Thursday, May 27, 2010

'Special' security for Subang Jaya council chief

By R. Nadeswaran (The Sun)
SHAH ALAM (May 26, 2010): The president of the Subang Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ) enjoys a rare privilege only accorded to cabinet ministers. He has official security for his private home in Shah Alam – paid for by ratepayers.
Every night, a vehicle belonging to MPSJ with two enforcement officers is parked outside Datuk Adnan Md Ikhsan’s house in Jalan Rabung in Bukit Jelutong, Shah Alam.
The irony is that while Subang Jaya ratepayers are out of pocket and breaking the law by putting up illegal barriers and hiring private security guards for their neighbourhood, their council president enjoys the "protection" of council officers for his double-storey corner house.
Their salaries and the overtime are paid for by the council and they are not complaining either. But many in Adnan’s neighbourhood are asking whether it is an abuse of his office and authority.
Investigations showed that a four-wheel drive belonging to MPSJ is parked outside the house from about 10pm to dawn daily. Just after midnight on Wednesday, theSun’s investigative team took some pictures.
One of the officers demanded to know our identity and claimed that we cannot take photographs. We told him to call the police if we had broken the law.
Anyway, enforcement officers from Subang Jaya have no jurisdiction whatsoever in Shah Alam and if at all, they could have made a citizen’s arrest if the "offence" committed is a sizable one.
There was no trespass to property as the photographs were taken from a public road which is accessible to everyone.
Attempts were made to meet Adnan to present the photographs and seek his views but he said he was busy till Tuesday.
It cannot be ascertained for how long Adnan had enjoyed this privilege but according to council insiders, the MPSJ full board had not endorsed any official security for his home.
However it is learnt that Adnan had sought approval from the finance committee to pay overtime to enforcement officers without disclosing the reasons.
It is uncertain how much the assistant enforcement officers have raked in overtime but a lower ranking officer can claim about RM10 an hour.
While council presidents may receive security, it is for the official residence only, and that too a designated security guard – not enforcement officers.
The council president’s official residence was sold about 14 years ago to fund a public library. -- theSun

BCorp may want to take the loophole but wait....

Pakatan Rakyat led Selangor State Government has again taken the lead in combating social ill.
This time the riches local council in Selangor, Petaling Jaya City Council ruled that they shall be no sport betting outlets operating within its area.
However, there are reports that Berjaya Corporation Berhad (BCorp), the holder of the sport betting license, may just open counters for sport betting too in existing Sport Toto gaming outlets which offer 4-digit betting.
On hindsight, it seems to be correct but if we examine it closely and purely on the perspective of business licensing, the business licenses issued by MBPJ to Sport Toto are meant for 4-digit betting and the license is issued to "Sport Toto Malaysia Sendirian Berhad".
On the other hand, the license holder for sport betting is Ascot Sports Sdn. Bhd. which 70% of its stake are owned by Berjaya Corporation Berhad (BCorp).
So, there are two different companies altogether although the two are owned by the same parent company, BCorp.
In terms of licensing, the business licenses issued to Sport Toto Sdn. Bhd. by the council cannot be shared with Ascot Sports Sdn Bhd. Moreover, according to section 107(2) of the 1976 Local Government Act, local councils have right to exert certain conditions in granting the licenses. Such license can be withdrawn at any time deemed suitable by the councils
Selangor local councils mount barrier against sports betting
By Malaysiakini Reporter Aidila Razak
May 27, 10

Several local councils in Selangor have moved to freeze the license of gambling premises which offer sports betting, in what appears to be a cascading wave of protest against the federal government legislation.
Starting with the Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) on Tuesday, the movement appeared to have spread to Selayang yesterday and Ampang Jaya this morning, with both acting to disallow sports betting in their respective jurisdictions.
Speaking to reporters after their full-board meeting, councilor Latheefa Koya said that they acted under Section 101 of the Local Government Act which covers issues concerning health, safety and convenience.
Latheefa, (left) who is also PKR information chief, said that sports betting is detrimental to mental health and turns sports into an unhealthy activity.
According to Selayang councilor Lee Khai Loon, local councils can bar the activity by controlling through the issuance of premise licenses, which stipulates the type of items that can be traded.
"Existing gambling premises like Sports Toto list lotteries as their trading item, not sports betting.
"To add sports betting as a trading item, operators have to apply to the local council and our stand is to reject such applications," he said, adding that the decision was unanimous.
Khai Loon, who is also PKR Youth information chief, added that the council will close down premises reported offering sports betting.
"We have 24 councilors who, with the help of the public ,will act as the eyes and ears for (the Selayang Municipal council)," he warned.
No round-the-clock bets
On top of controlling trading items, Ampang Jaya councilor Lee Shok Jing said that the council, whose vote on the issue was also unanimous, is also using the premise license to limit the trading hours of gambling operators.
"We expect that with the FIFA World Cup, punters will want to place bets around the clock, so we are limiting the trading hours to ensure that this does not happen," she said.
The councils will also not approve license applications for new gambling premises, with all the decisions made regarding sports betting taking immediate effect.

万达广场“Rock The Vote”选民登记运动


节目: “Rock The Vote” 选民登记运动
日期: 5月29日至5月30日
时间: 10.30 am 至 10.00 pm
地点: 万达广场(旧翼)底层(Sakae Sushi对面)





Letter from Councillor Richard Yeoh In Response To Nadeswaran

Dear Nadeswaran:
I am responding to your article as an MBPJ councillor and a member of the Audit & Corporate Governance Committee of MBPJ.
I shall confine myself to clarifying key points raised in the article. This email is copied to others who were copied in the original email of your article that was sent to me, for their info only.
When I became aware of the matter sometime in February this year, I did contact my fellow councillor Mr KW Mak to offer my assistance in taking the matter to the Audit & Corporate Governance Committee of MBPJ of which I am a member, with the intention of carrying out an investigation if there was evidence of irregularity in the allocation of low-cost housing units. At that time, Mr Mak told me that he had given the Mayor a deadline to take action failing which, he would refer the matter to SELCAT.
I subsequently heard that the matter was acted upon by the Disciplinary Committee of MBPJ chaired by Mayor. It was reportedly also discussed at SELCAT.
I subsequently did follow up with Mr Mak on the matter and to offer my assistance and he informed me that he was capable of pursuing the matter.
The only correspondence that I received from Mr Mak was a letter dated April 29th that was copied to Mayor, State EXCO members, Speaker, and MBPJ Councillors wherein a copy of an unsigned anonymous general complaint alleging malpractices in the acquisition of low-cost housing units and a copy of a purported letter offering banking facility to an MBPJ staff member were appended. Mr Mak's letter requested Mayor to do an audit of all low-cost houses in PJ to ascertain if any officer of MBPJ or their close relatives owned low-cost houses and for the results of the audit to be tabled at MBPJ's full council board meeting and to SELCAT for further investigation.
The special full council board meeting on May 25th was called to deliberate on the best way to investigate the matter in view of the serious allegations published in the press recently. Mr Mak left very early in the meeting when a few councillors were debating on how such allegations should be handled. To the best of my recollection, the meeting deliberated mainly on how the matter should be investigated. Mr Mak's role in this matter was not the subject of discussion at the meeting.
As a result of the meeting, the Audit & Corporate Governance was tasked to investigate the matter and the first meeting to plan the work will be held on May 27th.
The reason for the Committee not inquiring into the matter earlier, was due to the belief held that the matter was being handled by Mayor through the Disciplinary Committee.
Now that the Council has referred the matter to the Audit & Corporate Governance, we will ensure that the full facts are uncovered. If appropriate, we should even hold a public inquiry into the matter since issues of public interests are involved here.
Let me state clearly here that I have the highest respect for Mr Mak's work as a councillor and have had no occassion to doubt his good intentions and integrity.
We hope all parties concerned will offer their full cooperation to the inquiry and investigation.
Yours sincerely,

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Phase in build-then-sell system

By Chang Kim Loong, Secretary-General of National House Buyers Association
I REFER to recent calls for the government to replace the proposed 5% deposit with a Home Completion Guarantee Scheme.
The subject of abandoned housing projects has been a bane for the house-buying public.
Hundreds of thousands of housebuyers and their families are left suffering in the wake of such abandoned projects where they have paid a lot of money and not obtained their houses. Most of them are compelled to continue servicing their housing loans that their banks had disbursed to the developers while they continue to live in rented houses.
The government had spent huge sums of taxpayers’ money to revive some of these failed projects (But more soon come on line). Some of these abandoned projects are the results of fraud and deceit. How else can we explain that in many of the cases the land and the houses (although uncompleted) become net liabilities to the extent that the cost of reviving them requires large amount of money. Even “white knights” are reluctant to go near most of these failed projects. In property development, any construction put onto a piece of land will progressively enhance its value. Full value is attained when the houses are completed. Thus the fact that a large number of these abandoned projects become financially not viable for revival only indicates that their developers have been paid more than what the construction stage entitles them to and/or that the money collected from buyers are channelled elsewhere instead of towards the completion of the projects. In both these cases, fraud is involved and in any case the buyers are the ones who suffer most although the banks involved are also put in a quandary.
Recently the Real Estate Housing Developers’ Association (Rehda) has proposed the setting up of a home completion guarantee scheme (insurance). In this scheme, participating developers are required to contribute 0.25% of their construction costs (not project value) so that their buyers can be assured of getting their houses. Rehda even suggested that taxpayers’ money be used to augment this insurance scheme. We have elucidated on the practicality of this proposed scheme.
In 2006, the then Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced that the build-then-sell 10-90 scheme would be put on trial for two years. Also announced were a host of incentives to encourage developers to adopt this system that basically insulates buyers from the hazards of abandoned projects (plus a host of other advantages, little highlighted in the media).
But the system was left to the option of developers with the present hazardous sell-then-build (STB) still very much alive and creating havoc. For obvious reasons developers are adamant about sticking to the STB despite the attractive incentives. It is high time that a firm timeline be established for the industry to progress to the BTS 10-90.
Rehda has repeatedly stressed that the choice of either STB or BTS (10-90) should not be compelled but to be “market driven”. We would like to point out that this present option of either STB or BTS (10-90) definitely cannot be termed as “market-driven” but more “developer-driven”. It is solely the developers who make the choice, not housebuyers or any other party, for that matter.
Is it surprising then that there had been few, if any, who voluntarily chose the BTS (10-90). The reasons are obvious.
Rehda went further to state that after a three-year trial period, the system has proved to be not workable. We would like to state that the BTS (10-90) has never be given the chance to see daylight because it was given as an option. Thus the system in effect, was never put to test against the prediction of doom and all the other frighteners put forward by interested parties in defending their turf. Thus unless the government put in a time-line for the industry to adopt the system to get rid of the problems, the following will prevail:
>The house buying rakyat will continue to face the Russian Roulette every time someone buys a new house. (8% of housing projects are categorised as “problematic”)
> Poor/unacceptable quality houses will continue to rule the day.
> Taxpayers’ money will continue to be channelled to revive such projects.
> The government will continue to face the wrath of frustrated buyers.
> The industry will continue to attract bogus/questionable developers due to its low entry barrier.
> Our image abroad will continue to be adversely looked at from the eyes of property investors and potential participants of the Malaysia My Second Home programme.
> Banks (both bridging and end-financiers) will continue to grapple with the problems of loan defaults when housebuyers are unable to pay back because they never got their houses.
> Large amount of funds will continue to be made dormant when tied up in abandoned projects.
> Our beautiful skyline will continue to be peppered with ugly abandoned project sites with the attending health and social problems.
> Joint venture land owners will continue to face the possibilities of not getting the promised returns from their land.
It is time the authorities bite the bullet and set a timeline for the phasing out of this outdated and hazardous STB and phase in the BTS (10-90) system.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Rundingan Malaysia-Singapura – Jangan Biar Pisang Berbuah Dua Kali Seperti Rundingan Malaysia-Brunei

Pemindahan stesen Keretapi Tanah Melayu Berhad (KTMB) di Tanjong Pagar, pembangunan secara usaha sama tanah lapang yang ditinggalkan KTMB, pengurangan kadar tol Linkedua, pembinaan sistem MRT di Johor Bharu dan sebagainya merupakan isu-isu yang dibincangkan dalam perbincangan dua hala antara Malaysia dan Singapura. Juga dikatakan bahawa kedua-dua negara telah mencapai persetujuan bersama untuk mengatasi masalah-masalah ini.
Kerajaan juga perlu telus dalam perkara ini kerana kita tidak ingin melihat pisang berbuah dua kali di mana kerajaan persekutuan BN dalam menyelesaikan masalah bilateral antara Malaysia dan Brunei, pernah menyerahkan dua blok telaga minyak di perairan Sarawak dan Sabah kepada negara Brunei Darussalam untuk mengekalkan kedaulatan negra Malaysia di daerah Limbang.
Apa yang terkilan ialah keputusan kerajaan persekutuan BN ini tidak pernah diumumkan kepada rakyat Malaysia dan apabila rakyat Malaysia tahu tentang perkara ini, perjanjian sudah dimeterai dan tiada apa-apa yang boleh dilakukan lagi untuk memperbetulkan keadaanya.
Ini menunjukkan kecenderungan kerajaan persekutuan BN untuk melakukan secret deal atau perjanjian sulit tanpa pengetahuan rakyat. Apa yang kita lihat dan baca daripada media bukan merupakan gambaran sebenar terhadap situasi.
Justeru itu, saya meminta kerajaan persekutuan BN untuk berterus-terang dalam rundingan dengan kerajaan Singapura secara terperinci khususnya beberapa perkara yang terlibat seperti bekalan air, stesyen keretapi KTMB di Tanjung Pagar, pembinaan sistem MRT Singapura di Johor Bharu dan sebagainya merupakan isu-isu sensitif yang pernah disensasikan dahulu.
Adakah masalah-masalah yang berlarutan selama tiga puluh tahun boleh diselesaikan dalam satu rundingan yang mengambil masa beberapa hari sahaja? Apakah butiran-butiran rundingan lain yang tidak diumumkan? Saya berharap kerajaan persekutuan BN boleh berterus-terang dalam isu ini.



Sunday, May 23, 2010

Mencabar UMNO dan PERKASA membantah pemberian lesen judi bola oleh kerajaan BN

Saya mencabar ahlli-ahli UMNO dan PERKASA untuk mengumumkan pendirian mereka sama ada mereka menyokong tindakan kerajaan BN untuk memberi lesen judi bola kepada syarikat Ascot Sports Sdn. Bhd. yang dikuasai oleh Tan Sri Vincent Tan.
Pada pilihanraya kecil kerusi parlimen Hulu Selangor, BN dan UMNO mengkritik calon Pakatan Rakyat, Datuk Zaid Ibrahim sebagai kaki botol dan judi. Walaupun dalam isu arak beliau telah bertaubat dan beliau turut menafikan bahawa berliau terlibat dalam perjudian, UMNO tidak habis-habisan mengkritik beliau.
Maka dengan itu, kalau UMNO betul-betul memperjuangkan Islam, maka saya mencabar mereka untuk berdiri dan membantah keputusan kerajaan BN yang membenarkan pemberian lesen judi bola kepada syarikat yang dikuasai oleh Tan Sri Vincent Tan ini.
Saya juga melemparkan tuduhan yang sama kepada pertubuhan PERKASA yang diketuai oleh Ahli Parlimen Pasir Mas, Datuk Ibrahim Ali supaya berbuat demikian.
Jika tidak, ini hanya sekali lagi membongkarkan sikap hipokrit UMNO dan BN, iaitu mereka hanya menggunakan isu ini untuk kepentingan politik sewaktu adanya pilihanraya kecil tetapi apabila kerajaan yang diketuai mereka sendiri melakukan yang sama, mereka terus membisu.
Sehingga sekarang, Perdana Menteri Dato’ Seri Najib Tun Razak masih membisu dalam isu ini seolah-olah ingin membiarkan isu ini berlalu begitu sahaja. Sebenarnya, hasrat kerajaan BN membenarkan pemberian lesen judi bola ini adalah amat jelas sekali, iaitu mereka ingin mengutip cukai eksais yang lumayan daripada aktiviti judi bola ini dengan alasan kononnya pemberian lesen judi bola yang sah akan dapat mengawal dan mengurangan aktiviti judi bola haram.
Pertama sekali, alasan bahawa pemberian lesen judi bola yang sah akan dapat mengawal dan mengurangan aktiviti judi bola haram adalah tidak berasas. Contoh yang paling baik ialah aktiviti judi empat ekor. Biarpun kerajaan telah member beberapa lesen judi nombor empat ekor, aktiviti judi haram masih berlaku dan berleluasa. Begitu juga dengan aktiviti judi lumba kuda haram.
Oleh itu, kerajaan BN hanya berminat terhadap cukai eksaisnya yang dijangkakan agak lumayan. Mengikut kerajaan BN, nilai pasaran aktiviti judi bola di Malaysia mencecah RM20bilion bersamaan 1.5% daripada Keluaran Dalam Negara Kasar (KDNK) Malaysia.
Kalau kerajaan mengutip cukai 10 peratus daripada aktiviti judi bola ini, maka kerajaan akan mendapat pendapatan lebih kurang RM2bilion setahun. Ini tidak termasuk cukai pendapatan yang perlu dibayar kepada kerajaan BN setiap tahun.
Kerajaan BN memang memerlukan pendapatan ini kerana mereka gagal menguruskan sumber kekayaan semula jadi Malaysia sehingga mereka perlu memberi lesen judi bola bagi menambah sumber pendapatan mereka. Ini juga merupakan motifnya apabila kerajaan BN ingin memperkenalkan Cukai Perkhidmatana dan Barangan (GST) sebelum ini.
Malaysia tidak memerlukan lesen judi bola kerana aktiviti-aktiviti judi sedia ada sudah memadai. Pemberian lesen judi bola hanya akan membebankan masyarakat khususnya masyarakat bukan Bumiputera.
Kalau UMNO dan PERKASA benar-benar ikhlas dalam isu moral, maka mereka perlu membantah sekeras-kerasnya keputusan kerajaan BN ini sepertimana mereka berkempen untuk menolak Datuk Zaid Ibrahim semasa PRK Hulu Selangor yang lalu.

Low cost house fiasco: Publishing names of owners is the first step towards clearing the mess of the past

The Selangor State Government has responded to the ownership of low cost houses by 500 unqualified Petaling Jaya City Council staffs that unqualified owners of low cost houses should return the unit to the state government.
It is high time that the state government should do something to rectify as much as possible mistakes of the previous government in allocating low cost houses in the state, particularly in highly developed cities like Petaling Jaya, Subang Jaya, Shah Alam and Ampang Jaya.
In fact, right after March 8th 2008, I have suggested to the state government to carry out a thorough audit in identifying the flaws in allocating low cost houses to the poor. Action plan suggested included conducting a house-to-house survey (banci) to identify whether the owners of the low cost houses are staying in the unit themselves or merely renting the unit to outsiders, especially foreign labours for extra incomes. Worst still, the survey is also to find out whether the units were sold by rent-seekers to other party at a higher price.
I have always stressed numerously that low cost houses are not commercial products but controlled items. Therefore, the sales of low cost houses, must be strictyly regulated by the state and not subject to market force.
In the case of unqualified council staffs owning low cost houses, I urge that the focus should not be placed on council staffs only but on a larger scope on “unqualified buyers” as I believe not only there are unqualified council staffs, but also politically connected individuals who such the units.
Thus, I welcome the suggestion from state EXCO on Housing, Building Management and Squarters, Iskandar Abdul Samad that the state will consider publishing a name list of those who own low houses for public scrutiny as this is the first step towards rectifying the mistakes and correct the “inherited sins” from the previous administration.
There are also many flaws in the previous “zero-squarters” programme and actions must be taken to correct these flaws step-by-step. In the past, a unit of low cost house is to be allocated for each registered squarter, meaning that the first criterion to qualify for a unit of low cost house is that the buyer must be a squarter first.
Unfortunately, this has neglected the rights of other low-income earners who eargerly want a unit of their low cost houses. Many times they have to rent houses or rooms from others and have to buy low cost houses from open market and pay huge amount of under table money.
Secondly, since low cost houses are mainly offered to first and second families of the squarters, some of them already have big houses outside. Allocating a unit of low cost house to them means giving them an extra income, is this fair? The state must have strict regulations on low cost houses whether these houses are built by the government or private developer, that these houses are to be meant for own stay and should not be sold or rented to third party.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

New definition on "State Assembly" from Sarawak DUN Speaker

The Sarawak State Legislative Assembly Speaker has given a new definition to "State Assembly" when he made a ruling to bar suspended Assemblypersons from entering the compound of the State Legislative Assembly, including the State Legislative's parks, carparks, open space, fences etc.
He made this ruling when referring to several bids of PKR Assemblyman for Padungan, YB Dominique Ng to enter the State Legislative Assembly after the assemblyman was suspended from the State Assembly on 18th May 2010.
I found this ruling interesting in relation to an ongoing legal lawsuit against several PR Selangor Assemblyman, especially YB Ng Suee Lim, assemblyman for Sekinchan when he was served a legal notice by a lawyer representing YB Dato' Seri Dr. Mohd Khir Toyo in the carpark of the Selangor State Legislative Assembly.
If the ruling of the Sarawak Speaker can be made as a case law, then certainly the legality of serving legal notice in the state assembly can be disputed. Assemblypersons enjoy immunity from legal action when speaking in the State Assembly. Conventionally, the term "State Assembly" is defined as the chamber of the State Assembly but when the Sarawak Speaker broadens the definition of the "State Assembly" to include its "parks, carparks, open space, fences etc", then certainly assemblypersons who speak in these areas or places are automatically enjoying immunity from being charged in civil court.
Similarly, assemblypersons who speak in press conferences outside the chamber but within the compound of the state assembly also enjoy similar immunity.
Isn't this funny?
News cutting from Sarawak Chinese Daily, International Times:
新闻更新 >> 08:20 2010-5-22
砂议长:被禁足州议会议员 不能踏进议会范围

Thursday, May 20, 2010

MBPJ tubuh QRT tangani aduan penduduk

BY FADZLY ESA ON 19 MAY, 2010 (Dipetik daripada
Majlis Bandaraya Petaling Jaya (MBPJ) serius dalam menangani aduan dan rungutan penduduk di sekitar bandar raya ini.
Datuk Bandar Petaling Jaya, Datuk Mohamad Roslan Sakiman, berkata semua aduan dan rungutan penduduk seperti pokok tumbang, jalan berlubang dan sebagainya akan diambil tindakan segera.
Menurutnya, MBPJ akan menghantar Quick Response Team (QRT) atau Pasukan Bertindak Cepat yang baru dilancarkan awal tahun ini ke lokasi aduan dalam masa 48 jam bagi menangani aduan awam.
“Pasukan ini akan dibahagikan kepada tiga bahagian dan diketuai Pengarah Jabatan Kejuruteraan di mana setiap kumpulan mempunyai ketua unit masing-masing yang bertanggungjawab dalam mengambil tindakan menyelesaikan aduan.
Masalah selesai dalam tempoh 48 jam
“Pasukan ini hanya diberikan masa 48 jam untuk menyelesaikan setiap aduan dan fokus utamanya ialah memperbaiki segera aduan berkaitan lampu jalan, jalan berlubang, lampu isyarat dan pokok tumbang yang dikemukakan penduduk,”katanya ketika ditemui selepas melawat kerja-kerja QRT baru-baru ini.
Mohamad Roslan berkata, pasukan tersebut disediakan dengan pelbagai kelengkapan bagi memastikan setiap aduan dikemukakan penduduk dapat diatasi dengan berkesan dan efisyen.
Menurutnya, dengan tertubuhnya pasukan ini diharap dapat membantu penduduk menyelesaikan aduan dan masalah di kawasan masing-masing.
Disamping itu, ujar beliau lagi, setiap aduan diterima akan diteliti terlebih dahulu sebelum sebarang tindakan diambil dan ia mengikut keutamaan kes diutarakan penduduk.
“Setiap aduan yang dikemukakan penduduk akan diteliti sebelum tindakan diambil mengikut keutamaan bagi setiap kes.
“Bagaimanapun, jika masalah itu terlalu rumit untuk diselesaikan pasukan ini, barulah jabatan sepatutnya bertindak dan masing-masing akan bekerjasama mengatasi aduan terbabit,”katanya.
Mohamad Roslan berkata, bagi penduduk yang mempunyai aduan serta masalah boleh mengajukannya menggunakan khidmat pesanan ringkas (SMS) dengan menaip mbpjaduan, jenis aduan dan hantar ke 33733 ataupun hubungi talian bebas tol MBPJ di 03-79542020.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Kementerian Pembangunan Luar Bandar harus menyiasat kes Dr Selvaa terlebih dahulu dan bukan menghukum beliau

Laporan akhbar hari ini mengatakan bahawa seorang doktor yang membongkarkan keadaan pesakit-pesakit orng asli yang teruk di sebuah hospital Orang Asli di Gombak telah dikena surat tunjuk sebab oleh Jabatan Hal Ehwal Orang Asli (JHEOA) pada 19 April 2010.

Doktor yang bernama Selvaa Vathany Pillai berkata bahawa beliau menerima surat ini atas tindakan beliau membongkarkan peristiwa itu dan tindakan ini telah dikatakan sebagai melanggar peraturan tetap kakitangan awam.

Dr Selvaa telah membongkarkan perkara ini di Majlis Peguam Malaysia pada 11 Februari 2010 di mana beliau turut mengatakan bahawa rawatan yang diberi kepada pesakit-pesakit Orang Asli tidak memenuhi piawai yang ditetapkan oleh Kementerian Kesihatan.

Tindakan Dr Selvaa yang berani ini diikuti dengan peristiwa tunjuk perasaan yang diadakan di hospital berkenaan pada 24 Februari yang diadakan oleh lebih daripada 30 orang penduduk Orang Asli.

Saya berasa kecewa dengan tindakan JHEOA ini kerana tindakan ini sememangnya tidak akan menyelesaikan masalah kesihatan yang dialami oleh golongan Orang Asli. Selain itu, masalah yang ditimbulkan oleh Dr Selvaa ini berkait rapat dengan profesionalisme perkhidmatan perubatan di Malaysia dan sebagai seorang doktor perubatan yang bertauliah, beliau berhak untuk menyuarakan kepincangan dalam perkhidmatan perubatan kepada pihak yang berkenaan supaya tindakan pembetulan boleh diambil.

Saya percaya Dr Selvaa memilih untuk membongkarkan perkara ini kepada pihak luar kerana beliau tidak menampak apa-apa tindakan susulan daripada pihak berkenaan, sama ada daripada JHEOA, Kementerian Pembangunan Luar Bandar ataupun Kementerian Kesihatan untuk memperbetulkan keadaan ini.

Jikalau kerajaan BN betul-betul berjiwa 1Malaysia, maka mereka harus menyiasat tuduhan-tuduhan yang dibuat oleh Dr Selvaa dan mengenakan tindakan disiplin terhadap pegawai-pegawai kerajaan di JHEOA dan Kementerian Pembangunan Luar Bandar yang tidak menyelesaiakn masalah yang dibangkitkan oleh Dr Selvaa ini.'

Saya menyeru kepada Kabinet dan Perdana Menteri untuk bercampur tangan dalam hal ini. Seseorang kakitangan awam tidak harus dipersalahkan hanya keranan beliau menyuarakan kebenaran. Sebaliknya, tindakan berani beliau harus dipuji dan siasatan harus dijalankan terhadap tuduhannya.

Campaign in rural areas - DAP new focus

After all the hardworks, Pakatan Rakyat candidate from DAP, Sdr Wong Ho Leng, finally won the battle in Sibu. It is a victory that all Pakatan Rakyat comrades should feel proud about. Though Barisan Nasional poured millions of Ringgit into the campaign, they fail to retain Sibu and lost to PR at a slim majority, considering the fact that they won the seat in 2008 with more than 3000 majority.
Still, there are a lot of ground works to be done. This is my answer when people share with me how proud they feel with the result of the by-election in Sibu. I say that Pakatan Rakyat has to work doubly and triply hard in rural Malay, Indians, Chinese, Iban, Kadazan and Orang Asli areas. These areas are largely still hit by inadequate infrastructure with no basic amenities like water and electricity supply.
These places are barricaded from the outside world with no connection of information from urban areas. Thus, good news and programmes carried out by the PR-led state government normally does not reach them. Majority of them are still reading main stream newspapers like Utusan Malaysia which reports nothing but lies and concorted news against PR. In rural places of Sarawak and Sabah, telecomunication signals are so weak that they can't even receive RTM's signal.
How are we going to penetrate into these areas? I see changes in the DAP's campaign in Sibu. Rural Iban areas are not our conventional support ground and yet campaigners are sent to these places on a daily basis to reach out to the electorate.
Back home in Selangor, PR especially DAP which does well in urban seats, should start working in rural and semi-rural areas. Personal networking is important in winning the hearts and minds of the rural people as they are less exposed to information, leading a comparatively simpler life than urban dwellers.
I witnessed this on a first hand basis in Sibu. During our walkabout, the local grassroots normally will bring the Yang Berhormat from Peninsula and other parts of East Malaysia (Sarawak and Sabah) to visit the village from house to house. Normally the YBs are the focus, still villagers are more comfortable to communicate with party local grassroots, especially when the party grassroots do speak their native languages. Come to think about it, the party grassroots have been visiting the villages for years. How couldn't they not able to communicate well with the villagers?
From here I witness the strength and importance of engaging local people in winning the battles of the rural. It is neither because the rural people are more simple-minded, caring less for the national issue, nor they are only concerned about bread-and-butter issues, it is the people that carries the message that makes the difference.
For BN, their grassroots have been living in the village for years, they know almost every single house and villagers in their village. Therefore in the past, it is always very difficult for DAP to penetrate into the hearts and minds of the rural folks. Now it is the time for change, and it also means that the DAP has to change to a better fighting force in any election/by-election that the party machinery must prove itself to be capable of penetrating into all communities in spreading the PR message of REFORMASI.

Sunday, May 16, 2010


国阵政府表示为了要抑制非法赌球活动,同时加强政府的税收,因此国阵政府已经在1月13日重新发出体育赌博执照给一家由本地企业家陈志远掌控的公司——爱胜阁博彩有限公司(Ascot Sports Sdn Bhd)。

诗巫乡区连水电供应都没有, 1000台手提电脑成英雄无用武之地







Friday, May 14, 2010

Manikavasagam should cooperate with Selcat

I read with grave concern on Kapar MP S. Manikavasagam's statement that he does not trust Selangor Select Committee on Competency, Accountability and Transparency (Selcat) regarding Mentri Besar's decision to refer his graft allegations against Rangkaian Semesta Sendirian Berhad (RMSB) to the selection committee.

Selcat was formed in the Selangor State Legislative Assembly, the highest legislative platform in the state of Selangor on 26th May 2008. The committee will regulate and inspect the competence, accountability and transparency in all administrative matters of the state government and all agencies, statutory bodies, local authorities and organisations linked to or are under the administration of the state government.

Selcat is also empowered to hold public hearings and could recommend investigations. The committee is chaired by State Assembly Speaker Teng Chang Khim and his deputy Haniza Mohamed Talha, Mohamed Azmin Ali (PKR- Bukit Antarabangsa), Saari Sungib (PAS-Hulu Klang), Edward Lee Poh Lin (DAP-Bukit Gasing), Sulaiman Abdul Razak (BN-Permatang) and Ismail Sani (BN-Dusun Tua).

In a statement yesterday, S. Manikavasagam jumped into the gun by saying that he does not trust Selcat Chairman Teng Chang Khim, thus he does not trust Selcat as he has an open argument with Teng Chang Khim on the relocation of Klang Sentral Bus Terminal. Teng Chang Khim is the Speaker of the State Legislative Assembly and the Assemblyman for Sungai Pinang, under Kapar parliamentary seat.

I strongly support MB's decision to refer the case to Selcat. In the past, Selcat has conducted numerous public hearings and established its fame in upholding the principle of Competency, Accountability and Transparency (CAT) in Selangor. Selcat's hearings are also conducted openly and transparently and are broadcasted via TV Selangor. Selcat has also acted without fear or favour. Government officers, elected representatives and others have been summoned to its hearings to testify on issues brought to the attention of Selcat.

Therefore, Selcat is one of the best and probably the quickest platform to investigate the Kapar MP's allegations on KSSB. I do not think S. Manikavasagam should complicate the matter by bringing in his personal dispute with Selcat's chairman Teng Chang Khim on the relocation of Klang Sentral Bus Terminal as Selcat is not Teng Chang Khim's personal property. Selcat is directly responsible to the State Assembly and there are seven members in Selcat, including two BN's elected representatives to check the state government's administration.

What more to say when you have two BN elected representatives in the select committee to probe his graft allegations against KSSB? Manikavasagam should cooperate with Selcat and provide all the information he has as the people of Selangor have the right to know of any corrupt practices of the State Government's subsidiaries.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Proposed USJ6 development – SPC should meet to resolve the matter

I read the development of a proposed commercial development on a piece of telecom utility land in USJ6 Subang Jaya with deep concern.

Since the issue was first brought up openly more than one year ago, it seems like there is no clear-cut solution to the dispute. Worst, the issue has turned into a sore point among MPSJ councillors.

Without prejudice to MPSJ personnel, including its present batch of councillors and president, State Planning Committee (SPC), the landowner and the developer, such approval, once it is granted by a local authority like MPSJ, will create a precedence and utility reserve lands in other local authorities will be at stake as owner of the land can apply to convert and develop it for other purposes.

When a piece of land is developed, the developer, city planner and the local authority will examine the land use. There is always a reason for the planner to demarcate a certain portion of land as reserve for certain amenities, which are of public importance.

Therefore, I urge the State Planning Committee (SPC) to seriously think through the application to convert that said utility reserve land into commercial land as it will have serious impact on other local councils. State Planning Committee should and must have a strong stand and not pass the buck around without clear-cut solutions provided to the people. It is unfair to both the people and the landowner.

Furthermore, local council's decision making process must also be made transparently according to rules and regulations. For any official meeting, adequate notices must be served, agenda of the meeting must be provided, quorum must be met, minute-of-meeting should be taken and tabled for endorsement in the next meeting. These are simple rules that any secondary school students know. In this case, the council should come clear to clarify whether it had called and conducted the meeting according to rules and regulations.

Thirdly, the authority must be made aware that there are enough development in Petaling Jaya and Subang Jaya. Further development to these places in future must be planned properly as any unplanned, ad-hoc development will definitely jeopardize the living standard of the people in these areas. The situation is so serious that the State Assemblyman for Bukit Gasing Edward Lee had once even suggested a two-year moratorium for all development in Petaling Jaya.

I hope the State Planning Committee can call for an urgent meeting to resolve the matter.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010



Kerajaan Negeri Harus Menilai Semula Prestasi Alam Flora di Selangor

Saya telah menerima banyak aduan daripada orang ramai tentang prestasi Alam Flora dan kontraktor-kontraktornya yang rendah dalam mengendalikan masalah kutipan sampah dan pembersihan di kawasan mereka. Aduan-aduan yang sama turut diterima oleh wakil rakyat di kawasan yang lain.

Antara aduan yang diterima ialah kekerapan kutipan sampah yang tidak mengikut jadual yang ditetapkan, pembersihan tidak dijalankan di tempat-tempat yang sepatutnya dan tidak mengikut jadual yang ditetapkan, pekerja-pekerja meminta "duit kopi" untuk menjalankan tugas pembersihan dan kutipan sampah dan sebagainya.

Saya memahami bukan semua kontraktor Alam Flora yang menunjukkan prestasi rendah dan terdapat sebahagian masalah adalah berpunca daripada penduduk sendiri. Walaupun begitu, aduan-aduan yang semakin banyak diterima oleh wakil rakyat sedikit sebanyak menunjukkan bahawa Alam Flora perlu menilai semula prestasi kontraktor-kontraktor yang dilantiknya.

Saya tidak ada masalah jika kontraktor-kontraktor yang dilantik itu mempunyai kepentingan politik dengan Barisan Nasional dan UMNO kerana yang penting ialah mereka perlu menunjukkan prestasi yang memuaskan. Contohnya, kerja-kerja pembersihan di Seksyen 20, 21 dan 22 di DUN Kampung Tunku telah dikontrakkan kepada kontraktor bernama Mazlynoor Holdings kepunyaan Datuk Mazlynoor Abdul Latiff, mantan Ahli Majlis Perbandaran Klang (MPK) dan Timbalan Ketua UMNO Bahagian Klang. Saya tiada masalah dengan syarikat Datuk Mazlynoor mendapat kontrak ini tetapi beliau perlu memastikan kerja-kerja pembersihan dijalankan mengikut jadual.

Apa yang perlu dilakukan oleh Kerajaan Negeri ialah kita perlu lebih tegas dengan perlantikan kontraktor-kontraktor Alam Flora yang dilantik tanpa rundingan, malahan tanpa pengetahuan kerajaan negeri biarpun kerajaan negeri dan kerajaan tempatan yang menerima kesan-kesannya nanti.

Selain itu, kontrak antara PBT dengan Alam Flora juga telah tamat dan kini ianya hanya dijalankan atas asas setahun ke setahun dan setiap dua tahun. Justeru itu, kerajaan tempatan mempunyai peluang untuk menentukan sama ada mereka ingin meneruskan perkhidmatan dengan Alam Flora atau tidak. Jika mereka ingin meneruskannya, maka mereka perlu merunding semula perjanjian mereka dengan Alam Flora dan satu cara pemilihan dan perlantikan kontraktor yang lebih telus perlu dijalankan untuk memastikan prestasi kontraktor Alam Flora sentiasa di tahap yang memuaskan.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

A lot to be done for the Bumiputeras in Sibu and Sarawak

It is good that I can finally sit down quietly in my small room in Sibu to blog about what I saw during my stay in Sibu.
To be on a brief note, today I visited Chinese-majority Sungai Merah area and several Melanau and Iban settlements in the rural area of Bawang Assan. Yesterday I also visited several Iban settlements in the rural area of Rantau Panjang in the afternoon (Note: there is also a place named "Rantau Panjang" in Sibu). Yesterday morning, like many other DAP and Pakatan Rakyat comrades from all over the nation, I marched together with Sdr Wong Ho Leng, DAP candidate for the by-election to the nomination centre. I will be returning to the busy life in Petaling Jaya on Monday.
As you may know, Sibu is a 67% Chinese majority parliamenary seat, with about 20% Ibans and 10% Melanau. A big majority of the Ibans are Christians or Catholics while Melanau are mainly Muslim with a small proportion of them being Christians or Catholics. Sarawak Chief Minister Taib Mahmud is a Melanau. (Note: Melanau IS NOT Malay!)
Our campaign has been targeted on the element of change among all ethnic group. The DAP is particularly weak in the Bumiputera community, especially the Melanau-Muslim majority area. Therefore, the machinery does not neglect the importance of securing a victory through a stronger support among the Bumiputera communities, especially among the Ibans and has arranged at least a team of campaigners to visit Iban long houses everyday. I was tasked to be one of the campaigners to visit these areas for the past two days. Today's visit is even an important one as the party Secretary-General Lim Guan Eng is leading the visit, accompanies by Lim Lip Eng, Fong Kui Lun and DAP Dayak members from Sri Aman Branch (led by Augustine Terban). Reporters from and areare also with us.
We made three visits today, first to a Melanau village in Kampung Bungan Kechil, followed by Kampung Bungan Besar, which is also a Melanau village. There is no longhouses in these villages. Longhouses is the typical living structure of rural Ibans in Sarawak. The third visit is Kampung Sungai Aup longhouses in Rassau. There is no road access to these places. We have to travel by speedboats and it takes us about an hour to reach these places from Sibu.
Unfortunately the places we visited are places with the highest number of hardcore poor. Ironically these are BN's stonghold for the past 47 years ever since Sarawak and Malaya, Sabah and Singapore formed the Federation of Malaysia in 1963.
If we measured by the standard of United National Human Development Indexes (UNHDI), I am afraid that these places could have failed. The level of hygiene in these places were very low as there is no clean supply of potable water, no proper sanitation system and inadequate medical assistances for the villagers. Electricity has to be generated from gen-set, meaning that the State is not providing electricity to them. With a monthly household income of about RM300 to RM500 a month, it is hardly enough to feed their children and their extended family members.
Most of the villagers we visited today are sagu (a type of rice grain) farmers or small scale fisherman. The only way to uplift their living standard is via education for their children. Though the government build primary schools for most of the villages there, not all villages are equipped with school. For example, the poor parents in Kampung Bungan Kechil have to spend minimum RM30 a weekly for petrol to send their children to the nearest school. This work out to be about RM120 a month per family, more than one-third of their monthly household income of RM300.
During our visit, Guan Eng has categorically told the villagers that we cannot and we will not give money to the voters but he mentioned that a victory for Pakatan Rakyat in the Sibu by-election will kick-start a bigger victory for Pakatan Rakyat to change Sarawak State Government and the Federal Government in Putrajaya. With these victories, Pakatan Rakyat can do a lot to totally eradicate hardcore poor in Sarawak, just like what Penang PR government has done. In his stop in Sungai Aup longhouses in Rassau, he even urges the Ibans to vote for the party that can kill all the "buayas" (crocodiles) in Sarawak who have drained up the rich resources of Sarawak for their own benefit.
The Rantau Panjang longhouses I visited yesterday was a better longhouse community in the sense that it enjoys the supply of . However the the Iban community there is still plagued with poverty with substantial number of youngsters have to seek jobs outside Sibu. One woman whom I manage to talk to said that her daughter could not find a job with the government. She tried to apply in Kuala Lumpur, thinking that the chances to secure a job could be higher there compared to Sibu but she failed too. Her daughter was told that jobs are only reserved for Malay. The best job they could find in government is the "sapu" jobs (cleaners) while higher-paid jobs were only for Malays.
Throughout my visit, I have a feeling that the Iban community is generally a soft-spoken community and will only communicate effectively with the people they trust. It is good that the DAP grassroots have been working in these places since March 8th, 2008 in order to penetrate into these areas which are BN traditional strongholds. I think their years of hardwork are paid-off when villagers are more willing to communicate with them who can speak fluent Iban, as to us Peninsulans who can only communicate with them through simple Bahasa Malaysia.
It is for certain that there are plenty of works to be done for politicians from both Peninsula and East Malaysia to uplift the living standard of the Bumiputeras in our country. Education is the way forward as I see it and the government should put in whatever resources it has to provide top-class education to the people.

Friday, May 07, 2010



Thursday, May 06, 2010

Shockingly Poor Condition of Bandar Armada Putra

The Selangor State Assembly Select Committee on State Government Agencies, Subsidiaries and Statutory Bodies had received a memorandum from a group of frustrated housebuyers from Bandar Armada Putra, Pulau Indah, Port Klang on 7th April 2010 led by DAP MP for Klang, YB Charles Santiago on escalating water bill due to internal leakage caused by negligence of various State Government subsidiaries.

The Select Committee had visited the place on 3rd May 2010. These are some of the photos taken on the poor condition of the housing project.