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Saturday, December 20, 2014

Minister: Complaining on FB not sufficient

Siti Hasmah pukau hadirin dengan gesekan biola

PERKASA robek poster Krismas di bangunan DAP

Marina harap Kelantan tak laksana hudud

Isis agents in London dispatching gullible teenage jihadi brides to Syria

By Umberto Bacchi
British women Isis
Islamic State (Isis) militants, aided by a British-based intermediary, are offering to pay travel expenses to young and possibly good-looking British teenagers interested in joining the extremist group in Syria as jihadi brides.

Reporters posing as two teenage schoolgirls held regular conversations via social media with a jihadist in the Isis stronghold of Raqqa, northern Syria, for three months.

Upon showing interest in travelling to the self-styled caliphate, the two purported girls, aged 17 and 19, were told they would be given the money to pay for their trip from London to Syria via Turkey.

The sum was to be delivered via cash transfer to a Western Union branch in Sterling, and picked up by an Isis operative in the UK, who in turn was to hand it to the girls.

The investigation by The Times gave an insight into Isis' use of social media and the extent of its worldwide reach to recruit young Muslim women in the West, with the aim of marrying them off to the group's fighters.

Using mainstream social media such as Facebook, Twitter and, as well as instant messaging systems like Wickr and Kik, an Isis militant calling himself Abu Abbas al-Lubnani vetted and groomed the two purported girls over a three-month period, before finalising the money transfer.

'Mujahideen like a good-looking wife'

The jihadist reassured them about the safety of their journey, claiming that thousands of Sunni hardliners travelled to Syria every month without encountering difficulties.

He also asked the girls to provide him with a series of personal details, including a description of their appearance.

"Sorry but I need to know if ur good looking, the colours of your skin," Lubnani told the undercover reporter. "Usually mujahideen don't request a beauty queen, but they like to have a good-looking wife."

He finally agreed to send over cash to Western Union branch without security cameras in London. The girls were to wait near the premises while an Isis middleman picked up the money for them.

"The brother has a wife they can pick up from a certain place that doesn't have a camera then give you the money in their car," al-Lubnani wrote.

The day of the meeting a white man appearing to be Muslim convert showed up at the given location accompanied by a woman in a burka.

"To check this was the correct couple, The Times reporter changed the exact location of the "girls" several times in the space of a few minutes and set out the details in messages to the Lubnani messenger account. Each time the pair moved to the new location," the newspaper wrote.

Realising they were being watched the pair left, the paper said, adding that Counter-terrorism police are aware of the investigation.

An increasing number of women, including dozens of Britons, are believed to have joined Isis in Syria and Iraq over the last 12 months.

Danish Statistics: “Among the nine ethnic groups with the highest crime rate eight are Muslim”

Danish Statistics: “Among the nine ethnic groups with the highest crime rate eight are Muslim”
Besides the obvious religious reasons – that Islam urges Muslims to beat, rob, rape, and kill non-Muslims, and denigrates and demonize non-Muslims to such extend that many Muslims find it natural to do so – Islam creates a psychologically unhealthy culture that spawns criminal minds (more here: Report from the therapy room: Why are Muslims more violent and criminal?).
Graphics from Danish Statistics’ report on immigrant crime in 2007. According to the 2014 data, not much has changed (except that the Muslims have become many more – meaning many more criminals…)
Translated from Altinget (when looking at the graphs above and reading the excerpt below, it is important to know that the majority of the “Ex-Yugoslavs” are actually Muslims, especially when it comes to Ex-Yogoslavs populating Danish prisons – I know because I worked there):
“With crime rates half of that of Danes, one can not exactly blame Chinese, Indians and Filipinos to fill up the Danish prisons. In contrast, crime is alarmingly high among other immigrant groups. And it does not seem to fall. On the contrary, the same groups are in the top of the crime index year after year. …
Statistics Denmark has adjusted the crime index according to the so-called socio-economic factors. There is also adjusted for age, because there will normally be a more crime in populations with many young people. The figures are therefore directly comparable. …
On average Lebanese commit almost three times as many crimes as Vietnamese. Both groups contain refugees. …
Among the nine ethnic groups with the highest crime rate eight are Muslim. Ex-Yugoslavs are the only non-Muslim group with the top.”

PKR Muslim MPs undecided on PAS’s hudud bill

Rafizi Ramli, the PKR secretary-general, says he will not comment on PAS's private member's bill on hudud until he sees the draft. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, December 19, 2014.PKR's Muslim MPs have refused to say whether they will vote against a private member's bill to be tabled in Parliament by PAS which would pave the way for hudud to be enforced in Kelantan.

PKR secretary-general Rafizi Ramli said the party would only make a stand on the issue once it sees a draft of the bill.

“It is premature for me to comment on this. If there is a draft of the bill, we want to see it first. Then we will bring the matter up for discussion at the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) presidential council.”

Rafizi said he respected Kelantan PAS’s right to proceed with their state assembly sitting, adding that PR will discuss how to respond to the proposed bill.

“I do not want to jump the gun on this. We want to methodically deal with this at the national level, just like how we did so in the past,” said Rafizi, who is also Pandan MP.

The 18 Muslim MPs in PKR and DAP have been dubbed the "magic 18" by Gerakan secretary-general Liang Teck Meng, who urged them to vote against the private member's bill to be tabled by PAS in the Parliament.

PKR has 16 Muslim MPs, while two of DAP's 37 MPs are Muslims.

The private member's bill will need a simple majority of 112 MPs supporting it in order for it to be The private member's bill on hudud to be tabled by PAS end of this month willl need at least 112 votes for it to be passed in the Dewan Rakyat. – The Malaysian Insider pic, December 19, 2014.passed. The bill can be tabled once the Kelantan state assembly passes amendments to its Shariah Criminal Code Enactment II, which it plans to do at a special sitting on December 29.

Umno has 88 MPs, of which all, with the exception of deputy speaker Datuk Ronald Kiandee, are Muslims.

PAS holds 21 seats in Parliament and their combined force would still be short of four seats for the bill to pass.

DAP's Zairil Khir Johari today responded to Liang's suggestion by noting that the party has consistently opposed hudud law for Malaysia.

"DAP’s stand has been very clear from the beginning and Gerakan should ask those in Umno to stand with us,” Zairil had said in Penang today.

Other PKR Muslim MPs would not make a stand until the party leadership made a decision.

They also refused to state whether they would support the hudud bill, but said Muslims were required to support the Islamic laws.

Bukit Katil MP Shamsul Iskandar Mohd Akin said he wanted to see an official statement from PAS first.

"I cannot give any comments as I have not seen an official statement from PAS. I can only give my personal view once there is an official decision on the matter,” said Shamsul Iskandar, who is also PKR vice-president.

A similar cautious tone was repeated by Sungai Petani MP Datuk Johari Abdul, who said he would wait for PKR's stand.

“I was not informed of any meeting yet at the Pakatan secretariat level on the issue so I do not have enough information to enable me to comment,” said Johari, who is the coordinator for the party’s MPs and state assemblymen, adding that he expects the party to meet soon to decide on the issue.

Their mixed feelings reveal how divisive the hudud issue is for PR, with the Islamist PAS bent on enforcing it in Kelantan despite objections from DAP.

PR leaders in the past have admitted that if PAS goes ahead with their plans, it could break up the seven-year-old coalition, seen to be the most formidable opposition alliance against BNs's 54-year rule.

PAS also got rare support from its arch rival Umno, who said it would support attempts to enforce hudud in Kelantan.

In April, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department, Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom said Umno's 88 MPs will support the PAS bill, which among others allows for capital punishment on Muslims convicted of theft, adultery and alcohol consumption.

Currently, Shariah is only applied in Muslim marriages, inheritance and such personal conducts as alcohol consumption and relations between sexes.

Meanwhile, two PKR lawmakers were more strident in their responses, saying Muslim MPs could not simply “refuse to support” hudud.

“Muslims cannot refuse God’s law,” said Indera Mahkota MP Datuk Fauzi Abdul Rahman.

“But we have to explain it properly and we have to put the necessary infrastructure in place first before we implement it.”

Fauzi also said he wanted to see the bill first before deciding.

He said it was more important for Malaysians be schooled on the law first and that the police and courts be totally prepared to enforce it.

“If the bill says it wants to increase awareness and publicity and that it wants to put the infrastructure in place first, then maybe I will support it.

“But if it says they will introduce the law first and the rest comes after, then it will be hard for me to agree,” said Fauzi.

Lumut MP, First Admiral (R) Muhammad Imran Abdul Hamid, also did not clearly state whether he would support the bill but said Muslims were required to support Quranic laws.

“If the DAP wants to object to it, that is their right because they are non-Muslims.

"But if Muslims themselves do not support it, then it would seem strange. We have to accept those laws and we have to be wise about implementing them.

“Look at Brunei, the world did not end when they put hudud in place. So we don’t have to worry,” said Imran.

He said hudud would also protect non-Muslims.

“For instance, in Sitiawan (a town with a large non-Muslim population), there are many Muslim thieves. So we want to teach Muslims to fear God’s laws.” – December 19, 2014.

- See more at:

Court allows constitutional challenge on sedition

Padang Serai MP N Surendran succeeded today in referring two questions challenging the constitutionality of the Sedition Act to the Kuala Lumpur High Court.

In allowing two out of three questions to proceed, Sessions Judge Ahmad Bache ordered a stay on the Sessions Court proceedings.

"Hence, the court orders a stay in proceedings of the Sessions Court pending the case being referred to the High Court," said Ahmad.

Surendran, who is also a PKR central committee member, was charged with sedition following the comments he made on YouTube regarding the Court of Appeal decision over the Anwar Ibrahim Sodomy II trial.

The two questions that were allowed are:

  • Whether the Sedition Act 1948 is constitutional or otherwise
  • Whether the Act breaches three provisions in the Federal Constitution, namely the liberty of the person; equality; and freedoms of speech, assembly and association.
Ahmad, however, did not allow the third question, on whether the Sedition Act 1948 is unconstitutional since the question of intention does not need to be proven.

Surendran, who is also a lawyer, was represented by M Puravalen and Latheefa Koya.

Outside Sessions Court's jurisdiction

Ahmad ruled to refer the constitutional question to the High Court since the Sessions Court does not have jurisdiction to make a decision on the matter.

The judge said since the case of Universiti Malaya academician Azmi Sharom (above) was also referred to the apex court, hence this case should also be referred.

“These two constitutional questions are not new as they have been referred to the Federal Court in Azmi’s case.

"Hence, if we were to continue with this trial and the apex court gives a decision in Azmi’s favour, the proceeding here (at the Sessions Court) would be considered nugatory,” he said.

Ahmad said he held a similar view with the DPP that intention need not be proven in a sedition charge and for this reason, he is not allowing the third question.

Latheefa told Malaysiakini that since Surendran was successful in transferring the case to the High Court, they have decided to also appeal the Sessions judge’s decision in not allowing the third question.

‘Eminent 25’ get backing of inter-religious council

The 25 ‘Eminent Malays’ have received the support of yet another group, which is the Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism (MCCBCHST).

The consultative council said it had agreed to endorse the statement at its exco meeting yesterday.

“We agree with the concerns expressed by the group,” it said in a statement today, also noting the support of various groups, including the ‘I am #26' online petition in support of the group.

The group of former top civil servants, judges, ambassadors and scholars, had deplored, among others, how the current situation shows religious bodies asserting authority beyond their jurisdiction and the issuance of various fatwa violating the federal constitution.

MCCBCHST however pointed out that the opposing group of senior Islamic officials appeared to want to debate outside the framework of the federal constitution.

“The point made by the ‘25 Eminent Malays’ and other support groups is that some of the religious bodies appear to be asserting authority beyond the constitution.

“However, the group of ‘senior Islamic officials’ seems to be advocating amendments to the constitution to accommodate Islamic and Shariah law,” it said.

Thirty-three Muslim scholars, consisting mostly of professors in various disciplines, had urged the government to set up a “high-powered committee” to review the federal constitution for amendments to incorporate the needs of Muslims and entrench the rights of minorities.

MCCBCHST, meanwhile, said debates should be within the framework of the constitution, or otherwise, “we will be running in the wilderness”.

On the Islamic scholars’ claim that most Muslims want Shariah law, MCCBCHST said that offences such as rape, robbery and sodomy were already offences under the Penal Code and thus out of the bounds of Islamic law.

“What cannot be disputed is that most Islamic countries in the world do not want hudud law, including the most populous country, Indonesia.”

Expressing hope that everyone would abide by the constitution, it said that any attempts to rewrite the constitution would be unconstitutional and would not be accepted by Malaysians.

Perkasa: CM not 'holy pig', arrest him

Perkasa staged multiple protests this afternoon and fired a series of insults against Penang Chief Minister Lim Guang Eng over his remark that non-Muslims in the state can use the term Allah.

During a protest in Perak outside the DAP office in Ipoh, Perkasa members manhandled a state assemblyperson and tore down a banner with Christmas and New Year greetings.

In Penang, state Perkasa Youth chief Mohd Rizuad Mohd Azudin , who led the protest outside the state government office in Komtar, said Lim should be arrested and warned him not to meddle in Islamic affairs.

"I want to tell him that he (Lim) is not holy pig (babi suci). He is a wild boar (babi hutan) and should be expelled from Penang," he told reporters.

"Using the term Allah is the prerogative of Muslims. Lim shouldn't abuse his position as chief minister to intervene in Islamic affairs.

"The police must investigate and arrest him. If the police refuse to do anything and this leads to any unpleasant incident, the police will also need to bear the responsibility," he warned.

Rizuad also opened fire on state executive council for Islamic affairs Abdul Malik Abdul Kassin for endorsing Lim's position.

"He (Malik) dares to provoke but is afraid to face the Muslims in Penang. Indeed, he is a 'pondan'.

"By supporting Lim's statement, he is no longer qualified to hold the portfolio anymore. He should bear in mind that Muslims contributed to his victory in Batu Maung, he should appreciate that and not insult them," he said.

Earlier, the police allowed three representatives to submit a memorandum to Abdul Malik's assistant Ziezul Hakim Zainol.

The protesters came armed with placards and banners, which among others read, "Allah just for Muslims, Fight No Fear".

'Protester grabbed my wrists'

As for the drama in Perak, Tebing Tinggi state assemblyperson Ong Boon Piow told Malaysiakini that a protester had attempted to pull him out of the DAP office.

"Everything happened so quickly I didn't realise who intervened to stop him from pulling me further," he said, adding that the protester had grabbed both his wrists.

Confirming that the police were present, he was however unsure whether it was them who came to his rescue as some could have been in plainclothes.

He added that the protesters, numbering around 50, shouted slogans and insults.

Yesterday, Lim said the state would not repeal Section 5 of the Syariah Criminal Enactment for Penang or any other enactments, as they are not binding on non-Muslims.

"Even the Administration of the Religion of Islam (State of Penang) Enactment 2004 bears me out where Section 49(1) of the Enactment states that a fatwa shall be binding on every Muslim in the state…, without mentioning non-Muslims, clearly restricting its application on Muslims," he added.

Palanivel is the target

Loganathan Batumalai

The Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC) is in a real mess right now. Hard to know who is wanting what, and why they are wanting it, and what can be decided in the weeks to come.

The media is only reporting about the Registrar of Societies’ (ROS) order annulling the 2013 party election for the positions of vice-presidents and central working committee (CWC).

To outsiders to know why only those positions are being challenged, MIC did not have a contest for president and deputy president last year, which is they are not disputed. And the CWC argument and fight, on who should have attended December 18 meeting, would have not affected G.Palanivel and S.Subramaniam, the president and deputy president respectively.

While Palanivel’s legitimacy via the elections is not being questioned, many are using this opportunity to ask for his resignation. Why? He has been president for four years, why the impatience? This is not the time of S.Samy Vellu, it is not about thirty years of one man in charge. However, the answer might be with one of his protégés, MIC vice-president and deputy minister of youth and sports M.Saravanan.

Palanivel became MIC president in 2010, but the years have been cruel to him. He lost the Hulu Selangor parliamentary seat after four terms in 2008; was rejected openly by both MIC members and Umno supporters when he tried to be the candidate for the seat’s by-election in 2010 after his victor died; forced to contest in Cameron Highlands in 2013 and won close but only to have a mudslide six months later; and a year later last month have a worse mudslide with the Sultan of Pahang angry at him.

His critics know he is weak and we won’t know if it is fortune or unseen hands that have brought the ROS decision on MIC right now.

As a MIC member, I am worried for my party. As a Malaysian, I am worried about what this may do to the Barisan Nasional. The worst would be the increase in support for both the PPP and Hindraf type organisations always trying to tell the prime minister they have the Indian votes.

The person best likely to benefit from the ROS decision to turn into a party-wide election is Saravanan. No one has close links with the physical side of MIC’s membership like the deputy minister. Not since Samy Vellu, who also brought Saravanan to prominence.

Samy Vellu may be in the shadows only with his son S.Vell Paari looking to go higher up in the party, but Saravanan has business allies like Subramaniam Pillai of Daya Maju Infrastructure (Asia) Sdn Bhd (DMIA) to build his financial clout as much as his political clout.

The violence and aggression at the CWC meeting yesterday is only a sign of things to come, because those opposed to the election results are equally opposed to the leadership of Palanivel.

If Health Minister Subramaniam replaces Palanivel uncontested, because he is the compromise for all sides, without great levels of grassroots support, then Saravanan will certainly become deputy president.

This is what upsets me as a MIC member. I am fine that politicians want to win more power, but how about the normal Indian on the street. My friends tell me MIC is not the party for professionals, and I find it is difficult to answer when projects like the Little India Brickfields is used to network with allies rather than commit to creating a great environment for the Indian community. The more I see with what is happening in the constant fight for power it appears all the leaders are just preparing their war chests to win over regular members, to get them to fight outside on the street and let all of Malaysia see them fight. So people can say, this is the Indian party, a place where Indian men fight.

I cannot think of a way forward in the present, all I can hope is that the leaders realise while they fight the fate of millions of Indians, most of them the poorest in this country, is not improving.

That is what they have to realise if they really care. Otherwise the Indian stereotype is only going to be magnified in the months to come. I fear we might be going back to the days of M.G.Pandithan dragging a coffin into the party headquarters. Can Indian leaders find some civility, or do they have to wait for the prime minister to do something about this mess?

Hukum Hudud tidak sesuai – Marina Mahathir

Tidak sampai hati untuk melihat penganut agama Islam dikenakan hukum Hudud jika ia dilaksanakan kelak selain menyatakan dengan perlaksanaan hukum Hudud itu akan memecah-belahkan masyarakat.


KUALA LUMPUR: Aktivis sosial, Datuk Paduka Marina Mahathir menentang usaha melaksanakan hukum Hudud di Kelantan kerana tidak sesuai dengan masyarakat berbilang agama.

Menurutnya, beliau berharap hukum tersebut tidak dilaksanakan kerana “Walaupun hukum Hudud hanya untuk warga muslim, tetapi kita hidup di dalam suasana masyarakat yang bercampur-campur, jadi kelak semua orang akan terlibat.”

Beliau yang juga merupakan anak bekas Perdana Menteri, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad turut menyatakan, mengikut apa yang diketahuinya, Perlembagaan Malaysia tidak membenarkan hukum Hudud ini dilaksanakan.

Bahkan, Marina mendakwa, sekarang bukannya masa untuk Malaysia melaksanakan undang-undang seperti itu.

“Mengikut perlembagaan, setahu saya memang tidak boleh, saya harap ini bukan masanya untuk undang-undang Hudud macam ni,” ujarnya lagi.

Marina mendakwa, beliau tidak sampai hati untuk melihat penganut agama Islam dikenakan hukum Hudud jika ia dilaksanakan kelak selain menyatakan dengan perlaksanaan hukum Hudud itu akan memecah-belahkan masyarakat.

Dalam pada masa yang sama, Marina turut tidak menolak bahawa perlaksaan hukum Hudud ini mempunyai kaitan dengan politik yang dimainkan oleh PAS.

“PAS sudah membuat janji pada masa dahulu. Sekiranya tidak dilaksanakan, nanti orang kata PAS tidak ikut janji.

“Tetapi, PAS kena berjanji benda yang betul-betul, yang membawa kebaikan kepada masyarakat pada amnya dan bukannya pada satu-satu kumpulan sahaja,” katanya semasa ditemui media di Institut Pengurusan Wanita.

Kenyataan Kelantan sebelum ini Menteri Besarnya, Datuk Ahmad Yakob menyatakan, akan mengadakan sidang Dewan Undangan Negeri (DUN) Khas pada 29 Disember.

Ia bagi mengemukakan pindaan terhadap Rang Undang-Undang Kanun Jenayah Syariah (II) 1993 Kelantan (EKJS II) berkaitan hukum Hudud.

Jelasnya lagi, pindaan tersebut perlu dibuat untuk melayakkan Kelantan membawa usul rang undang-undang persendirian EKJS II ke sidang Dewan Rakyat di Parlimen dan seterusnya melaksanakan hukum Hudud di negeri itu.

Perkasa demonstrates over Allah issue

They submit memorandum to Penang exco in charge of religious affairs and want him to resign.


GEORGE TOWN: A group of 50 Perkasa supporters demonstrated against state executive councillor in charge of religious affairs Abdul Malik Abul Kassim for supporting Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng over the “Allah” controversy in Komtar today.

Led by Perkasa state youth chief Mohd Rizuad Mohd Azudin, the group called for Malik to resign for backing Lim on the issue.

Chanting “Allahu Akbar” and “Malik Pondan”, the group later submitted a memorandum on the issue to Malik.

Malik’s aide Ziezul Hakim Zainol received the memorandum on his behalf from Mohd Rizuad.

The demonstration began at 2.40pm after Friday prayers and lasted for about 30 minutes.

The protesters tried to go to the third floor of Komtar to enter into the tower block, where government offices were located.

However, police stopped them and told Rizuad to handover the memorandum to Malik’s representative.

Earlier in the morning the group lodged 25 police reports against Lim over his statement last week that non-Muslims can use the word “Allah”.

The group also handed over a memorandum to the police to probe the case.

The Penang State Islamic Religious Administration Enactment 2004 has banned non-Muslims from using the word Allah via an amendment in 2010 under the Pakatan Rakyat government.

Under the amendment to sub-sections 48(3) and (4) of the Enactment, a list of 40 words such as Allah, Solat, Ulama, Soleh, Mufti, Iman, Surau and Nabi, were decreed as exclusive to Muslims by the Penang mufti.

Lim’s interpretation of the Enactment that it could not be enforced on non-Muslims drew mixed response from various quarters.

Umno and its cohorts criticised Lim that he had erred legally and interfered with the state Islamic affairs, which comes under the Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s purview.

Other parties, such as Malik and several lawyers, however, backed Lim claiming that the chief minister was spot on with his interpretation of the law.

When MIC members got a little carried away

Uproar blamed on disconnect between participants at meeting and supporters outside.


PETALING JAYA: MIC Strategic Director, Vell Paari Samy Vellu has downplayed the chaotic scenes at a MIC meeting at Menara Manikavasagam, as due to miscommunications and “emotionally charged supporters.”

“Today’s papers have been reporting hooliganism and stuff like that. I think people have to look at it from a different point of view,´ said Vell Paari.

“It shows that members are concerned about the party.

Vell Paari explained that the huge gathering of almost 1200 members outside the meeting venue was due to supporters’ frustration on election issues, as the matter has dragged on for almost a year, as well as the frequent change of stance by the party leadership on the Registrar of Societies’ orders for fresh re-elections for certain positions.

“When the ROS letter was delivered, Deputy President (S. Subramaniam) was instructed by the President (G. Palanivel) to accept and abide by the ROS directives. Subra even held a press conference at the HQ about it,” he said.

“The President announced at the airport, on returning from Peru, that he’s going to appeal to the ROS.”

According to Vell Paari, upon insistence of some of the members, Palanivel eventually agreed to a meeting last week but kept avoiding the members, and ordered all correspondence to be directed to his secretary, citing a hectic schedule.

“That’s why people were annoyed.”

Vell Paari takes the view that the meeting was very fruitful and ended amicably, but as the leaders made their way out from the meeting hall, “emotionally charged” supporters outside, in factions oblivious to the developments inside, started pushing and shoving hurling verbal insults.

He explained, “People were shouting and telling him to step down, and such. I had to calm everyone down, and made sure the supporters are also in the know that matters are being resolved.”

“I had to shout from the window upstairs to the crowd to calm them down.”

Things eventually did calm down, when Vell Paari together with Youth Chief T. Mohan took to the stage to explain the details of the meeting and resolutions planned moving forward.

Marina sees father supporting Group of 25

No reason why Mahathir should express any reservations or objections on the contents of the Open Letter by the Group.


KUALA LUMPUR: Marina Mahathir, the social activist daughter of former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, is worried that nearly two weeks after a Group of 25 Eminent Malays penned an Open Letter to Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak, “the silence has been deafening”.

She was welcoming the Open Letter by the Group which wants the worsening polarization in the country, constitutional issues, creeping Islamisation and creeping desecularisation to be addressed urgently.

She also wanted to emphasize that there was no reason why her father should express any reservations or objections on the contents of the Open Letter

“I am in support of all efforts by the Group which has urged Putrajaya to address the mounting problems in the country which they have listed in their letter,” said Marina on the sidelines of a function on Friday at the Women’s Institute of Management (WIM) in expressing her admiration for the Group. “I salute them. They have given new hope to the country.”

“There’s a lot of tension in the country and we need to address the issues in a calm and rational manner.”

The Open Letter was apparently sparked off by Malay NGOs in the fringe going overboard with their statements in the media. The Open Letter particularly singles out Perkasa and Isma and criticizes them for “running amok” with their agenda.

BFM89.9 denies making seditious broadcasts

Allegations by Malay and Islamic groups are baseless, says the radio station.


KUALA LUMPUR: Radio station BFM89.9 has denied allegations by nine Malay and Islamic rights groups that it made seditious broadcasts on December 12.

It said the only subjects discussed during the hours pinpointed by the activist groups were the AFF Suzuki Cup football matches and the career of American lyricist Ira Gershwin.

“Our records indicate Sharaad Kuttan was on air during the said hours discussing the Suzuki Cup and other unrelated matters, and not as alleged,” BFM 89.9 said in a statement.

“It was also alleged that during 1800 and 1900 hours of the same day, presenters Umapagan Ampikaipakan, Caroline Oh, Patrick Teoh and Ezra Zaid were discussing issues related to animal sacrifice, Malay rights, Islamic matters, including the topic of wearing a headscarf/hijab, but we wish to clarify that based on our records, during that date and time, we were broadcasting a programme titled, “Hari Ini dalam Sejarah Dunia” featuring American lyricist Ira Gershwin.

“The relevant presenters involved in this programme were Umapagan Ampikaipakan and Richard Bradbury only.”

The activist groups made the police report against the station yesterday. The nine included Malaysian Islamic Consumers Association (PPIM), Ikatan Muslimin Malaysia and Pekida Malaysia.

They named radio presenters Sharaad Kuttan, Caroline Oh, Ezra Zaid, Umapagan Ampikaipakan and Patrick Teoh as the offending deejays, saying they made seditious remarks in their morning and evening shows.

The radio station said the allegations were “inaccurate and baseless”.

DAP lady dares Hadi’s son-in-law to debate

The debate would give the rest of Malaysia the opportunity to understand the seriousness of the hudud issue.


GEORGE TOWN: DAPSY Bukit Bendera secretary, Syerleena Abdul Rashid, wants to take on PAS Syura Ulama Council Member Zaharudin Muhammad on the hudud issue.

She was commenting on Zaharudin challenging DAP Secretary General Lim Guan Eng, a non-Muslim, to a debate on hudud law. Zaharudin is the son-in-law of PAS President Abdul Hadi Awang

“I would like to throw this challenge back to Zaharudin. Let us – you and I – debate this matter instead,” said Syerleena who is also DAP Wanita Bukit Bendera Political Education Director. “We should discuss this matter based on facts, and not emotion or any form of threats, so that the rest of Malaysia can understand the seriousness of the issue.”

DAP, she stressed, is also willing to discuss with PAS on why fighting corruption was the most important issue in Malaysia.

“DAP’s stand on hudud and its implementation, in the words of Lim Kit Siang, ‘is the same as the stand taken by the first three Prime Ministers of Malaysia, Tunku Abdul Rahman, Razak and Hussein,” she said. “Hudud laws go against the Federal Constitution which provides for a secular state with Islam as the religion of the Federation – no religion in Sabah and Sarawak — and freedom of worship guaranteed for other religions”.

As a Muslim, she strongly believes that the priority should be on the eradication of corruption, the root of most evils in society.

“Zaharudin should also ask himself whether he’s against democracy, freedom, social justice, human rights, gender equality, and equal opportunity.”

She pledged that DAP is a party that believes in preserving the rights of all Malaysians regardless of race, religion and gender. “We believe in upholding equality and solidarity,” she added. “We believe in the importance of maintaining harmonious ethnic relations with fellow Malaysians from all walks of life, as this is what democracy and societal evolution and progress is all about.”

Living in a multi-cultural society, she pointed out; it is only natural for Malaysians to question any idea thoroughly.

Islam needs heroes, not zeroes who kill in its name

 Islam needs Muslims who are rational and compassionate to make the world a better place. – The Malaysian Insider pic, December 17, 2014. Yesterday, 132 schoolchildren and nine adults were mowed down by gunfire in a school in Peshawar, Pakistan. A day earlier, two hostages died as Australian police ended a siege at a Sydney chocolate shop.

The link between both? It was done by people who professed to be Muslims. It was not a matter of what sect or school of thought they belonged to, they were simply Muslims like a majority of us here in Malaysia.

The Peshawar gunmen belonged to the Tehrik-E-Taliban or Pakistan Taliban out to seek revenge against the Pakistan army for an offensive that began last summer and resulted in some 1,000 deaths.

This was an insurgency's pure revenge and hate against the government of the day. It was also the same group that shot Pakistani schoolgirl and now Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai in 2012, purportedly because women do not need education in an Islamic caliphate or state.

In Sydney, an Iranian asylum seeker named Man Hosni Monis with a criminal past invoked his Islamic credentials when he took over the Lindt chocolate cafe that ended up in tragedy.

It really does not matter if both incidents have nothing to do with Islam as we know it. Or linked to more than a billion peace-loving Muslims across the globe. For the world, it is all done and declared in the name of Islam.

We can get angry that the Western media labels them as Muslims but the truth is, they have called themselves Muslims and pray to the direction of the Kaaba as we do.

And in our midst, we too have a fair number of young Muslims who have signed up with the militants who call themselves Islamic State in Iraq and Syria to fight fellow Muslims of the Shia persuasion. Some have been killed.

While we try to figure out new security laws to contain these militants when they return, we already have a slew of laws to regulate our lives as Muslims – just like Pakistan and the Talibans when they ran Afghanistan.

We also have an Islamist party that believes the solution to what blights modern life is a criminal law from 6th century Arabia that prescribes whippings, stoning and death by decapitation for major offences.

All in the name of Islam.

We rail against those who kill in the name of Islam but it is fine that we can exact justice using such punishment in the name of Islam?

For the Islamist parties, their brightest minds are put to the task of figuring out Islamic laws and punishment rather than working out rehabilitation, mercy and charity for all.

We Muslims seem to kill and punish in the name of Islam around the world but not quite being merciful and charitable unless in dire circumstances.

This is how the world sees us today. They see the slick videos of the Islamic State or wire reels of massacres and suicide bombings, all done in the name of Islam – against fellow Muslims and the world at large.

No one sees the mercy and charity of Muslims even when it actually happens. Perhaps because we have more loudmouths who want to go to war to defend Islam more than we have people who quietly do charity like the Kuala Lumpur soup kitchens.

See, we do have real heroes, not the zeroes who loudly proclaim they champion Islam and kill in its name.

And we really must make sure the 141 who died in Peshawar yesterday are the last such deaths by the Taliban. That the Islamic state militants are just bandits and lone wolves such as Man Hosni Monis are just criminals who belong in jail.

We need to condemn such barbaric and senseless acts of killings and those who believe punishments that involve cutting hands and feet, and decapitation will work.

Our grief for the dead must not be in vain or lead to an eye for an eye. Then we are no different from those who kill in anger and hate.

Islam does not need blood to show it is a religion of peace. Islam needs Muslims who can use science and technology; reason and intellect; mercy and charity; understanding and love; to make it a better world.

If we can't do this in Malaysia, where else can we do it? – December 17, 2014.

* Jahabar Sadiq runs The Malaysian Insider.

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Are Malays starting to leave the country?

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 18 — The South China Morning Post has suggested that Muslim Malays are starting to leave Malaysia as the country’s lurch towards authoritarianism and fundamentalism starts to bite.

A report in the weekend edition of the Hong Kong paper, titled: “Malay Muslims fleeing country as fundamentalism takes hold” painted a grim picture and suggested an exodus of members of the majority race but gave no numbers or hard data.

It cited a female researcher so disgusted with the state of affairs after her shared accommodation with other women was searched for the presence of a man by Islamic authorities on a morality raid that she has resolved to leave the country in two years.

“An anonymous phone call to the religious department alleging a man was seen entering her flat was all it took for the religious officials to descend on her home,” the paper said, adding that six or seven men from the Selangor State Islamic Department (Jais) had entered her flat.

Unaccompanied by any woman, the men were said to have searched all the bedrooms, closets and even under the bed.

"I don't feel safe in this country anymore," the researcher was quoted as saying. "It's like you are guilty until proven innocent. Anyone can make a phone call to accuse another person out of malice or vengeance and, without proof or investigation, the religious authorities will come to your place."

Figures hard to pin down

But apart from anecdotal accounts, evidence is on just how many Malays have left Malaysia is hard to come by. Most existing data has not been broken down by ethnic composition.

According to a World Bank report in 2011, an estimated one million Malaysians are residing overseas.

More than two million Malaysians have emigrated since Merdeka.

Last year, a total 308,834 high-skilled Malaysians moved overseas, with 47.2 per cent going to Singapore, 18.2 per cent to Australia, 12.2 per cent to US and the rest to other countries like UK and Canada.

According to the same report, the number of skilled Malaysians living abroad rose 300 per cent in the last two decades, with two out of every 10 Malaysians with tertiary education opting to leave for either Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries or Singapore.

These figures have not been broken down to show ethnicity.

But in October former de facto law minister Datuk Zaid Ibrahim said that more Malay-Muslims could be expected to leave the country if local religious authorities continue to pursue and prosecute those whose opinions they deem “deviant”.

Over the years, Islamic authorities have gradually become more rigid in their interpretation and application of the Shariah code in Islam.

They vilified and attacked a recent dog-petting event in which some Muslims touched dogs, which are considered unclean to people of the faith. The programme triggered such outrage that its organiser received death threats.

In October, the National Fatwa Council issued an edict banning Muslims from “celebrating” Halloween, which it categorised as a Christian celebration of the dead.

Kelantan, meanwhile, plans to enforce Hudud laws by way of state level enactments, even though its allies in Pakatan Rakyat are opposed to the idea.

An Oktoberfest-themed beer festival in Selangor also drew the ire of Muslim groups despite the promotional event being targeted at and restricted to non-Muslims.

Muslim intellectual Kassim Ahmad is also being prosecuted by Islamic authorities for allegedly suggesting that Muslims need only follow the Quran, and not the accompanying Hadith. The view differs from that which is officially approved.

Malaysia has also outlawed the Shiah denomination of Islam, which it considers deviant from the Sunni school that is officially sanctioned here.

Malaysia’s religious authorities also frequently warn against liberalism. The federal government’s Islamic Development Department (Jakim) has also stated that the National Fatwa Council had at its 74th meeting in 2006 declared liberal thinking as heretical.

Social activist Datin Paduka Marina Mahathir told Malay Mail Online in October she knows of several Malays who say they do not want to return to their homeland.

“It’s not for economic reasons, but simply because they feel that the environment here has become so negative and oppressive that it’s impossible to be able to live as peaceful, productive citizens anymore,” said Marina, the daughter of Tun Mahathir Mohamad, Malaysia’s longest serving prime minister.

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Former Sodomy II cop wins court bid to practise law, with conditions

Malay Mail

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 18 — A former policeman who led the investigations in Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s second sodomy case has finally got his dream of becoming a practising lawyer, following a High Court ruling allowing his admission to the Bar.

The Ipoh High Court rejected the Bar Council's objection to Jude Pereira's petition, but said the ex-policeman must undergo an eight-hour human rights training stint with the legal profession's regulator before he can be admitted as an advocate and solicitor of the High Court of Malaya, The Star daily reported.

The daily quoted judge Lee Swee Seng saying that the training will be a period of “effective rehabilitation” for Pereira.

On January 15, this year, High Court judge Datuk Zaleha Yusof allowed the Bar Council’s notice of objection and notice of caveat against Pereira’s admission to practise law as he was found “not to be a credible witness” during a human rights case in May 2013, based on the Human Rights Commission inquiry, then chaired by Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah.

In his ruling yesterday, Justice Lee said Pereira’s actions at the Brickfields district police station here during a candlelight vigil on May 7 had led to a severe constitutional breach on the rights of the detainees and their five lawyers.

But the judge added that the issue has since been resolved following the close of a civil suit filed by those arrested against the government; each of the five lawyers was awarded RM 60,000 in aggravated and exemplary damages for wrongful arrest and false imprisonment.

On September 3, Bernama reported that Pereira succeeded in his appeal to set aside the Kuala Lumpur High Court decision which prevented his admission as an advocate and solicitor.

A Court of Appeal three-member panel chaired by Justice Datuk Linton Albert unanimously allowed the appeal and held that the High Court judge had made her ruling based on a notice of objection and notice of caveat against Pereira’s  admission which was filed by the Bar Council and not on his petition.

Albert said that the court found that Pereira had not yet filed his petition under Section 15 (1) of the Legal Profession Act 1976 for enrolment and admission as advocate and solicitor and therefore, the High Court had not sat down to hear his petition.

He then fixed for mention of the case on September 18 in the High Court.

Government To Focus On Increasing Income And Reducing Disparity, Says Najib

Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak
PUTRAJAYA, Dec 19 (Bernama) -- The government will focus on the twin aspects of increasing income based on productivity and reducing income disparity in the quest towards driving the nation to developed status.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said Malaysia's economy needs to be based on the majority of the people being able to feel that their income is increasing in tandem with improving productivity.

"Only with rising income, does the term, 'developed nation', have meaning for the people.

"If the income disparity between the poor and rich is wide, it will create a feeling of dissatisfaction among the people," he added.

He said this in his speech at the Budget 2015 and Treasury Retirement Night 2014 event, at the Ministry of Finance (MOF) here Friday night.

Najib, who is also the Finance Minister, said based on the World Bank Report released two days ago, as a result of the policies introduced by the government, Malaysia's Gini coefficient had improved from previously.

"Despite this, we have yet to reach the level of an egalitarian or more equitable distribution of income, such as that in the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries. So, there is a lot to be done," he added.

He also said that in the uncertain global economy, Malaysia needs to have a strong foundation that is capable of facing and recovering from any form of sentiment.

According to Najib, if the country's economic fundamentals are weak, any economic crisis will linger, such as what is happening in Europe and no one is exempted from it (the crisis), even if it is a developed nation.

"Among the aspects that determine the country's fundamentals is revenue that is strong and sustained. As such, the decision to implement the Goods and Services Tax (GST) in the current economic climate, seems to be one that is very correct.

"I say, very correct, as when the country's revenue is affected, the GST will help support it with a very significant improvement.

"I will not predict, how much of an increase. But we pray that the GST implementation will have a better impact on the country's improving revenue. When revenue improves, we can help the people," he said.

Najib also said he was proud of the staff of the MOF, who had shown a high commitment towards the preparation of the Budget 2015 which had been received positively by the people.

Meanwhile, the Treasury Secretary General Tan Sri Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah in his speech said with the downtrend in the global oil prices and poor performance of the money market, Malaysia's economy is expected to remain strong with a targeted Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of more than 5.7 per cent for this year.

He said the registration of companies for the GST as of Thursday had reached 229,700 with more than 4,000 registering daily.

"It is hoped that the number of registrations will exceed the new target of 240,000 by year-end," he added.

A total of 21 MOF staff of various grades and divisions who retired between June to December 2014 were feted at the event tonight.

Friday, December 19, 2014

MIC chief, deputy to meet ROS next week

Hate Message Dominate Mosque Wall at Funeral for Slaughtered Children in Pakistan

At a funeral service for the children who died at great hands of the Taliban, a newly minted banner on the mosque wall has hate all over. It reads:

“The Blood of innocent children
will Allah-willing turn
India, America and Israel into dust.”

Source: Tarek Fatah

Why pretend to mourn children when the mourners themselves are hate mongers? Typical Muslims. Neither India, America nor Israel has anything to do with this mass murder of 130+ children and teachers burnt alive. Nor is any foreign country responsible for the 1,400-year jihad mentality that the Taliban operate under.

Islamic State selling church artefacts worth millions to western collectors

Western collectors are thought to be in direct contact with Islamic State looters, who have taken
millions of pounds worth of artefacts from ancient churches across Iraq and Syria, it has been claimed.

President of the Belgian federal police council, Willy Bruggeman, told The Times that ISIS are "using their own networks to come into contact with the final buyers...they want to have a one-to-one relationship with the collectors".

Bruggeman also said that some looted goods had almost certainly been sold to UK buyers, though none have as yet been traced.

Goods are most likely smuggled across the borders using the same illegal channels as oil and arms. ISIS has secured huge amounts of money from oilfields in eastern Syria, and has also pillaged ancient sites – taking priceless antiques from monasteries and churches, among other sites.

A senior Iraqi intelligence official told the Guardian in June that militants had taken $36million, around £23million, from the al-Nabuk area – a mountainous region west of Damascus – alone.

The group has specifically targeted Christian sites, and Bruggeman confirmed that murals and masonry ripped from church walls are among the most commonly traded artefacts. ISIS doesn't just steal, but also usually entirely desecrates religious sites. A fourth-century Syrian monastery was seized by insurgents in July, and militants also destroyed a tomb thought to be that of biblical prophet Jonah.

Bruggeman said the attack of religious sites is a means by which ISIS can "undermine the morale of the communities they invade".

"You...see a kind of cultural cleansing," he said.

Last week, it was revealed that churches in Qaraqosh, Iraq, are being used as torture chambers by Islamic State militants.

Abu Aasi, told The Sunday Times that Bahnam Wa Sara and Al Kiama churches in Qaraqosh were being used to hold and torture prisoners.

"Most inside are Christians and they are being forced to convert to Islam," Mosul priest Abu Aasi said.

"Isis have been breaking all the crosses and statues of Mary."

BFM 5 hauled up for radio shows on Islam

Five radio presenters from BFM 89.9 will be meeting the police after Muslim groups lodged a report today against the business radio station. – Screenshot of BFM’s official website, December 18, 2014.Five radio presenters from BFM 89.9 will be called by police to facilitate investigations after Muslim groups lodged a report today against the business radio station, demanding that it be probed under the Sedition Act.

Deputy Kuala Lumpur CID chief Assistant Commissioner Khairi Ahrasa said that investigations have been opened under Section 505(c) of the Penal Code on inciting or stirring up prejudicial feelings.

The presenters are Sharaad Kuttan, Umapagan Ampikaipakan, Ezra Zaid, Caroline Oh and Patrick Teoh.

Khairi confirmed that police received a report today lodged by Muslim groups including Malaysia Islamic Consumers Association (PPIM) and Ikatan Muslimin Malaysia (Isma) at the Dang Wangi police station in the capital.

"We will record the statements from all the deejays who were involved," Khairi told The Malaysian Insider in a text message.

Section 505(c) states that it is a crime to make, publish or circulate any statement, rumour or report with intent to incite, or which is likely to incite, any class or community of persons, or to commit any offence against any other class or community of persons.

If found guilty, the punishment is imprisonment, which may extend to two years, or a fine, or both.

PPIM and Isma's police report was on talk shows broadcasted on December 12, in which they said BFM had "challenged the sovereignty of Islam" by talking about the "Allah" controversy, about wearing the tudung, or Muslim headscarf, and about sacrificial meat.

This police report comes after news that the radio station had been fined RM10,000 over an interview with Iranian-American Muslim scholar Reza Aslan on October 21, 2013, in which he discussed Malaysia's ban on the use of "Allah" by non-Muslims.

Isma vice-president Aminuddin Yahya told Malaysiakini this morning that BFM had a "strategy" to create a "liberal country".

"This is a strategy by the liberals to break apart the racial harmony in Malaysia," he was quoted as saying at the Dang Wangi police station this morning.

"They are trying to destroy the integrity of Islam and create confusion among the people."

PPIM official Mohd Mustaffa Hamzah was also reported as saying that young people would form wrong conclusions about these issues.

"They will begin to hate Islam, the law, the rights of Malays and the New Economic Policy," he said.

The five presenters had been the hosts of the talk shows aired on December 12.

One of the presenters, when contacted by The Malaysian Insider, declined to comment on the police probe until the management had met to discuss the latest development.

The radio station is expected to issue a statement tomorrow. – December 18, 2014.

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Scuffles erupt, MIC leader's car attacked


Video l 2.30 min

Pandemonium erupted outside the MIC headquarters as the party's Central Working Committee (CWC) members exited the building after an emergency meeting this evening.

A crowd swarmed a blue BMW believed to be that of CWC member G Kumar Amman, kicking and punching it, forcing the police's Light Strike Force personnel to form a barricade to escort the vehicle out.

The MIC leader is said to be aligned to party president G Palanivel.

Palanivel himself was mobbed by angry MIC members while exiting the meeting room and later as he headed towards his car amid shouts of "Resign" and "We want a re-election".

Also shoved and shouted at was MIC disciplinary committee chairperson KS Nijhar, who is a close associate of Palanivel.

In another incident, former Youth chief SA Vigneswaran became embroiled in a scuffle with an unidentified member.

Various scuffles also took place at the scene.

MIC has been split over the Registrar of Societies (ROS) directive for the party to hold a re-election.

Earlier, as the CWC convened its meeting at 2pm, the atmosphere outside was already tense with some 500 members having gathered, many of whom called on Palanivel to step down.

There was also a huge banner fastened to the overpass facing the MIC headquarters, bearing a photograph of Palanivel with the words 'Please step down', with smaller banners with a similar message put up in the vicinity as well.

There were also banners in support of the embattled president.

Some 100 MIC members also held a protest march near the building against the holding of the CWC meeting, calling it "invalid" since the committee members are not recognised by the ROS.

At one point, as an MIC member addressed the crowd with a loudhailer, party strategy director S Vell Paari shouted at him from a window on the first floor, where the meeting was held.

"Stop talking on the loudhailer. There is a meeting going on here," Vell Paari thundered.

The ROS nullified the elections for the three vice-presidents and 23 CWC posts held during the party's general assembly in Malacca last November.

Last week, Palanivel said the meeting would discuss "some uncertainties" in the ROS letter.

Palanivel: Only a few are telling me to quit

Amid the chaos outside the party headquarters, MIC president G Palanivel has brushed aside talk of him resigning.

Speaking to reporters after a meeting this evening, he said only a small number of people were calling for his resignation.

"All that is nothing, only a few people are saying that," he added.
Since the Registrar of Societies (ROS) directed MIC to hold a re-election, Palanivel has been faced with calls to step down.

Palanivel also said that he and his deputy Dr S Subramaniam would meet the ROS next week to clarify the matter.

"Subramaniam and I will meet ROS next week to seek clarification on its directive. We will also be meeting with Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

"The party must move forward. We do not want to be de-registered. That is the most important thing," he added.

The Cameron Highlands MP also explained that the meeting held today was not an emergency Central Working Committee (CWC) meeting, as touted earlier.

He said it was a management meeting, which included state leaders, to discuss the ROS directive.

Previously, Palanivel's opponents objected to an emergency CWC meeting on the grounds that the ROS had already nullified the committee.

Hence, they said decisions made at the meeting would be considered void.

In view of this, former CWC members were also allowed to join the meeting.

Former Youth chief T Mohan, MIC Puteri chief J Usha Nandhini, MIC Youth chief C Sivarraajh and party strategic director S Vell Paari were allowed into the meeting to join the current crop of CWC members who were elected in the 2013 party election.

Palanivel also said a special committee would be formed, comprising 10 people from the current CWC and the opposition faction to further investigate the allegations by ROS.

However, he refused to comment on what the special committee would discuss.

"That I cannot tell you. It is private and confidential," he said when quizzed by reporters.

Palanivel said a decision would be made soon as ROS had given the party 90 days to respond to its directive to hold a fresh polls.

Meanwhile, following a separate meeting, Mohan, who is part of the opposition faction, said that they would be giving the president the benefit of the doubt.

"Let them talk to ROS first and let's see what the outcome is. However, we still want a re-election because there have been numerous discrepancies in the previous polls," he added.

Cops to return hymnals, priest wants no catches

The police will return the 31 hymn books with the word 'Allah' seized in Johor a fortnight ago to the Catholic church tonight.

However, Father Cyril Mannayagam said he will not accept them if they are stamped or a limit is set on their circulation.

"If any conditions are set, I won't receive them," he said when contacted.

Mannayagam (right) said he received a phone call from the police informing him to collect them at the Ledang police station in Tangkak, Johor, at 8pm.

"I had asked to collect them this morning itself, but they said 8pm," he added.

The hymnals are titled 'Kepujian Kepada Tuhan Allah' and are meant for Orang Asli parishioners.

Mannayagam was taken in for questioning for more than four hours on Dec 5, after sending the books for photocopying at a local store.

He was investigated under Section 298A of the Penal Code, but that section was in 1988 declared unconstitutional and struck out.

The section relates to the offence of causing disharmony, disunity or feeling of enmity, hatred or ill-will, or prejudicing the maintenance of harmony or unity on grounds of religion.

Lawyers worked hard to secure release

Mannayagam will be accompanied by the Catholic Church's lawyers tonight.

"The lawyers have been working hard on this and have written to the higher authorities for the release (of the hymnals)," he said.

They were meant for a Christmas service for the Orang Asli community on Dec 7.

The Federal Court in a 4-3 majority decision in June dismissed the Catholic Church's application for leave to appeal the Court of Appeal on the use of the word 'Allah' in the Catholic weekly, the Herald.

The Court of Appeal overturned a High Court decision quashing a Home Ministry ban on the  use of the word 'Allah' by the Herald.

Enactments in 10 states, including Johor, ban the use of the word 'Allah' by non-Muslims, even if it is not used for propoagation to Muslims.

Last month, the Selangor religious authorities returned copies of the Bible containing the word 'Allah' siezed from Bible Society of Malaysia in January and imposed a strict condition that they are not distributed in Selangor.

This condition was also stamped on the holy books, to BSM's dismay.

Another group of 25 pens letter to Najib

Another group of 25 Malaysians, this time a multiracial group, has penned an open letter to Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak in standing together with the 25 eminent Malays who last week sent an open letter to Najib, rejecting extremism in the country.

The open letter by the 25 Malaysians has been posted as a form of petition in the website, and is available here.

The group, calling itself "KamiJuga25" (We, too, are 25), said, among others, that they reject the notion that Islam is under attack in Malaysia.

They also rejected the notion that concepts such as liberalism and humanism are in contradiction with Islam and undermine Islam's position in the Federal Constitution.

"Malaysia cannot stand in the eyes of the world and claim that it is a model country for moderation and progressive Islam when it violates the very guarantees and teachings of the religion regarding other faiths, oppresses and punishes moderates, rewards and protects extremists and radicals," the letter reads.

The letter is signed by 25 Malaysians across all races.

Writer and actor Kee Thuan Chye (above, left) and Sharyn Lisa Shufiyan, the great-granddaughter of first Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman, are among the signatories.

The group comprises lawyers, radio hosts and a variety of people from other professions.

"As Malaysians, we must find the courage within us to acknowledge and fight injustice. If we disagree with others, let’s not ban them. Let’s engage, discuss, argue and work to convince. The Federal Constitution of Malaysia guarantees the right to freedom of expression," the letter says.

"Great moments are born from great opportunity. This is one such opportunity.

"We cannot and must not stand silently by and allow faith to be misused as a weapon to suppress peaceful dissent, intellectual discourse and opinions and to oppress those who would challenge and support contrarian positions. It is unjust and we should never tolerate the use of faith to divide us," it adds.

At this time of writing, the petition has been signed by 333 supporters.

Return grandson, pleads Deepa's Muslim mum

S Deepa's mother Siti Aishah Abdullah has asked her former son-in-law N Viran, who had also embraced Islam, to return her six-year-old grandson.

Siti Aishah was reported in The Star to have made the impassioned plea to Izwan Abdullah, who lost his appeal over the right to custody of his son in the Court of Appeal in Putrajaya yesterday.

She said it was unfair of Izwan to forcefully keep the boy, as he was the one who left Deepa (right) and her children.

“The court has made its decision and I hope Izwan will abide by it soonest. It is a sin to keep a child away from his or her mother, and for such a long time.

“I hope he will realise this and return the boy to his mother and sister,” Siti Aishah is quoted as saying.

Siti Aishah, who is an administrative assistant at a school in Jelebu, said she has been having sleepless nights worrying over the outcome of the appellate court decision.

The grandmother embraced Islam after marrying Mohd Sofi Yusof, 53, about five years ago.

Deepa was awarded custody of her two children after Izwan lost his appeal in the unanimous Court of Appeal decision.

Izwan had also lost custody of his children in the decision of the High Court in Seremban on April 7 this year.

Two days after the civil court decision, Izwan took away the couple's son from Deepa's Jelebu home.

The screw is tightening on Najib

K Kabilan, The Ant Daily

Are we seeing the beginning of an internal Umno revolt to push out Prime Minister and party president Datuk Seri Najib Razak?

While there had been rumblings for some months that Umno warlords were preparing to force Najib out, only now are we seeing slight movements to the effect on the ground.

Prior to this all we had were sharp criticisms raised by old-timers like former premier Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, ex-information minister Tan Sri Zainuddin Maidin and senior journalist Datuk Abdul Kadir Jasin.

The attacks against Najib started earlier this week with Batu Kawan Umno division deputy chief Datuk Khairuddin Abu Hassan lodging a police report against the controversial state sovereign fund 1Malaysia Development Fund (1MDB).

1MDB is Najib’s brainchild and he is the chairman of the 1MDB advisory council.

Khairuddin wants the police to investigate the financial dealings on 1MDB, and to interrogate 1MDB’s directors. 1MDB has been in the spotlight over its enormous debts, dubious land deals and secret transactions.

Mahathir is a vocal critic of 1MBD, and Najib’s failure to address the issues surrounding the sovereign wealth fund was among the reasons for the former to withdraw his support for Najib.

Interestingly, Khairuddin deems Mahathir as his mentor but had been quick to dispel any talk that his police report against 1MDB was at the behest of the former Umno strongman.

Another interesting twist to this saga is that Khairuddin was the publisher of controversial “50 Dalil Kenapa Anwar Ibrahim Tidak Boleh Jadi PM” book written by Khalid Jafri that mooted Mahathir’s move to oust Anwar Ibrahim from Umno and government in 1998.

Following Khairuddin, former Election Commission chairman and self-confessed Umno member Tan Sri Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman openly criticised Najib, telling the premier to “stop lying to the rakyat and go do your work”.

His criticism coming at a Perkasa’s annual group meeting tells a lot for the Malay right wing group which has until now been a strong Najib ally.

And on Wednesday (Dec 17), an Umno grassroots leader urged Najib to step down for the sake of the party.

Umno Taman Chempaka information head Syed Rosli Jamalullail penned an open letter to Najib to say that he had become a liability and that Umno had become weak and was losing support from not only the Malays but also from the Chinese and Indian communities.

He pressed on Najib to “help Umno to become strong again by leaving”, wanting the prime minister to step down voluntarily before the 14th general election.

These internal criticisms against Najib are only now beginning to surface in the open. It is not certain if they can gain any momentum to the extent which resulted in Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi being shown the door after the 2008 general election.

Party leaders have been quick in reacting to extinguish the fire of discontent by cajoling the dissenters to revoke their criticism against their big boss.

However, it remains to be seen if the open act of dissent against Najib will gain any traction. That will only happen if senior leaders in the party start raising their concerns openly.

The next few days will be interesting to watch indeed.

SIS: Shut up Ridhuan, you’re an embarrassment

“If people like Ridhuan are not confronted and put in their place, Malaysia might soon have its own IS.”


KUALA LUMPUR: Controversial academic Ridhuan Tee Abdullah, according to Sisters in Islam (SiS), is propagating views which will eventually result in terrorism in the country.

The NGO was referring to Ridhuan’s column, in a Malay daily on Monday, in which he claimed that there was no such thing as a ‘moderate Muslim”, implying that Muslims were extremists.

He described himself in the interview as a “fundamentalist”, a term linked with militancy, while others who beg to differ and say it means setting aside the Hadiths and returning to the Quran.

“‘Moderation’ in Islam, ‘Al Wasathiyah’, is an important element. Departing from this principle means ‘Irhab Al Fikri’ or ‘terrorism in thought’,” said Sisters in Islam (Sis) researcher Afiq Mohamad Noor in a statement.

“In Malaysia, we don’t have IS, but if people like Ridhuan are not confronted and put in their place, Malaysia will soon tread the IS path.”

”Terrorism in thought”, he stressed, could result in “physical terrorism” i.e. a breakdown in law and order and a return to the law of the jungle for no rhyme or reason.

Moderation, according to Afiq, was promoted by Islamic scholars like Al Imam Ibnu Taymiyah, Ibnu Al Qayyim, Al Syathibi and Ibnu Atheer.

“Ridhuan probably never read the works of the great scholars who argue that moderation (Al Wasathiyah) is an integral part of Islam,” he asked.

Islam, he said, has never recognised societal classification such as “clergies”, for example. He added that having a group of people who dominate and control Islam is “foreign and unheard of” in the traditions of the religion.

“These are people who reject scientific discussions and debates, which also use their influence and power to label people as infidels and heretics,” he said. “Islam seems like a religion that is rigid, stationary and anti-establishment.”

Islam, he warned, cannot be “monopolized” by any group. “It’s not an exclusive religion. Authorities and religious groups who monopolize religion are like robber barons controlling companies.”

“Ridhuan’s personal attacks contradict Islamic values as well as Malay culture,” he said.

“If I were given a choice to leave behind the principles of human rights and freedom of expression which I believe in, then without a doubt, I would advise Ridhuan to shut up and stop embarrassing and polluting a religion that I love.”

“They claim to be moderate Muslims? What is the meaning of moderate? Islam is not a moderate religion. Islam is fundamental in nature,” said Ridhuan in his column, criticizing the Group of 25 Eminent Malays for penning an Open Letter on Islam, civil law and the secular Federal Constitution.

MIC to meet with Zahid, ROS to iron out irregularities

MIC president meanwhile calls for calm and sets up temporary joint committee to oversee administrative matters within the party.


KUALA LUMPUR: MIC has announced that party leaders G Palanivel and S Subramanian will meet with Home Minister Zahid Hamidi and officials at the Registrar of Societies (ROS) next week to seek clarification over issues concerning MIC’s internal elections.

The ROS on December 5 ruled that due to irregularities within the party’s internal elections, fresh elections for its three vice president positions and 23 Central Working Committee positions, among others, must take place.

The decision came after almost three hours of deliberation by the party’s top members which included former CWC member T Mohan and the party’s legal advisers at its headquarters in Menara Manikavasagam in Kuala Lumpur today.

Speaking to reporters after the meeting, MIC President, G Palanivel said, “It’s not an appeal as we are not at that stage yet.

“We will meet with ROS and the Home Minister to seek clarification over the charges and irregularities that they found in order to resolve the issue,” he clarified.

Palanivel who was away on official business in Peru when the ROS letter was delivered to MIC, met with his party members for the first time today, and called for them to remain strong.

He also instructed a temporary joint committee be set up to oversee administrative matters within the party until such time when the party had resolved all outstanding issues with the ROS.

“We have to remain strong while we are going through these trying times.

“The party has to be managed well, and if not MIC will be de-registered as a political party,” he added.

Mohan who had earlier led the movement to reveal ROS’ findings on MIC’s elections and who pressed for re-elections, welcomed the party’s decision saying, “We appreciate the fact that we were included in the meeting.

“If they want to discuss the matter with ROS, we must agree with the leadership’s decisions,” he said adding, “Re-election must take place after the discussion.”

Earlier today, a minor fracas broke out between 500 MIC supporters who gathered outside the party’s headquarters when their leaders made an exit, necessitating the deployment of Federal Reserve Unit officers to manage the crowd.

The supporters were split into two factions with one faction led by Mohan and S Vellpaari and the other standing in solidarity with party President, Palanivel.

Opposition wants ‘answers’ on former CJ

“There is clearly something amiss in the appointment of judges where an extremist with racial and religious prejudice could rise up.”


KUALA LUMPUR: The Opposition wants to know, taking its cue from the social media, the legal fraternity and various press statements, how former Chief Justice Abdul Hamid Mohamad could rise up to become the top judicial officer of the land.

The question arises after Abdul Hamid has been linked of late with various extremist, racist, prejudiced, and bigoted public statements.

“There is clearly something amiss in the appointment and promotion of judges in Malaysia where an extremist with racial and religious prejudice could rise up all the way to become Chief Justice of the country,” said DAP elder statesman Lim Kit Siang in a statement.

“Hamid should have been hauled before the judicial tribunal for extremist, racial and religious prejudice and not be allowed to be promoted up the judicial ladder.”

Instead, noted Lim, he rose up the judiciary ranks from High Court to Court of Appeal and Federal Court, and was then appointed Court of Appeal President and Chief Justice of Malaysia. Hamid was elevated to the highest judicial post when he was appointed Chief Justice from 2007-2008, succeeding Fairuz Abdul Halim, and preceding Zaki Azmi.

Lim, also DAP Parliamentary Leader and Gelang Patah MP, said that many people have still not got over a recent statement by Hamid that Malays in the peninsula will end up like the Red Indians in America i.e. on reservations if PAS and Umno do not work together to “defend the Government from PKR and DAP”.

It was not known whether Hamid was referring to the reservations created by the British by gazette in the peninsula to get the Malay-speaking Muslim communities out of the way so that they could plant rubber and mine tin.

“Hamid was never interested in national unity in the sense of Malaysian unity but only in his concept of Malay unity,” said Lim in pointing out that majority rule, under the law, meant that in the legislature irrespective of the ethnic composition. “It’s a fallacy that Malay unity means PAS and Umno coming together.”

“The Malays and Islam could not be under threat after 57 years of Umno government under six Umno Prime Ministers.”

Lim, holding up Hamid’s “black record”, referred to retired Federal Court judge Gopal Sri Ram telling the media not so long ago that “the errant member of the bench” had shown extremist prejudice in a decision on a civil case which he heard as a High Court judge in the 90s.

Hamid, who had written the judgment in Bahasa Malaysia, apparently accepted the claim by a Malay defendant because “as a Muslim he would not tell lies”. He, however, did not accept the allegation of an Indian gentleman who was the partner. The bank and the Indian gentleman appealed to the Court of Appeal.

The Court of Appeal, comprising Gopal Sri Ram, the late Abdul Malek Ahmad and Siti Normah Yaakob, dismissed the bank’s appeal, set aside Hamid’s judgment and ordered a re-trial.

In that case, the bank had sued the two business partners, the Malay and Indian, who had stood guarantors for a loan. Both defendants relied on the defence that their signatures were forged by a third party.

Why Malays should back the ‘I am #26' petition

BY Hafidz Baharom

I was recently roped in to support the ‘I Am #26' petition, a subsequent reaction to the letter of the G25, a group of eminent Malays who long for thorough moderation and not just words without action.

Written by a columnist for The Malaysian Insider, it has at the time of my writing this gained 3,760 signatories in the last four days, averaging 1,000 people a day.

And quite wholly, I agree to what the petition stands for, because it is, in fact, what an Islamic society is supposed to be; thorough, enlightened and in the spirit of brotherhood or sisterhood.

Personally, the five points of the petition to the prime minister requires urgent and immediate attention, and as such, I am wondering what the hesitance is about.

Firstly, it urges a review of the Sharia Criminal Offences laws in the country, which make sinning criminal. Is it not in the best interest of the entirety of the Islamic population in Malaysia to see what sins should be criminalised?

Is it not necessary to standardise all these laws in all the states in line with the federal constitution?

For myself, it is. A review would also shed light on a lot of issues that have been plaguing the dual legal system.

The second point in the petition is a clarion call to ensure that parliamentarians and the public know the limitations to the sharia legal system as set by the federal constitution.

This is definitely needed for everyone to note, because there are limits to the state-specific religious legal system as defined by our founding laws. Perhaps this has gone forgotten for far too long, or has been left without clarification for everyone to note.

Perhaps this is the way it is out of ignorance or necessity by people with their own agendas, God only knows.

Shouldn’t we, the public at large, know what limits the religious authorities have?

And since Islam itself promotes speaking from a point of enlightenment and to share knowledge, how can we say this point is an attack on Islam?

The third point is to allow civil society to consult on Islam being used as a source of public law and public policy. Yet again, this is necessary.

As I have mentioned before, Islam has now grown to a point of multiple facets in which everything and anything can be accessed online from multiple sources.

Islam has evolved, and we should evolve with it. In addition to this, how can you do laws and policies without contribution from civil societies?

We do it for everything from economics to education to welfare. When did Islam ever tell us to avoid having intellectual discourses as a basis of law and policy?

Is that not what a syura, or a political congress or a muktamar all about?

How can you not have the same for the government?

Nobody has a monopoly

The fourth point of the “I Am #26” petition is exactly what I just said above. Islam has now evolved to be multifaceted, to the point that nobody truly has a monopoly on which or what the right Islamic laws and policies are.

What was implemented in Turkey and Arab Saudi, to exemplify, are two different brands. Commonalities are abound, true, but they are different, suiting different peoples, cultures and thus, forming different laws and policies.

Similarly, Malaysia and Malaysians should come from the same points of view, since we are equally diverse but united in worshipping one God.

So, how can we not allow the inclusion of all information through the different interpretations and juristic schools of thought?

The final point raised in the petition is leadership, or as I interpret it, a moderator who will allow the intellectual debates on Islamic jurisprudence in the establishment and review of sharia law and policies.

As I read it, we do not expect the prime minister himself to lead this move, but to appoint someone who is knowledgeable enough in both legal systems and intellectual discourse to lead it to fruition.

Is this not what we want?

For too long, Islam and the Malays have been made the boogeyman of Malaysia. We have been made scapegoats to anything and everything - from riots that would cripple the nation to even veiled threats of violence against non-Muslims.

This has never been the Islamic way.

Transparency, moderation, knowledgeable, intellectual discourse; these have been the hallmarks of the best of Islamic governance throughout history. Look at the rich history of Islam and you will find that the intellects in arithmetic and medicine were also the same intellects in philosophy and jurisprudence.

Historically the renaissance men

To be frank, Muslims were historically the renaissance men. This has been historically recognised even since the days of Kublai Khan. How can we ignore knowledge in any form?

With all this in mind, how can Malays reject a petition which truly stands for the best of what Islamic culture has offered in the past?

As such, there is nothing in this petition that is against Islam. In fact, it encourages the best qualities of our religious culture has to offer to combat ignorance and the hijacking of our religion by those who treat it as a monopoly.

These, by and large, are un-Islamic qualities that the petition wants to combat.

And thus, I urge my Muslim brothers and sisters to support it.