This will warn our visitors to Malaysia during the Visit Malaysia Year 2007 so that they can avoid visiting the country during the haze season between July and October.
HL Too: Since the haze is occurring with regularity every year for the past decade and since the Ministry of Environment has already warned that the haze is likely to occur again next year between July and October, we should declare a haze season. This will warn our visitors to Malaysia during the Visit Malaysia Year 2007 so that they can avoid visiting the country during the haze season.
Tourists visiting Malaysia after being seduced by the "Malaysia Truly Asia" advertisements can be forgiven for thinking the Malaysians are only interested in getting their greedy hands on their hard-earned money with nary a care for their health. I've just visited a friend who is spending his holidays inside a hotel in Kuala Lumpur. His asthmatic son spend the afternoon in the hotel swimming pool and was coughing and wheezing the whole night.
If we want to our visitors to regard Malaysians as a warm friendly and caring lot instead of a bunch of callous and greedy people, we should advertise and tell our visitors not to come to Malaysia during our hazy season.
MO8: I agree with Lim Ah Kek, former MCA deputy president and leader of Team B, that his opposition to the Nanyang purchase had caused a great financial loss to MCA. I should also congratulate the party leadership for taking the bold step of cutting its losses with the sale of half of its Nanyang shares. Frankly, I would have thought that MCA through Huaren Holdings should have sold all the shares and stop its own "bleeding".
You would have to accept the fact that the "gamble", as indeed it was a gamble, has not paid off. Of course, you may cherish the hope that Nanyang will make a profit. It is a great risk to hope for a turnaround when the writings are on the wall that it may bring greater losses and further "bleeding". Will the leadership then decide to unload the rest of the shares in future? It is left to be seen.
Charles F Moreira: I was in Singapore when the sale of the Nanyang stake to Sin Chew took place and I learned about it in the Sun on the way back. When Huaren Holdings bought the Nanyang group, people complained it put too much media power in the hands of the MCA, when Huaren sells down its majority stake and loses control, people complain it puts too much media power in the hands of one group.
Some people are upset and see Sin Chew as a media monopoly and some feel Tiong Hiew King's media conglomerate won't survive five years but who else could have bought Nanyang or wanted to buy it?
I guess complaining is the great Malaysian pastime. Malaysia would be a terribly boring place if we had nothing to complain about. Given the reality of the situation, people can't have their cake and eat it at the same time, so in my humble opinion, it's better Nanyang be owned by an independent party than a party connected to a ruling political entity. Is there a better alternative?
Sadirah K: Friendship is important. I lost a dear Malay Muslim friend this year. He would take great exception to the statement of the Perak mufti. My friend would come to my house and he would always be my honoured guest. Our friendship transcended rules and regulations that were interpreted narrowly because our friendship was based on trust and deep respect.
I feel for the Perak mufti for he may belong to that category of Malaysians who may not have the privilege of having a very good Indian Malaysian or Chinese Malaysian friend. For if he had, they would have helped him to transcend his narrow interpretations. This is part of the effect of racial polarisation.
Lee: At last, Mohd Fauzi has apologised after all the pressure from the non-Muslims and Muslims, police reports and demonstration. The company has also disclaimed the circular. The question I am asking is - did Mohd Fauzi used the company's letterhead to issue the no Deepavali greetings to the Hindu community? If so, an internal investigation should be conducted and a show-cause letter issued on why disciplinary action should not be taken against him, especially a high-ranking officer, i.e head of a department.
SK: We have read in the newspapers about the divorce settlements of some very highly esteemed dignitaries. The settlement amounts to millions of ringgit. We have also read reports in the press of ministers whose homes have been robbed and the loss of jewelry amounting to several thousands. We have councillors who live beyond their means as do policemen, custom officials and immigration staff. Their lifestyle will reveal that all this living is not 'halal' by any means.
All Malaysians will respond to helping those in the poor and underprivileged sectors. However, the fact is that the NEP has been exploited and the bureaucracy has become polarised with corruption thus causing immense imbalance. The government must act to correct this because the wealthy are getting richer with NEP.
Once we perceive this as an inter-ethnic issue, we will also miss the need for corrective measures that ensures that poor Malays do really benefit. As someone recently said to me, "You have to be a non-Malay to realise and feel how you are treated". This is a position that is difficult to appreciate but one that must be addressed.
SJB: To me, the NEP two-prong strategy to eradicate poverty amongst the races and to restructure the society in Malaysia is a noble intent indeed. The early implementation in the 1970s seems proper, judging from some success of the bumiputeras; however the previous government seems to mishandled it and the current government should correct it
This point is more important than the debate on who has got the right percentage. These are just arithmetic.
Klang Boy: I disagree with Khir Toyo's view that it is okay for Zakaria to be reappointed Klang municipal councillor. That is bullshit to high heavens.
We have a member of the state government putting up an illegal structure - it should be promptly torn down like the 'illegal temples' in Selangor. Doesn't Klang 'Clown' Council have strict bylaws on this? There should be no exceptions. To allow Zakaria's bungalow to stand is to sent a message that there are two sets of laws, one for the poor temple keeper and one for the rich and well-connected.
Zakaria should also be fined for illegally erecting a structure and charged in court for not following the rules that he has sworn to uphold. Furthermore, since he failed his duties and brought the entire town of Klang to disrepute, he should be barred from holding office.