The SIC belongs to UMNO now? That's what Azalina Othman and Ismail Sabri Yaakob, our two ministers from Umno, seem to be saying. They said since Mokhzani has quit Umno, he should also quit the Sepang International Circuit!
Blogger Apanama disagrees with the "SIC-k Duo". He said the SIC is not a subsidiary of Umno and belongs to the Rakyat.
Read his full posting h e r e. Rizal Hashim also posted on this subject earlier, here.RM100 million annual budget, night races, and a new multi-million USD contract.In reality, Azalina and Ismail's demand that Mokhzani quits SIC has little to do with their loyalty to Umno.
The SIC is a gold mine that's about to get a lot bigger. Mokhzani has been running the F1 races and the Grand Prixs on a budget of approximately RM100 million a year. Now, under the new contract that will come into effect in 2011 and stretches till 2015 with Bernie Ecclestone, the F1 boss, that budget is about to get a whole lot bigger.
There's more. Under that new contract, the SIC must get the Sepang Circuit ready with night facilities for night races by 2011. Naturally, you need big, big bucks to install those night facilities, ladies and gentlemen.
According to Utusan Malaysia, the contract for lighting the track alone is worth about RM40 million. I have been told it could go up to as much as US$20 million.
And that's lighting for the tracks only, mind you!
For quite a while now, a group of young guns closely linked to some Umno higher-ups has been eyeing the pie. But Mokhzani is there and he has submitted a proposal some time ago to the Youth and Sports Ministry (minister is Ismail, former minister is Azalina, get the connection?) to install the lightings by next year.
And then Mokhzani decided to quit Umno. How opportune! So last week, Mokhzani was told (by Khazanah, if I'm not mistaken) that his proposal to install the lighting by next year needs to be revised. Which means, sayonara. Which also means that someone else will be getting the project, thank you very much.
I have a feeling Azalina and Ismail know more than they are telling the reporters when they called for Mokhzani to quit as SIC chairman. But even if they didn't, we come back to Apanama's assertion: these Umno ministers should stop behaving as if SIC belongs to UMNO!
Saturday, May 31, 2008
The SICk Duo and the real reasons why Mokhzani must quit
the walk is ON
Walking the Talk. The organisers of the Walk for Media Freedom never called off the walk. The only thing we changed is the starting point for that walk.
Originally, we had asked you to begin your walk from the big flagpole in Dataran Merdeka. From the start, we had said there would be no assembly.
After consultation with the cops, the organisers agreed that those who wish to walk can start from anywhere (but the flagpole). Meaning, you can start your walk to the NPC from wherever you park your vehicle or from the nearest LRT/bus station. If you are coming to the National Press Club by cab, tell the taxi driver to drop you off 500 m or 1km away so you can walk the rest of the way to the clubhouse.
There are limited parking lots at the NPC so we advise you to park your car at the underground car park at Dataran or at Padang Merbok.
Me, I am going to walk from the NPC to Dataran Merdeka, maybe make one big round or two there, and then walk back to the clubhouse for the talk. Around 9.15 or so.
Let me recap:
The Walk for Free Media is ON.
Time 9 am onwards. Start anywhere. Destination the National Press Club
The Talk on Free Media is ON.
Time 10.30 am. Place the National Press Club
Breakfast is ON
from 9.15 am at the NPC
Friday, May 30, 2008
Blogger and the Finance Minister ll
Face to face with the Media. RTM has invited me for its Bersemuka Dengan Media program this Tuesday, June 3, at 9.30 pm.
This one will feature our Second Finance Minister Nor Mohamed Yakcop, the man who influences the well-being of your pocket and mine, and the state of our economy today.
It's an hour-long program and I will be interviewing Nor Mohd Yakcop together with another journalist, probably from Bernama.
I am sure you have questions you want the Minister to answer. Tell me what they are and I will try and raise them with him during the program. What I can't ask during the hour, I will neatly type them out on paper and ask him to respond later. Once I get his written answers to those questions, I will publish them in another posting in this blog.
I have published several postings on the Tan Sri, including This Cat's Many Lives (24/11/2006).
Malaysia's fastest-growing blog
M hits the Big MBY SINATRA_ZDr M hit 1 million hits (with extra of 11 thousand ++) as of 11.01 am 30th of May. In 30 days the old man gets a million hits.
Even after retirement and expulsion of UMNO Dr M still pawn your asses! Wohoooo
Dr M + Internet = Win!!
By the way, did you know that ...
Jewish students held a demo against Mahathir in London recently for his purported anti-Semitic views? Read Chedet's latest posting here.
Thursday, May 29, 2008
Media Freedom's Walk the Talk, this Sunday
Walk at Dataran, Talk at Jalan Tangsi.
Date: Sunday June 1, 2008
Walk, 9.30 am to 10.15 am at Dataran Merdeka
Talk, 10.30 am at National Press Club
The two events are actually ONE:-
The Walk for Media Freedom is organised by media activists, including Centre for Independent Journalism (CIJ), Writers Alliance for Media Indepdence (Wami), National Alliance of Bloggers, and BENAR, a cyber group for "free and fair media".
The Talk on Media Freedom is hosted by the National Press Club (NPC) and the National Union of Journalists (NUJ). Jalan Tangsi is where the NPC's clubhouse is located and the NUJ is the biggest body representing mainstream media journalists in Malaysia.
The journalists' bodies and the media activists have always worked separately to pursue the Press Freedom agenda. This is the first time they are working together.
The Walk, an idea initiated by Benar, will be the first part of the programme. Journalists, writers, bloggers and anyone who believes in Media Freedom are free to take part in the walk. No banners, no spanners. Those who expect water canons and tear gas will be disappointed. The walk starts anytime after 9.30am. It's only 10 minutes to Jalan Tangsi.
The Talk is where breakfast will be served. Senator Zaid Ibrahim, the de facto Law Minister, is scheduled to give a talk on Media Freedom. The NPC will be inviting Editors from the mainstream media to attend the talk (invitation for the walk is sent by the CIJ). Several Editors have already confirmed their participation. The talk starts at 10.30AM.
Zaid has indicated to one of the organisers that he might like to take part in the walk, too.
p/s At an NUJ forum I attended earlier this month, KJ the Son-in-Law also called for a revision of press laws to give way for a freer media. Will Zahid be singing the same tune? Will the two walk the talk?
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Govt to take on bloggers
Wednesday May 28, 2008
Government to engage bloggers in cyberspace
By SHAHANAAZ HABIB
KUALA LUMPUR: The Government will take on bloggers in cyberspace and respond to wild and baseless allegations raised in blogs.
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said remaining silent was no longer an option.
He acknowledged that the Government had overlooked the need to engage the new media, which was a new dimension in shaping public opinion, in the recent general election.
The Government had not been savvy in engaging the new media and lost out in cyberspace, he said, adding: “But we live and learn.”
Najib said this during a question and answer session at the Asia Media Summit 2008 here yesterday.
He in fact has started the ball rolling by putting a reply through his press secretary Datuk Tengku Sariffuddin Tengku Ahmad to a posting on Malaysia Today, a news portal run by Raja Petra Kamaruddin.
Najib said it was obvious that the Barisan Nasional Government would now need to engage the new media.
“We need to have people who are active participants of the new media, who are sympathetic and understanding of the government’s position.“Therefore, instead of just criticising them (the new media) or running them down, the best thing to do is to engage them. Hopefully they will understand our perspective,” he added. - more HERE.
Now, consider the irony. Some of the biggest bloggers in Malaysia now are Umno bloggers. Dr Mahathir (he's quit the party but only until PM Badawi steps down) should touch 1 million hits in the next 24 hours. A million visitors in less than a month is phenomenal, unheard of. Probably a world record. Most bloggers take years to reach a million.
Khir Toyo's blog is big, too. Since March 28, he's attracted over 600,000 visitors.
Kelab Maya Umno, or myKMU, is one of the biggest websites and it is pro-Umno. Agenda Daily is pro-Umno, too. Bigdogdotcom has over 1 million visitors.
The number of pro-Government bloggers would still be small (only 20 out of 190 socio-political blogs surveyed by a varsity before March 8 were pro-Government) but the traffic they are generating is not.
So what's the problem?
Well, the thing is these Umno/pro-Umno bloggers are too critical of the party's leadership. Many are actually anti-Badawi and his policies, promises, and practices.
The Government wants to engage bloggers? Sure. If it can convince its own bloggers to support it, maybe it'll be easier to persuade others.
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
Tea at Subang Airport?
pictures added 10 am/28 May. Please jump here to see over 50 other pics.
Welcome home party. Dr M and wife, who both quit Umno last week, are due to arrive at the old Subang Airport about 5 pm today. He was in Tokyo for an international conference. PM Badawi, who was also in the Japanese capital, is due to return tonight. I haven't heard if the two met in Tokyo. Perhaps, the Tan Sri-in waiting Kalimullah Hassan could honour us with the long-overdue sequel to his June 11, 2006 article?
Anyway, I am told that a lot of Umno members are going to be there to welcome Dr M, even though he's no longer a party member.
Monday, May 26, 2008
Our enemies within
Defending the Lion City
by Terence Fernandez
theSun's investigative deputy editor
Read Terence Fernandez's Down2Earth column today on our nation's security (no links yet). He is convinced that Singapore is not the enemy, never was, and never will be. Our enemies walk among us, he insists. Musuh dalam selimut.
It's a good piece and it's an opinion that is hard to disagree with. But as one of the few Malaysian journalists who have covered a war from the war-front (Baghdad 2003), Terence has seen and felt war.
Just because it hasn't happened does not mean it's not ever going to happen.
But that's not the point of this posting. I read Terence's reference to the (old) Malay Mail and I would like to respond.
He writes:"And so there came a period during the 1990s and in the early days of the millennium when many of us were suspicious of (Singapore) - although many of us have relatives and friends staying on the island ...
The (old) Malay Mail even when to town with a front page fictional piece on how the republic would marshal an attack against us and take over Johor in under a day.
But now it appears that it is the same prophets of chaos and commotion who are now guilty of selling out our security which they have so vocally been campaigning to protect, by giving away the last bastion of our southern defence -Majidee Camp for profit."
I was the Editor of the (old) Malay Mail when that "war" article made the Page One. The article was based on Tim Huxley's book Defending the Lion City. The scene of the attack on Malaysia was not fiction, it was a "most likely scenario" as depicted by the so-called military expert, Huxley.
It was controversial, it was unimaginable, and it made a good front page read. As a Malaysian, I had to admit it made me a little mad, too
That story sparked quite a bit of debate, (read here). Huxley wrote to us but I can't remember what exactly. And, contrary to Terence's theory, the "war-mongers" in the Malaysian Government were not at all happy with the Malay Mail's story. The NST group editor and I were called in to explain (Terence is also quite experienced now in this department).
And as I told the very, very senior government official, The Malay Mail published the story because it was of interest to Malaysians.
After Terence's scoop (with Nadeswaran) last Friday on "Majidee Camp gone!", I have begun to wonder if the decision to move the "last bastion of nation's southern defence" (theSun's words, not mine) to Kluang was not influenced byHuxley's book.
Defending the Lion city
Tabloid Malay Mail report on Tim Huxley's book following Malaysian ministers' rejection of author's tipping easy victory for Singapore in a war.
Jan 14, 2003
click here to read.
Read Syed Hamid's Loose talk about war.
A related recent posting:-
How effective is our intelligence agencies today?
Sunday, May 25, 2008
Tun Salleh dares Matthias to call for Inquiry into his dismissal
Former Lord President speaks out. After nearly 20 years, former Lord President Tun Salleh Abas breaks his silence and challenged an aide to Dr Mahathir to call for a Royal Commission of Inquiry to investigate a 1988 Tribunal that dismissed him in absentia for alleged misconduct.
Salleh, who hardly talks about his dismissal these days, is reacting to an article by lawyer Matthias Chang, who served as political secretary to Dr Mahathir towards the end of his tenure as PM. The article "Tun Salleh: Guilty or not guilty for Judicial Misconduct?" was posted on the blog (but not in Dr M's blog) and by Malaysia Today.
The following is his Salleh's statement which he issued to Rocky's Bru:What did Matthias Chang say that riled Salleh Abas? Read here."Since (Matthias Chang) doubts my innocence, (he) should devote his activities towards getting a government agreement to establish a Royal Commission of Inquiry to investigate into the circumstances of my dismissal and the suspension of 5 other Judges that led to the eventual sacking of 2 of these Judges.
"The Royal Commission of Inquiry should call as witnesses, among others, the following main players in the 1988 event:
"1. Dr Mahathir Mohamad
2. The former Chief Secretary to the Government
3. The former Attorney-General Abu Talib Othman
4. Hamid Omar, who chaired the Tribunal and who succeed Salleh after his sacking
5. Other members of the two Tribunals
6. Tan Sri Haidar (chairman of the 2007 RCI into VK Lingam's tape, who testified at the 1988 Tribunal)
7. The surviving Judges who were suspended/sacked by the Tribunals."
As Matthias says, "You be the judge".
Matthias Responds to Tun Salleh's Challenge
[Matthias e-mailed this to me around 7.30pm last night. It first appeared as a comment in the comment box]."I was just informed by Rocky that Tun Salleh has issued a challenge to me in response to my article which was published in MALAYSIA TODAY and Bigdogdotcom.wordpress.com
I immediately visited Rocky’s blog to read the challenge and to say that I was most disappointed in Tun Salleh’s challenge, is an understatement.
He asked me to demand from the government to establish a Royal Commission to investigate into his dismissal. Why should I? I hold the view that the Tribunal had every reason to hold that Tun Salleh had misconducted himself as per the charges.
Is it my responsibility to call for a Royal Commission when a Tribunal convened by King himself found him guilty of all the charges that was proffered against him? He should be the one who should “lobby” the government if he feels strongly that he has been unjustly victimised!
In anticipation of Tun Salleh’s reply that he did not demand a Royal Commission during Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad’s tenure as Prime Minister because it would not receive a favourable response, my query to Tun Salleh is:
Why have you not demanded a Royal Commission after Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad retired in October 2003, and thereafter in 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and only now in 2008?
You are legally trained and held the highest judicial office. So, if anyone knows about rights and legal remedies, it must be you. All these years why have you not commenced any legal proceedings to establish, as you have alleged, that you have been wrongfully dismissed? You had a team of senior lawyers advising you. What was their legal advice?
It is a pity that Tun Salleh does not realize that the powers that be have used his dismissal to prop-up the Badawi regime after the 12th General Elections fiasco. Tun Salleh is a mere pawn in this political wayang kulit orchestrated by the spin doctors of the Badawi regime.
In my article, I posed certain questions to Tun Salleh and demanded to know his answers.
Why is Tun Salleh avoiding the issues posed by my questions and diverting the issues by asking me to “lobby” for a Royal Commission?
Tun Salleh should be transparent first and answer my questions.
1) Did Tun write two letters to the Agong? What was the content of the first letter?
2) Did Tun advise his fellow judges, especially the five judges who supported him, the contents of the first letter?
3) If Tun did, what was their response?
4) If Tun did not advise the judges, what were Tun’s reasons for the cover-up?
ROCKY, I am truly disappointed in you. You have read my article and having done so, have you posed the questions to Tun Salleh?
After all, you are assisting in Tun Salleh’s memoirs. Surely, you should be equally interested in the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
Please pose this response in your Blog.
25th May 2008 7.25pm
Bru on TV One
I shall be the sixth blogger to appear, after A. Kadir Jasin, Raja Petra Kamarudin, Zahrin Yasin, Nuraina A. Samad and Ruhanie Ahmad.
The program starts at 830 PM.
Petrol prices stay, says Shahrir
We are grateful, really. In Indonesia, pump prices have gone up by 30 per cent, sparking unrest. Here, Minister Shahrir Samad says the Government won't increase prices.
I am grateful but I am curious as to how much more our Government earns now that oil prices have reached US$135 a barrel.
Because between March 2004 and March 2007, when oil prices were well below today's, Petronas raked in nearly RM250 BILLION! Not exactly a quarter of a TRILLION RINGGIT yet, but close.
So Shahrir is correct, and the Government is correct, too, on this one. And we are grateful, really.
General May 24, 2008 21:30 PM
Govt Has No Plans To Increase Fuel Price - Shahrir
MELAKA, May 24 (Bernama) -- The government has no plans to increase fuel price despite the price hike of petrol by 30 per cent in Indonesia beginning Saturday, Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Shahrir Abdul Samad said.
On the contrary, he said the government was now focusing on managing the subsidy system to prevent leakage and smuggling.
"For the time being, we are not considering increasing the price of petrol and diesel although we are aware of the impact of the crude oil price hike in the world market.
For the rest of the Bernama story, go here.
Saturday, May 24, 2008
Ah, P. Ramlee!
Umno equals Sarkis (circus)? Like you (most probably), I am a big fan of P. Ramlee, both his movies and his songs. But there was this scene from the movie Bujkang Lapuk, in which P. Ramlee and S. Shamsuddin are making fun of Umno, which had escaped me until I watch it on You Tube just now.
To watch the scene, just go h e r e.
For context, you have to read the posting by OpEd, P. Ramlee - Umno = Circus!
How did P. Ramlee and S. Shamsuddin get away with it? Can you imagine what will happen to anyone who tries this kind of joke in a movie these days?
p/s I found the clip after discovering OpEd, a blog by a journo. Great stuff. And good to know more and more journalists are blogging these days.
Umno blogger gets a million
Every dog will have its day. Blogger Bigdogdotcom has hit the million-hits mark. He is a rabid pro-Umno guy but is one of the biggest (literally) critics of Prime Minister Badawi.
Picture shows Big Dog (extreme right).
Friday, May 23, 2008
Goodbye Pulau Batu Putih ...
Pulau Batu Putih is now officially Pedra Branca even though both names mean White Rock. That's how the ICJ in the Hague ruled.
Sorry Malaysia, and hard luck to the team led by the Attorney-General.
Will we lose more than this rock outcrop?
I hope we'll do all that we should to ensure that we don't ever lose sovereignty over the Iskandar Development Region.
p/s We didn't lose all though. See pictures of the pebbles we've won h e r e.
Thursday, May 22, 2008
Should the Agong intervene?
Aziz Tapa, the Umno veteran, has suggested that the Yang diPertuan Agong intervenes to resolve a prolonged spat between PM Badawi and Dr M. "Call for Agong to intervene in Mahathir-Abdullah spat", Bernama, 22/5
Aziz is not the first to invoke the Agong's name since Dr M announced quitting Umno last Sunday. The pro-Umno blogger, A Voice, has already put up a posting on "Agong's Constitutional Power to Remove the PM" as early as Tuesday.
Should the Agong intervene? Dr M, asked in Tokyo about Aziz's suggestion, says "Don't involve the King", Bernama 22/5. But I have a feeling this is not for Dr M to decide ....
Demo against DBKL
People vs Datuk Bandar
Friday, 23 May 2008
at Dewan Bandaraya KualaLumpur, Jalan Raja Laut, KL
Even if you don't have an issue with DBKL, you may join residents of Kuala Lumpur at the DBKL tomorrow in a demonstration that aims to tell the Datuk Bandar to have a heart (or resign).
YB Wee Choo Keong, together with several other MPs, will submit a memo to the Datuk Bandar to protest what he described as "high-handed" and "indiscriminate" demolition of stalls in Taman Desa Setapak.
Some 130 stalls were flattened by City Hall workers despite a "deal" between Wee and DBKL for a two-week grace period to try and resolve matters.
Two police reports were lodged against City Hall demolition army yesterday. Stories and pictures h e r e.
Najib: I'll see Dr M
Torn in a flash! Musa Hitam must be cursing Mahathir. Because it looks like the Umno leaders who had an emergency Supreme Council meeting last night actually wanted back the "thorn in the flesh".
For the record, Pak Lah chaired the meeting. The Second-in-Command must be more eloquent and awake at such an hour, which is probably why he was the one speaking to the Press.
And Najib is saying exactly what he said the other day - that he's prepared to meet Dr M on the quit decision. What it means is that the Supreme Council has agreed for Najib to meet the Old Man. The meeting is to try persuade the Thorn to come back to the Flesh..
Dr M is in Tokyo to attend an international conference. Pak Lah is scheduled to be there as well. Yes, it's the same conference in which the two met but we were not sure for a long time who actually wanted the meeting and who went to whose room for the meeting.
At the airport yesterday, some Umno big wigs were there to send off the Thorn.
|General||May 22, 2008 01:29 AM|
|Umno Supreme Council Hopes Dr M Will Return To Party One Day|
Read the rest of the story HERE.
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Two-year-old Bru, and goodbye Anon
This blog turns TWO today. It's bruised and battered, just as the blogger is. But here's hoping for another two good years of blogging.
After this posting, I plan to disallow comments by ANONYMOUS. For one very simple reason: there are way too many Anons. It's gotten really weird to refer to Anon 10:55, for example. Worse still when Anon 10:55 refers to Anon 8:20 for disagreeing with Anon 20:31 for running down Anon 17:55. You see?
To those of us who still prefer anonymity, simply choose a nickname and stick to it, at least throughout the same thread.
Better still, register that nickname as a Blogger. No Fear, right? After all, we've got ourselves a more blogger-friendly government now.
Here's to my Anons. Thank you for the support and guidance.
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
Mukhriz quits Umno?
Monday, May 19, 2008
What after Dr M quits?
Mass resignation at branches?A related development: I heard a meeting in JB last Saturday, between Dr M and some Umno leaders, ended with over 200 branches in Johor pledging to disband before the start of the Umno cawangan meetings."With the first UMNO Branch or Cawangan meetings less than a month away, it would only take a few to begin a trend of mass resignation of members and closure UMNO branches such as to leave the party in disarray.
"These mass resignations are also a much more doable act than the recent feeble attempt to call an EGM at the Bahagian level. The Cawangan are still controlled by the grassroots, with a large majority still angry at Pak Lah and are easily stoked by the memory of Che Det."
-- Taken from an early observation by A Malay Mind, whose dad resigned from Umno 24 hours before Dr Mahathir or Che Det did! Read on h e r e.
Dr M quits Umno
Umno member No 0000001, pic taken from Apanama
update, 5.45pm: Sanusi Junid, the former MB of Kedah, has also resigned from Umno. He did it yesterday, even before Dr M said he was resigning!Vesak Day bombshell. Dr Mahathir Mohamad has quit the party he led for 22 years. The announcement, made about noon, caught even his closest aides by surprise.
Malaysiakini has the story:-
|Mahathir quits Umno|
|Ahti Veeranggan | May 19, 08 12:45pm|
Former Umno president Dr Mahathir Mohamad today announced that he was quitting Umno with immediate effect and urged other members to emulate him.
He said he was quitting the party, which he led for almost 22 years until handing over the reins to Abdullah Ahmad Badawi in 2003, as a sign of no confidence in his successor's leadership.
"I will only come back to the party when there is a change in leadership," the ex-premier told a crowd at a forum in his home state of Kedah this morning.
He also called on all Umno ministers, deputy ministers and all levels of party leaders to join him in leaving the party.
He entered active politics as a member of Parliament for Kubang Pasu in 1964.
He lost his seat in 1969 and was expelled from the party after attacking then president and prime minister Tunku Abdul Rahman.
Sunday, May 18, 2008
Anti-Mahathir, Anti-Crossover Haris Ibrahim
Shahanaaz Habib, the first Malaysian journo to enter Baghdad during the US invasion of Iraq, came face-to-face with lawyer Haris Ibrahim in today's The Star.
Haris, the man behind The People's Parliament blog, is a hardcore anti-Mahathir and anti-crossover (he does not think Anwar Ibrahim should try to form a Pakatan Rakyat government by getting Barisan MPs to cross over, as the act of crossing is tantamount to "fraud"). He lists Info Minister Shabery Cheek as one of the few Barisan Nasional MPs he has (some) regards for.
In the interview, Haris did not forget to say thank you to the New Straits Times, for making him start People's Parliament.Read the full interview online, H E R E."When they sued Rocky and Jeff Ooi*, it forced me to look into blogs and I reaslied this was a powerful opportunity for me to share the little messages that I have with fellow Malaysians."
*Haris Ibrahim is defending Jeff Ooi in a defamation suit filed by NSTP & 3 Others in January 2007. Jeff is now a Member of Parliament.
Saturday, May 17, 2008
Dr M: No to Merchants of Death in IDR
"The Perdana Global Peace Organisation (PGPO) strongly condemns the recent opening of Halliburton's manufacturing centre in Iskandar Malaysia, Johor. The American oil and gas company which is linked to the current United States Vice President, Dick Cheney, has been raking in billions of dollars in profit from the American invasion of Iraq which has entered its fifth bloody year.
It is appalling that we have allowed this war-profiteering company to invest in Malaysia. Iskandar Malaysia Chief Executive Officer Datuk Ikmal Hijaz Hashim (see story below) has been quoted defending Haliburton and even expressed his happiness at the willingness of the company to invest in Johor.
Are we so void of our humanity that we have to allow these war criminals to come in and thrive in our economy? Do we really need the blood money of a neo conservative entity that has played a role in the murder of innocent Iraqis to fund our development?
Cheney and George Bush are oil men and war criminals who have profited tremendously from the war in Iraq. Cheney is a major stockholder in Halliburton whose stocks have increased from USD 10 before the war to around USD 46 today. The phenomenal increase in value of its stocks is due to Halliburton continuously winning no-bid contracts in Iraq amounting to almost 20 billion dollars.
As a nation that has firmly opposed the invasion and colonisation of Iraq right from the beginning, it is a painful change in direction to allow Halliburton to operate in Malaysia. As a nation that has played a lead role in the Organisation of the Islamic Conference since its conception, it is deplorable that we have opened our doors to these war criminals that have plundered and destroyed Iraq, a sovereign nation that was invaded on false pretexts.
Today, more than a million Iraqis have died in the war that has been supported by firms such as Halliburton; which have benefited from the U.S being able to control the flow of oil in West Asia.
Surely in our endeavor to progress, we can still afford to be humane and conscientious. We must be sensitive to the sufferings of our brother humans elsewhere before we agree to accept even a single cent from these murderers.
The dead in Iraq need their justice. These warmongers who made the decision to destroy Iraq must be condemned and brought to justice for their crimes against humanity. Bush and Cheney must be put on trial for the blood on their hands as well as for all the money they have made from Iraq in the past five years.
We at PGPO reiterate our fervent objection and strongly denounce the setting up of Halliburton's 200 million ringgit manufacturing centre at Iskandar Malaysia in Johor. The Malaysian government must not allow these war profiteers to put their ill-gotten profits to operate in any way in our beloved country.
On another note, we wish to express our utter disappointment with the decision of the Dewan Rakyat to dismiss the motion by Dato' Seri Abdul Hadi Awang to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the tragedy of Nakba.
The action of the Dewan Rakyat does not reflect the aspirations and the sentiments of the Malaysian people who share in the suffering of their Palestinian brothers and sisters. To reject this motion on the basis that it is not urgent is a negation of the very ideals that we hold sacred such as peace and the sanctity of life.
It is bad enough that countries such as the United States, Britain and Australia are celebrating Israel's 60 years of statehood, the least we can do is for our parliamentary sitting to show empathy and solidarity with the Palestinian people. "
Tun Dr Mahathir bin Mohamad
Perdana Global Peace Organisation
Blogger Tehsin Mukhtar did a posting earlier in the week on Halliburton and the Iskandar CEO's statement:
Monday, May 5, 2008Whose ethics are you referring to? CERTAINLY NOT MINE.
CEO: Halliburton will bring benefits to Iskandar
Read the rest of her piece, h e r e.
Friday, May 16, 2008
wayang kulit or what?
16/5 PM's Dept has lodged police reports against several newspapers for publishing Royal Commission of Inquiry Report before it was made public/STAR
Lingam, Adnan and Tan
Malaysia's de facto Judicial Appointment Commission?
If the reports by the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the Lingam video clip were to be believed, then we actually already had a Judicial Appointment Commission! The questionable members of this de factor commission in question are: VK Lingam, Tengku Adnan and Vincent Tan.
What they allegedly did was to advise the Prime Minister then, Dr Mahathir, on the appointment of the Chief of Justice. (read HERE)
Mahathir, however, has gone on record to ssay that he got the views of people (not just the CJ) on the appointment of Superior judges. For this, I suppose, the Commission found the former PM had a "narrow interpretation" to the meaning of the word "consultation" in the appointment and promotion of judges. See Article 122 of the Constitution, excerpts below:The Lord President of the Supreme Court, the Chief Justice of the High Courts and ... the other judges of the supreme court and of the High Courts shall be appointed by the Yang di pertuan Agong, acting on the advice of the PM, after the consulting the conference of Rulers.
I expect the journalists to ask Pak Lah if he's going to retain Ku Nan as Umno sec-gen now that he's been found guilty by the Commission.
Terengganu's missing (RM) billions
Big scandal in poor Terengganu.
Idris Jusoh, the former MB, says his government got only RM1.3 billion a year between 2004 and 2007 only.
Just the other day, Parliament was told that RM7.34 billion oil royalty had been paid to Terengganu between 2004 and 2007, when Deris was MB.
That works out to about RM2.4 billion a year, not RM1.3 billion.
Deris told Sinar Harian yesterday he didn't know it was that much cos all the State got was RM1.3 billion a year. Really?
Do your math: 2.4 minus 1.3 is ...?
So into whose pockets did the RM1.1 billion a year of Terenggnu people's money go?
1.1 times three years is RM3.3 billion. So who got that RM3.3 billion, Pak Lah?
Visit Lawyer Kampung to read more!
Thursday, May 15, 2008
Speaker quits Umno post
breaking story !!!
Dewan Rakyat Speaker to quit Umno position. Veteran Sabahan politician Pandikar Amin Mulia, the Dewan Rakyat Speaker, is said to have tendered his resignation as the Umno division chief for Kota Marudu. Pandikar Amin is said to have told some people from his Bahagian that in order to serve as the Speaker for the Dewan Rakyat, and NOT the Speaker for Umno, he would have to resign from holding any post in Umno.
His action will obviously be linked to Anwar Ibrahim's relentless efforts to get 30 or so Umno MPs from Sabah to cross over to Pakatan Rakyat in order to for the Opposition to form a Government with a simple majority in Parliament, and in order to fullfil his dream of becoming the Prime Minister.
Pandikar Amin was sworn in as the 12th Parliament Speaker on April 28. His name was proposed by Prime Minsiter Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
Malaysia's halal connection, Badawi and Temasek
Is there conflict of interest in halal corporation?
Malaysia's plan to develop internation Halal certification and halal food industrial parks, is raising a web of sinister conflicts. The newly-formed Halal Industry Development Corp or HDC is under the auspices of the Prime Minister's office, although ownership of the company is unclear. HDC even processes foreign direct investment (FDI) for the halal sector, a role designed for the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (Miti).
HDC, and its links to Badawi's family, got a lot closer when HDC signed up with Tamadam Bonded Warehouse, a company which is being taken over by the PM's brother Ibrahim to develop halal parks.
Tamadam had recently signed an agreement with Temasek, Singapore's investment arm, to source for various projects here. It is unclear if Temasek has a hand in this project, but the Badawi lineage is clear, and it open sa lot more trails with questions such as Why is the HDC tasked with halal certification using Jakim logo? (Jakim was doing the certification previously) and What is the role of son-in-law Khairy Jamaluddin?
I am not saying that all this is haram or that there is wrong doing here, but the PM - HDC - PM's dear brother Ibrahim - Temasek link will have a lot of people edgy and will have great serious repercussions on Malaysia's Islamic finance aspirations.
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
Wang Ehsan: RM7.36 billion paid to Tganu
March 2004 to March 2007. And we all thought the Terengganu government under the former MB Idris Jusoh was getting about RM1 billion a year from Petronas in terms of Wang Ehsan! Read here.
That's RM7.364 billion in 3 years!
I bet you Ahmad Said, the pro-Palace MB that Pak Lah didn't want, hadn't known that the money involved was this much.
I am not an Anak Terengganu but I imagine people from this beautiful (and poor) state must want to know how the money was spend, on what (and who), and by whom! If any state government needs to conduct a forensic audit, it is Terengganu.
A file pic of happier times during the Monsoon Cup, a project said to have been funded with the Wang Ehsan.
Monday, May 12, 2008
School of Blogging?
Read the Bernama article here.
UiTM wants to produce ethical and professional bloggers."Currently, we do have blogging studies in our curriculum and this will be enhanced further by introducing a course on blog writing. I feel that the Communication and Media Studies Faculty is ready to conduct the course and I fully support this move (to introduce blog writing course) as it is time for us to help produce bloggers who are not only professionals, but with ethics," (UiTM vice chancellor Prof Ibrahim Abu Shah) told a media conference after opening a seminar on Media and the 2008 General Election, here Monday.
NST On-line's Dewan Dispatches: Is KJ the young and restless "Prince of Darkness"?, quotes the SIL proposing that "bloggers be given the same professional training as mainstream media journalists". Read that here.
As quite a seasoned journo, may I suggest that mainstream media journalists and editors be given a quick course on blogging (not the one UiTM is offering). It'd remind them of some of the things they should be doing as journalists and editors.
Another Istana vs Karpal
Selangor palace's wrath.
DAP's Karpal Singh may have taken on too many at one go. Wong Chun Wai has put up this posting:-
Royal rebuke against Karpal Singh
The Royal Court of Selangor, which met this morning. has issued a statement against DAP chairman Karpal Singh for purportedly saying that the Sultan of Selangor had interfered in the executive matters of the state. The report came out in the Malay Mail on May 6. In a strongly-worded statement from the Royal Court, which comprises elders of the palace, it regarded the statement by Karpal Singh as baseless and irresponsible.
Click here to read FULL STATEMENT from the Council.
They weren't Najib's words
Now, did Najib, who was the Umno Youth leader back in 1987, really say he was going to "bathe the keris with Chinese blood", or is someone using Wikipedia to fix the DPM?A Wiki "fact" (click here):
"In 1987, as UMNO Youth Chief, Najib defended special Malay privileges in a speech where he vowed to bathe the keris (Malay dagger) with Chinese blood. Shortly afterwards, the government launched a crackdown on extremist elements, termed Operation Lallang although Najib was not detained. At the same rally, banners were hoisted carrying phrases such as "revoke the citizenship of those who opposed the Malay rulers", "May 13 has begun" (referring to the May 13 racial riots in 1969), and "soak it (the keris) with Malaysian Chinese blood"."
Blogger Pasquale says here he did not remember Najib ever saying it. Unless someone can prove him wrong.
A fuming AMLG defends Dr Khir Toyo's on-line poll that puts Najib (13%) far behind Muhyiddin (49%) and Ku Li (33%) in the race for Umno president, replacing Pak Lah. The blogger told Pasquale that you can't fix the outcome of these on-line surveys.
Me, I don't see the point of fighting over the results of the survey. Badawi has said he's defending his position, so I don't see how any of these guys can get meet the qualifying quota even if they agree to enter the ring.
But if you want to cast your vote, what the heck! Go h e r e. Three days before the closing date.
Sunday, May 11, 2008
Nuraina A. Samad on TV1's BLOG
update: A Review
Hog-wash: "makanan sampah sarap yang diberi kepada babi"
Blogger Walski is far from happy with the "loaded" way RTM handled last night's Blog program. Pictures and his full critical appreciation, h e r e.
Tonight, 8.30pm. Netizens would know Nuraina for her blog 3540 Jalan Sudin, which she created in Jan 2007. Since leaving NST (after 27 years) in March 2006, she has taken up the post of Hon Secretary for the protem National Alliance of Bloggers, is a trustee for the National Press Club, and co-founder of N.U.R.I.N Alert.
She is Group Editor of Tell magazine and is currently co-writing Tun Saleh Abas' autobiography.
The daughter of ISA detainee A. Samad Ismail will be the first female blogger to appear in Blog with host Chamil Wariya, the CEO of Malaysian Press Institute. The weekly programme was started by Information Minister Shabery Cheek to prove that the Government is now blogger-friendly. So far, it has featured A. Kadir Jasin, Raja Petra Kamarudin and Zaharin Yasin.
Saturday, May 10, 2008
Correct, it's Fairuz. Shaila Koshy had a major scoop in today's The Star. Quoting sources, she wrote that former Chief Justice Ahmad Fairuz had been identified by the Royal Commission into the VK Lingam Video Clip as the person on the other side of the call with the lawyer.
Her sources also said the report included:
The commission submitted its report to the Agong yesterday. PM Badawi had said, also yesterday, that he hadn't read the report. I hope he has read The Star's report, h e r e.
- Findings that the content of the conversation between Lingam and Ahmad Fairuz, which touched on the brokering of judicial appointments, was substantially true;
- A recommendation that legal action be taken against those breaking certain laws.
Guess who's calling for Press Freedom?
The S-I-L. I'm always a supporter of the National Union of Journalists, so when its president Norela asked me last week to become a panelist at its World Press Freedom Day forum at the NST this morning, I said yes. The NUJ forgot to inform me that Khairy Jamaluddin agreed to officiate at the forum.
But what surprised me was to hear him call for greater Press Freedom, the repeal of draconian laws governing the Media and for "best reporting"practices, where only professional editors (as against politically-appointed ones, I later stressed during the panel discussion) lead the media.
Will he walk the talk? Let's see.
During the panel discussion, Citizen Nades of the Sun called for laws to bar political parties from holding a stake in newspapers and the other media. The other panelists were YB Tien Chua and Hanafiah Man from Agenda Daily.
The forum was held at the Balai Berita. I found it a little odd that none of the senior editors or executives from the NSTP group (NST, Berita Harian and Harian Metro) was there.
Thursday, May 08, 2008
Another 18-year old dies at NS camp
Yo, leave my lawyer alone!
The cops released Haris, said it was all a misunderstanding. Lawyer Edmund Bon was there at the Dang Wangi police station, just to make sure that our bro is ok.
Haris Ibrahim. The People's Parliament blogger-lawyer went to Dataran Merdeka tonight to lit a candle for RPK. Witnesses said he was minding his own business, seated on the staircase in front of the flagpole, waiting for the crowd to swell, when two cops took him away.
Whatever for, I don't know. Maybe his candle's too big? Maybe because he's the defending Syed Akbar Ali, the author who was charged for sedition Tuesday.
Haris was expecting to welcome RPK, who leaves Sg Buloh tomorrow. Click h e r e.
Forensic audit on Selangor
PKNS, Kumpulan Darul Ehsan under probe.
I heard the PKR-led Selangor state government is believed to have hired auditors to forensic audit on state government agencies, such as PKNS and Kumpulan Darul Ehsan Bhd, the state investment arm.
The auditors were focusing on land deals, award of contracts and state officials in cahoots with stock market syndicates to push up shares in Kumpulan Hartanah Selangor Bhd and Kumpulan Perak Selangor Bhd, the two listed entities of Selangor government. The audit firm is said to be an expert in CSI.
Perhaps they are boasting but some people told me the auditors have uncovered enough dirt to keep some people in hell, even if hell freezes over.
We'll need to see proof, though, eh Khalid?
"Causing friction between people and palace". Has Karpal Singh pushed his luck too far with the Raja-Raja?
In rapid succession, the DAP strongman reportedly questioned:
The Attorney-General is expected to decide whether to prosecute after prominent lawyer Shafie Abdullah said that Karpal could be charged under the Sedition Act for causing friction between people and the Raja-Raja. Read the story h e r e.
- the Kelantan Prince over his titah on Malay supremacy
- the Sultan of Perak, Sultan Azlan Shah, over the transfer of the Perak Islamic Religious Affairs Department (Jaip) director, and
- the Yang diPertuan Agong, over his opening address of the 12th Parliament
The Palace's popularity soared to a high last year when peaceful demonstration organisers made the Agong and his official residence, the Istana Negara, the focal point for several anti-Government people's gatherings. The Bersih rally on 10 November 2007, for example, is also referred to as the Yellow March, yellow being accepted by Malaysians as the colour of their Raja-Raja.
Karpal was at the PJ Sessions Court on Tuesday when Malaysia Today editor and blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin was charged under the Sedition Act.
Wednesday, May 07, 2008
Why didn't the Home Minister and the IGP exercise their right of reply?
In solidarity with RPK (and Syed Akbar Ali, and the 3 journalists "interviewed" yesterday).
After this morning's press conference, I told the AFP journalist that one does not have to agree with what Raja Petra Kamarudin wrote in "Send the Altantuya murderers to hell" to support him.
It's about his right to express his opionion. We are standing in solidarity with RPK in support of his - and our - freedom of expression.
And for the Government's right of reply, too.
Right of Reply
In the interview with AFP, I explained that:
1. The DPM, who was implicated in RPK's posting, had exercised his right of reply by writing in to RPK/Malaysia Today through his press secretary (see here); and
2. The DPM's wife, who was also mentioned in the posting, had exercised her right of reply by denying the allegations made in the Internet (see here).
And I asked these questions:
1. Why couldn't the IGP do the same, i.e. respond to RPK's posting instead of charging him with Sedition?
2. Why couldn't the Home Minister do the same and exercise his right of reply, i.e respond to whatever points raised by RPK in the posting?
The decision to charge RPK with Sedition, I told the AFP journalist, also undermines the Prime Minister's promise for reforms, greater freedom and transparency.
At the press conference earlier, which I chaired as President of the Interim Council of the National Alliance of Bloggers, I read out a prepared statement jointly signed by:
Dr Lim Tech Ghee, Director, Centre for Policy Initiatives
Wong Chin Huat, Chairperson, Writer Alliance of Bloggers
Gayathy V., Executive Director, Centre for Independent Journalism
Ser Choon Ing, Chairman of Civil Rights Committee, KL and Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall
Yap Sui Seng, Executive Director, Suaram
Ho Yock Lin, Coordinator, Empower Malaysia
Read our joint statement H E R E.
p/s Bernard Khoo and Desiderata (chairman of BUM 2008) spoke at the press conference as well. We were told by Bernard that Marina had gone to Sg Buloh to try and see her husband but was told that RPK did not want to see anyone. Marina was also told that her husband had refused any form of nourishment since yesterday.
Tuesday, May 06, 2008
Oct 6 trial
pic by Knights Templar
"Pigs are cute".
RPK was charged with Sedition at the PJ Magistrate Court 1 at noon today.
Trial date: Oct 6-10, 2008.
The Malaysia Today Editor is being defended by 7 lawyers.
There were 4 Members of Parliament at the Court for RPK: Wan Azizah, Karpal Singh, Gobind Deo, and William Leong.
RPK declined to post bail today. Gobind says "we will appeal to the rakyat to contribute to a fund to raise bail for Raja Petra."
RPK will spend time in Sungei Buloh from today until a time when the RM5000 is raised and posted.
Did you know?
... that the Sedition Act is 60 years old (two years older than Raja Petra Kamarudin), and that it was introduced by the British in 1948 with the intent of curbing opposition to colonial rule? And that Malaysiakini was shut down for a period in 2003 under the Act after it published a letter questioning Malay special rights and for equating a Malay party's youth wing to the KKK?
Click h e r e to read more at Wiki.
People's Parliament hits the millionth
A blog landmark. Haris Ibrahim @ harismibrahim.wordpress.com is the latest Malaysian blogger to have achieved 1 million unique visitors to his blog.
The champagne will have to wait, though, as the lawyer will have to be at the Jalan Duta courts complex first thing this morning for a serious affair. Haris, who started blogging seriously in April ast year after taking up the NSTP & 3 vs Jeff Ooi case, is expected to be part of the defence team for Raja Petra Kamarudin, who may be charged for sedition over an article he wrote.
Monday, May 05, 2008
Sedition charge against RPk and Syed?
Author Syed Akbar Ali, an active commenter on blogs, has also been told to appear at the same court, at 10AM. Sedition, too?
The Potters are back!
After 23 years ... Stoke City are back to English football's Premier league. Can't believe I had to wait half a lifetime for this moment! Read here.
Eat a football, Zorro, Azam, Dergak, and all of you non-believers!!!
The Paper That Cares is back!
The free* MALAY MAIL. From today, the paper I used to edit (2001-2006) hits the stands at noon. The relaunch this evening (Guess what? I'm invited!) shows that even in this New Media age, the Old can still re-invent. And Malay Mail (note: the "The" is gone from the title piece) is about the oldest. As a Malaysian born and bred, it is even older than the NST.
Get a copy and tell me about it.
* FREE from the New Straits Times Press, both editorially and in shareholding terms, that is. After some experiments that went awry in 2006 and 2007, the NSTP decided to sell the paper to Ibrahim Nor and Media Prima.
Sunday, May 04, 2008
Rais, the ladies aren't amused
A Most Silly Idea. Rais Yatim's ratings with Malaysian women took a nosedive into a dried-up swimming pool today. His ministry's proposal to compel every woman to get a written consent from her family if she plans to travel abroad alone has been described as nuts and biased.
"One step closer to Saudi Arabia," one commenter wrote to Nuraina A. Samad in response to her posting last night here.
Marina Mahathir, who says she travels abroad alone almost all the time, did not conceal her disappointment with the Minister in her posting here. "I have to say that I always thought that Dr Rais was much smarter than this."
Another blogger, here, suggests that "all Ministers and politicians DECLARE what they bring in and out of the country, where they are going to, and who they are going with!!! To make sure these jokers don't songlap anymore of our money or have sexcapades at OUR expense!!!"
Ah, Kum Hor!
Chow was part of Nuraina A. Samad's political desk that was disbanded after Badawi became Prime Minister. He left NST to report for a Singapore daily not too long after that.
Another Badawi on Facebook
I received an invite to be a friend of an "Abdullah Badawi" on Facebook this morning. I had to check it out.
But as I'd suspected, it's a con job. This "Badawi" says he's married to "Khariy Jamaluddin" and lists his address as "Denial". See for yourself, here.
Someone is having great fun but at the expanse of the PM. And not everyone is amused. Someone has even cast a "death spell in 7 days" to whoever is responsible for creating the Badawi account on Facebook.
Anyone knows how to notify Facebook?
Later, I Googled and found the Facebook account of the real (I think) Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, here.
Saturday, May 03, 2008
First class CM flies Economy class?
Guan Eng hires BH ex-reporter as aide. I posted once about bumping into a corporate leader who was flying Economy, so I understand blogger (Ning Baizura's) Mr Manager when he realised that it was the Penang CM seated in Y Class in front of him. I hope next time the airline upgrades Lim Guan Eng to Business; he can do quite a bit of paper work in that half an hour or 45 minutes. The people won't fault a CM if he flies in comfort, would we?
See Ning and Guan Eng's pics at Mr Manager's blog h e r e.
By the way, I hear Guan Eng will be hiring the services of one Wan Hamidi Hamid who recently tendered his resignation as journalist with the New Straits Times. Hamidi started his career with Berita Harian in 1988 before he moved to The Star, a Singapore newspaper, and a High Commission as its press attache.
He was brought in to NST by Kalimullah Masheerul Hassan to boost the Umno-owned paper's political coverage. Wan Hamidi, I was told, is a life member of the DAP.
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