Thursday, December 29, 2011

Make police report for subjudice against Anwar



Perkasa President, Dato Ibrahim Ali made a police report at the Dang Wangi police station on alleged attempt by Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim to disrupt the High Court from delivering a verdict on January 9th, 2011.

On the ground, Gerakan Bebaskan Anwar 901 are distributing pamphlets to encourage the public to gather at the Jalan Duta High Court. Anwar's Angkatan Muda Keadilan are getting their cybertroopers to spread the same message via the blogs, Facebook, Twitter, SMS, etc.

The plan is so elaborate and extensive that budget is allocated to pay for buses to ferry supporters, banners and posters are centrally coordinated, and a plan roadshow is in place. Read The Unspinners here, here and here.

Ibrahim Ali's concern for public safety is one part, but Anwar plan can have influence on the verdict. Someone should make a police report on Anwar and the organising groups AMK specific for sub-judice offense.

The Malaysian Insider report on Ibrahim Ali below:

Ibrahim Ali sees plot to disrupt Sodomy II verdict

The Malaysian Insiders
December 29, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 29 — Datuk Ibrahim Ali alleged today of an attempt to organise a mass gathering on January 9 to disrupt the High Court here from delivering a verdict in Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s sodomy trial, and warned the assembly could cause chaos and unrest.

The Perkasa president claimed to have received text messages and obtained leaflets of plans for a big gathering in front of the High Court next month, and urged the police to investigate the matter immediately.
Assalamualaikum, salam sejahtera dan salam hormat...Salam Pimpinan Pusat, AMK & Wanita serta para aktivis dan reformis... Lampiran adalah Badge, Bannner & Risalah untuk kegunaan kempen Bebas Anwar 901. Harap dapat diseleraskan bahan2 ini untuk kegunaan seluruh negara. Bahan-bahan ini adalah hasil perbincangan bersama "Sekretariat Gerakan Bebas Anwar 901" yang diketuai oleh Sdr. Shamsul Iskandar, Ketua AMK dan dianggotai oleh rakan2 pimpinan utama parti, Wanita, AMK, Negeri-negeri, NGO, Aktivis dan gerakan reformis 98... Harap dapat diedarkan dan diseleraskan.... Mohon semua SUK-SUK Negeri edarkan kepada MPN masing2.. Semoga kempen ini dapat digerakkan selaras seluruh negara..

Terima Kasih,

SYED BADLI SHAH B. SYED OSMAN
Setiausaha Kerja AMK Malaysia
“I believe there is an attempt by a group to spread leaflets to have a gathering at the High Court on January 9 to disrupt the trial process of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s sodomy case.



“To me, the move is clearly in contempt of court, disrespectful of the law and constitution, and can cause public unrest and endanger the safety of the people,” he told reporters here.

According to the Malay rights leader, the leaflets contained messages like “Free Anwar 901”, “Lawan tetap lawan” and “Rakyat Hakim Negara.

Predicting Anwar’s supporters would trigger chaos on the day, Ibrahim said “the police need to investigate the matter to ensure the safety of the people and the country is guaranteed.”

“Probe who is behind this plan for a gathering and take strict action against them. Don’t let them take the law into their own hands.”

Trial judge Datuk Mohd Zabidin Mohd Diah will deliver a decision on Anwar’s sodomy charge come January 9, after a high-profile trial which began in February last year.

Anwar has vehemently denied sodomising his former aide, saying the claim was part of an elaborate ploy to end his political career.
In addition to the report made by Ibrahim Ali, someone should make a police report against Anwar for subjudice offense.

Subjudice is a Latin term that literally means “under judicial consideration.” The subjudice law governs what public statements can be made about any on-going legal proceedings.

It's purpose is to avoid pre-judgement. A public rally as organised by Anwar may place improper pressure on the court, thus it is in contempt of court.

The sodomy case against Anwar has had it's day in court and it has undergone due process of law.

Anwar have been given the opportunity to present his side of the case, to defend, to bring his witnesses and alibi, and all the leeways, including to allow his conspiracy theory to be mentioned in court, more than 50 postponements, three time application to remove the judge, upteen non-related court applications and appeals, etc.

Since the police report made by Saiful Bahri against Anwar on June 28, 2008, the court proceeding begin in June 2009 and it has taken two and half year to complete. This is unlike Dr Khir Toyo's corruption trail that took only 4 months for a decision!

Anwar cannot deny his involvement in Gerakan Bebas Anwar 901. The gameplan and modus operandi is similar to Reformasi 1998. His appearance in ceramah to discuss his case openly have been going on since his first liwat rally at the Kelana Jaya Stadium on July 6th 2008.

It is his attempt to get a public discussion going. Since the Arab Spring revolutions, he has looked to instigate the public further into an emotional uprising. Anwar and his boys have been talking of Tahrir Square-like uprising to topple the legitimate Government in their ceramah.

Only through such means, Anwar see will earn him freedom from imprisonment (if convicted) for his sodomy case which is convincing to the thinking public that he is guilty. The public had distance themselves from Anwar since the release of his video in a sexual romp with a Chinese prostitute.

Someone should make a police report against Anwar for contempt of court. Who knows ... heard Dato Najib is still compiling his winnable candidate list. :)

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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Only another Khazanah-Amokh failure [Up-dated]

Any more failures, Azman should proudly hang himself
with his Kolet ties on


The Star reported husband to former CEO of Iskandar Investment Berhad, Arlida Ariff charged for graft yesterday. In today's report, two former directors of IIB to be charged for project packag of RM2 billion.

This is but another failure of "analyst" Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar and the organisation he leads, Khazanah Nasional Berhad.

In Khazanah, such failure or leakage in the system is not treated with alarm. Sometimes failure are rewarded.

Read The Star news below:
Husband of former Iskandar project official charged with graft (Updated)

The Star Online
Tuesday December 27, 2011

JOHOR BARU: The husband of a former top official of Iskandar Investment Berhad (IIB) was charged at the Sessions court here with asking and receiving RM1.6mil from a construction company as an inducement to get a tender project from IIB.

Mohd Amin Suhaimi, 52, pleaded not guilty to all three charges against him for asking and receiving money from Detect Engineering Sdn Bhd to get a tender project to build a boarding school in Pulai from IIB worth RM40.84mil.

In the first charge, he was alleged to asked RM816,900 in cash from Detect Engineering Sdn Bhd director Mohd Hassan Madon, 48, through Mohd Iskandar Fahmi Abdullah, 52, who acted as the middleman.

The offence allegedly took place at a hotel along Jalan Harimau in Taman Century here around 5pm on April 22 last year.

In the second charged, Amin was alleged to received RM500,000 in cash as a fee from Hassan through Mohd Iskandar, at a parking lot inside a shopping complex along Jalan Wong Ah Fook around 4pm on June 4, 2010.

He was also alleged to received RM316,900 in cash as a fee for helping the company to get the project from IIB, at a parking lot inside a shopping complex along Jalan Trus between 2pm and 3pm on June 9 last year.

Amin allegedly committed an offence under Section 16(a)(A) of the Malaysia Anti-Corruption Commission Act 2009 and was charged under Section 24 of the same Act.

The charge carries a jail term of up to 20 years and a fine of not less than five times the amount of bribe or RM10,000, whichever is higher.

Sessions Court judge Mohd Nasri Nordin then set bail at RM100,000, told the accused to surrender his passport and fixed Jan 27 as mention for the case.

MACC officer Abdul Ghafar Abdul Latif prosecuted the case while Shamsul Sulaiman represented the accused.
Read Big Cat here for comments. If only the operator of the blog IRDA Watch here had not close their blog, past indiscretion happening can be referred.

Iskandar spells Khazanah.

Another failed CEO from Iskandar, IRDA's former CEO, Harun Johari, who is Amokh's MCOBA buddy, was absorbed into Khazanah to lead it's agricutural marketing company. The Khazanah venture failed and the company is waiting time to go under.

The failed former CEO of Malaysian Airlines is absorbed into Khazanah and still earn fat salary despite his failure in managing MAS. It is indicative of Khazanah's poor monitoring of their investments.

Imagine Directors supposed to monitor and control as well as providing the chack and baances are also commiting graft. Read The Star report today below:
Former directors of IIB to be charged with corruption involving RM5mil

The Star Online
Wednesday December 28, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has arrested two former directors of Iskandar Investment Berhad for corruption involving some RM5mil.

The duo, in their 40s, are expected to be charged in the Johor Baru magistrate’s court today with corruption involving the construction of a RM124mil highway and a RM40.8mil boarding school in the Iskandar region.

The projects are part of the 3B package worth some RM2bil which involved subsidiaries that the two managed as chief executive officers, according to sources.

They said the two and several others under investigation had been buying property with their ill-gotten gains. The MACC would apply to the court under the Forfeiture of Property Act to confiscate what they bought.

The sources said the MACC had been investigating the various projects for several months now and had seized files and documents from companies linked to them.

They said the others being investigated were all connected to the projects and included a politician who is a Datuk.

MACC special operations director Datuk Mohd Jamidan Abdullah confirmed yesterday’s arrests but declined to elaborate.
One is innocent until pproven guilty. But in the lateest update, an ex-VP has pleaded guilty. Read the latest from The Star, below:
Published: Wednesday December 28, 2011 MYT 11:23:00 AM
Updated: Wednesday December 28, 2011 MYT 11:59:27 AM

Ex-senior VP of Iskandar subsidiary pleads guilty to graft charge

JOHOR BARU: A former senior vice-president of an Iskandar Investment Berhad (IIB) subsidiary was fined RM20,000, in default two months' jail, after he pleaded guilty to a charge of corruption at a Sessions court here Wednesday.

The 51-year-old man's identity has been withheld as he is assisting the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission in several other cases involving the IIB.

He was charged under Section 132(2)(b) of the Companies Act, and paid the fine.
One should wonder what has Khazanah achieved since their existence with so frequent incidences of failures?


What is said to be on track to contribute to national development in the above newspaper clipping of 2006?

Most of their investments are those made by Government in the past. They failed in their assigned turnaround of MAS, Proton, and UEM.
Khazanah have been fumbling on the MAS turnaround for years and for sure to send the national carrier to it's demise. Their intentional effort to prop up Air Asia at the cost of MAS will come with a political cost to the Government. They are positioning themselves to be part of a regional financial disaster in the making that is bigger than Pan El of 1980s.

Proton have been instituting only stop-gap measure of short sighted positioning. It is only doing what in auto term described as rebadging. There is nothing visionary of what is being done. Even the current new models are not in keeping with the latest market demand for increased fuel efficiency. Heard it is not selling. And, we are aware about the going-ons at one former wakil rakyat's by the name of Fatah's hometown.

UEM is hidden away from the public's radar by delisting and one will only know of their listed UEM Land. It will make money without thinking of the long-term socio-economic, political and security implication to the nation. But what happen to the failed businesses in Qatar, and perhaps other areas of the world.
With an analyst at the top, one can't expect Khazanah to turnaround businesses. They can generate great reports, churn analysis, crunch valuations with all sort of esoteric methods, and give impressive presentation but it is all ya ya ... or a cruder description, bullshit.
Government gave Khazanah to manage the a RM1 billion food fund in 2006 under Tun Dol, thanks to a stolen idea from a local University's fellow. Sorry, only ideas from Ethos Consulting, McKinsey, BCG, and other orang putih brand of consulting gets paid. Other ideas, including WAU get stolen.

Almost all their agriculture venture under the food fund failed. Blogger Syed Akbar of Outsyed the Box had written extensively on it.
Khazanah have a string of failed projects in their new investments. Corruption and leakage like the IIB graft charges is every where in the whole Khazanah organisation.
While Khazanah investee company had to undergo stringent cost control, their executives are helping themselves to the 14th floor Mandarin Executive Club for breakfast, lunch, and dinner for themselves and family. The monthly bill to Khazanah is in the millions.

Belum cerita the millions leaked as consulting fee.
But Amokh the "analyst" can have the cheek to say that on balance, they got so much return, and he feels it is okay as compared to blah blah blah ... and given market condition, we are blah blah blah ...?
Amokh is speaking in the language of Analyst and Fund Managers.

Khazanah is supposed to emulate Temasek. It is not supposed to be merely an outfit of Analyst managing Fund or Fund Manager. Khazanah should not be a fund management company.
It is supposed to do strategic investments!

Although there are weaknesses here and there, at least Dr Salleh "Budu" has some idea of strategic investment in his National Feedlot Corporation venture.

Syabas to MACC and new CEO and President IIB, Datuk Syed Mohamad bin Syed Ibrahim for the clean-up. Look also at IRDA the authority.

Amokh has to go. MACC should enter into Khazanah!


* Updated: 1:12 PM

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Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas greeting: Inspirational, touching moments


Wishing our Christian readers, freinds, and fellow bloggers, especially Tony Yew, Eric, Zorro, Freddie, and many others:


Merry Christmas


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There is no shortage of issues to write and comments. But it's the holiday season. Be it the school holidays or upcoming Christmas and New Year holidays.

Like few other bloggers, we are following suit with the holiday mood and hibernation mode. Bet the readers are on holiday mood too. So we'll save the materials for those issues for later.

In the spirit of the holidays, we would like to share these few inspirational and touching moments from the Britain and Korea Got Talents show.

Enjoy their great renditions too!



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Thursday, December 22, 2011

Congratulations girl, girl


When I first know of Girl, Girl or Aishah, daughter to Zakhir aka Bigdog ,she was a little girl.

The above is a picture of her celebrating her father's 40th birthday with the bloggers gang. So happen, she is a blogger too. See her more than two years unupdated blog here.

Aishah, is no more a little girl but a mature young lady of 15. See her 2009 picture in Perth below:


The Ministry of Education had announced that some 34,271 students (7.77%) of those that sat for the recent PMR examination scored straight A's. Today, Aishah had just made her parents proud by being one of them. She had scored 8As in the examination.

ABITW is happy for Aishah and her parents. We are equally happy that Allah had granted her wishes and our prayers. Prior to our flight to Mekah for Hajj, Aishah seek upon us to pray for her success in her examinations.

And we did not forget to do so.

Congratulations to Aishah. Savour this victorious moment. You have done well.

Uncle, wish you more success in the future. Are you considering medical school?

Special mention to Mrs Big Dog for her dedication to her daughter's education.

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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Happy 50th, Rocky


Taking a breather from a rushy weekend and week before, ABITW joined Dato Nuraina and a small group of friends for dinner to celebrate Dato Ahiruddin "Rocky" Attan's 50th birthday at Garibaldi, Bangsar yesterday.

This is the first time we finally get to meet up since we left for Hajj in October.

It is a small group of friends. Tonight will be another do at The National Press Club with another small set of friends.

Another picture of the birthday 'boy' blowing his cake with a bright Blackberry taking prominence

As Syed Akbar said in his blog here, we may have readers, sympathisers and supporters, but "we have few friends." With some negative trends in the blogging community, the circle of trust may get more limited.

We've taken few pictures to share the private event.

Engku Imran of Bernama TV in conversation with Mariam of Maxis. NST columnist, Azmi Anshar in dark T shirt.


Firdaus as unofficial photographer and Endie, both of The "Tikus Mondok." The Mole, they claim.

NST columnist and also with The Mole, Shamsul Akmar beside Blog House President, Syed Akbar chattering to Dato Lazarus Rok (not in picture).

Dato Rocky with Dato Nuraina with Dato Lazarus (this time head visible). Left out from picture blogger Tan Sri Doctor 2008 and wife, and Bigdog.

Our gift to Rocky ... It's a secret. Supposed to be inspiring.

Definately not this book

Happy 50th Birthday, Rocky.

By the way, there is another notable Birthday Boy today. Guess who?

----------------------------

Update: 12/20/2011 11:45 PM

That's right, Firdaus Shahnaz.

It is the "official" birthday of Tun Dr Mahathir. It is termed as "official" because that was the accepted official date. Perhaps that is what the registration people used as his birthdate.

If you read the Malay Wikipedia below, his date of birth is written as 20 Disember 1925.


However, the English Wikipedia used his actual date of July 10, 1925 as his date of birth.


Obviously, Dr Mahathir is more of a cancerian than a capricornian. Cancer is the hallmark horoscope of great thinkers.

Coincidentally, Tun Siti Hasmah was born two days earlier but a year later than Tun Mahathir's on July 12, 1926. Another cancerian.

So happen, some member of ABITW is a cancerian born on the forth of July.

Nevertheless, Tun Dr Mahathir is "officially" 86 years old. One can't help but admire his health and physical attributes at that age.

Hidup Tun M!

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Sunday, December 18, 2011

Dunces under the Light


Yes, it is a Sunday.

It is the time to be on low gear. Time to destress and not be so strung up serious. Time for a little laugh. Time to laid back a bit.

OK. Here is how we talk of serious issues and yet could remain laid back. The power of humour and sarcasm.



With the legendary Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse dancing to the tune of "Dancing in the Dark" in the musical classic movie, "Band Wagon" for a laid back Sunday as background, we present you "Dunces under the Light."

Where do we start?

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Why not with an issue we already touched? The Felda listing issue here.

Tan Sri Razali Ismail's press conference on Thursday turned out as we expected it. It was about Razali trying hard to be important ...


GWGF, Gempak lantik konsultan

KUALA LUMPUR 15 Dis. – Pengerusi Gabungan Wawasan Generasi Felda (GWGF), Tan Sri Rozali Ismail menafikan beliau salah seorang individu yang cuba mensabotaj usaha penyenaraian Felda Global Ventures Holdings (FGVH) ke Bursa Malaysia.

Kata Rozali, beliau tidak mempunyai sebarang kepentingan, termasuk untuk memegang jawatan Pengerusi Felda Holdings ekoran dakwaan sabotaj berkenaan.
He denied trying to derail the listing excercise effort of the Prime Minister but yet was in political speak saying we will consider upon consultant's finding. Is he saying they will act on consultant recommendation? Or is it a round about way of saying he is not supporting the listing?
Sebaliknya, kata beliau, tindakan GWGF dan penubuhan sebuah entiti baharu iaitu Gabungan Peneroka Generasi Wawasan Felda Kebangsaan (Gempak) untuk mendapatkan pandangan peneroka berhubung penyenaraian itu bertujuan menjaga kepentingan serta hak 112,635 peneroka di seluruh negara.

“Kami juga akan mendapatkan khidmat konsultan bebas dari dalam dan luar negara mengenai cadangan penyenaraian FGVH sebelum boleh mengatakan kami menyokong atau tidak penyenaraian itu.

“Saya tidak kata setuju dan tidak juga kata tidak setuju,” katanya pada sidang akhbar khas mengenai pandangan GWGF dan Gempak mengenai penyenaraian itu di sini, hari ini.

Terdahulu, Rozali menandatangani memorandum persefahaman (MoU) penubuhan Gempak dengan Pengerusi Jawatankuasa Perunding Peneroka Kebangsaan (JKPP), Samsudin Othman yang menyaksikan Samsudin dilantik sebagai Presiden Gempak dan Rozali bertindak sebagai timbalannya.

Baru-baru ini, beberapa pihak mendakwa, terdapat usaha sabotaj yang dilakukan oleh individu tertentu dalam Felda bagi menggagalkan usaha penyenaraian FGVH ke Bursa Malaysia.

Kepada satu soalan, kata Rozali, tindakan GWGF dan Gempak mendapatkan maklumat penyenaraian itu daripada Felda Holdings serta FGVH, melantik konsultan dan menyebarkan maklumat itu kepada para peneroka bukan bermakna mereka membelakangi cadangan itu yang diumumkan oleh Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak pada pembentangan Bajet 2012, baru-baru ini.

“Cuma kita mahu tahu dan perhalusi keputusan itu, macam mana yang disebut ‘durian runtuh’, libatkan aset yang mana kerana mungkin ada penambahbaikan yang boleh kita lakukan dan harap ia membantu semua pihak,” katanya. - Utusan Malaysia, 16/12/11
One hire a consultant to tell give strength to the claim of already knowing the time on one's watch. Or one hire a consultant to get time one is unable to tell.

Is Razali saying he and his fellow second generation Felda settlers - claimed able to climb every mountain and achieve feats unbecoming of man - does not know or understand what is happening?

Didn't Razali listed his company 10 years before Felda plan to do their's?

Razali and his fellow second generation Felda should be our first "Dunce under the Light." Problem is Razali thinks others are dunces too.

No Tan Sri, others can see you are up to no good ...
Hasrat GWGF dipersoal

KUALA LUMPUR 16 Dis. - Hasrat Gabungan Wawasan Generasi Felda (GWGF) yang mahu mendapatkan khidmat konsultan bebas dari dalam dan luar negara berhubung cadangan penyenaraian Felda Global Ventures Holding (FGVH) ke Bursa Malaysia dipersoalkan kerana seolah-olah mempertikaikan keputusan kerajaan.

Setiausaha Gabungan NGO Malaysia (GNM), Mohd. Jurit Ramli berkata, hasrat itu juga menggambarkan seolah-olah GWGF tidak yakin keputusan yang diumumkan sendiri oleh Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak yang bakal memberi keuntungan kepada warga peneroka.

''Pada saya hasrat itu adalah sesuatu yang memalukan kerana pihak tersebut seperti tidak percaya kepada kemampuan dan pandangan daripada pakar-pakar tempatan dalam mencadangkan penyenaraian FGVH itu," katanya kepada Utusan Malaysia di sini, hari ini.

Beliau berkata demikian sebagai mengulas kenyataan Pengerusi GWGF, Tan Sri Rozali Ismail berhubung perkara tersebut sebelum boleh menyatakan sokongan atau sebaliknya.

Menurut Mohd. Jurit, Rozali juga sepatutnya meletakkan jawatan dalam GWGF sekiranya beliau tidak yakin dengan penyenaraian FGVH ke Bursa Malaysia.

Apatah lagi, kata beliau, kredibiliti Rozali dalam isu itu juga boleh dipertikaikan meskipun beliau menafikan salah seorang individu yang cuba mensabotaj usaha penyenaraian tersebut.

''Kita tidak pasti apa maksud atau agenda sebenar Rozali sehingga mahu pihak luar campur tangan dalam isu ini," katanya.

Mohd. Jurit menambah, GWGF tidak sepatutnya terikut-ikut dengan rentak pembangkang yang kehilangan arah mengenai penyenaraian FGVH kerana menyedari warga peneroka akan mendapat keuntungan besar dan setia kepada kerajaan.

''Sepatutnya Rozali dan GWGF menyokong penuh dan turut membantu supaya usaha penyenaraian itu boleh disegerakan kerana ia jelas memberi keuntungan kepada warga peneroka," katanya. - Utusan Malaysia 17/12/11
We haven't given a professional answer yet.

Many seemed to comment without knowledge of the background information and are not keeping up with issues on Felda, ANAK attack, etc.

Didn't loafer Mazlan Alimin and his ANAK and unfortunately the settlers bought into their demand to distribute Felda plantation lands to second generation settlers?

Listing exercise will not effect what the settlers already have.

This is additional benefit. Discuss that.

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Secondly, this news title yesterday taken many a back. As one read further, it is more shocking.

What is Minister of Education cum Deputy Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin thinkng to appoint Tan Sri Tony Fernandez, Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar and Tan Sri Zarinah Anwar on the panel to review education?

OK OK ... before Tan Sri begin his usual lengthy and winded explanation, we know he wish to get industry feedback. Industries kept bitching about our education system not producing the graduate that they want.

Answer this: Does our industry really know what they want?

There are thousands of departments, degrees, and courses created to fulfill industry needs but the industry do not put writing to their words and claims. Beyond excuse of English competency, which is petty and temporary, they don't support the local education by employing products of our education system that they gave their wishlist.

And God forbid, now they are asking such characters to review the education system ...

Fernandes and Azman among seven selected to review education system

The Star
Saturday December 17, 2011

PETALING JAYA: A new panel to review the country’s education system has been formed with AirAsia Group boss Tan Sri Tony Fernandes and Khazanah Nasional Bhd managing director Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar among its seven panellists.

Appointed by Deputy Prime Minister and Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, the panel will be headed by Albukhary Internatio­nal University president Tan Sri Dr Dzulkifli Abdul Razak.

Fernandes, who praised the panel members as “game changers” from the public and private sector, said the panel would look into ways to cultivate a new education system which would build “global Malaysians”.

He said students needed an environment where creativity could flow freely and experimentation was encouraged.

“Education is beyond academics. It is art, culture, drama, sports, leadership, idea and thought generation,” he said yesterday, adding that students needed to possess strong character to survive in today’s era of globalisation.
Allow me to add, Tony F.

Education is also about good manners, respecting elders and traditions including institutions, and speaking the truth, not marketing hype.

It was never about academic only.

It is about building characters. It is about imbuing humanity (insan) and civilisation with the right values, conscience and integrity to make good the academic training, knowledge and creativity imparted on them for all of mankind.

The question now: Are they the right people to review our education system?

Tony F build his air Asia by insidiously plundering Malaysia Airlines in co-hort with incompetent Bina Fikir-led Khazanah Nasional, crooked politicians and greedy corporate man in the background.

His Air Asia will bring this country and (perhaps the region) into a financial ruin in the status Pan El of the early 1980s.

The Bina Fikir chap we are talking is Azman Mokhtar himself and Dato Rashdan "Danny geek" Yusof.

Both of them are incompetent analyst and accountant-book keeper, respectively. They are wiseguys and smooth talkers who really are unable to see the woods from the leaves and others can't see and acknowledge that they had left behind their trails of failures.

Read Jebat Must Die current ongoing series on why Azman Mokhtar must go.

However, we lent them some grey matter. They are smart enough to sell their valueless plagiarist consultant company, Binafikir to Maybank under Tan Sri Amir Sham Aziz. Now Dato Abdul Wahid Omar has no choice but swallow them. All within Tan Sri Nor Mohd Yakcop stable of crooked merry men.

Azman has his own set of idiotic educational program initiative under Khazanah that was not thought through, poorly executed, and waste on resources. As usual with any Khazanah initiatives other than downsizing and butchering companies, it failed.

Finally, what good is having Zarinah Anwar, the woman who covers for the husband to abuse her position as Chairperson of Securities Commission.

Sure hope Muhyiddin didn't pick her for her Johor pedigree. Johorean can be subtly parochial and proud. Her father, Anwar was involved together with Dato Onn Jaafar in the formation of UMNO. One wonders with her having a sister like Zainah Anwar, if there are still nationalism in their heart.

Aisay ... so long la enquiry on E&O. Why can smell rotten fish?

Other panel members include Securities Commission Malaysia chairman Tan Sri Zarinah Anwar, Sunway Group chairman Tan Sri Dr Jeffrey Cheah, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia vice-chancellor Prof Tan Sri Dr Sharifah Hapsah Syed Hasan Shahabudin and Tokoh Guru 2011 recipient Datuk Professor Dr Ab Rahim Selamat.

The panel will report its findings to Muhyiddin but no specific deadline has been set for it to complete its task.
Much as Muhyiddin should be called the "Dunce under the Light", let me tell you something.

As early this year, supremo consultant arranger cum commission agent, Omar Ong "Rasputin" and Ethos Consulting had arranged McKinsey & Co. to undertake a study of the education system. Not the Ministry of Education but Omar, Ethos and Pemandu that arranged it.

One wonders how the Mckinsey Matrix and 7S corporate strategy framework be applied to the education system. Omar Ong Rasputin probably see the common factor ... money.

Additional money can do wonders for the RM15 million new condo for this newly turned bachelor. He divorced his wife, daughter to former IKIM Chairman and Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Tan Sri Ismail Ibrahim.

So to share the inaugral "Dunce under the Light", one has to include Omar Ong Rasputin and the many who swear by his name and taken by his so-called genius.

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There are many others "Dunces under the Light" this week actually. But let's start with these two issues for a start.

Otherwise, too many will be sent to detention after class. :)

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Friday, December 16, 2011

Felda listing: No stroll in the park


There were two demonstrations held by PERKASA and other pro-Government activists yesterday in reaction to another demonstration by PAS's Mazlan Alimin-led NGO, ANAK to support the mutinous FELDA Director General, Dato Dzulkifli Wahab and to support Government's effort to list Felda Global Ventures Holdings (FGVH).

One was a protest held at the PAS Headquarter in a Jalan Raja Laut, Kuala Lumpur. It was followed by another show of support at the Felda headquarter in Jalan Semarak.

ABITW was at Jalan Semarak to document the event and lent support. Something smells fishy when PAS initiated ANAK, which had been relentlessly attacking Felda's management, policies and implementations but gave personal support to the head implementor, Dato Dzulkifli.

However, what seem look like a straight forward listing excercise that is supposed to benefit the settlers, without 'touching' their land, is no more a walk in the park. The issue is discussed as we scroll through the demonstration pictures.





Dato Dzulkifli was recently given 8 months 'gardening' leave from November 21st for his defiant act as Chairman of Koperasi Felda Berhad (KPB) to sack four Koperasi directors, which include Felda Chairman, Tan Sri Isa Samad and FGVH CEO, Dato Sabri against Prime Minister's directive to leave open his post for Isa.

Dato Dzulkifli and Ketua Peneroka was stabbing the Government in the back while giving lip service to support the listing. As a 30 year old career Felda officer, he had garnered support and loyalty from veteran settlers over the years but unknown to them are he has allegedly been feathering his nest from the organisation and settlers. Read Bigdog here dan here.

There are issues that need to be addressed and clarified to the 'participating' settlers. Nevertheless, the listing of FGVH is a more sensible exercise in the Government's next step initiative to look into the affair of the second, third and fourth generation of Felda settlers.





While the demonstrations was going on, Syabas Chairman and Chairman of Gempaq, Gabungan Wawasan Generasi Kedua and Bapak, Tan Sri Rozali Ismail held a press conference to deny rumours of his attempt to scuttle the FGVH listing and intention to replace current Felda Chairman, Tan Sri Samad. Read blog Putra Merdeka here.

Talk has it that he had attempted to join the Board of Directors of KPB together with the recently ousted Tan Sri Yusof Nor. Words are Yusof Nor has been dismissed immediately as advisers.

Perhaps Razali need to make the denial since talk is rife of him making a RM2 million offer to UMNO's training fund and facilities on condition he be given post of Menteri Besar for Selangor for a term. His basis is to resolve the water impasse in the state that is being blamed on him.

The conditional offer was believed to have been rejected by Dato Najib despite Razali being a regular donor and Treasurer to UMNO Selangor. The grassroot is not comfortable to place a corporate personality that became an issue for UMNO to spell an opposition led demonstration in May this year. [Read The Unspinners here]




Water industry sources claimed Razali had met Selangor Economic Adviser, Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim and reached a new tariff agreeement. Before the new tariff is announced, many would asked what is the deal behind the deal to enable them to reached an agreement.

Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim had refused to cooperate to build the new Ulu Langat dam. This is causing public anxiety and it was raised in the recent UMNO General Assembly. Without a new dam, Selangor and Klang Valley may face water shortage in 2014. Khalid and Razali were singled out. [Read Gerakan Anti PKR here.]



What is Razali up to? That is the big question.

Politically his political godfather was the former Menteri Besaar and UMNO Vice President and Informaton Chief, Tan Sri Muhammad Muhammad Taib. Muhammad Taib was in Anwar's Team Wawasan and the likes of Anwar loyalist like Telok Kemang MP, Dato Kamarul Baharian used to be running Muhammad Taib's Foundation.

Anything seems possible.

Perhaps it is merely a second generation product of Felda not wanting to be left out of Felda's listing excercise. He listed his Puncak Niaga before Felda went listing. He needs to show off to the folks.

After all, he created BAPAK just to be on the same stage with Dato Najib but did not become the answer to Mazlan Alimin's ANAK. He merely divert all the enquiries and problems back to Felda. He created Koperasi Generasi Kedua, which has yet to be approved by Registrar of Cooperatives.




Let's leave Razali and his corporate greed and ego aside. Commissions, kickbacks, extravagant mark-ups and RM5.1 mllion a year Directors fee for a public utility company still does not satisfy his insatiable appetite. Unfortunately, he does not realised that he is neither a winnable candidate to wrest any opposition seats nor the pull to attract support for BN to takeover the state.

The display of anger towards such defiance and double cross is real. And the opposition's sudden interest in Felda is not welcomed. But the opposition is adamant to penetrate Barisan Nasional and UMNO's fixed deposit of 55 parliament seats. Read Sanggah Tok Janggut here and Gelombang Wangsa Maju here.

The listing is necessary to help distribute the benefit to all Felda settlers. If Mazlan Alimin's demand is fulfilled, how on earth could 350,000 ha of Felda Plantation land be distributed to some 700,000 second to fourth generation settlers. More so with 250,000 ha is in Sabah.

By the time FGVH is listed around April next year and the settlers got extra money in their pocket, one wonders if all the political effort of PAS-led ANAK matters? Chances are it will be forgotten. For Mazlan Alimin and ANAK, it was worth a try.

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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Daulat Tuanku!


The Sultan of Kedah, Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah assumes the post of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong for the second time, today.

Tuanku ascended the throne the first time as the 5th Agong on Sept 21, 1970 till Sept 20, 1975, with the late Tuanku Bahiyah as the Raja Permaisuri Agong. I was at the age of 10 and in primary school standard 4 in Johor Baru, then.

His Majesty ascension today should be an interesting event for the likes of my generation, who get this unique chance to experience a former Agong being ascended the second time.

Despite being a Johorean, who usually have such high regards for our Sultan, (for the time being, while we learn to endear the new Sultan, my favourite and much respected will have to be the late Sultan Iskandar), I have always had greatest of regards for his Majesty, the Sultan of Kedah.

It is not merely because of the everlasting impression as a child shaking the hands of a Sultan at the steps of the Masjid Sultan Abu Bakar after Friday prayers in one of his official visit of Johor. I grew up in the compounds of the Masjid Abu Bakar, Johor Baru from 1969 till 1972.

But, much respect for his Majesty comes off from his reputation as an uncontroversial Sultan of Malaysia. No unsavory gossips or rumours is ever heard of his Majesty and the Kedah royal households but only words of respect and regards.

If there is such a thing as a humble Sultan, it has to be his Majesty. I have heard his Majesty's subject described him as one. They complimented his Majesty for his soft spokenness, humility, and concern. Even his living quarter in the istana ground is described as a simple home.

The Star's article today for a special coverage of the coronation aptly described his Majesty:

Concern for his subjects

By EMBUN MAJID
embun@thestar.com.my
Photo by G.C. TAN

THE SULTAN of Kedah, Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah, is close to the state's civil servants, knowing the names of all the district officers, revealed Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Azizan Abdul Razak.

He said Tuanku Abdul Halim cares about their well-being and always makes a point to ask after their welfare each time they meet.

Azizan said Tuanku Abdul Halim, who has his own office at the state administrative building Wisma Darulaman in Alor Setar, goes there five days a week.

The Ruler, he added, will also attend to all state administrative matters.

Tuanku Abdul Halim inspecting the guard of honour at the opening of the Kedah Legislative Assembly.

“He would arrive at the office at about 9am each day and return to Istana Anak Bukit for lunch before returning to the office in the afternoon. This is his daily routine,” he said when met at his office recently.

Azizan, who became Mentri Besar in 2008, said once a week, Tuanku Abdul Halim would grant him an audience during which he would brief the Ruler about Kedah's administration.

The meeting will usually be held before the state executive council meeting every Wednesday.

Azizan, who has been a state assemblyman since 1995, said he realised early on that Tuanku Abdul Halim was an extremely resourceful and approachable Ruler who would take the time to read up on important issues affecting the public and country.

“He is always smiling and never shows his temper. He will tell me directly if he is unhappy about anything. He also reads all the major newspapers every day.”

Topics close to Tuanku Abdul Halim's heart, added Azizan, are the Islamic religion, the state's civil servants and Malay custom.

“He is very concerned about the Islamic religion and would attend all religious functions. He has also advised his Muslim subjects to practise the Islamic way of life on many occasions,” he said.

In his address, the Ruler constantly reminds his Muslim subjects to be united in the face of challenges and obstacles.

Azizan said Tuanku Abdul Halim has often times expressed his concern about the welfare of the people and the development of the state.

When the state was hit by major floods in November last year, Azizan said Tuanku Abdul Halim had gone down to meet his subjects and ask after their welfare.

“He also kept himself updated of the latest situation,” he recalled.

By ascending to the throne as the country's 14th Yang di-Pertuan Agong at the age of 84, Azizan said the Ruler is creating history.

“We are proud that he is blessed with good health. We pray that he will continue to be in good health while performing his duties as the Agong,” he said.

Tuanku Abdul Halim has often displayed his concern about public service delivery in the state. When opening Wisma Darulaman's annexe block on Feb 21, 2009, he called on state departments to review their work procedures in order to improve their delivery system.

“I also want civil servants in the state to be knowledgeable about their sphere of duties. This will ensure that they can provide better services to the people,” the Sultan had said then.
I know my friend and Kedah exco member from PAS, YB Amiruddin meets his Majesty regularly and is seldom invited for a round of golf with his Masjesty.

Read also these interviews with the youngest daughter of the new Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Tunku Panglima Besar Kedah Datuk Seri Tunku Puteri Intan Safinaz here and here.

His Majesty first ascension to the throne was historically eventful as the country grapple and undergo the bitter aftermath of the racial riot of May 13, 1969 in Kuala Lumpur. For us living in Johor Baru then, there was nothing felt. In fact, I was attending a sports day in school.

If there is any truth, one rumour I heard as a child then was that he was elected by his fellow brother rulers so Tunku Abdul Rahman, his uncle by rank, could be replaced. Supposedly, it is improper of Tunku Abdul Rahman to bow to his nephew.

But how was the coronation conducted, because Tunku Abdul Rahman was still Prime Minister? Or he was not?

Wikipedia here only reports Tun Abdul Razak succeeding Tunku Abdul Rahman as second Prime Minister on September 1970. No dates, meaning the same month as the month Tunku Abdul Halim ascended to his first Majesty's first Agong-ship.

However, Tun Abdul Razak was Director of National Operations Council, heading the Emergency Government after the May 13, 1969 racial strife.


Coincidentally, Tunku Abdul Halim replaced the Sultan of Terengganu on both his Majesty's ascension to the Yang Dipertuan Agong. First time being the Tunku Ismail Nasirudin and the second time is Tunku Mizan.

And, the present Prime Minister serving Tunku Abdul Halim is Dato Seri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak, the son of the late Tun Abdul Razak Hussein.

Tunku Abdul Halim's interesting life and cycle of history is written in yesterday's The Star article, below:
Monday December 12, 2011

A king’s journey

THE journey of our 14th Yang di-Pertuan Agong started on Nov 28, 1927, in Alor Setar, Kedah, at Istana Anak Bukit. Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu’adzam Shah is the eldest son of Sultan Badlishah Al-Marhum Sultan Abdul Hamid Halim Shah and his consort, Tunku Sofiah Al-Marhum Tunku Mahmud.

Tuanku Abdul Halim started his schooling at Alor Merah Malay Primary School and Titi Gajah Malay School, and continued his education at Sultan Abdul Hamid College until 1948. He resided in the hostel for two years. He was an active student, and was a school and hostel prefect.

Tuanku left for Britain for a two-and-a-half-year degree course in Social Studies and Public Administration at his father’s alma mater in Wadham College, Oxford University, England.

Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu’adzam Shah, chancellor of Kolej Universiti Insaniah, and Tuanku Haminah Hamidun at the 13th Convocation of the university college in Alor Setar, Kedah, on Oct 4 this year. – Filepics


Tuanku was proclaimed the Raja Muda (Crown Prince) on Aug 6, 1949, while still in Britain. When he returned to Kedah in 1955, he served as a Cadet Officer at the Kota Setar District Office and later, the State Treasury in 1957.

Tuanku married Tuanku Sultanah Bahiyah on March 3, 1956. The marriage united, for the first time, the royal houses of Kedah and Negri Sembilan. The royal couple were blessed with three princesses, twins Tunku Soraya and Tunku Sarina (deceased, 1994) and Tunku Intan Safinaz. The eldest daughter of the late Yang di-Pertuan Besar Negri Sembilan Tuanku Abdul Rahman, Tuanku Bahiyah served both as Sultanah and Raja Permaisuri Agong during her lifetime. She passed away on Aug 26, 2003. On March 9, 1957, Tuanku served as the Regent until July 1957. The following year on July 15, he ascended the Kedah throne as the 28th Sultan upon the demise of his father. The Coronation was on Feb 20, 1959.

Tuanku has served as Sultan for 53 years, which makes him the fourth Kedah Sultan to have served for more than 50 years. Kedah celebrated his 50th Jubilee in grand fashion and pageantry on July 15, 2008.

During the first decade of Tuanku’s reign in Kedah, he officially opened the Muda Irrigation Scheme which was the catalyst that enabled the state to increase its rice yield significantly and improved the socio-economic well-being of his subjects.

Tuanku served a five-year term as Deputy Yang di-Pertuan Agong on Sept 21, 1965. He subsequently assumed that role a second time around from Dec 13, 2006, till today. Tomorrow he becomes King for the second time around.

Tuanku ascended to the throne as the 5th Agong from Sept 21, 1970, to Sept 20, 1975, with the late Tuanku Bahiyah at his side.

There were many State visits to Britain, Thailand, Bangladesh, Pakistan, India and Iran, among others, during his Majesty’s reign. The Royal Couple were met with admiration and respect wherever they went.

Tuanku played a significant role in steering the country to a more peaceful and progressive state after the tumult of May 13, 1969.

He was appointed as Colonel-in-Chief of the Royal Malay Regiment in 1975. He was also the Colonel-in-Chief of the Royal Malaysian Reconnaissance Corps before he was installed as King.

One of the more significant events in Tuanku’s third decade was the Silver Jubilee celebrations of his reign as Sultan in 1983.

The fourth decade saw very rapid industrialisation in Kedah, helped in part by the opening of the North-South Highway in 1988. Tuanku was proclaimed Chancellor of Universiti Utara Malaysia on April 7, 1994.

During the fifth decade of his reign, Alor Setar was proclaimed a city on Dec 21, 2003. Tuanku Haminah Hamidun was also installed as the Sultanah on Jan 9, 2004.

Today, Kedah stands proud as the country’s rice bowl, contributing 60% of its rice production. It has an industrial hub and is also an international tourist attraction, thanks in no small part to Langkawi.

Source: Sultan Abdul Halim: A Royal Journey
When asked to recall the May 13, 1969 incident, his Majesty's told Bernama, "It was a bitter incident which should not be allowed to recur."

May the country enjoy peace and prosperity with the various races living in harmony under the second reign of Tunku Abdul Halim.

Daulat Tunku! Daulat Tunku! Daulat Tunku!

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Saturday, December 10, 2011

UMNO to takeover Kedah?


Let's take a breather from the MAS-Air Asia issue for the weekend.

If someone were to say Kedah can be takenover three months ago, he or she would have been laughed off as a political novice with no knowledge of the ground.

This is especially so with the UMNO warlord problems in Kedah so endemic.

There is Det Khalid in one corner, Jo B (or Jo Derhaka for what he did to Tun M) in another corner, Bashah in another, and many others in their little turfs and kingdoms all over the state.

Even the likes of old Dato Bakaq of Langkawi still has dreams of contesting in the next general election.

"Mampuih!" as any Kedahan in their distinct accent would have reacted.

In the last Pergong, bet no one knows that Pergong is also PAU or Perhimpunan Agung UMNO, I met up my old school buddy, brother Noradzman Baharuddin, who is NST Alor Star Bureau Chief. We chatted for hours to catch up on family, my recent Hajj and politics.

That is how brotherly close we are in residential schools. We could have left school more than 35 years ago but we never lose sight of each other and the camarederie is as strong as ever.

He told me it is feasible for UMNO to retake Kedah.

Coming from Mantoi (as I would call him and he would call me by some M nickname too), who has been covering the political beat up north for decades, he is worth a serious listen.

One, there are many seats won over by PAS are lost by UMNO marginally. UMNO lost Tanjung Dawai by 79 votes, Jeneri by 167 votes, Bukit Lada by 208 votes, Ayer Hangat by 506 votes, and Pantai Merdeka by 503 votes; all to PAS.

Kota Darulaman was lost to DAP by 804 votes. Yet, we almost at will giving up Kota Seputeh which we won by 495 votes because Datuk Abu Hasan Sharif "absence" from State Assembly.

All the information is no big secret. It is widely available on the Internet.

Two, there is a power struggle boiling in the PAS cerek. There is an organised effort to bring down Kedah Menteri Besar Dato Azizan Abdul Razak within the PAS circle of power.

It is believed to be orchestrated by Mahfudz Omar. Whether he is interested to pursue the Menteri Besar post, it is unsure. However, it has strained relation between Azizan, who was recently admitted to IJN for heart problem, with senior exco member, Fakhrolrazi.

The PAS's potential second in line and friend of ours, the grassroot popular Amiruddin is losing focus.

Nevertheless, the odds are Azizan will still run.

Three, business community have grown fed-up and public are tired with unresolved public issues since the Azizan flood debacle.

This Mantoi had written.

*********************************

Kedah business community fast losing confidence in state government

Noor Adzman Baharuddin
noadzman@nst.com.my

DISAPPOINTED LOT: Kedah business community may abandon the opposition in the next general election

Ah Fatt is a very frustrated businessman.

So is Lingam, another member of the Kedah business community.

Equally stymied is Lingam’s neighbour, Ahmad.

One of them peddles in hardware, another runs a sundry shop while the other, operates an eaterie.

There are no prizes for anyone who can guess who trades in what but the men are seething with frustration over their decision to 'kaleh' (switch) to the opposition in the last general election.

Since Mar 8, 2008, the trio claimed the state government has offered little or no economic opportunities to the people.

"What sejahtera (well-being) is there when the state has failed to churn out new economic activities for the people, especially small businessmen like me?" Laments Lingam as he questioned the Pas-led state government's Kedah Sejahtera 2008 general election manifesto.

Ahmad chided the state government for failing to live up to its promises.

"We can’t just depend on 'pasar malam's and the ocassional 'karnivals' to sell our wares," he said, still reeling from his poor call at the ballot box about four years ago.

Ah Fatt had counted on expanding his business but the opportunities were far and few between.

"What do you expect, they could not even handle the ikan keli (catfish) project," he said of the RM400,000 losses suffered by the state government when its organic Keli-K aquaculture in Sik failed after two years of operation.

The traders’ concerns generally reflect the frustration of the local business community.

And yes, as business people, they tend to keep their frustration or disappointment, especially with the government of the day, to themselves - they only expressed their resentment in the ballot box!

On this score, one can't help but be reminded of the concern raised by former Finance Minister Tun Daim Zainuddin on the possibility of Penang, Selangor and Kedah falling into the hands of the opposition after the last general election!

Though small compared to the business communities in industrial states like Penang and Selangor, members of the business fraternity in Kedah is a force to be reckoned with. They had played a pivotal role in tilting the scale in the opposition's favour in the last general election.

The business community, especially among Chinese traders, were disillusioned by the country’s past leadership.

Like Ah Fatt, Lingam and Ahmad, they took out their frustrations on the Kedah Barisan Nasional by abandoning it.

This factor was a major cause for the marginal losses suffered by BN at seven of its strongholds to the opposition.

In Tanjung Dawai, for instance, the BN lost by a mere 79 votes to Pas.

For the record, Pas won 16 of the 36-seat State Legislative Assembly in 2008. BN won 14, PKR five and DAP one.

However, two PKR assemblymen have since abandoned their party to become independents.

Some argued that the troubles for the Pas-led state government, especially with Chinese traders and the rest of their community, started when the authorities decided to demolish a pig abattoir in Alor Star about a year after the new state government took over.

There was a big hue and cry over the authorities’ handling of the case, especially when a replacement slaughterhouse was never really properly identified.

Then came another boo-boo when the authorities, a few days before the fasting month this year, issued a directive ordering all karaoke outlets in the state to cease operations throughout Ramadan.

This really irked the karaoke operators, many of them Chinese.

The authorities finally relented. The outlets could stay open but must turn away Muslim patrons.

Kedah BN leaders and members have been deluged with many opportunities.

They should step up to the plate. They should make amends while some, make way. This is imperative to achieve holistic transformation for the party.

The state of disillusionment afflicting the business community should work in BN's favour in the next general election.

It did for the opposition pact in Penang, Selangor and Kedah in 2008.

*********************************

But, and a big but it is, UMNO Kedah need to get organised and resolve their internal problems. We both agree. And we back to square one.

*********************************
09 December 2011

'Whos' who should head for the exit

By Noor Adzman Baharuddin
noadzman@nst.com.my

All Umno members must be Khalid al-Walids as much as they can

Delegates supporting the minutes tabled at the Umno general assembly recently. The take-home message was ‘Umno before self’. Pic by Aizuddin Saad

UMNO president Datuk Seri Najib Razak has said that the party, which leads the ruling Barisan Nasional, is ready to face the general election.

The prime minister, who is also BN chairman, also said at the Umno annual general assembly recently that more new faces would be fielded in the next general election -- both for Umno and the ruling coalition.

Closer to home, Kedah Umno could help make Najib's task easier as he makes changes and decides on the winnable candidates for the state.

And change Kedah Umno must. It must heed Najib's call for political transformation, especially after BN's dismal performance in the 2008 general election.

Without naming names, most Kedah Umno members and "orang Umno Kedah" know "who" should give way.

Equally important are those "whos" should be shown the way.

The first group of "whos" is fewer than the second "whos".

The first "whos" are assemblymen who are not quite up the mark. And they know who they are.

The second group comprises "problematic" assemblymen, those caught in legal tangles and those allegedly involved in abuse of power.

There is a third group of which the party leadership needs to be wary. They jostle to be candidates but have no or poor track records, including some at the divisional level.

This group includes those who behaved in a manner that was detrimental, including sabotage, to Umno and BN in the last general election and in a few cases, in previous general elections, too.

This handful, some of whom also behaved like warlords, might have escaped disciplinary action but "orang Umno Kedah" know who they are and the rogue few also know who they are.

The majority of the people of Kedah made their choice in 2008. Kedah Umno members and their leaders can help them decide in the party's and BN's favour in the next general election.

Umno has done a lot for its members and it is time they repaid the party. To rephrase an oft-quoted line, Umno members must ask not what the party can do for them but what they can and should do for the party.

They must heed Najib's Umno-before-self call.

They must be magnanimous and help the party president rebuild and strengthen Umno. If there is an opportunity for them to help Umno, then this is the time.

BN lost Kedah in the last general election not because the opposition was strong but because Umno and the ruling coalition were weak.

Of the total 36 state seats, Umno won 12 while Gerakan and MCA won one each. Umno lost seven of its strongholds, including Tanjung Dawai, where it lost to Pas by a mere 79 votes.

In Jeneri, Umno lost to Pas by 167 votes and Bukit Lada by 208 votes.

Local issues, especially involving grassroots leadership, influenced the outcome. Poor choice of candidates and sabotage stood out as the culprits.

Najib must be firm and, as the saying goes, must be seen to be firm. There must be no flip-flops and stern action must be taken (and be seen to be taken) against those who betrayed the party in any way, shape or form.

This analysis by no means serves as the only remedy to Kedah Umno and BN's ills.

Some changes with Umno incumbents and the introduction of new faces and, by extension, changes and new faces for Kedah BN, must also be considered.

Najib has come a long way on damage control for Umno and BN. Numerous policies and programmes have helped to recapture the hearts and minds of the people, including those who had abandoned the ruling coalition in 2008.

All the promises and sumpah bai'ah (oath of loyalty) made by Umno grassroots leaders at the Putra World Trade Centre last Saturday would mean nothing if they do not honour their word.

Najib had cited the sacrifices by Khalid al-Walid, one of the most feared and successful Islamic generals, who willingly stepped down as army commander at the request of caliph Umar.

A strong believer that Islam takes precedence over everything else, including oneself, he soldiered on.

And Umno members must all try to be Khalid al-Walids as much as they can.

Incidentally, Khalid's successor, Abu Ubaidah, appointed him as head of the cavalry and as a military adviser.

*********************************

Heard that Bashah is so pathetic at getting organised that he had an overnight meeting to prepare and submit Election Manifesto for a long given next day deadline.

I am not bitching Bashah in order to promote Mukhriz. Perish that thought.

Mukhriz can't be Ketua Perhubungan Negeri (yet). He hardly holds an elected post of any significance at the Division level.

Mukhriz has his problems, lots of problems. Starting with his rather distant personality.

He is still too urbane for a wakil rakyat representing a rural area. He goes around like a VIP and comfortable to be treated as invited guests by program organisers. And, he falls short of meeting the not-easy-to-describe Kedahan leadership quality called hemoih.

Now that he is no more a Pemuda leader, I am no more going to be polite and private to my friend but be brutally honest and open. I am neither on his payroll nor under his instruction.

Mukhriz is in the big boys league, so stop hanging around boys. Being a nice guy is not enough to be a leader. He has to take charge and lead men. He can't depend on volunteers alone but build his army of supporters and followers.

Be a Mahathir, not a Hasmah. And be himself.

He should stop his dependency as son of Mahathir and Hasmah. Even Nurjazlan stopped opening his speech with a kirim salam from Tok Mat, naturally.

As for plan to place Mukhriz at a State Assembly seat to make way for Kedah MB post, he should be careful. It could be a plan to send him back to work at his fiber optic factory and kill his political career.

If he loses, he is finished. But if he wins, things will be alright. But with Kedah UMNO's present state of organisation, can UMNO Kedah win?

Bear in mind, if he wins but Kedah UMNO loses, he could be blamed for it. The perception is that he is in charge of the UMNO charge for Kedah.

So, back to Mantoi or my friend, Encik Noradzman Baharuddin. He writes his column on Friday NST on Kedah issues, including politics. It is long overdue that he be given a column to write anyway.

So take note of my buddy.

I sure hope Mukhriz and his team do take note and engage him. He can be a useful source of information and contacts.

To get his cooperation, treat him with respect. Dia bukan budak hinguih, tau.

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