Monday, March 31, 2008

Buntong Assemblyman's Conduct Tarnishes Party Image, Says DAP Chairman - Bernama

PENANG, March 31 (Bernama) -- DAP chairman Karpal Singh has expressed disappointment over the conduct of Perak state assemblyman A. Sivasubramaniam, saying he had tarnished the party's image with his resignation drama.

He said the matter would be discussed at the party's central executive committee (CEC) meeting in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday.

"This is not something to fool around with. I do not understand why he did that. I cannot accept such conduct," he said when contacted by Bernama.

Karpal Singh was asked to comment on the Buntong assemblyman's action in deciding to resign from the party earlier today and then reversing the decision in the evening.

Sivasubramaniam had sent his resignation letter to DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng and despatched copies to Perak DAP chairman Ngeh Khoo Ham and several media organisations.

In the letter, he had alleged that Ngeh had not kept his pledge to Indian voters to allocate two state executive council posts to Indian assemblymen, and said that the decision was a big blow to the Indian community.

He reversed his decision in the evening and at a news conference in Ipoh apologised for his hasty action which he said arose out of a misunderstanding.

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Buntong Assemblyman Retracts Resignation From DAP - Bernama

IPOH, March 31 (Bernama) -- Buntong state assemblyman A. Sivasubramaniam this evening reversed his decision made earlier in the day to resign from the DAP over alleged failure of the party to fulfill its pledge to Indian voters in Perak.

He attributed his hasty action to a misunderstanding and apologised to all quarters.

"I apologise because my action was due to a misunderstanding. I hereby withdraw my letter of resignation," he told a news conference which was also attended by Perak DAP chairman Ngeh Khoo Ham and DAP adviser Lim Kit Siang.

Sivasubramaniam had sent the resignation letter to DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng and despatched copies to Ngeh and several media organisations.

In the letter he had alleged that Ngeh had not kept his word to allocate two state executive council posts to Indian assemblymen, and said that the decision was a big blow to the Indian community.

Ngeh said he managed to contact Sivasubramaniam at 5pm and they met.

"As I had expected, Sivasubramaniam had acted due to a misunderstanding and we took less than five minutes to resolve the matter," he said.

Ngeh said the misunderstanding arose because he had refrained from announcing the decision of the state government to appoint an Indian assemblyman as the speaker of the Perak state legislative assembly.

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Syed Hamid Confident Umno Will Regain Strength - Bernama

KUALA LUMPUR, March 31 (Bernama) -- Home Minister Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar is confident that Umno will recover from the shock of the March 8 general election and will be capable of defending the Malays.

He said Umno will now look into ways to strengthen the party and to get back the support of the Malays.

Syed Hamid said although a two-third majority in parliament was not achieved in the recent election, the Barisan Nasional (BN), which Umno is the pillar, was still strong.

"At the national level, we just didn't get two-third of the seats but our majority was good. It's just that we have never been faced by this sort of situation, that many people now are worried and voicing (their concern)," he told reporters after visiting the police headquarters in Bukit Aman here.

Syed Hamid was asked to comment on Gua Musang member of parliament Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah's statement Sunday night that Umno must now accept the reality that the Malays had lost power, and could only hope of help from Sabah and Sarawak to continue leading the country.

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林冠英:只给土著承包商‧公开招標未剥夺权益 - Sin Chew Daily






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Buntong Assemblyman Quits DAP - Bernama

IPOH, March 31 (Bernama) -- The State Assemblyman for Buntong, A. Sivasubramaniam on Monday sent a letter to DAP secretary-general to announce his intention to leave the party which, he claimed, had not fulfilled its promises to the Indian voters in Perak.

However, Sivasubramaniam could not be contacted for confirmation on the letter, a copy of which had been sent to Perak DAP chairman Ngeh Khoo Ham as well as several media organisations here.

Speaking at a press conference, Ngeh confirmed that the DAP had received the letter but its authenticity had yet to be ascertained because he could not contact Sivasubramaniam.

In the letter, Sivasubramaniam, 41, claimed that the allocation of posts in the State Executive Council for two leaders from the Indian community had not been implemented as promised by Ngeh previously.

"The decision was a big slap and had cheated the Indian community in Perak. The DAP victory in the recent general election was through Makkal Sakti (People's Power)," he said in the letter.

In the general election on March 8, Sivasubramaniam, who is deputy secretary of the Perak DAP, beat Barisan Nasional candidate Lee Tung Lai with a 5,315-vote majority.

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Malaysia PM in deeper crisis as 2 Cabinet ministers seek leadership reforms - AP

By Julia Zappei, AP

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) - Two Cabinet ministers have endorsed demands by ruling party dissidents to hold an open contest for the party leadership, highlighting the prime minister's weakening control over power in Malaysia after disastrous election results.

The Star daily Monday quoted International Trade Minister Muhyiddin Yassin and Higher Education Minister Khaled Nordin as saying that everybody should be eligible to run for the post of the United Malays National Organization party's president.

At present, a contestant must be nominated by 30 percent of the party's divisions, which is hard to secure by someone not endorsed by the party leadership. The party president automatically becomes the prime minister.

The nomination quota encourages an "unhealthy political culture," Muhyiddin, who is the party vice president, was quoted as saying.

"I hope that with the abolition, the party at all levels will have a healthy democratic election system," the daily quoted Muhyiddin as saying.

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi is facing the biggest crisis of his political career after the March 8 general elections, in which the ruling National Front retained power but lost its traditional two-thirds majority. It also conceded five states to the opposition.

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Math prodigy now a £130 hooker claim - The Star

PETALING JAYA: Sufiah Yusof, the child Maths genius who won a place at Oxford University when she was just 13, has been found to be working as a prostitute, according to a report in London’s News of the World.

Sufiah, now 23, whose father Farooq is a Pakistani and mother Halimathon is from Johor, was reported to have entertained an undercover reporter in her flat in Manchester.

Claiming that she had posted her services for £130 (RM829) on the Internet, the newspaper said she had called herself Shilpa Lee on a hookers’ website. She is said to have advertised herself as “a sexy, smart student” who preferred “older gentlemen”.

The story in the newspaper comes just days after her father was jailed for sexually assaulting two 15-year-old girls as he home-tutored them in Maths.

Sufiah passed the Maths A-Level she needed for entry into Oxford at the age of 12.

Three years into Oxford, she sparked a massive police hunt after running away.

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The ferry is a Penang icon, says Guan Eng - The Star

PENANG: The vehicular ferry, a state icon, should not be scrapped even after the completion of the Penang Bridge widening project.

Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said the state government was not consulted over Penang Port Sdn Bhd (PPSB)’s decision to stop the service between Penang island and Seberang Prai.

“I don’t agree with the move. I think they can’t just stop the sea link,” he told reporters after attending the Chinese Town Hall Chinese Cultural flag-raising ceremony yesterday.

He said the decision to scrap the important service should be made by the Prime Minister or the Transport Ministry.

“Even if there is such a plan to scrap the service, it is necessary for PPSB to discuss it with the Government,” he said adding that commuters would be affected if the service was discontinued.

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Zam: Dr M to blame, too - The Star

KUALA LUMPUR: Former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad must shoulder some of the blame for Barisan Nasional's worst-ever performance in the recent general election, says former Information Minister Datuk Seri Zainuddin Maidin.

Dr Mahathir’s various accusations swayed the people to vote against Barisan, he said.

“Laying all blame on Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi for Barisan’s losses is not right because it is clear that Dr Mahathir is full of anger and uncontrolled vengeance,” said Zainuddin.

“Maybe he was not aware or maybe he purposely did not want to be aware that his credibility as a former leader is still strong and that his influence on the grassroots, both Malay and non-Malays, is significant.”

“His credibility influenced people into believing what he said and he also lent this credibility to bloggers and websites,” he said when met at his house here yesterday.

Zainuddin said there were three statements in particular that affected Umno’s and Malaysians’ confidence in the leadership in the run-up to the elections.

“The first was when he said he regretted appointing Abdullah as the Prime Minister.

“This was then followed up by Dr Mahathir saying that Abdullah was only meant to be a one-term Prime Minister and that more opposition was needed in Parliament.”

Zainuddin added that the third and most damning statement that was widely accepted by all segments of society was about the role Deputy Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin and his advisers played in the country’s politics and economy.

“This even caused Gerakan adviser Tan Sri Lim Keng Yaik to ask Abdullah to get rid of his advisers,” he said.

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