KINI ROUNDUP | Key headlines you may have missed yesterday, in brief.
1. UN Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights Philip Alston said Malaysia’s absolute poverty rate was not 0.4 percent but was closer to 15 percent (or 937,500 households).
Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the government will study the claim, while Economic Affairs Minister Mohamed Azmin Ali said Malaysia stands by its figures and called Alston's remarks "wholly unacceptable and irresponsible."
2. Perak cabinet member Paul Yong was charged at the Ipoh Session Criminal 1 Court with raping an Indonesian domestic worker under his employment.
He has pleaded not guilty to the charge. However, he refused to go on leave despite being advised to do so by the menteri besar.
3. The first of two proposed rallies in "Little India", Brickfields, took place without much incident, although two participants were detained to give their statements.
Organiser Shankar Ganesh said that the rally was being held to express opposition to the idea of introducing khat lessons for Tamil school Year 4 students. He later announced that another rally was cancelled following an intervention by PKR president Anwar Ibrahim.
4. PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang blamed Malaysiakini and DAP for the antagonism towards controversial preacher Dr Zakir Naik.
5. The Malaysia Sports Challenge is just one of the activities under the initiative of the National Sports Month, which also includes Hari Sukan Negara (National Sports Day). The Ministry of Youth and Sports clarified this after criticism of the language chosen for the programme.
6. Even though he was convicted in the past of possessing over 30,000 photographs and videos of child pornography, Nur Fitri Azmeer Nordin has served his sentence and deserves a second chance, said UKM, where he is pursuing his PhD.
7. Water, Land and Natural Resources Minister Xavier Jayakumar paid tribute to the Orang Asli community, saying they are the “eyes and ears of the authorities” in keeping away the poachers and plunderers of jungle treasures.
8. Nik Mohd Hasyudeen Yusoff was appointed the new group managing director and chief executive officer of Tabung Haji (Pilgrims Fund Board) effective Sept 1.