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Friday, October 24, 2014

5 inmates share a toothbrush - Uthaya reveals his experience in prison

PKR must act on reps who 'betrayed' Azizah

Terror grips Ottawa: Gunman was flagged as ‘high risk’

Terror gripped the Canadian capital of Ottawa on Wednesday when a convert to Islam shot and killed a soldier guarding the National War Memorial before storming the packed Parliament building, where he was gunned down in a hail of police bullets.

The armed assault, which put Parliament and much of Ottawa on lockdown, came as Canada was already in a heightened state of alert over an attack just two days earlier, when another jihad convert intentionally ran down two Canadian Armed Forces soldiers with his car in Quebec, killing one of them.

Wednesday’s terror attack began when a black-clad man wearing a hoodie and a bandanna appeared at the memorial at 9:52 a.m. and opened fire on the soldier, who was carrying only an unloaded ceremonial rifle.

“All of a sudden, I just heard a shot, turned around and there was a guy with a rifle . . . and just pow, pow,” said a bystander, Raivo Nommick.

The soldier, Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, of Hamilton, Ontario, died despite first responders’ desperate attempts to save him.

The 24-year-old father was a member of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders regiment.

The shooter was identified as Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, 32, a drug-addled recent convert to Islam who had been on Canadian authorities’ radar. Sources told the Toronto Globe and Mail that he was designated a “high-risk traveler” and his passport had been seized, suggesting that authorities were wary that he might travel to join foreign jihadis like ISIS.

In other developments:

  • Authorities released a photograph showing Zehaf-Bibeau posing with a pointed rifle on a since-deleted ISIS media account. They were trying to determine whether the gunman acted alone or was part of a terror plot.
  • The NYPD beefed up patrols at the Consulate General of Canada in Midtown as a precaution.
  • Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper spoke to his nation Wednesday night declaring, “Let there be no misunderstanding. We will not be intimidated. Canada will never be intimidated. In fact, this will lead us to strengthen our resolve . . . [and we will] redouble our efforts to work with our allies around the world and fight against the terrorist organizations who brutalize those in other countries.”
  • President Obama said, “I expressed on behalf of the American people our condolences to the [slain soldier’s] family and to the Canadian people as a whole.. Obviously, we are all shaken . . . but we’re going to do everything we can to make sure that we’re standing side by side with Canada during this difficult time.”
  • British Prime Minister David Cameron tweeted, “I’m appalled by today’s attack in Ottawa.”

After shooting Cirillo, Zehaf-Bibeau ran up the street toward Parliament Hill.

Dramatic video taken by a Globe and Mail reporter showed police warily searching for the shooter in the historic chamber before a loud rifle shot boomed out and then as many as 50 shots rang out in quick succession as cops returned fire.

Politicians and their staffers scrambled down scaffolding that was in place for renovations, while others hid inside barricaded meeting rooms as cops with high-powered rifles and body armor took up positions on the surrounding streets.

A security guard at the building was wounded in the fusillade but was expected to recover.

Canadian authorities said the intruder was taken down by 58-year-old Parliamentary Sergeant-at-Arms Kevin Vickers, a former Royal Canadian Mounted Police officer.

Zehaf-Bibeau had an extensive criminal record for drugs, assault, and weapons. His most serious crime resulted in a two-year sentence for a robbery.

The killer’s mother, Susan Bibeau, is a member of Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Board, while his father, Bulgasem Zehaf, is a Quebec businessman who owns a cafe, the Globe and Mail said.

Neighbors said the shooter grew up living a privileged life in a quiet neighborhood where he attended a private high school.

He told a friend at a British Columbia mosque about three years ago that he was thinking of traveling to the Middle East said “the devil” was after him, the Globe and Mail reported.

The bloodshed came as Canada prepared to join the US-led bombing campaign against ISIS terrorists in Iraq.

The cutthroat jihadis have urged supporters to kill military personnel and civilians in Canada and other countries — even instructing them to use their cars as weapons, as was the case in the Quebec attack.

A witness to Wednesday’s attack said the gunman was dressed in a manner similar to the uniforms worn by ISIS fighters.

“I looked out the window and saw a shooter, a man dressed all in black with a kerchief over his nose and mouth, holding a rifle,” Tony Zobl told the Canadian Press. “The honor guard dropped to the ground, and the shooter kind of raised his arms in triumph holding the rifle.”

Cirillo didn’t stand a chance. Soldiers who guard the memorial are part of a ceremonial guard, and he his comrade were carrying unloaded rifles.

The bespectacled Vickers was hailed as a hero for stopping the attacker’s advance just feet away from the country’s top officials.

Vickers’s brother John told the CBC his sibling called their mom, Monica, in New Brunswick to tell her he was safe.

“I just couldn’t be prouder of him right now,” John said, adding that his brother, a 28-year veteran of the Mounties, has “always been committed to service, people and country” during his law-enforcement career.

'Follow the footsteps of our brave brother': ISIS takes to Twitter to call for MORE attacks on Canada as it's feared more than 130 young Muslims have already left the country to join the terror group

  • Suspected terrorist attacks in Canada have sparked commentary from the online jihadist community on Twitter who are calling upon others to strike
  • 'Muslims in Canada, follow the footsteps of our brave brother Martin Rouleau who took revenge for Canadian military aggression in our lands,' wrote suspected jihadist Abu Khalid Al-Kanadi
  • The Canadian government estimates that over 130 Muslim youth have already left the country to join ISIS and that the number is growing

After two terrorist attacks in Canada in a week left two Canadian soldiers dead, ISIS has stepped up its rhetoric calling for even more radicals to carry out mass murder and mayhem in the country.

An even more horrifying fact is that an estimated 130 Muslim youths in Canada have been seduced and radicalized by ISIS and have even left Canada behind to join forces with them.

The first attack happened Monday night - a hit-and-run by suspected jihadist Martin Rouleau.

After two terrorist attacks in Canada in a week left two Canadian soldiers dead, ISIS has stepped up its rhetoric calling for even more radicals to carry out mass murder and mayhem in the country.

An even more horrifying fact is that an estimated 130 Muslim youths in Canada have been seduced and radicalized by ISIS and have even left Canada behind to join forces with them.

The first attack happened Monday night - a hit-and-run by suspected jihadist Martin Rouleau.

'Muslims in Canada, follow the footsteps of our brave brother Martin Rouleau who took revenge for Canadian military aggression in our lands,' he wrote.

One day later his account was suspended.

Insite Blog reports that a second jihadist Twitter account posted on October 21 and said that Canada is 'starting to pay the price of intervention' of the war against ISIS and followed up with a second tweet urging more attacks.

'A Canadian Revert killed a Canadian Soldier then he earned Shahada at the hands of the kuffar All This reward.. without evn leaving Canada.'

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Doggy debate reveals Malaysia’s narrow Islamic code

The ‘I want to touch a dog’ event has spurred a debate among Malaysian Muslims on handling canines. – The Malaysian Insider pic, October 23, 2014. As Malaysian Muslims debate the different views in Islam on handling dogs, the National Fatwa Council today said that teachings under the Shafie school of jurisprudence, which Malaysia follows, had to be obeyed.

The council today decided that touching or holding a dog went against Shafie jurisprudence, which the Putrajaya has called the "official" Islamic code for Malaysia, Bernama reported.

Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom said even though Islam held animals, including dogs, in high regard, dogs were still "unclean" from a religious standpoint and Muslims had to obey rules on handling them.

"That dogs are held in high regard is another matter, Muslims still have to abide by what has been decided under Islamic laws," he said in Kuala Nerus, Terengganu, today after a meeting of the fatwa council.

Bernama reported that the meeting was also attended by the director general of the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (Jakim) Datuk Othman Mustaffa and chairman of the National Fatwa Council, Professor Emeritus Tan Sri Dr Abdul Shukor Husin.

A day after the "I want to touch a dog" event in Bandar Utama, Petaling Jaya, on October 19, Shukor had said that there was no need for the council to issue a new fatwa about dogs as "everyone knew" that they were unclean.

Shukor also said that while there were different opinions about dogs between the four main schools of Islamic jurisprudence, the matter should not be debated as Malaysia followed the Shafie school.

This school has the strictest interpretation on dogs, which cannot be touched whether they are wet or dry, and requires Muslims to perform the "samak" cleansing ritual if contact is made.

The Maliki school, on the other hand, does not view dogs as unclean and does not prohibit touching them.

"The council feels there is no need to issue a new fatwa because as we know, in this country, Muslims cannot touch dogs without reason whether the animal is dry, what more if it is wet. And if they happen to touch it, they will need to perform 'samak'.

"The law against touching dogs should not be hyped up as it has already been decided by the ulama that it is haram. So why should we want to debate it. That is why we do not need a fatwa because the matter is clear," Shukor was quoted saying in Utusan Malaysia.

There are four schools of jurisprudence among Sunni Muslims: Maliki, Hanbali, Hanafi and Shafie. All four schools are accepted among Sunni Muslims as being within the confines of Islam. However, Malaysian Muslims traditionally follow the Shafie school of jurisprudence.

The debate has raged on social media between Muslims, and cyber bullying including threats to kill and beat up the event organiser, Syed Azmi Alhabshi, have also been made.

These threats have been condemned by moderate Muslims as bringing shame to Islam, while some scholars analyse the ongoing furore as part of a shift in Malaysian Muslim society with more people becoming open to other schools of jurisprudence.

Former Perlis mufti Professor Datuk Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin (pic, left) said the Malaysian Islamic authorities had to learn how to deal with a "modernising landscape".

"We cannot manage it as if we were from the dark ages. We must handle these modern changes in a mature manner,” he told The Malaysian Insider.

Asri has also said that Muslims were free to switch between schools, according to the teachings of Syrian scholar Wahba Zuhayli who held that it was not compulsory to commit to just one school of jurisprudence.

International Islamic University Malaysia lecturer Dr Maszlee Malik also told The Malaysian Insider that Muslim youth are now exposed to the other schools of jurisprudence through books, the media and the Internet. – October 23, 2014.

Top cop looks to ordinary Malaysians to keep police in check

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said Malaysians were the best monitors of police misconduct. – The Malaysian Insider pic, October 23, 2014. 
Brushing aside a proposal that an Independent Police Integrity Commission (Ipic) be set up to check abuse of power and graft among the boys in blue, top cop Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said that the public are the best monitor of police misconduct.

He said the public were tech savvy and made use of their smartphones to immediately expose any abuse of power or misconduct via social media.

"I think this is the best monitoring for us. With the smartphone, they take a picture and put it on YouTube. So the people generally can monitor anything that involves the police," the inspector-general of police said in Kuala Lumpur today.

Khalid was commenting on the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Consultation and Prevention Panel’s suggestion that the police look into setting up the Ipic, in an effort to reform the force and improve public perception towards it.

"I am waiting for the proposal. We have not seen it yet. We will see what are the suggestions and proposals made by the committee in setting up the Ipic before making any comments.

"But as I have said before, PDRM is not only closely monitored by the new Integrity and Standard Compliance Department but also by the MACC and the Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission (EAIC).

"But more than that, we are also monitored by the people."

The Ipic is similar to the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC), which was proposed by the 2005 Dzaiddin Police Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI).

The MACC panel said it believed that the Ipic, which would be independent, would be as effective as the IPCMC in preventing police misconduct and abuse of power, including bribery.

Despite calls by the opposition to set up the IPCMC following a string of death in custody cases, the police and Putrajaya have repeatedly rejected the proposal.

They said it was unconstitutional and would result in overlapping jurisdictions.

Khalid, however, said the police have never objected to the setting up of IPCMC, but only certain terms in the clause that did not leave police any rights.

"It is as if we are second-class citizens. That we have no rights under the law with IPCMC."

It was reported that under the IPCMC, there is no clause to permit convicted officers to appeal decisions in court.

Critics of the IPCMC, including former IGP Tan Sri Musa Hassan, have said that the IPCMC must include an avenue for this, arguing that police should be accorded fairness and justice. – October 23, 2014.

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Melayu perantau, bukan pendatang, kata Isma

Kawasan Nusantara disebut sebagai rantau Melayu kerana penduduknya bertutur menggunakan bahasa Melayu dan mengamalkan adat istiadat serta budaya Melayu secara saksama. – Gambar fail The Malaysian Insider, 23 Oktober, 2014.
Masyarakat Melayu di negara ini adalah penduduk asal wilayah Nusantara dan bukannya pendatang dari wilayah luar seperti kaum lain, kata Naib Presiden I Isma Muhammad Fauzi Asmuni.

Fauzi berkata, ahli parti politik Gerakan yang membicarakan isu pendatang di Tanah Melayu, Tan Lai Soon sebenarnya tersilap berhubung perkara itu ketika mengatakan Melayu juga pendatang di negara ini seperti kaum Cina dan India.

"Jika beliau merujuk orang Melayu yang duduk di Malaysia sekarang ini datang dari Sumatera, Kepulauan Sulawesi, Kepulauan Borneo, maka dalam sejarah ia tidak dipanggil bangsa pendatang. Orang Melayu yang berhijrah dari kawasan tadi, kita gunakan istilah sebagai perantau," katanya di laman sesawang Isma hari ini.

"Sebabnya, bila kita sebut Tanah Melayu, ia bukan merujuk kepada Malaysia sahaja, Tanah Melayu adalah satu wilayah cukup luas yang bermula dari Champa, sekarang ini dikenali sebagai Vietnam, Thailand, Singapura sehingga ke Riau Lingga.

"Kemudian di sebelah barat, Sumatera keseluruhannya, turun lagi ke bawah Kepulauan Jawa, kemudian naik semula ke atas Kepulauan Sulawesi, Borneo dan Filipina."

Beliau berpendapat, kenyataan pemimpin Gerakan itu tidak wajar disebut kerana ia amat bercanggah dengan fakta dalam sejarah.

"Saya tidak pasti sama ada perwakilan Gerakan tersebut merujuk kepada mana-mana kajian untuk mengaitkan atau menyimpulkan kaum Melayu adalah pendatang," katanya.

Fauzi berkata, kawasan Nusantara itu disebut sebagai rantau Melayu kerana penduduknya bertutur menggunakan bahasa Melayu dan mereka mengamalkan adat istiadat dan budaya Melayu secara saksama.

"Kalau kita lihat orang di Borneo, di Filipina, Maguindanao, Luzon dan sebagainya. Begitu juga jika di Sumatera, Jawa, mereka menggunakan nama-nama Melayu, bertutur dalam bahasa Melayu. Jadi itu dipanggilnya rantau Melayu.

"Rantau Melayu ini adalah rantau orang berpindah dari satu lokasi ke satu lokasi. Ia tidak dipanggil pendatang. Ia dipanggil perantau. Istilah itu lebih tepat," katanya.

"Jadi bila kita kata orang selain Melayu adalah pendatang, mungkin mereka akan sensitif dengan perkataan ‘pendatang’."

Fauzi berkata, rumpun Melayu menjadikan wilayah di Nusantara ini sebagai kediaman lalu menduduki rantau ini.

"Orang Cina berasal dari Tanah Besar China, orang India berasal dari tanah besar India. Kalau ada di sini saki baki keturunan orang Portugis, Belanda, mereka berasal dari Eropah.

"Jadi mereka ada tanah asal dan mereka datang ke sini. Kalau sensitif gunakan perkataan pendatang, gunalah apa-apa istilah pun.

"Tetapi mesti menunjukkan mereka itu datang dari tanah asal mereka dan masuk ke sini (Tanah Melayu)," katanya.

Fauzi berkata, pakar arkeologis dan pengkaji DNA serta seumpamanya mengatakan orang Melayu sudah bertapak di sini sejak penghijrahan awal manusia lebih kurang 35,000 tahun sebelum Masihi lagi.

"Jadi apabila pemimpin Gerakan itu mengatakan Melayu juga adalah pendatang, kita kena tanya semula kepada beliau, apa maklumat yang dia ada sampai dia sebut begitu? Sebab saya tidak nampak dia merujuk kepada mana-mana fakta ilmiah," katanya.

Fauzi berkata, selepas kemerdekaan sebahagian individu mula lupa sejarah terutama sebahagian kaum Cina dan India.

"Mereka menuntut kita lupakan sejarah dan mulakan sejarah baru bermula dengan kemerdekaan.

"Jadi mereka kata, selepas merdeka, mereka sudah duduk di sini, jadi sepatutnya kita bina negara baru.

"Saya tidak setuju dengan cadangan itu kerana sepatutnya kita perlu lihat kembali sejarah kita," katanya.

Beliau berkata, apabila kaum luar menuntut perubahan konsep kesamarataan, kumpulan itu tidak memahami konsep negara asal.

"Contoh, jika kita beramai-ramai pergi ke China dan menuntut mengubah konsep negara tersebut, pasti mereka tidak akan bersetuju.

"Mana-mana negara pun tidak bersetuju. Jika kita pergi ke Amerika, Amerika bertapak dengan konsep sekarang sejak pertengahan kurun ke-18.

"Jadi adakah satu cadangan daripada sesuatu pihak dengan mudah boleh diterima Amerika untuk mengubah konsep negara mereka? Mereka tidak akan ubah," katanya.

"Jadi logiknya, orang Islam Melayu di sini untuk tidak bersetuju terhadap beberapa tuntutan yang dituntut."

Beliau turut menegaskan konsep negera ini adalah Tanah Melayu dan ia adalah tanah Islam.

"Semua orang perlu bersetuju dengan konsep ini dan ia dipersetujui datuk nenek moyang mereka ketika kemerdekaan dulu.

"Jadi itulah hakikat kedatangan bangsa Cina, India dan bangsa lain ke Tanah Melayu," tambahnya.

Katanya, apabila terdapat seruan mengubah kontrak sosial dan Perlembagaan, ia mencabar doktrin negara yang menyebabkan keadaan harmoni selama ini.

"Kita tidak pernah halang orang luar yang sudah menjadi warganegara atau belum menjadi warganegara mencari rezeki. Siapa jutawan paling kaya di Malaysia?" katanya.

"Berapa ramai Cina berbanding Melayu? Jadi apa lagi yang mereka mahu? Sekolah Cina ada, sekolah India pun ada.

"Semua itu mereka kecapi yang mungkin tidak kecapi jika mereka berada di negara asal," katanya lagi.

Beliau berkata, konsep syukur itu harus difahami termasuk juga konsep berterima kasih.

"Sebabnya dari segi sejarah, kita lihat contoh bangsa luar apabila masuk ke mana-mana negara, adakah akan diterima sebagai warganegara dengan mudah?

"Tidak akan diterima dengan mudah. Tetapi sejarah membuktikan orang Melayu dengan toleransi yang tinggi, pada 1957 memberikan kewarganegaraan kepada lebih sejuta orang dengan pemberian mudah. Jadi jangan lupa sejarah itu," katanya.

Beliau berkata, sebagai seorang manusia dan warganegara, komuniti bukan Melayu sudah cukup dengan apa yang dinikmati hari ini.

"Saya rasa sudah cukup dengan apa yang mereka kecapi, sudah amat memadai dan sepatutnya diucapkan dengan ucapan terima kasih.

"Tetapi akhirnya sebahagian mereka menghasut supaya mereka dapat lebih, sampai nak ubah konsep negara.

"Mereka cuba mahu runtuhkan Perlembagaan, jadi macam mana Melayu tidak respons? " katanya.

"Melayu akan respons dan membalas jika berasa haknya terancam." – 23 Oktober, 2014.
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'Budget focus on bumis not due to racist gov't'

Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak's emphasis on the bumiputera agenda during Budget 2015 is not because it's a racist government, said Deputy Finance Minister Ahmad Maslan.

This is to address the bumiputera population which is set to increase to 70 percent in 2020.

The government feels that only if bumiputeras advance, can Malaysia develop, he explained.

"We do not have the intention of being racist. We do not want this issue to arise," he said.

He was speaking at a briefing on GST to some 700 civil servants in Bangi, Selangor.

"However, Malaysia can only advance when 70 percent of its population advances."

"Others (non-bumiputera), they work hard and have managed to move forward, but the 70 percent still lags behind, with most still staying in villages," Ahmad said.

'Rich Chinese, non-bumis reproduce less'

He said that the bumiputera’s composition increased following a drop in the reproduction rate among Chinese and non-bumiputera families when they get rich.
The bumiputera meanwhile maintained three to six children in a family.
Najib has underlined the bumiputera agenda as one of the seven strategies in his budget speech, and announced plans to help the bumiputera. 
Najib said the target of 30 percent bumiputera equity has yet to be achieved, and that the effective control over corporations was only 10 percent.
In his Ahmad also took the opportunity to lambast the ‘Rakyat Hakim Negara’ (People the judge of the nation) campaign being held in solidarity with the opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim's sodomy appeal in federal court next week. 
He said that it was Anwar as the former finance minister who first proposed the new tax system.
"When you talk about 'Rakyat Hakim Negara', that has only happened during national polls.
"But on a personal issue (like sodomy II trial), you have to take responsibility in your own capacity, there is no need to involve the rest of the people," said Ahmad, who is also the Umno information chief.
He cautioned the people against the campaign to flood the Federal Court next Tuesday for Anwar's final appeal.
"Read the judgement of three judges from Court of Appeal, read it. This was the only judgement in the world that I read to find out (the reason of five-year sentence,)" he said.
He said he hoped there won't be any chaos on the day of hearing at Palace of Justice, Putrajaya.

Malaysians urged to demand AG’s accountability

Kit Siang says the opaqueness of Gani and his office cannot be maintained in a democracy.


KUALA LUMPUR: DAP Parliamentary Leader Lim Kit Siang today issued a clarion call to Malaysians to demand that the Attorney-General’s Chambers submit to public scrutiny for its accountability.

In a media statement referring to AG Abdul Gani Patail’s announcement on Sept 9 that his office would review the sedition charges against academic Azmi Sharom and others, Lim noted that seven weeks had passed “but nothing has been forthcoming on the outcome of this review, or whether such a review has taken place.”

He said the opaqueness of the AG and his office “is not maintainable in a modern democratic country committed to accountability and good governance principles.”

He urged Malaysian citizens and their representatives in Parliament to demand that the AG’s Chambers “submit to public and parliamentary scrutiny for accountability”.

“MPs and the Malaysian public are entitled to know whether in the exercise of the prosecutorial discretion on the basis of public interest, are these purely legal considerations or they also involve political considerations, and if so, the nature of these political considerations,” he said.

The DAP leader also referred to former AG Abu Talib Othman’s criticism of Gani’s Sept 9 statement.

“Is he admitting that he was not fair and transparent when the accused were first charged, and that is why he is reviewing the cases now? Maybe he should clarify,” he quoted Abu Talib as saying.

Lim said Gani, more than failing to clarify, had allowed the sedition blitz to continue.

Contrasting the sedition charges against opposition leaders and activists with the apparent immunity of Perkasa chief Ibrahim Ali despite his call for the burning of Bibles, Lim said Gani was “fuelling the worst crisis of confidence in the nation’s history over the role and powers of the Attorney-General as a result of his silence over the escalating controversy”.

Serious questions

He said the AG’s failure to provide an “acceptable explanation that there has been no arbitrary abuse of the AG’s prosecutorial discretion … has raised serious questions as to whether he is committed to upholding the rule of law and to act as guardian of the public interest”.

Lim also quoted from a letter from former Court of Appeal judge K C Vohrah that the Star published today.

He said Vohrah expressed “the legitimate nagging concerns in many minds”.

Vohrah called for the review and withdrawal of sedition cases based on three considerations:

The Sedition Act is an oppressive law and that many jurists and scholars consider sedition (based on common law seditious libel) as obsolete. Seditious libel came during a period when the divine right of rulers was not only accepted but believed to be necessary;

That once a person is charged for an offence under the act, looking at the state of case law in Malaysia, there is no defence that can normally be taken for offences, say, under the Penal Code or other acts creating offences. So it appears there can be no defence even of truth, lack of intention, presence of an innocent or honourable intention, absence of consequent harm, or even a lack of possibility or potential for consequent harm.

That the AG before exercising his discretion whether to charge a person for sedition must ignore pressure from any quarter, political or otherwise, the noisy and the cantankerous, and the well-meaning and well-intentioned groups (who have not seen the oppressive implications of the law), and focus on whether it is reasonable to charge such a person in the context of all relevant circumstances in an age of “disagreement in ideas and belief on every conceivable subject” which are the essence of our life in modern Malaysia pushing on for developed status in 2020.

Ridhuan Tee, won’t you please shut up?

Integration does not mean an ethnic community has to give up its cultural identity.


Perhaps we can forgive his occasional pandering to Umno interests. Perhaps even a slip of the tongue here and there. But the constant attention grabs of columnist and alleged scholar Ridhuan Tee Abdullah have just become tiresome and downright irritating. Not content with throwing tantrums over civil society’s lack of concern when he was under investigation for sedition, Ridhuan is back to rant about vernacular schools and, of course, the “ultra kiasuness” of Malaysia’s Chinese community.

Please, please, just shut up already.

I say this out of an earnest yearning for Mr Tee to learn to hold his tongue and perhaps apply more diligence in his study of the Quran instead of spouting empty rhetoric under the guise of being ethnically Chinese. Every time he opens his mouth, or pens a column, all he does is drive a bigger wedge between Malaysians, as if we didn’t already have enough wedges to deal with.

It seems like he must have an opinion on everything, and his opinion will always lead back to, surprise, someone being “ultra kiasu” (usually Chinese). If there ever was a perfect illustration for the Malay proverb “kacang lupakan kulit”, it would have to be Ridhuan Tee Abdullah.

Let’s appreciate the irony of Tee’s use of “ultra kiasu” for a moment. He often uses this to refer to Chinese whom he perceives as more “cina than China”, whereas Tee often attempts to be more Malay than a Malay himself. Sweet, delicious irony in the form of an identity crisis if there ever was one. And yet he has the cheek to offer himself up as a “guide” for non-Malays to better understand the Malay people.

Here’s the catch: the only way anyone ever succeeds in understanding someone else is by facing him and engaging with him, which usually leads to a realisation that there are other ways of looking at and understanding this world. We don’t learn anything about each other through harangues and diatribes spouted by people like Ridhuan, who expects non-Malays to lend a ear to him while he consistently and constantly refers to them as “ultra kiasu tribes” or “ultra kiasu groups”.

Damage to the nation

Wong Chun Wai once said that Tee suffers from an identity crisis, and I’m tempted to concur. Ridhuan, you can’t change who you are and who you are born as. But why the need to spout divisive rhetoric, seemingly without realizing the damage you’re causing us as a nation? Your words will not bring us together as Malaysians. Look at your comment on Thaipusam, for example: “A sea of people of one colour only, as if there are no other colours in this country.”

Congratulations. You hurt the feelings of an entire people that day, as if they don’t figure at all in your daily life.

One could suppose this is Ridhuan indulging in a form of intellectual blackface, wearing a Malay mask as he writes and then stripping it off to assert that he is still of Chinese ethnicity when questioned. Despite claims that he never claimed to be Malay (genetically impossible considering his ethnic background), he certainly writes from a perspective that suggests he wishes that he could lay claim to the privilege.

Integration does not necessarily mean the loss of cultural identity. It does not mean that the dominant culture oppresses or represses that of the minority in the name of “unity” but assimilates it as part of the whole. That has been the guiding principle for most Malaysians throughout our history, and despite the hubbub and noise caused by extremists, for the most part we have integrated and accepted our different cultures as part of a greater whole, Malaysian culture.

I am proud to call myself a son of this country. I am a third generation Malaysian Chinese raised in the capital city of our country. I went to a kebangsaan school that hosted all the colours of Malaysia and do not speak a word of Chinese outside basic greetings and some food names. Most of my friends are Malay, across the strata from the liberal through the apolitical to the conservative. And I have found that they respect my cultural inclinations the same way they expect to be given respect in how they conduct their lives.

We have debated about religion with no animosity and shared a teh tarik together afterwards while laughing over football. I have been to their houses for Raya, and shared cakes my mother baked with them. Nothing, as far as this life here in Malaysia has shown me, has pointed to this idea that the Chinese need to give up their identity to be Malaysian. In fact, our identity is Malaysian because this is the only homeland we have ever known or will ever know, and the only culture we are familiar with.

Ridiculous suggestion

Your disingenuous assertion that we want to get rich so we can die in China is possibly the most ridiculous suggestion I have ever heard. I’m sure you know as well as I do that in China we are barely regarded as “true” Chinese anymore, and I believe China’s culture would be so alien to me that I would pack my bags and head back home to Kuala Lumpur not long after touching down in my so-called “motherland”.

I believe I speak for the majority when I say that Malaysia is my motherland and will be till the day I die, no matter where life may yet take me. This is my home, and has been my family’s home for three generations, and I will not accept the idea that I am “ultra kiasu” or somehow less Malaysian because I do not ape Malay culture. I am who I am, and that is Malaysian.

So Ridhuan, please, enough already. Stop driving a wedge between us the peoples of Malaysia for some obscure reason that only you and God know. As I said before, integration does not mean the loss of identity. With your position, you should be able to spread a message of wasatiyyah, a message of unity and not division. One could even argue that with one leg in your ethnic roots and the other in the majority religion of this country, you should be a bridge in the gaps, that it is your responsibility to be that bridge.

If you can’t, and instead insist on spreading your message of hate—and I’m sure you’ve heard this—“Much silence and a good disposition, there are no two things better than these.” (al-Bukhari)

Gani Patail fuelling worst crisis of confidence in nation’s history over the role and powers of Attorney-General

Lim Kit Siang Blog

The Attorney-General Tan Sri Gani Patail is fuelling the worst crisis of confidence in the nation’s history over the role and powers of the Attorney-General (AG) as a result of his silence over the escalating controversy over non-prosecution of Perkasa President Ibrahim Ali for his threat to burn the Malay-language Bible on the one hand and the sedition blitzkrieg against scores of Malaysians who did not make incendiary statements to create a climate of fear on the other.

This is because the continued absence of satisfactory accountability and acceptable explanation that there have been no arbitrary abuse of the AG’s prosecutorial discretion as highlighted by the decision not to prosecute Ibrahim Ali despite the threat to burn the Malay-language Bible and the mass sedition blitzkrieg have raised serious questions whether the Attorney-General is committed to uphold the Rule of Law and to act as guardian of the public interest.

Gani’s predecessors as Attorney-General, Tan Sri Abu Talib from 1980 to 1993 and Tan Sri Mokhtar Abdullah (1994 – 2000) had their controversies when they served under the country’s most controversial Prime Minister, Tun Dr. Mahathir but Gani Patail had put both Talib and Mokhtar in the shade both in the volume and gravity of controversies since becoming AG in 2002.

Gani has gained another distinction of having been criticized by his predecessor, as last month Talib excoriated Gani Patail for undertaking to review the sedition cases against Pakatan Rakyat leaders, academicians and social activists like Prof Dr. Azmi Sharom after the charges were framed, as the barrage of sedition charges came across as “persecution” and not “prosecution”.

As the former AG said:

“To charge a person is a very serious matter at it affects the accused’s credibility, standing and dignity.

“It will put the accused in an emotional turmoil. Even, if the prosecution withdraws the charge later, the damage is done.”

The former A-G said during his tenure, he only consented to charges being framed if there was “90% evidence to secure conviction”.

He said charges were also framed based on applicable law, fairness and public interest consideration without influence by a third party.

Talib said Gani’s statement that he would review the charges only gave the impression the decision to charge the accused was made without careful and serious consideration of all the available facts.

“Is he (Gani) admitting that he was not fair and transparent when the accused were first charged, and that is why he is reviewing the cases now? Maybe he should clarify.”

Gani had not only failed to clarify, but had allowed the “white terror” regime of sedition investigations and prosecutions to continue unabated – even pressing for the continuation of sedition trials despite Azmi’s successful application on Oct. 13 to challenge the constitutionality of the Sedition Act in the High Court, an outcome which would affect all sedition cases.

It is now seven weeks since Gani responded on Sept 9 to massive public outrage at the sedition blitzkrieg, announcing that the AG’s Chambers would review the sedition charges against Azmi and others, but nothing has been forthcoming on the outcome of this review, or whether such a review had taken place.

Do the Prime Minister or the de facto law Minister Nancy Shukri know anything about this review of the sedition charges by the AG’s Chambers, or are they completely in the dark as they are unable to demand any accountability from the AG’s Chambers apart from reading their prepared answers in Parliament?

The present status quo of opaqueness from public and parliamentary accountability of the Attorney-General and his Chambers is not maintainable in a modern democratic country committed to accountability and good governance principles – and MPs and Malaysians must demand the AG’s Chambers submit to public and parliamentary scrutiny for accountability.

For instance, MPs and the Malaysian public are entitled to know whether in the exercise of the prosecutorial discretion on the basis of ‘public interest’, are these purely legal considerations or they also involve “political” considerations, and if so, the nature of these “political” considerations.

The letter today by the Court of Appeal Judge, K.C.Vohrah on “Doubt in the administration of justice” (Star October 23, 2014) express the legitimate nagging concerns in many minds.

Vohrah wrote:

“I had been with the A-G Chambers for 16 years in the 70s and early 80s and the protocol for dealing with parliamentary questions was strict. An answer had to go through many layers of scrutiny and approval before being sanctioned by the A-G for release. What has happened to the strict procedure in the A-G Chambers?

“Admittedly the A-G Chambers in my days was, and more so now is, never idle as the volume of problems that come to the chambers for legal opinion is enormous.

“But in matters relating to parliamentary questions, truthful and accurate statements of law are expected in the august body of Parliament as the A-G is the ultimate adviser of the government in legal matters.

“There needs to be a re-think probably of the protocol relating to answers to parliamentary questions especially in criminal law matters, and the decision on the law should be for the A-G Chambers and nobody else, except for the courts.”

Vohrah said the AG’s prosecutorial discretion under Article 145(3) of the Constitution to institute, conduct or discontinue any proceedings for an offence is “an awesome power which has to be exercised bona fide and with great professionalism and care.”

He continued: “And any perception that the A-G when exercising such powers, is biased, selective or acts under ministerial pressure or pressure from any group will bring disrepute to the office of the A-G and cause grave misgivings as to the fair administration of the legal system. And when mistrust arises in regard to the exercise of such powers it would be to the discredit of the Government.”

Vohrah called for the review and withdrawal of cases where persons have already been charged based on three considerations:

(1) The Sedition Act is an oppressive law and that many jurists and scholars consider sedition (based on common law seditious libel) as obsolete. Seditious libel came during a period when the divine right of rulers was not only accepted but believed to be necessary; rulers who dispensed laws were above questions and criticism of rulers was considered sinful as well as unlawful.

(2) That once a person is charged for an offence under the Act, looking at the state of case law in Malaysia, there is no defence that can normally be taken for offences, say, under the Penal Code or other acts creating offences. So it appears there can be no defence even of truth, lack of intention, presence of an innocent or honourable intention, absence of consequent harm, or even a lack of possibility or potential for consequent harm. Prove the utterance of words as “seditious” (defined circularly and widely) and there is no defence to the utterance. Very oppressive in the 21st century. And to think this is the law in Malaysia, a democratic country.

(3) That the A-G before exercising his discretion whether to charge a person for sedition must ignore pressure from any quarter, political or otherwise, the noisy and the cantankerous, and the well-meaning and well-intentioned groups (who have not seen the oppressive implications of the law), and focus on whether it is reasonable to charge such a person in the context of all relevant circumstances in an age of “disagreement in ideas and belief on every conceivable subject” which are the essence of our life in modern Malaysia pushing on for developed status in 2020.

Will Gani Patail heed the voice of reason and sanity of an eminent Malaysian jurist, speaking for the overwhelming majority of thinking and reasoned Malaysians?

Human rights lawyer dies at 84

The funeral service will be held at 10:00 am TODAY (23 Oct 2014) at 1 Jalan Jujur 1/2, Taman Bakti, 68000 Ampang, Selangor. The cortege will leave for the crematorium in Cheras at noon.

PETALING JAYA: Former Parti Sosialis Rakyat Malaysia secretary-general S. Thaivasigamany died at his home in Ampang on Tuesday morning. He was 84.

He was better known as “Gamany” to the many detainees and unionists whom he defended after graduating from the Middle Temple in London in 1963 and admitted to the Malaysian Bar in 1964.

“His demise is a loss to the human rights movement in the country,” said Umno veteran Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah, who had known him since their student days in Britain.

“Even though Gamany was a socialist, he always took the middle road and was very fair and reasonable in his views and actions. He will be sorely missed by his peers and followers alike.”

Lawyer and former Member of Parliament Datuk Dominic Puthucheary remembers Gamany as a pioneer of human rights cases.

“It was long before civil rights became fashionable. Every October, he wrote to the Bar Council to remind them of all these people languishing in jail.”

Gamany was about the only lawyer in the 1960s and 1970s defending such cases, said Sivarasa Rasiah, partner of the law firm, Daim & Gamany, which Gamany set up with Tun Daim Zainuddin in 1968.

Hai-O Enterprise Berhad group managing director Tan Kai Hee said Gamany was “a hero who defended those who were in jail and took care of the families of the detainees”.

Tan was deputy secretary-general of the Labour Party when he was detained under the ISA from 1965 to 1973, and is grateful till today for Gamany’s visits.

Gamany leaves behind his wife Gan Hwee Hong and sons Kapila, Virata and Ushana.

Kapila remembers his father as “always looking out for other people and putting their needs above his own”.

The funeral will be held at 10am today at 1 Jalan Jujur 1/2, Taman Bakti, Ampang, Selangor. The cortege will leave for the crematorium in Cheras at noon.

1DANA Portal To Enhance Research, Development, Commercialisation Returns

PUTRAJAYA, Oct 23 (Bernama) -- Another government initiative - 1DANA portal - is launched by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak Thursday to make it easier for the people and companies to know of the assistance being provided for research, development and commercialisation.

The one-stop portal also enables the people to see all the grants and sponsorships for research and development (R&D) as well as commercialisation that are offered by government ministries and agencies.

Speaking at the launch, Najib said the portal could provide an overall picture on any ministry or agency that needed to be referred to for loans.

"Hope this portal receives good response and whatever feedback from the people will be taken into account for improvement," he said.

The 1DANA portal also has a dash board that monitors and detects the fund performance that is released for the national main key performance indicators (KPI) and selected KPI projects.

Najib said within a two-year period, the government had allocated RM2.3 billion for R&D.

"During the Malaysian Innovation Agency Governance Council, we have also discussed on detailing all the provisions so as to become a success factor, namely from the R&D process to commercialisation," he said.

He said the combination of demand and supply also needed to be given attnetion so that the success factor could be enhance to a higher level.

For further enquries, members of the public can surf


Thursday, October 23, 2014

Perkasa: Tornadoes due to 'dog patting' and vices

The recent series of rarely seen tornadoes in the country has left people scratching their heads but Selangor Perkasa appears to have an explanation.

The right-wing group, in a Facebook posting yesterday raised the possibility that the recent phenomenon may be related to vices in the country which it says, includes a 'dog patting' event for Muslims and a beer festival.

"Could it have something to do with the widespread vices such as gambling centres, prostitution, beer festival and dog patting festival which have become an attraction (for tornadoes)," said the ethnocentric group.

The NGO said this phenomenon did not happen in the past and appear to have only come about recently.

"What is making these tornadoes to be interested in coming to this country when all this while it had never been interested to do so.

"In the past, we only hear it visiting the South China Sea and even if it does 'visit', it would be to Vietnam or the Philippines," it said.

Perkasa was referring to an event dubbed 'I Want to Touch a Dog' last Sunday at a park in Kuala Lumpur, aimed at breaking the taboo among Muslims about coming in contact with dogs.

The event was well-attended – with Muslims making up the majority of the 1,000-strong crowd – but has sparked outrage among conservatives.

Earlier this month, nation-wide events to mark the Oktoberfest beer festival too had drawn criticism from conservatives, insisting that it disrespected Muslims sensitivities.

Malaysians were taken by surprise when a tornado struck Pendang, Kedah, on Oct 14, damaging eight houses and uprooting several trees.

The Malaysian Meteorological Department (MET) confirmed the rare incident which it attributed to these factors - high humidity, concentration of air at low levels, and the unstable atmosphere.

A week later, a freak storm struck Pandamaran, Klang, damaging 30 homes, which some media reports have described as a "small tornado".

However, the MET described that incident as a "large-scale storm" due to the formation of high intensity clouds.

'Bajet fokus Bumi bukan kerana kerajaan rasis'

Uthayakumar: Waytha did the right thing by resigning

In prison, one dipper for all, says Uthaya

INTERVIEW During his imprisonment, P Uthayakumar’s wife S Indra Devi had repeatedly raised the issue of her husband being in unhygienic conditions.

Uthayakumar, who was sentenced to an initial 30 months under the Sedition Act in 2013, said that he had highlighted it because it was not his case alone - it happened to everyone.

Relating his experience with the ‘multipurpose dipper’ in Kajang prison, Uthayakumar said prisoners use the same dipper to wash their wounds and soak their underwear in.

The dipper refers to the “gayong” used to fill water to wash oneself with after using the toilet.

“When there is a shortage of food trays, wardens dump food into the dipper, from which inmates will eat from with their bare hands, even those with scabs on their hands.

Uthayakumar said once, he even saw a prisoner vomit in the dipper.

As for the food, Uthayakumar said the menu is tasteless. He calls his prison term diet as complete detoxification of the human body.

“It is the first time I heard of sup air (water soup). If there is oil traces on any of the food, it is considered to be such a treat. There is almost no oil, which explains why most inmates have very dry skin,” said Uthayakumar.

He said one can either accept the food or go hungry for the rest of the day.

‘In the dark room, Malaysiakini saved me”

Due to his often “smuggled” and written complaints, he was placed in the ‘dark room’ thrice.

“I will tell you how to smuggle only when you are inside,” said Uthayakumar when asked how he did it. 

Once, they put him in solitary confinement for repeatedly missing the roll call.

“I had to sleep on the cement floor, with the longest experience for 14 days. I was in solitary confinement with no pillow, no blanket and no toiletries. There is a small window which opens up to the corridor and when they off the light, it is pitch black. The door is of hard steel.

“Despite being a hardened activist, I felt helpless that I could not even save myself.

“I kept myself busy by having a routine in the dark room. I would walk in circles, at times a thousand circles. Then I would go to the small tap and wash myself. Then the food comes. Then I walk circles again in the cell. Once it went on for five days.”

However, on the sixth day, an officer pulled him outside the cell and told him that they had read his complaints which were published in Malaysiakini.

“At that moment I was thinking, if not for Malaysiakini it was during my worst times in prison, I was hitting rock-bottom…that in a way, Malaysiakini was my saviour.”

Uthayakumar has initiated contempt proceedings against those who were allegedly responsible for his conditions of imprisonment.

Yesterday: Utahaya recounts horrors of a Malaysian prison

Next week, Uthayakumar talks of Hindraf failure, his brother and Pakatan Rakyat leaders.

PM, ministers and ambassadors celebrate Deepavali

Rakyat Malaysia di London bantah Akta Hasutan

Terror in Jerusalem: Baby killed, 7 hurt in attack at Light Rail station

Palestinian known to security forces plows car into crowd of people waiting at the Ammunition Hill station of Jerusalem's Light Rail; paramedic: car hit baby girl's stroller.

Noam 'Dabul' Dvir

Terror returns to Jerusalem: A 3-month-old baby girl was killed and seven other people were wounded Wednesday evening when a Palestinian plowed his car into a crowd of people waiting at the Ammunition Hill station of Jerusalem's Light Rail.

The driver - Abed a-Rahman a-Shaludi, a resident of the village of Silwad with a record of security related offenses - attempted to flee the scene on foot, but was shot by police. He sustained chest wounds and succumbed to his wounds late Wednesday evening after being taken to a Jerusalem hospital in serious condition.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said the car struck the train station near the national headquarters of the police force.

He said police were investigating but all signs pointed to an intentional attack. "There is a strong possibility that it was a terror attack," he said.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu lashed out at Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in wake of the attack, saying: "This is how Abu Mazen (Abbas') partners in government work," Netanyau said, referring to the Palestinian unity government comprising Hamas and Fatah that Israel has consistenly opposed. "This is the same Abbas that only a few days ago called for harming Jews in Jerusalem."

Interior Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovich, who arrived at the scene, also said that, "all signs indicate this is a terror attack." He further said that the driver had served time in prison before. He praised the police for their quick response.

"This is not an intifada," Aharonovich said, noting that he had spoken with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and that the police and the Shin Bet internal security service were investigating.

Two men in their 20s also were taken to Hadassah Medical Center on Mount Scopus with light wounds. Hadassah at Ein Kerem took in three wounded women, one in serious condition and two lightly hurt.

Read more:,7340,L-4583138,00.html

Syria Isis News: 40 al-Qaida Nusra Fighters Defect to Islamic State with Enslaved Woman Given to Leader

By Gianluca Mezzofiore

Dozens of fighters from the al-Qaida offshoot in Syria, the Jabhat al-Nusra front, have defected and joined Isis (Islamic State) in Syria in the past days, according to a monitoring group.

The London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights have reported that 40 militants from Syria's largest al-Qaida group moved to Al-Bab city, one of the bastions of the Islamic State northeast of Aleppo, and pledged allegiance to self-styled caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

Isis reportedly offered an enslaved woman named Sabbieh to the leader of the 40 Nusra defectors as a reward for joining the Islamic State.

While no additional details were available on the desertion, the Observatory said the defected included an Emir who retired from fighting on the al-Nusra side.

Al-Nusra, which takes orders directly from al-Qaida's leader Ayman al-Zawahiri, has battled IS in Syria in the past year while becoming the strongest and best equipped among the rebel groups fighting against troops loyal to president Bashar al-Assad.

Since September, however, US-led air strikes on IS positions near the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobani, which has been besieged by the jihadists, led al-Nusra to move towards a new alliance with IS. The Islamist group called the attacks a "war on Islam" and at least 73 members defected to IS earlier in September.

A source said al-Nusra and IS leaders were holding war planning meetings.

In February, in a bid to reassert influence among rival Islamic groups in Syria, al-Qaida had severed ties with IS, who reportedly disobeyed orders from network leader al-Zawahiri not to operate independently from the official offshoot, the al-Nusra front.

‘Pendatang’ furore proof of Barisan’s failure, says DAP

DAP said the fact that Malaysians were calling each other ‘pendatang’ or immigrant was a sign that Barisan Nasional failed in its nation-building policies. – The Malaysian Insider pic, October 22, 2014.
That Malaysians are still using the “pendatang” (immigrant) slur against one another after 57 years of Merdeka is proof that the millions of ringgit Putrajaya spent on nation-building have been wasted, says DAP.

The party's parliamentary leader, Lim Kit Siang (pic), today said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak should review his 1Malaysia and Umno-Barisan Nasional (BN) nation-building policies.

"Since the 70s, there is a National Unity Department in the Prime Minister's Department, but all the tens and even hundreds millions of ringgit of budget expenditures have been a total waste and loss, when 57 years after Merdeka, extremists are hurling the “pendatang” label at ordinary, loyal and patriotic Malaysians."

He said the majority of Malaysians were local-born and "100% Malaysians", leaving no reason for anyone to describe another as a pendatang.

"This is in fact questioning the citizenship rights of Malaysians, which is entrenched as one of the four ‘sensitive’ rights in the Malaysian Constitution in 1971, whereby it becomes an automatic sedition offence to call for the withdrawal of a Malaysian's citizenship."

Lim said the term was loaded in a very derogatory, pejorative and even abusive sense.

"Calling loyal, patriotic Malaysians, born and bred and who will die in Malaysia as ‘pendatang’ must be condemned as a form of extremism, which Najib denounced in the United Nations and international forums since becoming prime minister."

On Monday, Gerakan delegate Tan Lai Soon was suspended by his party for saying Malays, too, were “pendatang”.

It was not the first time the “pendatang” remark was made. In 2008, Bukit Bendera Umno division chief Datuk Ahmad Ismail made the remark to describe Chinese Malaysians who came to Malaya as immigrants during the British colonial rule.

The remark infuriated the Chinese and caused a serious rift between Umno and Gerakan in Penang. A Sin Chew reporter was detained overnight under the Internal Security Act for reporting what Ahmad said.

Ahmad was suspended from Umno and stripped of his party post for three years. He has since returned to politics as well as to his old position as Bukit Bendera division chief.

Ikatan Muslimin Malaysia president Abdullah Zaik Abdul Rahman also courted controversy when he described the Chinese as intruders brought in by the British. He is facing a sedition trial over the remark. – October 22, 2014.

Gerakan wants BN to act on 'extremist' members

Gerakan has urged all BN parties to follow its lead to suspend any member who makes 'extremist' remarks at annual general assemblies.

He said BN parties must do so following Gerakan's immediate action of suspending Johor delegate Tan Lai Soon for calling Malays 'pendatang' (immigrant) at the party's AGM last weekend.

"We have to take action immediately especially since Gerakan does not want to see any leaders from other BN component parties making racist or extreme remarks during their annual general meetings.

"We will urge party leaders to take immediate action on its members who make such remarks," Gerakan secretary-general Liang Teck Meng said at press conference today.

Liang (left) was speaking in general terms, but the only major BN party yet to hold its AGM is Umno.

Earlier a proposal was made at a division level Umno AGM for the abolition of vernacular schools to be discussed at the national general meeting. This prompted an outcry including from Gerakan.

While debating the Gerakan president’s policy speech on Sunday, Tan said: "Let me make the positions of Malaysians clear: Malays, Chinese and Indians were all pendatang, except the Orang Asli, Sabahans and Sarawakians, who are the original bumiputera."

The following day, Gerakan issued him a show-cause letter, urging him to explain his position within 14 days, failing which, he will be expelled from the party.

Zero tolerance

Under pressure from its members unhappy over the suspension, Liang today said the move was in line with the party constitution.

Liang explained that it was only natural for a member to be suspended pending investigation by the party's central working committee.

He also reiterated that Tan's (below) remarks were wholly against they party's stand.

"I want to stress that no race should be labelled as pendatang. What Tan said goes against the party's stand," said Liang in a press conference today.

He also recalled the case of then Bukit Bendera Umno division chief Ahmad Ismail who called the Chinese 'pendatang' in 2008.

"Penang Gerakan Youth wanted to leave BN over his statement. As a result, he was suspended for three years over his remarks."

Asked if this breaches Tan's freedom of speech, Liang argued that even the Parliament has its standing orders.

He also said he is "surprised" that the DAP, which promotes multiculturalism, supports Tan's remark.

“I cannot tolerate it and I feel offended if they want to claim everyone is pendatang," he said.

DAP: AG must clear air on Bible threat dismissal

Attorney-general (AG) Abdul Gani Patail should come forward to explain if he had personally signed off on the parliamentary reply which explained why the threat to burn Bibles is not prosecuted.

DAP’s Gelang Patah MP Lim Kit Siang said that this important not only so Malaysians would know the justifications for such a reasoning but also to know if a cabinet minister is doing the bidding of junior officers.

"If the answer was prepared by a law officer in the Attorney-General's Chambers (AGC) without the personal approval of the AG himself, does it mean that the minister in the Prime Minister's Department assigned the duties and responsibilities of a de facto law minister is merely an agent not only of the AG, but also of law officers in the AGC?

"If so, this will make an even greater mockery of the powers and responsibilities of the de facto law minister,” he said in a statement.

Lim (left) was referring to the parliamentary reply by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Nancy Shukri on whether Perkasa chief Ibrahim Ali will be charged for threatening to burn Malay-language Bibles.

In the reply she said he will not be prosecuted as he had no intention to cause disharmony and was defending the sanctity of Islam.

She said he was only responding to claims that copies of the holy book were distributed to Muslim students at a school in Penang.

'Most powerful AG'

In the wake of public outrage, Nancy explained that she was only relaying the AG’s position and that the cabinet does not meddle in prosecutions.

Lim said that if this is so, then the AG is the most powerful AG in the world as he is above cabinet and prime ministerial review.

He also questioned why Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak has not stated whether the government or BN agrees with the decision not to prosecute Ibrahim for the threat.

Ibrahim recently admitted that he did say the Bibles should be seized and burned last year, but said his remark was only directed to Muslim parents whose children have been given Bibles.

Let’s stop this pendatang nonsense

Khairie Hisyam Aliman, Malay Mail Online

So finally someone shot back in style to the Malay supremacists. Last Sunday, a Gerakan man told UMNO last Sunday that Malays are supposedly ‘pendatang’ to this land as well. And for his troubles, Gerakan member Tan Lai Soon was immediately suspended from the party.

Various non-government organisations (NGOs) including ISMA — who once called the Chinese ‘pendatang’ — lodged police reports against him. Federal minister Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim reportedly wants action against Tan. On the other hand Tan Sri Zainuddin Maidin said yes, Malays are ‘pendatang’ too but we came first.

But lurking beneath the fascinating responses to Tan’s statement is the point that this catchy rhetoric simply perpetuates a conversation that is fundamentally flawed.

The very concept of citizenship means that once you are granted a Malaysian citizenship, through birth or otherwise, you are Malaysian. You would have to pay taxes, obey the law, uphold the Constitution and swear allegiance to the King and country, just like any other citizen before you.

Once you’re in, you’re in — until such time that you renounce your citizenship. Apart from political alignment, citizens of this nation are all on the same side: Team Malaysia.

As a nation, there is no ‘us’ or ‘them’. Just ‘us’.

So why are we still talking about whose fathers came from where like it is the single overarching factor of everything today?

Our identity, past and present

History, of course, is important. Malaysia’s history is rich and the nation today has a wealth of diversified cultural heritage. Remembering where our forebears come from lends perspective.

Yes, Malays were in what would become Malaya long before the Chinese and the Indian immigrants came. But as our history unfolded, citizenship was extended to the immigrants, who in turn pledge loyalty to the nation.

Sarawak and Sabah had their own history and joined with Malaya to form Malaysia, which many seem to forget or dismiss today.

More importantly, the granting of citizenship back then was not conditional upon forgoing cultural heritage and identity. Unlike Indonesia for example, there were no nationwide assimilation policies per se to homogenise our national identity.

Hence today we do not have a homogenous identity as a nation. Rather, we have a multi-cultural identity forged by our various races brought together under one roof.

And we supposedly celebrate our diversity, going by how we advertise ourselves as a tourism destination. Yet we continue to talk about who came here first and who are supposedly superior because they came first.

This talk of ‘pendatang’, among others, tries to tackle an issue that is long past our control: that the immigrants of so many decades ago were eventually granted citizenships and their children were subsequently born citizens of the land just like any other Malaysian today.

But trying to undo the past is futile. None of us can choose who our fathers are, where our ancestors came from. Nor can we change what our fathers chose to do in the past.

Now Malaysia is what it is and there is no going back, nor should there be. Having each other with all the implications that brings enrich us further collectively.

We all own Malaysia

What we should talk about today instead is making the arrangement work for all of us, not just some of us. Like it or not every single Malaysian has rights to the nation as provided by the Constitution and the law.

While we cannot undo the past, we can shape the present and choose the future. We cannot choose our ancestors but we can choose who we are, what we do today and what we leave for our descendants.

For my fellow citizens who did not and do not wish to migrate away from this country, their choice is, essentially, to be Malaysians.

They are choosing to be loyal to this land they are born to and which they call home.

They are choosing to live here, to start families here, to fulfil what is expected of citizens here. And sometimes they even go above and beyond that for their fellow citizens.

It is something that many take for granted but nonetheless no less important. That choice to be Malaysian, to pledge loyalty to this nation and to serve it, should matter more today than lineage and ancestry.

Who is to say that the so-called ‘pendatang’ Malaysians are not as willing as, if not more than, other Malaysians to give their all for the country? Or that the other Malaysians are more patriotic solely by virtue of their ancestry?

The better measure of a good Malaysian, to my mind, is what service a person does for the betterment of the nation. And, in turn, how we can all prosper together while we are at it.

That, unlike who our fathers were and where our fathers came from, is something we can all do something about.

Anwar rejects exile

Najib Abdul Razak and Umno Baru were denied an early Deepavali present when opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim dismissed all talk of going into exile, in London.

Just imagine the headlines in Utusan Malaysia and TV3 if Anwar had chosen exile: ‘Coward Anwar seeks exile to escape jail’, ‘Exile proves Anwar’s guilt’, ‘Anwar abandons followers, lives in luxury in London’, ‘We told you so; Anwar is scared to face the truth’.

When he was interviewed by The Daily Telegraph, Anwar expressed no plans to form a government in exile, in London, despite unsuccessful attempts by his friends to convince him to stay. He admitted the strain placed on his family. He was sanguine about reform.

He said, “It is very difficult, particularly for my family. But when I started this case for reform in Malaysia I knew it was not going to be easy.”

If Anwar had chosen exile, Najib would have effectively isolated Anwar from his followers. The rakyat would not be spared either. They would be told that throwing their money and weight behind Anwar was wasteful, and their support for the opposition a futile cause.

Najib knows that having Anwar in exile is as good as putting him behind bars; but there are subtle differences.

People who have conducted a long-distance romance know that the relationship could suffer without complete commitment and absolute trust. The pressures and sacrifices are enormous. Anwar, in exile, and his supporters would face the same test. Who would falter first?

In recent months, many disillusioned Malaysians have had their confidence shaken by the troubles in Pakatan. In the recent Kajang move, PAS appeared to be hastening the break-up of the coalition.

Disheartened Malaysians should heed Anwar’s words. When he led the charge for reform, he knew it was going to be a long haul. Change is not for the faint-hearted. Decades of Umno Baru’s decadent and divisive rule, cannot be unravelled overnight. Are we all prepared to wait?

Anwar has laid the foundations for change, and although he risks losing his freedom, we have nothing to lose, apart from some sleepless nights, or our cool, when we are spat on, in a peaceful protest, by pro-government thugs.

If he were to be jailed, Anwar’s companions will be a few books, if his captors allow him that luxury, and the cockroaches in his cell. In relative freedom, we have the companionship and support of one another, to continue the reform agenda.

Jailing Anwar is not a simple matter for it presents Umno Baru with several dilemmas.

First. Jail might make Anwar a martyr. Umno Baru will want to avoid this at all costs.

Second. Jail reduces many of the opportunities to distract the rakyat. At present, our attention is immediately diverted, should any bad news emerge. Notice how the major corruption or religious scandals are immediately preceded by yet another Anwar sexposé? Sex sells, especially among the Malays.

Whetting our appetite for change

Third. Jail will not isolate Anwar. He may be physically removed, from our presence, but he has whetted our appetite for change. His absence will focus Malaysian minds and provide renewed momentum for change. It will prove to the authorities that we are capable of leading the charge, by ourselves.

Jailing Anwar may backfire on Najib. Urgings for reform will be re-energised with vengeance.

Anwar said that his exile would have a detrimental effect on Malaysians, especially its youth. He knows that responsible leaders are important role models. He said, “...if people like me can’t stand up against these atrocities what can we expect from young people?”

He is right. The problem is not always with our leaders. Our youth can be equally perplexing.

Two days before Anwar’s interview with The Daily Telegraph, PAS president Hadi Awang (right) had given a talk to Malaysian students in London.

Responding to a question fielded by a student, Hadi told his audience that women were perfectly suited to be leaders in their respective fields, but that they had no legitimacy to be leaders of the state, or the nation. He stressed that the woman’s importance lay in nurturing the family unit.

There is sex equality in Islam, so one must assume that Hadi is a closet misogynist. Why has he avoided the remarkable women leaders from the decadent west and Israel? Any Malaysian woman who aspires to be a menteri besar, or prime minister should avoid Hadi.

He has conveniently ignored the women leaders in Pakistan and Bangladesh, both Muslim nations. He has forgotten the succession of six Queens who ruled the Kingdom of Patani in the 16th and 17th centuries.

The PAS president is entitled to his views, but more shocking was the reaction of some female students that night. They agreed that Malay women should not aspire to be PM.

It appears that Anwar has much unfinished business amongst the Malay community. We still need him to free young Malay minds from the bondage of conservative Islam, Malay feudalism and subservient culture. Without Anwar, few Malay women will contribute to nation-building.

MARIAM MOKHTAR is a defender of the truth, the admiral-general of the Green Bean Army and president of the Perak Liberation Organisation (PLO).

Malaysians Of Hindu Faith Celebrate Deepavali In A Joyous Ambience

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 22 (Bernama) -- Malaysians of the Hindu faith today celebrate Deepavali in a joyous ambience by holding religious events and open houses.

The highlight of the celebration in the national capital is the Deepavali open house hosted by MIC at Dewan Merdeka, Putra World trade Centre (PWTC) here, which was attended by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor.

The beating of drums and flutes accompanied the arrival of Najib, who is also Umno President and Barisan Nasional Chairman at about 10.15 am. On hand to receive him were MIC President Datuk Seri G. Palanivel, his deputy Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam and other party leaders.

Also present were Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Nancy Shukri and about 5,000 people of diverse races.

Najib, who worn a cream-coloured kurta, the traditional Indian attire, later cut a cake together with other guests of honour before leaving the function at 11.10 am.

Speaking to reporters later, Najib said the Deepavali open house being held annually in the country could create a cordial atmosphere among each and every Malaysians.

"Many can get to meet their friends of the Hindu faith and we must enhance further the feelings of goodwill and harmony among Malaysians," he said.

He described this year's event as very joyous and in accordance to tradition.

Meanwhile MIC secretary-general A.Prakash Roa said it was a unique feature that all races could celebrate together whenever there was a festival in the country.

"Not only Deepavali, during Chinese New year, Hari Raya Aidilfitri, all can join in to sample the food and understand the culture of all the different races in the country and this harmonious atmosphere must be sustained," he said.

Foreigners who visited the open house also get to enjoy the auspicious festival.

Czech Republic Ambassador Rudolf Hykl said the Deepavali celebration in Malaysia, that was participated by all Malaysians from multi-racial backgrounds, was very interesting.

"The Indian community is one of the largest communities in this country, which is an ethnically rich nation. So for me it is important to have this experience," he said.

Meanwhile another well-wisher Ghazal Nabil from Syria said the festivity was very special because it was celebrated by all the communities while the food served could be savoured by everyone.

"I'm interested in the racial diversity here, I want to know as much as I can while I'm staying here," he added.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Anwar confident he won't go to jail

Uthaya speaks


CNN) — Imagine being rescued from modern slavery, only to be charged with a crime.

That’s the apparent reality in Mauritania, the country with the world’s highest incidence of modern slavery. Located in West Africa, on the edge of the Sahara Desert, an estimated 4% to 20% of people there remain enslaved. It was the last country in the world to abolish the practice — in 1981. And it only criminalized owning humans in 2007.

I visited the country in 2011 to produce a documentary on modern slavery for CNN. I’ve witnessed these horrors first hand — met the victims of slavery and the slave owners.
But this latest news still surprised me.

Mbeirika Mint M’bareck, a 15-year-old girl, was rescued from slavery only to be subsequently charged with having sex outside of marriage, according to a letter activists drafted on her behalf. (It is unclear who fathered the child). That crime is potentially punishable by death by stoning, according to an expert I spoke with. The activists planned to send the letter to the country’s ministry of justice on Monday.

“We are shocked and appalled that the prosecuting authorities would bring the charge of (adultery), as this young girl is evidently the victim of the heinous crime of slavery as well as statutory rape,” according to the letter, which the activists provided.

The 15-year-old ex-slave was “heavily pregnant” during a court hearing, which apparently led to the charge of sex outside of marriage. Her alleged captor, meanwhile, was charged simply with “exploitation of a minor (without financial compensation),” as opposed to the charge of slavery, which carries a longer prison term.

ISIS releases sickening video clip showing Syrian woman being stoned to death by group of men - including her own father

  • Shocking footage understood to have been filmed in Syrian city of Hama
  • Cleric seen ranting at woman and accusing her of committing adultery
  • Woman told to be 'content and happy' at stoning as it is ordered by God
  • She pleads for her life before asking if her father could ever forgive her
  • He responds telling her not to call him father, then orders murder to begin
  • A man was also stoned to death for adultery in a separate incident

Islamic State militants fighting in Syria and Iraq have released a sickening video of a young woman being stoned to death by a group of men - including her own father.

The shocking footage is understood to have been filmed in the city of Hama and shows a bearded cleric ranting at the woman in Arabic and accusing her adultery while she pleads for her life.

The woman turns to her father and begs his forgiveness but he coldly rejects her, saying he would rather please God. He then turns to the men to give the signal for his daughter's murder to begin.

Minutes later, as the men rain rocks down upon the helpless woman, her father steps forward with a large stone and the video fades to black.

It is believed he had been granted the barbaric 'honour' of being allowed end the life of the daughter he felt had betrayed both him and her religion.

In a separate incident a man was executed in Idlib province in an area controlled by Islamist groups including the Nusra Front, al Qaeda's official affiliate in Syria, said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which tracks violence on all sides of Syria's civil war.

It is the first documented case of a man being stoned to death for adultery since Syria descended into civil war in 2011 and hardline Islamic groups emerged as powerful players in areas that slipped from government control, the Observatory said.

The sickening five-minute video emerged on ISIS-affiliated social media pages this morning. It is not clear when the footage was actually shot and has not been independently verified.

The exact accusations against the woman remain sketchy, although the cleric who appears at the start of mobile phone-filmed clip accuses her of committing adultery.

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Mais says ‘I Want To Touch A Dog’ manipulated its goals

A Muslim mother and her baby girl get close to a dog during the 'I Want To Touch A Dog' event. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Najjua Zulkefli, October 21, 2014.The Selangor Islamic Religious Council (Mais) today said that holding, kissing and hugging dogs during Sunday’s "I Want To Touch A Dog" event was not in line with the programme’s stated objectives as presented to the council.

Mais chairman Datuk Mohamad Adzib Mohd Isa said he received a working paper on the programme from its organisers on October 3.

It outlined how it was aimed at teaching Muslims on the Islamic laws pertaining to dogs.

“The deliberate acts of holding, hugging and kissing dogs by Muslims like what happened that day is deeply regretted because such acts are against the ‘syarak’ laws.

“It was also not how the organisers had depicted it (to Mais) and was not in line with the programme’s objectives as mentioned in the organiser’s application’”

Adzib said the organisers had informed him that the objectives were: to explain the need to help dogs during emergency situations; situations when Muslims were allowed to keep dogs as pets; how to hold and manage dogs; and how to cleanse oneself after coming into contact with a wet dog.

“I understand that the intention or objection was to shed light and understanding on the laws related to the position of dogs from the Islamic perspective.

“Among the guidelines given to the Selangor mufti department as mentioned in the letter on October 9 was that while dogs provide many benefits to humans, Allah forbids that we touch them when we are wet and it is dry, or vice versa.

“This contact is considered unclean. But if both are dry, it is not considered unclean. That is why if dogs are kept to guard homes or to hunt, they must be kept outside the house.

"I Want To Touch A Dog" last Sunday drew a crowd of over 1,000 people, Muslims and non-Muslims alike.

But, the programme was criticised by several muftis and Malays who questioned the motive behind it.

Kelantan Mufti Datuk Mohamad Sh‎ukri Mohamad called for the organisers as well as the Muslims who touched the dogs to repent, saying that they had mocked Allah's laws.

Former Johor Mufti Datuk Nooh Gadut believed that the event was an attempt to insult the ulama and religious authorities.

The Johor Religious Council said deliberately touching a dog was haram (forbidden) because it was najis, or unclean, according to the Shafie and Hanbali schools of thought.

Former Perlis mufti Datuk Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin said that while the ulama unanimously agreed that a dry dog was not unclean, a person could still touch something unclean on the condition that they clean themselves afterwards.

"The Shafie school of thought is rather firm on this. But, other schools are wider and easier." – October 21, 2014.

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