Negri Sembilan PAS Chief for Bagan Pinang By-Election to take on Isa Samad

Untuk Pengundi di DUN Bagan Pinang  dari Bekas President UMNO

September 30, 2009

PAS (and Pakatan Rakyat) names Negri Sembilan Chief as its Bagan Pinang By-Election Candidate

malaysian insider

Malaysian Insider reports (By Adib Zalkapli):

PAS today (September 29, 2009) named its Negri Sembilan chief Zulkefly Omar as the candidate for the Bagan Pinang by-election. That announcement was made at a public rally in the Chinese-dominated Batu 9 town near here by PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang. “The candidate represents all Malaysians and the people of Bagan Pinang,” Hadi told the multi-racial crowd.

calon bpinang

Zulkefly, 45, a communication graduate, had contested and lost three times. During the last year’s general election he lost Lenggeng state seat in Kuala Pilah by some 1,000 votes.

Speaking to reporters after the announcement, Hadi said he is confident of PAS’s chances of winning the seat. “We have won seven out of eight by-elections, we are confident,” said Hadi. “He is our best candidate — young and educated,” he added.

Hadi dismissed the suggestion that the infighting within Pakatan Rakyat in Selangor will affect the coalition’s chances of winning the seat.

During the last general election PAS lost 12 out of 13 state constituencies it contested in Negri Sembilan. PAS only won the Paroi seat, situated within the Rembau parliamentary constituency. To a question on the Barisan Nasional’s (BN) decision to field Tan Sri Mohd Isa Abdul Samad as the Bagan Pinang candidate, Zulkefly said he will let the people decide on the former Negri Sembilan mentri besar’s ability to represent them.

“We contested to fulfil the people’s wish, not for other reasons,” said Zulkefly. The Bagan Pinang by-election was made necessary following the death of BN’s Azman Mohammad Noor on September 4.

In March last year, Azman defeated Ramli Ismail of PAS by some 2,000 votes. BN is currently ruling the state with a simple majority after winning only 21 of the 36 state constituencies.

Mahathir’s Advice to Civil Service

September 29, 2009

Bernama LogoMahathir says change strategy to achieve Vision 2020

Malaysia might not be able to achieve its Vision 2020 on time, if it does not change its strategy and remains dependent on foreign direct investments, says former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

He said Malaysia should focus on developing major local companies that have the potential to produce their ownDr. Mahathir Mohamad brands and compete in the global market

“The government must identify these companies and help them grow by lending them money with low interest rate.

“The profit they make will go back to us, the workers and the country,” he said during the 14th Civil Service Conference here today.

He also said workers at all levels must be paid higher wages but by doing so they must be more productive. “Then only the industry can produce in greater volumes, gain more profit and contribute to the country’s revenue,” he said.

Mahathir said Malaysia should become a medium or high cost country because it cannot compete with countries such as China and Taiwan who could offer lower cost manpower and resources to foreign investors.

Speaking to reporters following the event, he said Malaysia was capable of becoming a developed country but might exceed the set time of 2020 due to the global economic downturn which has affected the country.

“However, if we focus on developing local companies and not depend on foreign investments, it will not be impossible to achieve it in the given time,” he said.

He also said the fixing of minimum wages and increasing pay will not pay off if there was no restructuring as it could make the situation worse especially if productivity levels remain low.

On the 1Malaysia concept introduced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, Mahathir said the people, especially the younger generation must be given the opportunity to mingle and study together and build up friendships with different races. “During my time we had more opportunities to make friends with other races,” he said.

Malaysia can learn from Indonesia on Environment

September 29, 2009

Why Indonesia emerged as the true hero at G20

By Jonathan Wootliff *

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono

It appears that President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY) understands what is the real crisis facing our planet. With the continuing popular obsession with global economic woes, most of the leaders attending last week’s G20 summit in Pittsburgh came prepared with more of the same, worn-out rhetoric about the need to fortify the world’s financial systems.

Buoyed up from his recent election victory, a newly emboldened  SBY joined fellow government heads attended the meeting in the US former steel town playing a refreshingly different tune.

He presented a case study to his counterparts on Indonesia’s innovative strategy to wean this nation off addictive fuel subsidies. For as worrying as it may be, he clearly recognizes that the growing threat of climate change will make the current financial troubles look like a fly on an elephant’s back.

This President knows that the untamed escalation in the use of fossil fuels is creating the greenhouse gas emissions that will ultimately cause untold damage to the planet – which all of the world’s treasuries will be unable to fix.

Thankfully, his US counterpart, Barack Obama, shares his concern, which is why he was invited to explain his fuel subsidy reduction policy to the summit, in the hope that other nations would follow suit.

After years of increasing fuel subsidies, Indonesia has instituted a cash transfer system that now enables the government to direct cash payments to more than 19 million households while reducing across-the-board support.

This action has improved the national balance sheet while enhancing the economic condition of the poorest 40 percent of the country’s population, and heralding a whole new approach to our unbridled dependence of planet-heating fossil fuels.

It was SBY’s impassioned public plea and skillful backroom diplomacy at the UN climate change summit in Bali in December 2007 that significantly helped to ensure its successful outcome. Arguably, without the President’s eleventh hour intervention, efforts to allay the prospect of irreversible global warming would have been severely derailed.

Following desperate last minute efforts to avert failure, it was Indonesia that emerged as a true hero. The country’s reputation on the world stage was appreciably enhanced.

Now, as the G8 is replaced by the G20 as the new beacon for global leadership, it is heartening to see Indonesia playing such an innovative and influential role.

Throughout the years of the Bush administration, too many shortsighted Western commentators unfairly blamed the developing nations for hampering progress in instigating effective intergovernmental policies for tackling climate change.

In subsequently rejecting Kyoto, the original climate change treaty hammered out in Japan 12 years ago, the Bush administration took the parochial position that until and unless poorer countries were prepared to cap their greenhouse gas emissions, that it was unfair to expect the US – the world’s single largest polluter – to do so.

The emergence of the G20 has now given seats at the top table to the very nations previously derided by the last US administration for not playing ball on climate change policy.

It is pure political poetry that one such nation has so immediately played such a pivotal role in shaping new thinking on this critical global challenge.

With a key outcome of the Pittsburgh summit being a unanimous agreement of the 20 nations to phase out fossil fuel subsidies, history will again surely show Indonesia was a true hero in the word’s struggle to prevent adverse climate change.

There’s no doubt that the elimination of subsidies is only one small step along a long road to solving the problem. But it is an important stride in the right direction. And the timing is perfect, as governments now turn their attention to the impending climate change talks in Copenhagen in December when it is hoped that a successor to the Kyoto treaty will be agreed.

Planet Earth is sick. Rising sea levels, failing crops, debilitating floods and alarming temperature changes are just some of the many worrying symptoms which will cost far more to cure than the slump on Wall Street.

Climate change is the real crisis facing the world. It’s time for our world leaders to wake up to this harsh reality.

As one of the largest emitters of greenhouse gas emissions, it is gratifying that Indonesia should be taking a leadership stance in helping to avert catastrophe.

We cannot allow our politicians to procrastinate on this issue. Scientists are clearly showing us that time is running out.  SBY should be applauded for his international leadership. He has shown his mettle as a true crisis manager.

As we march towards the Copenhagen summit, with its new found international reputation, I hope we will see Indonesia continuing to play an influential and innovative role in mobilizing world governments in bringing Planet Earth back to good health.

*Jonathan Wootliff is an independent sustainable development consultant specializing in the building of productive relationships between companies and NGOs. He can be contacted at

Sorry, Che Det: Isa Samad is UMNO’s Man for Bagan Pinang


September 29, 2009

Isa Samad is UMNO-BN’s choice for Bagan Pinang By-Election

By Adib Zalkapli in Port Dickson

UMNO's Comeback Man

UMNO's Comeback Man

UMNO’s central leadership bowed to pressure from the Negeri Sembilan party grassroots and picked Tan Sri Mohd Isa Abdul Samad as the Barisan Nasional (BN) candidate for the Bagan Pinang by-election.

The by-election is expected to end Pakatan Rakyat’s (PR) winning streak in all by-elections in the peninsula since the last general election.

The announcement was made at the BN main operation centre near here and was attended by some 10,000 party loyalists.

BN election director Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin described Isa, who was the Negri Sembilan mentri besar for 22 years until 2004, as a grassroots leader who has worked hard for the party.

“This by-election is about the people, people first,” said Muhyiddin citing the 1 Malaysia campaign slogan to loud cheers from the crowd.

“Whoever the people want, we will grant the people their wish,” he added.

In his acceptance speech, Isa said he felt rejuvenated by the announcement.

“God willing, with the support of Negri Sembilan mentri besar and other component party leaders, we will retain the seat,” said Isa as he struggled to hold back his tears.

Isa’s selection today marks his second attempt at making a comeback after failing to defend the UMNO vice-president post during the party election last April.

His candidacy was also opposed by Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad who had advised the UMNO leadership to consider the long-term consequences of fielding Isa as he was found guilty of money politics by the UMNO disciplinary board in 2005.

Earlier this month, the Teluk Kemang UMNO division had insisted on proposing only the name of its chief – Isa – to the supreme council to be considered as the candidate, but Muhyiddin requested that the division submit more than one name.

Yesterday, Muhyiddin told reporters that the division had indeed submitted more than one name, resulting in a minor revolt in the Teluk Kemang division when banners threatening to boycott the by-election was put up across the state constituency this morning.

The Bagan Pinang by-election was made necessary following the death of BN’s Azman Mohammad Noor on September 4.

It is situated within the Teluk Kemang parliamentary constituency represented by PKR’s Datuk Kamarul Baharin Abbas.

Apart from Bagan Pinang, UMNO also won the neighbouring Linggi state seat in last year’s election, while PR controls three other state seats in Teluk Kemang — Chuah (PKR), Lukut (DAP) and Port Dickson (PKR).

In March last year, Azman defeated Ramli Ismail of PAS, by some 2,000 votes.

BN is currently ruling the state with a simple majority after winning only 21 out of the 36 state constituencies.

Breaking News: No show re Kugan case

September 29, 2009

No-show in prosecution of Kugan’s death

mk50by Rahmah Ghazali

The fuss over the expectation that a police officer would be charged this morning for the death of detainee Kugan Ananthan has fizzled.

Thus far, there is no sign that the case will come up at the Petaling Jaya Magistrate’s Court today, as anticipated.

Tun Majid Tun Hamzah, the head of prosecution in the attorney-general’s chambers, said “nothing has been confirmed” at this point.

Kugan’s uncle V Raviroy, who arrived at the court at 8am, said he is uncertain if the police personnel involved will be charged.

“I found out about this from (Kota Alam Shah assemblyperson and lawyer) M Manoharan, but up to 11am today, there has been no sign (of the police officer),” he said.

He and another of Kugan’s uncles, N Ravi, were accompanied by Manoharan and Kapar parliamentarian M Manikavasagam.

Reporters too had been waiting as early as 8am, only to find out that the case may be postponed. However, they are on standby for any developments.

Contacted this morning, Selangor police chief Khalid Abu Bakar indicated that he is in the dark.

“I haven’t any news about this and I am not sure what is happening at the moment,” he said.

Kugan, 23, died on Jan 20 at the USJ Taipan police station, five days after he was picked up in connection with a car theft case. His family has accused the police of foul play.

Two post-mortem examinations were conducted. The second of these revealed that Kugan had been beaten, burnt and starved prior to his death. Concerned groups have long complained about the lack of action in the case, which exploded into a national issue after a video recording revealed severe lacerations on Kugan’s body.