Saturday, March 9, 2013

Did Najib lie to the nation?

According to the Manila Accord signed on July 31, 1963 and registered in the United Nations as document No. 8029, then Malayan deputy prime minister Abdul Razak Hussein (late father of the present Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak) met up with foreign minister Dr Subandrio of Indonesia, and vice-president Emmanuel Pelaez of the Philippines in Manila for five days from June 7 to 11, 1963, to discuss about the status of Sabah.

Consequently, it was agreed in writing by former Malayan prime minister Tunku Abdul Rahman together with president Soekarno of Indonesia and president Diosdado Macapagal of the Philippines in paragraph 12 thereof:

“The Philippines made it clear that its position on the inclusion of North Borneo in the Federation of Malaysia is subject to the final outcome of the Philippines’ claim to North Borneo. The ministers took note of the Philippines’ claim and the right of the Philippines to continue to pursue it in accordance with international law and the principle of the pacific settlement of disputes. They agreed that the inclusion of North Borneo in the Federation of Malaysia would not prejudice either the claim or any right thereunder. Moreover, in the context of their close association, the three countries agreed to exert their best endeavours to bring the claim to a just and expeditious solution by peaceful means, such as negotiation, conciliation, arbitration, or judicial settlement as well as other peaceful means of the parties’ own choice, in conformity with the Charter of the United Nations and the Bandung Declaration.”

Subsequently on Aug 5, 1963 in a joint statement released to international media, the same also agreed in writing under paragraph 8 thereof:

“In accordance with paragraph 12 of the Manila Accord, the three Heads of Government decided to request the British Government to agree to seek a just and expeditious solution to the dispute between the British Government and the Philippines Government concerning Sabah (North Borneo) by means of negotiation, conciliation and arbitration, judicial settlement, or other peaceful means of the parties’ own choice in conformity with the Charter of the United Nations. The three Heads of Government take cognizance of the position regarding the Philippines claim to Sabah (North Borneo) after the establishment of the Federation of Malaysia as provided under paragraph 12 of the Manila Accord, that is, that the inclusion of Sabah (North Borneo) in the Federation of Malaysia does not prejudice either the claim or any right thereunder.”

It was undoubtedly stated from the above provisions of the Manila Accord and joint statement that:
  • the inclusion of Sabah into the formation of Malaysia is subject to the Philippines claim; and
  • the Philippines’ claim on Sabah must be settled in the International Court of Justice (ICJ) run by the United Nations.
Therefore, until such time when the ICJ has decided, Malaysia does not have absolute ownership of Sabah.

Yesterday, Najib made the following statement at a press conference in Lahad Datu: “The question of Sabah within Malaysia should not be disputed by anyone. Let not anyone underestimate Malaysia’s commitment to have Sabah within Malaysia forever. No one can dispute this, from within and outside the country. We will uphold the principle and fact of Sabah within Malaysia absolutely”.

Now, with the involvement of the two late former prime ministers of Malaysia – Tunku Abdul Rahman and Abdul Razak Hussein – in the Manila Accord and joint statement which contained straightforward and unambiguous stipulations, the question that begged to be answered now is: why did Najib lie to the whole nation without even blinking his eyes?

By refusing to honour the Manila Accord and backtracking on the joint statement, has Najib not figuratively slapped the Philippines and Indonesia which were signatories to the historic documents?
Internationally, is Najib not telling the whole world, especially foreign investors, that what Malaysia agrees and signs at any time may not be fulfilled or respected at Malaysia’s whims and fancies?

How are Malaysians going to face anyone overseas when our own prime minister has made us the butt of jokes and the laughing stock of the world?

Effectively, he has also slapped each and every Malaysian who has an ounce of dignity.

[Source: FMT]

Friday, March 8, 2013

Now, the cat is out of the bag

The father of Saiful Bukhari has apologised to PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim, claiming that his son had been used by irresponsible quarters, including an officer of the prime minister, to defame Anwar in Sodomy II.

“Anwar is innocent and a victim of this slander... as such I apologise to Anwar and his family.

“He and his family have suffered a lot as a result of this slander,” Azlan Mohd Lazim said in a statement he released at a press conference in Kuala Lumpur today.
NONE“I deeply regret all the slander hurled against Anwar, which involved my son Saiful Bukhari,” Azlan said.
Anwar was acquitted by the Kuala Lumpur High Court on Jan 9 last year on charges of sodomising Saiful, who was his political aide, on June 26, 2008, in a condominium in Kuala Lumpur.

The Attorney-General’s Chambers has appealed against the decision and the Court of Appeal will hear the case on July 22.
In the statement, Azlan, 60, said all media statements by him and Saiful had been prepared by an officer with the prime minister's office and a lawyer.

Malaysiakini is withholding the identities of these two people pending their response.

NONE“They are the masterminds behind all the sodomy slander against Anwar that involved my son.”

Azlan said he learnt about the sodomy allegation only from the “government- owned media” as Saiful never told him about it.

“I have never been contacted by any quarters to obtain my statement as his father, from the beginning till the end of the trial,” he said.

Giving moral support to his son

Although he was always seen accompanying his son during the trial, Azlan explained that he did that simply as a father who was giving moral support to his son.

“Actually I don't believe the allegations against Anwar.”

Azlan said he decided to make the expose today as he has unveiled the truth after spending a long time to collect information obtained during the trial, as well as those sent to him by the public.

The government has neither met him, nor asked for his opinion about the sodomy case, he claimed.

“Everything was so carefully planned and executed (by the official),” Azlan alleged.

NONE“As a Malay and a Muslim, I started to realise the evil of this plan. I don't want to continue to conspire with this malicious slander. I want the people who love this country to know their malicious intention.

“If this malicious intention continues, not only the Malays and Muslims would be destroyed, but the nation would be destroyed as well. I do not want to see this happen.

“I decided to be with Anwar, Pakatan Rakyat, and the Malaysians who thirst for prosperity, peace and truth, and are against this evil act.”

Azlan urged the people to “rise and fight against this cruelty, and work hard to uphold the truth”.

“Let us pray to Allah to win the struggle of Anwar and Pakatan to take over the government in the 13th general election,” he concluded.
[Source: Mkini]

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Lessons that can be learned from the Sabah crisis

Some of the things we Malaysians have learned from the security crisis in Sabah.

We are a polarised people.

Even when foreigners challenge our sovereignty and make a mockery of our border defence, we cannot extricate ourselves from seeing things through the prism of race.

Veteran journalist A. Kadir Jasin perhaps thought that he was being thought-provoking when he mused about the fact that when our security forces are called into harm’s way, it is Malays and Bumiputeras who die ― a reality because of composition of army and police.

Never mind that non-Malays have also bled for the country and only are averse from joining the security forces because of racial discrimination, over Islamisation and other reasons that have little to do with patriotism.

Also bringing race into the argument was Dr Mahathir Mohamed.

He said that the government employed the soft touch initially because the Sulu fighters were Muslim brethren.

This is the type of muddled thinking that enabled the Sulu invaders to stay much longer than necessary and compromised police operations.

Would the race of robbers, snatch thieves or rapist be a factor? Are you going to have a soft-soft approach when a robber holds your family at gunpoint because he shares the same religion?
Such daft thinking. And the man used to run the country.

What does Hishammuddin Hussein and Zahidi Hamidi have in common?

Plenty. They both are top Umno officials, have an eye on one day becoming prime minister, love the sound bites and DO NOT INSPIRE ANY CONFIDENCE.

When both these guys open their mouths, you either get clichés and some bumbling attempt at trying to assure Malaysians on “things being under control”.

They win top marks for bomber jackets and dress sense but is this the best talent we have? What paucity of talent in the Malaysian Cabinet and Umno!

Here is something to ponder: They could be future prime ministers!

Some thing’s in life come back and bite us in the backside

Some of the weapons used by the fighters can be traced back to the MNLF, who received the arms courtesy of Gaddafi through Malaysia.

Nur Misuari, the leader of the MNLF, says that some of his men are also fighting alongside the Sulu gang. And guess what, in the old days, the MNLF fighters who had long and bloody campaign against the Philippine army, were trained by Malaysians.

Add to that the fact that many of the Sultan of Sulu’s fighters have ties to Malaysia and this becomes a perfect example of biting the hand that feeds you.

Oh and for good measure, it must also be mentioned that Dr Mahathir says Malaysia never trained MNLF. He also denied existence of Project IC.

Submarines are useless against small boats

Some time ago, the Royal Malaysian Navy admiral said that the Scorpene submarines are needed to prevent a repeat of the 1511 takeover of Malacca by the Portuguese. I guess the genius did not factor in invaders in small boats.

And despite the spin by Nazri Aziz (the man has ended his silence after the RM40 million Musa Aman/Michael Chai episode) that these Sulu guys are bandits and outlaws, it does not hide the fact that there was a complete intelligence failure and that they had planned to enter the country illegally and make a claim to Sabah.

This made them invaders and a threat to national security and sovereignty ― and not part of the Mamak Gang.

I can excuse the failure of the Special Branch and Military Intelligence because their personnel are overworked keeping an eye on Opposition politicians.

But one plea to Nazri and gang: The average Malaysian is smarter and more informed than you or your Cabinet colleagues.

So don’t talk about outlaws and criminals. Just admit that you guys were clueless about who you were dealing with and what you were going up against.

[Written by: Abdul Samad Sulaiman]

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Is UMNO aware of what we are up against?

UMNO must have thought they were dealing with street thugs.  That was the reason for the initial despatch of the police force to contain the situation.  It was only after the first engagement with two dead police officers, that they now thought otherwise.  These militants are well trained and highly disciplined that despite years of military engagement with the Philippine government, they were able to hold on their own.  If the MNLF joins in and unleash their forces, may God have mercy on us all.  It will be a full scale war.

Lahad Datu: Is the situation getting from bad to worse?

LATEST : Thousands of Tausug, also known as the Suluks, have sailed to Sabah to help their fellow Filipino militants in eastern Sabah who have reportedly gone into hiding following the heavy assault by Malaysian forces since morning, The Philippine Inquirer reported today.

The claim, made by Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) Islamic council committee chairman Habib Hashim Mudjahab, contradicts reports elsewhere that security forces in both Malaysia and Philippines have blocked off entry points into the beleaguered Lahad Datu township, where the militants are holed up.

“We can no longer prevent our people. We are hurt and many of our people, even the non-combatants, are going to Sabah to help the sultanate,” Mudjahab was quoted as saying in the report.
But the Inquirer also reported denials of any such reinforcements being sent into Sabah from Lt. Gen, Rey Ardo, chief of the military’s Western Mindanao Command, and acting Governor Mujib Hataman of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

Both men said they are not aware of any reinforcements sent to aid the self-proclaimed royal army of the Sulu Sultanate.

According to Mudjahab, however, at least 10,000 Tausugs from Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi and Zamboanga had left Philippine waters from last night in small batches, entering Sabah through what they call the “southern backdoor” – a route that regular traders are familiar with.

The MNLF official said the naval blockade was of no use as those who know the route well would be able to slip into the east Malaysian state easily, and without raising any suspicion.

“It is about pride and honor, and our people are ready to sacrifice,” he added.

Earlier today, the MNLF chief Nur Misuari denied at a press conference any involvement in the Sulu standoff in Sabah, which is still raging on as Malaysian forces scour the length and breadth of Lahad Datu in search of the gunmen.

[Source: The MI]

OMG, look who is talking ...

Look at what is coming out from Najib's mouth.

PRIME Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak cautioned the people that they would face an uncertain future if they chose to be led by leaders who were hypocrites.

Speaking at the 12th Jelajah Janji DiTepati programme at Stadium Utama here yesterday, Najib said unlike the Barisan Nasional government, the opposition had failed to fulfil its pledges made in the 2008 general election, particularly in states now controlled by them.

"Let us not be led by hypocrites whose characteristics, as laid down by Prophet Muhammad, are, among others: when they speak they lie; when they are given responsibilities, they fail to carry them out; and, when they promise something, they do not fulfil it."

Najib, who arrived at the function greeted by an enthusiastic crowd of about 45,000, recalled the many promises made by the opposition parties en-route to making unprecedented inroads in 2008 and questioned why they had not been fulfilled.

"Where are their promises (of assistance) to single mothers, housewives, senior citizens, lowering of rental for shopkeepers and flat dwellers in states controlled by them?" Najib asked.

He then proceeded to ask the crowd what kind of promises had been made by the opposition and the deafening reply was, "Janji kosong!" (empty promises).

Asked what type of promises the BN government made, the crowd replied, "Janji ditepati!" (promises fulfilled)

Najib told the crowd that the Federal Government would continue to assist Perlis, which is the smallest state in the country, if it was returned to power.

He also announced that 10,000 units of affordable PR1MA houses would be built in the state.

Najib said the government had been able to fulfil its promises to the people and had proven its ability to manage the economy well despite the global financial crisis.

"Ever since we implemented the national transformation policies four years ago, we have been doing well despite the bleak economic outlook elsewhere, such as in the United States and Europe.

"Last year, Malaysia bucked the trend with its economy expanding by 5.6 per cent because our work was carried out with vision, good plans and effective implementation.

"We also did not promise anything that were unrealistic and could not be fulfilled."

Najib added that the opposition was now worried because the government was organising Jelajah Janji DiTepati programmes, which reminded the people that BN had fulfilled all its promises.

He said the opposition was not even capable of registering its coalition, therefore, its election manifesto could not be trusted.

"They are still going to the election under their separate banners.

"Whatever they promised in their joint manifesto is not legally or morally binding because they are not even capable of registering their coalition. [As if he didn't know that ROS rejected their application to register as a coalition].

"They can't even decide who among them will be prime minister."

[Source: NST]

Monday, March 4, 2013

Ridhuan Tee has it coming

Universiti Teknologi Malaysia’s civil engineering senior lecturer, Airil Yasreen Yassin, is seeking legal advice from his university’s legal team over a plagiarised work.

Airil’s work which was uploaded on his blog was plagiarised by National Defence University associate professor Ridhuan Tee Abdullah.

“I have forwarded a copy of Ridhuan Tee’s research paper (with the plagiarised sub-topics) to UTM’s legal unit and am awaiting its advice on the matter,” said Airil via e-mail.

Airil has also forwared the copy of the e-mail to UTM’s civil engineering faculty dean Professor Shahrin Mohammad and UTM senior legal officer, Abdul Karim Abdul Aziz.

In an earlier e-mail to FMT, Airil said he was made aware of Ridhuan’s plagiarised work after his blog readers alerted him to it when it was first reported in FMT on Feb 27.

Documents made available to FMT indicated that Ridhuan plagiarised entire paragraphs from his paper under several sub-topics.

The sub-topics are, “The importance of postgraduate research”, “Research as a form of teaching and learning”, and “Research as forms of religious acts i.e. ibadah, jihad and dakwah”.

‘No official complaint lodged’

The paragraphs that Ridhuan is alleged to have lifted were initially written by Airil for his research paper. It was uploaded on his blog on May 25, 2009.

Ridhuan plagiarised Airil’s work to complete his individual assignment for the Grade DS51 Efficiency Level Assessment (PTK4) coursework conducted from May to June 2010.

Reports of Ridhuan having plagiarised were first reported last Wednesday and as of March 1, no complaints have thus far been lodged with the Higher Education Ministry.

An official from the ministry who declined to be named told FMT that investigations into the alleged plagiarism would be conducted only after an official complaint is lodged.

Ridhuan, who is featured regularly in Islam-related talk shows, has been in the limelight the past two weeks after an article in his regular column for Sinar Harian demeaned Indians.

In the article, “Kesabaran umat Islam ada had” (The Patience of Muslims have limits) on Feb 18, Ridhuan criticised MIC for pushing for the screening of Tamil movie “Vishwaroopam” and belittled the Thaipusam festival.

[Source: FMT]

The never ending dream of Ang Lee

"In 1978, as I applied to study film at the University of Illinois, my father vehemently objected. He quoted me a statistic: ‘Every year, 50,000 performers compete for 200 available roles on Broadway.’ Against... his advice, I boarded a flight to the U.S. This strained our relationship. In the two decades following, we exchanged less than a hundred phrases in conversation.

Some years later, when I graduated film school, I came to comprehend my father’s concern. It was nearly unheard of for a Chinese newcomer to make it in the American film industry. Beginning in 1983, I struggled through six years of agonizing, hopeless uncertainty. Much of the time, I was helping film crews with their equipment or working as editor’s assistant, among other miscellaneous duties. My most painful experience involved shopping a screenplay at more than thirty different production companies, and being met with harsh rejection each time.

That year, I turned 30. There’s an old Chinese saying: ‘At 30, one stands firm.’ Yet, I couldn’t even support myself. What could I do? Keep waiting, or give up my movie-making dream? My wife gave me invaluable support.

My wife was my college classmate. She was a biology major, and after graduation, went to work for a small pharmaceutical research lab. Her income was terribly modest. At the time, we already had our elder son, Haan, to raise. To appease my own feelings of guilt, I took on all housework – cooking, cleaning, taking care of our son – in addition to reading, reviewing films and writing scripts. Every evening after preparing dinner, I would sit on the front steps with Haan, telling him stories as we waited for his mother – the heroic huntress – to come home with our sustenance (income).

This kind of life felt rather undignified for a man. At one point, my in-laws gave their daughter (my wife) a sum of money, intended as start-up capital for me to open a Chinese restaurant – hoping that a business would help support my family. But my wife refused the money. When I found out about this exchange, I stayed up several nights and finally decided: This dream of mine is not meant to be. I must face reality.

Afterward (and with a heavy heart), I enrolled in a computer course at a nearby community college. At a time when employment trumped all other considerations, it seemed that only a knowledge of computers could quickly make me employable. For the days that followed, I descended into malaise. My wife, noticing my unusual demeanor, discovered a schedule of classes tucked in my bag. She made no comment that night.

The next morning, right before she got in her car to head off to work, my wife turned back and – standing there on our front steps – said, ‘Ang, don’t forget your dream.’

And that dream of mine – drowned by demands of reality – came back to life. As my wife drove off, I took the class schedule out of my bag and slowly, deliberately tore it to pieces. And tossed it in the trash.

Sometime after, I obtained funding for my screenplay, and began to shoot my own films. And after that, a few of my films started to win international awards. Recalling earlier times, my wife confessed, ‘I’ve always believed that you only need one gift. Your gift is making films. There are so many people studying computers already, they don’t need an Ang Lee to do that. If you want that golden statue, you have to commit to the dream.’

And today, I’ve finally won that golden statue. I think my own perseverance and my wife’s immeasurable sacrifice have finally met their reward. And I am now more assured than ever before: I must continue making films.

You see, I have this never-ending dream."

(Following Ang Lee’s second Best Directing win at the Academy Awards last night, this beautiful essay resurfaced. Here is my translation of Ang Lee’s words, written in 2006 (post-Oscar win). Please credit the translation to Irene Shih (and to this blog), thank you!).