Archive for February, 2012

29
Feb
12

Tajudin Ramli Gets Off Scot Free

The Government must disclose why it has decided to write off RM589 million of court ordered payment from Tan Sri Tajuddin Ramli and who is ultimately responsible for the losses

Tan Sri Tajudin Ramli has now gotten off scot free from his Court-ordered obligations to pay back to Pengurusan Danaharta Bhd, an agency 100% owned by the Ministry of Finance amounting to a whopping RM589.15 million excluding interest.

The High Court had in December 2009 rule in favour of Danaharta and its two subsidiaries on the on the full amount outstanding and had ordered Tajudin to pay an interest of 2% above the base lending rate of Malayan Banking Bhd until the date of full realisation. The Court had also dismissed Tajudin’s counterclaim to the tune of over RM14 billion excluding damages and cost.

Danaharta’s claims are based on the claims that Tajudin had defaulted on a syndicated loan of RM1.792 billion, which he took in 1994 to acquire the Government’s 32% stake in Malaysian Airlines System (MAS).

In Tajudin’s defence, he claimed that he was never meant to be personally liable for the term loan as the government had agreed to an overriding agreement to indemnify him of any liability that arose from his acquisition of MAS shares from Bank Negara Malaysia.

Tajudin has also claimed that the then Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and then Finance Minister Tun Daim Zainuddin, “instructed” him to pay RM8 per share for MAS when the market price was around RM3.50.

However, in a shocking decision by the Government, Danaharta has been instructed to “settle” the suits in the Court of Appeal by completely writing off the outstanding debt from Tajudin Ramli and causing an immediately loss of RM589.15 million to the tax-payers’ coffers.

…more
Tajudin Ramli Gets Off Scot Free
February 17, 2012 – tonypua.blogspot.com

29
Feb
12

More bite for MACC, only if BN gets two-thirds?!

Is it a bribe, threat or extortion? It is outrageous for the PM to make such an idiotic statement saying that he would give more bite to the MACC only if BN gets two thirds majority in the next general elections.

As one online reader puts it, “Well, wouldn’t it be easier for us to vote Pakatan into power and push them to reform, not just the MACC but also police, judiciary, Attorney-General’s Chambers, Election Commission and many others.”

Other comments are more blunt:

“His latest public statement must go into the annals of the nation for its sheer defiance of logic and intelligence.”

“The chances of MACC being given more bite is zero as long as BN is in power.”

“To ask for more power as a precondition to fight corruption is ridiculous, more so for the government of the day. Najib is indirectly admitting incompetence or/and lack of political will to fight corruption. Malaysians should know what to do with Umno-BN.”

The following are some of the comments by indignant Malaysians.

Continue reading ‘More bite for MACC, only if BN gets two-thirds?!’

29
Feb
12

Reforming MACC: Tickled by PM’s two-thirds poser

Aliran is tickled by the Prime Minister’s so-called pledge that he would give more bite to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) if voters hand the Barisan Nasional its coveted two-thirds parliamentary majority in the coming general election.

We’re bemused because the federal government does not need a two thirds majority to give teeth to the MACC as it does not require a constitutional amendment. What it does need, though, is political will and commitment from the federal government to ensure that the MACC is fully and fiercely independent.

A truly independent anti-corruption watchdog would not only catch ‘ikan bilis’ but also the elusive ‘sharks’, many of whom have connections with people in high places. This also means that the MACC would be empowered to catch people at, for instance, ministerial level, if need be, without fear or favour.

Additionally, the “pledge” appears to be a thinly veiled threat to voters, thereby making it sound more like a bargaining chip.

Anyway, even if the BN proposal to make the MACC truly independent requires that the existing law pertaining to the MACC be amended, we are confident that Pakatan Rakyat parliamentarians, who have been clamouring for an independent watchdog all along, would fully support the amendment.

Indeed, the rakyat as a whole would give their wholehearted support to this noble endeavour to put a stop to taxpayers’ money being abused by certain individuals.

We therefore call upon the Prime Minister to take immediate steps to unleash the MACC before the next general election.

…source
Reforming MACC: Tickled by PM’s two-thirds poser
By Aliran, on 28 February 2012

28
Feb
12

Ku Li: Corruption may see BN’s downfall

Razaleigh pointed that no ‘public relations exercises’ can mask corruption and ‘dysfunctional democracy’.

KUALA LUMPUR: Respected Umno veteran Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah today said no government rife with corruption can survive public anger and warned Putrajaya that it may suffer the same fate as ousted regimes in the Arab Spring.

Speaking at the Royal Selangor Club luncheon talk earlier today, the Kelantan prince spoke of Malaysia’s “dysfunctional” political economy, which he blamed on money politics as a result of the of the policies under the tenure of former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

Malaysia under Mahathir is often characterised by neo-liberal policies which Razaleigh said kickstarted the politics-business relations and resulted in crony capitalism.

“As a consequence of economic policies in the past, inequalities have also widened. Today, Malaysians suffer from a very wide inequality… and the widening inequality will go into a deeper crisis of confidence among the people.

“No democratic system, no institution as envisaged by our Federal Constitution, can survive a political economy of this nature.

“There is too much money in politics and it has become inseparable from power and the electoral process,” he said.

…more
Ku Li: Corruption may see BN’s downfall
February 16, 2012 – FMT

28
Feb
12

1Care – Not a penny more, BN

FEB 15 — After handing out one-off payments of RM500 to the poor, the government turns around and is now asking for a handout from the taxpayers, under the guise of paying for an improved healthcare system.

The people must now realise that this is a government that has neither the vision nor the will to move Malaysia forward in the global marketplace. After a lousy victory in 2008 general elections, the Barisan Nasional (BN) government has virtually been on a re-election campaign mode since, devising short-term populist agendas such as KR1M, BR1M, etc., none of which addresses the current malaise the country is facing — stagnant wages in the face of rising costs in the midst of a long-drawn out, slow global growth.

As it stretched out is left hand to hand out cash to poor households, its right hand is dipping into the pockets of ordinary Malaysians to fund its lavish spending and greedy cronies.

This is a government that, after half a century in power, actually praises itself as a “caring” government as it hands out a pittance to poor Malaysians, when it should be ashamed that for a country so blessed with natural resources and talent, we still have three-quarters of households with monthly incomes below RM3,000.

This is the same government that that forked out RM80 million to a foreign media outfit to boost its credentials, and the result was an embarrassing worldwide public relations disaster for Malaysia.

This is the same government that sees no wrong doing in lending out RM250 million of the people’s hard-earned money to a Cabinet minister’s family, one with no experience or credentials, to run a national project in which the 31-year-old CEO-son duly demonstrated his superior “cow management” skills by purchasing luxury multi-million condominiums. At the same time, the government has to resort to sticking its crummy hands into our retirement funds in order to come up with an initial RM300 million to help fund homes for poor families.

This is the same government that does not blink an eye when its naval defence procurements overshot its budget by billions, as it prepares to fight its imaginary enemies in the high seas, when the real pirates are running wild inland, hand-in-hand with their BN masters, grabbing projects, concessions and sweet deals.

This is the same government whose ministers live in posh mansions in Damansara Heights, send their kids to private schools or foreign universities, and travel around in chauffeur-driven German cars. Meanwhile, the average Malaysian can barely afford his first terrace house, worries about declining education standards in his children’s schools’, and drives an overpriced local car on overpriced and congested tolled roads.

And now with 1 Care, Malaysians are now asked to fork out more of our incomes so that the government can provide us with a better healthcare system. Instead of looking hard at its books, coming up with ways to trim excess and wasteful spending, and re-prioritising spending towards health and education, the government took the rather lazy and predictable route — more tax on Malaysians.

This is from a government that has given Malaysia its biggest national debt in decades. This is from a government who claims to understand the average Malaysian’s daily tribulations in the face of the current economic uncertainty.

This is from a government that is surely disconnected from the realities that we are facing. When it has the audacity to ask the people to pay more tax to feed its out-of-control spending frenzy that yields no long-term benefit to the country, but are more likely to fatten the bank accounts of well-connected individuals.

To you, BN, I say: No more — not a penny more.

…source
Not a penny more, BN — CL Tang
February 15, 2012 – TMI

27
Feb
12

Dr M to blame for costly healthcare, says anti-1 Care group

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 18 — The Citizens’ Healthcare Coalition (CHC) has blamed Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad for the country’s escalating cost of healthcare, linking this to sweeping healthcare reforms pushed through by the former prime minister during the 1980s.

CHC, a coalition of medical practitioners and consumer associations formed recently to protest against 1 Care, cited the corporatisation of the National Heart Institute (IJN) as an example and said it has become one of the country’s costliest specialist centres.

It claimed that waiting time for the needy and poor have become “inordinately long” at the institute and could go up to two years, while those who can afford it could pay to get their treatment overnight.

“This is what privatisation does and we can credit Tun Mahathir for this dismal state of affairs,” CHC representative Dr T. Jayabalan said in a statement here.

He added that in 1994 during Dr Mahathir’s tenure, pharmaceutical services were also privatised, but with the government becoming a stakeholder.

“Along with the privatisation came a 15-year monopoly for pharmaceutical supplies to the government health facilities by Pharmaniaga.

“It was a closed tender and this disallowed competition. It is common knowledge that competition will bring down prices,” he charged.

Under Dr Mahathir’s privatisation moves, Dr Jayabalan said the prices of generic drugs also soared, effectively denying lower-income earners access to the medicines.

…more
Dr M to blame for costly healthcare, says anti-1 Care group
February 18, 2012 – TMI

27
Feb
12

Bukit Merah – The True Story (video)

The fatal decision to allow the Asian Rare Earth refinery to be set up in Bukit Merah back in the early 80s resulted in tragic stories of human suffering due to contamination from the plant.

We must not allow history to be repeated with Lynas. STOP LYNAS!

27
Feb
12

Himpunan Hijau Penang (video)

Despite the disruption by a small group of uncouth hooligans, a good crowd of about 500 turned up for the Himpunan Hijau event in Penang. They loudly cheered in support of the Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng when he gave his speech endorsing Himpunan Hijau.

26
Feb
12

Another cock-and-bull story from Mahathir

COMMENT Dr Mahathir Mohamad should talk straight or just shut up.

Whenever he rebuts allegations of wrongdoing during his tenure as prime minister, he appears to sound not only defensive but deceptive as well.

Now he says the government’s bailout of Malaysia Airlines (MAS) in 2000, during his premiership, was “not the worst”. What does that mean? Is he saying that the bailout was all right simply because it was not the worst?

If he is still of sound mind and can understand this, let me say it is not all right. So what if it was not the worst act of using public funds? It was nonetheless committed. Should only the worst be held accountable?

That bailout cost Malaysians RM1.8 billion. And the government paid for the MAS shares at more than double their market price. Why was this so?

Well, Mahathir has become famous for blaming others; this time, he points to the Finance Ministry – for recommending the purchase at such a price. Has he forgotten he was the country’s chief executive officer then, and that it wouldn’t have gone through without his say-so, no matter which ministry or individual recommended it?

He says MAS had to be saved from bankruptcy because it was “necessary”. But why was MAS privatised to Tajudin Ramli in the first place when the latter had had no track record in the airline industry? Whom would Mahathir blame for this?

And what about the other bailouts? Bank Bumiputra, Renong, and Proton, which was bought by Petronas from DRB-Hicom when the latter was deep in debt?

Mahathir is always right

Mahathir tries to justify the MAS bailout by comparing it to the cancellation of the double-tracking project by his successor, Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. But that doesn’t make it right. Would making such a comparison absolve Mahathir from the questionable use of public funds under his watch?

Did Mahathir have a personal stake in that project to make him so angry towards Abdullah for cancelling it, and therefore so unforgiving of the latter?

The way he’s been slamming Abdullah, almost at every chance he gets, indicates he has a personal axe to grind with the man. But he’s been doing it so often now that it’s really getting tiresome.

The thing about Mahathir is, he is always right and everyone else wrong. Less than two weeks ago, he refuted allegations that when he was prime minister, he cowed the judiciary.

Has he forgotten that in 1988, his ruling party, which then enjoyed a two-thirds majority in Parliament, passed an amendment to Article 121 of the Federal Constitution which effectively removed the judicial power from the courts and made the judiciary subservient to Parliament?

When former chief justice Dzaiddin Abdullah brought up three weeks ago that this was so, and de facto Law Minister Nazri Aziz agreed, what was Mahathir’s response? “This is fitnah (slander),” he said. But why is it fitnah when the amendment was indeed made and we have seen the consequences of it?

To deflect from the real issue, Mahathir blamed Nazri for getting personal. “Nazri … you know, he never likes me,” he said. But what about Dzaiddin? Mahathir doesn’t mention it, but does Dzaiddin not like him too?

So that’s how Mahathir avoids facing up to the truth – use emotional prattle, throw the focus off himself onto others, make it seem that others are against him and that they want to run him down.

…more
Another cock-and-bull story from Mahathir
Kee Thuan Chye
Feb 25, 2012 – Malaysiakini

26
Feb
12

Voter audit reveals thousands of dubious records

An audit on the electoral roll has revealed a shockingly large amount of dubious voter records, numbering at about 200,000, the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) on electoral reform was told today.

The audit was conducted by Mimos Bhd, a government owned technology company, which briefed the PSC on the results today.

PSC member Anthony Loke said that the briefing was conducted by Mimos chief executive officer Abdul Wahab Abdullah during a two-hour meeting.

PSC chairperson Maximus Johnity Ongkili was also present during the meeting.

Loke (left) revealed that Mimos had discovered 820 cases where there were more than 100 voters residing at the same address.

“Furthermore, we found 1,259 cases where between 51-100 voters are staying in the same address, another 3,254 cases where there are between 21-50 voters in the same place, and 6,002 cases involving between 11 and 20 voters who have the same addresses.

“These places included army camps,” he told Malaysiakini today.

Some other questionable addresses where large number voters are registered were either incomplete or invalid, citing “No 62, Lembah Pantai” and “E6, Seputeh” as examples.

Loke said that the PSC have given Mimos two weeks to run checks with the National Registration Department and the Election Commission.

“The PSC did not go in-depth on how to rectify this and Mimos would come back in two weeks time,” he said.

…more
Voter audit reveals thousands of dubious records
Feb 14, 2012 – Malaysiakini





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

 

Mahathir in Putrajaya ceramah

 

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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?

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