Friday, January 31, 2014



So, in 1982, Anwar felt that Umno had become too soft over the years and people like Suhaimi cannot put the Chinese in their place and is too compromising with the Chinese and so on. 
Raja Petra Kamarudin
Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim is not a “skilled” enough politician to handle Barisan Nasional’s (BN) political onslaught, PKR’s Rafizi Ramli said last night as he defended his party’s decision to field Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim in the coming Kajang by-election.
Speaking at a forum here, the chief engineer of the Kajang move said that while the embattled Khalid is known to be a popular technocrat, he was less stellar in his role as a politician.
“We all know in Pakatan Rakyat (PR), attacks based on racial politics and religion must be countered with political games as well,” the PKR strategic director told a forum discussing the by-election here.
“Although we have high respect for his administrative prowess, we have to also call a spade a spade: Khalid is not a skilled and experienced politician to face Umno’s racial and religious political games.” (The Malay Mail)
Rafizi was backed in the forum last night by political activist Hishamuddin Rais, who claimed thatAnwar would be a better choice as a mentri besar, particularly as he would be able to better articulate the pact’s position on issues regarding race and religion.
“If Anwar becomes an MB in this federalism system, then he will enter as MB into the conference of rulers, talking about land, religion,” said Hishamuddin.
“Who else has better authority, better skills, the credibility, and international stature to say that we do not agree with the ‘Allah’ issue and land?” (The Malay Mail)
Those are the comments by Rafizi Ramli and Hishamuddin Rais, both friends of mine and Old Boys of the Malay College Kuala Kangsar (MCKK). Those are their views regarding Selangor Menteri Besar Khalid Ibrahim.
Now allow me to give you my view. But this is going to be a very long story indeed.
Pemodalan Nasional Berhad (PNB), which was launched on 17th March 1978, can be said to be amongst one of the more successful unit trusts. It was actually the brainchild of Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah.
Khalid Ibrahim was appointed the General Manager and then the CEO of PNB from 1979 to 1994. For 15 years, Khalid expanded PNB to what it is today. And that was when I first met Khalid, more than 30 years ago.
But first, let us talk about Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah.
My father was a participant in the First Bumiputera Economic Congress of 4th June 1965. Contrary to what many believe, the move to improve the lot of the Malays was not the result of the 13th May 1969 race riots. This is what some politicians would like you to believe. That is not true at all. It started before that and 69 Resolutions were passed at that Congress.
Because of this Congress, on 15th June 1965, the Deputy Prime Minister, Tun Abdul Razak Hussein, announced the formation of Bank Bumiputera, later called BBMB. It was headed by Mohd Raslan Dato’ Abdullah as Managing Director and Tengku Razaleigh as Executive Director.
Tengku Razaleigh also headed Pernas, which was set up in November 1969, and Petronas, which was set up in September 1974.
When Tun Razak died in 1976, Tun Hussein Onn took over as Prime Minister and Tengku Razaleigh was offered the post of Deputy Prime Minister. Tengku Razaleigh, however, declined the offer and told Tun Hussein to offer the post to Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad instead. Tengku Razaleigh said he wanted to focus on his unfinished business of running the various banks and institutions that had been set up barely a few years before that. He was prepared to wait until Dr Mahathir took over as Prime Minister and then be would become the Deputy Prime Minister.
Of course, when Dr Mahathir took over as Prime Minister in 1981, he did not appoint Tengku Razaleigh as his Deputy as promised but instead appointed Tun Musa Hitam. But that is another story and a story I have already written about many times before.
If there were three people who needed to be credited with playing a prominent role in improving the lot of the Malay community it would be Tun Abdul Razak Hussein, Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah and Khalid Ibrahim. But not many Malaysians, especially those amongst the younger generation, are aware of all these developments over that decade from 1965 to 1975.
Okay, now back to the issue of Khalid and PNB, the unit trust agency that he headed since its inception.
In the beginning (in 1978/1979, when PNB was first set up) many of us refused to invest in the unit trusts that PNB launched. By then, of course, I was already a staunch PAS supporter and the reason we boycotted PNB’s unit trusts was because PAS and ABIM (which was headed by Anwar Ibrahim) told us that these unit trusts were haram.
So we steered clear of the amanah saham that PNB launched because we believed that the profits we would be making was dirty money. This was what PAS and Anwar had told us and as good Muslims we did not want to make haram money.
I admit, however, I eventually did invest in these amanah saham and I was glad I did so because that was the money I used to send my daughter to the UK to study and much later, in 2009, was the money I used to buy my home in Manchester. Without that money I would have not been able to give my daughter a UK university education or own a house.
So PAS and Anwar actually condemned the government’s efforts to teach the Malays to invest their money in unit trusts so that many years in the future they would be able to educate their children and buy homes for themselves and so on.
I am glad I listened to Khalid Ibrahim by investing my money in government run unit trusts instead of listening to Anwar and boycott these unit trusts. And because of that both my daughters received a UK university education and I now own a fully paid home in Manchester.
Okay, that sounds like a long story but believe me I can make it even longer than that if I want to. But that is not want I really want to talk about today. That is only the introduction or mukadimah. What I really want to talk about is what Rafizi Ramli said last night.
And what he said was, “We all know in Pakatan Rakyat, attacks based on racial politics and religion must be countered with political games as well.”
Rafizi is much too young to remember that Anwar was the one who started this race and religion politics back in the 1970s. Anwar would go around the country telling the people that the Umno people are kafir (infidels). Those who dress like kafir by wearing coats and ties become kafir. Those who ape the kafir become kafir.
Anwar would be dressed like an Arab and we too threw away our kafir clothes and started walking around dressed like Arabs. So who was the one who started all this religion politics in the first place? Today Rafizi laments about the problem. Does he not realise that Anwar started this problem in his ABIM days when he divided the Muslims into the kafir Muslims of Umno and the trueMuslims of the opposition?
So, yes, Malay politics is now the politics of Islam. And Rafizi is offering Anwar as the solution when he is the problem. Has Anwar ever apologised for labelling all those who dress like kafir and support Umno’s kafir politics of nationalism as kafir and then a few years later in 1982 he abandons the Islamists and joins the kafir political party?
Then, when Anwar joined Umno in 1982, he made a bid for the Umno Youth leadership. And his campaign strategy was to condemn Suhaimi Kamaruddin, the then Youth Leader, as being too compromising and not militant enough.
Anwar wanted the Ummo Youth Movement to return to the ‘glory days’ of the 1960s. And what do you think he meant by that? The glory days of the 1960s was when Umno Youth wanted to take back the country from the Chinese. The Malays are now hamba di negara sendiri (slaves in their own country), they argued. And this is because the Chinese have grabbed all the wealth of the country leaving the Malays with nothing.
And why do you think they organised the First Bumiputera Economic Congress in 1965 that I talked about above? It was to address the grievances of the Malays and prevent a possible civil war, which happened anyway four years later in 1969 when the militants won the shouting match.
So, in 1982, Anwar felt that Umno had become too soft over the years and people like Suhaimi cannot put the Chinese in their place and is too compromising with the Chinese and so on.
And with that very militant and anti-Chinese stance, Anwar won the Umno Youth leadership hands down and Suhaimi the Chinese-lover was ousted. And from there Anwar took Umno Youth in the direction of being a party within a party that would make sure that the government does not give in to the Chinese.
So what nonsense is Rafizi talking about? Yes, we do have a problem with race and religion politics but it was Anwar who propagated this and who planted this seed in Umno Youth. And now you are telling us that Anwar has a cure for this disease, which, in the first place, he spread?
Hishamuddin Rais then says, “Anwar would be a better choice as a Mentri Besar, particularly as he would be able to better articulate the pact’s position on issues regarding race and religion.”
Pray tell, what is Pakatan Rakyat’s position on race and religion that they want Anwar to articulate with the Rulers? Do tell us!
Does he want the Rulers to agree that the Malay Bible must be allowed to say that Jesus is the son of Allah? Does he want Article 153 in the Federal Constitution to be removed? Does he want to open up ITM to the non-Malays and entry into the universities based on meritocracy and not based on quota (and the same with government posts, the police and military included)?
We need details. Tell us what is wrong now and what — as the new Menteri Besar of Selangor — Anwar can do about it when he meets the Rulers during the Conference of Rulers.
Anwar was in the government for 16 years from 1982 to 1998. He was also the Deputy Prime Minister for some years and met the Rulers both inside and outside the Conference of Rulers. In fact, I have personally witnessed Anwar phoning a couple of the Sultans. Hence Anwar could just pick up the phone and make a phone call to the Rulers.
Did Anwar articulate his views then when he was the Deputy Prime Minister and successor-in-waiting to Dr Mahathir? And if not, why? And if he did not do that when he was at the pinnacle of power why and how would he do that now when he is merely a Menteri Besar?
This is a whole load of bullshit.
The Malays are better off today because of the First Bumiputera Economic Congress of 4th June 1965 (which my father was a participant in). This Congress that passed 69 Resolutions spawned various agencies, PNB amongst them (which was headed by Khalid). Without all this most Malays would still be fishermen and farmers.
I know that, along the way, some people abused this to get rich through government contracts, monopolies, APs, etc. But that is being done by less than 1% of those Malays who walk in the corridors of power. The other 99% of the Malays are not crooks.
Are we going to condemn all the Chinese just because 1,000 Chinese joined Chin Peng’s CPM army in the jungles? Why should the action of less than 1% of the Chinese be blamed on 100% of the Chinese? There are many more Chinese who did not support Communist Terrorism, as there are many more Malays who did not choose the crooked way to become rich.
The trouble is, Malaysians hate reading. And they hate studying history even more. But if you did read, and if you read history, then you will know that the perjuangan to improve the lot of the Malays started back in 1965 and not after May 13 in 1969.
And it was people like Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah and Khalid Ibrahim (plus many more, my father included) who contributed to this effort and people like Anwar Ibrahim who tried to torpedo this effort by declaring that what the government is doing is haram and that we should boycott it and not support it.
And today you offer us Anwar as the saviour when it was he who tried to sabotage the whole thing? Pleeeez.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Rein in the troublemakers, Najib

Rein in the troublemakers, Najib

Gone are the days when people always assume that what the government says is correct, truthful and good.

The BN government should stop rallies that are meant to whip up racial and religious sentiments. It is the government who always say that race and religion are sensitive issues so it is only right that rallies of such nature be disallowed.
“BN as a political party must not think that it can do as it likes. This is year 2014. People have already woken up to the era of new politics. Don’t try to start any nonsense because the nation will fall,” said Khalid Samad the PAS Shah Alam MP.
He also warned any parties attempting any nonsense to face up to the fact that Selangor voters can see through their ploy.
That is certainly true. These days the rakyat, especially the poor, are busy focusing on food prices, housing, jobs, children’s needs and loan repayments because many are struggling to survive.
Nizar Jamaluddin, a PAS lawmaker from Perak told BN not to play a fool or take the rakyat as fools.
“BN leaders and the NGOs aligned to them must not take the rakyat for granted as this is the 21st century,” commented Nizar.
The government especially Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak must come out strongly to warn off those attempting to use race and religion to gain political mileage. He must also really solve the problem of the soaring cost of living. It is futile to just check on prices here and there on an ad-hoc basis.
The grocery shop owner in a corner of Kepong Baru or Pokok Sena is not going to bother with the Deputy Prime Minister or any other government minister checking on prices of the goods being sold in their shops.
It is all a waste of time and a mere publicity ploy to fill up the newspaper pages with BN leaders’ pictures for rural consumption. This propaganda stunt will only succeed in influencing the gullible.
There is also no necessity to set up any special committee to look into the problem of the rising cost of living. As mentioned in a previous article, all the government needs to do is to bring down the RON95 petrol price and the electricity tariff.
But as the government is not going to do that, then their heroics is akin to King Canute trying to turn back the waves for it is 100% impossible to stop the price hikes and the rise of inflation.
In the meantime, there are some quarters that are trying their utmost to divert the price hikes issue by turning the rakyat’s attention to race and religion issues.
Although temporarily the rakyat’s attention might be diverted, it is still back to earthly matters after being side-tracked for one week the most. Heaven can wait as we are waging a daily battle on earth to combat the assault on our daily expenditure.
Still, PAS is ever vigilant.
No plan, no vision
In a hint at the troublemakers who aim to ignite racial tension, PAS information chief, Mahfuz Omar has issued a stern warning by saying: “We know what they are thinking. And we are monitoring them closely. They would be foolish to think about it, what more to attempt it.”
Indeed, those who think of sabotaging the rakyat for their own selfish gains had better think twice as this time the opposition is stronger than in the era immediately post-Independence.
Moreover, the citizens are wiser too and the price hikes have lessened the number of gullible voters among the general urban and semi-urban public.
PAS too is stronger now than in the old days.
Selangor PAS, with Khalid Samad being one of the outstanding moderate voices, has come out to state that no one should attempt to stir trouble and those who do so will have their names and political affiliations exposed.
The BN government must be constantly reminded that this is not the bygone era.
Take for instance the South Pole visit by Terengganu Menteri Besar Ahmad Said. Netizens have blasted him for wasting taxpayers’ money for a questionable venture.
These days people do not treat the government as God. Gone are the days when people always assume that what the government says is correct, truthful and good.
The government is slowly alienating themselves from the ordinary rakyat due to its arrogance and know-it-all attitude. This is because PM Najib seems to have no plan or vision in mind.
Nizar described the Prime Minister as being “dazed and confused and in the process is leading us on to the edge of the cliff and he also looks as if he is taking instructions from someone else.”
At the end of the day, PM Najib must rein in the troublemakers.
Failure to do so will show him up as being weak, helpless and hopeless.
What will become of the nation then? He should take note that we are already falling behind many of our Asean neighbours, including Myanmar.
Selena Tay is a DAP member and a FMT columnist.


Sunday, January 19, 2014

Christian villagers in remote Sabah district were tricked into converting to Islam

We were tricked into converting to Islam, claim Christian villagers in remote Sabah district

JANUARY 20, 2014
The Protestant Church of Sabah church in Kampung Layung Maliau has been packed since the alleged conversion incident. – The Malaysian Insider pic, January 20, 2014.The Protestant Church of Sabah church in Kampung Layung Maliau has been packed since the alleged conversion incident. – The Malaysian Insider pic, January 20, 2014.The small, white, nondescript wooden Protestant Church in Sabah (PCS) church in the Dusun village of Layung Maliau, in Sabah's remote Pitas district, was again packed for its Sunday service yesterday.
It has been filled to the brim since the first Sunday of 2014.
But what was strange in this revival of faith in this dirt poor village of 100 people is that a third of the worshippers are “Muslims” – or are supposed to be.
“They think they had converted us (to Islam). They are wrong. We are still Christians and our faith in God has not changed,” housewife Lenney Masangal said, explaining the presence of “Muslims” at the church.
The 41-year-old mother of three was one of 33 people from the village who claimed that they were tricked into converting into Islam for a mere RM100 on New Year's day.
They were part of a group of about 64 people, including children, from three villages in Pitas – Kampung Layung Maliau, Dowokon and Sosop – who had allegedly been converted.
Lenney Masangal said the villagers are still Christians despite the alleged conversion. – The Malaysian Insider pic, January 20, 2014.Lenney Masangal said the villagers are still Christians despite the alleged conversion. – The Malaysian Insider pic, January 20, 2014.Their trouble had apparently started on New Year's Eve.
A fellow villager, on returning from Pitas town, called everyone to his house to announce the “good news” that “some people from Kuala Lumpur” are giving them financial assistance.
“We all went to his house to hear how we could receive the financial assistance,” farmer Maison Bilu said.
When told that the amount would be RM800 per person, Maison was beyond excited.
The 44-year-old lost all sense of reasoning as he – there are seven of them in his family – was only thinking of how much he would be getting.
“Nobody asked who were these people giving us the financial assistance. We were only told 'people from Kuala Lumpur'. We didn't even ask the reason they are giving us this money,” Maison said.
“Everyone just wanted the money. That's all.”
Getting RM800 was like winning the lottery for the villagers who depended on subsistence farming to survive.
Maison plants tapioca, vegetables and maize to feed his family.
Like everybody else in the village, he does not plant cash crop.
The village is still without electricity and running water.
Those who could afford it have generators to light up their houses and power the all-important television sets.
To get to the village, one will first have to take a two-hour drive from Kota Kinabalu to Kota Marudu.
From Kota Marudu, its another two-hour drive up one of the state's “dog's ears” to Sungai Penipak, a major river in Pitas.
From the river, it's another long and exhausting walk of an hour or so on the dirt road left over by the company that used to harvest timber in the area.
The road is strewn with fist-sized boulders taken from the Penipak river and typical of logging roads, many sections are steep.
When it rains, the road is a slippery quagmire. When it's dry, it's dusty.
It is so remote that every one of their elected representatives in the last 50 years had never set foot in the village.
Neither had Muslim missionaries.
Maison Bilu said the villagers were told they were receiving financial aid. – The Malaysian Insider pic, January 20, 2014.Maison Bilu said the villagers were told they were receiving financial aid. – The Malaysian Insider pic, January 20, 2014.“We have no income of any kind. That RM800 is a lot more than BR1M (Bantuan Rakyat 1Malaysia). Everybody was understandably excited,” Maison said.
“To get it was also easy. We just have to give our name and MyKad number to that neighbour of ours. No questions asked.
“However, we were told we have to go to Pitas town hall the next day (New Year's day) to receive the cash.”
So early the next day, the 33 villagers excitedly trudged down the dirt road for the 3km New Year walk to the river.
Once they crossed the river via a suspension bridge, three cars were waiting to take them to the town hall.
“When we reached the hall, we were told to go to the 'masjid' (mosque) instead,” Maison said.
“At the mosque, we were all treated to refreshments and then they asked for our MyKad. We were then asked to sign a form. I don't know what the form was as I could not read or write. No one explained to us what the form was.
“All of us were illiterates. I never went to school and neither did my wife,” he said of his wife Nafsiah Momin.
“So I put my finger print on the form.”
What baffled Maison was that the person who helped him put his finger print on the form did not take the form from him.
“He gave me a large envelope and inside the envelope were several smaller, coloured envelopes.
“I did not immediately open them to check what was inside as we were then told to stand in a line across the room.
Villagers in Kampung Layung Maliau, Pitas, want police to investigate their claim that they were tricked into converting to Islam. – The Malaysian Insider pic, January 20, 2014.Villagers in Kampung Layung Maliau, Pitas, want police to investigate their claim that they were tricked into converting to Islam. – The Malaysian Insider pic, January 20, 2014.“A man then asked us to recite some words after him. I didn't understand a word he said as the words were all foreign to me.
“At the end of it, the man told us that we have converted to Islam and we are now all Muslims.
“I was shocked. I quickly dragged my wife and children out of the mosque to ask ourselves what was going on,” Maison said.
He said when he later opened the smaller envelopes, he found RM100 in the yellow envelopes and RM50 in the green envelopes.
It was only later that he found out that the RM100 were for adults and the RM50 for children.
The form that Maison still had with him was later passed to a church elder who informed him that it was a consent form and he had consented to be converted to Islam.
Jusman Masid feels cheated and sad. – The Malaysian Insider pic, January 20, 2014.Jusman Masid feels cheated and sad. – The Malaysian Insider pic, January 20, 2014.To 41 year-old Jusman Masid, the whole episode made him feel sad and cheated.
“Yes, RM800 is a very large sum of money to me. I felt very happy to think that I was going to get such financial assistance.
“But only to find out later that I had been deceived for RM100 and covertly converted, I really felt cheated."
Jusman's wife Lenny said the so-called conversion meant nothing to all of them.
“We are still Christians. We still go to church every Sunday and the church has been packed since this incident.”
After more than two weeks of mental agony, Lenny said she felt “happier” now as Christian non-governmental organisations in the state had engaged a lawyer to seek legal redress and see how the villagers could get out of their religious predicament.
“I had never thought of being a Muslim and never want to be one.”
The villagers, led by the neighbour who told them of the assistance, Makadan Masabu, 54, had lodged a police report over the alleged covert conversion.
They urged police to investigate their claim of covert conversion so that they not only retain their faith as Christians but to warn others who might be similarly tricked. – January 20, 2014.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

BN lame excuse for price hikes

Look who’s talking, DAP ticks off Putrajaya over claims of control by pro-opposition businessmen

JANUARY 19, 2014
DAP has denied that the hike in prices of goods and services is caused by pro-opposition middlemen. – The Malaysian Insider pic, January 19, 2014.It is really a case of the pot calling the kettle black when Putrajaya claimed that unscrupulous pro-opposition middlemen are responsible for raising the prices of goods and services, said the DAP.
Its national publicity chief Tony Pua said Barisan Nasional has been cultivating crony businessmen to dominate, monopolise and control the supply and distribution of many basic goods and services over the past 30 years.
He said the price of rice had been rising because Bernas Bhd had been given the right to monopolise its import.
"Bernas Bhd is a private company owned by Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhary and it holds the rights to import rice on behalf of traders in Malaysia.
"Therefore, the company makes fat and easy profits while at the same time causing the price of rice to increase. The same applies to many other essential goods, including sugar," Pua said in a statement.
His comments come after Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor had blamed pro-opposition middlemen for the rise in the prices of goods and services.
Pua said Tenaga Nasional Berhad has been forced by Barisan Nasional to purchase the majority of its electricity from independent power producers (IPPs).
"Why has the electricity tariffs increased?" Pua asked, adding that TNB paid the IPPs significantly higher prices for the electricity that it could actually produce on its own at lower prices.
He also noted that the prices of medicine in Malaysian hospitals were 148% more expensive compared to Australia.
"This is because Putrajaya forced our hospitals to purchase medicines from their designated middlemen, Pharmaniaga Bhd," Pua said.
He highlighted the infamous RM482 million Shah Alam Hospital project, which was awarded to Sunshine Fleet Sdn Bhd.
"The project was subcontracted wholly to another contractor by Sunshine Fleet for RM451 million in 2007."
Pua said despite the millions of ringgit already paid out by Putrajaya, until today, the project has stalled with no signs of being completed.
"These are all excellent examples of how pro-Barisan Nasional cronies and middlemen have caused the prices of goods and services to rise in Malaysia," Pua pointed out.
He said Putrajaya's spendthrift ways and extravagant tastes have also caused the country's fiscal deficit to rise.
"It is a knock-on effect, when Malaysia's fiscal deficit rises, the country's credit rating is affected, forcing Putrajaya to embark on massive subsidy reduction which results in today's painful inflation."
Pua said Tengku Adnan's attempt to blame pro-opposition middlemen for the hike in prices of goods and services proved that he was nothing more than a "kangkung minister".
"This is one of the most ridiculous excuses and accusations made by a Barisan Nasional minister. It shows they have run out of plausible excuses to defend the rising prices in Malaysia," he said.
Pua issued a challenge to Tengku Adnan to name the so-called pro-opposition middlemen who were increasing prices of goods and services.
"If Pakatan Rakyat truly controlled the economy through these middlemen, Barisan Nasional would have lost Putrajaya in the 13th general election," he said.
"Why does Tengku Adnan wait until 2014 to come out and make these ridiculous remarks? Stirring discontent should be before a general election, not after!"
Pua told Tengku Adnan to stop looking for "kangkung excuses" to defend Barisan Nasional and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
Yesterday, Tengku Adnan had blamed pro-opposition middlemen for deliberately increasing prices of goods and services, and inciting the public's hatred against Barisan Nasional.
His comments came following a series of memes and YouTube clips mocking Najib over remarks that he had made last week when speaking about the cost of living.
Najib had complained that Putrajaya is blamed whenever the prices of goods rise, but not praised when they fall, pointing out that the cost of kangkung (water spinach) has dropped.
The prime minister’s remarks on kangkung resulted in parodies by netizens and attracted global interest, with British news service BBC publishing a report titled “#BBCtrending: Be careful what you say about spinach”. – January 19, 2014.

Send Zakir Naik back or get him to S. Arabia where he has citizenship

Why empower a demagogue like Zakir Naik? By   Dennis Ignatius   - August 13, 2019 8:00 AM Whatever else you may say about ...