31 May, 2008

Malaysia overtakes UK, Japan, Thailand in competitiveness ranking

Malaysia’s competitiveness ranking which moved up to the 19th spot this year, saw it overtaking countries like United Kingdom (21st), Japan (22nd), Thailand (27th) and South Korea (31st), said Director General of Malaysian Industrial Development Authority (MIDA) R. Karunakaran.

It was in the 23rd place last year in the World Competitiveness Yearbook 2008 Report published by the International Institute for Management Development (IMD) in Switzerland.

"Malaysia was ranked seventh among countries with a population of more than 20 million, compared with its eight position in 2007. Malaysia’s ranking was ahead of UK, Japan, France, Thailand, India and South Korea and this was Malaysia’s best ranking over the last three years," said Karunakaran during the launch of the third edition of The Report: Malaysia 2008, here today.

MIDA collaborated with the Oxford Business Group (OBG) to publish the book.

MIDA has been actively promoting Malaysia as the choice destination for manufacturing-related activities including the establishment of regional centres, operational headquarters, international procurement centres, distribution centres, regional offices and representative offices.

Meanwhile, The Report: Malaysia 2008, which will serve as a guide for investors, with its in-depth source of information on the country's investment scenario, is expected to complement MIDA’s efforts to further promote Malaysia as the preferred investment location in the manufacturing and services sector, Karunakaran said. (BERNAMA)

The ranking here.


30 May, 2008

Nargis survivors can live on frogs !!

Myanmar's ruling junta lashed out at foreign aid donors Friday, saying cyclone victims did not need supplies of "chocolate bars" and could instead survive by eating frogs and fish.

Myanmar state media resumes its attack on western nations: they are without humanitarian spirit if they continue to link economic aid to relief workers access to the worst hit areas. The government censures all information relating to Nargis.

Myanmar’s survivors of cyclone Nargis “do not need foreign food aid; they can feed themselves on frogs and fish that abound in the worst hit areas”. The New Light of Myanmar newspaper, a government mouthpiece, has re-launched its attack on foreign relief workers and condemned donors for “linking aid money to full access to the hardest-hit regions in the Irrawaddy Delta”.

After several days of praising the work of the United Nations and charities, the regime's official newspaper renewed its attacks on foreign aid and insisted “Burmese people can survive without outside help”. In all probability the regime did not appreciate the “modest” results of the donor’s conference which took place in Yangon on May 25th. Myanmar needs 11 billion dollars to recover from the storm, but donors have pledged just 150 million dollars so far, and have demanded greater transparency on the part of the military who usually pocket the donations destined for the people. Donor nations say that most of the funds will only be handed over if the Naypydaw regime concedes access to the Delta, which has been virtually off-limits to the media and relief workers.

"Myanmar people are capable enough of rising from such natural disasters even if they are not provided with international assistance," the newspaper said.

"Myanmar people can easily get fish for dishes by just fishing in the fields and ditches," the paper said. "In the early monsoon, large edible frogs are abundant."

"The people (of the Irrawaddy delta) can survive with self-reliant efforts even if they are not given chocolate bars from (the) international community," it added.

No aid agencies are known to have provided chocolate bars to victims of Cyclone Nargis, which struck the impoverished country four weeks ago.

The New Light of Myanmar has also attacked nations which have maintained their economic sanctions against the regime, despite the destruction caused by the cyclone. "Do such countries really have humanitarian spirit?" the paper said. It is a clear reference to the United States, the harshest critic of the Burmese junta.

The regime’s propaganda machine has also restarted one of its favourite instruments: the National censorship board, according to Mizzima News, has banned some Yangon magazines from publishing stories on the devastation caused by cyclone Nargis and on the subsequent crises in the price of rice caused by the destruction of the crops in the Delta. According to the director of one of the magazines, they are only permitted to cover news stories on “the governments’ reconstruction program”.

Read AFP:"Myanmar lashes foreign aid, says survivors can eat frogs"


29 May, 2008

PM's anti-graft agenda won Ezam over


"PM's anti-graft agenda won Ezam over"

The government's post-March 8 anti-corruption agenda was the main attraction for former PKR leader Ezam Mohd Nor to rejoin the party that once expelled him for being overly critical.

So the prodigal son returns, with "3 boxes full of Altantuya’s photos"?

Many are curious as to why now? After all, the party is in a bit of a shambles with in-fighting that political observers insist is Umno’s tradition.

“Because he’s (Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi) only introduced the (reform) policies (on the judiciary and the Anti-Corruption Agency) in the last few weeks. I’ve never seen any prime minister do that in the past 10, 20 years I was in government,” said Ezam.

"I’m joining Umno now, not in the strongest position. My decision is based purely on my conviction that Umno now is capable of bringing about the necessary reforms."

Ezam did not want to elaborate on his reasons for leaving Keadilan – saying that he had already spoken about it at the time – he did say that he "holds strongly to the concept of an Islamic Malay nation that respects and acknowledges the rights of the other citizens from other races.”

Initially, he said, Keadilan was set up as a multiracial Malay-based party, but slowly, it dropped the "Malay-based" aspect and just became a multiracial party. Ezam said that to lose that foundation is "a big sin." "It crossed the line," he said.

Meanwhile, The Star reported that Two former Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) leaders, Anuar Shaari and Khairul Anuar, have applied to join Umno stating that they had suffered a loss of faith in PKR's leadership.

Anuar, the former PKR Permatang Pauh division chief, quit the party on March 25, 2007. Khairul is a former PKR Youth exco member in the term ending 2007. Anuar was also the private secretary to former Finance Minister, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, from 1996 to 1998.

But The Malaysian Insider reported that :"Seven former PKR Youth leaders submitted their applications to join Umno to Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak this afternoon."

The seven — Aswan Din Hamzah, Abdul Ghani Haron, Annuar Shaari, Johari Mohd Yasin, Mohd Nazmi Rosli, Ahmad Daud Che Ghani and Khairul Annuar Ramli — are not automatically accepted though.

Their applications have to be approved by the party’s supreme council but they will know within a month. “Normally they (Umno) will accept. I’m sure they will accept,” said Annuar.


28 May, 2008

Mohamad Ezam and the Art of War:

It is the business of a general to be quiet and thus ensure secrecy; upright and just, and thus maintain order.

He must be able to mystify his officers and men by false reports and appearances, and thus keep them in total ignorance. By altering his arrangements and changing his plans, he keeps the enemy without definite knowledge. By shifting his camp and taking circuitous routes, he prevents the enemy from anticipating his purpose.


Mohamad Ezam Mohd Nor, former Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) Youth leader and one-time confidant of PKR de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, today rejoined Umno.

He handed his application form and a RM100 fee for life membership to Umno president and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi at a news conference at Parliament House here.

"No conditions are attached to Exam's readmission (into Umno). He does not get any special treatment or privileges. He has also not sought any position. He just wants to serve and struggle for the party," he told reporters.

Abdullah said there was no objection from the Umno Supreme Council to Exam's readmission into Umno.

When someone asked how Umno could take Ezam back as he had been highly critical of the party in the past, the PM said, "Mungkin dia insaf (he has repented)."

As for the other questions -- Will Ezam be contesting in the party elections at the end of the year? What can he bring to the party this time round? What is his agenda? – well, only time or the man himself can tell.

Wong Chun Wai:"Breaking news: Ezam back into Umno"

There has been talk that Ezam would be made a Senator but it is unlikely to happen. At least, in the near future. Ezam is likely to channel his energy to reform Umno. Ezam, a one time confidante of Anwar Ibrahim, is said to have left PKR after a bitter feud with Azmin Ali.

After quitting PKR, Ezam made the fight against corruption as his political platform, landing himself into trouble with the authorities numerous times. It would be interesting to see how he intend to continue his struggle in Umno if he is serious about fighting corruption. Is it a mission impossible for him? What kind of role is he expected to play or can he play?


27 May, 2008

Govt To Pay More Attention To Internet Media !

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said on Tuesday the government would give more attention to the non-conventional media of Internet websites and blogs to ensure that the people receive accurate information.

This was most necessary as the impact of this so-called new media on the people was evident in the last general election, he said.

"We will certainly introduce the new dimension in terms of winning over public opinion. One of the aspects that perhaps we have overlooked is how to manage the new media.

"I have to admit, frankly, that we have underestimated their role and I have to admit that we are not 'tech savvy' to tackle this and utilise the impact of the new technology," he said.

On remarks raised by an American participant on freedom of speech and human rights in Malaysia, Najib said the United States should look at itself first before criticising others.

He said the United States, which has been projecting an image of a democratic country, was guilty of abuses especially in Guantanamo Bay, a US detention centre in Cuba.

"In the name of national security, there have been violations of human rights and even abuse. So please, critisise the US government and ask them to close Guantanamo Bay," he said.

Meanwhile,"LKS to be suspended from Parliament because of blog?"

No kidding?

Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia today asked Lim Kit Siang (DAP-Ipoh Timur) to correct a write-up in his blog regarding the ammendment of a motion of thanks for the Yang di-Pertuan Agong's address which was rejected last Thursday.

"When it was taken out from the Dewan (Rakyat), it was like ignoring the Dewan's decision," he said before the debate on the Supplementary Supply Bill (2007) started at the Dewan Rakyat sitting Monday.

He said, in 2001, Batu Gajah Member of Parliament Fong Po Kuan was suspended for six months from attending the Dewan Rakyat session for producing pamphplets outside the Parliamant accusing the Speaker, the late Tun Zahir Ismail as not being fair to her.

"I cannot create a blog to give my answer. So when our decisions were being questioned everytime we made one, then it means that the Parliament's decision was not respected. What was published in the blog can be seen as the same as what was published by Batu Gajah MP back then," he said.

And folks, did you know RM300 million being spent on organising the Monsoon Cup since 2005 ? The cost of organising the event last year was RM22.6 million, and it was actually small compared with the benefits derived from it?


26 May, 2008

Pile of Rocks or Island ?

An excerpt from The Malaysian Insider:

If you take a look at news of Pulau Batu Puteh from today, you may notice something. A subtle name change. The Malaysian Insider learned that there was a request from Wisma Putra – specifically the technical committee set up to study implications of the International Court of Justice’s (ICJ) decision – to refer to Pulau Batu Puteh not as an island.

Essentially, they want it to be referred to as either Batu Puteh or Pedra Branca. A check with the editors of two national dailies confirmed the request. "There is no directive but it was more of a favour ... to not refer to the island as an island," said one of the editors.

He went on to elaborate that since it now belongs to Singapore, the newspaper will now refer to the island as Pedra Branca – the way Singapore has always referred to it. He also noted that it should also not be a problem to refer to the island as Batu Puteh. "Just drop the word pulau ... like the way we refer to Penang or Singapore."

But why all this quibbling? What’s in a name, you ask? Apparently, quite a lot. It has to do with territorial seas; this is different for islands and rocks. So it looks like the technical committee is keen on Pedra Branca being officially defined as rocks and not an island.

Singapore, the tiny red rock dot's Foreign Affairs Minister George Yeo said :"We should be more relaxed now about safeguarding our claims, about the intensity of our patrols and so on,”.

Singapore and Malaysia should be more relaxed now about safeguarding their claims over Pulau Batu Puteh and Middle Rocks in the Singapore Straits after the International Court of Justice had made its ruling last week.

Meanwhile, according to Malaysiakini:

"Johor PAS lodged a police report today against former foreign minister Syed Hamid Albar for having been ‘careless’, resulting in the loss of sovereignty over Pulau Batu Puteh to Singapore."

Also named were two key individuals who were alleged to share responsibility in the matter - Johor Menteri Besar Ghani Othman and Attorney-General Abdul Gani Patail.

Johor PAS information chief Mazlan Alimin, who was accompanied by about 30 people, said the government had been careless and irresponsible in allowing Singapore to occupy the uninhabited island.

“They did not do anything against Singapore when it constructed buildings and a light house on the island,” said Mazlan after lodging the report at central police station in Johor Baru.

“This (gave the impression that) the government had recognised Singapore as the owner (of Pulau Batu Puteh).”

Read also, Din Merican's:"Batu Puteh: Police report lodged"


25 May, 2008

Boys Just Wanna Have Fun - Women should accept polygamy !

A MALAYSIAN lawmaker told Parliament that there would be fewer marital problems and a lower divorce rate if Muslim women were taught to accept polygamy.

"Women should accept polygamy, M'sian lawmaker says"

KUALA LUMPUR - A MALAYSIAN lawmaker told Parliament that there would be fewer marital problems and a lower divorce rate if Muslim women were taught to accept polygamy, news reports said.

Mr Ibrahim Ali, an independent parliamentarian, proposed moves to address the issue in response to complaints that women were always blamed for marital issues.

His argument:

'Such problems happen because women cannot accept polygamy. From a preventive point of view, what about doing a big campaign so that women can accept polygamy?'Mr Ibrahim was quoted saying in the Star daily on Friday.

The ethnic Malay Muslim lawmaker said women who are pregnant or who have 'problems' when they hit their fifties do not understand that men still want to 'have fun'.

Ms Fuziah Salleh, an opposition lawmaker, had earlier questioned the qualifications of Islamic sharia court counsellors as she had received complaints from women that they were forced to take the blame for most marital problems.

'They are not counselled but given 'advice'. And every time, they are told that the woman is to be blamed. If it is a family problem, they must be patient. If they are beaten up, they must also be patient,' she said.

Muslim men in Malaysia are allowed up to four wives. Activists and women's groups say polygamy is cruel and has deviated from its original purpose in Islam, which was to protect widows and orphans.

Islam is the official religion of Malaysia, where more than 60 per cent of its 27 million people are Muslim Malays. Polygamy is illegal for non-Muslims. -- AFP

The National Islamic Students Association of Malaysia had made it to the international media, claiming that the school uniforms worn by our female students are too sexy, saying the blouse were too transparent and could lead to rape and pre-marital sex.

Look like we have made it to the international media again,for the wrong reason.

Read Malaysiakini:

"Polygamy issue arouses passions in Malaysia"

...The issue of polygamy is being hotly debated in mainly-Muslim Malaysia, after the government proposed legislation that would make it easier to enter into multiple marriages - a practice some women's groups want banned.

Muslim men here are allowed up to four wives, but activists say the practice is cruel and that it has been distorted from its original purpose during the days of the Prophet which was to protect widows and orphans.

...Press reports are littered with cases of unhappy polygamous marriages, including a truck driver who swallowed weedkiller when he could not stop his two wives from arguing, and spurned first wives throwing acid at their husbands.

An excerpt from the Star:

"Call to ‘teach’ women on polygamy raises heckles"

THE discussion on problems afflicting the Syariah Courts caused a ruckus after Ibrahim Ali (Ind – Pasir Mas) called for a campaign on the concept of polygamy to be taught to all women to end such problems

...Fuziah Salleh (PKR – Kuantan) then asked if Syariah Court counsellors were qualified, pointing out that she had received numerous complaints about how the woman was always blamed for everything.

“They are not counselled but given 'advice.' And every time, they are told that the woman is to be blamed. If it is a family problem, they must be patient. If they are beaten up, they must also be patient,” she said.

As Ahmad Zahid was about to answer, Ibrahim stood up to say that such cases would not stop happening as the population was increasing and divorces were taking place daily.

“Such problems happen because women cannot accept polygamy. From a preventive point of view, what about doing a big campaign so that women can accept polygamy?” he asked.

Ibrahim said women did not understand that when they were pregnant for nine months, or had “problems” when they hit their 50s, their men still wanted to “have fun”.

“So the man wants to marry again, and the wife gets jealous and asks for a divorce.”

This caused Zuraida to stand up and say that a gender approach was very demeaning.

Ahmad Zahid agreed, saying: “That man is a male chauvinist.” ? :)

To this, Ibrahim giggled.

When Ibrahim said that it was allowed from the Islamic point of view, Zuraida hit back and said men must be held to blame, too.

From Women's Aid Organisation

Know Your Rights



...What are the conditions for polygamy under Malaysian law?
Before marrying a second or subsequent wife, the husband must first make an application to the Syariah Court for permission. As mentioned above, the conditions for granting this permission are slightly different in each State. In Perak, the husband need only to make a declaration before a Syariah Court judge that "he shall be fair to his wives" and obtain a certificate from a Syariah Court judge. There are no other conditions. In Kelantan and Terrenganu, apart from obtaining permission from the Syariah Court, there are also no specific conditions stipulated.

In all the other States, there are four conditions laid down before a man marry another:

* the proposed marriage must be just and necessary;
* the husband must have sufficient financial means;
* the husband will accord equal treatment to the existing wife/wives; and
* the proposed marriage will not cause darar syarie (danger or harm) to the existing wife.

What is deemed as "just and necessary" is debatable and is up to the judge to decide after hearing the application by the man, and in certain occasions where she attends the hearing, the wife's view. Some applicants cite the reason that the second or subsequent marriage was to 'avoid vice' or zina (adultery). The courts in previous cases have rejected this reason. There is no law in Malaysia which supports lust as a reason for polygamy, as there is nothing in the Qur'an which state fear of committing zina to be considered as a ground for polygamy.


24 May, 2008

China Sichuan Earthquake - Touching Stories & Photos

Tragedy: With no one to help him, a man is forced to take his wife's body to the morgue by strapping her to his back on his mope

Heartbroken: Parent mourn over their child who was killed by a collapsing school in Hongbai

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23 May, 2008

Singapore Has Sovereignty Over Pulau Batu Puteh !

Sovereignty over Pedra Branca/Pulau Batu Puteh, Middle Rocks and South Ledge (Malaysia/Singapore)

The Court finds that Singapore has sovereignty over Pedra Branca/Pulau Batu Puteh; that

Malaysia has sovereignty over Middle Rocks; and that sovereignty over South Ledge belongs to the State in the territorial waters of which it is located

The International Court of Justice here today ruled Singapore has sovereignty over Pulau Batu Puteh while Malaysia owns Middle Rocks, and South Ledge belongs to the state in whose territorial waters it is located.

The judgment brought to a close a 28-year-old territorial dispute between Malaysia and Singapore over the island which Singapore called Pedra Branca, Middle Rocks and South Ledge.

The judgment was delivered by ICJ Vice-President Shawkat Al-Khasawneh, who was the Acting President in the case, at 10am Netherlands time and ended reading out the verdict five minutes before noon.

Shawkat and 15 other judges had heard oral submissions by both countries from Nov 6-23 last year.

Malaysian Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim regarded the judgment as a "win-win" situation and stated that the status quo remained although Singapore had sovereignty over Pulau Batu Puteh and Malaysia over Middle Rocks.

Download "Sovereignty over Pedra Branca/Pulau Batu Puteh, Middle Rocks and South Ledge (Malaysia/Singapore) - Judgment of 23 May 2008"- International Court Of Justice
(icj) here. Press release here.

Malaysia’s conduct since 1953 showed that sovereignty over Pulau Batu Puteh had passed over to Singapore, the International Court of Justice said today, ruling 12-4 in favour of the republic.

This decision resolves a thorny issue that has haunted bilateral ties between the countries for 28 years. But the ICJ decision will not be the final word on this matter in Malaysia where loss of territory to Singapore – even an outcrop of rocks – could turn into a political issue. For the past few weeks, Johoreans have been conducting special prayers in the hope that the court will decide in favour of Malaysia.

But the ICJ noted that the strength of Singapore’s claim lay in a letter sent by the state secretary of Johor in 1953 to the Singapore government where he informed that "the Johore government does not claim ownership of Pedra Branca." It could not accept Malaysia’s argument that the state secretary did not have authority or legal capacity to disclaim or confirm ownership of the island, said Judge Awn Shawkat al-Khasawneh.

He also noted that between 1962 and 1975 Malaysia published several maps which attributed Pulau Batu Puteh or Pedra Branca to Singapore. This gave strength to Singapore’s claim of sovereignty.

The ICJ by a majority of 15-1 gave Malaysia ownership of Middle Rocks and said that the South Ledge belongs to the state in which territorial waters it is located in.

Malaysia’s Arguments.

1) Malaysia zoomed in on the 1953 letter, pointing out that Johor’s Acting State Secretary then did not have the authority and no legal capacity to renounce, disclaim or confirm ownership of any of its territories. Singapore had said earlier that the letter was from the Johor government then and it confirms the republic’s ownership of Pedra Branca.

2) Cited two Johor treaties with Britain in 1948 which said that Johor had transferred all its rights, powers and jurisdiction on matters of defence and external affairs to the British.

3) Singapore, in its rebuttal, had said that if the British had not funded the lighthouse construction and decided on it, there would not even have been one on Pedra Branca.
However, Malaysia’s counsel disagreed that it was the British who initiated the construction of the lighthouse and took ownership of the island.

4) Malaysia was criticised for its “silence on the nature of acts a titre d souverain” (the exercise of sovereign powers) on the island but this was because during the period 1847-1851, Britain’s conduct could not be classified as having exercised sovereign powers.

5) ”Conduct (British) in every respect related to the construction of a lighthouse and nothing

6) Placing of experimental bricks, the cutting of rain channels and others on the island, as submitted by Singapore, could hardly be described as acts of the exercise of sovereign powers

7) Malaysia’s counsel, Marcelo Kohen, submitted that the permission of Johor to build the lighthouse made the “fragile and convoluted Singaporean case irreparably collapse.

8 ) Native population used the island, as referred to in Portuguese books as early as 1552 and in 1822. Nearly 300 years later, John Crawfurd reported that the “men of the sea” living in that area were subjects of the Sultanate of Johor

Singapore’s Argument.

1) Pedra Branca was no man’s land in 1847, when the British went there to build the Horsburgh Lighthouse. This meant that Malaysia’s claim that it owned the island even before 1847 is untrue.

2) Malaysia has failed to produce any evidence to show that it owns the island.

3) British possessed Pedra Branca without permission from anyone.

4) Malaysia had claimed it gave Britain permission to construct the lighthouse on the island. But again, they had not shown any evidence to prove that.

5) In 1953, when Johor was a sovereign state under international law, the state secretary of Johor, writing in an official capacity, informed the Singapore government that ‘the Johore Government does not claim ownership of Pedra Branca’

6) Singapore’s display of sovereignty over the island was “open, continuous and notorious” for over 130 years. But Malaysia had said earlier that Singapore was merely performing acts that were expected of a lighthouse operator.

7) Between 1962 and 1975, Malaysia published six maps which attributed Pedra Branca to Singapore. Singapore has never published a single map attributing the island to Malaysia

8 ) Malaysia had also argued that Pedra Branca and its outcrops of Middle Rocks and South Ledge should be treated as separate features. But Professor Koh said for reasons of proximity, geology, history and law, the “three features are inseparable and must be treated together.

9) Malaysia had repeatedly argued that this case is about ownership and not about competing activities on the island but Singapore’s case is that Pedra Branca did not belong to anyone in 1847 and that Singapore has acquired sovereignty over it since 1847 and has maintained it from then.

10) Singapore’s actions are consistent with that of a country that has sovereignty over Pedra Branca. In contrast, all of Malaysia’s actions and inactions, he said, are entirely consistent with that of a country which has no title over the island.

11) Singapore’s actions were open and public and are the counterpart to Malaysia’s silence in the face of these activities over a period of 130 years. Malaysia’s official disclaimer in 1953 and its series of official maps attributing the island to Singapore are further confirmation of this picture.

12) The Singapore team highlighted that Malaysia did not protest to any of those activities over the last 130 years.

13) Citing examples, Malaysia did not object when the British expanded the jetty and landing stage on the island in the 1880s, and it did not protest either when Singapore insisted in 1974 that it had to approve Malaysian visitors going to Pedra Branca.

14) Singapore performed numerous activities in a manner which fully reflected the reality that it regarded itself as possessing sovereignty over the island while Malaysia did nothing.

15) Malaysia also disclaimed ownership over Pedra Branca in 1953. Malaysia’s meteorological publications listed the rainfall station on Pedra Branca as being “in Singapore”. It also published a series of official maps over a 14-year period designating Pedra Branca as Singapore. And it did nothing of its own on the island

16) Malaysia had argued that it had conducted navy patrols in the waters with other countries such as Australia and the United States, and those were an exhibition of its sovereignty over the island. But Malaysia has no documentary evidence to indicate the precise areas covered by such patrols or that they had anything to do with Pedra Branca and its waters.

17)Malaysia’s documents, which they claimed show its original title over the island, are insufficient.

Read also:

Malaysiakini:"Batu Puteh goes to Singapore"

Labels: ,

22 May, 2008

School uniform sexy ?

A Malaysian group condemned the uniform worn by girls at government schools, saying it encouraged rape and pre-marital sex.

“The white blouse is too transparent for girls and it becomes a source of attraction,” National Islamic Students Association of Malaysia vice-president Munirah Bahari said in a statement.

“It becomes a distraction to men, who are drawn to it, whether or not they like looking at it,” she said, calling for a review of uniform policy so that it did not violate Islamic ideals.

In multicultural Malaysia, home to majority-Muslim Malays as well as ethnic Chinese and Indians, female students at government schools have a choice of wearing a white blouse with a knee-length skirt or pinafore.

They may also wear a “baju kurung” and a headscarf is optional for Malay students.

Munirah said that “covering up” according to Islamic precepts was important to fend off social ills, including “rape, sexual harassment and even premarital sex.”

“This leads to babies born out of wedlock and, to an extent, even prostitution,” she said.

“Decent clothes which are not revealing can prevent and protect women from any untoward situations,” she said, suggesting that girls wear a blouse of a different colour or with an undergarment.

However, the girls themselves also came in for criticism, with the association saying that some used the white blouse to lure men.

“This is the source of the problem, where we can see that schoolgirls themselves are capable of using this to attract men to them,” Munirah said.

“This could see them getting molested, having premarital sex and all sorts of things.” - The Star

What planet do these guys come from? These little Talibans are also claiming that these uniforms are a distraction.

“Covering up” according to Islamic precepts was important to fend off social ills, including “rape, sexual harassment and even premarital sex.”

Okay, now I know why "a married father of three faces indecency charges after allegedly having sex with a picnic table",apparently, the table was not covered up.

Art Price Jr, 40, was seen doing the dirty with the garden furniture at his home in Bellevue, Ohio, on four occasions by a neighbour.

The neighbour, who hasn't been named, says that he saw Mr Price turning the table over before performing the sex acts on it.

Police officer Matt Johnson said: 'He was completely nude. He would use the hole from the umbrella and have sex with the table.'

Just to add a touch of class to his furniture-copulation, Price reportedly carried out his naked table-boffing in broad daylight, very close to a local school.

The fourth time, the neighbour videotaped the alleged table-sexing as evidence.

Officer Johnson commented: 'Once you think you've seen it all, something else comes around.'


21 May, 2008

Mahathir's last stand

There's something wrong with former Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad.

Why else would a man who led his country to such great economic heights, and in the process established global stature for himself as a spokesman for the developing world, try to tear it all down in retirement? Yet this is what many Malaysians fear will be the result of a bitter feud that has raged for much of the past year between the octogenarian former premier and his hand-picked successor Abdullah Badawi.

Malaysia's influential former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad quit the ruling party Monday after a long feud with his successor, deepening cracks in the party.

The 82-year-old Mahathir's departure raises the possibility of large-scale desertions by loyalists, which could split the party and bring down the government.

Mahathir 'has asked other members of the party to follow suit' and leave the United Malays National Organization party, or UMNO.

Tun Dr Mahathir, 82, who led the United Malays National Organisation for 22 years, said he was resigning to protest against Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi's leadership.

Years back, when he resigned, he did say that he would not interfere in the affairs of the country nor want to be a Minister Mentor.

Mahathir should have emulated Singapore's ex-Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew by not completely relinquishing his government posts after his retirement.

Lee Kuan Yew is smarter than (Mahathir), for he chose to remain as a ... minister to the government after stepping down as prime minister.

Lee Kuan Yew stepped down as Singapore's prime minister in 1990 but still wields considerable influence in the Cabinet and holds the title of "Minister Mentor."

So when leadership is challenged, as is now the case with Mahathir unleashing almost daily public criticism against Abdullah, the entire country comes to a standstill and fear stalks the land. Politicians don't know to whom to turn, business isn't sure when government decisions will be made or, if they are, that they will be honored, and the rest of society fears the fallout from a power struggle.

Why did Mahathir pick Abdullah as his successor? Perhaps Mahathir expected Abdullah to falter at the start of his tenure, and the party rank and file would come running to him with apologies and pleas for his return. Instead, Abdullah and his reform message were warmly welcomed by Malaysians weary of Mahathir's polarizing politics.

Mahathir's many tugs of war

THE bitter split between Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and his handpicked successor Abdullah Badawi started just months after the latter took over as prime minister.

• Oct 31, 2003: Datuk Seri Abdullah takes over from Tun Dr Mahathir in a simple handover ceremony.

• Dec 10, 2003: The new Cabinet postpones Tun Dr Mahathir's last mega project - a RM14.5 billion ($6.2 billion) double-track rail network. Other Mahathir projects, including a monorail and a giant mosque in Putrajaya, are scrapped later.

Tun Dr Mahathir says: 'The government claims it has no money to continue concessions. That is what they say to stop many projects in Putrajaya. My contention is the government has lots of money.'

• Feb 9, 2004: Anti-corruption officials arrest tycoon Eric Chia, a confidant of Tun Dr Mahathir. He is later charged, but acquitted of criminal breach of trust in a case involving former national steel mill Perwaja.

• Sept 2, 2004: The political nemesis of Tun Dr Mahathir, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, is released from prison by Malaysia's highest court. The move angers the former premier.

• Jan 3, 2006: Tun Dr Mahathir attacks Proton's decision to sell its stake in Italian motorcycle maker MV Agusta for 1 euro. Proton had paid 70 million euros for the company in December 2004 when he was in power.

• April 12, 2006: Prime Minister Abdullah scraps a plan to replace Malaysia's side of the Johor Causeway with a 'crooked' bridge. Tun Dr Mahathir claims the decision shows that Malaysia has lost its sovereignty to Singapore.

He says: 'This is our country, yet we have to seek permission from another country to build a bridge on our side. Where is the sovereignty?'

• July 28, 2006: Tun Dr Mahathir is attacked with pepper spray as he arrives in the Kelantan airport during a campaign against his successor.

• Sept 9, 2006: He suffers a humiliating defeat in his attempt to get nominated by his old Kedah division as a delegate to the Umno assembly in November. He claims members were paid to vote against him, but says he will not stop his attacks.

He says: 'The only way they can stop me is to throw me in jail.'

• Oct 22, 2006: Datuk Seri Abdullah and his predecessor meet privately in what is described as 'unity talks', but nothing is achieved. The latter continues his attacks just hours after the meeting.

Tun Dr Mahathir says: 'I will continue to criticise if I find that something is done that does not benefit the country.'

• Nov 9, 2006: Tun Dr Mahathir suffers the first of several heart attacks. He undergoes a second heart bypass on Sept 9, 2007. His first heart surgery was in 1989.

• April 23, 2007: Tun Dr Mahathir says for the first time that his successor was only supposed to serve one term, and that he wanted Deputy Prime Minister Najib Razak as premier.

• Throughout 2007: Tun Dr Mahathir continues to attack Datuk Seri Abdullah and government policies whenever given a platform.

• May 16, 2008: A Royal Commission probing charges of corruption in the judiciary recommends investigating key figures, including prominent lawyer V.K. Lingam and Tun Dr Mahathir.

• May 17, 2008: Tun Dr Mahathir challenges the government to investigate him as urged to by the commission.

• May 19, 2008: He quits Umno.

Reme Ahmad

Controversial Umno career

THE following are the links between Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Umno, a history that is being scrutinised again following his shock decision to quit the party yesterday.

• 1946: Tun Dr Mahathir, a medical doctor, joined the United Malays National Organisation at the party's inception.

• 1964: He became a Member of Parliament when he won a seat in Kota Setar, Kedah. He lost the seat in the following general election in 1969.

• 1969: Following the May 13 race riots, he was sacked from the party on July 12 due to the widespread distribution of his letter to first Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman criticising Tunku's handling of the administration.

• 1972: Tun Dr Mahathir rejoined Umno on March 7 and was appointed a senator in 1973.

He contested the Kubang Pasu (Kedah) seat, winning it unopposed.

Subsequently, he was made minister of education.

• 1975: He became one of the three Umno vice-presidents.

• 1978: Then Prime Minister Hussein Onn appointed Tun Dr Mahathir as deputy prime minister on Sept 15.

• 1981: Tun Dr Mahathir became prime minister of Malaysia on July 16, 1981. He led the country for 22 years.

• 2003: He retired on Oct 31 and passed the premiership to Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi, promising he would stay out of the government's affairs.

Read also:

Mahathir's long, dark shadow

Abdullah undermined as Mahathir quits Umno


Malaysia PM calls emergency talks over Mahathir

Impact of Mahathir leaving UMNO


20 May, 2008

The last resort of a former leader , Dr Mahathir Blackmailing Umno ?

The decision by former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to quit Umno is deemed as blackmailing the party, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Aziz said.

"Nobody, no matter how big he is, has the right to use dirty tactics to bring down a person who is democratically elected,"

"It's not something that we condone and it's undemocratic; that's blackmailing the party," he said.

Karpal Singh, the Bukit Gelugor member of parliament said Dr Mahathir was "unabashedly" showing his true colours.

"He has brought upon himself the ominous act of resigning from Umno with a view, obviously, to destabilize the government of Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

"Dr Mahathir has shown that he is incapable of becoming a statesman. He has been and remains a gutter politician."

"One who panics exhibits signs of weakness."

Press statement from PKR advisor Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim :

Tun Dr Mahathir's decision to leave Umno today is indicative of Umno's worsening crisis, where leaders continue to bicker and fight, while the welfare of ordinary Malaysians are increasingly neglected.

The internal problems of Umno are clearly deteriorating beyond any hope of recovery. Nonetheless, we must avoid being trapped by personal agendas to replace weak leaders with corrupt ones.

In view of the worsening crisis, any and all Malaysians of conscience who are concerned for the continued stability, prosperity or unity of the country are invited to join KeADILan and Pakatan Rakyat and pursue our shared ideals for a better, united Malaysia.

Fake farewell for Malaysia's Mahathir
By Anil Netto - Asia Times

Former premier Mahathir Mohamad's decision to quit the ruling United Malays Nasional Organization (UMNO) on Monday represents his strongest political protest yet against his hand-picked successor Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi - and perhaps his biggest gamble.

His high-stakes decision came after a royal commission of inquiry last week recommended that the former prime minister and a number of his associates face probes under various laws for suspected involvement in the fixing of appointments, promotions and removal of judges, including the sacking of six top judges in 1988, which critics claim permanently undermined the judiciary's independence.

Read here.


19 May, 2008

"I am quitting Umno today"

After goading Umno members today to temporarily resign from Umno as a sign of protest against the party president, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad took up a “dare” to take the lead by resigning from the party he had been a founding member of since 1946. However, he implored Umno members taking up his challenge not to join any other party and remain independent, at least until the Umno leadership was determined (after the December party elections). He indicated that he will only rejoin the party when Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi steps down as Umno president.

Mahathir Mohamad quit Malaysia’s main ruling party on Monday and urged others to follow suit in a move that could weaken its hold on power and unsettle financial markets.

The still influential Dr Mahathir, who was prime minister and leader of the United Malays National Organisation for 22 years until 2003, said he would only return to UMNO after Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi quit as leader.

The 82-year-old Mahathir's departure raises the possibility of large-scale desertions by loyalists, which could split the party and bring down the government. The party has been in power since Malaysia's independence from Britain in 1957.

Mahathir "has asked other members of the party to follow suit" and leave the United Malays National Organization party, or UMNO, his son Mokhzani Mahathir said.

Mr Abdullah has rejected previous calls for him to step down and hand power to his deputy Najib Razak. By tradition, the UMNO president is also the prime minister.

“I will not be an UMNO member as long as Abdullah remains as an UMNO President,” Dr Mahathir told reporters in his home state of Kedah. He said he had lost confidence in UMNO’s ability to safeguard the interest of the ethnic Malay majority, whose rights and privileges were being scrutinised by non-Malays.

Dr Mahathir said he believed his move to leave Umno would not have an impact on the politics of the Malays.

"I was once thrown out of Umno and the Malay politics did not fade away. If the Malays want to correct the situation, it's not because of my quitting. If they are brave to save the party and the party's struggles, they must be brave to act," he said.

Extracts from Dr Mahathir’s speech to 1,000 Kedah Umno members and comments made at a press conference later:

On his call for Umno members to quit the party

"The Malays, Umno members and many other people have sent him messages of their dissatisfaction of his leadership but Abdullah is unperturbed. We have to be radical and brave and this is the only way to bring him down.

"I feel what we have now is no longer the true Umno. It is now a party that recognises Abdullah Ahmad Badawi as president, his interests and that of his family so much so that the interest of the country has to take a backseat. I can list down the things he has done that has not been beneficial to the country and that is why I am not hesitant to leave the party which no longer upholds that objectives of its formation 62 years ago."

On whether Umno members will heed his call

"It is up to them. To follow or not, but if they think they should continue to support Pak Lah and give priority to Datuk Abdullah Badawi over the party’s struggles, it is their right."

On Abdullah’s role in Election 2008

"He is responsible for destroying BN component parties like the MCA, MIC, Gerakan and PPP. As a result, the Chinese and Indian communities which have been strong supporters of the BN no longer have confidence in the ruling coalition."

On Kedah not having any representatives in the Cabinet

"We lost Perak, Penang, Selangor and Kelantan but they have representatives in the Cabinet but isn’t there anyone from Kedah."

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18 May, 2008

An Unacceptable Trait - The ugly Singaporean

China’s quake throws up an ugly side of Singaporeans that frequently makes them disliked abroad.

Have affluent, educated Singaporeans become too self-centred and insensitive to other peopleâ??s plights? Can Singapore be considered a First World city with such boorishness? A mature, developed country isn't??t defined only by wealth and education; it is also about humanity and concern for others. ...

JUSTIFIABLY or not, the disastrous Sichuan earthquake has sparked off a re-look here at a Singaporean characteristic that overshadows his economic achievement.

In a TV interview, a tourist who just returned unhurt complained angrily about his encounter with airport delay and telephone breakdown at a time when the Chinese were frantically rescuing people.

One viewer commented: “He kept complaining bitterly as if the whole world owed him an explanation about the airport delay.”

Another added: “the man was practically shouting at the camera. His behaviour was really shocking.”

In the face of the terrible suffering, the middle-aged Singaporean’s insensitive complaint about his personal inconvenience spread consternation and a sense of shame among viewers.

It highlighted a trait often attributed to affluent, educated Singaporeans that they have become too self-centred and insensitive to other people’s plights.

After years of social campaigns, tales still abound of people rushing for train seats or refusing to give one up to the elderly, ill treatment of maids, littering or inconsiderate driving.

Many of the offenders are middle-class, young and educated who seem to have little interest in other people’s feelings.

The Singaporean tourist, instead of lending a helping hand, was fuming about his own safety – even after he was safely back home.

“Typical ugly Singaporean the sort that makes other people dislike us – totally self-centred,” said a blogger.

Read Full Article here.


17 May, 2008

Mahathir challenges government to charge him

Malaysia's former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad on Saturday challenged the government to charge him for his alleged involvement in a judge-fixing scandal during his rule.

"I welcome it," the 82-year-old influential leader said at a meeting in Johor.

"I want them to charge me in court. Only then will I have the opportunity to expose more conflicts faced by the judges, including those who have implicated me," he told reporters.

"We are of the view that there was, conceivably, an insidious movement by (V.K. Lingam) with the covert assistance of his close friends," it said, citing business tycoon Vincent Tan -- Mahathir's close associate -- and secretary general of the ruling United Malays National Organisation, Tengku Adnan.

"In the process, Tun Mahathir Mohamad was also entangled," the report said.

Meanwhile, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad continued his attacks on Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, telling him to be a Malay gentleman by stepping down from his post following the March 8 political tsunami.

He was ready to offer 100 tips on how Umno and the people could get Abdullah to quit.

To a question "What would you do if you were allowed to become PM again for 100 days?"

Dr M: The first thing I will do is get rid of Pak Lah. When I chose him over Najib, they told me he is Mr Nice and Mr Clean and all that. Only now we know what kind of a person he really is. So, the first thing I will do is fire him. Once I have done that, the rest is easy. No need to elaborate.

While Dr M continued his attacks on Pak Lah, Anwar, who was ousted from government in 1998 by then-Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad in a power struggle amid accusations of corruption and sodomy said he would have enough support to topple Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi's government by September.

"By our calculation, we should move before Sept. 16," he said during his visit to Mumbai, India's financial and entertainment capital, for a lecture series on "Human Rights Awareness."

Although Anwar has made such claims several times in the past, Friday was the first time he has given a specific timeframe to try to pull down the government.

Read also :

Malaysiakini "Dr M challenges gov't to charge him"

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16 May, 2008

Waytha's passport revoked ?

Malaysian Indian rights activist living in self-imposed exile after organising anti-discrimination protests in his home country denounced the government on Friday for allegedly revoking his passport.

Ponnusamy Waytha Moorthy, who has been in London since he fled the country last December, said he has sought asylum in Britain after learning that Kuala Lumpur had cancelled his passport.

"Technically, I am now without a state and am asking Britain for asylum," the chairman of rights group Hindraf told AFP in a phone interview. "This is a very cowardly act by the Malaysian government against me in order to undermine me, but it really undermines their credibility locally and internationally."

Malaysiakini :

The government has revoked the passport of a Hindu Rights Action Force chairperson P Waythamoorthy, Amnesty International said on Thursday.

Waythamoorthy, who has been living in London since he fled the country in December, has sought asylum in Britain, Amnesty's Washington-based Asia-Pacific advocacy director T Kumar told AFP.

The activist had planned to visit Washington for talks with leaders of the US Congress and Amnesty and other rights groups, "but it has been put off because of his passport's cancelation", Kumar said.

Waythamoorthy had sought the talks to highlight alleged discriminatory policies against minority ethnic Indian Malaysians as well as the arrest under the powerful Internal Security Act of five senior Hindraf members at home.

The five, who led a massive anti-discrimination rally in Kuala Lumpur in November, are being held without trial and for an indefinite period.

Kumar said Waythamoorthy only became aware of his passport's revocation when he returned to London from Geneva after talks recently with the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.

"He was shocked to be informed by British immigration officers that Kuala Lumpur has revoked his passport," Kumar said. "This makes him de facto stateless."

"This is the first time I have heard of a political activist's passport being revoked by his own country's government," he said.

Kumar called on Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to give a "full explanation on the rationale for the cancellation."

Asylum application

The British authorities will hold hearings to consider Waythamoorthy's application for political asylum, he said.

Waythamoorthy said in a statement to Amnesty that the Malaysian government revoked his passport in the belief that the British authorities would deport him to Kuala Lumpur where he could be arrested under the Internal Security Act.

"This unwarranted act has given me greater 'inner' strength to continue to struggle for the Malaysian Indians and for the unconditional release of my fellow brothers held unjustly under the Internal Security Act," he said.

Malaysia's highest court on Wednesday refused to release the five activists, including a newly sworn-in state lawmaker.

Ethnic Indians make up less than eight percent of the 27 million population of the mainly Muslim-Malay country.

Lawyers for the five said they would appeal on Monday for the Federal Court to review its decision.

Rights groups say 70 people, mainly alleged Islamic militants, are being held under the Internal Security Act.


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Panel finds judicial conspiracy

In Malaysia's legal system, the chief judge recommends candidates for senior judicial appointments and promotions to the prime minister, who can accept or reject those names.

Malaysia's judiciary has long been plagued by claims of favouritism and influence-peddling. Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi announced last month an independent panel would be established to help select new judges as part of legal reforms.

A high-level inquiry found evidence that prominent government and judicial figures, including former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, were involved in a conspiracy to manipulate the appointment of judges, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Zaid Ibrahim said today.

The revelation deals a major blow to the reputation of Malaysia's courts and bolsters allegations by many lawyers and opposition leade rs that judicial corruption has tainted verdicts stretching back more than a decade.

Law Minister Zaid Ibrahim said a panel that investigated the video found that it was authentic, and that Lingam apparently conspired with his allies in the judiciary, government and corporate world to broker the appointment of judges.

The Cabinet told the Attorney General's office Friday to undertake immediate investigations into the "possibility that offenses against the law have been committed," Zaid told reporters.

The report by the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the Lingam video clip will be made public as decided by the cabinet Friday. The cabinet also ordered that the Attorney-General's Chambers begin immediate investigations into allegations against the individuals named in the report

The video — filmed by a visitor to Lingam's house — shows him talking about ways to help Ahmad Fairuz become Malaysia's top-ranking judge with the help of business tycoon Vincent Tan and Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, a former Cabinet minister.

The inquiry's report said "there was conceivably an insidious movement by (Lingam) with the covert assistance of his close friends (Tan and Tengku Adnan) to involve themselves actively in the appointment of judges."

"In the process ... Mahathir was also entangled," the report added. "Actions of the main characters concerned have the effect of seriously undermining and eroding the independence and integrity of the judiciary as a whole."

Asked whether the individuals named in the report were involved in the offences stated, Zaid said: "No, I don't want to say they were involved. It was among the findings."

On the main allegations in the report, he said there were various offences committed against the Official Secrets Act, Sedition Act and Penal Code which needed to be investigated by the Attorney-General.

"We must remember that the report or recommendations are information. So, investigations have to be carried out."

Lingam claimed he may have been drunk when the video was shot. Ahmad Fairuz, who became chief justice in 2003 and retired last year, denied speaking to Lingam. Mahathir, Tengku Adnan and Tan insisted they were not part of any conspiracy.

In Malaysia's legal system, the chief judge recommends candidates for senior judicial appointments and promotions to the prime minister, who can accept or reject those names.

Copies of the Royal Commission's report will be sold to the public as published and handed in to the King last Friday.

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15 May, 2008

Hopping Hurdles In The Way To Form Federal Govt ?

By Nor Hayati Muda

KUALA LUMPUR, May 15 (Bernama) -- Over the last few weeks, there has been talk that the Opposition front may be in a position to form the next federal government given the not-so-robust majority of Barisan Nasional (BN) in Parliament after the 12th general election.

Debates and conversations on this probability or improbability have been taking centre stage of late among politicians, political analysts, business people and even people at the grassroots.

The BN has 140 seats or 63.1 per cent of the total number of 222 seats.

It garnered 4.082 million votes during the election or 50.6 per cent of the popular vote.

If Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) adviser Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim is to be believed, then perhaps he may have made it sound rather relatively easy with his contention that all the Opposition alliance needs is just 30 Members of Parliament from the BN to cross over.

They could then form the next government based on a simple majority.

At present, the Opposition has 82 seats including one independent MP.

Anwar has been reportedly saying that his party had managed to entice a number of MPs who would be willing to jump across.

However, based on a document being distributed by some unknown quarters in Parliament today, the matter is not as easy as it seems.

The document, written by people who have a strong understanding of Constitutional Law, argues that the Opposition front, in order to achieve what it aims to do, has to overcome various hurdles in the form of several laws in the Federal Constitution.

According to the document, the number one obstacle is provided under Article 43(5), which states that the Yang di-Pertuan Agong has no power to dismiss the prime minister.

But if the prime minister ceases to command the confidence of the Dewan Rakyat, then the prime minister must exercise one of several choices.

One is to submit the resignation of his entire government as provided for in Article 43(4) or advise the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to dissolve the Dewan Rakyat and call a new election as per Article 43(4).

But the Yang di-Pertuan Agong has the discreton to refuse the advice to dissolve the Dewan Rakyat as stated in Article 40(2)(b).

In the event of this, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong has to appoint someone who, in His Majesty's judgement, is likely to command the confidence of the Lower House.

The note also reveals that if the prime minister were to lose in a snap vote of confidence but is able to re-group his supporters and rebuild a majority, he is eligible to be reappointed again as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong has some discretion on who is best able to command the confidence of the Lower House.

Another obstacle for the Opposition is that no extra-parliamentary dismisal is possible unless the Dewan Rakyat dismisses the prime minister as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong has no power to remove the prime minister (Article 43(5)).

To reinforce its contention, the document cited the case of then Sarawak Chief Minister Stephen Kalong Ningkan versus the then Sarawak Yang Dipertua Negeri Tun Abang Haji Openg in Sarawak in 1966, which confirmed that unless there was a vote of no-confidence, a valid appointment cannot be revoked by the Yang Dipertua Negeri.

The document also pointed out that if the Dewan Rakyat were to be dissolved, then the previous prime minister would remain in office in a caretaker government capacity.

Although this was not laid down in the Constitution, it was a well established constitutional convention in the United Kingdom (UK), Malaysia and throughout the Commonwealth, it argued.

In addition, the document also argued that the inability of a party to secure a two-third majority did not hamper law-making or the passing of the federal government's budget.

"In the UK, governments come to power with less than 50 per cent of the popular vote and with a base majority in the elected House. This is not the first time that the Alliance-BN did not gain a two-third majority.

In 1969, the Alliance failed to secure more than 50 per cent of the votes and failed to obtain a two-third majority.

Tun Abdul Razak administered the country from Feb 20 1971 to the 1974 elections on a simple majority in the Dewan Rakyat," it stated.

At the same time, the document also pointed out that in the case of Nordin Salleh (1994), the Supreme Court held that the Kelantan anti-hopping law was a breach of freedom guaranteed by Article 10(1)(c).

Nordin, then the PAS state assemblyman for Sungei Pinang, joined Umno in 1992.

The Kelantan state government then enacted an anti-hopping law for politicians but the Supreme Court later ruled that it was unconstitutional.

The way to overcome this judicial decision is possible through a number of ways.

One is to have a constitutional amendment to Article 10 (2)(c) to forbid party-hopping.

But in the present political context, BN, without a two-third majority, may not be possible to secure this amendment.

The other is to promulgate an Emergency Ordinance under Article 150(2B) to provide for anyone who has been expelled or who resigns from the party on whose ticket he or she was elected to the Dewan Rakyat to vacate his or her seat and return to the electorate in a by-election.

Alternatively, a law can be promulgated to ensure that the "hopper" is disqualified to contest for five years and this will be similar to Article 48(6), which deals with MPs who resign from the Dewan Rakyat.

The note further explains that an emergency ordinance is an executive piece of law-making outside of Parliament, which only requires the Yang di-Pertuan Agong's assent.

It can be enacted if two requirements are met -- that there is an emergency in the country and that the two Houses of Parliament are not sitting concurrently.

This ordinance can be justified as a "collapse of civil government" is also a form of "emergency" as laid down by the Privy Council in the Stephen Kalong Ningkan versus the Government of Malaysia (1968) case.


Disrespectful to Islam? Porah !,

No, Karpal Singh was not disrespectful to Islam. Karpal Singh is as ‘Islamic’ as they come. Karpal Singh has done what 15 million Malay Muslims would not do. Karpal Singh has done what 15 million Malay Muslims should have done.

To insult or defy Rulers goes against Islam, say the men of the cloth. Is this so? Well, then Rosmah, the wife of the Deputy Prime Minister, has committed a serious crime and should be punished. Rosmah phoned His Highness the Sultan of Selangor and scolded him. Rosmah spoke to His Highness the way you would scold a dog that shit on your new carpet.

Rosmah is angry that Raja Petra Bin Raja Kamarudin wrote an article called Let’s send the Altantuya murderers to hell. And Rosmah phoned His Highness the Sultan of Selangor and shouted at him. That is worse than what Karpal Singh did.

Rosmah wants to become the ‘First Lady’ of Malaysia even though the First Lady is the Agong’s consort. But Rosmah has committed treason against the Ruler. 200 years ago Rosmah would have been put to death. Today she will be rewarded with a RM100 million budget to renovate the Prime Minister’s residence in Putrajaya when her husband becomes Prime Minister.

And Raja Petra Bin Raja Kamarudin now challenges Rosmah for her to deny this allegation. Or maybe she would like to make a police report instead. That is what they normally do anyway when they are not able to reply. Porah Rosmah. Please don’t phone my cousin His Highness the Sultan of Selangor. Please don’t shout at my cousin His Highness the Sultan of Selangor. The Perak Mufti said that if you do that then you are disrespectful to Islam. You are only the wife of the Deputy Prime Minister who shall never become the Prime Minister of Malaysia. This quarrel is between you and me. Leave my cousin His Highness the Sultan of Selangor out of it.

More Read here

Meanwhile, The government has no plans to amend its policy based on the spirit of the New Economic Policy (NEP) which is aimed at improving the socio-economic lot of not only Bumiputeras but also Malaysians of Indian origin, the Orang Asli and minority groups in Sabah and Sarawak, the Dewan Rakyat was told tody.

The successful realisation of the aims of the spirit of the NEP will contribute towards solidifying national solidarity, which is the most vital asset for a complex society like Malaysia's in continuing the march towards further progress beyond 2020.