Wednesday, January 03, 2007

After the floods (and a long holiday)

The Deputy PM chaired the first Cabinet meeting for 2007 today. Looks like Najib was not too thrilled with the conduct of some ministries during the floods and wanted them to double efforts. Rightly so. [Read the Bernama piece here]

Meanwhile, the vacationing PM returns tonight from Perth, Australia.


  1. Anonymous12:23 am

    So, what now? After the 'war' is over, they come and collect votes?

  2. Anonymous12:28 am


    Why don't you do a search and check out who are the ministers who didn't do much or anything at all during the floods. Not difficult one, I tell you. Many were on holidays abroad. You know who they are. Some of the so-called genuine do-gooders also know. Tau sama tau lah..

  3. Anonymous12:49 am


    There was no need for hte PM to return tonight because the people had sufferred and he should have stayed longer in Perth. The PM deserved his holidays in Perth when the Johorians were suffering. This is the style of Badawi caring administration.

    SudahLah! Malaysians are fed up with the situation and are dying to get rid of him. So why rush coming back to Malaysia - he should carry ownhis holidays in Perth. In fact, he should have his holidays in America where he will be treated better by Bush administration - he could also celebrate together with the AMericans over the execution of Presidnet Sadam Hussein.

    Kalimullah and Khairy should have advised the PM to go to America for holidays where he will be given a red carpet!!!

  4. Anonymous1:56 am

    Welcome home, Mr PM. We are glad that you still remember Malaysia. Do you know Johorians are suffering from the flood. "I do nto Know!" say someone. what a familair sentence.

    Mr PM tru us, we are "Vry Proud of Yo". Yo are God's gift to Malaysia becaue you do make laugh at you msot of the time. Thank to your advisors like Khairy and Tingkat Empt boys and girls!

    We are still proud of you and will always be proud of you because you have given us joys most of the time and we are laughing like hell now!!!

    We are also glad that Mr PM that YOU ARE IN CONTROL ALL THE TIME!!!

  5. Anonymous2:52 am

    Rocky aa...

    Look like Brother Najib is destined to take over throne in next election huh.

    He shows commitment to serve rakyat like his Dad... Good lah.

    The other fella as usual hope-less, as reflected by his ac-tions huh!

    You know what... the 2 barges bigger than 2 football fields is good for bigger and safer yachts, dont you think so? That half-past-sick may need that to sail thru the next coming banjir ma...

    Nowadays, act of God so many unpredictable one you know...?

    You take care huh & happy new year man!

  6. Sdr Rocky,

    Cuba fikirkan,mungkin berguna kepada pembaca blog saudara khasnya dan kepada rakyat jelata amnya jika dihebahkan siapa yang hadir dan tidak hadir mesyuarat kabinet.

    Ini sudah pun dilakukan oleh syarikat yang disenaraikan di Bursa Malaysia dan oleh banyak NGO di mana mereka menyenaraikan kehadiran ahli lembaga dan ahli jawatankuasa dalam mesyuarat tetap mereka.

    Khas mengenai banjir di Johor, saya rasa rakyat jelata ingin tahu menteri mana dan pembesar mana yang melawat dan tidak melawat.

    Dan oleh kerana kita kini berada dalam Tahun Melawat Malaysia (VMY) dan kerajaan kita menggalakkan kita bercuti dalam negeri, rakyat jelata tentu ingin tahu menteri mana dan pembesar mana yang bercuti di luar negara.

    As for Datuk Seri Mohd Najib chairing the Cabinet meeting, I see no problem in that. It's a good training for him.

    The question to ask is whether he and his fellow Cabinet members present can make decision or they only meet to fulfil the requirement but not decision can be taken because the PM is away.

    As for the cleaning up operations in Johor, I think it's a good idea to use military personnel, national service trainees and police trainees. This can help to inculcate good community awareness and the spirit of volunteerism.

    Thank You.

  7. Anonymous8:00 am

    I think better Pak Lah remain in Australia and take an even longer need to come back and indulge with country's problems. No need to have headache. We already immune to the "wayang kulit"

    The great flood in Malaysia was very trivial to him and he could afford to relax in a faraway land. It is not like the country cannot move on with life without him. The people and Najib seems to be doing just fine without him around.

    So Pak Lah, better take another holiday whilst we get someone else to run the country.

  8. Anonymous8:29 am


    Happy New Year, brother.
    I clicked the Bernama story and there was no mention of Najib chairing the meeting.
    Odd that Bernama "chose" not to mention the fact that the DPM chaired the Cabinet meeting. A simple statement of fact. Someone must have chaired the Cabinet meeting. It is usually, as a matter of newswriting practice, mentioned.
    Two questions come to mind -- 1) Bro, was that your conclusion that Najib chaired the meeting as Abdullah was still on his honeymoon in kangarooland? 2) that THAT was a fact but Bernama was instructed not to mention it?

    I am inclined to believe that the second question will be an affirmative. I cannot believe that it was an oversight on bernama's part not to mention a simple, matter-of-fact, a statement of fact bit of information.

    And why was that, we wonder? Because, Abdullah's boys know that people aint happy that their boss was away honeymooning while the big floods hit Johor and there were deaths and scores made homeless.

    Good Day, Mate,
    and salam to you.
    Watch your back, brother. You are angering some very ugly and greedy people.

  9. Anonymous8:43 am


    why is it that i get this feeling that our beloved Prime Minister is on a looooooong hooooliday?

    in my mind's eye is abdullah having a great time holidaying with nary a care...

    brother, don't get me wrong. I am not bitching. i am not begrudging the man. people need to take a break. even prime ministers.

    heck. maybe it is my imagination. the man is damn hardworking. he travels the world to seek world peace, justice for the third world, understanding for his muslim brethren.

    my apologies if my wild imagination causes hurt and ire to my fellow commentators.

    anyway, i am scanning the internet on where i should go vacationing. and which airline is giving the best deal....

    and when are you off on your holiday, brother?

    salam and may Allah bless you, you brave man (as opposed to cowards like Kalimullah and machais).

  10. Anonymous9:27 am

    I still cannot comprehend why Pak Lah would continue his vacation when the flood is so bad in Johor. People are dying and the state is ruined. It seems like every last inch of our hope that the true Pak Lah will somehow emerge has again failed to materialised. Maybe there was no kind hearted Pak Lah in the first place. It was just a spin by the mainstream media.

  11. Anonymous9:42 am

    The PM has returned from his 'elegant disappearance' or so say one Black Moses.
    Read the statement fromt he wanita saying they will deploy 2000 volunteers after the holidays or weekend..sheesh..since when did rescue efforts had to wait for weekends or holidays to be over? Pitiful.


  12. Anonymous10:08 am

    This may not relate to your posting but wanted to share this with you;

    Incidents may mar Malaysia's tourism bid

    By Jonathan Kent
    BBC News, Kuala Lumpur

    Malaysia celebrates 50 years of independence this year and to mark the occasion it has launched Visit Malaysia Year 2007.
    Malaysia is hoping for more than 20 million visitors this year

    The country's palm-fringed beaches, affordably priced hotels, sprawling shopping malls, fantastic food and wildlife already make it one of Asia's premier destinations.

    And this year its tourism authorities hope a big push will propel visitor numbers towards an astonishing target of 20 million.

    But following an incident late last year, American Wayne Wright is far from convinced by the promise of Malaysian hospitality and the claim of its tourism slogan that it is truly Asia.

    "I was walking in Chinatown," he told the BBC, "when a gentleman in very scruffy type clothes, nothing that you would associate with police or anyone in authority, walked up to me and asked me, "Can I see your passport?"."

    Fearing a scam, Mr Wright refused and tried to move away.

    "At that point he essentially lunged at me, grabbed me, put handcuffs on me really tightly and called for a few other people out in the crowd," he explained.

    Mr Wright, a serving US Navy lawyer, says he protested that he was a US citizen and told the men who had grabbed him that his passport was in his hotel room, a matter of a few hundred meters away.

    He was taken, shackled, through Chinatown and put into a caged truck used by the Malaysian immigration department.

    'Worst experience'

    There he met a second American, who had also been grabbed by men who refused to show any identification, Yahweh Passim Nam.

    It became abundantly clear to Mr Wright and Mr Nam they had more in common than their nationality. Both they and every one of the 30 or so other people arrested in the same raid were black.

    This was probably the worst experience I have had in my life

    "At this time I'm knowing this is racial profiling, beyond a shadow of a doubt," said Mr Nam, an ex-US Navy serviceman and now a multi media engineer living in Vancouver, Canada.

    "This is definitely some screwed up mission by some... militant group, trying to get Africans to take us somewhere," he said, adding that he feared for his life.

    They were taken to an immigration detention centre where for almost 24 hours they say they were fed only bread and water, not allowed to go to the toilet and refused permission to contact the US embassy.

    "I was treated inhumanely," said Mr Nam. "I felt like a dog, I felt like something worse than a dog."

    Mr Wright agrees. "Honestly this was probably the worst experience I have had in my life," he said.

    Both say that, when they were finally freed, immigration officers treated the matter as a joke, something that incensed them.

    Morality patrol

    Malaysia's Head of Immigration Enforcement Ishak Mohamad was approached by the BBC for comment, but was unavailable.

    Nor would the prime minister's department comment, although a senior official privately cast doubt on the accounts of the two men.

    However not only do they appear to bear one another out, but they are also backed up by the US embassy, which confirmed it provided consular assistance to have them released from custody. No charges were filed against the men.

    The incident does not appear to be isolated.

    Several Africans approached on the streets of Kuala Lumpur by the BBC over the issue reported facing discrimination in Malaysia, whether it be people refusing to sit next to them on public transport, taxis refusing to stop for them through to harassment by police and immigration officers.

    Nor have recent problems been confined to people of African origin.

    In October, a couple in their 60s from the US state of Alaska were woken at 0200 with threats to break down the door of their rented holiday apartment on Langkawi Island.

    It was an Islamic morality patrol, which under Malaysian law has widespread powers over Muslims' behaviour.

    "When I opened the door I saw six men, in my face, yelling at me that they want to inspect the apartment, that I'm Muslim and that they're coming in," Randal Barnhart said.

    He told the men he was not Muslim and refused to let them enter, but they persisted.

    "They started yelling, 'We want to see your woman, we want to see your woman'," an angry Mr Barnhart recalled.

    "So I asked Carole, who was just wearing a sarong to stand back 15 feet in the light so they could see that she is a white woman - my wife of 42 years."

    The intruders refused to leave without seeing a marriage certificate and were only persuaded to go after being shown the couple's passports.

    Mr Barnhart says his wife suffered a nervous breakdown and returned to the US and he is currently pursuing legal action against the religious department.

    But rather than disciplining the officers - who apparently broke the law by carrying out the raid without regular police in tow - local politicians defended them saying Mrs Barnhart was mistaken for a local Muslim because she liked to wear a sarong.

    That assertion has been greeted with derision by some in Malaysia.


    Malaysia's Tourism Minister Adnan Mansor defended the immigration department, pointing out that Malaysia has problems with illegal migration.

    "Sorry to say especially there's a lot of Africans, black people, who come to our country and overstay," he said.

    "What they did was just trying to clean up some of these people who've overstayed in our country."

    Both Wayne Wright and Yahweh Passim Nam had not overstayed their welcome. They had legitimate tourist visas.

    The minister says he is keen to repair the damage.

    "Give us a chance and let us correct this," Mr Mansor said.

    He has apologised to the Barnharts and acknowledges Malaysia has a problem with petty officials who readily abuse their power - a problem he says the government will address by re-educating them.

    But it is not the kind of news the country needs on the cusp of its big tourism year.

    Asta, the American Society of Travel Agents, described the incidents as regrettable.

    "Authorities have an obligation to educate the local populace about the importance of tourism and their role and to be vigilant and protective of anti-tourist incidents," a spokesman told the BBC.

    And more worrying still for Malaysians is that such incidents are merely symptomatic of a wider issue - public servants who are increasingly resistant to government control.

    Newspaper columnist Dina Zaman says some Malaysians are looking to Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi to take a tougher line.

    "They don't think he's authoritative enough," she believes.

    "You need someone to actually sit down and say, 'Look you can't do this, you can't do that'. And yes, he's a nice man but with... the crime rate, all these things... it just makes you wonder whether he's too nice."

    Millions of people will doubtless visit Malaysia during 2007 and most will have a very happy time.

    But until Malaysia's bureaucracy wants to make sure they all do, some would-be visitors may be deciding to holiday elsewhere.

    p/s: I'm not a big fan of Mr Kent and his story will really hurt our tourism industry.

  13. I didn't know PM went to Aust for his vacation. I wonder how as PM he came to choose Aust as his holiday choice when a major Aust newspaper called M'sians 'bodoh'. Furthermore, PM and his cabinet hardly protested... If Dr M wasn't feeling weak from his heart-attack, I'm sure Aust will kena from him good-good... Haha

  14. Anonymous11:26 am


    This is not the first time Abdullah has skipped chairing the first Cabinet meeting of the year. He pulled the same stunt last year.

    This dereliction of duty is becoming a habit. Abdullah's stand cannot be tolerated and condoned. Abdullah totally lacks discipline.

    The PM must chair the first Cabinet meeting of the Year. It may be symbolic but it is important to impart upon his Ministers what he expects out of them. To go on holiday is to neglect his official duties. Is it any wonder that the Cabinet members too do not take their duties responsibly when the PM himself plays truant?

    As Prime Minister, Abdullah has failed to not only chair the first Cabinet meeting, but;

    - he has failed to be with the people during the recent floods,
    - he has failed as a leader of Muslims to celebrate Eid-al-Adha
    - he failed as the leader of this country and its populace to usher in the New Year
    - he has failed to deliver any messsages to the nation towards 07.

    Of course all these are symbolic, but that is what being a leader is all about. Abdullah is a failure.

    Abdullah's actions are unprecedented. Abdullah's actions are unacceptable for a man who helms the post of Prime Minister.

    Yes Abdullah lacks substance. His presence may not even make a difference, but he is still the Prime Minister and the Prime Minister is expected to carry out certain responsibilities!

    Obviously, even his advisors are incompetent!

  15. Anonymous12:11 pm


    Isn't possible that this is more than just a long Aussie holiday for thw PM? Could it be that something is amiss?

    Why has the PM to be away for so long in Australia? How may days do a man of his age and busy national affairs need to go fishing with his fishing kakis?

    Not when a huge chunk of the country is under water and tens of thousands of people are rendered homeless, hungry and wet. Scores drowned and some were reported missing.

    Could it be that the PM is not well? Could it be that his last sinusitis treatment in Parth is not working? Could he be ill with other inflictions?

    A foreign press reporter told his friend who is my friend that the PM had the sinus ops to repair his wind passages. Sinus had blocked his air passages and deprived his lung of oxygen causing him to yawn and fall asleep easily.

    He still falls asleep after that surgery. So the Aussie doctotrs didn't do a good job or the PM may be suffering from a more serious malady. I think a medical bulletin should be issued by the 4th Floor Boys to clear the air.

  16. Anonymous12:14 pm

    what can our PM do even if he was around? He wasnt hands on in so many affairs of the country and so what can he contribute to the Johoreans? Maybe take up space in newspapers planting a few trees here and there and smile and pose. Forget him la. I hope the Johoreans will remember vividly the people they voted in and how they have contributed in helping them during this trying times. Let them not be sweetened by a few hundred rinngits as compensation for the sufferings they went thru.

  17. Simple conclusion, i short , Abdullah Ahmad is not fit to be our PM (period).
    Cast him off the leadership, so, coming poll, vote for 'Undi Rosak'
    Meanwhile just let him do whatever he wishes, nak pancing ikan ke!, nak kahwin ke!, nak tergolek ke!, nak terlentang ke, nak tidur ke!.... just ignore him, no point of us thinking about him waste of time... he is not what we want, forget about Abdullah Hj. Ahmad, he's never exist in our history..

    Salam, God bless all of us(except Abdullah Hj Ahmad and kronis)

  18. Anonymous1:02 pm

    firstly, I'd like to apologize if I'm going off tangent...but the BBC report posted by "the man who sold the world" is too interesting...

    after reading that piece by Jonathan Kent I get the impression that the guy has an agenda...well, either that or he has the habit of NOT telling the whole story...especially the khalwat incident in Langkawi.

    this is especially interesting because Mr.Kent did indeed go through great lengths to describe the incident insofar as to even insert quotes from the angry Mr. Barnhart...but Mr.Kent conveniently didn't mention the fact that the angry Mr. Barnhart did receive an apology and some financial compensation from a local government agency!

    all quite interesting, huh?

    another interesting thing about Mr.Kent's biased report is the name of one of the Americans...Yahweh Passim Nam.

    did you know that one of the probable names of the Jewish G_d is Y_hw_h?

    it's a long, long story...go read about it and...learn!

  19. Anonymous1:50 pm

    Oh my GOD!!!!!are they saying that rescue efforts has to wait until weekends or holidays....
    let it rain......


  20. Anonymous2:00 pm

    Folowing samurai's comment.

    Where is the spirit of Kempimpinan Melalui Teladan - Leadership by Example?

    Leaders are expected to carry out symbolic action in order to guide and send the right message to the Rakyat.

    So much publicity has been given by the Government on Visit Malaysia Year 2007.

    Where is the commitment by our leader? Instead we hearing that our PM is having holiday in Perth, Australia.

    Where is Malaysia heading to?

  21. I was particularly disturbed by what Kent had printed (thanks to the man who sold the world) Indeed, through this kind of acts by our very special group of government backed agencies, that will cause us problems!
    We , the majority of others do not treat others like that. It is also sad to note that no one else would stand up to these illegal immigrants.
    (I am assuming that the 2 Americans, going by their names, are also of the darker toned gentlemen) hence, if the officers were doing their job, they could have done so in not a high handed way. Is it just me, or it seems that as long as you are a government officer upholding the law, you have the right to do so in a high handed way?
    As for the morality police, I will definately be chastised as I do not belong to the often morally policed group. Such, my opinion is that, no one should have the absolute right to judge another as far as morality is concerned. Once you cross that personal boundary, there is no limit. (A good analogy is the ISA, once you are charged with it, there is no issue that can deter it)

    To the Government, Please wake up and put a stop to all these kind of activities, and restore the pride of Malaysia in the eyes of the world. Please stop persecuting us religously! and more importantly, please make sure our hard earned tax payers money are not being thrown away...why do we need officers to go round issuing compound notices to couples who hold hands and kiss in public? Shouldnt they be going after litter bugs instead? Howabout the wanton smokers puffing away in public places? How about going after illegal hawkers (and not by selective persecution of those small traders, as the big fishes like the Syed's Mamaks that get to place their chairs and tables on 5 foot ways get their way) Stop wasting taxpayers millions in the local municipals, and make them accountable (persecuting one council president, and letting the others go is not the way to do it!)

    I can go on and on, but I will just be using up all of Rocky's space. . go figure!

  22. Anonymous3:45 pm

    We're promoting Visit M'sia 2007 and he's off holidaying abroad.

    And he's just stopped by Johor to have a photo-op with some flood victims and off he goes again to resume his holiday.

  23. Anonymous5:42 pm

    where where where??

    it's a plane, no, it's a bird.....

    NO>'s our PM!!!!!! on a hand-glider....ALL THE WAY FROM AUSTRALIA..

    "Dang, the dastardly winds took me all the way to Siberia before blowing this way again," he said.

    re jonathan kent, to be fair he writes good stories that local media may be too afraid to expose...there many problems that our tourists face, including harassment.

  24. Anonymous6:22 pm

    Hey! Ain't this Jonathan Kent who NST wanted to sue over the BBC report on the plagiarism issue?

    I must say he is doing a favor writing reminding us about how to treat tourists right.

    We know what a tourist is, don't we?

    Because we did not know what plagiarism is.

  25. Anonymous7:14 pm

    Ex=bt may be right about the PM having a malady.Only its not the sinus,but the heart.No, not the bypass kind but the romance kind.A bird says he's in love and wants to get married but faces strong opposition from the three K's who see the marriage as a threat to their influence over AAB. Only time will tell...

  26. Anonymous8:10 pm



  27. Anonymous10:12 pm

    ex-bt reporter
    I wish whatever you said about him not being well... comes true. I have had enough of his dereliction of duty. Let Tuhan balaskan kapada nya ..... sebagaimana he treats his rakyat!

  28. Anonymous12:50 am

    Dear Rocky

    Whether the PM is sick or sufferred from malady or in love with his house mate or not getting enough love from his house mate (not girl friend OK!) so he had to go on a honeymoon in Australia, I do not care at all. I jsut want to know is WHEN IS HE GOING TO LEAVE THIS COUNTRY IN THE HAND OF A COMPETENT POLITICIAN LIKE TUN MAHATHIR WHO STEEREED THIS COUNTRY TO A MAJESTIC HEIGHT UNLIKE UNDURLAH!!

    I pray that we do not have to put up with Khairy or anyone near Kalimullah. Lim Kit Siang definitely not because he is a very close friend of Kalimullah and Khairy.
    Sudahlah, let get rid of the Sleeping Beauty first then we will talk about his successor - quite frankly anyone in Malaysia including you and I are better than this Sleeping Beuaty any time!!!

  29. Anonymous11:33 am

    Hey itu cilaka orang USA jon wain buat repot sama jonni kentut from bbc ada bikin police report ka?

    Semua orang putih kencing you picaya?

    LU ada kenal itu back packers, aa? MOst are drug addicts and whinoes and social dropouts in their countries while some are arrogant college cheapskates on social welfae and here to do some trading.

    Lu ingat duit dari tourist macam itu besar ka?

    U tanya itu bbc guy why europeans are afaid of people with arab features and dress a beard?

  30. Anonymous1:47 pm

    many politician and cronies
    are CASHING OUT,
    making arrangement in Australia/ UK,
    making fast cash,
    before the nation cripple.

  31. Anonymous2:35 pm

    It seems Badawi even had time to open a new Nasi Kandar restaurant in Perth. I'm sure it was part of a 'pressing agenda'.

  32. Anonymous3:24 pm

    Dear Bru,
    Can I add some additional nothing to do with these comments? Anyway, I will take the liberty to do so. While what happened to the Americans is regrettable and should not be repeated, with better training for the law enforcement officials, the same can be said about racial and religious profiling in the country where those US guys came from. Having been through America's customs and airport security, I can tell you that many there eye Asians with distrust and I often had to patiently wait while the Customs and Immigration nit pick with me on everything, one because of my Muslim identity and two being an Asian, let's not forget that Yusuf Islam was also turned away and other Malaysians confined for 8 hours in chambers for questioning and finally being released without any one apologizing. I always regret going to the US, but sometimes forced to on business.
    But now back to the floods at hand, perhaps what the government should do is set up a disaster fund that is tax deductible seeing how the cost of living has risen tremendously, and also match it ringgit for ringgit the amount raised, and these be distributed rapidly through the NGOs rather than government agencies, as NGOs spread out goods and needs faster, but you have to be wary about some of them, and only provide those with accounts that can be easily audited. I wonder if the present "inaction" on the floods will badly affect the present government in any further elections, as the rakyat can destroy their votes in protest against the BN MPs, even if they did not wish to vote for the opposition. Also, the East Coast states people do it best, they vote for whoever, will be less detrimental to them, and many are not amenable to vote buying. It reminds of what King Saud of Saudi Arabia or one of those Kings did, when they jacked up world oil prices in the 1970s: He said to the Americans, do what you want to us as you will, we can always go back to living in our tents and drinking tea. These are the kinds of attitude required from our rakyat.