Friday, October 31, 2014

Unsworn statement from the dock is no evidence

During his sodomy trial at the High Court, Anwar had read a 32-page statement, in which he said the sodomy charge against him was a political conspiracy. The High Court and the Court of Appeal, however, had dismissed it, regarding it as a "bare denial" of the offence.

Anwar's lawyer N. Surendran this morning cited six case laws in support of evidence from the dock. Surendran had been asked yesterday by Chief Justice Tun Arifin Zakaria to produce authorities so that the court could decide on the matter.

The lawyer told the judges that it was for the court to determine the weight to be attached when an accused person gave a statement from the dock.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Malay Reserve land: Peninsular's version of NCR land issue

There is a forum today to be held today 2:00 PM at Dewan Ulama ISTAC at persiaran Duta off Jalan Duta Kuala Lumpur on the issue of Malay Reserve land. It is jointly organised by Perkasa and ISTAC.

The keynote speech will be delivered by Former Chief Judge, Tun Ahmad Fairuz bin Sheikh Abdul Halim and it will be followed by two papers by Prof Dato Dr Nik Zain bin Nik Yusuf, former KSU for Ministry for Land and Cooperatives and Director general for Department of Land and Mineral, and Dr Hasrol, Senior Lecturer, Department of Estate Management, Faculty of Architecture, Planning, and Survey, Universiti Teknologi MARA. 

Although Malay Reserve Land issue have been openly discussed in many other seminar and forum before and over the years, it is usually positioned in side session. It is far in between and resolution to the issue  have been muted. Not much progress made since acquired Malay Reserve could not be replaced by land of similar character.

At least, disputes on Native Customary land (seldom called NCR land) in Sabah and Sarawak, usually involving ownership claim, could revert to the Native Court for settlement. NCR land is  being championed by the opposition and there positive response from state government give attention.

Unfortunately, Malay Reserve issues have no serious champion and disputes left unresolved.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Do Malaysia "really" benefit from trade through TPPA?

The view of Malaysian businessmen and corporate people on TPPA is that of optimism.

As a trading nation dependent on import and export with other countries, they see the beneficial flow of revenue and hopefully the profit derived to their business from TPPA as good for the country. Anything good for business is supposedly good for the country.

The view is that Malaysian goods and services have a fair chance to enter foreign market without any more barriers. So matters with regards to consumer interest, "sovereignty", and Bumiputera rights (which is effectively pittance actually) pales in comparison to the benefit. 

Unfortunately, the benefit from TPPA is not as simple as commutative arithmetic law of 1 + 1 = 2. If badly put together, the country could not achieve that 2 and perhaps even end up with less than 1. The TPPA serves the MNC interest to penetrate market. It has been extensively written in this blog, so no point rewriting it. Just key-in TPPA in this blog's saerch engine.

However, it is not sufficiently convincing to opportunity driven businessmen and corporate man. Only when it affects their interest will they appreciate the problems with TPPA. It has to hit their wallet to wake them up from their over-optimism.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Food security is national security

Sundaily Oct 23rd 2013

THIS is a land of abundant food. The melting pot of cultures has meant that we are spoilt for choice when it comes to mealtime and as a result many Malaysians have an expanded and rather critical palate.

But little thought is given to where our food comes from with regards to quality, safety and how it is produced.

Why should we be concerned anyway? Our supermarkets are well stocked, we have daily wet markets, weekly night markets in almost every neighbourhood and in some areas, a farmers market.

But how much of our food is locally produced?

When is the big day, Zahida?

A big break for Zahida but one question still remain

Actress and model Zahida Rafik is back in the news again. The driver which sued her for defamation will be charged for CBT. he had allegedly squandered away with the RM200,000 money entrusted by Zahida to bank-in.

It is a face saving development for Zahida, which had been rumoured to have an affair with Dato Shafie Apdal. When this blog wrote of it in September 2010 [read here], there was a follow-up denial from Shafie's aide [read here].

However, the rumour unabated as more stories surface claiming Zahida had married Shafie in London and lives in a RM4 million home in Ampang bought by Shafie. It was aggravated further in April 2012 when the matter involving Zahida's driver surfaced. [Read here and here]

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Touching a dog doused Anwar's campaign

Until an intimate video of popular pro-opposition Ustaz Azhar Idrus with his third wife surfaced last night, the most viral subject on the social media was the weekend Dog Touching event.

It dominated the social media to the point that it even overshadowed another intimate revelation on the FB of DAP candidate for Telok Intan by-election, Dyana Sofea and married Member of Parliament for Bukit Bendera Penang, Zairil Khir Johari.

It was a unique happening and the ensuing debate attracted the public attention that Anwar's campaign to gain sympathy and pressure the court to save him from an impending prison sentence by the Federal Court was lost.

Syed Azmi may have innocently helped to douse Anwar's usual rabble rousing.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The hypocrasy and ulterior motive to get Ibrahim Ali charged

Upon seizing power at the Federal level, DAP will be more draconian than the BN the accused as draconian. All one need to see is the reaction of Penang DAP Chief Minister, Lim Guan Eng to any criticism or questions on his administration of Penang or DAP party.

Guan Eng would threaten them with lawsuit as former PAS Youth Chief is facing, use goons to physically harass them as in the case of defiant Johor DAP members, expelled and suspended BN state assemblyman, and many more.

He refused to meet and deal with the Kampong Buah Pala Indian. And in the case of falling FDI to Penang, he resorted to lying and blaming the Federal government. However, he claim credit when FDI was rising in his first year in office.

In the latest episode and in the midst of campaign by Bar Council, Pakatan and their linked NGOs for abolishment of the Sedition Act, DAP and few Bar Council activists are applying pressure on Dato Nancy Shukri to charge Dato Ibrahim Ali for sedition.

It shows they are inconsistent in their principle and hypocritical in their attitude. When Pakatan do  take control of government with DAP in the driver seat, the likelihood is they will reinstate ISA, Sedition Act, and other law they say now as draconian?

Monday, October 20, 2014

Malay "pendatang" remark could spoil Gerakan comeback

Whether it was because of the Chinese vernacular school issue raised at the UMNO Petaling Jaya Utara annual general meeting or the ensuing discussion on the root of Chinese vernacular school as education for the children of then Chinese immigration worker, the Malay "pendatang" remark uttered at the Gerakan AGM was unnecessary.

Surely it is untrue and illogical, be it from the archeological or historical or geo-cultural or even DNA finding done. Not only former MP Dato Zulkifli Nordin immediately rebutted, one article by a Chinese writer by the name Tai Zee Kin disagreeing to any intention to claim Malays as "pendatang' from Indonesia has gone viral. Prior to modern nation-state introduced by colonial masters, Malay archipelago is one big "nation".

Politically, it is not a smart move, even for merely a drama to attract the attention of Chinese voters and hopefully secure back their votes.

If that is what the Gerakan delegate from Johor, Tan Lai Soon intended, that is not the way since such remarks makes politics a zero sum game. By attracting one group, one anger another group.

How did Gerakan do their number crunching?

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Tun M's KTM suggestion expose neo-liberals problem-solving weakness

In his blog yesterday [read here], Tun Dr Mahathir suggested few business ideas for Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM) in order to reduce their losses. He suggested to lease their tracks and use trains to transport goods to Bangkok.

The additional profit generated could be substantial and return KTM back to profitability. As it is, Tun Mahathir said KTM is losing about RM185 million annually.

In his first line, it may seeemed as though Tun may have took a swipe at another of Dato Ahmad Maslan's typical comment that made him a common conversation piece. He claimed KTEM would turn around after an "intensive transformation" plan with a RM30 million profit by next year.

Without Tun M having to say anything, the bigger jokers that got swiped in his posting was the predictable textbook thinking neo-liberal advisers, specifically Pemandu in government, and young leaders and politicians in UMNO.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Popularly elected Jokowi to raise fuel price by 50%

The public outcry from the 20 sen increase in fuel price, or as they try to avert as only reduction in subsidy, can be heard everywhere.

Understandably, the distribution system dominated by cartels result in an amplified increase in consumer goods. Though the public understood the subsidy burden on the government, some reaction gave the impression they were ready to throw out Dato Najib out of office.

Now, Joko Widido just came out as the new popularly elected Indonesian President. He plan to increase fuel price by 50%. Not 20 sen, but by more than the 80 sen increase that led to the downfall of former PM Tun Abdullah. As it is, fuel cost more in Indonesia. There is no BR1M, nothing in the pipeline to buffer the impact .

Will the Indonesian emulate some local sentiment to throw Jokowi out after just electing him in July? Two countries but different reaction and approach to the same problem.

Thursday, October 09, 2014

When "Menteri-Menteri bongok" wrongly explained as "good for government"

Image that has gone viral

Within the week the fuel rationalisation to raise petrol pump price by 20 sen was announced, two notable Tan Sris expressed an alarming opinion that the government could not be relied upon to help solve many of the nation and rakyats' woes and needs.

One is of the view that government is only there to serve only corporate interest and not "rakyat didahulukan" as per the campaign slogan for GE13. He went on to say that Dato Najib's political fate lies with the upcoming budget, which opposition has already tried to put down.

Wrong budget and it is the end of Najib and BN.

Both the Tan Sris seemed to share a common view that the government is under the power oligarchy of ruling elites, civil and Chinese taukeh which only serves the interest of business and corporate, including government and multinational corporation. 

It must have took the two government loyalist Tan Sris long period of observation to come to that conclusion. The public sentiment arising from the pre-Eidil Adha fuel rationalisation announcement serve to confirm their view.

The perception problem is compounded by "Menteri-menteri bongok", as one Whats App received described, explaining fuel rationalisation and GST as good for government without showing sensitivity to the rakyat.

Friday, October 03, 2014

Remembering Arafah ...

Time moved so fast that a week past since we returned back from Pengkalan Kubor. It was fast because we were practically sick for a week thereafter.

After two weeks in an oven-like temperature, the cooler Kuala Lumpur weather and the full blast air-con at home instantly affected us with flu. The blocked nose only complicates matters as we are kept in a state of constant drowsiness. That itself is another issue being addressed this week.

Right about when the public attention is on Selangor politics, then the surprised 20 sen fuel hike or termed as fuel rationalisation, we were reminded of wukuf at Arafah today.

Thanks to What App messages from our youngest brother and a friend from Kedah whose performing Haj in Mecca yesterday afternoon. It is customary to seek forgiveness and blessing of those close to us before begnning that once in a lifetime spiritual journey.

How time flies ... because it is already Haj, a ritual we performed three years ago. To read, go back to November 2011 in the monthly archive here. We will be re-reading of our past journey with with sentimental tears flowing in happiness.

If only we could be strong and healthy to be there again....

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