Thursday, December 30, 2010

Umno 'rapist' in Cabinet: In the name of justice, form a public probe


Umno 'rapist' in Cabinet: In the name of justice, form a public probe
Written by  Mariam Mokhtar
I did not name him but others did. ‘He’ is Malaysia’s Cabinet minister who allegedly raped his Indonesian maid 3 years ago. He is a lawyer by profession and obtained his PhD from King’s College London.
In 2007 Malaysia nominated its Minister of Culture, Arts and Heritage to replace the outgoing Commonwealth secretary-general, Don McKinnon, whose term would have expired in March 2008.
This minister was a strong contender for the post having once served as Foreign Minister. There had never been a secretary–general from Asia before and a Malaysian ‘victory’ was imminent. Countries in the region – Singapore, Brunei and New Zealand, also supported Malaysia’s bid.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Why Najib has enough money for RM36bil MRT but not enough for civil servants' bonuses

Najib's Budget 2011
was filled with doubtful projects
Amid rising speculation that the biggest gainers for the RM36bil mass rapid transit system was the Umno elite and the Perak royal family, Pakatan Rakyat leaders have called on Prime Minister Najib Razak to come clean on where the already cash-strapped federal goverment would raise the money from.

Indeed, their caution is timely given that the Najib administration has warned the country could go bankrupt by 2019 if he did not cut subsidies and raise prices of consumer essentials.

Billion Dollar Bride

Meanwhile, we have exclusive pictures of Sarawak Chief Minister, Taib Mahmud’s, new young bride.  Kuching has been aflame with interest and amusement at the leaked information that the 74 year old has found himself a second wife who is still in her 20s.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Fairy-tale rise of Perak's princess in Malaysia's corporate world

Little is known about her as she is elusive and rarely grants interviews to the press. She is a businesswoman, a lawyer and a princess and her credentials and curriculum vitae are impressive. She is Raja Eleena binti Sultan Azlan Shah and recently, Malaysia’s Prime minister Najib Abdul Razak appointed her company as the joint venture partner for the Mass Rail Transit (MRT) project which is worth RM 36 billion.

Raja Eleena is the fourth child of the current ruler of Perak, Sultan Azlan Shah. She was born on April 3, 1960 and obtained her Law degree from the University of London.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

History Of Most Corrupt Politicians - Samy Vellu



Samy Vellu was the President of the MIC party, the Indian-based political party in Malaysia. He was also the Works Minister, responsible for most of the public infrastructure and facilities of the country. Favorite pharse in Malay "itu bukan bapak saya punya toll..." in english "That toll does not belong to my father"

History Of Most Corrupt Politicians - Taib Mahmud

Taib Mahmud is the Chief Minister of Sarawak, Malaysia, as post he held for 20+ years. Also known as the Con Man of Sarawak. Owns a few large sarawakian corporations like Naim Cendera and Cahya Mata Sarawak. 

History Of Most Corrupt Politicians - Najib Abdul Razak

1. Made million of ringgit in kick backs when he was education minister, mostly in purchase of computers and construction.

2. Huge kickback in purchase of defence weapon, submarine etc

3. Kick backs in national service programme.

History Of Most Corrupt Politicians - Rafidah Aziz

Dato' Seri Rafidah binti Aziz is a Malaysian politician. She was the Minister of International Trade and Industry, a position she has held since 1986-2004. She was also the head of United Malays National Organization's Woman Wing (Wanita UMNO in Malay) and Member of Parliament for the constituency of Kuala Kangsar (since 1986). She has also been the chairman of MATRADE since 1991. She was born in Kuala Kangsar, Perak.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Culprits in Sime’s RM2.1bil losses to face full brunt of the law


PUTRAJAYA: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has found several “elements of fraud” in Sime Darby Berhad and has shared its findings with police and the Companies Commission (SSM) for them to initiate action.
The MACC, together with the Securities Com mission (SC), made the conclusion after reviewing reports submitted by Sime Darby’s Investigative Reports Review Committee over its RM2.1bil losses.
In revealing this, MACC special operations director Datuk Mohd Jamidan Abdullah told The Star yesterday that Sime Darby was found to have breached several provisions under the Penal Code, the Companies Act and the Anti-Corruption Act 2009.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

NEW OUTRAGE – TAKING CARE OF MY SON BY ROBBING MY PEOPLE!


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

CROCODILE TEARS!


Chief Minister, Abdul Taib Mahmud, has been attempting to use the Borneo Post in increasingly desperate attempts to rescue his reputation over Pulau Bruit.  The fact that there has been a recent stream of announcements showing his sudden new concern for the poor islanders is a sure sign that the revelations that he and his family have stolen millions of ringgits of their land without compensation are causing him trouble!
How stupid do they think people are?

The Malaysian corruption story

Dr M - I did it for the nation
Tunku Abdul Aziz

Malaysia is, ethically speaking, in dire straits. Mahathir founded his administration on corruption, lies and subterfuge. He lied to the nation about the many schemes that were blatantly dishonest. Worse, they were criminal, such as gambling with the EPF money, your money and mine, to corner the international tin market and later the country’s reserves to speculate on the currency market, pitting himself in the latter case against George Soros. The country lost billions.


I was honoured last month by the Australian Corporate Lawyers Association with an invitation to deliver the International Keynote Address at their 2010 Conference at the Sydney Hilton.

Monday, December 13, 2010

TAIB’S BRIBES – SURELY TOO LATE?


Progress and Development? -
6 years after Taib took their land and stripped
their forest these locals are left destitute.

According to the Borneo Post, Taib and his BN party have made a belated attempt to curry favour with the voters of Pulau Bruit by promising plans for investment!  It was just a week ago that we exposed how the Chief Minister and his family have made millions of ringgit out of robbing his fellow Melanau people of their Native Customary Lands on the island, so this must be their attempt to limit the damage!

Friday, December 10, 2010

World 'is becoming more corrupt'


Police taking bribes was highlighted as a major problem by the report

The world is considered a more corrupt place now than it was three years ago, a poll suggests.
Some 56% of people interviewed by Transparency International said their country had become more corrupt.
The organisation put Afghanistan, Nigeria, Iraq and India in the most corrupt category, followed by China, Russia and much of the Middle East.
Meanwhile, a BBC poll suggests that corruption is the world's most talked about problem.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

HELPING HIMSELF – TAIB LIFTS PRIME PLOTS FROM PELITA [EXCLUSIVE!]



The Sarawak Chief Minister, Abdul Taib Mahmud, who is also the Chairman of the Land Custody and Development Authority (LCDA), which manages state land under the title of Pelita, has been using his control over the government agency to steer prime bits of land the way of himself and his family!

CORRUPTION AND ABUSE OF POWER – IRREFUTABLE EVIDENCE AGAINST TAIB. EXCLUSIVE!


Land from the people -
 profit to the Chief Minister

Certain people in high places are given to alleging that the facts which have been published in Sarawak Report may not be true.  Yet, the allegations we have published have been verifiable and documented.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Fighting corruption: Stop the sandiwara


By Paul Low
COMMENT Dec 9, 2010 is the United Nations Anti-Corruption Day. It is a day to commemorate and remind nations and their citizens of their continuing battle against corruption.
Corruption must be recognized as not just an economic crime but also a crime against the society at large that undermines and cripples its institutions, including making public services inefficient, costly and unavailable or affordable to the poor, and increasing the risk to safety and health of the people.
For example, a corrupt act of awarding a contract to an incompetent but well-connected builder for the construction of schools can put the lives of our children at risk.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

DEEPENING SCANDAL – TAIB’S LAND GRABS EXPOSED !


Progress and Development? - 6 years after Taib
took their land and stripped their forest
these Melanau are left destitute.

Sarawak Report has been piecing together documentation that enables us to prove for the first time that the Chief Minister has conducted land thefts on a  massive scale from the people of Sarawak.   Using a number of sources, many of which Taib has shamefully attempted to keep secret, we are now unravelling detailed information showing the full extent of his seizures of Native Customary Rights Lands for himself and his family and also the extraordinary profits he has made at the expense of his people. 

Friday, November 26, 2010

TAIB MAHMUD SHARE SHOCK ! – EXCLUSIVE


Sarawak Report can reveal that the Chief Minister, Abdul Taib Mahmud, has a major personal shareholding in Sarawak’s highly controversial  Royal Mulu Resort,  a project that has received huge injections of cash from the State.  This means that, as both Chief Minister and Finance Minister, Taib has authorised the diversion of large sums of public money straight into his own pocket.  

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Khir Toyo is like talking to a mirror!

SHAH ALAM - Turning the table on his critics, former Selangor Menteri Besar Mohamad Khir Toyo has now accused the current Selangor state government of practising cronyism while distributing welfare goodies for the people.

Khir said the state was biased by prioritising Pakatan Rakyat members in giving assistance.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

‘HIDE PARK’ ! – THE TAIBS’ LONDON BOLTHOLE


It is undoubtedly one of the smartest addresses in London.  Hampshire House is an enormous and gracious period building overlooking the world-famous Hyde Park, just a stone’s throw from Marble Arch and Oxford Street.  It contains some of the largest apartments in the capital, including the regular ‘pied a terre’ of Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Corruption: For the past 16 years Malaysia is the worst country in Asia-Pacific

Lim Kit Siang

Malaysia is the worst country in Asia-Pacific in Transparency International Corruption Perception Index in past 16 years since the start of the annual ranking in 1995

Despite the “1Malaysia People First Performance Now” slogan and the alphabet soup of GTP, NKRA, MKRA, SRIs, ETP etc and one Roadmap after another of Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak and the National Integrity Plan of former Prime Minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, Malaysia is the worst country in the Asia-Pacific in Transparency International (TI) Corruption Perception Index (CPI) in past 16 years since the start of the annual ranking in 1995.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

BN pouring in RM80mil for 620 votes

A lot is being made of BN's Linda Tsen's whopping 6,359 majority in the Batu Sapi by-election. Without wishing to take anything away from her, it is important to point out that she scored just 294 votes more than her late husband Edmund Chong, and he had won with a majority of 3,708 votes.



So how can Linda's 6,359 be possible? Is it the BN media spreading its usual mis-information, fully aided by the Najib-APCO public relations machinery? Fair or not, that assumption is actually not far off the mark because a lot is at stake.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Altantuya-Scorpenes: Trails that lead to Najib continue to puzzle

In the fifth and final part of the mystery interview with private eye P Balasubramaniam published in Malaysia Today, he tells that prime minister’s wife Rosmah Mansor was “very happy” with him for retracting his first statutory declaration which implicated her and Najib Razak in Altantuya’s murder.

Friday, October 29, 2010

When will all these financial scandals end?

`
Many people are wondering: How could there be so many scandals revealed by the Auditor-General Report every year? The problems do not lie in the shocking degree of the scandals, but why are these similar scandals repeating every year?

How could 16,013 of students allowed to draw RM2,378 in advance even though they did not apply loans from the National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN)?

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Singapore least corrupt nation

SINGAPORE shared top spot with Denmark and New Zealand as the least corrupt nations in the world, in the latest annual ranking by non-governmental corruption watchdog Transparency International (TI).


The ranking yesterday by the Berlin-based outfit saw Singapore move up from third place last year when Denmark was top and New Zealand second. In 2007 and 2008, Singapore was ranked as the world's fourth least-corrupt nation.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The victims of the rich and the powerful

Numpang Suntai and some of the logs illegally chopped down
by Quality Concrete
In a recent story Sarawak Report exposed the shocking attempt by the firm Quality Concrete to force Iban villagers to hand over their rights to 3,035 hectares of Native Customary Rights Lands in Sebangan for just MR 250 (US$ 80) per family.

The company, of which the Chief Minister’s sister Raziah is one of the Directors, is after the millions of dollars-worth of rare and valuable hardwood trees in the area. However the Ibans are refusing, saying they want to preserve their forest for future generations.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Where is Sulaiman?



Annointed successor no longer?
Sulaiman Rahman Abdul Taib had received
his father's blessing to take over his seat
 Kuching is once again awash with rumours about the health of the ‘heir apparent’, the Chief Minister’s son Sulaiman Abdul Rahman Taib. Because government controlled newspapers dare not allude to what has clearly become a serious problem, Sarawak Report regards it as its duty to demand that the Taib family explain to the constituents of Kota Samarahan what has happened to their elected representative to the Federal Parliament?

Sulaiman, who was elected to his father’s old seat in 2008, resigned from his post as Deputy Tourism Minister back in December last year for what were described as ‘personal reasons’. The speculation at the time was that he wished to return to Sarawak to begin taking over as Chief Minister, which is clearly his father’s keen desire, if only to protect the family fortunes.

Disappeared!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Bloggers fight back against Rais over his son's graft allegations


KUALA LUMPUR: A new association called Bloggers For Malaysia was set up last night in response to a recent police report lodged by Information, Communications and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim after denying corruption allegations involving his son.

Protem president blogger Syed Akbar Ali (outsyedthebox) said the group was formed at the National Press Club Malaysia here after a meeting, held by several prominent bloggers, concluded there was no proper association to help protect and to represent bloggers in the country.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Taib Mahmud: The Most Corrupted & Bastards Chief Minister

`

Raziah Mahmud’s RM880,000,000.000 Bank Loan!


Cause to celebrate? Razia Geneid - sister of Taib Mahmud

We can reveal that Malaysia’s RHB Bank has just lent Raziah Mahmud, the Chief Minister’s sister and her third husband, Robert Geneid, a whopping RM 880 million ringgit!

This breath-taking hand-out (the equivalent of US$ 285 million) was discovered by Sarawak Report in the public records of Malaysia’s Companies Commission. It was registered last June as a charge against one of the couple’s privately owned companies, Kumpulan Construction.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

The Umno web of deceit and corruption

`

In the 1980s and 1990s, Halim Saad and Tajudin Ramli were two of Malaysia's brightest stars, picked by former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad to lead the country's ethnic Malays onto the national stage as exemplars of a new Bumiputera business culture that would catch up with the ethnic Chinese who had dominated commerce as long as Malaysia had been in existence.

When Mahathir took office, insiders say, his plan was to create a cadre of 100 super-rich bumis who in turn would help rural Malays into prosperity under a konsep payung, or umbrella concept routed through the United Malays National Organization, much the way he envisioned driving the country into industrialization through massive projects. But greed intervened. Once the privileged got rich, there was little incentive to share it with the kampongs, the Malay rural villages. Many of the companies eventually collapsed and are being supported by government institutions such as Khazanah Nasional, the country's sovereign investment fund, or the Employee Provident Fund.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Malaysian UMNOlephant Fight


Nazir goes to war and Najib may lose

1. Najib's weak link is not his wife but his youngest brother Nazir Razak, the wonder banker who can do no wrong and who says he does not need help.

2. Nazir sits on the EPF investment panel, nd guess what? He has been pushing for EPF to get involve in projects with his clients.

3. All the while Azlan Zainol the big man at epf is keeping silent because he does not want to upset Najib and reducing his chances of getting renewed.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

The jungle is a dangerous place but not to the Penan


For all middle-class urban citizens, the jungle must seem like a primitive, wild place. We urbanites can only be comfortable when we are surrounded by what we consider to be the advanced products of industrial civilization. Plunged into the middle of the jungle, we would probably not survive on our own for more than a few days.

But the Penan are perfectly comfortable in this jungle environment. They are familiar with the forest, and know it like their back of their hand. Like all jungle dwellers, the Penans are totally immersed in the land where they live. They depend on this environment for their survival.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Najib's RM20 million plot

KUALA LUMPUR (Harakahdaily) - Self-exiled blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin has revealed a document on his Malaysia Today website, said to be an investigation paper by the then Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA).

Among others, the document dated December 10, 2008, appears to confirm allegations that Parti Keadilan Rakyat's Kulim state assemblyman Lim Soo Nee had been offered RM5 million to leave his party in 2008 as part of a plot to bring down the Pakatan Rakyat state government through defections.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Najib and Musa Aman's CASINO Plan

Sabah's PKR Director of Communications Ronnie Klassen has demanded the Chief Minister of SabahDatuk Musa Aman to come clean and explain the purported plans that a CASINO is on the cards in Prime Minister's Najib Tun Razak "Economic Transformation Plans(ETP)"




Musa Aman must explain to Malaysians in Sabah, "has the State Government of Sabah given the APPROVAL for the go-ahead of a Casino?". If Musa Aman has given the nod for this Casino,when and why was it approved?

Monday, September 13, 2010

Dr M wants traders jailed under ISA

Former Malaysian leader Mahathir Mohamad has warned Prime Minister Najib Razak against allowing the ringgit to be traded offshore, saying that currency traders should instead be locked up and jailed under the country’s draconian Internal Security Act that allows indefinite detention without trial.

“We must be careful and do proper review. US$4 billion is traded each day. What is the benefit to us, we do not see any prosperity from this trading. It does not boost our trade or our businesses. These people should be locked under the ISA. They are the ones responsible for the financial crisis,” Mahathir told reporters during his Hari Raya open house on Sunday.

Najib plays to the gallery

Thursday, August 26, 2010

MACC's latest 'comedy circus' no laughing matter

Mariam Mokhtar

The inquest into Teoh Beng Hock’s death is at the forefront of our minds. The cross-examination last week, of Thai pathologist Dr Pornthip Rojanasunand by Abdul Razak Musa, the lawyer representing the MACC, was not worthy of a government counsel, or any lawyer for that matter.

A further disappointment is the article which was posted on the MACC official blog on Monday.

The entry described Dr Pornthip as a fortune-teller, with a doctored picture of her as a gypsy, complete with crystal ball. It was not complimentary and was intended to smear her character.

A Saga of Corruption Ignored, Tajudin escapes.

(Asia Sentinel) - On June 4, 1995, Tajudin Ramli, then one of Malaysia's brightest Bumiputra, or native Malay stars, was named a Tan Sri, the country's second highest honor, by the country's reigning sultan. At the time he had been the managing director of Malaysian Airline System, Malaysia's nationally owned flag carrier, since July 1, 1994.

Like his friend and former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, the then 49-year-old Tajudin was a native of Alor Setar in Kedah state. He would be the recipient of a long list of national honors including being president of the Malay Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Malaysia. He was regarded as a shining example of the bumi businessman that Mahathir wanted to foster to run the country and take the commanding heights of the economy back from the ethnic Chinese who ran it.

Abuse of power: PM's Dept funding defeated BN candidates

Viktor Wong,

The BN - under the guise and funding of the Prime Minister's Department - has appointed all the defeated BN election candidates as parliamentary and state constituency coordinators.

The landmark 2008 general election saw the Barisan Nasional losing many seats in both the federal Parliament and the state legislative assemblies. Needless to say, the ruling coalition also lost a few prized states to the Pakatan Rakyat led by Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim.

But although more than two years have passed, the BN federal government is insistent on not recognizing the mandates given by the people.

And to avenge the people's mandates, the BN under the guise of the Prime Minister's Department has appointed all the defeated BN election candidates as parliamentary and state constituency coordinators.

The job of these coordinators is to manage their respective "constituencies", with the PM's Department providing them annual grants and allocations similar to those enjoyed by the sitting BN MPs and state assemblymen.

It goes without saying that such generosity has resulted in smaller annual grants, allocations and other funding for the Pakatan elected representatives, even though this is clearly a violation of the people's wishes and against their constitutional rights.

And to make sure that the defeated BN candidates are motivated to serve their respective "constituencies" and not laze around, the PM's department has allocated a large amount of funds in the form of salaries and given them grand titles such as "Federal Representative to the parliamentary/KADUN" or "the Prime Minister's Department representative to the parliamentary/KADUN" areas.

Such a move by the BN clearly reflects their refusal to recognize the democratic process. Is it not also an improper use of government funds and taxpayers' money? If BN wants to maintain their "lost" consituencies, should not the money come from their own coffers?

Instead of using public money to finance these so-called coordinators, would not the funds be put to better use to help the poor, finance a much-needed project or community development. Mind you, the final bill is quite staggering because we are talking about hundreds of lost seats.

No wonder, allocations for the PM’s Department alone for 2010 has been escalating and is now a whopping RM12 billion. The huge increases in the Department’s budget in 2009 and 2010 have never been seen before. The combined operating and development expenditure for 2009 was RM14 billion or nearly double the RM7.1 billion allocated for 2008. The total for 2005 was a mere RM4.1 billion in comparison.

It is time for the BN federal government to come clean and make public the accounts and transactions of these allocations to their defeated candidates now posing as coordinators.

The practice should be stopped immediately and the funds diverted to them so far must be accounted for. Steps should also be taken to make sure that those who are really elected by the people get access to the people's money and rightful allocations made to them so that they can carry out projects for their constituents.

RM300mil loss for S'wak from land 'sold' to Taib's children

(Malaysiakini) - A company owned by Sarawak Chief Minister Taib Mahmud's children has obtained land in Kuching at a very low price, causing the state to lose at least RM300 million in potential revenue.

Bandar Kuching MP Chong Chieng Jen said the state government had alienated 269 acres of land within the city to Monarda Sdn Bhd at a "grossly and obscenely under-priced" rate of RM291,000 per acre on average.

"The market rate is between RM1.5 million and RM2 million per acre. Had the government gone for public tender, the state could have (earned) RM400 million to RM500 million," he told Malaysiakini today.

Instead, Monarda, which has a paid-up capital of RM100, only paid about RM78.28 million for the three parcels of land, he said.

"We demand that the state government gives a full explanation and be accountable to the people of Sarawak," said Chong (left), who is also Sarawak DAP secretary.

The three parcels are located next to the Kuching International Airport near Stutong. There is a military base located in the same area.

Monarda is headed by Taib's eldest son Abu Bekir, who holds 52 shares, and one Choong Sun Nam, who holds 12 shares.

Other shareholders include Taib's daughters Jamilah and Hanifah Hajar, and Taib's daughter-in-law Anisa Hamidah Abdullah, all of whom hold 12 shares respectively.


Unusual alienation exercise



Chong, who traced the Taib connection through land and companies registry searches, said this was one of the largest parcels of city land to be alienated in any one exercise.

"The land is currently vacant and Monarda has not done any business since it was founded," he said.

Earlier this year, three complaints were lodged with the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission against Taib, alleging that he and his family had used corrupt means to build a property empire valued in excess of RM3 billion.

Two documents surfaced this month in the Sarawak Report website alleging that Taib had used proxies in 1987 to take control of a US-based property company, Sakti International Corporation, then worth at least US$80 million (RM250 million).

Inquest video of MACC lawyer buylling Pornthip not uploaded

Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng has thrown the book at the Attorney-General for not uploading the latest video clip of the inquest proceedings of the late Teoh Beng Hock, accusing his chambers of trying to hide the way it tried to bully Thai forensic expert Dr Pornthip Rojanasunand.

“Why not the latest recording? The latest recording is supposed to be the funniest, full of surprises and our government lawyer will be the laughing stock in the whole legal profession and the whole world. So they purposely tried to hide it,” Lim told a press conference on Wednesday.

Lim was among the lawyers involved in the Teoh Beng Hock case since his body was discovered on July 16, 2009, after overnight interrogation by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission in connection with a graft probe on several DAP leaders.

Amid public outcry and accusations of a government cover-up, the AG had last year promised transparency and that it would upload the video tape of each inquest proceeding on its website at www.agc.gov.my .However, it has not done so for the latest hearing which took place on August 18.



Making a mockery of themselves and the country

Last week, Dr Pornthip flew in to testify at Teoh's inquest, flustering the MACC because her forensic findings show Teoh’s death was homicide while the federal-government agency has been insistent it was suicide.

The MACC, together with the Attorney-General’s Chambers, has tried hard to discredit Pornthip because of her popularity with the Malaysian public. In her country, Pornthip is rated as the most trusted individual in the whole of Thailand, according to a recent Reader’s Digest poll.

But Malaysian authorities have mocked her, and a Cabinet minister even called her a liar. Few Malaysians were surprised when at last week’s inquest, she was subjected to brutal cross-examination.

The MACC prosecutor Abdul Razak Musa denigrated her academic qualifications and at one point even asked her where the weapon was if it was not suicide. But Pornthip held up well despite Abdul Razak’s belligerence.

She also impressed Malaysians by the way she answered his questions and stole the day when she refused to retaliate to his needling that her testimony was biased because she was hired by Beng Hock’s employers - the Selangor government,

"You have to understand. I work for the rights of the dead, not the Selangor government. My objective is to help the dead," said Pornthip, drawing loud applause from the courtroom.


Monday, August 23, 2010

A result of Umno's racial incitement

KUALA LUMPUR (Harakahdaily) - UMNO and Barisan Nasional must take responsibility over the racist remarks uttered by a secondary school principal in Kulai Jaya, Johor.

PAS vice president Salahuddin Ayub said the action by the principal was the result of "continuous racial incitement whether through government agencies under Barisan Nasional control or the main stream media dominated by them".

Siti Inshah Mansor, the headmistress of SMK Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra, had allegedly told Chinese students to go back to China.

"For the Indian students, the prayer string tied around their neck and wrist makes them look like dogs because only dogs are tied like that," she had alleged said, as reported by several angry parents who lodged police reports against her.

Salahuddin said many people had fallen into "UMNO-BN’s racist incitement and it cannot be denied that the principle is one of them."

“She dared to utter those remarks because most likely she felt confident that she won’t be punished because she saw UMNO leaders, including Prime Minister's special officer, who got off scot-free,” added Salahuddin referring to Nasir Safar who created a stir last February when he called Indians "beggars" and Chinese women as "prostitutes".

Salahuddin, the Kubang Kerian member of parliament, also called for an end to racist incitements found in government programmes especially the Biro Tata Negara (BTN).

Salahuddin also took a shot at UMNO Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin, saying it was hypocritical of him to condemn the headmistress, saying the latter's action was encouraged by Barisan Nasional whose leaders had been "fanning racial hatred".

"Don’t just punish those subordinates while UMNO leaders are let off,' he said.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Twist in jet-engines theft: Airman charged for money laundering

New charges have been levied against former airman N Tharmendran in the Sessions court today, this time for alleged money laundering in connection with the 2007 theft of two jet fighter engines.

He was slapped with three separate charges while company director K Rajandran Prasad, who is jointly charged with the theft, faces five separate counts on the same charge.

Both accused denied the charges.

The latest accusations add yet another twist to the already convoluted case facing Tharmendran who claimed that the armed forces had tortured him in connection with the jet engine theft.

His lead counsel, N Surendran, said the prosecution intended the new charges to be heard together with Tharmendran's earlier one, but the defence had submitted against the application.

Judge Hayatul Akmal Abd Aziz set Sept 6 for mention to decide whether or not the new charges should be heard together with the earlier ones.

Surendran said the new charges are fishy as there had been no prior investigation by the police.

"We believe someone gave instructions to charge Tharmendran, because after the charge was read out the police wanted to take him to record a statement.

"The charges are completely baseless and we believe this is being done to simply persecute Tharmendran, since he had exposed his torture by the military," he said.

Tharmendran is currently being detained at the Sungai Buloh prison, after he retracted his bail, fearing possible reprisal from his former employers after making his torture claims.

The former air force sergeant is also facing a court martial for alleged dishonest misappropriation of public property and has the alternative charge of accepting stolen property filed against him.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

If not for "monstrous hijack", 30% Malay-Bumi quota already met

As Umno and MCA continue to wrangle over the country’s economic pie, Pakatan Rakyat leaders have ramped up calls for a Royal Commission of Inquiry to probe if it was true that if not for a “monstrous hijack”, the 30 percent Malay and Bumiputera target would have already been met.

“The real problems for Malaysia are not BN's claims of race or religion but deep-seated corruption, inefficiency, abuse of power, mediocrity and lack of rule of law,” DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng said in a statement.

“If the RM52 billion worth of Bumiputera shares still remained in Bumi hands, then the 30 percent Bumi/Malay equity target under the NEP would have long been achieved.”

No need for heated polemics, just do it

Lim was referring to shares allocated to Malays and Bumiputera worth a whopping RM54 billion since the New Economic Policy was launched in 1971. Prime Minister Najib Razak said in June last year that of this amount, only RM2 billion still remained in Malay hands.

“Clearly the RM52 billion worth of shares given to the few Malay and Bumiputera leaders was cashed out and sold off. Stern action and the full force of the law should be unleashed at this open sabotage of the NEP,” Guan Eng said.

PKR Youth chief Shamsul Iskandar Akin said the best way for Umno and MCA to prove to the people that it was not hiding any misdeeds was by agreeing to hold an independent full-scale RCI.

"We have to stand by principles of honesty and zero-tolerance for corruption. It is no point launching into heated polemics and boring everyone in the country to death because they know from the past, it will just be sandiwara. If Najib is sincere, call for a Royal Commission of Inquiry," Shamsul told Malaysia Chronicle.


Protecting cronies

Indeed, the NEP was introduced in 1971 to eradicate poverty regardless of ethnicity. But due to decades of Umno political dominance, the policy has been turned into a symbol of Malay rights and special position to help the party camouflage the gross corruption amongst its top leaders.

Covers for graft, again in the name of Malay supremacy, have also been added to the policy through the years, mostly during the rule of former premier Mahathir Mohamad from 1981 to 2003.

“BN's refusal to take action against these NEP saboteurs and that they return the RM52 billion is an immoral act designed to protect their own cronies who have profited shamelessly from a policy that is supposed to assist the poor Malays and Bumiputera," Guan Eng said.


Calling a spade a spade

At at a recent economic congress, Najib’s brother Nazir, the CIMB CEO, openly described the NEP as having been "bastardized" into its current corrupt form. Najib has tried without much success to replace the NEP with the New Economic Model that strives to distribute economic wealth on a needs-basis - much like the Pakatan's own platform.

As expected, Nazir's comments sparked a furore from Malay rights groups such as the Mahathir-patronized Perkasa and Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin, who rushed to issue stinging warnings to the Chinese not to encroach on Malay rights. But their emotional rhetoric failed to impress.

“So long as the BN government refuses to demand full accountability and action over the ‘lost’ RM52 billion in bumi shares, they are using the NEP to divide and rule by playing racial antagonism against Malaysians,” said Guan Eng.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Land worth RM6-8 mil to cronies


Perak Mentri Besar Zambry Kadir has come under fire for alleged corruption after he gave a 50-acre piece of land worth between RM6 to 8 million to a company owned by an Umno crony.

The news comes amid a storm of Umno and MCA accusations against the DAP for issuing recommendation letters to help businesses win contracts from the Selangor state government.

“This is the biggest joke. Here they just hand over the state’s land to their cronies. Not once have they thought about the aqua farmers who have been toiling the land for more than 20 years,” Teja assemblyman Chang Lih Kang (pix), disclosed.

Unkindest cut, and not the first time

Chang has lodged a complaint with the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission over the land in Kampung Sungai Itek in Gopeng, Perak. He has also demanded that Zambry be suspended from the Land Committee and that approval granted to the crony firm is immediately revoked pending investigations.

“This is the unkindest cut of all. Zambry not only ignored the claims of the farmers who have worked on land and contributed to the state’s economy all these years but he actually gave away the land to his cronies. It is a clear case of abuse of power,” said Chang.

The land is currently being cultivated by ornamental fish breeders and farmers, who have for years been applying for land titles from the state authorities but to no avail. When they found out about Zambry’s grant, they complained to their assemblymen.

Chang then raised the matter in the Perak state assembly and a written reply revealed that the land had been given to a company called Safura House of Diamond Sdn Bhd under the state’s Proper Village Planning Plan. A check with the Companies Commission of Malaysia showed that one of Safura’s shareholders is the deputy chief of Umno Gopeng.

“It is actually the second time this sort of shenanigan has taken place. The first scandal also took place in Kampung Sungai Itek, where the UMNO Gopeng division chief was given 10 lots of land in the planned village scheme,” said Chang.


More farmers are being evicted

He warned that if the federal authorities ignored the charges against Zambry and if the MACC delayed taking action, more farmers would be expelled from the land.

“Their livelihood will be badly affected. It is the duty of the government to care for the people and not grab their land from them and give to their friends and families,” Chang said.

"Through the years, the farmers in Sungai Itek have invested a lot of their savings and if they are evicted, they will have nothing. Even if Zambry offers compensation, the water quality might not be suitable for fishes. So what is going on, where are the priorities?”


Najib must account for the Scorpenes' never-ending costs


Pakatan Rakyat leaders have demanded a clarification from Prime Minister Najib Razak over what they said were never-ending costs for the two problematic Scorpene submarines he bought, in light of the latest RM532 million "in-service support" deal dished out to a government-linked firm.

“This looks like an additional cost the Najib administration has not disclosed before. It will jack up the total bill and re-emphasize the foolishness of the government in making such a wasteful acquisition,” PKR strategist Tian Chua told Malaysia Chronicle.

"But even though nasi sudah jadi bubur (the misdeed has been done), he cannot hide. The public has a right to an explanation and he must account for how he has spent taxpayers' hard-earned money."

The two Scorpene submarines purchased from France’s defense giant DCNS in 2002 were delivered only recently. Since arriving, both ships have suffered some form or other of malfunctioning and were reportedly docked for weeks.

Although the Navy has given both the Scorpenes a clean bill of health, the intimidating way in which they denied the malfunctioning accusations and warned off the media have sparked even greater suspicion than before.



Account to the public on the costs

Indeed suspicion, corruption, blackmail, sex and even murder have marked this arms acquisition, the chunkiest so far by the Malaysian government.

Apart from public worry that the submarines do not cater to national needs as the coastal waters may be too shallow to justify their high-tech costs, the ships have also dragged country into international infamy.

French financial police are investigating the possibility of corruption between DCNS officials and members of Malaysian defense ministry in the deal. On the Malaysian side, Najib was the defense minister who had authorized the purchase, and part of the French probe actually centers on a complaint that a commission of 114 million eurors or RM 570 million was paid to a firm controlled by his close friend Razak Baginda.

Apart from possible graft, Najib, his wife Rosmah Mansor and Baginda were also implicated in the murder of a Mongolian translator Altantuya Shaariibuu, who had allegedly acted as a go-between for Baginda and DCNS.

“The Scorpenes have cost Malaysia much more than the actual billions of ringgit spent. No doubt the damage has been done but it does not mean that Najib can sweep it under the carpet especially when new bills are still coming in,” PAS vice president Salahuddin Ayub told Malaysia Chronicle.

New bills still coming in

Defense Ministry data show the total costs for the 2 submarines excluding annual maintenance came up to 1.34 billion euros or about RM6.7 billion before taking into account maintenance fees. The sum broke down down to 969 million euros for the two submarines, 219 million euros for missiles, 38 million euros for miscellaneous equipment and 114 million euros for commission paid to Perimekar, which is Baginda’s firm.

Maintenance fees were initially agreed at RM600 million for six years or RM100 million per year. However, this was later increased to RM270 million per year.

On Friday, in a filing to the Malaysian stock exchange, Boustead Holdings Berhad announced the government’s decision to award the contract to its unit Boustead DCNS.

“Boustead DCNS Naval Corporation Sdn Bhd had received a LETTER OF AWARD dated 12 August 2010 from the Government of Malaysia for the contract to undertake In Service Support (ISS) for the two Royal Malaysian Navy’s Prime Minister Class Scorpene Submarines (“the Contract”). The Contract is for total contract sums of EUR 193 million and RM 532 million and is effective for a period ending 30 November 2015.

“The contract includes a full Submarine Integrated Logistics Support package. This consists of a comprehensive spare parts package as well as the outfitting of workshop equipment, respective yard facilities and equipment, submarine safety conditioning facilities and their corresponding upkeep and maintenance. The contract also covers tug boat services and the operation and maintenance of the shiplift, transfer system and submarine “umbilical services”.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

50 years of ISA

Tian Chua

1 August is the 50th Anniversary of ISA. The notorious law was enacted in 1960 when the legitimacy of the newly founded federation of Malaya was challenged by armed insurgency.

The ruling Alliance led by late Tunku Abdul Rahman assured the Parliament that the ISA would not be used against dissidents abiding by peaceful means of struggle and within the framework of the Constitution. Nonetheless as soon as it was passed, activists from a wide range of political spectrum became victims of the repressive law.

It is obvious that despite the apologists of authoritarian regime frequently justifying the law in the name national security, the ISA is undoubtedly oppressive, undemocratic and it contravenes basic human rights. In half a century of its existence, thousands of people had been imprisoned, and deprived of their families, livelihood and freedom.

The draconian law has conveniently become the weapon for the BN regime to perpetuate corruption and to cover up its misuses of power. It is also a tool to institutionalize a culture of fear among the Malaysian people.

The practice of detention without trial is not condoned by any religious values. In addition to preventive detention, the ISA had been a license for the authorities to torture and torment detainees. Thus such inhumane law should be condemned by democratic minded people both domestically and globally.

In the last few years, in collaborating with civil society organizations, Parti Keadilan Rakyat had intensified its campaign against the ISA. We are unequivocal in our demand for the abolition of the notorious law.

KEADILAN regrets the reluctance and delay in removing the provision for indefinite detention. Throughout 50 years we have witnessed innocent individuals becoming victims of this unjust law. The long list of people included Anwar Ibrahim, Syed Husin Ali, Lim Kit Siang, Karpal Singh, Lim Guan Eng, Jeffry Kittingan, Mat Sabu, and many other Pakatan Rakyat leaders.

We believe that Najib and his Government is aware of the growing opposition against the Act. The PM must surely understand that the continuous existence of the ISA will project a negative image of Malaysia in the eyes of the international community.

By not abolishing the ISA, we suspect PM Najib is keeping his options open. Once the political interests of the ruling UMNO are threatened, I am convinced Najib would have no qualms in ordering a heavy crackdown using the ISA.

On behalf of Parti Keadilan Rakyat, I reiterate our firm and unambiguous stand-- the ISA must be abolished. We are determined to continue our struggle for change and to make sure that laws which are inconsistent with human rights and democracy are eventually reformed.

(Tian Chua is the Member of Parliament for Batu and the strategic director of PKR)