Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Istana Negara

Quote from above site "The Istana Negara complex itself will cost around RM650 million and the project was awarded to Maya Maju, also through direct negotiation. The palace will be completed by February next year. Note :- Direct negotiation means NO tender was called for. This is AGAINST the JKR guidelines that CLEARLY state that all projects costing more then RM100 thousand ringgit should go for tender. This project was budgeted originally at RM400 Million....

Checks with the ROC reveal that Maya Maju Sdn Bhd registered shareholders are Mr Ko Chin Teck (RM15,000 shares), Mr Lo Sin Li (RM85,000 shares). The directors are Ko and En Mohamad Muslim Hamzah (Mohamad Muslim does not own any shares). Maya Maju Sdn Bhd in other words has NO Bumiputera shareholders. And they only have RM100,000.00 ringgit in paid up capital. Yet they were awarded a RM650 Million job without having to tender for it.

1. With such a low paid up they do not qualify to tender for projects exceeding RM1 Million as certified by CIDB WHICH JKR HAS TO ABIDE BY. This project costs at last count RM650 million.


All's quiet now on this after the initial furore. There were published reports that workers on site were treated like conscript labour with wages unpaid for months and their travel documentation held by their employers. Wither the outcomes there? Were the reports unfounded or were they swept under the carpet away from the national conscience...?

Every rule in the book was broken did this happen and are any questions being asked? It is the responsibility of our duly elected government to not just be mindful of malpractice but to ensure any untoward practice be addressed appropriately.

Let it not be forgotten that we are building a Palace for our King and perish the thought that he be positioned in a domicile that was built by contractors that aren't validated or qualify or are ethically responsible to undertake such work...

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

So TNB is taking the author of a satirical piece on Earth hour to court. This can’t be the collective decision of the National Utility company. It has to be the decision of a minority if not just one man. Someone or some people who not only don’t have a sense of humour but chose to react with anger and retaliate against what was just a harmless joke, and one that if looked at positively shed some light (no pun intended) as to how much we owe the Utility Giant for lighting up our homes and making our lives more convenient.

Now they just look like a horse’s ass, not from the piece but from their own belligerent bullying attitude in bringing their considerable financial resources and might to bear down and stamp on one lone individual…… I’m carrying through with earth hour now every day in any way I can till some sense prevails……

Thursday, June 10, 2010

High Income productivity?

Five strategic thrusts have been identified under the 10MP, which was tabled by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak at the Dewan Rakyat yesterday:-
1. Designing Government philosophy and approach to transform Malaysia through the National Key Results Areas
2. Creating a conducive environment for unleashing economic growth
3. Moving towards inclusive socio-economic development
4. Developing and retaining a First World talent base

5. Building an environment that enhances quality of life

I have finally figured out what drives our government. Stupidity. It's not that they believe we'll believe this hogwash, they actually think that simplistically. That spouting crap like the above will help. All the above are just 'fluff' statements. PT Barnum would have been proud...

The rest of the paper on the 10th Malaysia plan had further nonsensical quotes like "Competitiveness in higher value activities necessitates specialisation in terms of having a critical mass and ecosystem of firms and talent to drive economies of scale"... Christ give me strength...

The cornerstone of growth, it's fundamental base in fact has to be education. This would be a fact even in a developed economy with a sound education system (one of the US's most recent initiatives was a ramp in focus, investment and resources in education for instance) When you juxtapose that priority there onto our education levels here that are worse than pathetic and need a major overhaul and yet no mention is made of it in a purported drive to ramp up productivity and income...? You wonder as to the intellect if not the will of the people in our countries administration.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Fire safety

There's been a lot of press on the incident where this poor girl died in a car fire subsequent to an accident. Aside from the fact that I'll never use BHP (until they show genuine remorse with commensurate deeds to back this) here's a question and a thought. How many of us carry extinguishers in our cars and have one in our homes? I have both. This practice started when I almost lost a car through a fire. I have carried one ever since and sometime in the mid-90's had cause to use it to save a girl from a car fire. And if I hadn't had one, she could have died.

I carry extinguishers in all my cars. If you want to (as you should) pick one up from ACE hardware. Don't get the dinky little car type ones. Those are next to useless. You need to get an ABC type of 1kg capacity (that's the powder inside NOT the weight of the extinguisher). It looks like a scaled down version of the big ones you might have seen. And yes get one for your homes too. My take, you only need to use it once in your life....

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Selangor CPO’s car stolen?

It’s been all over the news! The Selangor Police Chief’s official car has been stolen! Read about it here

Someone must have taken the IGP seriously when he said he’d call his men off the streets. Thinking of course that the police would not maintain law and order and would not fight crime, the thieves must have decided they could get away scot free with anything. Seeing as how that was the Police forces sole task, to fight crime, it's also a given that they probably didn’t need even need their cars anymore…

Tongue in cheek aside, that crime is a slap to the face of the Royal Malaysian Police. The Official car of the Selangor Police Chief would have been festooned with badges identifying it as such. They might have been discreet (hands up those who have seen black perdana V6’s with badges covered in vinyl jackets) but they would have been there. For thieves to act with such impunity drives home the simple fact that not only do they not fear the police, but they view them with such disdain, that they’d even steal from them. And if the Police can’t even safeguard their own property and belongings what hope is there for the rest of us?

I read that article with fear. Fear for myself and fear for my friends and family. We are descending into a crime ridden society. Crime is on the upswing because the police are viewed as incomprehensibly cuckolded and emasculated. Toothless and ineffectual. Aside from their sense of duty and professionalism, If they had any self respect, this incident should galvanise them into action, into realizing how bad the rot is and to start acting like a police force. A good step in the right direction would be to see if they can even recover their own car first….

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Our IGP decides if Law and Order are to be upheld

Our IGP lashes out? He threatens tax payers and yes the government, that he can instruct his men at any time NOT to enforce the law? The reasons for him doing so are immature enough, the outpouring of public indignation against the shooting death of a 14 year old. That incident, and ones similar, will obviously give rise to people expressing concern and yes maybe even anger and disgust as is their right. But, the incident itself aside, the arrogance of the IGP to think that he decides if the Police should act as is their calling? A calling by the way that is their legal and statutory obligation to do so?

That statement of our IGP is both irresponsible and arrogant. He is obviously not concerned about his or the responsibilities of the force or even cognizant of them. For him to begin to even think that he and only he decides if law and order should be upheld in this country points to some serious flaws in his reasoning and his capacity to act as the IGP. The Home Ministers task here is clear. He should have him removed and replaced with one with a clear understanding that such a position is not one of supreme authority but one of supreme obligation.

Monday, April 26, 2010

To reach out and help someone, do we or don’t we…

To reach out and help someone, do we or don’t we… I was faced with this exact question this past Sunday and was struck with my initial response.

I was driving home along a side road when a little old lady (of Chinese ethnicity if you must know) came running into view waving her arms furiously. And my first instinctive response was? Not to stop. To ask myself what scam was this and what was she up too? I was shocked at myself and buried that skepticism, pulled over and asked her what the problem was. It turned out her brakes had seized. On a brand new Honda Civic. Delivered to her just the day before. She had gone to the shops and on the drive back her car had come to a stop and had refused to budge. She had thought her engine was at fault but when I checked and drove the car a short distance (she was blocking someone’s driveway) I knew instantly what the problem was. I parked her car safely, offered to give her a lift home and advised her to call the dealer as the car had to be towed. She accepted my offer of the lift and on the way to her place, told me that she had been standing there for over an hour trying to get someone to stop and help her. And no one had.

When I had dropped her off I retraced the entire event over in my mind and questioned my initial reticence. I asked myself, why had I been apprehensive to the point of possibly not helping? And why after more than an hour of seeking help, had no one else stepped forward? To step forward and help a little old lady. The obvious answer, we live in a fear filled society. Our papers are filled with reports of snatch theft victims, road side scams, muggings and extortions. Petty crime has spiraled to such a point we have ceased to be civil as we move about in fear in our little cocoons. In so doing, we avoid and ignore our fellow man.

Over the past days though I have come across some interesting newspaper reports. One was of a student who fell to his death while trying to leave an apartment that was being raided under a joint exercise by Jais and the police. A raid that they were supposedly conducting under a tip-off…..

Another report covered another joint raid on muslims at bars and clubs at some mall in Selangor

Juxtapose this against the rising crime, the cloud of fear we are all living under and you can’t help but wonder if our resources are being misappropriated, our focus myopic. And in so doing not addressing what should be the core priority of our internal security forces. To combat real crime, to elevate this cloud of fear we live under such that, among other things, we can start functioning as a real society again. To be what we claim to be, a sociable people ever ready to help one another.

In the interim, until we see this happen, we shouldn’t be using the above as a reason, nay an excuse to not help. To not be a part of the human race. Selflessness as opposed to selfishness. It’s the least we can do I think…

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Veterinary services Deputy DG advocates eating dogs in dog pounds

PETALING JAYA (March 7, 2010): People with a penchant for exotic meat should be allowed to buy dogs from dog pounds for consumption, Veterinary Services Department (VSD) deputy director general Dr Ahmad Suhaimi Omar to full article here

I read with shock and horror the call from Veterinary Services Department (VSD) deputy director general Dr Ahmad Suhaimi Omar to eat the dogs from dog pounds!!!

Besides the sheer barbaracy of this statement, it was the absolute nonchalance in which it was stated that appalled me. The first criteria of anyone in veterinary services has to be empathy for animals. Or else how would you safeguard the safe and humane treatment of animals and care for their welfare? This person shows NONE of it. He should not be holding this position or in fact be anywhere near veterinary services for that matter and should be removed with immediate effect. Any lack of will here is reflective of the quality and nature of our society and our governments will in having good and decent people in responsible positions.

Or is this the best we have? This person, wasn't some lowly minion in the dept of toilet flush monitoring. He is the Deputy DG of the Veterinary services department. Are we forced to face the reality of knowing that this is the state of affairs here in Malaysia? That something as simple as the Veterinary Services Department isn't and cannot helmed by someone capable and suitable for the task at hand...?

Friday, March 5, 2010

We are losing the battle

Two so-called journalists from AL-Islam magazine took part in holy communion in a church, an act of faith that is deeply sacred and reserved only for Baptized Christians… They defiled a house of worship. But they will not be prosecuted due to ‘overwhelming public pressure’ as quoted by an ASP in the AG’s chambers. From the outpouring of disgust and anger from all strata of Malaysian society one would have thought there was overwhelming public pressure to prosecute. But I digress. The law should not and must not bow to pressure, public or otherwise. It must act in accordance with the law. It is a crime to defile a house of worship, there is a clear evidence that the crime was commited, there were witnesses and heck the perpetrators have publicly confessed that they did it.

So why aren’t they being prosecuted? It's politics isn't it? The BN government under UMNO's stewardship plays to the malay masses with the opiates of ketuanan Melayu and the sense that they are above the law whilst ironically and simultaneously emasculating them...

The gallery is constantly played to on what is at the end of the day non-core issues. The psyche and comfort level of the Malay (and for that matter the Indians and Chinese in their respective component parties) is pandered to. What is truly Machiavellian and what many fail to realise is their insecurity is created and stoked by the very same party. All this so attention is distracted from their management of our country.

We are being emasculated on a daily basis. Does no one shed a tear at the fact that we were at par with a once impoverished Singapore on just the value of our currency? A country with no natural resources whereas we were blessed with oil and minerals in abundance? They are now at, what 2.5 times our money? Within the span of 30 years our ringgit is now worth just 40 cents of what it once was. We have become poor.

Our National debt is mounting, we have engines that go missing from a military base, crime is spiraling out of control. In short the strength, security, the very integrity of Malaysia is being eroded at a terrible rate but the average Malay, Indian and Chinese doesn't see this. He isn't concerned we are falling apart vis-a-vis his neighbours as his eye is focused on his fellow countryman. We are each other’s enemy, we are competing in one upmanship with each other instead of giving each other a leg up or at least watching out for each other. And we are content as long as we think we are ahead or have carved out our place in the sun here, not realising that we are actually sliding down into a deep dark hole, each and everyone of us. Malaysia is indeed burning while the BN fiddles...

So the sacraments of a church are violated and the perpetrators and their supporters think how wonderful. And are grateful for this perceived victory. And in their euphoria fail to see that they, their children and possibly their childrens children are having their own lives violated, their standards of living fall, their very quality of life shredded and their futures compromised on a daily basis while they are none the wiser.

They think they are winning battles against fellow Malaysians when there are none to begin with, and in the process losing the actual war…

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The recent caning of women

Friends, there is a petition needing your urgent support against the recent caning of three young women, one of whom was merely 17 years. If you feel strongly about this as I do, then please lend yr support. Pls visit Alternatively, go to the petition online website and type in "Caning of Women".

Power savers and other urban legends

There has been a sudden plethora of purported electrical power saving devices that have flooded the market here in Malaysia. Possibly due to the fact that there is a slowdown in the economies of the world and any and all means to cut costs and save is proving more attractive by the day. The record needs to be set straight however as unfortunately these devices do not save you money and instead just divest you of your hard earned cash.

There is no technical or physical way that plugging in or connecting any device to your household mains is to going to reduce your power consumption. All these devices do (if they at all work) is bring the power factor of your home up to unity. Unfortunately I have to resort to the use of technical jargon here but in essence bringing the power factor of your home up to unity presents a more efficient load to the utility company. It reduces the current traveling through the cables and hence transmission costs for the utility but has no bearing on power consumed by the consumer. One such device which I saw on display and hooked up at a major DIY centre here in KL literally shows the current consumption drop as you switch the power saving device in and out of circuit. Unfortunately all this does as stated above is reduce the current traveling through the cable. The consumer doesn’t pay for the amount of current consumed, he pays for the power. And this device has no bearing on the amount of power consumed.

So, save your money and just turn down the lights.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

What ails us

I had watched the recent rebirth of our nation with both hope and happiness. There was a scent of idealism in the air. That we could be better than the gutter, parochial racial politics that permeated our existence here. That we were rising above it. That we could really stand side by side as Malaysians.

What a letdown the last year has been. Perhaps I shouldn’t have been so optimistic, should not have rose tinted my glasses. I should have been more of a realist, more aware of what years of conditioning could do to one. And by conditioning I am not solely referring to the all pervasive conditioning that permeates our political landscape, but the conditioning that extends to our family and friends and how we propagate this conditioning and ensure it’s continuance in the choices we make.

Every day I look around and shake my head. I look at the papers and read statements that say Bumiputera quotas will be increased. Articles that say Chinese businesses predominantly hire Chinese. That the Indian chamber of commerce is asking for more assistance for Indians. Private ads that say Chinese only or Bumiputera preferred…

But what is truly gut wrenching if not puke worthy is how we conduct our personal lives on a daily basis.

I was at the Curve dining with a friend yesterday. As urbane an environment as any. And yet, the usual gatherings were there. Groups of Chinese, Malays and Indians, all distinct and in isolation with perhaps the odd exception. Malaysia after 50 years of independence and we don’t even mix outside of our own ethnicity. We have Chinese who use expletives like ‘tau see’, Malays who mouth of ‘keling’ at the drop of a hat, Indians who call out ‘natta’… Our everyday conversation is littered with such rubbish. Why don’t we stop? Because it’s nice to be nasty? Or just that we don’t recognize or acknowledge our bigotry or worse think it’s actually acceptable?

We constantly hear the vents against the racism and bigotry that exists here. Facebook is riddled with comments from users. The Blogs constantly rail against it with user comments all expressing their angst against some perceived racist act, statement or slant by some politician or other. Yet we don’t conduct ourselves any better than the very people we condemn. Is our sense of a better Malaysia only applicable to others? For us to self righteously pass judgement on whilst we ourselves wallow in the gutter? Or is our public altruism far more base, that it is placed, exhibited and stated purely out of self interest so we may carve out more for our own ethnic communities?

We are told that we are 1 Malaysia, a shining example of racial unity, but the truth is far removed from the spin. By pretending that everything’s fine and kosher all we do is allow this ugliness to not just prevail but flourish. We should face it head on. With courage and dignity. And if it shames us to see this side of ourselves, well then we should change. Take those steps. If not, then we should just stop pretending that we are concerned. That bigotry and racism are an anathema to us when point of fact is it’s a source of comfort to us like a well worn blanket. Something we draw on and retreat to, to bolster our petty fears and insecurities.