Archive for August, 2012

31
Aug
12

Despite ban, yellow shirts swamp Dataran (Video)

31
Aug
12

Janji Demokrasi in Pictures 2

Janji Demokrasi

Janji Demokrasi

Janji Demokrasi

Janji Demokrasi

Janji Demokrasi

Janji Demokrasi

(source: Malaysiakini)

31
Aug
12

Thousands attend Janji Demokrasi countdown despite police ban

UPDATED Thousands of Malaysians defied a police ban to attend a countdown to the nation’s 55th Merdeka or Independence Day, proving once again that Prime Minister Najib Razak’s BN government could no longer hope to rely on authoritarian and violent crackdowns to cling to power.

The Janji Demokrasi (Promised Democracy) event planned for Thursday had been banned at the 11th hour by the police. Organized by Gabungan Janji, a coalition of 47 NGOs, sister-countdowns were also held at various states and cities around the world, with overseas Malaysians keen to join in the celebrations. Malaysia celebrates its Independence Day anniversary on Friday, August 31.

“This is a real show of love for the country. If not for the drizzle, the crowd would have been even bigger, so who says Malaysians are not patriotic? They love the country and without wishing to politicize the event, I think it is clear they know BN is bad news and must be removed from power,” PKR vice president Tian Chua told Malaysia Chronicle.

“You can feel the sense of unity of purpose tonight. This is a people uprising Malaysian style. It is very peaceful but it is a revolt no less, BN has lost the hearts and minds of the Rakyat.”

Sea of yellow: HIDUP RAKYAT!

Together with colleague Fuziah Salleh, the PKR MP for Kuantan, Tian had joined the crowd that thronged the Dataran Merdeka in Kuala Lumpur.

Blowing vuvuzelas, Malaysians from all walks of life had slowly trickled in hours before the 11pm start of the countdown in the historic square where Independence Day was declared 5 decades ago.

Most of those who came wore yellow to show their support for free and fair elections as requested by the organizers, who also distributed yellow flowers to the attendees.

“It was a good showdown. Hidup Rakyat! Merdeka Rakyat!” said Fuziah.

Earlier this afternoon, there was dismay after the police declared the event as illegal and warned Malaysians not to attend. However, given the past experiences with the Bersih 2.0 and 3.0 rallies, where the police had brutally attacked the crowd, few Malaysians were really surprised by the latest autocratic announcement.

“We did not expect this but we can’t really say we are surprised either. We are just shocked at how silly the police and Prime Minister Najib Razak are making themselves over this issue of public demonstrations. It goes totally against Najib’s own promise of greater freedom to peaceful assembly and confirms yet again what a sham the government of the day has become in Malaysia,” PKR vice president Chua Jui Meng told Malaysia Chronicle.

Too late, thousands still came despite ban


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TIME’S UP FOR BN: Thousands attend Janji Demokrasi countdown despite police ban
31 August 2012 – Malaysia Chronicle

31
Aug
12

Janji Demokrasi: 10,000 near Dataran Merdeka

About 10,000 people gathered near Pasar Seni and Dataran Merdeka to remind the government of its unfulfilled promises.

UPDATED

KUALA LUMPUR: About 10,000 people gathered peacefully near Dataran Merdeka tonight where the Janji Demokrasi coalition and supporters of Save Jalan Sultan converged to remind the government of its unfulfilled promises.

While the Janji Demokrasi coalition wants electoral reform, the Save Jalan Sultan group is opposing the construction of the MRT. The crowd started gathering as early 9.30pm.

There was an air of fiesta despite police presence and Dataran Merdeka itself was cordoned off to facilitate the official Merdeka celebration tomorrow morning.

PAS deputy president Mat Sabu’s presence was greeted with cheers from the crowd. Also seen in the crowd was PKR vice-president and Batu MP Tian Chua.

National Laureate A Samad Said also arrived along with Empower executive director Maria Chin Abdullah – both also being the steering committee members of Bersih. Samad was expected to read out a poem before the gathering was officially called to an end just past midnight.

Earlier, more than 2,000 people from the Save Jalan Sultan group gathered at the Gospel Hall along Jalan Hang Jebat to protest the construction of the My Rapid Transit (MRT) line.

The crowd started congregating at around 8pm with many of them clad in yellow Bersih T-shirts. They demanded the government and the MRT project to stay away from the Jalan Sultan area.

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Janji Demokrasi: 10,000 near Dataran Merdeka
August 30, 2012

31
Aug
12

Janji Demokrasi in Pictures

Janji Demokrasi
(source: ccwm)

Janji Demokrasi
(source: szening)

Janji Demokrasi
(source: nstm)

Janji Demokrasi
(source: nstm)

Janji Demokrasi
(source: nstm)

Janji Demokrasi
(source: nstm)

Janji Demokrasi
(source: nstm)

Janji Demokrasi
(source: anak sungai derhaka)

Janji Demokrasi
(source: anak sungai derhaka)

Janji Demokrasi
(source: anak sungai derhaka)

30
Aug
12

Phantoms must not decide our future! Register to vote

Phantom voters

30
Aug
12

Janji Demokrasi says ‘Go yellow, go anywhere’

We won’t enter Dataran, says Janji Demokrasi organisers, after the gathering was declared illegal.

PETALING JAYA: Hours away from the Merdeka Day countdown celebrations, the organisers of the Janji Demokrasi gathering have received a stern police warning: don’t gather at Dataran Merdeka, it is illegal.

Gabungan Janji (Coalition of Promises) representative Hishamuddin Rais said, however, that this would not deter them from their mission to gather.

“Right, we’ll not break the law and won’t enter Dataran. But we can be everywhere, as near as possible, probably in Pasar Seni, wherever the nearest. We’ll be in Chinatown first,” he told FMT.

He urged all citizens that are attending to celebrate “anywhere and wherever”, as long as they wore yellow.

Hishamuddin said that his fellow committee member Maria Chin Abdullah received a notice from the Dang Wangi district police chief Zainuddin Ahmad stating that the gathering goes against the laws, based on the following reasons:

Failure to provide notice to the Dang Wangi police chief under Section 9(1) of the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 (PAA);

Failure to obtain permission from the owner of the place of gathering under Section 11 of the PAA; and

Will disrupt preparations made for Merdeka Day celebrations tomorrow.

When contacted, Zainuddin told FMT that he did not mean that Dataran Merdeka was “out of bounds”.

“But they need permission from City Hall. Let’s say, I want to stab you, if I didn’t, I would not have committed an offence, but if I did, then it is a wrong act. So if they go, it would be an offence, no?”

‘That’s strange’

Hishamuddin said that the group “had not realised that we needed to ask police permission to celebrate independence day. That is strange”.

However, he said that the group “will not be confrontational”.

Janji Demokrasi is organised by a group of close to 50 non-governmental organisations. The gathering will be held between 11pm and 12am.

Although the main gathering will be held at the iconic Dataran Merdeka, there will be simultaneous gatherings in other states, including Perak, Negeri Sembilan, Malacca and Johor. The organisers have disallowed banners, placards, and sound systems, but have urged participants to wear yellow.

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Janji Demokrasi says ‘Go yellow, go anywhere’
August 30, 2012 – FMT

30
Aug
12

‘Janji Demokrasi’ rally unlawful, cops say

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 30 — The police have declared as unlawful a grassroots rally to usher in the country’s 55th Independence Day celebration just hours before the gathering is to take place tonight at Dataran Merdeka here.

Dang Wangi district police chief ACP Zainuddin Ahmad told Maria Chin Abdullah, one of the organisers of the “Janji Demokrasi” rally, that the planned assembly had breached the law on three counts — namely for failing to give sufficient advanced notice to the police; for failing to gain the venue owner’s agreement and for “threatening preparations to celebrate National Day on 21 August 2012”.

“I wish to inform that the Janji Demokrasi Coalition’s assembly to be held at Dataran Merdeka on 30 August 2012 between 2200 hours and 2400 hours is an assembly against the law on the following reasons,” the district police chief said in a brief letter.

A copy of the letter was also made available to The Malaysian Insider.

Use of the public square is controlled by City Hall.

Chin Abdullah has said the rally — to be held at Jalan Sultan and Dataran Merdeka from 10pm tonight and will see participants disperse after midnight — will go ahead even without the authorities’ permission as it was to be a peaceful assembly.

“We have agreed with police that there will be no banners, stickers or speeches. Only Pak Samad (A.Samad Said) will recite poetry. We promise the rally will be peaceful,” she told reporters after being called in by the police over its proposed event three days ago.

Zainuddin however has said the police will arrest participants if they break the law under the Peaceful Assembly Act that came into force in April this year.

Tonight’s gathering, previously named “Janji Bersih”, is organised by a coalition of 47 non-government organisations that has called on members of the public to wear yellow to remind the government of its electoral reform promises that have yet to be introduced.

…more
‘Janji Demokrasi’ rally unlawful, cops say
August 30, 2012 – TMI

29
Aug
12

Ambiga Ignores Threats in Fight for Fairer Malaysian Vote – Bloomberg

Ambiga Sreenevasan got anonymous death threats for her work on the rights of women whose husbands convert to Islam in Muslim-majority Malaysia four years ago. After leading a rally calling for electoral reforms in April, she was accused of treason by a ruling party lawmaker.

The 55-year-old former Malaysian Bar Council president, who received the International Women of Courage Award from U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 2009, hasn’t stopped challenging the government’s human rights policies.

“They underestimate right-thinking Malaysians,” she said in an interview. “We don’t like bullying.”

While Prime Minister Najib Razak, who must call elections by early 2013, has agreed to some of the demands of Ambiga’s Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections, or Bersih, for fairer voting procedures such as the use of indelible ink, his government has declared the civil society group illegal and she has become the focus of personal attacks. Opposition leaders have championed Bersih’s campaign and called the attacks racist.

“She is seen as somebody who’s a professional, has the aspirations of the middle class, believes in things like human rights and good governance,” said James Chin, a professor of political science at the Malaysian campus of Australia’s Monash University outside Kuala Lumpur. “She symbolizes that: Somebody who holds the Malaysian authorities accountable for their actions.”
Triple Minority

The mother of two believes her “demonization” has intensified because government supporters want to undermine the credibility of the non-partisan campaign for free and fair elections.

As an Indian, Hindu and woman, “I’m a minority in every sense of the word and I think they thought it would be easy to do,” she said.

In the 2008 elections, Najib’s multiparty, multiethnic National Front coalition had its worst showing in five decades of unbroken rule as urban Malays as well as Chinese and Indian minorities supported opposition parties pledging policies that don’t discriminate in favor of the Malay-Muslim majority.

Harassment of Ambiga since the April demonstration has included traders setting up outside her home and serving free beef burgers and Malay army veterans stretching and shaking their buttocks near her house.

Ruling party lawmaker Mohamad Aziz withdrew his June 26 comment about Ambiga’s possible treason – a crime which carries the death penalty – two days later following complaints from the ruling coalition’s ethnic Indian party leaders.
Electoral Impact

“Her rather calm and methodical responses to many of the different challenges and the personal attacks,” have given a sense of pride to the Indian Malaysian community, according to Bridget Welsh, Associate Professor of Political Science at the Singapore Management University. “By allowing the people who attacked her to go without prosecution or condemnation — this has actually had an electoral impact.”

Indians account for about 7 percent of Malaysia’s population of 29 million. Najib’s approval ratings dropped to 69 percent in June from 72 percent in May among the ethnic Indian community, possibly due to dissatisfaction over statements toward Ambiga, according to a Merdeka Center for Opinion Research survey released July 26.

…more
Ambiga Ignores Threats in Fight for Fairer Malaysian Vote
By Ranjeetha Pakiam and Liau Y-Sing
Aug 21, 2012 – Bloomberg

29
Aug
12

SHAMEFUL & PATHETIC: MCA’s Record on Education

Various thoughts come to my mind on reading the report that the Selangor MCA will build more Chinese schools if Barisan Nasional regains the state at the coming election. According to the Selangor MCA chairman, Donald Lim Siang Chai the MCA “will help the state government approve more land for Chinese schools, particularly in predominantly Chinese areas in Selangor”.

One is of disbelief that the MCA leaders can stoop so low in their attempt to win a few seats in the coming elections. But perhaps we should not be surprised that the MCA is scrapping the bottom of the barrel in terms of political integrity. Learning from the senior partner, UMNO, electoral bribery appears to be the main item in the standard operating procedure manual of MCA for the coming election, so desperate is the BN to remain in power.

The second is to question why this proposal to build more Chinese schools has come now. After all, before Pakatan took over in 2008, the MCA was part of the Selangor state government for 50 years. During the past decade the demand for Chinese schools in the state (and in other urban areas of the country) has especially grown tremendously. However, this demand was ignored by the MCA leaders.

Why State Land was not alienated for Chinese Schools

Why was this community and national need been pushed aside? The reason is that the MCA leaders were more engrossed in getting contracts for themselves and their cronies and in making hay while the sun was shining on the notorious Toyo administration.

The reason why state land was not approved for Chinese schools in the years leading to the 2008 elections is that the MCA leaders were busy requesting land for their cronies and business partners. This is the only conclusion any ordinary person can come to.

If Donald Lim would like to dispute and take me up on this, I will be happy up take up his challenge. It can be easily shown who is correct by opening up the state government’s records on land alienation during the period of the Toyo administration and to compare the approvals granted to cronies versus the Chinese community.

National Education: Bigger MCA Failing

Not only has MCA failed Chinese education dismally it has also been a leading partner in the decline of our national school system. Today our national schools are characterized by regressive language and religious dogmas, dismal performance, low standards and unemployable products. No middle or upper middle class parent – whether Chinese, Malay, Indian or from any community – would want to have their young children schooled in the sekolah rendah kebangsaan and sekolah menegah if they can help it. In fact, frankly, most Malaysian parents if they can help it avoid the national schooling system like the plague.

This national disgrace has one of its leading stake players the MCA which has held the Deputy Minister of Education portfolio for umpteen years. Can the MCA point to any educational innovation that it has introduced? Can the MCA point to any educational policy of merit, fairness, and tolerance that it has been responsible for since independence?

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SHAMEFUL & PATHETIC: MCA’s Record on Education – Koon Yew Yin
Written by Koon Yew Yin
21 August 2012 – Malaysia Chronicle




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

 

Mahathir in Putrajaya ceramah

 

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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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