Hornbill Unleashed

October 23, 2012

MCA touts ‘Ah Jib Gor’ factor for Chinese vote

Nomy Nowzir and Hafidz Baharom

Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s popularity or the “Ah Jib Gor” factor will help cajole a segment of the Chinese community back to Barisan Nasional (BN) in the coming polls, MCA grassroots leaders have agreed, but warned that the same sentiment could not topple the opposition in its urban fortresses.

This was the resounding sentiment among delegates attending the MCA’s 59th annual general meeting at Wisma MCA yesterday, which is seen as the party’s final chance to chart its election strategies in the months ahead as it heads into its toughest battle yet. (more…)

September 5, 2010

A distant cry for help from the jungle

NONEBy Sim Kwang Yang

The year was 1993, and I was serving my third term as an opposition member of parliament (MP) of Bandar Kuching.

In the Malaysian context at the time, the core of an MP’s job was to service the constituency, by solving the little problems created by inefficient administration, like looking after blocked drains, neglected garbage collection, and attending to minor daily problems faced by the constituents. That was how politicians saw their roles in Malaysians’ daily lives.

But I had different ideas about politics. I believed that the duty of our Wakil Rakyat was to serve the whole nation, and in the context of Sarawak, to serve all the people in the state. Therefore, I devoted my energies throughout the 1990s to the contentious battle to protect the forests of my home state, Sarawak. It was a tough job, because nobody was interested in environmental protection, and the powerful timber interests made sure that we were denied access to the mass communication media. (more…)

August 13, 2010

The lies and fall of ethnic politics

By Pak Bui

In the week following the police crackdown in Selangor and Penang, featuring arrests of 30 people for holding candles to mark the 50th anniversary of the hated Internal Security Act, leaders of junior BN coalition partners failed to stand up for civil rights.

Instead, Chua Soi Lek, president of the Malaysian Chinese Association (MCA) and George Chan, leader of the Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP), chose to speak up on typically parochial issues. Both these veteran politicians cemented their standing as having been left behind the times, reduced to rehashing old and careworn tactics, and bereft of new ideas.

Chua, hoping to burnish his reputation for being a plain-speaking iconoclast, decided to play to the lowest common denominator in the gallery, by making bigoted comments about Muslims. He obviously hoped this would play well among the more introspective and ignorant segment of the Chinese ‘voting bloc’. (more…)

June 30, 2010

PKFZ scandal far from over: Ong

Filed under: Human rights,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:00 AM
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NONEBy Malaysiakini

Ong Tee Keat, the man who exposed the Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) scandal, believes the case is far from over.

Despite the arrest and impending trial of former Port Klang Authority (PKA) general manager OC Phang and three others in relation to the scandal, the former transport minister remains convinced there is more left to be uncovered.

Ong (right), who was dropped from Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s cabinet in a recent reshuffle, stressed that he has first hand information on those implicated in the PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) audit report on the scandal, but declined to go into detail. (more…)

June 5, 2010

The Council of Najib

By Dreamweaver

Angry grey clouds scudded across the sky over the huge green onion dome rising above the magnificent mock Moghul splendour of the prime minister’s office in Putrajaya. Thunder boomed as the howling wind whipped up the fluttering flags bringing with it the promise of rain. A late afternoon thunderstorm was about to unleash its fury on the land below but deep in the bowels of the building insulated from the capricious weather, a secret high level meeting was in progress.

Its seven participants are among the most powerful people in this nation of 28 million people. (more…)

November 2, 2009

Inscrutable and divisive Chinese politics

Kaypo Anak Sarawak is a Columnist  of  Hermit Hornbill at The Borneo Post Online , His article is  published  in The Borneo Post every Sunday. (Used by permission of the Author )

mca-2WATCHING from the sideline as the sickening melodrama of the ongoing MCA crisis unfolds before us, we cannot help but cringe from the ugliness of the naked power struggle within this 60-year-old political party claiming to fight for the Chinese community in Malaysia.From the original Datuk Seri Ong Tee Kiat and Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek factions, we are now told of a Third Force that tipped the balance of votes in carrying the motion of no-confidence against Ong’s tenure as the MCA President.

The smoke from the battlefield of the MCA Oct 10 extraordinary general meeting (EGM) had hardly died down, when from Ong’s own support group, a number of Central Committee members hitherto loyal to Ong had agitated for the forced resignation of Ong from the presidency. This led Ong to lament publicly the disappearance of long-time friendship in politics.

To fight off this latest sabotage on his presidency, Ong has invoked his presidential power to call for another EGM, this time to decide whether there should not be another EGM to re-elect the entire CC.


October 16, 2009

One Sarawakian’s view of Bagan Pinang and the Umno revival

By Pak Bui

isa-sept30The newspapers are full of Umno triumphalism. Umno’s ecstasy is overwhelming: you’d think they had managed to take back Perak by a popular vote.

Umno’s victory in the Bagan Pinang by-election has put some spring back into Umno’s goose-steps at their 60th General Assembly.

Many pundits have argued that Umno is winning back the trust of the Chinese and Indians. There may be a tiny kernel of truth in this.

Since Pakatan Rakyat (PR) have been bickering publicly over beer raids and municipal councils, a proportion of the Indian and Chinese population may, indeed, have voted against PAS to show their displeasure with certain pea-brained squabblers. But a vote against PR’s loudmouths is hardly a vote for Umno.

Throughout Umno’s ongoing General Assembly, speakers have tried to capitalise on this perceived swing among non-Malay voters, back towards Umno and the BN. (more…)

October 15, 2009

MCA – Malaysian Chaos Association

Filed under: Corruption,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:01 AM
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By Sim Kwang Yang

mca-2As you read this on Thursday, the MCA central committee is to meet to discuss how to mop up the mess left by the delegates in their EGM on October 10.  The MCA delegates had voted their party into an impasse, by voting out both Ong Tee Kiat and Chua Soi Lek as President and Deputy President respectively, thereby creating a vacuum at the apex of the party’s power structure.

They say that nature abhors a vacuum anywhere in our physical environment.  Likewise, a political party also abhors a vacuum in the highest places.

The most democratic thing for the MCA to do to wriggle out of their paralysing quagmire is to hold another EGM, to hold a fresh round of election for all the posts of the central committee, including that of President and Deputy President.  This is unlikely to happen.

Now that the two highest posts of the party are up for grabs, you can be sure that the four Vice Presidents in line for succession to the top posts will be agitating and engaged in all kinds of horse-trading to get themselves appointed.


October 12, 2009

The biggest winner of the MCA EGM is ………………DAP!

By  Sim Kwang Yang

CSL VS OTK all outWhen the voting results came out in the afternoon of October 10 (Saturday), I was in the neighbourhood coffee shop with my neighbour Jimmy.

Jimmy is a retired teacher from Penang.  Though his son-in-law is the treasurer of a local MCA branch, he is himself non-partisan.  But like many Malaysian Chinese, he hates pandemic corruption in high places.

When he learned that the MCA EGM had carried the motion of no-confidence against Ong Tee Kiat as party President, he was very upset.

He said he had no goodwill towards the MCA, but he has tremendous respect for Ong because of his work in unearthing the massive abuse of funds in the PKFZ.  He said Ong is the only MCA leader who could reform the party and the government for the good of the people.  He was thinking of joining MCA to help Ong, but now the delegates’ rejection of Ong means there is no chance of salvation for the MCA.

I narrate this little story because I suspect many of the non-partisan Chinese probably share Jimmy’s view.


October 10, 2009

Sexual indiscretion and public life in Malaysia

Kaypo Anak Sarawak is a Columnist  of  Hermit Hornbill at The Borneo Post Online , His article is  published  in The Borneo Post every Sunday. (Used by permission of the Author )

SEX is big business in our politChua Soi Lek Sex Scandalical life these days.

The big power tussles in the up-coming MCA extraordinary general meeting will be held on October 10 to decide whether their deputy president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek ought to be sacked or suspended from the party for four years because his sex video scandal has damaged the image of the party.

Everyday, the national Chinese newspapers and the Chinese language net news portals are filled with endless pages of blow-by-blow coverage of the plots and counter-plots between the Datuk Seri Ong Tee Kiat faction and the Chua faction.  Daily, numerous face-to-face meetings are held by both sides all across Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah to win the hearts and minds of the over 2000 voting delegates.

Fortunately for Sarawak, we are not too bothered because we have no MCA branches and divisions here. Besides, we have our own SUPP factional fight to entertain us. (more…)

October 6, 2009

October 10: MCA’s day of reckoning — does anybody care?

By Sim Kwang Yang

OTK VS CSLIn a few days’ time, on October 10 next Saturday to be exact, MCA will be confronting their day of reckoning.  2377 central delegates will be casting their crucial votes, to determine whether Ong Tee Kiat or Chua Soi Lek will have to go.

The mainstream and alternative media have been saturated with news of the campaign for weeks, giving blow-by-blow and state-by-state reports of how the campaign has been shaping up on both sides.

The latest revelation by the commentator and long time MCA member Ho Chee Ping is that the offer for one vote has gone up from a few thousand to tens of thousand of the Ringgit.  Ho should know, because he is a loyal MCA member and has witnessed more than a few MCA internal fights.


September 10, 2009

PKFZ – bottomless sink hole in Port Klang

By Sim Kwang Yang


Malaysia  Biggest Scandal PKPZNo, the hottest news in Malaysia nowadays is not about the MIC party election this weekend.  The MIC is a rich mosquito party that has nothing to do with the poor and marginalised Indians.  Who wins there is hardly newsworthy!

The hottest news these days is the bottomless sink hole in Port Klang, as more and more information surfaces of how billions of taxpayers’ money have been sucked into that financial black hole, created by bad planning and bad management.

As I write, on a Wednesday afternoon, the Cabinet is discussing what to do what a report submitted by a task force set up to investigate the irregularities committed in the PKFZ project.  For once, I agree with Kho Tsu Koon; nothing short of a Royal Commission of Enquiry, with wide terms of reference to get to the bottom of the pork barrel, will satisfy Malaysians who seek transparency, good governance, and accountability. (more…)

September 8, 2009

MCA crisis; where would it take our nation?

By Sim Kwang Yang

ongchuaThis is the season for internal warfare within MCA as both sides in this Ong-Chua tussle are now openly engaged in very ugly exchange of words in the media.  It looks now that the chance of any mediation to resolve the party crisis is razor thin.

Many Chinese citizens have expressed their loss of interest in following this latest round of power struggle in the MCA.  They say that, whichever side emerges victorious in the end, the MCA will just be its old self, as the junior partner of BN, that gives credibility to UMNO’s myth of the Social Contract and power sharing among the races.

This contemptuous lack of interest in the ongoing MCA crisis is the trend of the Chinese people to-day that regard the party as having alienated the Chinese community.  It is a sharp contrast to the MCA image at one time that the MCA represented the Chinese, and the Chinese could find salvation in multiracial Malaysia only through the MCA. (more…)

September 2, 2009

Ong Vs Chua: who will win?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:01 AM
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By Sim Kwang Yang



The war between MCA President Ong Tee Keat and his Deputy Chua Soi Lek is now the hottest news in mainstream Chinese newspapers like Sin Chew Jit Poh and Nanyang Siang Pao, and on net news portals like Malaysiakini, Merdeka Review, Fung Yin Times, and the Chinese version of Malaysian Mirror.

Numerous Chinese bloggers from both sides of the conflict have also been engaged in a war of words.

As an outsider and a bystander who has never been too fond of MCA brand of politics, I watch this much ado about MCA’s internal power struggle with great amusement.  But as a commentator of current events in Malaysia, I feel obliged to make some sense of the present MCA crisis in the context of our evolving Malaysian political culture.

The first thing that comes to mind is that Chinese politicians like to quarrel among themselves, even within their own political party. (more…)

August 20, 2009

Permatang Pasir: a milestone in the long march against racism

By Sim Kwang Yang

unite against racismThe Malaysian government is thinking of doing away with the category of “race” in all official forms.  I have been filling those forms all my life and I have always hated that particular category.  When the forms do not really matter, I just fill in “human” for my race.

But removing the category “race” from forms will not begin to eradicate racism that is so entrenched and institutionalised in Malaysian national life.  It has its deepest roots in party politics.  As long as political parties find that racist sentiments are the most effective tool in mass mobilisation of populist support, racism will continue to colour all our daily judgements.

In short, race-based political parties and their race-based nation-building policies are the real cause of racism in Malaysia. (more…)

July 9, 2009

Contra racism

By Sim Kwang Yang

unityWhen the DAP Kuching Branch was first established in 1978, the party was a new kid on the block.  For many years before that, the SUPP was seen to be the sole representative of the Chinese in Sarawak.

The most effective tactic of the SUPP in demonising the DAP at that time was to call the DAP as a traitor to the Chinese race, out to divide the Chinese community, and to destroy Chinese unity. The SUPP needed the united support of all the Chinese, in order to negotiate and compromise with other race-based party.

The MCA used the same tactic against the Peninsular DAP and they were quite successful at that time.

During those early years of the DAP in Sarawak, the voters did buy the SUPP’s fare of Chinese unity.  I doubt they will continue to do so blindly, 30 years later. (more…)

July 2, 2009

If you can’t beat them…

By Sim Kwang Yang

I received in my email the following excellent article by Bernice Low on the battle in the Internet world in Malaysia.  The object of her attention is the newly launched net portal the Malaysian Mirror, for which I write a weekly column.  Naturally, I feel the irony of  the situation, me – a die hard anti-BN man writing for Ong Tee Kiat the MCA President to further the cause of the BN, if her speculation and assumptions turn out to be true. We will see.

If you can’t beat them…

…join em. And that’s what the MCA (Malaysian Chinese Association) is going to do, it would seem.

According to a news report on the Malaysianinsider.com, the MCA is going into the online news game. A friend in the media line confirmed that hiring is ongoing for the Malaysian Mirror, the name that has been chosen for the new newsportal. A search on MYNIC shows that the domain name Malaysianmirror.com.my is available. A search on WHOIS, however, shows the top-level domain (TLD) name Malaysianmirror.com to be unavailable. It was recently purchased on March 3, 2009, and is registered to a Web domain hosting firm in (ironically) Penang.

June 17, 2009

PKR Should Woo Tengku Razaleigh

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 5:35 AM
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By Kenny Gan @ hueditor

Zaid IbrahimDatuk Zaid Ibrahim’s (right) entry into PKR has given a boost to the opposition party. The reform minded moderate had been wooed by both PKR and DAP even before he resigned from the BN government in September last year over the use of ISA on civilians. Zaid was subsequently booted out by Umno for his presence at opposition functions. Well respected by both PAS and DAP, Zaid is expected to play a role in strengthening ties between the three Pakatan Rakyat parties.

Datuk Zaid was a prime target for the opposition’s courtship because it was clear that his reform minded personality made him a misfit in the Badawi administration and better fit for the social justice ideology of Pakatan Rakyat. Zaid is indeed a good catch for PKR but there is another prominent Malay leader who can also be said to be a “misfit” in Umno and whom the opposition should court assiduously. The person I’m referring to is none other than Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah, also affectionately known as Ku Li. (more…)

May 29, 2009

PKFZ Report: A Royal Commission of Enquiry needed

By Sim Kwang Yang

67_fsYesterday, Malaysiakini has this shocking headline Audit: PKFZ cost ballooned to RM7.5 billion.  “PKFZ audit report has shown that the project outlay has ballooned from RM1.957 billion to a staggering RM7.453 billion since the project inception in 2001.”

In Malaysian Insider, a news story entitled PKA loan default raise PKFZ cost to RM12.5 billion has this to say, “The Port Klang Authority (PKA) must restructure its soft loan of RM4.6 billion for the Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) to avoid any default by 2012 when it is expected to report losses as interest charges will balloon the entire cost to RM12.5 billion by 2051, its auditors said in a report released today.”

The audit report was prepared by Price Waterhouse Coopers, a very credible firm in such matters.  It was released to the public yesterday. (more…)

April 15, 2009

The new Cabinet with the new PM

By  Sim Kwang Yang (SKY)

Finally, we have a new prime minister, a new federal cabinet, and a new administration. Though the media are going crazy with endless comments over this latest development, and friends have advised me to give them 100 day honeymoon before commenting on them, I just do not find the energy in me to get excited about the whole orgy of media frenzy.

Going by the radiance of the new PM’s face, he is still basking in the euphoria of his new found glamour. If I were him, I would be dead worried. Just imagine; he has inherited a government that has been denied a two-third majority in parliament. Four (or five) state governments are still in the hands of the Pakatan Rakyat coalition. The BN has lost four by-elections since March 8 in 2008.

His BN partners, MCA, MIC, and Gerakan are reduced to the status of mosquito parties. The Malaysian economy is going down the drain, and people are losing jobs and income. The new PM has come into office with a low rating on approval. He is also tainted by the whiff of personal scandal, and even Kuli has asked him to come clean on the matter. His UMNO continue to be embroiled in internal intrigue, including the latest episode in Terengganu.

If Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak is not careful, he may well be the last UMNO prime minister in Malaysia.

UMNO cabinet

Of the 28 new and old federal ministers, 19 are from UMNO. (more…)

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