The Dandelions

.. the mutual admiration and bashing society.

Archive for December, 2008

MP Kapar, please resign fast! Good riddance! We don’t love you Mike..

Posted by barbie on December 31, 2008

MP Manikavasagam quitting PKR

The representative from Kapar, S. Manikavasagam, told mStar Online that he was quitting because he was disappointed with the attitude of Selangor PKR leaders, who he claimed had neglected the needs of the people. He also cited in-fighting among the state leaders as a reason.

Two words. Good riddance.

He did it before, and now he’s doing it again. If he’s saying he’s the protege of Samyvellu, nobody will say otherwise. He has mastered the art of saying one thing, doing another thing almost flawless now. This guy, has been blackmailing Pakatan Rakyat and threatened to resign before, yet he’s still there. WTF dude? Attention seeker? Cry baby?

From his own blog:

Breaking News – Manikavasagam to resign

It shows he is serious and committed in upholding the rights of all Human Being. When conveying this message at Kulai last night he says “I’m not like other leaders holding on position despite knowing Rakyat’s rejection”

No idea what the idiot was saying by “holding on position despite knowing Rakyat’s rejection.”

Of course, in true flip flop style (we already saw this coming), he then retracted his decision to resign, because HIS demands has been met. This is not blackmailing then what? Going to public media like that? Lack of PR skills and not media savvy, are you?

From Malaysiakini,

Selangor PKR leader S Manikavasagam will not relinquish his post as the party’s state liaison deputy chief, said his political secretary M Shanmugam today. “Manikavasagam will retain his post as PKR deputy liaison chief for Selangor following the suspension of the person behind the demolition,” said Shanmugam (his political secretary)

Now, he is doing it again. After making such a big issue about resigning with surprisingly perfect timing with the coming by-election in Kuala Terengganu, you thought he would do it for real!  But, no!

Not before he said in NST that Selangor MB and PAS head are back-stabbing by “accepting his decision” to step down. He was saying both Selangor should discuss things with him first before they come out with that kind of remarks in the media. WTF?

SHAH ALAM: Kapar member of parliament S. Manikavasa- gam said Pas president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang was ungrateful and a backstabber for asking him to resign his post as an MP before he had made his final decision.

“Earlier, it was the menteri besar (Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim) and now it is Hadi. This is not right. They should have discussed it with me.

“I guess they could not wait for me to resign and quit the party even when I have not made a final decision.

“Hadi forgot that the Indian community and I had helped a lot during the last general election.

“Previously, the Indian community did not support Pas but now they are willing to hold Pas flags,” he said when contacted yesterday.

Hey! Discuss what again? Who the idiot went amok in the media, making it such a big issue and let the MainStreamMedia (MSM) blowing it out of proportion? So, what you did was right? Shouldn’t you discuss with other PKR leaders first? What final decision? You want to resign, do it. Like we care! We don’t need such childish, idiotic leader, please. Go ahead and resign!!

Now, I have this to say to you, and I know you will be reading this, since I link this article to your blog.

“…..forgot that the Indian community and I had helped a lot during the last general election”

Thank you very much. Where you contested again? In Kapar right? So who you think voted you in to the position you are holding now? The Indians? Bite this fact!

Kapar has 112,224 registered voters – the largest constituency in the country – with Malays forming the majority at 51.4 percent and Chinese at 35.4 percent. Indians make up 13 percent, working mainly in oil palm plantations and the factory sector.

Indians form only 12% of the voters while the Malays form 50% and they gave you 12,000 majority during the last general election. Talking about being grateful?? You are not fit to utter the word, Mr. Mike!

Yet now you are behaving as if you were was elected by Indians alone! Such insensitive  behaviour and making threats, acting like a hooligan. Karpal Singh is right when he said:

”People did not elect him in his personal capacity. He has no right to leave PKR and join any other party. His only other option is to resign so that the people in the constituency can decide what they want.”

And thank you again for creating this issue so that the very biased MSM jump on it like rabid dogs.  Just look at NST Online, how many “special reports” dedicated for this fiasco, with misleading title like “Pakatan Rakyat Row Hots Up”, when it is really about one stupid, insecure, selfish MP trying to get some attentions. BAH!

p/s: Do we need another Indian party? Indians have MIC, IPF, PPP, Hindraf,  bla bla and that new party by Nalla, are we going to have another Indian party?

50 Indian leaders plan meeting to decide on their future in PKR:

…one of the options to be considered at the meeting is a mass resignation followed by the setting up of a new party to represent the interest of Indian members.”

Although with a population lesser than the other major races in Malaysia, Indians are probably having a bit too many ‘Indian’ parties to choose from to “represent their interests” . Own interest or Indian interest?

p/p/s: Yeah.. he’s not resigning. Nah! Like we couldn’t see that coming already. What are you trying to achieve from all this fiasco, Mike? Blame the media again, ah? Aiyo..

DAMN YOU MTF%!&*!**!! After tarnishing the image of Pakatan Rakyat, allowing MSM to capitalise and mislead public on the PR’s unity, now you are making a U-turn? You are a joke!

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , | 14 Comments »

2009………….Keeping Fingers Crossed…..

Posted by ErnieJean on December 30, 2008

Soon we’ll be saying our goodbyes to 2008 and welcoming 2009.

While most of us will be watching our budget when celebrating the coming new year, some will be looking forward to some “panty-less” party down south in the land of the cowboys and litter-happy moments in the shopping haven of Jalan Bukit Bintang……….sigh………

Since the March 2008 election, we’ve constantly talked and blogged about a “New Malaysia”. But seriously, I really wonder whether we’ll ever see that being realised.

For one, it looks like everything is remaining as “status quo” as far as our ruling coalition and all that is tied to their ankles are concerned…….and you can bet we’re talking about the entire web of civil service and the mainsetream media.

Question: How does one know if there is going to be a by-election held in Malaysia soon?

Answer: Check the Malaysian MSMs and you’ll have the stark differences screaming out.

1. Headlines higlighting troubles supposedly brewing in Pakatan Rakyat and grotesque distortion of statements made by PR politicians, while

2. UMNO is all “Love”, “Kindness” and “Maturity”…..everything’s all rosy and peachy in the ruling coalition’s camp……..who cares whether that the PJ UMNO chief is going to join PAS, right? Small issue only………

And another would be the startling drop of morality and civil-mindedness amongs Malaysians, in particular, our youths. The pictures of the streets of Bukit Bintang buried in rubbish on Christmas morning reveals so much about the attitude of our young folks todays…..It’s no longer society orientated but “Me, Myself & I”.

Will 2009 bring changes for the better? Wishful thinking?

I want to remain optimistic. I want to be able to hope for the better…..so that there is still that glimmer of hope that my children and their children will be able to inherit a beautiful land that nurtures, accepts and provides for them. That although it’ll be fat chance with how things are going on at the moment, politically speaking, I’d like to keep my fingers crossed for Malaysians will come to their sense and make changes for the better.

So, what would I wanna wish for 2009?

Here’s the Top 10 that I’d like to put up, in no particular order……..

1. More people-orientated and righteous politicians, civil servants and law-enforcers. (HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH…..Yea, right!!)

2. Main stream media with a conscience. (Will we be seeing cows fly too?)

3. Freedom to voice our concerns as citizens of this country, including cycling and holding lighted candles and hands in public.

4. Abolishment of draconian laws….you and me know what I mean ya?

5. That the forecasted economic downturn for next year will be survivable and employers all over the country will have a heart and not retrench just for the sake of retrenching.

6. Someone in the Education Ministry finally do something about our pathetic education system.

7. Less Walk…..More Talk…….that applies to just about everyone.

8. Recognise and respect the individual’s religious rights, including access to religious books of whatever language.

9. Greater community-orientationess, civic-mindedness, respectfulness, thoughtfulness, etc

10. And for the final one…….for myself personally, to not procrastinate anymore with the “spring-cleaning” of, not only my closet-full of old and worn-out stuff but my personal life too. …..to treasure and focus on what’s important, which is family and close friends ;D

Anyway, to my dear dear Dandies and everyone reading this…….

HAPPY NEW YEAR 2009 EVERYBODY!!!

Posted in Dandelions, Malaysia, malaysian, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

So, who actually owns the land in Perak & Penang?

Posted by Oscar the Grouch on December 29, 2008

So, here’s the crunch: – the benevolent Perak state government wants to award freehold land titles to those residing in settlements and new villagers. The DPM, Najib Razak, quickly responded by declaring that the Perak government is not entitled to do so, citing the need to get the approval of the National Land Council. Perak and Penang disagrees and insists that it is within their legal right to do so.

Here’s an interesting constitutional impasse, I thought to myself. I have already prepared myself, since the March 8th election results, of the eventual legal collision between the State and the Federal Government. Amply armed with statute books and plain curiosity, I decided to waste the long stretch holiday afternoon to understand the issue. Here’s what I found out: –

The Federal Constitution demarcates very clearly jurisdictional matters concerning the Federal Government and the State Government. Article 74 (1) of the Federal Constitution allows Parliament to make laws with respect to matters stated in the Federal List. The Federal List includes matters relating to international treaties & diplomatic matters, defence, internal security, administration of justice, official secrets, citizenship, finance, commerce, transport, education and health.

As for State Government, Article 74 (2) of the Federal Constitution allows the Legislature of a State to make laws with respect to matters laid out in the State List. These include matters relating to Islamic law, land tenure, registration of titles & deed, land improvement & soil conversation, rent restriction, Malay reservation, compulsory acquisition and transfer of land.

Therefore it would seem that the State Government has jurisdiction when it comes to matters relating to land. What then is this National Land Council? The National Land Council, or the NLC for short, was established pursuant to Article 91 (1) of the Federal Constitution. The duty of the NLC is set out in Article 91 (5) as follows: –

91 (5) It shall be the duty of the National Land Council to formulate from time to time in consultation with the Federal Government, the State Governments and the National Finance Council a national policy for the promotion and control of the utilization of land throughout the Federation for mining, agriculture, forestry or any other purpose, and for the administration of any laws relating thereto; and the Federal and the State Governments shall follow the policy so formulated.

The task of the NLC is to formulate policies on land matters. This is so argued by the DAP. In the press statement issued by Ngeh Khoo Ham, the MP for Beruas and a member of the Perak Senior State Exco, entitled “Legal Opinion on the Constitutionality of the Perak State Government to permit the Conversion of Leasehold Titles into Freehold Titles”, it was contented that the NLC has no legislative power.

In many ways, the DAP’s claims are correct. There appears to be no provisions in any Acts of Parliament or the Federal Constitution to support Najib’s claim that prior approval of the NLC must be obtained. It is not for the State Government to seek permission from the NLC, but rather it is the NLC who formulates policies, of which it shall be the responsibility of the State to adhere to.

Land belongs to the State, not the Federal Government. This is clearly provided on the National Land Code 1965: –

40. There is and shall be vested solely in the State Authority the entire property in –

(a) all State Land within the territories of the State;

Since land belong to the State, the State has authority and power to dispose and alienate State Land, either in perpetuity or for a term not exceeding 99 years (Sections 41, 42 and 76 of the National Land Code 1965). Therefore, as maintained by DAP, since land belongs to the State, the State Government is at liberty to issue freehold titles as it wish, without seeking prior approval of the NLC, whose job is to only formulate policies.

Alas, I find DAP’s argument half-full. Although it is true that the State Government need not get approval from the NLC, Article 91 (5) of the Federal Constitution provides clearly that the “… State Governments shall follow the policy so formulated.” This means, even though the NLC has no legislative powers, the States are mandated to follow the policies, even though it has no force of laws, unlike an Act of Parliament.

The powers of the Federal Government are far greater than that of the State. Even if the DAP argues that the NLC has no legislative powers, Article 76 (1) (b) of the Federal Constitution allows Parliament to step in and legislate on state matters for the purpose of promoting uniformity of the laws of two and more States.

Of course, when Parliament starts to legislate on state matters, the law shall not come into operation in any state until it has been adopted by a law made by the Legislature of that State and shall then be deemed to be a State law (Article 76 (3) of the Federal Constitution). However, in matters relating to land, Article 76 (4) of the Federal Constitution provides the final blow for the State Governments: –

76 (4) Parliament may, for the purpose only of ensuring uniformity of law and policy, make laws with respect to land tenure, the relations of landlord and tenant, registration of titles and deeds relating to land, transfer of land, mortgages, leases and charges in respect to land, easements and other rights and interests in land, compulsory acquisition of land, rating and valuation of land, and local government; and Clauses (1) (b) and (3) shall not apply to any law relating to any such matter.

Sadly, to me, the Pakatan State Governments are fighting an uphill battle. Though the States own the lands and are given jurisdiction on land matters, they are bound by the policies issued by the NLC. Even if the policies are ignored, ultimately Parliament can step in to arrest the matter. Of course, there may be other novel legal arguments for the Pakatan to dwell on, but that is something that needs mulling over.

________________________________________________

P/s. Oh yes, I like to wish my fellow Dandies and all readers a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2009!

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Mamma Mia! It’s the Chief Justice!

Posted by Oscar the Grouch on December 22, 2008

I have always wanted to be a judge, ever since I was young; way before I actually enrolled into law school. As opposed to children who have pictures of astronauts or race cars posted on the bedroom walls, I remember a cartoon poster of a judge, complete with his hammer and black robe, plastered on the wall of my cupboard for a good many years, reminding me of my keen ambition.

There was no direct-route to be a judge, I later found out. So, I had to take up law and be a lawyer instead. This was not really a problem, for I didn’t really mind being a lawyer. I used to be enthralled by sensational murder cases of the 70s and 80s. I remember being captivated by the murder trial of beauty queen Jean Sinnappa during the late 70s. I was rapt by the daily reporting, though I cannot make out half of the facts and issues. Years later, when I was working in my first legal firm as a humble assistant, I had the opportunity to meet the legendary counsel who defended in that trial. To be made privy to his personal journals: consisting of notes, jottings and newspaper clippings; and to hear from the man who was himself there, was like a dream come true for me.

I jumped at my very first chance to attend the High Court when I was just a pupil. I was instructed to apply for an adjournment for a hearing. It was before the late Justice Abdul Malek Ahmad. I remember going into the large judges’ chambers, the very first time for me. It was a grim yet imposing room; in fact it was more of a hall than a room.

I sat myself on the counsel allocated seat, in front of me is the solemn and serious judge, looking straight at me, unblinking and unflinching. I swallowed, cleared my throat and begin my simple speech which I have practised many times the night before. But nothing came out. No voice, not even a squeak. I froze in front of the judge; obviously the occasion has taken over me.

The judge sat up, gave me a steely stare. “Aahh …” was all the blabber I could offer. “Ahh … ahh…”. More incomprehensible babble followed. I wanted the floor to open up and devour me. Here I was, in my very first historic legal duty in the High Court, and I lost my ability to speak.

The serious judge suddenly and unexpectedly gave me a kind and knowing smile.

“You are chambering? Your first time?”

I nodded like a nincompoop.

“You want an adjournment to this application set today, yes?” asked Justice Abdul Malek.

Again, I nodded like a fool.

“Adjournment granted.” And the kind judge gave me a date for the next hearing and sent me off. I left the court building relief, but foolish. But in many ways, my first encounter with the kind judge has fuelled my childhood ambition with even more relish.

But that incident was a good many years ago, when my youth was still shrouded by innocence. I found out later that not all judges are nice. Many are nasty, some spiteful, others viciously offensive. These are the ones that made me forget, over the years, of my childhood ambition to be a judge. I just did not want to be one of them.

But there were other reasons as well. Primarily, I found out that being a judge means leading a terribly lonely life. Which means: – no socializing, no friends, no party, no drinking (unless you are ok with drinking alone). I am no party animal, but to be devoid of a social circle seems a tad bit cruel. So, slowly, I begin to abandon my childhood ambition and concentrated instead on being a boring lawyer.

Until last Saturday. As usual, I had my cuppa of coffee and browsing lazily on the weekend daily, until I chanced upon a photo in the Saturday Metro (Saturday, 20 December 2008) under “Events”. There it was, a photo of Chief Justice Tan Sri Zaki Tun Azmi, standing grandly, attending the Mamma Mia! Gala musical show; flanked on his right and left by ministers and corporate leaders. Egad! I thought. Isn’t the Chief Justice socializing?

I did a quick check on judges’ conduct and found the following provisions in the Judges’ Code of Ethics 1994: –

Section 3 (1) A judge shall not-

(b) conduct himself in such manner as is likely to bring his private interests into conflict with his judicial duties;

(c) conduct himself in any manner likely to cause a reasonable suspicion that-

(i) he has allowed his private interests to come into conflict with his judicial duties so as to impair his usefulness as a judge; or

(ii) he has used his judicial position for his personal advantage;

(d) conduct himself dishonestly or in such manner as to bring the Judiciary into disrepute or to bring discredit thereto;

I am no expert on a judges’ code of ethics but the photo shows the Chief Justice surrounded by SP Setia director Datuk Eddy Leong, Datuk Fu Ah Kiow, Tan Sri Chan Kong Choy, Health Minister Datuk Liow Tiong Lai, The Star’s group chief editor Datuk Wong Chun Wai and SP Setia managing director and CEO Tan Sri Liew Kee Sin.

Here is the Chief Justice, seen socializing with members of the corporate industry and members of the MCA. To make matters worse, the Mamma Mia! show that day was hosted by SP Setia and was dedicated to all of SP Setia’s business partners, corporate clients and customers. Which makes one wonders, who is the Chief Justice to SP Setia: – Business partner? Client? Customer?

The appointment of Tan Sri Zaki as Chief Justice has received a lot of flak due to his rather illustrious background. He holds many directorships in many companies prior to his appointment, including being a director to PETRONAS and the Board of Trustee for SP Setia.

He was also the legal advisor for UMNO. His rise in the judiciary has also been of concern, having being appointed directly to the Federal Court as a private practitioner, by-passing several senior judges along the way. All in all, he spent less than 5 years in the judiciary before being made the Chief Justice.

Tan Sri Zaki began his job by announcing that he would get tough and take action against errant judges to prevent the image of the judiciary from being tarnished. But judging from these Mamma Mia! photos, he has taken the lead in tarnishing the already battered image of the judiciary.

As for me, I have renewed hope and vigour in re-launching my childhood ambition of being a judge: – the Chief Justice has since open the door on socializing

Posted in Oscar the Grouch | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

No, It’s Not Our Business Anyway…….

Posted by ErnieJean on December 17, 2008

Remember this song?

My name is luka
I live on the second floor
I live upstairs from you
Yes I think youve seen me before
If you hear something late at night
Some kind of trouble. some kind of fight
Just dont ask me what it was
Just dont ask me what it was
Just dont ask me what it was
I think its because Im clumsy
I try not to talk too loud
Maybe its because Im crazy
I try not to act too proud
They only hit until you cry
And after that you dont ask why
You just dont argue anymore
You just dont argue anymore
You just dont argue anymore

Yes I think Im okay
I walked into the door again
Well, if you ask thats what Ill say
And its not your business anyway
I guess Id like to be alone
With nothing broken, nothing thrown
Just dont ask me how I am
Just dont ask me how I am
Just dont ask me how I am

Luka, apparently, was eventually found beaten to death…… 😦

Ella Mae called me yesterday, pretty much shaken up…….

A neighbour of hers, a lady from India who is married a local guy, with 3 teenage girls, was overheard screaming in pain. Knowing the husband’s history for beating his wife up whenever he pleases, Ella Mae got worried and called her condominium’s management office to send a security personnel to that apartment unit to check on them. Guess what? The security guard only went to the front of the apartment and upon not hearing anything, decided that it was a false alarm.

Not satisfied with the guard’s half-heartedness, Ella Mae then, decided to try approaching some other neighbours whom she is friends with, to check on the Indian lady. Needless to say, nobody wanted to get involved because it’s considered to be a “domestic issue“.

In the end, Ella Mae made the same security guard follow her to the Indian lady’s apartment, knocked on the door and the husband appeared. After being questioned about the blood-cuddling scream that she heard, he admitted to hitting his wife, but his excuse was that she hit him first. Funny thing that she’s gone to the clinic for treatment while he’s bruise free.

What got her extremely upset was the level of apathy her neighbours displayed during such incidences. The beatings that the lady had to endure was not a one-time-off incident, as she has endured so many beatings in the past that she tried running away before, but due to threats from her Malaysian husband regarding their daughters and her Malaysian visa, the poor woman had to return her hell-hole of a home. And Ella Mae knew that her neighbours had heard the screams that morning too, although they all played dumb when asked about it.

Nobody cared.

And nobody will too.

Because nobody wants to get involved in something that’s so messy and emotional.

Public Apathy, folks!!

The question is, do we really turn our backs on these victims of violence (domestic or otherwise), all for the sake of not being tagged as “Nosy-Parkers” ? And only to come out with stories for the press and TV crew when something horrible takes place, such as murder?

That only when the dead body of the wife is discovered and the husband arrested, do these neighbours eagerly jump at the opportunity to be interviewed by some TV reporter, for their 1-minute fame, and say “Ya-lah….we always hear the poor woman scream for help…..so pitiful“………..SAD, isn’t it?

Someone asked me what can one do if the abused victim doesn’t want to press charges or ask for help. Well, like Ella Mae’s neighbour, she’s obviously at the mercies of her abuser aka husband due to her status as a foreign wife (and we all know how our immigration people process eligibility for PR status, don’t we?) and hence how can we blame her for keeping quiet, but all these while, living in fear?

I think, the very least we could do as decent human beings would be to let the abuser know that he/she is being watched by a lot of people who will not hesitate to act accordingly if the abuses continue……..

Did you know that studies have shown that majority of these abusers are actually COWARDS? That they only prey on the ones that are weaker than themselves in order to cover up for their insecurities and weaknesses?

That if they are confronted by a group of people, these cowards would more often than not, back down and think twice before they use their fists again……and with the support from such a group, this may also give the victim the much needed courage to take charge of the situation.

The other thing we could do is to at least inform the relevant social organisation such as Women’s Aid Organisation for their possible intervention.

(Hey, by the way, does that mean our sadistic dog-catchers are cowards too? Throw away their shot guns and long sticks and see if they are still so macho, ya?)

Posted in ella-mae, Emo, erniejean, Malaysia, murder, Observations, Opinions, People, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

In Anticipation Of Legoland Malaysia?

Posted by ErnieJean on December 16, 2008

logo1Malaysia to get Legoland theme park by 2013

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Danish toy maker Lego will open a multimillion dollar Legoland theme park in southern Malaysia in 2013, the first such international amusement center in the region.

The 750 million-ringgit ($210 million) park, based on Lego’s colored plastic construction blocks, will be built in the Iskandar development zone in southern Johor state, a spokeswoman for the project said Monday.

The theme park will boost Malaysia’s efforts of turning Johor into a high-tech urban and industrial hub to rival Singapore, a city-state separated from Johor by a narrow waterway.

The Legoland park is a joint venture between Iskandar Investment Bhd., an investment holding company which coordinates the development in the zone launched in 2006, and theme park operator Merlin Entertainments.

So it looks like after unsuccessfully approaching numerous theme park operators, such as Disneyland and Universal Studios, our govnerment has finally managed to convince the creators of LegoLand to “open shop” in Iskandar Malaysia, touted to be the super-duper economic engine of growth. For someone who grew up playing with Lego blocks (and still do with my kids), I SHOULD be surely excited over this piece of news, shouldn’t I?

You know what, like all GLC business ventures that promises the sky, the stars and the moon, I can’t help but have some serious reservations about this. Why? Just look at how “successful” our other bombastic hare-brained projects turned out to be…….Paya Indah Wetlands, Bukit Cahaya Seri Alam, KL Hop On Hop Off Bus System, PutrajayaPort Klang Free Zone………just thinking about the indecent amount of taxpayers’ money being flushed down someone’s pants really gets me all riled up!! 

And everytime some failed government project surfaces, what do our leaders and those responsible do? Shrug their shoulders and says “What to do? Either bail out or close shop lor“……..it never fails!!!!!!

Now, Legoland Malaysia is owned 80% by our very own Iskandar Investment Berhad and the balance by Merlin Entertainment, the designer and operator of the theme park.

And while this joint-venture announces an investment of RM750 million….don’t be fooled into thinking that we’re having RM750million injected into the economy from somewhere else because it sure looks like at least RM500million is going to come from ourselves, folks.

(Business Times Singapore) The government is likely to be tapped for a loan to kick-start the development of the proposed Legoland theme park in south Johor in view of the current credit crunch which has made funding tougher and more expensive to obtain.

A senior government official told BT that the joint venture behind Legoland Malaysia was expected to approach the federal government for a loan not exceeding RM500 million.

“It is difficult to get loans now, so it will have to be Malaysian government sponsored,” he said of the park which is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2013.

Yupe…it does look like Malaysians are funding this project under the guise of “government kick-start loan”……based on what R.O.I, one wonders? That we’ll probably only get back every cent of our “investment” if the theme park successfully fulfills the projection of 1,000,000 visitors a year continuously for a couple of years…..which, with our humid hot climate, it’s going to be quite some tall order, isn’t it? Even HongKong Disneyland, with so much projected potential, is said to be suffering from low-visitor turnouts.

As construction is only estimated to commence in 2010 and be ready to receive visitors in 2013, it does look like it’s going to be a long long long wait before that promised 5000 jobs is realised. And as we all know, many things can happen in 2-3 years time….after all, we’re not known as Bolehland for nothing, you know?

Also, did you also know that Singapore’s Unversal Studios will be opening the same year our Legoland only starts construction? Someone’s got a head start already. And with our knack for “excellent and persistant maintenance culture” (see our Zoo and S’porean Zoo….and you’ll know what I mean), theme-park visitors are going to have a “hard” time deciding which theme-park to visit……why I’m assuming most of them would only pick one to visit is that the entrance fees are not quite that affordable and hence don’t think many people can afford to visit both places in one go.

I only hope my doubts will be proven wrong, since there is the presence of a foreign business partner, in the form of Merlin Entertainment, in this joint-venture and who may need to ensure the success of this project for the benefit of their reputation.

But for now, I’ll just continue feeling the RM500million pinch.

Posted in Current Affairs, government, Observations | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments »

Of Cowards, Plagiarists and Shameless MSMs………

Posted by ErnieJean on December 12, 2008

You know what? It is only in the face of a crisis that you see the true nature a person and the manifestation of the sort of charater that person bears.

And it is the recent landslide disaster in Bukit Antarabangsa, which saw the loss of lives and properties, that reveals to us what sort of leaders we have in our current BN government…………

A) GUTLESS COWARDS who tries to cover up for their inefficiencies and lack of accountability, intelligence and integrity by shifting the blame on whoever they can get their hands on.

JAKARTA: Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi has hit out at the Selangor Government for apparently trying to wash its hands of the Bukit Antarabangsa landslide tragedy.

The Prime Minister said the Pakatan Rakyat government should accept responsibility and correct any mistakes or weaknesses which have occurred. (That’s precisely what they’ve been doing since March 2008, you old goat!! Correcting your Toyol’s previous administration’s mistakes!!)

“This is not the way to govern – taking credit only for the good things and blaming others for the mishaps.

“As the new state administration, they should improve on all aspects and take things in their stride,” he told the Malaysian media here when commenting on claims by Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim that a total of 99 risky hillside projects were approved by the previous government.

Abdullah said there was no need for him to teach the present administration how to do their work as they should be fully aware of what was good for the people.

Firstly,  if the risky hillside projects were indeed approved by the greedy administration of Toyol, then what the heck is wrong with informing the public of the truth!!!!!???? Pray tell, how on earth is that washing one’s hands off the tragedy!!?? Yoo Hoo!!! Where are you hiding, Uncle Toyol !!!???

In fact, the Selangor government has basically done the exact opposite of washing their hands of the shit that Toyol’s government has left behind. Their unwavering stand on the ban on Class 3 & 4 hillslope developments is definitely something to be admired and applauded!!!

(Btw, We love you Eli Wong!!!!!!! Please do continue being “Lan Si”)

Mr. Badawi, don’t think the taxpayers are that stupid……….we all have eyes, ears and definitely brains to know who is at fault here >:-(

Secondly, on the contrary Mr. PM (who makes chameleon-like statements), I think the 5 Pakatan Rakyat state governments should, instead, teach your BN government a thing or two on proper governance practices.

B) And then, there is the other characteristic trait of most UMNO/BN politicians that us taxpayers are quite familiar with……their shameless fondness to PLAGIARIZE.

Emulate Hong Kong on hill slope developments, says Guan Eng

By Debra Chong

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 10 — Penang’s Chief Minister wants the federal government to set up a geotechnical engineering unit under the Public Works Department to ensure the safety of all hillside developments.

In light of the latest landslide incident in Bukit Antarabangsa which killed four people, Lim Guan Eng said Malaysia should learn from the painful experience and emulate Hong Kong, where 80 per cent of the buildings sit on slopes.

Lim, who had just returned from a working trip there, noted that the Hong Kong government had formed a Geotechnical Engineering Office after landslides in the 1970s killed “hundreds of people”.

“Existing hillside projects require maintenance, require monitoring and require management,” he said.

“We need to have a special department to deal with it professionally,” he added.

Lim explained that the Hong Kong body had proved successful in preventing further deaths and other unwanted incidents through four simple moves: checking new slopes, planning land use, maintaining and upgrading slopes on government land and ensuring private land owners follow the same guidelines.

While Penang already had a similar committee working on drawing new guidelines for slope safety and carrying out inspections on the developments, Lim said the body needed to be placed under federal supervision.

“The resources required are quite substantial. I don’t think any state has enough resources,” he said. – The Malaysian Insider

And what else but the very next day, PAC’s chairman was reported by the MSMs (which mysteriously failed to report LGE’s statement) to be considering adopting Hong Kong’s hillslope development regulations. 

PAC chairman Datuk Seri Azmi Khalid said the Department of Environment’s (DOE) environmental impact assessment required all hillside development to be on 25° angle slopes or less, and the committee was informed that most of the units on Bukit Antarabangsa were built on 20° slopes.

“This is a weakness we see here. Laws to govern hillside buildings must be seriously looked at,” he told a press conference at the landslide site which he visited with eight committee members, including his deputy Dr Tan Seng Giaw, yesterday.

Azmi said the committee would discuss the possibility of a new law on hillside buildings that could be based on Hong Kong’s Land Code, as recommended by the Public Works Department (PWD). (So…..this stealing of ideas goes even deeper into the system than we originally thought, huh?)

– The Star, 12 December 2008

And of course, being total suckers for good publicity (God knows how badly he needs it), our DPM joins the bandwagon and “fishes” for whatever bravos he can get and promptly promises to seriously consider “Azmi Khalid’s” recommendations. 

The Government may introduce planning legislation similar to Hong Kong’s guidelines of hillside development to prevent more landslides in future.

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the Government was willing to consider any suggestion when he was asked to comment on the statement by the Public Accounts Committee that it would look into introducing a new hillside law based on Hong Kong’s Buildings Ordinance.

Hong Kong’s Dangerous Hillside Order is “to reduce the risk posed to the public from known dangerous or potentially dangerous private slopes or retaining walls”.

– The Star, 12 December 2008

So, with the marvellous use of our very “independant and unbiased” media, Lim Guan Eng’s brilliant idea has been totally HIJACKED!!!!

Speaking of our “unbiased and professional” MSMs, did you catch this video that was aired by TV3?

In this clip, the TV3 newscaster’s voice-over seemed to attempt to indicate that the residents were venting their anger at and blaming Azmin Ali for the poor coordination in relocation efforts. But if you listen closely, it was basically residents, frustrated with the lazy attitudes of the RELA boys and MPAJ, complaining to the MP about the lack-lustre attitudes.

There is a big big difference between COMPLAINING and BLAMING, you know TV3?

Now, do you think TV3 will air this if the person at the receiving end of the man’s rant was not Azmin Ali but some UMNO MP? They would have shown smilling faces and thumbs-up gestures instead…..DOUBLE STANDARDS!!!!!

 

Posted in Badawi, BN, Current Affairs, government, Mainstream Media, Malaysia, Najib Tun Razak, Observation, Opinions, Pakan Rakyat, PKR, Politicians | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments »

Malaysia…….The Preferred Destination For All The Wrong Reasons……..

Posted by ErnieJean on December 11, 2008

Something’s just not right with Malaysia….can’t really put my finger on what’s wrong but one thing’s for certain, that there is more than meets the eye as far as our constant link to terrorist acts is concerned.
 
Remember JI terrorist Mas Selamat? He’s the one who made fools out of the Singaporean authorities by staging a successful escape bid from detention in Singapore. Where he is now, nobody knows. But rumours have it that while he may still be hiding in the forest areas of Singapore, he could also be attempting to get to Indonesia through Malaysia……….WHOOPEE!!! Malaysia gets a mention here!!!
 
Then there was the recent terrorist attack in Mumbai. Once again, our beloved country gets a mention here, as the terrorists had Malaysian credit cards and home addresses……deny as much as our Home Minister likes but the fact remains that those terrorists were comfortably familiar enough with our country…..I mean of all Asian countries, why pick Malaysian addresses?
 
And now, with no valid reason other than that he’s believed to have been rehabilitated enough, our authorities quietly releases one of the most dangerous terrorist in Asia (and a dozen more fellow JI-ians) back into the streets of Malaysia last month while harmless folks of Hindraf are still deemed security-threats…….WHAT STUPID LOGIC IS THAT!!!!

KUALA LUMPUR: Suspected Jemaah Islamiah terrorist Yazid Sufaat, who allegedly abetted and housed several terrorists involved in the September 2001 attacks in the United States, has been freed from Internal Security Act detention.

The rehabilitated JI terrorist?

The rehabilitated JI terrorist?

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan said Yazid, 44, was released with another Malaysian, Sulaiman Suramin, on Nov 24.

“We released him as he had shown remorse and had repented,” he added. (Remorse? Repented? How certain are they? Bcos he constantly nods in agreement to every single statement the rehabilitators say? How sure are they that what goes on in his mind and heart is the same as what he professes through his mouth?)

“His release was conditional upon his reporting to the police from time to time and not leaving the state without prior permission from us.

“Our officers will also be monitoring him, as well as several others who had been released over the past years, to ensure they do not go back to their old ways,” Musa said. (Yes, our police officers are very well-known for their “diligent monitoring”)

It is learnt that the Government had over the past year released 17 suspected JI members, eight of them Indonesians.

Yazid, a biochemistry graduate from a US university, was detained in January 2002 and is said to have allowed his home to be used in early 2000 as a meeting place for al-Qaeda members planning the Sept 11, 2001, attacks in the United States.

Mind you, Yazid was not only a well-connected and well-trained JI member, but he was also a biochemist who had headed an Al-Qaeda anthrax programme on using the deadly biological agent for terror attacks. This is the sort of person who has already decided where his path will go……straight to “a heaven that is laden with virgins“………definitely not the sort who would be easily persuaded to go back onto the “right path” by some ustaz who couldn’t even out-debate Raja Petra.

No, this time it’s not about ISA…..I still believe that we should abolish this draconian law and everyone should get their day in court………rather it’s the way our law enforcers (who wouldn’t think twice about detaining the ordinary man on the street who happens to support Non-UMNO-friendly causes citing security concerns), determines (with prejudice?) “who stays” and “who goes“, based on very flimsy reasons.

Which brings me and a couple of friends to come up with this conspiracy theory of sorts………it may seem far-fetched but seriously, Malaysia’s been quite the frequent reference to these terrorists, don’t you think?

Could Malaysia be, sort of, “allowed” to be used as some sort of transit base for these terrorist networks, as long as they “guarantee” that Malaysia will never be the target of terrorist acts? Perhaps, some greasing of the palm took place too?

After all, what better decoy than a “peace-loving” nation that is all about smiles, great sunshine and imbecilic politicians? Perhaps, like what one commentator said on Malaysia-Today, just like MM2H (Malaysia, My 2nd Home), our ever innovative and “pro-active” authorities are thinking about starting a MMTH (Malaysia, My Terrorist Hub)?

And please, don’t even get me started on how the other non-desirable crime-based syndicates prefer to settle down in our country too.

What do you think?

 

 

Posted in conspiracy, Current Affairs, Famous for Wrong Reason, government, Malaysia, mumbai, Observations, Opinions, Raja Petra Kamarudin, terrorism | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

And Then There Comes The Compensations And Hotel Rooms…………

Posted by ErnieJean on December 10, 2008

KUALA LUMPUR: The Government will consider compensating victims of the Bukit Antarabangsa landslide, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

Speaking to reporters after chairing the Barisan Nasional supreme council meeting, Abdullah said the council expressed sadness and regret over the incident.

“The Government will consider help for the victims,” he said when asked.

Abdullah said, however, that the supreme council did not discuss the giving of aid from Barisan. (Of course the money will not come out of BN’s coffers…..us Taxpayers will be the ones shouldering this burden, right?)

“To those affected, our deepest condolences, and sympathy goes out to the families who lost relatives and those who lost their houses.”

When asked if the Government would gazette such land as permanent forests to prohibit development of homes, Abdullah said there would be no more choice for developers if that were the case.

“The choice to build or not to build is now an option for developers because that is where the air is good and the view is good,” he said.

“To gazette land, where building of houses is prohibited, would mean no more choice.

“At this point, there appears to be some choice.”

Abdullah, however, said that catchment areas that had not been gazetted would be done so as soon as possible.

On Bukit Antarabangsa residents citing carelessness by local authorities for the tragedy, Abdullah said those affected would want to point fingers or complain to the Govern­ment at this time. (Complain also cannot ar?)

“What had happened is regretful and was not deliberately done,” he said. (You mean these incidences can be “deliberately” done? The horrors!!!)

“Those who are responsible for building the houses would have considered the soil stability and all other technical studies and should not be taking risks.”

Abdullah said that because of the incident, the order was given to stop all development approvals in such areas.

– The Star, 9th December 2008

Ok……..is it just me or is this “compensation” proposal by Badawi sounding mighty fishy? No, I’m not begruding these people for whatever financial assistance that they may be getting…….but rather, the question is, why now? Why only this time? Could it be our BN govn is feeling mighty rich and hence, generous too, what with the recent RM300million gain from petrol sales last month?

Why announce compensation for this particular incident only? How about victims of all other previous landslide incidences? And by the way, were the survivors of Highland Towers compensated at all for their loss? Anyone?

How about Muhyiddin’s “proactive” proposal to provide those landslide evacuees with free hotel rooms? And UMNO’s setting up of yet another “not-at-all-to-be-trusted” Disaster Fund with pledges from several UMNO division amounting to RM60K (todate). (I wonder whether there will be anymore fools out there who have not learnt from the missing Tsunami Fund incident, and happily contribute to this other “UMNO-endorsed” Fund)

Erm………………Am I missing something out or aren’t the residents of Bukit Antarabangsa quite well off, financially? Do they really need the financial assistance more than, say, some poor attap house dwelling kampung folks besieged by rising flood waters? Why all these quick-to-action pledges for this particular incident?

How much longer can Malaysian taxpayers shoulder this burden and why should we in the first place, when all these were caused by greedy local authorities and greedy developers? If there were to be any compensation to be handed out, then I say the money should come out of them, not us!!

As for the home buyers, some actually blame them for contributing to the “demand” factor, but I’m going to give them the benefit of the doubt….after all, one is usually inclined to believe some big-shot-established developer when he tells you that his development satisfies all criterias required of a hillside development and obviously, no one is going to fork out a couple of hundred thousands for a home that one is not convinced of it’s safety factor, right?

And why does it seem like our Prime Minister is sort of coming up with all sorts of excuses and playing the role of an apologist for the developers with interest in these hillside developments? Didn’t he, just one day after the landslide occurred, went all emo and called for all hillside developments to stop? How come the sudden change of heart?

KUALA LUMPUR: Enough! No more hillside housing projects at Bukit Antarabangsa, orders Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

Abdullah was aware the decision would not go down well with some parties.

“I am sure this will incur the wrath of individual land owners and developers, but enough is enough,” he told reporters after visiting the landslide-hit area yesterday afternoon.

– The Star, 7th December 2008

You know what? Dr. Benjamin George, survivor of the Highland Towers disaster couldn’t have put it more aptly……..

“The politicians will climb up their helicopters and say all development must stop.

“There will be a stop-work order for two months but in the third month the tractors will start work again.

“I have survived long enough to see all this nonsense repeated,”

P.S. Ever wondered what juicy bits could be contained in that little “black-book” of the PM, that his principal private secretary would risk his life to retrieve? Hhhmmmmmm…….

Posted in Badawi, BN, Current Affairs, erniejean, government, Observations, Opinions, UMNO, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

The Bukit Antarabangsa Landslides: – Highland Towers revisited

Posted by Oscar the Grouch on December 8, 2008

My heart goes out for the victims of the Bukit Antarabangsa landslide tragedy. It is indeed a sad day for Malaysia. Some 15 years later from the infamous Highland Tower tragedy, we have not learnt our lesson one bit.

It is almost surreal to see the drama unfolding before the television news broadcast; it is almost an uncanny reminiscence of the scenes played out a decade-plus ago: – the eerie earth-brown mudslide area, the confusing commotion all over, the familiar search and rescue unit, the poignant interviews and narration accounted by the victims, the solemn visits by leaders and authorities, the uproar by citizens and group bodies and finally, promises of investigative responsibility and setting up of task forces.

Trying to find out how the incident happened and who is to be blamed is not going to be easy. I should know; being a doctoral student for the past two years, researching on the topic of construction law liability, with a major segment of my thesis focusing on the court decisions of the Highland Tower case. I have read, and re-read the court judgement- decisions made by the High Court, Court of Appeal and the Federal Court, and I can safely say that, from my personal opinion, to now try to pinpoint cause and blameworthy parties will be somewhat impossible.

In that case (Steven Phoa Cheng Loon Appeal v Highland Properties Sdn Bhd (2000) 4 MLJ 200), legal proceedings were commenced against a total of ten defendants: – namely the developer, the architect, the engineer, the local authority, owners of adjoining land, the company that carried out clearing works on the said adjoining land, owners of another neighbouring land, the developer of the said neighbouring land, the State Government and the Director of Lands & Mines.

During the course of the legal proceedings in the High Court, two conflicting theories were being advanced by foreign experts in the field of geo-technology as to the cause of the collapse. One report put blame on the developer, the other lay guilt on the part of the owner of the said adjoining land. These theories, to me, remains as that: – theories. It can never be accepted as universally accurate. In the end, the court had to accept one finding against the other.

The fact is, once a landslide occurs, we may never find out the actual cause, and who is to shoulder the blame. It can be the weather; it can be the rain; it can be Act of God; it can be due to shoddy workmanship; perhaps it is the fault of the developer; perhaps it is the architect; or the engineer; contractors; it can also be the fault of the authorities for approving the projects. It can be any of them. Or it can be neither of the reasons. Or, perhaps, it can be all of the reasons put together. Who knows? At the end of the day, we can only theorize, not conclude.

The point being, there is nothing we can do in trying to look back, in trying to look for answers, in trying to look for culprits. But we will never find the answers; only guesses. We will also not find any culprits; only scapegoats. We should have move on back then, 15 years ago. This problem would have to be nip head on. Setting up committees and taskforce is only tackling the issue half-heartedly. Blaming the weather, the developer, the architect, engineers and landowners will do no good.

Why should the leaders declare, only at this juncture, that all hillside projects will stop? These projects should not have commenced in the first place. True, it doesn’t mean that the authorities are at fault by approving these projects. But the fact is we will never know who is at fault. But what we do know is that hillside projects will always court landslide disasters. If that is what we do know, why then must the projects be approved? Let’s face it. Developers are not going to care as long as the development order is approved and the projects are saleable. At the end of the day, it is for the authorities to be the protector of the citizens in not approving such projects. If the projects are not approved, then there will not be any development. It is as simple as that. And there will be no loss of lives when landslides occur.

Also to consider is the controversial section 95 (2) of the Street, Drainage and Building Act 1974 which provides immunity against the local authorities. This is exactly what happened in the Highland Tower case, where litigants are being deprived of remedies against the local authorities. In our culture of tidak apa attitude and corruption, such immunity laws are no longer appropriate in today’s climate. There has to be a more responsible involvement on the part of the local authorities to ensure safer building environment. Government officers can no longer be allowed to hide within the veil of statutory protection when they are supposed to be the nation’s guardian and protector.

Posted in government | Tagged: , | 3 Comments »