Thursday, April 26, 2007

Ijok:PKR malay candidate a smarter Strategy

I refer to the letter Ijok: Can’t an Indian represent Malay rights? I must say that opposition party PKR is right in fielding a Malay candidate at Ijok for the very simple reason that strategy dictates such a choice. To field an Indian against another Indian from the BN would be suicidal.
If you study past records (the recent one being Machap), you will find that when two non-Malays contest against each other, the Malays will inevitably support the BN guy. DAP adopted the wrong strategy in Machap when it selected a Chinese. The DAP candidate obtained about 1,400 votes without a doubt from the Chinese as the Malays are averse to voting for a Chinese DAP member.
Assuming the BN Chinese candidate obtained 50% of the 1,400 Chinese votes, this means that balance of 3,600 votes came from the Malay voters. If DAP had fielded a Malay candidate and split the Malay votes, the result could have been a cliffhanger. The DAP (or PKR) Malay candidate would have obtained 1,800 + 1,400 = 3,200 votes, around the same as the BN candidate.
There is no doubt in my mind that if an Indian candidate from the opposition was nominated to contest in Ijok against an Indian from BN, the latter would win hands down. Now, with a Malay candidate, the opposition votes from the Chinese and Indians - plus a sizeable ‘split votes’ from the Malays - the battle for Ijok is more even.
For the opposition to win any contest against BN, the opposition cannot adopt the same strategy as the latter. BN has no option but to field an Indian candidate because it was a seat allocated to the MIC.
PKR or DAP have the luxury of not abiding by the same agreement that firmly binds the BN. Instead, they can face political reality and field a candidate that provides the best opportunity to win the seat based on the racial profile of a Malay-majority area.
It is a correct decision of PKR to field a Malay candidate. To do otherwise would severely diminish the chances of an opposition victory.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

The NEP has been abused to help the rich

How long can the govt continue with its NEP policy? If the govt’s denial that ASLI’s report “of 30% bumiputra equity ownership had already been exceeded ” then it’s incumbent upon the govt to provide a clear official methodology as to how corporate equity is measured.
Earlier, the centre for public studies headed by Dr, Lim Teck Ghee had made a statement that its findings had established bumiputra equity ownership had exceeded 45%. In order to rebutt this findings by ASLI and to deny further credence to the findings that “corporate equity distribution was narrowly based, unrealistic and has resulted in an underestimation of the true volume and value of bumiputra equity”, the govt must reveal the official methodology to measure corporate equity. Based on itscalculation it must provide clear irrevocable proof that bumiputra’s equity has regressed to a lowly 18% in 2006.
At that time when the ASLI’s findings was published many UMNO leaders including the P.M called the report “baseless, inaccurate and irresponsible”. UMNO vice-President Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin went even further and called it “rubbish”.
There was a beacon of hope to establish the truth when DPM Najib gave an assurance that the methodology used to calculate the Bumi’s corporate equity would be publicly revealed.That assurance was given almost six months ago and it appears quite likely that the DPM has reneged on his word.
NEP in its present form has been abused and lost its initial noble objectives of helping the poor and the needy instead of the rich of one single race. Instead of affirmative action based on poverty it was exclusively based on a policy of helping just one race irrespective of the wealth of that person.
Hence we have a situation where a rich bumiputra is entitled to purchase a high-end property at a discount. What kind of logic is it? If he can afford to buy a high-end property surely he don’t need a discount.
The NEP must embrace the concept that there are poor Malays Indians, Chinese, Ibans and Kadazans etc. If the NEP is to have any meaning it must help those in need irrespective of their race and not because they belong to a select community.
If there is any defect in ASLI’s report, it is its failure to pinpoint the recipients of the 45% of bumiputra equity.The revelation maybe academic but the truth is maybe only 10% of the bumis benefitted from the 45% corporate equity distributed by virtue of the NEP.
As long as the govt refuse to accept this reality the longer it will be for national reconciliation.The inequitable distribution of wealth can only mean that the poor and the needy will continue to be deprived of govt assistance while the rich will continue to benefit from this skewed affirmative policy.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Contract Award Of West Coast Highway is a Sham

It is disconcerting to learn that the West Coast Highway mooted in 1996 but put on hold because of the Asian financial crisis will be given to the original contractors awarded 11 years ago.
A project awarded 11 years ago certainly has no justification to be given to the same contractor unless the project was awarded in an open tender in 2007.
Cost of labour and price of material fluctuate over time and can bear no relationship after a period of 11 years. So on what basis was the Highway contract awarded to the same contractor?
How did the estimated cost of $3.12 billion been awarded to the contractor if there was no competitive bid for the project?
Surely a project of such magnitude would demand greater transparency and accountability.
The concessionaires for the project include Kumpulan Europlus Bhd and the contractor is Konsortium LPB Sdn Bhd.
As taxpayers whose money are being used for this project I think we are entitled to know how and on what basis this contract was awarded and who are the principal beneficiaries of this Highway Project.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

The People of Machap must vote for a Change.

The Machap by-election will be an important milestone for the chinese community.It will determine, after 50 years of BN rule whether the chinese community will opt for a change or remain and continue to be marginalised by the present govt.
The choice for the people of Machap is a simple one.After 50 years where do we go from here? The present govt seem to have lost its direction and no longer have the capabilty to lead this multi-culture, multi-race and multi-religious nation where its people of different origin can live in peace and harmony.
Instead of fostering goodwill among its people the govt has implemented divisive racial policies that have polarised the different races. Its affirmative race based policy has benefited only one community and discriminated the rest.
Even its race based affirmative policy has been hijacked to benefit only a few elite UMNO members. After 50 years the Malay rural heartland of kelantan, Trengganu, Pahang, Perlis,Kedah and Johore still remain impoverished.
Corruption has creeped into every level of our daily lives. Corrupt politicians and civil servants are so prevalent that the system is powerless to act on them. Our political masters are reluctant to bring the culprits to justice because they are just as tainted with corruption.
Our Judicairy are presided by spineless judges guided by religious emotion and personal conviction rather than the rule of law as defined in our sacred Constituition.
So where do we go from here? The question should not only be directed at the Chinese but to all the races in Machap. If after 50 years our path taken is still littered with potholes, then its high time we make a change. A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.To begin our journey, the people of Machap must take that first step to vote for the opposition. Failure is not an option because our very future may well depend on it.
This entry was posted on Friday