Archive for April, 2010


BN’s pyrrhic victory in Hulu Selangor

More important, the Hulu Selangor election result has shown that there is a majority of Malaysians whose vote cannot be bought and whose ideals are not in line with the BN’s. In particular, the younger voters yearn for justice, fair play and good governance – attributes which the BN seems to be incapable of embracing.

Continue reading ‘BN’s pyrrhic victory in Hulu Selangor’


Is it worth it, Najib?

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak might have won the electoral battle at Hulu Selangor, but he sure has made a giant step of retreat in the defence of Putrajaya against the relentless advance of Pakatan Rakyat (PR).

The orgy of election bribery indulged over those few days leading up to polling day yesterday would have put any other pseudo democracy to shame when comparing election excesses.

To induce votes, Najib and his colleagues made innumerable on-the-spot grants of cash and promises of goodies (many were conditional upon a Barisan Nasional (BN) win) that run easily to hundreds of millions of ringgit during that compact campaign period.

Continue reading ‘Is it worth it, Najib?’


By-elections are very different from a general election

Although it is sometimes indicative of the sentiments, by-elections bear their own histories, with wants and needs that differ from place to place. It is not an accurate premonition of the general election to come.

In fact, it can be totally opposite of the local sentiments.

The Ijok by-election in April 2007 was a good example of how local needs took precedence and portrayed a warped view of what was in store in the next general election.

After picking a relative unknown from MIC K Parthiban by giving him a 1,850-vote majority, the same voters returned the favour to PKR candidate, Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim, who lost 11 months earlier, with a 1,920-vote majority in the 12th general election (GE).

Practicality ruled the day in Ijok as voters decided to accept any goodies that Barisan Nasional (BN) could dish out or promised to give for the remaining electoral months before shutting off Parthiban’s replacement from Umno Datuk Mohamed Sayuti Said in favour of Khalid.

With a little more than two years to go before the 13th GE, it looks like Hulu Selangor also chose to settle local governance issues and collect on old debts before deciding again on April 25.

Continue reading ‘By-elections are very different from a general election’


What I learned from the HS buy-election

What I learned from the HS buy-election
Art Harun
April 26, 2010

Okay guys. The by-erection is over.

As many of you might notice, I am a history freak. I just love history. I don’t know why. But one thing for sure, I like to look at how people behaved or acted before so that I could learn a lesson or two from them in order to enable me to predict how people will behave in the future. I think that’s part of the reason why I love history.

What can I learn from the Hulu Selangor buy-election?

First and foremost, this buy-erection teaches me the sure fire way on how to get something done in my constituency. Let’s say there are pot holes everywhere on the roads leading to my house. Or there is an old abandoned school project (there are everywhere, aren’t they?) which stands like a sore thumb in my housing area which has also doubled up as a drug haunt.

Let’s say my kids need a laptop each. And the old folks near my house need some help with their monthly expenditures to make ends meet. Or I need some road humps near my house because there are bloody idiots who drive 80kph on roads in housing estates in their Cayenne or whatever behemoth they drive. And I have been writing countless time to my MP to help. But there isn’t anything done.

The trick is to ask my MP to resign. Or to pray that he or she would kick the proverbial bucket.
Then a buy-erection would be declared. And oh my God wouldn’t all my prayers be answered instantly! The abandoned school project will immediately be revived. All the pot holes will instantly disappear. My kids will get new laptop. The road humps will suddenly grow on the road in front of my house. Like wow wow.

And I tell you what. If Barisan Nasional wins, I could even get to go to Putrajaya to see the Prime Minister who will see to it that a sum of RM3 million or whatever will be allocated for my mosque, Chinese school or whatever. Fooh…like tawdally simply happenin’.

I also learned from this buy-election that many Malays do not know the difference between a “gift” (for which they should be thankful or grateful) and something which they are already entitled to.

Yes. I am talking about the RM50000.00 each paid to 100 FELDA settlers. That money was not a gift from the government. Nor was it a contribution of any sort from the government. That money belonged to the settlers in the first place because their lands have been taken away more than 10 years ago. That money was long due to them. So there was nothing to be thankful to the government for paying it.

I mean, should I thank you if you had taken my Porsche GT3 (note: this is just an example. I do not have a Porsche GT3 or any Porsche for that matter) about 4 years ago and now you pay me 500 bucks for it?

Yes. But the FELDA settlers could not differentiate between the two. They are owed about a million each for their lands. They are now paid 50000 bucks and they thought it was a gift.

…read more


Back to the drawing board

For the past eight days, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has led a campaign that showcased everything rotten about Umno and BN.

The vilification and assassination on the personal lifestyle of Datuk Zaid Ibrahim, candidate of PKR and Pakatan Rakyat was absolutely disgusting but it brought mixed results based on the Malays’ voting pattern.

The people of Hulu Selangor did not respond to BN’s campaign by giving Zaid a decisive thumping, but instead word has it that they were displeased with the gutter politics on show.

Even though Zaid was not elected as the new representative of Hulu Selangor, it has shown to the nation that Umno has adopted this brand of politics.

Playing the typical opposition’s game, Umno moved in to kill off Zaid by accusing him of not being Islamic enough, referring to his liberal character.

Then there was the crossing over of a few of Pakatan’s representatives in the hope of destabilising the alliance that has been touted as the government-in-waiting.

The ill intent and misguided efforts were a desperate attempt by Najib to hold on to power and to reverse the potential end of BN’s 53-year rule.

Continue reading ‘Back to the drawing board’


Hulu Selangor — Dr Syed Husin Ali

Hulu Selangor — Dr Syed Husin Ali
April 25 2010 – Malaysian Insider

APRIL 25 — While we are sad to lose the seat, we are glad that we have been able to make considerable headway amongst the voters.

We take that as a sign that our policies and programmes, even after a mere two years, have brought benefits to the people.

In 2008, we lost all three state seats by a collective majority of 6,000 votes, and we won the parliamentary seat by a wafer-thin margin — for reasons that everyone knows.

We are therefore heartened that despite the mud-slinging at our candidate, the unashamed vote buying, the presence of all of the BN’s top guns, including the Prime Minister himself, the media spins and the absence of the specific factors that won us the parliamentary seat the last time, we were able to make significant advances amongst the voters, especially those in the Felda settlements, and to make a mockery of proud boasts by the BN that they would win with a majority of over 3,000.

In reality, the BN only won with a majority of around 1,700 votes: 600 of the majority came from postal votes. Najib has nothing to celebrate.

Our candidate will keep to his pledge to continue to work for all the people of Hulu Selangor. Pakatan Rakyat will continue to work for all the people. The Pakatan Rakyat Government of Selangor will continue to carry through its pro-people policies and programmes.

* Senator Dr Syed Husin Ali is PKR deputy president
* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication. The Malaysian Insider does not endorse the view unless specified.


Maverick lies

Malaysian politicians past and present are notorious for utterances that range from brazen insults to blatant lies, and at election time we can trust our leaders to prove that they are capable of producing the appropriate noises from the larynx.

The Hulu Selangor by-election adds another stomach-churning element so revolting that even the most hardened of us are hard-pressed to hold in our vomit: the sight — and the sound — of a leader past his expiry date shamelessly prancing into the circus ring to say some of the stupidest things ever heard on any campaign trail.

Here is a lesson for our retired leaders: check to see whether your brains are still functioning properly before trying to return to the spotlight to feed your craving for national attention. Check, especially, what you are going to say now against what you said when you were younger, lest you get caught in a contradiction.

Continue reading ‘Maverick lies’


Felda ‘fat cats’

“Fat cats” was the stinging label once used against Malaysian palm oil. Untrue, said Malaysia, pointing to the harsh life of the Felda settler as evidence. But the essential truth of that sneer is becoming more apparent, even to the Felda settler.

Down on his allotment and among his crops in Jengka or Johor Tenggara or Hulu Selangor, the Felda settler is surely no “fat cat”.

But Felda itself must qualify as one now.

Over the years, it has turned itself into a burgeoning corporate organisation and a “global player” in agriculture, and into the world’s largest plantation conglomerate.

All that built on the efforts of the settlers, now numbering more than 110,000.

“Felda should be transformed into a world class multinational,” said the prime minister, Najib Tun Razak, last year as he launched Felda Global Ventures, the new commercial arm of the Felda group, with RM6 billion ambitions.

But how does that relate to the original intention to end rural poverty by opening up land to the poor? And how does that relate to the settler, who remains tied to Felda in an almost womb-to-tomb captive relationship?

The settlers represent a source of labour and a supply of oil palm fruit. The settlers represent a market for agricultural services and supplies. The settlers represent profit.

Continue reading ‘Felda ‘fat cats’’


Maika share sale an election gimmick?

All the above leads to the conclusion that Gnanalingam’s offer of RM106 million for a 74% controlling stake in Ocab, a mere 2.91% premium over its NTA of RM103 million is derisory, disingenuous and an attempt to put one over the many ill-informed Maika shareholders.

The timing of Gnanlingam’s offer announcement was surely calculated with one eye on the by-election at Hulu Selangor tomorrow.

What is astonishing is that Samy Vellu, his son Vell Paari and the board of directors of Maika, and Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak as well are all supporting Gnanalingam’s offer.

Continue reading ‘Maika share sale an election gimmick?’


Pakatan’s grand finale draws thousands

Pakatan Rakyat’s “grand finale” ceramah at the Kuala Kubu Baru stadium tonight drew close to 15,000 people.

The overflowing crowd at the “mini” stadium is said to have caused concern in the Barisan Nasional camp but some claim that the fears are baseless because most them were outsiders.

Hundreds also made a beeline outside the stadium, hoping to catch a glimpse of the opposition stalwarts.

When PKR candidate for the Hulu Selangor by-election Zaid Ibrahim arrived, he was greeted with rapturous cheer and chants of “Reformasi” and “Undi Zaid Ibrahim”.

The crowd also went wild when PAS spiritual leader Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat made an appearance.

PKR supremo Anwar Ibrahim, who was caught in a traffic snarl, caused a stir when he arrived riding pillion on a motorcyle.

This was the opposition coalition’s final assault, with campaigning drawing to an end at the stroke of midnight.

Continue reading ‘Pakatan’s grand finale draws thousands’

The dawn of A Better Malaysia!
Rafidah Aziz, Hannah Yeoh, Ambiga at TTDI ceramah


Mahathir in Putrajaya ceramah


What happened to 1MDB’s money? – CNBC Video
Nuclear lessons for Malaysia (Part 1) (Part 2)
BN govt is directing attention to distant past and distant future, in order to distract people from present misdeeds and poor governance
Felda - A picture is worth a thousand words
How the 1MDB Scandal Spread Across the World (WSJ)
We cannot afford ridiculously expensive RM55 Billion ECRL!
All that is necessary
for the triumph of evil
is for good men
to do nothing.

- Edmund Burke
When the people
fears their government,
there is TYRANNY;
when the government
fears the people,
there is LIBERTY.

- Thomas Jefferson
Do you hear the people sing?