Star today cites Tamil news reports that residents of the former Braemer Estate, who are parishioners of St Joseph Church, gathered at the church’s vicinity when workers contracted by the Kajang Municipal Council (MPKj) arrived to demolish the church at night.

MCA Religious Harmony Bureau condemns this clandestine action by the Kajang Municipal Council to demolish a place of worship in the dark.

Pakatan Harapan prides so much as championing religious freedoms. Yet this church tearing-down attempt had occurred in PKR-helmed Selangor state, what more at night which indicates the local authorities definitely wanted to conduct the demolition without attracting any unwanted public attention at all as it realises that desecrating a holy house is insensitive.

MPKj’s intended action is unscrupulous and crass as had it been successful in proceeding with the destruction, parishioners would have a rude shock awaiting them when they wake up in the morning or wanting to go to the church to pray or do voluntary work. Is this how Pakatan safeguards the religious rights of non-Muslims in states it rules? (more…)

Blondes, Pan-Asians and plastic surgery

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

Asians have an obsession with women with fair skin, light-coloured eyes, and blonde hair. In the olden days, it was said that a Malay bride would not be allowed to go out in the sun for at least one month before her wedding, so that she would not be too tanned, when sitting on her wedding dais.

A distant relative of a Malay woman, who is married to someone from the West Indies, said: “Your children will be hitam (black). Perhaps, it is better to adopt.”

The colour barrier extends to the super rich. Angeline Francis, daughter of tycoon Khoo Kay Peng, claimed in a Malay Mail article, that her father disapproves of her husband, who is of Caribbean origin.

Then, as now, some of us consider fair skinned people “beautiful”. Why do we have this hang-up when in the west, Europeans desire to have tanned skin. Is it because Asians think that being tanned is associated with people who have toiled under the hot sun? (more…)

‘Bar can’t be limited to bread and butter issues’

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

steven-thiru-malaysian-barBar Council President Steven Thiru today said its duties cannot be limited to bread and butter issues.

He was commenting on a statement by de-facto Law Minister Azalina Othman Said that she hoped the proposed amendments to the Legal Profession Act 1976 (LPA) would address “bread and butter issues” like legal examinations and the ability of all lawyers to speak and read English.

Star Online reported that during a briefing today on the proposed amendments, Thiru said the Bar had other objectives like giving views on laws, law reform and legal aid issues.

“If you balance our 14 objectives, there are practices and professional issues as well as public roles. We play a mixed role.


The fourth Olympic medal

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:01 AM

There are three types of medals that can be won in the Olympics, right? Wrong.

There is actually a fourth type of medal, which is arguably the most rare, noble and precious of them all. It is called the Pierre de Coubertin medal (or the True Spirit of Sportsmanship award).

This medal is named after the founder of modern Olympics, and exemplifies the essence of excellent sportsmanship. It is an extremely prestigious award; and represents ultimate sacrifice by the athlete.

To date, less than 20 medals have been awarded.

This medal is a symbolic reminder of what the games are actually about – a strive for excellence in sports through a universal fellowship and communion, a sense that we are all united through our common humanity.

August 23, 2016

Petronas comes under fire in Sarawak again

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:02 PM

petronas-sarawak-1Petronas has come under fire in Sarawak again, this time for terminating the services of Sarawakian and Sabahan tour companies which have been handling the travelling needs of its personnel.

According to a Borneo Post Online report, the Sarawak chapter of the Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (Matta) has urged Petronas to explain the termination of services of tour companies which had been servicing Petronas for years, in favour of a Kuala Lumpur-based company as its panel agent.

The chapter’s chairman Chris Kon said the move was very unfair to Sarawakian companies, as one of Petronas’ new criteria for companies wishing to be on their panel of agents was the requirement that they have branches in all states.

“The criteria were given on very short notice, and as a result, local companies lost their businesses with Petronas because they could not fulfil the criteria. (more…)

Sarawak DAP mulls taking Petronas hiring issue to Parliament

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:02 PM

Petronas has been accused of discrimination by state-sponsored think-tank Suarah Petroleum Group who claimed the oil giant was sidelining Sarawakians in preference of peninsular Malaysians. — Reuters picAmid local uproar over Petronas’s hiring practices, Sarawak DAP said it may table a motion in Parliament to get an explanation from the national oil company.

“By way of debate or even motion in Parliament on Petronas issue, Sarawakians and the people will know the national oil and gas giant company’s operation including giving priority to Sarawakians to fill in the positions here,” Sarawak DAP secretary Alan Ling Sie Kiong was quoted saying by The Borneo Post in a report today.

Petronas has been accused of discrimination by state-sponsored think-tank Suarah Petroleum Group (SPG) who claimed the oil giant was sidelining Sarawakians in preference of peninsular Malaysians.

SPG president Hamin Yusuf said that the recent removal of 29 permanent posts had resulted in the retrenchment of 13 experienced staff from Sarawak in Petronas’ upstream restructuring exercise. (more…)

Australia keen to explore areas of cooperation with the Sarawak, high commissioner says

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:02 PM

Australian High Commissioner to Malaysia Rod Smith made courtesy calls to Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem (pic) and said the Australian government is keen to work with Sarawak to strengthen cooperation and ties with the state. ― Bernama picThe Australian Government is keen to work closely with Malaysia, in particular, the Sarawak Government, in various fields to further strengthen cooperation and ties between Australia and the state.

Australian High Commissioner to Malaysia Rod Smith said Australia and Malaysia enjoyed a strong foundation in relations and cooperation.

Nevertheless, the two countries could further strengthen cooperation in many fields, he told a press conference here today, in conjunction with his two-day working visit to Sarawak, his second to the state since his appointment as high commissioner.

During his visit here, Smith made courtesy calls to Sarawak Yang di-Pertua Negeri Tun Abdul Taib Mahmud, Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem and the three Sarawak Deputy Chief Ministers, Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas, Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg and Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing. (more…)

Bill Kayong murder suspect: His location is known, says Australian High Commissioner

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:02 PM

The suspects still at large (from left) Dato Stephen Lee Chee Kiang, Chin and KongAustralian authorities have inferred that they are aware of the location of one of the suspects wanted by Malaysian police for the murder of former PKR Miri branch secretary Bill Kayong.

Australian High Commissioner to Malaysia Rod Smith however said he could not disclose much about the case because it was subjected to the legal processes in Australia.

“We have to allow those legal processes to run their course,” Smith said in a press conference here today (Aug 23).

One of the two remaining suspects wanted by the police, Lee Chee Kiang or also known as Datuk Stephen Lee, is believed to have fled to Australia, according to state CID chief SAC Dev Kumar.

On Aug 18, the suspect Chin Wui Chung gave himself up in the company of his lawyer at the Krokop police station, leaving only Lee and Kong Sien Ming still at large.

The Borneo Post Online

Bill Kayong’s murder mastermind located in Australia

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:02 PM

Bill KayongAustralian police have tracked down the whereabouts of the mastermind said to be behind the murder of PKR’s Bill Kayong and hiding there.

However, it is not that easy to bring him home to face justice.

The Malay Mail Online quoted Australian High Commissioner to Malaysia Rod Smith as saying the suspect’s extradition to Malaysia “is subject to a legal process in Australia”.

Smith said this after paying a courtesy call to Sarawak Chief Minister Adenan Satem in Kuching today.

He did not elaborate further but the “legal process” could be in reference to the part in Australian law that prevents the country from returning fugitives to any nation where the person could be subject to the death penalty. (more…)

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