Friday, November 30, 2007

Free and peaceful demonstration is provided for in the constituition

Why should the govt stifle dissent by refusing to give permits for its citizens to demonstrate? It does not matter whether the govt thinks that the issue is not justifiable or for some imaginary reason it is a threat to national security. Whether their grievances are legitimate or not is something the public will have to judge. The govt’s role is merely to ensure that the demonstration is held peacefully and without any violence.
When people take to the street to demonstrate it is always for a cause. History has shown us repeatedly that when the voice of the people is continually and contemptously ignored the only recourse is to show their displeasure by demonstrating. After all this liberty to demonstrate peacefully is provided in our constituition and it is the inalienable right of every citizen to exercise this right.
I disagree with some view that because the rally was specifically for a certain community the demonstration should not proceed. This view is in direct contradiction with the basic principle that the right to peaceful assembly is enshrined in the constitution and if the aggrieved party is of the view that their grievances have not been addressed than they should have every right to demonstrate. It does not matter whether their grievances merely highlight a particular community interest as long as they perceive there is a need to publicise and convey their message.
It is totally irrational to say that the demonstration is acceptable only if it also espouses the grievances of the other community.What if the other community is not interested in joining the cause? Does that means then they cannot proceed with their own cause?
Free and peaceful demonstration is one of the cornerstones of a democracy and the govt cannot repeatedly come out with preposterous excuses that it causes inconvenience and an imaginary threat of racial disturbance.
By denying people the right to demonstrate the govt is implying that it has indeed something to hide and that the issue which caused the demonstration is indeed a legitimate one.

Friday, November 23, 2007

The Last Monsoon Cup.

When 28th November comes, the 3rd Monsoon Cup will once again begin in the east coast state of Trengganu. The Heritage Bay Club Marina and Resort in Pulau Duyong, Trengganu will once again become the focus of international attention as it will be hosting the final of the 10 International Legs.
Once again the people of this state will be treated to an extravaganza costing about $250-$300 million. The foreign sailing fraternity will be feted and pampered by the Monsoon Cup organisers namely Patrick Lim and Khairy, the son-in-law of the P.M.
Luxurious bungalows costing few millions await to shower the foreign sailing dignitaries with comfort and luxury that only locals could only dream of.
For the next few days, the organisers will spare no effort to regale and entertain the mostly foreign participants. Sumptious food and drinks will be served while the local populace can only watch in awe as they bear witness how their oil money previously ear-marked as ‘wang Ehsan’ was to be spent.
The rally at Batu Burok was just the awakening of the people’s consciousness as to what is happening in their state.The PM and his son-in-law with the connivance of the local UMNOPUTRAS and cronies are in town to rip off the people of Trengganu with the annual grand Monsoon Cup.
The incident at Batu Burok was an expression of that anger and if that current state of disenchantment continues BN will suffer an ignominous defeat in the coming general election.
Sadly, history always seems to portray its past in a contradictory manner.It was in Trengganu that Pak Lah sealed a massive victory which saw him capture the state from the opposition PAS. Now it will be in Trengganu that Pak Lah will also face his Waterloo. It will predictably be in Trengganu that this Islam Hadhari leader will face his most ignominous defeat and return the state to the opposition PAS.
For Pak Lah and his gang of cohorts,it will be the last Monsoon Cup.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

MCA Senator objects to Bersih Rally Because of money

I refer to the report in the mainstream media that MCA senator Lee Chong Meng called on Bersih, the coalition for clean and fair elections, to keep their agitation indoors.

This senator represents the face of the race-based political party who is supposed to look after the interests of the Chinese community. Instead of joining the clarion call for reforms in the electoral process, he has deemed it fit to support the government’s suppression of free and fair elections.

His selfish and ill-conceived reason that the demonstration on Nov 10 have caused losses in the 'millions' clearly shows that the MCA and their underlings have no principles to uphold and that their main motivation for objecting to the rally was because of money.

By now, the Chinese community should be conscious of MCA's role in the BN government. The MCA politicians are in the BN for money, position and power. Fifty years of this unholy alliance in the BN have proven that MCA is incapable of looking after the interests of the Chinese community. If they had done their work faithfully and unselfishly, the Chinese would not have been marginalised in education, civil service, government contracts, university places and a slew of other racist policies.

The coming election will determine the future of the Chinese community. If we continue to give MCA the same support we have been giving them for the last 50 years then you can expect the same practice and habits to continue. MCA politicians will continue to receive the crumbs offered by their Umno counterparts and in return they will give their undivided support to
plunder the nation's coffers.

We as Malaysians must not allow this to happen. We do not have the luxury of time to change our destiny. We must do it now before it is too late. We must all unite and ensure that these unscrupulous politicians from MCA are voted out of office and sent to political oblivion.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

One Rule for BN and another for the rest.

The government is practising double standards in the issuance of permits to hold demonstrations. As long as the demonstration is not directed by or involving opposition to government policies, permits will be granted.
Better still, if the demonstration is to support government policies or to resonate the government's stand on certain foreign policies, then permits will readily be granted.
For example, last year a permit was granted to the Umno Youth to stage a demonstration in conjunction with the visit of the United States secretary of state held at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre. As recent as last week, permit was granted to Maybank employees in protest of bonuses not being paid to them.
The rationale is that as long as the ire of the protest is not directed at them, they will issue the permit. Why should the government be wary of Bersih's rally if it was for the stated purpose of wanting to create a level-playing field for all in the coming elections.
Surely, this is a legitimate complaint the government should have no problem addressing if it is transparent. Its opposition to this rally only serves to reinforce public perception that the government has its own agenda to preserve the status quo in the electoral process.
In previous elections, there have been numerous complaints regarding the presence of phantom voters, of death voters voting, of fictitious postal voters, of changing electoral boundaries in favour of the ruling party and the glaring imbalance of numbers in the electorates of government areas as opposed to opposition areas.
The comment by the Asia director of New York-based organisation Human Rights Watch, Brad Adams is most appropriate and summarised the government’s position. When it comes to holding onto power, the ruling party makes one set of rules for themselves and another for everyone else.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Ecm-Libra/Avenue Merger and approval of Air Asia Singapore route

I wish to refer to the Malaysiakini article ‘Air Asia: Its like going to the Moon.’
Yes, Tony Fernandez and Air Asia has every right to be in a jubilant mood after having obtained the rights to fly the Kuala lumpur to Singapore route. After all its a gold mine route previously the monopoly of our MAS airline.
But why the sudden change of mind to give this lucrative route to Air Asia when the logical decision would be to allow the status quo to remain and let MAS reap the profits while it is on its path to recovery?
The answer can be found by referring to the ECM-Libra and the Avenue merger. Prior to the merger, Kallimullah and Khairy Jamalluddin (son-in Law of P.M) bought a block of shares in ECM-Libra and lo and behold one month later ECM-LIibra sealed the deal with the cash-rich Avenue merger. Of course someone at the Ministry of Finance had to approve the deal and guesswho?
If we were to recall a few months earlier, Kallimullah bought a stake in Air Asia. I am not sure whether Khairy has a stake in this deal but the deal is certainly very suspicious if not a bitfishy because one month later, a smiling Tony Fernadez was gushing with pride and annoucing to the world that the Singapore route was like Air Asia going to the moon. And why not? It was like manna from heaven.
CEO of MAS, Idris Jala could not conceal his disappointment and who could blame him? It was alucrative and profitable route which MAS had prevously had sole monopoly and now it was to be shared with Air Asia.
Perhaps it would be appropriate to ask the P.M why the interest of the country’s own airline was sacrificed and why a public owned airline was given a share of the lucrative route?
The ECM-Libra and the Air Asia episodes seem to reveal a very ingeniuos and systematic way of plundering our nation’s wealth by our leaders.
Well done P.M. I didnt know you could do so well while sleeping on your job. Perhaps I was wrong.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Key Politicians Appear Immune to ACA

I refer to Malaysiakini report, PAC: Arrest decision-makers too.
Lately, the Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA) has been busy prosecuting civil servants mentioned in the recent auditor-general's report for corruption.
It becomes glaringly obvious that ACA has no hesitation when it comes to arresting and prosecuting civil servants but are reluctant to haul in politicians who are similarly tainted with corruption.
Prosecution and punishment appears to be swift and efficient for civil servants and the police force but when it comes to politicians like Zakaria Deros from Port Klang and Mohd Said Yusof, the ‘close one eye' Jasin MP from Malacca, the wheels of justice seemingly grinds to a halt.
In our country, it appears some people are more equal than others in the eyes of the law. And politicians here are a special breed of men who seems to have immunity from any prosecution despite their public commission of a felony.
Those people entrusted with the duty to enforce and prosecute the perpetrators have a latent fear of politicians who perhaps have the clout to punish any ACA officers foolish enough to try and bring them to book.
With the revelation of the controversial Lingam tape, we now witness corruption within the corridors of the judiciary. Appointments and promotion are designed for those who toe the line and are compliant to their political masters.
Judicial decisions affecting the interest of the government and its cronies are not won or lost on the merits of facts and law but on the basis of a prearranged slotting of a friendly judge who would ensure a favourable judicial decision on the understanding that they would be rewarded with a promotion at a later date.
If ordinary citizens can no longer seek justice and equity from our judiciary, where else can we turn to?
Our country's structure and system comprising the executive, the legislature and the judiciary appears to be crumbling. The once lauded Westminister system inherited from the British is now a pale shadow of its former glory. In its place, the present government has now perpetuated a system which is rotten to its core. Only a matter of time before it will finally bring our country to an ignominious end.