Hornbill Unleashed

December 8, 2013

Canada’s ‘Richest Woman’ Jamilah Taib Gets Unwelcome Local Press

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Canada’s ‘Richest Woman’ Jamilah Taib Gets Unwelcome Local Press

Sarawak Report

A popular Canadian satirical magazine has set its sights on Canada’s ‘richest woman’, Jamilah Taib.

Frank Magazine is known for its scathing, if light-hearted, tone and it does not spare the Chief Minister’s daughter and her Canadian husband Sean Murray.

In particular, it examines the evidence that their wealth is based on Taib’s plundering of the Sarawak rainforest and other natural resources.

The article is below. (more…)

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November 29, 2013

Taib: Most terms of M’sia Agreement met

Filed under: Corruption,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:00 AM
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Bernama

He said Sarawak ‘enjoyed’ autonomy in culture, politics and economy and the question of whether or not “we can stand alone as a country should not arise”.

Sarawak’s position in the federation of Malaysia is a stale, old issue that is needless to be questioned anymore, says Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud.

He said most of the conditions set during the process of forming Malaysia 50 years ago had been met and proven by the development achieved by the state all this while. (more…)

November 25, 2013

‘Modular Housing’ Scandal Brings Shame On CMS

Filed under: Corruption,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:02 AM
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Guaranteed structural integrity? This five year old house makes a poor advertisement!

Sarawak Report

Guaranteed structural integrity? This five year old house made a poor advertisement!

Question No 2 in the Frequently Asked Questions guide about their Modular Housing by Cayha Mata Sarawak Berhad (CMS) has an unequivocal reply.

In response to “What guarantees are given to the customer?” it answers “The structural integrity of the system is fully guaranteed and customers are furnished with a ten (10) year warranty”.

Such claims were not born out, however, when the first big storm hit the area just a few years later in 2009 and 80 roofsflew off, including plenty more damage to walls and structures.

(more…)

November 24, 2013

Noble Gesture? How Taib Family Cashed In On Samariang While Poor Buyers Suffered

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Noble Gesture? How Taib Family Cashed In On Samariang While Poor Buyers Suffered

Sarawak Report

Sarawak Report has investigated how members of the Taib family started cashing-in on the Bandar Samariang project, straight after the Chief Minister had placed the vast 5,200 acre site into the hands of his own company CMS.

The rip off has caused untold misery to poor house buyers, who have been left with sub-standard homes and little compensation.

Yet, Taib had promoted the Bandar Samariang project as a “noble gesture” by his family company, designed to assist poor families, desperate for low cost housing. (more…)

November 19, 2013

“Apes” and the billion-ringgit consultants

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A Kadir Jasin

On June 27, I published a posting entitled Malaysian Parliament vs Animal Planet.

On November 14, judging from media reports, the Dewan Rakyat was transformed from the more respectable Animal Planet into a mere zoo.

It was the climax of yet another uncivilised behaviour of our elected representatives, when the opposition PKR member from Padang Serai, N. Surendran was suspended for six months for allegedly insulting Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia outside the House on November 12. (more…)

November 18, 2013

Where did RM7.2bil in consultancy fees go to?

Aidila Razak

What can RM7.2 billion buy?

Going by figures in the 2012 and 2014 Budget speeches, this could pay for Bantuan Rakyat 1Malaysia handouts to benefit a whopping 13.1 million people.

However, from 2009 till October 2013, the government spent exactly that amount to pay for private consultants, a written reply to Parliament has revealed. (more…)

November 17, 2013

Najib’s obsession with money, status symbols

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Mariam Mokhtar

He has made known his desire to transform Langkawi into a Bali or a Monaco but before catering to high-end tourists, he should address the needs of the local population
Najib Tun Razak expressed a wish that Langkawi would become like Bali and Monaco, but he should be very careful of what he wishes for. He said: “Thousands of tourists come here to spend, generating revenue not only for companies but also the Government.”

Before Langkawi can be like Bali and Monaco, there are many things Najib must resolve. (more…)

November 12, 2013

The world’s MOST FRUGAL first couple – Najib and Rosmah?

The world's MOST FRUGAL first couple - Najib and Rosmah? Malaysia Chronicle

Believe it or not, Prime Minister Najib Razak and wife Rosmah Mansor are among the most ‘frugal’ first couples in the world, according Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Shahidan Kassim.

“I believe our spending for the complex is among the lowest because of the frugal spending system we have in place there,” Shahidan told Parliament on Monday.

Sad to say, in the very next breath, Shahidan was forced to admit he had never made any “specific comparison” before arriving at such a ‘guesstimate.’ (more…)

‘Probe into Global Witness video still ongoing’

Ng Ai Fern

Malaysia Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) assures today that the Global Witness video case, which exposed alleged corrupt dealings implicating Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud, is still being investigated.MACC deputy commissioner (Operations) Datuk Seri Shukri Abdull also denied claims that the commission did not investigate many cases, especially those involving top politicians.

He stressed that all cases were being handled seriously and an improved conviction rate was proof of that. (more…)

‘Greedy’ Umno’s lopsided budget for Sarawak

Awang Abdillah

In 2014, Sarawak is expected to contribute over RM76 billion towards Petronas and the federal government’s coffers; in return Prime Minister Najib has offered RM2 billion.

The federal government has been operating on straight deficit budgets since 1998. The latest budget for 2014 as announced on Oct 25 is no different.

Throughout this period there has been no undertaking to adopt fiscal reforms to attain surplus budgets resulting in accumulative national debt to the tune of about RM520 billion as of end June 2013, as reported by the Finance Ministry. (more…)

November 6, 2013

‘Govt should restudy its financial policy’

http://www.investvine.com

  • Former PM Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad in an interview with Inside Investor opined that the weak results of the last election was due to past policies that were reversed or changed.

Malaysia’s longest serving prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who held the post for 22 years from 1981 to 2003, although retired is still a critical observer of Malaysian politics.

In a recent interview with online business portal Inside Investor, Mahathir spoke on a range of issues and reminded his detractors of his promise that he would not interfere in politics and that the current government had “every right” to change directions and policies. (more…)

November 4, 2013

Baram Malaysia Meets Baerum Norway…And Sjotveit Is Reported To OKOKRIM

Baram Malaysia Meets Baerum Norway…And Sjotveit Is Reported To OKOKRIM

Sarawak Report

When he is not tearing down tropical trees in Sarawak, the chief officer of Sarawak Energy has his home in a very smart, leafy suburb of Oslo in Norway, known as Baerum.

Last week, appalled at the latest round of mega-projectshanded out by this hired Norwegian to companies owned by his boss, the autocratic ruler Taib Mahmud, NGOs decided it was time to inform the residents of Baerum about the corrupt activities of their wealthy neighbour, who spends so much time on the other side of the world.

So, they came to Bearum, Norway to distribute leaflets explaining what Sarawak Energy (SEB) boss Torstein Dale Sjotveit is doing in Baram, Sarawak and how the entire project is linked to Taib Mahmud’s kleptocratic destruction of the world’s oldest rainforest. (more…)

November 2, 2013

RM618 mil SEB contracts to Taib’s son irks BMF

Winston Way

Swiss based Bruno Manser Fund claims the Sarawak Energy Berhad CEO has ‘lost his credibility’ and is ruining Norway’s reputation.

Sarawak Energy Berhad’s chief executive officer Torstein Dale Sjotveit has made himself a “tool of the Taib Mahmud family’s unrestrained greed and corruption”, claims Swiss NGO,  the Bruno Manser Fund (BMF).

Expressing its shock at the latest disclosure that SEB had awarded Sarawak Cable two new contracts worth RM618 million contract, BMF said the “act has passed all levels of decency”.

Sarawak Cable is helmed by Chief Minister Taib’s eldest son Mahmud Abu Bekir. (more…)

Taib-linked firm bags RM600mil Sarawak Energy job

Mkini

As the Penan community continues its battle with state-owned company Sarawak Energy Bhd (SEB) over the Murum Dam, SEB has awarded two contracts worth more than RM600 million to a company linked to the son of Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud.

According to a Aug 29 filing with Bursa Malaysia, Sarawak Cable Bhd said its subsidiary Trenergy Infrastructure Sdn Bhd (Trenergy) won two contracts, worth RM352.8 million and RM265.8 million each.

The contracts are for a 500kV electricity transmission line from Mapai to Lachau and the 500kV Lachau-Tondong transmission line, which will be completed within 23 and 26 months respectively from Nov 15. (more…)

November 1, 2013

Govt mum on further fuel hikes

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Anisah Shukry

Deputy Finance Minister Ahmad Maslan fails to respond to a question asking whether there will be a further fuel hike this year or next year.

The Finance Ministry today sidestepped a question on whether Malaysians will see further slashes to the petrol subsidy in the near future, in a move that suggests a fuel hike is not off the cards this year.

Instead of answering Lanang MP Lau Kiong Yieng’s question on whether the government will reduce petrol subsidies this year and in 2014, Deputy Finance Minister Ahmad Maslan launched into an explanation on subsidy rationalisation. (more…)

October 31, 2013

Budget and political risks

OKU-Budget-2014-300x202Lim Sue Goan

Our Prime Minister is known for his careful approach. But then why did he announce to abolish white sugar subsidies and the 6% GST from April 2015 in the 2014 Budget?

The Malays consume a lot of sugar, and for GST at a relatively high level of 6% instead of 3 or 4% will aggravate the financial burden of low to middle-income families. With the government having rejected the GST bill in 2009, why such a “bold” step this time?

I personally feel this could be attributed to three key factors:

1. The government has full confidence in the country’s unique “subsidy rationalization.” (more…)

Will Musa do what Taib did?

FMT Staff

  •  In reality Sarawak has no real need for Putrajaya and the recent ‘Allah’ controversy and Taib Mahmud’s stand has clearly set it apart from Sabah.

Sabah Chief Minister Musa Aman’s verbosity over a list of recyled projects on Budget 2014 and his spineless silence on the Allah issue is in sharp contrast with his counterpart in Sarawak.

Musa and Taib Mahmud are CMs of once ‘independent’ nations who signed the Malaysia Agreement in 1963, thus stepping in together with Federated Malaya and Singapore (who got purged out two years later) into a newly formed Malaysia. (more…)

October 30, 2013

Cut costs in your dept, PM urged

P Ramani

  • If Najib is serious about asking ordinary Malaysians to change their lifestyles to adapt to rising prices, he should also reduce expenditure in his own department.

Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak should walk the talk by shaving expenditure in his own backyard and not create new, expensive agencies.

Serdang MP Ong Kian Ming said in a statement that the PM who is also the Finance Minister announced in the budget the setting up of a new Green Foundation (Yayasan Hijau) and the Malaysian Global Innovation and Creativity Center (MAGIC). (more…)

Now that Budget 2014 is tabled, what’s next?

Raja Ahmad Shahrir

As expected, Budget 2014 included the announcement of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) implementation, the removal of subsidy (one item now but potentially more within the near future), and the announcement of various spending allocations to boost the Malaysian economy, all embedded within the prime minister’s ‘Five Thrusts’ framework, with the hope to improve the nation’s fiscal deficit.

Frankly speaking, from a planning perspective, I believe that the budget contains steps needed to grow the Malaysian economy and enhance it through the development of basic infrastructure to the people, enhancing human capital development by focussing on the right sets of skills and knowledge, boosting economic activity to increase domestic and foreign investments, restructuring the tax system to enhance revenue, etc. (more…)

October 29, 2013

We’re not ready for GST, says Anwar

Anisah Shukry

Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim also hits out at Najib over his budget deception which sees allocations for the rakyat being slashed.

Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak’s argument that Malaysia should implement the Goods and Services Tax (GST) because other counties already have is off the mark, said Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim.

He pointed out that the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development Report 2012 had revealed in its report that the GST was more regressive in developing and transition economies than in developed counties. (more…)

October 28, 2013

6pct GST high, but better to bite bullet early

Stephanie Jacob & Lawrence Yong

At 6 percent, the goods and services tax (GST) which will kick in on April 1, 2015, is introduced at a comparatively high level, a tax expert admits, but it is better to take the hit early on.

Similarly, a drastic removal of all the sugar subsidy starting today may taste better to some, but is something necessary.

Stakeholders weigh in on yesterday’s Budget 2014 announcement:

SM Thannermalai, president of the Chartered Tax Institute of Malaysia (CTIM) (more…)

Fresh blockades, warnings to SEB workers

FMT Staff

  • Heavy police presence in downstream Long lama and fresh blockades by natives in upstream Baram has turned the area into a hotspot of demos.

BARAM: Native protestors who chased out 30 Sarawak Energy Berhad (SEB) workers doing geological studies at the Baram dam site last Wednesday, have set up fresh blockades on the access road into the construction area.

The indigenous landowners set up two blockades and appeared to have successfully prevented workers in the area from returning and pursuing their work on the proposed dam.

Swiss based Bruno Manser Find (BMF) in a statement today said the native are demanding an immeidate halt to all planning and costruction works at the dam site and its access road. (more…)

PKFZ scandal: So who cheated the govt?

Jeswan Kaur

  • How could a minister not be accountable for misinformation or manipulation of figures and facts as evident in the document he would be signing?
Hindraf-HRP leader P Uthayakumar has written to Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak saying he was being tortured by the Prisons Department.

Uthayakumar who is serving a 30-month jail sentence for sedition claimed he was made to sleep on the floor.

But the Prisons Department begs to differ, saying Uthayakumar had been placed in solitary confinement for a total of 13 days on two separate occasions as he had “refused to take instructions”. (more…)

October 27, 2013

At RM16.5bil, Najib oversees most expensive PMD yet

Nigel Aw

Despite Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s pledge to rein in the country’s deficit, his own department’s budget is ballooning to the highest level ever.

According to the Federal Expenditure Estimate 2014, the Prime Minister’s Department’s (PMD) estimated budget for next year stands at RM16.45 billion, with an operational expenditure of RM5.86 billion and developmental expenditure of RM10.58 billion.

The sum is the highest ever allocation for the PMD, breaking its previous record of a RM15.62 billion budget in 2011. (more…)

October 25, 2013

Najib’s Budget 2014 acid test

Bridget Welsh

Malaysia’s Budget 2014 represents the most important economic policy initiative of Najib Razak’s premiership. After scraping through GE13 and deal-making his way to an unchallenged presidency of Umno, there are no immediate political obstacles undermining his ability to implement the economic reforms he has repeatedly promised investors and international financial institutions such as the International Monetary Fund.

Najib has gone on record to claim that he will reduce government debt, tighten spending and make the Malaysian economy more competitive. International watchers were initially bought over by all the different acronyms coined by the government, such as the ETP (Economic Transformation Programme). (more…)

More pain than gain for the middle-class

Andrew Ong

Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s Budget 2014 speech comes as no surprise: Post-GE13, pretty much the entire population would be taxed and forced to go cold turkey on various subsidies.

The goods and services tax (GST) is something which has long been mooted. The Dewan Rakyat tried to pass the new tax in 2009 but it was put on hold in order for Najib to safely seek his own mandate.

Now that he has one, albeit with only 47 percent of voters supporting BN, the premier has no qualms about making the public dig deeper into their pockets instead of first resolving problems that has plagued his administration and that of his predecessors – corruption and leakages. (more…)

October 22, 2013

Allah only an issue in peninsula, Sarawakians are tolerant, says Taib

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak (3rd from left) and wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, flanked by Taib and his wife, at the Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu meeting in Kuching, today. - The Malaysian Insider pic, October 21, 2013.DESMOND DAVIDSON

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak (3rd from left) and wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, flanked by Taib and his wife, at the Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu meeting in Kuching, today. – The Malaysian Insider pic, October 21, 2013.The Allah issue between Muslims and Christians in Peninsular Malaysia does not affect Sarawakians because they are a tolerant people, said Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud.

“To us (people in Sarawak) there is no issue. We have lived with people of different races and different religions for many decades, even before Malaysia,” Taib said in his first public statement on the issue since the Court of Appeal ruled last Monday that the word Allah could not be used by the Catholic weekly, Herald.

Taib declared the ruling was not binding on Sabah and Sarawak. (more…)

Auditor General’s Report: unanswered questions

Filed under: Corruption,Human rights,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:00 AM
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Ravinder Singh

Much has been said about the Auditor General’s Report, but a couple of nagging questions have not been addressed. The Auditor General needs to inform the public on:

1. Whether the sky-high prices paid for the purchases were the prices as stated in the budgets of the respective departments and agencies?

Thus, for example, in the case of the RM40,000 laptops and RM3,800 wall clocks, were these the prices stated in the budgets of the departments or agencies concerned?  In other words, is this the sum of money they had asked for, for purchasing those items at those prices, and were given without a question? (more…)

October 16, 2013

Pehin Sri Considers His ‘Heritage’

Sarawak Report

My kids have got it up here – no help from me!

So, Taib Mahmud has yet another business in Sarawak, despite all his protests to the contrary, and it is even named after him.

Pehin Sri Heritage Sdn Bhd has featured on a list of 49 Malaysian companies identified in court by his former daughter in law Shanaz Taib, who is seeking a financial settlement from his son Abu Bekir.

From the value of these recorded companies alone (leaving aside foreign bank accounts and properties amassed by the Taibs) auditors were able to demonstrate that the CM’s son is worth over a billion ringgit in assets, which earn him more than RM2million income per year. (more…)

October 11, 2013

Spotlight On Melikin – How Gangsterism And Politics Mix In Sarawak..

Sarawak Report

Surik Anak Muntai – beaten up as he picked up his son from school – had led the protest against loggers in Melikin

Taib Mahmud has complained that Sarawak is in the ‘media spotlight’ after years of ‘obscurity’.

But, thanks to that obscurity and his own media blackout, gangsterism has been allowed to flourish unreported against the native people of the state.

For years these organised thugs have waged systematic violence against rural communities, in order to enforce the timber and plantation concessions handed out by this Chief Minister. (more…)

October 10, 2013

Auditor General to meet public today over his report

Filed under: Corruption,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:21 AM
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LEE SHI-IAN

Tan Sri Ambrin Buang (pic) will go down to the ground for the first time today to meet the public and explain the findings of the 2012 Auditor General’s Report which is currently being hotly debated.

The Auditor General will be at a forum titled “Audit Report: Leaks or Lapses” where he will share the stage with Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chief commissioner Tan Sri Abu Kassim Mohamed and DAP publicity secretary Tony Pua.

The three-hour event, which begins at 2.30pm, will be held at the Auditorium Kompleks Media Karangkraf in Section 15, Shah Alam. (more…)

Taib urges Sarawak media to help fight bad press

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Tan Sri Taib Mahmud

The malay mail

Following recent exposés on alleged abuses in Sarawak, Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud has urged media outlets there to help counter the negative exposure brought about by such reports.

Saying that globalisation has imported issues such as human rights and environmentalism that he said were not previously present in the state, Taib said local media outlets could do much to repel the criticisms aimed at the state for, among others, “raping the environment”.

“Obviously we have to counter the adverse publicity by telling the truth about ourselves,” national news agency Bernama quoted a portion of Taib’s speech at the Kenyalang Shell Press Awards 2013 in Kuching yesterday. (more…)

October 4, 2013

Felda’s pricey London hotel buy sparks probe, Umno disquiet

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The Grand Plaza service apartments in Bayswater, London, is now the property of Felda. - October 3, 2013.JAHABAR SADIQ

The Grand Plaza service apartments in Bayswater, London, is now the property of Felda. – October 3, 2013.State plantation giant Felda’s £98 million (RM497 million) purchase of a London serviced apartment complex is now being investigated by anti-graft officials and could derail its chairman Tan Sri Isa Samad’s chances in the Umno vice-presidential race.

The Malaysian Insider understands there is also growing disquiet in Umno over the hefty price paid by Felda Investment Corp (FIC) UK Properties for the Grand Plaza Service Apartments in London’s Bayswater suburb, a popular area among Malaysians living in the UK capital city. (more…)

September 3, 2013

The Murum Penan Are Right To Fight

Sarawak Report

Families gathered at outdoor camps – last October’s Murum blockade was joined by women and children for several weeks

Sarawak Energy adopted a familiar tactic towards the renewal of the blockade at Murum by the indigenous Penan people at the weekend.

They patronised them, by complaining that they had been “instigated” by un-named NGOs.

Over the past days there have been reports that scores of the indigenous tribes people have again brought the construction site on their lands to a grinding halt. (more…)

August 28, 2013

Ex-wife: CM’s son Bekir was unfaithful to me

Hafiz Yatim

Shahnaz A Majid has claimed in the Kuala Lumpur Syariah High Court that her former husband and corporate player Mahmud Abu Bekir Taib had been unfaithful to her.

She said Mahmud Abu Bekir, a son of Sarawak Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud, had taken an Australian woman to his sister’s wedding in 2000.

Testifying in her RM100 million claim for mutaah (matrimonial gift), Shahnaz described how she had also felt humiliated when Mahmud Abu Bekir told The Peak magazine some time in 2010 that he was married to a Russian, Elena Vasilenko. (more…)

August 26, 2013

MACC chief claims he’d have stood up to Taib

Nigel Aw

Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chief Abu Kassim Mohamed said he would have stood up to Sarawak Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud who had criticised the graft buster.

“Like in the video, when Taib said we were naughty and dishonest, I wanted to stand up and respond to him.

“But my public relation officers said Tan Sri (Taib) had alreadyexplained that he was not referring to MACC.

“If not, I’d tell him to let the law to take its course,” said Abu Kassim (far right in photo) in a stern voice during a forum at the 7th Annual Malaysian Student Leaders Summit in Kuala Lumpur today. (more…)

August 16, 2013

BN’s Post-Election Priority? Tripling Their Own Salaries Of Course!

Sarawak Report

No shame – Taib Mahmud glories in his unexplained wealth after a lifetime in public office

Just days after an election marred by bribery and ballot rigging, Sarawak’s Chief Minister made his first move to set the tone of his conduct as BN’s ‘kingmaker’.

He tripled the salaries for state YBs and ministers.

The effect was to bump up his own salary as Chief Minister from RM13,000 a month to RM39,000. He doesn’t need the money of course, but obviously he enjoys the symbolism of receiving more than the actual Prime Minister, who is now dependent on East Malaysia’s ‘obedient’ rural seats to remain in office.

But, since this salary rise was clearly planned and decided upon long beforehand, people are entitled to ask why the Chief Minister did not announce his intention to voters in advance?  Why keep the plan secret until right after the election? (more…)

August 7, 2013

No Resolution Without Justice

Sarawak Report

Long Teran – How can there be settlement without justice?

This past month saw Taib Mahmud’s 50th anniversary of uninterrupted public office.  Thirty three of those years have been spent as Chief Minister of the State of Sarawak.

He has chosen this symbolic moment to make variousremarks acknowledging the ‘lack of progress’ achieved by the Dayak people during that time.

Yet, cheekily, he suggests that it is he who can come up with the solutions to the problem, when it is plain to all around that it is he, Abdul Taib Mahmud, who has been the biggest single cause of Dayak woes throughout all those 50 years. (more…)

July 31, 2013

Concern Over Australia’s Mega-Pay Outs To Taib Family Firm

Sarawak Report

No compromise – campaigners are appalled that wealthy Taib interests are being paid to keep logging Tasmania’s forests

Concerns have been mounting over the millions of dollars beingpaid out by the Australian government to the company Ta Ann, owned by the fabulously wealthy cousin and business proxy of the Chief Minister, Hamed Sepawi.

The amount paid out so far in incentives first to locate in Tasmania; then to surrender previously agreed logging rights and now to build a new mill (announced last week) total AUS$44.6million.

It is money Ta Ann could easily have raised itself, since Sepawi is one of Malaysia’s wealthiest individuals and protestors say the payments are condoning corruption and human rights abuses in Sarawak, while also rewarding highly incompetent and deeply questionable decisions made by the Tasmanian officials and politicians who welcomed the timber company into the state back in 2006. (more…)

July 29, 2013

Scorpene broker: Altantuya never part of the deal

Mkini

The architect of the Scorpene deal, Jasbir Singh Chahl, says murdered Mongolian national Altantuya Shaariibuu was never an interpreter for the submarine deal, nor was she ever involved in the contract.

In an interview published by New Straits Times today, Jasbir said whatever affair Altantuya had with defence analyst Abdul Razak Baginda, a central figure in the deal, was a personal matter.

“His dealings with her had nothing to do with the Scorpene deal. It’s unfortunate that it (the affair) coincided with our (submarine deal) timeline.

“Abdul Razak was the only common denominator in this. He was the only link, and a tenuous one, at best,” Jasbir is quoted as saying. (more…)

July 24, 2013

3 contracts for GE13 caps, to 3 companies, one common link – why, Rafizi asks EC

Filed under: Corruption — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:00 AM
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Rafizi wants EC to explain contracts. - The Malaysian Insider pic by Nazir Sufari, July 23, 2013.JENNIFER GOMEZ

Rafizi wants EC to explain contracts. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Nazir Sufari, July 23, 2013.The Election Commission came under attack again, on the eve of the Kuala Besut by-election, when PKR strategy director Rafizi Ramli alleged that it breached rules of governance and transparency by awarding contracts to supply caps for GE13 to companies controlled by the same person who supplied the tainted indelible ink.

The PKR strategist said that if the commission cannot be trusted to even follow the process in awarding contracts, how can it be trusted to oversee free and fair elections?

He alleged that the beneficiaries of the cap contracts were Nash Ventures Sdn Bhd, for which Shamsia Mansoor is the director, Ayumi  Resources Sdn Bhd, for which a Norsiah Yusoff is the director, and Bumi Services Sdn Bhd, for which Mohamed Salleh Mohd Alli is the director. (more…)

July 22, 2013

Too many holes…

Filed under: Corruption,Education,History — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:00 AM
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educationTay Tian Yan

The failure of a four straight A’s STPM student to gain access into a local public university only shows either or both of the following:

1. There are problems with the admission system of public universities that even the best -performing students are excluded.

2. There are problems with the STPM examinations that even the top students are not good enough to make it to public universities.

Perhaps the Cabinet could try to get a solution within days, such as by increasing the admission quotas for government universities or provide scholarships for such students to further their studies in local private colleges or foreign universities. (more…)

July 12, 2013

Malaysia’s Credit Squeeze: Property & share prices SURE TO FALL?

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Malaysia's Credit Squeeze:  Property & share prices SURE TO FALL?Sam Chee Kong

Malaysia’s current household debt problem is not the result of our government’s recent policies to encourage private expenditure. Actually, the current debt problem has been accumulating for the past 15 years. The history of Malaysia’s household debt can be traced back to 1997 when the household debt to GDP was only 39% then. This was also the year that Malaysia was struck by the Asian Financial crisis.

Since then, Malaysia embarked on an expansionary fiscal and monetary policy which led to an expansion of credit and also the proliferation public projects so as to extract its economy out of the recession. During the Asian Financial Crisis in 1999 Malaysia’s GDP per capita felled to $3653.83 compared to $4043.64 recorded in 1998. However since then as the expansionary policies worked its way into the economy, Malaysia’s GDP per capita risen as a result. This can be shown by the following graph on Malaysia’s GDP per capita since 1995. (more…)

July 11, 2013

Najib’s son moves the markets, again

Filed under: Corruption,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:00 AM
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Tiger Talk

Tiger doesn’t understand why shares soar and plunge, and quite honestly Tiger doesn’t give a toss about these man-made type of dramas – dramas which are full of faecal matter, to put it delicately.

But how things change… the news of the premier’s son, Mohd Nazifuddin Najib, looking at buying into Eastland Equity (formerly known as Furqan Business Organisation Bhd) made its way into the jungle, making even the likes of Tiger take notice.

And making it more heroic, Nazifuddin is thwarting the bad guys Teh Soon Seng and co from coming in to Eastland Equity, a report from a news agency said. (more…)

July 9, 2013

Goldman Sachs’ US$200million Charge For 1MDB Bond Issue!

Sarawak report

One of the key names behind many of the recent deals that have been raising eyebrows in Malaysia

Sarawak Report would like to draw the attention of the United States financial regulators to what has emerged as an exceedingly large and unusual payment made during a recent off-shore bond transaction, conducted by one of its major banks.

The terms and conditions of the offer note, now in our possession, have lifted the lid on a deal that was widely criticised at the time for its lack of transparency.

This transaction, which involved the raising of US$1.75billion in bonds to buy an energy company owned by BN crony Ananda Krishnan, was issued in March 2012 by 1Malaysia Development Bhd, headed by Malaysia’s PM Najib Razak. (more…)

July 6, 2013

THE AGENDA BEHIND MACC INVESTIGATING TAIB?

Vernon Aji Kedit

The political rumour mill is in overdrive again and the grapevines are abundant with all sorts of theories. Words like ‘hidden hands’, ‘UMNO plot’, ‘sandiwara’ and even ‘Salah Anwar lagi’ are being touted and bandied liberally in every coffee shop and cafe throughout the country.

One thing is for sure – Taib has not spoken a single word. Very smart of him. This intensifies the mystery surrounding the very sudden and unexpected move by MACC to investigate him. But the question on everyone’s lips is WHY?

Now let’s look at this very interesting development chronologically and logically. (more…)

Hidden hands from UMNO push for Sarawak CM to step down now ?

Taib talks to reporters in this filepix.DIANA ROSE

Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud’s loyalists believe “hidden hands” within the country are behind recent mounting pressure for their chief to relinquish his post with immediate effect.

They were eager to remove Taib as he was seen as a stumbling block to their agenda to make Sarawak “politically and economically a free for all state,” according to Parti Pesaka Bumuputera Bersatu (PBB) leaders, who declined to specify if the hidden hands came from Kuching or Kuala Lumpur.

Responding to reports that Taib might serve a full five-year term in office instead of mid-term, political secretary to the Chief Minister Abdullah Saidol told The Star Online that the accusations hurled at Taib recently were an integrated effort to tarnish the image of his boss. (more…)

July 3, 2013

‘Taib family firms got land at far less than market price’

Filed under: Corruption,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:00 AM
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Ram Anand

Seven companies linked to the family members of Sarawak Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud have acquired state lands at prices much cheaper than their market valuation, the Sarawak DAP claims.

Bandar Kuching DAP Chong Chieng Jen, who is also Sarawak DAP chief, said the parcels of the land were worth about RM1 billion, but were alienated to the companies at a total price of about RM200 million only.

The lands, located across the state, have a total area of 94,773 acres, and were all acquired between 2000 and 2008. (more…)

July 1, 2013

MACC plays down Taib’s ‘naughty, dishonest’ remark

Filed under: Corruption,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:01 AM
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Nigel Aw

Sarawak Chief Minister’s Abdul Taib Mahmud’s statement that he will not cooperate with the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) because it is “naughty and dishonest” is a non-issue, the MACC said today.

This was because the chief minister of 32 years has denied making this statement, MACC investigation division secretariat assistant commissioner Lim Bee Kean told a press conference at the commission’s headquarters in Putrajaya today.

“The question of Taib Mahmud not cooperating (with us) does not arise. This is because he has denied saying that the MACC was naughty and dishonest and that he will not cooperate (with the MACC),” Lim said. (more…)

June 3, 2013

Malaysian exchangers helped hide paper trail for world’s largest cyber money-launderer

Filed under: Corruption,Human rights — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:00 AM
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The Financial Times

The Financial Times(FT) has reported that exchangers, located in less regulated countries including Malaysia, Russia and Nigeria, had converted real dollars into LR, the virtual currency of Liberty Reserve.

Money exchangers based in Malaysia played a key role in hiding the paper trail for Liberty Reserve, the global, virtual “bank of choice” for identity thieves, drug traffickers, computer hackers and child pornographers, whose founders and workers were indicted this week by US authorities for being the world’s largest cyber money laundering operation.

Citing US authorities, The Financial Times (FT) has reported that exchangers, located in less regulated countries including Malaysia, Russia and Nigeria, had converted real dollars into LR, the virtual currency of Liberty Reserve that helped to erase its digital footprint and made it practically impossible to trace back to the user — a fact that won the Costa Rica-based currency exchanger over one million subscribers worldwide. (more…)

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