Hornbill Unleashed

August 1, 2015

Rail has potential to make Borneo the new Australia

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Practically every other week, there is news of people and businesses from either side of the border separating Sar­awak from West Kalimantan wanting to forge greater formal relations.

Just the past week, it was reported that a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the Dayak National Congress (DNC) and the Ulu Kapuas District Iban Association as a way to further bond kinship and business ties between peoples sharing common ethnic and cultural heritage even as they are divided by an international border.

“The Iban Dayaks in Kalimantan have managed to preserve the origi­nality of their traditions and cultures. (more…)

CM praised for willingness to listen to those affected by Baram Dam project

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11760215_885576128162614_8714360737209805135_nThe leader of Sarawak anti-dams network has expressed his appreciation to Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Adenan Satem for the latter’s willingness to listen to the voices of those affected by the building of Baram hydroelectricity project (HEP).

“I appreciate what the chief minister has done. This is a big change compared to the past administration,” Save Rivers Sarawak chairman Peter Kallang told The Borneo Post yesterday.

However on Adenan’s call to remove the blockades against HEP works being carried out in Baram, Kallang said he could not commit on calling off all those that had been set up by the affected communities since Oct 23, 2013. (more…)

Join Bersih rally with eyes wide open

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Those attending the Bersih 4.0 rally should know that there is always the possibility of provocateurs.

Those who want to attend the Bersih 4.0 should go with their eyes wide open, even after the authorities have said they will give their cooperation to ensure the rally proceeds smoothly.

This is because the authorities have clamped down on other rallies before, and there will be provocateurs joining in as well again. Furthermore, this will be the first massive overnight rally in the country, says a lawyer. (more…)

Rosmah denies ‘out to nail Zeti’ article

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Rosmah Mansor has denied an article published in the Asia Sentinel which claimed that the prime minister’s wife is seeking to oust Bank Negara governor Zeti Akthar Aziz.

“The insinuations and allegations are made with the intention to injure the reputation of Datin Sri Rosmah Mansor in her personal capacity and (as) the wife of the prime minister.

“Words used by Mr (John) Berthelsen (author of the article) are adversarial in nature as those misinformed ‘facts’ are highly skewed to connote and create a negative perception of Datin Sri Rosmah Mansor as the postings are in the public domain,” read a statement issued by the law firm Messrs Noorhajran Mohd Noor. (more…)

‘RETIREMENT PACKAGE’ ? — ZETI IN DANGER

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Prime Minister Najib Razak’s controversial wife, Rosmah Mansor, is trying to drive another powerful woman, internationally respected Bank Negara Governor Zeti Akhtar Aziz, out of the central bank, according to knowledgeable sources in Kuala Lumpur.

Rosmah is said to be enraged over leaks of her personal financial details. She also fears that Zeti has detailed information on the 1Malaysia Development Bhd. scandal that could bring down the government and the prime minister. Insiders say Rosmah, a lightning rod for criticism over her lavish spending, is the field marshal directing the defense of her beleaguered husband’s government. (more…)

Current education policies unchanged, says minister

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Education Minister Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid says current education policies will be retained. – The Malaysian Insider filepic, July 31, 2015.The Education Ministry will maintain the existing education policies, but will make some modifications if required, said its newly appointed minister, Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid today.

He said although the existing policy would be maintained, there were issues that needed to be addressed, including with respect to the increased work load for teachers recently.

“From time to time, we will improve the policies (education) but that does not mean when an Education Minister is changed, everything will change.” (more…)

Rosmah’s lawyer denies allegations in Asia Sentinel article

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Datin Rosmah Mansor's lawyer denies allegations made in an Asia Sentinel article, saying they are malicious lies. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Afif Abd Halim, July 31, 2015.A law firm acting for Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor today denied the allegations against her client in an Asia Sentinel article posted yesterday titled “Malaysian PM’s wife seeks central bank governor’s ouster” by John Berthelsen.

The legal firm representing the prime minister’s wife, Messrs Noorhajran Mohd Noor in a statement, said the allegations were deemed damning and damaging to Rosmah’s reputation.

“The insinuations and allegations are made with the intention to injure the reputation of Rosmah in her personal capacity and also as the wife to the prime minister. (more…)

Malaysian PM’s Wife Seeks Central Bank Governor’s Ouster

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Malaysian PM’s Wife Seeks Central Bank Governor’s OusterKonfrontasi

Two powerful women take center stage in spreading scandal as government clings to power

Prime Minister Najib Razak’s controversial wife, Rosmah Mansor, is trying to drive another powerful woman, internationally respected Bank Negara Governor Zeti Akhtar Aziz, out of the central bank,  according to knowledgeable sources in Kuala Lumpur.

Rosmah is said to be enraged over leaks of her personal financial details. She also fears that Zeti has detailed information on the 1Malaysia Development Bhd. (more…)

Article on Sultans getting involved in politics lands Aziz Bari in hot water

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Constitutional expert Prof Aziz Bari is being investigated under the Sedition Act for an article on Sultans being involved in politics. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Seth Akmal, July 31, 2015.Constitutional expert Prof Aziz Bari was hauled up under the Sedition Act for an article in which he argued that Sultans should not get involved in politics or in the affairs of their respective state governments.

Aziz’s lawyer Zulhazmi Shariff said his client was called up by police to give a statement today under Section 4 (1) of the Act.

This was in relation to the article Aziz penned titled “Rulers flexing muscle in several states unhealthy” which was published on May 7 in news portal Malaysiakini. (more…)

Bersih activist Mandeep Singh latest to be arrested

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Bersih 2.0 activist Mandeep Singh (centre) is the third person to be arrested today after two youth activists earlier this afternoon. – The Malaysian Insider filepic, July 31, 2015.Bersih 2.0 activist Mandeep Singh was the third person to be arrested today after two youth activists earlier this afternoon.

His lawyer Honey Tan said he was arrested at the Petaling police station at Jalan Klang Lama under Section 124(b) of the Penal Code, which pertains to activities that are detrimental to parliamentary democracy.

Tan said according to police, Mandeep’s arrest was in relation to statements made at a press conference, but it is not clear which of his statements were being investigated. (more…)

Who needs enemies when you have clueless ministers?

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The recent cabinet reshuffle sought to strengthen the country’s leadership with the dropping of 1MDB critics to make way for “team players”.

Surely, by taking vocal critics out of the equation, Prime Minister Najib Razak’s new “Dream Team” would present a more solid and unified defence against scathing attacks from politicians, media outlets and the public.

However, this does not seem to be the case especially when the team includes clueless ministers who are poor defenders of the government.

An example of such a minister would be Kota Belud’s Abdul Rahman Dahlan. (more…)

Paul Low vows to ‘protect’ task force members

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As the special task force investigating 1MDB comes under attack, with allegations that it was out to overthrow the government, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Paul Low promised to defend its members.

The special task force, comprising the police, Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission and Bank Negara, is also investigating claims that RM2.6 billion was deposited into Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s personal bank accounts.

“I was brought into the federal cabinet specifically to promote good governance and to strengthen transparency and accountability in the government. (more…)

Najib has lost the MORAL AUTHORITY to govern

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Veteran newsman A Kadir Jasin has concluded that Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak has succeeded in clinging on to power following his series of manoeuvres in the past week.

He said this in reference to Najib’s move to purge his 1MDB critics from the cabinet as well as the co-opting of Public Accounts Committee (PAC) members into the government as well as the sacking of attorney-general (AG) Abdul Gani Patail on Tuesday.

“His executive powers is more solid as his critics in Umno and the government have been ousted or silenced with the post of minister or deputy minister,” said Kadir in a blog posting today. (more…)

ocus should be on Najib and his ministers, not me, says Ambiga

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Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan says the police investigation against her is a diversion, drawing focus away from the real issue. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Kamal Ariffin, July 31, 2015.National Human Rights Society (Hakam) president Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan today said the “swift” action by the police in calling her for questioning is a “diversion” to draw the public focus away from the real issue.

Ambiga has been on the police radar after she allegedly called on the public to take to the streets to air their unhappiness about the current happenings in the country, at a press conference, following the sacking of former deputy prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin on Tuesday.

Ambiga, who is being investigated by police under Section 124C for activities that undermine parliamentary democracy, said she was dumbfounded by the investigation against her. (more…)

Civil society tells Cameron of 1MDB, racial and religious woes in Malaysia

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1MDB debts were among the issues brought to British PM David Cameron's attention during his visit to Malaysia yesterday. – Reuters pic, July 31, 2015.Corruption issues, 1Malaysia Development Berhad’s (1MDB) debts, racism and religious intolerance were among the concerns raised by Malaysian civil society to British Prime Minister David Cameron at a meeting yesterday.

The meeting, organised by the British High Commission in Malaysia, was held with prominent leaders of civil society that included National Human Rights Society (Hakam) president Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan, spokesperson of the group of prominent Malays (G25) Datuk Noor Faridah Ariffin and Malaysia Bar president Steven Thiru. (more…)

Johor Umno Youth leaders quit over axed DPM

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Signs of turmoil in Umno have emerged in the wake of Muhyiddin Yassin’s removal as deputy prime minister.

Two Umno Youth leaders from Muhyiddin’s home state of Johor resigned from their positions today, with one of them accusing Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak of betrayal.

Both Asrul Esreen Mohd Salleh and Saiful Zakry Ripin were Tenggara Umno Youth division committee members.

In a scathing statement, Esreen said he quit because the top leadership has veered far from the original struggle of Umno. (more…)

The scandal in Malaysia 

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In 1971, more than forty years before the world would turn its attention to the top 1% and the problem of income inequality, Malaysia embarked on one of history’s boldest and most noble of experiments to reduce social disparity. Malaysia’s New Economic Policy or NEP would seek to “eradicate poverty for all” and “eliminate identification of race by economic function and geographic location”. This polity was setting out to solve the massive problem of injustice and inequality that other societies much more mature continued to struggle with.

Malaysia was a democracy that hewed the rule of law. The NEP would be Malaysia’s key political driver. Over the decades that followed, the NEP’s mantra would serve as backdrop to almost all political discourse in the country. NEP-themed policies would, among much else, flesh out the concept of Bumiputera – an ethnic-driven formulation of native peoples in Malaysia. (more…)

Clean up your act, Cameron tells Najib

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British Prime Minister David Cameron has urged his Malaysian counterpart Najib Abdul Razak to clean up his government, Birtish newspaper The Telegraph reported.

The UK daily’s headline on yesterday’s meeting between the two leaders in Putrajaya reads, ‘David Cameron challenges Malaysian PM Najib Razak on corruption’.

According to the report, Cameron confronted Najib over the “deepening corruption scandal that threatens to bring down his government.”

The Telegraph added allegations of US$700 million (RM2.6 billion) of 1MDB-linked funds ending up in the personal bank accounts of Najib overshadowed Cameron’s visit to build trade ties with Malaysia. (more…)

The people will ‘strip’ any blanket ban on information

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What is the point really? As the saying goes, there is always more than one way to skin a cat.

Even with the Malaysian Communication and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) having blocked access to whistle-blower website Sarawak Report, its latest posting on Facebook had as of press time garnered close to 5,000 shares and over 200 comments.

The posting showed a purported charge sheet allegedly drafted by former Attorney-General Abdul Gani Patail against two prominent personalities involved in the 1MDB saga.

Commenters on the postings also shared links to access the full entry, despite knowing full well that MCMC had declared it as an offence to do so. (more…)

‘Cops hauling up Ambiga will not deter Bersih 4.0′

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Bersih says it will not back down from hitting the streets despite its former co-chaiperson Ambiga Sreenevasan being hauled up by the police.

“Despite the threats of arrest made against activists like Ambiga, we will not be deterred from taking to the streets in our struggle for these reforms,” it said in a statement today.

The electoral reform group had announced an overnight Bersih 4 rally on Aug 29, amid corruption allegations against the government.

Ambiga was today summoned by the police under Section 124 of the Penal Code after she warned that the government risked facing street protests if it did not address its scandals. (more…)

July 31, 2015

‘Najib lacks Dr M’s guts to sack Umno deputy’

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Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak appears to lack the courage in sacking Muhyiddin Yassin as Umno deputy president after dropping him as deputy prime minister on Tuesday, says former minister Zainuddin Maidin.

This is in contrast to former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who sacked then Umno deputy president Anwar Ibrahim in 1998, shortly after dismissing him as deputy prime minister.

Zainuddin said this in reference to the aborted Umno supreme council meeting that was scheduled for tomorrow, which he said could have been used as an opportunity to sack Muhyiddin as deputy president. (more…)

Malaysia’s prime minister battles claims of corruption

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Najib intends to roll on, not over

WHATEVER the truth of them, the accusations levelled against Najib Razak, Malaysia’s prime minister, have astonished a country that some had thought inured to scandal. In early July the Wall Street Journal reported that it had seen documents produced by government investigators suggesting that nearly $700m from companies linked to a troubled state-backed investment fund had been paid into what they believed to be Mr Najib’s personal bank accounts. With worries about an oil-dependent economy, the controversy is the last thing Malaysia needs. (more…)

Charge sheet draft against PM not from A-G’s Chambers, says prosecution head

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Tun Abdul Majid Hamzah, in his inaugural tweet, says the alleged charge sheet against the prime minister did not come from the Attorney-General's Chambers. – Photo courtesy of Twitter.The Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) has denied that it had drafted or issued an alleged charge sheet against Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, which was disclosed by whistleblower site Sarawak Report.

Datuk Tun Abdul Majid Hamzah, who is the Deputy Solicitor General I (Litigation) in the AGC, said this via his Twitter account tonight.

“The draft of the charge that was published by Sarawak Report was not made or issued by the Attorney-General’s Chambers,” he said via his Twitter handle @TAMajid. (more…)

‘Task force must haul up ex-DPM after video leak’

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The special task force on the 1MDB fiasco that is also investigating claims that RM2.6 billion was deposited into the prime minister’s private bank accounts has been urged to haul up former deputy prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin to facilitate the investigation.

This has to be done as Muhyiddin appears to possess information about the massive funds purportedly deposited into Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s private bank accounts, Umno activist Shahbudin Husin said in his blog posting today.

This follows the circulation of a leaked video that shows Muhyiddin confiding with friends that he confronted Najib about the matter and the prime minister admitted the money was from the Middle East and was indeed deposited into his own bank accounts. (more…)

1MDB execs may escape PAC hearing next week

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1MDB’s top executives may escape testifying before the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) next week after Dewan Rakyat deputy speaker Ronald Kiandee said the committee should consult house speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia before proceeding.

This is after four of eight BN MPs in the committee, including its chief Nur Jazlan Mohamed, wasappointed into the government on Tuesday.

“The PAC now should seek the opinion of the Speaker before proceeding. The Speaker is the custodian of Parliament after all,” Ronald was quoting as saying by The Star. (more…)

Najib’s personal accounts nothing to do with Muhyiddin, says propaganda unit

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 Former deputy prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin is believed to have said in a leaked video that  Datuk Seri Najib Razak admitted that US$700 million (RM2.6 billion) was transferred into his accounts. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, July 30, 2015. Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s personal bank accounts and its contents have nothing to do with former deputy prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, said Special Affairs Department adviser Tun Faisal Ismail Aziz.

In a blog posting, he said any money that went into an individual’s personal account was the right and privacy of that person and did not have to be declared to the public.

The statement from Putrajaya’s propaganda unit adviser comes after Muhyiddin, in a leaked video, was heard saying that Najib had admitted that US$700 million (RM2.6 billion) was transferred into his accounts.

“The money that goes into private accounts, that is the right and privacy of the individual that does not have to be declared to the public. It is just like the money that is put into our own personal accounts,” Tun Faisal wrote. (more…)

British PM sending adviser to meet opposition leaders

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David Cameron is sending his adviser to meet the Malaysian opposition during his visit here which starts today.

UK daily The Guardian reported that Cameron had sent his national security adviser Kim Darroch to meet Malaysian opposition leaders as concerns about alleged corruption scandal linked to Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak deepens.

Cameron (photo), who was criticised for not cancelling his Malaysian leg of a four-nation tour as the country in political turmoil over the corruption allegations and Najib’s attempt to marginalise his critics including by sacking his deputy prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin defended the visit saying he would want to talk about it with the country’s leaders. (more…)

Umno leader says Najib told Supreme Council he never took 1MDB money

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Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak (centre) with newly-appointed deputy International Trade and Industry minister Datuk Ahmad Maslan (right) at the Wisma Matrade for an event tonight. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Najjua Zulkefli, July 29, 2015.Datuk Seri Najib Razak had explained to Umno Supreme Council members about allegations of billions of ringgit going into his personal accounts, newly-appointed deputy minister Datuk Ahmad Maslan said tonight.

He rejected claims made by former deputy prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin in a leaked video clip that Najib had admitted to receiving US$700 million (RM2.67 billion) in his bank accounts.

Ahmad Maslan, who is also an Umno supreme council member, dismissed Muhyiddin’s claim and said Najib, who is prime minister and also Umno president, had already explained the matter. (more…)

Good and bad of civil society movements in the country

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Malaysia has many civil society movements that deal with various issues, from assisting the poor and marginal­ised of our society to championing legal and human rights.

While they may not have the political clout to directly influence policy, campaigns by these organisations have, in the past, been effective in getting the government to act.

For instance, many would credit Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram) and other human rights NGOs for the decision by the government to finally repeal the Internal Security Act (ISA). (more…)

Besieged Malaysia PM Sacks Enemies

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Besieged Malaysia PM Sacks EnemiesUnder fire from a spreading scandal, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak ordered a sudden, wholesale housecleaning of top officials on Tuesday, July 28. Those getting the boot include the deputy prime minister, attorney general, head of the police special branch intelligence unit and others. The move may come to be seen as either bold or reckless depending on whether Najib survives in office.

Najib is trying to evade a tightening noose related to financial irregularities involving the 1MDB state-owned investment fund. Fired Attorney General Abdul Gani Patail has been leading a government investigation into the fund. (more…)

1MDB probe as good as dead, says Transparency International

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Transparency-International Malaysia believes the investigation into 1Malaysia Development Berhad lacks governance, integrity, and submission to the rule of law. – AFP file pic, July 30, 2015. Recent events in the past few weeks, including the slow 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) investigation process and sackings of government officials, can leave Malaysians feeling like there is a concerted effort to stop the ongoing probe on the state investment vehicle, says Transparency-International Malaysia (TI-M).

Saying that the ongoing investigations is as good as dead, its president Datuk Akhbar Satar added that the entire 1MDB scandal had so far displayed a complete lack of governance, integrity and submission to the rule of law.

“Given the snail pace of the investigations and halting of PAC activities coupled with the sackings on July 29, how will intelligent Malaysians view the whole episode? Surely they will think it is clearly a concerted effort to stop the probe into 1MDB in its tracks. (more…)

With or without Gani, MACC vows to finish probe

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The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has vowed to complete its investigation even in the absence of Abdul Gani Patail as attorney-general.

“In the case of (former 1MDB subsidiary) SRC International Sdn Bhd, with or without the special task force (probing 1MDB), with the absence of Abdul Gani, MACC assures the investigation on SRC International will continue until completion,” said the commission.

Upon completion of the investigation, MACC said it would submit its findings to the deputy public prosecutor for perusal and further action. (more…)

July 30, 2015

Bersih 4.0 rally to push for Najib’s resignation

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Bersih will hold rallies in three cities to push for Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s resignation and institutional reforms to prevent prime ministerial corruption.

The Aug 29-30 overnight rally would be held at Kuala Lumpur, Kuching and Kota Kinabalu.

Bersih said that the series of events over the past two days – the removal of Abdul Gani Patail as attorney-general, co-opting four out of 13 Public Account Committee members into cabinet and the removal of dissidents in cabinet – had triggered the call for the rally.

“Najib had virtually ruled out all possibilities for truth on the 1MDB scandal to be unearthed and criminals to be brought to justice by a series of political moves on July 27 and 28. (more…)

Bersih can proceed with rally but must follow all laws, KL police chief says

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Bersih 2.0 chairman Maria Chin Abdullah says the Bersih 4 rally will be held on the streets of Kuala Lumpur, Kuching and Kota Kinabalu from August 29, 2pm to August 30. ― File picPoll reform watchdog Bersih 2.0 need fear no crackdown on its planned rally next month to demand Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s resignation as prime minister as long as it follows all laws, city police chief Datuk Tajuddin Md Isa has promised.

The police will even help smoothen the process for participants if the group’s representatives go through the proper channels, Tajudidin said.

“They can do it as long as it is done according to and with respect to the law. We don’t have a problem,” he told Malay Mail Online when approached last night during the police Raya open house celebration in Sungai Besi. (more…)

Will it be the natives or the Norwegian who will be damned?

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Two opposing forces are at play in the controversy surrounding the plan to build the Baram Dam in northern Sarawak, while a third force, Chief Minister Adenan Satem’s government, stands on the side-line to see who
to believe.

On the one side are the natives, who are under threat of being displaced, and their NGO friends, while on the other are Norwegian Torstein Dale Siøtveit and the power company he heads as CEO of Sarawak Energy Berhad
(SEB).

The natives, at least 20,000 of them, with the help of several local and international NGOs like the Bruno Manser Fund (BMF), SAVE Rivers, Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram), Sahabat Alam Malaysia (SAM), Saya Anak Bangsa Malaysia (SABM), Malaysians for Teoh Beng Hock, Pusat Komas, Damn the Dams, Pahang Raub Ban Cynide in Gold Mining Action Committee (BCAC), Baramkini, Persatuan Komuniti Prihatin Selangor & KL (Prihatin), Kuala Lumpur & Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall Youth Section, Sabah Women’s Action Resource Group (Sawo), Knowledge and Rights with Young people through Safer Spaces (KRYSS), Dignity International, Pax Romana-ICMICA, and School of Acting Justly, Loving Tenderly, Treading Humbly (SALT), reject the dam out of both real and imagined fears. (more…)

MACC panels: Don’t hinder 1MDB task force

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The five independent oversight panels of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) said there should be no interference or pressure on the special task force investigating 1MBD.

“The task force must be given the widest possible latitude to conduct the investigation without fear or favour.

“In this matter, we strongly feel it is highly pertinent to ensure the integrity of MACC as an independent anti-corruption commission is maintained and not compromised,” read their joint statement today. (more…)

Najib must now expel Muhyiddin to stop Umno revolt, say former ministers

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Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin at the Umno general assembly last November. Many say Najib can only consolidate his power by removing his former deputy from his party post, following the Cabinet reshuffle this week. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, July 30, 2015.Umno president Datuk Seri Najib Razak has no choice but to sack his deputy Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin if he wishes to consolidate his position, former Umno ministers said.

Despite Najib stripping Muhyiddin of his Cabinet post, the deputy Umno president still wielded power in the party and had leeway under the party constitution to mount a challenge against Najib, former minister Tan Sri Zainuddin Maidin said.

And Najib would have to move fast, as pressure mounts following a leaked video clip appeared to show Muhyiddin telling of the prime minister’s admission to having US$700 million (RM2.6 billion) deposited into his personal bank accounts. (more…)

In leaked video, Muhyiddin says Najib admitted RM2.6 billion in his accounts

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Umno deputy president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin is seen outside his house last night as many leaders, family and friends visited following his removal as deputy prime minister yesterday. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Seth Akmal, July 29, 2015.Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak admitted that US$700 million (RM2.6 billion) was transferred into his accounts, former deputy prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said in a video (see below) that has leaked on the Internet.

In the video, Muhyiddin appeared to be informing his guests at his home last night that he had confronted Najib on The Wall Street Journal’s report that US$700 million (RM2.67 billion) of funds from 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB)-linked firms were deposited into Najib’s personal accounts.

“I asked him (Najib) from whom? He did not mention the name, from somewhere in the Middle East. How much?… Hard to count, he said ‘a lot, a lot’. (more…)

Will Nazir Razak save the day for Malaysia?

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Malaysia has been making the news for all the wrong reasons. The 1MDB (1Malaysia Development Bhd) debacle has become a weapon for former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to publicly call for the ouster of current Premier Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Political parties on both sides of the aisle are mired in internal squabbles. There can­not be a worse time for Malaysian politics.

Adding to the chaos is a recent report in the Asia Sentinel that Najib’s brother, Datuk Seri Nazir Razak, himself a critic of Putrajaya’s politics, is roping in moderates such as Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah to form a new political party. (more…)

Najib’s manoeuvre cripples 1MDB probes

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The removal of Abdul Gani Patail as attorney-general as well as the cabinet reshuffle points in the direction of Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak consolidating his position amidst the raging 1MDB imbroglio.

Najib’s move dealt a blow to both the investigations into 1MDB by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) and the special task force.

On the PAC front, the committee’s chairperson Nur Jazlan Mohamed was appointed as deputy home minister, while three other PAC members were also appointed to the government. (more…)

New AG: Abdul Gani removed lawfully

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
Newly appointed Attorney-General Mohamed Apandi Ali said the removal of his predecessor Abdul Gani Patail had been carried out in accordance with the Federal Constitution.

Mohamed Apandi, in his first official statement as AG, said Article 145(6) does not apply as it is a saving provision which only applies to the attorney-general from 1959 to 1963, which was Cecil M Sheridan.

“In the interest of administration of justice, it is important that the public is not misled into thinking otherwise. (more…)

Reject corruption on the grounds of pride and honour, says Tunku Ismail

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

TMJThe screenshot poster depicting the Tunku Mahkota of Johor, Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim on his stance that he would never support any individual or organisation that condones corruption. — Screenshot photo from the Johor Southern Tigers Facebook page.

 In a posting against the abuse of power for personal gain, the Tunku Mahkota of Johor declared he would never support any individual or organisation that condones corruption.

Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim cited honour and pride as the basis for rejecting corruption in a Facebook posting at about 2pm on the Johor Southern Tigers Facebook page today.

By 5.30pm, the post had garnered more than 12,100 likes and about 230 comments from fans. (more…)

Leaked video: Ex-DPM says Najib admitted RM2.6b in account

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

A leaked video clip depicting Muhyiddin Yassin talking about allegations that millions were transferred into Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s private accounts is currently making rounds.

The grainy video clip, which appears to be recorded using a mobile phone, depicts Muhyiddin addressing several guests at his home on the topic last night.

Among those present were Kedah Menteri Besar Mukhriz Mohamad and former Umno supreme council member Kadir Sheikh Fadzir.

Although certain parts of the 53-second video clip were inaudible, Muhyiddin appeared to be suggesting he had confronted Najib on the allegation.
(more…)

Don’t praise Najib’s administration, Tony Pua urges British PM

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

Datuk Seri Najib Razak (centre) is implicated in a financial scandal surrounding 1MDB and an opposition lawmaker has urged British Prime Minister David Cameron not to lend the Najib administration any legitimacy by praising him. – The Malaysian Insider pic, July 29, 2015.Tony Pua today urged British Prime Minister David Cameron not to give the legitimacy sought by the Malaysian administration, ahead of his visit here tomorrow.

Pua said he hoped that there would not be any “pretentious praise” for the sake of political diplomacy while Malaysia was under a cloud of financial scandal involving state-owned investor 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) and allegations which implicated the prime minister himself.

“While we do not need your interference over our sovereign affairs, we also do not need any pretentious praise embedded into polite diplomatic speak which will lend any legitimacy desperately sought by Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s administration,” Pua said in an open letter to Cameron. (more…)

Bukit Aman fire: Chance coincidence or bad omen

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

What a coincidence!

A day after the nation learnt of the sacking of Muhyiddin Yassin as DPM, the change in Attorney-General and the uncertain fate of the 1MDB probe following the promotion of four Public Accounts’ Committee members – including its chairman Nur Jazlan Mohamed – to the Cabinet, superstitious Malaysians can add yet an accident to the list of unlikely incidents – the fire at Bukit Aman police headquarters that happened today.

The fire, which broke out at the 9th and 10th floor of Menara 2, which house the Criminal Investigation and Narcotics departments was brought under control by 7.47pm.

And though the fire was not an inferno, news of it spread like wildfire through social media as photos and various comments made their rounds.
(more…)

PAC probe into 1MDB to go on, says deputy chairman

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

Former PAC chairman Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed is wrong to state that the hearing on 1Malaysia Development Berhad by the Public Accounts Committee has to be halted, says deputy chairman Dr Tan Seng Giaw. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, July 29, 2015. The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) hearing into 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) will go on as scheduled, despite the loss of four members following the Cabinet reshuffle, PAC deputy chairman Dr Tan Seng Giaw said today.

He said former PAC chairman Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed was wrong to state that the hearing must be halted until new members are elected in October, as they still met the quorum according to the Dewan Rakyat’s Standing Orders.

“We have got to continue. We have nine members left, and all you need is three members plus one chairman to form a quorum, according to the Standing Orders. (more…)

Nazir issues ‘Game of Thrones’ caution

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

Game of Thrones is a popular American fantasy drama television series created for HBO, which has accumulated legions of fans worldwide.

The plot revolves around the battle of various kingdoms for the ‘ultimate’ throne to become the supreme ruler of the land. And this quest is replete with back stabbing and betrayals.

And now, the brother of Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak has warned that Malaysia should not descend into a similar state.

As always, Nazir, the chairperson of CIMB, put forth his views in a simple Instagram posting, which included an image of the popular series. (more…)

‘AG’s removal bolsters conspiracy claim’

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

The abrupt removal of Attorney-General Abdul Gani Patail midway through the special task force investigation into 1MDB has raised suspicions.

“To terminate his service in the middle of an ongoing investigation involving the prime minister raises a lot of questions about the intention behind this ‘sacking’,” Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (Ideas) chief executive Wan Saiful Wan Jan (photo) said in a statement today.

The task force comprises the police, Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) and Bank Negara, and it refers to the Attorney-General’s Chambers for legal advice. (more…)

Muhyiddin warning against attempts to sack him from Umno?

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

Despite his cavalier attitude in accepting his termination from the Cabinet, Umno deputy president Muhyiddin Yassin may be now warning party leaders against making any attempt to remove him from his party position.

Being a man of his vast political experience, the former deputy prime minister would surely have expected that his recent outbursts against Prime Minister Najib Razak would lead to his eventual removal from the Barisan Nasional federal administration.

The only question was when and who would be the man to replace him.

Over the weekend, Muhyiddin had during an Umno event in Cheras repeated his criticisms over Najib’s handling of state-investment arm 1Malaysia Development Berhad – triggering what observers noted has been a long awaited decision to reshuffle the Cabinet. (more…)

Cabinet reshuffle will destroy party, says Umno deputy permanent chair

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

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s decision to axe his Umno deputy president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin from Cabinet will soon destroy the party, its deputy permanent chairman Tan Sri Mohamad Aziz (pic) has warned.

Mohamad told The Star that Najib would be blamed if Umno fell, as he was responsible for removing Muhyiddin Yassin and vice-president Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal from the Cabinet.

Mohamad reminded Najib that he commanded the party due to support from the grassroots, just like Muhyiddin and Shafie. (more…)

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