Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Full List of AP to be Published

AP - Full Publication Posted by Picasa

From Salbiah Said

JOHANNESBURG (South Africa), July 27 (Bernama) -- Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi Wednesday directed Minister of International Trade and Industry Datuk Seri Rafidah Aziz to publish the full list of Approved Permit (AP) holders to avoid negative perceptions from the public.

"Okay publish all, publish all. There's no need to keep. Why should we keep. If by keeping we create negative perceptions, that's not right, that's wrong," he told the Malaysian media at the end of his three-day official visit to South Africa.

He said this in response to allegations from former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad that the government did not issue the full list to the public.

Rafidah, who was at the press conference, said that she would publish the full list including those owning showrooms.

In a quick response, the Ministry of International Trade and Industry released the list of 2004 AP holders in Kuala Lumpur.

Earlier at the press conference, Abdullah said that he had no intention of not publishing what had already been made public.

"The list was the latest until 2005 and the public has seen the latest list. If there's anything that has been left out inadvertently, then we would furnish further. But Rafidah would be in a better position. I have given and published the list on that day," he said .

The prime minister said he was looking at the AP issue from major aspects.

"We may have to review the policy and introduce stricter regulations on the issuance of open APs to prevent abuse. They should be importing cars and selling cars and not selling APs," Abdullah said.

On the franchise APs, he said that the government would also have to review the issuance in the interests of the future, but said that he was not in a position to announce the details on the matter.

As for Proton board's decision not to renew its Chief Executive Officer Tengku Mahaleel Tengku Ariff's contract, he said it was the board's decision which was properly made.

On Tengku Mahaleel's successor, Abdullah said that the new CEO would be experienced and one who had served about 12 years with Proton.

"We'll see who's going to be the CEO. It will not be a foreigner. Don't start speculating," he said when asked to comment on talks that a foreigner might be appointed to replace Tengku Mahaleel.

Abdullah said that clarifications on the matter should be made by the board.

"They will know the answer. I would give the board the benefit of the doubt. The board must act in the interest of Proton as the national car manufacturer. They must have the interest of the national car at heart," the premier said.

"They must ensure that there's been progress by Proton. That is certainly what I want to see. Details of the management are matters for them to decide. I will leave them to make the best of decisions in the interest of the board.

"They may have many reasons for whatever they have done. I would like to remind them and make this statement, that decisions must be made in the interest and progress and development of Proton."

Tengku Mahaleel is on leave effective July 26 prior to his retirement on Sept 30, 2005.

Following the decision to terminate Tengku Mahaleel's contract, Proton appointed Datuk Kisai Rahmat, who was Director of Operations and Datuk Kamarulzaman Darus, Chief Executive Officer of Proton Tanjung Malim Sdn Bhd, as joint operating officers to run Proton Holdings Bhd effective July 26.

Later, after the press conference, Rafidah told reporters that she was too hurt to reply to Dr Mahathir's allegations.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Non Malays Prefer Private Sector?

Private Sector Preferred Posted by Picasa

New Straits Times report:

The dearth of non-Malay civil servants may be attributed to many preferring private sector jobs instead of a career in the public service. While Chinese accounted for 29.7 per cent and Indians 9.8 per cent of civil servants in the 1980s, their numbers fell to 8.2 per cent and 5.2 per cent respectively in 2003. The numbers have, however, been encouraging since 2001, said Public Services Commission secretary Luey Puteh.

"If the numbers of non-Malays applying is small, what can we do? The PSC is an appointing authority and we can’t woo certain racial groups or we’d appear biased."

The PSC, she said, could not conduct recruitment drives among non-Malays alone for the sake of neutrality. She said the drastic drop in the number of non-Malay civil servants since the 1980s was due to the retirement of the post-Merdeka batch of civil servants, who were not being replaced. Luey said efforts to encourage non-Malays to join the civil service were best left to political parties or government agencies.

She added that the PSC functioned as a recruiter, but approval was in the hands of the heads of department in the federal service. There had been a slight increase in the number of non-Malays applying of late for professional and managerial (Grade A) posts. More were also applying to be support staff, but the numbers have fluctuated in recent years.

While few non-Malays look at civil service for jobs, many however succeeded. For instance, 5,668 Chinese applied for Group A federal posts last year, of whom 1,042 made the cut for interviews, with 564 or 54.13 per cent offered jobs. A similar pattern has emerged for other non-Malay applicants.

One reason few applicants turn up for interviews is that it can take up to three years before an applicant is called for an interview. "We have to wait for ministries or agencies to make a request," Luey explained. "Until then, we don’t process the job applications. If one is lucky, there may be a post available sooner."

Luey said the number of vacancies fell short of candidates because there were no new posts being created or applicants did not meet the stringent requirements. "If there are many applicants for few posts, we raise the bar in our vetting process. This can be difficult for applicants to understand. They think they are qualified and get upset when they find we have made vetting more stringent without telling them."

The PSC only handled recruitment for about 30 per cent of all public sector jobs, but is the largest appointing body, Luey said. The rest are under the respective service commissions of the police, armed forces, Education, Legal and Judicial, state and local authorities. Luey said there were generally more applicants than vacancies in public service. Last year, 418,000 applied for vacancies but only 19,000 were hired. She cited an example where 18,000 applications were received for 10 vacancies for Customs officers.


Non Malays preferred private sector instead of civil service?

Oh No! Please, please,.... everyone one in Malaysia are interested in civil service. As there are so many who had applied, and the clear preferences based on ethnicity, the non-Malays understand the reality and the onerousness. We accept reality and instead of competing with the privileged and later cause some uproar in UMNO, we prefer to adapt and seek the competitive world of employment - the private sector. In the private sector, excluding the government linked companies, employment is based absolutely on meritocracy, the ability to perform and the commitment to work long hours, beyond normal working time.

Furthermore, in the private sector, if you are a high performer, you will be given the opportunity to rise in the ranks plus the benefits will commensurate with your effort and dedication. In civil service, it is accepted that even if you are more senior, more years of service, and deserving, some positions are sacred and are reserved under the rule of convention. Otherwise, UMNO Youth will be shouting biases and uneven playing field.

To Cik Luey Puteh, thank you very much for your openness and fair comments. We are happy that there are millions of Malays who are fair and reasonable headed, unlike those from UMNO. On behalf of the non-malays, we sincerely appreciate your fairness and competency. We are happy to continue our dog-fight in the private sector. Tho it is tough and stressful, but we have learn to live with the environment and to compete based on meritocracy. Many of us have not been successful but there are many too that had succeed. To those who have not been successful, they are still struggling and will continue to survive; but they are happy tho' poor.

UMNO can have what they want and we will not object as long as they don't try to rob us of what we had achieved thru our hardwork, blood and sweat. We don't need APs, we don't need NEP, we don't need the post of D-G, PM, DPM. We don't need rent-seeking. What we need is basic education and university education for our children and medical benefits offered by the government hospitals to help the poor who could not afford private hospital services. We need social life, self esteem and we need peace of mind.

Thank you to those who understand, including all those from PAS and KeAdilan, and those deprived UMNO members. The problem is only the eunuchs from the inner circle of the dynasty.

No reason for non-Malays to worry

NEP- DON'T WORRY Posted by Picasa

Najib: No reason for non-Malays to worry

With the Government’s commitment to economic growth for all, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said there was no reason for non-Malays to be uneasy over calls to revive the New Economic Policy (NEP).

"The Government is committed to expanding the economic growth of other races, so there is no reason for them to feel worried that their interests will be affected," Najib said.

Though Malays had made strides in various fields since the affirmative action programme for the Bumiputeras was introduced more than three decades ago, he said several targets had not been met. "It is our hope that we can fulfil what has been promised to the Malays as enshrined in the NEP."

Najib was commenting on the statement by Gerakan president Datuk Seri Dr Lim Keng Yaik that Malay leaders should analyse why the community had failed to achieve a 30 per cent share of the economy.

Lim said the issue could turn into a racial confrontation if Malays failed to address their economic weaknesses.

Najib said that in general, Malay leaders knew the cause of the failure and were the first to admit that the shortcomings needed to be addressed immediately.

"We’re the first to admit that we have to rectify the weaknesses in the Malays, like the ‘leakages’ raised by the Prime Minister in his speech, the Malays’ habit of wanting to get rich quickly, not wanting to strive for themselves, and the many other things that we have criticised them for."

The decision to revive the NEP would finally reside with the Barisan Nasional coalition. "The BN is resilient," he said. "We have found solutions to problems and maintained racial harmony in the country.

"I’m confident that the national development and the national agenda for the country will be tackled in the BN spirit through consensus."


Dear Najib, thank you and we appreciate your frankness and fairness. We believe Pak Lah shares your philosophy and ideology. We also thank you that your father, Tun Razak, had done what was necessary for the people of Malaysia, and has help to eradicate poverty particularly, of the Malays and had been successful. The only unfortunate thing is he has only served as PM for only a few years. If he had been PM for another 10 more years, the NEP would have been fully fulfilled and we need not suffer the rumblings from the moronic eunuchs. Sad to say, what Allahyarham had done was deviated since his demise. The policies were abruptly re-invented using innovative and creative wealth creation, benefitting a selected few, at the expense of the majority of the Malays.

We hope someday, when you become PM, you will not forget what your father had done, his philosophy and ideology of equality amongst the Malays, without discriminating the other Malaysians; not of the system of unfair enrichment of the selected few cronies and the policy based on nepotism.

May God bless you and anoint you with His wisdom. Amen.

Monday, July 25, 2005


Mahaleeled Posted by Picasa


GAME-OVER for Mahaleel! Proton Board of Directors decided to sack their maverick CEO, after months of altercation.

It must have been a brave decision, considering the well-known fact that Mahaleel has always been protected by Tun Mahathir, Proton's Advisor and our beloved ex-PM. This decision must have received the consent from the prime minister, Abdullah Badawi.

Read the details from Kyodo News:

Malaysia's national carmaker Proton Bhd. chief executive officer Mahaleel Ariff will be replaced, the company said Monday, ending months of speculation triggered by his criticism of government automotive policies.

The company said in a statement the board of directors, in their meeting Monday, "has resolved not to renew the tenure of the group CEO for another term. Under the terms of the current arrangements, he will therefore be retiring with effect from Sept. 30, 2005. Meanwhile, the group CEO will be on leave with immediate effect, from July 26, 2005, till the end of his tenure, Sept. 30, 2005."

The decision ended months of speculation over Mahaleel's future in the company. His feud with the board has been an open secret. His only ally has been Proton adviser Mahathir Mohamad, former prime minister.

Mahathir twice saved Mahaleel from an early exit and it has been alleged it was Mahathir's meddling that led to Proton's former chairman, Abu Hassan Kendut, quitting early this year in protest because he felt Mahathir, with no formal executive position, was interfering with management efforts to revamp the long-protected automaker, including axing Mahaleel.

But the latest straw was when Mahaleel, who has been Proton CEO for eight years, went on a head-on collision with the government, which he accused of trying to kill Proton by opening up the automotive market.

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi replied the government stood by its commitment to market liberalization, including cutting tariffs on imported cars and urged Proton to improve.

As a national car company, Proton still receives government protection in the form of a 50 percent excise tax rebate.

At a press conference, Proton Chairman Mohammed Azlan Hashim declined to say if Mahaleel's contract was not renewed because of his criticism of the government.

"It's a question of change. Proton is an institution. It's not about an individual," Azlan said.

He added Mahathir has been informed of the board decision and that they are still looking for a new CEO.

Proton was Mahathir's brainchild, created in 1983 to spearhead the country's heavy industry.

It once dominated the market with an up to 80 percent share, but that has dwindled to about 40 percent in a 430,000 unit-a-year market due to the influx of cheaper models from South Korea and Japan.

Proton is currently in talks with Volkswagen AG for a partnership where the German company will use Proton to assemble its cars for the Southeast Asian market while Proton benefits from Volkswagen's technological know-how.

Globalization: The China Doll Effect

China Dolls Posted by Picasa

The world is swamped with cheap products from China and Malaysian Industries must be prepared to face the competitive onslaught from products from China.

Apart from manufactured goods, China are also exporting massive "Biological weapons" in the form of beautiful-tall babydolls, which provide "extra" services to meet men's biological needs. This time, it is not only the industry that faces the economic onslaught but wifes are facing getter challanges to keep their husband filial.

Hundreds of thousands of tall, beautiful made-in-China ladies are spreading their charm, attracting and seducing men. If you put a nice fish infront of a cat, no matter how hard he tried to resist, the temptation is beyond our biological capability to resist.

In sitiawan, hundreds of wifes are complaining that these "China dolls" are offering their "extra" services, to elderly men in the district for a handsome fee. The women from the Foo Chow district in China are available for "rental" of up to RM6,000 a month depending on their age and beauty. The 20- to 30-year-olds have latched on to local agents who advertise their services by word of mouth to the mostly Foo Chow-speaking members of the local Chinese community.

It is learnt that the women are virtually invisible except for a brief period about 9pm daily when they meet for dinner at a restaurant in Jalan Kampung Selamat. By 6pm, the parking area is filled with expensive cars, from which elderly men alight with the women in tow.

A businessman in the property line here, who declined to be identified, said one needed to be in the right circles to be able to "rent" the women. According to him, the agents set the women up in apartments where those "renting" them can visit daily. The rental period could range between a day and a month. "If you go to the right location, you can see men as old as 70 being accompanied by women in their 20s to breakfast.“

WOMEN from China have also “invaded” Taiping to take up jobs as “short-term mistresses,” Sin Chew Daily reported in July last year.

In August 2004, China Press reported that Chinese families are apparently under threat of being broken up by “seductresses” from China. The daily received many calls, letters and faxes from readers complaining that the women seduced their husbands who often end up losing money and breaking up the families. The women, who came on social visit passes, targeted cities and towns with a high Chinese population, such as Kepong, Jinjang, Tanjung Sepat, Cameron Highlands, Teluk Intan and Seremban. They worked in karaoke lounges, bars and restaurants to get close to the men.

Those who found a sugar daddy would be given accommodation, cars and allowances.

A reader narrated the story of her friend’s husband who was so obsessed with a woman from China that he spent up to RM1mil on her a year. The man’s marriage ended in divorce. He was later abandoned by the mistress who found a “new target” after draining the man of his fortune. The daily said the women were good at gaining sympathy by telling sob stories, such as the tough life they had in China or that their ailing parents and siblings needed money for medical treatment.

While they have made many men happy, they have also made many "OLD" wives unhappy. These "PRETTY WOMEN" act as social escorts, but cautioned against tarring all female visitors from China as there were genuine visitors with relatives in the area. The authorities should take care not to arrest the innocent.

A woman, unhappy that some local men had been calling on the foreigners, approached Perak state immigration director Datuk Ishak Mohamed and told him in broken Malay: “Orang tua keranda punya duit belum cukup lagi mali sini cari itu perempuan (These old men have not saved enough to pay for their coffins and yet they can come here to find the women).”

“The residents are happy that we conducted the raid as they feared such vice activities would spread,” Ishak said yesterday. He added that the women were especially worried their husbands would spend their life savings seeking the services of the foreigners.

Well, we are in the age of globalization and liberalization. Married women must try to stay body beautiful and sweet, otherwise, the China Dolls will relieved them of their duties in bed.

Maybe, soon, the handsome Chinamen may also be seducing the local wifes. Watch out old-men with sweet wifes!!!

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Moulded Meritocracy. What?

Moulded Meritocracy Posted by Picasa


This is an abstract from the NST interview with UMNO Youth President, Hishamuddin.

Q: How do you square the message of bringing back the NEP with the PM’s call to Malays not to expect any handouts?

A: Malays are not competing on a level playing field. If you look at education and the issue of strengthening national schools, there is nothing racial about it.

You are talking about schools that don’t have water and electricity. There is no way that students coming out of schools can compete with students coming from Smart schools, with the best teachers and facilities.

In that context, while we deal with the leakages, corruption, the delivery system, the civil service and the party, it’s very important for everyone to realise that we need to address fundamental issues such as the basic needs of those in the remote areas, villages.

Meritocracy is being discussed today. Umno Youth has always said yes, we want meritocracy. But at the same time, we want meritocracy in our own mould.



I tried checking Oxford dictionary, Webster, and Wikipedia - there is no vocab on moulded meritocracy.

Meritocracy means:

"a system in which the talented are chosen and moved ahead on the basis of their achievement", or

"leadership selected on the basis of intellectual criteria"

Cambridge Advance Learner's Dictionary described it as:

"a social system or society in which people have power because of their abilities, not because of their wealth or social position"

Wikipedia explains:

Meritocracy is a system of government based on rule by ability (merit) rather than by wealth or social position. “Merit” means roughly intelligence plus effort. One implication is that whatever level in society a citizen reaches is held to be what such an individual deserves. Meritocratic can also sometimes be used to describe a government, or other body, that stresses formal education and competence despite other features (e.g. ancestry or sex or race).

Most systems of government contain some meritocratic elements; for instance, elected officials usually hire expert advisers to help formulate policies. Some would suggest that the military ranking system is perhaps the closest meritocratic organization which can easily be found. Pure meritocracies, however, are virtually unknown.

Proponents of meritocracy argue that a meritocratic system is more just and more productive than other systems, and that it allows for an end to distinctions based on such things as gender and race (though social classes would still exist).

Proponents of critical theory often argue that merit is defined by the power elite simply to legitimise a system in which social status is actually determined by class, birth, and wealth.


Is Hishamuddin trying to say that because rural schools don't have electricity and water in their school, therefore, if they fail SPM but have pass at least one subject, they should be admitted into university to study medicine or engineering?

If that's the case, we will end up with more unemployable graduates.

Whatever decision is made, meritocracy is merit, that is, INTELLIGENCE PLUS EFFORT.

The government can decide what they want and which Malay to put into unversity. I don't think any non-Malays would object. What the non-Malays asked is that their children be provided with educational opportunities if they pass their SPM and STPM with meritocratic results (minimum Bs and Cs as stipulated by the university of equal status; maybe, follow Oxford or Imperial College of UK standard). For UMNO, they can lobby to have those who have Ds and Es to be admitted but others, we only asked to be admitted into university based on the standard set by international quality universities - that, we consider fair and just.

Datuk Dr Norraesah Mohamad, an Umno Supreme Council member, chairman of Bank Rakyat and currently chairman of French telecommunication company, Alcatel Malaysia has this to say:

"It takes sharp business acumen to make it a success. At least, by the time all market barriers come down a few years down the road, there will be those among us who are ready with their “shields” for the “attacks” from foreigners in a globalised world.”

Likening the attacks on Rafidah and the Malay AP kings to herd mentality, Norraesah said:

“At MCA meetings, can you imagine them screaming for the blood of Tan Sri Lim Goh Tong for getting the monopoly on the casino licence, Tan Sri Francis Yeoh for his IPP (independent power producer) licence or Tan Sri Vincent Tan for the projects that he got over the years? And no one complains about Ananda Krishan having a controlling stake in Astro.”

The Chinese and Indians, they would not cry foul if anyone gets rich or are given any privilege which they do not enjoy. What concerns them is any attempt to discriminate them by depriving them of the basic social necessity such as education and medical services. So far, we have not complain about the APs being given to Malays, projects classified as Bumi-only, Class F licence for Bumis' only, UiTM for Malays only, PM and DPM for Malays only, GLCs controlled by Malays, Civil services dominated by Malays, Metriculation for Malays, etc, etc.

We can find ways to survive, be it a hawker, a mechanic, pasar-malam retailer, VCD peddler, bookies, mini-casinos, karaoke, coffeeshop owner, insurance agent, salesmen, or any profession that can help us earn a living and feed our children. Leave us alone and don't try intimidate us. Being patient and humble does not mean we are fools. It is just that we love peace and harmony, and strive to co-exist and accept some bearable pain. We do all this to preserve harmony and for the sake of our children and the future generation. Please don't use the UMNO general assembly where you placade your toons and mock all others to derive some joy to camouflage your own mediocrity and weaknesses, which is no fault of others.

“We live in one global environment with a huge number of ecological, economic, social, and political pressures tearing at its only dimly perceived, basically uninterpreted and uncomprehended fabric. Anyone with even a value consciousness of this whole is alarmed at how such remorselessly selfish and narrow interests – patriotism, chauvinism, ethnic, religious, and racial hatred – can in fact lead to mass destructiveness. The world simply cannot afford this many more times”.

- Edward Said 1993, 21

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Keep Profit in the Hands of "SELECTED" Malays

Keep Profits in Malays Hands Posted by Picasa

"The Profound Obscrurity of our Ignorance is scarely illuminated by a few Glimmers of our Insight. ...that the process in the unconscious or in the id obey different laws from those in the Preconscious Ego."

- Sigmund Freud

Keep Profit in the hands of the Malays? Of course! But which Malay? What then if there is no profit?

Where does profit come from? Profit is equal to total revenue minus total expenses and net profit is equal to gross profit minus overhead and taxes.

No one with sound mind would hand over profit to another person, be it their friends, relatives, or person from other races.

When I was young, just started my vocation, my mother told me to keep any money I had and deposit it with her. I asked her why? She said, that way, it will ensure that I won't spent it away. Then I asked her: "Why don't teach me the knowledge of how to save money so that I will learnt to keep them and nurture them myself." She said: "No, you will spent it away."

Today, I told my children: "You must learnt to save for your future." My son said: "Dad, every month I park a few hundred dollars with mum and she will save it for me." I told my wife: "Don't do it for him. You are not educating him if you do it. He must learnt to handle it himself as he will have to plan his own financial freedom. We must let "go" of him so that he can live and survive independently. We can't cuddle him forever. If we don't make him take care of himself, he will continue to depend on us for directions and decisions and someday, we will leave this world and then he will be without our guidance. He will then suffer."

I am absolutely certain, Malays are able to take care of themselve. They are educated and they know how to differentiate between the right and wrong.

When Khairy said: Keep the profits with the Malays, it puzzled me! What does he mean?

My first presumption is: Malays given projects must do it themselves so that the profit will be kept within the community and thus, over the years, more Malays will have achieve financial freedom, meeting the objective of the NEP.

This presumption, I strongly support! It will work.

But caution must be taken as business is also about risk taking. When projects are awarded, every businessmen will take the presumption that every project will make profit. But that is idealism. Take for example of the steel bar price increase of $600 per ton. If you have tendered and awarded a project before the price increase, then subsequently, the price increase will affect the financial bottomline and you end up losing money. But how can businessmen predict accurately what's going to happen? Look at the price of crude oil. One year ago, it was USD30 per barrel. Now, it is USD60.

For the Chinese and Indians, they never had a problem about ALI-BABA-ism. When a Chinese contractor gets a project, almost all of them, will sub-contract it to a few sub-contractors. This is because, they do not have the competency to carry out the operation of the specialized work packages. They would concentrate on management and finance aspects. They are never called Ali Baba. Similar actions are taken by Indian contractors.

But when a Bumiputra contractor does it, they are called AB and most likely, their PKK licence may be withdrawn. At such, most Bumi contractors have to engage their own workers to do the specialized work packages themselves of which they have no competency and technical ability. To add to the complexity, their workers may not perform to the planned productivity which lead to delay and ultimately cost more money. In the end, their profit were eaten up by their high cost and overheads and which lead them to a state of insolvency. Some even suffered termination of contract and bankruptcy. When this happened, the NEP is defeated.

The biggest challenge to Bumi and non-bumi contractor is the political contributions every project had to pay. Known throughout the whole construction industry, only denied at the executive and political level, it cannot be denied and shut-out that most government projects awarded, there is always been an unwritten convention that the potential contractor have to lobby for the project through politicians and there is always a price to pay for the "goodwill" service". Often, the goodwill is millions of dollars for each project. Before you start work, and earned revenue (get progress payment), you have to pay-upfront - likely in millions or hundreds of thousands - that's a sure and certain expenses that has to be paid to get the award letter. With this upfront cost, most bumi contractors (except the PLCs) will have to source the money as they do not have them. The only natural way is to get anyone who is a cash cow towkay to fund the over-the-table money. Naturally, the towkay will have conditions for funding them - thus, it ends up that the towkay will be the China-Baba or Mamak-Baba or Singh-Baba.

That's what caused Ali-Baba-ism.

Can we eradicate it? ONEROUS!

We have yet to see a minister who is not rich! Osu Sukam only spent a few years as federal minister and two years as chief minister, and it was reported in the affidavit that he gambled away RM156 million in the casino (see: The Star: How Osu frittered away those millions ) and lostRM31.17mil at the casino in just seven months, from February to September 2002. Casino gaming manager Robert Whitehall, who filed the affidavit on May 29, 2003, said the lowest amount that the Malaysian politician had gambled was £700,000 (RM4.66mil) on Feb 15 2002. Even then, he lost £600,000 (RM3.99mil). Then in just one day, on Sept 9, 2002, Osu gambled away £2.06mil (RM13.72mil) and lost £1.75mil (RM11.65mil). It seemed the amount he would gamble increased with every visit. The affidavit mentioned that Osu could not afford to repay his £1.75mil debt and an instalment arrangement was therefore made.

I dare not say every minister is corrupt - there is no evidence to support this statement. But in our society, we cannot hide and pretend ...... the political system have been derived from kleptorism and cartelism of the emperor's men. [period].

The greatest sandiwara is about to unfold. It is a master plan and a great master piece of strategic management.

The government under Pak Lah's leadership has declared that mega projects is yesterday's dream. There will be no more pump priming for the construction and development projects. This decision will definiately affect the new emperor's men. In the age of a new dynasty and a new emperor, there are many rising lieutenants that had waited for the crowning glory and the wealth distribution via projects. Now, the emperor pronounced the negative: There will not be anymore mega projects and pump priming! Disappointment and Dismayed ... psychologically betrayed!

Oh, don't worry, the eunuchs are innovative and creative. They now called for the setting up of an agency to assist and to be empowered to advice GLCs and Petronas. They claimed it will promote better management and to act as police and auditors to ensure that the interests of the Malays will be protected and that it could act against rent-seekers through market intelligence measures. WOW, great master tactician!

With lesser projects, attention is turned to Khazanah and Petronas. Now, these eunuch wants the power to influence decision-making in these two organizations because they are the only cows with plenty of milk. Azman Mokhtar and Hassan Merican must bring themselves to be prepared to face and deal with this powerful chief eunuch of the royal chamber.

The Malays are never lack behind in economic prosperity. Over the last twenty years, we have seen the rise of Tajuddin Ramli, Syed Mokhtar, Halim Saad, Wan Azmi, Ahmad Pardas, Jalaluddin Mohd Jarjis, Izham Yusoff, Charon Wardini, Khalid Ibrahim, Nasir Razak, Amin Shah, Jamaladdin, Azman Yahya, Syed Azman, Mohd Haniff, Azzuddin Ahmad, Ishak Ismail, Rozali Ismail, Ahmad Aznan, Johari Abdul Ghani, Izhar Sulaiman, Abdul Rahman Ibrahim, Mohammadiah Moner, Zainuddin Abdul Rahman, Zainol Izham, Muhammad Faizal, Ayob Saad, Ramzia Arshad, Faridah Ghazali, Zatizam Ghazali, Diam Zainuddin, Khairy, Kalimullah, etc, etc. There are many thousands more if we have to name them. they are all successful and rich; many are ultra rich.

What is the problem with NEP? It definitely have proven successful in breeding millionaires amongst the Malays and the UMNO politicians and ministers. Be comforted that all Malaysians of other races respect them and in fact feel happy for them.

Probably, the only set-back is that the vast majority in the kampung is still struggling to make ends meet. But will the new Malay Agenda ensure that these kampung folks will benefit. I am not pessimistic; just realistic! IT WON'T!

All the rhetorics made at the general assembly sounds to be fighting for millions of deprived Malays. Believe the truth - it is shouted in their name but any harvest will definitely not meant for their pockets. It will still end up with the eunuch system of the dynasty. Each dynasty that had ended always saw the emergence of a new Phalanx and a mad-wealth grabbing by the phalanx in the name of equality and equity. For 49 years, the same song had been sung so many times, and each time, the voice grows louder and Asphyxiating.

Those in the deprived sector when hearing of it thought: This time is for real; but each time, and each year passes with a new agenda paraded and each time the voice gets incendiary, but, they remain empty handed and they see politicians parading their multi-million dollar bungalows and contributing millions to casinos. This will go on for the next 49 years, and the next dynasty will have to come up with a new agenda to parade in front of the credulous lot.

You can't clean up the system without first cleaning up the house. Charity always must begin from the home. Honesty is a value and can only become a culture within the society if the same value is ingrained within those who inherited and exercise power. No honest person can accumulate hundreds of millions within 5 years; neither can Warren Buffet. It took Warren Buffet more than 20 years to make his hundred million. In Malaysia, even 28 years old protege is worth hundreds of millions but they still cry foul! Is it that they do not have enough? Or, are they benchmarking with Diam?

God bless them and all the Malaysians. May God shower his wisdom on Pak Lah so that he can make a better and prosperous Malaysia for all Malaysian; not just the eunuchs.

Friday, July 22, 2005

ENOUGH? Are You Sure?

ENOUGH Posted by Picasa

"The Profound Obscrurity of our Ignorance is scarely illuminated by a few Glimmers of our Insight. ...that the process in the Unconscious or in the id obey different laws from those in the Preconscious Ego."

- Sigmund Freud

Government cannot continue to play Santa Claus

THE Government cannot play Santa Claus by continually handing out contracts as “gifts” to Class F contractors, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. Conceding that his decision might not be popular, he said there would be no more pump priming of the construction sector because “every cycle runs its course.”

“No one can deny that, in the past, there were among us those who had received too much assistance and too many chances."

“There were those who had not received enough assistance and those who had not been given opportunities at all. This is not fair. This cannot continue."

“We must wake up to the fact that when we award a scholarship to an unqualified bumiputra, we are depriving a more deserving bumiputra recipient. This is clearly unjust,” Pak Lah said.

“Awarding a contract to a bumiputra company that is incapable of doing quality work when there are other bumiputra companies that are more capable is also unjust and cannot be allowed. It must be stopped. We set targets but others mock us."

RENT-SEEKERS and "leakage" in implementation resulted in Bumiputeras failing to achieve fully the targets set under the New Economic Policy. These rent-seekers abused the opportunities given to them. Instead of using the opportunity to expand businesses and enhance capacity, which would have ensured continued and lasting success, they went for short-term gains.

The permits, facilities, contracts and licences allocated to them were instead handed over to others for a quick profit.

After that, they demanded new opportunities again and again. Their actions led to the creation of a class of Malays who transformed the term "middlemen" into a full-time profession.

They were given shares under the Bumiputera quota allocation to meet equity ownership targets. It was a tragedy for the Malay race that these people sold their shares for immediate gain.

Individuals were entrusted to helm companies but were content with symbolic involvement, remaining on the sideline.

The greater tragedy for the race were those who betrayed the trust placed on them by committing fraud.

Our dignity and our survival are at stake. We have to approach our problems with a new mindset and a fresh spirit.

(read: MALAY AGENDA: Success if you embody new Malay spirit )

According to Pak Lah, it is imperative that Malaysia must follow a 10-point plan for collective prosperity. The Plan is aimed at building a knowledge-based economy.

(read: 10-point plan for prosperity)

First, the nation must multiply efforts to ensure higher and sustained economic performance. It would include managing the economy carefully and safeguarding funds and savings for the future, managing public spending, striking a balance between stimulating economic activity and reducing the deficit. “We will reduce the deficit in stages to allow the economy to still prosper; and a reasonable amount of development expenditure has been allocated,” Pak Lah said.

Secondly, there would be a shift in focus from “hardware” to “the software elements that touch on human development.”

The third approach was to strengthen the basics and fundamentals of Malaysia’s economy and to explore new sources of growth.

Forth Point: The Plan also recognises the need to further improve the public sector delivery system. “Investors, including domestic investors, do not have the time or patience to wait long periods. They will choose destinations that facilitate business.

Fifth Point: “Excessive bureaucracy must be abolished. A delivery system that is efficient and expedient plays a big role in reducing corruption, which increases the cost of doing business and consequently blunts our competitive edge.”

Sixth Point: The Plan is designed to enhance integrity and eradicate corruption in every sector and grouping.

Seventh Point: Improving quality of life through housing, healthcare, education and infrastructure development and the eradication of hardcore poverty follows.

Eighth Point: Capacity building and capacity enhancement of human resources were also in the Plan.

The final strategy will be to build a nation that is stable, united, peaceful and prosperous.


Where is NINETH POINT? Sudah Hilang????

I can find in the print?

Maybe, Pak lah intentionally left it out so that someday, he can add it on if necessary.

BUT.... this is not what UMNO Youth had called for yesterday???

Is Pak Lah's ideology different from his son-inlaw who is UMNO Youth deputy chief?

This is glaring and it can be observed that both the institution are preaching different philosophy and have divergent ideology.

To Pak Lah's vision, Malaysia as a whole has to let go the Santa Claus expectation. To his son-inlaw, Khairy Jamaluddin, Umno Youth wants the return of the NEP and this was no longer a hidden agenda or something only in spirit and soul. He said this should be the basis for the country's economic planning in the coming Ninth Malaysia Plan with no shame or excuses. “No need to hide. This is the Malay agenda." "We want 30% equity for the bumiputras so that they will be on par with the other races.”

On par with other races? Which race? Chinese, Indian, American, English, Jews, Mamak?

In terms of wealth between the Malay, Chinese and Indians, the bumiputras controlled more than 51% of the nation's wealth. But 70-80% of the nation's wealth is in the hands of foreign investors. So, to be on par, UMNO Youth had to buy over the investments from the foreigners which is worth in excess of RM500 billions. And if you want 30% of this, then it would require RM150 billion. Where does he get the money? Steal, rob, burgle, or force a nationalization program on foreign investors? Try do it and see how the nation crumble!!!!

When we deal with economic prosperity, it is not about bulldozing your nose and stuck it into the asshole of another. It is about earning it. It is about capacity and capability building as enunciated by the Prime Minister. It is not about an AGENDA or a SCHEME. It is work hard and spent less. It include tapping wealth from the global economy. Iy requires entrepreneurship skill and risk taking. It is not about rhetorics and shouting loud and trying to frighten others. It is not about INTIMIDATION.

For information, there are more than 50% Chinese still living slightly above poverty level, and more than 70% Indians hovering at the poverty horizon. And they don't shout loud for privilege, social welfare and rent-seeking. They never ask for APs and Contracts. They only seek subsidized education and educational opportunities, and subsidised medical benefits. Yet they are intimidated!

Will Pak Lah's economic doctrine work? No way, if you read the lines of their Youth movement!!!

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Bring NEP Back, cries UMNO Youth

NEP Posted by Picasa

The Star; July 21, 2005; Nation

Bring back NEP, says Youth wing

UMNO Youth wants the New Economic Policy revived as part of the national development policy to protect the interest of the Malays. Movement chief Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein said the “growth by distribution” strategy, as outlined by the NEP should be pursued to ensure the 30% bumiputra stake of corporate ownership was maintained. “The NEP definition itself should be reapplied as part of the national development policy, so that the Malays would be empowered and not sidelined from now till the year 2020,” he said in his keynote address at the Umno Youth general assembly. Hishammuddin said the movement was raising the issue again as the same proposal at the last general assembly had not made any headway. Besides the 30% equity, he said there must be an assurance for the Malays to be allowed to dominate selected property sectors. The movement also called for the following:

  1. EXTRA effort by the Entrepreneur Development Ministry to produce quality bumiputra entrepreneurs;
  2. FRESH approaches in the funding and planning of projects in rural areas;
  3. MAKING sure the key performance index of Government-linked companies or privatised companies safeguard the “Malay agenda”;
  4. ENSURING authorities responsible for awarding tenders are committed and responsible towards the Malay agenda; and
  5. CREATING a monitoring system to ensure a more efficient delivery system for the Malay agenda.
Besides the Malay agenda and the movement’s Jatidiri Pemuda principles of self-resilience, Hishammuddin said, Umno Youth would adopt the principles of Rukun Islam (five pillars of Islam), Rukun Iman (six tenets of faith) and the Rukun Negara (the five principles of nationalism) as its guiding principles.

Meanwhile, the movement's deputy chief Khairy Jamaluddin was cheered by the delegates as he praised Hishammuddin and pledged his unwavering support for him to continue to lead. He received thunderous applause when he sought permission for the floor to call for the reintroduction of the NEP.

Khairy, who was booed at last year’s assembly, thanked the delegates this year for not mandikan (ragging) him. He said Umno Youth was calling for a return of the NEP and this was no longer a hidden agenda or something only in spirit and soul. He said this should be the basis for the country's economic planning in the coming Ninth Malaysia Plan with no shame or excuses. “No need to hide. This is the Malay agenda. We want 30% equity for the bumiputras so that they will be on par with the other races.”


"If you do not know where you're going, any route will lead you to a destination"
- Alice in the Wonderland

I woke up early today, hoping to read some interesting topics in the news published. Grabbing hold of the Star I read the heading: RAFIDAH UNDER FIRE. I thought; they are singing the same old song - boring and bland. The I pick up my New Straits Times and saw the heading: REVIVE THE NEP & REVIEW SUBSIDIES!

My first reaction: WHAT? Revive NEP? First and foremost, when was the NEP scrapped of which no Malaysians were informed? So, if the NEP is still there and alive, how to revive? If ever, it should be REVIEW.


Economics and control of economic asset is not the same. 30% of $10 and 30% of $10 billion is not the same. When the NEP was first mooted three decades ago, the Malaysian GDP is hovering around RM60 billion. So, a 30% stake is about RM18 billion. Tracing the statistics, we should be happy that we had in fact achieved the 30% Bumi participation as planned. But todays GDP is RM260 billion. If you are asking to have 30%, then we are looking at RM78 billion per annum. To understand GDP, we have to take into consideration that foreign investments contributed more than 80% of the GDP figures. We invited foreigners to invest in Malaysia and to make Malaysia their second home. So, they bring in their monies, built factories, set up banks and financial centers, invest in the stock market, and trade in our currencies. At such, they indirectly contributed to the huge GDP figures. So, what does UMNO Youth wants? If you want 30% of what foreigners invested, then we either had to buy over the foreign businesses and get them out of the country or to snatch or steal from them.

In order for Malaysia to grow in prosperity and become a developed nation, we need foreign investors to grow our economy. At the same time, we can't say, we want to control and owned the economy. You cannot have the cake and at the same time eat it!

So, what are we talking about? Khairy is an economic graduate from Oxbridge; doesn't he understand economic theory and the philosophy of economics? Or, they are playing rhetorics in front of their own people, to win votes using smokescreen tactics?

Look at China's economic position. In the 70s, they own close to 100% of the economic activities. Since opening up their economic door, foreigners, particularly Americans and Europeans are creeping in, investing trillions in their economy; building factories, buying over state-owned corporations and financing the Chinese economic activities. As a ball-park figure, foreigners have owned more than 60% of the Chinese economic activities. And the percentages will continue to increase in the coming years.

So, why did China give up control of their state-own corporations to the foreigners? Isn't China not concern about the dwindling economy ownership? Far from it. In fact, with the investments from foreigners, China are bringing in wealth from the global world and building prosperity for their people.

So, what's UMNO shouting about? We want foreign investments but UMNO Youth wants control of others' investments?

On one hand, Pak Lah said: we want to built towering Malays. Najib said we want Malays to be Glocal. On the other hand, we hear that UMNO Youth is directing Government-linked Companies (GLC) to ensure that Bumiputeras dominate in the bio-technology, farming, aero-space, defence, information technology, halal food manufacturing, petroleum and gas, finance, automotive, services and tourism sectors; that Government-linked companies are to ensure efficient and effective business management and at the same time ensure total contribution towards the Malay agenda; and civil servants are directed to fully understand the importance of the Malay agenda when awarding contracts or tenders.

So, what do they want? Towering Malays or Candu? Still hybernating?

I weep for all my Malay friends!

UMNO Youth Poke Fun at Elder Sister

poke fun Posted by Picasa

Umno Youth delegates vented criticisms and cracked jokes against International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Rafidah Aziz, making no qualms of how they felt about the way she handled the AP issue. The movement's information chief Datuk Azimi Daim asked Rafidah: “If one person gets 25,000 APs and makes a profit of RM30,000 for each one, how much would the total come up to? “How much is RM30,000 x 25,000? Tak kena (It’s just not right). What’s the story about giving one person so many APs?”

International Trade and Industry Ministry secretary-general Datuk Sidek Hassan said he takes the full responsibility over the approved permits (APs) issue. Sidek, who is the chairman of the ministry’s AP Issuing Committee, admitted that he did not consult Minister Datuk Seri Rafidah Aziz before issuing the APs. “She (Rafidah) also does not give me any instruction before the APs are issued,” he said, adding that the four-man committee, including two ministry deputy secretaries-general, would decide on the approval of the APs.

Sidek said: “When the authorities approve 51,000 APs, they can not allocate the APs to 51,000 people just to show fairness.” He said that basically, the objective of giving out APs was to develop a business environment for bumiputras.

If you manage a company that imports cars, as a Bumi you are privileged to apply for franchise APs. And if your sales each year exceeds 15,000 units, it is natural you will apply for APs in equal quantity. The question whether each AP will profit $25,000 is cognitive and irrelevant UNLESS it was sold per se to some other people. The basic objective of giving out APs is considered fulfilled if the applicant use it to import the cars which must be above 1,800c.c. - which is not a direct competition with Proton.

Why comment about the benefits and profits of these importers? Is it that when they lose money that will make UMNO Youth happy? Isn't prospering the Bumis the objective? The question why 4 organization are given 40,000 APs are because they are the biggest 4 importers while others are only importing one to two hundred units a year. In fact, some of those who receive 100 APs are not importers at all. So, the problem to attend to is those who do not import cars but were given 100 to 200 APs and are selling it to importers; and these people should be penalized for abusing their privilege.

Sidek Hassan said he had never consulted Rafidah before issuing the APs and Rafidah also does not give me any instruction before the APs are issued. Yet throughout the whole episode, she had never once blame her ministry officials neither did drag them into the controversy. Rafidah had stood by her people in MITI and had taken full responsibility and the blame for whatever shortcomings in her department. Isn't this an example of leadership; leadership of a Bumiputra? Don't Bumi admire the quality she had exuded?

In the June PAS Muktamar, there were calls from PAS Youth for change. Youth leader Muhajid Yusuf Rawa said the outcome of the last general election was proof that voters felt uneasy with the party’s policies and strategies. “We must admit our mistakes and identify where we went wrong before even thinking of coming up with a new master plan to determine the party’s direction,” he said. Another Youth Leader Salahuddin asked the ulama to expand their field of knowledge and to work closely with party intellectuals and activists. In response to the Youth's call, Hassan, the PAS deputy president, told delegates at the party’s Youth assembly here that the wing members should set a higher standard for themselves before setting standards for others. ”For a start, the wing should improve its own image and establish a presence in every single party branch in the country,” he said when opening the assembly.

In retrospect, we can see the maturity of PAS members when dealing with problems and mistakes. The discussions topics and arguments are intellectual discourse aimed for seeking improvements and at the same time the forum exercises respect for the elders. In contrast, UMNO Youth choose to poke fun at their elder sister Rafidah and the issues and languages are clear evidence of contempt and disrespect for their elders. This is clearly against the teaching of the Prophet.

I will not vote for PAS because their doctrines are in contrast with mine. But I admired their maturity and sensibleness when they dealing on subjects concerning with defeats, mistakes and weaknesses.

I would vote for UMNO as their doctrine and policies are more accommodating to all races. But how do you expect others to respect them when they claimed Islam as the national religion but often acted in contempt and showed inmaturity and disrepect/disregard to national policies - the Rukunegara and our national constitution and in particular, against Islam Hadhari?

Islam Hadhari emphasizes the need to respect your elders, the need to work hard to earned respect and the need to seek competency, meritocracy and natural justice. In contrast of this principle, UMNO Youth had in fact demanded the government to MAKE sure the key performance index of Government-linked companies or privatised companies safeguard the “Malay agenda” & CREATE a monitoring system to ensure a more efficient delivery system for the Malay agenda. At such, is Islam Hadhari contravened? I have no right to question it!

What UMNO Youth should seek is a continuous and unwavering endeavor to assist and enable the underprivilege Malays to acquire knowledge and competency that will ensure the Malays will, within a shorter possible period, catch up/close the gap of economic disparities. To ensure this achievement, they should seek the cooperation and assistance of Malaysians of all races and together with the government's "friendlier" and accommodating policies, it will enhance and expedite the process. With the right attitude and mutual respect for everyone, the nation as a whole would rally behind UMNO's initiative to fulfill the vision and mission of a just, equitable and prosperous nation, for the Malays, the Chinese, the Indians, the Melanaus, the Kadazans, the Dayaks, the Sikhs, and everyone who calls themselves Malaysian citizen and must include the foreign citizens residing in Malaysia and who shared the same values.

Would we see this happen? Only UMNO can answer. I hope they will discover the profound knowledge. God bless them. Amen.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005


TEARS OF SORROW Posted by Picasa


ENOUGH! ENOUGH! You are destroying your very own, your very own Malay leader!

I cry for the Malays! How far will you all go? Till you destroy everyone and yourself and till all are casted to the devil?

Don't throw all the blame to Rafidah. She has served the nation for more than two decades and she had served UMNO far longer than two decades. She don't deserve all this.

The AP system was not created by her. It was wrong to have initiated that system in the very first place. What she has done was to fulfill the system design. If ever it was wrong, it was the system. All within the system - the past and present government must share the blame.

The APs only benefit a few? How can the APs which are basically franchise APs be granted to all? It is only granted to those who have foreign franchise, that is, the foreign automakers have contracted to the local distributors who numbered only a few.

How is it that Proton had suffered? The total number of imported cars under 1800cc – those in direct competition with Proton is only 3.2% of the total production of Proton.

Only 17,455 foreign cars were brought in with APs while the total car production by Proton is 530,035 units.

The problem with Proton is the weak management and the failure to strike strategic alliance with strong foreign partners. Look and Hyundai, Kia, Daewoo and Samsung. They have team up with American jaggernauts and have grown stronger, more competitive and leaner.

If Proton is incapable to compete with global players, they should look into themselves and ask why. Mahaleel should shoulder the responsibility instead of blaming everyone. Why hide behind Mahathir and Why drag in Mahathir who has retired from politics to the front line?

Why blame Rafidah? Even if the claim that she had benefited from the AP system, it can only be: because the system has made it possible. Corruption? Oh, don't pick on her! The whole system is utterly corrupt and everyone within the system is just sharing the spoils.

If Pak Lah is serious about mitigating the kleptocratic system, he should start the house cleaning beginning from his home, his family and his party.

Apologise to Mahathir? What for? He was the boss for 22 years and he set up the AP system. It was known that such system would ultimately lead to such consequences as seen today.

Blame Mahathir? What for? He has done everything possible to bring up the Malays to what they are today. He has done everything possible to bring the Malays to the forefront of the world of economics and prosperity. Malays today are big time businessmen and millions have got university education. Isn't that proof of what he has done for the good of the Malays and the nation as a whole?

UMNO and the Malays must stop crushing their own people. They had crush Isa and now they are going to crush Rafidah. What good will it bring to the nation and to the Malays in particular?

Looking back is only good if the system is trying to learn from the past mistakes. Otherwise, it is more important to look forward and to make Malaysia a better nation for everyone.

Globalization and liberalization will devour us if we are not going to adopt and adapt. Meritocracy and Competence should be the maxim. Glocal or Glokal or Towering ... all these ... it won't work!

Think Global and Act Local - that's what we should do! Seek competency; seek meritocracy; built learning organization; seek knowledge; and most of all, seek virtue and seek God.

The current governmental and civil service system needs a complete overhaul. Every minister and top rank civil servant must shed their billionaire dream. The social fabric must be integrated and enhanced. There is no way forwward, until we are prepared to built a system based on competencies and meritocracy.

We can continue to shout rhetorics. We can continue to blame everyone for our failures. UMNO can continue to cry foul and blame meritocracy as discriminating. Another new UMNO manisfesto won't work. Another jargon from their leaders won't work.

ONLY Honesty, hardwork and a strong political will is all that's needed to see a better tommorrow.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005



Degrees from dubious universities under probe
By Koh Lay Chin

The Higher Education Ministry is now looking into complaint that two universities offering degrees from Cambridgeshire University and the Irish International University are not accredited or recognised in the UK, US and Ireland and that the institutions are bogus. The institution, NetAcademy Sdn Bhd, and Kolej Putra are the consultants appointed to conduct the courses offered by these universities and had applied to the ministry for official approval.

Another institution, Kolej Putra, also offers courses in collaboration with Cambridgeshire University.

According to a Kolej Putra officer, its courses in collaboration with Cambridgeshire University had been approved by the Education Ministry and were accredited by the Lembaga Akreditasi Negara (LAN).

NetAcademy, an MSC-status "education provider" approved by the government to provide e-learning are offering the MBA qualifications from these two universities.

"We may have to go overseas to conduct our investigations," the Ministry officer told the New Straits Times.

Last year, former student Yap Yee Lan lodged a police report against NetAcademy. She also took her case to the Consumer Claims Tribunal today, seeking a refund of almost RM14,000 in fees she paid to obtain a Master of Business Administration (MBA). She alleged that after a year of classes in the MBA programme of the International Irish University, she and her classmates were abruptly asked to transfer to the programme of Cambridgeshire University. She then did some research, and discovered the universities were apparently unaccredited and unrecognised here.

Officials of both the British Council and the Malaysian- American Commission on Educational Exchange (MACEE) said they had no knowledge of these two universities or the courses offered.

Public Service Department accreditation unit officer Ross Rafizal Rosli also confirmed the two were not on its list of recognised universities and qualifications.

NetAcademy principal William Chong said there were many types of accreditation. "We do not tell people that we are a regionally accredited university, so they enrol at their choice and we have explained this to our students," he said.

"We are an MSC-status company which has been recognised by the Government to do e-learning programmes."


University Malaya degrees in Engineering and medicine are accredited and recognised by Malaysian authorities but are not recognised in UK, Europe and US. So?

Taiwan Engineering, pharmaceutical, dental and medical degrees are not recognised by Malaysian authorities but are recognised in UK and US. So?

University Crimea, Akita University and Chiba University of Japan - their medical degrees are not recognised by Malaysia Medical Council but are recognised in Japan, UK and US and Europe. So?

Many Malaysian graduates from local public universities (all accredited by Malaysian authorities) can't even speak proper English and unable to communicate in oral and written English. They are unemployable in Multi-national corporations and local corporations that do business with multi-nationals; except probably the Malaysian government services and GLCs. So?

What's the problem? What is accreditiation and what benefit can we derive from such accreditation?

The advantage of having a degree with an accredited university is the presumption that these accredited universities are deemed to have the necessary quality assurance system for the education offered and at such, the graduates are enabled with the relevant knowledge which will enable them to apply it into the works.

However, academic knowledge and emphirical knowledge are not the same. The presumption is that, with a good academic knowledge and the right exposure to the work environment, these graduates will in shorter time be able to built competencies and expertise.

Again, these are basically presumptions and organizations seeking to employ graduates may consider this presumptions as the basis of their evaluation. But the main criteria for employment do not rest entirely on this presumption. Take an example: when two person go for a job interview with an American or European multi-national corporation, one has an accredited degree from Malaysian University and cannot communicate in English, either written or oral, and the other is from Cambridgeshire which is unaccredited, but is excellent in English language, both written and oral, and both have the relevant engineering knowledge; who do you think gets employed?

In literal senses, it would be best to get into an accredited university, possibly at an Ivy League U, like Harvard, Oxford, Cambridge, MIT, Stanford, Imperial College, Nottingham, Warwick, Northrumbria, etc. But the cost of education in these universities may be unaffordable to many. Further, entry is limited and onerous.

The next best choice is probably a local university degree which are accredited. But then, it is reserved for under-graduates and the places available are insufficient to meet the growing population completing their from SPM and STPM students.

The other available choice for working professionals is to seek degrees via distant learning programs offered by local and foreign universities and managed by local organizations. Some are accredited by Lembaga Akreditasi Negara (LAN) while others do not apply for it as the cost of the application can be exorbitant. So, in a competitive environment and to stay viable, using this cost advantage, these providers are able to get more students.

The fundamental issue is not whether you have an accredited degree or an unaccredited one. It is about yourself. Most of these unaccredited distant learning institutions do provide excellent education and teaching materials. They get good lecturers to conduct seminary-styled lectures and students are to do attend lectures, do assignments, which will be marked by their foreign counterparts. In the final year, students may have to sit an exam, while many require students to submit volumnous dissertations or thesis.

At the end of the day, what matters is for those who go through these education to ask themselves what they had acquired and achieved and would the education make them a better professional?

The weakness of the system is that some of these local providers are unethical and have bad practices and approaches. They do not care about the quality of education and some even conduct themselves in a way that is seen as paper-milling organization. To those who "BUY" these degrees, they are accountable for themselves. They can have a degree but that is only a piece of paper. Ultimately, it is their knowledge capacity and capability to translate their newly learnt knowledge into their work environment. If inside their brain there has nothing, then, having the degree would not make them an intellectual.

What matters is the intellectual knowledge within, not that piece of paper qualification. Even those who do not have the paper qualification can be competent in what they do, largely because they read a lot, read wide enough, and had acquired intellectual knowledge. Many organizations are concerned with intellectual knowledge and competencies, not paper qualification. Paper qualification is most useful when seeking employment with government services only. Of course, if you have all the three - competencies, academic qualifications and right attitude, you will go far and high.



Problematic projects get helping hand
By Reports by Chok Suat Ling

Ten major development projects identified as "problematic" will be completed on schedule, the Dewan Negara was told yesterday. Deputy Works Minister Datuk Mohd Zin Mohamed said the ministry had offered technical advice to the contractors involved and was facilitating the approvals they required.

"Other steps taken include using less steel in designs, re-scheduling projects as a result of necessary extra work, making more frequent development payments and paying 25 per cent construction costs up-front," Zin said when replying to Senator Lee Sing Chooi.

"As a result, we have managed to resolve most of the problems faced by the 10 projects and all will be completed on schedule.“

In May, Works Minister Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu had said that at the end of last year, 215 development projects had been identified as "problematic". Of them, 10 were considered major – four hospitals, four federal roads, a bridge and a university.



How was the problem overcome? Steps taken include using less steel in designs, re-scheduling projects as a result of necessary extra work, making more frequent development payments and paying 25 per cent construction costs up-front.

Using less steel in designs? What? Engineers, please explain how we can use less steel? Is it over-design in the first instance, or are we replacing the steel with other structural components? Steel is the fundamental component in reinforced concrete design; so using less steel???

Ten major development projects identified as "problematic" will be completed on schedule? Steps taken include re-scheduling projects as a result of necessary extra work - and the minister call it complete on schedule? Complete within the new revised schedule or complete within the original schedule?

Paying 25% construction costs upfront? Wow! Why not 50% or 75% or maybe, 100% upfront?

Did they solve the problem? Ya, the problem was solved! Do we call it problem solving? Doing less with more and driving project completion using gold-plating methodology is the best solution?

Please don't tell the world that's how our Minister and his department manage projects and solve the problems. We will make a mockery of project management.

Just say: it is Malaysia-Boleh methodology!!!!


APOLOGISE TO WHO? Posted by Picasa


Apologise to Dr M, Zainuddin urges Rafidah

ISA: Eh Samy and Ah Beng, you read what Deputy Information Minister Datuk Zainuddin Maidin said to International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Rafidah Aziz?

SAMY: What did the mamak say?

AH BENG: What good can come out from his sengget mouth?

ISA: He asked Rafidah to apologise openly to Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad for her “disconcerting” statements on the approved permits (AP). Zainuddin said Rafidah should apologise to the former Prime Minister before the coming 56th Umno General Assembly. He said the replies by Rafidah on Dr Mahathir’s proposal that the names of AP holders be made public were rather hurtful.

AH BENG: What so hurtful?

ISA: He said that although Rafidah has replied to Dr Mahathir on the AP issue, she should do it in a respectful manner as he was, after all, the former prime minister. Zainuddin felt sad when Rafidah launched an attack against Tun Mahathir by disclosing his son’s name as an AP holder to import a Porsche.

SAMY: But Rafidah had said that she had explained “the real situation” to Dr Mahathir, who is Proton adviser, regarding the issues he raised relating to the local motor vehicle industry.

AH BENG: What is Mahathir's problem?

ISA: Dr Mahathir had complained that the large numbers of cars brought in under APs had led to unfair competition to our national car Proton.

AH BENG: What so unfair to Proton? Is he saying that if Proton cannot compete with foreign car makers, then the govt should banned all foreign cars or impose exorbitant taxes and duties so that we cannot afford to buy them and force us Malaysians buy the Proton cars at a very unreasonable high price? Is this what he called fair? Is he saying we Malaysians should be suckers and stay stupid for the sake of Proton?

SAMY: Ya lah! It is already 20 years since Proton was set up and if they are not able to compete with foreign cars, then it must be the fault of their management and we citizens cannot be made to pay unreasonably high prices in order to keep Proton alive. Don't suck our blood for the sake of Proton.

ISA: But you must know, the Proton project was Mahathir's dream. He wants Proton to be the International best car, maybe better than the Americans.

SAMY: Best car? I think if you asked all Malaysians, they would prefer to buy anything except Proton. So many of us appreciate Kancil and Perodua, but Proton, the window problem until now is still not solved; even my Proton is facing the same problem.

AH BENG: International best car? Even the people within Proton won't buy that car if given a choice.

ISA: Do you think Rafidah should apologise to Mahathir?

AH BENG: Apologise for what? The AP initiative was created by Mahathir and he should also be responsible for the outcome. He was PM for 22 years and he cannot absolve himself entirely. He cannot blamed that so few people were benefiting from the APs. It was the same for the last 24 years.

SAMY: Ya lah! Even his son gets a few hundred APs last year.

AH BENG: The objective of the APs is to help as many Bumiputras get into the automobil business by giving them an unfair advantage over the others within the same industry. That should not be the way to built entrepreneurs. If we are desirous of building the Bumis to become successful entrepreneurs, we must teach them and enable them with knowledge, skills and the use of the relevant tools and techniques and over a period of time, we should see to it that they had acquired the necessary competencies to be able to compete internationally and competitively. But we give them ecstasy and schizophrenic drugs - candu and marijuana and they now are totally reliant upon it to survive.

SAMY: The old saying cannot be wrong. Give them fishes and they eat for a day. Teach them to fish and they can feed themselves for a lifetime.

AH BENG: We reap what we sow and don't blame Rafidah. She has been doing what she was doing over the last 2 decades. If what she do is wrong, then Mahathir should also be responsible as he was her boss for umpteen years and had not removed her.

ISA: I think the AP problem is not a problem. The problem is Proton not being competitive and trying to blame everyone for their weakness.

AH BENG: Ya lah! In the first place, the AP system should not have been initiated. The Proton project should have been an assembly plant. We shouldn't try to stand 6 feet tall by wearing 10 inches high heel shoes; we will fall and then we blame the ground for not been evenly built.

SAMY: Why blame Rafidah? Don't blame Mahathir too. Blame UMNO and the Rent Seeking UNMO Youth system.

I weep for Malaysia......


Monday, July 18, 2005

Planet with 3 Suns?

Three Suns Posted by Picasa

Did the scientist discover more Suns?

Read this: California Institute of Technology Press Release

An extrasolar planet under three suns has been discovered in the constellation Cygnus by a planetary scientist at the California Institute of Technology using the 10-meter Keck I telescope in Hawaii. The planet is slightly larger than Jupiter and, given that it has to contend with the gravitational pull of three bodies, promises to seriously challenge our current understanding of how planets are formed.

In the July 14 issue of Nature, Maciej Konacki, a senior postdoctoral scholar in planetary science at Caltech, reports on the discovery of the Jupiter-class planet orbiting the main star of the close-triple-star system known as HD 188753. The three stars are about 149 light-years from Earth and are about as close to one another as the distance between the sun and Saturn.

In other words, a viewer there would see three bright suns in the sky. In fact, the sun that the planet orbits would be a very large object in the sky indeed, given that the planet's "year" is only three and a half days long. And it would be yellow, because the main star of HD 188753 is very similar to our own sun. The larger of the other two suns would be orange, and the smaller red.

Konacki refers to the new type of planet as "Tatooine planets," because of the similarity to Luke Skywalker's view of his home planet's sky in the first Star Wars movie.

"The environment in which this planet exists is quite spectacular," says Konacki. "With three suns, the sky view must be out of this world-literally and figuratively."

However, Konacki adds that the fact that a planet can even exist in a multiple-star system is amazing in itself. Binary and multiple stars are quite common in the solar neigborhood, and in fact outnumber single stars by some 20 percent.

Researchers have found most of the extrasolar planets discovered so far by using a precision velocity technique that is easier to employ on studies of single stars. Experts generally avoided close-binary and close-multiple stars because the existing planet detection techniques fail for such complicated systems, and also because theories of solar-system formation suggested that planets were very unlikely to form in such environments.

Konacki's breakthrough was made possible by his development of a novel method that allows him to precisely measure velocities of all members of close-binary and close-multiple-star systems. He used the technique for a search for extrasolar planets in such systems with the Keck I telescope. The planet in the HD 188753 system is the first one from this survey.

"If we believe that the same basic processes lead to the formation of planets around single stars and components of multiple stellar systems, then such processes should be equally feasible, regardless of the presence of stellar companions," Konacki says. "Planets from complicated stellar systems will put our theories of planet formation to a strict test."

Scientists in 1995 discovered the first "hot Jupiter"-in other words, an extrasolar gas-giant planet with an orbital period of three to nine days. Today, more than 20 such planets are known to orbit other stars. These planets are believed to form in a disk of gas and condensed matter at or beyond three astronomical units (three times the 93-million-mile distance between the sun and Earth).

A sufficient amount of solid material exists at three astronomical units to produce a core capable of capturing enough gas to form a giant planet. After formation, these planets are believed to migrate inward to their present very close orbits.

If the parent star is orbited by a close stellar companion, then its gravitational pull can significantly truncate a protoplanetary disk around the main star. In the case of HD 188753, the two stellar companions would truncate the disk around the main star to a radius of only 1.3 astronomical units, leaving no space for a planet to form.

"How that planet formed in such a complicated setting is very puzzling. I believe there is yet much to be learned about how giant planets are formed," says Konacki.

The research was funded by NASA.

Can Speak England?

Speak England? Posted by Picasa

How do you find our university graduates' English? What about our politicians and ministers' command on English? Read this article from the New Straits Times on July 17, 2005 by the maverick Kalimullah Hassan.

Do you speak the England?
By Kalimullah Hassan

SOME time ago, we interviewed aspiring journalists for Berita Harian, now the country’s top selling Bahasa Malaysia daily. The New Straits Times Press’ deputy group editor-in-chief Datuk Hishamuddin Aun normally tests applicants on their command of the English language as it is taken for granted that anyone not proficient in Bahasa Malaysia would be foolish to apply for a job in Berita Harian.

Hisham’s favourite story is of one candidate who was asked about his family. It goes like this:

Hisham: How many are there in your family?

Applicant: I number three.

Hisham: What does your father do?

Applicant: Father die already.

Hisham: What does your mother do?

Applicant: Mother not yet die.

Hisham could not have made his questions simpler. And the applicant, who naturally did not get the job, could hardly have answered in a more simplistic way.

Hisham’s story is not peculiar in today’s Malaysia. Editors who interviewed applicants for the New Straits Times, where they are also tested for their proficiency in Bahasa Malaysia, found that a good number — from different racial groups, from both rural and urban schools - spoke the "not yet die" kind of English.

A few months ago, a senior news vendor from Perak and five of his colleagues — all in their late forties and above — met me to discuss some issues.

The spokesman among them, a gentleman by the name of Pandian, began by saying: "Sir, we come here not to lament…"

And one by one, as I heard them out, what amazed me was that they all spoke good English and used words that many of us no longer use in day-to-day conversation. They were pukka old school and it was a delight to just listen to them.

There you are. There is a vast difference in command of both Bahasa Malaysia and the English language between the 45-and-above generation and the 40-and- below generation.

A generation of Malaysians — the lost generation, as Hisham describes them — have joined our work force, the majority of them having only a passable, if not rudimentary, knowledge of English.

Now, with the re-emphasis on English in schools, we find that we have teachers who are not well versed enough in the language to teach their students. We find that in rural areas, children find it harder to adapt and fare worse than their counterparts in the urban areas.

When the New Straits Times launched its compact version last September, we conducted a number of surveys and focus group studies to determine why some people preferred to buy our rival newspapers.

A frequent comment that came from the younger readers of English newspapers was "your English too high". Of course, there were other reasons given but that response of "English too high" floored us.

Talk to the older civil servants. Talk to some of our retirees. They are proud Malaysians and take equal pride in being able to speak perfect Bahasa Malaysia. But they will also tell you of the days when Malaysians were always chosen by our neighbours such as Thailand and Indonesia to represent the region’s views at international forums.

Why? Because that generation of Malaysians did not speak "not yet die" English; because they spoke "we come here not to lament" English.

Well, no more. Today, we have a new generation of Thais and Indonesians which speaks English eloquently, who can sit down at international forums and conferences and articulate their country’s case with those whose mother tongue is English and who can go through trade agreements and pacts without missing any nuance that may disadvantage their countries.

Malaysians who used to visit Thailand and Indonesia in the 1980s and who go there now will be the best judges of then and now. Today, as it used to be in Malaysia, it is more likely that one will find an Indonesian or a Thai who can speak passable if not good English than one who cannot.

Look at China. Receptionists and front desk managers at hotels are always testing out their English with guests and many have a pocket dictionary that they always refer to in their free time, learning as many English words as they can in a day.

Taxi drivers in Beijing and Shanghai can, to a large extent, follow instructions in English. India, of course, has always had a fascination for the English language and has produced many renowned writers of international standing.

We have to face it. We blundered when we started treating English as just another subject in the mid-1970s and made it non-compulsory to pass for examinations. Today, in a keenly competitive world, where English is the major language of knowledge and communication, one generation of Malaysians is paying the price for that blunder.

No point, though, in "lamenting" about that costly mistake. At least, we have taken steps to remedy the sorry situation we are in.

Education Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein’s task is not an easy one.

But the process of "re-learning" English, forced through by former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad despite strong opposition, is being backed just as strongly by the current administration. That, perhaps, may make the difference.

The 1960s’ and early 1970s’ generation grew up earning English not only through books but through children’s games as well.

We had this game of learning our colours where we would start off with a question going around "my mother went to the market and bought me some fish. What colour do you want?"

The person at whom the question stopped would answer "red". R-E-D would be counted out on his spread fingers, stopping at the third finger, which would then be closed.

The question would go around and around and all the colours would come up: blue, purple, grey, orange, yellow, pink, white, black and when we ran out of the normal colours we knew, we would try to find new ones to win the game. Such as burgundy, turquoise…

The person who managed to close all 10 fingers first won the game.

It may seem juvenile now but we learned our colours.

Scrabble competitions were a big hit and there used to be inter-school Scrabble championships.

Competition always brings out the best in people and it may not be a bad idea to re-think the tools of old to build up the Malaysians of tomorrow.

Speaking of job applicants and journalists, stories which go around newspaper circles often can be quite funny, especially anecdotes of the unprintable stuff about newsmakers.

In 1993, at the height of the battle for posts in Umno, a colleague from the Far Eastern Economic Review, Michael Vatikiotis, interviewed a senior Menteri Besar (since retired) who said: "We will win because of our prestation."

"Prestation?" Michael asked.

"Ya, ya… prestation. You know, prestasi (Bahasa Malaysia for performance)."

A few years ago, another Menteri Besar, at a dinner with senior editors, slapped his thighs excitedly at one point during the conversation, and said: "That’s the reason is…".

It was, of course, a direct translation from Bahasa Malaysia’s "itulah sebabnya".

That same Menteri Besar was known for always trying very hard to speak English and one day, impressed by a study tour of China, he briefed journalists saying he would implement in his State the "les-kay-pe" he saw in Beijing.


Eventually, it dawned on everyone that he was talking about landscaping though initially it sounded like he was speaking about a cousin of Nescafe.

But to his credit, this Menteri Besar took lessons and is today better versed in the language.

There was also a deputy minister, now in a more senior position, who attended a dinner organised by shipping companies. He kept referring to "the koeh" and "the koehs" in his speech. No, it was not kuih.

He was referring to the quay and the quays. His English is still appalling. My apologies if offence is taken but there is no slur intended.

Just like there is a need for many of our politicians to be more proficient in the national language, they need to set an example by improving their English.

We can’t be like the ketam mengajar anaknya jalan betul (a crab trying to teach its young to walk straight).

And we need to do more for our young, especially in the rural schools. Certainly, there is a limit to what the Government and the Education Ministry, in particular, can do. There is a need for the private sector and for individuals who have done well in life to help as well.

We can adopt schools and provide them with books for their resource centres; we can pay for extra tuition classes; we can volunteer our services to teach and train these students after classes; we can organise workshops for teachers.

Many of these things are already being done but they have not received the widespread support that is required to ensure that another generation does not suffer.

Perhaps, our greatest asset is, as proven by that Menteri Besar, that our spirit to learn and improve ourselves "not yet die".