Hornbill Unleashed

July 22, 2017

Why do people have sex in public?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

I was standing on the balcony of my apartment in SS2, Petaling Jaya, last week, sipping my hot coffee when I almost spurted it out upon seeing a couple humping each other on the stairway of the opposite flat.

The man was naked from the waist down and the woman was in her baju kurungwith her skirt lifted up.

When I spoke to my children about it, they were not surprised. Apparently, similar incidents happen every now and then in our neighbouring block.

People behaving friskily in their respective units; making-out sessions; men and women walking around in their undergarments – all done in well-lit rooms on the lower floors with all the windows wide open, ready for public viewing.

Recollecting the infamous incident at Bangsar South not too long ago where a couple were caught indulging in sexual intercourse out on their balcony in broad daylight, I suppose this kind of indecent behaviour is not really as shocking as we think it is. (more…)

Can and should vernacular schools be abolished?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin Abu Bakar opened an old can of worms when he asked at a question-and-answer session whether “anyone in politics dared abolish vernacular schools, even if it was a popular proposition to promote unity in the country”.

In case anyone is wondering why the sports minister is engaging in this dialogue, remember that he was given the task of coming up with TN50, a plan to transform the future of Malaysia during the period 2020-2050.

There are two parts that need to be answered here. First, how is it possible to abolish vernacular schools, and also by extension religious schools, so that there is only a single educational system in the country which is taught in the language the government decides and a curriculum it sets?

Two, is it really desirable at this stage to ban vernacular schools? (more…)

Journalism and the coming general election

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

In the run-up to the 2008 general election, the GE12, the daily chatter in the newsroom of my newspaper was invariably about voting for the incumbent ruling coalition or the opposition.

Out of curiosity, I asked one young reporter, who was usually the most animated, about the forthcoming polls: “Have you registered as a voter?” To my utter shock she had not. It’s almost like a practising vegan offering me a new recipe for cooking tandoori chicken.

“Then you are not qualified to write about elections,” I told her. End of argument. Her jaws dropped and she said no more. Maybe because I said the right thing. I don’t know. But she remains my good friend till today.

There are some who see the role of journalism as supporting the status quo and the establishment. To do anything else would be a sin. After all, their rice bowls depend on it. On the flipside, there are yet others who would do the exact opposite. That again would also be a sin. That would be too self-righteous and equally biased. (more…)

Sarawak seeks deferment of tourism tax

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Sarawak seeks deferment of tourism taxSARAWAK wants the federal tourism tax to be deferred until next year, the Borneo Post reported Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg as saying.

This is because tour agents and hotels have secured bookings and payment for packages into early 2018.

“Give us time, till early next year. Then, we can implement the tourism tax,” said Abang Johari in Samarahan, without giving a deadline.

The tax, passed in Parliament earlier this year, will see both local and foreign tourists being charged a levy for accommodation. It was originally slated to come into effect on July 1, but has been postponed to August 1.

Sabah and Sarawak, however, have agreed to put a hold on the tax until an implementation mechanism is developed. (more…)

Sarawak, Indonesian consulate forming joint committee to tackle rabies outbreak

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas says the formation of the joint committee is very essential as it acts as a venue to exchange information on all contagious diseases from both sides of the border. ― Picture by Sulok TawieSarawak and the Indonesia consulate-general here have agreed to form a joint committee to tackle the spread of rabies from West Kalimantan into Sarawak, Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas said today.

The agreement was reached at a meeting between a delegation from Sarawak which he led with the Indonesian consulate general led by its head of mission Jahar Gultom.

Uggah said details of the tasks to be undertaken by the joint committee are being worked out.

“We have asked the joint committee to come up with the details by this Monday,” he said when contacted by Malay Mail Online.

He said the formation of the joint committee is very essential as it acts as a venue to exchange information on all contagious diseases from both sides of the border. (more…)

Malaysia’s turning point

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Liew-Chin-Tong-malaysia-turning-pointWhen the dust settles after the next general election, especially if a Pakatan Harapan (PH) government is installed, history is likely to mark July 14, 2017 as the turning point that made the difference.

A press conference was held at 12.30am on July 14 at the PKR headquarters. PH unveiled its symbol, leadership line-up and initial policy platforms.

The historical moment could be experienced in many ways. It was the end of a four-hour meeting; the joyous conclusion of months of agony on how to effectively consolidate PPBM with the existing PH parties, namely PKR, DAP and Amanah; and the grand reconciliation of an acrimonious two-decade political battle between Anwar Ibrahim and Dr Mahathir Mohamad, and the forces aligned with them.

Now BN can be defeated

Regardless, a new air prevails everywhere. There is a sudden surge of hope that Prime Minister Najib Razak, Umno and Barisan Nasional (BN) can now be defeated. (more…)

Sarawak to go ahead with the construction of Trusan dam

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Openg (centre) with his wife Datuk Amar Juma'ani Tuanku Bujang (second left), Tan Sri Dr James Masing and Datuk Amar Abdul Hamed Sepawi (right) cutting a cake at the Hari Raya gathering, July 21,2017. ― Picture by Sulok TawieThe Sarawak state government will proceed with building the Trusan dam in Limbang Division after the completion of the Baleh dam in Kapit Division, Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Openg said today.

He said unlike other mega dams in Sarawak which are only generating electricity, the proposed Trusan dam will supply both electricity and water once it is completed.

“The Trusan dam will not supply electricity and water to northern Sarawak, but we will also supply these two commodities to our neighbours Brunei and Sabah,” he said at the Hari Raya gathering organised by Sarawak Energy Berhad (SEB) here.

However, the chief minister did not provide details on the proposed Trusan dam, except to say that SEB would undertake its construction.

“In other words, the revenue stream of the Trusan dam will be endless,” he said. (more…)

KJ: Is there political courage to abolish vernacular schools?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin Abu Bakar today questioned whether anyone in politics dared abolish vernacular schools, even if it was a popular proposition to promote unity in the country.

“To abolish vernacular schools, who has the political courage to do that?

“It’s an ideal because you want to have everybody going to the same school as an element of unity… but it’s a tough one.

“At the moment I don’t see either side (of the political divide) doing this,” Khairy said during the TN50x session organised by Petronas staff in Kuala Lumpur today.

TN50x sessions are privately organised offshoots of Putrajaya’s ongoing Transformasi Nasional 2050 (TN50) dialogue sessions, which provide a platform for the public to state their aspirations for 2050. (more…)

Sarawak moves to shield Sri Aman after rabies-positive dog found there

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

There have been a total of 516 cases of dog bites reported in Sarawak since April, with the state declaring 18 areas as outbreak areas. — Reuters pic The Sarawak Health Department has started rabies control activities in Sri Aman, Sarawak after a dog was detected to be rabies positive in the Punggu Mawang there.

It’s local daily, The Borneo Post reported the State Disaster Management Committee secretariat saying 26 cases of dog bites were reported in Sri Aman alone yesterday.

The number of cases is almost similar to Serian, which reported 29 cases of dog bites yesterday. Serian has already been declared as a rabies outbreak area.

There have been a total of 516 cases of dog bites reported in the state since April, with the state declaring 18 areas as outbreak areas.

The rabies outbreak in Sarawak has so far claimed four lives. A fifth case was also reported yesterday.

In a separate news article, The Borneo Post also reported 13 individuals have died from rabies in Kalimantan Barat, the Indonesian region bordering Serian in Sarawak, since July 11.

Source : The Malay Mail Online


An attack on the royalty from behind a mask of anonymity

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

He first turned heads in July last year by asserting that there was an American conspiracy to defraud 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB). His attack came after then US attorney-general Loretta Lynch’s press conference on Department of Justice (DOJ) made public its findings on 1MDB.

He gave a one-on-one interview with the national news agency Bernama’s Azman Ujang where he made a host of other statements which were subsequently pooh-poohed by legal luminaries. Claiming to be a lawyer from Brisbane, he also appeared on Bernama television with former DAP vice-chairman Tunku Aziz Ibrahim and continued his tirade against the DOJ.

After a year’s hiatus, he has apparently returned, re-emerged with an allegedly nom de plume, but this time with a difference. Instead of DOJ and Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s detractors, he has turned his attention on the royalty.

Over the past five days, he has twice attacked the royal households, Johor specifically. These verbal doses transcend all acceptable boundaries of fair comment. To ignore them as academic or journalistic pieces would do injustice to the many of who cherish not to misuse or abuse the little freedom that is left. (more…)

Why no rabies vaccine? Sarawak asks Putrajaya amid outbreak

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

The Sarawak Health Department is now working to control the spread of rabies in Sri Aman. — Picture by Marcus Pheong
The Sarawak government wants Putrajaya to explain the unavailability of rabies vaccine in the state following the outbreak in Serian, which has since claimed four lives.

Sarawak Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian said he has sent a query to the Ministry of Health, and promised to raise the matter in Parliament if he doesn’t get a satisfactory answer soon, The Borneo Post reported today.

“I can’t answer you, the ministry has to respond. I have already sent them the questionnaire,” Dr Sim was quoted saying.

The outbreak has so far claimed four lives and a fifth person is currently at the Sarawak General Hospital.

Dr Sim was reported saying the man was given three doses of the rabies vaccine before his condition became critical. (more…)

Sabah, Sarawak lawyers to declare stand on CJ extension

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Sabah, Sarawak lawyers to declare stand on CJ extensionLAWYERS from Sabah and Sarawak will make their stand known on the government’s decision to extend the tenure of the chief justice and the Court of Appeal president, Free Malaysia Today reports.

A central committee, representing lawyers from Sabah and Sarawak, will meet tomorrow, said Ranbir Singh Sangha, president of the Advocates’ Association of Sarawak.

Sabah Law Association president Brenndon Keith Soh also told FMT that a decision “in due course”.

Sarawak lawyers are expected to meet with their peninsula counterpart, the Malaysian Bar Council, later this month to further discuss the issue. (more…)

Umnoputra, not bumi status, is holy grail of Malay politics

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

“When one treats people with benevolence, justice, and righteousness, and reposes confidence in them, the army will be united in mind and all will be happy to serve their leaders.”

– Sun Tzu, ‘The Art of War’

What exactly does “bumiputera” status mean? Recent polls suggest that most Malays identify themselves as Muslim first – which would make a certain opposition leader who considers himself “Malay” first an outlier – which basically means that religion as opposed to race has become the defining concept of supremacy in this country.

Just last year, the Peranakan Chinese community hoped to achieve “bumi” status. As reported in the press, Ronald Gan, the chairperson of the Baba and Nyonya Association of Malaysia, in dismissing the perception that all the community wanted was “privileges”, claimed – “We are not interested in that, we just want recognition because we are already living a Malay lifestyle.” The aspiration of this community was supported by none other than Chief Minister Idris Haron. (more…)

Malaysia Airlines’ latest losses occurred during Najib’s time

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

During electioneering, it is common to make political capital out of everything. Malaysia Airlines Bhd was not spared when Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak blamed one of his “predecessors” at a Hari Raya open house earlier this month for “horrendous decisions”.

He was very obviously referring to former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad, although he did not name him. But to be fair, Mahathir was not responsible for the latest disaster at Malaysia Airlines. Paradoxically this happened largely during Najib’s time.

This latest disaster which resulted in losses of billions of ringgit and required a RM6 billion injection of capital and privatisation in 2014 by Khazanah Nasional Bhd, the previous major shareholder and now sole shareholder, resulted after Malaysia Airlines was turned around in 2007.

What Najib was referring to was the previous disastrous privatisation of Malaysia Airlines, to a Mahathir-Daim crony Tajudin Ramli who bought a controlling near 30% stake in the airline in 1994 for RM1.8 billion. After mismanaging the airline into the ground, he sold back his stake in the airline to the government – at the same price – in 2000. The market price was less than half that. (more…)

Will my daughter be a racist if she goes to national school?

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

Abolish and close down fully residential Malay schools, said Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin. This was the headline that dominated the news media early this week and everyone was talking about it.

Khairy said it in the context of the abolition of all vernacular schools and having a single national education system so that it could promote integration and nationalism. Basically, the move is supposed to create a single and united Malaysia.

He had made the comment during a TN50x session with a group of Petronas employees who had said that they wanted all vernacular Chinese and Tamil schools to be abolished. Hence, Khairy said that it would mean all Malay schools need to be shut down as well.

Sure, we can debate whether he had raised the issue during a TN50x session as a political strategy because the general election is coming up. But that is not what my intention is for this week’s column. What I do want to talk about is the lack of integration in our school system. (more…)

Will Dr M make ultimate U-turn if Harapan wins GE?

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

Many breathed a sigh of relief after Pakatan Harapan finally came out with its line-up but there are those, especially among hardcore supporters of the Reformasi movement, who are slightly uneasy with seeing former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad sitting as chairperson of the coalition.

Their concerns are understandable. After all, this was the man responsible for throwing PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim behind bars in the first place, they contend.

Even those who do not really follow politics know that it was Mahathir’s sacking of Anwar as deputy prime minister that gave birth to the Reformasi movement in 1998.

So can he be trusted to ensure that Anwar would indeed become the country’s eighth prime minister should Harapan emerge as the victor in the 14th general election? (more…)

Fears of dirty GE14 with low sign-up rate, ‘tainted’ electoral roll

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

Fears of dirty GE14 with low sign-up rate, ‘tainted’ electoral roll HUNGER strikes, protests and sieges. These are some of the “drama” at Election Commission offices nationwide since April but which have scarcely made the headlines.

The reason for all the mayhem is the new electoral roll – of individuals qualified to vote in the next general election, which is less than a year away.

Pakatan Harapan and electoral reform activists said the EC has stopped its usual practice of issuing them copies of the roll, which is updated every quarter.

The last official figures from the EC on new voters were issued a year ago in a mainstream English daily.

In October last year, EC chairman Mohd Hashim Abdullah said only 354,141 new voters have registered between the 13th general election in 2013 and June 2016. (more…)

Dr M: 1MDB scandal even led Kit Siang to quote Quran

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

Former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad last night expressed his amazement at how the 1MDB scandal had even prompted a DAP leader to quote the Quran.

The Pakatan Harapan chairperson said Lim Kit Siang, Gelang Patah MP, quoted verses from the holy book when attorney-attorney Mohamed Apandi Ali chided him (Mahathir) for criticising the latter’s inaction against Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak.

“I was shocked to hear Kit Siang quote the Quran after Apandi said he only feared God when discharging his duties,” Mahathir said during his 20-minute speech at Bersatu’s aidilfitri open house in Penang last night.

“This seems to be the best kind of dakwah (preaching) and we do not need to dakwah to Kit Siang. He has shown that just because of politics and Apandi … he (Kit Siang) can read the Quran,” he said tongue-in-cheek, with much laughter from the 2,000 strong crowd who attended the dinner at the Long Say building, on Jalan Burma. (more…)

Learn from Sri Lanka’s mega Chinese debt fiasco, says DAP rep

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

Malaysia must learn from Sri Lanka’s experience before it is too late, and ensure the feasibility of all mega projects are thoroughly studied and they are awarded through open tender, said DAP’s Damansara Utama assemblyperson Yeo Bee Yin today.

Citing the huge debts incurred by Sri Lanka after taking in money from China to fund underutilised mega infrastructure, Yeo said there are chances that reckless mega infrastructure constructions will send Malaysia into a deep debt trap.

“Instead of investing in education and health care, Sri Lanka spends most of its revenue now to pay off the debts to China that was used to finance the now underutilised mega infrastructure, from port to airport.

Sri Lanka has a new airport that is called the world’s emptiest airport. The Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport only handles a few flights a day. (more…)

PSM is right about Mahathir

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

PSM is the whipping boy for urban political elites who claim they want change, but all they want is a change in the seat of power in Putrajaya. What happens if the current grand Umno poohbah vacates his seat? You can bet your bottom ringgit that the forces who oppose the current Umno president within and outside Umno will become embroiled in a fractious war that would eventually see the coronation of a new Umno strongman.

What happens if Pakatan Harapan is unable to maintain the status quo or worse, loses badly in the next general election? What would this mean for the forces of change in this country? Would the oppositional intelligentsia and their online apparatchiks blame the “dumb rural folk” for their losses or worse, scapegoat whatever proxy is convenient to shift the blame to?

Harapan has a track record of not choosing its allies intelligently and banking on political personalities to hold disparate oppositional forces together. Remember when PAS (led by Tok Guru Nik Aziz Nik Mat) was supposed to be part of the coalition which would lead Malaysia to a new dawn. (more…)

July 21, 2017

S4S: Wear red to celebrate Sarawak Day

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Sarawak for Sarawakians (S4S) has called on Sarawakians, particularly those living in Kuching, to wear red tomorrow (July 22) in conjunction with Sarawak Day.

Its spokesperson Peter John Jaban said this would be a show of solidarity among Sarawakians “Sarawakians must stand together to show that we support the state government’s effort in fighting for Sarawak’s rights.

“Come July 22 (tomorrow), let’s all wear red going to coffeeshops, shopping or even going to the garden,” he told a press conference here yesterday.

He also said S4S and Sarawak Dayak Iban Association (Sadia) would also be holding a peaceful gathering at the Museum Gardens from 8.30am onwards.

The organising chairman, Bill Jugah, thus urged the public to join in the activity, adding the police had been informed of the gathering and were supporting it.

“Bring along your families and friends in your red attire, and let us all have a fun time at the Museum Gardens in conjunction with Sarawak Day.”

Source : The Borneo Post Online


Election Commission wins appeal on dubious voters case

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

The Court of Appeal ruled today that the Election Commission (EC) need not provide documents containing voter information from the 1994 and 2003 electoral rolls to the Selangor government.

This is in relation to the Selangor government’s application to file for information on 136,272 registered voters in the state without addresses who had been included in a redelineation exercise proposed by the EC last year.

The Selangor government also lost its appeal to cross-examine EC chairperson Mohd Hashim Abdullah.

The three-member bench led by Justice Mohd Zawawi Mohd Salleh unanimously allowed the EC’s appeal and made no order on costs.

“We have allowed the appeal (by the EC) to set aside the High Court order, and dismissed the appeal by the Selangor government. We have also affirmed the decision by the High Court (in not allowing the cross-examination),” said Justice Mohd Zawawi. (more…)

Sarawak’s legal team to find out why Malaysia Agreement signed

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

abangjohari-ma63The Sarawak legal team going to London will research on the objectives of the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) and the Cobbold Commission Report.

It will also look into references related to the state’s rights under MA63, Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg said.

The Borneo Post quoted him as saying that in upholding the rights of Sarawak in Malaysia, the uppermost consideration was adherence to the spirit of the Malaysia Agreement and the Federal Constitution.

Abang Johari said this at a Hari Raya Aidilfitri gathering organised by the Islamic Welfare Trust Board of Limbang and the Islamic Welfare Trust Board of Lawas on Tuesday.

“In any agreement, there is always the unwritten objective behind what is agreed upon. We want to find out the authority on the agreement as a treaty,” he was quoted as saying. (more…)

No new cases of rabies, situation under control, says Health Minister

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam today said no new cases of the mad dog disease or rabies have been reported in Malaysia. — Picture by Yusof Mat IsaNo new cases of the mad dog disease or rabies have been reported in the country, according to Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S Subramaniam.

Right now, the number of rabies cases recorded remained at five and the situation is under control, he said.

On the case reported in Melaka, he confirmed that there was no infection of the disease as the six-year-old child who allegedly showed symptoms of rabies was tested negative and had been discharged from Melaka Hospital.

Speaking to reporters after opening Kota Melaka MIC division’s annual general meeting here today, Dr Subramaniam said the ministry, together with the Department of Veterinary Services (DVS), would continue to run inspections on stray dogs, as well as pet dogs and cats, in a bid to control the spread of the disease. (more…)

Sarawak seeks collaboration with Indonesia to tackle spread of rabies

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Openg (2nd right) watching a dog being vaccinated at the Kota Padawan community hall July 20, 2017. — Picture by Sulok TawieDeputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas will lead a team for a meeting with Indonesian consulate here tomorrow to tackle the spread of rabies in the state.

The meeting is expected to discuss a possibility of creating a buffer zone between the villages of Sarawak and West Kalimantan, at border areas where cases of rabies are known to have occurred.

“We want to collaborate with the Indonesian authorities to tackle the spread of rabies because based on records that we have there were dogs that came from the other side to our villages,” Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Openg said today.

Apart from Uggah, Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian will also attend the team meeting with the Indonesian consulate. (more…)

EC wins redelineation exercise appeal against Selangor

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Selangor state executive councillor Elizabeth Wong reportedly said she was shocked by the court ruling on the allegedly unconstitutional redelineation exercise and added that the state will discuss with its lawyers before deciding on the next course of action. ― Picture by Yusof Mat IsaThe Election Commission (EC) today won an appeal to not produce one of the six types of information sought by the Selangor government over the alleged unconstitutional redelineation exercise.

A three-member bench at the Court of Appeal led by Justice Mohd Zawawi Mohd Salleh said the EC is not required to provide a database of the locality codes and locality names of the 136,272 Selangor voters for the last two redelineation exercises of Peninsular Malaysia in 2003 and 1994.

“We allow the EC’s appeal and set aside the High Court’s order,” Mohd Zawawi was quoted as saying in Free Malaysia Today.

The court also dismissed the state government’s appeal to examine EC chairman Mohd Hashim Abdullah. It provided no reason for doing so. (more…)

Sabah, Sarawak lawyers to make stand on judges’ appointments

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Raus-Sharif-Zulkefli-Ahmad-Makinudin-1Lawyer groups from Sabah and Sarawak will soon make their stand known on the government’s decision to extend the tenure of two top judges.

President of the Advocates’ Association of Sarawak, Ranbir Singh Sangha, said the central committee would meet on Saturday to deliberate on the matter.

“We will make our position known after the meeting,” he told FMT.

Ranbir said Sarawak representatives would meet with the association’s counterpart from the peninsula, the Malaysian Bar Council, later this month to further discuss the issue.

Meanwhile, Sabah Law Association president Brenndon Keith Soh said the group would make a decision “in due course”. (more…)

‘Voters more worried about bread-and-butter issues than 1MDB’

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Voters are five times more concerned about bread-and butter-issues than corruption scandals such as 1MDB, a survey by PKR-linked Invoke has found.

In the survey, 47.7 percent of Malays, 29.1 percent of Chinese, and 47.6 percent of Indians are concerned about the cost of living and the impact of the goods and services tax.

In addition, 10.4 percent of Malays, 4.9 percent of Chinese, and 6.6 percent of Indians also expressed concerns about employment and wages.

The economy, meanwhile, is a cause for concern for four percent of Malays, 16.5 percent of Chinese, and 8.9 percent of Indians.

In comparison, corruption and scandals only weighed on the minds of 13.6 percent of Malays, 15.1 percent of Chinese, and 9.9 percent of Indians. (more…)

Scrap proposal to list trainee teachers’ living allowance as loan — PKR

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

The National Higher Education Fund Corporation’s (PTPTN) proposal to list the living allowances of trainee teachers as a loan commencing with the 2018 intake is setting alarm bells, particularly in Sarawak, which is striving to increase the number of local-born teachers.

PKR vice chairman Boniface Willy Tumek, who is also PKR Mas Gading branch chairman, said the cost of living allowance is presently given to trainee teachers as non-repayable allowance.

“PKR Sarawak is greatly disappointed by the proposal

which was announced by Education Minister Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid on July 18. It is clear to all that this is a major obstacle in the path of all who aspire to become teachers.

“A good number of trainees in teachers’ training institutes (IPG) throughout the country come from middle and low-income families and the non-repayable living allowance they are receiving now greatly reduces the burden of the trainees’ parents. (more…)

RoS urges DAP to abide order to hold CEC re-election

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

File picture of DAP's CEC at a press conference after their meeting in Kuala Lumpur July 1, 2016. The RoS urges DAP to hold a re-election for its Central Executive Committee. — Picture by Syed Jaymal ZahiidThe Registrar of Societies wants the DAP to abide by its instructions for the party hold a re-election to choose office bearers for its Central Executive Committee.

Its director-general Datuk Mohammad Razin Abdullah said if the party failed to do so, DAP’s CEC will not be recognised and that the committee cannot function legitimately.

He said RoS maintained its decision that the DAP must hold a re-election which is legitimate and transparent for a new CEC, enabling the delegates to elect 20 valid and recognised CEC members.

“If the DAP remains stubborn, any decision made by the CEC and office-bearers will be considered illegal,” he said when contacted here today. (more…)

Dr M: I’ll only contest GE14 if times are ‘desperate’

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

PPBM chairman Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said he will only contest in the next elections if desperately needed. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad downplayed the possibility of him contesting the next polls, saying he will only do so if it is desperately needed.

In a Sinar Online report, the Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) chairman said the fledgling party has already many capable and experienced candidates.

“I have not finalised whether I will contest or not, but only in desperate times I will do so. Currently it does not look desperate,” he was quoted saying in an event in Kulim, Kedah.

“We have many candidates to contest and they all have their own strengths,” he added. (more…)

S’gor cries foul over destruction of electoral rolls

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

The Selangor government today cried foul on being told only today from lawyers representing the Election Commission (EC) in court that it had destroyed the electoral rolls of 1993 and 2004.

The electoral rolls of those two years were used in the redelineation exercise.

Selangor executive council member Elizabeth Wong said the state government was surprised by the revelation made in court today.

“As a practice, we (the Selangor government) do not destroy government documents and we have documents from Merdeka days. But today, we are surprised with the EC’s revelation.” (more…)

No academic freedom in public varsities without autonomy

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

ali-salman-ideas-1The Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS) has called for policies to bring about greater autonomy among Malaysia’s public universities over their own administrative affairs, in order to make academic freedom in these institutions possible.

‘’At the moment, our universities are not free to make independent decisions on governance, financial and admission matters,” IDEAS director of research Ali Salman said.

“The hiring of vice-chancellors, drafting of university budgets and determination of student numbers and profiles are subjected to the ministry of higher education’s control.”

“The more dependent a university is on other institutions, the more questionable the integrity of knowledge generated will be. In order to safeguard academic freedom, true autonomy is the way forward for Malaysian universities,’’ he said in statement. (more…)

Islamic institutions must focus on women and children

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

The issue of our rights and responsibilities as women in Islam has often been distorted and become a subject of grave misunderstanding. This is partly due to the misinterpretation of Islamic teachings perpetuated by misogyny and patriarchy.

Islamic laws are derived from the Quran, which is often regarded as the words of Allah and the sayings of the Prophet (pbuh) based on his deeds and endorsements.

However, over the past several years, we have witnessed how certain laws have been upheld with a preference that contradicts basic human rights and common decency.

The recent survey conducted by Sisters in Islam’s (SIS) legal service, Telenisa, sheds some light on the distressing situation currently faced by a number of Muslim women in our country. (more…)

INVOKE urges Pakatan to reposition as bread-and-butter issues pip scandals in survey

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

Image result for INVOKE urges Pakatan to reposition as bread-and-butter issues pip scandals in surveyInterest in controversies and scandals surrounding the government has waned drastically while worry over living costs has surged, according to a study by the PKR-linked Invoke Centre for Policy Initiatives (INVOKE).

The findings will be of particular concern to the federal Opposition Pakatan Harapan, which has so far relied on such playing up scandals and controversies to foment discontent with its rivals, the ruling Barisan Nasional.

INVOKE echoed the view today, saying Pakatan Harapan should shift its focus towards proposing policy solutions rather than continuing to use attack politics as its main thrust.

“The voters named economic issues affecting the people as the main concern, way above issues of scandals and corruption, at a ratio of 5:1,” PKR’s Rafizi Ramli said when announcing the findings of the month-long survey today. (more…)

Mahathir: Jobs, scholarships await if PH sweeps into power

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

mahathir-2Dr Mahathir Mohamad today promised more scholarships for students and more job opportunities if Pakatan Harapan (PH) sweeps into power in the coming general election.

The chairman of the opposition pact said once it gained control of Putrajaya, it would fix the economy and restore its financial status.

“Believe us when we say we can do all this, as we have experience in administrating a country. That is why we have formed PH,” Mahathir told a 1,000-strong crowd at the Penang PPBM Hari Raya open house here today.

Mahathir said PH wanted to work for the people and help them shoulder their burden, especially when it came to the rising cost of living.

He said he knew the ruling government would do anything to win, including blocking opposition candidates from contesting.

“But the people should realise that the vote for PH is a vote for themselves as Malaysians, as PH can administer well, redevelop our country and work hard to clear our debts without burdening the rakyat,” Mahathir said.

Source : FMT Online by Predeep Nambiar


More indictments to come in Scorpene case, say NGOs

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

More French indictments are expected over alleged kickbacks from the 2002 sale of two Scorpene-class submarines to Malaysia, claim NGOs Suaram and C4.

“We understand from our French lawyers that several more indictments are expected, before the probe wraps up and is brought before an open court,” Suaram director Sevan Doraisamy and C4 director Cynthia Gabriel said in a joint statement today.

Indictments under French law are not the same as indictments or charges as understood in American or British common law.

France has a two-tiered court system, and according to Gabriel, the Scorpene case is at the first stage, where an examining magistrate is probing the case.

Once the probe is completed, the examining magistrate can then recommend prosecution for those indicted in the case. (more…)

Who will be prime minister if Pakatan Harapan wins GE14?

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

Mahathir-Mohamad-azmin-ali-muhyiddin-yassin-pakatan-harapan-1The likely scenario, should Pakatan Harapan win the 14th General Election, is that Dr Mahathir Mohamad becomes prime minister.

He will then work for the release from prison of Anwar Ibrahim and handover power to his former deputy prime minister-turned nemesis-turned compatriot.

That is the scenario painted by a report in The Straits Times (ST) of Singapore.

But no one has openly said that Dr Mahathir will be the prime minister if PH takes Putrajaya.

Quoting sources, the ST reported that the various factions across the disparate four-party PH coalition acknowledged behind closed doors that Dr Mahathir was their best choice. (more…)

Kua: After ‘betrayal’, Harapan now answerable for Dr M’s scandals

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

A veteran human rights activist has described the appointment of Dr Mahathir Mohamad as chairperson of Pakatan Harapan, or in the former premier’s own words – “top dog” of the coalition – as the biggest betrayal of the reformasi movement.

Kua Kia Soong said it was bad enough when Harapan made an alliance with the “unrepentant former autocrat”.

“Well, now that Mahathir has been made the chairperson of the coalition, Harapan will have to answer for all his scandals.

“Harapan must be prepared for more than the RM30 billion forex (foreign exchange) losses incurred during Mahathir’s term,” added the Suaram adviser in a statement. (more…)

Lawyer urges magistrate to look into fundamental rights

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

A magistrate’s court in Kuala Lumpur has been urged to look into the issue of fundamental rights before deciding whether there is a case or otherwise involving several PKR leaders who took part in the Kita Lawan demonstration in March 2015.

PKR’s Teja assemblyperson Chang Lih Kang, Semambu assemblyperson Lee Chean Chung and former political secretary to PKR vice-president Tian Chua, Rozan Azen Mat Rasip, have been charged under the Peaceful Assembly Act (PAA) for taking part in the rally.

Lawyer Eric Paulsen represented Chang and Rozan, while Dexter Mah acted for Lee.

In court today, Paulsen argued that a constitutional issue was at stake. (more…)

Bersih: Malaysia embarrassing itself by detaining Bangladeshi activist

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

The Bersih 2.0 steering committee members are seen in a file picture. Bersih 2.0 today called for authorities to release Bangladeshi human rights activist Adilur Rahman Khan. — Picture by Saw Siow FengBersih 2.0 has called for local authorities to release Bangladeshi human rights activist Adilur Rahman Khan immediately after the latter was detained by immigration officers this morning on entry into the country.

Its steering committee said detaining Adilur was “an embarrassment to Malaysia on the world stage”.

“We demand an explanation from the director-general of the Department of Immigration and the Home Ministry on the reason for the police order to bar Mr Adilur from entry into Malaysia and his subsequent ongoing detention for over 12 hours.

“We further call for Mr Adilur’s immediate and unconditional release,” it said in a statement. (more…)

Minister: Amendment to Legal Aid Act gives underage victims of sex crimes access to legal advice

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

Datuk Azalina Othman Said said a new amendment to the Legal Aid Act will enable underage victims of sexual crimes and their family members to get access to legal advice from the Legal Aid Department and lawyers approved by the department. ― Picture by Choo Choy MayThe amendment to the Legal Aid Act 1971, which is expected to be tabled at the next Parliament session, will enable underage victims of sexual crimes and their family members to get access to legal advice from the Legal Aid Department and lawyers approved by the department.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said said the amendment would create a term of Legal Companion, in which legal officers from the department would give the necessary aid and advice to the victims in accordance with the Sexual Offences Against Children Act 2017.

“However, this will not include the court process, only to introduce and to explain to them about the law,” she told reporters at a luncheon with senior new editors here today.

She said the proposed amendment was a continuity to the government’s efforts to introduce the Sexual Offences Against Children Act 2017 and the newly established Special Child Sexual Crimes Court. (more…)

Labour MP tables motion on 1MDB in UK Parliament

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

A United Kingdom opposition MP has tabled an early day motion (EDM) in the House of Commons highlighting the 1MDB issue.

The motion by Ann Clwyd from the Labour Party stated that the House was alarmed by the allegation of misappropriation that supposedly took place in 1MDB, and encouraged the Malaysian government to allow international observers to be present in the 14th general election.

“(This is) to demonstrate its (Malaysia’s) commitment to free and fair elections, particularly given Malaysia will be taking up the Chair-in-Office of the Commonwealth in 2020.

“(The House) calls on the government to ensure that allegations of misappropriated funds from Malaysia having been used to buy assets in the UK is thoroughly investigated,” the motion read. (more…)

July 20, 2017

Reveal progress on Sarawak’s push for autonomy, govt told

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:03 AM

see-sarawak-1Sarawak PKR vice-chairman See Chee How says the government must reveal the progress of the state’s push for autonomy and devolution of powers from Putrajaya.

In a statement today, he acknowledged Sarawak’s achievements over the past year, especially the establishment of the state’s education ministry which he called “the most significant progress”.

This was despite 70% of Sarawak’s 1,454 schools being categorised as “dilapidated and in need of immediate attention”.

He added that Sarawak Education Minister Michael Manyin was focused on resolving the problem of dilapidated schools and improving English proficiency among schoolchildren. (more…)

Reveal progress of Sarawak’s push for autonomy, devolution of powers at 722 Sarawak Day — Rep

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:03 AM

Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg is urged to reveal the progress of Sarawak’s achievement in the push for autonomy and devolution of powers from Putrajaya, at the 722 Sarawak Day celebration this Saturday (July 22).

According to Batu Lintang assemblyman See Chee How, who is state PKR vice chairman, Sarawakians are eagerly wanting to know how Sarawak has benefited from any success over the past one year, whether they have more control and jurisdiction over Sarawak’s natural resources, whether they have more administrative, legislative and fiscal power over the destiny of Sarawak, that the living standard of all Sarawakians has improved.

He said the 722 Sarawak Day should not be just another public holiday; it should be the most important day for Sarawak. However, he said its significance is measured by the realisation and success of Sarawak in exercising autonomous powers over matters in Sarawak, with Sarawakians benefitting in real terms. (more…)

Will Dr Sim be able to fulfill all planned projects, PKR man asks

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Image result for Jeffrey Mok pkrPKR Stampin branch youth deputy chairman Jeffery Mok is skeptical that Batu Kawah assemblyman Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian will be able to deliver all the development projects lined up for the area during his tenure.

Mok was referring to Dr Sim’s recent statement advising land owners in the constituency not to sell their land as it would be more valuable in view of the development projects lined up for the area.

He said among the projects planned for Batu Kawah were Batu Kawah Lagoon, Riverbank Park, police station, fire station, 1Malaysia Clinic and affordable houses that are highly anticipated and welcomed by the people of Batu Kawah.

“It would be a bonus if all of the above proposed developments can be realised in the future. The question here is how long would it take for work on any of the above development projects to complete? (more…)

Two French execs indicted for graft over Scorpene sale

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Image result for Two French execs indicted for graft over Scorpene sale

French investigators have indicted two former top executives with corruption over alleged kickbacks from the 2002 sale of two Scorpene-class submarines to Malaysia, according to sources close to the long-running inquiry.

Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported today that the two are Phillippe Japiot, former chairperson of French naval dockyards unit DCNI and Jean-Paul Perrier (in photo above), former chief executive of the French defence and electronics giant Thales.

It also reported that one of the sources said Japiot has also been indicted for “abuse of social assets” and Perrier for “complicity in the abuse of social assets.

The investigation was launched in 2010, after a complaint was filed by Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram) in France in November 2009. (more…)

Sarawak confirms fifth rabies victim in Serian

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Sarawak Veterinary Services Department personnel putting down a puppy showing symptoms of being infected by rabies virus in Kampung Lebor, Gedong, Serian, July 5, 2017. — Bernama picA 52-year-old man has become the fifth victim of rabies in the infected district of Serian in Sarawak.

Director-General of Health Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said today it was confirmed on July 18 that the man, from Kampung Remun, had contracted the disease.

He said in a website post that the man had been bitten by a dog in early May and that he developed what is believed to be symptoms of the disease on July 11 and was admitted to the Sarawak General Hospital

The man is the fifth person in Serian to have contracted rabies. Four people have died of the disease.

Source : The Malay Mail Online by Bernama


Sarawak govt increases funds to address mental health problems

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Openg said the state has increased its allocation for mental health promotions and activities. — Bernama picThe Sarawak government has increased its allocation to the state Ministry of Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood for mental health promotions and activities, said Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg.

He said it would involve an appropriate allocation of budget for all aspects of mental health promotion, especially among schoolchildren in building their resilience.

“This will help to improve mental health and to reduce suicidal behaviour in the development plans for our state,” he told reporters after opening the 29th World Congress of The International Association For Suicide Prevention (IASP) and the 21st Malaysian Conference of Psychological Medicine (MCPM) at the Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK) here today.

The chief minister said the government was particularly concerned about the impact of mental disorders like depression, anxiety, and alcohol and drug abuse since these were important contributors to suicide. (more…)

PKR Youth wants MACC, police to reopen Scorpene probe

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Image result for Scorpene probePKR Youth wants the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) and police to reopen investigations into Malaysia’s 2002 purchase of two Scorpene-class submarines from a French defence company.

“Failure of the MACC and police to investigate and take appropriate legal action on the Scorpene submarine scandal will cause the image and integrity of the agencies to be sullied, and cause people to lose faith (in those agencies),” PKR Youth deputy chief Afif Bahardin said in a statement today.

It was reported today that French investigators had indicted two former top executives with corruption over alleged kickbacks from the sale of two Scorpene-class submarines to Malaysia.

This followed an investigation launched in 2010, after a complaint was filed by Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram) in France in November 2009. (more…)

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