Linundus Kinabalu Headline Animator


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Monday, November 30, 2009

‘BTN taught me the Chinese are the Jews of Asia’

By Asrul Hadi Abdullah Sani

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 27 — I am one of the privileged few to have attended a local public university and learned the meaning of hate, thanks to the ever popular Biro Tata Negara.

All undergraduates were forced to attend this programme or else they would not be eligible for graduation.

Muhyiddin has defended the BTN courses. — File pic

The BTN under the Prime Minister’s Department brought in “intellectual” speakers who were supposed to enlighten the students about the meaning of being a Malaysian but instead it felt more like a communist propaganda camp brainwashing those attending about the importance of “Ketuanan Melayu”.

The lecturer even failed one of his students in his oral exam when he quoted a Western scholar in his presentation.

“You should be ashamed of yourselves. You are a Muslim and should only use Islamic scholars,” he scolded the student.

I was personally saddened when my Islamic law lecturer compared Christianity to Head & Shoulder’s 3 in 1 shampoo in referring to the religion’s Holy Trinity.

I feel that racism has been institutionalised in our country and that BTN is only the tip of the iceberg.

Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin defended BTN yesterday and claimed that it was not racist but is in line with the 1 Malaysia concept.

I have to humbly disagree and would like to suggest maybe the ministers should bring their overseas children home and let them have a taste of what BTN is.

READ MORE HERE – The Malaysian Insider

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Bumiputera contractors: A wasteful national mission to date


This article is too important not to be read by more people. It is written by Koon Yew Yin, one of the founders of the three larger construction companies listed in Bursa Malaysia. These are Gamuda Bhd, Mudajaya Group Bhd, and IJM Corporation Bhd.

We certainly do not need more contractors - we must ensure that our resources are put into creating value to industry and economy, not creating layers after layers of profits being hived off.

Producing competitive Bumiputera contractors

As reported on May 1, 2005, Malaysia had one contractor for every 614 persons. Most likely there are more contractors by now. This ratio is again likely to be amongst the highest in the world and is obviously costing the public a significant amount of money besides affecting our overall economic performance.

I would like to pose a few questions which may appear unkind or insensitive but nonetheless need to be asked.

Out of hundreds of high-rise buildings in Kuala Lumpur does anyone know of any Bumiputera contractor who has won any of the building contracts through an open competitive tender process? Out of hundreds of kilometers of highway in Malaysia, can any Bumiputera contractor who won any part of the highway contracts through open tender be identified?

The answer to the above questions unfortunately is in the negative. The evidence is that all the government’s well-intentioned efforts in trying to produce competitive Bumiputera contractors since 1957 have failed.

Why this has happened needs to be openly discussed rather than swept under the carpet. In this note, I share my experiences as a contractor and my knowledge of why Bumiputera contractors have failed in the past and what needs to be done by the government to correct this unhealthy situation.

Facts of life in the contracting business

Contracting is a very difficult business yet it is so easy to register as a contractor.

To register as a Class F contractor one has only to show that he has RM5,000. He does not even require a pass in Lower Certificate of Education (LCE). But it will take at least 10 years to learn how to overcome all the inherent difficulties and become competitive and efficient. Continuously giving out lucrative and over-priced contracts without open tenders will only make the recipients less competitive.

Secondly, studies have shown that there are more failures and bankruptcies in contracting than in any other business, and also almost all construction projects are NOT completed within the original scheduled time.

The delay will cost the contractor more and that is why you can often see uncompleted buildings and abandoned projects which have been undertaken by inefficient contractors. There are many reasons for this peculiar phenomenon.

Note on the Author

I am a 76-year-old chartered civil engineer and one of the founders of the three larger construction companies listed in Bursa Malaysia. These are Gamuda Bhd, Mudajaya Group Bhd, and IJM Corporation Bhd.

I was a member of the Board of Engineers, Malaysia for three terms. I was also on the Sirim Board responsible in writing the Malaysian standard specifications for cement and concrete. In addition, I was the Secretary General of Master Builders Association, Malaysia for nine years.

These days, I am completely retired. My intention in writing this article is honourable. Many people may not like reading what I have written and the truth may be difficult to accept. Nevertheless, this is my considered analysis for the benefit of my country, the Bumiputera contractors and the construction industry.

READ MORE HERE at Centre For Policy Initiatives

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Pacquaio made 'Datu"

Pres. Arroyo confers the Order of Sikatuna with rank of Datu on the Filipino champ, assisted by his wife Jinkee during rites at the Quirino Grandstand. Willy Perez

MANILA, Philippines - President Arroyo yesterday conferred boxing hero Manny Pacquiao the Order of the Sikatuna, Rank of Datu, for winning a record seventh title in seven different weight divisions.

The award was the highest honor that can be given to a civilian under the law.

Pacquaio scored a 12th round TKO over Puerto Rican Miguel Cotto to capture the WBO welterweight crown at the MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas last Saturday for his seventh crown.

The Chief Executive led the rites at the Quirino Grandstand in Manila instead of Malacañang where these types of events usually take place.


Sunday, November 15, 2009

Pacquiao stops Cotto with unprecedented 7th weight class.

Blood sport

The face of Miguel Cotto shows the effect of the punches of Manny Pacquiao.

Jae C. Hong - Associated Press

Taking it on the chin

Manny Pacquiao, of the Philippines, right, reaches with a left at Miguel Cotto, of Puerto Rico, during their WBO welterweight boxing title fight Saturday in Las Vegas.

Jae C. Hong - Associated Press

Manny Pacquiao of the Philippines (C) poses for a photo with promoter Bob Arum (L) and trainer Freddie Roach after defeating Miguel Cotto of Puerto Rico in a WBO welterweight title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada today - Reuters pic

Las Vegas Saturday 14th Nov. Manny Pacquiao enhanced his status as the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world with a commanding win over holder Miguel Cotto to claim the WBO welterweight title today.

The Filipino southpaw stopped his opponent 55 seconds into the 12th and final round to win a seventh world title in an unprecedented seventh weight class.

Pacquiao twice knocked the Puerto Rican to the canvas in the earlier rounds at the MGM Grand Garden Arena before referee Kenny Bayless ended the fight after Pacquiao had pummelled his opponent with a flurry of combinations against the ropes.


Round by Round coverage Here

Watch Video from HERE

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Young Muslim writer defends crucifixes in Italy

Adapted from CNA

Rome, Italy, Nov 13, 2009: A young Muslim writer named Randa Ghazy (right) has written an article entitled, “I, a Muslim, Defend the Crucifix,” in which she expresses her opposition to a ruling by the EU Human Rights Court that ordered all crucifixes be taken down in classrooms across Italy. The article will appear in the December edition of the magazine Mondo e Missione, a publication of the Pontifical Institute Missioni Estere.

“One of the most beautiful memories of my childhood and adolescence was of Father Bruno,” she writes. “I would often go to the oratory with my little brother and the sisters would treat us with great kindness and care.”

Ghazy recalls as well that “Father Bruno made us truly laugh. When it was time for Mass, my brother and I would run off to play ping pong and eat candy. Every day Father Bruno would ask us to stay with the other kids who were there in the church, which we embarrassingly declined to do.”

“One day, Father said to us, ‘Why don’t you come and say your prayers?’ And so we did. During Mass my brother and I slowly recited prayers from the Koran. So the crucifix, all the different kinds that I remember (from grade school to college) was always a symbol of security for me, a projection of the greatness of the heart of Christ, and in some way, of Father Bruno.”

For this reason, Ghazy says, “I support and encourage every possible debate between Muslim and Christian citizens, all discussion about the secularity of the State, but with respect for the great models of humility that each one can find in his past and his experiences.”

“I turn off the television so I don’t see the continuous verbal assaults, I remember Father Bruno and I smile, thinking about those two little Muslims who looked at each other in that beautiful church. I almost feel nostalgia for the 90s,” she writes.

The young Muslim writer was born in 1987 in the Italian region of Lombardy to Egyptian parents. She has written three books, the first when she was only 15, entitled, “Dreaming of Palestine.” The book is about the friendship shared by a group of young people in the occupied territories.

Her second book, “Bloody Trial,” was published in 2005. In 2007 she wrote, “Today I'm Not Going to Kill Anyone: Short Stories of a Young Muslim Who is Not a Terrorist.”

Friday, November 13, 2009

Confusion over the Printing License Permit (in 2010) of 'The Herald'

KUALA LUMPUR: A news portal had earlier reported that Malaysia’s weekly Catholic newspaper has lost its publishing permit for next year amid a long-running dispute over its use of the word "Allah", the editor said Thursday.

The loss of The Herald’s permit comes as it prepares for a High Court hearing on December 14 in a legal battle between the Catholic Church and the authorities over the use of the world "Allah" in the paper’s Malay-language section.

However, the Home Ministry, as reported in the same news portal, clarified that The Herald's permit for publication has not been revoked and that the renewal of its permit for 2010 is in process.
"There was never an issue of revoking the permit for The Herald," explained an official from the publication control and Al-Quran text division.
He told Malaysiakini that the last letter sent to The Herald in September was a notification that the application to publish in the Kadazan-Dusun language was not approved, and that a refund of the permit fee could be made.

The reason being, he said, is that The Herald paid its permit fees too early.
"We will only process the permit three months before the old permit expires, as in this case it is in January 2010. The ministry will give the option for a refund if monies were paid prior to the three months.

The official said that it was a norm for the ministry to send applicants a letter to remind them of an option to claim refunds for fees paid too early. This is so they could pay the ministry closer to the expiry date.
He said that the confusion arose from a misunderstanding, stressing that the Home Ministry did not have issues with The Herald.
He also added that the 'Allah' ban is a pending court case and should not be tied to the issue of the permit.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Jeffrey Kitingan to form new party?

By Joseph Bingkasan

KINABALU: After being side-lined by Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) from the party’s Sabah liaison committee, Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan is mulling to proceed with his plans to form a new Sabah-based political party.

Sources said Jeffrey is considering to submit his application to the Registrar of Societies to register his party – One Nation Party (Parti Satu Negara, Paati Iso Pogun) or join a Sabah-based opposition party.

Among Jeffrey’s senior aides in preparing for the formation of the new party are former Sabah PKR deputy chief Daniel John Jambun and Mozes Iking, a lawyer who contested and lost to Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) president Datuk Seri Joseph Pairin Kitingan in Tambunan in the last general elections.


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Failure of Nur Amalina (who scored 17A's)

Nur Amalina had held briefly the record of the most A's scored in the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia. Upon the announcement of results of SPM 2004 on 26 March 2005, she received 17 1As - a record for number of A's received by a student in the history of Malaysian education back then. She was sponsored by Bank Negara Malaysia to study medicine in the United Kingdom, and did her A-levels at the Cheltenham Ladies College in the UK.

Now Malaysia Push Factors was informed that she had failed her second year medical study at the University of Edinburgh.

What went wrong? Could English language be the problem? We are going back to Malay medium again and that means trouble.

If the students score an exemplary number of distinctions (A's in Malaysia) in a public exam, they are considered the pinnacle of what the Country's education system is capable of producing. They are expected to go through tertiary education anywhere in the world with flushing success. So what could possibly have happened if they fail abroad?


Monday, November 2, 2009

The Pastor’s Prayer that shook the World.

“This was in America. How about Malaysia?!!!! What has become of Malaysia??? Can we apply the same prayer for Malaysia? - Idrus al-Haj.

The Pastor’s Prayer that shook the World.

When Minister Joe Wright was asked to open the new session of the Kansas Senate, everyone was expecting the usual generalities, but this is what they heard:

"Heavenly Father, we come before you today to ask your forgiveness and to seek your direction and guidance. We know Your Word says, "Woe to those who call evil good", but that is exactly what we have done.

We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and reversed our values.

We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery.

We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare.

We have killed our unborn and called it choice.

We have shot anti-abortionists and called it justifiable.

We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building self esteem. We have abused power and called it politics.

We have coveted our neighbor's possessions and called it ambition.

We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression.

We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment. Search us, Oh, God, and know our hearts today; cleanse us from every sin and set us free. Amen!"

The response was immediate. A number of legislators walked out during the prayer in protest. In 6 short weeks, Central Christian Church, where Rev. Wright is pastor, logged more than 5,000 phone calls with only 47 of those calls responding negatively.

The church is now receiving international requests for copies of this prayer from India, Africa and Korea. Commentator Paul Harvey aired this prayer on his radio program, "The Rest of the Story," and received a larger response to this program than any other he has ever aired.

With God's help, may this prayer sweep over our nation and whole-heartedly become our desire so that we again can be called: "1Nation under God."

If possible, please pass this prayer on to your friends. "If you don't stand for something, you will fall for everything." Think about this: If you forward this prayer to everyone on your e-mail list, in less than 30 days it would be heard by the world. How many people in your address book will not receive this prayer ... do you have the guts to pass it on?

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Fast Facts on Sabah’s Power Issues

How much power do we have?

  • We officially have about 785 Mega Watts (MW) on the books, however in reality the dependable capacity is about 712 MW while the maximum demand is about 675 MW.

If that is the case why do we have power failures? These figures indicate we have enough supply at the moment?

  • Because the reality of the situation is that our supply of electricity is inefficient due to age and lack of maintenance.
  • It is estimated that they are running at 40% capacity at present!

Do we need a coal-fired power plant?

  • We have alternative energy solutions which were identified in the Sabah Energy Masterplan, this plan identifies hydro projects as a source of electricity generation and does not focus on coal at all.
  • For hydro, Liwagu and Upper Padas were identified and feasibily studies and an Environmental Impact Assessments for the Upper Padas is being carried out, these projects just need to be fast tracked!
  • Liwagu and Upper Padas would both generate 190 MW each!
  • Also note that unlike the proposed Kaiduan hydro scheme which would drown out seven villages both Liwagu and Upper Padas would not and have been in the planning far longer than the coal fired power plant.
  • Sabah has it’s OWN natural gas and if the Kimanis Natural Gas plant is fast-tracked we will have capacity of 300 MW, remember even the coal-fire power plant will take a minimum of three years to be built so why not Kimanis Natural Gas or Liwagu or Upper Padas?
  • Hydro will come under the purview of the State whereas coal-fired power plant is under the purview at the Federal level.
  • Another IPP called Rainhill in Sepanggar is scheduled to generate 190 MW (60 MW by April 2010).
  • So the question should be, if we have this “cleaner” alternatives and we still have to wait for three years for the coal-fired power plants how does this solve our electricity issues? Which option could people, wildlife and nature of Sabah live with?

Let’s talk about renewable energies such as using palm oil empty fruit bunches, why can’t we just use this for a power source, after all Sabah is the number one producer of Malaysian palm oil?

  • The first and major hurdle to any sort of renewable energy is the fact that the Malaysian Government has a policy in place that limits the amount of power that can be produce by using renewable energy!
  • The Malaysian electricity legislation does not allow you to completely “go off the grid”.
  • The same legislation limits the production of electricity via renewable sources to only 10 MW and their sell back price to the grid is lower than other power sources.
  • Does, this make sense? A coal-fired power plant can produce 300 MW but a cleaner (and even cheaper as the source is located here unlike coal) may only produce 10 MW!
  • Following the Prime Minister’s 2010 Budget speech which focussed on green technologies, the Federal Government needs to immediately review these types of outdated policies that are not good for the environment and makes absolutely no sense especially in Sabah for reasons described in number 5 below.

Tenaga National Berhad (TNB) who owns 80% of Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd has repeatedly stated that they make no money from Sabah and that Sabah is part of their Social Corporate Responsibility, so why not let SESB and Sabah proceed with hydro and gas which Sabah has ample resources off? Maybe Sabah should work on certain areas being off the?

  • We cannot answer this simple question, only TNB can.
  • Once again, we note that hydro is under State purview and coal-fired power plant under Federal purview.

RM500 million was spent to do the Sabah grid which was completed in 2007. The head of TNB, Leo Moggie has stated that once the Sabah grid was completed Sabah would not have power problems. And now, he says once Sabah has a coal-fired power plant, Sabah will have no power problems…

  • We as people living in this State should have the right to decide for ourselves!

The current identified location of the coal-fired plant is to the East of Lahad Datu township on the Dent Peninsula.

  • FELDA who owns the land where the coal-fired power plant is to be located has been in the area since the 1980s, yet the local community have NEVER benefited as they still lack power supply (there is power to run the palm oil mills) and no access to fresh water (they rely on rain and ground water).
  • This place has beautiful beaches and previous studies have already shown that the waters of this coastline is abundant with fish stocks and other marine life. And now even this access to abundant fish stocks is at risk for the locals once a coal-fired power plant begins operation and affects not only air quality but also water quality.
  • An estimated RM400 million is needed for infrastructure alone with another RM200 million such to pull the grid to this area!

Five NGOs in Sabah cement anti-coal lobby efforts

Joe Fernandez reported that five leading NGOs came together to form a coalition called Green Surf, or Sabah Unite to Re-Power the Future to help present positive ideas and contributions to solve Sabah's energy woes.

They are Leap (Land Empowerment People and Animals), Pacos Trust (Partners of Community Organisations), Sepa (Sabah Environment Protection Association), the Malaysian Nature Society Sabah Branch, and the WWF-Malaysia (Worldwide Fund for Nature), Sabah chapter.”

Effects of Coal Burning

The world is investing too much cash and hope in carbon capture and storage.

"FACTORIES of death" is how James Hansen, a crusading American scientist, describes power stations that burn coal. Coal is the dirtiest of fossil fuels, producing twice the carbon dioxide that natural gas does when it is burned. That makes it a big cause of global warming.

WWF objects coal-fired power plant

Meanwhile, World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Malaysia will object to the setting up of a coal-fired power plant no matter where the location is in Sabah.

The organisation's first public statement on the issue was made by WWF Malaysia Borneo Programme Director, Dr Rahimatsah Amat, at a luncheon with the media in Centre Point Sabah, Tuesday, 16th June, 2009.

"As far as coal is concerned, our (WWF-Malaysia) stand is clearÉthere should be no coal-fired power plant in Sabah," he said.

Sign your Petition HERE