Dr Mahathir: Brave of Anina to speak up, I’m proud of her

Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad says he is proud of the bravery of Langkawi Wanita Umno member Anina Saadudin, who was recently sacked from the party.

“There are not many people who dare to speak the truth about our top leader (Najib Abdul Razak) fearing that they will be called traitors.

“But the truth must be said, lest what are not true (lies) become gospel… don’t ever give up, our country needs people like you,” the Mahathir said in a letter to Anina sighted by Malaysiakini.

He hoped she would continue to speak out, and expressed his sadness over her expulsion from the party. Continue reading

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Take action against Taib if serious about reform, activist tells Sarawak CM

Global Witness director Patrick Alley says there must be action if people are to believe Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem’s pledge to end corruption in the local timber industry. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Kamal Ariffin, September 3, 2015.

An anti-graft activist has told Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem that his predecessor Tun Abdul Taib Mahmud’s impunity from prosecution has to end if the people are to take seriously his pledge to end corruption in the local timber industry.

Global Witness director Patrick Alley (top photo) said this to Adenan at a discussion on corruption in investment and development at the 16th International Anti-Corruption Conference in Kuala Lumpur.

Taib was chief minister before Adenan, from 1981 to 2014, and has gone on to be Sarawak’s governor despite scores of allegations that he had enriched himself and his family by logging Sarawak’s forests.

When he took over, Adenan promised to end corruption in Sarawak’s timber industry. Alley, whose organisation produced a documentary in 2012 on corruption in Taib’s administration, called on Adenan to take action against Taib in order to prove his pledge.

“Without ending impunity and what happened in the past, how can you change the future? What has happened in Sarawak has gone global,” Alley said at the plenary session titled “Peace, equality and social justice: fighting corruption in investment and development beyond 2015”.

Alley said Adenan could at least freeze the assets of the former chief minister, his family and that of his cronies. Alley added that while Adenan has promised to end illegal logging and corruption in the timber sector, the big six companies that profited from Taib’s administration are still able to operate freely. Continue reading

Posted in Adenan Satem, Corruption, Taib Mahmud aka The Termite | Leave a comment

From donation to disrupting probe, Najib’s actions suspicious, say international critics

Ana Maria Gomes, a lawmaker from Portugal, says Najib must do the patriotic and decent thing like in any real democracy and step down while being investigated. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Kamal Ariffin, September 3, 2015.

While Umno leaders continue to insist that the US$700 million (RM2.6 billion) donated to Datuk Seri Najib Razak is not unusual, international speakers at a global anti-graft conference said the entire affair was suspicious and required action.

They told The Malaysian Insider that it was in the country’s best interests for the prime minister to disclose how he came to receive the money, and the possible strings attached to it.

They noted that if similar cases happened in other countries, when found out, the politicians were either charged or left office.

European lawmaker Ana Maria Gomes said that any other politician would have resigned if they were in Najib’s place.

“He needs everything to be clarified. In my opinion, anyone who have been under so serious charges, the first thing (they would do) in Europe is resign and then make their case.

“Prove you are innocent and face the consequences,” Gomes said when met at the sidelines after speaking at the 16th International Anti-Corruption Conference (IACC) in Putrajaya yesterday.

She said that in her own country, Portugal, a minister had been subject to a serious allegation several years ago and he immediately stepped down.

An investigation later revealed that the allegations were not true, she said. Continue reading

Posted in Corruption, Najib Abdul Razak | Leave a comment

Najib’s end is certain, only how, says The Jakarta Post

The outlook for Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak is not bright, says an influential Indonesian daily, making comparisons with their former president Soeharto's downfall in 1998. – The Malaysian Insider pic, September 2, 2015.

An influential Indonesian daily has likened the Bersih 4 rally last weekend to the anti-Suharto uprising in the late nineties, suggesting that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s days are numbered.

“The departure of Najib appears simply to be a matter of time and a matter of how to find a ‘face-saving’ formula.

“This is the perfect time for Malaysians to prepare a new direction for their nation. Like it or not, they have to embrace fully fledged democracy,” said an editorial in the English-language daily, The Jakarta Post, today.

The paper made a comparison between Najib’s reaction to the protest with the late Suharto’s dismissal of the “reformasi” protests in Jakarta that eventually forced the long-serving dictator to resign in May 1998.

“The corruption and abuse of power allegations against the prime minister have gained strength and he has apparently failed to convince the people of his innocence,” said the paper. Continue reading

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Dr M is right, Najib fears prison

YOURSAY ‘Dr M’s lone voice is louder and stronger than all the Umno’s.’

Dr M cites Marcos, says rallies needed for lawless gov’t

Quigonbond: Former PM Dr Mahathir Mohamad would within his own set of principles try not to lend too much credence to civil disobedience because in his mind, rallies are what made him retired while he was at the top.

To him, former DPM Anwar Ibrahim was wrong to try to unseat him. But we have come a long way from May 13 and even reformasi. Bersih is organised by civil society, of civil society and for civil society.

As he begrudgingly admits, it was the tool to bring down Ferdinand Marcos in the Philippines. And isn’t that a fitting analogy when we compare Imelda’s lavish lifestyle with Rosmah Mansor?

Hence, there is nothing wrong if Mahathir decides that Malaysians are finally ready to use rallies as a forum to express disaffection.

It is a tool, and every tool can cut both ways. So he should also accept that Bersih can also continue to protest if BN continues to be corrupt and incompetent, whoever is at the helm.

Justine Gow: More important than a change in the leader is the reformation of institutions of governance to strengthen the rule of law.

As Malaysians can now clearly see, the many decades of hard work in nation building can be easily destroyed by just one rogue leader if there is no proper check and balance between the different branches of the government.

The progress made by earlier leaders can be protected and preserved for future generations only if power is not concentrated in the hand of one person.

What is the use for a country to have nine consecutive benevolent dictators achieving greatness and prosperity that can be readily and completely ruined in just a short time by one powerful corrupted successor? Continue reading

Posted in Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Najib Abdul Razak | Leave a comment

End of the road for Bersih?

By Neil Khor

COMMENT The last 48 hours has been most exhilarating. A lot of Malaysians, particularly wearing yellow and doing their bit for democracy, had a very good time in Kuala Lumpur.

They can now go home pleased with themselves. Work done and mission accomplished.

What they are really saying is that I have done my bit. Next time, far in the distant future, when my grandchildren ask whether I made a stand, the answer is a resounding yes.

I was with the 200,000 or 20,000 (depending whom you ask) who stood up for a better Malaysia.

The reality is a far and distant cry from what actually happened.

The last 48 hours were also the last spurt of the 2008 Tsunami.

Street protests that started by Indian Malaysians (remember Hindraf) and that cascaded into a tsunami of votes denying the Barisan Nasional its traditional two thirds majority ended in a carnival of yellow.

Finally, the government has wised up. No need for any kind of crackdown and allow the people to gather. The two day event – there was never enough steam to last even 48 hours – allowed middle class urban Malaysia to feel good about itself.

The government also looks good and on Aug 31, roll out the bands as we all celebrate National Day.

From this moment onwards, let us hope that we have successfully buried idealism in politics. We need pragmatism and we need it in huge doses. Continue reading

Posted in Bersih | Leave a comment

Dr M fires back at ‘comfortable’ Zahid and Hisham

Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad has fired back at Umno vice presidents Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and Hishammuddin Hussein for criticising his presence at the Bersih 4 protest last night.

In his second visit to the protest this afternoon, Mahathir slammed Ahmad Zahid, who is also deputy prime minister, and Hishammuddin, who is also defence minister, as having grown “comfortable” with their positions.

“It is their right for them to slam me, they are comfortable now,” he told a press conference in a restaurant in Pasar Seni.

Earlier today, both Ahmad Zahid and Hishammuddin had expressed disappointment against Mahathir.

Ahmad Zahid (photo) had also played down the significance of Mahathir’s visit last night, claiming that it was only “six minutes” and therefore did not mean support for Bersih 4.

However, Mahathir’s second visit today, together with his wife Siti Hasmah, lasted for almost an hour. Continue reading

Posted in Bersih, Dr Mahathir Mohamad | Leave a comment