Selamat Hari Raya, PM Ke-7

Will the real 7th Prime Minister please stand up?

When I first set my eyes upon the photo above late last month, I thought of individual monologues based on the body language shown by the individuals in the photo.

Lim Kit Siang: “I am only holding this up because I will need the support of the Malays in PKR.”

Mahathir: “Anwar as the 7th PM? No way, Jose!”

Azmin: “I don’t really want to put this up but I need the party to vote me for the top post.”

Wan Azizah: “Better him than me. I am clueless most of the time!”

The above photo is the perfect depiction of how the Opposition front is in a disarray.  Each of the parties in the Pakatan Harapan want to become the Big Brother. PKR believes that it has what it needs to lead the coalition; Pribumi believes that it should have the lead role as it has a former Prime Minister as well as a former Deputy Prime Minister (and throw in a former Menteri Besar who did virtually nothing for the state he governed); while the DAP knows that it is the Kingmaker in the coalition, and no matter who becomes the Pakatan’s PM, they call the shots.

However, if those above were actually sincerely hoping for Anwar Ibrahim to become the next Prime Minister, they would be utterly disappointed as Anwar had recently announced the removal of himself as the coalition’s PM candidate.  The announcement leaves the race to become the Pakatan’s Prime Minister candidate to just two persons – Azmin Ali, PKR’s current Deputy President and Menteri Besar of Selangor, and U-Turn Mahathir, a former Prime Minister who stepped down but now misses the power that comes with the seat.


Wan Azizah does not come close to being the person either Azmin or Mahathir are.

But what of Lim Kit Siang?

Lim Kit Siang is the de facto father of the Opposition, no matter by what name you call it.  Although he declared that he is not interested in the post of the Prime Minister, everyone knows that he does not have to be in the seat to actually rule the country.  Nizar Jamaluddin, the JKR engineer who once went on to become Perak’s Menteri Besar, contested on PAS’s ticket but became the MB because his mother is related to Perak DAP henchmen Ngeh Koo Ham and Nga Kor Ming.  Through Nizar, the DAP managed to get things done its way, including giving leasehold land to Chinese New Villages inhabitants for 999 years!

Although Kit Siang is just a member of the DAP’s Central Executive Committee and nothing more, he is the hidden hand behind the CEC and especially his son, Lim Guan Eng (Tokong) who is the party’s Secretary-General.

Lim Kit Siang is known to use whatever means at his disposal to make sure he stays in power.

Those born in the mid-1970s and onwards may not have heard of the name Goh Hock Guan. He was the DAP Secretary-General who was involved in a power tussle with Kit Siang.

Hock Guan, who was also the Selangor DAP Chairman, wanted to field Lau Dak Kee in the Ulu Selangor by-election but Kit Siang favoured (now Tan Sri) Lee Lam Thye.

The repeat of this was in Johor during the 13th General Elections where Kit Siang and Tokong pushed aside then-state DAP Chairman Boo Cheng Hau and fielded their minions in order to hold on to power.

Kit Siang’s next move was to expel Hock Guan from the party. Others who were expelled included Dr Soarian, Chan Teck Chan, Seow Hun Khin, Chin Nyuk Soo and Goh Lin Eam.

Goh Hock Guan, in his letter to Cheng Man Hin, said,

“I don’t want to have any relationship with Lim Kit Siang. We’re totally adverse in terms of viewpoints and personality. As long as Kit Siang is holding the position as the Secretary-General of the DAP, he would definitely and finally destroy the future of DAP.”

Lee Lam Thye was made the Deputy Secretary-General but without power nor authority. Under Kit Siang’s orders, Lam Thye was not allowed to give views nor comments of any dissatisfaction. But he had an impeccable record of service to his constituency, and this threatened Kit Siang’s position.

On 29 September 1990, Lee Lam Thye dropped a bombshell announcing his departure from the DAP.  He said,

“A few leaders had hurt me from behind…I can’t stand anymore.”

After Lam Thye’s resignation, Lim Kit Siang issued a gag-order on the DAP ordering all party members to ‘shut-up’, avoiding giving any statement, view or statement through the media.

Lee Lam Thye certainly has a better life outside Kit Siang’s DAP

Azmin Ali may be the star of PKR but he does not have the support of the leadership.  It is no secret that he has no love whatsoever for Wan Azizah and her camp.

While Wan Azizah is no match for Azmin, who was Anwar’s Principal Private Secretary, Rafizi and Tian Chua who are in the former’s camp has been actively and openly doing things to undermine Azmin’s position.

Dubbed as the UMNO-man in PKR, I doubt that Azmin would make it to the Prime Minister’s seat as long as there still are those who are opposed to him.

And I also doubt his ability to rein them in onto his side.

This leaves us with the Gollum who still yearns for his precious seat.


At 92, many think that he is too old to be returning to the Premiership. He doesn’t think so.  Even with a protem Pribumi President, he thinks that only he is fit to lead the nation he dumped in 2003.


Which is why despite concerns he has twice hinted that the next Prime Minister for Malaysia is him.

We all know what kind of a PM he was, and we all know putting him and Kit Siang side-by-side, they are actually one of a kind. Both are fighting for the survival of their dynasty while current PKR’s reason for struggle has not changed since 1998 – Anwar Ibrahim’s freedom and nothing else beyond that.

Wan Azizah has already announced after Anwar’s bombshell announcement that the Pakatan should concentrate on winning the next general elections before thinking of who is to become the PM.

Wan Azizah’s absurd comment

That is as absurd as saying let us get in the car and then we decide where to go on a holiday.  Everybody wants to know who will become the PM if they let you win.  Having said that, you do not need to have a brain if you are Wan Azizah

Although time is running out for him, Mahathir has no problem working with arch enemy Kit Siang as long as he gets to become PM again.

Maybe all he wants is to die in office. That way he stays No.1 till kingdom come.  Who doesn’t want a send-off fit for a Pharaoh? So, in the meantime, wishing the 7th PM Selamat Hari Raya, whoever you may be.

Not Synced At All

Recently Azmin Ali announced a two and a half months bonus for Selangor civil servants. The civil servants rejoiced at hearing this news and I am sure Azmin cheered himself.

He stands to get almost RM73,000 as his pay is RM29,000 per month.

With two weeks to go till the end of Ramadhan, news leaked out that the confirmation of any bonus payout will only be made known this coming Tuesday. And already netizens are up in arms over it.



And it seems Pulau Pinang is mulling to cancel its binus payout due to short of funds, as seen in the discussion below:


The Pulau Pinang state government had recently announced that it will give bonus to its civil servants, but with certains terms attached:





The bonus is for 0.75 months or RM1,000 minimum, whichever is higher. This goes to show that the Pulau Pinang government is no longer cash rich.

In order to be able to pay the bonus out, and to continue keep the administration running, the Pulau Pinang state legislative assembly recently passed an enactment to allow the state government to take an undisclosed amount of cash loan from the EXIM Bank of China.

As in the words of Tokong Chao Ah Beng, “borrow money to make more money.”


It seems that the business of running a state government is all too easy. It does not matter how you manage the finances, if you run short of cash, borrow.

And it does not matter who has to shoulder the burden of repaying this debt. According to portal Utaranews, each Penang Lang will have to pay back RM28,000 for this loan..

What does Tokong care? He’s going to jail and he’ll be fed and cared using the money that the Penang suckers pay in the form of taxes. So not only do they have to bear RM28,000 each, but in fact RM28,000 + x being the anount Tokong will be living off them.

This shows how the Pakatan-led states government is totally not in sync with the wishes and wants of the rakyat. They are always dancing to their own tempo, and not with the rakyat – just like this pathetic attempt by DAP MP for Bukit Mertajam, Steven Sim Chee Keong, to be in sync with his constituents.

​​​

Omega 3

PAS delegates at a Muktamar – photo courtesy of Perak Today
It is almost 29-27 in Selangor.

Yesterday, the Dewan Ulama PAS voted for the party to end its ties with DAP-lackey, PKR. Today, the Muktamar Pemuda PAS voted for the same.

Tomorrow, the Muktamar PAS will decide if it will continue to work with PKR or not.

This would see the end of the 19-year alliance that started with Mahathir’s ousting of Anwar Ibrahim.

PKR has already called PAS’s bluff. Saifuddin Nasution has already called for PAS Selangor Exco members to quit their posts if the decision to sever ties with PKR is final.

Even with PAS out of the picture, the Selangor Pakatan government holds on to the seat of the government with a simple majority.

Pakatan would be down to the last three parties in Selangor: PKR, DAP and PAN.

But this would mean the true master in Selangor which is DAP, holds the largest number of non-Malay seats in the government. They hold 14 seats while PKR has only 13 of which three are non-Malays. PAN, which lives at the mercy of DAP only has two.

It is very unlikely that PAN would go against DAP’s wishes in Selangor.

It was bad enough during Abdul Khalid Ibrahim’s time when the Malays in Selangor were stronger. DAP was the one calling the shots.

It would be interesting to see how much real power Azmin Ali would have after the Muktamar tomorrow.

Especially when there is already a marked increase in the number of Chinese voters in the Shah Alam Parliamentary constituency.

Rindukan Zaman Mahathir?

Ada saja yang mengeluh mengenai harga barang serta nilai Ringgit yang tidak seperti zaman Tok Kadok.  Tidak kurang juga yang membandingkan bagaimana harga rokok pada zaman Mahathir Mohamad adalah jauh lebih murah dari zaman Najib Razak.

cpo88zjueaa6uym-jpg-large

Benar. Harga rokok Dunhill 20 sekotak kini mencecah RM17.00.  Namun ianya bukan disebabkan kelemahan matawang tetapi diakibatkan oleh kenaikan cukai ke atas rokok.

Saya berterima kasih kepada Cik Lim Sian See kerana menulis dengan panjang lebar mengenai kos sara hidup di Malaysia berbanding kualiti hidup.  Beliau telah menggunakan Indeks Big Mac yang membandingkan harga jualan burger Big Mac di setiap negara sejak 30 tahun yang lalu.

Kita ambil tahun 1993, iaitu zaman pemerintahan Mahathir Mohamad.  Harga Big Mac pada masa itu ialah RM3.35 manakala harga minyak RON92 (semasa itu minyak RON95 masih belum wujud di Malaysia) berharga RM1.06 seliter.

Pendapatan median bulanan setiap keluarga di Malaysia pada tahun 1993 ialah RM1,077 manakala bagi Bumiputera ianya adalah RM887.

Ini bermakna sekiranya kesemua pendapatan tersebut digunakan untuk membeli Big Mac maka setiap keluarga mampu membeli sebanyak 321 Big Mac manakala bagi sebuah keluarga Bumiputera hanya termampu sebanyak 265 Big Mac.

Untuk pembelian minyak RON92 pula setiap keluarga di Malaysia boleh membeli sebanyak 1,016 liter manakala keluarga Bumiputera boleh membeli 837 liter.

16 tahun kemudian apabila pentadbiran Najib Razak mengambil alih pucuk pimpinan pendapatan median bulanan setiap keluarga di Malaysia meningkat kepada RM2,830 dan RM2,531 bagi keluarga Bumiputera.

Harga Big Mac telah meningkat kepada RM6.80 (kenaikan sebanyak RM3.45 berbanding tahun 1993) manakala minyak RON95 setelah RON92 tidak lagi dijual di Malaysia berharga RM1.80 seliter (kenaikan sebanyak 74 sen).

Ini menjadikan kemampuan bulanan setiap keluarga pada tahun 2009 membeli Big Mac meningkat kepada 416 biji manakala keluarga Bumiputera membeli 372 biji Big Mac. Peningkatan  berbanding tahun 1993 ialah sebanyak 95 biji Big Mac (peningkatan 29.45 peratus) manakala bagi keluarga Bumiputera pula ialah sebanyak 107 biji Big Mac (peningkatan 40.6 peratus).

Untuk pembelian minyak RON95 pula, kemampuan bulanan setiap keluarga pada tahun 2009 membeli minyak RON95 meningkat kepada 1,572 liter manakala keluarga Bumiputera membeli 1,406 liter. Peningkatan  berbanding tahun 1993 ialah sebanyak 556 liter (peningkatan 54.74 peratus) manakala bagi keluarga Bumiputera pula ialah sebanyak 569 liter (peningkatan 68.04 peratus).

Ini bermakna taraf hidup bagi setiap keluarga di Malaysia telah meningkat walaupun harga barangan juga meningkat berbanding pada zaman pentadbiran Mahathir Mohamad.  Bagi keluarga Bumiputera pula, walaupun pendapatan mereka masih di bawah purata pendapatan setiap keluarga di Malaysia, kualiti hidup mereka meningkat dengan mendadak melebihi dari peningkatan purata keluarga di Malaysia pada tahun 2009 berbanding 1993.

Lima tahun kemudian, iaitu pada tahun 2014, pendapatan bulanan setiap keluarga di Malaysia adalah RM4,585 (kenaikan RM1,755 atau RM351 setahun) dan RM4,214 (kenaikan RM1,683 atau RM336 setahun) bagi keluarga Bumiputera.

Manakala harga Big Mac dan RON95 pula berada pada paras RM7.60 sebiji dan RM2.30 seliter (iaitu sama dengan harga minyak pada bulan Februari 2017).

Kemampuan untuk membeli Big Mac sebulan bagi setiap keluarga di Malaysia telah meningkat kepada 603 biji (peningkatan 44.96 peratus) manakala bagi keluarga Bumiputera pula sebanyak 554 biji (peningkatan 48.97 peratus).  Peningkatan bagi kemampuan keluarga Bumiputera sekali lagi mengatasi peningkatan setiap keluarga di Malaysia.

Bagi RON95 pula, kemampuan pembelian bulanan bagi setiap keluarga di Malaysia telah meningkat kepada 1,993 liter (peningkatan 26.79 peratus) manakala bagi keluarga Bumiputera pula sebanyak 1,832 liter (peningkatan 30.30 peratus).  Peningkatan bagi kemampuan keluarga Bumiputera sekali lagi mengatasi peningkatan setiap keluarga di Malaysia.

Big Mac di Malaysia - gambar ehsan NST
Big Mac di Malaysia – gambar ehsan NST

Malah, akhbar Singapura AsiaOne pada tahun 2014 melaporkan bahawa Big Mac di Malaysia adalah yang ketiga termurah di dunia.

Itu tahun 2014. Bagaimana pula dengan dakwaan bahawa kadar inflasi membuatkan rakyat Malaysia kini tidak mampu untuk membeli makanan?

Perbandingan harga Big Mac dari 2009 hingga 2017 mengikut matawang masing-masing negara
Perbandingan harga Big Mac dari 2009 hingga 2017 mengikut matawang masing-masing negara

Perbandingan di atas menunjukkan kenaikan harga Big Mac di antara tahun 2009 hingga 2017 menunjukkan kenaikan harga Big Mac Malaysia adalah kedua terendah berbanding negara lain.  Kalau kita lihat restoran-restoran terutamanya yang mahal seperti Serai di Empire Subang masih penuh pada waktu makan tengahari tidak mengira hari hinggakan barisan yang beratur menunggu tempat duduk begitu panjang setiap hari.

Begitu juga di Facebook dan Instagram kita dapat melihat betapa ramai rakyat Malaysia yang mampu bercuti sama ada di dalam mahupun luar negara.  Ini berlaku mahupun dakwaan bahawa rakyat Malaysia tertekan akibat kekurangan wang dan Ringgit tidak laku di luar negara.

Semasa saya menunaikan ibadah Umrah setiap tahun dari tahun 1998 hingga musim Haji 2001, setiap pengendali pakej hanya memenuhi satu buah bas setiap penerbangan.  Yang pergi secara puratanya berumur 45 tahun ke atas.  Jarang ada yang berumur kurang dari 30 tahun.

Apabila saya kembali ke Mekah pada tahun 2014, ia menjadi tiga buah bas setiap pengendali pakej bagi setiap penerbangan dan lebih ramai pasangan muda turut serta.  Baru-baru ini ia telah meningkat kepada empat buah bas setiap pengendali pakej setiap penerbangan dan begitu ramai pasangan muda yang membawa anak-anak kecil, atau pergi beribadah bersama seluruh keluarga.  Bukan sahaja mereka yang menjalankan perniagaan atau kerja dengan syarikat swasta, malah guru-guru peringkat bawahan juga mampu pergi anak-beranak.

Anda boleh membaca dengan lebih lanjut lagi mengenai jumlah kerusi penerbangan yang diperlukan untuk jemaah Umrah dari Malaysia setiap hari DI SINI.

Mahukah anda kembali ke tahun 2001 semasa pentadbiran Mahathir Mohamad?
Mahukah anda kembali ke tahun 2001 semasa pentadbiran Mahathir Mohamad?

Perangkaan tidak pernah berbohong.  Tidak seperti puak Pakatan yang suka menabur fitnah mencanangkan bagaimana harga barang naik di bawah kerajaan Barisan Nasional.  Tidak pula mereka menceritakan bagaimana kualiti dan taraf hidup juga telah naik melebihi kenaikan harga barangan.

Untuk perbandingan, janji untuk menghapuskan tol di negeri Selangor masih tinggal janji.

Janji untuk menghapuskan tol di Sungai Nyior, Pulau Pinang masih tinggal janji.

Malah kerajaan Pulau Pinang DAP sejak 2008 telah menaikkan harga lesen, kadar parkir, lesen perniagaan (begitu juga di Selangor) dan menaikkan kadar tarif air di Pulau Pinang sebanyak EMPAT kali.

Tidak cukup dengan itu, di Selangor anda dikehendaki membayar 20 sen untuk setiap beg plastik yang anda perlukan semasa membeli barang.

Dulu anda mendapat beg plastik secara percuma sekiranya anda membeli barangan berharga, sebagai contoh, RM10.  Ini bermakna kos pembelian beg plastik oleh peniaga telah difaktorkan ke dalam kos penjualan barangan.  Dicampur dengan GST anda membayar RM10.60.

Kini anda dikenakan RM10 + 20 sen menjadikan RM10.20 dan apabila dikenakan GST anda perlu membayar RM10.81!  Anda membayar sebanya dua kali untuk satu beg plastik dan peniaga membuat keuntungan atas angin sebanyak 21 sen bagi setiap beg plastik.

Ada yang mengatakan bahawa polisi membayar untuk beg plastik ini bagus kerana kutipan akan diserahkan kepada kerajaan negeri untuk tujuan memerangi pencemaran.  Apa kata Azmin Ali?

Azmin tak kata pun dia suruh kita bayar 20 sen untuk beg plastik
Azmin tak kata pun dia suruh kita bayar 20 sen untuk beg plastik

Ada pula yang kata kutipan akan disalurkan ke badan-badan amal dan bukan kerajaan.  Apa pula kata Exco Selangor Elizabeth Wong?

Eli Wong pun kata dia hanya BERHARAP agar para peniaga akan menyalurkan kutipan 20 sen kepada badan-badan amal dan bukan kerajaan. Dia tak suruh. Jadi siapa kena tipu?
Eli Wong pun kata dia hanya BERHARAP agar para peniaga akan menyalurkan kutipan 20 sen kepada badan-badan amal dan bukan kerajaan. Dia tak suruh. Jadi siapa kena tipu?

Rafizi yang menjanjikan penurunan harga barangan akan berlaku dengan penurunan harga minyak juga masih belum tunaikan janji walhal minyak pernah turun dari RM2.70 seliter pada zaman Pak Lah kepada RM1.60 seliter pada awal tahun 2016.  Namun hingga kini tidak nampak penurunan harga barangan.

rafizi-ramli-bodoh-20-sen-minyak

Apabila disoal di dalam group WhatsApp, beliau hanya menjawab bahawa itu bukan masalah beliau.

Perangai sotong
Perangai sotong

Seingat anda, pernahkah ibubapa anda menyebut bagaimana barangan langsung tidak mahal?  Dan sekiranya anda masih mahu membuat perbandingan di antara zaman Mahathir Mohamad dan zaman Najib Razak dan rindukan zaman Mahathir Mohamad, kenapa anda tidak mahu rindukan zaman pentadbiran penasihat British dan Kapitan Yap Ah Shak?

harga-barang-tahun-1897

Tanggang Bin Ali Buat Hal Lagi

Siapa ingat kisah di atas? Baru lebih empat tahun dulu Azmin di anggap seperti Si Tanggang oleh ibu kandungnya sendiri.

Namun, kesemuanya kelihatan baik dan sempurna setelah Azmin menjadi Menteri Besar setelah Abdul Khalid Ibrahim digulingkan oleh rakan-rakan separtinya sendiri melalui Kajang Move.

Sejak itu, Azmin dilihat menjadi semakin lantang bersuara terutamanya dalam usaha memburukkan kerajaan pusat.


Azmin sebenarnya ingin mengukuhkan kedudukannya untuk menghadapi serangan dari dalam parti terutamanya dari kem Wan Azizah. Oleh sebab itu beliau perlu menunjukkan betapa beliau lebih layak menjadi presiden partinya berbanding Wan Azizah yang tiada sebarang pengalaman selain menjadi tempat Anwar Ibrahim meletakkan kakinya semasa duduk berehat.

Mungkin Azmin telah mendapat restu ibunya dan telah berbaik semula dengan adik-beradiknya.

Malang sekali bagi Che Tom Yahaya yang berumur 82 tahun dan kini sakit teruk, kejatuhan matawang Ringgit yang dibuat bising oleh Azmin bermakna beliau wajib bercuti di London untuk Boxing Day sales kerana ianya lebih penting dari kesihatan ibu kandungnya itu.

Lihat sahajalah luahan adiknya Ummi Hafilda.


Patutlah negeri Selangor ni semakin parah keadaannya. Menteri Besar hanya pentingkan dirinya sendiri.

Selangor Water Crisis: Politicising Water

Mad rush for water at USJ4, Subang Jaya
Today is DAY SIX that taps have run dry for  about 360,000 account holders or 1.6 million residents in the most developed state of Selangor. DAP supporters have gone quiet in residents’ WhatsApp groups while those who will be celebrating Deepavali are screaming for vengeance. Some are already asking “Mana Hannah Yeoh?” while Azmin Ali who, under his tutelage Selangor has seen the most of water disruptions, has reneged on the usual promise of announcing the biggest exposé on those he blamed this current water crisis on.

The MP for Kelana Jaya, Wong Chen, has since appeared on WhatsApp groups trying to appease voters. The following is his message:

Message from MP Wong Chen this morning 27 Oct.

Good morning from Parliament. We have been sitting the last few days up to 9.30 pm every night. The budget session is the most important session of the year but this year the government slashed some 8 days of sitting and as such we are forced to go beyond our 5.30 pm sitting by four extra hours a day to 9.30 pm every day.


This morning I want to talk about the water crisis affecting 1 million residents in Selangor. I have been following closely the water crisis in Selangor, affecting a large part of my constituents in Subang Jaya. YB Hannah Yeoh has been updating regularly, she is on the ground distributing water and engaging residents. Residents are going into their 5th day without water. And we had a water crisis barely a month before.


In Parliament, I bumped into Minister Wan Junaidi and also separately the Deputy Minister Hamim on several occassions. I keep asking for their quicker action. They keep saying that Selangor must also do their bit. I have also relayed some of my ideas to YB Zuraida to pass on to the MB. 


Wan Junaidi do not believe the current pollution crisis to be an act of deliberate political sabotage. Deputy Minister Hamim, who is an engineer and someone I enjoyed working with on the TPPA (when he was Deputy Minister of MITI), will not speculate but says that the problem is not new. The federal government has resources but water is a state matter.


I am of the view that with the economy slowing, more and more companies will try to cut costs by dumping pollution straight into the river. 


Enforcement in Malaysia has always been a challenge. A widely held view is the enforcement officers are either stretched thin, overworked or at the other end of the spectrum, just plain corrupt being paid by polluters to turn a blind eye. 


If enforcement officers are not effective then we have to bring in the accountants. 


The obvious solution is to track historical records of industrial waste output of each factory and counter check with their disposal costs. If a factory is found to have slashed spending substantially on disposal of industrial waste in the last year, then we can assume that they are engaging in illegal dumping. A major discrepency in the accounts should be a basis for a full investigation and raid by enforcement officers. 


The state should also set up a benchmark of waste output for each industry to red flag any unusual data volatility. Setting up patrol units along the rivers is not going to help as much as sending in the accountants.


Bottomline is this. If the economy deteriorates, we can expect more and more water cuts stemming from increased pollution activity.


Irate residents will not listen to excuses or causes. Understandably, they just want water and they want this crisis to not repeat. As such Selangor must dramatically improve its emergency water delivery system. We need more water tanks and we need delivery to be on schedule and to be regular. 


We need to also beef up security monitoring at our rivers. We need night time road blocks to monitor all suspicious trucking activities. More importantly is we need new people to lead such enforcement. A fresh start with new officers.


We need to bring in the accountants. We need all factories in Selangor to disclose their waste inventory. And we need to catch the culprits, severely punish them to end this cycle of water cuts.


Lastly, I beg the residents to also empathise with the authorities. You will not find a harder working ADUN in Malaysia than YB Hannah Yeoh. If you see her on your streets at midnight distributing water, give her a pat on the back.

Wong Chen may be the sanest of the PKR lot probably due to being an idealist more than a politician. But he is saying nothing new, not a lot, and has nothing much to offer.

Firstly, it is obvious that as an MP he is not aware that all matters pertaining to land and water belongs to the respective states. Had he known this he would not have approached Wan Junaidi or his deputy Hamim.

As advised by industry players as early as 2011, the Selangor State government should gazette water catchment areas and implement the Langat2 Water Treatment Plant project. The State government did not do the first and delayed the second suggestion until it was too late.

Secondly, the economy is not slowing. Slowing down means that there will be negative growth. Wong Chen is probably not aware that even the World Bank says that the Malaysian economy is growing at a slower rate in 2016 but will pick up in 2017 and 2018.

Even in the 1990s when the economy was vibrant and our growth rate exceeded eight percent, business owners were dumping industrial scheduled wastes into rivers. It has nothing to do with our economy. It has all to do with our mentality and screw-all attitude.

Enforcement is lacking, no doubt, but stretched thin is the more than likely case. They can’t all be corrupted just as not all bungalows without swimming pools are cheap. So we just do not have the numbers needed to police based on a personnel to area ratio. And it doesn’t help when motormouth Tony Pua wants to trim down the civil service if he comes into power!

Even tracking of industrial waste output needs the manpower to do it. You can’t just sit in the office, tap on some keys and expect the numbers on the screen to tally with what is being produced in the real world.

Security monitoring of our rivers would go back to two things: manpower and gazetting water catchment areas! Why is there a need to repeat this over and over again? Everything points back to those two!

Hannah Yeoh the hardest working ADUN in Malaysia? I have seen better-working ones even from the DAP back in the 1970s. Distributing bottled water can be sub-contracted out to Bangladeshi workers. A hardworking ADUN would be screaming in the Dewan for more manpower to enforce gazetted water catchment areas. Not seek political mileage and benefitting from the misery of others!

Water: Time For Azmin To Sue BN

There is no water in most parts of Selangor…again. And this is due to the Semenyih river being polluted…again. And The administratively-impotent Menteri Besar, Azmin Ali, has blamed everyone else but the weakness of his administration…again.


I cannot remember how many water cuts has it been since August but this time Azmin has taken the idiot-level a step up by blaming the Barisan Nasional.

Giving him the benefit of the doubt one can only blame the Pakatan-led Selangor government for its failure to gazette water catchment areas, continuing to allow industries to encroach river buffer zones despite having an enactment to enforce a ban, and failure to haul the culprits in previous episodes of water cuts to court. Barisan Nasional is not in charge of administering Selangor so start pointing your finger at yourself!

This is typical of Pakatan Haprak (Harapan + Rakyat). They shout out rhetorics about bringing prices down and only Lim Guan Eng gets a discount for his bungalow. Is Pakatan Haprak really concerned about the welfare of the rakyat? Are they even democratic as claimed? I doubt. The walkout done by them from the tabling of the budget session last Friday is a poignant reminder of that.

This edited photo of Pakatan Harapan leaders after the staged walkout has made its way around in the Internet
Blaming provocation Azmin said that the budget delivered by Najib Razak did not address the fundamental issues. If the Pakatan leaders cannot stand mere provocation then how is it going to find the patience to even listen to the rakyat? I got blocked by the various Pakatan leaders on Twitter for asking a simple question that they have refused to answer! I am sure there are many more whom have been treated in the same manner by Pakatan leaders!


Walking out of Parliament like spoilt little girls isn’t the only thing that Pakatan Haprak MPs are famous for; they also did not attend Parliament to vote against the Peaceful Assembly Bill and the Prevention of Terrorism Bill that have now been enacted. Then, they label the laws passed as draconian and restrictive but what have they done to ensure that these Acts never got passed in the first place? At the hint of a struggle, they collapse like jelly.

And I am sure they had to suddenly squeeze those placards out from their rear orifice because they claim that the walkout was not planned.

You can read for yourselves the disappointment that the Pakatan Haprak is:


Is Azmin Ali interested in doing work as a Menteri Besar? No.

Is Pakatan Haprak interested in democracy? No.

They are only interested in using the rakyat‘s money to finance their campaign and lifestyle. And Pakatan Haprak will cling on to power so that they can continue this financed lifestyle while you and I will have to endure endless water cuts!

If Azmin Ali feels he is right about Barisan Nasional sabotaging the water supply, provide evidence to the police and arrest the culprits. Or shut up and continue to remain the screwed-up little girl he is!

The Johor Conundrum

Has Khaled Nordin lost control over Johor?
Has Khaled Nordin lost control over Johor?

Blogger Life of Annie wrote on the 24th May 2013:

Five years from now, Johor will not even be an Umno stronghold if those in control of the party are “beraja di mata, bersultan dihati” even among their fellow Umno people.

Do mark my word on this.

It took merely almost three and a half years before that actually happened following the departure of Jorak assemblyman Datuk Dr Shahruddin Md Salleh from UMNO to join Mahathir’s Pribumi.  For the first time in 61 years, the Barisan Nasional/Alliance holds its two-thirds majority in its Peninsular safe deposit, Johor, by a single thread.

Losing two-thirds majority in UMNO’s bastion used to be unthinkable right until the 13th General Elections when the Chinese Tsunami swept many state and parliamentary seats.  It lost 12 seats in the last general elections compared to GE12 in 1998, and this time around the biggest gainer was the DAP with nine extra seats.  Barisan Nasional ended up initially with 38 out of the 56 seats. With the departure of Jorak, it now holds the two-third majority with the bare minimum number of seats.

Despite the progress and development that are taking place in Johor, Ghani was trounced not because he did not do his job, but because of blatant racial sentiment. As with the previous three general elections, Ghani would not be seen sitting comfortably in his office at least two years prior to the elections. He would be on the ground making sure that the machinery is ready to face the next battle, and there would be elections simulations held at various levels of the state’s BN. Ghani would also make sure that his relationship with the Johor Civil Service (JCS) remain at the highest level.

Life of Annie also pointed out that when Ghani pointed out to Khaled that his Pasir Gudang division was in danger of falling into the Opposition’s hands, Khaled did not take that rather well and rubbished the findings.  The simulation was almost correct – Barisan Nasional held on to Pasir Gudang with less than 1,000 votes ahead.

With Ghani ousted, Khaled wanted to make his own mark as the Menteri Besar.  The job as the Menteri Besar of Johor is not exactly an easy one.  With a Sultan who can be somewhat overbearing and often puts his hands into the affairs of the state administration, the Menteri Besar would have to know how to manage both the Sultan and the state administration without upsetting either one. Ghani was an old hand at this and knew exactly how to handle the Sultan, having had to also manage the unconventional behaviour of the Almarhum Sultan Iskandar previously.  He had a good relationship with both Sultans, knowing when exactly to pull the strings and when to let it slack.  Khaled is said to let the Sultan have things his way so much so that even the promotion of JCS officers is left for the Sultan to decide.  While Ghani was often seen patting the back of JCS officers for the good job that they do, Khaled lets the Sultan do the Menteri Besar’s job for him.  While the Sultan might like it, this doesn’t augur well for the state Barisan Nasional.  Any administration would want to have some form of control over its civil service and a good rapport to go with.

The number of gatekeepers one needs to go through to get to Khaled is another common complaint by the common people. Journalists covering Khaled also complain that at almost every event, Khaled is being surrounded by his posse of young lieutenants, even to the extent of having the nearest table to the VIP table occupied solely by this group of people.  This makes Khaled look like the overgrown hipster. It only makes the Menteri Besar less approachable even to the Ketua Bahagians. It is said that he was advised by UMNO veterans to go down and meet the grassroot leaders. His response was, “Aku tak kenal orang Johor (I don’t know the Johor leaders).”

It is already less than two years to the next general elections.  Unlike Ghani before him, Khaled is still mostly seen in Johor Bahru.  Ghani and his executive councillors would have been scouring the state to see what else that have been missed.  Speaking to a Puteri UMNO division head recently she expressed her worry that none of the division heads have actually begun to activate their election machineries in a concerted manner.  This particular Puteri UMNO head has had to conduct her own voters and membership registration drive; an effort which is puny compared to the ones that have and are being done by the DAP in Johor alone. If you were to ask the UMNO division chiefs in Johor, they would tell you that all is rosy, and that is until you speak to them on a one-on-one basis. However,  Khaled has told reporters that the Johor Barisan Nasional still holds a comfortable majority despite it being razor thin after the departure of Jorak.  To the UMNO grassroots, Khaled’s confidence is extremely worrying.

It is no secret that the DAP will be working with Pribumi to wrestle control of Johor from the Barisan Nasional come GE14.  It is hardly an impossible task too!  Muhyiddin might be a figure to be reckoned with both in Pagoh and Muar, but outside those two areas, he is still remembered as the person who sold Johor Malays’ rights to the Chinese.  Mahathir knows this very well as he was the one who rescued Muhyiddin when the latter became a persona non grata in Johor in the early 1990s.  Mahathir knows that Muhyiddin carries a lot of baggage with him and would not be the correct person to lead the country if the Opposition wins. There is already an attempt to kill Muhyiddin politically.  You hardly hear of any statement being made by Muhyiddin while Mukhriz is seen going around in Johor conducting membership registration drives.  No clues needed for the question on who is Mahathir’s choice for PM.

DAP on the other hand, wants to conquer the western Johor belt, where there is a significant number of Chinese population as compared to the eastern belt. During a dinner at the Landmark Hotel with Batu Pahat DAP members, DAP’s MP for Kluang Liew Chin Tong and ADUN for Senai Wong Shu Qi related the plan to wrestle Parit Sulong, Pulai and Pasir Gudang. With Batu Pahat already in PKR’s hands, all that is needed is for Muar to fall, and it is most likely that Muhyiddin would contest there, if not the often-clueless Syed Saddiq, a Muarian himself.

Even Azmin Ali does not want to be left out by the Mahathir and Pribumi bandwagon.  He was seen recently in Muar together with Mahathir at a Pribumi event. It is no secret that he is heading the drive for PKR to work together with Mahathir – a sentiment not shared by the pro-Wan Azizah camp that includes Wan Azizah loyalists Rafizi Ramli and Wong Chen.  There is even talk that Azmin might work towards dissolving PKR and jump en masse into Pribumi. While that is not totally impossible, the departure of Ezam from UMNO to Pribumi has certainly strengthen that theory.

The Johor conundrum is something that the Barisan Nasional (read UMNO) cannot take lightly if it were to gain more seats in the next general elections.  If Khaled is not moving, then someone should take the lead and face the Opposition head on.  There are two FELDA regions that need to be handled with care.  Khaled should realise that there is more to Johor than just Johor Bahru.  He has to go down on the ground and get the feel himself instead of relying on reports from the UMNO divisions and the various sugar-coated reports from agencies.  If you do not know the terrain and its people, you will lose the war. Don’t be like Hamid Karzai who was dubbed the ‘Mayor of Kabul‘ despite being the President of Afghanistan!

And in the words of Life of Annie opus citatum:

If this is how Khaled’s people want to behave, then I dare say that he will be just a one term MB and Johor will fall five years from now.

 

Water: Azmin Should Stop Blaming Others

Mengapa? Why?
Mengapa? Why?

For the umpteenth time, the Petaling district in Selangor have to face waterless days because someone decided the rivers are the best place to dump chemical wastes.  What has the Selangor state government done about it? Apart from blaming the Department of Environment, the Menteri Besar, Azmin Ali has done nothing.

air

Investigation by the Selangor water authority has traced the pollution to its source and not only have taken water samples from the alleged source, but even named the source.  Yet, Azmin chose to blame the Department of Environment for being slow in acting against the perpetrator citing that the Selangor Water Management Board has no authority to act.

Therefore, let me introduce this seemingly alien State Enactment to the clueless Menteri Besar:

Selangor Water Management Board Enactment, 1999
Selangor Water Management Board Enactment, 1999

There are powers accorded to the Board that the state government.  Section 40(1) of the Enactment states that the Board has the responsibility to arrange and control all water resources. This includes buffer development, the management, use and the conservation of water sources while Section 41(3)(d) the Board is allowed to take whatever steps deemed necessary to protect water from contamination and the improvement of its quality. Which part of the Enactment that is not clear to either the Members of the Board, or Azmin himself?

Section 43(2) of the said Enactment empowers the Director of the Board to instruct by writing any activity, work, structure or building that is located within the flood zones, river reserves, or coastal areas that the Director deems to cause the degradation in quantity of water flow, quality of water, or to cause pollution to improvise or stop the activity, or to modify or to relocate the building.  The Director even has the power to enter such premises at any time and inspect as given by Section 43(3).

I have, in different previous posts (Water, Water Everywhere dated 28th October 2011 and Water, Water Everywhere Part 2 dated 4th November 2011), pointed out the need to protect the water catchment areas.  The value chain starts at water catchment areas and therefore it is imperative that state governments take steps to protect these areas by gazetting them under a specific Act for Water Catchment Areas, and not as it is now, under the Forestry Act.  We often find water resources polluted by human activities in these areas such as logging (legal and illegal), farming, plantation, manufacturing, animal husbandry and indiscriminate dumping of rubbish despite having these areas gazetted under the Forestry Act.

Lo! And behold! The power had already been given to the Board through Section 48 of the Enactment which you can read below (unless you are one of those who criticised Zahid Hamidi for his poor command of the English language while you cannot even speak in Bahasa Malaysia despite holding a Malaysian Identity Card):

screen-shot-2016-10-06-at-16-44-23

screen-shot-2016-10-06-at-16-44-38

screen-shot-2016-10-06-at-16-44-49

So, what are you waiting for, Azmin? Why are you still playing the blame game? This is the effect of the incompetency of the Pakatan government that politicises every single thing that has now caused misery to hundreds of thousands of water account holders in Selangor.  And not only that, the arrogance of biblical proportions that your Executive Councillors and you have make you think that you have the right to play with the lives of those in need of water such as at the Serdang Hospital that had had to declare an emergency for being in dire need of treated water supply.

Screenshot of Free Malaysia Today's post on the emergency situation at the Serdang Hospital (http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/bahasa/2016/09/27/tiada-air-sejak-jumaat-hospital-serdang-dalam-darurat/)
Screenshot of Free Malaysia Today’s post on the emergency situation at the Serdang Hospital (http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/bahasa/2016/09/27/tiada-air-sejak-jumaat-hospital-serdang-dalam-darurat/)

Since being given the power to administrate, the Pakatan-led state government of Selangor has given the rakyat nothing but excuse upon excuse to NOT solve its water woes.  Starting with saying that there would be enough water and the Langat 2 Water Treatment Plant is not needed and one suggested by a Pakatan-suporter that there are better alternatives to the Langat 2 WTP.  Yet, nothing was done to solve the problem.  And only in February 2014 that the state government conceded that the Langat 2 WTP is needed after all, a realisation that caused former Menteri Besar Khalid Ibrahim his job as the rest of his administration and also party office holders did not subscribe to his view.

The Pakatan-led state government should pull its act together and stop giving excuses when it is empowered to protect water sources.  If it does not have the political will to do so, make way for the party that would.

Period!

Selangor Water Crisis: Time To Change The Top Management

By “Top Management” I mean the state government.

Yes!

For the people of Petaling district, this is the second time that taps have run dry. The first was just before Aidil Adha (2nd September 2016) when a pipe burst caused taps in Subang Jaya, USJ, parts of Puchong and Pinggiran USJ to not have water supply for about three days. The second time which began two days ago is caused by contamination of the raw water supply to the Semenyih River Water Treatment Plant and this time several districts are affected namely

  • Hulu Langat (Bangi, Bandar Bukit Mahkota, Kajang, Semenyih and Rinching),
  • Kuala Langat (Morib, Banting, Saujana Putra, Bandar Rimbayu and Teluk Panglima Garang),
  • Petaling (USJ1-27, Puchong, Seri Kembangan and Serdang),
  • Sepang (Putrajaya, Cyberjaya, Bandar Nusa Putra, Putra Heights, Pulau Meranti, Kota Warisan, Bandar Bukit Puchong and Sungai Merab).

If you have no idea how huge an area that is, let me represent them using the map below:


Both these situations were totally avoidable. Since 2010 various water-related non-governmental organisations, water industry players as well as the Federal Government have advised the Pakatan-led Selangor state government to allow for the construction and completion of the Langat 2 Water Treatment Plant. Else, Selangor would face a water crisis by 2014. The state government vehemently denied that Selangor would face such a crisis.

True enough, people in Selangor had to undergo scheduled rationing in 2014 and 2015. 60,000 accounts were affected. That translates into at least 360,000 people who were directly affected. This time it could be far more.

Selangor has been giving away 20 cubic meters of water free to consumers since 2008 when Pakatan won the state from the Barisan Nasional – a very poorly thought of political decision; a populist move rather than a prudent one. It costs a lot not only to treat water but also to maintain 27,420 kilometres of pipes. Giving away water for free and not increasing tariffs will ensure that you would not be able to maintain your operations efficiently, and even an idiot would know this.

When a pipe burst on the 2nd September 2016, instead of helping by explaining the situation, an assemblyman decided to take it out on Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor (SYABAS). This assemblyman gave the most absurd ideas on how to manage water cuts:


This invited a basket of zombies to support her statement, some even blaming the Federal government for the problem. In one of the community WhatsApp groups one even said that maybe the problem was created by the Barisan Nasional to create hatred towards the Selangor state government. What they failed to realise is that the Selangor state government IS the one managing it’s water treatment and supply:


Not clear enough? How about this? From September 2015, the Selangor state government owns the water concessionaires in the state!

The second problem is that unlike Penang, Selangor does not gazette its water catchment areas. Factories, loggers have no problem whatsoever to encroach into the water catchment areas. It is a no-brainer that this is the contributing factor to the hundreds of cases of contamination of the Langat and Semenyih rivers and their tributaries.

Let us not kid each other. The Selangor state government has been in denial about the dire water situation in the state since 2008. It was made worse when the whole situation was not dealt with properly and by not heeding the advice of the industry players.

So, I hope Hannah Yeoh actually means it when she said there should be a management change. It should be a change in the management of the state. It can’t even handle the basic but extremely critical issues and it’s members are spending more time bashing others than actually looking into the problems the rakyat is facing! And when shit actually hits the fan, this is the sorry excuse to say “Oh! We’re with you! We feel your pain!


Yes, Hannah Yeoh. Let us have that change in the management soon. Your voters are already supporting your call.


In the famous words of your fellow party member and former USJ resident Jeff Ooi,