Selangor the First State to Approve Swiftlet Licence


SHAH ALAM, 8 Nov: Selangor became the first state to approve the granting of licence for the farming and operating industry of swiftlet nests through an intensive package offer that is fair to existing farmers and operators, with effect from 1 January 2014.

Executive Councillor for Local Government, Studies and Research, Datuk Teng Chang Khim, said that implementation of the policy was decided by the State Government Council Meeting (MMKN) after holding a dialogue session with associations and operators of the industry on 25 September.

He said that the implementation will be done through the enforcement of Rearing of Swiftlet and Manufacturing of Swiftlets’ Nest By-laws 2013 in all Local Authorities in the state of Selangor.

“In the consideration process, the state government took into account several factors including the interests and problems of operators, in addition to the interest of the public in terms of hygiene, disease control, sound pollution, negative impact on property prices as well and building a comfortable city,” he said in a press statement at his office here today.

At the same time, Teng explained several key points of the implementation of the licencing policy which needs to be observed by swiftlet farmers and operators as decided at the MMKN.

“All breeders and operators on agricultural land will be granted licence starting 1 January, 2014. Breeders and operators of existing business premises will receive licences starting form 1 January 2014 to 31 December 2016, while breeders and operators on paddy fields will be given licences from 1 January 2014 to 1 December 2020.

“For breeders and operators in business premises as well as paddy fields, they will be given incentives which includes licensing fees, free quite rent and assessment for five years at the new site if they move their premises to existing farming sites within the period the licence is granted,” he said.

Chang Kim said that the granting of licence is subject to conditions provided for under the by-laws and all operators and breeders have to submit licence application no lter than 31 December this year.

“Licence application for operation in business premises and paddy fields, whether existing or new, will not be considered after 31 December this year and all applications will be submitted to the relevant local authorities.

“We hope that with the granting of this licence, breeders and operators of the swiftlet nest industry in Selangor will grow in an orderly manner, thus benefiting the economic development of the state,” he said.

Selangor to Begin Klang River Development in March 2014


SHAH ALAM, 8 Nov: The state government will start the redevelopment of the Klang river, including cleaning and upgrading, in March 2014.

Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim said that the first effort which is to be taken seriously is the cleaning of the river and currently, there are several planning to be initiated in 2014.

Abdul Khalid said that the state government should first wait and examine the development of the Klang river because many have come forward to help in the upgrading, including several companies from Korea and China.

“I think that this development would likely occur in March 2014. Currently there are several work papers, (and) our first effort is to clean up the Klang river because there is a lot of garbage in it,” he said.

Abdul Khalid said this at a press conference after attending the Selangor State Headman (Penghulu), Traditional Village Heads and Members of Village Development and Security (JKKK) Assembly here at the Silver Jubilee Hall in the State Secretariat Building today.

However, Abdul Khalid said that the conditions imposed on the governments cannot be met by the state government for several reasons.

“Too many people want to help us fix the Kang river, including some from abroad. But they do not really want to develop the Klang river, but they are dreaming of the land next to the area, so I have postponed it.

“If I consented to it, I fear that we will not have the land. They want to beautify the Klang river so that is anyone wants to go to Kuala Lumpur from Port Klang to Masjid Jamek can do so by boat.

“However, to fund this development, the land next to the river would have to be handed over to them. The village people would be angry with me,” he said.

Abdul Khalid said that the state government is waiting for cleaning and upgrading of the river in Kuala Lumpur to finish before starting the Klang river clean-up efforts.

“I will wait for Kuala Lumpur to upgrade the upper part of the river. If we start cleaning, dirt from that area would reach here. But plans are ready and next year, it can begin,” he said.

Busted Edition: SMS ‘Vote PAS to Enter Heaven, Vote BN to go to Hell’ Came from BN


SHAH ALAM, 8 Nov: A Short Message System (SMS) text ‘calling’ for voters to vote for PAS in the 13th General Election (GE-13) as a ‘ticket to heaven’ was not actually sent by the PAS election machinery, instead, it was sent by Barisan Nasional (BN).

The message also claimed that choosing UMNO would cause the individual to enter hell, it it was clearly aimed to show that the message was purportedly sent by PAS, thus giving the impression that it is an extremist party.

The BN machinery tactic to gain votes in a dirty manner, despite being read by some of the people, has yet to be proven.

However, such tactics were ultimately proved by the Coordinator of Youth Solidarity Malaysia (SAMM), Badrul Hisham Shaharin, when Muslims in Malaysia were set out to celebrate the new year of the Islamic calendar; 1435 Hijra.

The tactic was uncovered when a member of SAMM in Kedah received two different messages from the same number, 019-5791297, which i believed to have been sent by the BN campaign machinery.

“The first message was received during the GE-13 campaign period and I believe that the forgot or assumed that no one would notice the second message before the recent Ma’al Hijra celebration.

“For mobile phones that are using the Android system, every SMS received will cause the previous message to also be displayed if it is not deleted.

“Indeed, God wanted to show this when the SAMM member did not delete the first message and when they sent the second message, automatically the previous message was displayed. This is known as ‘sepandai-pandai tupai melompat’ (as clever as the squirrel hops, it will one day, eat dirt),” said Badrul Hisham when contacted by Selangor Kini yesterday.

The first message received in May, says, “Think of heaven when voting. Vote PAS to enter heaven, vote Umno to go to hell. PAS is Allah’s party (Hezbollah), Umno is the devil’s party”.

The second message received before the Ma’al Hijra read, “Salaam. Happy Ma’al Hijrah 1435H from Barisan Nasional “United Together in Moving Forward”.

Badrul Hisham said that BN should have thought of a smarter tactic compared to the defamatory text.

“Voters are now smart, many know this tactic but BN likes sending tactics that instigates PAS ulamas. The same method was used to instigate PAS leaders by sending SMS messages in the recent Bukit Limau By-Election,” he said.

Malaysia to Face Lawsuit if TPPA is Signed


KUALA LUMPUR, 7 Nov: The Malaysian Government will face the risk of lawsuits from giant firms if they insist on implementing the investment dispute settlement (ISDS) by signing the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).

Member of Parliament for Lembah Pantai, Nurul Izzah, said that although many believe that the ISDS is important because it has been adopted in many countries, but the mechanism would only benefit foreign investors and cause local investors to fall into the second class.

She said that the government has been urged to create a special fund in case Malaysia is sued by giant companies at a high cost, in addition to advising them to accept the TPPA post-signing risk.

“This is a serious problem if the agreement is signed without knowing the burden to be shouldered by the country and it would affect future generations as well as the Malaysian economy.

“Leaders of Pakatan Rakyat (PR) have met with ISDS experts and we think that we cannot accept it without carefully looking at the black and white of every chapter of the TPPA to be signed by Malaysia,” she said in a press conference at Parliament today.

She said that PR has never rejected any trade dealings; however the implementation of the law may entrap many parties and should not be adopted.

She said that the TPPA should be stopped, especially since the United States have been found to be spying on Malaysia by using their embassy and high commission in Kuala Lumpur.

“We must stop this, especially after finding out what is being done by the US to Malaysia, and the government should seek clarification.

“Malaysia should emulate the European Union and stop US banking access after knowing that they were conducting surveillance on the country,” she said.

US Spying on Malaysia, Immediately Stop TPPA Negotiations


KUALA LUMPUR, 6 Nov: The Federal Government has been urged to halt talks on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) with the United States and Australia following the surveillance activities conducted on Malaysia.

Member of Parliament for Klang, Charles Santiago, said that the action was necessary to show Malaysia’s dissatisfaction on surveillance as a violation of human rights of the citizens of this country.

“Instead, the government merely sent a protest note which was embarrassing and shows that the Malaysian government is weak.

“Even Najib merely responded that he will wait for response from the US about what is happening in Malaysia,” said Charles.

He said this in a press conference here at the Parliament lobby, which was also participated by the Member of Parliament for Bayan Baru, Sim Tze Tzin.

Last week, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs sent a memo of protest after news of spying by the two countries on Malaysia was exposed by the media.

Tze Tzin, in a statement, urged for Najib and the Foreign Affairs Minister, Datuk Seri Anifah Aman, to urge the American and Australian embassies to explain the real situation to the Federal Government.

“We hope that the government will seek an explanation from both the embassies this week and that they will give us an answer in Parliament next week.

“This matter cannot be regarded as petty because it involves national sovereignty,” said Tze Tzin.

The two parliamentarians urged Najib, ad the Prime Minister, to rise up and protest strongly on the spying done.

Najib’s Monarchy Strategy to Dominate the Country’s Finances


SHAH ALAM, 5 Nov: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s move to add up to 43 times in provisions under the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) is seen as a full monarchy style strategy in efforts to dominate the country’s finances.

The Member of Parliament for Shah Alam, Khalid Samad, said that the strategy enables Najib to have an advantage of using taxpayers’ money as he wished without clear details and is is probably being used for the political survival of Barisan Nasional (BN).

“This way, the PMO would be like kings and sultans, with full control of everything and cannot be questioned. With this too, the country’s finances can be used to either enhance the image of the Prime Minister or ‘instant noodle’ projects of buying votes during the elections for BN’s victory,” he said when contacted by the Selangor Kini portal today.

He said said this when asked to comment on the exposure by the Member of Parliament for Kluang, Liew Chin Tong, regarding the allocation for the PMO which increased by 43 times since Najib led the country’s administration 2009.

In 2010, the total allocation for the PMO was only RM158 million, 0.3 percent of the total RM54 billion allocation for development, but it increased to RM6.8 billion, 15 percent of RM53 billion of the total allocation development for the year 2014.

Khalid, who is also the Selangor PAS Commissioner, said that Najib’s actions hide monetary expenditures under the PMO name, which is seen as being not transparent and irresponsible.

“It evidence that this is a desperate move by Najib in attempt to strengthen BN, which is seen as losing the people’s faith day by day, because this is seen as easier compared to placing it under other ministries that need to go through audits, compared to placing it under the PMO,” he said.

MOHA Urged to Issue a Cause Letter to Security Companies


SHAH ALAM, 5 Nov: The Ministry of Home Affairs (MOHA) has been urged to immediately issue a cause letter and revoke the licences of security companies involved in the robbery of a gold shop in Setapak last week.

The call was made because prior to this, the MOHA took drastic measures to revoke the licence of Kawalan Prima Sdn Bhd when a security guard of the company shot a banker dead at the Ambank in USJ2 last month.

Member of Parliament for Padang Serai, N.Surendran, said that the MOHA and the Inspector General of Police (IGP) should be responsible regarding the matter seeing that the authority to approve firearms is issued by them to security companies.

“The failure and responsibility lies with the MOHA and the IGP because the approval for firearms comes from the ministry concerned.

“This means that the problem is the MOHA’s failure to ensure that security companies given the licence have the ability and aptitude to perform their duty without committing crime,” he told the Selangor Kini portal today.

Surendran said that the inconsistent attitude in cancelling licences of security companies involved in any crime should be addressed because it involved the life of the public.

On 30 October, a security guard pointed a gun at his employer before starting business at the gold shop, prior to bringing a tray containing 100 necklaces, of which the value if uncertain, to the premises which is located at KL Festive City Mall.

Commenting on the alleged involvement of a former IGP in the security company, Surendran said that the MOHA needs to explain the matter in more detail.

According to the MStar portal, a search on the Security Services Association of Malaysia (PPKKM) shows that one of the member of the board of directors of the firm that hired the suspect is a former IGP.

The Astro Awani portal reported that the Filipino security guard has been arrested, together with his friend, at the Low Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT) airport and is being remanded for seven days starting from yesterday till 10 November.

The arrest has also been confirmed by the Kuala Lumpur Criminal Investigation Department Deputy Chief, Assistant Commissioner (ACP) Khairi Ahrasa and is being investigated under Section 117 of the Criminal Procedure Code.

Wong Chen: Tackle Crime Holistically


SHAH ALAM, 31 Oct: The crime problem should be addressed holistically instead of only focusing on law enforcement alone, stressed the Member of Parliament for Kelana Jaya, Wong Chen.

Wong Chen said, the economic aspect should also be given serious attention, like the enforcement of law, in curbing criminal activity in the country.

“Suppose one criminal commits armed robbery every day, the country will witness 365 criminal cases throughout the year.

“Imagine if 10 thousand criminals have the same commitment. How many police officers are required to handle this problem?” he asked when contacted by TVSelangor.

Wong Chen said that he urges for the Federal Government to be more concerned with a more efficient administrative management in providing a better economic environment for the masses.

The lives of the people, which is becoming more pressing due to the growing economic pressure, should be taken into account.

Wong Chen said, criminals in this country are committed in making crime a permanent career to a point of smuggling firearms from neighbouring countries.

“People who are desperate enough to risk tremendously would fall into the criminal arena. If the government continues to not be concerned with this matter, more people will fall into criminal activities.

“On this factor, the economy plays an important role because if job opportunities for the people are more secure, with favourable returns, crime will no longer be a career option,” he said.

PR to Visit Every State to Protest Against GST Implementation


KUALA LUMPUR, 28 Oct: Pakatan Rakyat (PR) will visit every state to protest against the implementation of the goods and services tax (GST) which was presented in the National Budget 2014 on 25 October

Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said the protest will be done because the Central Government should not implement the GST in the near future.

He said that the people should not be burdened with the GST in order to ‘pay’ for the national debt which has been increasing every year and he also expects that the GST will increase to eight percent by 2016.

“This is a crime and you let leakages and corruption be shouldered by the people. So we (PR) will fight relentlessly. This protest is also being done so that future generations do not have to shoulder the national debt.

“I want the young people to rise up and protest against the implementation because the GST is a burden which the people would be forced to shoulder. The GST can be implemented if it is done in a transparent manner, but not in the near future because corruption, wastage and leakages are rampant in this country.

“Pakatan is of the opinion that the GST cannot be implemented yet and should be reviewed until the income of the people is satisfactory, the tax collection is completely improves and until the economic position is more favourable,” he said in the budget debate 2014 in Parliament today.

Utusan Malaysia Urged to be More Ethical


SHAH ALAM, 24 Oct: The Umno-controlled newspaper, Utusan Malaysia, has been urged to be more responsible and ethical when reporting news by prioritising journalistic professionalism.

Senator Syed Husin Ali said the apology by the newspaper today proves that the allegation against him is unfounded.

He said, Utusan’s apology is for the defamation suit against the newspaper on the defaming accusation that he received RM500,000 to dissolve Parti Rakyat Malaysia and join Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) early year 2000.

Syed Husin who is also the former Vice President (PKR) said the condition was for Utusan to apologise by publishing an apology in the newspaper within 10 days from today.

“I leave the follow-up to my lawyer, L Bani Prakash and the amount of compensation to be received,” he said when contacted by TVSelangor today.

He said that there are two other defamation cases involving Utusan Malaysia regarding Zulkifli Nordin’s statement and expects the newspaper to make an appeal.

The case was over an article on page eight of the March 6, 2010 edition of the Utusan Malaysia under the headline “RM500,000: Syed Husin dicabar lapor polis” (RM500,000: Syed Husin challenged to report to police) and two other individuals regarding the article which defamed him.

Justice Su Geok Yam recorded the settlement statement Thursday in the presence of all parties.

Government urged to Investigate Loss of RM2 Billion in Tax Revenue due to Cigarette Smuggling


KUALA LUMPUR, 23 Oct: The Central Government has been urged to increase enforcement on cases of cigarette smuggling because the country has lost almost RM2 billion in duty tax revenue in a year.

Member of Parliament for Taiping, Nga Kor Ming said the loss does not include tax losses due to the smuggling of liquor into the country, which is expected to be greater than the amount mentioned.

He said based on a study by British American Tobacco Co, Malaysia has the highest rate in cigarette smuggling; one-third of cigarettes in the market are products of massive smuggling.

“Considering that the price of a box of cigarettes in the market is RM12.50, many smokers would choose to smoke smuggled cigarettes because it is cheaper although detrimental to their health.

“This phenomenon clearly shows that the government’s move to raise duty taxes on cigarettes or alcohol is ineffective in controlling smuggling of the goods,” he said in a press conference at the Parliament lobby today.

Kor Ming said the expensive price of cigarettes indirectly intensifies further smuggling causing consumers and the government to incur losses due to the weakness of authorities such as the Customs Department, the Royal Malaysian Police and the Immigration Department.

He said that the government should continue to place Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) agents in all law enforcement agencies to solve the problem.

“Based on the announcement by the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Robert Low, the government will hire 500 integrity officers next year to be placed in government agencies.

“To prevent smuggling, law enforcement agencies should be given priority to receive the placement of such officers to conduct internal checking so that they can provide useful information to prevent the growing concern of smuggling,” he said.

MACC Fails to Solve 99.3 Percent of Corruption Cases Despite Spending RM1 Billion


KUALA LUMPUR, 23 Oct: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has still filed to solve 99.3 percent of corruption cases despite receiving provisions of almost RM1 billion since 2009.

Member of Parliament for Kampar, Ko Chung Sen said based on the statement from the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Senator Datuk Paul Low Seng Kuan, only 75 percent or 1274 of the cases have been convicted compared to the 1692 c

He said, despite the increase in provisions and MACC staff, the number of prosecuted and convicted cases has decreased in the last three years.

“This is not a problem is there is no corruption in Malaysia. However, Malaysia has been identified as one of the countries with high corruption rates based on a report by the Wall Street Journal (December 2012) and Earnest and Young in September,” he said in a press conference at the Parliament lobby this morning.

He said, the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has also failed to eliminate corruption cases in Malaysia despite promising to do it in his speech at Commonwealth Club in San Fransisco, USA, in September.

“Reducing corruption is one of the six National Key Result Areas (NKRA) announced in January 2012.

“He promised to make corruption a matter of ‘the past’ in Malaysia,” he said.