26 February 2014


Pendapat Anda?


So why is Tun Daim Zainuddin quaking?

Make no mistake, the former finance minister is worried. Worried enough that he keeps talking incessantly about Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

Publicly, he dismisses the PKR de facto leader as a publicity hound, a man who craves the limelight and loves the next headline.

Publicly, he runs the opposition leader down as someone who has never been able to solve any problem.

Publicly, he says that Anwar’s move to contest a by-election in Kajang is a complete waste of public funds.

Apparently Daim’s fixation with Anwar continues in private discussions but behind closed doors, the tone is less dismissive, less condescending.

Those in his circle say he speaks with some concern over the consequences of an Anwar victory in Kajang; chiefly the real possibility of Anwar being the chief executive of the richest state in Malaysia with several billion ringgit at his disposal and the immediate impact on the morale of Umno members in Selangor and then around the country.

Left unsaid is the fear that with a strong economic base and a platform to showcase stronger leadership qualities than the incumbent in Putrajaya, a rejuvenated and focused Anwar could lead Pakatan Rakyat (PR) to defeat Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Barisan Nasional (BN) in the next general elections – an end result could prove particularly uncomfortable for Daim, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and other Umno leaders from the glory days of privatisation and excess.

After all, Selangor is the country’s richest and most-industrialised state and next to it is Kuala Lumpur, which make them rich pickings for infrastructure projects, property deals and business for cronies and others connected to Putrajaya.

It would be in the interest of the few who have benefited in the past to ensure Selangor returns to the Barisan Nasional fold.

Anwar leading the state would make that a remote possibility for the near future and turn Selangor into another political fortress like Kelantan is for PAS.

To put it simply, there is a need to protect the golden goose.

And Umno-linked tycoons will go all out to prevent Anwar from taking over as menteri besar.

So do not be surprised if Daim takes more than a cursory interest in how Umno/BN are preparing for battle against Anwar.

It would be in the interest of the old guard of the Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad era if the current Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim does not vacate his position or at least drags out the whole process.

And let’s be clear, their disdain about the “Kajang move” has little to do with the use of public funds for a by-election.

Because if they were truly concerned about how taxpayers money is spent, they would not have allowed the one-sided toll concessions or sweet deals for the independent power producers or keep water resources in the hands of a few connected businessmen.

The battle for Kajang then, is really the battle over who gets to control Putrajaya in the nearest future.

An Anwar win in Kajang could lead to Umno losing the federal government sooner than later.

25 February 2014


Pendapat Anda?

Program Bersama Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim di N25 DUN KAJANG


1) 5:00 – 7:00 mlm – Sepetang Bersama Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim

Lokasi: Kediaman Cikgu Ridwan (Ketua Cabang Hulu Langat), Taman Koperasi Cuepacs Cheras, Kajang (https://maps.google.com/?source=friendlink&q=3.029086,101.775540(My+Location%4017:00,25/2))

2) 7:30 mlm – Solat Maghrib dan Penyampaian SMUE Fasa 2

Lokasi: Surau Taman Jenaris Kajang (http://maps.apple.com/maps?q=3.011930,101.801590)


21 February 2014


Pendapat Anda?


Deflecting claims that it carried out a “political activity,” the Holy Family Church (HFC) in Kajang said today that it invited by-election candidate Anwar Ibrahim to its church last Sunday for the sake of inter-faith harmony and not to win him more voters.

HFC’s parish priest George Harrison said the unusual initiative originated from a church member and he allowed it only because it was consistent with the church’s mission to boost  ties between Christians and Muslims in the country.

“I have been talking to people about building bridges with our Muslim brothers and sisters and so the event was allowed because a parishioner proposed it,” he told Malaysiakini.

“It was not meant to back any political party,” he added.

Harrison said the event, attended by some 1,200 people was organised by a church member from the Centre for Reform, Democracy and Social Initiatives, who rented a multi-purpose hall.

He added that although it took place after the Sunday church service, it was not in the main church building and the event was open to all.

During the event, Anwar spoke at length about the needed brotherhood among multiple races and religions, quoting from both the Quran and the Bible.

Harrison said he too dropped by for the talk on Sunday but not to cheer the PKR leader on.

“I have told my people – that we must listen well to all and then make your own discernment and decision (on the by-election) – even BN’s view and all.

“This is my message all along – I have said nothing to side anybody and to Anwar, I have only said : ‘This is my brother, welcome,’ ” he added.

The 40-year old priest asserted that as a citizen, he too had a right to host a famous personality, and noted that it was the first time he and Anwar had met.

Asked to answer to Perkasa vice-president Zulkifli Noordin’s suggestion that the church also allow Umno or NGOs like  Perkasa or Isma to hold talks at the church after Sunday prayers, Harrison hesitated.

“If this happens now, it will be very political. Remember, I am not the one organising it,” he said, adding that the church facilities were usually reserved only for its members to use for wedding and community events.

21 February 2014


Pendapat Anda?


Although official campaigning has yet to start, PKR chief and Kajang by-election candidate Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim is starting to make inroads among the Malay voters who have traditionally sided with Barisan Nasional.

Umno supporters are increasingly showing up in the small-scale meetings that Anwar’s team organises with residents such as at coffee shops and tazkirah (small discussions after the evening prayers).

The presence of Umno members who stay on to listen to Anwar at these meetings bode well for PKR’s aim of retaining the seat¸ said one of the managers in Anwar’s campaign, Mohd Yahya Saari.

“We were quite surprised that they came. And that they stayed on until the end to hear Anwar speak,” said Yahya, who is chief of the Kajang by-election operations room.

Although Kajang is considered a PKR bastion – the party won it with a 6,000-vote majority in the 13th general election – most of the support came from Chinese voters.

The party has been trying to widen its appeal to the Malay working and middle classes whose support it will count on if it wants to win federal power.

In order to break Umno’s hold over the Malay Muslim psyche, it needs to convince more Malay Muslims to accept its needs-based, multiracial agenda.

Anwar’s visits to the Malay villages and residential areas in Batu 10 Cheras and Kampung Sungai Kantan in the constituency also fit into what PKR strategic director Rafizi Ramli alluded to in a past interview.

That Selangor Pakatan Rakyat, as a whole, needs to inoculate Malay Muslims against what it believes are increasing racial and religious provocations during the coalition’s second term ruling the state.

For instance, Umno Selangor has gone on a roadshow in the state to drum up support for the ban on the use of the term “Allah” by non-Muslims.

Conversations between PKR activists and Umno supporters, said Yahya, showed an underlying worry about Umno’s increasing tilt to the party’s ultra conservatives.

“They seem to be quite bothered with how insular Umno has become. They feel that the party nowadays seems to only care for Malays instead of in the past, when the party was more open to all the communities,” said Yahya.

However, Universiti Malaya academic Datuk Prof Mohammad Redzuan Othman cautioned against treating the presence of a few Umno supporters at Anwar’s programmes as signs of an impending shift in Malay Muslim support in Kajang.

According to surveys by Redzuan’s research team, overall support for Barisan Nasional and Pakatan has remained the same since the general election last year.

“There may be a 2% to 3% shift in support. But this is not a big wave,” said Redzuan, the director of Universiti Malaya’s Centre for Democracy and Elections (UMCEDEL).

In UMCEDEL’s latest survey of the Kajang constituency, 69% of respondents felt that the rise in the cost of living would drive support towards Pakatan Rakyat.

The highest number of voters who felt this were civil servants, with 79% of them saying that the rise in the price of goods and services would drive votes to Pakatan.

At the same time, 60% of Malay Muslim Kajang voters feel that the “Allah” issue would not lead to more support for the BN and Umno in the by-election.

The by-election was triggered by the resignation of its state assemblyperson Lee Chin Cheh of PKR.

PKR had admitted that Lee’s resignation and the by-election was a carefully laid-out plan, called the “Kajang move” by its architects, for the party’s de facto leader Anwar to enter the Selangor government.

Both PKR and Anwar have strongly indicated that it was to allow him to take over as menteri besar from the popular Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim.

In the last general election, Lee garnered 19,571 votes, to win by a 6,824 votes. BN’s Lee Ban Seng obtained 12,747 votes while Mohamad Ismail of Berjasa got 1,014 votes.

21 February 2014


Pendapat Anda?

Program Bersama Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim di N25 DUN KAJANG


1) 1.00 tghari – Solat Jumaat

Lokasi: Surau Saujana Impian, Kajang (3.007895,101.788328) (selepas Tesco Kajang)

2) 10:30 mlm – Pentas AMK bersama Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim
Lokasi : Tapak Pasar Malam, Taman Delima, Batu 13 Jalan Cheras, Kajang (3.012727,101.779011)


1) 7:30 mlm – Solat Maghrib & Interaksi dgn Jemaah

Lokasi: Surau Raudhatul Mawaddah Taman Mesra, Jalan 2, Taman Mesra, Batu 12 1/2, Jalan Cheras, Kajang

2) 8:45 mlm – Solat Isya’ dan Interaksi dgn Jemaah

Lokasi: Surau ittifaqiah, Taman Delima, Batu 13, Jalan Cheras, Kajang

3) 8.30 – 12.00 mlm – Santai Bersama Komuniti India & Pelancaran Jentera

Lokasi : No 1, Jalan 1, Taman Kajang Baru, Sg Jerlok, Kajang (2.995884,101.806029)

4) 9.00 – 12.00 mlm – Pelancaran Jentera DM Sg Kantan dan Ceramah Perdana

Lokasi: Pusat Komuniti Taman Impian Murni, Kajang


1) 10.00 pagi – Kuliah Dhuha

Lokasi: Pondok Zakaria, Kampong Batu 10 Jalan Cheras, Kajang (berdekatan kompleks penghulu) ((3.058903,101.777685) )

2) 11:30 pagi – Penyampaian Hadiah Sukaneka

Lokasi: Kg Jambu, Belakang Tabung Haji, Kajang

3) 12:30 tgh hari – Bersama Khidmat Kesihatan 12 Pakar Perubatan

Lokasi: Perkarangan Surau Taman Jenaris, Kajang

4) 1:00 – 2:30 ptg – Santai Tengahari Bersama Komuniti India

Lokasi: Sebelah Kuil Mariamman – Taman Delima, Batu 13, Jalan Cheras, Kajang

5) 3:00 – 5:00 ptg – Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim Bersama Teman-Teman Lama

Lokasi: KK Hotel Kajang, No 12, Plaza Citra, Jalan citra off Jalan Cheras, Kajang

6) 5:00 – 7:00 ptg – Sepetang Bersama Anak Muda dan Raikan Perlawanan Futsal

Lokasi: Padang Futsal Kg Bukit Dukong, Kajang

7)  7:30 mlm – Solat Maghrib dan Interaksi Bersama Jemaah

Lokasi: Surau Taman Koperasi Cuepacs, Kajang

8) 8:30 – 11:00 mlm – Ceramah dan Pelancaran Jentera PRK Komuniti Cina

Lokasi: Taman Berjaya, Sungai Chua, Kajang

9) 9:00 – 12:00 mlm – Ceramah Perdana dan Pelancaran Jentera DM Kajang Baru

Lokasi: Padang Francis, Taman Maju, Kajang

10) 9:00 – 12:00 mlm – Ceramah Perdana dan Pelancaran Jentera

Lokasi: Padang Surau Nurul Aman, Taman Damai Jaya, Cheras


1) 5:00 – 7:00 mlm – Sepetang Bersama Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim

Lokasi: Kediaman Cikgu Ridwan (Ketua Cabang Hulu Langat), Taman Koperasi Cuepacs Cheras, Kajang

2) 7:30 mlm – Solat Maghrib dan Penyampaian SMUE Fasa 2

Lokasi: Surau Taman Jenaris Kajang


20 February 2014


Pendapat Anda?


Datuk Mokhzani Mahathir, the son of former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, has finally joined the ranks of the country’s top 10 richest people as the nation’s magnates continue to widen the gap with the rest of Malaysia.

According to a new list of Malaysia’s 40 richest tycoons released by the Malaysian Business magazine, the SapuraKencana Petroleum mogul added another RM1.59 billion to his coffers over the last year to raise his estimated wealth to RM4.22 billion — good enough for ninth place on the list.

In 2012, Mokhzani had emerged with about 15 per cent of SapuraKencana after his Kencana Petroluem Bhd merged with SapuraCrest Petroleum Bhd. He later disposed of 90 million shares at for an estimated RM387 million.

Mokhzani relinquished his executive positions in SapuraKencana late last year and instead remains only as a non-executive director.

The two richest two Malaysians remain “sugar king” Tan Sri Robert Kuok (RM54 billion) and T. Ananda Krishnan (RM33 billion) by a wide margin, with the telecommunications and entertainment tycoon nearly twice as rich as third-placed Tan Sri Teh Hong Pow of Public Bank fame.

Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar al-Bukhary was fifth richest with RM11 billion, while AmBank chairman Tan Sri Azman Hashim capped off the top 10.

Berjaya’s Tan Sri Vincent Tan foray into the English Premier League with Cardiff City also appears to be taking a toll on his bank balance, with the gaming magnate managing only 20th spot with his RM1.9 billion.

“One interesting fact is that since 2002, 81 tycoons have joined the 40 Richest Malaysians list

and out of that, 15 have managed to remain on it continuously,” the magazine said in an accompanying release.

It added that there were now two more local billionaires, bringing the number to 33, while the combined wealth of the top 40 richest Malaysians weighed in at RM217.8 billion or some 11 per cent better than they had been in the previous year.

According to a previous list released by Forbes last year, Mokhzani was the 15th wealthiest person in Malaysia. Forbes also differed on Vincent Tan’s net worth, listing him as the tenth richest man in the country.

Forbes is due to release an updated list next month.

Malaysian Business began tracking the worth of Malaysia’s wealthiest people in 2002.

20 February 2014


Pendapat Anda?


A Pakatan Rakyat victory in the Kajang by-election scheduled is important to end the legacy of Umno and Barisan Nasional, says opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

The de facto PKR leader, who is also the PR candidate in the by-election, said a victory on March 23 would answer all the doubts and questions raised by various quarters over his candidacy.

“If Selangor really succeeds and develops, provides the people with good services – that would be the perfect riposte to all the Pakatan critics and doubters.

“It will be a sign that the history of BN and Umno in Malaysia is coming to an end,” Anwar said.

Addressing about 300 supporters and residents in Sungai Sekamat, Kajang, last night, Anwar said nomination day was a long way away but the attacks against him had begun.

“Campaigning has not started, but I am insulted and assaulted daily,” he told the crowd.

Even former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has waded into the fray, expressing his fears if Anwar is appointed the Selangor menteri besar.

Dr Mahathir has cast doubts on Anwar’s suitability as a leader, claiming that the Permatang Pauh MP had formed PKR to realise his ambition of becoming prime minister.

“Anwar is adaptable and capable of changing his colours to suit the circumstance,” Dr Mahathir said, referring to the former’s speech at a church last weekend.

However, Anwar said it was because of this attitude and honesty PKR supporters were still steadfastly supporting him despite the various obstacles that he had faced in his political career.

“Integrity and honesty is important. I retain the support of the people despite being insulted, mocked and jailed because the public feels I am a man of my word.

“Kelantan is not a rich state but the rakyat adore former menteri besar Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat,” Anwar said.

“The people know that Nik Abdul Aziz does not use his position to enrich his family members nor did he take a single state share.”

Anwar took a swipe at Dr Mahathir and wondered how his son had become a billionaire if he did not abuse his position.

Business magazine Malaysian Business yesterday reported that Datuk Mokhzani Mahathir was listed among the top 10 richest individuals in Malaysia.

Mokhzani was listed ninth on the list with a total wealth of RM4.22 billion. He rose four spots compared with last year through his company, Sapura Kencana Petroleum.

Last year, Mokhzani had been ranked 13th with a total wealth of RM2.63 million, according to Malaysian Business.

Anwar praised the voters in Kajang for being more Internet-savvy compared with the voters in his Permatang Pauh constituency.

“Kajang’s unique trait is due to the strong Internet penetration in the area. Kajang residents follow more news on the Internet compared with mainstream television and newspapers.”

20 February 2014


Pendapat Anda?

Huffington Post

Most democracies achieve political legitimacy from a popular perception of effective and upright governance. Malaysia’s self-described “best democracy in the world” is looking increasingly tarnished these days, following the recent election and return to power of its long-ruling Barisan National party. As President Obama plans a long awaited trip to Malaysia in April he should be aware of the toxic mix of racial politics being fomented by the Malaysian ruling party.

Despite losing the popular vote, the BN triumphed again in the country’s 2013 elections, disappointing a growing opposition that had high hopes after a strong performance in 2008. The entrenched political hierarchy, instead of being humbled by its near defeat, is attempting to strengthen its hold on the country and its institutions, ignoring the need for change. Its autocratic insistence on adhering to past practices of repression, racism, corruption and cronyism have led observers to qualify its system of government as semi, quasi or limited democracy.

In the latest World Press Freedom index, Malaysia has hit an historic low, ranking 147 out of 180 countries, reflecting the government’s increased repression of media freedoms by suspending publications that dare to criticize the Prime Minister, denying licenses to media outlets, censoring publications and restricting access to information.

The declining popularity of the Naijib Razak government is reflected in the increasing popularity of Anwar Ibrahim’s Pakatan Rakyat coalition which is calling for ending the erosion of democracy in Malaysia. The fact that Ibrahim’s party won the popular vote is an indication that the current electoral system is due for reform based on the principle of popular sovereignty, not on the basis of a selective franchise. In Malaysia all votes are not equal, with the apportionment of seats to states not based on their populations, with the result that rural votes have more weight than urban votes.

Restoring public confidence in the Electoral Commission and election process will be crucial to a healthy and mature democracy that will be responsive to the interests of all citizens, regardless of ethnicity or religion. The BN insists that Malaysia is a democracy simply because it has had regular elections with the latest being the 13th instance of electing a government by the ballot box. But democracy demands more than just elections. Protection of civil liberties and political rights, the freedom of the press and the right to assemble, checks and balances, transparency and accountability are all as important as process.

In the complex plural society of Malaysia, with its highly educated generation of young people, it is therefore inexplicable that the government should recently choose to inflame religious tensions by forbidding Malaysian Christians from using the word “Allah.”

About 2.6 million Malaysians are Christians and have long complained about discriminatory policies that favor Muslim Malays. The Prime Minister glibly praises Malaysia as a multi-ethnic melting pot, yet fails to protect the rights of minorities to worship as they see fit. The ban on Christians using the word Allah — which has been in Malay translations of the Bible for 400 years — is seen to be pandering to extremists from a right-wing fringe of the ruling party. Several independent United Nations human rights spokesmen have called on the Malaysian government to rescind the ban and secure the right to freedom of expression of Christian publications, instead of exacerbating tensions within religious minorities in the country.

The controversy is a symptom of a deeper unease as the country is becoming increasingly polarized along ethnic and religious lines. Instead of building the idea of a Malaysian nationality, the present government seems to have retreated into divide and rule divisive sectarian politics. In contrast, opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim advocates a common identity based on universal citizenship and his message of inclusive and pluralist democracy has a particular resonance at a time when Malaysia is struggling to live up to its legacy as a pluralistic and open society.

Anwar Ibrahim recently announced he would be contesting for a state assembly seat in Selangor, Malaysia’s most prosperous and ethnically diverse state. Many believe once elected he may assume the position of Chief Minister, giving him a platform on which to resolve some of these contentious issues and confront the racially charged rhetoric emanating from the ruling party. If he does succeed in the upcoming election instead of headlines reading “Death of Democracy in Malaysia,” we will begin to see a resurgence of optimism as the underlying shift in political attitudes in Selangor bring about a renaissance for democracy in the nation.

20 February 2014


Pendapat Anda?

Perkembangan Pelik di Kajang, SPR Harus Minimakan Ruang Manipulasi

Satu perkembangan yang pelik telah berlaku di sekitar Kajang apabila pasukan pemantauan Solidariti Anak Muda Malaysia (SAMM) telah mengesan beberapa bas persiaran menurunkan warga asing di hadapan KTM Kajang pagi ini.

Apakah ianya satu kebetulan apabila ribuan warga asing dipercayai warga Myanmar hadir ke Kajang dengan beg besar seolah-olah baru masuk ke negara melalui KLIA.

Dalam perkembangan yang sama, adakah kehadiran warga asing ini turut berkaitan dengan kelewatan melampau tarikh pilihanraya kecil yang jatuh pada akhir Mac dengan alasan yang tidak masuk akal?

SAMM tidak menolak kemungkinan kelewatan tarikh PRK ada kaitan, demi persiapan lebih rapi untuk penipuan pilihanraya kecil N25. Usaha SPR untuk menggunakan senarai pemilih yang baru (Mac 2014) juga agak meragukan.

SAMM turut menggesa supaya SPR meminimakan ruang-ruang manipulasi antaranya dalam soal jumlah pengundi awal yang begitu ramai.

Menjadi persoalan, mengapa SPR menggunakan petugas dari pengundi DUN Kajang? Mengapa tidak SPR memanggil petugas dari sekitar Bangi, Semenyih dan Cheras untuk menjadi petugas pilihanraya?

Jika SPR memanggil pengundi Kajang sebagai petugas maka ia membuka ruang manipulasi dengan peningkatan besar jumlah pengundi awal. Ini sepatutnya boleh dielakkan.

Sebagai sebuah badan yang tercalar teruk menafikan demokrasi dalam PRU lalu, SPR harusnya terarah untuk menjadi lebih bersih bagi mengembalikan keyakinan orang ramai. Namun pemerhatian SAMM setakat ini, SPR tetap tidak berubah dan tidak punya usaha yang nyata untuk perbaiki kelemahan. SPR terus diperkudakan pemerintah.

Sebelum ini SAMM telah mendesak pihak SPR memperinci anggaran perbelanjaan RM1.6 juta untuk PRK Kajang yang disifatkan agak tinggi. Ia ekoran operasi SPR yang kerap menggunakan orang tengah dalam pelbagai urusan secara tidak langsung berlaku ketirisan dan pembaziran.

Akhir sekali, SAMM menyeru kepada orang ramai dan semua aktivis demokrasi agar turun ke Kajang untuk memastikan pilihanraya kecil kali ini berlangsung dengan bersih dan adil. Harus diingat, Inilah ‘turning point’ bagi pihak Barisan Nasional maka tidak mustahil penipuan terbesar dalam sejarah bakal berlaku di Kajang.


Solidariti Anak Muda Malaysia (SAMM)

19 February 2014


Pendapat Anda?

Program Bersama Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim di N25 DUN KAJANG

19 – 23 FEBRUARI 2014


1) 9.00 – 12.00 mlm – Ceramah & Pelancaran Jentera

Lokasi : Lot 688 Kg Sg Sekamat, Batu 13, Jln Cheras, Kajang (3.017248,101.782159)


1) 1.00 tghari – Solat Jumaat

Lokasi: Surau Saujana Impian, Kajang (3.007895,101.788328) (selepas Tesco Kajang)

2) 9.00 – 12.00 mlm – Pentas AMK bersama Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim dan Tuan Guru Haji Abdul Hadi Awang

Lokasi : Tapak Pasar Malam, Taman Delima, Batu 13 Jalan Cheras, Kajang (3.012727,101.779011)


1) 8.00 – 12.00 mlm – Santai Bersama Komuniti India & Pelancaran Jentera

Lokasi : No 1, Jalan 1, Taman Kajang Baru, Sg Jerlok, Kajang (2.995884,101.806029)

2) 9.00 – 12.00 mlm – Pelancaran Jentera DM Sg Kantan dan Ceramah Perdana

Lokasi: Pusat Komuniti Kg Sg Kantan (berdekatan padang permainan) (2.994813,101.793992)


1) 10.00 pagi – Kuliah Dhuha

Lokasi: Pondok Zakaria, Kampong Batu 10 Jalan Cheras, Kajang (berdekatan kompleks penghulu) ((3.058903,101.777685) )

2) 1.00 – 2.30 ptg – Santai Bersama Komuniti India

Lokasi: Bersebelahan Kuil Mariamman, Taman Delima, Batu 13 Jalan Cheras, Kajang (3.018663,101.778705)

3) 3.00 ptg – Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim bersama teman-teman lama

Lokasi : Kolej Darul Hikmah, Sg Ramal, Kajang (2.974156,101.76025)

4) 5.00 – 7.00 ptg – Sepetang Bersama Anak Muda, Raikan Perlawanan Futsal

Lokasi : Padang Futsal Kg Bkt Dukong, Kajang (exit Sg Sekamat)

5) 7.30 mlm – Solat Maghrib dan Interaksi Bersama Jemaah

Lokasi: Akan dimaklumkan

6) 8.30 -11.00 mlm – Pelancaran Jentera PRK Komuniti Cina

Lokasi: Taman Berjaya, Sungai Chua, Kajang (pusat komuniti) (2.983467,101.779112)

7) 9.00 – 12.00 mlm – Pelancaran Jentera DM Kota Cheras dan Ceramah Perdana

Lokasi: Padang Surau Nurul Aman, Taman Damai Jaya, Cheras (3.061839,101.767321)


19 February 2014


Pendapat Anda?

The New York Times

SOME of the smartest thinkers on problems at home and around the world are university professors, but most of them just don’t matter in today’s great debates.

The most stinging dismissal of a point is to say: “That’s academic.” In other words, to be a scholar is, often, to be irrelevant.

One reason is the anti-intellectualism in American life, the kind that led Rick Santorum to scold President Obama as “a snob” for wanting more kids to go to college, or that led congressional Republicans to denounce spending on social science research. Yet it’s not just that America has marginalized some of its sharpest minds. They have also marginalized themselves.

“All the disciplines have become more and more specialized and more and more quantitative, making them less and less accessible to the general public,” notes Anne-Marie Slaughter, a former dean of the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton and now the president of the New America Foundation.

There are plenty of exceptions, of course, including in economics, history and some sciences, in professional schools like law and business, and, above all, in schools of public policy; for that matter, we have a law professor in the White House. But, over all, there are, I think, fewer public intellectuals on American university campuses today than a generation ago.

A basic challenge is that Ph.D. programs have fostered a culture that glorifies arcane unintelligibility while disdaining impact and audience. This culture of exclusivity is then transmitted to the next generation through the publish-or-perish tenure process. Rebels are too often crushed or driven away.

“Many academics frown on public pontificating as a frivolous distraction from real research,” said Will McCants, a Middle East specialist at the Brookings Institution. “This attitude affects tenure decisions. If the sine qua non for academic success is peer-reviewed publications, then academics who ‘waste their time’ writing for the masses will be penalized.”

The latest attempt by academia to wall itself off from the world came when the executive council of the prestigious International Studies Association proposed that its publication editors be barred from having personal blogs. The association might as well scream: We want our scholars to be less influential!

A related problem is that academics seeking tenure must encode their insights into turgid prose. As a double protection against public consumption, this gobbledygook is then sometimes hidden in obscure journals — or published by university presses whose reputations for soporifics keep readers at a distance.

Jill Lepore, a Harvard historian who writes for The New Yorker and is an exception to everything said here, noted the result: “a great, heaping mountain of exquisite knowledge surrounded by a vast moat of dreadful prose.”

As experiments, scholars have periodically submitted meaningless gibberish to scholarly journals — only to have the nonsense respectfully published.

My onetime love, political science, is a particular offender and seems to be trying, in terms of practical impact, to commit suicide.

“Political science Ph.D.’s often aren’t prepared to do real-world analysis,” says Ian Bremmer, a Stanford political science Ph.D. who runs the Eurasia Group, a consulting firm. In the late 1930s and early 1940s, one-fifth of articles in The American Political Science Review focused on policy prescriptions; at last count, the share was down to 0.3 percent.

Universities have retreated from area studies, so we have specialists in international theory who know little that is practical about the world. After the Arab Spring, a study by the Stimson Center looked back at whether various sectors had foreseen the possibility of upheavals. It found that scholars were among the most oblivious — partly because they relied upon quantitative models or theoretical constructs that had been useless in predicting unrest.

Many academic disciplines also reduce their influence by neglecting political diversity. Sociology, for example, should be central to so many national issues, but it is so dominated by the left that it is instinctively dismissed by the right.

In contrast, economics is a rare academic field with a significant Republican presence, and that helps tether economic debates to real-world debates. That may be one reason, along with empiricism and rigor, why economists (including my colleague in columny, Paul Krugman) shape debates on issues from health care to education.

Professors today have a growing number of tools available to educate the public, from online courses to blogs to social media. Yet academics have been slow to cast pearls through Twitter and Facebook. Likewise, it was TED Talks by nonscholars that made lectures fun to watch (but I owe a shout-out to the Teaching Company’s lectures, which have enlivened our family’s car rides).

I write this in sorrow, for I considered an academic career and deeply admire the wisdom found on university campuses. So, professors, don’t cloister yourselves like medieval monks — we need you!

19 February 2014


Pendapat Anda?


The Kajang by-election has triggered a crapshoot.

With something like three weeks to go to nomination day, the campaign is already awash in the hogwash that tells you the silly season’s here – earlier than usual.

By now we well know that any contest in which the stakes are high and PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim is involved tends to attract mad hatters, like moths to flame.

It’s not that Anwar is a contributor to the crap; it’s just that he’s so unfailing a cause for the emission of the drivel that tells you the madding season has begun.

Presently, the most prolific peddler of poppycork is former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

Even at an age that is supposed to bring on a mellow equanimity, the scent of Anwar can be counted on to make the octogenarian Mahathir’s nostrils twitch, like a tapir’s when browsing for food.

As gleefully as a hog after truffles, the former prime minister the past few weeks has dug up every unthinking cliché about Anwar for regurgitation without aid of the rhetorical contrivances that can render the jaded the gleam of wit.

Anwar, the agent of America; Anwar, the sly dodger of court action; Anwar, the PM-aspirant who’s barely MB material; Anwar, the sexual deviant but pretender to Islamic rectitude; Anwar, the justice exponent but hidden repressor of liberty; Anwar, the apparent meritocrat but latent promoter of nepotism; Anwar, the bogus financial czar and tool of the IMF and World Bank; Anwar, the public Islamist but covert Jew lover, and so on and so forth.

The range of these defamations must want to make Anwar say with the poet Walt Whitman: “Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself. I’m large, I contain multitudes.”

But the only multitudes that matter these days are the ones that turn up for his stumps on the election circuit.

From Permatang Pauh to Pasir Gudang, from Kajang to Kota Kinabalu, the attendances at the opposition leader’s ceramah have not receded. And this is what appears to give his adversaries sleeplessness.

Anwar’s decision to go for a seat in the Selangor legislature has given his ally turned adversary Mahathir the insomnia that can cause memory loss.

Echoing Liow

Last week, Mahathir, taking the cue from MCA president Liow Tiong Lai, blamed Anwar for Operation Lallang.

Operation Lallang, launched in October 1987, involved the detention of over 100 politicians and social activists and the banning of several newspapers in what has come to be regarded as one of the darkest chapters of Malaysian history.

Anwar was education minister at the time while Mahathir was both prime minister and home affairs minister.

Mahathir has previously tried to dodge responsibility for that episode by claiming that it was the police who had insisted on the repression, conveniently forgetting that the Internal Security Act only allowed for detentions under the signature of the home minister.

If Mahathir’s disclaimer of responsibility is taken at face value, then it meant that at the time of ISA arrests, Malaysia was a police state, not a parliamentary democracy.

With regards to Operation Lallang, Anwar’s links extended only to the fact that his ministry was responsible for the placement of non-Mandarin speaking personnel in government-aided Chinese schools.

The decision led to protest demonstrations by Chinese educationists. Umno Youth responded with a menacing display of chauvinism. Tensions ran high and the government reacted with a spate of detentions and newspaper bans.

Last week, newly elected MCA chief Liow, in his first foray into Kajang, which seat is likely to be contested by his party, reminded Chinese voters that it was Anwar’s actions that had led to Operation Lallang.

Mahathir, 88, promptly seconded Liow’s view until Anwar countered by saying that he was in charge of the education portfolio and not home affairs under whose imprimatur the ISA arrests occurred.

Under pressure from DAP adviser Lim Kit Siang, who was the opposition leader in 1987 and who tartly reminded Mahathir that he had signed the detentions orders as home minister, the ex-PM admitted responsibility, citing advanced age for his memory lapses.

However, a retentive memory for old canards was at work when Mahathir, pressing the attack against Anwar, trotted out all the hoary old charges against his nemesis, from western tool to latent sexual predator.

He sounded like a stuck record, spinning endlessly in the grooves of a discredited past.

This is what gives Mahathir and his ilk goose pimples: while their target, Anwar, is taken up with what to do about the future, they are reflexively fixated on the past.

That is why, for the latter, the Kajang by-election is a crapshoot while for their adversary it is the signpost to a better future – for Selangorians, at least.

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