Posts Tagged ‘DAP’

DAP and PAS at it again

August 23rd, 2010
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Its quite evident that the two parties won’t be able to find a common ground, that’s why the contentious issues on religion has not been properly articulated earlier. This will be one of the factors that will lead to downfall of the Pakatan coalition. It just doesn’t jive to imagine DAP and PAS sharing a common consensus on the state of our state.

So, its not surprising to read again about DAP “distancing” itself or PAS saying “DAP are not clear yet” or “just view of individual”. Its quite clear to me (and probably to others as well). From early of last year (read it here and here) till end of last year (read it here), the hudud and Islamic state has been simmering. And it won’t be the last we hear of this issue.

The DAP today distanced itself from renewed talk of hudud law and the implementation of an Islamic state, saying that these were not Pakatan Rakyat (PR) policies.

DAP advisor Lim Kit Siang maintained that DAP’s stand on Malaysia as a secular state has always been “constant and consistent.”

“Hudud laws and [an] Islamic state are not Pakatan Rakyat policies. This is why there is no mention of these issues in the Pakatan Rakyat common platform unveiled at the Pakatan Rakyat convention in Shah Alam on December 19 last year,” said Lim in a statement today.

Under the PR Common Policy Framework (CPC) last year, PR had made a pledge to “defend the Federal Constitution, Islam as the religion of the Federation while other religions can be practiced peacefully anywhere in the country…”

Reiterating that the two matters were not part of the PR framework, Lim said “any policy change would need the agreement of all three component parties and there is no such consensus in Pakatan Rakyat on hudud laws and Islamic state.”

The Ipoh Timur MP then pointed out that the idea of an Islamic state was supported and advocated by the three most recent prime ministers — Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamed, Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Lim claimed that this contradicted the positions of the first three prime ministers — Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Abdul Razak and Tun Hussein Onn — who considered Malaysia a secular nation and not an Islamic state.

“It is the leaderships of the  MCA, Gerakan, MIC, SUPP and the other Barisan Nasional (BN) component parties who were ever-ready to give unquestioned support to the declarations by the last three prime ministers, beginning with Mahathir’s ‘929 Declaration’ that Malaysia is an Islamic state on September 29, 2001, who should be repudiating their past positions instead of trying to pull the wool over the people’s eyes,” added Lim.

Renewed talks regarding the implementation of hudud laws and an Islamic state started when DAP national chairman Karpal Singh stated that he was firmly opposed to such laws being implemented should PR take over the federal government.

Karpal had argued that such laws were “unconstitutional” and that everyone had to respect the constitution.

PAS spiritual advisor Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat claimed that Karpal was the only DAP leader raising the issue, adding that other leaders were silent on the matter.

Nik Aziz said that Karpal’s views did not represent the views of DAP.

In the 1999 general election, the DAP together with PAS and PKR formed the Barisan Alternatif coalition, which collapsed after two years when DAP quit due to PAS’ objective of forming an Islamic state.

The unprecedented co-operation between DAP and PAS then resulted in the defeat of DAP’s strongmen Lim Kit Siang and Karpal Singh in Penang due to non-Muslim voters’ fear of the Islamic party.

I expect more than free wifi, RM1000 and saman ekor cancellation!

August 13th, 2010
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What kind of promises are these? Call this election promise kah? Come on la, be more creative and come out with something useful. RM1000 for 12 months, is less than RM100 per month. By the time you come into power, I doubt the money will have any useful value.  If RM5,000 per person, then its more reasonable.

Free wifi or wireless broadband? Its possible or not to cover all the remote areas first? And please state the minimum speed so that not putar belit like our current providers. I expect 20MB all over Malaysia within the next 3 years.

And cancelling saman ekor? I’m sure there are better options like installing more CCTVs along highways and/or review of highway speed along with cancellation of such summons.

I fail to see how this can directly impact the economy or social standard of the community.  There’s so many other promises we can expect: review of laws, equal footing for schools, revamp of civil service, upgrading of transportation, removal of equity requirements, removal of monopolies in trade and business licenses, housing for poor and middle income families, improvement of education system, etc.

I expect much more than free wifi, RM1000 for senior citizens and abolishment of postal summons (saman ekor)!

The DAP has embarked on what appears to be a quest to boost its popularity ahead of the coming 13th general election, with three promises to the people should the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) capture Putrajaya.

The promises are — to abolish the saman ekor (postal summons) system, to provide annual payments of RM1,000 to each senior citizen aged above 60 and to provide free wi-fi or wireless broadband throughout Malaysia.

DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng said that the party’s central executive committee had agreed yesterday to issue a blanket directive to all party leaders to work on publicising these three promises during all political functions.

“These are the three policy initiatives that will bring benefit to the people that we are confident will be carried out by the PR should we win Putrajaya.

“We do not just want to harp on the corrupt practices of the Barisan Nasional but we also want to talk about what we can do for the people,” he told a press conference at the party headquarters here.

Lim noted that the practice of blacklisting owners of vehicles was not only unfair but should also be declared illegal by the courts for it was in contrary to the principles of natural justice.

“We also want to provide this annual payments of RM1,000 to senior citizens as a sign of appreciation for their past contributions to the country,” he said.

He noted that the policy would merely cost the government RM2.1 billion annually.

“What is RM2.1 billion when the country squanders RM28 billion annually to corruption,” he pointed out.

The Penang chief minister also cited an article from the global weekly magazine The Economist, pointing out that even the internationally renowned magazine was agreeable to the concept of providing money for the poor.

“This is a number one capitalist economic magazine who does not believe in giving money. But it is true that if you help those in need, there is a multiplier effect. People will spend the money and this will in turn help to generate and liven up the economy,” he said.

Lim pointed out that such a policy was also implemented in Thailand.

“In Thailand, they believe that it is the responsibility of the government to give people money when they need it. They believe that if the government does not adhere to this, they should change the government,” he said.

On the third promise to provide free wi-fi to throughout the country, Lim noted that the country needed to change with the moving times.

“We must innovate and only when you do that, you are racing to the top. If not, you are racing to the bottom,” he said.

The DAP leader denied that the three promises were merely populist measures or a form of vote-buying.

“What vote-buying? We are not even having an election now. Why is it wrong to give money to the people? To the BN, giving money to themselves is not wrong but giving money to the people is,” he claimed.

He noted that Malaysia was behind for it does not adopt international practices such as attempting to empower the poor and the elderly.

Lim also claimed that the DAP’s policy suggestions had been accepted by all PR parties and would duly be implemented should the fledgling coalition wrest Putrajaya from the BN in the coming general election.

“I have spoken to the other parties and it is not a problem. In any case, it is not about objecting, only on how to implement these policies,” he said, adding that he had also spoken with PR de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

Lim also said that the DAP, in introducing such promises, was showing its strong denial that it was anti-Malay and a communist party.

Flying Sikh dumps DAP

June 15th, 2010
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Well, would you believe it! The Sikhs in DAP would be incensed after Malim Nawar (my mother’s hometown actually) assemblyman Keshvinder Singh (a lawyer too) quit from DAP to be independent (i.e. BN friendly and firm supporter of PM Najib, Menteri Besar Zambry, and 1Malaysia). I believe Keshvinder is also the first Indian rep to quit DAP and be independent. Well done!

And for what purpose? For the “kebaikan of the rakyat” of course 🙂

According to him:

He also said he was leaving because he was “very disappointed” with the DAP and Pakatan Rakyat leadership and the “excessive politicking” that got in the way of him carrying out his duties.

“I found it very hard to work with the Pakatan Rakyat people to serve my constituents,” he said, adding that he could not get any allocation for his constituents.

“I now realise that only Barisan can bring progress and prosperity to the people. I hope this decision will help me serve my constituents better,” he said at a press conference at a hotel here Tuesday.

“I will be going to my constituency soon to explain my decision,” he said, adding that he gave his resignation letter to DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng earlier Tuesday.

In Malaysiakini, the following is mentioned:

Keshvinder said he chose to defect now instead of February last year – along with Hee Yit Foong (Jelapang), Mohd Osman Jailu(Changkat Jering) and Jamaluddin Mohd Radzi (Behrang) – because he didn’t know how serious the problems were at his constituency then. 

“When I started doing work there (after February 2009) I found that there are severe poverty issues that really need to be solved,” he said.

Keshvinder said he hoped the BN state government will provide financial aid so that he can serve his constituents. 

“The state and national DAP did not assist me in helping the people. I couldn’t do anything for my constituents as an opposition state assemblyperson,” he said, adding that he had been using his own funds thus far.

Good for him, until we find out (or remember) that he was one of the people who claimed there were offers to buy him over last time:

On Feb 5 last year, five Pakatan Rakyat assemblymen, including Keshwinder, had claimed they had been approached by agents to cross over to Barisan Nasional.

Keshwinder had said then that he had been offered RM10mil plus the position of the Perak MIC chief and a place on the state executive council.

So, which is which?

If really for “kebaikan rakyat”, why not just resign and force a by-election? We can literally see money falling down from sky (or podium) whenever there’s by-election. The people can get new school, new road, new surau, new temple, new bridges, etc. Maybe the voters in Malim Nawar should think about this. The amount of goodies they could get from by-election should last them till the next general election.

I’m curious too, in case the PR wins GE13 and Perak state, would he realign himself to be PR-friendly (assuming he stands under BN banner then)?

Terminating tender without reason clause

March 1st, 2010
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While it may be seen as something which is common or acceptable, the clause (number nine) in PDC’s tender application forms which says contract can be terminated at any time without any reason given upon the order of the Chief Minister or PDC chairman is not appropriate for the CAT policy of the Penang state government. You must walk your talk. At least the reason must be provided, and the contractor must have an avenue to appeal or state his case. Then only fair, right?

Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng has come under fire for having the power to terminate any contract awarded by the Penang Development Corporation (PDC) at any time without giving any reason.

Umno Youth information chief Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican said the insertion of this clause in the PDC’s tender application forms recently was a “psychological threat” to contractors bidding for projects.

He said clause nine in PDC’s Tender Form A stated that contractors could have their contracts terminated at any time without any reason given upon the order of the Chief Minister or PDC chairman.

“How could anyone have the absolute power to overrule the decision made by the state Tender Board?

“This move is not in line with the Treasury’s tender procedures as observed by the Federal Gove rnment,” he told reporters at the Kepala Batas parliamentary-level Juara Rakyat programme launch in Dewan Bakar Kapor here yesterday.

Lim is PDC chairman as well as chairman of the state Tender Board.

Reezal said four contractors had highlighted the problem to him last week.

He said Lim should explain the reasons for introducing the clause and not brush it aside.

Earlier, state opposition leader Datuk Azhar Ibrahim, lashed out at Lim, saying that he hardly showed his face in Kepala Batas but expected the people to continue supporting him like he was their saviour.

When contacted, Penang Malay Contractors Association chairman Datuk Mohamed Fadzill Hassan said he has not received any complaint from his 500-odd members about the clause.

I don’t know anything about this. If there is indeed such a clause, it is not fair because Lim cannot terminate contracts just like that without giving reasons.

“Where is the transparency? The affected party can take him to court,” he said.

I didn’t realise allocation finishing???

February 2nd, 2010
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What kind of representative is this la? Need to go for financial management course before standing for re-election. Not knowing the status and details of allocations is a pathetic excuse. Leaving this to aides to run the office is fine, but that doesn’t absolve you of anything. Its your responsibility and your head on the block.

Selangor state executive councillor Ronnie Liu admitted he did not realise he had used almost all of his RM600,000 annual allocation for 2009 in the first six months.

He was in fact surprised when informed by the Special Select Committee on Competency, Accountability and Transparency (Selcat) of the Selangor State Assembly that 99% of his allocation had been used between January and June.

Liu, the state Local Government Committee chairman, said he only knew that a large portion of the allocation had been spent when his personal assistant told him “wang cepat habis” (the money was running out fast).

Liu was hauled before a Selcat inquiry yesterday at the state secretariat building here to explain excessive expenditures of annual allocations.

“The situation in and around my constituency is unique. There are many active associations, temples and churches.

“They request for my financial help. There is a lot of pressure on my part,” said the Pandamaran state assemblyman.

When Selcat panel member Saari Sungib asked Liu what did he do to source for money after June when his allocation dried up, the exco member replied he pledged funds to organisations by using loans and next year’s allocation.

He had pledged about RM120,000 until the end of last year.

Saari then asked him: “Aren’t you a politician who promises too much?” Liu replied: “These are promises I can keep. The money will not be given out immediately. The recipients understand this.”

Another Selcat panel member Mohamed Azmin Ali asked why the allocation disbursed via cheques to 43 organisations had named individuals as recipients, and Liu said: “That is a good question.

“I do not know why such a mechanism was used. I will direct my three personal assistants to change the names of the recipients to the associations.” [this is recipe for disaster. MACC will be gleefully investigate this!]

Seri Setia assemblyman Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad and Sri Muda assemblyman Shuhaimi Shafiei were the other two leaders who have used more than 70% of their allocations from January to June 2009.

Nik Nazmi had used up 88% of his funds while Shuhaimi had spent 72%.

Later at a press conference, Selcat chairman Teng Chang Khim commended Nik Nazmi and Shuhaimi, describing them as “superb” in answering questions posed by the panel members.

“Nik Nazmi adhered to the guidelines by using 30% of his allocation for small projects and is very familiar with his account.

“Shuhaimi explained that his area encountered three floods in December 2008 and January the following year,” he said.

NST has more juicy details:

Pandamaran assemblyman Ronnie Liu pleaded ignorance and blamed his personal assistant for his financial predicament on the last day of the Select Committee on Competency, Accountability and Transparency (Selcat) hearing yesterday.Liu, who was the first Pakatan Rakyat representative called as a witness before Selcat, spent 99.01 per cent of his RM618,042.34 constituency allocation last year in six months (from January to June). [who is elected rep, Ronnie or his assistant?]

He said he did not realise that he had spent almost all his constituency allocation by June as he was not in charge of the accounts and was never informed by his personal assistant Tee Boon Hock that it had almost run out of money.

My personal assistant was in charge of the accounts and because he is also a local councillor, he did not have the time to tell me.

“He just said, ‘YB, the money is finishing fast’. I was surprised when I was told by Selcat that 99 per cent of my constituency allocation had been spent.”

He was one of the first Pakatan representatives who disclosed to the public that most Barisan Nasional assemblymen in Selangor had spent their annual constituency allocations within the first three months in 2008.

Liu, who is state executive councillor in charge of local government and research, claimed most of his allocation went to schools, non-governmental and religious associations, adding that he was under pressure to contribute.

Selcat chairman Teng Chang Khim said Liu could not make such a claim as only 40 of the 168 applications for contributions were from schools and organisations.

Liu, however, disagreed. Teng then ordered him to read out loud each of the organisation which received funds from him.

It turned out that 43 of 168 contributions were made to associations and religious bodies and this amounted to 25 per cent of the allocations.

Moreover, none of the allocations was spent on small projects and of the 168 che-ques issued, 167 were to Tee. [this is not a good news!]

Liu was also grilled by the panel on his “pledges” to give money to associations after his allocations ran out and his decision to borrow money to hold functions. [borrowing money is also not good sign]

By the end of last year, Liu had pledged an additional RM120,000, which was to be paid with this year’s allocation.

Teng said: “What circular or guideline did you use to make such a decision?

“If the state assembly was to be dissolved tomorrow, how would you pay for it?”

I think Ronnie Liu is in deep, deep trouble.