Jumaat, 3 Jun 2011



Khairy Jamaluddin

Posted: 03 Jun 2011 01:30 AM PDT

Khairy Jamaluddin

Pengambilalihan RHB Bank Bhd

Posted: 02 Jun 2011 05:00 PM PDT

Pergerakan Pemuda UMNO Malaysia khuatir dengan nasib dan kebajikan pekerja RHB Bank Bhd (RHB Bank) ekoran daripada laporan media berhubung persaingan di antara Maybank Banking Bhd (Maybank) serta CIMB Group Holdings Bhd (CIMB) untuk mengambil alih RHB Capital Bhd (RHB Capital), iaitu syarikat induk RHB Bank.

Ahli Parlimen Kota Belud

Posted: 02 Jun 2011 11:30 PM PDT

Ahli Parlimen Kota Belud

To Dam or To Be Damned? A question to Lim Kit Siang

Posted: 02 Jun 2011 05:23 AM PDT

The proposed construction of a dam in Kota Belud has drawn so many responses. The latest is from DAP parliamentary leader, YB Lim Kit Siang who visited Kota Belud for a few hours to celebrate Kaamatan festival several days ago.
As usual, without wasting any time, Lim Kit Siang launched into a political tirade, delivering  vicious broadside on the BN government and tongue lashing the local YBs including yours truly ( I am the MP for Kota Belud). He took great pains to convince the public of the purported cruelty and heartlessness of the wicked BN government. He accused the government of trying to obliterate Kampung Tambatuon from the map of Sabah for no apparent reason at all.
While I like to consider myself as a person who could handle barrage of criticism, I find myself feeling disgusted at Lim Kit Siang's sheer ignorance and lack of understanding of the issue.
To understand why the government mooted the idea of having a dam in Kota Belud, one needs to revisit agriculture Malaysia circa the 60s and 70s and the recent food crisis experience of year 2007/2008.
In the 60s and 70s Malaysia had been able to produce up to 90% of its rice requirement. The world prices and supply of rice were relatively stable. There were no major food crisis which resembled panic buying and depleting stockpiles except for a one or two brief occasions.
But by the 80s onwards, Malaysia (and the rest of the world for that matter) had been developing quite rapidly. The economy was booming, factories were humming and people by and large were more healthier and wealthier. Without doubt, industrialization of the nation was in full swing.
By the turn of the millineum, demand for food including rice started to rise exponentially in conjuction with increasing population and wealthier citizens. At the same time, more and more lands which could have been used to plant rice, were alienated to be industrial areas (which provide jobs) and housing estates. Infact, more lands were opened for palm oil and rubber plantation than for rice cultivation. 
In 2007 and 2008, Malaysia and the world had experienced critical food shortage phenomenon, coupled with steep hikes in rice prices. There were several reasons for this. Rice exporting countries to Malaysia like Thailand and Vietnam suddenly curtailed their rice exports to ensure local demands in those countries were met. Severe weather related flooding and dry spells also resulted in massive crop failure and crop infestation problem in world's populous countries like China and Bangladesh. This in turn forced them to procure more rice from the international market and thus putting more upward pressure on rice prices.

Observing this phenomenon closely (and nervously), many countries inadvertently exarcebated the acute supply of rice worldwide when they decided to increase the quantity of their rice stockpile (Malaysia raised its national rice stockpile from 92,000 tons to 292,000 tons). This extraordinary demand pushed world's rice price to ever more dizzying heights.
Rice prices nearly tripled from USD362 a tonne in December 2007 to almost USD1,000 in April 2008 as stocks fell to 30-year lows amid surging global demand (according to International Rice Research Institute). There was a 30% jump in prices in Bangkok in a single day, and rice riots in Ho Chi Minh over a weekend. Egypt, the Philiphines, Haiti, Camerron and a host of other countries were struggling in handling the rice crisis. Almost suddenly, the world food crisis was a real threat to national security!
Although by 2009 the international prices of rice had somewhat stabilized (eventhough they were still higher compared to pre-crisis time), the trauma of the food crisis had left its mark in the psyche of Malaysians. Will Malaysia have another round of food supply crisis? Will there be panic buying and hoarding? Will the prices of rice skyrocketed so severly? Will Malaysia be again placed at the mercy of rice exporting foreign countries? Will Malaysians run out of rice if the crisis resurfaces in the future? 
The government moved in quickly to allay fears of Malaysians. It initiated  immediate plans to increase the national capacity to produce rice. This target was made into a firm commitment by the government in 10th Malaysia Plan when it said in the document, " Food security will be strategically addressed!". More funds were made available to the rice production sector as well as indentifying more lands to be cultivated with rice.
When the government was looking for more lands to plant paddy, it naturally turned to Sabah and Sarawak which still have ample lands. All eyes were on Kota Belud's vast but unproductive 25,000 acres of paddy fields.  Kota Belud was chosen as one of the areas to be further developed to help Sabah (30% self sufficiency) and the nation (70% self-sufficiency) avert future rice supply crisis.

The government had then ordered massive infrastructure undertaking to transform Kota Belud into the nation's newest ricebowl (jelapang padi). The government wanted the 25,000 acres ( approximately 10,000 hectares) of fertile lands in Kota Belud to produce up to 4 tons of rice per acre (currently about 1 to 1.8 tons per acre).

In order to achieve such ambitious plan, the government wanted to quickly upgrade Kota Belud's irrigation, management, technology and machinery. In the first year of implementation (2009/2010), the government spent approximately RM150 million. But that was just the beginning and it was not enough. For the plan to succeed, there must be new and adequate sources of water supply to irrigate those 25,000 acres of lands. Hence, the idea of the dam was mooted.
Without this dam, there is no other way to adequately irrigate the massive area of paddy fields. Some NGOS claim the irrigation can be done without building any dams. As of today, I am yet to see any proofs to back up their claim. But one thing for sure the volume of river flows in time of draught is not sufficient to cater for the water needs of 25,000 acres. A dam is needed to store up huge volume of water to be released in time of dryspells.

One of the most important objectives when the jelapang padi and the dam become reality, is that the thousands of Kota Belud poor paddy farmers will now be able to produce 4 tons of paddy per acre or 200,000 tons in two seasons every year. If the rice price maintains around RM1,000 per ton, this means every year the Kota Belud's rice bowl will be able to contribute RM200 million into the local gross income! Some of this money will end up in the hands of local traders, further reinvigorating the local economy with multiplier effect, providing more jobs and bright future for the younger generation. Soon such huge annual income will eventually shed Kota Belud's unflattering title as "One of the poorest districts in Malaysia". 

Apart from ensuring enough water to be diverted to the paddy fields, the dam will also have several other benefits. Firstly, it will be able to prevent perennial problems of floodings in greater area of Kota Belud by controlling the water flow of the river during rainy season. The recurring flood problem has done untold damages to properties and crops in Kota Belud every year. Secondly, since independence, Kota Belud has been experiencing electricity power shortages due to development and sprouting new housing areas. This dam could be used to generate hydro power in the future. Thirdly, with the anticipated huge amount of water in the dam's reservoir, part of it can be used to provide treated water supply for human consumption. And fourthly, the dam will become a tourist attraction, giving boost to Kota Belud's tourism. The man made lake will attract sightseers and activities like fishing and camping.
When the plan to turn Kota Belud into a productive Jelapang Padi was mooted by the government, the District Office, the relevant agencies and the local YBs including myself, discussed the plan extensively in many meetings. We called the consultant to give us a briefing especially on the government's proposal to build the dam. (Infact, I remember seeing the Ketua Kampung Tambatuon and the Chairman of the JKKK attending the meetings as well).
The consultant showed us an aerial map of several potential and suitable locations for the dam. Actually there were a few of them. Each one of the locations was discussed at great length with the intention to single out the one that had the least negative impact to the environment and the affected villagers. The consultant told us some of the other locations would involve flooding even bigger area and affecting several kampungs. Some spots required construction of higher dam walls which would be costly and structurally unstable. 
After extensive discussions, the consultant zeroed in on Kampung Tambatuon as the spot with least destructive to nature and man. Even as the consultant based his findings on his technical observations, the YBs expressed concern about the well being of the affected villagers and the environmental impact. We asked for indepth studies to be conducted to determine whether Kampung Tambatuon was really suitable or not. This exercise would require the consultant to go on field trips to Kampung Tambatuon. 
This is where the whole thing has ground to a halt at the moment. The villagers, despite  assurances that the government will only proceed if the environmental and the societal study are positives, have refused to even allow the consultants to set foot in the kampung to do the studies!
The government has repeatedly said that the project is still in its infancy and that Kampung Tambatuon will only be chosen if the Environmental Impact Assesment (EIA) and societal survey prove positively. The villagers have jumped the gun too early. Click here 
I am amuse reading statements coming from oppostion leaders and Suhakam over this issue. All of them demand the government to look into how the dam may affect the lives of the villagers and to do EIA study before proceeding with the dam (click here). I am absolutely in agreement with their call. But how do we do it? Doesnt this require the consultants to go to the ground and do test and survey both on the land and the community? On one hand they ask studies to be done, and on another hand they instigate the villagers to block the consultants from coming to the village. I am utterly baffled. 
Lim Kit Siang incessantly questioned why no discussions were held with the villagers themselves. All local YBs have met the "Jawatankuasa Bertindak" which was formed specifically by the villagers themselves to represent their interest. Infact, the Ketua Kampung and  JKKK Chairman have all been briefed by district office. There is no doubt that the concerns of the villagers have been heard loud and clear. I believe the memorandum that was given by the Jawatankuasa Bertindak to all YBs as well as to the Chief Minister have essentially captured the gist, essence and substance of their objections. 
Given the fact that it is now become highly politicised issue (thanks to opposition political rhetorics), we feel it is better to wait for the EIA report and the government proposed compensation terms before meeting the villagers. At least with the EIA and compensation terms made known, the villagers can consider them and all parties can use that as the basis to have productive meeting. Without the EIA and compensation terms, very likely any meeting with the villagers will only be repeating what has been  said by the village leaders and the Jawatankuasa Bertindak in the numerous meetings previously.
No YB worth his salt likes to see a village in his constituency destroyed or his constituents being resettled. But resettlement of communities have been done before. From preventing communist influence in pre-independence Malaysia (new villages) to current day building of highways and MRTs in urban areas, people affected by the government's projects have to move and resettle elsewhere. This is not the first time and certainly wont be last. I dare DAP  to put in their election manifesto that if they form the government, no person will be resettled whatsoever to make way for development and construction of crucial public infrastructures. Not even for national security!
For the life of me, I cant understand why Lim Kit Siang refuses to acknowledge the necessity to have food security for the country. Does he want Malaysians to go through the rice crisis panic which happened in 2008 when supplies of rice to Malaysia were badly affected due to export restrictions? Does he want Malaysians to go through another crisis where the national rice stockpile could only lasted for two weeks? Does he even care whether Malaysians have rice for food or not in the future? Will he  take full responsibility if Malaysians are faced with acute shortage of rice supply and high prices? These are hard questions that need to be answered by "leaders" not "politicians". Sadly Lim Kit Siang is more the later than the former. 
I like to reiterate once more that no kampung has been identified as the final location of the dam. More studies must be done before any location is chosen including Kampung Tambatuon. But I believe the people as a whole understand that there is no progress or eradication of poverty if there is no development, which at times require migration, resetllement and restructuring of communities. Of course as responsible YBs, we will ensure the government gives adequate and fair compensation the the villagers and that their welfare is not sidelined. Government must recognise that this people will be sacrificing their village for the greater good of the nation. Perhaps the villagers affected can demand for better houses and systematic infrastructure and amenities. Maybe villagers can insist new school, shoplots, balai polis and klinik desa  to be part of the deal. All I am saying is talk to the government. Afterall, if they wait for normal progress of development, they may need to wait for years before the government can bring this development to them. Whatever it is, on that note, the local YBs will ensure that the affected villagers are not sacrificing their land for pittance.
In short, the objectives of the jelapang padi and the construction of the dam can be summed up this way. In one fell swoop, the government hopes the construction of the dam and the success of the jelapang padi will help eradicate Kota Belud's poverty, bring development and wealth, solve water supply to the people of Kota Belud, solve elctricity shortages, solve the country's food security threat and generate employment for the locals. Nothing sinister at all (as claimed by Lim Kit Siang) about the government's motive.
Unfortunately Lim Kit Siang has no qualms to forever condemn the rural people of Kota Belud to perpetual poverty. He refuses to see the benefits of the dam and the Jelapang Padi. He will always play politics even at the expense of the poor people and the security of the nation. I remember how he always pride himself as being "Malaysian First". But now everyone can see he is actually "Politician First, Malaysian A Distant Second".
Lim Kit Siang rightly pointed the need for YBs to fight for the interest of the people he represent above everything else.  But in this case any YB will find himself sandwiched between the interest of the villagers ( about 550 of them ) and the greater interest of tens of thousands of poor farmers in Kota Belud as well as millions of Malaysians. How do you balance this delicate moral question? Do you compromise the welfare of the few (while ensuring they are adequately and fairly compensated) for the benefit of the larger population and the future of the nation or do you play politics and thus putting the nation at risk? I dont blame Lim Kit Siang if he is unable to answer this moral question. Afterall, he is always been an urban YB and never hold any government positions which at times requires him to make tough decisions such as this.


Some readings on 2007/2008 rice crisis

Hamidah Osman

Posted: 02 Jun 2011 11:04 PM PDT

Hamidah Osman

Perwakilan Pas perlu ikhlas

Posted: 02 Jun 2011 02:14 AM PDT

"SAYA perlu memberitahu saudara satu daripada syarat kejayaan bagi satu perjuangan ialah keikhlasan. Kita mungkin bodoh, mungkin jahil, mungkin tidak tahu apa, mungkin tidak kuat.

''Tetapi keikhlasan ada pada kita, maka ada harapan cita-cita ini dapat dilaksanakan. Tidak ada gunanya kita cerdik, pandai, kuat, sekiranya kita tidak ikhlas apa yang diperjuangkan. Kita sucikan tujuan kita kepada itu.

''Kita ketepikan kepentingan yang lain dari itu, ini perlu pada kita. Keikhlasan yang tidak ada belah baginya lagi. Keikhlasan yang tidak mengira yang lain selain daripada apa yang kita tuju di dalam perjuangan asal kita. Kejayaan orang yang dahulu pada diri kita, semuanya pada keikhlasan. Amat perlu keikhlasan ini, kita tanam, kita pupuk pada diri kita".

Keikhlasan - Itulah wasiat yang ditinggalkan oleh Allahyarham Prof. Zulkifli Mohammad kepada wakil rakyat Pas pada tahun 1964 sebelum beliau meninggal dunia.

Sememangnya Muktamar Tahunan Pas Kali Ke-57 yang akan diadakan selama tiga hari bermula esok amat berkait rapat dengan keikhlasan.

Seramai 1,100 perwakilan ke muktamar itu bagi mewakili hampir sejuta ahli dan penyokong Pas mempunyai dua tanggungjawab yang perlu dilunaskan dengan penuh keikhlasan.

Tanggungjawab pertama ialah memilih kepimpinan Pas berdasarkan kepada keputusan yang dibuat mengikut hujah syarak dan bukannya mengikut emosi atau agenda mana-mana pihak.

Tanggungjawab kedua pula ialah keberanian untuk membuat teguran dan memberi pandangan secara ikhlas terhadap perjalanan parti supaya tidak lagi dilihat menjadi kuda tunggangan atau mangsa diperkotak-katikkan oleh sekutu mereka, Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) dan DAP.

Dalam soal melunaskan tanggungjawab pertama, perwakilan perlu ikhlas menentukan sama ada hendak mengekalkan kepimpinan sedia ada atau membuka laluan kepada satu gelombang perubahan yang dicanangkan kononnya demi mewujudkan Pas yang lebih progresif.

Ujian terbesar bagi perwakilan ialah menentukan siapakah yang mereka mahu untuk digandingkan dengan Presiden Pas, Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang bagi jawatan Timbalan Presiden.

Ketika ini jawatan berkenaan disandang oleh Nasharudin Mat Isa yang akan mempertahankannya dan beliau dicabar oleh dua calon lain iaitu Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man (ulama) dan Mohamad Sabu (aktivis).

Sebelum perwakilan menentukan pilihan mereka adalah wajar jika mereka menilai apakah benar wujudnya keperluan untuk melakukan perubahan di kerusi nombor dua parti itu.

Tidak dapat dinafikan bahawa Pas perlu perubahan tetapi biarlah perubahan yang membawa kebaikan dan bukannya keburukan.

Salah satu yang boleh menjadi dasar penilaian mereka ialah kenyataan Mursyidul Am Pas, Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat yang menegaskan bahawa seseorang pemimpin itu hanya boleh ditukar atau digantikan apabila dia melanggar syariat dan melakukan dosa besar.

Ketika itu, Nik Abdul Aziz mengulas desakan pelbagai pihak yang mahukan Abdul Hadi meletakkan jawatan berikutan kegagalan berturut-turut Pas dalam pilihan raya kecil termasuk di Pilihan Raya Negeri Sarawak.

Persoalannya, adakah kriteria ini akan diambil kira oleh para perwakilan dalam menentukan siapa yang akan menduduki jawatan Timbalan Presiden?

Apakah kerana Nasharudin dilihat 'tidak sebulu' atau bukan pilihan Nik Abdul Aziz, maka ia juga akan dijadikan kriteria bagi menurunkan beliau daripada jawatan tersebut?

Bagaimana pula dengan gerakan terancang oleh kumpulan pro Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim dalam Pas untuk menguasai kepimpinan parti tersebut termasuklah memastikan orang yang mereka sokong menjadi Timbalan Presiden?

Mengulas perkara ini, Ketua Kluster Politik, Keselamatan dan Hal Ehwal Antarabangsa Majlis Profesor Negara, Prof. Datuk Dr. Mohamed Mustafa Ishak berkata, jawatan Timbalan Presiden bukan suatu jawatan yang mudah dan tidak penting.

''Calon ini ialah tokoh yang akan ambil alih Pas jika Presiden perlu diganti dalam keadaan tertentu. Calon ini perlu seorang yang telah teruji dalam politik dan pentadbiran, ramai yang bercita-cita tinggi untuk merebut jawatan tersebut dalam parti berkenaan tetapi tidak semua yang layak,'' katanya.

Tegas beliau lagi, Pas memerlukan pemimpin yang dapat membantu Presiden dan kepimpinan parti secara bebas serta bijaksana tanpa perlu mengikut telunjuk atau proksi mana-mana pihak.

Kriteria ini seharusnya menjadi pegangan perwakilan sebelum mereka membuat keputusan. Ini kerana seperti mana kata seorang pemimpin Pas kepada penulis, mereka tidak boleh membuat keputusan hanya berdasarkan kepada cakap-cakap dan laporan media sahaja.

''Sebaliknya berlandaskan kepada hujah syarak yang kukuh kenapa seseorang pemimpin perlu ditukarkan.

''Sebab itulah mereka tidak harus terpengaruh dengan kempen-kempen yang mahukan orang baru menduduki jawatan Timbalan Presiden.

''Bagi saya, biarpun ada sedikit sebanyak kelemahan namun itu bukanlah bermakna gandingan kepimpinan sedia ada perlu diganti,'' katanya.

Atas sebab itulah kematangan perwakilan dalam membuat keputusan amat diperlukan, mereka perlu ikhlas untuk menentukan siapakah yang paling layak berganding dengan Abdul Hadi.

Mereka tidak boleh terperangkap dengan mainan politik merebut kekuasaan yang cuba dicanang oleh pihak tertentu dengan berselindung di sebalik istilah perubahan.

Janganlah nanti hanya kerana terpengaruh dengan laungan perubahan, kepimpinan Pas yang dipilih oleh perwakilan hanya menyebabkan mereka ibarat menang sorak kampung tergadai, yang dikejar tak dapat yang dikendong berciciran.

Menyentuh soal perubahan juga, perwakilan perlu ikhlas untuk mengkaji sejauh manakah hubungan Pas dengan PKR dan DAP menguntungkan parti berkenaan.

Mereka perlu mempunyai keikhlasan untuk menegur secara terbuka tetapi berhemah terhadap kecenderungan sesetengah kepimpinan Pas yang dilihat terlalu 'berkiblatkan' kepada Anwar, PKR dan DAP.

Malahan apa yang paling penting sejauh manakah perwakilan akan ikhlas mendesak kepimpinan Pas menyatakan pendirian berhubung isu moral melibatkan Anwar kerana ia sudah banyak menjejaskan imej Pas sebagai parti yang memperjuangkan Islam.

Jika perwakilan Pas tidak ikhlas menyatakan kebenaran dan cuba menyembunyikannya demi kepentingan politik parti itu bagi merebut kekuasaan, percayalah mereka akan dihukum oleh rakyat seperti mana berlaku dalam beberapa pilihan raya kecil sebelum ini.

Justeru keikhlasan seperti mana kata Allahyarham Zulkifli perlu dijadikan pegangan kepada perwakilan Pas dalam muktamar kali ini.

Ikhlaslah untuk membuat keputusan dan menyatakan kebenaran jika betul perjuangan Islam masih belum terhakis dalam dasar parti itu.



Posted: 02 Jun 2011 09:07 PM PDT


2 JUN 2011

Posted: 02 Jun 2011 05:19 AM PDT

Apo Kono Eh Jang!

Posted: 02 Jun 2011 07:05 AM PDT

Apo Kono Eh Jang!


Posted: 02 Jun 2011 04:55 AM PDT


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