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Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Speaking up for the ‘third force’

(The Malaysian Insider) - He says he is independent, supports a pro-reform agenda and plans to run in the next polls. But lawyer and civil rights activist Malik Imtiaz Sarwar also says he hopes to contest on a Pakatan Rakyat (PR) party ticket.

Monday, December 20, 2010

M'sians have nothing to lose

MALAYSIANS, especially Johoreans in Tenang, have nothing to lose in giving the benefit of doubt to the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) and their ballots in the coming by-election.
For the die-hard or hardcore Barisan Nasional (BN) supporters or voters, at least use the Tenang by-election to send a clear message to their leaders.
Stop the arrogance and display some sincerity in wanting a truly 1Malaysia or United Malaysia. Stop the racism.
This one seat – Tenang – will not alter the state government. It will mean nothing to the BN state government as they will
continue to rule. But a loss will rock the arrogant and corrupt BN leaders, hopefully jolting them to their senses to start serving the rakyat faithfully and sincerely.
Hopefully, they will also see the folly of disrespecting the laws of the country, manipulating the administration with the powers bestowed on them by the rakyat.
Most of all, the rakyat must send a clear message to the BN that Malaysians don’t want the country to be turned into another Myanmar-like authoritarian administration.
The voters in Tenang have the opportunity to tell BN to stop the rot or else … what have you got to lose?
To continue supporting two-faced BN leaders who preach 1Malaysia but sleep with Perkasa is nothing short of making fools out of Malaysians.
Such leaders will continue their ways if Malaysians don’t start sending the correct message. There are too many examples to show how insincere the BN government is in serving the interests of the rakyat.
The best example that directly affects all Malaysians is the unabated price hikes.
Why the need to hike prices of necessities while continuing to give billions-of-ringgit in subsidies to the Independent Power
Producers (IPP) and toll concessionaires. The IPPs and toll collectors are just filthy rich and the operators are BN cronies benefiting shamelessly from law-abiding taxpayers without losing a drop of sweat.
Malay rights group Perkasa chief Datuk Ibrahim Ali has announced that the political pressure group will stay out of campaigning in the Tenang by-election in what is seen as an attempt not to jeopardise BN’s chances among the Chinese voters there who form 38% of the electorate.
Ibrahim was quoted as saying: “Perkasa wants to remain neutral as an organisation. We have many Umno members. It is good for Perkasa to stay neutral.”
If I believe what Ibrahim says, I also believe humans have evolved to grow wings to fly.
Perkasa has been vociferous about the need to keep Malay rights, upsetting Umno’s allies in the BN and stoking fear that it could affect rather than improve their chances at the ballot box. Asked how the Malay right-wing group could maintain its neutrality in the Tenang campaign, Ibrahim stressed that Perkasa members could only join the campaign trail in their capacity as Umno members or individuals.
Tell me about two-faced politicians and double-headed snakes and their unreliability. Isn’t this clear enough that a sizeable
percentage of Malaysians are allowing themselves to be fooled at the expense of their democratic rights?
The PR convention in Penang unveiled a 10-point resolution which the BN will surely dismiss as rubbish or nonsense, just because it looks too good to be true for the rakyat.
But what have you got to lose, anyway, by giving the PR the benefit of doubt to rule at federal level and the chance to
deliver its promises.
After all, if PR does not keep its promises, the rakyat can still give them the boot, and perhaps a viable Third Force may
emerge. If not, the rakyat can return the BN to power, and hopefully this time it will be more sincere and consistent in both words and actions.

That is what democracy is about.

What have you got to lose? The PR’s resolutions are:

1. A restructure of institutions including the Elections Commission (EC), the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), the Attorney-General’s Chambers and the Royal Malaysian Police. During a debate on the policy framework, DAP’s Anthony Loke said PR bring the MACC under the purview of Parliament.

2. A repeal of the Internal Security Act (ISA)

3. Instruct Khazanah Berhad, Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) and other government bodies to take over highway assets from the concessionaires in order to abolish the toll system.

4. A restructure of the country’s subsidies, to lessen subsidies given to the private sector (such as the RM19 billion in gas subsidies given to independent power producers) and transferring these to subsidies for the man on the street.

5. Acknowledging the role and sacrifices of civil servant by studying the current pay schemes and increasing the incentives for teachers by RM500 a month

6. Transferring private water concessions to the government

7. Offering free wireless Internet access to those in urban and semi-urban areas

8. Cancelling Felda Plantations and opening up its farms to second- and third generation Felda settlers.

9. Increasing oil royalty payments to Sabah, Sarawak, Terengganu and Kelantan to 20% cent from 5% currently.

10. Formation of a Royal Commission to solve the problem of illegal immigrants and citizenship issues in Sabah and Sarawak.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Culprits in Sime's RM2.1bil loses to face full brunt of the law

PUTRAJAYA: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has found several “elements of fraud” in Sime Darby Berhad and has shared its findings with police and the Companies Commission (SSM) for them to initiate action.
The MACC, together with the Securities Com­mission (SC), made the conclusion after reviewing reports submitted by Sime Darby’s Investigative Reports Review Committee over its RM2.1bil losses.
In revealing this, MACC special operations director Datuk Mohd Jamidan Abdullah told The Star yesterday that Sime Darby was found to have breached several provisions under the Penal Code, the Companies Act and the Anti-Corruption Act 2009.
“We convened a meeting with the police and SSM earlier this week to share our findings (of fraud) and we also handed over the (Sime Darby’s) reports to the two authorities.
“With the report, police can look into breaches committed under the Penal Code while SSM can investigate Companies Act violations.
“As far as MACC is concerned, investigations into the alleged corruption in the company are on-going and we are trying to speed up investigations,” he said.
Mohd Jamidan, however, was tight-lipped about the status of the MACC’s investigations.
In a joint statement, the MACC and the SC said they had completed reviewing the reports submitted by Sime Darby’s forensic and legal consultants involving four key projects in Sime Darby’s energy and utilities division – the Qatar Petroleum Project, the Maersk Oil Qatar Project, the Bakun Hydroelectric Dam Project and the Marine Project.
“The MACC and the SC have identified the breaches of relevant laws arising from the information disclosed in the reports.
“The relevant reports were also handed over to the police and SSM for further action with regard to breaches that fall within their respective jurisdiction.
“Where offences straddle several jurisdictions, the enforcement bodies will work together to ensure that investigations undertaken are thorough and holistic.”
It said the SC had also initiated investigations into potential breaches of the Capital Markets and Services Act 2007.
The statement also said that the SC and Bursa Malaysia had worked closely to identify the various breaches of the Listing Requirements and the SC would be issuing show-cause letters to certain individuals
Sime Darby suffered RM2.1bil in losses in its energy and utilities division in the financial year ended June 30, resulting in group chief executive Datuk Seri Ahmad Zubir Murshid being asked to take a leave of absence.
The conglomerate announced on Nov 16 that it would initiate legal proceedings by year-end to recover the losses it suffered.
This is not the first time the anti-graft body has investigated a government-linked company. In 1996, it launched investigations into Perwaja Steel after it was declared insolvent, with losses up to RM10bil.