Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Child genius Adi Putra goes to Parliament; meets Deputy Higher Education Minister - NSTP e-Media

Isu Karpal pertikai hak sultan - Persoal titah Agong pula - Utusan

KUALA LUMPUR 6 Mei – Pengerusi DAP, Karpal Singh yang dibidas pelbagai pihak ekoran tindakannya mempertikaikan kuasa Sultan Perak dalam isu arahan pertukaran Pengarah Jabatan Agama Islam Perak (JAIP), Datuk Jamry Sury hari ini turut dikritik oleh ahli-ahli Parlimen kerana mempersoalkan titah ucapan Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin pula.

Tindakan Ahli Parlimen Bukit Gelugor itu menimbulkan persoalan tentang siapa yang menyediakan titah ucapan diraja dan adakah ia ‘titah kerajaan’ pada perasmian persidangan Parlimen Ke-12 dilihat sebagai perbuatan yang menghina institusi raja.

‘‘Tuanku merupakan Ketua Negara dan rakyat kena akur dan taat kepada Seri Paduka. Memang Tuanku bertindak atas nasihat Perdana Menteri tetapi tidak perlulah bertanya titah ini titah siapa...titah kerajaan atau titah menterikah.

‘‘Apabila perkara itu dilafazkan oleh Yang di-Pertuan Agong maka ia adalah titah Seri Paduka,” kata Razali Ibrahim (BN-Muar) ketika membahaskan usul terima kasih atas titah Yang di-Pertuan Agong di Dewan Rakyat hari ini.

Pada hari pertama persidangan Rabu lepas, Karpal berkeras ingin tahu siapa yang bertanggungjawab menyediakan teks titah Seri Paduka.

‘‘Terlalu banyak soal berkaitan sultan ini, negara ini ditubuh, sebab wujudnya Kesultanan Raja-Raja Melayu. Ini bukan soal perkauman tetapi kedaulatan. Bukit Gelugor semasa (Parlimen) rasmi dulu juga bangkit soalan yang sama,” kata Razali.

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DEWAN DISPATCHES: Parliament’s great white shark - NST


For as long as the political savvy can remember, Lim Kit Siang has been an authoritative presence in the Dewan Rakyat, an orator of sublime presentation on compelling issues of the day he wishes to hound on political rivals, or a predatory great white shark smelling blood dripping from a “wounded” Minister or MP desperately trying to cover shenanigans only the Ipoh Timur MP can sniff out.

The 67-year-old seasoned Parliamentary player of seven terms can appear to be humbled by a lucid riposte by a cool Minister or MP and smile bewitchingly (menacingly if you suddenly realise that you are the target of his sniping), or he can suddenly snarl like an attack dog, pouncing ferociously on the lapses the MP may have unwittingly exposed. Except for a brief four-year period (1999-2004) when he was “exiled” out of Parliament after losing in the 1999 general election in Tanjung, Kit, as he is fondly called by colleagues and friends, has been a paradoxical character who had injected impact and colour into the debates of august hall.

Kit’s parliamentary performances, many seasons as Opposition leader, but now deferring to PKR president Datin Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, had been in his vintage style – articulate and authoritative when raising and stressing points but insistent, cynical, outlandish and brazen when deflecting broadsides from Barisan backbenchers, a slew of them with many axes to grind.

If there ever was a Top 10 list of best Dewan Rakyat debates, you can be sure that Kit has a couple of greatest hits in there somewhere, such is his searing influence in the business of formulating national laws and polices in the Dewan Rakyat.

Today was Kit’s turn to hold the floor in the debate on the royal address and he took a good two hours to deliver his package though a bulk of it meandered on endless interjections, clarifications, demands for rebuttals and, in the spirit of the Dewan Rakyat, a good old-fashion shouting match, all of it with BN backbenchers. Kit, who has the skill to rile up a Member of Parliament for no other reason than to rile up the person, would not have it any other way. All in all, another Lim Kit Siang vintage performance.

It was expected: the moment he stood up to begin his debate, Kit accelerated from zero to 120 in a matter of seconds, thundering on the authorities’ motive of charging blogger Raja Petra Raja Kamaruddin under the Sedition Act in connection with a recent posting on Altantuya Shaariibuu murder case when the resolute blogger should have been cited for contempt of court.

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Najib: Sultan of Perak’s action cannot be questioned -

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the Sultan Perak’s decision to ask for the immediate reinstatement of the state’s Islamic Department is in line with the law.

Raja Petra charged, chooses jail over bail -

Clasped in handcuffs like a common criminal, photographers followed Raja Petra Kamaruddin's every step as he was led in and out of the court after he refused to post bail.

Raja Petra charged with sedition -

Malaysia Today news portal webmaster Raja Petra Kamaruddin was today charged with sedition at the Petaling Jaya Sessions Court over an article which he wrote in his website.

The article allegedly implied that Deputy Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak and his wife were involved in the killing of a young Mongolian woman.

Raja Petra claimed trial to the charge. He was charged under Section 4(1)(c) of the Sedition Act for publishing seditious article on April 25 on Malaysia Today.

Hearing has been fixed from Oct 6 to 10 and Raja Petra was granted a bail of RM5,000, which he refused to post, deciding instead to remain in custody until the hearing date.

If found guilty, Raja Petra could be jailed for a maximum of three years and/or face a fine of up to RM5,000.

The chargesheet also highlighted nine paragraphs of the article which was titled "Let's send the Altantuya murderers to hell" as seditious.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Nordin Hassan is prosecuting while Raja Petra was represented by a team of six lawyers led by Karpal Singh.

Najib: No commission paid on Scorpene, Sukhoi deals - The Sun

By Tim Leonard

KUALA LUMPUR (May 6, 2008): No commission was paid by the Government to any parties for the purchase of the RM4.5 billion Scorpene submarines and the RM3.2 billion Sukhoi jets, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak said today.

Najib, who is also Defence Minister, said allegations of corruption and cronyism were baseless as all these transactions were made in keeping with proper procurement procedures.

He was responding to calls by opposition leader Datin Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail in the Dewan Rakyat yesterday for the Prime Minister to set up an independent commission to probe these purchases as she claimed that large amounts of commission were paid.

Speaking to reporters after presenting excellent service awards to Defence Ministry personnel in conjunction with Workers Day in the Mindef headquarters here, Najib advised those who make such allegations to check their facts first.

His ministry also issued a statement that allegations that the ministry had paid RM540 million to Abdul Razak Baginda (an accused in the Altantuya Shaariibuu murder trial) as commission to secure the Scorpene deal were without basis.

It said that a local company, Perimekar Sdn Bhd, was awarded a contract worth 114.96 million Euros to provide support and coordination services for a period of six years. This was the amount that was miscontrued as "commissions".

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Karpal langgar ketertiban pembentukan negara - Utusan

KUALA LUMPUR 6 Mei - Tindakan Pengerusi DAP, Karpal Singh yang secara berterusan mempersoalkan hak dan kuasa Raja-Raja Melayu melanggar ketertiban pembentukan negara ini yang diamal dan dipertahankan sejak sekian lama.

Ketua Pergerakan Pemuda UMNO, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein berkata, Malaysia adalah negara raja berperlembagaan yang perlu dihormati oleh semua.

“Raja-Raja Melayu ialah lambang Ketua Agama Persekutuan dan juga kepada negeri-negeri Melayu yang lain. Yang di-Pertuan Agong dan Raja-Raja Melayu adalah payung yang menaungi seluruh rakyat tanpa mengira kaum dan agama.

``Kita tidak boleh pisahkan urusan kenegaraan di antara institusi raja dengan Perlembagaan Negara. Ia sangat berkait rapat di antara satu sama lain. Kemakmuran dan kerukunan bermasyarakat terbentuk selagi kita menghormati latar belakang ini,'' katanya dalam satu kenyataan yang diedarkan di lobi Parlimen di sini.


No evidence indelible ink was brought in - The Star

KUALA LUMPUR: The police have not found any evidence that indelible ink was brought into the country from Thailand in the run-up to the recent general election.

Home Minister Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar said in a written reply to Fong Po Kuan (DAP - Batu Gajah) in Dewan Rakyat Tuesday that after studying the report that it had received and interviewing all the witnesses and complainant involved, the police found no such evidence.

“This is because not one witness has ever seen the ink. From their testimony, no individual, syndicate or certain parties have been identified to be involved in such activities.

“The statement made by the complainant and the witnesses were thus rumours and no individual has been positively identified or known to be involved.

“The investigation papers have been refered to the deputy prosecutor’s office on March 14. On March 31, the case has been classified as ‘no further action’,”he said.

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Raja Petra claims trial for sedition - The Star

KUALA LUMPUR: Raja Petra Kamaruddin, the editor of news portal Malaysia Today, claimed trial at the PJ Sessions Court to publishing a seditious article on April 25.

He was charged under Section 4(1)(c) of the Sedition Act 1948.

Nine paragraphs in his article titled "Let’s send the Altantuya murderers to hell" were found to be seditious.

The article was posted on his website on April 25.

The court set his bail at RM5,000.

Raja Petra did not post bail. His wife Marina Lee Abdullah said he is hoping to raise the money through his news portal.

As of 2.30pm Tuesday, he was still in lockup at the PJ sessions court.

Earlier Tuesday, Raja Petra arrived at the magistrates’ court in the Kuala Lumpur Court Complex in Jalan Duta at 9.06am.

He was later instructed to go to the PJ Sessions Court to be charged.

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Productivity up by 4.2% - The Star

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia recorded 4.2% productivity growth last year, the highest since 2001, and marginally higher than that two years ago.

Malaysia’s productivity growth surpassed that of selected Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development countries and Asian countries, including Britain, Japan, Australia, United States, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Thailand.

Malaysia ranked third behind China and India.

International Trade and Industry Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin attributed the achievement to vibrant domestic business activities aided by the Government’s pro-business policies and productivity initiatives by industries.

The public sector grew by 3.6% in 2007, up from 3.4% in the previous year.

“The commitment of the civil service to serve the public more efficiently through implementation of various productivity and quality initiatives has resulted in progressive growth in service productivity,” Muhyiddin said yesterday in launching the Malaysia Productivity Corporation Report 2007.

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Non-Malays need not fear congress, says Muhyiddin - The Star

KUALA LUMPUR: Non-Malays need not feel their rights are being infringed by the recent resolution adopted during a congress consisting of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) calling for Malay privileges to be upheld.

Umno vice-president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said Kongres Permuafakatan Melayu, which concluded in Johor Baru over the weekend, was an expression of the perception held by the NGOs that their rights had been eroded.

He added that the Government and Umno needed to take note of the situation and not take things lightly.

“They feel that their rights are being less fought for by the Government and they want attention to be given.

“But non-Malays should not feel threatened. There is no taking away the rights of any race,” he told reporters yesterday, after inspecting preparations for the Fifth Malaysia International Halal Showcase exhibition which will be opened on Thursday by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

“Maybe, they feel the current Umno leadership is not being seen as giving the due attention. We accept their resolution with an open heart,” he added.

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Full telecast will cost govt RM100,000 a day - NST

FULL telecasts of Parliament sittings will cost the government RM100,000 a day, Information Minister Datuk Ahmad Shabeery Cheek said yesterday.

He said this in a written reply to questions by Liew Chin Tong (DAP-Bukit Bendera) and Dr Mohd Hatta Md Ramli (Pas-Kuala Krai).

Shabeery said the move to telecast the proceedings of the Dewan Rakyat starting from April 30 without any vetting was proof of the openness and transparency of the government in line with the country's democratic practice.

"The current 30-minute live telecast during the question and answer session was also broadcast by Radio Klasik and is streamed live through the ministry's web portal," Ahmad Shabeery said.

He added that his ministry was prepared to extend the live telecast to cover the debates provided there was positive feedback from the people.

Ahmad Shabeery said he was pleased with the way the Members of Parliament had conducted themselves yesterday during Question Time compared to the much maligned session last Wednesday.

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Dewan Rakyat:State govts can transfer any civil servant, says Karpal - NST

Reports by V. Vasudevan, B. Suresh Ram, Eileen Ng, R.S. Kamini, Ili Liyana Mokhtar and Joseph Sipalan

IT is the prerogative of the state governments to move any of their civil servants without consulting the head of a particular state, Karpal Singh (DAP-Bukit Gelugor) said yesterday.

Speaking at the parliament lobby, he said state governments should not feel intimidated by royal administrations as they were not answerable in matters concerning civil administration.

Referring to the events involving the reinstatement of Datuk Jamry Suri to the position of Perak Islamic Religious Department director after being directed to do so by the Sultan of Perak Sultan Azlan Shah, Karpal said the Perak state government should not have changed its decision to transfer Jamri.

Karpal said the situation reflected badly on the current administration and it would be seen as weak.

"The Perak Menteri Besar has buckled and wilted under the intimidation by the royalty and this sets a very bad precedence if the royalty interferes in the state administration."

He added that this was not the first time for such interventions by the royalty, citing the appointment of the menteri besar in Terengganu and Perlis.

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