Monday, November 02, 2009

Why was this blog blocked by IJN?

A week before the Criminalise War conference, I expressed doubt that IJN will be privatised in a piece entitled "IJN: Is there really a takeover?"

I was expressing a differing understanding with others who fear of a renewwed takeover of IJN.

Subsequently, I wrote "IJN should be spared the "the second wave of privatisation" n response to the budget speech by PM.

I expressed forthrightly that any corporate manouvre to privatise IJN will involve the senior medical consultants. By saying that, I implied it is the doctors that should be steadfast in their opposition against privatisation becasue any corporate maonuvre will definately involve them.

Any deserter will be from them. Not others.

That view attracted few not quite complimentary comments of IJN doctors. A commentator then notified that IJN had immediately blocked access to this blog. Upon checking with few friends in IJN, it turn out to be true. Certainly the firewall must be authorised by someone high up. This caught me by surprise because I share the aspirations of IJN.

I feel that such action is not wise and only invite speculation and suspicion that it had to do with those comments.

Come on, comments are comments. Unless it is written in bad language or deviate from from the topic, I am obliged to release it. Water will find it's own level. There should not be any fear for such comments if it is false.

True enough, The Star (read below) published opinion of an analyst over the weekend that view IJN will be one of the entity to be privatised. Then came the access block. What is going on?

Since then, I have checked around and was assured there will be no privatisaion in the immediate future. But I have no assurance it will not happen in the future. And it depends on the resolve and unity of doctors to resist.

We can only do so much.


Some explanation on what “second wave of privatisation” means

The Star, Wednesday October 28, 2009

PETALING JAYA: Many people are in the dark over what the “second wave of privatisation” may entail besides an expectation that the Government’s role in the economy will be gradually reduced.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak was vague in his Budget 2010 speech on what assets might be up for privatisation besides saying that it would involve companies under the Finance Ministry and “other viable government agencies”.

It was just a couple of sentences in the speech but it has sparked much speculation on what assets might be privatised, the manner of privatisation, the timeline for privatisation and how much these assets could be worth.

Does privatisation mean floating part of a state-owned enterprise on the stock exchange? Does it mean incorporating state agencies as corporate-run entities? Other than the obvious reason that this would mean government funds could be deployed elsewhere instead of rescuing companies and agencies under financial distress or mismanagement, analysts at this point have not read too much into that part of the speech except to view it in the more macro context of freeing up the economy further for entrepreneurship and innovation to thrive.

Private sector participation in the economy as well as innovation and entrepreneurship were key themes running through Najib’s Budget 2010 speech.

Maybank Investment Bank Bhd chief economist Suhaimi Ilias told StarBiz that the assets that immediately came to mind for privatisation were Felda Holdings Bhd and Bank Kerjasama Rakyat Malaysia Bhd (Bank Rakyat).

“The privatisation of Felda was talked about before and that of Bank Rakyat was discussed in the early 1990s but did not materialise due to the Asian financial crisis,” he said.

In fact, Felda was ready for listing at the end of 2003 and Najib had said in the middle of this year that Felda’s privatisation would be announced at the right time after the launch of Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd.

There might be reason to believe that Felda Global, Felda’s integrated commercial arm, could be a good candidate for a listing as it might need funds since it plans to spend over RM6bil in the next five years to expand its overseas presence in plantations and other related businesses.

Suhaimi said other entities that could be targets for privatisation included Institut Jantung Negara (IJN) and KTM Bhd (KTMB).

“The Government has denied it will privatise IJN while KTMB’s floating on the stock market is a long way off,” he said.

Suhaimi said the privatisation would not involve any stakes held by Khazanah Nasional Bhd or Permodalan Nasional Bhd in already privatised companies, some of which were already listed.

“My understanding is that this will involve only wholly-owned entities of the Government,” he said.

CIMB Investment Bank Bhd economic research head Lee Heng Guie said any privatisation measures carried out should be done in as transparent a manner as possible.

He said although the details on privatisation were lacking in Najib’s speech, the statement of intent was there to prepare the country for a less visible role by the Government in the economy.

“The most obvious reason is the hiving off of non-core activities that the Government feels it does not need to be involved in, this will not only ease the burden on its finances but also allow for more private sector participation,” Lee added.

RAM Holdings Bhd chief economist Dr Yeah Kim Leng said the Government would need to look into areas of the economy where it played an “inhibiting role” to private-sector participation.

He reckoned that privatisation should form part of the drive to address longer term issues of competitiveness with the private sector unleashing competitive forces.

“The Government should withdraw gradually as this will allow for talent, entrepreneurship and innovation to come up to the fore under private-sector driven initiatives and dynamism,” Yeah said.


Anonymous said...

Felda's overseas venture into the US in 2007, ie via 100% stake in Twin Rivers Technologies Group is bleeding, so much money had been pumped, yet poor returns, in fact, none. and it seems that the previous Mat Salleh owners are laughing all the way to the bank. In addition, Felda's Saudi JV for the catering business via D Saji is not doing well as well. Not many customers at the premise and it is a matter of time before dsaji closed shop. It seems that those overseas JV were initiated by some powerful invisible hands. Surprise, surprise...

Wah Al-Subangi said...

bro, dato sakmongkol have a take on the IJN issue. from what i can understand he cautioned that its the doctors now who are out to make millions and he suggest that the same criteria used must be met by the doctors as those used that disqualify sime darby takeover.

Anonymous said...

Dear Voice

Keep up the good work.

You must have made enough impact for them to take the 'blocked access' decision.

We support your civic consciousness.

Thank you.

fadli said...

The first wave of privatisation during Tun Dr. M's tenure , attracting singaporean money was never the agenda.

How about the second wave ?

IT Dept, IJN said...

Wrt your article, please be informed that your site has never been blocked by IJN. We have tested and succefully accessed your site.

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