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Friday, August 31, 2018

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Tan Kok Wai confirmed as Special Envoy to China


PETALING JAYA: The appointment of Cheras MP Tan Kok Wai (pic) as the Prime Minister's Special Envoy to China is now official.
In confirming this, Foreign Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah said the Cabinet had decided to appoint Tan as the envoy and chairman of the Malaysia-China Business Council.
The council is to promote relations between Kuala Lumpur and Beijing.
On Tuesday, Saifuddin told The Star that Tan was only appointed as the council chairman.
.But Saifuddin clarified on Friday (Aug 31), saying at the time of the interview, the ministry had yet to receive Tan's appointment letter and terms of reference as Special Envoy.
On Aug 14, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Liew Vui Keong told Dewan Rakyat that Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad had agreed to appoint Tan as Special Envoy to China.
Liew was replying to Ayer Hitam MP Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong's question on the rationale behind the appointment.
The MCA deputy president had raised the matter, pointing out that Pakatan Harapan had criticised Barisan Nasional for such appointments in the past, citing "wastage and redundancy".
Dr Wee added that Pakatan had also said that it was not proper for political figures to be involved in diplomatic related jobs between countries.
"Before this, Tan Sri Ong Ka Ting, who was the special envoy to China, took the job without any salary," he said.
Ong was also the council chairman.
He served as the prime minister's special envoy from November 2011 to January this year.-- Star

JUST BECAUSE JARJIS WAS A MALAY, HE MUST BE A CROOK IS IT? NAJIB CAMP MANIPULATES RACIAL EMOTIONS TO EXCUSE AWAY DEAD UMNO MAN’S SHOCKING RM2 BILLION FORTUNE

Commenters in the internet, even websites such as Finance Twitter, accuse the late Jamaluddin Jarjis a.k.a. JJ of being a thief and a crook since he was worth RM2.1 billion and he was a Malay who was an Umno member. If JJ were Chinese or Indian and was not an Umno member they would say he was a billionaire because he was clever and hard-working. That is the way non-Malays look down on Malays and their comments about JJ over the last 24 hours show this.

Those who are younger would be surprised with the reported RM2.2 billion wealth of the late Jamaluddin Jarjis.
Those in the business world in the 1990s would know what Jamaluddin Jarjis did before he entered politics.
JJ, as he was commonly known, was a graduate of University of Manchester and then got his PHD is Electrical Engineering from Canada.
In the early 1980s he started his engineering consulting company called J & A Associates. By the year 1986, he then bought a company called EPE Power which manufactures electrical and power equipment.
He then listed this company on the KLSE under the name  EPE Power Corp Bhd in the early 1990s.
EPE Power was one of the early recipients of Mahathir’s IPP projects and was one of the major shareholder of the Teluk Salut IPP in Sabah.
In August 2000, he was appointed the Chairman of Tenaga Berhad by Mahathir and held this position until the year 2002 when he was appointed Minister of Finance II (Mahathir was Minister of Finance 1 then).
JJ had made a fortune even in the 1990s which is now coming to 30 years ago. He could probably have invested his fortune in the share market and did well as news reports said RM2 billion of his RM2.2 billion estate are all in shares.
Although EPE was late rdelisted from the stock exchange and then bought by the Ranhill group, many of the company subsidieis still survive and prosper today.
As much as JJ’s fortune is now, it is nowhere near the new heroes of Pakatan – Tun Daim Zainuddin and Mahahtir & Family.
The person has died tragically and there no need to slander or second-guess him – or at the very least, please do try and search a bit more about the person before you accuse him.

Jamaluddin Jarjis, daripada ahli akademik kepada diplomat hebat

(Astro Awani) – Tan Sri Dr Jamaluddin Jarjis, yang terkorban dalam nahas helikopter di Kampung Sungai Pening, Semenyih dekat sini petang semalam, adalah seorang insan yang memiliki pelbagai bakat istimewa.
Anggota Parlimen Rompin itu, yang akan mencapai usia 64 tahun pada 25 Mei ini, memulakan dunia kerjayanya dengan menjadi tenaga pengajar di Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) pada 1974 selepas memperoleh Ijazah Sarjana Muda Sains Kelas Pertama dalam jurusan Kejuruteraan Elektrik dari University of Manchester, United Kingdom.
Dua tahun kemudian, beliau memperoleh Ijazah Sarjana Sains dalam bidang Kejuruteraan Elektrik dari University of Manitoba, Kanada dan pada 1980, beliau menamatkan pengajian doktor falsafah (PhD) dalam bidang Kejuruteraan Elektrik (Sistem Kuasa) dari University of McGill, Kanada.
Selepas enam tahun menabur bakti dalam bidang akademik, pada 1981 beliau berundur untuk menubuhkan sebuah firma perunding yang membuat pengkhususan dalam bidang kejuruteraan elektrik dan mekanikal dikenali sebagai J&A Associates.
Pada 1986, beliau membeli EPE Power Corporation Berhad dan menyandang jawatan naib pengerusi eksekutifnya sebelum berundur pada 3 Ogos 2000, sehari sebelum dilantik sebagai timbalan pengerusi Tenaga Nasional Berhad, dan selepas itu dilantik sebagai pengerusi TNB pada September 2000.
Dalam arena politik, Jamaluddin memulakan langkahnya dengan menjadi anggota UMNO Kampung Mengkasar di Pekan pada 1980 dan menyandang jawatan Ketua Pemuda.
Lima tahun kemudian, beliau dipilih sebagai Ketua Pemuda UMNO Pekan dan pada 1988 sebagai Naib Ketua Pemuda UMNO Pahang dan anggota Exco Pemuda UMNO.
Beliau juga dipilih sebagai anggota Majlis Tertinggi UMNO bagi penggal 2008-2011.
Kali pertama Jamaluddin, yang juga Pengerusi Program Perumahan 1Malaysia (PR1MA), bertanding sebagai calon ialah pada Pilihan Raya Umum 1990 iaitu bagi kerusi parlimen Rompin.
Dalam pertandingan itu, beliau mengalahkan calon PAS, Salim@Ahmad Awg Kalib dengan 13,128 undi majoriti, manakala pada pilihan raya umum lepas (Mei 2013), beliau dipilih sebagai Anggota Parlimen Rompin bagi penggal keenam setelah mengalahkan calon PAS, Nuridah Mohd Salleh, dengan majoriti 15,114 undi.
Jamaluddin berundur daripada TNB pada November 2002 setelah dilantik sebagai Menteri Kewangan Kedua dalam pentadbiran Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad dan dua tahun kemudian, beliau dilantik sebagai Menteri Perdagangan Dalam Negeri dan Hal Ehwal Pengguna dalam rombakan Kabinet pertama Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi pada Januari 2004.
Tidak sampai dua bulan kemudian, beliau dilantik sebagai Menteri Sains, Teknologi dan Inovasi serta diberi tanggungjawab untuk menjayakan Program Angkasawan Negara bagi menghantar seorang rakyat Malaysia ke Stesen Angkasa Lepas Antarabangsa dengan kapal angkasa Soyuz TMA-11.
Program yang diumumkan secara rasmi oleh Dr Mahathir pada 2003 itu merupakan program bersama antara Malaysia dan Persekutuan Rusia di bawah program perjanjian timbal balas kerajaan dengan kerajaan melalui pembelian jet pejuang Sukhoi SU-30MKM untuk Tentera Udara Diraja Malaysia.
Misi angkasa lepas pertama Malaysia itu terlaksana dengan Datuk Dr Sheikh Muszaphar Shukor menjadi rakyat Malaysia pertama meneroka angkasa lepas pada 10 Okt 2007.
Pada 2009, Jamaluddin dilantik sebagai Duta Besar Malaysia di Amerika Syarikat bertaraf menteri.
Ketika menyandang jawatan itu, beliau memanfaatkan teknologi terkini untuk mendekatkan diri dengan penduduk di kawasan Parlimen yang diwakilinya, walaupun berada jauh di perantauan.
Pada satu majlis di Rompin, Jamaluddin merasmikan program bersama rakyat melalui sidang video dari Amerika Syarikat.
Semasa betugas selama empat tahun di Washington, beliau berjaya meletakkan hubungan Malaysia-Amerika Syarikat di peringkat paling tinggi dalam sejarah negara ini.
Sebagai duta khas Malaysia di Amerika Syarikat pula, Jamaluddin berusaha gigih untuk meningkatkan hubungan antara kedua-dua negara dan merintis jalan bagi lawatan Obama ke Malaysia tahun lepas.
Lawatan Obama itu merupakan kunjungan pertama presiden Amerika Syarikat dalam tempoh 48 tahun ke negara ini selepas lawatan Presiden Lyndon B. Johnson pada 1966.
Dilahirkan di Pekan, Pahang pada 25 Mei 1951, Jamaluddin meninggalkan seorang isteri, Puan Sri Dr Kalsom Ismail, serta tiga anak iaitu dua perempuan dan seorang lelaki.
Raja Petra Kamarudin
– http://www.malaysia-today.net

MACC STUMBLES ONTO SHOCK BREACH IN NATIONAL SECURITY – AND NAJIB COULD HAVE SANCTIONED IT: THIS IS THE ‘REAL’ TREASON – HASANAH’S CIA LETTER NOTHING COMPARED TO THE MILLIONS IN CASH FLOWN IN FROM FOREIGN SOURCE

PUTRAJAYA – The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) is widening its investigation into the alleged misappropriation of US$12mil (RM49.3mil) worth of government funds involving a little-known spy agency.
It has already made nine arrests as it looks into unravelling the web of intrigue involving Datuk Hasanah Abdul Hamid, the former director-general of the Malaysian External Investigation Organisation (MEIO).
The anti-graft investigators are probing if the senior intelligence officers had “help” to bring in US$12mil – believed to be from a Middle East source – into the country.
The cash was believed to have been brought in via air, possibly through Kuala Lumpur Inter­national Airport.
Highly placed sources in the anti-graft body said this angle needed to be looked into as it would be difficult to carry such a staggering amount of money undetected.
Malaysian laws require those bringing in US$10,000 and above into the country to have it declared at the point of entry.
“Obviously, there was a breach of security because the cash was brought in without raising alarms of the authorities at the airport.
“We want to investigate if those who brought in the money had some assistance so that they need not declare it,” a source told The Star.
Following the remand of officers from the MEIO as well as its former chief Datuk Hasanah Abdul Hamid, investigators found out that the money was brought into the country three months ago in May.
“The timing suggests that the cash was for the general election. But the other question is why the officers had their hands on the money,” said the same source.
Investigators are also not discounting the possibility that the funds could be from 1Ma­­lay­sia Development Bhd (1MDB).
“We will have to probe deeper before coming to a conclusion,” the source added.
Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission deputy chief commissioner (operations) Datuk Seri Azam Baki said there was a possibility that the money was brought into the country through the airport.
“Whatever the entry point is, we would like to know how it passed through security. Obviously that would be one angle of investigation,” he said.
Azam said his officers could still manage the investigation but if the need arises, it would seek assistance from other authorities.
Hasanah and seven other former MEIO officers were arrested earlier this week, and a ninth arrest was made on Wednesday night involving a 47-year-old businessman.
The businessman, who has a “Datuk” title and is also a permanent resident of Britain, was ­arrested in Kota Baru at 11pm on Wednesday.
The MACC has so far recovered US$6.3mil (RM25.9mil) of the US$12mil that was brought into the country about three months ago, as well as RM900,000 in ringgit.
The bulk of the US currency, about US$4.07mil (RM16.7mil), was seized from the businessman.
“We have raided several locations, including a rented condominium in Cyberjaya and the Prime Minister’s Department, where we seized the cash along with other valuable items including a luxury watch.
“Our swoop on the suspects began on Monday and we are not ruling out the possibility of making more arrests in the future,” Azam told a press conference at the MACC headquarters earlier yesterday.
The MACC has already called ­several witnesses, including three foreigners, and at least 20 more witnesses will be tracked down and called to assist with the investigation, he said.
MEIO was listed as the “research division” of the Prime Minister’s Department under the previous Barisan Nasional administration.
“Initial investigations revealed that the funds were brought into the country about three months ago,” said Azam.
“We are investigating whether this was before or after the last ­general election (on May 9).
“We are also investigating the source of the funds and which country the money came from.”
And despite its widening scope, the MACC is hoping to wrap up its investigation within two months as long as it does not involve a complicated money trail or require any foreign assistance, he added.
Hasanah was arrested at the MACC headquarters at 4.15pm on Tuesday after she arrived to give a statement to the anti-graft body.
She had previously courted controversy after writing a letter to the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) director Gina Haspel, appealing to the United States to support former premier Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s administration.
She and the seven officers are also being investigated under Section 23 of the MACC Act 2009 for abuse of power.
– ANN

MAHATHIR NOW VOWS TO KEEP ALL ELECTION PROMISES AFTER SPLENDID SHOW OF PATRIOTISM BY MALAYSIANS WHO THRONGED HISTORIC MERDEKA CELEBRATION BY THE HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS

PAKATAN Harapan’s manifesto was crafted by an opposition that did not believe it would actually win federal power, said Dr Mahathir Mohamad, adding that the pact, nevertheless, remains committed to fulfilling all its promises.
“Many things were included in the manifesto (based on the) thinking (that) we would be the opposition. But now, we are the government. We are not used to being the government.  
“Among the things we put in the manifesto was, limiting the prime minister’s power. Then, we discovered that we are the power, and we limit the power we have now.
“The prime minister only having two terms is fine by me. If we have a prime minister (who is) 100 (years old), it would be a world record,” the 93-year-old said at the “Malaysians for Malaysia” Merdeka celebrations in Kuala Lumpur today.
“We realised that (winning) was the easy part. We thought it would be the hard part.  
“Now that we are the government, there is a little bit of discomfort for those who had been opposing the ruling government for 61 years. They now find it difficult to be the government.
“They don’t know how to behave, and they find that the manifesto is against them.”
Present were Dr Mahathir’s daughter and rights activist Marina Mahathir, deputy minister Hannah Yeoh, former Selangor exco Elizabeth Wong, Petaling Jaya MP Maria Chin Abdullah, lawyer Siti Kasim and women’s rights activist Ivy Josiah. Some 200 people were in attendance.
Rights activist Marina Mahathir, who is the daughter of the prime minister, is among those present at the 'Malaysians for Malaysia' Merdeka celebrations in Kuala Lumpur today. – The Malaysian Insight pic by Hasnoor Hussain, August 31, 2018.
Rights activist Marina Mahathir, who is the daughter of the prime minister, is among those present at the ‘Malaysians for Malaysia’ Merdeka celebrations in Kuala Lumpur today. – The Malaysian Insight pic by Hasnoor Hussain, August 31, 2018.
Dr Mahathir said PH must keep its word on providing more room for checks and balances, including the pledge that the Public Accounts Committee chairman would be from the opposition.
“We promised this, so we must have ourselves examined and scrutinised by the opposition, which was previously the ruling government.
“I think we will stick to our promises. We will try our hardest to deliver on our promises. So far, so good, because people still seem to be very relieved (that the previous government has been ousted).”
He said with Barisan Nasional’s historic defeat, Malaysians no longer felt oppressed.
“Sometimes, we catch them smiling to themselves. They feel there are no longer oppressed. There was fear before.
“Smiling to ourselves, it’s okay, but what’s important is the delivery. We need to deliver on our promises.”
Dr Mahathir said he was happy that Putrajaya was once again the venue for the annual Merdeka parade, adding that the wide central boulevard was designed for such purposes.
He spoke only briefly, and stayed for just an hour. Organisers were informed of his attendance a mere three hours before the event began. – August 31, 2018.
Deputy Women, Family and Community Development Minister Hannah Yeoh seen at the 'Malaysians for Malaysia' Merdeka celebrations today. – The Malaysian Insight pic by Hasnoor Hussain, August 31, 2018.
Deputy Women, Family and Community Development Minister Hannah Yeoh seen at the ‘Malaysians for Malaysia’ Merdeka celebrations today. – The Malaysian Insight pic by Hasnoor Hussain, August 31, 2018
THE MALAYSIAN INSIGHT

Family steps out for Merdeka in style with Jalur Gemilang



KUALA LUMPUR: A family of four clad in various Jalur Gemilang-themed outfits caught everyone’s attention at a picnic attended by former prime minister Najib Razak and his wife Rosmah Mansor at the Kuala Lumpur Botanic Gardens.
Zihaza Sabila, 34, her husband Ahmad Nazmie, 36, and their two children Putra Ahmad Sabil, 9 and Putra A’ish, 4, were dressed in different designs.
The family has made it a point to dress in the Jalur Gemilang on Aug 31 for the past five years.
“The first time we started doing this, I wore a baju kurung. Subsequent themes were Harry Potter, magician, Indian and Punjabi, and the kebaya.
“This year, we focused a bit more on the children’s outfits,” Zihaza said, pointing towards her children who wore warrior-themed outfits.
The businesswoman said she would think of a theme every year, even searching websites for ideas. Once she decided on a theme, she would give the design ideas to a tailor who would then customise the outfits.
The family would spend between RM700 and RM800 for the outfits to be tailored, Zihaza said.
Zihaza Sabila.
On why she decided to do something like this, she said she wanted to instil in her children the spirit of patriotism, and to make them understand how difficult it was for the country to achieve its independence.
“We want them to know how our leaders back then had fought for our country’s independence, that it was not an easy task.
“Furthermore, this is only done once a year. I don’t see anything wrong for us to celebrate Merdeka in this manner just once a year.
“The children themselves get excited every time Merdeka draws near. They will be very curious as to the theme of their Jalur Gemilang outfits,” he said.
Asked for their hopes for their country, now under a new government, Ahmad said they hoped the government would steer the country in the right direction and care for the welfare of all Malaysians.
“I hope they will continue to carry out initiatives for the benefit of all Malaysians,” he added.
Over 100 people gathered at the popular park to join Najib and Rosmah for the picnic, organised by their supporters.
Comprising mostly families, they converged on the Bamboo Playhouse, bringing with them their own food and beverage, as well as picnic mats. -FMT

Did Hasanah Hamid Mislead Najib To Sabotage GE14?

Since then, a letter that Hasanah wrote to the CIA has been leaked (and is confirmed authentic) while she has also been arrested and may face trial for bringing millions of ringgit into the country. Lokman, in the news report below, has condemned Hasanah. Did Hasanah sabotage GE14 by misleading Najib? And was the leaked CIA letter and leaked information regarding the millions that Hasanah is alleged to have smuggled in from the Middle East the work of Najib’s people as payback for her sabotage work?

THE CORRIDORS OF POWER
Raja Petra Kamarudin
Malaysia’s ‘CIA’ chief, Hasanah Hamid: was she working for the CIA to topple BN?
According to those who personally know Hasanah Abdul Hamid, the former director-general of the Malaysian External Intelligence Organisation (MEIO) — Malaysia’s equivalent of the CIA — she is well-connected and has links to all the foreign intelligence agencies, even in the UK and US.
These people say she also has her eyes and ears all over the place and there is nothing that happens inside and outside the country involving Malaysian politics that she does not know about.
I actually saw her once in London — like two ships passing in the night — but I did not stop to talk to her. The look on her face showed she recognised me, as I did her. It is enough we both nodded to indicate we knew who the other was.
Anyway, it was Hasanah who reported that Barisan Nasional was assured of winning at least 130 parliament seats in the 9th May 2018 general election or GE14. Another intelligence source I spoke to disagreed and said if Umno is not careful Barisan Nasional may win only about 80 seats. When I mentioned that the ‘CIA’ reported Barisan Nasional was going to win 130 seats my intelligence source disagreed.
That put me in a dilemma. Malaysia’s ‘CIA’ said Barisan Nasional was going to win 130 seats while another intelligence source said it was going to be only 80 seats. The Military Intelligence agreed with the 80-seat prediction while the Special Branch agreed with the 130-seat prediction.
At that point I knew Najib Tun Razak was in trouble and I told my daughter, Sara, not to worry about being dropped as Gerakan’s candidate for Segambut (Gerakan was upset about what I wrote regarding Robert Kuok). I told Sara that Barisan Nasional was most likely in trouble and was going to get wiped out anyway.
“I suspect,” I told Sara, “that Najib is being sabotaged from within and I also suspect that Tun Dr Mahathir is spending billions to buy off those within Najib’s inner circle.”
My question is: my intelligence source said Barisan Nasional was going to win just 80 seats and the Military Intelligence agreed with this. The MEIO and Special Branch, however, both said Barisan Nasional was going to win 130 seats. While I can understand the Special Branch, which is working for Mahathir, misleading Najib with false intel, how come the MEIO was also misleading Najib?
Since then, a letter that Hasanah wrote to the CIA has been leaked (and is confirmed authentic) while she has also been arrested and may face trial for bringing millions of ringgit into the country. Lokman Noor Adam, in the news report below, has condemned Hasanah. Did Hasanah sabotage GE14 by misleading Najib? And was the leaked CIA letter and leaked information regarding the millions that Hasanah is alleged to have smuggled in from the Middle East the work of Najib’s people as payback for her sabotage work?
Interesting questions are they not?

READ MORE HERE: MACC Probe Into Spy Agency Widens


Letter to CIA ‘unforgivable’, says Umno leader

(MMO) – Soliciting a foreign power for political support is unacceptable, said Umno supreme council member Datuk Lokman Noor Adam.
Commenting on the controversy around a letter the former director-general of the Malaysian External Intelligence Organisation (MEIO) wrote to the US’ Central Intelligence Agency seeking support for Barisan Nasional, he said the move “is a mistake that cannot be forgiven”.
While saying he was informed that the private letter was intentionally leaked to sabotage Datuk Hasanah Abdul Hamid, he stressed that she must be investigated if the document was authentic.
“We cannot tolerate this. It’s very wrong, very wrong,” Lokman told reporters at a private celebration of the 61st anniversary of Merdeka at the Perdana Botanical Gardens here.
Hasanah’s lawyers confirmed the authenticity of the letter by insisting it was protected under the Official Secrets Act.
The former head of the now defunct agency previously insisted it was not related to former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak who has denied any knowledge of the matter.
Another reason Lokman cited for criticising the move was his belief that the CIA was “deeply involved” in deposing Najib as prime minister.
The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission arrested Hasanah on Tuesday over an unrelated investigation into the misappropriation of millions of ringgit meant to be used for the 14th general election.
She remains in the commission’s custody.

Orang Asli rebuilds blockade torn down by authorities


The Orang Asli community in Gua Musang has rebuilt one of the three barricades that had been demolished by the Kelantan Forestry Department (JPNK) and the state Land and Mines Department (PTG) on Monday.
Jaringan Kampung Orang Asli Kelantan chairperson Mustafa Along said the community had rebuilt the barricades at Kampung Cawas, Pos Bihai while the other two in Kampung Depak, Pos Tohoi and Kampung Kuala Wok, Pos Pasik would be reconstructed in the near future.
"The Orang Asli community will continue to monitor the barricade in Kampung Cawas and at the two other villages to prevent illegal logging and agriculture activities in our villages," he told reporters at Kampung Cawas here today.
Mustafa said the barricades would continue as long as the issue of customary land claims was not resolved by the Kelantan state government.
On Monday, the operations to demolish the barricades were carried out by 200 JPNK and PTG staff while supervised by 234 General Operations Force (PGA) and police personnel to avoid any untoward incidents.
- Bernama

Understanding the roots of Malaysia


Roots, the historical novel of Alex Haley, was the standard bearer of how strong investigative research, written in plain language, could help Americans from all walks of life understand the hodgepodge nature of the United States of America; especially through the lens of slavery, the exploitation of African-Americans, eventually, the rape and plunder of Africa, too.
Roots, which was made into a wildly popular TV series in the 1980s, exposed the physical and psychological wounds of the United States.
Within the context of the printed word, the closest Malaysian equivalent of Roots would be Ownership and Control in the Malayan Economy written by James Puthucheary, The Myth of the Lazy Native by Syed Hussein Al-Attas, The Malay Dilemma by Dr Mahathir Mohamad and The Asian Renaissance by Anwar Ibrahim, all which were written at different times in Malaysian history, to push the country along.
While these were not made into any movies or TV serials, they energised an entire generation of students and policy works in the country. A healthy discourse on Malaysia was spawned, both within the country and abroad.
One might even add, The Malaysian Islamic Party PAS 1951–2013 by Farish Noor and Chinese Politics in Malaysia: A History of the Malaysian Chinese Association by Heng Pek Khoon; indeed Malaysia's Political Economy: Politics, Patronage and Profits by Edmund Terence Gomez and KS Jomo, all ought to be applauded in the same spirit–as well as the work of MalaysiakiniMalaysian InsightSarawak Report, and many other posts in Facebook and social media that helped Malaysians see the light.
Each of these authors took a jab at either exposing the hypocrisy of the colonial master, the falsehood of the weak social caricature (masqueraded as the truth), and the importance of speaking truth to powers that be. Not surprisingly, the Pakatan Harapan was the first to challenge and remove the Anti-Fake News Act of 2018.
Indeed, Australian academic Deborah Johnson likes to point out that it is not the scholars and politicians who shape the discourse on Malaysia but upstanding chroniclers of Malaysia like Munshi Abdullah, Abdul Rahim Kajai, Abdul Samad Ismail, even exceptionally talented poets like Usman Awang and Latiff Hussein. Without their wits and written prose, the streams of consciousness that formed Malaysia from different racial or religious silos would not have emerged.
If anything, Malaya did not achieve its independence based on the return of the colonial authorities of Britain to Malaya after the failure of the Malayan Union in 1948.
But Malayans from all walks of lives gained it by asking the British to look squarely at their own shortcomings as the administrators of the land.
First, they could not hold back the onslaught of the Japanese Imperial Army in 1941, and secondly, they made little or no effort to defend Malaya, for that matter, Singapore, and the two Borneo states – even when the people looked to them for redemption.
With a cluster of leaders whom you cannot trust, why would it be sensible to retain them at the top for perpetuity? It would be far more dignified if they left in peace. Merdeka achieved latter, by politely asking them to relinquish their duties one after another.
There was no war nor eviction but a steel will to restore the good standing of Malaya by asking the British colonial authorities to leave. In 1957, they did just that.
Tim Harper at the University of Cambridge averred that well before Malaya in 1957, however, there was a constant tug and pull of what made Malaysia.
KS Jomo, back in the 1990s, once spoke of the importance of concepts like Rukun Negara, the National Economic Policy and Wawasan 2020 to add to the potential thrust and trajectory of a new country.
Without these templates, there were no policy frameworks to guide the social reconstruction of Malaysia at all, since the Constitutional courts of Malaysia were considered too subjective, resulting in or open to multiple interpretations that could be challenged time and again, as indeed they were.

A new Merdeka or a "new" Malaysia can be proud of the rise of the people on May 9, 2018. Against all odds, 82 percent of the 15 million voters came out to vote.
The ruling government of Najib Razak and his component parties received less than 36 percent of the popular vote. Naturally, Najib Razak and his component parties were defeated wholesale.
But Malaysians cannot be thumping their chests on the basis of one victory alone. Nor must they be unduly proud if they can contain and corner Barisan Nasional time and again, either through the exposures of 1MDB or other acts of financial malfeasance.
Such modus operandi would be too easy – as it would operate on the crude principle of a tell-all.
Whenever some issues crop up, immediately tell all, with the ostensible goal of pointing fingers at the culprits (of the past).
But tell-all politics would suffer from serious whiplash effects, too. For example, when politicians resort to a tell-all, such as with a growing national debt that is strategically solvable, Malaysians confuse the size of the problems with the hopelessness of the solution.
Secondly, when paranoia forms the background of the country, the citizens become more vulnerable to democratic manipulation, due to the sheer sense of fear.
Yet, if Merdeka were to have any meaning at all, it is the deliverance from this mind-numbing shock, which the past generation has ruined the hopes and opportunities of the many generations to come.
Yet, as can be seen, Mahathir has called for the Tabung Harapan to be stopped next month since the solution to reducing the national debt cannot come from every citizen emptying his or her pockets.
Public sector reforms can range from an austerity drive to the introduction of various government-backed debentures and bonds, sometimes extending to 30 to 50 years to offset the debt already incurred.
Thirdly, Merdeka cannot mean the "breaking of the chain" of colonialism within the context of Malaysia alone.
Rather, Malaysia must warn the world of the debt traps that they can get into, if they should borrow from another country with total abandon.
Regardless of Sri Lanka, Laos, Cambodia or far away Tonga, Malaysia must warn others of the systemic risks that they face when they keep taking development dollars without any seeming strings attached.
Finally, Merdeka cannot be self-incriminating. Freedom of speech and actions cannot lead to the freedom to indulge in all forms of bestial activities, which undermine the human spirit and form.
While the majority must exercise their rule well, to avoid the tyranny of the minority, the latter must not cast aspersions at others for not accepting the LGBT as the mainstream of Malaysia
Malaysia cannot be bending to the rainbow coalition of LGBT, for instance, when the votes of the people on May 9, were geared towards ridding the country of any traces of corruption and kleptocracy first.
Merdeka, in this sense, is a renewed construction and reconstruction along the fine principles of constitution, checks and balances, institutional forms and basic mores of human ethics, even Islamic mores and values, which must by nature be transcendental, race and gender blind.
Merdeka does not have to mean a free for all. For that would be to urge the country to embrace hedonistic excesses in another form; fresh from destroying the kleptocratic overdraft of the previous regime that drew no lines and saw no ends.
Do not do to others what you do not want others to do unto you. That is Merdeka in the truest sense. It is the roots of any independence movement. And, Malaysia has been exploring deeply at one.
Merdeka celebrations are always special. This year is more special than any other. As I watched the Merdeka parade, tears were rolling uninhibited to witness a real Merdeka happening right in front of my eyes. This is the testimony of the rakyat’s effort in liberating Malaysia from the clutches of kleptomaniacs that almost ruined this nation of ours. The only nation that we have.
Merdeka! Merdeka! Merdeka!
 

RAIS HUSSIN is a Supreme Council Member of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu). He also heads the Policy and Strategy Bureau of Bersatu. - Mkini