Posts Tagged ‘Malaysia’


Folks, at this crucial time, please continue taking precautions as Malaysia battles #coronavirus in a united manner.

As of today 19th March, Malaysia has recorded another 110 new Covid-19 cases, bringing the total number of patients so far to 900 people.

Sixty-three of the latest cases are linked to the Tabligh convention at the Sri Petaling Mosque early this month.

Worldwide, the Covid-19 pandemic has led to over 8,000 deaths and close to 200,000 cases of infection.

So, as PM Muhyiddin announced yesterday, “Just stay at home.”

Stay safe folks and do not use the backdoor, this too will past….

#DudukRumah


Beware the Ides of March.

On March 15, 44BC, Calpurnia, wife of Julius Caesar, tossed and moaned in her sleep while her husband looked on. Abruptly, she bolted upright in bed, awake, but screaming and weeping from a nightmare in which her husband was stabbed and spurting blood. Suddenly, the doors and window shutters banged open, flooding the bedroom with moonlight.

That same night, a little bird had flown into the Forum, pursued by wild birds, who tore it apart in the hall. Calpurnia begged Caesar not to go to the Senate, though he had been specially summoned with a promise that he would be crowned king that day.

Other signs foretold the assassination. A group of Caesar’s horses refused to graze. A sacrificial offering made by Caesar had no heart, and the soothsayer Spurinna warned him to beware the Ides of March.

Calpurnia’s distress was so out of character that the dictator stayed home until late in the day, when his good friend Brutus arrived to fetch him. Brutus ridiculed the dream and divination, mocking Caesar and telling him that the Senate had been waiting all day for his arrival. Together they left for the Forum.

Along the way, they passed Spurinna, and Caesar remarked, “The Ides of March are come.” The soothsayer replied, “But they are not past.”

Upon Caesar’s arrival at the Senate, the sixty senators stood in respect, and then one man approached Caesar. He grabbed Caesar by the shoulders and plunged a knife into his neck. The assembly then rushed at him, unsheathing their daggers. Caesar was stabbed twenty-three times and was left dead. For the next seven nights, a comet streaked through the heavens.

And In Malaysia, the members of parliament are ‘stabbing’ each other openly since last Sunday 23rd of February 2020, after months of plots and counter-plots to control Putrajaya.

Today March 1st 2020, The Agong had enough and has decided, Muhyiddin Yassin is the eighth Prime Minister of Malaysia by the King’s appointment. The process of the appointment of the Prime Minister is over.

Now its up to Parliament, Parliament will decide on a Vote of No Confidence. That is the way ! This is Parliamentary democracy!

Selection by The King for the 8th PM was not based on the number of Statuary Declarations from all the MPs. It’s the opinion of the Agong whom he feels can command the respect of the majority in parliament, based on this The King choose Muhyideen Yassin as the 8th Prime Minister of Malaysia.

Parliament is siting on the 9th of March 2020. If it is not postponed, MPs can go to Parliament on the 9th of March and show their support for Dr Mahathir or Muhyiddin Yassin.

If Muhyiddin loses the vote of no confidence, he has the power to advise the Agong to dissolve Parliament and a new elections will be held, which is not what Dr Mahathir or DAP wants.

Serious horse-trading is going on now. The Battle for Putrajaya is on, and this is Malaysian version – IDES OF MARCH!


As we celebrate the 56th anniversary of our beloved nation, it is time to reflect on the circumstances which led to the formation of Malaysia with Sarawak joining the Malayan states, Sabah and Singapore to give birth to a new federation on Sept 16, 1963.

Watch this video!


It may seem that the war of words between Dr Mahathir and Shafie Apdal began with some confusion over the issue on how many seats were initially secured by Party Warisan Sabah on the night of May 9th GE14 elections. On one hand, rumour has it that Dr Mahathir believed Warisan should have secured 35 seats instead of a dismal 21 seats. Today, Shafie Apdal has claimed to having 45 seats in the Dewan. The question here is, what are his intentions?

As soon as it was established by the court that Warisan had become the legitimate government, things began to change. As we all know, absolute power corrupts absolutely. Beginning with the repeal of the TYT term and giving him unlimited extension. Many opposed the move but those who have supported him did so to curry favour with Shafie with the hope of getting personal rewards, some say. Even the Minister of Finance was taken up by Shafie in vowing not to follow the footsteps of his predecessor Musa Aman.

After nine months in power it was later admitted that the state had in fact RM 4 billion in government reserve. In the beginning it was reported by Shafie that the treasury has empty coffer which readily made people believe.

Warisan became the state government only through the support of UPKO, without whom, Shafie could not have become Chief Minister and Wilfred Tangau, Deputy Chief Minister. In a sense, the two live for each other. Warisan leaders were also given a number of full federal ministry posts, Darell Leiking, VK Liew and Mohd Din Ketapi and their choice of Sabahan personnel.

The spate of fire in the squatter colonies in Likas/Sepanggar, Banggi, and elsewhere have suspicion ignited. All these fires only occurred in squatter colonies all over Sabah and this is unique and devoid of logic. During the fires people were said to be seen rushing to save their televisions, refrigerators, mattresses and other household goods, but not their personal documents. Those affected by the fire are known for their illegal statuses and it was suspicious that these acts of arson kept happening only in those squatter colonies.

Then, the State Minister of Law and Native Affairs Aidi Moktar claimed the government would review the law on whether the Bugis and Jawa communities can be considered as natives in Sabah. Rumours indicated that it is because of the fear that Datu Akjan the self proclaimed “ Sultan Sulu” was taking away the Suluk and Tausug vote bank from Warisan to Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia’s (PPBM). It did seem apparent that there is a grand design to distort the Sabah political landscape and cause a racial imbalance for political purpose, once again.

Then thousands turned up at NRD centres, all allegedly foreign looking individuals. The state director of NRD said that the department was conducting census, an alteration of shifting demographics. There was even a report that thousands have been issued late birth certificates in several parts of Sabah with substantial population of immigrants.

With all these happenings in Sabah the last nine months, for sure the Special Branch must be reporting to Prime Minister Dr Mahathir. And those receiving big favours from the government especially the millions changing hands at the Harbour Trade legal firm in Kota Kinabalu have plenty to be worried now. Naturally nothing is secret anymore especially with social media i.e Facebook, Whatsapp and blogs that could go viral and influence the course of events.

The tide has certainly shifted with the sudden change of mood between Warisan and Bersatu.Their arrival in to Sabah leaves no credible opposition in the state. Bersatu’s arrival can be seen as an attempt to monitor the activities of the state government. As a part of the PH central government, Bersatu or its appointed allies in Sabah can provide check and balance, based on the “rule of law”. The fear many locals share with me is that any uprising in the future is possible when a large population of illegal immigrants is present in the state and comfortable with a sitting government. Sabah is facing an existential treat and I’m certain Shafie is aware, which is why he has met with the Philippines ambassador to raise Sabah’s concerns that security threat in the southern Philippines might spill over. I can only caution the state of the events in 1976 fall of USNO. That too was a similar threat to the then ruling PM, and if left not monitored, history will indeed repeat itself.


“One of the reasons people hate politics is that truth is rarely a politician’s objective. Election and power are” – Cal Thomas

This is one subject that could take an encyclopedia to wrap up but lets try and figure it out within the scope of this space.

Malaysian politics is often described as being feisty, vibrant, colourful, controversial, debatable, provocative, all of that and more. It all depends on which side of the spectrum you stand and there is a perspective, always. Ask a million people what is wrong with Malaysian politics and you will get a million perspectives. That, in itself tells a story. People are aware, concerned and involved, good or bad, it shows the vibrancy of politics in Malaysia.

People confuse politics with governance. That’s not true. Politics is the means to effect change. All countries and societies effect change all the time; politics is the means to bring about that change. The kind of politics practiced can vary and remain a subject of debate. However, it is at the core of people’s participation in deciding who governs them and how.

Governance is for administrators and bureaucracy, politics is for people’s representatives. People don’t really indulge in politics, they indulge in making political choices and gather groups that agree with them, to elect the leader of their choice. Politics is what the leaders indulge in before and after being elected.

The art of politics lies in being successful in gathering consensus through discussion, debate and persuasion and then pushing that consensus into legislation that results in action and implementation.

What’s Right With Malaysian Politics?

So when we ask what is wrong with Malaysian politics, you have to first acknowledge what is right about it. After all, after 55 years since formation of Malaysia in 1963, Malaysian politics and democracy is alive and vibrant. It becomes even more relevant when we take into account the sheer geographical size of the country and diversity of its people, culture, religion and lifestyle. To get all of that to come together and give people the freedom to choose their voice, can only evoke admiration. This is perhaps Malaysia’s single biggest achievement, since formation and one, it can be proud of.

Sure, it has its flaws, but then what system doesn’t. It’s all about evolving and bringing about change, for the better, through people consensus. That’s politics and it has worked for Malaysia. So before we pull out the knives on Malaysian politics, bear in mind what we have achieved, thus far. It may not be without flaws but it is still the best option. This is our brand of politics and it has worked, for us.

So What’s Wrong With it?

Plenty. We shout over roof tops that we are a democracy and assume that it is also the best. Well, look again. Is the system truly representative? At the time of voting, people make choices based on their belief and understanding of the leader they choose and that leader, post being elected, represents the people, as their voice. That’s idealistic but is that really true? Does the elected leader really reflect what the people want or is it mostly about what that leader wants, often for his own reasons?

Look at the fact on the ground. Majority of Malaysians still live in rural areas and in poverty and poor living conditions especially Sabah and Sarawak and Kelantan and Terengganu and Kedah and Pahang, and with little education or awareness of matters outside their areas of residence. Yet, 98% of the people who would fall in this category are responsible for choosing a government which will legislate over the future of the country.

Too Many Questions….

It is one man – one vote and that is all that matters. Well is it? Is the vast majority really capable of understanding and judging the leaders they choose? The lack of education and awareness, coupled with poverty, often forces the voters to elect leaders who seem to offer them solutions for a better life but instead end up buying or coercing them to vote. So do they really represent the people?

Isn’t it common to see votes being bought and sold in its crudest form? Don’t we see vote bank politics being practiced in its worst form, or votes being garnered on the basis of race or religion? What about votes garnered through threat? It all happens and is part of Malaysian politics.

So can anyone stand up and claim the virtues of Malaysian democracy as being truly fair and truly representative? Should we really beat our chests with pride while proudly claiming to be a democracy?

Free and Fair…. Really?

The ground reality is that politics played at the grass root level can be nasty, coercive and corrupt. Electing representatives is often based on clan and kinship. And most times, its money that buys a position. After all, at the village level, it’s the Ketua Kampung, JKKK, Kapitan Cina, Temenggong, Pemanca or Penghulu that determines the level of respect and influence that an individual commands. That’s the reality and plays a part in the election process.

So can one really say that Malaysian politics be it Sabah or Sarawak or Malaya, at all levels, is truly free and fair? The voting process may be free and fair, at least in most cases, but the process of politics that goes into the run up to elections, and thereafter, is what is questionable. And that’s what is wrong with Malaysian politics.

Let’s take a look at another example. Sabah has always been in the forefront of entertaining politics. But after elections when the courts have to decide who is the rightful Sabah Chief Minister and not wait for a vote of no confidence in the state assembly, it is time to sit up and question the ‘quality’ of politics that we practice. GE14, Musa Aman was first sworn in as Chief Minister at 11.10pm Thursday (May 10) before the Yang di-Pertua Negeri Tun Juhar Mahiruddin at Istana Negeri. In less than 48 hours, Warisan’s Shafie Apdal was sworn in as Chief Minister at 9.30pm Saturday (May 12) by Juhar at the Istana Negeri also. The general election saw a hung assembly when both Sabah Barisan and the coalition of Warisan-PKR-DAP had won 29 seats each in the 60-seat state assembly. And then Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan’s Sabah Star party, which had two seats, became the “kingmaker”. Sabah Star supported Sabah Barisan to give a simple majority of 31 seats, thus allowing Musa to be sworn in as Chief Minister. But by the next day, six Barisan assemblymen – four from Umno and two from Upko – had declared their support for Warisan and its partners PKR-DAP. With the majority support of 35 (out of 60) assemblymen, this allowed Shafie to be sworn in.This matter is still not settled yet, The Court of Appeal will soon decide who is the rightful chief Minister, till then we have to wait and there is still a cloud of uncertainty, its more than 8 months since GE14.

The list of misuse in politics is endless and the ‘quality’ of politics practiced, questionable. The intelligentsia and civil society is aware of the failings, as you and I are too, but the big question before us is – what are we doing about it?

Intolerance to Dissent is a Big Threat

Question, dissent and debate are an essential part of politics and democracy. The ‘quality’ of democracy and politics is judged by the level of debate and dissent allowed, within the party and outside of it. Malaysia is witnessing increasing levels of intolerance to the above and that is very visible in state and national politics. Older parties like the UMNO and PAS have shown signs of intolerance, as have new age parties like Bersatu, Amanah and Warisan. All parties are guilty of quashing dissent in any form. What is a worrying trend is that several parties are resorting to violent means whenever questioned by the people or members of their own parties. Even the media, which serves as a watchdog for the people, has not been spared.

Another problem with Malaysian politics is increasing rowdyism in parliament and state assemblies. On paper, it’s a forum for free and fair debate but in practice, only those with high decibel shouting and aggressive behaviour get heard. What chance does a Dr Jeffrey Kitingan have against a loud and aggressive politician from another party? Yet, on a daily basis we have incessant shouting that passes off as debate. So is this fair on those who do not possess the requisite shouting ability? Is that supposed to be a pre-qualification? The voice of each representative in Parliament must have equal and fair weight and must be given equal opportunity to express his or her viewpoint. That’s easier said, as in practice, it is almost always to the contrary.

And now for the biggest problem of them all, influence and impact of money on Malaysian politics. Politics has degenerated into a business which has a lot of money, some legal but mostly unaccounted, being plowed into it by vested interests. It’s a global phenomenon but a big problem nevertheless. As long as unaccounted money makes its way into politics, it will never be free or fair. And we, as a nation, have to come together to try and figure out how to address this, if Malaysian democracy has to prosper on the bed of fair politics.

It is time for the people to raise their voice and question their leaders and political parties, and force them to change for the better. For we have one non-negotiable weapon, our vote. Isn’t that what democracy is all about?


Good job AG Tommy Thomas.

Malaysians are amazed by the professional difference between the present AG Tommy Thomas to that of the previous AG Apandi Ali. Previous AG Apandi Ali proudly announced that there is no criminal case against Najib Tun Razak and his conspirators, what a clown!

Anyway, Malaysia filed criminal charges against Goldman Sachs over the 1MDB scandal. It accused the bank of making false and misleading statements, a rare rebuke of an institution that has long represented the pinnacle of money and power.

The Malaysian authorities also charged several individuals in connection with the multibillion-dollar investment fraud that ensnared Goldman and led to the ouster of Malaysia’s former prime minister Najib Razak. The government said it would seek criminal fines in excess of $2.7 billion.

The charges relate to a Malaysian state investment fund called 1Malaysia Development Berhad, or 1MDB, from which officials and employees are suspected of looting billions of dollars. The money funded an enormous spending spree, according to U.S. federal prosecutors.

Read the rest in the nytimes.com

GOLDMAN SUCKS CHARGED FOR GIGANTIC MALAYSIAN FRAUD.

The filing of federal charges could increase pressure on Goldman, the…


Finance Twitter

The older the ginger, the spicier it gets – goes a very popular Chinese idiom. It means the older a person becomes, the wiser the person gets. When Mahathir Mohamad led the opposition coalition, Pakatan Harapan (Alliance of Hope), to a stunning victory in the May 9th general election, the world was shocked and impressed with the emergence of the world’s oldest prime minister.

This is not the first time the grand old man walks the corridors of power. He had enjoyed and tasted the power before – as prime minister for 22 years from 1981 to 2003. But to return to his old job after retired for 15 years is particularly satisfying for him. From a dictator, Mr. Mahathir suddenly becomes a very popular saviour who successfully defeated the evil and corrupt (former) PM Najib Razak.

Heck, he has become so popular that there were concerns the 93-year-old man would be pressured to continue his premiership for as long as he likes, nullifying the agreement to hand over the most powerful job after 2 years to Anwar Ibrahim, his protégé-turned-nemesis-turned-ally. However, Mahathir has repeatedly said he will honour the agreement signed by Pakatan Harapan partners.

The two year period may sound very short, but when a man like Mahathir is put to work, he can deliver more than what an idiot can do in 20 years. The fact that his party – Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) – commands almost the equal share of ministry portfolios among the 4 partners in the ruling coalition, despite being a minority party, was already impressive.

After the historic May 9th win, Anwar’s party (PKR – People’s Justice Party) possessed the lion’s share of 47 parliamentary seats, while DAP (Democratic Action Party) grabbed 42. Mahathir’s PPBM (Malaysian United Indigenous Party) won only 13 seats and Amanah (National Trust Party) managed 11 seats, giving the Pakatan Harapan coalition the required 113 simple majority.

Sure, Mahathir was sworn in as the country’s 7th Prime Minister of Malaysia primarily because all the component parties had agreed to the arrangement. Another factor was due to the fact that there is no dominant party with super majority seats in the coalition. Still, after Anwar was granted a full pardon by the Agong (King) and released from prison, he can kick Mahathir out of the government.

There were strong rumours that Anwar Ibrahim was plotting to partner with either UMNO Malay nationalist party (which was dethroned for the first time in 61 years) or PAS Islamist party or both so that he can instantly grab power. After all, how hard could it be to replace Mahathir’s 13 seats party? Anwar’s advisers believed Mahathir might play him again like in 1998.

Mahathir easily checkmated Anwar, pampered PKR Deputy President Azmin Ali with a very powerful portfolio – a specially created Minister of Economic Affairs. The divide and conquer tactic has essentially split PKR into half. To ensure DAP and ethnic Chinese loyalty to his premiership, Mahathir rewarded them with 6 ministers, including the powerful Minister of Finance.

After ensuring stability and no rebellion within the Pakatan Harapan ruling coalition, Mahathir proceeded to break up the opposition Barisan Nasional coalition. Out of 79 parliamentary seats initially won by the old regime, UMNO alone had in its possession 54 seats. Like a skillful sushi chef, Mahathir skinned Barisan’s so-called fixed-deposit Sarawak Barisan Nasional.

About a month after its humiliating defeat, the extremely corrupt Barisan was shocked when it lost 19 parliamentary seats in June. All the Sarawak parties – PBB, SUPP, PRS, and PDP – abandoned the coalition. Including UPKO (1), PBS (1) and PBRS (1), the Barisan was reduced from 79 to 57. The once arrogant former Deputy PM Zahid Hamidi was reportedly begged the Sarawak Chief Minister not to quit, but to no avail.

It was not a coincidence that Sarawak former Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud’s party PBB, the biggest in the state with 13 parliamentary seats, launched the rebellion after his meeting with PM Mahathir and Daim Zainuddin. In exchange for not investigating Taib’s decades of corruption and illegal logging, Mahathir single-handedly took away Barisan’s fixed-deposit.

UMNO plunged into disarray almost instantly. Its self-proclaimed 3-million members were running around like a headless chicken. From a mighty coalition of 13 component parties, the Barisan Nasional is now reduced to just 3 parties. With MCA and MIC holding 1 seat each (after MIC’s Cameron Highland was declared null and void), the coalition was reduced to 56 seats.

But the slaughtering has just begun. With UMNO members already disillusioned and demoralised by their clueless president Zahid, Mahathir didn’t have to do any heavy lifting. Like it or not, the old man was a master strategist. Besides to gauge the real support of UMNO and PAS, there appeared to be another reason why the anti-ICERD rally was allowed to proceed.

Zahid Hamidi and PAS President Hadi Awang thought the ICERD was a God-sent opportunity to rally the Malays and Muslims against the Mahathir government. The much hyped demonstration had turned out to be a flop – only managed to attract 55,000 protesters. Both gangster Zahid and extremist Hadi had wanted to test the feasibility of UMNO and PAS joining forces.

But the same racial and religious rally would come back to haunt both Zahid and Hadi, sooner than they had expected. On Dec 12, just four days after the mega rally, a mass exodus from Sabah UMNO has begun with nine of 10 of its assemblymen, five of six MPs and two senators leaving the party. There were dozens of reasons (or rather excuses) given for the mass resignations.

However, according to sources, the main reasons were the fear of UMNO becoming too Islamic-centric and getting closer to PAS. There’s a reason why the PAS Islamist party doesn’t have a presence in Sabah. UMNO in Sabah is different from the Peninsular. Perhaps the stupid Zahid Hamidi hadn’t a clue that Sabah UMNO actually has “non-Muslim” members.

A day after the December 8 rally, which Mr. Zahid proudly declared as a huge success and attended by 500,000 Malay-Muslims, PAS and UMNO told all and sundry that they will set-up a joint committee to discuss and deliberate issues concerning the position of Islam as well as special privileges of the Malay, suggesting a partnership or a coalition or even a merger could be on the horizon.

Mahathir was absolutely naughty to give UMNO enough ropes to hang itself. All UMNO Sabah leaders & elected representatives who were leaving the party have pledged full support to the Pakatan Harapan Government under the leadership of Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad. UMNO is now left with only one assemblyman and one MP in the state of Sabah.

Thanks to anti-ICERD rally, UMNO’s 54 MPs has been diluted further to 43 after the Sabah fiasco. That’s close to half of the initial 79 MPs lost within 6 months under Zahid leadership. Not bad for a Java-migrant who had dreamt of becoming UMNO president. After the collapse of Sabah UMNO, a second wave of exodus from UMNO is reportedly coming very soon.

At least 32 UMNO MPs have allegedly switched loyalty to Mahathir Mohamad. If that happens, UMNO would be crippled with only 11 MPs left, presumably the most toxic and unacceptable even to the “garbage collector” Mahathir. The PPBM now possesses 16 MPs, up from 13 after three UMNO MPs jumped ship earlier on.

If Mahathir’s PPBM decides to accept all the 32 UMNO frogs, it would be boosted with a whopping 48 MPs, just second to Anwar PKR’s 50 MPs. To be fair to him, the prime minister did not say all of UMNO MPs will definitely be accepted. They must first become independent or Pakatan-friendly. This is important because the frogs can be used to initiate institutional reforms.

Yes, as a 13 MPs small “mosquito party”, as previously mocked and insulted by former Tourism and Culture Minister and UMNO warlord Nazri Aziz, it’s incredible that Mahathir could control the 222-seat government. Even without the 32 UMNO frogs, the 19 (Sarawak) and 5 (Sabah) respective friendly votes means Pakatan has 146 votes, just 2 seats shy of two-thirds majority.

Pro-UMNO cybertroopers, propagandists and bloggers had predicted and hoped that a merger between UMNO and PAS could create a new powerful force. They suggested that what Zahid and Hadi needed to do was to scream, whine and bitch about 3R (religion, racial and royalty) and the Pakatan Harapan government would collapse.

Instead of a merger, clearly Mahathir has a better solution – to slaughter UMNO like a pig and deny PAS the satisfaction of taking a free ride out of UMNO misery. From the leader of a minority party, Mahathir has not only divided UMNO into pieces of junks, but also recycle the garbage to become useful parts, without any promise of keeping the trash.

This piece is by Finance Twitter and it can be found HERE.


Raids are on political figures across the country, even if they are now restricted to only non-Pakatan Harapan leaders, should be welcome. People who accumulate money by misusing powerful positions must be brought to book.

BUT it would amount to nothing but vendetta if leaders of Dr Mahathir’s Bersatu, PKR, Amanah and others in the PH are exempted, including Party Warisan. It cannot be anyone’s case that PH leaders or their allies don’t amass money. A scrutiny of their Election Commission submissions will be quite revealing.

I have been saying this for quite some time. Why go far, raid the chieftains of all parties and their relations and you will come to know about others. Also check all the diary entries of all businessman to know who all did they pay over the years, not dismissing them as “Routine Accounts”. Then the crimes like rapes and murders by politicians, now that people have started coming out to allege sexual harassment by leaders.

As far as Borneo states are concerned certain correction is happening now. Till recently some big time business tycoons and politicians are untouched as entire income tax department and the corruption agency here was in the hands of those people who were with Barisan National Putrajaya. Following the breakup of Barisan National after GE 14 there are searches.

Dr Mahathir is no holy cow in using institutions like ACA now called MACC, and the Tax Department. During his 22 years rule countless times he used them against other party leaders as well as his own party leaders who revolted, he is doing it again. See what he did to Musa Aman just two days before the court verdict for the rightful Chief Minister of Sabah? He charged Musa Aman for corruption. He charged Musa Aman for a case which was closed 14 years ago, he resurrected the case and charged Musa Aman for corruption.

Why did the charges against Musa come just two days before the court is set to rule on his challenge against Mohd Shafie Apdal’s legitimacy as Sabah’s current chief minister? Is it not to influence the judiciary? Is this not selective prosecution? And worst still, as speculated in the social media, the judge involved in the ruling has been promoted to the Court of Appeal.

Another side of the story. Ideally action should be taken against all irrespective of their political affiliations. But if corrupt are taken to task even as pure vendetta it is welcome. Next time when the other comes to power they should also take action by way of vendetta, and the score will be settled. But my guess is that even these vendetta are just for public consumption.

Credibility comes when you do it to your own also. When Fidel Castro ordered the nationalisation of all big farms in Cuba, the first farm expropriated was that of his father.


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(Dr Jeffrey Kitingan of STAR Sabah & Wilfred Tanggau of UPKO)

Kota Kinabalu, Sat 3 Nov 2018

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Sabah may see ‘shift’ in political allegiances

Speculation is rife in Kota Kinabalu, in the run-up to Nov 7, that several state assemblypersons may ditch the state gov’t soon to sit as “independents” in the state assembly.

It was not immediately clear from talk in the social media on whether the “shift” would take place before or after Nov 7.

Nov 7 is the day the High Court would decide on the lawful chief minister of Sabah. Umno Sabah Chief Musa Aman was sworn in as the head of gov’t on May 10. Forty eight hours later, the Governor swore in Parti Warisan Sabah president Shafie Apdal to replace the former.

According to the political grapevine, the “rebel” lawmakers have a long list of grievances which are yet to be addressed by the new administration.

“Don’t focus on Nov 7 too much,” said one post in a whatsApp group. “This has gone beyond Nov 7.”

“There are serious issues which are yet to be addressed.”

The “rebels” have claimed in private chat groups that it was premature at this juncture to flog the issues in public.

They are hoping against hope that the state gov’t will address the issues. If they are addressed, naturally there won’t be anyone taking an independent stand in the state assembly.

It has been learnt that some of the grievances of the “rebels” include the registration of “dubious” people for the issuance of late registration birth certificates and ICs, the state gov’t’s stand on a spate of fires that took place since mid-May in several squatter settlements, and land issues.

Other issues are appointments in the new administration, and the dismissals of village chiefs.

The “rebels” appear uncertain on how many of them would support the lawful Chief Minister declared on Nov 7. That appears to be a separate issue with the rebels.

All lawmakers have to search their conscience on the court’s declaration.

Perhaps they will cross the bridge when they come to it.

The circumstances under which the switch of chief ministers took place on May 12 remain somewhat murky. There are allegations of a conspiracy during the 48 hour period. Six nominated state assemblypersons, proposed by Musa, were also not sworn in.

Musa was not given the right to go to the state assembly to gauge his level of support. If he had been given the chance, it’s unlikely that any gov’t Bill would have been defeated.

It doesn’t happen.

If a gov’t Bill was defeated in the state assembly, it would be tantamount to a vote of no confidence in the chief minister.

The High Court is expected to shed light on Nov 7 on whether the defeat or otherwise of a gov’t Bill in the Sabah state assembly should be the “gold standard” to demonstrate the lack of confidence or otherwise in a sitting chief minister.

Amir Hussein Sulaiman (Tel: 0168406756)

A concerned citizen from Sarawak in the Land Below the Wind


PRESS STATEMENT

Sabahans see end to simmering ‘constitutional crisis’ on 7-11

An eerie calm has descended on Kota Kinabalu in the run-up to 7-11, Nov 7, the day that Judge Yew Jen Kie from Sarawak will rule on whether the appointment of Shafie Apdal as Chief Minister on 12 May 2018 was constitutional or otherwise.

Musa Aman was earlier appointed, on May 10 in the wake of GE14 on May 9, as Chief Minister. Musa’s Barisan Nasional (BN) secured 29 seats, the majority under one symbol, in compliance with the Sabah Constitution.

Six defections from BN to the other side precipated the constitutional crisis which has been simmering since May 12. Shafie’s seats which can be counted under his Parti Warisan symbol remain at 21, less than the 23 seats left with Musa on May 12.

Shafie claims he has crossed the simple majority mark in the 60-seat state assembly under a coalition of parties viz. DAP, PKR and Upko with Warisan.

However, Musa still has the majority under the Sabah Constitution which stipulates the Chief Minister must have the most and/or largest number of seats under a registered political party i.e. one symbol.

The consensus in the court of public opinion sees Musa returning as Chief Minister to head a minority gov’t.

The public debate has come around to the realisation that the Sabah Constitution mandates this unique situation. It has no provision which calls for a simple or absolute majority to be Chief Minister.

The Shafie camp has been left clutching at straws.

They believe the judge can pull a “magical rabbit” from the hat in their favour.

The “magical rabbit” the judge can pull from the hat on Nov 7 would be to say that “it cannot be the intention of the state assembly to deny the formation of coalition gov’t in the 2nd instance, i.e. May 12, when the gov’t in the 1st instance, i.e. May 10, was ‘challenged’ by defections”.

If so, such a ruling would be fundamentally flawed, riddled with errors in facts, and errors in law.

True, it cannot be the intention of the state assembly to prevent/discourage the formation of coalition gov’t.

However, having said that, the main party in the coalition gov’t must still have majority as defined by the Sabah Constitution.

If coalition gov’t arises, the party in the first instance, i.e. May 10, can put together such a gov’t, if not go to the state assembly as a minority gov’t.

Minority gov’t is lawful.

It has to depend on independent lawmakers and/or rebel lawmakers to see the passage of gov’t Bills in the state assembly.

Not surprisingly, the public debate on May 12 has come full circle indeed. The court of public opinion expects Musa to be restored as Chief Minister on Nov 7.

Daniel John Jambun

Human Rights Advocate

Tel: 010 878 6993

President

Borneo’s Plight in Malaysia Foundation (BoPiMaFo)

Thurs 1 Nov 2018

Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Borneo-Malaysia