A-G Gani Patail is not above the Law

April 11, 2014

A-G Gani Patail loses to Rosli Dahlan: NO ONE IS ABOVE THE LAW

by Din Merican

mh370-hishammuddinWilliam Pesek, a prominent Bloomberg columnist, wrote recently that the global outcry over the loss of flight MH370 has highlighted the country’s deepest flaws of incompetent people running the country.

The Fumbling Team of MH370

“The fumbling exposed an elite that’s never really had to face questioning from its people, never mind the rest of the world. The country needs nothing less than a political revolution,” said Pesek. And I agree. Nothing will change until the present political elite is made to pay for their ineptitude, incompetence and crooked ways by Malaysian voters.

At the international level, our political leaders will have to take the blame. At the national level, we are facing a crisis of our public institutions being headed by not just mediocre and incompetent people but also characters who are downright dishonest and who abuse the system with impunity– the rogues in government.

Rosli Dahlan wins against A-G Patail

Vazeer, a former practising lawyer before being made a judge, said he agreed that deliberate abuse of power by those holding a public office was misfeasance in public office.

Vazeer, a former practising lawyer before being made a judge, said he agreed that deliberate abuse of power by those holding a public office was misfeasance in public office.

That brings me to the news reports of this morning that my young friend, Lawyer Rosli Dahlan, has again won another case against A-G Gani Patail. For my readers’ convenience I have reproduced only the MKini report by Hafiz Yatim (below) that provides interesting links on this story that never ceases to inspire me.

Back in Time–To the Eve of Hari Raya (Aidil Fitr), 2007

It’s a sad story of how on the eve of Hari Raya 2007, Lawyer Rosli Dahlan (right) wasR Dahlan brutally arrested in his office in full view of his staff by the ACA (now MACC). He was then charged in a most sensational manner to deceive the public into believing that Rosli had hidden illegitimate assets belonging to the Director of Commercial Crimes, Dato Ramli Yusuff, in another sensational story fanned by the media dubbed as the “The RM 27 million Cop”.

All this was part of a conspiracy to eliminate Dato Ramli from the PDRM as Dato Ramli posed a threat to then IGP Musa Hassan and A-G Gani Patail. Rosli was made a victim because he dared to defend Dato Ramli despite warnings having been sent to him. Since then, Musa‘s former ADC had sworn a Statutory Declaration to expose IGP Musa Hassan’s links with the underworld.

A lot more was also disclosed about A-G Gani Patail’s association with shady corporate figures like the one in the Ho Hup Affair. The Internet was also abuzz with stories about how A-G Gani Patail went to Haj and had his son to share a room with a shady former Police Inspector who was once charged for corruption, Shahidan Shafie, a proxy of former MAS Chairman Tan Sri Tajudin Ramli.

Tajuddin Ramli and the MAS saga was among the many failures of Dr Mahathir’s Bumiputra corporate advancement project which culminated with MH370 disaster. The latest episode could sink MAS without tax-payers bailout forthcoming .

Tajuddin Ramli and the MAS saga was among the many failures of Dr Mahathir’s Bumiputra corporate advancement project which culminated with MH370 disaster. The latest episode could sink MAS without tax-payers bailout forthcoming .

That explains why A-G Gani never charged Tajudin Ramli for the losses of RM 8 billion that MAS suffered despite recommendations by Dato Ramli Yusuff. Dato Mat Zain Ibrahim, former KL OCCI also swore SDs about A-G Gani Patail throwing away the Batu Putih case for pecuniary gains.

Ramli YusuffYet Gani Patail remains as the A-G of Malaysia, leading many to speculate that he has a grip on PM Najib Razak because of Razak Baginda’s acquittal in the murder of the Mongolian beauty, Altantuya Shariibu. In that case, the A-G did not appeal against Razak Baginda’s acquittal.

On the other hand, the A-G has pursued criminal appeals against certain people like Lawyer Rosli Dahlan and Dato Ramli Yusuff (left). In the PKFZ case, A-G Gani Patail charged and appealed against the acquittal of Tun Ling Liong Sik which led to Tun Lingcalling him – “ That Stupid Fella”.

Back to Rosli’s case. Lawyer Rosli, he has fought a long and lonely battle, winning his acquittal and then suing every one of the mainstream media for defaming him – Utusan Malaysia, The Star and the NST, and winning against them one by one very patiently.

On April 15, 2008, Utusan Malaysia published a public apology admitting their wrongdoings and acknowledged that the Utusan Malaysia’s article “was written and published in a sensational manner to generate publicity which exceeded the parameters of ethical journalism surrounding the investigation of YDH Dato’ Pahlawan Haji Ramli Haji Yusuf who at that time held the post of Director of the Commercial Crime Investigation Department of Police DiRaja Malaysia.”

Utusan's Apology

On January 15, 2013, the Star paid damages and admitted to its wrongdoings in a published public apology.

The Star's Apology

On October 18, 2013, the KL High Court found the NST and the MACC guilty of defaming Rosli and ordered them to pay damages of RM 300,000 and costs. This made history as it was the first time that the MACC was sued by a person and the MACC lost and had to pay damages.

Last year Rosli sued A-G Gani Patail, MACC Chief Commissioner Tan Sri Abu Kassim and several other MACC officers for conspiracy, false and malicious investigation, abuse of power, abuse of prosecutorial discretion, malicious prosecution, prosecutorial misconduct and public misfeasance.

Read the MKini report below and you will discover that A-G Gani Patail had engaged Tan Sri Cecil Abraham , a senior private lawyer from Messrs ZulRafique & Partners (an UMNO law firm) to defend him, the A-G Chambers (A-GC) and the MACC.

I find that surprising since I am told that the A-GC has over 800 lawyers, making the A-GC the “largest law firm” in the country. By contrast, I am told that the largest private law firm in the country has a maximum of 140 lawyers.

 Putrajaya needs to review its policies as it can't afford to spend taxpayers' money on the AG's own legal problem.

Putrajaya needs to review its policies as it can’t afford to spend taxpayers’ money on the AG’s own legal problem.

That means the Government of Malaysia spends millions of ringgit to staff the A-GC in order to defend the government. Yet when the Government is sued, A-G Gani Patail engages private lawyers. Does that makes sense to you?

Is A-G Gani Patail admitting that he is not confident of the A-GC, which he heads, to defend him and the government in the face of the law suit by Lawyer Rosli Dahlan? Is A-G Gani Patail admitting that the A-GC is incompetent? Was that why Tan Sri Shafee Abdullah was asked to be an ad hoc DPP to prosecute the appeal against Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim? Or is there is a commercial logic to that? Is A-G Gani Patail outsourcing legal work to his friends in the private sector to reward them for covering up for his misconduct and incompetence?

Cecil Abraham sits in the MACC’s Operations Review Panel.

Cecil Abraham sits in the MACC’s Operations Review Panel.

I had a chat with Tan Sri Robert Phang who has always been critical of A-G Gani Patail. He told me a more worrisome story. Robert Phang questioned whether Tan Sri Cecil Abraham (right) is a fit to lawyer to defend the A-G because Cecil Abraham sits in the MACC’s Operations Review Panel, which advises on oversights in the MACC. One of the committee’s functions is to ensure that the MACC and other government agencies do not commit abuses. It is like an Ombudsman. If so, how can Cecil Abraham defend A-G Gani Patail and the other MACC officers whom Rosli has accused of fixing him? Is that not a conflict of interest?

Other lawyers tell me that Cecil Abraham is the senior lawyer implicated in the PI Bala SD case over the Altantuya murder. I am stunned by all these revelations. It seems that all the committees and advisory panels in the MACC and other government agencies are to cover up for their wrongdoings rather than to expose and correct them. No wonder our country is headed for doom !

Americk Sidhu, PI Bala's lawyer makes a startling revelation at the Bar AGM that Cecil Abraham confided in him that he prepared the 2nd SD on instructions from Najib.

Americk Sidhu, PI Bala’s lawyer makes a startling revelation at the Bar AGM that Cecil Abraham confided in him that he prepared the 2nd SD on instructions from Najib.

I am told that Rosli’s Statement of Claim against A-G Gani Patail contains very damning revelations about A-G’s misconduct. I am told that with every victory that Rosli gained against A-G Gani Patail, more and more civil servants and people are coming up to him to offer assistance and being more willing to be witnesses in his cases. This was unlike before when many were afraid to be associated with him.

Is that why AG Gani Patail does not want to go to trial and employ all kinds of delaying tactics in Rosli’s suit against him. Is that why A-G Gani Patail engaged Tan Sri Cecil Abraham to strike out Rosli’s suit? Otherwise, why is A-G Gani Patail so afraid to go to trial in Rosli’s case?

But now that Tan Sri Cecil has lost this striking out application and the A-G is ordered to pay cost to Rosli, who is going to bear this cost? Should taxpayer’s money be used to pay for the misconduct of these rogues in government? If we taxpayers have to bear this cost, then A-G Gani Patail and the likes of him will never be repentant. There will never be accountability!

In my view, A-G Gani Patail must bear the full costs of his misconduct. He must be held accountable and he must pay the legal fees charged by his friend Tan Sri Cecil Abraham. I am also of the view that the MACC should sack Cecil Abraham from being on its Advisory Panel. Cecil Abraham cannot sit there to pretend that he is acting as a check and balance against the MACC’s misconducts whereas he is also covering up for the MACC when the MACC is sued by Rosli, and getting well paid by the Government using tax payer’s money!

Conflict of Interest

The conflict of interest is so clear and it is appalling that a senior titled lawyer like Tan Sri Cecil Abraham cannot see that. I also feel that the Bar Council should not stand idle arms akimbo with this revelation. The Bar Council should subject Cecil Abraham to disciplinary proceedings for breaching such common sense rule on conflict of interests. Cecil has dishonored the Bar and the Council must act against him!

Well Done, JC Wazeer Alam Mydin 

In that regard, I must congratulate Judicial Commissioner Wazeer Alam Mydin for having a fair sense justice in not allowing A-G Gani Patail to strike out Rosli ‘s claim. A judicial Commissioner is basically a probationary judge. For a probationary Judge to do this means JC Wazeer is indeed a brave man who would not tolerate public authorities who commit abuses and then claim immunity. It is indeed a brave probationary judge to stand up to the A-G and tell it to the A-G’s face that the A-G is not above the law.

The winds of change is blowing and judges like JC Wazeer Alam will be a credit to the judiciary. JC Wazeer Alam is indeed a brave man to make this iconic statement:

“The claim by AG of his absolute public and prosecutorial immunity is an anathema to modern democratic society.”


April 11, 2014

A-G not immune to legal action, rules Judge

by Hafiz Yatim@www.malaysiakini.com

The Attorney-General is not immune to legal action, the High Court in Kuala Lumpur ruled today.

Judicial Commissioner Vazeer Alam Mydin Meera said this in dismissing Attorney-general Abdul Gani Patail’s application to strike out the suits by former Commercial Crime Investigation Department director Ramli Yusuff and his lawyer Rosli Dahlan.

Public authorities who abused their powers have been "insulated" from prosecution for "far too long" by using the Public Authorities Protection Act.

Public authorities who abused their powers have been “insulated” from accountability  for “far too long” by using the Public Authorities Protection Act.

“I am afraid that the notion of absolute immunity for a public servant, even when mala fide or abuse of power in the exercise of their prosecutorial power is alleged in the pleadings, is anathema to modern day notions of accountability.

“I agree that deliberate abuse of power by a person holding a public office is tortious and is referred to as misfeasance in public office.

“Such a tortious act can arise when an officer actuated by malice, for example, by personal spite or a desire to injure for improper reasons, abuses his power,” Vazeer Alam said.

“This is keeping with developments in modern jurisprudence that absolute immunity for public servants has no place in a progressive democratic society,” the judge added. The A-G and two other officers from the A-G’s Chambers were named in the respective suits filed by Ramli Yusuff and Rosli Dahlan.

They had sought to strike out the suits on the grounds that they should be immune to such action in carrying out their prosecution powers. Ramli had filed a RM128.5 million suit against A-G Gani, former IGP Musa Hassan and several Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission officers.

Rosli had filed a separate suit amounting to RM48 million against the same parties.The two are suing them for abuse of power, malfeasance in the performance of public duty, malicious prosecution and prosecutorial misconduct, among others.

Suits not filed out of time

Judicial Commissioner Vazeer Alam also ruled that the two suits for malicious prosecution were not filed out of time as this cause of action accrued upon the determination of the final appeal. He said that the court could not consider the period to be when Ramli or Rosli  were acquitted, as there were subsequent appeals against the acquittals made after this.

“As with Ramli’s case, the appeals lodged by the public prosecutor were dismissed in June and in November 2011. Therefore the filing of the action on Nov 1 last year is well within the time stipulated in Section 2 of the Public Authority Protection Act,” the  ruled,

Vazeer Alam also allowed the two to name the MACC in their legal action, since the MACC took over from the Anti-Corruption Agency.

Ramli had sued the defendants for their claim that he was the policeman in the Copgate affair and that he had RM27 million in assets.

Subsequently, Ramli was charged with the non-disclosure of some of his assets and the case against him was thrown out. Ramli’s lawyer friend Rosli was also hauled up as a result of this.

Ramli, who was a former state Police Chief for Pahang and Sabah, said in his statement of claim that his relationship with Gani soured in 2006.

This was after he met then Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and recommended that former Malaysia Airlines chairperson Tajudin Ramli be prosecuted for the severe losses suffered by the company.

“But the A-G decided not to prosecute Tajudin. I even told the PM then that if the AG was reluctant to prosecute Tajudin, the CCID would have the necessary resources to conduct the prosecution.

“This earned me Gani’s permanent displeasure…” Ramli said in his statement of claim.

‘A brave decision’

After today’s court session, Ramli commended the judge for his brave decision. “I am not doing this for Ramli Yusuff but for the Police Force, some of whom have been victimised as a result of this. And I am also doing this for the serving government officers who have also been victimised.

“I am also seeking closure to an event that has affected my possible career advancement,” he said.

The RM27 million investigations had hindered his promotion to be the Inspector-General of Police, he added. This post was subsequently handed over to Musa Hassan.

Rosli, on commending today’s High Court decision, said abuses by the public authority have for too long been insulated by invoking the Public Authority Protection Act.

“Today, a brave judge has declared that absolute prosecutorial immunity is  anathema to the modern concept of democracy. This is to remind the public authorities that no one is above the law,” Rosli said.

Several Police Officers under Ramli’s charge have also been prosecuted as a result of the Copgate affair and all of them have acquitted and have been reinstated to their posts during former IGP Ismail Omar’s tenure.

Ramli was represented by Harvinderjit Singh, while Chethan Jethwani and Darvindeer Kaur appeared for Rosli. Senior lawyer Tan Sri Cecil Abraham, Rishwant Singh and Senior federal counsel Dato Amarjeet Singh represented the defendants.

Vazeer fixed June 18 for case management to possibly fix trial dates for the hearing.

Lahad Datu Incursion: Our Leaders have failed not just Sabahans

March 5, 2013

Lahad Datu Incursion: Our Leaders have failed not just Sabahans

by Din Merican

Yesterday afternoon, my wife and I had tea with a Semenanjung (West Malaysia) man with his wife who is a Sabahan lady. He was seething with anger over what is happening in Lahad Datu. Come to think of it, I am now not sure if he was angry or was just expressing utter disappointment in the state of our country.

sulu lahad datu soldiers

 Our tea conversation started with our worry over the high incidents of street crimes and the failure of the Home Ministry to curb it. It is now almost a daily occurrence that someone gets snatched, slashed and snatched, and crashed and snatched even in locked cars at traffic lights. This is manifest that the Police have failed in upholding their pledge under the Police Act – the protection of life and property.

 Then the topic became more heated when my friend’s wife, the Sabahan lady, said that our leaders have failed us in more ways than one. She said Malaysians in Semenanjung  no longer feel safe within the borders of the country, and,as a Sabahan, she is now petrified that her home state can be so easily “invaded” by a ragtag army from Southern Philippines.

Hishamuddin-The Bird Watcher2

She recalled that some three weeks ago, the Home Minister, Hishammuddin Hussein, expelled an Australian Senator Nick Zenophon because he was a threat to the national security of the country, but defended the presence of the Sulu gunmen as somewhat of a peaceful delegation. And now what has happened?

Zaid HamidiShe then asked rhetorically – Where is our Malaysian army? Where is our Malaysian Navy? Where is our Scorpene submarine? We spend billions in defence and we can’t even ward off a rag tag unsophisticated group of criminals from across the border.

It is meaningless for Defence Minister Zahid Hamidi (left) to appear on the front page of national newspapers dressed in army fatigues, whereas we have allowed one hot spot in Lahad Datu to expand to Sampoerna and Kunak. And yet our Ministers say it is only 3 locations. ONLY?

We were then joined by another couple from Sabah, the husband is a former Policeman turned private sector lawyer and the wife a former magistrate in Sabah. Both of them were very certain of whom they hold responsible – our government leaders. All were very sympathetic to the policemen who were killed and their families. “We grieve for them but their deaths could have been avoided if the politicians had taken things more seriously and are not busy politicising this matter” said the lawyer husband.

He pointed out the multiple crimes committed by these Filipino criminals – illegal entry, bearing and using firearms, kidnapping, murder etc etc, all these latter crimes punishable with capital punishment. He mocked our Foreign Minister, Information Minister and all government Ministers for falling into the trap of characterising these criminals as the Sulu Sultanate army. They are not even recognised by the Philippines Government and yet we are ever too eager to treat them as if they are a legitimate army.

 On the night the 2 Policemen were killed, the country’s InformationRais Yatim Minister, Rais Yatim, was on national TV at the Malaysian Film Festival receiving an award of his own creation, insensitive to the fact that the nation’s security personnel are battling their lives for the country.

There is a news blanket on what is happening in Sabah whereas entertainment programs continue to lull the public into complacency, into a false sense of security oblivious to the fact that the security forces are facing clear and present danger from this highly explosive situation.

When 911 happened in New York, all TV stations in the USA made live reporting hour by hour as if the whole of USA was under attack. The incident received worldwide attention and sympathy. Here in Malaysia, we have an invasion-type criminals terrorising the state of Sabah, and yet our leaders make it appear as if it does not affect the country. Is Sabah a hinterland of no significance to the Federation of Malaysia? What does being part of a federation mean if the Federal government cannot protect Sabah as part of its sovereignty? This is the central issue in this incident.

“It is also a mistake to keep on harping about these criminals being Sulus” said the Sabahan wife. “Just as Malaysia is a multiracial country that we are proud of, Sabahans too consist of many indigenous groups including Malay, Chinese,Kadazan, Murut, Bajau and Sulu. Thus, focusing on the Sulu will isolate the Sulu people to feel uneasy and forced to take sides” she said. In Sampoerna, it was the Sulu community that disarmed the infiltrating criminals. So, there are good patriotic Malaysian Sulus just as there are patriotic Malaysian Indians, Chinese, Kadazan, Murut and others.

 On the other hand the country’s leaders from Semenanjung seemed Shafie Apdalignorant in not involving the TYT of Sabah who is a Sulu, or for that matter the Sabah UMNO Chief Shafie Afdal who is also a Sulu, in seeking a resolution to this problem. The best asset available in Sabah are not used, instead the Semenanjung Ministers are busy posing for photographs!

Then the lawyer husband made an interesting comment that this incident would not have happened in the time when Dato Ramli Yusuff was Police Commissioner Sabah and Brig-Gen Yasin was Army Commander Sabah. I asked him why he said that. He then narrated a fact unknown to most Malaysians that after the Sipadan hostage incident in 1999-2000, Dato Ramli became Commissioner Sabah from 2001- 2004.

Ramli Yusuff

At the request of the then Chief Minister Chong Kah Kiat, Dato Ramli (above) formed a special Task Force with the Army Commander of Sabah to rid the state of illegal Indonesian and Filipino immigrants. Hundreds of thousands illegal immigrants were driven out of Sabah. Ramli was so successful that the then State Government of Sabah awarded him the Dato’ Pahlawan Sabah for truly taking care of Sabah’s territorial borders.

 But little did Dato Ramli realise that he was digging his own grave by doing that because those whom he drove out of Sabah were not just illegal immigrants. These were illegal immigrants issued with NRIC masterminded in a BiroTataNegara (BTN) project to secure Sabah votes for BN. This is now revealed in the on-going RCI on the NRIC issue. It is a surprise that neither Chong Kah Kiat nor Dato Ramli are asked to give evidence in this RCI.

 So, for doing that “good deed” for Sabah, Dato Ramli was summoned back to KL on a lateral transfer as CPO Pahang. In 2006, when Dato Ramli became the Director CCID, he was aware of the fragile coastal line around the Tanjung Labian area. To prevent illegal human traffic and arms flow, he conducted an aerial survey over the area called Den Haven in Tanjung Labian in full uniform escorted by 4 other uniformed Police personnel. For doing that, then IGP Musa Hassan and A-G Gani Patail charged Dato Ramli for unlawfully using a Police Cessna for personal use. That was how insidious A-G Gani Patail behaved towards Dato Ramli in order to bring him down.

 Dato Ramli was protecting the Sabah borders and yet he was charged justA-G Gani Patail because A-G Gani Patail (right) couldn’t find enough things to charge Ramli for in that infamous RM 27Million Cop Story. After that, no Commissioner Sabah dared to do a similar aerial survey and that explained the intrusion into the Sabah borders that we see today undetected by our security forces.

 Life has a strange way of turning a full circle. Today, we know that Dato Ramli was cleaning up and saving Sabah while A-G Gani Patail, a Sabahan, was and is preoccupied saving crooks and criminals close to the corridors of power. Today we know some truth, not all, but some truth about how the NRIC project in Tun Mahathir’s time and perpetuated by other BN leaders have proven costly to Sabah.

 We mourn for the loss of lives of our security personnel. They are indeed heroes and should be honoured as such. Malaysians should be united in that. However, we cannot absolve our leaders for the mistakes they committed in causing these losses.

map-sabah-intrudersWe cannot forgive the Home Minister Hishamamuddin Hussein, the Defence Minister Zahid Hamidi and the Information Minister Rais Yatim for all their bungling acts. Ultimately, the buck must stop with the Prime Minister, Najib Tun Razak, and the government of the day that he leads that has caused our sovereignty to be trifled with and our territorial integrity violated.

As we approach GE-13, the likes of Dato’ Ramli and other former military leaders must come forth to seek election as the people’s representative. These are the people whom we can trust to protect our country and our sovereignty when our current leaders have failed not just Sabahans but all Malaysians!

Look, Who’s Talking Now

Singapore: Softer Part of Nation Building

November 19, 2012

Singapore: Softer Part of Nation Building

By Seah Chiang Nee (11-17-12) @www.thestar.com.my

For decades, the government had regarded chasing after gross domestic product and accumulation of reserves as the supreme objective, done at the expense of other developments. However, it still lacks the “graces of a civilised society” such as music, culture and the arts.

WITH the foreign population topping a historic two million mark, materialistic Singapore is seeking to turn more towards values it was rarely famous for.

“We can’t just measure our success by GDP growth…but also by the growth of our values: compassion, empathy, altruism, love for our fellow citizens,” said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

This is the second time in three months Lee has referred to the softer part of nation-building, something not often emphasised in 47 years of independence.

It comes at a time when division in this over-crowded city is growing between locals and foreigners as well as between Singaporeans themselves.

In his National Day Rally in August, Lee dwelt on how Singapore could become a home with heart, where people become more gracious.He also set up a “national conversation” in which values became a regular theme.

Society is undergoing a period of transformation as more foreigners continue to be admitted to fuel its economic growth and make up for a low birthrate.

At end of 2011, the number of foreign workers, including permanent residents, reached 1.926 million, but by mid-2012, it totaled 2.027 million – 38% of a population of 5.3 million.

For decades, the government had regarded chasing after gross domestic product and accumulation of reserves as the supreme objective, done at the expense of other developments.

The result has been a “golden era” of economic growth. But as Lee Kuan Yew, then Senior Minister, himself admitted eight years ago Singapore was every bit a First World nation.

However, it still lacked the “graces of a civilised society” such as music, culture and the arts.

“The generation now in their 30s to 50s can take Singapore there in the next 15 to 20 years. The best is yet to be,” Lee added. It implied he was leaving the problem to the current leadership under his son to resolve, and could be the cause of PM Lee to start emphasising on “compassion, empathy, altruism, love for our fellow citizens.”

The pursuit of the dollar – from the government and corporations downwards to the ordinary citizens – has become so strong that it has clouded some Singaporeans’ sense of ethics and morality.

This money preoccupation stems from many of the young to senior citizens who flock to 4-D shops and casinos.It includes employers who exploit foreign workers before packing them home and girls traded into prostitution by boyfriends, all under the influence of making money.

I have heard cases of kids expressing shame at their father’s small Japanese car “when their friends were being driven in luxury vehicles”.One child reportedly told his father not to pick him up in his old car too close to his school gate.

Some teachers commented that it began with the schools and the choice of studies. For most students acquiring knowledge or serving society is the last thing on their mind.

“By and large students choose subject they can easily score distinctions rather than what they like or need,” said a retired school principal.

As a result few readily choose to study literature or history, which are useful to learn but hard to score good grades, she said.They are also shunned by parents because they don’t make money.

Yet these subjects often teach young people about humanity about what is right and what is wrong about life.

I remember the occasion when (then Deputy Prime Minister) Dr Goh Keng Swee called for a wider teaching of Humanities not only for individuals but society as a whole.

Books like Shakespeare, the Three Kingdoms or English literature are not only interesting, but are a treasure cove on ethics and morals.Science, Math and Engineering are useful, but just as important to any society is the old wisdom or values.

In Singapore we have too many who choose to study finance, medicine and law where the money is.

The habit of sitting quietly to read a literature book or the humanities helps to moderate temptations of modern times and provides a balanced sense of right and wrong.It teaches us to express ourselves and articulate well.

“We learn what we should do or not do, what we should say or not say.Literature is not a popular subject among Singapore’s students. Our education system as everyone well knows places a huge emphasis on scores and grades,” wrote Elaine Ee.

Holding a masters degree in Comparative Post Colonial Literature from the University of London, she said: “Waxing lyrical about the benefits of studying literature doesn’t address the issue that Singapore schools face either.As long as grades remain what makes or breaks a student in our system.”

A local DJ, Anna Lim commented to Lianhe Wanbao that Singaporeans are well educated but have poor upbringing.

“Singaporeans reserve seats with tissue paper packets and they leave trash behind after gatherings”, she said.

“On the MRT, they do not give up their seats to the needy, neither do they allow alighting passengers to get off before squeezing their way into the carriage.”

Students compete both academically and in the sporting arena, she said. “It certainly makes us afraid and it saddens their teachers,” she said.

More on Che Det: Looking Back on his Legacy

March 2, 2012


More on Che Det: Looking back on his Legacy

by Nawawi Mohamad and Wong Choon Mei, Malaysia Chronicle (01-03-12)

Former premier Mahathir Mohamad has criticized every prime minister of Malaysia from the late Tunku Abdul Rahman to the current leader Najib Razak, sparing no one except of course, himself. Mahathir has also criticized other world leaders including UK’s Tony Blair and of course George W Bush, the 43rd President of the United States.

So far none of his local peers have swung back at him, which is not surprising considering that several are already dead and only Najib and 5th prime minister Abdullah Badawi are alive. As for the international leaders, they have largely ignored Mahathir’s existence, which only adds to his frustration, but there is nothing he can do to them. However, he can make life miserable for his successors here, and this he is already doing.

When Mahathir retired in 2003, after 22 years as Prime Minister, there was talk about his ‘great’ legacy and he was even called Bapa Pemodenan or Father of Modernization. Some 9 years after his retirement, the excesses and sheer ill-judgement of his economic, social and political decisions have come back to wallop the nation with a backlash stronger than the ferocious tsunami of 2006 that devastated much of South Asia.

At 86, Mahathir is now reviled by most Malaysians, blamed for the massive corruption that may soon bankrupt the country if no remedial economic action is taken, and for the apartheid-scale racial fissures amongst the various ethnic groups in the country.

New Economic Policy (NEP)

Just pick the NEP, which was the brainchild of the policymakers of the 1960s but which he abused to the maximum. This abuse alone is enough to ensure that he will stay in the Malaysian Hall of Villains rather than in the Hall of Fame which he still thinks he belongs in.

His peers with better memories including former Finance minister Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah said last week that the NEP was never meant to create or to be used to incubate a class of Malay capitalists, but to address poverty and  raise the level of Malay participation in the economy. It was never meant to be abused by the government of the day to handpick a select group of Malay entrepreneurs, load them with sharply-discounted government deals and then expect them to prosper and create enough economic ripples to help lift the rest of the community.

This was Mahathir’s first and major mistake. But was it really a mistake? Doubters and critics point to the enormous wealth he accumulated for his cronies and proxies through the money-making schemes hatched under the guise of the NEP, and by privatizing government assets to favored Malay entrepreneurs, one of whom is the disgraced former MAS chairman Tajuddin Ramli. Not able to deal with the ‘instant success’ or the stress of big time business, many succumbed to debt during the 1998 Asian financial crisis. Tajuddin and friends like Halim Saad fell from hero to zero, losing enormous amounts of money and requiring massive government bailouts.

Cronies but the masses get nothing

The second mistake Mahathir, in his foolhardiness, made was to pool the major part of the nation’s wealth in the hands of a few. This time he included non-Malays millionaires such as Vincent Tan, Robert Kuok and Ananda Krishnan. Tan has just announced his retirement, Kuok unhappy with the worsening racial system in the country has chosen to stay Hong Kong, while Ananda is wanted by the Indian authorities for allegedly having corruptly wangled a telecoms licence to buy into Aircel.

This pooling of wealth in the hands of a few inevitably left the ordinary Malays and Malaysians with just a few crumbs to share amongst themselves, a slow-boil situation that has blown up to today’s red-hot disputes about social and economic fairness. Not only is there not enough money for scholarships, education, healthcare, employment and welfare for everyone, even the Malays who have been repeatedly told by Mahathir’s UMNO party that they will get priority, have left in the lurch.

Malays now form 96% of the poorest 40% lowest income earners in the country. As for the non-Malays, of course, they have felt the pinch more. Many have been forced to go overseas to work and to study. That’s right, educational and employment opportunities are scarce for the non-Malays in the country. Again, the only group that benefited were the elite in the Umno party, their families and cronies. So Mahathir – despite his self-praise – was in fact rather shortsighted. Money was far more important to him than he cared to admit.

Trusting the wrong people

The third mistake that Mahathir made was choosing the wrong people for the wrong jobs. He also trusted the wrong people. All of the Malays tycoons that he picked had no real business savvy but were merely the trusted aides of former Finance minister Daim Zainuddin. That is why guys like Tajuddin, Halim, Rashid Hussein of RHB Bank, Mohd Noor Mutalib and Abdul Rahman Maidin of MRCB fared poorly in the end. Some have even been hauled to court to settle debts.

Only Daim Zainuddin remains ‘filthy’ rich. His nominees ended up owning all the various banks and business enterprises meant to be transferred into UMNO Baru. Somehow, as the UMNO legend goes, Daim managed to secure these for himself. This was obviously a huge letdown for Mahathir. Instead of ‘tricking’ people over to his point of view, for once, he had been had!

Set Malaysia off on the borrowing habit

Mahathir did not foresee that the National Debt could be as high as it is today, having ballooned to over RM450 billion. Despite several ‘begging’ trips to Singapore and Brunei, he was politely rebuffed. In the end, he borrowed from overseas by issuing bonds and ‘stealing’ every spare sen from Petronas and the other Government-Linked-Companies to fund his mega projects. Throughout his 22-year rule, Mahathir never saved a sen for Malaysia for a rainy day. And this was his fourth mistake.

Weak grasp of economic principles

Mahathir is just an ordinary doctor; a general practitioner and not a specialist. His understanding of economics is as rudimentary as the average Malaysian. His idea of increasing the equity of the Malays is so simplistic – use the GLCs. Mahathir’s vision of doing business is by profiteering through controlling shares in as many companies as possible without considering the possibility of losing money. Sad to say, real life businesses involves losses, not just profits.

Mahathir’s economic policy was not based on any solid foundation and had never been tested in any country before. It was based on his opinions and viewpoints. If these had been any good or worked, many countries would have already implemented similar ideas centuries ago. Even established capitalist and communist economic systems have come under fire and economic collapse is a norm these days, part of a man-made boom and bust cycle. Several economists have even urged nations to revert back to gold-based currencies, an ancient and established type of monetary system, so what are Mahathir’s child-like economic concepts by comparison? His fifth mistake is therefore his skewed understanding of the economy. It led to the controversial de-pegging of the ringgit from the US dollar and the overnight closure of the CLOB share market trading in 1998 – two events that investors have still not forgiven Malaysia and Mahathir for.

Dictator syndrome

Mahathir’s ego and unconscious desire to be a dictator is his sixth mistake. He amended the constitution to weaken the Agong and the Sultans and then made sure that the law and enforcement bodies obeyed him. He sacked the Chief Justice Tun Salleh Abbas and closed both eyes when judges were openly bought by those who had money. It would be tough for Malaysians and their investors to fully trust the judiciary system again. This is why the UMNO-BN has lost its integrity and the people their faith in the coalition. Malaysians will always distrust whatever UMNO-BN does even if it may be well-intentioned.

Racist policies

To prevent the disintegration of his policies and his misdeeds from being exposed, Mahathir had to resort to his favorite racial politics. He had to convince the Malays that what he had done was necessary and in their interests. He kept for himself the great jewels and gave out the small chips so as to convince the Malays that the war against the other races was real. The non-Malays had to be kept back. Thus the budget allocations for places like BTN (Biro Tata Negara) or the National Civics Bureau where Malay graduates and civil servants were openly taught to be suspicious of the other races.

But not all the Malays bought it. Such teachings were against Islam and also against universal values. The Malays were left confused, while the non-Malays totally sidelined. So being racist is Mahathir’s seventh mistake.


If Mahathir and UMNO have been successful in making sure Malaysia achieves developed nation status by 2020, why does the record show so many serious faults to date. There are only eight years to go but the economy is still in a shambles with the national debt soaring, racial and religious harmony in disarray, and the political situation worsening with UMNO-BN now openly resorting to physical violence to stop the opposition from holding their rallies.

The education system is also leading nowhere, healthcare is getting worse and more expensive, the much-touted and corrupt 1Care already rejected before it can even come on-stream, law and order is still questionable, mismanagement and graft more entrenched than before in the UMNO-BN government. Instant of all cylinders kicking in, and culminating into the realization of Vision 2020, Malaysia may go bankrupt instead. Not fighting corruption, but perpetuating it is Mahathir’s eighth mistake.

Meddling with the running of the country

The majority of the Malays are poor and still need government help despite 55 years of UMNO “successes“ (read failures). The non-Malays have been patient enough and have given UMNO enough chances. They have waited until the third generation after the nation’s independence in 1957 and they are now fed-up with UMNO-BN. The same too is happening with the Malays. Those not in the direct line of the UMNO gravy train, and this would be the great majority, are getting fed-up too. More have voted for the opposition and will continue to do so.

When Mahathir realized that things were turning sour, he handed over the baton to Abdullah Badawi, thinking that he could still control the running of the government by ‘remote control’. But when things were not carried out as he had wished, Mahathir forced an ouster and replaced Badawi with Najib. Granted, the disorganized Badawi was in no capacity to lead Malaysia but Najib is just as incapable too. All through, instead of giving a helping hand, Mahathir continued to meddle with the running of the country. Interfering with the running of the country and disallowing the current leaders to put in solutions that suit the era is Mahathir’s ninth mistake.

Causing trouble in UMNO and pushing Mukhriz up the ladder

Yet Mahathir stubbornly refuses to accept or to admit to his mistakes. This is one man who refuses to face up to reality. He is not really interested in the welfare of Malaysians at all, not even the Malays or UMNO. He only wants to save his face and to make sure that his son Mukhriz will become prime minister no matter what deals he has to execute with the current batch of UMNO warlords to effect this.

Ruthless and completely selfish, Mahathir would think nothing of creating chaos just to fulfill that ambition. After all, he could de-register UMNO just to stay in power. Imagine what he won’t dare to do to get Mukhriz in as UMNO president. But it is this incessant interfering and trouble-making in UMNO that will be his tenth and last mistake.

Mahathir will doom UMNO, and in imploding, UMNO will very likely take Mahathir down for the count.

Malaysia Chronicle

IGP Musa Hassan as new Police Academy Head

September 1, 2010

Musa Hassan’s Contract ends with a face saving job


Inspector-General of Police Musa Hassan has not been given a third extension and will be replaced by his deputy Ismail Omar (right). The matter was announced by Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein during a function at Putrajaya today.

hishammuddin ismail omar musa hassan 010910This has put to rest months of speculation about Musa’s future, as his contract is slated to expire on September 12, 2010.

Musa, 59, reached retirement age in 2007 but had his tenure extended twice, much to the chagrin of the opposition and human rights activists.

Taking Ismail’s place is Hussin Ismail, 57, who is currently head of national security and public order division.

According to Bernama, Hishammuddin said Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak would be bringing the matter to the King soon.

“The post of the IGP and deputy IGP are special posts under Article 140 of the Federal Constitution and appointments to the post must be consented to by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong,” said Hishamuddin at a press conference in Putrajaya today.

Government wants Musa to lead new academy

To a question, he said that the decision not to renew Musa’s contract was not due to pressure from any group. “It just happens that the IGP’s tenure expires on September 12. It’s time for a successor to come and fill in the position. That process will carry on and our struggle to ensure a better police force and to ensure the country is safe will continue,” he said.

Hishammuddin also said that the government was looking into how Musa could continue to contribute his expertise, saying he would be the best candidate to lead the proposed training academy to tackle trans-border crime such as cyber crime, human trafficking, drug smuggling, money laundering and terrorism, based in Langkawi.

“On behalf of the government I would like to record our highest appreciation to Musa for his service in the police, spanning over a period of 41 years. I would be very glad if he could lead the proposed academy and I believe he has the capability to make it a renowned police training academy in the world.”