Friday, July 14, 2006


Not exactly "Lelaki MelayuTerakhir .." (Last Malay Man Standing ..) but Saiful Azhar Abdullah's removal from the NST's news desk this morning will be a subject of speculation, especially with talk that the former Kedah correspondent was "close to Tun Dr M".

The transfer had nothing to do with the NST on-line getting caught with its pants down earlier today with a "Scoop that wasn't".

I can say with absolute certainly that Saiful was not among the editors involved in spinning and weaving the statement that the DPM was supposed to issue last night but did not, and which the NST on-line published anyway. (Read this blog's 1.30am update on "The First Choice vs Dr M").


  1. aaah, that explains it - so where is dear saiful now?

  2. Anonymous1:36 pm

    Politics aside, what's your take on the proposed RM490 million High Performance Training Centre in Hertfordshire, England?

  3. Anonymous1:43 pm

    saiful has always been the nice guy who doesn;t get things done in the nst. in nst, they don't want nice guys but doers. he lacks the drive to propel the nst into a fullscale war against the likes of the star and sun. therefore he is not in brendan's scheme of things. in short, saiful doesn't have fire in his belly. i agree with rocky on the spinning part. saiful is not capable of it.

  4. Anonymous2:46 pm

    Get ready for a meteor fragment crash

    Saiful Azhar? Ah, the poor man. The official line will be that he, an editor with hardcore news instincts, is to return to the Malay Mail to strengthen the newspaper’s inept news desk and news gathering effort.
    What a coups de théâtre, all this after transferring him out of the Malay Mail long before it was trivialised into a rag even its targeted young readership found obnoxious.
    Saiful’s surprising transfer merely underscores Brendan Pereira’s desperate black-ops to tightened control of the NST newsdesk – from news gathering, writing, re-writing, tone and focus to anything that remotely emanates a Dr Mahathir Mohamad aftertaste. He will, of course, deny it but it fits into his spinmeistering and Singapore-centric scheme of things.
    Saiful’s transfer will have little to do with how the Malay Mail is run.
    Here I have two posers:
    ► should M. Zul strenuously object to the transfer since the Malay Mail, incorporated and decidedly independent, is no longer a dumping ground for NST discards (My thinking? No, M. Zul has no stomach for the Machiavellian politics of the NST and will just accept); and,
    ► will Saiful be answerable to its deputy editor, the very much junior Yushaimi Yahaya? (This one’s tougher though but if Saiful is to solely take care of the newsdesk, then it will create some measure of resentment)
    Fuel and fodder for a plethora of commentaries and conjectures, as Rocky had postulated? Saiful is already inflaming like a meteor fragment, ready to crash and burn. I hope he walks out of the crater in one piece.

  5. Anonymous4:21 pm

    assuming saiful is transferred to malay mail, what would be his position. zul is No 1, yushaimi, a guy who was very much junior to saiful in the old malay mail, is no 2. saiful could be no 3 but i dont think he would want to swallow his pride by taking orders from a man very much junior to him. but then brendan has this tendency to tell people to take it or leave it.

  6. Anonymous6:08 pm

    aaaah..... what else is new. Removing saiful fits into the Kali-brendan scheme.
    We wont be surprised if his place is reserved for someone of their choice.
    And i dont agree with NSTMAN that saiful is a nice guy, in that sense. Not that he is a bad guy. He was transferred out not because he is a nice guy. Neither are the others staying put because they are "not nice" and they have belly in their fire. You know what I mean.
    Simple. Saiful has beenremoved becasue he is the wrong kind of Malay.

  7. Anonymous7:07 pm

    Just a quick update..the NSC, during its press conferance held earlier at 4pm today, clarified the amount of RM490 million to be spent on the high performance training centre in UK is not an accurate figure nor was it projected from any authorised party. It is just a mere speculation, or puff, you may call it. The money to be spent has yet to be decided and the location in Hertfordshire will be best defined as a 'home away from home' for our local sportsmen and sportwomen. Nevertheless, nothing was mentioned on the amount spent through their dosages of consultations over the months and how much will be spent in the future. Also, NSC is bullish of obtaining the approval from the Lembaga Getah Malaysia board of members in allowing the athletes to be house together with the research team at the centre.

  8. Anonymous7:13 pm

    Tiger Woods

    I am quite confused about certain things about this bridge issue and have a funny feeling that there was more the Government is not telling us.
    Lets examine the rapid about-turn in events leading to cancellation of the project. I refer here to publication dates of news concerning the abandoned project:

    11th March 2006 – Singapore sent a 3rd party note asking Malaysia to explain media reports that Kuala Lumpur has gone ahead to symbolically launch construction of a crooked bridge.

    13th March 2006 – Syed Hamid was reported to have said in Kota Tinggi as follows:

    Malaysia and Singapore have agreed in principle to
    build a bridge to replace the Causeway. The agreement was reached at the
    conclusion of the fifth round of negotiations between senior officials
    from the two countries in Putrajaya yesterday.
    Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar, who confirmed this, said
    an official announcement on the accord could be expected soon.
    "We have agreed on the main points of agreement for the building of a
    full bridge," he said.
    It is learnt that some minor technical details have yet to be resolved.
    Once these are cleared, an official announcement will be made, followed
    by the signing of the agreement by the two Prime Ministers.
    Syed Hamid, who is MP for Kota Tinggi, was speaking after launching
    Umno Kota Tinggi division's annual Family Day here today.
    The Singapore delegation at yesterday's talks was led by its Foreign
    Affairs Ministry permanent secretary Peter Ho, while the Malaysian side
    was headed by ambassador- at-large Tan Sri Ahmad Fuzi Abdul Razak, former
    Wisma Putra secretary-general.
    While Syed Hamid declined to elaborate on the salient points of the
    agreement, it is learnt the protracted negotiations have finally reached
    a settlement for the building of a straight bridge.
    Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and his Singapore counterpart Lee
    Hsien Loong last met in Putrajaya in February last year, but no decision
    was reached.
    Prior to Saturday's talks, officials from both sides had met four times
    in Malaysia and Singapore without making any headway.
    The negotiations had all along been based on the principle of quid pro
    quo, with Singapore wanting the right to use Johor airspace for training
    flights by its Armed Forces jets.
    The republic, in addition, had sought a long-term concession for the
    supply of sand from Johor for its massive on-going coastal land
    reclamation work.
    Malaysia, apparently, acceded to both these requests.
    Syed Hamid explained that airspace for Singapore's military jets would
    not infringe Malaysia's sovereign territorial rights.
    "The airspace can be used only for specific purposes like holding joint
    military activities. We are not compromising on our sovereignty,
    territorial rights or national interests," he said.
    The need to open Johor airspace to Singapore jets was also warranted by
    the fact that Malaysia was a party to the five-nation joint air exercise
    with Singapore, Australia, Britain and New Zealand.
    He said Singapore and Malaysia were already sharing intelligence
    information on terrorists and pirate activities through their
    "eye-in-the-sky" facilities.
    Asked about the "scenic bridge" under construction now, Syed Hamid said
    this was merely a contingency measure in the event the talks failed.
    It was announced on Monday that construction of the bridge was under
    way and due to be completed by April 2009.
    Singapore had previously delayed an agreement on the bridge because it
    claimed there were no clear "balance of benefits" to proceed with the

    It means that within that two days, Syed Hamid was successful in getting Singapore’s nod to build a STRAIGHT bridge instead of a CROOKED one. He said himself that Malaysia having symbolically started construction of a crooked bridge (the one Singapore sent a third party note to) was only a contingency plan. That means Syed Hamid was saying that either Singapore agrees or otherwise, a bridge will be built. The question is whether is will be a straight bridge right up to Woodlands to a crooked one that would end just before the international boundry.

    But what Syed Hamid was referring to in a 13th March report was clearly to construction of a straight full bridge to Singapore.
    In short Syed Hamid and his gang has successfully achieved in a matter of days perhaps, what Mahathir failed to achieve in almost a decade – to have a full straight bridge to Singapore.

    Syed Hamid himself said in the 13th of March report that Malaysia acceded (agreed) to two main requests by Singapore to obtain the republic’s agreement for a full bridge – SAND and use of M’SIAN AIRSPACE.

    My question is this:
    1) Did Syed Hamid say YES to both the Singapore requests?
    2) Or did he refer to someone and was instructed to say YES to the requests?
    3) Why was he so confident that the full bridge project was to start in the report when he had not even conveyed Singapore’s requests to the State Government of Johor?
    4) Was Syed Hamid himself agreeable to the requests, since in the report he went to great length in trying to rationalise why its okay for Malaysia to open its southern airspace?

    My guess is that Syed Hamid agreed to Singapore’s request but made a mistake in approaching the people of Johor last. When he did, he faced insurmountable opposition from the rakyat. Then he turned back to the crooked bridge which in the first instance he said was a ‘contingency plan’. But that one too was poorly researched since only later did the Attorney General’s office came out to say that the crooked bridge itself may face several legal challenges.

    Reports of the cancellation of the crooked bridge project came out on 12th April 2006, just a month after Syed Hamid’s assertion that Singapore had agreed in principle for a straight bridge.

    True, Malaysia did not make the offer of sand and airspace first. But one must remember that Mahathir had already taken out this bridge issue out of the package of deals with Singapore, simply to take the issues of sand and airspace out of the equation.
    So the question of sand and airspace need no longer arise and even if it did, Syed Hamid should have rejected it right away. But he did not and instead went to to confidently state that barring some minor issues, the straight bridge was on its way.

    Now tell me again:




    Don’t mention Mahathir please because he was long gone from the Government during this time.

  9. Anonymous7:15 pm

    The root cause of the problem is somebody a 'really somebody' who are playing behind the scene brought in the Trojan Horse into our nation. They spread it like fatal virus either intentionally or unintentionaly by their sub agent.
    Something like MLM to say that how they work.
    Current malaysian status is like cancer patient waiting their body to be eat by very dangerous disease.
    Is there any braveheart or super doc. to eliminate this foreign element(virus)?
    We don't have to trust the 'besarkan tembolok sendiri' minister to solve this critical situation.
    This virus are immune to antibiotic because they put another virus in mainstream media to cover from any attack.

  10. Anonymous9:01 pm

    The purge continues. Saiful Azhar is a late casualty in the new regime's scheme of things. One can see a pattern quite clearly. Send the Malay boys to Siberia and they'll soon perish in the cold. Spinwise, the new regime says Saiful is to strengthen the Malay Mail, a tabloid that has seen better days and is now without an identity, much less credibility. Spinwise, Saiful's experience is to provide some semblance of professional leadership in the paper.

    Saiful Azhar is perhaps one of the sharper editors in Balai Berita. But today, sharp editors are not what the Balai Berita people want. people want. They want more of the Hishamudin type - mindless, obedient, uninspiring.
    Saiful Azhar shouldn't feel overly unhappy about this development. Many other bylines have left the Balai Berita newspapers. Maybe now we can read the MM again..

  11. Anonymous9:19 pm

    isit that easy for someone to sya take it or leave it ? And to be transferred into a position that is much junior than what one's current position. There is such a thing called "constructive dismissal". Claim constructive dismissal and let nst pays big time ! You cannot just swallow your pride and drag on. I am all against superior who bullys subordinates when they are in power ! There must be fair play in this world.

  12. Anonymous10:02 pm

    NoName said ...

    Saiful is not the first to be removed ... so, it is a common practice by the kali-brendan's regime in nst... if they suddenly feel that so and so is a threat for them, then out he/she go! Saiful was in the old MM, hope he can make some brilliant improvement for that tabloid.. by increasing the circulation, maybe? All the best to u saiful!

  13. Anonymous1:29 am


    The NSTP is sounding more and more like the journalistic version of Serbian ethnic cleansing with its own Radovan Karadzic and Ratco Mladic.
    The Melayus are the Bosnians. Umno is the gutless UN. Kali and Branden are untouchable. You touch Kali, he sues you. He made history as "editor" who sues a news source.
    If Kali is goddess, Branden is minor god. He received a very personal phone call from Putrajaya pleading him to stay.

  14. Anonymous1:39 am

    the man who sold the world, back in the sixties, we had two teachers training colleges in the UK dedicated to training our teachers. They were Kerby and Brinsford Lodge. They produced some of the finest secondary school teachers.
    The RM490-million HPTC may work along a similar line. But that was the 1960's when we were simpler, more dedicated and less corrupt.
    But today I am not sure if that kind of mega project will produce world class sportsmen and women or will line up somebody's pocket.
    At the time when inflow of fund is lathergic, I don't think the government should be sending out that kind of money abroad.
    Would it not be better to hire world class coaches to do the training here at home?

  15. Anonymous2:15 am

    in nst, being transferred is an euphemism for being sacked. nst is one of the rare companies which doesn't believe in sacking people because they don't have the guts or balls to do it. but to me getting transferred is like constructive dismissal. that's what nst is doing to a lot of people. saiful can either stay on or leave. the choice is his.

  16. Anonymous2:49 am

    wonder what hisham or he-shame does...yes man to kali all the time and let good guys gone for kali=brendans sake..that to me he-shame is a man with no balls...he-shame ought to be ashamed of himself..people will remember him for all dissastrous reasons...

  17. Anonymous10:46 am

    Oh..poor Saiful. Never mind. When the time comes, you will be given the power to threat whoever you don't like nicely. I suggest you give Datuk Syed Faizal a big room and his duty is look after the drivers and security guards and Datuk Hishamuddin Aun a small transparent glass room and prepare him all the 4 newspapers for him to read them loud and clear everyday which everybody can listen to him. No salary cut please.


  18. Anonymous2:06 am

    Why make such a fuss about a minister having a birthday bash or an orgy in Singapore?
    What threat to national security can such an indiscretion cause? You think the Singapore SB, the CIA, the Mi5 and the Mosaad don't know about sexual dalliance of our ministers?
    They know a lot more. They know their health problems too. Like now the Australian Federal Bureau of Inteligence know more about health condition of our PM than you and I do.
    Let's get real. Like you and I, Bru our ministers, men and women and anything in between are not angels.
    What you and I should not tolerate is hypocrisy -- pontificating while fornicating!

  19. Anonymous2:21 am

    Bru Bro,

    I believe anyone doing a decent journalism job in the NSTP will one day be sidelined or forced to part company. You and all the others who were forced out since the new regime took over are not forgotten. Those who stayed back and try to stay true to the ethics of journalism are doing so under very trying circumstances. They must be admired.

    Saiful and the rest should feel comforted by the fact that they are more professional than many of those who are now riding high in the Brendan-led Singapore-style anti-Malaysia type of journalism. Even Dato Hishamudin subscribes to this type of journalism, which explains why the Berita Harian didn't use Datuk Rejal's articles on Singapore!
    The NST's loss is the Malay Mail's gain. If the Malay Mail editor wants to survive in the newspaper industry, he should be glad to have an old hand like Saiful with him. We'll be watching!