MALAYSIA Tanah Tumpah Darahku


Thursday, January 31, 2019

Did PAS become a DAP tool, asks Malacca CM

Malacca Chief Minister Adly Zahari has dismissed claims that Amanah is a tool of DAP, citing the cooperation between PAS and DAP to drive home his point.
The state Amanah chief pointed out that DAP and PAS were allies in the now-defunct Pakatan Rakyat much longer compared to Amanah and DAP in Pakatan Harapan.
“Did PAS turn into a DAP tool during this period of cooperation between the two parties?
“The answer is 'no'. The two needed each other and helped one another to garner support from the people,” he added in a Facebook posting today.
Adly was a former PAS leader before joining Amanah.
Amanah is a PAS splinter party formed following the fallout between PAS and DAP, which resulted in the death of Pakatan Rakyat and the birth of Harapan.
According to Adly, PAS is constantly peddling a negative impression that Amanah is under the thumb of the predominantly Chinese DAP, which it accuses of being opposed to Islam.
The chief minister claimed that PAS is doing this to sow hatred, especially among the Malay Muslims, towards Amanah.
“This perception is swallowed whole without evaluating the good and bad of Amanah,” he rued.
Adly said Amanah's cooperation with other Harapan parties such as DAP, PKR and Bersatu is based on the principle to eradicate the corruption perpetrated by the former BN government.
In a separate posting, Adly reminded Muslims to endeavour towards doing good instead of maligning others.
PAS and Umno, who were once arch rivals, have formed an unofficial alliance following BN's defeat in the last general election and their clarion call is to safeguard the status of the Malays and Islam.
A recent survey found that 60 percent of Malay respondents are unhappy with the present administration.
The survey conducted by Ilham Centre together with Penang Institute also found that 54.4 percent of the respondents did not believe the government was serious about the “Malay agenda”, including upholding Malay rights and Islam as the official religion.
Whereas more than 60 percent of the respondents believed that non-Muslims were now in control of the government and that DAP was calling the shots in Putrajaya.
DAP leaders have repeatedly denied the allegations that the party is against Islam being the official religion of the federation or that it seeks to turn Malaysia into a secular nation. - Mkini

Dr M surprises commuters at Bandar Tasik Selatan

PETALING JAYA: Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad surprised commuters travelling home for Chinese New Year at the Terminal Bersepadu Selatan (TBS) at Bandar Tasik Selatan on Friday (Feb 1).
A video shared by Bernama on Twitter showed a jovial Dr Mahathir obliging excited commuters' request for a photo op.
Dr Mahathir turut luang masa bertemu pengguna bas ekpress di TBS sempena cuti perayaan Tahun Baharu Cina
Besides touring the terminal, Dr Mahathir also hopped onto one of the buses where he met and greeted commuters, who were waiting to depart to their destination.
Bernama said the visit was in conjunction with Chinese New Year.- Star

AG’s comments on ex-EC members disrespectful to tribunal, says lawyer

Attorney-General Tommy Thomas has come under fire for his remarks on the six former EC members under investigation for alleged misconduct. (Bernama pic)
PETALING JAYA: A lawyer has taken the attorney-general (AG) to task over his statement that the six former Election Commission (EC) members under investigation by a tribunal over alleged misconduct during the May 9 polls will not escape punishment despite having resigned last year.
R Kengadharan, who is appearing for one of the former EC members, said AG Tommy Thomas’ remark was “disrespectful” and had tarnished the image of the six.
“The AG’s statement, which is totally opposite to the position taken by his conducting officer during proceedings on Monday, is not respectful to the tribunal,” Kengadharan said.
He added that Thomas’ remark could be seen as a move to exert pressure on the tribunal members who will decide if it is feasible to continue with the hearing.
M Puravelan, the lawyer appointed by the AG’s Chambers to assist the tribunal, had said the findings would be largely academic since the EC members had already quit the institution.
However, Thomas accused them of trying to frustrate the tribunal’s investigations by resigning and attempting to “avoid the ignominy of being removed”.
All six of them resigned from the EC following the announcement that the government had begun setting up the tribunal.
The tribunal, which is made up of Steve Shim, Zaleha Zahari, Suriyadi Halim Omar, Jeffrey Tan Kok Wha and Prasad Sandosham Abraham, is expected to deliver its ruling on whether the matter is academic on a date to be fixed.
Thirteen charges have been framed against the six former EC members in connection with their role in preparing the redelineation report and the manner in which the May 9 polls were conducted.
The six are Othman Mahmood, Md Yusop Mansor, Abdul Aziz Khalidin, Sulaiman Narawi, Bala Singam Karupiah and Leo Chong Cheong.
Kengadharan, who is representing Cheong, said he did not rule out some form of legal action against the AG or government over the next few days.
“As far as we are concerned, no proceedings for misconduct can be instituted once the king has accepted the resignation of EC members,” he said.
Meanwhile, lawyer Ragunath Kesavan asked why former EC chairman Hashim Abdullah had been excluded from the tribunal as he would be regarded as the most culpable for any misconduct.
“Hashim was responsible for the day-to-day decision-making process, including his role in the redelineation exercise to alter election boundaries,” he said.
Hashim, 64, resigned from the EC effective July 1. He was replaced by lawyer Azhar Harun.
The EC came under heavy fire during the 14th general election from Pakatan Harapan and its supporters, who accused it of acting in favour of Barisan Nasional. -FMT

Poca shouldn’t be used on minors, says Wan Azizah

KUALA LUMPUR: The government will review the use of the controversial Prevention of Crime Act, or Poca, on minors, Deputy Prime Minister Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail said today.
“Children should not live the life of a detainee. They deserve a second chance.
“Although they are not detained in the same way as other criminals, this should still be revisited. I will discuss the matter with the relevant ministries,” she said.
She added that while Poca facilitates police work, the law is still open to abuse.
A total of 142 children are known to have been held in custody under Poca, and 17 under the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act (Sosma).
On Wednesday, two rights groups urged the government to release all children and juvenile detainees held under the two security laws, which Pakatan Harapan politicians had promised to repeal.
The Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) and Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram) said no child should be subjected to detention without trial.
“If there is evidence of their involvement in criminal activities, they should be allowed a fair trial in court,” Suaram executive director Sevan Doraisamy said.
In July last year, Suhakam visited the Kluang Prison, a dedicated detention centre for juvenile Poca detainees. There, they met 35 children, 10 of whom had been arrested when they were below 18.
Fifteen of the 35 children were Malay, 18 were Indian, and two were from other races. There was no Chinese among them.
Among others, Suhakam found that some of the children were still attending school when they were arrested. - Mkini

How diplomatic relations with Israel could help Malaysia and Palestine

I ask myself what benefits Malaysia would receive if it had diplomatic relations with Israel. One hundred and sixty-five countries, including Islamic countries, are currently benefitting from their relationship with Israel.
Are we just trying to show other countries that we are too “macho”?
Let’s be frank and not hypocritical. We can influence the Israeli government more by having diplomatic relations and by not being confrontational.
We must come to terms with the fact that Israel is technologically advanced and countries all over the world, big and small like India and China, are seeking a relationship with it and its technology.
The recent ban on Israeli athletes from participating in a swimming meet not only damaged Malaysia’s image internationally but strained relations between Sarawak and West Malaysia besides causing monetary loss.
We might want to play politics by bashing Israel locally to win votes in by-elections but it will never build a good image of Malaysia internationally, neither will it help the economy.
In an effort to distance Malaysia from Israel, aren’t we isolating ourselves from the rest of the world?
The government of Malaysia must realise that we cannot continue playing the same old politics while the world continues to march ahead with reality.
Malaysia may become instrumental in representing the Palestinian cause by negotiating, discussing and having a conversation with Israel.
The confrontational approach that we have adopted for decades helps neither Malaysia nor the Palestinian cause.
I urge the new government to take steps towards a fresh diplomatic approach in the international arena which will unite humanity instead of a confrontational approach that divides and doesn’t benefit Malaysia.
KT Maran is an FMT reader.

MAHB gears up for 16% rise in passenger traffic for CNY

MAHB says it is taking measures to reduce waiting time for passengers at KLIA and klia2 this Chinese New Year season.
KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) is expecting an increase of nearly 16% in passenger movement through both the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) and klia2 during the super peak period from now until Feb 13.
Group CEO Raja Azmi Raja Nazuddin said the expected rise in passenger traffic meant they would be serving about 196,000 passengers each day.
He added that MAHB had joined hands with the police, customs and immigration departments to ensure the safety of passengers travelling during Chinese New Year.
He said measures to be taken by MAHB included managing the increase of traffic flow at kerbsides for drop-offs and pick-ups at KLIA and klia2.
“We will continue enforcing the two-minute limit on pick-up time to prevent congestion and remind passengers not to park illegally along the main roads as this will endanger other motorists.
“We have also increased the number of personnel to ensure that the kerbsides are manned around the clock for smooth traffic flow,” he said.
Raja Azmi advised passengers to use the self bag-drop facility and self check-in kiosks at both terminals which will shorten the queue as well as waiting time.
“With the additional Malaysian immigration auto gates that were recently installed, I believe this will significantly reduce the queue time for all our passengers,” he added.
Ten new autogates, incorporated with the latest biometrics technology, were installed early last month to replace the previous six units at the international departure hall.
Raja Azmi also advised passengers to arrive at least three hours before their flight departure time.
“Do utilise public transport as much as possible in getting to the airport. It only takes less than 30 minutes by the Express Rail Link,” he added. -FMT

Umno riding a tiger, DAP man says on ties with PAS

PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang with Umno deputy president Mohamad Hasan during the Cameron Highlands campaign earlier this month. (Bernama pic)
PETALING JAYA: DAP’s P Ramasamy today questioned the collaboration between Umno and PAS, which was largely credited for Barisan Nasional’s (BN) victory in the Cameron Highlands polls, cautioning the two parties against assuming a repeat performance in the upcoming by-election for the Semenyih state seat.
PAS, which opted out of the Cameron Highlands by-election, had thrown its support behind BN candidate Ramli Mohd Nor who won by over 3,000 votes against his closest competitor, Pakatan Harapan’s (PH) M Manogaran.
Ramasamy, who is deputy chief minister II of Penang, said Umno appeared to think that it could repeat its Cameron Highlands success with the support of PAS.
“PAS is not naive,” he added. “It will go along with Umno for a while, but as we know, it will not play second fiddle too long.
“PAS is just testing the waters in backing the second evil, but no one knows how long such an opportunistic collaboration will last. Essentially, for the moment, Umno is riding the ‘PAS tiger’.”
Yesterday, PAS said it would wait and see who BN chose as its candidate for the Semenyih by-election before deciding whether to support the coalition again.
The Islamist party also gave way to BN in the Sungai Kandis by-election last year.
However, Ramasamy said any idea of a repeat victory in Semenyih by Umno and PAS was only “wishful thinking”.
In a statement, he acknowledged similarities between Cameron Highlands and Semenyih in terms of racial composition, but also noted the urban nature of the Selangor state seat.
“Just because there is a Malay majority in Semenyih does not mean that they will be swayed by the ethnic and religious rhetoric of Umno and PAS,” he said, adding that PH had won the seat with a majority of over 8,000 votes in last year’s general election.
“There are no indications that votes will swing back to BN even with the support of PAS, although the majority could be reduced.”
He added that nearly a third of the voters in Semenyih are Chinese and Indian.
“With MCA and MIC out of the political picture, I seriously doubt that Umno will get the support of the non-Malays.”
However, he cautioned PH against taking support for granted, saying it must think seriously about what was promised in its manifesto before the last general election.
“It’s about time that the PH manifesto is translated into practice,” he said.
“Even if PH is not unduly concerned about the coming by-election, it should think about winning the next general election.” - FMT

Malacca Gateway project is still ours, says developer

The Malacca Gateway project on Malacca Island is still being developed by KAJ Development Sdn Bhd (KAJD), the master developer of the RM43 billion project, and there is no change in ownership, said the company in a statement today.
KAJD said the company was still operating as usual and had not sold off the project or any equity in it as widely speculated.
"Rumours are rife and this is fake news that has tarnished KAJD’s reputation,"  the statement said.
KAJD said it would not be responsible for the speculation and had the right to take legal action against those disseminating such false accusations.
KAJ signed a memorandum of agreement with Powerchina on Sept 1, 2016, to privately develop the 546.4-hectare mixed development on the Strait of Malacca, comprising three man-made islands and one natural island.
Malacca Gateway is expected to be completed in 2025 and attract some 2.5 million visitors, annually, with some 40,000 to 45,000 job opportunities created.
The islands would feature, among others, an international cruise passenger terminal, a commercial city, a liquid bulk terminal and a maritime industrial park.

Trailer fire in Genting Sempah Tunnel causes 11km crawl

The traffic heading to the East Coast is reported to be congested with an 11-kilometre crawl after a trailer caught fire in Genting Sempah Tunnel at about 1.37am.

A Malaysian Highway Authority (MHA) spokesperson said following the incident, MHA opened a contraflow lane at KM36.9 west bound to KM38.2 before the tunnel from 8.24am to 9.06am for works to remove the trailer. 
“Works on removing the trailer have completed and the lanes in the tunnel were reopened at 9.06am but traffic is still congested.
"The trailer's driver was unhurt and the vehicle was only razed in the front section,” he said when contacted by Bernama today.
Meanwhile, a PLUS Malaysia Berhad spokesperson said traffic was reported to be slow moving from Tapah to Gopeng.
Members of the public can obtain the latest traffic information via toll free Plusline at 1800-88-0000 and MHA at 1800-88-7752 or via Twitter at www.twitter.com/plustrafik and www.twitter.com/llminfotrafik.

DPM defends Harapan’s political appointments

Deputy Prime Minister Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail has defended the slew of recent political appointments by Pakatan Harapan.
“We have reduced the number of political appointments, but some of the appointments could have been made on the basis of merit... and those chosen don’t hold high positions in political parties.
“Most of us have political affiliations anyway and some of us are members of political parties,” she told the media when asked after distributing mandarin oranges to her constituents in Pandan, Selangor, this morning.
Earlier this week, Minister in Prime Minister’s Department and Amanah vice-president Mujahid Yusof Rawa appointed Amanah members Nik Omar Nik Abdul Aziz and Zolkharnian Abidin as the president and deputy president of the Islamic Dakwah Foundation (Yadim).
Mujahid also installed Selangor Amanah vice-chairperson (II) Shamsul Ma'arif Ismail and DAP’s Paloh assemblyperson Sheikh Omar Bagharib Ali as part of Yadim’s board of trustees.
Mujahid, who is in charge of Islamic affairs, had defended the appointments, saying they were people whom he believed could effectively uphold and implement Islamic ideals.
Also this month, Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister and Amanah deputy president Salahuddin Ayub (photo) handpicked four Amanah members and one PKR member to sit on the National Farmers Organisation (Nafas) committee.
Salahuddin explained that appointing “outsiders” would have been a time-consuming process as he would have needed to “scan and read (their) track record”.
“So we chose specialists from among our ranks," he had said.
Meanwhile, in Johor, two Bersatu division chiefs were appointed as board members of the Yayasan Pelajar Johor (YPJ).
The foundation explained that the appointments were made based on the duo’s academic qualifications plus their experience in the education and corporate sectors.
“Political position has never been considered as a merit in the selection of YPJ board members,” it said.
Harapan had promised in its election manifesto to ensure that the appointment of board members in national and state government-linked companies (GLCs) would be from among professionals, rather than based on political connections.

- Mkini

Gov't must take note of 'widespread Malay unhappiness', says DPM

The government must take note of the reported widespread dissatisfaction among the Malays regarding Pakatan Harapan's performance, Deputy Prime Minister Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail said.
Commenting on a survey where 60 percent of the Malay respondents were displeased with the current administration, she said there must be a balance between populism and priorities in policymaking.
“I read the survey. We must listen to the woes and opinions of the rakyat, and take steps to see if (their perception) is real or imagined.
“The majority of Malaysians are Malays, so when they say the majority of them (are unhappy), we have to take note.
“We have to balance between wanting to do what is popular yet having to consider what the country needs, what needs to be done for the economy and take care of stability (of the country),” Wan Azizah told reporters in Pandan this morning.
The survey, conducted by Ilham Centre together with Penang Institute, also found that 54.4 percent of the respondents did not believe the government was serious about the “Malay agenda”, including upholding Malay rights and Islam as the official religion.
More than 60 percent of the respondents believed that non-Muslims were now in control of the government and that DAP was calling the shots in Putrajaya.
The survey interviewed 2,614 Malay respondents between Oct 24 and Dec 24, 2018.
The detailed findings:
  • 59.5 percent of the respondents disagreed that they were satisfied with the performance of the Harapan government since the 14th general election, versus 40.8 percent who agreed;
  • 54.4 percent agreed the Harapan government was ignoring Malay rights and Islamic interests, while 45.1 percent disagreed;
  • 50.1 percent thought that Harapan was not serious about fulfilling its election manifesto, compared with 49.8 percent who said the ruling coalition was serious on this;
  • 58.3 percent believed that the federal government was not serious in dealing with the cost of living problems;
  • 62.9 percent agreed that non-Muslims now controlled the federal government after May 9, as against 37.2 percent who disagreed;
  • 62 percent believed that the DAP dominated the government’s decisions over other Harapan component parties, while 38 percent did not; and
  • 58.9 percent think that the federal government is being driven by a liberal agenda, versus 41.1 percent who disagreed. - Mkini

Harapan can win Semenyih, but must get its act together

ADUN SPEAKS | There is wishful thinking on the part of both Umno and PAS that they can repeat the Cameron Highlands victory in the coming by-election in Semenyih early next month.
This thinking within the ranks of both parties is based on a number of reasons.
First, given the similarity of the ethnic composition in Semenyih to Cameron Highlands, there is a feeling that Malays, being the majority, would give the mandate to Umno and PAS.
Second, both these political parties believe that Pakatan Harapan has lost the Malay ground after the last general election.
Third, some Umno leaders think that despite the mega-scandal associated with 1MDB, they are looked upon as the saviours of the Malay race.
Structural differences
Semenyih and Cameron Highlands might have some similarities in terms of ethnic composition, but the fact remains that both have structural differences.
Semenyih is definitely not a rural seat and Cameron Highlands is not an urban one. These structural differences might produce different electoral outcomes contrary to the simple-minded prognosis of the “champions” of Malays and Islam.
In the last general election, Harapan won the seat with a majority of more than 8,000 votes. 
There is no reason to believe that, with this majority, Harapan stands to lose the coming by-election. There is no indication that voters will swing back to BN even with the support of PAS, although the majority could be reduced.
What was operative in Cameron Highlands, such as the subsistence ethic among the rural community, might not be relevant in a highly mobile constituency such as Semenyih.
Moreover, there are different levels of consciousness among people in rural and urban constituencies.
In other words, just because there is a Malay majority in Semenyih does not mean that they will be swayed by the ethnic and religious rhetoric of Umno and PAS.
Harapan as the governing coalition might not have the luxury to engage in the senseless and highly irresponsible political rhetoric of Umno and PAS. Both these parties have nothing to lose because they are in the opposition.
A moderate stand
But Harapan, whatever the appeal of race and religion, must adopt a moderate stand, a position that will be in keeping with a new Malaysia.
Nearly 30 percent of the voters in Semenyih are Chinese and Indians. With MCA and MIC out of the political picture, I seriously doubt that Umno will get the support of the non-Malays.
Interestingly, Umno thinks that it can repeat its win in Cameron Highlands with the support of PAS. Of course, PAS is not naive; it will go along with Umno for a while, but as we know it will not play second fiddle too long.
PAS is just testing the waters in backing the lesser evil, but no one knows how long such an opportunistic collaboration will last. Essentially for the moment, Umno is riding the “PAS Tiger”.
Even if Harapan stands the chance of winning in Semenyih, the coalition must get its act together. Malaysians’ support for it must not be taken for granted; it must think seriously about what was promised before the last election.
In a more specific sense, it is about time that the Harapan manifesto is translated into practice. Even if Harapan is not unduly concerned about the coming by-election, it should think about winning the next general election.

P RAMASAMY is the state assemblyperson for Perai. He is also deputy chief minister II of Penang. - Mkini