MALAYSIA Tanah Tumpah Darahku


Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Syed eyes Proton, Syed eyes Airports

... And the ghost of Labu airport. There are many Syeds around, in politics and in business, some good news and some bad news. Well one good Syed has been eyeing Proton and may have another shot, but it won't be a clear shot. It seems that Syed Mokthtar al-Bukhary's DRB will have to contend with two other corporate giants for a 30+ percent stake of the national car. Proton's boss Khazanah is said to have nudged Naza and Sime Darby to come in with bids. Naza may come in on its own or a not-so-reclusive tycoon may come in as its partner to take Proton private. Before the denials kick in, a word of caution: Next week something big is about to land ..

Another Syed in the news [see The Edge Nov 28, page 8] isSyed Faisal Albar, a distant relative of Syed Hamid Albar the ex-Foreign Minister and now chairman of land transport commission SPAD, who is reported to be taking over Ahmad Bashir, the charasmatic managing director of Malaysia Airports Holding Berhad. [True or not, remember that: 1. It was this blg that forewarned this in After MAS, the mother of all ... 2. Syed Faisal is sueing me for defamation with some ex Fourth Floor operatives' buddies].
Not the first time the Edge is promoting Faisal

Incidentally, Tony Fernandez of Air Asia, now MAS, etc has been attacking MAHB, mostly for no really good reasons (especially if you consider that MAHB is the only aviation arm of the government that's making money). ThenZaki Zahid, out of nowhere , twitted the other day that the "cost overruns" at the KLIA2under MAHB would not have happened if they had agreed toLabu airport, which was proposed by Tony Fernandez some time back when Dollah was PM and Forth Floor boys were kings.

A conspiracy against Malaysia Airports? Whoa, with former Fouth Floor posterboy & powerful friends involved, I won't discard this possibility too quickly. Azman Mokhtar, Khazanah boss, is watching this closely, I'm sure.

- rocky's bru

Like Shahrizat, the writing is on the wall for Khairy and Rosnah

Like Shahrizat, the writing is on the wall for Khairy and Rosnah

The manner in which Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin chided the Umno Youth wing and Puteri Umno is telling. Muhyiddin, the Umno deputy president, minced no words saying both wings had yet to capture the full attention of the younger generation. Hence, he said the two wings should work harder to be effective and remain relevant and of use to Umno.

"I can't deny that they have carried out many programmes and activities but the question is whether those programmes and activities have captured the attention and won the hearts of the young people," Muhyiddin said in a recent interview with Bernama.

Muhyiddin said he also hoped that the younger generation of Umno members would take advantage of this year's assembly to raise issues concerning the aspirations of the "Generation Y' as they made up 40 per cent of the country's registered voters.

"So, they have to debate on the interests and the aspirations of this new generation, especially in terms of transparency, accountability, and whether what is being done will benefit them. All these aspects must be manifested in their debates at the assembly," he said.

But Gen Y does not like Umno's caveman style of politicking

Indeed, Muhyiddin’s observation of the Umno Youth wing led by Khairy Jamaluddin and Putri Umno under Rosnah Rashid Shirlin is not too far off the mark. But he is wrong in identifying the ultimate source of blame. Malaysia's Generation Y has no issues with voting nor debating issues. It is with Umno that Generation Y has an issue with! And neither Khairy and Rosnah have enough credibility to convince the extremely circumspect Gen Y into believing they are the salvation within a rotting Umno.

Indeed, it looks like Khairy and Rosnah - both of whom despite their youth are already wealthy beyond the imagination of the masses - are unable to 'lock minds' with Gen Y, generally defined as those born after 1978. This group of privileged youngsters, due to better education and more prosperous parents, tend to extremely scrupulous, disdainful of gains not obtained through their own merit and take enormous pride in their skills and knowledge.

Certainly, it takes more take a YBs Can Jump basketball tournament or incessant, sharp-tongued twitters to hook in the young these days. Gen Y would expect KJ and Rosnah to stand up, draw a line and protest when the overly patriarchal Umno, in the form of dinosaurs such as Muhyiddin amd Mahathir Mohamad, sputter what they regard as sheer nonsense.

But neither KJ nor Rosnah have uttered a squeak even when it came to recent Peaceful Assembly Bill, which practically robs Malaysians of their fundamental right to gather and express their views. This Bill is a huge No, No as far as Gen Y is concerned. Yet, KJ and Rosnah pretend not to notice.

Not 'real'

Both KJ and Rosnah can run all the activities and programs they wish to get young people to support Umno and thus, vote Barisan Nasional into power. But while the young Malaysia may attend the events, they are unlikely to vote Umno given the huge question marks on how 'real' Khairy and Rosnah really are.

More likely, Malaysia's Gen Y will see both these leaders as peddlers of poison ice-cream coated with Gen Y flavor. But once consumed, they will develop the same diarrhea that their parents and grandparents are now suffering.

During the July 9 Bersih 2.0 rally, there was a noticeable youth presence amongst the walkers. And these youths were came from all walks of life - rural or urban, female or male, rich or poor, tertiary or basic education.

Gen Y is aware of current issues affecting Malaysia and truly aspire for Malaysia to be the best that it can be. They can see through Najib's bluster and bombast of making Malaysia "the world's best democracy". They laugh at him. So, it is Umno itself which is clearly an obstacle to the aspirations of many Malaysian youths.

To Gen Y, the Umno patriarchs are senile

When Muhyiddin alluded to the failings of both Umno Youth and Putri Umno, he was kidding himself. He wasn't looking at the whole picture. Really, Muhyiddin should understand Gen Y will not be interested as long as either wing support the racist and religious stance taken Umno, the parent organisation.

Sad to say, neither wing has had the courage to break free and make its own stand reflecting what Gen Y wants. So far, both Youth and Puteri wings have gone contrary to parent Umno only on select issues, and these only at the surface level.

For example, Khairy said when the wing decided to take a contrarian view on several controversial issues such as the Internal Security Act, freedom of the press and on the Universities and University Colleges Act, many in the party had questioned his move. The right-wing in Umno found it hard to understand Umno Youth's direction as the wing had previously played the role of the champion of the Malays and was very radical on ethno-centric issues.

“They said we were championing issues that were similar to the opposition's agenda. “But I kept explaining that we need to change because this is what the young people want. We can still be radical but we have to be radical progressive and radical moderates. Now our efforts have paid off,” a defensive KJ said.

Self-praise is no praise

But have they really paid off? The delusional Khairy even seems to think that his Youth wing should be credited for the influencing Umno to change and for helping to keep Umno relevant. But to others, this was an example of why Khairy must go.

"He thinks he has done a lot but the fact is, he has done the least of any Youth leader in Umno so far. To Umno, the party as a whole, he is a washout and must be taken out. Frankly, I agree because Khairy is only putting on a show. He is preserving his own political reputation - not daring to be too ultra and yet not daring to really stand up and push for the reforms that Umno needs," a veteran Umno watcher told Malaysia Chronicle.

As for Puteri Umno, its chief Rosnah dismissed 'rumours' that she failed to get the full support of the “ladies in pink”.

“That is not true at all. We are as united as any movement can be. There are disagreements and there are times when some don’t agree with my ideas but otherwise, we are very close. To me, disagreements are part of the democratic process. It doesn’t distract us from our responsibilities in ensuring that UMNO remains relevant, especially to the younger generation,” Rosnah told the press last week.

Major shakeup in Umno after GE-13

Indeed, the words of the two leaders of the youth wings in Umno seem positive and they appear sure that they have done everything right and necessary for their party. So, why the negative comment from Muhyiddin?

As pundits say, interesting times are up for Umno.

With the 13th general election expected to be called in early 2012, chances are both Khairy and Rosnah will be allowed to save face so that Umno as a whole can close ranks and fight the Pakatan Rakyat opposition with all their might. But the signal to the delegates at the ongoing assembly is clear.

The Umno top leadership has acknowledged the failure of Khairy and Rosnah and will not oppose those who believe they can do a bettr job from contesting the posts of Umno Youth chief and Umno Puteri Chief at the party's internal polls slated for the second half of 2012 - after GE-13! This is the writing on the wall for Khairy Jamaluddin and Rosnah Rashid.

Both are expected to make for the same exit as Women's chief Shahrizat Jalil, although the chances are high Shahrizat may announce plans to step down before the GE-13 in order to boost the BN's chances. Rocked by a RM250 million corruption scandal involving the national livestock project NFC, Shahrizzat has denied involvement but she is facing an uphill battle for political survival.

Malaysia Chronicle

Bastard, 'pondan', 'bapok' and no 'telur': The measure of Youth talent in Umno

Bastard, 'pondan', 'bapok' and no 'telur': The measure of Youth talent in Umno

The BN media and spin-meisters must surely feel like fools. Just last weekend, they rushed out to slam Umno's arch rival PKR for being a party devoid of issues and able only to slam the BN.

Some PKR Youth delegates even went to so far as to soul-search in public, voicing their concerns about their party's ability to grow and press on with the struggle for justice in Malaysia. They needn't haven't worried.

As for the Umno media, despite all their coordinated efforts to do a hatchet job on the PKR, they have once again been exposed to be purveyors of anything but the truth.

'Tin kosong' when it comes to the crunch

At the much-watched 2011 Umno annual assembly on Wednesday, Malaysians were treated to a preview of the party's potential leaders and prime-ministers-in-waiting. They were not disappointed.

As expected, Umno Youth failed miserably when it came to the crunch, confirming accusations that few Malaysians with any worthwhile talent would wish to join such a party, from which groups like Perkasa and corruption-tainted leaders including Youth Chief Khairy Jamaluddin, Shahrizat Jalil and Umno president himself, Najib Razak, have sprung.

Puffing themselves up with the fire and brimstone that they imagined was the 'groovy' hallmark in keeping with a youth movement, although many Umno Youth leaders are themselves already grandfathers with huge paunches and balding hairlines, they took turns to attack the Pakatan Rakyat, led by Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim.

Talent vacuum

And the language they used? Why the very crudest, of course - as befitting a party that critics say will have no qualms about resorting to massive cheating in a bid to cling to power at the next general election, widely expected to be held early next year.

“PKR and PAS are bapok (transvestites) and pondan (sissy) as these days they have no power to challenge DAP. A vote for DAP is a vote for the destruction of Islam,” said Shaik Hussein Mydin, the Penang Umno Youth chief, to loud applause and shouts of “PKR, PAS tak ada telur!” (PKR, PAS have no balls!)

Apart from witch-hunting the DAP and Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, they also accused the Pakatan of systematically eroding the rights of Malays in states like Penang and Kedah.

Shaik claimed that PKR and PAS would be unable to stop DAP from bullying the Malays and Islam should the Pakatan come to power.

He accused DAP of being anti-Islam and anti-Malay and that Malay food stalls had been demolished and Malay businesses negatively affected since the Pakatan took over the state. He reiterated DAP were out to spread Christianity at the expense of Islam.

“Under DAP, Malays have become their ‘baruas’. I won’t mince my words, because I mean what I say. Anyone who supports DAP is a ‘bangsat’ (bastard),” said Shaik Hussin

“This is the sad reality of Penang. Umno has to redouble its efforts here!”

Khairy's weak hand on Umno Youth

Perak Umno state youth chief Khairul Azwan also attacked DAP MP for Taiping Nga Kor Ming for describing Umno Mentri Besar Zambry Kadir as a 'metallic black' chief minister.

“DAP is racist. Racist! If they say the Perak Mentri Besar is a ‘black metallic haramjadah’, then DAP is the mother and father of all ‘haramjadah’,” Khairul said.

Kor Ming has since apologized to the Indian community including Zambry, while Christians have already begun questioning why BN MPs were keeping quiet at the way Umno members were discrediting their religion, as if Christianity was a "dirty word".

"Now Malaysians can see and judge for themselves and those who have been biased against the Pakatan and insisting that we cannot govern, should have no problem in seeing the true picture for themselves," PKR vice president Tian Chua told Malaysia Chronicle.

"Umno has been facing a talent vacuum for decades and for sure, those who have a modicum of talent are already jumping ship to the Pakatan. Nobody in their right minds would want to join such a pirate ship like Umno. It confirms that Umno is in its death throes with members unable or not capable enough to save it. It is also a reflection of (Youth Chief) Khairy Jamaluddin's weak hold on his wing."

Malaysia Chronicle

Khairy admits ‘inappropriate’ remarks by some Umno Youth delegates

UPDATED @ 11:14:31 PM 30-11-2011
November 30, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 30 – Khairy Jamaluddin admitted today the remarks made by “one or two” Umno Youth delegates were “inappropriate,” in reference to some leaders use of foul language to attack Pakatan Rakyat (PR).

The Umno Youth chief(picture) said, however, the context of the delegates’ speeches needed to be looked at in its “totality”, saying that he was impressed with the overall quality of the issues raised by his members.

“One or two things were a bit inappropriate, but if you look at it in totality, it was quite good,” he told reporters here.

PR bashing served as a focal point in today’s Umno Youth assembly, with delegates resorting to the use of foul language and insults to get their points across.

Umno state youth chiefs took turns attacking PR parties with a specific focus on DAP, accusing the party of systematically eroding the rights of Malays in states like Penang and Kedah.

One leader, Shaik Hussein Mydin, claimed that Malays and Islam were at risk in Penang, and said that PKR and PAS had “no power” to stop the repression of the Malay community there.

“PKR and PAS are ‘bapok’ (transvestites) and ‘pondan’ (effeminate) as these days they have no power to challenge DAP.

“A vote for DAP is a vote for the destruction of Islam,” said the Penang Umno Youth chief to loud applause and shouts of “PKR, PAS tak ada telur!”

Honing in on the island’s PAS state chief Datuk Salleh Man and state executive councillor in charge of religious affairs Abdul Malik Kassim (PKR), Shaik Hussin repeatedly called them “pondan” and “bapok.”

He accused DAP of being an “enemy of Islam” and Malays in general, alleging that under Lim Guan Eng’s administration, Malay food stalls had been demolished and Malay businesses affected.

Responding to this, Khairy said merely attacking the opposition was “not enough” and that Umno needed to do more.

He told delegates that Umno Youth needed to fight PR based on policies, and to promote BN’s policies instead.

“What’s important now is victory. Everyone needs to work together.”

The Mamak Dilemma – Shame, Opportunity, Assimilation, and an Identity Lost

I have no disrespect for the Malay culture which is beautiful. We can all learn a thing or two from Malay adat. However, I do hold a grudge against the deliberate extermination of one’s own heritage. I further find it offensive when Indian Muslims, in their eagerness to convert, use Machiavellian means to identify themselves as Malay. It demonstrates a lack of dignity and self-worth.

By Mohd Ikhram Merican

“How shall a man escape from his ancestors, or draw off from his veins the black drop which he drew from his father’s or mother’s life?” - Ralph Waldo Emerson

For some time now I’ve felt that the Indian Muslim or Mamak community at large suffers from a pitiful cultural and identity crisis. Being a Muslim of Indian origin, I have first-hand experience with the dilemma afflicting this community that has contributed so much to the culture, politics, and economy of Malaysia for well over a few centuries. I also worry that so many members of this, my community, are shedding their identity by becoming over-zealous converts.

Some of the offensive and snide remarks by an individual with clear Indian ancestry at the on-going UMNO General Assembly have motivated me to finally pen this letter.

My ancestral beginnings in Malaysia start with my great-grandfather, K.K Daud, in Penang in the early 20th century; although I suspect earlier generations were already making trade excursions to the Malay Peninsula. My grandfather, D Mohamed Ibraheem, born in India, was brought to study at the Methodist Boys School in Penang. He was a scholar, a sportsman, and a gentleman. These exact traits, decades later, were to become my obligation at my Alma Mater, the Victoria Institution.

My grandfather was a linguist of sorts. He learned Latin, was sufficiently proficient in Malay, and a master in English and Tamil. All of his children bore a combination of Tamil and Muslim names, a testament to his pride as a Tamilian and an unashamed celebration of his Indian roots. He worked hard, contributed to Penang’s economy, was a well respected member of his community, and raised a good family. For all intents and purposes, he was well assimilated into the fabric of Penangite society. He did not have to shed his cultural identity to do this.

My father and his generation, like their preceding generations, spoke excellent Tamil. Most of them were privileged to have an English education. A significant number of them have gone on to becoming prominent captains of industry in Malaysia and abroad. None of them coveted handouts from the government or needed to shake-off their “Indian-ess” to progress in Malaysia. It was never an option. Their parents worked hard to educate them.

My generation does not speak Tamil as well as the previous generations. Most of us speak English or Malay. Suddenly it has become important to be seen as practicing Malay culture. Article 160 of the Constitution states that a “Malay” is a person who professes the religion of Islam, habitually speaks the Malay language, conforms to Malay custom and -

  1. was before Merdeka Day born in the Federation or in Singapore or born of parents one of whom was born in the Federation or in Singapore, or was on that day domiciled in the Federation or in Singapore; or
  2. is the issue of such a person;

Many Indian Muslims have used or would like to use this provision to “convert”.

I have no disrespect for the Malay culture which is beautiful. We can all learn a thing or two from Malay adat. However, I do hold a grudge against the deliberate extermination of one’s own heritage. I further find it offensive when Indian Muslims, in their eagerness to convert, use Machiavellian means to identify themselves as Malay. It demonstrates a lack of dignity and self-worth.

Naturally, I feel sick when I read of the charades of UMNO politicians, academicians, and community leaders masquerading as Malays, spewing hatred against other races, sometimes against their own roots. Even when they’re challenged as to their real identity, they shamelessly defend their false Malay roots. For some, Tamil is still spoken in whispers, in the privacy of their homes, like it were a “dirty” parlance.

Why? For special rights? For economic handouts? My grandfather worked very, very hard for providence. So did the men of his generation. The early Indian Muslim traders who came to these shores were an industrious lot who earned their bread. They contributed to Malaysia’s rich heritage without becoming cultural orphans. They cherished their roots. Hardship and experience polished them. It earned them monopolies in certain trades that last till today.

This legacy is being destroyed. A culture and heritage is disappearing only to be replaced by a false sense of security. In the process, the Indian Muslims are offending not only their own race and the Chinese, but many Malays too. In the long run, we as a community will isolate ourselves from our roots and the nation in which we want so much to assimilate with.

“Distinguished ancestors shed a powerful light on their descendants, and forbid the concealment either of their merits or of their demerits.” - Gaius Sallustius Crispus