Archive for April, 2012

April 29, 2012

SA Senator Nick Xenophon has been gassed in a crackdown by riot police using teargas to in Kuala Lumpur.

Speaking by mobile phone to AdelaideNow while an armed escort attempts to move his party out of the area as tear gas canisters continue to be launched at protestors, Senator Xenophon said the police “had gone nuts, people are panicking and starting to run”.

Senator Xenophon is in Malaysia with six international delegates at the invitation of Malaysian Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim on a fact finding mission to investigate electoral processes including gerrymanders, with an election expected around June.

Senator Xenophon said so far he had been gassed three times and at one stage more than a dozen canisters rained down near him as he tried to leave.

Estimates of the crowd vary, with Senator Xenophon putting it at 200,000 people.

For the full story, read here.

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April 29, 2012

428 Malaysian Spirit

The Malaysians who thronged the city around Dataran Merdeka and the roads leading to it were peaceful. They sang the national anthem Negara Ku (My Country) and chanted Bersih! Bersih! along the way. There were grandpas, grandmas, papas, mamas, sons and daughters including some who came in their wheelchairs joining forces in full solidarity together. They were from all racial communities and included a number of foreign visitors who joined in.

And they were a truly peaceful bunch of friendly people in the true Malaysian muhibbah spirit enjoying themselves. They were only there for a clean and fair election. They were having fun.

Here are some interesting pictures contributed by many people who were there at the duduk bantah yesterday! Hope it puts a smile on your faces.

Golly gee! High platform sandals are back in fashion.

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April 29, 2012

428 Magnificent Day for Malaysians


Malaysians thronged KL city at 6 locations and slowly proceeded towards Dataran Merdeka for a peaceful sit down protest. The police estimated 25,000 but Bersih estimated 250,000. Those who were there today believes there are at the very least well over 100,000 Malaysians who gave their voices and presence to call for a clean and fair election.

The police shot tear gas and chemical laced water at protestors towards the end of the duduk bantah event claiming protestors broke through the barricades. The ugly and indiscriminate firing of tear gas gave Malaysian a bad taste believing that there was no reason to retaliate that way. The police actually moved into the city to clear the protestors even though they were already dispersed.

Regardless of any trouble makers in crowds of such immense proportions, Malaysians have clearly sent a signal to our PM Najib very loud and very clear that they want a clean and fair election. It is evident that the PAC report did not go down well with Malaysians as it did not fix the problems but made it worse. Most demands were ignored or made it easier for fraud to happen.

Will the Government listen and heed the demands to make the changes before the next General Election?

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April 26, 2012

Make a date, Malaysia – It’s 428

It is 2 days before 428 (April 28). Saturday is the date for Bersih 3.0 themed “Duduk Bantah” at Dataran Merdeka at 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm.

The Home Minister Hishamuddin has underscored that they have learnt not to repeat the past reactions towards Bersih and that Bersih 3.0 is of no threat to the country. In fact, he proudly declared that it will have no traction with the people. A high court judge has asked of Hishamuddin regarding his change of stance towards Bersih that he “banned” Bersih 2.0 but “permitted” Bersih 3.0. He might just witness a milestone event beyond his imagination totally contrary to his wish.

Strangely, the Police has rejected the application by Bersih 3.0 to hold the rally and KL Mayor Ahmad Fuad Ismail has had a confrontation with the organizers of Bersih in a meeting recently. He held a press conference and positioned himself as the saint that if any chaos happen, it will be blamed on Bersih. What a nerve he has to forget that he is a civil servant and that means a servant of the people who pays his salary. It is very sad that Malaysian leaders have long forgotten the service to the people and have fallen in line with service to the political party. Dataran Merdeka belongs to the people. What would Tunku Abdul Rahman say in back in 1957 if we had a KL Mayor like Ahmad Fuad.

To date, besides Kuala Lumpur, there are 71 other sites around Malaysia and around the world that will hold Bersih 3.0 rallies. Well, 72 if you count Mount Everest as a location (in Nepal) (read here). This will break new ground of global Bersih coverage by Malaysians around the world and judging by what happened in Bersih 2.0, we will find friends of Malaysians joining in as well to stand with all of us in solidarity.

Why is this happening?

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April 5, 2012

Hindraf Missing The Point

Hindraf’s participation in the upcoming Bersih 3.0 rally will depend on the opposition coalition Pakatan Rakyat’s response to an invitation it extended yesterday.

Hindraf had yesterday invited Opposition Leader and PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim, DAP advisor Lim Kit Siang and PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang to outline plans for Indian poor in the first 100 days if Pakatan Rakyat forms the next federal government. (read here).

Hindraf has missed the point. They are still obsessed with the Indian poor. They are forcing the issue to focus on the Indian poor. Instead, they should demand Pakatan Rakyat how they are going to help the Malaysian poor which includes the Indians as well.

We don’t want another NEP with special focus on the Indians. We want the right NEP spirit, concept and actions for ALL Malaysians.

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April 4, 2012

Bersih 3.0 it is – 428 date


Bersih 3.0 was announced by Ambiga in a reaction to a Parliamentary Select Committee poor and shoddy work that whitewashed the electoral reform demands of Bersih 2.0. Although 22 recommendations were made, no urgency was placed and neither a timeframe to execute. Lots of studies recommended and probably more reports to be made out of these studies and GE13 will be long over when these make their rounds.

To be clear, Bersih 3.0 is not a rally but a sit-in. It is themed as “Duduk Bantah” or sit-in protest and is scheduled to be held on Saturday 28 April. The primary location is Dataran Merdeka but will be simultaneously held in multiple locations across the country and overseas.

Nazri already came out saying that Dataran Merdeka is not considered an acceptable location under the newly passed Assembly Act 2011. The Government will be planning all their options to stop Bersih 3.0.

Will they do a crackdown before 28 April on people wearing yellow again? By the way, the declaration by Hishamuddin on yellow tshirts to be illegal has not been rescinded but was that declaration legal in the first place?

Will they lockdown Kuala Lumpur again? What options does the Government have? What options does Najib have?

For sure, Najib does not want to have a repeat of the international backlash which resulted from poor advice given to him. It is very bad publicity for his preparation of the impending GE.

But if he does not do anything to stop this sit-in protest, he could be cowed by a possible humongous hoard of Malaysians who will make their presence and demands felt around Malaysia and around the world.

What if Najib plays the statesman and accepts graciously the demands of Bersih 3.0 and tell them to behave and do it peacefully? He may not agree to true electoral reforms as demanded by Bersih but he can play his good guy role with a pretentious listening ear to Bersih and pay lip service to it.

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April 3, 2012

Bersih 3.0?

It was barely 9 months ago that Bersih 2.0 took to the streets of Kuala Lumpur. The Najib administration vilified the people of 25,000 of all walks of life and all communities. The disproportional retribution during the walk caused all Malaysians to feel that the Government has something to hide.

Banning Bersih 2.0, lockdown of KL, water canons and tear gas fired on innocent people, political arrests, and to top it all is playing with the truth on how the police acted on the people and trying to censor the Economist article on this event.

With an international backlash, Najib agreed to having a Parliamentary Select Committee which is bipartisan to look into the demands. Now we can see that the PSC has side stepped on all the key problem areas to ensure a fair and free election. Even cleaning the electoral roles that are strewn with allegations of fraud has no priority in the PSC view.

Now we are looking at the possibility of Bersih 3.0 and it seems inevitable. There will be an announcement made later today and we shall see what the organizing committee has to say.

But frankly speaking, this could have been avoided had the PSC and EC been genuine to resolve the demands of Bersih 2.0. After all, they are not difficult and is of paramount importance yet they are not addressed head on but glossed over. Unless there is glory and pride in winning an election shrouded with doubt and fraudulent allegations, the Government must stand up and be counted.

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April 3, 2012

Najib: Don’t Change Drivers … Only If

Datuk Seri Najib Razak called on Malaysians tonight not to switch to a “dangerous” government in coming polls after his administration claimed it had exceeded last year’s targets for its transformation plans.

The prime minister reminded voters in a live televised address that “we need a capable driver that can streamline all factors to ensure the vehicle arrives at its destination at the appointed time safely.” (read here).

It is very interesting and amusing to find our PM pleading with Malaysians not to change the Government. The only reason he is saying this is that his grassroot feedback tells him that all is not well and the support for his administration is not good. In fact, he is showing signs of desperation to engage Malaysians this way.

A PM in real power and driving seat will not need to say such things or eat humble pie. A PM who is really driving should already know where he is taking the country is a better place and the passengers, us Malaysians, will be happy even though the ride may be very bumpy and difficult?

It is this type of PM who can make the hard decisions and get real results and not some public relations ETP report that moves the economy. We need the PM who is really driving and knows where he is taking the people. And not down the hell hole either.

Government statistics which is truthful and accurate can only be gleaned AFTER the people on the street already felt, suffered and possibly many died in the economic quake.

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April 2, 2012

Najib says subsidies to continue but for how long more?

In tonight’s live telecast of PM Najib’s ETP/GTP Report, his overriding theme was how much subsidy that the Government is making for the people. The change from subsidy rationalization to continuing to have more subsidies stems from the Government’s focus to cost of living. (read here).

How convenient to spin this subsidy tall tale. Malaysia has been a highly subsidised nation for a long time and continued unabated subsidies will certainly bring the Government to its knees very soon.

In a previous posting, we already suggested that it is definitely necessary to cut subsidies but not until Government wastage and leakages are reined in.

There is no point in making Malaysians suffer more while reading how the Government paid mega millions and billions more for goods and services others pay a fraction for.

Furthermore, the rise in cost of living began with the previous PM Abdullah Badawi and followed closely by PM Najib in raising the fuel prices. This caused an unimaginable ripple effect on cost of living – upwards!

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