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Malaysia's second prime minister Tun Abdul Razak with Tan Sri Abdullah Ahmad (third from right), who was his political secretary, and Tun Rahah (right). – File pic, January 14, 2015.

The youngest son of Malaysia’s second prime minister Tun Abdul Razak, who died on this day 39 years ago, has called for the setting up of a national consultative council to bring Malaysians together, just as his father did after the 1969 race riots.

Banker Datuk Seri Nazir Razak said this when asked by The Malaysian Insider (TMI) what message his father would convey if he could speak to Malaysians today.

“I think he would say that it is time to set up another national consultative council, like he did in 1970, to discuss critical issues around preserving harmony and fostering unity amongst Malaysians,” says Nazir. “I think he would be shocked that it is 2015 and race and religion divide Malaysians even more today than during his time.”

Nazir was replying to questions posed to him and his other brothers, Johari, Nizam and Nazim about their father as part of a series of articles The Malaysian Insider will be publishing over the next few days to mark the death of Razak, who died of leukaemia in London in 1976, to the shock of the nation, at the age of 54.
Razak and his wife Tun Rahah had five sons and the eldest is, of course, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

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Gelang Patah MP Lim Kit Siang says at least six Malaysians have been reported to have died in Syria and Iraq while fighting for the global militant group Islamic State (IS). ― File pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 13 ― DAP parliamentary leader Lim Kit Siang questioned today the truth in Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s claims that there are no extremist Muslims in Malaysia, pointing to evidence that strongly suggests the presence of Islamic militancy in the country.

The Gelang Patah MP said reports of the increasing number of arrests made on suspected militants and reports of Malaysian Muslims taking loans to fund their passage to fight with terrorist group the Islamic State in Syria, contradicted Muhyiddin’s claims.

“If there are no extremists among Muslims in Malaysia, how come the Bukit Aman Special Counter Terrorism Division had arrested 51 persons suspected of being Malaysian militants.

“And why have Muslim Malaysians even gone to the extent of taking personal loans from banks and money-lenders to pay for their passage  to Syria to join Islamic State and  to fund their living expenses there, knowing that repayment of their loans is very slim?” Lim asked in a statement.

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Seputeh MP Teresa Kok called on the Home Ministry to restore manual issuance of migrant worker permits until lingering questions over the new online system and fees paid to MyEG are resolved. — Picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 11 — The Home Ministry must restore Immigration Department counters issuing migrant worker permits until lingering questions over the new online system and fee by MyEG are resolved, a DAP lawmaker insisted today.

DAP vice-chairman Teresa Kok said that the Home Ministry has not adequately explained the RM38 fee payable to the e-services provider — permits were previously issued without charge — apart from insisting that the new charge is to cover the operational and management costs for the system.

Kok also questioned the decision to impose a higher RM58 fees for employers who purchase the necessary insurance from agents other than MyEG, saying this encouraged a monopoly for the firm.

“Is this a fair and reasonable move to employers and other insurance companies? Why such monopoly for MyEG?” posed Kok, who is also the Seputeh DAP MP.

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Major Zaidi Ahmad, who disclosed the inefficacy of the indelible ink in the last elections, with his family after being found guilty in a military court today, January 12, 2015. — Pictures by Ida Lim

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 12 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein should intercede on behalf of the air force major dismissed for highlighting weaknesses in the indelible ink used in Election 2013, DAP’s Lim Kit Siang said today.

Accusing the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) of punishing Major Zaidi Ahmad for telling the truth about the impermanence of the ink meant to prevent vote fraud, Lim said the court martial that adjudged him guilty was a “travesty of justice” and blot on the nation’s conscience.

“At this moment of national moral crisis in the country, when lies, falsehoods, chicanery and dishonesty seem to rule the roost in public life instead of honesty, probity and industry, Malaysia needs more Major Zaidis at all levels of government instead of drumming them out of public service.

“If there is any case where the defence minister or even the prime minister should intervene to ensure that Major Zaidi can continue his sterling service in the military, this is the one,” the Gelang Patah MP said today.

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Last year, Transport Minister Datuk Liow Tiong Lai became the most criticised Minister due to the Road Transport Department’s crackdown against vehicle’s number plates. It appears now that Home Minister Datuk Ahmad Zahid will soon become the most criticized Minister due to the unwise and unfair online foreign worker permit renewal implementation by the immigration department.

As a result of massive public criticisms against the online renewal process, the Home Ministry has via a statement yesterday defended the outsourcing move to MyEG and the RM 38 fee charged for the online application.

The Ministry said that the fees are needed to bear the operational costs and managemnet of services.

But the Ministry’s explanation is unsatisfactory as it has not answered the key questions raised by many employers, especially on the question why the additional online fee of RM 38 per application when employers are still required to fork out RM 125 processing fees under the existing fee structure for renewing foreign workers permit.

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Universiti Malaya’s decision to ban its staff from organsing any political activities is an attack on academic freedom and will curtail the progress of the university.

The move will also cause UM’s international image to take a further dive after it has recently made itself an international laughing stock for banning Anwar Ibrahim from attending a talk organized by Universiti Malaya’s Student Council and for subsequently imposing a campus lockdown.

It is obvious that the UM adminstration is not prepared to admit and learn from its previous mistakes. Perhaps it is more accurate to say that it just does not care about its image at all.

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Semalam bila rombongan DAP Seputeh dan DAP Balakong tiba di Kuala Krai, kami disambut oleh beberapa sukarelawan yang diketuai oleh En Pong Hook Ching. Kami kemudian dibawa ke setor untuk punggahkan semua barang bantuan daripada 4 lori yang dibawa oleh kami.

En Pong sangat gembira untuk bertemu dengan kami. Beliau mengambil gambar bersama saya dan Tony Pua dengan menggunakan telefon bimbitnya kerana beliau hanya pernah lihat kami daripada media selama ini.

Pada lewat petang, selepas kami habis mengedarkan barang bantuan di beberapa kampung di Kuala Krai, kami pun pergi ke rumahnya untuk makan malam. Saya baru berpeluang untuk mengenalinya dengan lebih mendalam.

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