Thursday, July 31, 2014

Old Men Rise Again Part 2


So who killed the young Malay businessmen? I think we can eliminate the DAP. Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, in fact, should be credited for giving life to Zarul Ahmad Mohd, the chairman of Zenith BUCG Sdn Bhd which is tasked with building the Penang Undersea Tunnel, a project economically valued at more than RM10 billion! Read what Anil Netto has to say about the deal in The Sage Begins: Penang tunnel developer enters JV with Ewein Bhd.  
If DAP didn't do it, who did it then?  Could it be Idris Jala or Wahid Omar, famous for abbreviations? Or was it the so-called government investment arms that took over most Malay-held business after 1997? Institutions like Khazanah Nasional ... 
Remember Rashid Hussain?
Today Khazanah,  MARA, and PNB are fat owners of businesses that should be owned by Malay-Bumiputera individuals. 
Look at our telcos, for example: where there used to be Tajudin Ramli and Celcom, today it is "GLC" Axiata run mainly by accountants who take their orders from bigger accountants at Khazanah Nasional. 
Where there used to be Malay entrepreneurs in the banking sector, there is now a rush to further merge the banks and put them under the institutions. It is the same story in property sector, where PRIMA rules and dictates. 
The people at Khazanah, ETP, MARA and PNB are highly paid (they even fancy themselves as private sector) but to the Malay businessmen, who are perishing because of them, they are no more than a mere extension of the civil service. 
Still to be cont'd ...


Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Old men rise again

Did you hear about Halim Saad and his lawyer Abdul Rashid Manaf teaming up to buy over a 30 per cent stake in CN Asia Bhd?  You heard right. The deal's going down next week, I was told. 
A younger Halim

If all goes as planned CN Asia will become the second national oil company with focus on overseas assets. 
Halim is on a hot streak, having helped Sumatec Resources become the first PN17 firm to have a RM1bil market capitalisation while Rashid Manaf took over Focal Aims Bhd in preparation to help Tan Sri Liew knockout the salarymen at PNB and SP Setia. 
Both Halim and Rash Manaf are veterans. Instead of taking it easy in their twilight years, these old guards have become flag carriers (again).  
Question is, where are the young guns? 
Who killed the young Malay entrepereneurs? Khazanah Nasional? PNB? Can't be the DAP ... 
To be cont'd ...

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

CIQ's PAC response: How to undermine your own government's move (This is NOT a manual)

Updated:
A fight Singapore can't win (Life of Annie, Wed 30/8)
Singapore threatens Malaysia ... again? (Apanama, Tue 29/8)
On government shooting its own foot: Jazlan shows the way
Original article:
Nur Jazlan was circumspect when Singapore raised their toll, a move aimed right at Malaysian individuals and businesses entering the Republic. But when Malaysia reciprocates Singapore on the toll charges, he is decisive! And angry, too. You wonder where this Umno Pulai MP's heart is sometimes (some of us have stopped wondering about his brains!). 
The following comment by a JB man who is an FB critic of the so-called 1 Million motorists say no to unfair charges at JB CIQ was written with Malaysian leaders the likes of Nur Jazlan in mind:


  • Kunathasan Chelliah Aiya, when Singapore puts all kinds of ristrictions on Malaysian cars entering Sg, no one makes noise, cos it seems Singapore has a "clean" government. When Malaysia imposes a levy, all the criticism. Believe me when I say that Singaporeans will still keep coming into Malaysia by the droves. Maybe, 10% less. RM16.50 is peanuts to them. Just filling up their petrol tanks with ROM97 can recover more than enough. What about the grocery shopping by the cart-loads, makan, and car wash? Yes, Malaysians with Sg cars and working in Singapore will have to dig deep,........that also, $S300 per month max la!


Read what Nur Jazlan said h e r e about his own government's move to make those Singapore plate numbers*** pay a little bit more. Bear in mind that he'd said earlier that Malaysia should worry about Singapore viewing us as doing tit-for-tat against them. 
Now you'd notice that Lim Kit Siang, the Johor's Gelang Patah MP, is keeping quiet, probably still on Hari Raya leave or more likely just contented to allow the apologists within Najib Razak's administration throw the spanner into the government's work. 
Rest assured, though, the DAP strongman will soon be jumping the bandwagon to join Jazlan in this own-government-whacking opportunity.  Kit Siang has a long history of opposing privatisation projects that benefit the Rakyat, including the North-South Highway and the Penang bridge but he's Opposition and you'd expect that. 
What's Nur Jazlan's excuse for shooting first and asking questions later? As PAC chairman, Nur Jazlan can get highway authority LLM to come and explain to him the rationale.
Or if he's too lazy to do that, just read Jebat Must Die's explanation and A Voice's reason lah. 
*** Malaysians are allowed to own and drive vehicles that are registered in the Republic, which means they pay road tax, insurance, etc to the Singapore government. Singapore, on the other hand, would not dream of letting its citizens own and drive Malaysian plates on its roads. Obviously we need to grow balls and be more kiasu, too. Follow Jazlan's fellow Johor politician The Patriot's arguments in Better late the never on the VEP for Singaporeans ... 
  

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Balan-ced blog, explicit content

Wan-nabe: Name already submitted for MB post! Source Malay Mail
If you like the stuff made by Balan Moses, veteran ex-NST journalist and author of the book Brickfields and Beyond. there's good news: the man is opening a blog soon. He told me the blog will basically park his thoughts on current affairs, including cuttings of his weekly column in ABN News. 
For a sample of Balan-ced Perspective, his latest piece on the sorry episode the Reluctant MB-to-be and why Wan Azizah as MB of Selangor might weaken PKR's position among the people in the State who thought they would be ushering in a new era of state politics by rejecting the BN ... 
I have my own thoughts on my residential state, Selangor, but I have to save it after Raya due to the explicit nature of those thoughts ...

Friday, July 25, 2014

More like Menyakit rather than Menyayat tHati

Common sense. Sometimes bloggers sans formal journalism training are called up to defend journalism against journalists themselves, as in this case of Big Dog barking at the editors of mainstream Malay-language daily Berita Harian for their Distasteful and de-Dignifying front page (see below).

Staged for "front page effect" or did they really belong to one of our stewardesses?


I wonder how different is this with the case of the Sky News' reporter tampering with evidence? Read Sky News apologises after reporter rifles through MH17 victim's luggage.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

MH17 and how we brokered the deal with rebels (with pics)

Malaysian quiet diplomacy at work in Kiev, Ukraine
Over buka puasa with a senior rep from the Prime Minister's Office the other night, everybody wanted to know the same thing: How did Najib Razak pull it off? Our friend said he didn't have the details. Of course the bloggers weren't convinced but later our friend whispered to me, "My boss kept it to himself and just a couple of people involved in the nego(tiations). We were only told of the deal at the very last minute. And that's the truth!" I believe him. There was no bitterness in his voice; like (most) everyone else, our friend was happy the deal was gotten.  
Apparently, their journalists don't have the details, either. What's clear is that all quarters are in awe of Malaysian and Najib Razak. 
But we are reminded by Medan Abdullah, a Malaysian working abroad, PM Najib's "quiet diplomacy" has always been "the Malaysian way (that we always knew was there)". True, that. Our roles in ending Apartheid in South Africa, the genocide in Bosia-Herzegovina, the isolation of Myanmar and, of course, our untiring on-going support for peace in Gaza and Palestine are proof that as a nation we've never been afraid to go our own way in the international scene, without having to kowtow to the so-called superpowers.  
BTW, contrary to popular belief, Najib's quiet diplomacy is not just about making or getting phone calls as these pics attest ...

President of Ukraine signing the MH17 condolence book at our embassy in Kiev
Dutch FM
With the OZ governor general
    
Our delegation with the Vice Premier of Ukraine and its Foreign Minister
Malaysian delegation with the Dutch PM
Our delegation meets Australian Foreign Minister

p.s. My friend Medan also wrote that we all need to rally around each other as Malaysians during times like this.  Save your MAS and Najib-bashing for another time. Thank you, YB Wee Choo Keong for showing the way in Thank you, Mr Prime Minister. The Rakyat Post has been doing write-ups in support of the national airline e.g. Support for MAS gets louder. And I was told a group of residents from Taman Tun Dr Ismail is planning to do a greet-and-hug MAS staff at the KLIA to lift everybody's spirit ...  

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Najib's quiet diplomacy


"...(Malaysia) achieved what pressure from far more powerful nations had failed to accomplish". 
Getting the job done. People who know Capt Nik know that he's not one to easily praise anyone or anything (bikes, included). So I sat up when I read his salute to Najib Razak over the PM's brokering for MH17. This was before Sahur time (I usually have sahur just before 5am) and I was reading hard between the lines to see if Xr Rider isn't being sarcastic!
This morning the New York Times talked about the deal by the Najib for the return of the bodies and black box and safe passage the international team. I'm not sure what our clever commentators out there would have to say and honestly, I don't give a tutt anymore. They are not going to agree that against the apparent US/NATO agenda to use the MH17 to isolate Russia, Najib has done rather well by all of us. *
.   
Capt Nik's FB posting:

A Proud and Sad Event.

Well Done PM Najib. You pulled it off. Quiet Diplomacy did it.
They trust Malaysia.   
No one can ever imagine the difficulties in dealing with forces at war in a country so far away.
SALUTE.

ALHAMDULILLAH.
 

Cick to enlarge; go to Xr Rider to read the comments

NST's sms alert on NYT's write-up:
RM0 NST 22/07: MH17: New York Times praises PM Najib for brokering deal to recover black boxes, remains of victims and secure safe access to crash site
The NYT article:

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Prime Minister Najib Razak’s announcement that his government had reached an agreement with pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine, for the transfer of the bodies and so-called black boxes from Flight 17 to Malaysian representatives there, apparently achieved what pressure from far more powerful nations had failed to accomplish.
... If all participants honor the deal, it would be a diplomatic success for Malaysia. Mr. Najib said that at times over the past few days he had wanted to be more outspoken about events in Ukraine, “but sometimes, we must work quietly in the service of a better outcome.” 
The agreement is the result of an unusual spate of diplomacy by Mr. Najib, who held a series of secret telephone calls with Mr. Borodai. A person with a detailed knowledge of the negotiations said that Mr. Borodai concluded that he would only release the bodies and black boxes to Malaysia, although Malaysia would then transfer the bodies to the Netherlands and make the black boxes available for an international investigation. 
The backdrop for the negotiations was a slowly growing criticism within Malaysia, including by some in the political opposition, that Mr. Najib did not appear to be more publicly critical of the separatists or Russia. - Read the article H E R E 

*p.s. Quietly, our Foreign Minister Anifah Aman left for Kiev the other day to ensure that the deal happens. Some of us were supposed to have a buka puasa with him this evening and are extremely happy and proud that he had stood us up! Godspeed!!  

Monday, July 21, 2014

Malaysia has lost her first woman doctor





Tan Sri Dr Salma binte Ismail, the first Malay woman doctor, passed away at 6.15pm Sunday 20 July 2014 of old age. She was 95. 

She entered the King Edward College of Medicine (subsequently known as the University of Malaya and then University of Singapore) in 1936 but graduated only in 1947 as her studies were interrupted by the Japanese occupation of Singapore during the Second World War in 1942-1945.
Her determination to become a doctor superceded the norms of the times when it was unheard of for a single Malay girl to journey from her hometown AlorStar by boat to Singapore. Even the Second World War did not deter her from eventually finishing the course once the Japanese surrendered, taking 11 years in all to complete. Subsequently, she specialized in midwifery in Dublin in 1957 and returned to Alor Star where she was also the Royal Midwife to the late Sultanah of Kedah.
During her medical studies she met her future husband, Datuk Dr Abu Bakar Ibrahim (subsequently Director, Institute of Medical Research), also from Alor Star who graduated in 1951, by which time the medical school was known as University of Malaya. They returned to Alor Star and married in early 1950. Their first-born  (Tan Sri  Dr Ridzwan Bakar) was born in December of that year, to be followed by three other children subsequently.
When her husband was transferred to Kuala Lumpur to serve as the Medical Superintendant of Kuala Lumpur General Hospital, Dr Salma became one of the first Malay private practitioner in the country to open a private clinic in 1967 – Klinik Salma, which is existent till today. She retired from private practice at the ripe age of 82.
She was awarded the BCK (Bintang Cemerlang Kedah, 1957) and DPMK (Dato Paduka Mahkota Kedah, 1996) by the present Sultan of Kedah. In 1997, she was made a Tan Sri with the conferment of the Panglima Setia Mahkota by His Majesty the Yang Di Pertuan Agong.
Throughout  her career,she had been active in social work, among which were the Higher Education Advisory Council, Governing Board of Tunku Kurshiah College, President of Private Practitioners Association of KL and President of the Pan-Pacific Southeast Asia Womens Association.
As a woman and a doctor, she lives by the principle: “Have confidence in yourself, be honest, do not talk bad about others and give help to those who need it”.


Bru's notes: Our salam takziah to our dear friend Dr Ridzwan Bakar and family. May Allah bless her soul. Alfatehah.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Why I won't fly with Singapore Airlines ever again

Updated: This guy is among many who won't fly SIA any more  

Singapore Airlines apologises for 'insensitive' social media posts following MH17 disaster after public backlash 

  • Singapore Airlines wrote on Facebook and Twitter that its planes do not fly across Ukrainian airspace 
  • The posts were made right after reports that MH17 had been shot down 
  • Singapore Airlines' lack of initial condolences led to public cries of outrage 
  • The airliner has since apologised and said the posts were issued as a response to customers' requests 
Source: dailymail.uk

p.s. Just so we know who are neighbours down south really are. I hope HRH Sultan Johor and TMJ will cut ties with their Singapork friend Peter Lim. Khazanah Nasional should review all contracts with the Singaporeans. This is beyond kiasu; they were lying through their teeth! It was pure malicious. 

Updated:
A reader sent me the screenshots of the SIA's so-called "response to customers' requests" ..



Saturday, July 19, 2014

Save your MAS and Najib-bashing for another time, please

There's a time for everything. This is a time to be united for this nation and for its people and the leaders as we all mourn for the MH17's fallen and their loved ones. This is when we hold hands to condemn the perpetrators and those trying to poke their dirty fingers into our national orifices. It is not the time for your cheap shots at the national carrier or the civil servants and their ministers, and we surely don't need to listen to your whining about how clever you are compared with the Prime Minister.  
I'm not surprised if the likes of Yuki Tan churn out their rotten comment and filth (read other Yuki-like responses at h e r e, courtesy of The Unspinners) or if the CNN twist and turn facts to make their lords look good and us bad, but I expect better from clever bloggers like some of my own good friends.  
They should let the professionals do what they are trained for or just STFU!

Some Malaysians letting their blind
hatred for the PM get the better of them

p.s. Even Jahabar Saddiq and TMI know what kind of time this is ... Read his piece Stop blaming Malaysia Airlines for Downed MH17

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Condemning Israeli attack on Gaza: Najib must take it further

With updates on 50 Malaysian doctors for Gaza ...



It's good to listen to Najib Razak condemning the Zionist regime over their latest atrocities in Gaza and their audacity to defend the action as being in the interest of Israeli security. I hope the Prime Minister takes it further and all the way. Just take the cue from his predecessor's predecessor. Together with Dr Mahathir Mohamad (who's known for his uncompromising stance on regimes that support Zionism while he was PM and even after) and politicians linked to Anwar Ibrahim (who isn't known for the same thing, unfortunately, but do read Malaysian leaders unite over Gaza, 10 July 2014, anyway ..), the Malaysian leader can make the voice of Malaysia and human beings in general be heard against the evil that has been blatantly committing crime against humanity in Gaza. 

"... the cruelty of the Zionist regime against the Palestinians in Gaza is not only being opposed by Muslims but also people who hold to the principles of humanitarianism." _ Najib Razak at 1Malaysia.com.my

p.s. Dr Mahathir's Perdana Global Peace Foundation will be sending volunteers to help the Palestinian victims of Israeli's "war". Malaysians can do their bit by aiding the PGPF. Moral support pun sudah bagus ... 

p.p.s. And say what you like about our honorary envoy to Palestine, Azeeez Rahim, his Kelab Putra 1Malaysia has done it again - they've set up a Ops Room to start despatching aid to the Palestinians. He's trying to get 50 Malaysian doctors for Gaza. Ten specialists have already volunteered to go with Azeez. Again, say what you like ...

Friday, July 11, 2014

Tit for Tat



Blogger A Voice is in favour of a Malaysian tit-for-tat on Singapore for the latter's move to impose ludicrous amount of money on foreign (read Malaysian) vehicles entering the republic via Johor. I am with A Voice all the way here, as should all Malaysians: why shouldn't we impose equally ludicrous amount of money on foreign (Singaporean) vehicles entering Johor via the Causeway and the Second Link? 
The key thing here is equality: if Singapore wants to almost double the Vehicle Entry Permit and increase its Goods Vehicle Permit by a whopping 400 per cent, we should do the same. Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai must show to the Singaporeans that we aren't wimps. Read Singapore could tac but Johor not allowed to tic.

   

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Stop being trashy, Umno SoPo blogs told


SoPo blogs beating the tabloids at their own game?
A good advice from The Unspinners, probably the most influential pro-Umno social political blog (27 million hits and counting), I must say. It is true that too many Umno and pro-Umno blogs are resorting to tabloid-ish news and postings, especially after last year's general election, in order to maintain their readership or just to remain relevant. The Unspinners say if these Umno cybertroopers want to dish out gutter postings on people's private lives, they should focus on scandals involving politicians and not celebrities like Awie. 
"... there are so many hypocrites among our politicians, (they) claim to be holy when in actual fact they are far from it." - The Unspinners (Usah masuk hal rumahtangga artis untuk kejar ranking, 10 July 2014)
Gunning for him or his dad?
Sometimes the two worlds do collide, though. As in the high-profiled divorce case involving the sister of a local jazz diva Sheila Majid and the son of a former Sarawak Chief Minister and the Opposition's No 1 Enemy in East Malaysia, Taib Mahmud. It's the kind of story I thought Harian Metro would have lapped up especially in view of the BM tabloid's dwindling circulation. Thanks to The Benchmark, which not your typical sopo blog, we learn about how dirty divorce cases can be when they involve the world of celebrities and politicians.

Read all about it in Jailed Conman and a Syariah-compliant partner. I can't vouch for the accuracy of the claims made in the posting (check out the super-dodgy Canadian connections, for example) but as far as trashy tabloid stuff goes, you can't get any better! 

p.s. In the spirit of The Unspinners' very good Ramadan advice, I hope no Umno or pro-Umno sopo blogs would put up the Benchmark's article.
  

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

The real reason Guan Eng cried ...

The soup kitchen issue has landed Lim Guan Eng in the soup at least as far as mymassa.blogspot.com is concerned. The blog has accused the Penang Chief Minister and DAP big boss of being so eager to score political points with the soup kitchen controversy that he forgot he had declared way back in 2012 that the poor in Penang was no more (Tiada lagi miskin di P. Pinang).




Crying for the poor, homeless in Penang

Nov 2012 ... No more poor in Penang

No ban of soup kitchens in Penang, says Guan Eng (Rakyat Post, 8.7.2014)

KL soup kitchens aside ...


Lifeline for these kids, please ... It's good to know that Malaysians still care about KL's poor and homeless. That's the impression I get from the outcry against an official order to ban soup kitchens from the Bukit Bintang area, anyway. These soup kitchens feed the capital city's needy, the good Samaritans tell the government; never mind if many or most of these homeless and poor are illegal migrants, foreigners. I hope Tengku Adnan Mansor, who created the furore with the ban directive effective last Thursday, can clarify the government's supposed good intentions, which are 1. to open a one-stop centre to replace the soup kitchens and 2. provide permanent shelters for the homeless (Centres to stop people from taking advantage of free meals, Malay Mail, 8/7/2014). If he can't even convey those simple good intentions properly to the people, he should consider doing something else ...  

With so many caring KLites out there, we should also highlight efforts by individual Malaysians fellow in trying to cheer up some needy Malaysian kids. Here are two fine examples. Now, you can bitch about how this shouldn't still be happening in a land of plenty like Malaysia (the fact is, it is still happening), or you can do your bit to help these dudes help those kids ... 





2. From the Instagram account of is_drbubbles


p.s. By the way, Norman Fernandez, the DAP man who has finally thrown in the towel and quit the party, thinks the do-gooders from the soup kitchens could actually be doing more harm than good ... Read The Mole's article h e r e .

Monday, July 07, 2014

Why Dr Mahathir is still front-paging our newspapers


Read today's Page 1 of The Malay Mail, where I was Editor until 2011. A pleasant surprise, really, since the article Economic prescription from the doctor is proper reporting (based on a proper interview) and not a heavily editorialized piece like  The Paradox of Dr M published by The Heat, whose editor David Lee Boon Siew, incidentally, was also news editor of the Malay Mail at one time.


As Statesman, the Tun is viewed in all sorts of light. Sometimes it is up to the agenda for the day (or week) of the publisher. Most times it's because he says something newsworthy.

The Mail's piece is not all feel-good. Dr Mahathir did express his "other worries, including the current government's tendency to seek popularity in implementing popular measures". Read the full article h e r e   (and yes, do read The Heat's rantings, too ...).




Thursday, July 03, 2014

Tak faham or buat2 tak faham?

Not a case of lost in translation. I didn't know whether to laugh or to cry after reading The Malaysian Insider's take on Zaini Hassan's latest Cuit Sikit column in Utusan Malaysia. I had read Zaini's latest piece Hidup Mati Peniaga Melayu, Legoland dan SilTerra earlier in the day and was dumbfounded by TMI's amazing interpretation of the article, which would seem to pit Zaini and his newspaper against the Chinese businesses. Now how on earth did they manage to read the article that way?! Usually, some nuances get lost when you translate an article from one language to another but the thing in this case is that there is no translation involved: the TMI's aritlce is entirely in Bahasa Melayu, as is Zaini's piece! A case of poor pemahaman of the national language?

On the contrary, the Utusan article says the Chinese way
of helping its business community is more effective than the government's 

It'd be interesting to see how Utusan responds to the TMI's article, seeing that there's not much love lost between the editors of the two ... 
Read also Malaysian Insider fitnah Datuk Zaini (mymassa, 2 July 2014)