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Saturday, May 21, 2022

Not all in opposition share same goals - DAP MP

 


Kota Kinabalu MP Chan Foong Hin said Pakatan Harapan should focus on building on its own strength amid differing interpretations of the "big tent" strategy.

The DAP lawmaker said while some see the big tent strategy as uniting all anti-Umno forces, others see it as uniting all opposition parties.

However, he said, even in the opposition, not all share the same goal.

"However, not all opposition parties have the same objective or strategy. There are those who want to try their luck in a free-for-all.

"I'm of the opinion that if we are unable to form the so-called big tent, Harapan should focus on strengthening its capabilities.

"We have to rely on our own strength to become the people's choice," he said in a statement.

Chan's statement came amid discussions in Sabah-based Warisan to "go solo" in the next general election.

"A political alliance will not necessarily win seats in an election," Warisan president Shafie Apdal had said.

There have also been suggestions that Harapan should consider working with Perikatan Nasional (PN) against BN but the proposal is unpopular due to PN's role in bringing down the Harapan government in 2020. - Mkini

Kit Siang: I expected desperados to twist my statement, not an ex-PM

 


DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang slammed former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak for what he described as an attempt to twist his words.

This was after Lim (above, left) made a reference to incidents of angry protestors setting fire to the homes of ministers in Sri Lanka and warned that Malaysia should not go down the same path.

This prompted Najib (above, right) and others to call on the police to investigate Lim for sedition and incitement.

"I had expected political desperados and opportunists, through their propagandists and cybertroopers, to twist and distort the meaning and purpose of my statement as one of incitement, but I had not expected a former prime minister to head the charge," he said.

Lim maintained he had no intention to incite Malaysians.

"I have already explained that I had no intention to incite any unrest in Malaysia but to warn of the dangers of allowing the political and socio-economic conditions in Malaysia to deteriorate as happened in Sri Lanka for over half a century as to become a failed state," he said in a statement.

Lim noted that in his previous statement, for which he is being accused of incitement, he said what is happening in Sri Lanka won't happen in Malaysia today but asked if it could happen in the future if Malaysia followed Sri Lanka's decline as a jewel of development.

"For the last half a century from 1970 to 2020, whether in terms of GDP growth or per capita GDP growth, Malaysia lost out to South Korea, Singapore, Indonesia, and China, but Sri Lanka had done worse," he said.

Political comebacks

Lim also made reference to the recent election in the Phillippines where Ferdinand Marcos Jr, the son of a kleptocrat, won in a landslide.

Lim said there are attempts to paint Najib's era from 2009 to 2018 as a golden era of development and progress but he pointed out that during this time, Sri Lanka grew faster than Malaysia.

However, during the same period, Sri Lanka took on a large amount of debt and yesterday defaulted on its debt payment for the first time in history.

A bus was set on fire at the top of the road to Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa's residence during a protest against him as many parts of the country faced up to 13 hours without electricity due to a shortage of foreign currency to import fuel, in Colombo, Sri Lanka (March 31, 2022)

Violent protests against the Sri Lankan government erupted this month after a chronic foreign exchange shortage led to rampant inflation and shortages of medicine, fuel, and other essentials.

In the country’s worst economic crisis since independence in 1948, protesters burned down homes belonging to dozens of politicians, including the family home of Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa and his younger brother and President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.

Mahinda tendered his resignation as prime minister on May 9.

"The travails of the Philippines and Sri Lanka should be followed closely by the people of Malaysia if we are to learn from the lessons of the Philippines or Sri Lanka to become a world-class great nation by Malaysia’s Centennial whether in 2057 or 2063," Lim said. - Mkini

Disgraced airforce captain struggles daily, pining for second chance

 


Joraymi Jamaludin was once considered a hero.

But it's not something you would know based on the 55-year-old's current state, struggling to make ends meet day after day.

Once a captain in the Royal Malaysian Airforce (RMAF), Joraymi was perhaps best known for being a DHC-4 Caribou cargo jet pilot.

The plane is capable of taking off and landing quickly and on slopes, making it suitable for operations in the interiors of Borneo.

Joraymi served in the airforce from 1992 until 1998, and among his fondest memories is helping put out forest fires in Kalimantan during Operation Haze in 1997.

He later became a public face after flying a charity flight to transport an infant girl from a remote village in Sabah to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Kota Kinabalu for urgent treatment.

His noble act landed him on the front page of the New Sabah Times - one of Sabah’s pioneer newspapers which shuttered in 2020.

New Sabah Times feature on Joraymi Jamaludin

Wasn’t without flaws

But despite his acts of service, Joraymi wasn't without flaws, and the latter would end up ruining his life. His career with the RMAF came to an end after he was dismissed with disgrace.

Joraymi when he was still in the RMAF

He was court-martialed for going absent without official leave (AWOL), jeopardising the service, dishonouring the RMAF, and several other disciplinary issues.

"I was heartbroken when I heard the judge read out the charges because I loved my carer," he told Malaysiakini in a recent interview.

Because he was dismissed with disgrace, Joraymi is not officially recognised as an armed forces veteran and thus ineligible for benefits.

"I have tried to go to the Defence Ministry to try and save whatever rights I could, but it's clear there are none left.

"My life is totally upside down," he said.

Currently living in a squatter settlement in Gombak, Selangor, Joraymi said this black mark continues to haunt him wherever he goes.

No benefits

Besides not getting any veteran benefits, his dismissal with disgrace also left him without the paperwork to show he had served in the armed forces.

"Every veteran, when they end their service, will be given a passport book to prove they served in the armed forces.

"But because of how I was terminated, I don't have that. This makes it really hard to get a job as employers want to see that passport book," he said.

He added that those who access the Defence Ministry's database can find out how he was fired, making them reluctant to give him a chance.

But it's not just employers shying away from Joraymi. His family and friends have turned their backs on him too.

"To them, I am a very evil person. Everyone distanced themselves from me. My family and relatives sidelined me, and my wife asked for a divorce. I was treated like a criminal.

"Sometimes I wonder, after all I have done for my country, is this how my life will end?" he asked.

Health issues

To make matters worse, Joraymi has health issues. He suffers from heart and kidney disease and requires dialysis treatments.

Healthcare, unfortunately, is not something he can afford and he is not eligible for treatment at a military hospital like other officially recognised veterans.

"I eat just enough to stem my hunger, I can't afford to go to the hospital for treatment... there are weeks where I have to skip dialysis," he said.

He said there are members of the public who take pity on him and donate to him, but the kindness doesn't always last.

"Some people, when they find out I have been dismissed with disgrace, ask for their money back, as though I am a scammer. But that's ok. I returned all their money," he said.

One donor, however, was kind enough to donate a peritoneal dialysis machine.

Not waiting for handouts

He is also a zakat recipient, but like many others, it is not enough to make ends meet.

But Joraymi said he is not a lame-duck just waiting for handouts.

Instead, he said he harvests recyclable trash which he said can earn him around RM200 a month. He also takes up odd jobs such as cleaning, washing cars, and working at fruit stalls.

Joraymi now harvests recyclable trash to make ends meet

Joraymi also hopes there will be a light at the end of the tunnel.

The disgraced captain is hoping that the Rise Veterans demonstration in Kuala Lumpur on June 6 - the Yang di-Pertuan Agong's birthday - will have an impact.

Demand for pardon’s board

One of the rally's demands is for there to be a pardons board specifically to bring military court cases to the King's attention.

"I really need a royal pardon from His Majesty so that I qualify as a veteran and can get benefits.

"24 years have passed (since my dismissal) and I am still being punished. My wrongs are not so grave, such as selling national assets, being corrupt, or abusing my subordinates," he said.

The rally's organiser, Major (R) Mior Rosli Mior Rosdi said the Federal Constitution allows the Agong to pardon or lighten sentences meted out by military courts.

A photo of Joraymi in his early days at RMAF

However, since 1974, there have been no pardons issued to court-martialed service officers.

"Even former communists who betrayed the country get a second chance to live comfortably in our motherland," Mior Rosli said.

He also cited how the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah and Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob both pleaded with Singapore to save Nagaenthran Dharmalingam from the gallows. - Mkini