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Monday, October 31, 2016

TWISTED IRONY: MALAYS CAN’T ACCEPT DR M FOR ALLYING WITH KIT SIANG BUT CAN STOMACH NAJIB TURNING MALAYSIA INTO A CHINESE ‘COLONY’

DAP’s newsmaker and parliamentarian Jeff Ooi marked the 29th anniversary of the notorious Operation Lalang on his Facebook.
“Ops Lalang … 29 years today. A lingering Umno legacy,” he wrote.
A year ago, Ooi, who is Jelutong MP, would have probably blamed the Internal Security Act (ISA) crackdown on Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad who was then the Prime Minister and Home Minister.
But Malaysian politics has become so fluid – enemies yesterday, friends today and something else tomorrow.
Dr Mahathir has gone from arch enemy to friend of DAP. Leaders of DAP have taken to closing an eye on his past excesses and some of them even pretend that they never said all those awful things about him.
All the things they used to throw at Dr Mahathir have been conveniently transferred to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
The former Premier has also been interviewed by Roketkini, the DAP’s Bahasa Malaysia online portal. That ought to have been another milestone in his colourful and controversial career but it passed with quite little interest largely because what he told Roketkini was what he had said numerous times before.
Batu Kawan MP Kasthuri Patto, whose politician father P. Patto was also caught in the ISA dragnet, issued a statement censuring Barisan Nasional for using the ISA to cling to power. She lauded those arrested, among whom was Lim Kit Siang, as the “conscience of the many voiceless”.
Again, no mention of Dr Mahathir. It does look like the opposition parties have absolved Dr Mahathir of any responsibility for Operation Lalang.
Past anniversaries of Operation Lalang used to find Lim demanding that Dr Mahathir apologise for his action but there was silence on the part of the elderly DAP leader this year.
There is actually a deep sense of disquiet among many DAP politicians about Dr Mahathir. They are still distrustful of what they call the “old man’s agenda”. Their aim is to ride on his prestige but they are unsure whether this avid horseman is instead riding them like a horse.
But Lim’s word carries weight in the party. He has insisted that DAP needs to work with Dr Mahathir to break into the Malay hinterland and erode the influence of Umno.
Lim and Dr Mahathir are like some sort of secret lovers these days. They are together in their quest against Najib but they try not to be seen together because Lim turns off the average Malay while the average Chinese is not into Dr Mahathir.
Lim even chastised Najib for remarks seen as aimed at Dr Mahathir during the Budget speech. He said Najib was “hitting below the belt” for “deviously attacking Mahathir”.
Well, Lim did have a point there because Najib had concluded his Budget speech with a sort of farewell to Mahathirism and the unfulfilled Vision 2020. The Prime Minister announced his own vision for Malaysia, naming it TN50 or Tranformasi Nasional which will chart the future for a new Malaysian generation by the year 2050.
“Let the old legacy pass. We will create the future of Malaysia,” said Najib, without once mentioning Vision 2020.
To rub salt into the wound, Najib appointed the happening Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin to initiate the discourse for TN50.
It was quite a Machiavellian touch on Najib’s part.
Khairy is the perfect choice for the task but, as everyone knows, Dr Mahathir dislikes Khairy whom he privately mocked as “kambing hitam” (black sheep) from the day the latter’s father-in-law Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi became Prime Minister. Moreover, Khairy had stood in the way of Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir’s political ambitions in Umno.
In his interview with Roketkini, Dr Mahathir dismissed Najib as a “failed student”. He was not amused with the opinion that Najib is his “best student” in the art of political survival.
But there is no denying that the student has elevated the art of the master.
Dr Mahathir has yet to respond to the Budget or TN50. Instead, he decided to give Najib a break and turned his guns on Tun Musa Hitam, his Deputy Prime Minister from 1981 to 1986.
He had read Musa’s memoirs Frankly Speaking and decided to do some frank speaking of his own.
He apparently could not stomach Musa’s claim that he resigned as Deputy Prime Minister after being accused of trying to oust Dr Mahathir.
Dr Mahathir published two confidential letters sent to him from Musa in his Chedet blog to show that Musa resigned because he was upset over Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah being made Trade and Industry Minister.
Dr Mahathir and Musa rode to victory in the 1981 general election as the 2Ms but their relationship swiftly went downhill, largely because of their different personalities and outlook and also because where Dr Mahathir is concerned, there can only be one tiger on the hill.
In 1984, Musa became the Umno deputy president against his rival Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah.
In what was seen as a move to check the rise of Musa, Dr Mahathir offered Tengku Razaleigh the post of Trade and Industry Minister.
Musa was naturally unhappy and had penned the two letters to Dr Mahathir. The first letter was an attempt to dissuade Dr Mahathir from offering the Trade and Industry post to Tengku Razaleigh and Musa had ended the letter with an implied threat to resign.
Of course, the appointment went through and Musa sent the second letter, hand-written for greater confidentiality, to inform Dr Mahathir that he intended to resign as Deputy Prime Minister.
It played right into Dr Mahathir’s own long-term survival plans.
In hindsight, Musa was such a political naivete – he had beaten Tengku Razaleigh for the Umno No.2 post by a credible margin, he was the Deputy Prime Minister and he was resigning because his rival was back in the Cabinet. That was so weird, to say the least.
Musa became the first of four deputies under Dr Mahathir. They were like bridesmaids of whom only one eventually reached the altar only to be pushed down the steps all too soon.
The above episode shows that there is no such thing as private letters in politics. Secondly, it shows that Dr Mahathir has the memory of an elephant. All those instances when he claimed he could not remember are probably memory lapses of convenience.
Thirdly, it seemed like Musa had forgotten about the incriminating letters or perhaps he was also suffering a spell of selective recall.
And finally, Dr Mahathir is such a combative man. It was obvious that he was trying to take the mickey out of Musa but was it really necessary to embarrass Musa this way after all these years?
Anyway, Musa was also guilty of contradictory behaviour. Despite complaining about Tengku Razaleigh, he ganged up with the Kelantan Prince three years later to take on Dr Mahathir and Tun Ghafar Baba in an epic fight for the leadership of Umno.
Dr Mahathir won narrowly by 43 votes, leading Tengku Razaleigh to scorn him as the “one-busload president”. Those in the Mahathir circle say he has never forgiven Tengku Razaleigh for challenging him.
Ghafar has passed on. Musa is 82 and, in his own words, in his twilight years. Tengku Razaleigh, 79, has talked about calling it a day.
But Dr Mahathir at 91 is still going strong, picking fights with politicians past and present and still trying to determine who should be the next Prime Minister.
Top photo-journalist Minag Jinggo who has been on the Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia ceramah trail has been constantly amazed that Dr Mahathir has been able to keep the pace, travelling from state to state to address the rural Malay crowd.
At a recent ceramah in Shah Alam, Dr Mahathir announced he would be attending the Bersih rally in November. He also defended the rally against critics, slamming Datuk Jamal Yunos, the leader of the Baju Merah group, as “Jamal Jamban”.
The mostly pro-opposition crowd loved it but Datuk Wan Albakri Mohd Nor, a one-time Mahathir admirer, walked out midway through Dr Mahathir’s speech.
“I thought he would talk about big issues but he was condemning the Election Commission for the redelineation exercise. What’s wrong with this man? In his time, he did the same thing,” said Wan Albakri.
Dr Mahathir has made a complete U-turn in his views on issues, people and politics – all thanks to his hatred for Najib.
According to Kapar Umno division chief Datuk Faizal Abdullah, the biggest turn-off for many in Umno is the new alliance between Dr Mahathir and DAP.
“They cannot accept Dr Mahathir holding hands with Lim Kit Siang and DAP. Throughout his career, he told us how destructive and racist DAP was. He used to talk about DAP as though it was ‘haram’ (forbidden), we should not even touch or go near them. And now everything is okay for him,” said Faizal.
That’s politics, as they say.
ANN/ASIAONE

BULLIED & OPPRESSED, MALAYSIAN CHINESE HAVE THE LAST LAUGH AT UMNO: IN THE END, MALAYSIA BECOMES ‘MA-LAH-SIA’, A SMALL PROVINCE OF THE GREAT MOTHERLAND

The Malays, who dislike their fellow Malaysians of Chinese extraction, calling them “pendatang” and “illegals”, denying them equality as citizens, had better look away now.
We were colonised by the Portuguese, then the Dutch and the British. The Ketuanan Melayus must be bristling with pain. Malaysia will soon be ‘Ma-lah-sia Province’, part of the Greater ‘People’s Republic of China’. The writer Howard French called Africa, China’s “second continent”.
Nobody rewrites Malayan/Malaysian history faster than our Umno Baru historians. The pain of seeing Najib Abdul Razak hold a begging bowl in Beijing must confuse the Ketuanan types. Malaysian history will have to be rehashed, yet again.
School children learnt that Parameswara, the renegade Hindu prince from Palembang, was the founder of the Malacca Sultanate. He established Malacca as the most important trading post in the region, frequented by traders from Arabia, India, the Indonesian islands and China, one of the superpowers at the time. The Chinese Admiral, Zheng He (Cheng Ho), was dispatched to Malacca to meet Parameswara.
In 1411, Parameswara visited China to pay homage to the Ming Emperor Yongle (Yung-Lo), explore trading opportunities and establish diplomatic relations; but more importantly, he wanted refuge, to protect Malacca from the two neighbouring empires of Ayudhya (Siam) and Majapahit (Java), which constantly attacked Malacca.
Is Najib a modern-day Malaysian version of Parameswara?
Najib’s closeness to the People’s Republic of China (PRC) is no coincidence. He is punishing western leaders for humiliating him. Najib does not care that 1MDB closed down BSI, the 143-year-old Swiss bank and caused Coutts, the Queen’s bank, to be scrutinised.
The Global Risk Insight website reported that “two Chinese firms had launched multi-billion-dollar bailouts of 1MDB assets and had leapfrogged over Japan, Singapore and America to become Malaysia’s largest investor.”
Previously, many Malaysians wondered why the west was reluctant to act against Najib, despite the many paper trails criss-crossing the globe, like a ticker tape parade.
Western leaders need trade to survive, politically. Trade will prop-up their economies. When Malaysian companies invest in rundown parts of London, these areas are regenerated without the use of the taxpayers’ money.
Millionaires from the PRC, Malaysia, Singapore and Russia purchase these expensive London properties and bump up house prices. They force locals out of the area. Politicians don’t really care about affordable and social housing. The same thing occurs in parts of KL, Malacca, Penang, Johor Baru and Ipoh.
‘Perfect facade for the politician or crony’
Properties provide the perfect facade for the Umno-Baruputra politician or crony. To avoid accusations of money-laundering, he buys multi-million ringgit apartments in London instead of stashing his millions in a bank. For added effect, he enrols a son or daughter in a local school, and says that the property is a home for the child.
Western arms manufacturers love Malaysian and third-world country despots. Leaders with blank cheques purchase missiles, weapons, tanks, second-hand planes, and second-hand submarines, as long as a middleman is involved. The middleman, usually an Umno Baru crony, baby-sits the hundreds of millions of ringgits in commission, all charged to the taxpayer, of course.
Back to Parameswara and Najib. On his diplomatic mission to seek protection, in 1411, Parameswara impressed Emperor Yongle with gifts of ivory, gold, incense, black bears and jungle exotica. In exchange for the gifts and protection, the emperor presented him with jade and other treasures and most important of all, the emperor’s royal seal. So what deals did Najib do with the PRC in modern Malaysia?
Is Najib afraid that the PRC will stop investing in Malaysia, in particular bailing out 1MDB?
The PRC refuses to negotiate with Asean in the case of the highly disputed Spratly islands. In July 2016, an arbitration tribunal, under the auspices of the UN Convention on the Laws of the Sea, backed the Philippines’ claim. Malaysia said nothing, possibly fearing Beijing’s wrath.
A few years ago, the PRC navy landed on the James Shoal islands, about 60km off the Bintulu coast. The Malaysian chief of the armed forces said, “Don’t worry lah.” The incursion was reported by the South China Morning Post but apparently our leaders were not perturbed. Remember the same lackadaisical attitude when Sulu warriors invaded Lahad Datu in 2013?
After the MH370 crash, which claimed the lives of many people from the PRC, the number of tourists to Malaysia from the PRC fell dramatically. Two years later, Malaysia waived the visa requirements for PRC tourists to entice them back. Tourist dollars from the increasing PRC middle-class help prop-up our economy.
The horrors of bauxite are visible in Pahang. It is difficult to stop illegal mining when key players at the very top have allegedly been bought out, to the tune of RM200 million. Most of the bauxite is exported to China. We ignore the environmental damage caused by bauxite, because of our greed.
Barjoyai Bardai, a lecturer at Universiti Tun Abdul Razak, claims that the development of Bandar Malaysia by PRC firms should not cause concern. Really?
Acres of land, high-end waterfront properties, landed property, ports, islands, railway lines and the land beneath these tracks, are all under the control of PRC companies.
PRC’s bid to build the high-speed rail project between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore has been successful. The original price of the East Coast rail project rose from RM30 billion to RM55 billion.
One still remembers the 1.6km of monorail in Malacca, which kept breaking down and the millions of ringgits that were pumped into it, to try to make it work. This doesn’t really fill one with confidence.
Najib’s cosying-up to the PRC is not just about taking advantage of China to boost our economy. It is also payback time. He is fuming because the US Justice Department (DOJ) is attempting to recover our assets from the 1MDB débâcle, and bring Jho Low and Riza Aziz, to justice.
Does Najib think that the PRC will not want political and economic leverage in the region and in Malaysia? What have the red-shirts and the Ketuanan Melayus to say?
WRITER: MARIAM MOKHTAR
MKINI

PR1MA Housing : Budget Analysis By Our Editorial Consultant

Image result for PR1MA Housing

The following is a series of comments on the Budget by our Editorial Consultant.  The first part is about the PR1MA houses.

Lets discuss PRIMA.  To date, 12,000 PR1MA units have been booked worth RM3.3 billion.  This averages out to about RM275,000 per house. But PM never mentioned where are these PR1MA houses.  The bookings are a mystery. No one seems to know where these 12,000 PR1MA houses priced at RM275,000 are going to be built. 

Because the cost of land is so high, it is going to be very difficult to build a house with three rooms in the Klang Valley or Selangor for RM275,000 per unit. Maybe they will build very small apartments (750 square feet) with just two bedrooms and one bathroom.  In the long term small apartments will create social problems like sumbang mahram, child abuse, teenagers running away from crowded homes and gangsterism.  

If they want cheaper land  to build cheap houses maybe they can build apartments on top of Gunung Ledang, Gunung Jerai or Gunung Tahan. Or they can try Gua Musang. It is not going to happen in the urban areas mentioned above.

If the private sector developers have firm bookings for 12,000 housing units  the developers will work day and night to deliver the 12,000 units.  But not PR1MA. Although they say they have 12,000 bookings, and also with another 1.6 million civil servants and tens of thousands more employees in the GLCs as potential buyers, PR1MA still cannot deliver any of the 12,000 homes.  PR1MA seems to be taking their own sweet time to deliver the 12,000 units. 

One of the reasons could be the PR1MA staff know they will not be sacked even if they do not deliver. They will still get their salaries at the end of the month even if no work is being done.   PRIMA staff are all over the country trying to start projects but waste time with meetings instead of working.  

But the real reason could be something else. Rumour is that the Government has failed to honour the promised allocations to PR1MA to buy land and begin construction of the houses. 

The most urgent demand for PR1MA housing is inside the Klang Valley and Selangor. Due to very high land costs in Klang Valley, Selangor, Penang and Johor Bharu it will be very difficult  for PR1MA to build comfortable homes at medium costs.  RM275,000 per unit for a decent sized home is only feasible outside these major urban areas.  But there is less demand for houses on top of Gunung Tahan.

So those 12,000 people who have made those bookings with PR1MA can wait patiently.  And as more time passes and more delays occur the land prices will keep going up. This makes PR1MA's promise of building affordable homes even more difficult  to deliver.

Then we hear of the new special loans.  Those earning RM3,000 per month can borrow more than RM295,000 to buy houses.  But these are the same group of people who are eligible for BRIM to help them face the high cost of living in the urban areas.  These are the urban poor. Surely they have no savings to pay the down payment for the houses and not enough money for their own needs. 

Many legitimate business are complaining that banks are not lending to them and in fact, the banks are recalling loans because their NPLs are on the rise.  This is the real situation. The banks will certainly not lend RM295,000 to poor people who fall in the BRIM category.

Banks usually calculate a loan amount whereby the monthly instalment does not exceed 1/3 of your monthly income.   After deducting EPF, a person earning RM3000 per month actually takes home only about  RM2,700.  His monthly instalment payment capacity is therefore about RM900  (1/3 of income).

Using a 5% interest rate or 5% 'Islamic' profit rate per year, a 25 year financing of RM295,000 will require a monthly instalment payment of about RM1,700. This means your monthly income should be in the RM5000 range.
 
So it will be difficult for the RM3000 income group to qualify for the RM295,000 loans.  If they have to pay RM1,700 monthly instalments, they will only have about RM1,000 left to meet their household expenses.   This will become very high risk type of lending.  Even the crazy Bank Bumiputra  that went bust long ago would have rejected this type of risky lending. 

Our financial system also is not in good shape. Bank Negara now announces our reserves position  in Ringgit Malaysia and no more in US Dollars.  This is a cheap trick to fool simple people like the new 2nd Finance Minister.  Because the Ringgit is falling in value, it appears that our foreign reserves are increasing.  Actually our foreign reserves are shrinking, if they are calculated using US Dollars.   Our reserves are now below US$100 billion.  So a weaker Ringgit is good for Bank Negara's new foreign reserve calculation method.  It makes MO1 happy.

Most rakyat can't afford to buy houses or apartments as they are too expensive.  The Government has no idea how to control the price of houses.   The  ministers are not really bothered because they are too busy defending MO1 and his wrongdoings.

The real situation is that the Government  just makes empty promises. PR1MA has been mentioned in the Budget for years now. Yet not a single home has been built and delivered by PR1MA.  

So what happened to all those Budget allocations to PR1MA over all these years?  Have they been spent? If yes, where are the houses?   If the money allocated has not been spent, then why give PR1MA new allocations every year? What is going on?

So it is nothing but promises. 7 million people are supposed to qualify for BR1M. There are many people who qualify for BR1M who are finding out that their names are not on the list.   So it is not 7 million people.  It is just statements and promises.

UPDATE ON YEO JIA WEI TRIAL



first person to be tried for key role in massive money laundering linked to 1MDB

DPP Tan Kiat Pheng called trial "most complex, sophisticated and largest money laundering case handled by CAD (Commercial Affairs Division)"

staggering amounts of moneys across jurisdictions over several years

Yeo, 33 facilitated illicit transactions involving 1MDB 
led to shutdown of BSI 
faces 11 charges: money laundering, cheating, forgery, obstruction of justice.

prosecution proceeding on four charges 

remaining seven charges: cheating, money laundering, forgery to be stood down.

District Judge Ng Peng Hong presiding, to run until Nov 11

prosecution opening statement : Yeo amassed RM72m 

Yeo central role in laundering large sums of money

Yeo and Kevin Swampillai involved where fees would be shared 
between BSI and Samuel Goh Sze-Wei an associate of Yeo's.

Yeo arranged for Bridgerock Investment and GTB Investment
beneficially owned by Yeo and Swampillai respectively
to receive significant portion of fees for their own benefit
Bridgeock and GTB subject of investigations by CAD in March 

Yeo first interviewed by CAD on Oct 6, 2015, arrested on March 17, 2016.

Yeo released, conditions  dont commit offence; dont interfere with witness.

following release, Yeo took active steps to pervert justice.

he met and contacted key witnesses, hope of suppressing evidence 
pertaining to his own illicit schemes and activities," DPP Tan said.

March 27 Yeo arranged for Swampillai, Goh, himself to have a meeting 

Yeo, Goh and Swampillai discussed CAD investigations

Yeo told them to lie to CAD that funds were Goh's investments.

After BSI, Yeo continue involved illicit transactions in money laundering case

Some transactions conducted through Amicorp Group

Jose Renato Carvalho Pinto and Mun Enci Aloysius were Amicorp employees 
Yeo worried CAD would interview them.

March 2016, Yeo contacted Carvalho using "Telegram" text message 
Yeo told Carvalho to dispose of his Amicorp laptop
Yeo told Carvalho not to travel to Singapore, to avoid interviewed by CAD.

in March Yeo also used "Telegram" to instruct Carvalho to tell Aloysius to inform CAD he did not know of Yeo's dealings with Amicorp

two other BSI employees also facing charges. 

Oct 10, Yak Yew Chee, Yvonne Seah charged with suspicious transfers for Jho Low.

Kelvin Ang, broker with Maybank also charged. 
He paid research analyst to produce favourable valuation on 1MDB assets. 
Ang's pre-trial on Nov 17.

China a true friend and strategic partner, says Najib

Prime Minister also vows to take relationship with China to greater heights.
najib-china
KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Najib Razak today hailed China as a “true friend and strategic partner” and said the relationship between the two nations augured well for Asia’s stability and harmony ahead of a high-powered delegation he is leading to Beijing today.
In an interview, China Daily Online also quoted the prime minister as saying he intends to ensure that ties with the republic continues to improve and reach new heights.
“It is a relationship I am personally committed to; not just as the Prime Minister of Malaysia, but also as the son of Tun Razak – our former prime minister who first established diplomatic relations with China 42 years ago,” the portal quoted him as saying.
Najib, who agreed with Chinese President Xi Jinping’s comparison that China’s relations with Malaysia was akin to “being as close as lips are to teeth” said the two nations would be finalising “the first significant defence deal” during his trip.
It was previously reported that Malaysia will sign a contract to buy naval ships from China.
Najib will be in China, his third trip to the republic since becoming PM in 2009, from today until Nov 6.
The visit will see the two nations sign at least 10 government-to-government Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) on economy, tourism, construction, education and defence.
Najib went on to state that Malaysia welcomed significant investments from China in innovation and technology, citing telecommunications giant Huawei’s expanding presence in the country which he said symbolised the confidence leading Chinese companies had in Malaysia.
The PM’s praise for China came in the wake of news that China will build and fund the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL), a 620km high-impact project in Malaysia.
Last week the Dewan Rakyat approved Malaysia’s membership into the China-led international financial institution, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).
State investment arm, 1Malaysia Development Berhad has meanwhile sold its 60 per cent stake in Bandar Malaysia – a major development project in Kuala Lumpur that will include a public transport hub – to Malaysian tycoon Lim Kang Hoo’s Iskandar Waterfront Holdings and its partner, state-run China Railway Engineering Corp (CREC).