Ex-judge: Protect Malaysia’s secular status


KUALA LUMPUR: A former Appeals Court judge has called on all Malaysians to defend the country’s status as a secular nation as aspired by Malaysia’s first prime minister Tunku Abdul Rahman.

Mohd Hishamudin Yunus, who retired in 2015 after serving the bench for 24 years, said the status had been agreed to in the Malaysia Agreement 1963 and stipulated in the Federal Constitution, and therefore must be respected by all.

“Freedom to practise religion was guaranteed during the negotiations to establish Malaysia.

“The issue of hudud (Islamic criminal punishment) never cropped up,” he was quoted as saying by The Star Online today.

“If it did then, certainly the proposal would have been overruled by the people of North Borneo (Sabah) and Sarawak,” he said at a forum organised by Sisters in Islam yesterday.

Referring to PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang’s motion in the Dewan Rakyat on April 6 to bring about intensified shariah punishments through amendments to the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965 (Act 355), he said the move was not suitable and will not be accepted by most Malaysians. Continue reading

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PM must declare assets to MACC, says TI-M


PETALING JAYA: Transparency International Malaysia (TI-M) wants Prime Minister Najib Razak and his future successors to declare their assets to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), in the wake of the agency’s recent arrests of civil servants allegedly linked to graft.

Its president Akhbar Satar said if Najib led the way in the matter, there would be no excuse for leaders of the executive, legislative, judiciary and civil service not to do the same.

“The prime minister, deputy prime minister, ministers, menteris besar, chief ministers, exco members, judges, the attorney-general, the inspector-general of police, chief of the Malaysian armed forces, they must all declare their assets,” he said.

He said the nature of their jobs in which they hold decision-making positions that can affect public interest demanded that their assets and wealth be scrutinised.

“The declaration of assets, starting with the prime minister, is in line with the belief that transparency and accountability start at the top,” he said in a statement today.

He said this should be done before and after a top official assumes a post, as well as periodically while the official is serving in office.

Akhbar, who assumed the mantle in TI-M succeeding Paul Low who was appointed as a minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, said MACC’s chief commissioner must also declare his assets to Parliament. Continue reading

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Nobody slapped for asking questions during my era, says Dr M

Dr Mahathir Mohamad has used the incident where a movie producer was slapped in front of Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak to illustrate how freedom of expression has been curbed.

The former premier, who was known to have little tolerance for dissenting views during his tenure, alleged that those who ask Najib questions would end up in trouble.

“This never happened during my time and the prime ministers before me. This only happens during Najib’s era … Those who speak end up in trouble. The newspapers are censored, so is TV3 and other (media).

“So when given a chance to speak, they try (to air their views), and this is the consequence and result of such attempts to speak the truth. Ask questions also cannot, (you get) beaten,” he added. Continue reading

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Social worker who was sold to a brothel

© Provided by The Star Online

PETALING JAYA: Social worker Rahayu Rahmat has no qualms telling people that she used to work in a brothel.

That was how Rahayu, a mother of four, managed to stay together with her children and feed them after they were thrown out penniless on the streets by her ex-husband.

Born in Johor Baru, she was raised across the causeway and it was there that she received her education, worked, and eventually married. But one day, life took a dark turn.

In 2005, Rahayu was “sold” to a brothel in Johor Baru to pay off her then husband’s drug debts.

“My children were all Singaporeans so when I was sold to the brothel and with the house being auctioned off due to non-payment, my children’s passport and birth certificates were sold as well.

“They were unable to leave Malaysia and they ended up being homeless, stateless and penniless with me,” the 47-year-old told The Star. Continue reading

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Support for Najib in Selangor plunges, survey reveals

Support for Najib in Selangor plunges, survey reveals

Prime Minister and Umno Najib Razak and wife, Rosmah Mansor, at the party’s 71st anniversary celebrations last week. Support for Najib has dropped by nearly 8% in Selangor. – EPA pic, May 16, 2017.
SUPPORT for Najib Razak has plunged from 27% to 19% in just six months, according to a survey of voters in Selangor, who were disappointed with the prime minister’s performance and governance.Among the other reasons cited for Najib’s drop in popularity were the introduction of the goods and services tax (GST) in 2015, which is still a concern, rise in the cost of living and lack of good governance, the survey showed.The survey, which was conducted by Institut Darul Ehsan (IDE) in March this year, polled 2,208 respondents.

The survey also found that only 25% of respondents supported Umno and the ruling Barisan Nasional coalition, compared with 69% who pledged their support for Pakatan Harapan.

IDE, which is led by former director of Universiti Malaya’s Centre for Democracy and Elections (UMcedel) Dr Redzuan Othman, conducts voter surveys every six months to detect sentiments, issues and attitude towards state governments and political parties in the country.

The survey was conducted before PAS announced it is breaking off all ties with PKR, casting uncertainty over the Islamist party’s future in the state government. Continue reading

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‘Strange to return Bandar M’sia deposit if consortium broke deal’


It is unconventional for the Finance Ministry to return the RM741 million deposit paid for the Bandar Malaysia land, if it insists that the payment deal was breached, said Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua.

Project owner TRX City Sdn Bhd said it cancelled the contract with the Iskandar Waterfront Holdings-China Railway Engineering Corporation (IWH-CREC) consortium because it did not meet the payment obligations.

TRX City Sdn Bhd belongs to the Finance Ministry, which in March took over the land it had sold to 1MDB for a sweetheart price of RM1.6 billion in 2010.

“The question is, if the contract with IWH has been cancelled, who will reimburse the deposit? Not 1MDB but the Finance Ministry.

“But this is strange. The Finance Ministry said the contract was cancelled because IWH did not fulfil its contractual obligations.

“In conventional contracts, if a contract is breached, the deposit is forfeited. So why should the deposit be reimbursed? They (IWH) did something wrong but we have to repay the deposit?” Pua asked.

He raised the question at a forum on 1MDB in Petaling Jaya last night. Continue reading

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Yeoh lodges report against lecturer over ‘Christian agenda’ claims

Selangor speaker Hannah Yeoh has lodged a police report against Universiti Utara Malaysia lecturer Kamarul Zaman Yusoff and websites which published allegedly defamatory statements against her and the DAP in relations to their purported Christianisation agenda.

Yeoh in her report lodged at the Subang Jaya district police station here said Kamarul’s statement was first published as a Facebook post and has been used by DAP’s critics to attack her and the party.

“The post has gone viral and shared by 252 individuals.

“It was also used by more than 10 online portals, as well as Harakah Daily and Utusan Malaysia, manipulated with defamatory elements against me and the DAP,” she said.

The Subang Jaya state-assemblyperson later told reporters she regretted the baseless and irresponsible allegations made through manipulating the people’s religious sentiments ahead of the next general election.

“He (Kamarul) had used my expressions as a Christian in my book ‘Becoming Hannah: A Personal Journey’ as a bullet to attack the DAP,” she said, adding that subsequent articles quoting the post had further accused the DAP of having a Christian agenda.

Kamarul in the post titled “Hannah Yeoh Contoh Hipokrasi Terbesar DAP” (Hannah Yeoh example of DAP’s biggest hypocrisy) had quoted excerpts from her autobiography and accused the DAP of going against their stand that Malaysia should remain as a secular state. Continue reading

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