Kartika ditemui oleh Ketua Wanita KEADILAN

Ketua Wanita KEADILAN, Zuraida Kamaruddin telah menemui Kartika di kediamannya di Kuala Kangsar siang tadi.

Dalam pertemuan tersebut, Kartika telah menegaskan bahawa beliau tetap dengan keputusannya untuk dihukum menurut undang-undang syariah.

Turut bersama Zuraida Kamaruddin ialah Naib Ketua Wanita, Noorsham Abu Samah dan EXCO Wanita KEADILAN, Rozaini Mohd Rosli.

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Apabila mendekati tarikh 31hb Ogos, ingatan kita akan mengimbas kembali rentetan peristiwa dan perjuangan rakyat yang berkemuncak dengan Kemerdekaan. Tarikh tersebut terungkap sebagai tarikh keramat ,menjanjikan kebebasan daripada cengkaman penjajah dan menyelamatkan martabat hidup rakyat.

Persoalan yang menerjah kita semua ialah; bagaimana kita menghayati makna tarikh tersebut hari ini. Pergulatan ini menjadi penentu kepada persoalan makna diri kita sebagai rakyat Malaysia.Tekad baru untuk memahami makna diri Malaysia sebagai bangsa merdeka juga menuntut kita untuk memahami bagaimana kita menjadi tidak merdeka; bagaimana kita hilang kemerdekaan sebelum kita memperolehinya kembali.

Lebih dua ribu tahun yang lalu, Brutus bertanya warga Kota Rom “siapakah yang begitu hina sehingga mahu hidup sebagai hamba ?” Ceasar mahu memiliki kuasa yang tidak terbatas. Nafsunya sebegitu besar dan mahu memastikan Rom dalam genggamannya.

Pertentangan antara Brutus dengan Ceaser adalah pertentangan antara kebebasan menentang nafsu kekuasan tidak terbatas. Sejak negara kita merdeka kita masih bergelut dengan pertentangan ini. Kebebasan – kebebasan bersuara, kebebasan media, kebebasan institusi kehakiman sentiasa mahu disekat oleh penguasa. Oleh itu kita menginsafi hanya bangsa yang pernah melalui gelita penjajahan akan mengerti makna cahaya kemerdekaan. Bagitu juga, hanya diri yang pernah kebebasannya diragut akan menghargai nilai kebebasan.

Syarahan Perdana Professor Dr. Syed Muhammad Naguib al-Attas yang berjudul Islam Dalam Sejarah Dan Kebudayaan Melayu juga menghuraikan dengan panjang lebar peranan paksi tauhid sebagai aqidah menambat keyakinan baru yang menolak faham tahyul dan perhambaan, seterusnya menjadi pelantar kepada pemikiran yang berakar dengan tradisi aqliyah dan mencernakan budaya segar dengan bahasa Melayu sebagai pertuturan kepustakaan(lingua franca) rantau ini. Ratusan tahun berlalu yang sewajarnya tambah memperkukuh dan memantapkan semangat dan keyakinan baru tersebut.

Cantik sungguh puteri Palembang,
Sayang bersunting bunga pudak;
Betapa keras dilambung gelombang,
Kucacak tiang, kulayar jua.

Manakala melangkaui separuh abad kemerdekaan, kita rakyat Malaysia sewajarnya mempunyai kesedaran betapa Bahasa Melayu bukan sekadar bahasa pasar, bahasa komunikasi basahan untuk berjual beli. Bahasa Melayu adalah bahasa ilmu, bahasa tamadun dan bahasa untuk mengungkapkan pengalaman kemanusian yang paling mendalam dan luhur. Bahasa Melayu telah menjadi bahasa intelektual dan kerohanian untuk umat Islam, makanya Bahasa Melayu juga seharusnya menjadi bahasa intelektual dan kerohanian umat Budha, Hindu, Kristian dan lain-lain keyakinan.

Bahasa Melayu yang saya sebutkan di sini bukanlah bahasa milik orang Melayu semata-mata. Bahasa Melayu adalah milik rakyat dan bangsa Malaysia yang berketurunan Melayu, Cina, India, Kadazan, Dayak dan lain-lain. Bahasa Melayu adalah milik semua rakyat Malaysia.

Kemerdekaan mestilah tidak terperangkap dengan bahana dari politik sempit dan kelam sesebuah parti politik tertentu. Kemerdekaan perlu di lihat dari perspektif rakyat keseluruhannya; perjuangan pelbagai kaum, menggunakan pelbagai wadah, dan melibatkan pelbagai aliran pemikiran. Sejarah ternyata mengajar kita bahawa Perjuangan Menuntut Kemerdekaan menerbitkan kesatuan semangat untuk menentang penjajah dan imperialisme Barat ketika itu.

Generasi terdahulu yang sama-sama berjuang untuk kemerdekaan, dan mereka yang menempuh zaman mudanya di masa awal kemerdekaan menjadi saksi kepada kepelbagaian aliran dan wadah perjuangan rakyat. Tetapi penulisan sejarah kemerdekaan yang disampaikan kepada generasi hari ini masih belum berlaku adil kerana fakta yang bercampur propaganda. Ini merupakan beban dan tanggungjawab kepada ahli-ahli sejarah kerana tanpa pensejarahan yang adil, kita tidak akan dapat melihat dan menemui makna dan rupa diri bangsa kita yang sebenarnya. Nama pejuang kemerdekaan seperti Dato’ Onn Jaafar, Ustaz Abu Bakar Baqir, Dr Burhanuddin al Helmy, Ahmad Boestamam, Mat Salleh, Panglima Rentap dan Rosli Dhobi tidak sewajarnya digelapkan dari sejarah menuntut kemerdekaan.

Kemerdekaan adalah untuk kebebasan dan keadilan. Inilah yang dijanjikan kepada kita pada 31 Ogos 1957. Sekiranya kita mahu berdegil untuk meneruskan saki baki peninggalan feudal, atau mahu memperkokohkan lembaga-lembaga sistem otoritarianisme, sudah pasti kita menjadi bangsa yang terpinggir. Bangsa Malaysia tidak miskin dengan sumber daya manusianya. Dengan paras pembangunan yang telah dicapai dan kekayaan yang kita miliki Malaysia boleh menjadi negara yang besar. Dan kita perlu yakin bahawa Malaysia boleh menjadi bangsa yang besar. Tetapi kita tidak boleh menjadi bangsa yang besar sekiranya rakyatnya tidak bebas dan merdeka.

ANWAR IBRAHIM

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Kartika’ caning – Round peg in square hole

* Headlines
* Opinion
* Religion in the News

2009-08-31 12:05

LETTER

While Mr. P. Gunasegaran ( No to whipping for drinking, 28 Aug 2009, Star ) and those in the similar vein are entitled to their freedom of expression, it nonetheless needs to be pointed out that his abrasive intrusion into the intoxicating whipping debate is in extreme bad taste and a blatant affront to Muslim sensitivity.

His high and mighty pronouncement ( read fatwa ) based on his secular theology and his one sentence reference to some unnamed Muslim scholar, makes him an overnight jurist ( read Mufti ) !

Despite 52 years of Merdeka, quite apparently and most unfortunately, the civilized and democratic values of mutual respect is sorely missing in our multi-religious co-existence. And as far as Muslims are concerned, there has been one too many Islamophobic sentiments snowballing by the day in the mainstream editorials, press reports and cyber portals.

Fed by deep-seated prejudice, and popular misconceptions towards Islam and the Shariah, the words “barbaric”, “cruel”, and “inhumane” are hurled without regard for the sensitivity of Muslims.

Barbaric, cruel, and inhumane are after all relative terms that are employed to demonize the other. This media onslaught, directly or indirectly, knowingly or unknowingly, attempts to belittle and humiliate the Shariah justice system, an entire institution whose place in our nation is legitimated by history and the Constitution.

What else does one make of the following headlines “and lets do away with a slew of outmoded, archaic laws in the statute books, both syariah and civil”. He further adds “there is real danger of disarray when man purports to speak for God”. I hasten to respond by asking – should we then let him (the editor) play God or better still be God ?

Islam, meaning ‘submission’- however awkward such a notion is to secular liberal thinking – is acceptance with a free conscience both the tenets of the faith and outwardly the injunctions of the Shariah which encompasses formal ritual worship and the regulation of personal and social mores based on sacred texts.

Believers of other faiths, liberal secularists and secular atheists need to understand that Islam is the governing principle in every aspect of a Muslim’s life to a degree seldom seen in the adherents and practitioners of other religions. Islam is not just a matter of rituals and worship; Islam is a complete way of life. For those who cannot or will not accept the crucial importance of this most important reality in the life of all Muslims we can only say, hopefully without insult, please stay out of our business.

As Muslims we have no difficulty accepting that non-Muslims have different beliefs and live their lives differently than we do. Please show us the same courtesy.

His editorial among others, reflect the distressing trend that non-Muslims are making ill-informed, prejudiced and unwelcome comments on the religion of the majority of people of this country. This is very unhealthy, and dangerously crossing the lines of civilized discourse.

There exists a myriad of opinions on the issue of consumption of intoxicants. But the Muslim scholars are unanimous that the offender must be punished.

If the offence is considered under the jurisdiction of hudud (limits), as is embraced by the schools of thought of Syafie, Maliki and Hanafi, caning must be meted without exception. This being the stipulate of God for the good of the bigger society.

However, Al-Qaradhawi, the celebrated contemporary scholar, in consonant with the likes of At-Tabari, Ibn Munzir, As-Syawkani and Ibn Qayyim opines that this offence is within the domain of ta’zir (discretionary penalty). Thus, the judge may choose to forgive the first time offender or he may elect to cane the offender and would stipulate the number of canings. As alluded by others, the caning is unlike the brutal and vicious whippings as prescribed by the civil courts.

Asst. Prof. Dr. Zulfakar, who lectures Islamic criminal law in the International Islamic University of Malaysia, and Datuk Abdul Munir Yaakob, SUHAKAM commissioner, concurred that the courts acted within the State Shariah Criminal Offences Act notwithstanding the seven day remand order.

The Shariah court is part of Malaysia’s dual justice system which has jurisdiction over Muslims and the decision of the Kuantan Shariah High Court must be respected as such That is the rule of law enjoyed by both the Shariah and Civil courts and outside interference would tantamount to contempt of court. The due process of appeal is open to the victim if justice is not done or seen to be done.

In this media frenzy, the irony has not been lost that Kartika herself has accepted the sentence and has refused appeal despite the suggestion by no less the Prime Minister himself. This underscores one of the objectives of the Shariah, to guide Muslims to be more observant of their religious obligations through remorse and repentance.

The controversy surrounding Kartika’s sentencing also exposes the sometimes uneasy co-existence of the world views of Islam and that of modern secular society. Attempts to fit Islam into the secular world view is like forcing a square peg into a round hole.

Globally, the World Health Organisation (WHO) reports that alcohol causes 1.8 million deaths (3.2% of total) and 58.3 million (4% of total) of Disability-Adjusted Life Years (DALYs). The U.S. Department of Justice Report on Alcohol and Crime found that alcohol abuse was a factor in 40 percent of violent crimes committed in the U.S. The British Home office reports a figure of 45% which rose to 58% in cases of attacks by unrecognized persons. We have not even begun to mention the primary role of alcohol in road traffic accidents, domestic violence, drug dependence, alcoholism, women and alcohol, adolescents and alcohol, fetal alcohol syndrome, alcohol and liver cirrhosis, alcohol and brain damage, alcohol and cancer risk, the causal link between alcohol and 60 different types of diseases etc.

God says in the Quran, Chapter 2, Verse 219 :
“They ask you concerning wine and gambling. Say: ‘There is a great sin in both of them, and (some) profits for people; but their sin is greater than their profit …”

As Muslims, our absolute love and allegiance is to our Creator, whose infinite wisdom we do not question. Thus, it is completely unacceptable and reprehensible that any from amongst his creations, should instruct us otherwise applying their fallible human and secular opinions and standards.

(Board of Directors
Muslim Professionals Forum
Dr. Mazeni Alwi
Dr. Jeffrey Abu Hassan
Dr. Shaikh Johari Bux
Haji Mohamed Ali Ghazali
Dato’ Dr. Musa Mohd. Nordin)
KualaLUmpur
28 Aug 2009
MySinchew 2009.08.31

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A MERDEKA DAY MESSAGE FROM 54 NGOs
Aug 31, 09 10:00am

Fifty-four civil society groups have come together to express their outrage over the threat of violence and the offending display of a cow head at a protest in Shah Alam last Friday.

In a statement, the NGOs demanded that those responsible for the incident be investigated and charged for inciting violence instead of sedition, which is considered a much lighter offence.

“Hatred and bigotry must be condemned and distanced by every ethno-religious community especially those the bigots claim to represent,” it said.

“We hope this message representing the view of various segments of our society – Muslim, Christian, Hindu, Chinese, Indian, human rights, women rights, media freedom, culture, business – will be given its commensurate coverage for all Malaysians to ponder upon while celebrating our national independence.” said Wong Chin Huat, one of the spokespersons for the group.

“Pretending that such incident did not happen or downplaying it would do no good to our national consciousness and the preservation of peace in this country.”

Among the key groups which backed the statement are Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram), Jemaah Islah Malaysia (JIM), Muslim Professionals Forum (MPF), Coalition of Selangor Indian NGOs and Council of Churches of Malaysia (CCM) Youth.

The following is the statement in full

We, the undersigned civil society organisations are shocked, angered and saddened by the ‘Cow-head protest’ in Shah Alam last Friday against a proposed Hindu temple in Section 23 of the city.

The carrying of the head of a freshly slaughtered cow, a sacred animal to the Hindus, and the unveiled threat of bloodshed on the eve of Merdeka celebration suggest that all Malaysians need to reflect deeply about our 52 years of nationhood, and the clarion call of 1Malaysia

From the outset, these heinous acts of crime perpetrated by the irresponsible few must never be seen as a conflict between the two faiths or the two faith communities.

All major spiritual traditions, Islam and Hinduism included, uphold peace and human dignity as their common and core values. Our spirituality and love for humanity mandates us for the perpetual quest for peace and abhorrence of all forms of hatred and civil disorder.

The Shah Alam incident sadly reveals that violence and hatred are still inadequately delegitimised in our society. We exhort all Malaysians to unite in our joint efforts to decry and delegitimise violence and hatred to prevent any individual or grouping from resorting to intimidation or provocation when faced with any town-planning disputes or rows of similar nature.

We the undersigned, taking cognisance of the above, do hereby:

1. Urge that all disputes in civil society must be resolved through peaceful means such as peaceful demonstrations, rational dialogues, extensive consultations and legal suits. The Selangor state government’s plan to hold a town hall meeting to facilitate communication and engagement with all stakeholders is highly commendable.

2. Condemn in the strongest possible language any act to humiliate and intimidate any ethno-religious community, in this case the irreligious and irresponsible display of a cow head.

In the Shah Alam incident, not only the Hindus are humiliated and hurt but also all thinking Malaysians – Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu, Christian, Sikh, those of other spiritual traditions and atheist. We particularly share the pain and anguish of the Shah Alam Hindu community.

3. Urge all religious authorities, community leaders and political parties to unreservedly condemn the perpetrators of the reprehensible ‘cow head’ act. Every racial and religious bigot should be shamed and distanced by the general public especially by their ethno-religious community which they seek to represent.

Political parties must also take disciplinary action against members involved in inciting hatred. This would deprive them the pleasure and gratification of self-righteousness and heroism. Legal punishment alone may prove inadequate because it may instead grant the offenders the self-perceived honour of martyrdom

4. Support a thorough investigation of those responsible for the ‘cow head’ protest for threatening violence (not sedition) on both the local Hindu community and the elected state government of Selangor.

Threats of violence, for whatever reason, has no place in a civilised society. Violence must be condemned and can only be completely delegitimised when society has zero tolerance for it and every offender is appropriately punished.

5. Express shock and dismay at the failure of the police force to stop the protestors from issuing their threats of bloodshed. An independent investigation on professional negligence should be
immediately initiated to examine these policing failures of a potentially fulminating racial and religious crisis.

This incident among others further highlights the dire importance and urgent need for an Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC). The IPCMC is a must if the Najib administration is genuinely committed to peace in Malaysia.

6. Call on all Malaysians to heed our plea to completely delegitimise violence and hatred and to strive towards its elimination from our public life. Let this be our joint resolution for our nation’s
forthcoming Merdeka anniversary. Let us usher in a Malaysia which cherishes the values of peace, reason, justice, freedom, equity and inclusion for all Malaysians.

The undersigned groups

1. All Women’s Action Society Malaysia (Awam)
2. Centre for Policy Initiatives (CPI)
3. Civil Rights Committee, Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall (CRC-KLSCAH)
4. Civil Society Committee, LLG Cultural Development Centre (LLGCSC)
5. Civil Society Initiative for Parliamentary Reform (CSI@Parliament)
6. Coalition of Malaysian NGOs Against Persecution of Palestinians (Complete)
7. Coalition of Selangor Indian NGOs
8. Consumer Association of Klang
9. Council of Churches of Malaysia (CCM) Youth
10. Council of Malaysia Indian Trustee
11. Friends in Conversation (FIC)
12. Group of Concerned Citizens (GCC)
13. Hindu Youth Organization, Port Klang
14. Human Development and Research Centre
15. Islamic Medical Association of Malaysia (Imam)
16. Islamic Renaissance Front (IRF)
17. Jemaah Islah Malaysia (JIM)
18. Justice for Beng Hock Facebook Group
19. Kelab Sukan Depot, Port Klang
20. Klang Vellarun Kalai Pannai
21. Letchumi Pooja Dhana Manbran, Klang
22. Majlis Kelab Bell Tamil, Selangor
23. Malaysia Belia Hindu, Negeri Selangor
24. Malaysia Hindu Sangam, Klang Council
25. Malaysia Hindu Sangam, Selangor State Council
26. Malaysia Indian Youth Council, Selangor
27. Malaysian Hindu Dharma Mamandram, Selangor
28. Muslim Professionals Forum (MPF)
29. Nadaraikia Sangam, Selangor
30. Pamban Swami Maha Teja Mandala Sabai
31. Persatuan Alumni PBTUSM (Lihua), Selangor and Kuala Lumpur
32. Persatuan Kebajikan Bharathana, Selangor
33. Persatuan Kebajikan Cahaya Wawasan, Selangor
34. Persatuan Kebajikan Nammakkal
35. Persatuan Kebajikan Vanniar
36. Persatuan Kemajuan Pendidikan, Malaysia
37. Persatuan Pembaca Tamil, Klang
38. Persatuan Peniaga Little India, Klang
39. Persatuan Penyelidikan Astronomi, Selangor
40. Persatuan Prihatin Belia Malaysia
41. Persatuan Thiruvallavar
42. Persatuan Wawasan India, Selangor
43. Pertubuhan Kebudayaan dan Kesenian India, Selangor
44. Pertubuhan Kesedaran Hara Krishna, Klang
45. Research for Social Advancement (Refsa)
46. Selangor Indian Videographers Association
47. Sri Vadivelu Culture and Welfare Association Selangor
48. Sri Vaishnava Paribalana Saba

Penggunaan ISA Secara Double Standard Dipersoalkan

Kenyataan Media
30 Ogos 2009

Merujuk kepada laporan berita yang disiarkan dalam mukasurat pertama Sinar Harian hari ini (30 Ogos) bertajuk ”ISA kepada yang terlibat: Exco”, ingin saya memperjelaskan pendirian saya seperti berikut:

1)    Tajuk berita yang disiarkan adalah mengelirukan atau misleading kerana saya tidak pernah menyarankan agar Akta Keselamatan Dalam Negeri(ISA) digunakan ke atas mereka yang menyertai perhimpunan itu.

2)    Ketika ditemui wartawan, saya mempersoalkan double standard yang diamalkan oleh pihak pemerintah kerana kelihatan hanya menggunakan ISA ke atas pemimpin Pakatan Rakyat yang didakwa menimbulkan isu perkauman sepertimana dilalui oleh Exco Kerajaan Negeri Teresa Kok tahun lepas, tetapi tiada tindakan dikenakan ke atas pimpinan atau penyokong Barisan Nasional yang menjurus kepada ketegangan perakuman sepertimana disaksikan dalam perarakan kepala lembu di depan Bangunan SUK pada Jumaat lalu.

3)    Adalah jelas bahawa ISA digunakan oleh pihak pemerintah hanya untuk memburukkan imej pimpinan Pakatan Rakyat. Untuk menghalalkan penggunaan ISA, pimpinan Pakatan Rakyat dikaitkan pula dengan isu ketegangan perkauman.

4)    Maka saya tetap berpegang kepada pendirian bahawa ISA harus dimansuhkan kerana ISA telah memberi kuasa yang terlalu besar kepada Menteri Dalam Negeri sehingga bertindak secara selektif serta menafikan hak perbicaraan dan hak untuk membela diri seseorang.

5)    Dengan ini saya berharap pelaporan berita ke atas isu pemindahan kuil dari Seksyen 19 ke Sekysen 23 ini tidak teralih dari masalah pokoknya, iaitu isu perancangan komuniti yang bakal diselesaikan dalam pertemuan dengan penduduk Seksyen 23 pada 5 September nanti.

RODZIAH ISMAIL
ADUN Batu Tiga
Exco Kerajaan Negeri Selangor

Strategi Konspirasi BN, memainkan sentimen kaum (updated)

Kelihatan kepala lembu yang menjadi keharaman bagi kaum hindu memakannya di usung ke pintu pagar Bangunan Pentadbiran Kerajaan Selangor pimpinan Pakatan Rakyat.

Kumpulan yang berdemonstrasi tanpa permit itu telah berceramah dan menghamburkan kata-kata kesat terhadap MB Selangor, Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim, YB Rodziah Ismail, YB Khalid Samad, dan Dr Xavier.

Ribuan mereka yang solat Jumaat tidak mengikuti rombongan Demo tersebut, yang diketuai oleh seorang yang bernama Ibrahim.
Hanya kira-kira 35 orang menyertai demo itu.

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KENYATAAN MEDIA

29 OGOS 2009

KERAJAAN NEGERI KECAM TINDAKAN HINA AGAMA

SHAH ALAM: Kerajaan Selangor kesal terhadap tindakan menghina, menghasut dan menimbulkan kemarahan dalam kalangan penganut agama lain yang diapi-apikan oleh segelintir kumpulan pembantah yang berarak membawa kepala lembu sebagai tindakan membantah pembinaan kuil Hindu di Seksyen 23, di sini.

Pada ketika rakyat Selangor sedang bersiap-sedia untuk  menyambut Ulang Tahun Kemerdekaan Ke-52, sikap tidak bertolak ansur terhadap agama orang lain yang masih wujud dalam kalangan segelintir warganegara Malaysia itu, sangatlah dikesali.

Kejadian dan tindakan menghina agama orang lain itu menyebabkan  seluruh negara ini dilihat undur kebelakang dalam usaha mewujudkan rasa hormat terhadap kepelbagaian agama dan adat resam dalam kalangan penduduk pelbagai keturunan. Walhal usaha tersebut, sebenarnya sudah dilakukan sejak kemerdekaan tahun 1957 lagi, demi pembinaan satu negara bangsa yang memperlihatkan persamaan visi dan identiti.

Seterusnya, Kerajaan Negeri berharap semua rakyat supaya bersikap matang dan tidak mudah terpengaruh dengan sikap tidak bertanggungjawab segelintir pembantah tersebut kerana ia dikhuatiri boleh mewujudkan ketegangan antara kaum.  Dalam hal ini, walaupun kita wajar mengecam tindakan mereka yang tidak bertanggungjawab tersebut, namun kita lebih baik menyerahkan kepada pihak berwajib untuk mengambil tindakan.

Sehubungan ini, Kerajaan Negeri meminta supaya pihak polis segera mengambil tindakan secara adil dan melakukan penyiasatan termasuk mengambil tindakan terhadap pihak-pihak yang mengugut para pemimpin Kerajaan Negeri.

Kerajaan Negeri juga sudah mengarahkan Majlis Bandaraya Shah Alam (MBSA) supaya mengadakan perbincangan terbuka pada Sabtu, 5 September 2009, yang  dihadiri oleh penduduk sebenar Seksyen 23, pegawai-pegawai MBSA dan pegawai-pegawai Perbadanan Kemajuan Negeri Selangor (PKNS).

Perbincangan itu nanti bukan sahaja mendengar luahan pendapat masyarakat setempat tetapi juga memberikan peluang kepada pihak Kerajaan Negeri untuk menjelaskan fakta sebenar dan alasan yang menyebabkan keputusan menempatkan semula kuil Hindu di Seksyen 19 ke Seksyen 23.

Sementara menunggu tarikh perjumpaan tersebut, Kerajaan Negeri menggesa supaya penduduk Seksyen 23 bertenang dan tidak membiarkan diri mereka dipengaruhi oleh fakta-fakta yang tidak benar yang sengaja diapi-apikan oleh kumpulan yang memang berniat jahat terhadap keharmonian rakyat dan kestabilan politik Kerajaan Negeri Selangor.

Sekali lagi, marilah kita sama-sama memelihara sikap bertimbang rasa, rasional dan saling hormat menghormati kerana inilah cara terbaik bagi menyelesaikan hal ini.

TAN SRI DATO’ ABDUL KHALID IBRAHIM

DATO’ MENTERI BESAR SELANGOR

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PARTI KEADILAN RAKYAT MENGUTUK TINDAKAN KUMPULAN MENGHINA AGAMA HINDU
Parti Keadilan Rakyat mengutuk sekeras-kerasnya tindakan sekumpulan 50 orang yang kononnya mewakili penduduk Seksyen 23 di Shah Alam yang telah mengarak dan bertindak menghina kepala seekor lembu dalam memprotes isu penempatan semula sebuah kuil Hindu.
Tindakan mereka ini dengan jelas bertujuan untuk mengaibkan dan menimbulkan kemarahan penganut Hindu yang menganggap lembu sebagai binatang yang suci.
Agama Islam tidak pernah mengajar penganut Islam untuk mencemuh mahupun menghina agama atau kepercayaan orang lain malah telah melarang sekali orang-orang Islam berbuat sedemikian.
Keadilan juga percaya bahawa tindakan ini berupa satu cubaan untuk mewujudkan kemarahan dan kebencian di antara orang-orang Islam dan Hindu sekaligus mencetuskan perbalahan kaum dan agama dan suasana yang tegang di Selangor lantas memberi peluang untuk UMNO untuk merampas balik Selangor sebagaimana yang dilaung-laungkan kononnya atas nama bangsa dan agama.
Keadilan menyeru pihak berkuasa mengambil tindakan yang tegas untuk menjaga keamanan dan keharmonian dan tidak memandang remeh terhadap perbuatan yang jelasnya salah disisi undnag-undang dan berbentuk provokasi dan menggugat ketenteraman awam dan hubungan antara kaum/agama.
Keadilan juga kesal kerana pihak polis Selangor gagal menghalang kejadian ini dari berlaku dan sebaliknya Ketua Polis Selangor menyatakan bahawa tindakan boleh diambil hanya sekiranya terdapat laporan polis. Ini jelas menunjukkan sikap sambil lewa pihak polis seolah-olah membenarkan atau mengalakkan perkara sebegini.
Keadilan meminta semua pihak yang berkenaan untuk bertenang dan berwaspada supaya tidak terperangkap dengan reaksi yang boleh diambil kesempatan oleh pihak UMNO yang berusaha untuk menjatuhkan Kerajaan Negeri Selangor dengan mencetuskan insiden-insiden berunsur perkauman dan agama.
Latheefa Koya
Ketua Penerangan
Parti Keadilan Rakyat
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Dari seorang pengirim MFILE:

Bantahan Pembinaan Kuil Seksyen 23, Shah Alam

SHAH ALAM, 28 OGOS 2009

Usai waktu solat jumaat, sekali lagi berlakunya tunjuk perasaan dan bantahan dari sekumpulan individu yang mendakwa mereka dari kumpulan penduduk Seksyen 23, Shah Alam. Seramai lebih kurang, 35 orang sahaja, dengan membawa kepala lembu yang masih berdarah, mereka telah melaungkan kata-kata kesat di depan pintu pagar utama Bangunan Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah (SSAAS) yang ditujukan buat Y.B. Rodziah Ismail, Y.B. Khalid Samad dan Y.A.B Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim sebagai tanda teguh bantahan secara berterus-terusan. Mereka membantah penubuhan kuil di Seksyen 23 tersebut yang bukan pun terletak di dalam kawasan perumahan seperti dakwaan mereka. Tapak tersebut sebenarnya merupakan tapak industri dan berjauhan dari perumahan penduduk Seksyen 23. Jelas dan terang, tapak industri, bukan tapak perumahan. Jika tidak, masakan PKNS yang mencadangkan dan memberikan tanah tersebut? Dengan megah, mereka melaungkan bahawa ketiga-tiga pemimpin ini bagaikan pemimpin yang dicucuk hidungnya. Akan tetapi, tidakkah mereka sedar apa yang dikatakan oleh mereka itu tadi terkena batang hidung pemimpin Kerajaan Negeri Selangor dahulu iaitu KERAJAAN BARISAN NASIONAL? Pelik, membantah satu usaha kerajaan Pakatan Rakyat Negeri Selangor kini yang sebenarnya telah membantu menyelesaikan masalah juak-juak pemimpin Barisan Nasional yang hanya menutup mata dan memekakkan telinga selama 26 tahun lepas akan aduan dan rungutan penduduk yang majoritinya Islam di seksyen 19, untuk memindahkan kuil Seksyen 19 tersebut yang didirikan amat berdekatan dengan barisan perumahan kawasan penduduk Melayu, telah dianggap salah oleh kumpulan ini. Di tapak yang baru ini, bukan sahaja barisan rumah sayup dilihat, melaung pun masih tidak dengar. Apa yang mereka tidak faham ialah Kuil di Seksyen 19 yang majoritinya kawasan penduduk Melayu itu perlu dipindahkan ke tempat yang lebih sesuai. Walaupun cuba diberikan penerangan dan kefahaman akan tapak sebenar cadangan pembinaan kuil di Seksyen 23, mereka masih menafikan dan menepis segala kebenaran dan melaungkan segala salah fahaman mereka itu.  Hari ini, dengan lantang bersuara mereka mencabar sekiranya penubuhan kuil tersebut diteruskan, akan berlakulah pertumpahan darah seperti di Taman Medan sebelum ini. Di manakah sebenarnya mereka ini harus diletakkan kerana telah terang-terangan mengugut dan mengancam keselamatan rakyat di Negeri Selangor khususnya. Segala bobrokan dan tindak -tanduk mereka ini semakin hari dilihat semakin memualkan, tidak cukup dengan kegiatan vandalism yang telah mereka lakukan. Merekalah pembangkang dan generasi yang mengajar aktiviti tidak sihat itu kepada anak-anak zaman kini. Ingin menghangatkan lagi mainan politik, sehinggakan rasional dan kesabaran tidak dapat difikirkan pada petang Ramadhan ini. Masyaallah..

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Cops say sorry, promise prompt action
Aug 29, 09 11:07am

The police have apologised for not taking prompt action during the ‘cow head’ protest that took place in Shah Alam yesterday, said Selangor exco member Dr Xavier Jeyakumar.

He said Shah Alam district police chief Noor Azam Jamaluddin conveyed his apology to several Pakatan Rakyat leaders during a meeting this morning.

The police chief explained that the officer at the scene was a ‘junior’ (suggesting that he was inexperienced in handling such matters).

“So Noor Azam has given us his word that action will be taken immediately against those responsible (for the protest),” said Jeyakumar, who overseas non-Muslim affairs in the state.

He also revealed that numerous police reports have been filed over the incident.

“Many of the (reports) are by NGOs, councillors, PAS Youth, PKR Youth and some individuals,” he said.

The half-hour meeting was held at the Shah Alam police district headquarters and was attended by DAP MP Charles Santiago and state exco Ronnie Liu as well.

Yesterday, some 50 residents enraged with the proposed relocation of a Hindu temple to their area staged a noisy protest with a severed cow’s head.The residents who gathered after the Friday prayers, placed the head outside the gates of the state secretariat building for a short period before removing it.

Meanwhile, Santiago said it was “weird” that the dozens of policemen “watched silently” when the protesters were spitting on and kicking the bloodied cow head.

“I also strongly condemn the lack of action on the part of the police, who have subtly been accomplices to the act that is totally disrespectful of Hindus,” he said.

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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Tapak Kuil Seksyen 23 Shah Alam

Baru-baru ini, banyak betul yang kita dengar berhubung isu tapak kuil yang dicadangkan di Seksyen 23, Shah Alam. Yang tahu, yang tak tahu dan yang buat-buat tahu, semuanya turut sama mengemukakan pandangan masing-masing. Di antaranya, pandangan Noh Omar yang menyatakan bagaimana kerajaan PR tidak peka terhadap sensitiviti umat Islam.

Oleh itu, bagi mereka yang ingin tahu, izinkan saya menceritakan serba sedikit perkara sebenar berkenaan isu ini. Tapak Kuil yang dicadangkan adalah di kawasan Industri, lebih 200 meter dari kawasan perumahan. Sebuah Kuil yang sekarang ini berada di Seksyen 19 akan dipindahkan ke tapak baru yang dicadangkan ini. Di Seksyen 19, kuil berkenaan hanya berjarak 20 kaki dari kawasan perumahan! Buka pintu rumah, seberang jalan terdapat kuil.

Sebenarnya, kuil Seksyen 19 telah berada di situ sejak zaman sebelum wujudnya Shah Alam lagi. Pada masa itu kawasan di mana kuil tersebut dibina dinamakan Ladang Sungai Renggam. Apabila PKNS ambil-alih, maka dijadikan kawasan perumahan. Semasa membina dan menjual rumah-rumah di Seksyen 19, PKNS tidak menunjukkan kuil tersebut di dalam pelan mereka. Sebaliknya yang ditunjuk adalah rumah-rumah teres dua tingkat.

Maka, para pembeli rumah sekitar kuil tersebut, 80% dari mereka yang merupakan orang Melayu Islam pun terperanjatlah apabila berpindah ke rumah baru mereka dan mendapati kuil masih berada di situ. Sedangkan mereka diberitahu bahawa kuil tersebut akan dipindahkan. Malangnya, PKNS di bawah pemerintahan Kerajaan Negeri UMNO/BN, tidak menunaikan janji mereka dan tidak juga bertanggung-jawab dalam soal ini. Kalau diusahakan pada ketika itu, masih terdapat banyak kawasan lapang, maka perancangan yang lebih sesuai dan tepat dapat dilaksanakan.

Seperti yang diduga dan sepertimana biasa, kerajaan BN tidak melakukan apa-apa. Penduduk terpaksa bersabar selama 26 tahun, menagih janji dari PKNS dan kerajaan BN Selangor, sehinggalah naiknya kerajaan PR. Kami mengusahakan dengan serius dan bersungguh-sungguh sehingga terhasilnya cadangan kuil Seksyen 19 dipindahkan ke Seksyen 23.

Sepatutnya Noh Omar mencerminkan diri sebelum mengeluarkan pendapatnya. Takut-takut meludah ke langit, terjatuh ke muka sendiri. Siap dengan kahak lagi! Sekiranya tapak di Seksyen 23 mahu dikatakan tidak peka dan tidak sensitif, kedudukan di Seksyen 19 mahu dipanggil apa? Mendera? Menyeksa? ataupun derhaka?

Kalau ikut kehendak masyarakat Hindu yang juga merupakan rakyat negeri ini, mereka ingin kuil tersebut kekal sahaja di situ. “Inilah tapak asal kami, sepatutnya PKNS mengambil kira kehadiran kuil kami di sini semasa merancang pembangunan kawasan Shah Alam”, kata mereka. Tetapi apa boleh buat, nasi sudah pun menjadi bubur, mereka amat menyesal mengundi BN sejak dari dulu lagi. Akhirnya hasil perbincangan yang waras, mereka sanggup bertolak ansur. Sanggup berpindah, asalkan tidak terlalu jauh. Kuil ini dikunjungi penganut Hindu dari Seksyen 19, 20 dan 23.

Oleh itu, PKNS ditugaskan untuk mencari tempat yang sesuai. Tapak yang dicadangkan adalah seperti yang dinyatakan. Cadangan dikemukakan kepada MBSA dan seterusnya kepada Exco kerajaan Negeri. Semua menganggap ianya sesuai dan masalah di Seksyen 19 di mana suasana diperhangatkan oleh NGO Melayu/UMNO seperti Pewaris, perlu diselesaikan dengan segera.

Ini yang perlu kita perlu fahami. Tapak di Seksyen 23 bukan untuk kuil baru. Ianya adalah untuk memindahkan kuil yang sedia ada di Seksyen 19. Kedudukannya tidak terlalu hampir dengan kawasan perumahan, di mana terdapat Dewan orang ramai dan juga sebuah padang permainan di antara tapak kuil tersebut dengan kawasan perumahan. Ianya merupakan kawasan Industri. Kalau kilang boleh diletakkan di situ tanpa sebarang bantahan dari penduduk, mengapa tidak kuil? Sedangkan jarak kawasan Industri dari perumahan sudah mengambil kira terlebih dahulu semua aspek yang wajar dipertimbangkan.

Saya faham ada yang ingin mempolitikkan isu ini. Memang suku sakat Ketua Bahagian UMNO duduk di situ. Saya rasa Najib kena ‘mendidik’ ahli UMNO. Kikis semangat perkauman yang sempit yang diasaskan selama ini. Adakah beliau mampu lakukannya? Adakah beliau ingin lakukannya? Najib ke Batu Caves dengan begitu gah ceria, 1Malaysia katanya. Kita ingin lihat sejauh mana falsafah Najib difahami ahli partinya sendiri atau ianya semua hanya satu sandiwara untuk mengaburi mata rakyat?

Seorang penduduk Seksyen 23 memberitahu saya, “Jangan layan sangat YB, puak-puak ini, bukan sekadar kuil mereka bantah. Buat kuliyyah di Surau pun mereka bantah juga”.

WaLlahu ‘Alam
KHALID SAMAD

Pilihan Raya Kecil Permatang Pasir: Video Gerak Gempur Pakatan Rakyat

U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy dies aged 77

File photo of U.S Senator Edward Kennedy walking out of Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston Reuters – U.S Senator Edward Kennedy (D-MA) waves as he walks out of Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, …

By Scott Malone Scott Malone 13 mins ago

BOSTON (Reuters) – U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy, a towering figure in the Democratic Party who took the helm of one of America’s most fabled political families after two older brothers were assassinated, has died at age 77, his family said on Wednesday.

Edward M. Kennedy, the husband, father, grandfather, brother and uncle we loved so deeply, died late Tuesday night at home in Hyannis Port (Massachusetts),” the Kennedy family said in a statement.

One of the most influential and longest-serving senators in U.S. history — a liberal standard-bearer who was also known as a consummate congressional dealmaker — Kennedy had been battling brain cancer, which was diagnosed in May 2008.

“We’ve lost the irreplaceable center of our family and joyous light in our lives, but the inspiration of his faith, optimism, and perseverance will live on in our hearts forever,” the family statement added.

His death marked the twilight of a political dynasty, and dealt a blow to Democrats as they seek to answer President Barack Obama‘s call for an overhaul of the healthcare system. Kennedy had made healthcare reform his signature cause.

Known as “Teddy,” he was the brother of President John Kennedy, assassinated in 1963, Senator Robert Kennedy, fatally shot while campaigning for the 1968 Democratic presidential nomination, and Joe Kennedy, a pilot killed in World War Two.

When he first took the Senate seat previously held by John Kennedy in 1962, he was seen as something of a political lightweight who owed his ascent to his famous name.

Yet during his nearly half century in the chamber, Kennedy became known as one of Washington’s most effective senators, crafting legislation by working with lawmakers and presidents of both parties, and finding unlikely allies.

At the same time, he held fast to liberal causes deemed anachronistic by the centrist “New Democrats,” and was a lightning rod for conservative ire.

He helped enact measures to protect civil and labor rights, expand healthcare, upgrade schools, increase student aid and contain the spread of nuclear weapons.

“There’s a lot to do,” Kennedy told Reuters in 2006. “I think most of all it’s the injustice that I continue to see and the opportunity to have some impact on it.”

After Robert Kennedy’s death, Edward was expected to waste little time in vying for the presidency. But in 1969, a young woman drowned after a car Kennedy was driving plunged off a bridge on the Massachusetts resort island of Chappaquiddick after a night of partying.

Kennedy’s image took a major hit after it emerged he had failed to report the accident to authorities. He pleaded guilty to leaving the scene and received a suspended sentence.

Kennedy eventually ran for his party’s presidential nomination in 1980 but lost to then-President Jimmy Carter.

His presidential ambitions thwarted, Kennedy devoted himself to his Senate career.

(Additional reporting by Thomas Ferraro in Washington; (Editing by Peter Cooney)

Permatang Pasir By Election: BN kekal tewas di Semenanjung

Lim Hong Siang | Aug 25, 2009 08:25:57 pm

“Angin perubahan” yang dimaksudkan oleh Timbalan Perdana Menteri, Muhyiddin Yassin ketika berkunjung di Permatang Pasir pada hari ini, rupa-rupanya lanjutan daripada tsunami 8 Mac, 2008.

Calon UMNO dari Barisan Nasional, Rohaizat Othman ditewaskan oleh calon PAS dari Pakatan Rakyat, Mohd Salleh Man (gambar kiri) dengan majoriti  4,551 undi.  Mohd Salleh Man memperolehi 9,618 undi, sementara Rohaizat Othman mendapat 5,067 undi, selain undi rosak sebanyak 83 undi.  Undi majoriti berkurang, selaras dengan penurunan peratusan pengundian kepada 73.1%, berbanding 82.57% pada tahun lalu.

Terdapat seramai 20, 289 orang pengundi berdaftar di kawasan DUN Permatang Pasir, dengan Melayu 72.36%, Cina 25.85%, India 1.63% dan kaum lain 0.16%.

Mengimbas Pilihan Raya Umum ke-12 tahun 2008, bekas ADUN PAS, Allahyarham Hamdan Abdul Rahman berjaya mempertahankan kubu dengan 11,004 undi, memandangkan calon UMNO ketika itu, Ahmad Sahar Shuib hanya memperolehi 5571 undi.  Majoriti yang diraih ialah 5,433 undi, dengan 227 undi rosak.

Kekal rekod tewas di Semenanjung

Keputusan malam ini memperlihatkan BN mengekalkan rekod kekalahannya dalam setiap pilihan raya kecil yang diadakan di Semenanjung Malaysia, selepas PRU ke-12.  BN hanya menang di pilihan raya kecil DUN Batang Ai, Sarawak dan tidak bertanding untuk pilihan raya kecil Penanti, Pulau Pinang, 31 Mei 2009.

Sebelum ini, “angin perubahan” lebih kencang apabila pilihan raya kecil kawasan parlimen Permatang Pauh menyaksikan bagaimana UMNO-BN tewas dengan majoriti yang lebih besar.  Malah, Kuala Terengganu yang sebelum ini dimiliki UMNO, ditembusi calon PAS dari PR.

Seterusnya, pilihan raya kecil Bukit Gantang dan DUN Bukit Selambau juga menyaksikan kemenangan yang memihak kepada Pakatan Rakyat, dengan majoriti yang lebih besar.

Keadaan menjadi “reda” buat UMNO apabila membuat kejutan di pilihan raya kecil DUN Manek Urai, Kelantan dengan menghakis majoriti calon PAS, sehingga PAS hanya menang tipis dengan 65 undi majoriti di kubu sendiri.  Walaupun UMNO-BN dilihat cuba mengekalkan, malah memacu momentum selepas “kekalahan tipis” tersebut, namun hasrat BN akhirnya tidak tercapai.

Analisa selanjutnya…

Data terperinci keputusan pilihan raya kecil Permatang Pasir akan dikeluarkan kemudiannya.  Sejauh manakah propaganda UMNO yang disebarkan sejak awal Ogos, bahawa “Anwar pengkhianat Melayu”, “Nik Aziz menghina Islam” dan sebagainya berkesan, akan diteliti dalam analisa selanjutnya.

Permatang Pasir By Election: The Official results

PAS retains Permatang Pasir
Malaysiakini team
Aug 25, 09
6:34pm

PAS has won the Permatang Pasir state seat by-election in Penang today with a majority of 4,451 votes.

The majority however had decreased by nearly 900 votes since the last general election which saw the party winning by 5,433 votes.

The Election Commission announced that PAS candidate 55-year-old candidate Mohd Salleh polled 9,618 votes while BN’s Mohd Rohaizat Othman, 38, garnered 5,067.

Voter turnout had also decreased this time around to 73 percent which the Election Commission chief Abdul Aziz Yusof blamed on the A(H1N1) outbreak.

In the previous election, the turnout was 82.6 percent.

The result of the by-election was announced by Returning Officer Roslan Yahaya at 7.25pm at the Dewan Perdana of the National Youth Skills Institute in Bukit Mertajam.

‘Thank you all’

Supporters of Mohd Salleh in the hall applauded soon after the result was announced.

Among the leaders present at the Dewan Perdana were the PAS election director Mahfuz Omar and Penang Deputy Chief Minister I Mansor Othman.

After the result was announced, Mohd Salleh alighted from the stage and had dates for the breaking of the fast. The BN candidate was not seen in the hall.

“I thank the voters of Permatang Pasir and party workers.

“I also thank everyone else for contributing to this victory. It is a big victory for Pakatan Rakyat it is the result of our coalition’s close cooperation,” said the PAS man.

The by-election in the heart of Anwar Ibrahim’s parliamentary stronghold of Permatang Pauh was held following the death of PAS state assemblyperson Mohd Hamdan Abd Rahman on July 31.

This is the eighth by-election since the March 8 polls last year.

With this victory, Pakatan Rakyat has taken seven with BN only emerging victorious in Sarawak’s Batang Ai contest.

Voting trend has not changed

Opposition leader and Pakatan Rakyat supremo Anwar said the victory reflected the people’s trust in the opposition alliance.

“Today’s result proves that the people have rejected the divisive politics of Umno/BN,” he added in a statement.

PAS vice-president Mahfuz described the victory as a ‘birthday gift’.

“This is the second birthday gift for me after winning my lawsuit against Berita Harian (last week).

“I’m now 52. I usually celebrate with my wife and children and this year I celebrate with the candidate and party colleagues. It is a very precious birthday gift,” he said.

Mahfuz said the results show that the trend set in 2008 hasn’t changed.

“The only thing that has changed was the voter turnout (a reduction of) about nine percent.

“That doesn’t mean that there is a change in voter attitude towards PAS. After all, it is a working day,” he said.

“This is a step forward from what was achieved in Manek Urai. It is significant milestone, which well exceeded my prediction of winning by one-vote. The balance 4,550 is a bonus,” he added.

Victory over the crony system

PAS researcher Dzulkifly Ahmad said the results showed that Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak has not made improvements.

“I don’t want to say this is a referendum in retrospect, but the fact is, he has not regained lost ground,” he added.

Welcoming the results, Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said it was a victory for the people and reflected the rejection of the ‘crony system’ practiced by BN.

“I have confidence that Salleh will continue to serve the people diligently, just as how the late-Hamdan had done,” he added.

Personal attacks not the cause for defeat

BN’s Rohaizat meanwhile accepted the outcome, saying that it reflected a democratic decision.

He congratulated Mohd Salleh and hoped that the PAS man would fulfil his obligations as an elected representative.

He also brushed aside talks that personal attacks on him were the reason for the voters to turn away from him.

“That’s not true. If you look at the results, the votes I got today were consistent with what BN obtained during the 2008 general election. That shows the support for us is the same,” he told Malaysiakini.

Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin also agreed with Rohaizat on the level of support for BN.

He said that if the voters were swayed by the personal attacks on Rohaizat, they would have rejected him outright without giving him almost the same number of votes as they did for BN in 2008.

He said that the reasons for the defeat were that Permatang Pasir was Anwar’s area, it was a PAS stronghold, the semi-urban constituency preferred PAS and voters were not interested in development.

He also said that there were more Chinese voters in Permatang Pasir than in Manek Urai where BN only lost by 65 votes to PAS.

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KEMENANGAN PAKATAN RAKYAT DI PILIHAN RAYA KECIL PERMATANG PASIR BUKTI RAKYAT TOLAK POLITIK UMNO-BN
Saya panjatkan rasa syukur di atas kemenangan Pakatan Rakyat di Pilihan Raya Kecil Permatang Pasir. Berbulan-bulan diasak fitnah sebagai pengkhianat bangsa dan berhadapan pembelotan, kemenangan hari ini membuktikan rakyat menolak politik acuan pimpinan umno-bn yang memecahbelahkan.
Penghargaan yang tidak terhingga saya ucapkan kepada seluruh jentera pilihan raya kecil, yang tetap bersabar mengharungi kepayahan pada bulan Ramadhan ini. Kepada YB Haji Salleh Man tahniah di atas kejayaan ini dan tunaikanlah amanah dan mandat yang diberikan rakyat.
Kemenangan dengan majoriti meyakinkan ini ternyata, menzahirkan keyakinan rakyat Malaysia terhadap Pakatan Rakyat, hasrat bergelora mahukan Perubahan dan masa depan Pakatan Rakyat yang pasti gemilang.
ANWAR IBRAHIM
KETUA PEMBANGKANG
DEWAN RAKYAT MALAYSIA

A PAS win in Permatang Pasir?

Updated 5.35pm on 25 Aug 2009

PERMATANG PASIR, 25 Aug 2009: Polling in Permatang Pasir ended at 5pm today with 73.1% or 14,832 voters, out of the 20,290 registered voters, having cast their ballots, the Election Commission (EC) said.

On Twitter, DAP parliamentary leader Lim Kit Siang predicted a PAS win with a majority of 3,000 to 4,000 votes. Earlier in the day, Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim had predicted a PAS victory with a “satisfactory majority”.

In the March 2008 general election, PAS beat Umno for the seat with a 5,433-vote majority.

Voting today began at 8am, and traffic jams gripped certain parts of the constituency where schools, used as polling centres, were located along main roads. The presence of uniformed police was moderate, and there was little sign of the Federal Reserve Unit, a notable difference compared with the previous six by-elections in the past year.

As neither PAS’s Mohd Salleh Man nor the Barisan Nasional (BN)’s Rohaizat Othman — the rival candidates — is registered to vote in Permatang Pasir, the media’s attention was turned to Anwar. He voted at Sek Keb Seri Penanti in Kubang Semang together with his wife, Parti Keadilan Rakyat president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail. They were accompanied by Salleh, who, from there, continued on a tour of all polling stations to greet supporters and voters.

Rohaizat, too, made his rounds at polling stations with his wife Khairul Nisa Abdul Razak in tow. The BN candidate has been on the defence throughout his campaign from attacks about his disbarment from legal practice, and allegations that he married a second wife secretly. He has denied the allegations about a second wife, and has tried to downplay his disbarment by blaming his former legal firm partner.

Other BN and Pakatan Rakyat leaders were also moving around the constituency checking on the mood. Polling was relatively smooth, save for a few minor clashes between rival supporters. A few groups were also seen arguing with police, who were enforcing the rule banning the display of party logos near polling centres.

Notably missing in the vicinity of polling centres were the “pondok panas”, booths or canopies set up by the contesting parties for voters to check their status on the electoral roll. The EC has been stricter this time, enforcing the rules against this and only allowing voters to check their details at EC booths. In past elections, pondok panas were used in last-minute campaigning before voters proceeded to mark their ballots.

Also noticeable was the lack of vehicles sporting party flags and logos, which reduced somewhat the merriment of polling day.

Still, the rules have not stopped supporters from turning out in large numbers despite it being Ramadan, and from shouting themselves hoarse cheering and heckling.

The votes will be tallied at the National Youth Skills Training Institute on Jalan Berapit here. Results are expected by 8pm.

Najib Waving Mongolian Flags…ah, only in comics

Comic mag with Najib waving Mongolian flag seized
/ Salhan K Ahmad
Aug 25, 09
12:53pm

The Home Ministry today confiscated 408 copies of humour magazine Gedung Kartun which featured a caricature of Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak waving a Mongolian flag and shouting Merdeka on the front cover of its inaugural issue.

The 10.45am raid was carried out by the ministry’s Publication Control and Al Quran Text division at the publisher Sepakat Efektif Sdn Bhd in Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur.

According to ministry officials, the bi-weekly magazine, which specializes in political satire, was being published without a permit thus violating Section 5 (1) of the Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984.

Magazine editor Zulkiflee Anwar Haque, better known as Zunar, said a written approval has been granted by the Home Ministry for the publication.

Did not expect this treatment

“We went ahead with publishing the magazine without getting the black and white due to government bureaucracy – it takes three months to obtain the letter.

“We definitely didn’t expect this kind of treatment. We expected a warning letter for the content,” said the former editor of PKR party organ Suara Keadilan.

Marketed as an ‘alternative comic magazine’, the publication touched on many current affairs.

Among the issues featured were the death of political aide Teoh Beng Hock, highway toll prices, teaching of science and mathematics in English, the Internal Security Act and the Port Klang Free Zone scandal.

Other than cartoons, the magazine includes various articles and political satires written by notable writers such as Hishamuddin Rais, Pyanhabib and Rahmat Haron.

Though normally associated with more serious publications, national laureate A Samad Said and political scientist Farish A Noor also contributed articles to the first issue.

A total of 10,000 copies were printed for the inaugural issue which cost RM4 in Peninsula Malaysia and RM5 in Sabah and Sarawak. Copies have already hit newsstands.

‘Get your license first’

Meanwhile, Publication Control and Al Quran Text division acting director Zainal Abidin Osman confirmed that the raid was conducted because Gedung Kartun did not possess a publishing permit.

He said the magazine was not allowed to be published even though it has obtained a publishing permit number (PP).

“It is not just a formality. If you don’t have a (written) permit, please don’t publish yet. Once it is official, then you can print.

“The written permit is like taking a driving test. Once you pass the exam, you still can’t drive until you obtain a license,” he said when contacted.

Permatang Pasir By Election: End of Polling

Polling ends, counting to start soon
/ Aug 25, 09 8:51am

Polling for the Permatang Pasir by-election closed at 5pm today. The final voter turnout stood at 73.1 percent, or translating to about 14,832 out of 20,290 total voters coming out to vote.

The Election Commission had predicted a 80 percent voter turnout. In the March 2008 general election, the turnout was 83 percent (16,803 voters).

The counting process will start soon at all eight polling stations. They will then be tallied at the vote-tallying centre at the National Youth Skills Institute (IKBN) in Bukit Mertajam before the official results are announced. Results are expected at about 8pm.

Earlier today, the Permatang Pasir voters started voting at 8am to elect a new state assemblyperson for their constituency.

In all eight polling stations 39 streams were available for voters to cast their ballots.

The eight polling stations are SJKC Lay Keow Permatang Pauh, SMK Sama Gagah, SK Permatang Pauh, SK Permatang Pasir, SK Bukit Indra Muda, SJKC Kubang Semang, SK Seri Penanti and Sek Rendah Islam Al-Masriyah.

The by-election was called following the death of incumbent PAS representative Mohd Hamdan Abdul Rahman, 63, on May 31.

It saw Barisan Nasional’s Rohaizat Othman, 38, taking on PAS’ Mohd Salleh Man, 55. However both the candidates did not vote today as they were not registered voters of Permatang Pasir.

Anwar confident of win

Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim and his wife Dr Wan Azizah Ismail are however among the voters in this constituency and they were among the earliest to cast their votes.

Anwar, Wan Azizah and Mohd Salleh arrived at the SK Seri Penanti polling station at about 8.20am to vote.

Speaking to reporters after voting, Anwar said he was confident of a satisfying majority for Mohd Salleh.

“I am happy with our machinery. They have been working hard. I am confident Salleh will win with a satisfying majority,” he said.

He also said that Pakatan Rakyat party workers have been informed to keep a lookout for phantom voters.

“We are aware of Umno strategy but we have party workers to monitor vehicles and buses ferrying phantom voters.

“Umno is using propaganda as if we are bringing in phantom voters. Their machinery is like international circus facility,” said the Permatang Pauh member of parliament. Permatang Pasir is a state seat under his constituency.

Good start for new EC regulation

This by-election is also the first time the Election Commission has gone strict in disallowing pondok panas (canvassing booths) and last-minute canvassing by political parties.

EC chief Abdul Aziz Yusof who made his first visit of the day at SJKC Lay Keow Permatang Pauh said he was satisfied with the situation so far.

He hoped that political parties can adapt to the new culture of no canvassing on polling day and the pondok panas ruling.

Commenting on the EC’s new regulations, Anwar said he was happy that the commission had laid down the rules firmly but added that there was room for improvement.

He also said that the EC could have allowed party workers to help voters check their polling centres. Under the new regulation, only the EC is allowed to do so at it booths outside the voting centres.

Meanwhile the police are standing guard at all polling stations to ensure that parties do not breach the new EC regulations. At certain centres the police are not allowing the supporters to gather.

The weather meanwhile is cloudy with a slight shower expected in certain areas. A downfall is also expected later in the day.

The voters have been coming steadily to cast their ballots, especially the Malay voters who were up early due to the fasting period.

Workers on the way to the Penang island too were seen voting before heading off to work. The traffic around Permatang Pasir has been generally smooth.

Muhyiddin visits voters

Meanwhile Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin and some other BN leaders visited the SMK Sama Gagah voting centre at about 9.15am.

There they met and greeted their supporters numbering about 100.

Muhyiddin spoke to voters, especially some senior citizens who had come out early to vote. He and his entourage of BN leaders also visited the EC booth before moving on to the BN operations centre in Sama Gagah. He then left the place at about 9.30am.

The BN supporters chanted ‘Hidup BN’, ‘Hidup Melayu’ during Muhyiddin’s short visit.

Among the leaders with him were Gerakan president Koh Tsu Koon, Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin and Permatang Pauh Umno division head Jalil Abdul Majid.

At about the same time, over at the Seri Penanti polling centre some 200 supporters from both BN and Pakatan were targeting each other with jeers and mocks.

The PAS crowd shouted ‘Umno pengkhianat’ (Umno traitors) while the rebuttal from the other side was ‘Hidup, Hidup BN’ (Long live BN). A police Light Strike Force unit is on standby to disperse the crowd.

However, upon a request from the police, the crowd dispersed. The BN crowd – mostly mat motors – immediately left the place on their motorcycles but the PAS crowd retreated by about 200 metres to regroup.

And over at the Kubang Semang voting station, the atmosphere was also hot with supporters from both sides teasing each other.

The same situation was also prevalent at the SJKC Lay Keow where about 30 Umno Youth members were asked to stay away by the PAS supporters.

DAP leader Lim Kit Siang also visited the centre this morning and explained that the by-election was a referendum on Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak.

Candidates meet at polling centre

The candidates – Rohaizat and Mohd Salleh – meanwhile bumped into each other at the SMK Sama Gagah polling centre at about 10am while making their rounds.

They greeted each other warmly and were seen exchanging pleasantries.

Rohaizat, speaking to reporters later, said the voting process was proceeding smoothly and he was happy with the process so far.

He also urged voters to come out early to vote as it could rain later in the day.

Wearing a red Baju Melayu with a songkok, Rohaizat also urged party workers to maintain discipline throughout the day and work hard to ensure a win.

EC chief: So far so good

At about 11.30am, EC chief Abdul Aziz said he was satisfied with the turnout so far and with the general polling process.

He hoped that the EC target of 80 percent turnout can be achieved by the end of the voting period.

“I also hope there is no rain today. So far we have also not heard of any complaints of phantom voters,” he said.

There was a slight drizzle in the morning but the weather has cleared up since.

By noon, the voter turnout had risen to 47.2 percent, or 9,573 voters. An hour later, the figure was 10,812 voters, or 53.3 percent.

At 2pm, the turnout has climbed to 59 percent with three hours to go and at 3pm it hit 65 percent, or 13, 172 voters.

In another development, election watchdog Mafrel reported that it found one BN pondok panas near SK Permatang Pasir polling centre.

“But it was immediately asked to be shut down by the EC,” said Mafrel coordinator Mohd Zaki Abdul Ahmid.

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