Hornbill Unleashed

November 25, 2013

PKR prepping for transition

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

On the surface, PKR’s wide-ranging amendments to the party constitution looks improve the party’s democratic image, but several key amendments raises the question of whether it was designed keep new central leaders in check.

Apart from amending rules that will provide greater recognition for women and East Malaysian states, some significant functions of the party’s central leadership functions will be passed on to the state and branch levels. (more…)

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PKR incorporates Sabah, Sarawak rights into constitution

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

PKR today approved amendments to its constitution that among others incorporated equal treatment of Sabah and Sarawak as part of the “purpose of struggle”.

It read: “To be faithful to the spirit of fair cooperation and power sharing between Sabah, Sarawak and Peninsula Malaysia by strengthening the just political and economic position based on the Malaysia Agreement 1963”.

Earlier in her speech, PKR president Wan Azizah Wan Ismail said this was to follow up with its pledge to incorporate the Kuching declaration made last year, which promised autonomy to the two East Malaysia states. (more…)

Too early to talk about becoming PKR president, says Anwar

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:00 AM
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Delegates vote unanimously in favour of amending the party constitution at PKR's special congress held in Shah Alam, Selangor, today. - The Malaysian Insider pic by Nazir Sufari, November 24, 2013.LEE SHI-IAN

Delegates vote unanimously in favour of amending the party constitution at PKR’s special congress held in Shah Alam, Selangor.

Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has brushed off talks of him becoming the president of Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) as the Registrar of Societies (ROS)  had yet to approve amendments to the party constitution.

“It is too early to talk about the presidency, wait for the ROS first. Once the ROS has approved the amendments, then we will talk,” he said. (more…)

November 12, 2013

PKR elected reps who quit party must abide by agreement to give up seat, says party president

PKR president Wan Azizah, seen here with Anwar, has demanded two PKR elected reps in Sabah give up their seats after they quit the party in the past week. - The Malaysian Insider pic, November 10, 2013.DESMOND DAVIDSON

PKR president Wan Azizah, seen here with Anwar, has demanded two PKR elected reps in Sabah give up their seats after they quit the party in the past week.

In light of one assemblyman leaving and another on the verge of quitting, PKR wants to enforce agreements its elected officials in Sabah had signed to vacate their assembly or parliamentary seats if they left the party, said president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.

Wan Azizah said it was looking at its options but conceded the action would be difficult considering such agreements had been successfully challenged in court before. (more…)

March 24, 2013

Kg Majidee may presage a Pakatan breach of Johor

Terence Netto

Kampung Melayu Majidee, located in central Johor Baru on the route to Kota Tinggi, has long been an Umno stronghold that has invariably thrown its support behind the BN candidate for Parliament representing the state capital.

But that BN-favouring pattern has not been reflexive because when their perennial preference for MP and current incumbent, Shahrir Abdul Samad, entered a phase of open rebellion against Umno 25 years ago, the electorate there split their votes between him and his BN challenger in a by-election that Shahrir won in stirring fashion, an indication that Kg Majidee’s voters could not be taken for granted. (more…)

July 22, 2012

PKR’s Peter Mayau killed in chopper crash

Filed under: Keadilan,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:00 AM
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Joseph Tawie

Sarawak PKR chairman Baru Bian described his deputy, the late Peter Ato Mayau, as a principled man who believed in the struggle for justice.

Sarawak PKR  lost one of its leaders. Peter Ato  Anak Mayau in a helicopter crash which occurred yesterday morning at the mouth of Sg. Lingga, Sri Aman.His body was recovered earlier this afternoon not far from the incident.

Siti Kuzaimah Annuar (surveyor) and Henry Lay (engineer) were also killed in the crash.

The pilot of the helicopter Reco Steger, 35, a german, survived the crash. (more…)

March 19, 2011

Snap now strutting about and talking big

Stephen Tiong

After eight years in hibernation battling the deregistration order of the Registrar of Societies (RoS), the Sarawak National Party (Snap) is now acting up and talking big. 

It is rather ambitious of the party to aspire to contest more than 40 seats in the coming state election.

And questions are being raised whether Snap has the financial muscle to fight in the polls, let alone field candidates in that many constituencies as it announced. (more…)

March 13, 2011

Anwar: Only candidates with integrity for S’wak

Stephen Tiong

PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim has directed Sarawak party chief Baru Bian to select candidates with high integrity for the upcoming state elections.

In a wide-ranging speech at the State PKR’s annual convention at Batu Kawah, near Kuching today, he vowed to reject candidates without integrity.

“If these candidates become part of the government in the event that the Opposition coalition, Pakatan Rakyat, wins the next elections, they will destroy the administration,” he said. (more…)

May 21, 2010

‘Sibu miracle’: Money doesn’t talk

NONEBy Wong Teck Chi and Joseph Sipalan

If Pakatan Rakyat’s currency during election campaigns is ideals, promise of good governance and accountability, then BN’s currency is plain cold hard cash.

But if results of the Sibu by-election were anything to go by, pork-barrel politics ought to be brought to an end.

This was particularly evident in the voting district of Rajang Park, a Chinese majority suburb within the Pelawan state constituency.

On the eve of polling, Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak told voters there during a rally that he would approve a RM5 million flood mitigation project to resolve frequent flood problems in the area. (more…)

April 26, 2010

Gangsters haunt Sibu by-election

pkr supreme council meeting 0404010 anwar 02By Keruah Usit

The parliamentary by-election on May 16 in Sibu is expected to be a close contest, a straight fight between BN and Pakatan Rakyat.

We may witness the usual fistful of ‘independent’ candidates, perhaps even one from the oddly named Parti Cinta Malaysia, on nomination day May 8. Some independents will of course be hoping to cash in by being spoilers, but these are unlikely to affect the outcome.

Thanks to a new-born, slightly wobbly-kneed agreement among Sarawak Pakatan parties – DAP, PKR, PAS and now Snap – three-cornered fights between the ruling BN and two opposition parties may now be avoided for the upcoming state elections, expected within the next couple of months, and the 13th general elections. Sarawak is the only state that currently holds staggered state and parliamentary elections. (more…)

March 19, 2010

Sarawakians terrified by street crimes

By Rosita Maja

Last week, March 11, on the streets of Kuching, three schoolgirls were attacked and stabbed, leaving one dead and two seriously injured.

It is indeed horrifying that these grievous crimes of stabbing and murder can happen on the street in a town, in broad daylight.

We can clearly recall that last year, incidents of rape of school girls on the street also aroused great fear and anxiety among the people.

It seems to indicate that offenders are breaking the law at will, and committing crimes without giving a damn about the existence of the police force in our country. Street crimes are happening as if law and order does not exist in Malaysia.

What is at the root of the problem? Is it that people do not fear the police here? Or can it be because people do not sense the presence of police around them? (more…)

March 3, 2010

Sarawak PKR aspiring candidates: hands up, socialists or NGO people?

By Apang

Former PKR secretary-general Salehuddin Hashim has predicted more resignations from PKR elected reps, after the latest PKR loss of former Penang Gerakan youth chief, Nibong Tebal MP Tan Tee Beng. Salehuddin has also just resigned from PKR.

I am sure many rakyat who have longed for much-needed change in federal and state governments will be taken aback, to put it mildly. They must be surprised, not by the latest resignations, but the prediction of more to come by Salehuddin, once the kingpin of Anwar Ibrahim’s inner circle.

I am not taken aback. Instead, I would prefer to urge the public to swallow the bitter pill that history has taught us. That is, change is a process that requires a critical time factor. Furthermore, as I had written earlier in HU, I see these latest developments as part of a ‘cleansing phase’. (more…)

November 11, 2009

Whom should we trust?

By Sim Kwang Yang

anwar_ibrahimOn the eve of polling in the March 8 2008 general election, a close friend enquired whether Anwar Ibrahim could be trusted or not, given his chameleon-like political career that saw him change his affinity in rather dramatic ways several times.  This question about Anwar Ibrahim’s trustworthiness has become all the more topical now that he is scheduled to come back to our Malaysian political arena on full steam next week.

Even before the general election, there was widespread mistrust for Anwar Ibrahim among the Chinese electorate, because of his perceived sins committed against Chinese education during his tenure as Education Minister.  One could argue that, as Education Minister, Anwar Ibrahim was implementing the education policy of UMNO, but that would still not diminish the burden of his rather huge political baggage.

The Chinese community has always had ambiguous feelings for Anwar, even from the early days when he was involved with ABIM as a young radical Islamic activist.  His Islamic credentials may have been an asset for his career, first in UMNO, then as an ally of PAS when he was banished to the political wilderness ten years ago. But for many Chinese who suffer from Islam phobia, Anwar Ibrahim is often perceived by many as a mildly threatening enigma.

In the ten-year existence of PKR, right up to the time of the general election last month, I was constantly bombarded with the question of whether Anwar Ibrahim would return to UMNO, just like Ku Li did in the 90s after fighting UMNO in vain with Semangat 46 as his political vehicle.

(more…)

November 1, 2009

Sarawak PKR’s new chief faces BN mud-slinging

By Maximus  Kho

baru-bianFinally, it is done. Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) or the People’s Justice Party, has appointed a Sarawakian to head its Sarawak Chapter. Yesterday, at a press conference at the Telang Usan Hotel, Mr Baru Bian, a well-known, well-liked, and widely-respected Land Rights lawyer, announced his assumption of the leadership of PKR Sarawak.

This is after much clamouring from within and without the party for a local Sarawakian to head the party. Amongst the most frequently expressed views was the concern that Sarawak’s interests demand the leadership of a Sarawakian. Even George Chan ventured in with his two cent’s worth, when he was quoted as saying that the PKR could not represent Sarawak’s interests because it was headed by a West Malaysian.

Baru’s appointment therefore comes as a breath of fresh air to many. However, not all is well in Sarawak.

(more…)

October 29, 2009

PKR struggling in Sarawak and Sabah!

By Sim Kwang Yang

baru-bianWhen I was told that Baru Bian would be appointed as the new PKR Sarawak chief a couple of weeks ago, I was relieved.

The PKR Perak chief Mustapha Kamil Ayub was the PKR Sarawak Chief for a while, but that kind of stop-gap measure cannot be sustained for long.  Sarawak PKR must be led by a Sarawakian leader.

I met Baru for the first time a few months ago in Kuching.  I found him impressive, calm, and thoughtful.  He told me then that he lost the Ba Kelalan seat by over three hundred votes only.

He mentioned the sum of his miniscule campaign funds.  I was shocked. With that tiny war chest, he lost by a mere 300 votes.  That is unthinkable in rural Sarawak constituencies.  Another candidate would have lost his deposit and his pants.

PKR must now work hard to make sure Baru Bian win the next round; the meek people in Sarawak need his voice in the state assembly.

(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.

(more…)

October 1, 2009

“Balik kampung tanam jagung”

By Maximus  Kho

baru-bianFinally, it is done. Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) or the People’s Justice Party, has appointed a Sarawakian to head its Sarawak Chapter. Wednesday, at a press conference at the Telang Usan Hotel, Mr Baru Bian, a well-known, well-liked, and widely-respected Land Rights lawyer, announced his assumption of the leadership of PKR Sarawak.

This is after much clamouring from within and without the party for a local Sarawakian to head the party. Amongst the most frequently expressed views was the concern that Sarawak’s interests demand the leadership of a Sarawakian. Even George Chan ventured in with his two cent’s worth, when he was quoted as saying that the PKR could not represent Sarawak’s interests because it was headed by a West Malaysian.

Baru’s appointment therefore comes as a breath of fresh air to many. However, not all is well in Sarawak.

(more…)

September 11, 2009

WHAT NOW … TAIB, JABU AND JAMES MASING???

.

English Version of “ Part 5” Summary Inside

By HU Editor

What now AIO IRWhen allegations of rape and sexual abuse of the Penan young women and school girls

came to light last September 2008, the Sarawak state government was dismissive with the news reports:

Penan girls claim abuse , Against their will , Violated by loggers , A neglected people

Sarawak Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud said the reports were nothing but lies and demanded that the newspapers corrected them. Check your information or you will be suspected by the decent people of Sarawak of trying to sabotage us when we have toiled to develop our state, Taib said.

Deputy Chief Minister Alfred Jabu who is the chairman of the steering committee on Penan Affairs said that it would be a waste of time to investigate. He said: I have not heard of such complaints from the Penan communal leaders in my many visits to Ulu Baram. (more…)

The rape of the Penan, and other shameful crimes

By Pak Bui

Penan IRThe government has finally admitted that vulnerable Sarawakians have been raped by logging workers in Baram.

The Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development caved in to demands by NGOs and the electronic media. Malaysian civil society has been clamouring for justice for nearly a year. As a result, the Ministry released its National Taskforce report to PKR Women’s Chief Zuraida Kamaruddin this week.

Our wealthy logging companies behave as if they are kings in rural parts of Sarawak. Rape is an expression of power over the victim as much as it is a crime of passion or lust. Therefore it is no surprise to learn that schoolgirls as young as 10 years old have been molested, abducted and raped by loggers.

These loggers carry out these crimes because they can. (more…)

September 8, 2009

Report on Allegations of Sexual Abuse of Penan Girls and Women… Finally released !

Women, Family and Community Task Force Investigation Report

on Allegations of Sexual Abuse of Penan Girls and Women in Sarawak

Penan ReportPenan Task Force Report in PDF Format

We thank Keadilan Wanita Chief YB Hajjah Zuraidah Kamaruddin and her good team that demonstrated outside Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Seri Shahrizat’s office today and obtained a copy of this report, and made it available for our readers.

Video & Photo Inside : (more…)

September 4, 2009

Flying Doctors Grounded

flying Doctor

The Flying Doctor Service and Emergency Medevac Service, an important service provided by the health department to provide minimal health services to 158 stations of more than 500 remote rural native communities in Sarawak, is allegedly crippled for the past 2 years and 9 months.

How many deaths of the rural natives could have been avoided have there been regular Emergency Medevac Service?

There ought to be an independent inquiry into Sarawak’s crippled Flying Doctor Service and Emergency Medevac Service, said Parti Keadilan Rakyat (The People’s Justice Party).

In a statement issued at a press conference in Kuching today (03.09.2009), the party’s National Strategy Director and Member of Parliament Tian Chua said that he will bring up the matter to the Malaysian Parliament but said that this basic health care service ought to be addressed immediately.

Full text of the press statement: (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…)

August 10, 2009

Umno, the Malay heartland and the Winds of Change

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:01 AM
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“”  Election after election, UMNO expects the rural Malays to vote them back into power and they have fulfilled that expectation. Beneath the peace and the tranquility, the sleepiness and the simplicity, the rustic countryside holds the key to the real political power in the land. “”

water-buffalo

By Kenny Gan

Bright sunshine pours out of a glorious blue sky and bathes the rustic scene of wooden stilted houses set among coconut palms and banana trees close to the winding ribbon of bitumen road.

Padi fields stretch into the distance on both sides like a sea of fresh, vibrant green stalks waving in the gentle breeze.

The deep grunt of a water buffalo penetrates the still air as it waddles in a muddy pool and contented cows rest under shady trees as all around flows the shimmering heat, encompassing everything in its benign embrace, keeping people indoors. (more…)

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…)

June 7, 2009

SKY Counters George Chan – on a lazy Malaysian Sunday!

By Sim Kwang Yang

George Chan Hong NamThe public political conversation in Sarawak can only be described as primitive at best.  How I know it!  I was engaged in frontline politics for nearly 20 years in Bandar Kuching, trying to elevate the level of political narrative in my home state.  It was near impossible, because the media was all closed, and the weight of the Internet had yet to be felt.

Thanks to the Internet, I can read the Borneo Post online everyday these days.  Living in Cheras on the edge of Kuala Lumpur as I do, it is my way of touching base with my home state, so to speak.

On June 5, in a story headlined Pakatan Rakyat cannot bring progress, this is what I read about what George Chan has to say. (more…)

June 2, 2009

“PKR Calm, BN Mental Torture”

By Audie61

gawai 2009 017After a few glasses on Tuak (traditional rice wine) and visibly impressed with PKR National Vice President Mustaffa Kamil Ayub’s visit to Dayak friends during the Gawai festivity, Audie61 cheerfully agreed to be our guest writer to contribute a piece for Hornbill Unleashed.

True to his words, Audie61 writes “PKR Calm, BN Mental Torture”, very much in the spirits of Gawai. (more…)

May 8, 2009

A Coup d’État in Perak

By Pak Bui @ hueditor@gmail.com

American hawk Edward Luttwak wrote in Coup d’État: a Practical Handbook, that “a coup consists of the infiltration of a small, but critical, segment of the state apparatus, which is then used to displace the government from its control over the remainder.”

sivatheheroThis is what took place on Black Thursday, May 7, in Ipoh. The State Assembly Speaker, V Sivakumar, was removed forcibly from his seat and dragged out of the State Assembly. A new Speaker, R Ganesan, was installed by the BN State representatives. The scuffle caused damage to the speaker’s chair, and great offence to the dignity of the Perak State Assembly.

The men who carried off Sivakumar wore name-tags printed with the word “Official”. They did not identify themselves as policemen, but there was little doubt these were plainclothes policemen. In fact, the police have no jurisdiction in any State Assembly or Parliament.

Separation of powers ignored

Article 72 (1) in the Federal Constitution states clearly that “The validity of any proceedings in any Legislative Assembly of any State shall not be questioned in any court”.

This applies also to the other branch of government, the Executive. The Legislative Assemblies are independent of the Executive and the Home Ministry. The State Assembly Speaker arranges all security for the Assembly. Legislators at a sitting in the state Assembly are, therefore, not subject to the actions of the police.

Policemen were bound by the Constitution to request permission from the Speaker V Sivakumar, before entering the State Assembly. Perhaps they whispered politely in his ear while they were dragging him away. (more…)

April 21, 2009

What is racism?

By Sim Kwang Yang ( SKY )

My fellow blogger Sarawak Headhunter had in recent days posted two very controversial entries.

First, he proclaimed that the PKR defeat at the Batang Ai by-election should have buried the skeletons of Dayakism in Sarawak forever. Then he declared war on racism, targeting an Utusan Malaysia headline calling on Malays to rise and be united. It is a pity that his ideas are not more widely discussed in Sarawak’s blogsphere.

UN conference on racism boycotted

Meanwhile, Australia and the Netherland joined the US, Canada, Italy, and Israel in boycotting a United Nations conference on racism in Geneva. The United States and Israel had walked out of a previous conference in South Africa, after Arab states sought to define Zionism as racism. (more…)

April 17, 2009

MP Sivarasa challenges Notice to bar him from entering Sarawak

Decision for leave for judicial review on May 15

By Ken Hu

sivarsa-014-smallThe Kuching High Court I today heard the leave application by PKR vice-President and Subang MP Sivarasa Rasiah for judicial review to quash decision of Immigration Director issuing a Notice of Refusal of Entry barring his entry to Sarawak on 14 February 2009.

In his application, Sivarasa also asked for an order of mandamus to compel the Sarawak Immigration Director to allow his entry into Sarawak.

sivarasa12The PKR vice-president, who was scheduled to conduct internal meetings for Sarawak PKR leaders in Kuching and Miri on that day, was stopped by immigration officials upon arriving at Kuching International Airport at about noontime on 14 February 2009 and was served with a notice of refusal of entry under Section 66(1) on the Immigration Act. (more…)

April 12, 2009

The Dayak urban-rural divide

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 2:26 PM
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Sim Kwang Yang ( SKY ) @ The Nut Graph on April 10, 2009

THE loss of Jawah Gerang and Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) in Batang Ai by a shocking majority of 1,854 votes has jolted many party members and supporters to the core. I hear that even on the morning of polling day on 7 April 2009, some of Jawah’s closest associates were still expecting a glorious victory for him.

Onlookers like me were less involved and can afford to be more objective. Something was amiss with Jawah’s campaign in the dying days of the battle. To be fair, the odds were so stacked against PKR that the party’s candidate, whoever he or she was, would not have made much difference.

But one critical question keeps pecking at the back of my mind: what happened to the much-touted groundswell of Dayak support for PKR in Sarawak? What happened to that resurgence of hope among the usually hopeless Dayaks for redemption from poverty and mental enslavement?

Article Link : http://www.thenutgraph.com/dayak-urban-rural-divide

Sizing up the new PM

Sim Kwang Yang ( SKY ) @ Malaysiakini

So we Malaysians have a new prime minister, a new cabinet, and a new administration.

MCPX

From the way the BN controlled mainstream media cover the event, you would think that the whole country is exploding with joy at the arrival of a new Messiah and his twelve apostles.

Inevitably, the press will publish “positive” response from the BN component parties, business leaders, community leading lights, and the odd selected men and women on the street.

najib announce new cabinet lineup 090409 03I have lived to watch five prime ministers come and go. Najib Abdul Razak is my sixth PM. To call him “my” PM is a little awkward, for I did not vote for him, but the convention of linguistic usage has to be observed.

Thanks to alternative media like Malaysiakini, my cynical “anti-social” voice has found a perfect platform. But my cynical voice is not born from any form of destructive nihilism, but from my idealistic dream of what Malaysia could be.

From that seemingly paradoxical position of idealistic cynicism, let us proceed to evaluate the early days of the new premiership of Najib Abdul Razak.

Article Link :- http://www1.malaysiakini.com/news/102147


April 8, 2009

Post election reflection

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 7:38 AM
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Polling Day, April 7 2009

By Sim Kwang Yang  (SKY) 6 pm

By 6 pm on polling day, I received news that in the vote counting from 21 of 24 polling centres, BN was leading PKR by about 1,600 votes.

I had expected that PKR will lose by 1000 to 1200 votes, so the result will not surprise me much. I have participated, assisted, and watched enough electoral contests to develop a nose in the last few days before polling.

My friend KJ alerted me to also a big loss, and said the candidate is not an issue in such a one-sided affair. Obviously, the Maggie Mee raining from the sky worked its wonders.

Disappointed opposition supporters will perhaps rant on the Internet against the stupidity of the Iban voters for being so gullible to Maggie Mee offensive. Others will blame the PKR election strategy. More will express gloom and doom about the political future of Sarawak. One or two may talk about migrating to Australia, as if that helps.

I am told that Anwar Ibrahim has been bombarded with messages on his mobile phone from Sarawak – in good English -about his handling of the Batang Ai by-election by Sarawakians. His credibility and reputation in Sarawak will be dented by this big defeat, but I am not going to join the crowd.

I tend not to be so emotional. A by-election loss for the PKR is not the end of the world. It is a temporary setback. Much good can be salvaged if lessons can be learned from it.

The loss in Batang Ai does reflect some basic and entrenched problems (more…)

April 7, 2009

My hazy crystal ball on polling day

By Sim Kwang Yang / SKY

72c0230c14023c0a09fba22d2ae13164By the time you read this, on Tuesday April 7, 2009, the fierce campaigns at the two Bukits and the one Batang would have been over, as voters queue up to cast their precious votes.

Since whatever I say would not change the outcome, or influence the moral of the campainers, I may as well join many of my fellow commentators and cast into cyber sphere my conjecture on the possible results at the end of this evening.

So I unpack my dusty and hazy crystal ball and gaze inside. I see a 2-1, for either BN or PR. A 3-0 clean sweep seems unlikely for either side.

bukit-gantangBukit Gantang

I think PAS will win in Bukit Gantang on the strength of the non-Malay support for their candidate Datuk Nizar. Of the 3 component parties of Pakatan Rakyat, PAS also has the best organised campaign machinery.

bukit-selambauBukit Selambau

Despite the large number of independent candidates, I think PKR can pull through with a victory though with a slim margin. As in Bukit Gantang, the ethnic composition of Bukit Selambau is such that the multiracial appeal of the party may just deliver enough votes for PKR to scrap through.

batang-aiBatang Ai

In Batang Ai, BN should win with a larger majority than the 2006 general election.

I am a pessimist when it comes to electoral contests in Sarawak. If the party I support loses eventually, I will not be devastated. If it wins, then I can be pleasantly surprised.

In the last few days, I have been hearing negative (more…)

April 6, 2009

We are Malaysians. But do we know Malaysia ?

– An interview with YB Ong Chin Wen

dscn1280YB Ong Chin Wen, PKR Penang State Assemblyman who possessed a degree in Civil Enginnering from UTM is now a practising lawyer and an active human rights activist. This reformist legislator was in Sarawak to help in the Batang Ai by-election. But he did not stop at an all-out campaigning for PKR candidate Jawah Gerang during his stay. In his zest to understand the livelihood of the rural Iban folks better, he chartered a boat to visit 3 longhouses in the upper reaches of Batang Ai.

Hornbill Unleashed team talked to YB Ong about his experience in the Iban longhouses and downloaded some of the precious photographs he had taken, to share with our HU readers their livelihood and let us understand better a section of the very people who are voting in this Batang Ai by-election.

We are Malaysians.

But do we know Malaysia?

“This is something that is always bugging me. We are Malaysians and we pride ourselves with the diversity of indigenous culture and tradition. However, how much do we know about them? How much do we know about Malaysia?” (more…)

March 30, 2009

Money, money, money, Abba and Marx say it all

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:42 PM
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By Henry

On one occasion a friend of mine named Ted, delivered a speech and ended it with a punch line, “Money isn’t everything but without it you are almost next to nothing”. For the first time I realized the truth that was very much contrary to what my late father had always preached in his usual Sunday sermon.

256d8ffc1b8ae6e04aaf9653d1d5073a-grandeI always thought even without money I am always somebody. Popular pop group, Abba, and the father of communism, Karl Marx, say it all about money that proves my friend’s punch line carries much truth.

Abba, in their song, and part of the lyrics, which I quote below that read:
I work all night, (more…)

March 29, 2009

I am a member of the human race!

By Sim Kwang Yang/SKY

One of the most virulent toxins in Malaysian politics is racial and ethnic politics. Politicians and activists of various ethnic origins still dream about the unity of their race.

I can understand their aspiration for unity, though I disagree with them. They think that once their race is united, they will have greater political representation, and their race will enjoy greater socio-economic benefits.

But 46 years after independence, the facts speak for themselves in Sarawak. Despite the dominance of PBB in more than four decades within the Barisan Nasional, the ordinary Malays and the Melanaus in the coastal regions of our vast state are still dirt poor. Although the Dayaks are well represented in the ruling coalition by the four Dayak components, the Dayak people are still dirt poor, by and large. In sharp contrast, how many of these ethnic representatives in the state assembly and the state cabinet have not grown opulently fat? (more…)

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