The RMAF Grants A Wish

13-year old Muhammad Farhan Najmi bin Johari from Jasin, Melaka, dreamt of soaring high in the skies as a fighter pilot in the Royal Malaysian Air Force. His dream, however, was dashed when he was diagnosed as having Germ Cell Tumour, a condition that would definitely deprive him of his future.

In conjunction with the 59th Merdeka Day celebration’s theme ‘Sehati Sejiwa‘ and in line with the Royal Malaysian Air Force’s tagline ‘We Are One‘, the RMAF collaborated with a non-governmental organisation called ‘Make A Wish Malaysia‘ to grant Farhan’s wish.

Muhammad Farhan Najmi bin Johari

Farhan who is the third among three siblings was referred to ‘Make A Wish Malaysia‘ by his doctor. According to Irene Tan, CEO of Make A Wish Malaysia, children between the age of 3 to 18 when referred, residing in Malaysia who have been diagnosed with life-threatening medical condition are eligible to have their wish granted. The child’s presiding physician will then have to certify if the child is medically eligible.

Among those whose wish was granted was 9-year old Aqilah whose dream was to become a flight stewardess. Make A Wish Malaysia made her dream come true in 2010 partnering with Malaysia Airlines and Pelangi Beach Resort, Langkawi. 

Aqilah’s dream was to become a flight stewardess

Representing the RMAF, Chief of Staff of Air Region 1, Brig Gen Dato Abd Manaf bin Md Zaid TUDM in his speech said the RMAF is always committed to support members of the public whenever possible as this also serves to remind the public that the RMAF is one with them.

Farhan inside the cockpit of a RMAF F-18

Farhan’s father, Encik Johari, was choked with tears of happiness that his son’s wish has finally been made true.

We wish Farhan a speedy recovery, long life, and every success in his life. Thank you to Make A Wish Malaysia and the Royal Malaysian Air Force for granting his wish.

Farhan with his family, staff of RMAF Subang and the team from Make A Wish Malaysia

Sarawak Repost


Give enough rope and he will hang himself

That is how the idiom goes.  Muhyiddin was the first one to admit that there was a conspiracy to topple Najib Razak.  Then recently Mahathir himself named the conspirators as former Governor of Bank Negara Zeti Aktar Aziz, former Attorney-General Gani Patail, and former head of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Abu Kassim.  Mahathir’s favourite news portal Sarawak Report has now joined in and underscored the role of the three in trying to bring down Najib Razak. This time around, the Sarawak Report (SR) has gone overboard by including His Majesty The Yang DiPertuan Agong into the conspiracy.

The SR claims that by middle of 2015, all three conspirators agreed that Najib Razak had embezzled billions from public funds “not only to fund lavish frivolities for the PM and his wife and family, but also influence the outcome of a very tight election.”

First and foremost, the investigation into the 1MDB was far from over in the middle of 2015.  A quick check of SPRM’s press statements archive found no such announcement being made. Furthermore, Najib Razak as the accused had not been called to give his statement regarding the 1MDB, and it was only in December 2015 that Najib Razak was summoned to do so.  How a charge sheet was drafted before investigation was completed is beyond me.  When investigations were completed and submitted to the 20-member Public Accounts Committee, the PAC released its findings on 7th April 2016 that there is absolutely no truth in billions having gone missing, and that the 1MDB issue is solely governance in nature.  This findings was also agreed and signed by six Opposition members of the PAC including Tony Pua himself.

As for influencing a very tight election, the SR’s myopic reporting means that nothing is ever mentioned about journalist Nile Bowie’s report on the millions of USD channeled to the Opposition and/or Opposition-friendly organisations annually to fund activities that would destabilise the ruling government.The National Endowment for Democracy (NED) has channeled millions to beneficiaries such as SUARAM, BERSIH, Merdeka Center for Opinion Research through the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI) and the International Republican Institute (IRI).  The IRI, said Nile Bowie, received $802,122 in 2010 to work with “state leaders in Penang and Selangor to provide them with public opinion research, training and other resources to enable them to be more effective representatives of their constituents”. IRI claims that it “does not provide direct funding to political parties” in Malaysia, but their lack of transparency, significant budget and emphasis on helping broaden the appeal of political parties in opposition-held states suggests at the very minimum that funding is taking place indirectly.

The SR also claims that Najib Razak is the sole shareholder and decision-maker in the 1MDB and the only man able to sign off investment decisions such as the Joint Ventures with Petrosaudi and Aabar,

Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 10.36.52

Perhaps, the SR does not know that the Minister of Finance (Incorporated) was passed in an Act of law in 1957 through the Minister of Finance (Incorporation) Act, 1957 that was revised under Mahathir Mohamad’s tenure in September 1987. Its objectives are to ensure sustained and continuous economic growth; to strengthen national competitiveness and economic resilience; to ensure effective and prudent financial management; to pursue a more equitable sharing of national wealth; and to improve quality of life and well being of society. It is headed by one Encik Asri of Bahagian Menteri Kewangan (Diperbadankan). And mind you, Najib Razak is not the only Minister of Finance. There is a dedicated Minister of Finance whose time is 100 percent there unlike Najib Razak. He is NOT a Deputy Minister, he is a FULL Finance Minister.

Of course, according to the SR, the conspirators then had no choice but to bring the matters to His Majesty Yang DiPertuan Agong, and the Yang DiPertuan Agong agreed that Najib Razak should step down “while prosecution took its course.”  Like I mentioned above, how was it possible for prosecution to proceed when Najib Razak himself had not been questioned on his involvement by the very agencies claimed by SR to have decided to prosecute? Furthermore, what Constitutional powers does the Yang DiPertuan Agong have to tell Najib Razak to step down?  Even Lim Guan Eng, already investigated and charged in court on two counts of corruption, has not left office to let prosecution take its course!

On the 28th July 2015, Gani Patail was removed as the Attorney-General and was replaced by Mohamed Apandi Ali.  SR pointed that the act of removing the AG was unconstitutional.  Allow me to go slightly deep into the Federal Constitution of Malaysia to comment on this claim.

The Federation of Malaya was born on 31st August 1957, adopting a new Constitution that replaced the Federated Malay States Constitution of 1948.  During that time, the Attorney-General was Cecil Majella Sheridan, a practicing solicitor who joined the Colonial Legal Service to help reopen the courts in 1946 after World War Two.  He was posted to Kelantan and Terengganu to become the States’ Legal Adviser and Deputy Public Prosecutor. In 1955, he became the Legal Draftsman for the Federation. Upon Indepence, Sheridan was made the Solicitor-General and subsequently the Attorney-General in 1959. Sheridan then began to prepare for the enlargement of Malaya into Malaysia (with the accession in 1963 of Singapore, Sabah and Sarawak). In the process, he worked closely with Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak, and Lee Kuan Yew, of Singapore.

During this time, Article 145 of the Federal Constitution was limited to five clauses only.  Article 145(5) then provided that “the Attorney-General shall not be removed from office except on the like grounds and in the like manner as a judge of the Federal Court.”  This Article was drafted by the Reid Commission and subsequently passed to be included in the Federal Constitution of 1957.  A Government White Paper explained the need for Article 145(5):

It is essential that , in discharging his duties, the Attorney-General should act in an impartial and quasi-judicial spirit. A clause has therefore been included to safeguard the Attorney-General’s position by providing that he shall not be removed from office except on the like grounds and in the like manner as a Judge of the Supreme Court.

This is still maintained in Articles 105(3) for the Auditor-General and 125(3) for the Judges.

With the imminent formtion of the Federation of Malaysia, Sheridan amended Clause 5 of Article 145 and added Clause 6 to facilitate his eventual removal from the AG’s position.  Article 145(6) of the Federation of Malaysia Constitution, 1963 reads:

The person holding the office of the Attorney-General immediately prior to the coming into operation of this Article (note: specific reference to Sheridan) shall continue to hold the office on terms and conditions not less favourable than those applicable to him immediately before such coming into operation and shall not be removed from office except on the like grounds and the like manner as a judge of the Federal Court.

And Clause 5 of the Article was changed to the following:

Subject to Clause (6), the Attorney-General shall hold office during the pleasure of the Yang DiPertuan Agong and may at any time resign his office and, unless he is a member of the Cabinet, shall receive such remuneration as the Yang DiPertuan Agong may determine.

Article 145 was amended for two reasons according to Sheridan’s successor, Abdul Cadir Yusoff: one is the desire to have “the most suitable person available for the performance of the onerous tasks” of the AG’s office regardless whether the person was from the pubic service or not, and secondly the impartiality of a political appointee could be assured by conferring on him “untrammelled constitutional discretion.” Bear in mind that Abdul Cadir was both a lawyer and a politician and could not have been appointed under the previous version of the Constitution.  Nowhere in the Constitution, in its present form, requires for the formation of a tribunal to remove or replace an Attorney-General as applicable to the Auditor-General and Judges via Articles 105(3) and 125(3).

Therefore, Gani Patail’s removal was not unconstitutional.

I refuse to comment on the rest of the fairy tale that Clare Rewcastle Brown had conjured because she seemed excited plucking these stories from a very low sky that her nipples probably scrape the ground giving her that pleasure. Like the story about the fire that had occured at the Royal Malaysian Police Headquarters in Bukit Aman, as she claimed “destroyed evidence of money laundering” when the division that was investigating the 1MDB issue is housed in a different building in a different part of the Bukit Aman complex.  Also on the murder of DPP Kevin Morais whom she said was the one who had drafted the charge against Najib Razak when the poor sod was confirmed by his own brother and by authorities not investigating 1MDB.

You can choose to believe Sarawak Report if you wish to.  All Clare Rewcastle Brown does is to repost trash and expands on it, grabbing more invisible low hanging fruits while her nipples harden at being scraped against the asphalt. Must make her wet teling lies. But it’s funny how the white trash seem to have conveniently omitted Justo from the equation.

Nothing to hide? I don’t think so.

Purging Penang’s Peasants

You tengoklah sekarang. Kalau you tak ada duit you cuma boleh tengok bukit. Kalau you kaya you boleh tengok laut. Bukan Melayu sahaja yang tak mampu. Cina pun ramai tak mampu!” (You look at it now. If you don’t have money you’d be looking at the hills. If you are rich you can see the sea. It isn’t just the Malays who cannot afford, but many of the Chinese too!)

The above are words said to me by a Penang Chinese during my last visit to Penang.

If you live or have lived in Penang like I did, you would know what the statement above is all about.  My earliest memory of Penang is of my trip there in 1974. Several more visits followed and I finally lived there from 1989 until the end of 1991 when I worked at Jalan Azyze.

Penang has always been a melting pot of cultures because unlike the mainland Peninsular Malaysia, Penang (together with Melaka and Singapore) were true crown colonies, ruled by Britain through the Colonial Office in India. The composition has always been majority Chinese, followed by Malays and people of the Indian diaspora.

When I got married there weren’t many quarters for armed forces officers back then and rent rates were just too high for me (I was earning a basic of RM750 per month with RM115 as service allowance). My monthly housing allowance was RM400 while a terrace-house would have cost me RM800 a month. Initially I could only afford to live in a squatter house, which really was a shed attached to the back of a main house in what was Kampung Haji Mahmood in Tanjung Tokong and paid RM150 per month for that. It was literally a eat-where-you-sleep and shit-where-you-bathe house. I stayed there for half a year before moving to an apartment unit at the UDA apartments across the road. What I liked most about Tanjung Tokong were the stalls that lined up the coastal road.  I used to hang out at a stall operated by a man named Murad and would fish across the road for Groupers.  Yes, you could see the sea then and the proof of that is when the South Asian Tsunami (aka Boxing Day Tsunami) hit Penang in 2004, Tanjung Tokong was one of the places affected.

Post-Tsunami Tanjung Tokong looking towards the UDA apartments (blue roofed)
Post-Tsunami Tanjung Tokong looking towards the UDA apartments where I used to live (blue roofed). On the left is what was Kampung Haji Mahmood
Since then, Kampung Haji Mahmood is only a memory and you can no longer see the sea from the road side.  Where fishing boats used to dot the coastline is now filled with apartment buildings where none of the units built can be afforded by the locals.  What saddens me most is that Kampung Mahmood, a traditional Malay village and not a squatter village, has been bulldozed to make way for more apartments that the Malays who resided there cannot afford to buy.

Kampung Haji Mahmood now
Kampung Haji Mahmood now
Back then, Malay villages used to dot the coastline between Kelawei and Tanjung Bungah.  Now, you would be extremely lucky to find even one.  Gentrification has forced those who cannot affor to live on the island off to the mainland.

The Seri Tanjung condominiums built on a reclaimed land has blocked the viewoof the sea from Tanjung Tokong
The Seri Tanjung condominiums built on a reclaimed land has blocked the viewoof the sea from Tanjung Tokong

Jalan Tanjung Tokong was what separated the sea from the Malay kampungs
Jalan Tanjung Tokong was what separated the sea from the Malay kampungs
What is probably the last Malay kampung on the northern shores of Penang island, Kampung Mutiara, is also gone. The kampung, which had existed since the 1950s sits on a piece of land that had since come under private ownership.  While the landowner is a private individual, Lim Guan Eng as the Chief Minister had promised the people of Kampung Mutiara that he would intervene. Based on this word given by the Chief Minister the legal representatives of Kampung Mutiara should have applied for an equitable estoppel.

Kampung Mutiara in Batu Ferringhi back in January 2016 - already surrounded by high-rise buildings
Kampung Mutiara in Batu Ferringhi back in January 2016 – already surrounded by high-rise buildings
However, in February 2016, the Kampung Mutiara residents lost their appeal at the Appellate Court and were asked vacate the land and pay legal cost amounting to RM5,000 to the landowner, Peter Loke Leng Seak.

The Malay fishing community of Queensbay (formerly known as Pantai Jerejak) will soon be gone
The Malay fishing community of Queensbay (formerly known as Pantai Jerejak) will soon be gone
Next to suffer are the fishing communities of Queensbay and Teluk Kumbar. Reclamation works is now in full swing in a nearby area and is already affecting the daily catch.  “We used to get RM500 worth of catch daily. Now, we are thankful if we can get RM100. Life has been difficult. We are plagued with debts. What is going to become of us?” said Queensbay fisherman Mohd Rafie Md Said to New Straits Times reporters.

Shahrul Nizal Md Daud, 30, said there were times when he came home empty-handed. “I have a family to feed. I also need to pay for the house and car. “We were given only RM5,000 as compensation. How long can that last us?” Both fishermen said they had no clue as to the purpose of the reclamation, adding that more than 100 fishermen had been given until the end of the month to move out.

Read More :

T-shirt worn by the wife of a Queensbay fisherman expresses the helplessness they feel
T-shirt worn by the wife of a Queensbay fisherman expresses the helplessness they feel
And in Gertak Sanggul where the Malay fishing community fish for shrimps, there is already a plan to reclaim the waters off Gertak Sanggul all the way to the southern island of Pulau Kendi. Some 1,500 Malay shrimp fishermen will be affected.  They have already protested to the State government but their protests have fallen on deaf ears.  This video report, again by My Nation, explains the situation.

These waters off Teluk Kumbar where traditional Malay fishermen look for shrimps will soon be reclaimed
These waters off Teluk Kumbar where traditional Malay fishermen look for shrimps will soon be reclaimed
Livelihoods and traditional Penang communities will be lost and there would certainly be a migration of those marginalised in Penang DAP’s plan for the gentrification of the State.  But what would happen to those who cannot afford to either own a house in Penang or move out?

They become the homeless, the vagrants, the destitute.

When commenting on Tengku Adnan’s move to arrest the homeless and fine soup kitchens two years ago, Lim Guan Eng had this to say:

“I admit that the homeless in the streets is a problem but arresting them is not a solution, just like in Penang, we put them in homes and they escape to live in the streets.”

The truth is far from it.  A quick walk around the KOMTAR building where Lim Guan Eng’s office is located, we found the following:

A homeless person sleeps on the grounds of the KOMTAR building, seat of the Penang State Government under Lim Guan Eng
A homeless person sleeps on the grounds of the KOMTAR building, seat of the Penang State Government under Lim Guan Eng
Web news portal My Nation even shared a video made by one Saiful Abdullah on this issue.

And NGOs tackling the issue of the homeless in Penang all say that there is no government shelter that is being provided for the down-and-out.

Penang is already inhabited by those who can afford to live there which translates into more financial support for the DAP government.  The gentrification of Penang has helped those marginalised to move out of the island in search for more affordable housing and new jobs.  Given that the Chief Minister has been charged in court for corruption and corrupted practices under Section 23 of the Anti-Corruption Act and Section 165 of the Penal Code, yet is still trying to create unnecessary projects in Penang, I don’t think he is interested in helping the Penang people.  As in the words of Trevor D Richardson: “People used to make money, but somewhere along the way, it started making us.

Being Magnanimous

Congratulations to Azizulhasni Awang, the Pocket Rocketman, for winning a bronze medal in the Kierin event at the Rio Velodrome recently.  It is an achievement to be proud of.

However, he spoiled the celebration by making a statement, thanking the Terengganu Menteri Besar sarcastically for NOT rendering any assistance to him and his teammate in their preparations for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

Taken from Azizulhasni Awang's Facebook page
Taken from Azizulhasni Awang’s Facebook page
It is clear that Azizulhasni Awang, or Jijoe to his fans, felt frustrated for not getting any support from the Terengganu State Government as he was born and bred in the coastal town of Dungun. He alleged that a proposal for a road bike had been sent a year before the Olympics to the Menteri Besar but no response was ever received, and that calls to the Menteri Besar by his manager was never answered.

Several questions here: why send such proposal to Ahmad Razif and not Datuk Rozi Mamat who is the Terengganu Executive Councillor for Youth, Sports and Human Resources? Did Azizul’s manager call the Menteri Besar personally? To whom was the proposal handed over to and was it by mail or by hand?

Azizul is not without controversy.  He was almost expelled from the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow for making a political statement in support for Gaza.

Courtesy of Paul Chesterton SIPPA/Pinnacle
Courtesy of Paul Chesterton SIPPA/Pinnacle
The Commonwealth Games Federation shuns any form of political statements being made using the Games as a platform.  In his defence, Azizul stressed that his statement was humanitarian in nature and not political.

It’s inappropriate for any form of protest in a Games venue – we respect everyone’s right to protest out-with. He has had a strong reprimand from his team management and he has apologised. In apologising profusely he now knows any repetition will see a removal of his accreditation,” said Mike Hooper, chief executive of the Commonwealth Games Federation.

Azizul loves to do things without giving a thought first. Those who know of his political leaning would also remember this tweet that was not a reply to a topic, but a reply to actually start a conversation with a certain politician asking the latter to pray for his success, while other sportsmen and women showed political neutrality as they were there representing Malaysians irrespective of political beliefs and creed:

A tweet sent by Azizulhasni Awang to Anwar Ibrahim on the 5th August 2016
A tweet sent by Azizulhasni Awang to Anwar Ibrahim on the 5th August 2012
Whatever his political inclination may be, he ought to know that the name “Azizulhasni Awang” reresents all Malaysian  He can be Jojoe in private but that name is a household name.  While the Menteri Besar of Terengganu should investigate into the allegations made by Azizul, the latter should also remember that for three season in a row he was Terengganu’s Sportsman of the Year.  He had receive more than RM20,000 in awards from the state government while the state government has to be fair to 50 other state athletes and state sports associations.  It is not the duty of the state government to provide assistance to individual athlete as that remains the duty of the associations to which the respective athlete belongs to. The duty of the state government is only to provide the facilities that can be used to train athletes. This was pointed out by one Dr Aznil Hisham in his Facebook posting:

Screenshot of pictures of Azizulhasni Awang and the Terengganu Hockey Association receiving state awards
Screenshot of pictures of Azizulhasni Awang and the Terengganu Hockey Association receiving state awards taken from Dr Aznil Hisham’s Facebook page
Dr Aznil went on in another related Facebook posting to say that Azizul could have been more magnanimous and less rude about the whole situation by rewording the statement in a much nicer language.

Najib Razak has always been magnanimous.  Why am I including him in this post? If you remember the campaign by Mahathir to oust Najib started in the second half of 2014.  Since then Mahathirs goalpost has changed so many times that I have lost count. This includes the inclusion of the Altantuya case by Mahathir in May 2015 when Najib didn’t flinch, and sending out his pariahs to lodge reports overseas in order to put the Premier in a bad light.

When things really seemed bleak for Najib, I asked some of his close associates why hasn’t the PM hit back at Mahathir?  Apparently, they asked this question to Najib but he replied saying that the last thing he would want people to see is hi being rude to an elderly figure – and that is VERY un-Asian, let alone not-Malay.  Najib’s magnanimity crosses political boundaries and has been seen on occasions taking time to visit opposition leaders who fell ill, and although he was in Turkey when the late Karpal Singh passed away, Najib made a blog entry dedicated to Karpal – in spite of being called a murderer in Parliament by Karpal Singh’s Gobind Singh Deo, and allegation that is baseless and has been proven in a court of law that Najib is not linked to the case in any way.  Not once would you hear harsh words being directed towards anyone, including to his detractors.

You would go far being magnanimous, especially when your name is big enough for people to remember.  In contrast to Azizulhasni’s uncalled for outburst, Joseph Schooling participated in the Olympics, beat the reigning champion to win the Gold, without a single help from the Singapore government.  Yet, when Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong asked for permission for a selfie to be taken with him, Schooling obliged and was gracious about it.


I hope the Menteri Besar of Terengganu would investigate thoroughly Azizulhasni’s allegations and make public the findings.  And I also hope that the state would assist him with his road bike, using state funds.  And as pointed out by Dr Aznil Hisham, if Azizulhasni does not improve and get a Silver in the next Olympics, be prepared to be criticised and eat the humble pie for having used taxpayers’ money but fail to give something back in return. Furthermore, he received RM2.85 million from the Sime Darby Foundation before he went to Rio de Janeiro and will be receiving another RM100,000 from SDF as a reward for his achievement at Rio.

Now, how many RM12,000 road bikes do you think Azizul could have bought before going to Rio with RM2.85 million?

Now, tell me if his outburst on Facebook is justifiable?



Pic courtesy of NSTP/Datu Ruslan Sulai

Former Sabah Chief Minister Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan knows very well what Mahathir would do to those he hates.  He experienced that first hand in 1990 when Mahathir went all out to try depose him as Chief Minister. Pairin was Chief Minister of Sabah from 1984 to 1995.

Speaking to reporters after receiving a courtesy visit from the Kadazandusun Cultural Association Youth Council yesterday Pairin said that when Mahathir is a ‘political animal’ who, when he does not like a person, would go all out (to get the person out of his way).

Therefore, it comes as no surprise to Pairin when Mahathir would form a new party and work with his enemies just to try force Najib Razak out of office.

In politics, anything goes – wrote Awang Selamat, a pseudonym used for Utusan Malaysia’s editorials. And that includes trying to erase his dark past by working with DAP’s Lim Kit Siang whom he had put behind bars without trial during his tenure.  It was Mahathir whom had planted the idea that DAP is nothing less than the enemies of the Malays and what Malaysia stands for, in the mind of the Malay masses.  Equally disgusting is Lim Kit Siang whom had spent most of his life in DAP slandering Mahathir as being the most corrupted dictator, now seen being in the same bed with Mahathir.

Another person who would know Mahathir well is Tan Sri Musa Hitam, who was Mahathir’s deputy from 1981 to 1986. While he described Mahathir as “observant, innovative, and meticulous” he also used the words “authoritarian, contemptuous, and belligerent”.

In an article by The Star, Musa said Dr Mahathir could be pleasant and engaging at times, but would often come off as being disinterested in dialogue or debate.

“Discussion and debate were never the order of the day,” he wrote in his book ‘Frankly Speaking’ which was recently launched by His Royal Highness the Sultan of Perak.

“Discussion and debate were never the order of the day.” – Musa Hitam describing Mahathir

In his book Musa wrote:

“Malaysia today is going through a difficult transition. Trying to establish a mature democracy after more than two decades of authoritarian rule is not easy. Moreover, there is no guarantee that the current, more open political system will continue. Malaysia would, in fact, find itself gripped by reactionary forces that even now are advocating policies and practices that – if adopted – would eventually result in the country becoming a failed state.”

This was echoed by the former Grand Mufti of Jordan, Professor Dr Amin Mohammad Sallam al-Manasyeh in an interview with the portal MalaysiaGazette. “I am of the opinion that if Allah gives him (Najib) time, he will continue to develop and position Malaysia as the best country in the world. That’s what I think about him,” he said in the interview.

I, too, had doubts about Najib Razak’s ability to do well as the leader of this country.  Up until April of 2015 at least, I and like-minded friends did not think that he would last in the face of relentless acrid attacks by Mahathir. By May, Mahathir faltered and changed goalposts several times while Najib Razak stood firm, unwilling to budge even a bit.  Most of us saw that the light shone by Najib in the tunnel of lies made by his detractors is far brighter than the one shone by Mahathir.  And this year, Mahathir received multiple slaps first in the form of the resignation of his son Mukhriz as the Menteri Besar after being told by the Council of Regent of Kedah that he had lost majority support of the State Assembly.  This was followed by his own resignation from UMNO. Then came the hattrick wins in Sarawak, Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar elections where, despite Mahathir’s claims, Barisan Nasional still won. And then he was conned by his own people for faking more than half a million signatures of people reportedly in support of his ‘Save Malaysia’ declaration.

Mukhriz, seen here with Tan Sri Tunku Sallehuddin ibni Almarhum Sultan Badlishah, Chairman of the Council of Regent of Kedah (right), and council member Tan Sri Tunku Abdul Hamid Thani, leaving the Wisma Darul Aman after a meeting with the Council of Regent.

One would think that at 91, Mahathir would take it slow and call it a day.  Well, that is not Mahathir. In the end he sets up another political party called Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (BERSATU) where Najib’s former deputy Muhyiddin Yassin becomes the pro-tem President, and his son Mukhriz the pro-tem Treasurer.  And where is Mahathir in this party? He positions himself as Lim Kit Siang has – the Puppet Master.  Despite being a political giant, Muhyiddin has all but lost support in Pagoh and Muar.  Many Johoreans still remember him for his sins committed against the Malays. He would now have to find another seat to contest in.  Otherwise his political career is as good as over.

Admitted to the National Heart Institute for medical complications the day his party’s registration form was submitted to the Registrar of Societies, Mahathir’s first act upon being ill was to post a blog article attacking Najib, not taking care of his health or coming to a realisation that his days as a mortal are numbered, and that instead of creating more sins, he should repent. No, things like that never seem important to Mahathir. And neither would the parasites who call themselves “his advisers” advise the old man to slow down. Instead, they feed his anger, and he in turn feeds them for making him angry. And Mahathir should remember that whenever he, the authoritarian, gets angry, he loses support.  Zuraidah Ibrahim aptly puts it in the South China Morning Post:

Instead of departing on his terms, as he did in 2003, he may now find himself leaving the scene a loser.

For Najib Razak, it is business as usual. As in the old adage wrongly attributed to Thomas Jefferson:

In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock.

And like a rock does he stand.

National Security


Scenario One

Heavily-armed group of men wearing black crosses the Strait of Melaka in twenty speedboats at night from the island of Rupat, 50 kilometers from the coastal town of Port Dickson. Travelling at 36 knots it takes them just 47 minutes to reach the Negeri Sembilan shores. Most land at the beach in Pasir Panjang to distract the security forces while three land at the town itself. Sending a group of armed men with suicide bombers hitting the waterfront cafes, the rest making for the refinery and power station in cars provided by sleeper agents. Being an insurgency or homeland security in nature, the OCPD could only declare the area as an emergency area but lacks the resources to combat them.  He could not readily ask for the assistance from the various army units located there without having to go through the red tapes. Stretched thin in terms of manpower, there is very little that the police could do.

Scenario Two

The Chief Minister of Penang (whomever that may be) with members of the Penang State Executive Committee holds a function in the vicinity of Weld Quay.  Several heavily armed men emerges from an abandoned building across the road and randomly fires into the crowd.  Two of them managed to get close to the podium before blowing themselves up.

When two rival gangs got involved in a quarrel that culminated in a grenade-throwing incident in Bukit Bintang in October 2014, I went on air to discuss the matter and registered my concerns about the possibility of terror attacks in Kuala Lumpur and how real they could get.  The attack in Puchong by Daesh sympathisers underscores this concern and shows that the police cannot cover everything.

Scenario One above is an enhancement of two actual events that took place in Sabah – both in Lahad Datu in 1985 and in 2013.  In 1985, a group of 15-20 armed men from the Philippines robbed the Chartered Bank and Malaysia Airlines office in Lahad Datu. These men fired randomly at onlookers killing at least 21 people and injuring 11 others.  The outnumbered and outgunned police sought help from the nearest military unit but were told that it was beyond them as the incident was a robbery and not an invasion.  In 2013, a group of heavily armed men landed at Kampung Tanduo and started what was known as the Lahad Datu stand off.  Insurgency by nature, the military was not made involved until after several policemen were killed.

Several years ago the police stopped three youths in Johor Baru from carrying out a suicide mission at the Causeway.  When the police questioned one of the youths on the reason for wanting to blow himself up, the latter replied, “I would go straight to heaven, I could pick ten of my family members whom I would want to be in heaven with me, and I would get 72 virgins.”  When asked what would he do with these 72 virgins he simply replied, “I don’t know.”

He was 13 when arrested, had no idea what he was doing but he thought what he was about to do would do his religion, him and his family a lot of good.

In times like this, the traditional school of thought where “terrorism is a network where one cell controls other cells” no longer applies. No longer does the body wither when the head is taken off. The terrorism of nowadays only needs likeminded people who share the same interest, ideology and wavelength. No longer do you need so many people to conduct a terror attack – and at times, lone wolves obsessed with the lunacy of the “teachings” would be enough to drive someone to blow himself up in the name of religion.

Th recent arrests of Daesh-related operatives in Batam whom had planned a rocket attack on the Singapore CBD shows how dangerous these pockets of terrorists are. They are totally detached from what is considered as the main body of Daesh. All it takes for the network to expand and work are social media and phone apps.

The Batam raid succeeded because intelligence agencies from Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore have been sharing information on known and known-potential terrorists in the region. What all agencies fear are those who enter the country undetected through rat-holes in the borders, as Federal police Special Branch Counter-Terrorism Division (SB-CTD) principal assistant director Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay said it would be harder to detect them as “we wouldn’t know whom to look for and where.” And with limited resources and men, it is not possible to keep every target in sight.

The recent grenade attack at the Movida Bar in Puchong is evident.

Perhaps the timing is just right that Datuk Seri Mustafar Ali is made the Director-General of the Immigration Department. One of the most dedicated senior officers of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission, Mustafar would be able to clean the department up and help plug the holes at our borders.

Ayob Khan’s men and women are working continuously round the clock monitoring the Internet traffic and keeping tab on known Daesh sympathisers. With the coming into force of the National Security Council Act, 2016, his men would have a better legal backing to combat terrorism and prevent terrorist attacks in the country. The new Act would allow all resources to be deployed without having the present red tapes preventing instant cooperation and coordination between agencies.

Without which, Malaysians cannot have a normal life – no shopping in peace, no weekend dinner and drinks with friends and family. Our way of life, as we know it, would simply be disrupted.

And all it takes is one madman.