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Who cares if Anwar can be trusted?

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vox populi big thumbnail 'Whether that is going to be a mistake or not, I think, at this time, the people may just want to take a gamble and let popularity decide the winner - which may or may not be the right choice.'

On Can Anwar be trusted?

Peter Yew: Under the current political climate and the choices available to us plus the disappointment we experienced over the past 25 years, do you think we really care if Anwar can be trusted?

I think all we want is to have a change of government, any government. I think the people are tired of BN’s style of running the country and are willing to give Pakatan a chance. Whether that is going to be a mistake or not, I think, at this time, the people may just want to take a gamble and let popularity decide the winner which may or may not be the right choice.

Anu N: I refer in particular to this paragraph: ‘And what if he reneges on his promises – promises that have been widely-publicised domestically and internationally? Think of it this way. If Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi could suffer so badly politically in such a short span of time because of his failure to keep his promises of reform, imagine how much more Anwar would suffer if he didn't live up to expectations.’

I think a salient point missing from the discourse is that we no longer live in a climate of political fear. Many of us have grown up with drummed-in fears of a repeat 1969 (from our parents, not history books) and Operasi Lallang. It was the politics of fear that had for so long kept BN in power. What is there to say that should Anwar come into power he will maintain his promises simply because he fears he could be voted out?

He could just take a leaf from Dr M and keep Malaysians in their place the same way his mentor, the man who handpicked him for succession, had done. Strangely, despite the Hindraf 5 ISA arrests and the closing of a newspaper that printed the Danish cartoons, the man-in-the-street today under the Abdullah administration is less afraid than he was pre-2004.

Promises are easy to make, as we have seen in Malaysia, but politics is a strange animal with strange bedfellows and anything can happen. Until Anwar apologises for his mistakes while in the cabinet, few will buy whole his 'changed man' mantra.

On Dr M restless in retirement

Dann-munti: Did Dr M really mean by what he said in Japan about non-Malays making unfair demands? Pity this octogenarian, he doesn’t seem to understand what he is talking about. Malay special rights are here to stay, no Malaysian ought to question this. Nevertheless, a government championing such rights indiscriminately at the painful expense of others would find it difficult to last. Dr M should know this better than any body else.

By incessantly (and often unnecessarily) harping on sensitive and emotional issues, he is not going to get what he hopes for. Instead, he will remain the main culprit if any racial conflict happens to raise its dirty countenance again. Don’t forget, history will show no mercy on the obnoxious.

Ratormo: Tun Mahathir (TM) should be retitled as the Father of Destruction (of Malaysia). In his 22 years of ‘ berjuang untuk bangsa, agama dan negara ’, he destroyed everything that constituted Malaysia. He destroyed the constitution, democracy, freedom, reduced the sultans’ power, the civil service (including the police, military, judiciary, academia, teaching and other government agencies), unity amongst the races, religious tolerance etc including the economy. Civil servants during TM’s time - and even now - are more keen to play politics in order to get into a position of power where they can line up their pockets with the department’s budget and behave like little emperors when questioned by others.

TM’s idea of modernising the country was to throw money at it. With full control of the national coffers (and Petronas’ purse), anyone could have built the largest this and the tallest that but only a true leader, a man of dignity and honour will develop human capital (and this is Malaysia’s greatest asset) . But instead, he and his band of crooks chased away human capital and sabotaged our country’s education system. How sad. In time, if we ever succeed in restoring our nation to its rightful place with a good and decent government, TM will earn the title ‘Father of Destruction’.

HSW: Dear Tun, for the sake of all Malaysians, please stop your attacks on Pak Lah. You have done your 'national service' so it is time for you to retire in peace. Let the future generations think fondly of what you have achieved.

On Cheras saga continues - toll operator vows to rebuild wall

Fed-up: It has become clear as day why the police involved in the Cheras blockade took such obvious side with Grand Saga all this while. Zainal Abidin Ali, the executive director of Grand Saga, is non-other than the former police chief of Dang Wangi! My goodness! Isn’t it obvious now? I hope somebody takes action on this obvious connection.

Brian Fong: I have been wondering why the police and FRU are so quick in taking action against the residents and come out in full force with water cannons and tear gas as if there is a major riot on-going. Apparently Grand Saga's executive director Zainal Abidin Ali happens to be the former Dang Wangi police chief. Hmm...

On Batu Puteh: Malaysia was 'lackadaisical'

Ross: For a number of days I have been wondering the consequences of the ICJ decision and went further and researched and discussed the same with a number of knowledgeable people. Some of the comments coming out are nonsense but some of the following points should be considered.

1. The Middle Rocks have been handed to Malaysia. They are situated south of Batu Puteh. This means that neither country can draw a straight corridor between land and the outcrop and say we own this corridor as both corridors will cross.

2. There are definitions of what is an island and what is an outcrop and what is a ledge in relation to the boundary of the country.

3. The same also applies to the exclusive economic zones.

Broadly speaking, only an island can have an economic zone. The other two do not. It is possible, therefore, that Singapore only owns the outcrop of Batu Puteh. In which case there is no big deal. We hope some experts to shed light on the principles accepted by the United Nations before we speak out of turn and completely out of context.

On Residents group ticks off Mohd Khir, don't talk rubbish

Francis T Rozario: I think the Selangor state government should hold a press conference and call for Khir Toyo's assets declaration to be made public. What good is it to make an asset declaration year after year and claim it is with the federal government, kept under lock and key? Is this a case of ornithological specimens of identical plumage invariably congregating in close proximity? The assets could accumulate like they did for one of his infamous state assembly persons and yet the government found nothing wrong with it.

I think before Khir talks anymore in the state assembly, he should cleanse himself - he should ask the federal government to make public every asset declaration form he sent in each year he was in office, or keep his mouth shut. We all suspect hat his wealth grew by leaps and bounds since he became menteri besar. He lacks public accountability and he is refusing to account for public money received and spent. What is his he hiding or who is he protecting?

The Selangor state government should report Khir Toyo to the ACA immediately, I am sure they have a case here. Although I have very little trust in the ACA, a report should be made and the report should be made public. That is the way to put pressure upon the ACA to reveal the details of the investigation.

On Koh in no hurry to meet Lim

Peter Ooi: I used to hold Koh Tsu Khoon in high esteem. I regard him as a sincere chief minister who always has a heart for Penang people. With this in mind, I find it strange that he is reluctant to meet Lim Guan Eng to discuss such pressing issues like the alleged land scam, PGCC and the the controversial dissolution of the Pertubuhan Bunga Tanjung.

If those three issues are not pressing, I wonder what is. The alleged land scam and controversial PGGC are costing Penang millions of ringgit which could have been used to improve quality of life for her people. I wonder if he really feels how Penang people feel for the losses.

By the same token, I wonder if the Persatuan Bunga Tanjung could not find a better option to donate their remaining funds. If it found it fit not to pass it on to the incoming members, there are plenty of non-profit organisations in Penang alone which are sorely in need of money. Only a phone call to these institutions, and they will come running for the money. Sadly, now none of them stands to gain from the remaining funds.

Yes, Koh Tsu Khoon, you have to explain to Lim Guan Eng all these issue if you and Gerakan truly have the Penang people at heart. Lim Guan Eng has to clear up all the problems before he can move forward.

On All Malaysians have special rights

J Loong: Very well written. This article should be compulsory reading by all, especially the politicians in all parties. I hope the article can be translated into all languages, so that we can all see beyond the shortsightedness of race superiority or rights, whatever race that may be.

I believe we must provide assistance to the marginalised. If the marginalised are Malays, help them. But do not hijack that objective and turn it to schemes to make millionaires for a select few while leaving the majority of Malays still marginalised.

In any family, parents sometimes assist one or two children more than the others out of necessity. But if this assistance or favoritism is prolonged, will it ever be a happy family? Will it be the most achieving family? We can see the consequences. Can the politicians not see the consequences for Malaysia?

On S'gor to aid ISA families

AM Sufi: To Menteri Besar Khalid Ibrahim, I read of your decision to offer financial and humanitarian support to the families of the ISA detainees. You are absolutely right in making that decision and it is also an absolutely justifiable and good use of state funds for these are Malaysians who are innocent victims of a cruel situation that is not of their making and which is totally outside and beyond their control.

While necessary to be supportive neighbours, it is not good enough for Malaysians to merely help the natural disaster victims in Burma and China and elsewhere in the world while ignoring those who are just as needy at one's own door-step.

I have no intention to patronise you or be condescending as I can clearly see you to be a competent man in matters of business and governance, but Khalid Ibrahim, I have to take my hat off to you as you have managed to impress me with your gesture of goodwill, kindness and insightful stewardship.

Malaysia needs strong human leaders like you and I wish you well on your journey toward an exemplary Malaysia for all.

On Malaise in our public hospitals

Shan Ganeson: Ahmad Sobri's review on Malaysian cardiology gives an insight to the poor planning within Health Ministry as far as cardiology is concerned. His comment: ‘The heart unit at the UH today is more renowned for fistfights and slapping incidents with no trainees forthcoming. While heart units around the world progressed by leaps and bounds, the UH unit stagnated and, in fact, regressed. The country’s pioneer unit fell victim to medical politics and to the tantrums of the remaining surgeon’.

If true, then the Education/Health ministries must investigate and resolve issues. What are the mortality/morbidity statistics of by-pass/angioplasty procedures in UH compared with IJN or other heart centres? Does anyone review the performance of these institutions? What groundwork has been laid down for human resource training? If the lone surgeon is underperforming, show him the exit. If he has - despite constraints - done well, then lend him the support to let UH regain its glory.

On Why can't we use the word 'Allah'?

Kenef1: I am not Malaysian but I am a Muslim. To go back to the subject matter, Allah is not a word or term; Allah is the name of the Muslims’ God or Tuhan. In addition, Islam does not recognise other peoples’ beliefs as religions but as a sort of belief. In the same token, Islam does not recognise other peoples’ gods. However, Islam respects other peoples’ beliefs and their so-called their gods. If their gods have names, then we call them according to their name. We can’t call the Muslims’’s God using the name of the non-Muslims’ god. The non-Muslims also can’t call and name their gods with the Islamic name, ie, ‘Allah’. Finally, Islam’s God is the one who named Himself ‘Allah’.

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