Thursday, July 8, 2010

Lebanon: Death sought for 3 Palestinians in failed assassination

Lebanon: Death sought for 3 Palestinians in failed assassination

Lebanon: Death sought for 3 Palestinians in failed assassination

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 06:44 AM PDT

See? It's OK with Arabs to seek death for Palestinian terrorists in Lebanon. Why do they have a problem when Israel wants to do the exact same thing?

BEIRUT (AFP) — A Lebanese military court on Wednesday sought the death penalty for three Palestinians fugitives over the attempted murder of the police intelligence bureau chief, the National News Agency reported.

"Prosecutor Fadi Sawwan is seeking to put Fadi Zeidan, Abdel Nasser al-Duwali and Oussama Shehabi on death row for a 2006 terrorist attack that aimed to kill Lieutenant Colonel Samir Shehadeh," the head of police intelligence at the time, the state-run agency reported.

Shehadeh survived the attack, but his four bodyguards were killed in the roadside bombing just south of Beirut.

The three Palestinians are currently hiding from authorities in the refugee camp of Ain al-Helweh in southern Lebanon, according to the charge sheet. More... Hat tip: Eye On The World

Our Friends, the Saudis? By Clifford D. May

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 06:31 AM PDT

Last week, Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah was welcomed to the White House by President Obama. According to the Washington Post, their meeting provided an opportunity "to demonstrate the friendship between their countries, a point the king was particularly keen on highlighting. 'I would like to say to the friendly American people that the American people are friends of Saudi Arabia and its people, and they are friends of the Arab and Muslim people, and they are also friends of humanity,' Abdullah said."

Did you, friendly American person, happen to notice that while His Highness confirmed that Americans are friends of Saudis, Arabs, and Muslims, he did not say that Saudis, Arabs, and Muslims are friends of Americans? If you think that's being picky, consider: Also last week, Nina Shea and Bonnie Alldredge reported that the textbooks used in Saudi-funded schools around the world remain decidedly unfriendly. They teach "that Jews and Christians are 'enemies,' and they dogmatically instruct that various groups of 'unbelievers' — apostates (which includes Muslim moderates who reject Saudi Wahhabi doctrine), polytheists (which includes Shiites), and Jews — should be killed."

Is there a relationship between such teachings and what Obama calls "violent extremism"? Is it more than coincidence that 15 of the 19 violent extremists who carried out the atrocities of Sept. 11, 2001 were Saudis? These are questions not likely to be seriously examined on the many campuses — e.g. Georgetown, Berkeley, Harvard — where Middle Eastern—studies departments receive multi-million-dollar grants from friendly Saudi princes.

Also recall: Osama bin Laden, born in Saudi Arabia, became radicalized while attending college in the Saudi city of Jeddah where his instructors included Muhammad Qutb. Muhammad Qutb's brother Sayyid Qutb studied in the United States from 1948 to 1950, where he learned to abhor American materialism, individualism, and the "animal-like" mixing of males and females — "even in churches." Sayyid Qutb's many books and articles helped shape modern Islamism, which I would define as the movement dedicated to Islamic supremacy and domination; a world ruled by Muslims under sharia — Islamic law which, Islamists believe, is God's law and therefore is unchallengeable.

Not all Muslims are Islamists — far from it. But to say that Islamists have hijacked Islam is also mistaken. Mohammad, who established the religion in the 7th century, was not only a prophet. He was a warrior and a conqueror as well. At the end of his life, Mohammad instructed his followers "to fight all men until they say, 'There is no god but Allah.'"

Saudi history in a nutshell: In the 9th century, the scholar and theologian Ahmad Ibn Hanbal founded what would become a small, strict school of Fiqh or Islamic jurisprudence. In the 18th century, this Hanbali School produced Ibn Abd al-Wahhab, a religious scholar who made a fateful alliance with Muhammad ibn Saud, an Arabian tribal chief.

Ibn Saud pledged to spread al-Wahhab's fundamentalist interpretation of Islam, later known as Wahhabism. In exchange, al-Wahhab agreed to lend theological legitimacy to the Saudis — but not to their rivals. Continue here to page 2 of the National Review

Turkey: Christians in Danger by John F. Cullinan

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 06:31 AM PDT

Bishop Luigi Padovese, stabbed to death last month, is the latest victim of Turkey's growing hostility to Christians.

For all the attention Turkey has gotten lately, very few Americans are aware that the Roman Catholic bishop serving as apostolic vicar of Anatolia was stabbed to death and decapitated last month by an assailant shouting, "Allahu Akbar! I have killed the great Satan!" There are fewer than 60 Catholic priests in all of Turkey, and yet Bishop Luigi Padovese was the fifth of them to be shot or stabbed in the last four years, starting with the murder of Fr. Andrea Santoro in 2006, also by an assailant shouting, "Allahu Akbar!" (An Armenian journalist and three Protestants working at a Christian publishing house — one of them German, the other two Turkish converts — were also killed during this period.)

What's going on? Why has traditionally secularist Turkey, with its minuscule Christian community (less than 0.2 percent of the population), lately become nearly as dangerous for Christians as neighboring Iraq? And why has this disturbing pattern of events so far escaped notice in the West? In a nutshell, all these violent acts reflect a popular culture increasingly shaped by Turkish media accounts deliberately promoting hatred of Christians and Jews.

As it happens, Bishop Padovese was murdered on the same day (June 3) that the Wall Street Journal published an eye-opening report on how Turkey's press and film industry have increasingly blurred the distinction between fact and fantasy, especially since the Islamist Justice and Development Party (AKP) took power in 2002. "To follow Turkish discourse in recent years has been to follow a national decline into madness." That's how Robert L. Pollock, editorial-features editor of the Journal, summed up the trajectory of the daily fare that shapes Turks' attitudes toward the outside world — and toward non-Muslims in their midst. Indeed, much of what passes for fact in Turkish public discourse would be comical if not for the deadly consequences.

Take, for instance, the wildly popular 2006 film Valley of the Wolves, later serialized for television. An earlier Journal piece summing up the plot as "a cross between American Psycho in uniform and the Protocols of the Elders of Zion" hardly does it justice. The plot turns on blood-crazed American soldiers committing war crimes for fun and profit in Iraq. These include the harvesting of body parts from murdered Iraqi civilians on an industrial scale (overseen by a Jewish doctor, of course) for shipment in crates clearly labeled New York and Tel Aviv.

Valley of the Wolves is the most expensive and most commercially successful Turkish feature film ever. Worse yet, it comes with the endorsement of leading AKP figures, such as the speaker of the parliament ("absolutely magnificent") and the mayor of Istanbul ("a great screenplay"). Mr. Pollock's judgment? "It is no exaggeration to say that such anti-Semitic fare had not been played to mass audiences in Europe since the Third Reich." Continued here to page 2 of the National Review...

Kerajaan Guna Akta Zalim Sekat Kebebasan Bersuara

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 06:02 AM PDT

Apabila demokrasi di hukum mati — Mohamed Hanipa Maidin

Kerajaan BN yang zalim telah mengggunakan Akta zalim iaitu Akta Penerbitan dan Pencetakan 1984 bagi melarang PKR untuk menerbitkan akhbar Suara Keadilan. Tulisan ini ingin membawa para pembaca melihat dan mengenali Akta draconian ini dengan lebih dekat supaya para pembaca dapat melihat kezalimannya dengan lebih dekat.

Harapan saya selepas para membaca artikel ini dan mengenali betapa buruknya Akta ini maka kita dapat bersama-sama dengan satu nada menyumpah Akta ini dan berdoa agar Akta ini dapat dimusnahkan dengan kadar segera.

Di dalam Islam hanya Allah yang ada kuasa mutlak. Kuasa manusia tidak mutlak. Kuasa manusia boleh dibahas dan dipertikaikan. Jika kita lihat Akta Akta Penerbitan dan Pencetakan 1984 ianya berpaksikan atas satu dasar sahaja iaitu Menteri Dalam Negeri adalah berkuasa penuh dan tiada siapa boleh persoalkan kuasa mutlak tersebut hatta Mahkamah.

Akta ini mengingatkan saya kepada kata-kata Lord Acton yang masyhur iaitu "power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely" ("Kuasa itu merosakkan dan kuasa yang mutlak rosak secara mutlak") .

Ayuh mari kita berkenalan dengan Akta zalim ini.

Seksyen 6 ( 1 ) ( a ) memperuntukkan bahawa Menteri boleh melalui budibicaranya yang mutlak memberikan kebenaran atau permit kepada mana-mana orang untuk menncetak dan menerbitkan suratkhabar di Negara ini tetapi dalam masa yang sama di bawah seksyen 6 ( 2 ) Menteri yang sama juga diberikan kuasa mutlak untuk membatalkan permit suratkhabar atau menggantungnya seberapa lama yang Menteri itu mahu.

Seksyen 13A ( 1 ) Akta Penerbitan dan Pencetakan 1984 memperuntukkan bahawa keputusan Menteri untuk tidak memberikan, membatalkan permit atau menggantung permit adalah muktamad dan keputusan tersebut tidak boleh dipersoalkan oleh mana-mana Mahkamah atas apa alasan sekalipun.

Seksyen 5 pula mengandungi 10 kesalahan yang boleh dikenakan ke atas mana-mana orang iaitu kesalahan-kesalahannya adalah mencetak, mengimport ,menerbitkan, menjual dan mengedar mana-mana suratkhabar yang tidak mendapat permit dari Menteri atau kesalahan atau menawarkan diri untuk mencetak, menawarkan diri untuk mengimport , menawarkan diri untuk menerbitkan,menawarkan diri untuk menjual dan menawarkan diri untuk mengedar mana-mana suratkhabar yang tidak mendapat permit dari Menteri.

Mana-mana orang yang didapati melakukan mana-mana kesalahan dari 10 kesalahan di atas boleh ditangkap dan jika didapati bersalah oleh Mahkamah boleh dihukum dengan hukuman penjara tidak lebih dari 3 tahun penjara atau dengan hukuman denda yang tidak melebihi RM 20,000-00 atau kedua-duanya.

Akta ini juga memberikan kuasa kepada Pendakwa Raya, jika dia mendakwa mana-mana orang di bawah mana-mana peruntukkan Akta ini, untuk meminta Mahkamah menggantung penerbitan akhbar tersebut dan jika Mahkamah berbuat demikian ianya adalah suatu yang sah di bawah seksyen 8c ( 2 ) Akta tersebut.

Akta ini juga berdasarkan seksyen 12 ( 1 ) memberi kuasa mutlak kepada Menteri untuk meletakkan apa-apa syarat di atas permit yang diberikan dan kuasa Menteri ini juga tidak boleh dipersoalkan oleh mana-mana Mahkamah atas apa-apa alasan sekalipun.
Kita tentu tidak lupa bagaimana akhbar Harakah pernah dikenakan syarat-syarat yang tidak munasabah oleh Menteri meskipun permit dikeluarkan.

Saya masih ingat sewaktu mewakili Harakah memfailkan semakan kehakiman bagi mencabar keputusan Menteri suatu ketika dahulu. Harakah telah mencabar syarat-syarat yang dirasakan tidak munasabah yang dikenakan ke atas akhbar tersebut.

Saya masih ingat salah satu syarat yang dikenakan kepada Harakah adalah ia hanya boleh menerbitkan berita tentang PAS sahaja . Maknanya kalau Harakah hentam Umno di dalam akhbar tersebut ia dikira melanggar syarat permit. Tidakkah ini syarat gila yang hanya boleh dikenakan oleh Kerajaan gila seperti Kerajaan BN.

Meskipun jangka hayat permit suratkhabar itu adalah untuk tempoh 12 bulan daripada tarikh permit dikeluarkan namun berdasarkan seksyen 12 ( 1 ) Menteri juga diberi kuasa mutlak untuk meletakkan syarat di dalam permit bahawa tempoh usia permit itu dikurangkan dari 12 bulan.

Seksyen 12 ( 2 ) secara jelas menyatakan Menteri mempunyai kuasa mutlak untuk tidak meluluskan permohonan bagi mendapatkan permit. Dan di bawah seksyen 12 ( 2 ) inilah Menteri telah menggunakan kuasa mutlaknya itu untuk tidak memperbaharui permit akhbar Suara Keadilan.

Harus diingatkan Menteri tidak perlu memberi apa-apa alasan mengapa ia enggan memperbarui permit Suara Keadilan.

Di dalam undang-undang pentadbiran ( administrative law ) sebarang keputusan pihak awam seperti kuasa Menteri perlu mematuhi prinsip keadilan asasi ( natural justice ) di mana salah satu prinsip itu adalah apa yang dipanggil " audi alteram partem" ( seseorang hendaklah diberi hak untuk didengar ).

Diterjemah di dalam kes akhbar Suara Keadilan sepatutnnya Menteri hendaklah memberi hak tersebut kepada PKR apabila ia memutuskan untuk tidak mahu memberikan permit kepada Suara Keadilan. Adakah tindakan Menteri tersebut boleh dicabar ? Jawabnya tidak kerana seksyen 13B dengan secara jelas memberi kekebalan kepada Menteri apabila diperuntukkan bahawa mana-mana orang yang tidak diberikan permit atau digantung permitnya tidak perlu diberi hak untuk didengar oleh Menteri.

Akhirnya Akta ini juga membenarkan mana-mana orang yang ditangkap kerana disyaki melakukan apa-apa kesalahan di bawah Akta ini tanpa perlu waran tangkap dari Mahkamah ( lihat seksyen 20 Akta ) .

Seterusnya jika pihak penguatkuasa KDN melakukan penggeledahan dan rampasan dan berlaku kerosakan mereka juga kebal dari sebarang tuntutan gantirugi dan mereka tidak boleh disaman di Mahkamah ( lihat seksyen 24 )

Amat menghairankan hanya kerana Suara Keadilan menyerang bertubi-tubi pengurusan Felda – agensi di bawah jagaan dan kawalan Najib- maka ia dihukum dengan hukuman yang amat berat – tidak boleh lagi diterbit dan dicetak akhbar tersebut. Kita tidak faham kenapakah Suara Keadilan perlu di hukum dengan hukuman sebegitu berat. Jika pun berita tentang Felda itu adalah satu fitnah ke atas Felda bukankah Felda dibenarkan oleh undang-undang untuk menyaman akhbar itu dan menuntut gantirugi .

Tidakkah akhbar pro Umno juga banyak kali menyiarkan berita fitnah dan bohong dan mengapakah mereka tidak pernah dihukum seperti Suara Keadilan?

Suatu yang amat ganjil parti apabila politik berdaftar seperti PKR dinafikan haknya yang fundamental iaitu menyebarkan mesejnya kepada rakyat melalui penerbitan akhbar. Jika Perlembagaan Perskutuan di dalam Perkara 10 ( 1 ) memberi kebebasan bersuara yang mana hak itu termasuk kebebasan akhbar Akta zalim ini menjadikan hak dan kebebasan di dalam undang-undang tertinggi tersebut tidak lagi bermakna dan hanya satu ilusi atau mimpi.

Sayugia diingatkan apabila BN menghukum Suara Keadilan menggunakan Akta zalim itu pada hakikatnya BN sedang menjatuhkan hukuman mati ke atas demokrasi. Apabila hak bersuara PKR dinafikan BN pada hakikatnya sedang mencabut oksigen dari tabung atau balang demokrasi. Pembunuh demokrasi wajib dihukum mati oleh hakim yang berkuasa di negara ini-rakyat atau pengundi .

Apa lagi – marilah kita sama-sama menyumpah Akta zalim ini 33 kali dalam sehari!

Malaysia to face double-dip recession...

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 05:15 AM PDT

Malaysia may face double-dip recession, most probably during the second half of this year. Former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who just returned from England said should it happens, the impact on the domestic economy would be severe (read here).

As there were already such signs hitting most parts of Europe, Malaysia would also be 'infected', he said, commenting on predictions made by economists and analysts that a double-dip recession may occur in the second-half of this year and whether Malaysia would suffer the same fate.

While saying the government had in place several economic plans and adopted progressive measures like the New Economic Plan, Dr Mahathir said it would, however, be difficult to predict the future as whatever occured overseas would have repercussions on Malaysia.

However in Hong Kong, the IMF chief economist Olivier Blanchard said the global economy is unlikely to slip back into recession over the next few years, although such a scenario is not impossible (

Any country, he said needed to return to a sustainable level of fiscal spending. The IMF revised upward its 2010 world GDP forecast but said there were significant risks to the global recovery stemming from Europe's debt problems. The IMF lowered its 2011 GDP growth forecasts for Britain, Canada, the euro zone, emerging economies and Japan.

In the United States, debate is brewing about whether the bond curve can be a trusty gauge in a post-bubble, deleveraging environment that many key industrialized economies face (

The yield curve, or the spread between yields on short-term and long-term US. treasuries, has contracted through the recent market turmoil, beginning in April — a sign, pundits argue, that the economy is beginning to price in a weaker economy. But recent research from the US Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, based on the yield curve, puts the chances of the US economy falling back into recession at only 12.4 per cent.

However, this report
here should be well read and understood. It says high debt and slowed growth - the nasty cold bug plaguing developed markets - spread to emerging economies in the second quarter, and significantly decreased output as a result, according to HSBC.

The bank's Emerging Markets Index report, released Wednesday, shows that manufacturing growth in emerging markets (like Malaysia) contracted sharply in the second quarter from the record pace set in the first. "Although output remains above the long-term average, it is below the average seen before the financial crisis," the report says.


Posted: 08 Jul 2010 05:03 AM PDT

Local news reports indicate that there is a new fad in town - name calling - where some politicians take delight in giving selected politicians a new 'name'. Last year, we had a season of frogs and this year we have seen a new 'chameleon' season. It almost seems as though some are on a creativity spurt in this area. Even the Sarawak CM has not been spared as he is also called 'Pak Uban' or "Bai Mao' or 'white-haired uncle. Barry Wain called TDM 'The Malaysian Maverick. In wartime, the other side gets given a whole slew of derogatory names. For example, during WW2, the Germans were called Huns, Krauts, the Boche, etc. while Japanese were called Nips, Japs, Slant-eyes and other uncomplimentary names - a practise which must not be encouraged at all.

This evening, I came across an article HERE where it was reported that Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin today called Wee Choo Keong a "substandard MP" and described the PKR turned independent lawmaker as the Chinese version of Perkasa chief Datuk Ibrahim Ali.

Excerpt from the report:

"Quality of Wee Chee Keong's (sic) interventions are extremely poor. I think he's a substandard MP," said Khairy in his tweet to MCA Youth chief Datuk Dr Wee Ka Siong.

"I think he's the Chinese version of Ib Ali (Ibrahim Ali)," he added.

Khairy was making an apparent reference to the similarities between Choo Keong and Ibrahim because both had been members of various political parties in their careers.

The fiery Perkasa chief was recently embroiled in bitter verbal spats with Khairy and Ka Siong recently over Malay rights.

Khairy also expressed hope that MCA would not take in Choo Keong as a member.

Ka Siong replied, also via Twitter, that Choo Keong could never "rejoin" the party.
It is commendable that Khairy made this stand and also the call for the abolishment of the Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984 (although there is much about his past that we cannot forget).

In the first place, why is name-calling practised? We can see that name calling often occurs in political and wartime scenarios. This site says that it is the use of derogatory language or words that carry a negative connotation when describing an enemy. What then is the purpose of name calling? Well, this sort of propaganda intends to "arouse prejudice among the public by labeling the target something that the public dislikes". We can see how some practise name calling through the use of sarcasm and ridicule in political cartoons or writings. When examining name calling propaganda.

Such a practise does not augur well for the person who labels others by this new names because it is reminiscent of childish behaviour at elementary school whereby kids would call their classmates "fatty/fat soul", "nerd", "geek" or other uncomplimentary names.

Commonly, when the name is given, it makes others laugh at the target. With the label, they can go on to criticize their lack of values or to denounce their ideals as can be seen in the case mentioned earlier. Sometimes humor or malice can be used to turn around their words and actions, taking them out of context and amplifying them to drown out any denial (making denial seem like admission of guilt).

In the international scene, we can see how some use other double-binds such that whatever they say or do only mires them more deeply.

The basic method seems to be merely finding a name that pokes fun at them and then to use it at every opportunity to show up their weaknesses. Sometimes, the intention could be to make opponents appear stupid, immoral or otherwise undesirable.

It could also be used to show up certain negative traits in the person which can affect society or the group to which they belong. However, it is clear that the victim of the name-calling act is likely to retaliate such as seen in the way DSAI reacted when called a 'chameleon'.

I guess the most common label used in our country is that of a frog because if not for those frogs, there would certainly be more peace, harmony and unity in our land!

As we all know, mud sticks so name-calling associates the other person with something that is despised or is inferior in some way. Therefore, anyone who associates with that person, will also get a fair share of the mud that will stick to them. On the other hand, the more the other person is socially isolated, the more that others will avoid the person. What happens then? We can see a spiral of isolation that neutralizes opponents and sends a chilling warning to those who might follow in that person's path. So far, it has not happened in our country for the frogs have banded together and seem to be gaining strength and momentum!

In political elections, it is easy for anyone to descend into name-calling from which there is no recovery.

Suffice to say that politicians should avoid this practise of name-calling, especially if they are not paragons of virtue themselves. Otherwise, it would be a case of pot calling the kettle black! The reality is that the scenario is quite a muddy affair altogether and it almost seems as though some are relishing the mud bath! The only way out is to demonstrate integrity and a consistent stand in issue instead of waffling to and fro. May there be more men and women of honor who can step forward to serve the country!

No more name calling please except the ones given by our parents!

So this is the fine example of Democracy, Human Rights and Freedom of Speech !!!

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 04:16 AM PDT

WASHINGTON, July 8 – CNN has fired a senior editor for Middle East news after she published a Twitter message that said she respected a Lebanese Shi'ite cleric branded a terrorist by the United States, US and British media said today.

The Grand Ayatollah Mohammed Hussein Fadlallah, one of Shi'ite Islam's highest religious authorities and an early mentor of the militant group Hezbollah, died in Beirut on Sunday.

Octavia Nasr, a 20-year CNN veteran based in Atlanta, wrote on Twitter: "Sad to hear of the passing of Sayyed Mohammed Hussein Fadlallah … One of Hezbollah's giants I respect a lot," the New York Times reported.

Some supporters of Israel saw the Twitter posting almost immediately and took issue with it, the Times said. CNN officials were not immediately available to speak to Reuters.

The Times cited Parisa Khosravi, the senior vice president for CNN International Newsgathering, as saying in an internal memorandum that she "had a conversation" with Nasr and that "we have decided that she will be leaving the company".

Fadlallah was a supporter of Iran's Islamic Revolution and one of the first backers of the Iraqi Dawa Party of Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki. He was also the spiritual leader and mentor of Hezbollah when it was formed after Israel invaded Lebanon in 1982, though he later distanced himself from its ties with Iran.

CNN officials became aware of Nasr's message on Monday, and a spokesman said on Tuesday that it was an "error of judgment" on her part, the Times reported.

"CNN regrets any offence her Twitter message caused. It did not meet CNN's editorial standards. This is a serious matter and will be dealt with accordingly," the spokesman said, according to the Times.

The BBC report said that Nasr wrote in a blog post on Tuesday: "Reaction to my tweet was immediate, overwhelming and provides a good lesson on why 140 characters should not be used to comment on controversial or sensitive issues, especially those dealing with the Middle East." –

SOURCE: CNN fires veteran editor for Mideast over Tweet via Reuters

Expanding Pakatan bullish on next GE

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 03:36 AM PDT

By Shannon Teoh

July 05, 2010

Pakatan Rakyat leaders attend the launch of FoPR in London yesterday, July 4, 2010. — Picture by Danny Lim

LONDON, July 5 — Pakatan Rakyat (PR) leaders continued their bullish stance towards a possible snap election by insisting that they would win big, when launching an outreach programme here yesterday.

Despite losing five MPs this year, they further taunted Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak by stating that the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition was running scared.

"Umno is in a state of panic. They see enemies everywhere," PR secretariat chief Datuk Zaid Ibrahim told a crowd of over 200 at the launch of Friends of Pakatan Rakyat (FoPR) in London.

Other leaders at the FoPR launch, such as PAS treasurer Dr Mohd Hatta Ramli, DAP's Kepong MP Dr Tan Seng Giaw and Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar, were also confident of expanding their historic wins in Election 2008 into the next general election, which must be held by 2013.

Their upbeat mood followed Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's statement last week that PR would be ready should BN opt to dissolve Parliament early.

The government's reluctance to upset the majority Malays has led to policy reversals and reform pullbacks that are fuelling talk Najib may be readying to get his own mandate as prime minister. The last election was led by Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, who stepped down in April 2009.

Najib raised constituency allocations for BN MPs from RM1 million to RM1.5 million last month, leading to further speculation.

Dr Hatta expressed his belief that there was a significant possibility of a snap election after Umno vice president Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said yesterday that the time had come for BN to go to the polls to prove that they have overcome past mistakes.

"If it's in September, we will win big. If it's next year, we will win even bigger," the Kuala Krai MP said.

Zaid added that "ministers are talking rubbish all the time, because they are panicking over early elections.

"When you start banning newspapers, charging people for sedition and play races against each other and manufacture enemies, that's the sign of an emerging fascist government. We cannot afford to let that happen," the former de facto law minister said.

He also claimed that the constant persecution of opposition figures while Umno figures got away with outrageous statements was evidence that the Malay party had "destroyed all sense of fairness in the system."

"Najib can blatantly buy elections by promising millions because they know they will never be prosecuted," he said, referring to his recent defeat in the Hulu Selangor by-elections where the prime minister handed out millions to sway voters including RM3 million he promised to a Chinese school if BN won the poll as well, as in the Sibu by-election where the prime minister made a similar appeal.

Nurul Izzah expounded on how PR was more than just "not BN", but a viable alternative today.

Nurul, who is Anwar's eldest daughter, stressed that PR had established a Common Policy Framework; while in Selangor, it has introduced a select committee to ensure the integrity of lawmakers and are set to table the Freedom of Information Act in the state assembly.

"The only innovation from BN is Perkasa," she said, referring to the Malay rights group led by Pasir Mas MP Datuk Ibrahim Ali.

"Change will come and [the] next general election will not be something easily forgotten by BN," she promised.

Dr Hatta added that in the last elections, DAP, PKR and PAS had only formed an electoral pact to avoid three-corner fights and campaigned individually, whereas this time they would campaign together and make sacrifices for each other.

"This administration should have been over in the last general election. Victory is within reach," he said.

Dr Tan also insisted that PR would not wait to capture government state-by-state but would be taking over both federal and state governments "simultaneously."

"While we cannot ensure that PR will be 100 per cent clean once we are in government, we promise that we will show no mercy to those who are corrupt. We must have integrity," the DAP vice-chairman said.

A Series of Unfortunate Events

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 03:17 AM PDT

It started on Monday night. We were getting ready to go out for dinner when Azman started to walk sideways. Ala ketam mabuk todi. "OMG!" He said, "I have lost my balance!" I never knew he had vertigo and he seemed fine so we went ahead driving to dine in PJ. By the time we reach Jalan Gasing, Azman seriously couldn't drive and he pulled over at the curb and I took over the wheel.

I was like "YOU GOTTA SEE A DOCTOOORRRRR!" I was almost confident that he was hit with high blood pressure. Inside my head all possibilities came flashing one by one including blaming myself for serving delicious super terrific roast lamb for dinner the night before.

He was like "I am fine, shut up and drive."

So I drove and but by the time our food was served he couldn't eat for his head was terribly spinning and he was nausea. OMG Is my husband pregnant?! I am on the pills who is the mother?

I fed Miki quickly and we sped off to KPMC Puchong. As I had expected the first thing the Doctor checked was his b.p and syukur Alhamdulillah it was normal. He was however slightly feverish. They did blood test as well to check for his sugar. Just after I was relieved to hear he had normal b.p, sekali lagi aku nak pengsan when the Doctor asked if he has always had diabetes?

Diabetes = Aku menjanda.Okk???

Ok that equation is a bit too much but hell I was worried about my husband. His sugar level turned out  normal as well. Thank God. So what is the explanation for the dizziness? Well the next possible reason is his cholesterol level. When the Doctor mentioned cholesterol I immediately said farewell to my new oven. I was going to make meatloaf and roast lamb legs there ok? If Azman has high cholesterol. He and I and Miki and our parents and our rabbits WILL BECOME VEGETARIAN! Wait a minute…. In exception to Miki's slippers for tea time snack, the rabbits ARE vegetarian, right?

The result for the cholesterol test hasn't been released from the lab as I am typing this but I am seriously praying to God that the result will be normal and Azman is sihat walafiat. I really hope he was dizzy due to over exposure of Spongebob Squarepant full episode 3 that Miki has been playing over and over again despite having memorized all the stories and the lines and the songs and he has even told us the stories back a hundred times but he is still playing it it is so annoying panjangnya ayat ni aku akan jadi gile lah lama-lama tengok Spongebob macam ni….!!!!! *tarik napas* *hembus napas*

And then…

On Wednesday, I arrived home at 7pm. As I was driving with Miki on the passenger seat into my driveway, I saw my porch has been a complete mess. Burglars had entered our compound. I was calm. From watching all those CSI, I knew I shouldn't tempered with the crime scene so I remained in the car and called Azman. Then I got out from the car and walk around the curb to see my wet kitchen/laundry room lights was on. I ransacked all the memory-recording brain cells inside my head (I don't have so many); trying to remember DID I LEAVE IT ON THIS MORNING? All my doors and windows were perfectly closed but who switched on the lights ughhhh!!!

My next statement is not me being racist but honestly peeps, it is well known to all of us that there are a bunch of Indians going around the city collecting scrap metal for living. Sometimes they take a little extra initiative in getting more income by stealing. These guys are harmless in the sense that they won't hurt you or break inside your house but stealing can still make one's blood boil.

Only when Azman arrived we entered our house compound and found the boxes stacked neatly at the porch has been broken, the content spilled over the floor… Luckily, syukur Alhamdulillah they didn't break into the house else we could have lost more than the three pairs on Azman's futsal shoes, football boots, formal black shoes, loyang buat kek aku, a door stopper that cost RM79, a gorgeous wooden ship model that Azman bought in Vietnam and several other metal stuff.

Azman was kinda pissed that he lost his expensive shoes. I was kinda pissed off they didn't take my shoes! What you people think my shoes takde harga ke?? Kasut aku lagi mahal lah!!

Anyway, our main suspect (the Indian scrap metal collector guys) was also the main suspect of the Police. The Officer that took our report at Puchong Police Station told us that their modus operandi is highly influenced by the latest Tamil movie. Why are you laughing? I am not kidding.

After Sivaji the Boss movie was released the were cases of burglary armed with parang reported. Simple because parang-armed super macho men with thick mustache had made a significant scene in the movie. Kebangangan melampau apakah ini haaa? Vodooooh siyalllll….

But the again, the whole mishap was indeed a result of our own carelessness. We shouldn't have kept valuable things out there on the porch. Although the things are not really valuable for us but it is very tempting for those lazy idiots.

And then…

Today I walked out the elevator to my office, Azman gave me a call on my cellphone. His car has broken down at Kampung Abu Bakar Baginda in Bangi. He needed help pronto. So the super wife jumped back into her car (sambil rambut mengurai terbang style gitu…) and went to the rescue. The rambut mengurai is lawak ajerrr ok.. so I picked him up and yata yata yata… the car is ok already. It only costs around RM200. The sakit otak costs so much more.

Well, it is only Thursday. Do not know what tomorrow has got to offer. I seriously hope it is gonna be alright. Although it has been a pretty bad week but I am still positive and thankful because Azman didn't have diabetes or high b.p. People broke in our garden but only took shoes. The car was broken but it was just a minor problem. God still loves me. These are all gentle reminders from above I guess. I need to get back on track…

Tubuh Suruhanjaya Bebas Siasat Kes Kematian Yang Ditembak Polis

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 02:57 AM PDT

Sebanyak 26 pertubuhan masyarakat negeri Johor termasuk parti politik menggesa kerajaan menubuhkan badan siasatan bebas untuk menyiasat kes-kes kematian melibatkan penggunaan kekerasan atau senjata oleh anggota polis.

Ahli Parlimen Ipoh Timur, Lim Kit Siang berkata dengan petisyen yang baru diterimanya di Parlimen daripada pertubuhan Suara hak Asasi Manusia (Suaram) pagi tadi, mereka juga mendesak kerajaan mendedahkan laporan siasatan dengan kadar segera.

Pada sidang media di parlimen tadi, wakil Suaram menyerahkan petisyen 26 Parti Politik dan Pertubuhan Masyarakat Negeri Johor Kepada Perdana Menteri melalui Lim Kit Siang. Petisyen itu diserahkan oleh Kordinator Suaram Johor Bahru, Fang Pei Fen.

Dalam kandungan petisyen tersebut memperincikan beberapa desakan antaranya meminta Ketua Polis Negara meletakkan jawatan dan mengambil tindakan undang-undang ke atas anggota polis yang terbabit.

"Ketua Polis Negara dengan hanya menyebelahi hujah anak buahnya, bukan sahaja menolak tuntutan munasabah pihak keluarga mangsa dan masyarakat, malah mengeluarkan kenyataan yang angkuh dan sombong. Beliau harus meletak jawatan dengan segera. Anggota polis yag terbabit harus dibicara dan menerima hukuman dengan adil. Pihak kerajaan pula harus menegakkan keadilan dengan membersihkan nama baik mangsa dan memberi ganti rugi kepada ahli keluarga mangsa."

Koordinator Suaram Pusat, S. Arutchelvan menegaskan penubuhan badan bebas adalah perlu bagi memastikan siasatan yang adil, telus dan saksama bagi semua pihak.

"Hanya Suruhanjaya Diraja yang bebas dan berkuasa dpat mencungkil rahsia sebenar kematian mangsa-mangsa tembak mati polis. Lain dengan mahkamah koronel, Suruhanjaya Diraja mempunyai kuasa untuk memanggil saksi dalam proses penyiasatan. Suruhanjaya Diraja dibentuk daripada pakar undang-undang dan perubatan. Keputusan Suruhanjaya Diraja yang berdasarkan siasatan bebas dari pelbagai aspek dipercayai lebih adil. Suruhanjaya Diraja juga kelihatan lebih neutral dan berkecuali.

"Kami 26 organisasi di Johor termasuk NGO dan parti politik dan ingatkan di sini, ini satu insiden yang jelas ditembak mati dan kematian dalam tahanan terus berlaku dan kita tidak puas hati dengan siasatan yang dibuat oleh pihak polis.Polis tidak boleh menyiasat diri sendiri, kita perlu satu badan untuk menyiasat apa-apa salah polis terutamanya kematian kerana nyawa sudah hilang, nyawa itu hak untuk hidup."

Pada 20 Oktober 2009, seorang remaja Melayu, Mohd Afham Arin, 18 tahun ditembak mati.

Allahyarham Mohd Afham menunggang motosikal bersama Mohd Firdaus Marsawai yang juga berusia 18 tahun dikejar dan ditembak mati oleh tiga polis yang berpakaian biasa semasa dalam perjalanan dari Taman Johor Jaya ke Pasir Gudang.

Mohd Afham mati kerana kecederaan yang berpunca daripada tembakan pistol di arteri jantung tiga.

Pihak polis mendakwa tiga peronda bermotosikal cuba menahan motosikal yang dinaiki oleh Mohd Afham dan Mohd Firdaus kerana mereka disyaki terlibat dalam kes ragut yang berlaku di Taman Johor Jaya.

Tembakan dilepaskan oleh anggota polis atas alasan mempertahankan diri kerana pembonceng motosikal iaitu Mohd Firdaus melibas pisau dan pedang terhadap anggota polis.

"Jadi kita sentiasa mengambil berat mengenai kes tembak. Pihak polis sewenang-wenangnya tembak. Jadi kita ada dua kes ini yang pertama atas Afham dan satu lagi kes ke atas Agustin yang berlaku di Johor.

"Hari ini saya ada satu soalan mengenai kes tembakan atas kes ini dan Aminulrasyid dan meminta Menteri Dalam Negeri menyatakan apakah kerajaan perlu meminta maaf secara rasmi kerana sewenang-wenangnya menembak mereka termasuk Aminulrasyid dan apakah siasatan sudah dibuat oleh Menteri Dalam Negeri," kata Lim Kit Siang. -TVS


Posted: 08 Jul 2010 02:56 AM PDT


The Launch of Friends of Pakatan Rakyat

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 02:38 AM PDT

Friday, 02 July 2010

Friends of Pakatan Rakyat (FPR) is being officially launched as an organisation to rally the support of Malaysians who share the vision of the Pakatan Rakyat coalition for a better Malaysia. The launch will be held on the Sunday 4th of July 2010 in London and officiated by Datuk Zaid Ibrahim, the Pakatan Rakyat Secretariat Coordinator.

Speakers at the event will also include the ineffable Raja Petra Kamarudin as well as speakers from PAS and DAP together with a number of civil society activists  sharing their experiences in shaping the agenda of change in Malaysia.

Naturally we would like to attract as many as possible particularly the "unconverted" to experience first hand the depth of support that currently exists globally amongst Malaysians living abroad particularly in the UK.  The Friends of Pakatan Rakyat (FOPR) movement is currently being duplicated in various countries throughout Europe, Canada, USA, New Zealand, Australia, Asia, etc.  The objective is to harness the global strength of highly qualified Malaysians and former Malaysians living and working abroad to tap into their expertise and financial strength in preparedness for GE 13.

Date:   Sunday 4th of July

Time:  10.30 am to 4pm.
Registration begins at 10am

Venue: Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, Holborn, London WC1R 4RL


The programme for the day is as follows:
1000    Registration
Meet civil society activists

1100    Introduction & Welcome address by MC in the Main Hall

1110    Opening Address by Pro tem Chairman of Friends of Pakatan Rakyat – Brian Morais

1130    Speech by Raja Petra Kamarudin, Malaysia Today

1150    Speech by YB Dr Tan Seng Giaw, DAP Deputy Chairman and 7th Term MP Kepong

1210    Introduction to Civil Society Movements
Fair Comment
Abolish ISA Movement UK
Malaysia Freedom Film Festival
1225    Speech by Ustaz Idris Ahmad, Ketua Penerangan PAS

1245    Canapès & Lunch served by Mango Tree, Top Fine
Cuisine Restaurant, Belgravia, London  …

1400    Keynote speech by Pakatan Rakyat Secretariat Coordinator for PKR – Datuk Zaid Ibrahim

1430    Speech by YB Nurul Izzah Anwar,  PKR  MP for Lembah Pantai

1500    Q & A session

1630    End of Conference
This event will represent the largest gathering of overseas Malaysians max. possible 500 people, to demand a nation that we can all be proud and call home.

Do bring along your entire family.

For those with young children families, provisions will be made for a playroom and creche.

To join us on this momentous occasion, please indicate your interest by registering online at

Do register early as seats are limited and pass this invitation to your other friends.

Be part of the torch that lights the spirit of hope for Malaysia.



Posted: 08 Jul 2010 01:36 AM PDT

I tried to climb the mountain today. As I inched my way up the path, I felt overwhelmed, so I had to turn back.

I tried to climb the mountain today. On my journey, darkness started to fall, and I was full of fear, so I had to return to a safe place.

I was ready to climb the mountain today. But it was so hot outside, I thought I better stay in my nice air-conditioned house and rest up for tomorrow's attempt.

I was about to climb the mountain today. But I had so many other things to do, so instead of climbing the mountain I took care of much more important tasks. I washed my car, mowed the grass and watched the big game. Today the mountain will just have to wait.

I was going to climb the mountain today. But as I stared at the mountain in it's majestic beauty, I knew I stood no chance of making it to the top, so I figured why even bother trying.

I have forgotten about climbing the mountain today; until a friend came by and asked me what I was up to lately. I told him I was thinking about climbing that mountain some day. I went on and on about how I was going to accomplish this task.

Finally, he said, "I just got back from climbing the mountain. For the longest time I told myself I was trying to climb the mountain but never made any progress. I almost let the dream of making it to the top die. I came up with every excuse of why I could not make it up the mountain, but never once did I give myself a reason why I could. One day as I stared at the mountain and pondered, I realized that if I didn't make an attempt at this dream all my dreams will eventually die."

"The next morning, I started my climb." He continued, "It was not easy, and at times I wanted to quit. But no matter what I faced, I placed one foot in front of the other, keeping a steady pace. When the wind tried to blow me over the edge, I kept walking. When the voices inside my head screamed "stop!" I focused on my goal never letting it out of sight, and I kept moving forward. At times, I was ready to quit, but I knew I had come too far. Time and time again, I reassured myself that I was going to finish this journey. I struggled to make it to the top, but I climbed the mountain!"

"I have to be going," my friend said. "Tomorrow is a new day to accomplish more dreams. By the way, what are you going to do tomorrow?"

I looked at him, with intensity and confidence in my eyes, and said, "I have a mountain to climb."

written by Gary Barnes

May we continue to hope for a better tomorrow in our individual lives and for our country. May we try and try without giving up even in the face of difficulties. Do leave a message to share your thoughts. Thanks! Have a nice day.

Is removal of 20% rebate by Malaysian IRB means inceasing tax ?

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 01:32 AM PDT

PETALING JAYA: The schedular tax deduction system (STD) implemented last year that removes a 20% rebate is among the reasons that could lead to confusion over the tax amount.

The 2009 tax deduction system no longer gives a 20% rebate on the monthly schedular tax deduction for individuals earning below RM10,000 a month, said Ernst & Young Malaysia human capital director Irene Ang.

"Therefore, the amount collected under this monthly deduction can be higher than the actual tax to be paid by an individual at the end of the assessment year," she said.

However, Ang stressed that the overpaid amount from the monthly schedular tax would not be a sizeable sum.

Under this 2009 STD, Ang said taxpayers could also request their employers to lower the tax deduction for the particular month in the event the employees had incurred incidents allowing for tax relief.

These included the purchase of computers, paying for parents' medical bills and buying reading materials.

Ang advised employees to be diligent in claiming for tax reliefs, although some effort – such as the need to fill forms – was required.

A financial controller of a company said not all companies were actively helping their employees to make the tax relief claims because the process was tedious.

"Can you imagine the extra paper work for employers and employees should there be a high number of employees making such requests every month," said the high-level executive working in a public-listed company in Kuala Lumpur.

A consultant with a local tax agency said most taxpayers would rather pay the estimated tax (accumulated from the STD) first and apply for tax relief when doing their taxes at the end of the assessment year, instead of applying for the tax relief every month to reduce the STD amount.

"Many people find the tax calculations too confusing.

"I suggest that the IRB continue to simplify the tax deduction measures," he said.

  1. Removal of 20% rebate on STD leads to confusion

Time to remove all reservations and sign the Optional Protocols: The Malaysian Bar – July 8, 2010

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 01:13 AM PDT

Press Release: Time to remove all reservations and sign the Optional Protocols

Thursday, 08 July 2010 03:11pm
Image The Malaysian Bar welcomes the Government's ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Alongside Malaysia's well-publicised ratification, the Government has nonetheless taken reservations to Article 3 on general principles, Article 5 on equality and non-discrimination, Article 15 on freedom from torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, Article 18 on liberty of movement and nationality, and Article 30 on participation in cultural life, recreation, leisure and sport.

This means that the Malaysian Government does not fully subscribe to the fundamental principles that persons with disabilities should enjoy such equality, non-discrimination, freedom or liberty, or to fully participate in culture, recreation, leisure and sport. This makes for a hollow ratification since such reservations take away from fundamental principles that underpin CRPD.

These kinds of reservations are consistent with the reservations made to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), which Malaysia acceded to in 1995. Despite withdrawing reservations to Articles 1, 13 and 15 of CRC, Malaysia still has five reservations in place. These are to Article 2 on non-discrimination; Article 7 on name and nationality; Article 14 on freedom of thought, conscience and religion; Article 28(1)(a) on free and compulsory education at primary level; and Article 37 on torture and deprivation of liberty. This indicates that the Malaysian Government still takes the view that children can be discriminated against, have no right to a name or nationality, have no freedom of thought, conscience and religion, and staggeringly, should not be free from torture and deprivation of liberty.

The Malaysian Bar also welcome the Government's withdrawal of reservations to Articles 5(a), 7(b) and 16(2) of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). While noteworthy strides have been made in terms of efforts to eliminate discrimination against women, Malaysia also still has five reservations in place with respect to CEDAW. These deal with equal rights for women to pass their nationality to their children (Article 9(2)); equal rights to enter into marriage (Article 16(1)(a)); equal rights and responsibilities during marriage and at its dissolution (Article 16(1)(c)); equal rights and responsibilities with regard to guardianship, wardship, trusteeship and adoption of children (Article 16(1)(f)); and the same personal rights in a marriage, including the right to choose a family name, a profession and an occupation (Article 16(1)(g)).

In addition to these reservations, the Malaysian Government has still not signed or ratified any of the Optional Protocols to CRPD, CRC or CEDAW. These Optional Protocols grant specific rights to the citizens/residents of a country to refer their government to the international supervisory committee for non-compliance with each of these conventions. At present, although Malaysia is a State Party to these conventions, Malaysians cannot hold the Government accountable if it does not honour or comply with their provisions.

Similarly, the Persons With Disabilities Act 2008, which supposedly implemented the provisions of CRPD and which came into force in July 2008, does not provide for any form of punishment or remedy for breaches. It remains to be seen how the Malaysian Government will ensure that provisions of that Act are implemented. The Act also does not ensure that the persons with disabilities are not discriminated against, e.g. in education and employment opportunities.

The ratification of CRPD, and the withdrawal of some of the reservations to CRC and CEDAW, are all positive steps. However, more can, and should, be done.

We call on the Malaysian Government to give full effect to its international obligations by removing all remaining reservations, and by signing all three Optional Protocols. It should also expand the scope of the existing Child Act 2001 and Persons With Disabilities Act 2008 to comprehensively cover all areas of CRC and CRPD respectively. Currently, many of the provisions of CRC and CRPD have been left out of the enabling Malaysian legislation.

Finally, to show that it is fully transparent and accountable to the rakyat, we call on the Malaysian Government to insert provisions in all enabling legislation to allow the Malaysian Government to be challenged in Malaysian courts for non-compliance with its full obligations under CRPD, CRC and CEDAW. In particular, as a member of the United Nations Human Rights Council, the Malaysian Government should do no less.

Lim Chee Wee
Malaysian Bar

8 July 2010

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Khan Shatyr – world’s tallest tent opens in Kazakhstan

Posted: 07 Jul 2010 11:01 PM PDT

The world's tallest tent has opened to the public in the Central Asian nation of Kazakhstan. Designed by British architects Foster & Partners, the Khan Shatyr (lit. Royal Marquee) Entertainment Centre in the capital Astana is 150m high.

Khan Shatyr world tallest tent in Kazakhstan

Read the rest of this post »

Khan Shatyr – world's tallest tent opens in Kazakhstan from YeinJee's Asian Blog

MBPJ Councillors' Swearing-In Halted At The Last Minute

Posted: 07 Jul 2010 10:57 PM PDT

DATELINE MBPJ HEADQUARTERS: The planned swearing-in ceremony for local councillors in Petaling Jaya, Selangor, at 10.30am did not take place as scheduled this morning.
A last-minute message from the Selangor state executive office was issued out early this morning instructing a postponement of the event. No reason is known for the decision.
The council was told to wait for

Wife, Court, PI Bala: Abdul Razak innocent! WHO HAD MOTIVE TO KILL??

Posted: 07 Jul 2010 10:34 PM PDT

Today's headline: Abdul Razak a scapegoat, claims Bala
In other words, Abdul Razak is innocent
 Rewind - Chronology of events:
On the onset of the trial: 
Friday November 17, 2006 
Wife maintains political analyst is innocent
Published: Wednesday February 4, 2009 MYT 2:50:00 PM Updated: Wednesday February 4, 2009 MYT 7:15:27 PM Altantuya case: Sirul says he is a scapegoat

We know that even though the two accused, Azilah and Sirul, were sentenced to death on April 9, 2009, Karpal said the motive to kill Altantuya remained unclear and the person who had the motive to kill Altantuya should be implicated and  convicted with the two Special Action Force officers.

Coming or not? Please confirm…

Posted: 07 Jul 2010 09:38 PM PDT

For the past week I've been calling/texting my clients – informing them about the coming family day, asking them if they'd like to join, and giving them a deadline to confirm their attendance and number of pax.

Since this year's event will be at a theme park, where the entrance fees alone takes up a huge portion of the expenses involved, I told them to make sure they can attend before submitting their names. (Tommy, before you say I am so typical accountant everything oso want to kira; we get our funds from public donations okay? So cannot simply spend ikut suka hati!) Through past experiences, quite a number of clients (and sometimes even volunteers themselves) who said they were coming but ended up giving it a miss without even informing us about it and with excuses that don't qualify as "unavoidable circumstances". They don't feel it's such a waste because it's not THEIR money we're spending. Since this year's event requires more budget than previous years' events; I need to remind them how much they're wasting if they submit their names without even being sure if they can make it.

Anyway, as always, I'd usually be the one who'd end up with the most number of clients attending. Without even all of them confirming yet, I already have 28 of them (including their children) coming. Fuzi confirmed immediately after I sent out the text message to her. Her family had been regulars to our Family Day ever since she became our client.

For Sofie, this will be the first time for her family. She was already our client last year, but she was too weak then to join us, and her children were not that used to me yet at that time to be joining the Family Day on their own (unlike the time when I took along her 3 kids with me during my day trip to Kedah last year). I saw the excitement on Saiful's and Ika's faces when I mentioned Lost World of Tambun.

Murni and 3 of her kids joined us last year at the National Stud Farm, while her younger son didn't join us then because he couldn't see what was so exciting about going to Tanjong Rambutan. He was even asking his mother, "Nak pergi tengok orang gila ke?" Well, this year, they are all coming!

As for Rosnah, she did tell me before that she wouldn't want to be joining all these functions as she was afraid she may bump into someone she knows and that someone will end up knowing about her illness. But when I sent her a text message telling her about this year's Family Day, she replied almost immediately asking me to include her and her daughter.

Lin's family joined us when we went to Taiping Zoo 2 years back. But last year, although they wanted so much to join, they simply couldn't make it back in time as Lin went to fetch her daughter at the airport (the daughter came back for summer holidays). This year she's certainly joining, only thing is now she needs to confirm first if her older son would want to join as well.

There is however one regular who is now difficult to contact – Jah, who had always been the "live-wire" during any of our activities. Always so jovial, always so chatty. I hadn't been able to contact her of late. I even tried asking her best friend Shila if she had Jah's latest contact number; but Shila said she had not been able to contact Jah either.

I was already thinking of asking my fellow volunteer who stays in the same town as Jah, to visit Jah at home and inform her of the Family Day. But yesterday, when I went to the hospital, I met Fuzi and Fuzi told me she had just met Jah who was there for blood testing. Too bad I didn't bump into Jah. But Fuzi said she did mention about the Family Day to Jah and was told Jah wouldn't be able to join. Huh? That's weird… knowing Jah, she'd usually be the first to jump in line!

According to Fuzi, Jah doesn't even own a phone now. And she's not joining the Family Day because, "Dah ada suami, suami tak bagi, tak bolehlah pergi."

Oh, so she's married! Wow, marriage for her meant she's now no longer allowed to meet friends! And in addition to that, she no longer has her own phone number for us to contact. It is so not like Jah. I wonder if she's really happy now as she was before…

Oh well, there are a few other married ones who had always wanted to come but never getting the "visa" from their other half… like Maria and Asiah. Asiah did express her interest again this time, but I told her to really confirm she can make it before she submits her name to me. As for Maria, I will try again this year. She did mention last year that her hubby may allow her if he himself doesn't have to send her and if someone could fetch her at the bus station. Let's see how it goes this year.

Mrs K will confirm with me by this weekend while a new client, a single mother of two, whom I will be visiting tomorrow, did express her interest to join us.

Looks like my clients alone will make up more than half of the total attendees…



Brad & Angelina, you are both below 90 cm, so free entrance for both of you. No need to jump up and down telling me to include your names ok?

Bapak Penipu Tuduh Orang Lain Menipu

Posted: 07 Jul 2010 09:33 PM PDT

Siapa Harus Rakyat Percayai?

Perdana Menteri Najib Razak menggesa orang ramai tidak mempercayai pengarang blog Malaysia Today Raja Petra Kamarudin kerana mendakwa beliau menulis berita-berita fitnah terhadap kepimpinan Umno.

Najib turut meminta rakyat tidak mempercayai dakwaan-dakwaan yang dibuat oleh bekas penyiasat persendirian P Balasubramaniam mengenai pembabitan Perdana Menteri, isterinya Rosmah Mansor dan kerabat keluarga Perdana Menteri dalam kes pembunuhan Altantuya Shaariibuu.

Selain itu, sudah lumrah juga untuk Perdana Menteri menggesa rakyat tidak mempercayai pemimpin-pemimpin seperti Menteri Besar Kelantan Nik Aziz Nik Mat, Ketua Parlimen DAP Lim Kit Siang dan tentunya Anwar Ibrahim, Ketua Pembangkang dan seteru politik utama Umno.

Malah, seluruh jentera media arus perdana khususnya Utusan Malaysia digerakkan untuk menanam persepsi di kalangan rakyat bahawa orang-orang ini - dari Raja Petra sampai kepada Anwar Ibrahim TIDAK boleh dipercayai.

Terbaru, Najib meminta rakyat tidak mempercayai Suara Keadilan, akhbar rasmi Parti Keadilan Rakyat yang melahirkan rasa khuatir Felda akan bankrap jika wangnya terus disalah-urus.

Dalam tempoh lima tahun lalu, rizab tunai Felda sudah pun susut lebih enam puluh peratus.

Duit RM4 bilion tinggal RM1 bilion.

Jika semua pihak yang dinyatakan di atas tidak boleh dipercayai, persoalan yang harus diajukan kepada Perdana Menteri ialah SIAPA harus rakyat percayai?

Bolehkah rakyat mempercayai Menteri di Jabatan Perdana Menteri Nazri Aziz yang mendedahkan Kabinet meluluskan pembinaan Parlimen baru RM800 juta di Putrajaya?

Apabila berdepan dengan bantahan rakyat, Nazri kemudian mendakwa beliau tersalah memberi maklumat.

Bagaimana pula kewibawaan Timbalan Menteri di Jabatan Perdana Menteri Ahmad Maslan?

Haruskah rakyat menelan bulat-bulan penjelasan beliau yang mendakwa simpanan tunai Felda RM2 bilion digunakan untuk penanaman semula oleh peneroka?

Kenyataan itu adalah pembohongan semata-mata kerana peruntukan untuk penanaman semula datang dari sebuah tabung berasingan yang dibiayai oleh peneroka sendiri, kata bekas Timbalan Menteri Tanah dan Pembangunan Koperasi, Datuk Dr Tan Kee Kwong yang bertanggungjawab ke atas Felda semasa beliau dalam Kabinet.

Bagaimanapula dengan Menteri Dalam Negeri Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein yang gagal memberikan penjelasan bagaimana rekod kemasukan Altantuya Shaariibuu yang mati dibom ke negara ini "tiba-tiba" hilang dari rekod Jabatan Imigresen? Adakah beliau boleh dipercayai?

Dan akhir sekali, apakah rakyat boleh mempercayai Najib sendiri, selaku Presiden Umno dan Perdana Menteri?

Pemimpin utama negara ini memberitahu Parlimen, beliau tidak pernah menjanjikan projek untuk mendapatkan undi pada mana-mana pilihan raya kecil.

Hakikat, seperti yang terpacar dalam rakaman-rakaman video ialah Najib menjanjikan RM5 juta kepada penduduk di Sibu untuk projek banjir jika mereka memenangkan calon BN pada PRK Mei lalu.

Umpan sama diberikan kepada pengundi Cina dan peneroka Felda semasa PRK Hulu Selangor beberapa minggu sebelum itu.

Najib adalah juga pemimpin Melayu yang berjanji mempertahankan kesucian agama Islam dan kebajikan seluruh rakyat lain tanpa mengira agama dan bangsa.

Namun pada masa sama beliau meluluskan lesen judi sukan yang bertentangan dengan agama Islam dan mendatangkan masalah sosial dan jenayah kepada masyarakat yang terjebak dengan amalan buruk itu.

Apabila Pakatan Rakyat dan rakyat bangkit menentang, Najib secara tiba-tiba berkata lesen itu ditarik balik.

Hari ini apabila isu itu reda, Najib sekali lagi memberitahu Parlimen pihaknya bersedia memberikan semula lesen judi sukan jika ada rancangan untuk menghalalkan amalan itu di negara ini.

Kenyataan yang mengelirukan dan putar belit. Siapa yang mempunyai kuasa untuk menghalalkan judi sukan jika bukan kerajaan pemerintah.

Namun pendirian kabur dan berdolak dalih sudah saban kali di perlihatkan oleh Najib dalam mengumumkan keputusan-keputusan kerajaan.

Justeru, rakyat keliru, mana satu Najib yang harus dipercayai?

Patutkah mereka berpegang kepada seorang Perdana Menteri yang mudah membuat janji dan kemudiannya bingkas mengubah kata-katanya?

Ini belum lagi dikupas janji-janji Najib untuk memansuhkan hak pemilihan 30 peratus di dalam Model Ekonomi Baru sebelum menjajanya ke Amerika Syarikat.

Sekembali dari berjumpa dengan Presiden Barack Obama, segala peruntukan itu dikekalkan dalam RMK-10, selepas dikritik oleh Perkasa dan mantan Perdana Menteri Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

Bagaimana pula dengan kelewatan Najib mengkritik serangan Zionis ke atas misi kemanusiaan kapal laut yang berkesudahan dengan pertumpahan darah.

Ataupun tindakan Umno-BN mengupah syarikat Apco Worldwide yang dipimpin bekas pegawai-pegawai risikan Zionis dengan kos RM77 juta.

Negara semakin condong ke arah menjadi tali barut kuasa-kuasa tertentu, dan Malaysia akan "bankrap" nilai-nilai moral dan kemanusiaannya jika rakyat meletakkan kepercayaan kepada pemimpin yang hanya pandai menanam tebu di bibir dan menyembunyikan hakikat sebenar.

Jelas, rakyat mempunyai kesukaran untuk memberi pertimbangan kepada gesaan Najib supaya tidak mempercayai orang dan pihak tertentu.

Ini kerana kenyataan Perdana Menteri ibarat meludah ke langit. Bak kata Karam Singh Walia, paku dulang paku serpih, mengata orang, dia yang lebih.

Itulah akibatnya apabila tukang "nasihat" sendiri dibelit dengan kredibiliti rapuh lagi mencurigakan. -Wira Arjuna

Lesen judi: Respons bertulis PM tambah keliru, kata Mahfuz
Oleh Clara Chooi July 07, 2010
KUALA LUMPUR, 7 Julai – Jawapan bertulis Perdana Menteri Datuk Seri Najib Razak menimbulkan kekeliruan berhubung status lesen pertaruhan sukan yang baru-baru ini mencetuskan kontroversi di kalangan pelbagai pihak sehingga memaksa kerajaan membatalkannya.

Respons kepada soalan Ahli Parlimen PAS seolah-olah menunjukkan bahawa lesen pertaruhan telah dikeluarkan meskipun akhir bulan lalu Najib mengumumkan yang ia tidak akan diberi kelulusan.

Datuk Mahfuz Omar (PAS-Pokok Sena) memperlekehkan jawapan bertulis yang dikeluarkan di Dewan Rakyat dan mempersoalkan mengapa Najib tidak kisah untuk memberi butiran sedemikian selepas kerajaan "sudah sewajarnya" telah membatalkan lesen itu.

"Jawapan beliau seharusnya menggambarkan pendirian kerajaan sebagaimana telah diumumkan oleh Najib.

"Meskipun saya bertanya mengenainya, mengapa respons beliau datang dalam bentuk seperti ini? Apakah pendirian sebenar beliau?" kata beliau pada sidang media di Parlimen hari ini.

Mahfuz dalam soalan lisan kepada Najib, yang juga Menteri Kewangan, telah meminta kementerian mengemukakan senarai syarat dan peraturan pihaknya terhadap lesen yang diberikan kepada Ascot Sports Sdn Bhd bagi mengendalikan pertaruhan ketika kejohanan Piala Dunia 2010.

Naib Presiden itu juga mengemukakan persoalan mengenai anggaran tranksaksi pertaruhan sukan dan sama ada kerajaan sedar aktiviti ini boleh meningkatkan ketagihan judi sukan di kalangan rakyat.

Dalam responsnya, Najib berkata: "Untuk makluman anda, kerajaan belum lagi mengeluarkan lesen bagi pertaruhan sukan bagi kejohahan Piala Dunia 2010. Justeru, isu pulangan dianggarkan daripada judi Piala Dunia tidak timbul sama sekali.

"Bagaimanapun kerajaan telah menawarkan pengeluaran semula lesen kepada Ascot Sports untuk perkhidmatan bookie (tidak termasuk Piala Dunia) sejak syarikat telah diberi kelulusan terdahulu untuk mengendalikan aktiviti itu.

"Oleh itu kerajaan berpendapat bahawa jika pengeluaran semula lesen hendak dipertimbangkan, adalah adil jika Ascot Sports diberikan keutamaan berdasarkan pengalaman mereka dalam industri ini," katanya.

Najib menyenaraikan 14 terma dan syarat yang kerajaan beri kepada Ascot Sports termasuk syarikat itu dikehendaki membayar deposit sekuriti RM10 juta kepada kerajaan.

"Ascot Sports kena memastikan bahawa tiada sesiapa di bawah 21 tahun dan yang beragama Islam dibenarkan membeli pataruhan atau bekerja di syarikat," itu.

Mahfuz juga berkata, respons Najib tidak jelas, sebaliknya mencetuskan lebih banyak persoalan sama ada kerajaan masih ada rancangan untuk meluluskan lesen pertaruhan sukan tetapi tidak ketika Piala Dunia ini.

"Ini bermakna isu Piala Dunia tidak timbul. Persoalan sekarang ialah sama ada lesen tidak diberikan untuk Piala Dunai... tetapi selepas ini? Kemungkinan untuk Liga Perdana Inggeris? Atau Piala Malaysia? Adakah ia bermakna kerajaan masih akan mengeluarkan lesen kepada Ascot Sports untuk aktiviti lain dan bukannya Piala Dunia?" kata Mahfuz.

Menurut beliau, jawapan rasmi yang diberikan oleh perdana menteri di Parlimen dengan jelas tidak mencerminkan keputusan yang beliau umumkan bahawa lesen kepada Ascot Sports ditarik balik.

"Saya mahukan penjelasan jujur daripada kerajaan mengenai isu ini. Tambahan pula, isu di sini ialah sama ada keputudan harus datang daripada Kabinet ataupun Majlis Tertinggi Umno," katanya.

Mahfuz memberitahu, perdana menteri mengumumkan keputusan itu selepas mesyuarat Majlis Tertinggi Umno, bukannya selepas perbincangan Kabinet.

"Adakah bermakna lesen masih akan dikeluarkan? Atau Majlis Tertinggi lebih penting atau lebih tinggi status berbanding Kabinet," katanya.

Pada 25 Jun lalu, kerajaan dalam tindakan drastik yang mengejutkan banyak pihak memutuskan untuk tidak mengeluarkan lesen sukan judi kepada Ascot Sports, syarikat milik jutawan Tan Sri Vincent Tan.

"Pada dasarnya kerajaan bersetuju untuk memberikan kelulusan kepada Ascot yang mahu lesen itu diperbaharui sejak 1990, tetapi kerajaan memutuskan untuk tidak memberikan kelulusan," kata Najib.

Najib memberitahu syarikat itu telah dimaklumkan mengenai keputusan itu. -TMI

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