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Yesterday, I was so happy to read the news that the Court of Appeal has upheld the judgement of the High Court on the ISA detention of the 5 activists and PR political leaders in 2002. They were awarded RM4.5 million by the court.

Today is supposed to be the decision of my case. I was hoping for a positive verdict like the 5 activists’ case yesterday. However, the judge, Datuk Su Geok Yiam, ordered my lawyer and defendant (government’s lawyer) to give further clarification on the two federal court cases.

So the judge fixed 22 December 2014, Monday morning for the hearing. That day is Dong Zhi day (冬至- winter solstice) in the lunar calendar. It is an auspicious and significant day for the Chinese. I hope it will be a good day for this legal suit. :-))

 

Malaysia's longest-serving MP Tan Sri Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah says the country's leadership must be willing to listen to advice. – The Malaysian Insider file pic. December 12, 2014.

 

Tan Sri Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah, Malaysia’s longest-serving Member of Parliament, is decidedly despondent about his country.

“I cannot recall an experience when Malaysia, after independence, was trapped in a situation similar to that we face now,” he said in a wide-ranging interview with The Edge Review.

Malaysia’s troubled political landscape, where the sensitive issues of race and religion are dominating headlines and public discourse, is being weighed down by the serious deterioration in the country’s economic performance where mounting debt in the public sector and households is leaving the country very vulnerable to external shocks.

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KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 11 — A global report issued this week singled out Malaysia, along with countries facing social unrest and political turmoil in eastern Africa and the Middle East, for trampling on the rights of non-religious sections of society.

The International Humanist and Ethical Union’s (IHEU) latest edition of the Freedom of Thought Report 2014 gave Malaysia a“grave violation” rating, specifically citing Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s speech in Kuantan on May 14 in which he branded “humanism and secularism as well as liberalism” as “deviant”.

Najib went on to describe these elements as a threat to Islam and the country at a national-level Quran Recital Assembly, the report added.

“This country is found to be declining due to alienating rhetoric against “atheists” and “humanists” voiced in 2014 by the prime minister, as well as ongoing legal disputes over the freedoms of religious minorities contributing to interreligious tension,” stated the report

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Batu Sumpah dan Sabah

Semalam pemimpin DAP Sabah Jimmy Wong dan Chan Foong Hin, dan juga Ahli Parlimen Bukit Mertajam, Steven Sim dan saya masuk ke Kampong Mempulut untuk menyaksikan upacara penegakan replika Batu Sumpah ke-2 di kawasan pedalaman Sabah.

Kg Mempulut terletak di bawah Kawasan Parlimen Pensiangan. Penduduk di sana sangat miskin. Penduduk di sana pernah minta lampu jalan daripada pihak kerajaan, BN kemudian mendirikan tiang lampu jalan di kampung tersebut sebelum PRU 13 tetapi tanpa diberikan bekalan eletrik.

Semalam kami masuk ke kampung pada pukul 5 petang. Pada mulanya, kenderaan kami disambut oleh pasukan motosikal pemuda kampung di tepi jalan. Selepas kami sampai ke kampung, kami pula disambut oleh kumpulan penari Murut dengan pakaian tradisi Murut.

Kami nampak kehadiran polis berpakaian seragam dan kereta polis di kampung dekat dengan tapak ceramah kami bila kereta kami masuk ke kampung. Saya diberitahu oleh seorang penduduk kampung bahawa kehadiran polis telah menakutkan sesetengah orang kampung yang ingin hadir dalam upacara perasmian batu sumpah dan ceramah kami.

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DAP leader Lim Kit Siang said Putrajaya had a ‘funny way’ of celebrating Human Rights Day after United States Ambassador to Malaysia Joseph Y. Yun expressed support for human rights in Malaysia. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, December 11, 2014.

Putrajaya came under criticism today for summoning the United States Ambassador to Malaysia Joseph Y. Yun over his remarks on the government’s decision to retain the Sedition Act.

DAP stalwart Lim Kit Siang said Putrajaya had a “funny way” of celebrating Human Rights Day after Yun expressed support for human rights in Malaysia.

“What was Yun’s offence? In an interview with Malaysiakini, Yun said that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s decision to retain the Sedition Act raised human rights concerns,” he said in a statement.

Yun had said on December 6 that the US was “puzzled” over Malaysia’s decision to retain the act.
His comments, however, did not go down well with Putrajaya, prompting Foreign Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Anifah Aman to summon the envoy to explain his country’s position on the government’s decision to keep the draconian Sedition Act.

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Sarawak Christians are fuming over the desecration of the seized Bibles which were returned last month. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, December 9, 2014.

Iban and Bahasa Malaysia-speaking Christians in Sarawak are seething over the stamping of Malay and Iban-language Bibles with a warning by the Selangor religious authorities, saying the act of desecration had marred any sincerity over the release of the holy books which were seized earlier this year.

Pastor Graman Ujang, the chairman of Gempuru Besai Sarawak, the largest Christian grouping representing 6,000 Iban-speaking congregations in the state, said the Selangor religious authorities had showed bad faith in the return of the Bibles.

“It showed they were not sincere in wanting to return them. They did so because they were pressured to.

“But why on earth did they do that, stamping the Bibles?” Ujang asked.
Ujang said he also felt embarrassed because the stamping showed Muslims in Malaysia were so weak in their faith that they would go to such lengths to reassure themselves.

“It also shows they just don’t have any respect for other religions,” Ujang told The Malaysian Insider.

The Bibles contain the Arabic word “Allah” for God. In the Alkitab and Bup Kudus, the Iban-language Bible, God is referred to as “Allah Taala”.

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Malaysians must laud the recent statement by prominent Malays in speaking their mind, but it will take more than the 25 Malaysians to ensure shrill voices do not dominate the national discourse. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, December 8, 2014.

It might be a little, but not too late, to finally see some prominent Malays speak up against the national discourse on race and religion that has been going pear-shaped recently.

Twenty-five of them, retired top civil servants and personalities that helped take Malaysia to punch above its weight-class in the 1990s and early 2000s, sent an open letter last night to ask moderate Malaysians to stand up and be counted.

“Given the impact of such vitriolic rhetoric on race relations and political stability of this country, we feel it is incumbent on us to take a public position,” Datuk Noor Farida Ariffin, former Malaysian ambassador to the Netherlands, said in a statement issued on behalf of the 25 signatories last night.

In their 19-paragraph statement, they succinctly described the need for a rational dialogue, spoke out against minister Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom’s comments on a recent transgender case, and importantly, told Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to provide leadership.
Malaysians have to laud them for their stand, for their candour, and their courage to speak their mind. But it will take more than 25 Malaysians who have seen the world in their time to ensure shrill voices do not dominate the national discourse.

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KUALA LUMPUR: The Opposition is perplexed that Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin is seeing double on Washington, if not acting out a bundle of contradictions, following US Vice-President’s Joe Biden’s recent tweet expressing concern on the state of the democracy and Judiciary in Malaysia.

“Why didn’t Muhyiddin tell Obama to ‘shut up and mind his own business’ when the United States President praised Malaysia at the United Nations General Assembly in September and yet bristle with rage over Biden’s tweets? asked DAP elder statesman Lim Kit Siang in a statement. “Muhyiddin should have told the US President that Malaysia does not need his praises!”

He was commenting on Muhyiddin flying into a rage at Biden’s tweets expressing concerns on the Sedition Act and other laws being used to stifle the opposition.

Biden also expressed the hope that Anwar Ibrahim’s final appeal against his Sodomy II conviction would give Malaysia a chance to put things right and promote confidence in its democracy and judiciary.

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