Sunday, March 25, 2018

The recycled foreign media attacks on Malaysia  

Salleh Said Keruak

Over the last two days, the foreign media has been attacking Malaysia in general and Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak in particular. This is not surprising considering that Tun Dr Mahatir Mohamad said, “Kita terpaksalah guna saluran media luar, BN bolehlah mereka ada banyak duit untuk upah penganalisis dari Cambridge.”

Basically, what the foreign media is reporting are recycled reports from years ago about corruption, fraudulent elections, lack of democracy, denial of freedom of speech, and so on.  Since 30 years ago when Mahathir was the Prime Minister until today they are still saying the same thing. The opposition then virals these reports to give the impression that the whole world is against Malaysia.

What the foreign media fails to mention in these reports is about the many cases of corruption now being investigated by the MACC in the Pakatan Harapan states of Selangor and Penang, or about the allegations of cheating in GE13, such as 40,000 Bangladeshi voters, that were proven false. The foreign media reports are not balanced but very one-sided giving the impression that everything about the government is bad while the opposition are angels.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Justice and Common Sense has Prevailed

Salleh Said Keruak

Today, a motion submitted by Swiss MP Carlo Sommaruga, was debated in the Swiss National Assembly. YB Lim Kit Siang, YB Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, certain Malaysian online media portals and so-called independent NGO leaders, such as Cynthia Gabriel of C4, shamelessly tried to spread fake news, by linking the motion to 1MDB.

Their perfidy even extended to letters being written to Swiss MPs and representatives of the Malaysian NGOs taking a junket to Switzerland, to lobby Swiss MPs to support the motion.

The Swiss Parliament today voted to throw out the motion, with an overwhelming majority of 138 MPs voting against, and only 53 MPs voting in favour. Notwithstanding this, the position of 1MDB and the Ministry of Finance has been very clear- the motion is a concern only for the Swiss Government, Swiss Parliament and Swiss Courts. It has nothing to do with 1MDB as the monies being sought by the Opposition does not belong to 1MDB.

Fortunately, justice and common sense has prevailed, over fake news and biased reporting.

Why did Mahathir not do all that when he was PM?  

Salleh Said Keruak

Yesterday, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said if Pakatan Harapan comes to power in GE14 they will allow more press freedom and will remove laws that restrict freedom of expression. What exactly are those laws that Mahathir intends to remove? And why did he not introduce those changes when he was Prime Minister for 22 years and had the power to do so?

When the New York Twin Towers was attacked in 2001, Mahathir said the Petronas Twin Towers is still standing because Malaysia has the Internal Security Act or ISA and if the US also had laws like the ISA their Twin Towers would still be standing. And when the government wanted to abolish the ISA Mahathir was against that move. So how serious is Mahathir about more democracy for Malaysia when he was opposed to democracy when he was in power?

It was not too long ago that Mahathir said Malaysia is a guided democracy and can never be a full democracy like in the west because of the delicate and fragile racial and religious balance of Malaysia’s population. Mahathir argued that unrestricted freedom of expression would invite racial or religious strife. Therefore the western version of democracy and free speech cannot work in Malaysia. Has Mahathir done a U-turn on that as well?

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Is PPBM contesting under DAP?  

Salleh Said Keruak

There appears to be some confusion due to the contradicting statements by PPBM leaders. Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said he does not mind contesting under DAP’s banner whereas some PPBM leaders have said they do not mind contesting under PKR or PAN, which are seen as Malay parties, but not under DAP.

So which is it going to be or is Mahathir going to contest under DAP and the others are going to contest under PKR and PAN? Meanwhile Lim Kit Siang has said nothing regarding using DAP symbol.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Mahathir’s most puzzling confession  

Salleh Said Keruak

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s latest confession is most puzzling and contradicts what had been revealed in court 20 years ago. First of all, when it was revealed that Anwar Ibrahim had a ‘black eye’, Mahathir said most likely Anwar punched his own face. When it was finally revealed that the IGP had punched Anwar, Mahathir did not offer any apology or retract his allegation that Anwar had punched his own face.

Tun Hanif Omar then revealed that Mahathir had sent him to meet Anwar to advise Anwar that the police were aware of his sexual misconduct and other activities and that he should stop before it becomes public knowledge. Anwar never denied this meeting but said the meeting was about Hanif’s chairmanship of Genting and not about his sexual activities. This means Mahathir knew about Anwar’s activities long before August 1998 and he had sent Hanif to meet Anwar to discuss the matter.

If Mahathir thinks he can change history then he is badly mistaken. Everything that happened since 1997 is well documented mainly because of the Internet. Mahathir had 20 years to set the record straight if what had been reported is wrong. It is now too late to change history. Furthermore, all this talk about GE14 being the dirtiest election in history sounds like Pakatan Harapan knows they are not going to win so they are lining up an excuse to explain why they lost. They did this in GE13 and it was later proven that all the allegations of Bangladeshi voters and power failures were false.

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Pakatan Harapan’s poisoned cup  

Salleh Said Keruak

Pakatan Harapan’s election manifesto has been dressed up to appear like they are giving Malaysians milk and honey if they win the upcoming general election. However, in reality, they are giving us a poisoned cup to drink from. This is a case of short-term gain for long-term misery. As they say in America, there is no such thing as a free lunch. Someone, somewhere, has to pay for it. And Pakatan Harapan’s election manifesto means future generations have to pay for the folly of the current generation.

Just look at the promises Pakatan Harapan makes in what they are going to do in the first 100 days if they come to power. They are going to abolish the GST and reintroduce the SST when all over the world countries that do not yet have GST are introducing it. But they do not explain how much they will earn to replace the RM40 billion that will be lost once the GST is abolished. Where is the alternative revenue that will be needed to pay for goods and services and to develop the country going to come from? How much will the SST bring in? Abolishing the GST is not an issue. The issue is there is no explanation on the SST, which used to be higher than the GST.

The second promise on the list is to stabilise the price of petrol and reintroduce subsidies for petrol. Oil prices are subject to global fluctuations and all sorts of external events beyond Malaysia’s control influence this: such as supply and demand, production surpluses or shortages, wars, etc. Commodity prices cannot be controlled and once before when Malaysia tried to control the tin market it ended up in a disaster that is still being felt until today. On the one hand Pakatan Harapan attacks subsidies while on the other hand they want subsidies for petrol. Most economist would disagree that subsidies for petrol is a good thing.

Pakatan Harapan’s election manifesto is merely aimed at making the voters feel good. It is just like when they said in 2008 they will abolish highway tolls but after ten years in power they have still not abolished toll charges for highways in Selangor. Abolishing toll charges for highways means the Selangor State Government will need to pay billions in compensation to the concessionaires every year and that is economically not possible.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Pakatan’s manifesto mired in sensationalism  

Salleh Said Keruak

Pakatan Harapan’s 138-page manifesto makes a lot of promises such as giving more money to the rakyat. But how do they plan to replace the lost income? They also talk about giving the states the equivalent of 20% oil royalty. Will this mean grants and development budgets would now be reduced or is it an additional burden to grants and development budgets? How can the country afford that and where will the money come from? That question is never explained. We need to make promises that can be delivered, not just any promises to help win the election.

In that same manifesto Pakatan Harapan talks about restoring the ‘kedaulatan’ or sovereignty of the law. It is the actually the same thing the Opposition said back in 1988, and then in 1998, when Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was accused to practice rule by law instead of rule of law. Today, Pakatan Harapan are saying the same thing again and have chosen Tun Mahathir to lead the ‘change’. What logic is this?

Pakatan Harapan also says the sovereignty of the nation has been pawned (gadai). What does that this actually mean? Are they saying Malaysia no longer an independent country? This is again simple exaggeration and sensationalism. Malaysia is still merdeka and its sovereignty is intact.

We need to be realistic. The fact is that Pakatan’s manifesto is big on words but small in substance. With reduced income and increased spending, Pakatan is not going to deliver all their promises and still develop Malaysia.

We must build our nation on proven plans, not recycled promises.