Saturday, June 29, 2013

Mutalib MD

We met at the First Malaysia-Asean Bloggers Forum in Kuala Lumpur in April 2012. Mutalib MD was then facing a lawsuit by a Cabinet Minister so everybody was looking forward to meet him. His news portal, the Sabahkini, had then become the main reference site for us here when it came to socio-political news concerning Sabah. Throughout the forum, Mutalib was engaging and unexpectedly soft-spoken. Those who had read his articles or one of his books would have expected to be talked down to by a loud, forceful character.  
We'd met again several times in Bangsar and a couple of months before the May 5th general election I bumped into him at Lowyat, still as fearless as ever, still writing a few books at the same time, still trying to bring down the "bad guys".
This morning, sadly, Mutalib, just 51, returned to Rahmatullah.
 Updates: Alfatehah untuk Mutalib MD

Friday, June 28, 2013

Tabung Haji gets new Chairman?

Final update:

Today's news 

Updated 30/6: Malaysian Insider thinks "Najib's new brain trust - Idris Jala, Omar Mustapha Ong et al - draws ire of the Mahathirists". Hehe. Maybe it is so, maybe not. Mostly, Dr Mahathir is duly informed of the appointments. If he's unhappy with a certain appointment, the so-called Mahathirists will be very unhappy. But sometimes some of the so-called Mahathirists are unhappy even when the Tun is happy with a certain appointment. That's what makes these Mahathirists so unpredictable, sometimes. I should know ... 
Updated, 29/6: Bujai adds some spice to Azeez Rahim's appointment (which takes effect July 1 2013) with his latest posting on Gang Mamak (no relations to the notorious Mamak Gang, the gangsters, rapists and criminals from the 90s).  

Original posting:
Azeez "Gaza"
Azeez Rahim. Azeez with a doule E, his name is being bandied about as the next Chairman of Tabung Haji, the billion-ringgit co-op formed by the government to send Malaysian Muslims to Mekah for their haj. If it's true, it would be an amazing feat for the 46-year old who won back Baling for Najib Razak in the recent general election. 
Azeez has come a long way from his Rempit era of the Pak Lah's bygones. Due to some sleek rebranding exercises, some people have taken to calling him Azeez Gaza these days, not Azeez Rempit or Azeez Putra or Azeez Baling. Not easy to organize all those humanitarian missions to Gaza and Somalia and all those jin-bertendang boondocks of the world. 
But question is, will he have what it takes to re-organize Tabung Haji? Will he, for instance, replace long-time CEO Ismee Ismail? Or will it be, you know, business as usual?

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Turf war in FGV

Isa Samad, finger-blocking Sabri 
While I share Annie's confidence that Sime Darby is in good hands, having a politician at the helm of a GLC can be a bane. Isa Samad, the Umno veteran, is fast becoming one at Felda. His haste to put Emir Mavani Abdullah as CEO-designate seven months before the current one steps down has raised eyebrows and, unfortunately for Emir, opened a can of worms.  
Now, apparently, there's a social media war taking place between pro-Umno bloggers. In one corner, you have Big Dog stripping Emir naked (and, in his latest post h e r e, biting Isa into pieces); in the other, you have others gunning down the existing CEO, Ahmad Sabri, to the ground in typical assassin fashion ie go after the wife (Sabri must go and retire from FGV).
It's all a lot of fun to read, but it also makes Felda a laughing stock. My advise to Isa, stop bringing politics into FGV. You now know that your man Emir is not a Dr Emir as claimed, question is how do you fix it? Telling the AGM that Emir hadn't know he was going to come back to Malaysia to serve is so lame. 
Anak Felda also

Khairil, anak Felda
p.s. There are several "anak Felda" in the top management of FGV. What, people like Khairil Anuar Aziz and Zakaria Arshad are not qualified to be CEO of the company their parents helped create with their blood, sweat and tears, izzit? 

The Tourism Ministry is curious about the new theme park

The Eye draws 3.5 million visitors  annually
New Tourism Minister Nazri Aziz hasn't made any public statement on the so-called Malaysia Truly Asia theme park they want to build near Parliament and the National Monument, but he will (have to). Blogger Apanama's latest revelation is that the 26.3 ha park will wash away too much of our heritage. It's hard to make economic sense of it, too.
The office that houses the ISIS office, for example, was the official residence of the Dewan Rakyat Speaker. Between 1959 and 1964, the House Speaker was Noah Omar, the grandfather of present PM Najib Razak. Noah was also our delegate to the UN General Assembly in 1958. He addressed the world body twice: the first time on apartheid in South Africa and the second on the plight of Palestinian refugees, both of which have remained central in Malaysia's foreign policies till today. 
Noah (right) at theSpeaker's home, about 50 years ago
(pic taken from The Thee Swans by Fawzia Abdullah)
But history isn't the only reason why the ministry's officials are going around asking questions about the theme park. 
If it's supposed to be a major tourist attraction as claimed, their new Minister would want every claim to be backed up by details. "It won't be business as usual, if you know what I mean." And as Apanama has lamented, there's very little anybody know about the project. For all you know, the theme is a front - an excuse - for the developers to build high-end condos and colossal commercial havens for the benefit of a few. 
The claim that foreign tourists will now need to spend just 2-3 hours at the theme park to know Malaysia and to love Malaysia is also a worrying - even disturbing - prospect as far as tourism is concerned. "Do these people know what they're doing? We want tourists to stay 2-3 weeks here so they spend money, lots of money. If they only need 2 or 3 hours, Singapore and Thailand will say thank you very much to us as the tourist will spend more time with them instead of with us."
Me, I think we need to avoid building another white elephant like the mini-Asean village
Not "business as usual" under Nazri ..
(or is it mini-Malaysia). If we really need to have one, then it certainly does not need to be in the heart of the city and at the expense of one of its last gasps of green lungs.
Learn from the Londoners. When they wanted a world-class tourist attraction, they built the Eye. They didn't touch a grass at Hyde Park or Kensington or any of the city's gardens and green lungs because they knew they wouldn't get near any of it. Since 2000, the London Eye has been attracting some 3.5 million visitors a year. 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

RM350 million, that's how much UMNO gotta spend to defeat the Red Bean Army by PRU14!

With updates at the end of article 
Or that's what some experts are telling the UMNO big wigs. If the party wants to set up a department ala the DAP's mysterious Red Bean Army, they asy, it needs to cough up RM350 million over the next 5 years. Ringgit tiga ratus lima puloh juta sahaja. 
The proposal is in, I was told. Party sec-gen Tengku Adnan is thoroughly studying it. 
Shocking, you say? Hogwash, certainly. 
What UMNO needs to do is get its leaders, including those experts, to serve the people from now until Najib Razak or whoever is PM then calls for the next general election. Turun padang and meet the people face-to-face in the real world, not in the virtual one. There is no substitute for sincere hard work. Whose idea was it in the first place to have a department of social media that employs full-time tweeps, facebookers, instagrammers, bloggers and cybertroopers? What madness!   
Three-hundred fifty bloody million ringgit to win the war of perception? Come off it! 
Updates: Jebat Must Die is perturbed with how BN could allow unfriendly operatives such as the ex-Malaysian Insider's Lau siblings infiltrate its media platforms, h e r e.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Sime Darby gets new chairman

Sime Darby's new chairman

There's life after Saujana, for sure. Former Johor Menteri Besar Ghani Othman is headed for Sime Darby, the massive transnational corporation, as its chairman. Overheard today in Bangsar, a politician was telling the soft-spoken Malay gentleman, "Half the world is yours now, Datuk." The last Sime Darby chairman is also a Johorean, Tun Musa Hitam, a former deputy prime minister.
Updates: Sime Darby in good hands by Annie

Attack on Parliament: Today with punches, tomorrow with guns

More pics at theunspinners
The NST reports more than 15 people arrested for trying to break into Parliament with anything-but-peaceful intent. A police officer was punched in the face in a scuffle where riot police had to use teargas to break up the mob. I'm all for peaceful walks but these people are dangerous and a menace to society. To the politicians involved - you know who you are (and we know who you are) - rein in your followers before it's too late.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Yet another theme park in Malaysia

Only 2-3 hours needed to know Malaysia and love Malaysia when park's completed.
Now is that good or bad?
Read with some degree of depression the latest posting by Apanama, Khazanah wants the National Monument too? 
I love theme parks but the blogger's right to woe: why is there so little they're telling us about this so-called Malaysia Truly Asia attraction? If it's going to take away one of the last precious pockets of green lung in the city, we want to know what they're planning to build, how the park/parks will benefit the KLites and Malaysians in general, what the project does to the environment, and how much $$? Will there be just parks and ponds or are they going to build clusters of 5-star hotels, yet another convention hall, and super high-end condos? I'm told the occupants of the colonial structures around the Tugu Negara have been given eviction orders since last year, so presumably a lot of quiet planning has been done  ... 
Google, and you get a site linked to the Hettema Group which says it has been picked as the designer for a Malaysian Truly Asia Centre. 
Leave your comments h e r e. Apanama's 1 millionth unique visitor stands to win a free ticket to the park.

Ambiga's speechwriter?

Updated: Helen Ang defends Guna, lashes out at The Star-Wong Chun Wai's machai h e r e.
P. Gunasegaram, the creator/founder of KiniBiz, is a seasoned journalist who's gone to hell and back, as they'd say. 
His byline has appeared in Business Times, Malaysian Business, The Edge, The Star,  The Sun, among others. He's been an analyst and a corporate comm guy, too. But cyberspace "warfare" is almost uncharted territory for the old hand and in Pro-Pakatan Malaysiakini attacks that Star! - Ambiga's speechwrier, Gunasegaram leads the charge, Guna would get a taste of things to come. The unflattering series on The Star that Guna has sanctioned is not going down well quarters close to his ex-employers. It's not going to be pretty.
When I joined BT as an intern in 1984, Guna was already specializing in banking and finance. We got loads of regards for him, so don't expect me to run this guy down. But if it's down to The Star vs Malaysiakini, well, this is how I see it: at the end of the day The Star is a newspaper despite all its posturing or pretenses; Malaysiakini, on the other hand, is a top-notch think-tank inside a well-backed "independent news portal" clothing created to help achieve a political end. 
Perhaps Guna will change Malaysiakini for the better? Perhaps.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Anwar takes fight to be PM from Padang Merbok to Washington

Tomorrow's Padang Merbok "blackout 505" protest against the GE13 results is just a start of efforts by his friends and supporters to help realize Anwar Ibrahim's lifelong dream to be Prime Minister of Malaysia.
Din backs Anwar but admires Najib
Next week in Washington, The East West Center is organising an "aftermath" forum featuring two Malaysians including Din Merican and former US Ambassador to Malaysia John Malott. Both don't need much introduction, of course, but the East West Center failed to mention that Dato' Din and Malott are two of Anwar Ibrahim's tightest buddies. 
Info on the second speaker, Hui Hui Ooi, is originally from Malaysia and now attached with the Brent Scorcroft Centre on International Security. 

Those hazy things they say about The Star ..

Hazy Malaysia, from NASA's sat
I must comment that today's lead article on The Star Online does make the largest English-language daily read like a DAP mouthpiece. 
Ngeh's quotes h e r e
It's a  piece about (ultimately) how the advanced people think we should not be felling our trees (like they used to do), quoting NASA and all, but the fact that the MCA-owned newspaper has found it fit to publish the article - as a lead story, too! - when only a DAP chief is being quoted (well, the NGO dude doesn't count, really), automatically puts the authorities in a not-so-good light. Which I'm sure wasn't The Star's intention, or wazzit? 
Surely here's a government spokesman (not just from the Perak MB office, perhaps the Prime Minister's Department?) who would and could comment on the matter and in the even that the reporter is too lazy to get one, the editor should have run the NASA story as it is and get politicians from both sides to comment later. Basic journalism.
Well, I'm just saying but with all the things they have been saying about The Star's political posturing and what-not, this article does make me want to wonder ..

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Call for MACC to probe Felda's China deal

The Doctor at Felda
A prominent pro-Umno blogger has urged the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission to investigate a alleged discrepancies in a recent deal between Felda and a China company. Big Dog, in his posting Swine-(dling) Scruple, accused a unit under Felda of giving preferential treatment when selling 50,000 tonnes of palm olein to a "non-preferred client". There was also a suggestion that the transaction had involved some dubious commission. 
What's interesting is the blogger is implicating Dr Mohd Emir Mavani Abdullah in the deal. This is the same dude from Pemandu who was untimely named the CEO designate of Felda FGV in January this year, a full seven months (!) before the tenure of the sitting CEO who had successfully listed Felda FGV on the Bursa comes to an end.  
I have also written a little about the Doctor's link with the unaccredited Warnborough h e r e

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Anwar chickens out, will attend June 24 swearing-in

And remember this: once they take the oath, they are deemed to have accepted the results of the 13th General Election. - Pakatan MPs want to boycott Parliament, izzit? Rocky's Bru, June 7

Were you surprised when you heard the news that Anwar Ibrahim will attend the swearing-in at Dewan Rakyat this Monday?

I didn't think you were. 

Anwar blamed a "misunderstanding" for the talk about the boycott. He sure took a long time to set the record straight. In typical style, he tries to create a new issue (the selection of Parliament Speaker) to distract us from the fact that the minute he's sworn in as an MP this Monday, he would have, officially and in front of the Agong, accepted the results of the PRU13.

And he would have broken his promise to you that he'd retire from politics if he didn't unseat Najib Razak as PM in the May 5 general election.

Helen Ang clarifies

Imposters among us ...
helenang ( has left a new comment on your post "Exodus, NST as Insider recruits":  
Dear Rocky and other readers, 
Inasmuch as I'm not the only Helen nor the only Helen Ang in Malaysia, but still and nonetheless. 
I'd just like to point out that I did not post the comment above @ 3.40pm (to forestall any case of "mistaken identity" as it has happened before.)  
I normally do not post comments in blogs unless it is to clarify (such as in this particular instance).
I'd also like to inform the public that a number of genuine commenters have been impersonated in blogosphere and these include Calvin Sankaran, Aidil Yunus, I.D.A., Sarah ... (plenty of others) and myself.
The imposters who masquerade as some of the known names will go as far as to bash other folks in order to deliberately create misunderstandings and smear reputations, e.g. "Calvin Sankaran" wrote some nasty things about me in the STL blog but of course I'm aware that it wasn't the 'real' CS who did that. 
I'd like it put on record that there is a Dapster who went around leaving comments as Helen Ang Abdullah, and that certainly wasn't me either. 
What can I say about such political operatives? "What kind of people are they?"

They are the kind of people who have no compunction in fabricating lies, in concocting stories about 40,000 Bangladeshis, blackouts and spreading fiction in international fora to drag the country's name through the mud.  
If they can manufacture such big lies about Malaysia, what's to stop them from slandering small people? None at all. 
Helen Ang 

Monday, June 17, 2013

Exodus, NST as Insider recruits

UPDATED: The earth moves again as Terence Fernandez makes his exit from Malay Mail to join, a socio-political news portal owned by a corporate mover linked, at least once upon a time, to Anwar Ibrahim. The Star's Wong Sai Wan, one of the few Datuks in journalism, has already started at the Malay Mail in charge of Special Projects. The biggest newsmaker would have been Datuk Syed Nadzri, who is the media adviser of RedBerry: the ex Group Editor of NST was tipped to be joining joining The Star as one of its directors with executive power BUT my man at the newspaper says it's NOT true. The post of NST group editor is still vacant. Wallahualambisawab.

p.s. Lionel and team comprising my ex Malay Mail staff Rita Jong and Muzliza, among others, will be starting work at TMI tomorrow. Terrence will start work at fz-com on August 1.

Original posting
Malaysia's media landscape is shifting. Lionel Morais, probably one of the most seasoned crime reporters East of Suez, is leaving the New Straits Times, which turns 168 years next year, to join the five-year old news portal Malaysian Insider as a very senior editor. He's taking half a dozen crime journalists from the pro-government establishment to fill the vacuum in TMI left by Leslie Lau, who has quit to join the Malay Mail with 30 others. A big blow for Malaysia's oldest newspaper.
Good news is, until they find a replacement for Lionel and his reporters, there'll be a mark decline of crime rate, at least in the pages of NST.   
I hear some journos from Singapore will be joining the Malaysian Insider ...

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Fraud, allegedly

While we're on the subject of "fraudulent scheming" (see preceding posting h e r e), I feel it's my duty to attach the following documents which are the actual statement of claims filed in Court by Halim Saad against the former Minister and recently appointed Deputy Chairman of Khazanah Nasional. For older context, go to Halim Saad vs Nor Mohd Yakcop: Mother of All Corporate Lawsuits:

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Putting words into the Prime Minister's mouth

Updated: By the way, asks Life of Annie, Who are the PM's speech writers?

The Blooper: The report quoting Najib was
picked up by the Singapore media and the rest of the world
With friends like these ... No thanks to some sloppy journalism, Najib Razak has been quoted to have said something he never did. Something so despicable that nearly the entire Malaysian blogosphere and social media berated him. 
The PM's Department issued a statement the very next day to set the record straight.

The clarification: Najib never said it

Alas, someone must have decided to downplay the mistake by not making such a big deal out of the clarification. A single column in a former broadsheet, even on Page 3, is easily overlooked. 
What a single column looks like

So how do you bungle so badly when it involves the Prime Minister himself? I think I know what happened. The following would have been the likely sequence of things: 
1. The PM's Office releases Najib's speech to be delivered late that night in advance to the media. There's a "CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY" note attached to each copy of the speech in case the PM decides to make changes or not to read the speech at all, which happens all the time. The idea of issuing the speech in advance is to enable the newspapers to meet the deadline, usually around midnight. 
(Even if there isn't a "Check Against Delivery" or "Embargo" notice, the editor would have reminded the reporter covering the event that night to make sure to check against delivery. Even without such a reminder, every reporter covering the PM should be senior enough to know it as basic, a standard operating procedure). 
2. The senior reporter processes the speech into a news article at the office before going to the event that night, where the PM is to deliver the speech 
3. Najib delivers the speech. However, after vetting the copy earlier, he has decided to skip the paragraph(s) about compelling bloggers to reveal their IDs. Obviously, he does not agree (with his speechwriter) that it is a good idea at all.  
4. Reporter fails to check against delivery 
5. Newspaper publishes the story 
6. All hell breaks loose the next day 
7. PM Department issues clarification 
8. Editor(s) decides to "bury" the clarification in a single-column. 
I say, with editors and journalists like these, the PM does not need Malaysiakini or Malaysian Chronicle to do him in! 

Friday, June 14, 2013

Blogging Malaysia: To mask or unmask?

Blog, portal owners must reveal identities: Najib

New Straits TimesThursday, Jun 13, 2013
KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia will not emulate Singapore's move requiring blogs and news portals to be licensed, but will instead opt for self-regulatory measures that make it necessary for blog and website owners to reveal their identities, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
He said in handling the challenges of a mature nation, the government would ensure social media practitioners are more responsible in disseminating information.
BEFORE he was Zorro Unmasked, ex-teacher Bernard Khoo was a fiery commenter on many blogs who went by the moniker Zorro. When Jeff Ooi and I made our mark in Jan 2006 as the first bloggers in the whole wide world to be sued by a newspaper, Bernard started his own blog. Back then, to reveal oneself as the operator of a blog critical of the government was a foolhardy thing to do. I was there when Zorro was deciding whether he should stop hiding behind anonymity. After a few beers, Zorro became Zorro Unmasked and today he's still a fiery anti-BN (or pro-Pakatan - sometimes it is hard to tell) voice, and since then many anonymous bloggers have done the same. Big Dog, Sheih Kickdefella and OutSyed The Box were also ex-Anons.  For some, it was inevitable. The alleged real ID of A Voice, for example, was exposed by a fellow blogger (a former BN Adun who is today the only DAP Melayu MP) during a heated cyber exchange. 

Many more have kept their masks on. Some felt it was the safer thing to do given the blog-unfriendly BN government that we had back then; some had very good reasons to remain anons. They were wise. Big Dog, Syed, Kickdefella and A Voice were all "brought in" one time or the other by the MCMC, the police, or the courts.  

Thanks to Allah, the BN government now is a lot friendlier to blogs and cyberspace. That's mainly because PM Najib Razak is a believer in the Internet. During the Abdullah Administration, Najib was the only BN leader who openly engaged with some of us. It came as no surprise that when he succeeded Dollah, the entire BN government transformed itself in haste into a web of FBs, twitter, blogs, etc. So much so that during the PRU13, Umno even had a war room just to manage the social media. And immediately after the election, with the series of exposes about the overrated Red Bean Army of the Pakatan Rakyat, a decision was made by the party leadership to create a stand-alone department to plan an Internet campaign from now until the next general election in four or five years time.

Given these developments, I find the suggestion by the PM to compel social media practitioners and bloggers to reveal their real ID as out of sync. Especially when the suggestion was made as soon as he'd said Malaysia won't try to emulate Singapore's licensing framework for news portals, a decision hailed even by A Kadir Jasin. In my experience, it is not easy at all to make an impact in cyberspace as an Anon. Unless you have a reputation as an Anon that churns nothing else but porn clips involving politicians. In which case you will have traffic but not authority nor credibility.

My suggestion as told to several journalists who called me for my views yesterday is this: keep the pressure to disseminate news responsibly on:

1. the mainstream media, eg NST, RTM, Media Prima, Astro, the Star, Sin Chew, Tamil Nesan, etc and 
2. the news portals, e.g. Malaysiakini, the dying Malaysian Insider, Malaysia Today, Sabahkini, Mole, all MSM portals, Malaysian Digest, etc.

It is very simple. We bloggers, facebookers, tweeps and what-nots get our news from either 1 or 2, or both. If they get it right, the people at the end of this food chain will most probably NOT get it wrong. If there's s scandal involving the government and Bernama or the Sun tried to cover up, that's irresponsible. If the same scandal is amplified x100 by Malaysian Chronicle or Sarawak Report, that's equally irresponsible.

Back to basics. Set up a Media Council so that the industry can self-regulate. Of course, easier said than done.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Nazir Razak for Prime Minister?!

Apa lagi Zaid mahu? Zaid mahu Nazir sebagai Perdana Menteri!

Guan Eng: More Malaysians should be like Nazir 
Lim accuses Utusan of setting Malaysians against each other
as he happily pits Nazir against Najib and UMNO
Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng today commended Datuk Seri Nazir Razak for his outspokenness even as the CIMB Group boss continues to come under attack for defending AirAsia X CEO Azran Osman Rani for the same trait. 
Lim urged Malaysians to emulate Nazir in speaking their minds despite the risk of backlash. 
“I hope his brother Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak can be just as brave as him ” he said while condemning a news article in Utusan Malaysia that had labelled Nazir as “anti-Malay” for his praise of Azran. - TMI
CIMB big boss Nazir Razak is now, officially, the darling of Pakatan Rakyat. He is hailed as a new hero for coming out to praise AirAsiaX CEO Azran Osman Rani for his anti-Malay, anti-Umno stance. Nazir has even won the adoration of DAP's Lim Guan Eng, who urged Najib Razak to try and be as brave as his little brother, and Zaid Ibrahim.

Some will ask if there is more than meets the eye. 

The one certainty is the label of “kacang lupakan kulit” will stick forever. Many will say he is where he is today because he benefited from NEP, because he has strong ties in Umno and because of his linkages with the party top leadership. So, why is he so prepared to be seen as anti-Malay, anti-Umno and along with that, inflict the unkindest cut of them all on his own brother, the PM?

One theory is that Nazir is buying political insurance to stay relevant in the event of an "Ubah". Never mind that it could be by street violence. It has been said a corporate man is always keen to see an easier passage for his company or business's quest for profit, profit, nothing but profit. It does not matter who is the government of the day so long as he covers both sides. This sometimes can lead to spilling the beans to stay alive if there is a new power in Putrajaya.Today, given the political landscape, Nazir may be out to buy insurance. Even if the premium happens to show one is anti-Umno and anti-Malay by supporting Azran. 

In the avalanche of criticisms against Nazir for biting the hand that fed him, many think he has become a liability to Umno and his own brother. Read Malay NGOs slam Najib's brother for backing AirAsia CEO.

Me, I think it is ok to massage the hand that may one day feed you but it is a betrayal to bite the hand that is still feeding you. 

p.s. I hope Nazir doesn't get carried away by Guan Eng and Zaid's praises. We know they'll use anything and anyone to get at his brother.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Challenging the Will of the Majority: Everything you need to know about Election Petitions

Sinar Harian 12 June:
DAP, PAS boycotting Anwar's boycott plans?

The Art Harun note to YB Rafizi. It's not a mere note, I must say, it's an education. And since it's not so often that you get a learned lawyer like Art Harun to provide counsel, pro bono, do take time to read his arguments in Election Petition: A note to YB Rafizi. Art's views usually inflict pain in both sides of the political butt, so I try to choose excerpts from his posting that I find to be most neutral. In the following paras, Art tells Rafizi:
"Our election laws are NOT skewed to tolerate discrepancies. Our laws are based on the English laws as well as other respected jurisdiction within the Commonwealth. 
"In fact I dare say that our election laws are even better than the English laws. That is because here, we have an automatic right to appeal against any decision of the Election Court to the Federal Court (where at least 3 Judges will sit). In England, the decision of the Election Court is not appealable. A judicial review may however be asked for. But that is not automatic as judicial review may only be invoked if the High Court grants leave to do so. 
"When our laws place a high burden on us and do not always work in our favour or do not support our cases, it does not speak well for us to say that our laws are skewed."
Read the entire posting and leave comments h e r e.

Too critical?

The difference between us and them. Some people think some of the pro-Najib bloggers are too critical of the Prime Minister, especially after the general election. Of course, they are. In fact, the likes of Syed Akbar Ali (president of Blog House Malaysia, which has held events involving Najib), A Voice, Big Dog, Apanama, Bujai and The Unspinners have always been critical of Najib and his Administration. But always - or almost always - within reason. 
That's what separate them from other bloggers, especially the pro-Pakatan bloggers. With the exception of Helen Ang and a few others, all pro-Opposition bloggers don't criticize their leaders at all. They are not allowed to. There is no room for dissent in PAS, PKR and DAP, even in cyberspace. Anyone who dares to speak up is quickly crushed. 
And that's something Najib's aides must never try to emulate. If OutSyed The Box comes out with a poll like the one above, which has over 1000 readers voting against Najib being retained as Umno president, they should not jump and try to get someone to get Tuan Syed to pull it down. Calm down and have a chit chat. The poll is not among Umno members. But if you are still worried and need to look good, send in your army of cybertroopers to vote FOR the PM-lah, apa susah? 
Go here to see the poll's closing tally (I was "respondent" no 1415).

Monday, June 10, 2013

The truth is, politics sells

Battle of biz weeklies: Taib outsells Halim?

Edge, Focus go political. In their respective latest issues, The Edge has Eighties' corporate high flyer Halim Saad on its cover while rival Focus Malaysia is front-paging what it happily labels as the "Taib Family Inc". The two business weeklies don't usually feature Malay-Bumi corporate names prominently unless there are scandals and mouth-watering controversies involved, so the Halim-Taib headlines are kind of a "bonus" for the community.

The political undertones in both Halim and Taib's articles are overwhelming, if not overcooked in places. In Halim's lawsuit against Nor Mohamed Yakcop, especially, the attempt to scandalize Umno, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and the Barisan Nasional are hardly sublte. But that's to be expected, too, given the allegiance of the magazine's owners to Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, or so people tell me.

The truth is, Anwar is
a favourite with The Edge
Not all pro-BN bloggers are in a hurry to defend NMY, who only recently was appointed as Deputy Chairman of Khazanah Nasional by the Chairman (and PM) Datuk Seri Najib Razak. A Voice is one example: he spells out F.R.A.U.D from the word go but at the same time sniffs out the politics of the Edge and the agenda of its political idol.

For its big scoop on Taib Mahmud, who is a known pain in Anwar's Pakatan Rakyat's butt where its dream of conquering Sarawak is concerned, there isn't a quote from the man himself. The Chief Minister's hate groups Bruno Manser Fund and Radio Sarawak, on the other hand. are quoted extensively throughout the article. The Mahmud clan is supposed to be linked to 400 companies locally and worldwide, but only five Malaysian PLCs are analyzed in the article.

As the Umno general assembly draws nearer, expect more political articles in our business pages.

Friday, June 07, 2013

Pakatan MPs want to boycott Parliament, izzit?

Federal Constitution Article 59 (2):
"If a member has not taken his seat within six months from the date on which the House first sits after his election or such further time as the House may allow, his seat shall become vacant."

So, yer buggers (ybs) we Malaysians elected just last month and are now threatening to boycott the Dewan Rakyat session, please make sure you stay away long enough to earn automatic diisqualification. 

Don't be wimps, ybs. Go all the way. 

also, Now Anwar is "mulling" over whether to betray his electors.
Excerpts: "At the opening session of Parliament, 222 members are due to be sworn in. They will do so because they were elected and they believe in our system of government. Don't be surprised if even Anwar takes his seat that day because he, as much as anyone else, knows how silly this boycott idea is."
p.s. The opening session of the 13th Parliament is 24 June 2013. Mark it on your calendar, bros and sis, coz we are going to watch these drama kings and queens who said they'd boycott the session come to be sworn in. And remember this: once they take the oath, they are deemed to have accepted the results of the 13th General Election. 

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Tony wants Khazanah to sack Malaysia Airports boss

(Tony) Pua said MAHB’s managing director Tan Sri Bashir Ahmad’s contract should not be renewed when it ends this month, noting that it was extended last year. He accused Bashir, who has led the listed firm MAHB for nine years, of failing to manage the KLIA2 project competently. “A competent successor must immediately be found to clean up the mess in MAHB to ensure that there are no further delays to the completion of the airport as well as capping the cost to taxpayers for the project." - Pua: MAHB must take responsibility, Malaysian Insider, 5/6/13

Who's incompetent, who's lying now? For a while, I thought TMI made a mistake, that it was Tony Fernandez and not Tony Pua who made this call to the Government not to extend Bashir's contract. For a long time, before and after the Labu Airport fiasco, Fernandez the Air Asia boss and Bashir have crossed swords. I can count with my fingers the number of crooks and cronies who want that to happen. But Tony Pua, he is a politician, an elected MP, Opposition, and he is the last person I'd expect to join this bandwagon bandwagon. 

[Tony] Pua: “While we are not privy to the details of the dispute which is now triggering the blame game between the various parties, the question that needs to be asked is, after nearly 2 years of delay, why is it that MAHB is only coming out for the first time to blame the contractors?  If it is really the contractors who are at fault, why haven’t they been penalised with the LAD since September 2011?” 
I would expect the YB to have done his homework before accusing KLIA2 as being run by "a team of incompetent liars". That kind of labeling hurts people's feelings. Good, hardworking, ordinary people. It seems to me this is what the DAP and Pakatan Rakyat folks have been reduced to. Simply accuse people based on the info that has been fed to them by their friends. If you are not privy to the details that have led to the delay of the KLIA2, ask for the details! 

YB Tony Pua should get the full details right away and get back to us, or we might start thinking of him as an incompetent MP with vested interest.

p.s. Waiting to see if Khazanah will bow to Tony's wish ...