Jumaat, 12 Julai 2013

Philosophy Politics Economics

Philosophy Politics Economics

So Us Crime Stats Now, Why Wait Till September?

Posted: 12 Jul 2013 06:38 PM PDT

If Home Minister Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi has proof that former Emergency Ordinance detainess account for 90% of the rise in crime, show Malaysians now.  Why wait until September?

Yesterday, Home Minister Dato' Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi claimed he will present statistics from a recent study on crime in full at the next Parliament session to justify the need to revive the Emergency Ordinance (EO), to allow the Police to place suspects under detention without trial for 2 years.

He said "I obtained the statistics, which were derived empirically, that in Selangor, 90% of organised crimes were carried out by ex-detainees who were released from Simpang Renggam where they were held under the EO. I will present the statistics and the study in the Dewan Rakyat in the coming session, the September session, to prove the need for the EO."

The perplexing question for us to ask the Home Minister is, if the study is already concluded, and he already have in his possession the study, why does he need to wait 2 months before the report is presented to the Parliament?  Why not present it next week while the Parliament is still in session?  In fact, even if the report isn't yet presentable next week, he could always call for a press conference and release the results of the study.  There is absolutely no necessity to wait a whole 2 months "to prove the need for the EO".

However, if you read into Dato' Seri Zahid's statement, one can only deduce that it is completely oxymoronic.  If the "study" even exists, then surely for a shocking 90% of the crimes to be identified as being carried out by ex-detainees who were released from Simpang Renggam, these "criminals" would have been identified, arrested, investigated and possibly even charged already.  But if they have been arrested and investigated – and there have been very few reports of such, then how come crime is still rampant and the Police still needs the EO?

Is the Minister trying to tell us that they have identified all the suspects of all the crime incidences over the past year but are unable to arrest and charge them?

In fact if Dato' Seri Zahid's allegation that 90% of these crimes were committed by former EO detainees were true, it actually doesn't "prove the need for the EO".  On the contrary, it only proved that the police force to be totally incompetent!  The question needs to be asked, that if the Police is indeed so certain of who committed 90% of these crimes, then why can't they be charged in court and put in jail?  If the Police is unable to charge all of them, surely the Police is able to garner evidence and charge half or even a quarter of them?

However, based on the Home Minister's argument, the Police are absolutely helpless without the EO to put these "criminals" to jail via our criminal justice system.  Hence the need for the Police to take the easy way out, by becoming the witness, prosecutor and judge to place these "criminals" under detention without trial.

Unlike Dato' Seri Zahid who seems to have trouble coming up with concrete statistics, we have shown using past published police statistics have shown that the EO was completely ineffective in fighting rising crime. For example, the Malaysian crime index was rising rapidly from 2003 to 2008. At the peak, with the crime rate rose by 34.0% from 2004 to 2007.  During this period, the EO was readily available at the Police's disposal and yet, crime was seemingly unstoppable.

However, despite the EO repeal at the end of 2011, the Police and the Home Ministry were claiming victory in the fight against crime, with the crime index declining by 7.6% in 2012.  Hence, based on the above official crime statistics presented by the Police themselves, how can the Home Minister, Dato' Seri Zahid Hamidi, now claim that the cause of rising crime is almost entirely due to the repeal of the Emergency Ordinance?

Therefore, just like Dato' Seri Zahid's utter nonsense over the "Red Bean Army" allegedly funded with hundreds of millions of ringgit by the DAP, this so-called study which shows 90% of organised crimes being committed by ex-EO detainees is a complete figment of Zahid's imagination.  This study does not exist.

We are seriously concerned that the Home Minister is taking advantage of the public fear of rising crime to bring back draconian laws for sinister purposes in Malaysia, instead of focusing on how to improve the professionalism, efficiency and effectiveness of the Police in fighting crime.

We call upon both the IGP and the Home Minister to heed Dato' Seri Najib Razak's advice when he announced the repeal of the EO, that "now police must train themselves how to look for evidence."  Instead of just catching suspects and chucking them into EO detention, Dato' Seri Najib asked the police to now "provide evidence to charge them in court".

PEMANDU, So Where Are The "Radical" Reforms?

Posted: 12 Jul 2013 12:35 AM PDT

We welcome the statement by Performance Management and Delivery Unit of the Prime Minister's Department (Pemandu) which admitted that the Government has not done enough to battle corruption and that "radical reforms" are needed.  This comes after the latest Global Corruption Barometer (GCB) report which showed that the people's perception of the government's effectiveness in combatting corruption has plunged significantly from 49% previously in 2011 to a shocking low of 31%.

Director of Anti-Corruption NKRA of Pemandu, Ravindran Devagunam said Pemandu acknowledged the results, saying "the survey clearly shows that what we have done is not enough. We need to intensify efforts and continue to push for improvements across the social, political and business arenas."  This is a complete reversal from earlier in April this year, when Ravindran's fellow NKRA director Datuk Hisham Nordin told Bernama, that the NKRA has exceeded the target of the KPI set to fight corruption in the country.

In the same statement, Ravindran said among the new measures being implemented are that "Ministers are currently required to declare their assets to the prime minister as well as to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC)".  In addition, Special Officers to the Ministers would declare their assets to their respective minister as well as to MACC starting this year.

Pemandu has also suggested that "to increased transparency and accountability by ministries, Ravindran said the Auditor-General's Performance Audit Report would be tabled at every Parliament sitting instead of just once a year."

All of the above are fine proposals, but they are hardly radical, and clearly do not go far enough to demonstrate an impact against corruption.  When Penang state executive councillors are already publicly declaring their assets, the policy for Ministers disclose assets privately to the MACC falls far short of creating a ripple.  What's more, the MACC to date has been part of the corruption problem and not the solution.  Hence until such a time when MACC is able to show its teeth and prove its worth, such assets disclosures to MACC will be viewed with disdain.

The move to table the Auditor-General's Performance Audit Report at every Parliament sitting is certainly welcomed.  However, if the Government isn't even able to resolve the scandals, and punish the responsible culprits arising from the annual tabling of the Auditor-General's Report previously, how would increased frequency of the report improve the Government's commitment to fight corruption?

Perhaps the least credible element of the statement was when Ravindran said the appointment of Datuk Paul Low, his superior as Minister of Governance and Integrity in the cabinet line-up is "a clear manifestation of the prime minister's commitment towards fighting corruption".

Ravindran said "with Low leading the coalition across ministries, NGOs, professional bodies and business and the Rakyat at large, we believed that the war on corruption will intensify, bringing about radical changes and deliver greater results."
Such endorsement for Datuk Paul Low in itself will extinguish any flickering hopes Malaysians have for real transformation.

Datuk Paul Low, despite his past experience as the President of Transparency International, has at every practical opportunity become the apologist for the Najib administration, justifying continuity and not change.  He has gone on record to reject the Independnent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC), public declaration of assets by Ministers, offering of the Public Accounts Committee chairmanship to the parliamentary opposition and even supported the return of Emergency Ordinance for detention without trial.

To quote The Malaysian Insider, Datuk Paul Low also "did not do himself any favours last night when reacting to the survey results that showed that the public's confidence in the government's anti-corruption effort had dropped sharply in 2012. Low said that corruption is a global menace and not unique to Malaysia."

He said that "the Malaysian finding is consistent with the worldwide results where 36 countries viewed the police as the most corrupt."  These answers are in sharp contrast to his statements when commenting on graft surveys in his capacity as TI-M president.  Then, he pointed out that the MACC and other reforms introduced by the government were ineffective in fighting corruption.

Let us be clear that Pakatan Rakyat wants to see the fight against corruption succeed.  However if the above measures are the standards by which Pemandu deem as "radical", then certainly Najib's administration's attempts to reduce corruption will fail miserably.  Being "radical" in this case, doesn't have to be "out of this world".

The Government just needs political will to ensure open, competitive and transparent tenders for mega-privatisation contracts, public declaration of assets by Ministers, giving teeth to regulatory agencies such as MACC and IPCMC and promoting check and balance within the Parliamentary system.  The implementation of these measures will go a long way towards redeeming the decling corruption barometer in the country.

Apakah Sebab Malindo Air Diberikan Layanan Istimewa Daripada Najib?

Posted: 11 Jul 2013 09:32 PM PDT

Perdana Menteri Dato' Seri Najib Razak telah melancarkan syarikat penerbangan Malindo pada tahun lalu 12hb September.  Malindo Air yang merupakan hasil usahasama antara National Aerospace and Defence Industries Sdn Bhd (NADI) dan PT Lion Group, diumumkan oleh Perdana Menteri bahawa akan mula beroperasi pada 1 Mei 2014.

Masalah percanggahan kepentingan telah berlaku dalam jawapan yang telah diberikan oleh Kementerian Pengangkutan kepada saya pada minggu lalu, 4hb Julai 2013, di mana pihak Menteri memaklumkan bahawa Malindo Air hanya diberikan Lesen Perkhidmatan Udara oleh Jabatan Penerbang Awam (DCA) pada 28 Februari tahun ini.

Maksudnya, Dato' Seri Najib Razak telah melancarkan dan mengumumkan tarikh operasi sebelum DCA dapat menjalankan audit ke atas kelayakan syarikat tersebut untuk memperolehi lesen berkenaan.  Kejadian ini telah memberikan bukti yang lebih kukuh bahawa Malindo Air telah diberikan sokongan luarbiasa daripada Perdana Menteri sendiri sehingga kekurangan-kekurang lain syarikat tersebut diabaikan.

Mengikut jawapan Menteri Pengangkutan, antara kriteria dalam memberikan lesen perkhidmatan udara adalah "kedudukan kewangan yang kukuh" dan "lulus dalam menjalani audit teknikal".

Mengikut laporan Suruhanjaya Syarikat Malaysia (SSM) terkini, Malindo Air hanya mempunyai "paid up capital" sebanyak RM1 juta sahaja.  Pemilik saham utama Malindo Air, syarikat NADI, seperti yang telah dibongkarkan tahun lalu, telah melanggari Akta Syarikat 1965 kerana tidak memfailkan penyata kewangan mereka sejak tahun 2007, atau 6 tahun berturut-turut!

Saya ini bertanya kepada pihak Kementerian Pengangkutan, adakah sebuah syarikat yang hanya berkapita sebanyak RM5 juta, yang dimiliki oleh sebuah syarikat yang melanggari undang-undang dan tidak mempunyai penyata kewangan terkini, layak untuk diiktiraf "berkedudukan kewangan yang kukuh"?

Apatah lagi, syarikat usahasama PT Lion Group merupakan syarikat penerbangan yang mempunyai trek rekod yang amat diragui di Indonesia dan antarabangsa.

Adakah Kementerian sedar bahawa Lion Mentari Air adalah syarikat penerbangan yang diharamkan di European Union atas sebab "safety concerns due to alleged poor maintenance and regulatory oversight standards on the part of the EU, preventing them from entering the airspace of any member state".

[Senarai penuh syarikat penerbangan yang diharamkan boleh diperolehi di sini.

Baru-baru ini, pada bulan April, sebuah kapal terbang Lion Air terhempas di Bali (gambar dibawah).  Tahun lalu, ramai juruterbang Lion Air ditahan kerana menagih dadah dan syarikat tersebut dihukum oleh Kementerian Pengangkuatan Indonesia.  Dan pada Julai 2011, perkhidmatan Lion Air digantung beberapa bulan atas "on-time performance" yang terlalu teruk.  Isu-isu di atas masih belum mengambilkira banyak kemalangan yang telah berlaku sebelum 2011.

Kami mengalu-alukan persaingan yang lebih sengit dalam sektor penerbangan di Malaysia.  Rakyat Malaysia akan lebih beruntung dengan tambang penerbangan yang lebih murah dan kompetitif.  Akan tetapi, lesen yang ditawarkan kepada Malindo Air ini amat diragui dan soalan-soalan integriti tertimbul atas isu-isu kewangan dan keselamatan yang telah saya bangkitkan.

Soalan yang paling perlu dijawab oleh Datuk Seri Najib Razak, adalah sama ada Lesen Perkhidmatan Penerbangan ini telah diluluskan atas pemilikan saham 10.5% syarikat NADI oleh DZJJ Sdn Bhd, yang dimiliki oleh anak-anak Datuk Seri Jamaluddin Jarjis, Nur Anis binti Jamaluddin dan Ikhwan Hafiz bin Jamaluddin, yang berumur 27 dan 25. 5.7% syarikat NADI juga dimiliki oleh Kementerian Kewangan.

Soalan ini penting kerana ini menunjukkan bahawa Malaysia, selepas "transformasi" Datuk Seri Najib Razak, masak dipengaruhi dengan gejala kroni Barisan Nasional.

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