30 December 2022

TM sold KL Tower shares 'murah2' for mere RM3.8 mil?...

One wonders if Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM) has short-changed itself by disposing its 100% interest in Menara Kuala Lumpur Sdn Bhd (MKLSB) for a mere RM3.8 mil when the net profit recorded by the latter through concessions and the right to manage Menara KL was said to be worth as much as RM20 mil in 2019 (2018: RM25 mil).

According to TM’s 3Q FY2022 financial announcement to Bursa Malaysia, the telco group had on Oct 31 completed a share purchase agreement to dispose its 100% interest in MKLSB for RM3.8 mil comprising of cash and the acquirer’s commitment to make good obligations associated to the concession.

Interestingly, the announcement made no mention of the acquirer’s identity, notably whether it was the said financially troubled Hydroshoppe Sdn Bhd and whether the transaction entailed “10 million shares” as reported by the FocusM yesterday (Dec 28).

For the uninitiated, Menara KL is owned by the Government while the operations and maintenance of the tower is granted under a concession. TM via its wholly owned subsidiary MKLSB had undertaken the concession since 1996.

Meanwhile, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) is investigating elements of corruption in the sale of 100% of shares belonging to a TM subsidiary to a company in the issue of the transfer of ownership rights to the management of Menara Kuala Lumpur (Menara KL).

Towards this end, it has summoned three people over the transfer of the Menara KL concession to Hydroshoppe Sdn Bhd. In a statement today, the graft buster agency confirmed that the investigation was carried out after it found suspicion in the ownership transfer of the iconic building’s management.

Whatever said, TM issued a media statement today to clarify that it is exiting the concessionaire as part of its business transformation programme whereby it is focusing its efforts and resources to strengthen its core business of telecommunications and technology.

“After due consideration on the change in the business nature of Menara KL from telecommunications services to tourism and hospitality, TM has decided in October 2021 not to renew the MKL concession and informed the Government accordingly,” the national telco operator pointed out.

“Subsequently in 2022, the selection process of the new concessionaire was then taken up by the Government upon which TM was informed on the appointed company to take over the shares of MKLSB and the Menara KL concession.”

TM went on to say that MKLSB shall continue to operate the concession and ensure the continuity of Menara KL operations for the Malaysian public, including international visitors.

“Employees will remain employed with MKLSB under the new concessionaire for a minimum period of three years. This is to ensure their welfare is protected in this transition,” TM further noted.

It added: “TM practices good governance and transparency in our business undertakings to preserve the interest of our customers and stakeholders. TM will provide our full cooperation and disclosures as required by the authorities.” – Focus Malaysia

Meanwhile,the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has started a probe to investigate an alleged deal that saw the management ownership of the iconic KL Tower transferred from telecommunications company Telekom Malaysia to a lesser-known firm. The alleged deal was said to have happened before the 15th General Election (GE15) on Nov 19.

MACC’s chief commissioner Azam Baki was quoted as saying by The Malaysian Insight that his agency has opened the investigation papers on the sale of the KL Tower management ownership. Mr Azam, however, declined to reveal more information about the investigation, The Malaysian Insight reported on Thursday (Dec 29).

Allegations of Telekom Malaysia selling off its shares in Menara Kuala Lumpur - a subsidiary which manages the KL Tower – to a company called Hydroshoppe came to the fore in a series of tweets by a user that goes by the handle @FreeMsian. In the Twitter thread, the user alleged that Hydroshoppe was a firm with low paid-up capital, and yet was able to be involved in a deal that was worth millions of dollars.

According to checks by local media, Hydroshoppe is a firm based in Shah Alam, Selangor with a total issued share capital of RM1 million.The Twitter user further added that KL Tower was generating some RM66 million (US$15 million) a year in revenue before the COVID-19 pandemic, with a net profit of RM25 million, the New Straits Times reported.

The KL Tower belongs to the Malaysian government and serves as the broadcasting station for Radio and Television Malaysia (RTM) and FM-radio broadcasting, among others. On Tuesday, Communications and Digital Minister Fahmi Fadzil said that he takes the issue of KL Tower’s management transfer seriously after the allegations about the deal were surfaced to him.

In a statement, Mr Fahmi said that his ministry will monitor the issue and will give its full cooperation with the authorities should there be any investigations. “I was given a detailed briefing on the concession of KL Tower’s management by the Communications and Digital Ministry on Dec 14,” he said, adding that he will next be briefed on the issue by Telekom Malaysia on Jan 3 next year.

Separately, former communications and multimedia minister Annuar Musa (above) denied that he had anything to do with the transfer of shares from Menara Kuala Lumpur to Hydroshoppe.

Mr Annuar was quoted as saying by the New Straits Times that Telekom Malaysia is a publicly listed company and was not under the purview of his then-ministry.

“Nothing to do with the communications minister. Go ask (Telekom Malaysia) …,” Mr Annuar was quoted as saying to news portal Malaysiakini. -  - CNA

In the month before the general election when the government was turning into caretaker mode, a profitable public asset, the KL Tower was stripped from public ownership and discretely sold off to private interests.

According to a Twitter account FreeMalaysian, dedicated to highlighting corruption, in the month before the general election, the KL Tower concession was quietly sold off to a company about to be struck off the Registrar of Companies (ROC),Hydr...ppe ..

KL Tower is a government asset of T...kom Malaysia, a government owned company or GLC holding a concession to the tower and the rights to commercial activities therein. KL Tower operations achieved RM66 million per annum before the pandemic, where RM 25 million net profit was achieved. With the pandemic effectively over, those sort of revenue and profit figures are achievable once again.

Ten million shares of M...a KL Sdn Bhd, the concession operating company for T...kom Malaysia Bhd, were sold to Abdul H...d Sh..h Abdul R..k Shaikh and N...ina Binti M....ed N...r. These two people are the directors of Hydr...ppe in a transaction dated 31st October 2022.

This transaction selling off public assets to private citizens raises a number of questions???

Why would a public asset be sold off without any announcement just before a general election when the executive government was entering caretaker mode?

Why had T...kom Malaysia made no public announcement?

Why is T...kom Malaysia selling off a profitable asset?

This on the face of it appears to be a clandestine sale of public assets to cronies before the election. The T...kom Malaysia integrity officer who was also an officer of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), Abdul Razak Deroaf is totally silent on the issue, that should have raised ‘red flags’.

The nominee directors of M... KL Sdn Bhd, the concessionaire company, Tengku M...r Bin Tengku M...i and R...an Bin G...li indicates that senior management of T...kom Malaysia were fully aware of the transaction and the implications. Tengku M...r is T...kom Malaysia’s chief strategy officer, while R...an is the group chief financial officer.

This is a scandal of the highest order, which shows that cronyism and corruption is rife within GLCs. This is only one case the public has been alerted to. GLCs are havens of corruption.- Syed Akbar Ali 

Mereka ahli Bersatu bertanding atas tiket GRS berbeza dgn ahli Bersatu bertanding atas tiket PN. Paling mustahak adalah kena lihat sapa yang sign watikah pencalonan. Umum mengetahui Muhyidin ketua PN bukan GRS. Jadi siapa ketua GRS? Hajiji?


28 December 2022

PNB dgn menara pencakar langit tapi pelabur dapat "ciput"...

Pulangan ASB baik sedikit...

Nampak jelas Permodalan Nasional Berhad (PNB) yang menganjurkan skim Amanah Saham Bumiputera (ASB) telah melakukan perakaunan kreatif dalam memutuskan pengagihan pendapatan bagi tahun kewangan berakhir 31 Disember 2022. Itu pun baik sedikit saja daripada tahun lalu dan yang kedua paling rendah dalam sejarah. Ada tiga komponen dalam pulangan tersebut iaitu pulangan asas sebanyak 3.35 peratus, bonus 1.25 peratus dan bonus tambahan 0.50 peratus. 

Bagaimanapun, bonus tambahan dihadkan kepada maksimum 30,000 unit yang pertama saja. Inilah unsur perakaunan kreatif yang saya maksudkan itu. Kita ambil contoh pelabur yang ada 30,000 unit kerana sehingga ke tahap itulah sajalah seseorang mendapat pulangan maksimum. Selepas itu tidak ada lagi bonus tambahan. Dalam bentuk pulangan (dividen), dia akan dapat RM1,005, bonus RM375 dan bonus tambahan RM150 bagi menjadikan jumlah kesemuanya RM1,530. 

Malangnya tidak ramai pelabur yang ada pelaburan sebanyak itu. Menurut ahli ekonomi dan penyelidik Dr Muhammed Abdul Khalid, yang memetik perangkaan PNB, sebanyak 76 peratus pelabur hanya ada purata RM590 dalam akaun mereka. Ini bermakna mereka dapat RM30.08 saja.Kalau kita banding jumlah pembayaran sebanyak RM8.9 bilion dengan 10.6 juta pelabur yang layak, purata agihan hanya RM839.62 seorang. 

Menurut Dr Muhammed lagi, 80 peratus pelabur ASB mengusai hanya empat peratus daripada keseluruhan dana skim tersebut manakala 10 peratus menguasai lebih 80 peratus daripada modalnya. Demikianlah tidak seimbangnya pelaburan antara golongan berada dengan tidak berada.Walaupun prestasi dan pulangan ASB mengatasi saluran pelaburan lain seperti perniagaan saham dan simpanan tetap, namun nilai purata pelaburan terlalu kecil untuk memberi pendapatan yang bermakna kepada majoriti pelabur. 

Dalam keadaan ekonomi global yang mencabar, kemampuan orang ramai menabung merosot. Sebaliknya banyak yang menjual pelaburan dan menarik keluar simpanan untuk menampung kos sara hidup akibat pengangguran dan kenaikan harga barang pengguna.Suasana ekonomi dan prospeks penjanaan pendapatan diramalkan lebih muram tahun hadapan. Justeru itu kita juga perlu lebih teliti dan kritikal mengawasi serta menganalisis prestasi ASB khususnya dan PNB amnya. 

Seperti yang telah saya sebut berulang kali, apa guna PNB mempunyai menara tinggi yang mencakar langit kalau agihan pendapatan kepada pelabur "ciput".Pengeruri PNB, Tan Sri Ariffin Zakaria, membandingkan pulangan ASB dengan prestasi Indeks Komposit Bursa Malaysia (KLCI) yang negatif sebanyak 6.7 peratus hingga 21 Disember dan kadar faedah simpanan tetap Maybank sebanyak 2.27 peratus. 

Baguslah kalau aset bawah pengurusan PNB bertambah dan prestasi ASB lebih baik daripada Bursa Malaysia dan simpanan tetap dengan bank. Tetapi bagi majoriti Bumiputera yang melabur dalam skim amanah kelolaan PNB, itulah pelaburan tunggal yang mereka pilih, yakini dan mampu. Perbandingan tidaklah memberi erti yang besar kepada mereka. Mohon baca rencana saya dalam Sinar Harian semalam seperti dilampirkan untuk kefahaman lebih lanjut. Terima kasih. - A.Kadir Jasin

It seemed that this 👇👇👇 company acquired menara Kuala Lumpur 
from TM just before GE15.It's really U grab,I grab,everybody grablah!!!

The real reason Mahathir attacks Anwar – Here’s what the ex-PM fears as the new PM started dismantles his cronies...

Many had never imagined Anwar Ibrahim would finally become the 10th Prime Minister of Malaysia last month. After all, he had been PM-in-waiting for 24 years – since 1998 when he was stunningly sacked by then-PM Mahathir Mohamad. In total, Anwar was persecuted with three prison sentences and 11 years in jail before walked free from prison after receiving a royal pardon.

He was imprisoned over dubious charges of corruption and sodomy – twice – by two prime ministers – Mahathir and Najib (who is serving his 12-year jail sentence for stealing RM42 million of SRC International money). Mr Anwar saw his chances slipping away as “Sleeping Beauty” Abdullah Badawi, “Corrupt” Najib Razak, “Racist Bigot” Muhyiddin Yassin and even “Turtle Egg” Ismail Sabri overtook him as PM.

While the majority of the so-called analysts had forecast a hung parliament post-15th General Election, none of them predicts Anwar would emerge the winner as most of them were betting that UMNO, Bersatu and PAS political parties would once again form a Malay-centric government. That explains why Bersatu president Muhyiddin and PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang are still squirming till today.

Mr Mahathir is another man who almost fell off his chair after learning that his protégé-turn-nemesis has become the prime minister. Like Muhyiddin and his religious extremist sidekick Hadi, the 97-year-old Mahathir didn’t expect Anwar-led Pakatan Harapan coalition would emerge as the biggest coalition in Parliament with 82 seats, let alone the idea that UMNO would support Anwar to form a unity government.

After serving twice as prime minister – first as the leader of then-ruling coalition Barisan Nasional for 22 years (from 1981 to 2003) and next as chairman of Pakatan Harapan after the 2018 general election – Mahathir was hoping to emerge as the kingmaker (even PM for the third time) based on the popular predictions that not a single political party or alliance will be able to command majority support.

Unfortunately, not only Mahathir-led Gerakan Tanah Air coalition lost all the 121 parliamentary seats it contested in the general election, the former premier and his son Mukhriz were among 369 parliamentary candidates who lost their deposits after obtaining less than one-eighth of the total number of votes. It was the most humiliating moment in the political career of Mahathir Mohamad.

It was both amusing and puzzling that the ex-PM could lose the Langkawi constituency, supposedly his stronghold. Yet, even after voters have expressed their loss of confidence in Mahathir, he has the cheek to prematurely judge the 1-month-old Anwar administration, expressing his lack of confidence in the new premier’s leadership. The old man should get a mirror from Shopee or Lazada.

Did Mahathir realize Pakatan Harapan won a whopping 5.8 million votes, more than 1 million votes than nearest competitor Muhyiddin-led Perikatan Nasional, which captured only 4.7 million votes? Perhaps Mukhriz has not told his father that the Anwar-led coalition has won 58 times more votes than Mahathir-led GTA (not to be mistaken as “Grand Theft Auto”), which only grabbed a pathetic 100,000 votes.

Apparently, Mahathir is using the 1997-1998 Asia Financial Crisis as his excuse to justify the lack of confidence in PM Anwar’s ability to face the current economic downturn. In an interview with Malay language newspaper Berita Harian, Mahathir has also raised the laughable concern that the new PM appeared to be preoccupied with maintaining support in the Parliament.

Perhaps the senile Mahathir didn’t get the memo that Anwar has already proven his legitimacy (unlike Mahathir’s lieutenant Muhyiddin) when the new premier easily won the motion of confidence in Parliament with two-thirds majority support. In fact, it was Anwar who bravely pushed for the vote of confidence on Nov 24, the same day he was sworn in as the 10th Prime Minister.

None of previous premiers – Najib Razak, Muhyiddin Yassin, or Ismail Sabri – whom Mahathir fully or partially supported had ever tabled a motion of confidence during their respective administration. Mahathir should stop thinking people are stupid to realize that he was one of the traitors who approved the “Sheraton Move”, the political coup that toppled the Pakatan Harapan government after just 22 months in March 2020.

Mahathir’s latest claim that Anwar, who was his deputy from 1993 to 1998, had failed to solve the country’s economic problems some 25 years ago because Anwar was ready to subscribe the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) recommendations is not entirely true. Exactly how does Mahathir know for sure that the alternative methods won’t work?

The ex-PM said – “When I was the prime minister, I went on holiday for two months and he assumed responsibility as acting prime minister. But he couldn’t resolve the economic problems. The economic crisis happened and the Ringgit dropped in value. I believe that would have caused us to go bankrupt and unable to execute economic policies.”

Mahathir bragged that it was he who had saved the country. Of course, he was referring to his brilliant move in fixing the Ringgit at RM3.80 against the U.S. dollar. At its worst level, the local currency plunged to a record RM4.885 per dollar in 1998. The pegging was heavily criticised, but even the World Bank and IMF acknowledged the policy stopped fluctuations in the value of the Ringgit.

However, it’s also true that countries in the region like South Korea, Indonesia and Thailand that subscribed to the IMF way of handling the crisis have emerged successful without taking the same currency pegging approach. A prominent feature of the IMF packages for the Asian countries was structural reform in the financial and corporate sectors, aimed at restoring market confidence and at improving growth prospects.

Between August 1997 and February 1998, the Malaysian Ringgit and the Thai Baht followed a remarkably similar pattern, but since then the Baht has recovered more lost ground than the Ringgit – suggesting that the IMF methods actually worked. At one time, as the Thai Baht and the Korean Won more or less halved their depreciation, the Ringgit started plunging again.

It was only when the Ringgit continued to drop like a rock, thanks partly to Mahathir’s attacks on currency speculator like George Soros and his refusal to reform monetary policies, that Malaysia decided to introduce capital controls including the pegging of Ringgit to the dollar effective October 1, 1998. What Mahathir doesn’t want people to know is the consequences of his solution.

While foreigners were welcome to take over ailing businesses in Thailand and Korea, Malaysia was interested in foreign direct investment but not in takeovers. As a result, cross-border mergers and acquisitions in Korea increased from US$1.4 billion in 1997 to US$ 6.3 billion in 1998 and total foreign direct investment rose from US$2.8 billion to US$5.1 billion.

Likewise, Thailand saw its FDI jumped from US$3.7 billion to US$7.0 billion, whereas net foreign direct investment in Malaysia fell from US$5.1 billion to US$3.6 billion. Investors were basically spooked and horrified by Mahathir’s anti-Western rhetoric. Today, the local stock market is still trading at less than 1,500 points, not much improvement from 1,300 points during the 1993 Super Bull Run.

Yes, in April 1993, the Malaysian stock market experienced its Bull Run. From a low of 645 points, the KLSE Composite Index hit its all time high of 1,332 in the first quarter of 1997, before it went kaput and ended less than 500 points in January 1998. And it was not a coincidence that the bull run happened when Anwar was serving as finance minister from March 1991 to September 1998.

What Mahathir also doesn’t want people to know after 25 years is the fact that the corrupt government of Barisan Nasional, first started with his leadership, has been abusing the provision in Section 26 of EPF Act 1991 to bail out cronies and families for decades. For example, during the 1997-1998 Asia Financial Crisis, PM Mahathir formed a RM60 billion fund, sourced mainly from EPF, to bail out tons of cronies.

As Mahathir’s privatization crumbled under the weight of incompetence, corruption and mismanagement during the crisis, companies owned by cronies like national sewerage concessionaire Indah Water Konsortium (IWK) was given soft “irrecoverable” loan amounted to RM1.4 billion, while MAS (Malaysia Airlines System) was also bailed out as the national airlines sat on a RM9.5 billion debt.

National carmaker Proton, which reported losses for so many years people had actually lost count, was repeatedly bailed out so that Mahathir’s pet project would not go belly-up. EPF suffered RM100 million losses when it was forced to cough up RM269.28 million on 81.6 million unsubscribed Time dotCom shares at RM3.30 – when the share was hovering between RM1.96 to RM2.10.

After raising RM6 billion bond to rescue light-rail transit operators PUTRA (Projek Usahasama Transit Ringan Automatik Sdn Bhd), which had defaulted its RM2 billion loan in 1999, the EPF was ordered to give RM600 million in yet another soft “irrecoverable” loan to STAR (Sistem Transit Aliran Ringan Sdn Bhd) simply because the companies belonged to Renong Bhd (UMNO’s former investment arm).

Other companies that enjoyed mega bailouts, just to name a few, included UEM, Malayan Banking, Bank Bumiputra, Sime Bank, KUB, Bank of Commerce, RHB Bank, Ekran’s Bakun Dam Project, Park May-Intrakota bus, Monorail, and even Konsortium Perkapalan Bhd – owned by Mahathir’s son Mirzan whose brilliant business acumen saw the company submerged in debts as much as RM1.7 billion.

It’s not hard to understand why Mahathir fiercely rejected the World Bank and IMF’s loans, which come with policies that could bankrupt his cronies and family members. Hilariously though, the man who actually bankrupts the country is none other than Najib, his favourite prime ministerial candidate whom had stolen tens of billions in the 1MDB scandal and had borrowed till the country hit RM1 trillion debts.

Since August 2015 at the peak of 1MDB scandal, Ringgit has effectively lost its value, trading more than RM3.80 to a US dollar and hasn’t looked back, even though then-PM Najib implemented the Goods and Services Tax (GST) effective April 1, 2015. The extra revenue from GST, averaging RM43 billion a year, wasn’t enough to impress the currency market.

Under the clueless, incompetent and corrupt regime of Muhyiddin and Ismail, both leaders whom Mahathir believed to be better than Anwar, the country further accumulated more than RM1.3 trillion debts. Worse, the Ringgit depreciated to RM4.74 to the greenback under Sabri’s watch. In essence, the Malaysian currency increasingly became worthless in the last 25 years – till Anwar was sworn in.

Today, within 1 month since Anwar took over, the Ringgit is trading at RM4.42 to the dollar. Exactly how does the new prime minister bankrupt the country when the confidence has returned to the local currency? In truth, Mahathir isn’t worried about Anwar’s ability to lead the country economically. He is actually terrified over Anwar’s ability to dismantle his web of cronies. He fears the truth will be unveiled.

Anwar’s first target on billionaire Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhary – one of Mahathir’s biggest cronies – has sent shivers down Mahathir’s spine. Syed Mokhtar was ordered to immediately allocate RM10 million, follows with RM50 million next year, for poor farmers. It was just the beginning. Other cronies, who are Mahathir’s proxies, such as Vincent Tan, Ananda Krishnan and even his own sons Mirzan and Mokhzani could be next. - FT


27 December 2022

Tun M needed self-reflection before criticising Anwar...

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is free to form his opinion on whether he is confident or not in Prime Minister (PM) Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim. But before commenting on the topic of confidence, it would be best for the two-time PM to assess and contemplate the people’s loss of confidence in him, his party and his coalition.

Anwar-led the Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition to emerge as the biggest coalition in Parliament with 82 seats while the Dr Mahathir-led Gerakan Tanah Air (GTA) coalition received zero. Anwar officially won the Tambun parliamentary seat with a majority of 5,328 votes although the constituency is not his stronghold, while Dr Mahathir not only failed to defend his Langkawi parliamentary seat but even lost his deposit.

In a huge contrast, Anwar became Malaysia’s 10th PM upon receiving a mandate from his voter base, confidence from other coalitions, and endorsed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and the Malay Rulers. On the contrary, Dr Mahathir and his party became totally irrelevant in Malaysia’s current politics.

Despite this, Anwar proved his legitimacy by also winning the motion of confidence at the first session of the 15th Parliamentary session, gaining support from his unity government consisting of former political rivals, while the top leadership in Dr Mahathir’s Pejuang are leaving, citing the loss of confidence. Even Dr Mahathir has left the party he founded.

Thus, as far as the topic of confidence goes, the contrast between Dr Mahathir and Anwar is like night and day. It is best to digest, contemplate and accept the reality before commenting on the matter.

Dr Mahathir loses relevance...

As for being worried about Anwar’s ability to navigate and address the economic issues or claiming Anwar was preoccupied with maintaining support in the Dewan Rakyat, perhaps Dr Mahathir could not recall ever being worried about securing confidence because the system he put in place ensured that his authority will never be questioned.

In contrast to Dr Mahathir’s brand of power concentration and collusion of power, thankfully Anwar and PH are in fact, pushing for the de-powering of the PM’s position by limiting terms, ensuring appointments of the Attorney-General (AG) and other crucial checks-and-balance organisations are made independently as well as separating the executive and the judiciary and many other reforms.

If anything, Anwar’s apparent “preoccupation” involves undoing the resulting corrupt machinery instilled through decades of Dr Mahathir’s “preoccupation” with securing power. Anwar could have focused solely on economic issues but he ended up having to juggle cleaning up someone else’s mess of poor governance and integrity over many decades.

As for being worried about Anwar’s ability to navigate and address the economic issues, Dr Mahathir should know it has only been a month since Anwar took office, and even then, his administration has done plenty.

Anwar’s first order of business was (and still is) to focus on addressing issues tied to cost of living with short and long-terms measures being implemented. Dr Mahathir should know that inflation is a combination of various factors, some areas being less within the control of the government. It’s easy to criticise from the sideline.

Dr Mahathir is unable to deny Anwar’s leadership-by-example which has been shown through cutting ministerial salaries (in addition to Anwar not taking any pay), ordering cost-cutting measures and frugality in ministries and agencies, and not taking new government car or office renovations.

Helping the people remains a focus when electricity tariff was not increased, giving tax cuts for low-cost housing, direct cash aid for students and families who are in need, special telco payment schemes for youths, veterans and the old, and many more.

All this while not forgetting to address structural and governance issues such as ending direct tenders, reviewing costly and questionable projects and so on.

Perhaps if Dr Mahathir has other great ideas, he should constructively convey this to Anwar. At least Dr Mahathir might maintain some semblance of relevance in that way instead of unproductive criticisms and comments to the press or ramblings on social media. – Datuk Dr Rais Hussin

The real story of Pejuang: 
tales of treachery and deceit...

Treachery and infighting within Parti Pejuang Tanah Air (Pejuang) led to the recent resignation of Mahathir Mohamed as party chairperson. Mahathir gave no reason for his shock resignation. However, informed sources said his resignation wasn’t a voluntary one. Treachery from very close quarters brought down Mahathir.

Pejuang went into the last general election with few expectations of electoral success. Mahathir founded Pejuang back in August 2020 after withdrawing from the “Sheraton move” engineered by Bersatu’s Muhyiddin Yassin and Azmin Ali who betrayed PKR.

Mahathir also stitched up a loose coalition of academics, professionals and NGOs called Gerakan Tanah Air (GTA). Pejuang and GTA fielded 369 candidates for state and federal seats in the recent general election, where all candidates lost their deposits.

Mahathir in his own seat of Langkawi could only garner 4,566 votes, not enough to even return his deposit in a humiliating defeat. The election results should have been enough for Pejuang to close shop. By itself, Pejuang doesn’t have enough direct support to influence the national political environment.

If Pejuang is to have any political future it must cooperate with one of the main coalitions. Reliable sources tell a tale of deceit between the chairperson and president of Pejuang, Mukhriz Mahathir who had long been talking to Anwar Ibrahim.

If Mukhriz held his federal seat of Jerlun, it is believed there might have been an opportunity for him to participate in the cabinet or hold another government post. However, this evaporated when he lost his seat.

Analysts are predicting Pejuang to lose its way after Mahathir’s resignation. However, the reality is that Pejuang was irrelevant before the election. This is not true for some small pockets within the state of Kedah.

Mukhriz still has some value for Anwar in the coming state election in Kedah. Pejuang still holds two seats in the assembly, Mukhriz in Jitra and Amiruddin Hamzah in Anak Bukit. With the little support Pejuang has in Kedah, joining Pakatan Harapan would bolster its chances of survival.

This is a strategic chip for PH, which together with Pejuang may be able to prevent Perikatan Nasional from holding the state. A possible reward for Mukhriz could be a return to the chief minister position. Mukhriz was one of the early people to have publicly congratulated Anwar on becoming prime minister.

What makes the plot thicken is that Pejuang Youth Chief Abu Hafiz Salleh Hudin and Mukhriz’s political secretary Anas have been regularly talking to Anwar since the Melaka state election. What is not known is whether Mukhriz was aware of this. Mahathir was certainly not aware. Mahathir drove Pejuang alone during the last general election. This proved disastrous.

Mukhriz feared disagreeing with his father. This is why Mukhriz is often seen to appear “half-hearted”, as he was essentially subservient to his father in what was essential his party. However, Mahathir is adamant of creating enough instability to make Anwar’s government fall.

He is in earnest discussions with Muhyiddin on this issue. Mahathir is still chairperson of GTA, a vehicle he can use to destabilise the government. This is an issue of great contention among the leadership of Pejuang.

Many members of Pejuang feel that Mukhriz has betrayed his father’s cause and is thus a traitor to the party. This led to the Federal Territories chief Khairuddin Abu Hasan and Pejuang Youth Chief Abu Hafiz Salleh Hudin resigning their positions. Sources indicate more are planning to follow.

There is a feeling Mukhriz has betrayed his father. Many within Pejuang are sympathetic towards Mahathir. This story indicates that political treachery and infighting is still prevalent in Malaysian politics. This time it has split Mahathir’s own family! - Murray Hunter

Sejak bila Hadi jadi jurucakap Allah? 
Kalu PAS sokong halal lah pula.Tapi...


23 December 2022

Spot on, dari isi hati PMX untuk rakyat marhaen...

Pihak Berkuasa Tempatan (PBT) terutamanya di kawasan bandar perlu menyediakan kemudahan infrastruktur yang selesa kepada penjaja dan peniaga kecil agar mereka dapat menjalankan perniagaan dengan suasana kondusif.

Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim berkata, kemudahan itu perlu disediakan memandangkan kumpulan berkenaan juga turut menjadi penyumbang kepada ekonomi negara menerusi perniagaan yang dijalankan.

"Kemudahan di kota mesti diselitkan dengan kemudahan kepada penjaja dan peniaga kecil agar dapat berniaga dengan selesa, ada kemudahan asas yang cukup,” katanya ketika merasmikan Konvensyen Hari Penjaja dan Peniaga Kecil Peringkat Kebangsaan 2022 (HPPK2022) pada Khamis.

Perdana Menteri berkata, perkara itu merupakan antara intipati perbincangan semasa mengadakan pertemuan bersama pengurusan tertinggi Dewan Bandaraya Kuala Lumpur (DBKL) di Kuala Lumpur, pagi tadi.

"Pagi tadi saya di DBKL... antara matlamat utama saya, kita harus adakan anjakan. Apa dia anjakan? Keindahan Bandar Raya Kuala Lumpur misalnya mesti disertakan dengan upaya (usaha) berlebihan (untuk) menyediakan tempat perniagaan bagi penjaja dan peniaga kecil seluruh Kuala Lumpur,” katanya.

Beliau berkata, menerusi usaha itu yang bertujuan untuk merakyatkan ekonomi, ia juga dapat memberi peluang penyertaan kepada semua golongan termasuk penjaja dan peniaga kecil selain turut menyeru setiap kementerian di dalam Kerajaan Perpaduan bekerjasama untuk menjadikan pentadbiran yang diterajuinya benar-benar merakyatkan ekonomi. - sinar harian

Who is Hamzah Zainuddin...

Hamzah’s character assassination 
of PM backfires...

In his first parliamentary speech as Opposition Leader, Hamzah Zainudin’s calculated, deliberate and malicious attempt at tarnishing the reputation of the prime minister, Anwar Ibrahim, severely backfired. One would have thought that Hamzah would prove to the rakyat that he was worthy of the title “Leader of the Opposition”, but instead, Hamzah let his side, and himself, down.

With a smirk on his face, and egged on by his equally contemptible fellow Perikatan Nasional MPs, the overconfident Hamzah made reference to an obscure and unheard of Italian publication, Agenzia Nova, which had described Anwar as Malaysia’s first “full-blown homosexual PM”.

The cowardly Hamzah is aware that if he had made damaging allegations about Anwar outside of parliament, he would risk a possible lawsuit. So, he abused his parliamentary privilege to launch personal attacks against Anwar using the flimsy pretext of “defending” the PM’s reputation.

Hamzah probably thought that the allegations would ruin Anwar’s standing, make parliamentarians reject Anwar, and deny him the crucial parliamentary vote of confidence. At the same time, Hamzah was desperate to court publicity. He failed.

Having stooped extremely low to score a political point and failing to achieve all that he intended, Hamzah looked like the prize buffoon. His deliberate smear tactic against Anwar failed, and in the end he was left with egg on his face. If only had he not squandered the perfect opportunity for him to start afresh and propel the PN coalition onto a new footing.

The rakyat are weary of the bully-boy tactics and childish antics of our MPs in parliament. Former Speakers, some of whom were spineless and were nothing more than political stooges, were unable to control recalcitrant MPs like Hamzah and his peers, like Shahidan Kassim, the MP for Arau.

Instead of leading by example, Hamzah has given us a taste of what’s to come. There will be more of the same-old, same-old rubbish of previous years. On the first day of parliament under the Unity Government, Hamzah showed that under his tenure, the mainly Malay opposition PN coalition possessed neither class nor maruah (dignity).

For his maiden speech, Hamzah could have focused on the economy, on ways to reduce the burden of the rakyat, and engage with the government about tackling the cost of living crisis. He could have questioned the Unity Government on a variety of topical issues: rising poverty, flood mitigation measures, policies to address climate change, food security, or how to reduce our dependency on fossil fuels.

He could demand answers from the Unity Government and ask them how they would handle rising unemployment, steps to encourage more people back to work, stimulate local economic growth, and how to help flood victims.

If many Malaysians are mistrustful of Hadi Awang, the president of PAS, then they will soon learn to be wary of Hamzah. In March 2021, the outgoing Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Abdul Hamid Bador, made serious allegations about a police cartel that was working together with criminals.

A month later, Abdul Hamid alleged that Hamzah, the then Home Minister, had blocked the transfers of a number of police officers and undermined his (the IGP’s) authority of the Malaysian police force. So, why had Hamzah interfered when Abdul Hamid was attempting to cleanse the image of the PDRM?

A few people claim that the ultra ambitious Hamzah, alleged to be one of the instigators of the Sheraton Move, is more dangerous than Hadi! Hadi focuses on the religious side of things, whilst Hamza’s role is to undermine Malaysian democracy. He will stop at nothing to score political points.

Anwar’s former adversary, Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, has been relegated to a footnote in Malaysian history. Mahiaddin Yassin was a mere opportunist and Ismail Sabri is just another accidental PM. Hamzah wants to fill the vacuum left behind by Mahathir, then install himself as PM.

Hamzah had no intention of “saving” Anwar’s reputation when he made his contemptible remarks. His allegations about the Italian website and the article on homosexuality were designed to wound and denigrate Anwar.

Hamzah wanted the media to pick up on his story, write about it, then publish it. He knew full well that before long, people would start to discuss it. This is Hamzah’s end game: to remind the rakyat about Anwar ‘s previous jail sentences even though these were politically motivated by his rivals. Actually, Hamzah forgot one thing. Most Malaysians know his true intentions.

As for Anwar, he is aware that he cannot control what others say about him, but is confident that the Malaysian public are more mature and not so gullible. The PM is too smart to retaliate and he will not respond to Hamzah. He also knows that he can prove Hamzah wrong.

Anwar’s focus is on uniting the country, stamping out corruption, improving the lives of Malaysians and boosting the economy. He is aware that deeds alone will suffice. Actions speak louder than words. - Mariam Mokhtar

PAS the most popular party after GE15?...

To believe that PAS is the most popular party in the country is a complete misnomer.  Too many 'analysts' appear to be quite misled by the fact that PAS has won 49 seats in Parliament and are now the single largest party in Parliament. This is incorrect. For the GE15 PAS abandoned their party name and their party logo and instead stood under Perikatan Nasional which is clearly identified with Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.  

The 49 seats won by PAS were from disgruntled Malay voters who had turned away from UMNO/BN. They looked to Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Bersatu and Perikatan Nasional. The lebai fellows also sensed this mood among the Malays and took advantage of the situation.  The lebais decided to sail under the PN flag and it has paid major dividends.

If the lebais stick with PN for the next elections they may likely win again. But if for whatever reason the PN breaks up, then the lebais will lose their seats again. In the long run it is better for Bersatu to break with PAS. But on the other hand is also useful to keep your enemies close. For the Malay voters the strength in Perikatan Nasional is Bersatu and Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin. Not the lebais. 

Just like in 2018 the strength in Pakatan Harapan was Dr Mahathir and Bersatu but running under the PKR banner. In 2018 the Malays actually voted for Dr Mahathir. Hence PKR won 47 seats in 2018 - the largest party in Parliament. On the other hand PAS won only 18 seats in 2018. 

In 2022 minus Dr Mahathir and Bersatu in PH, the PKR has won only 31 seats - down by 16 seats from 2018.  And even Nurul Izzah lost in their "family home seat" of Permatang Pauh. - Syed Akbar Ali 


21 December 2022

Budget 2023 to be tabled in February...

 House approves interim funding...

The Dewan Rakyat has passed an RM163.7 billion mini budget to keep the wheels turning in Putrajaya, pending a full budget.

Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim, who is also finance minister, told Parliament today that a new Budget 2023 will be tabled in February next year.

The mini budget was necessary to pay civil servant salaries and keep the government in operation as the previous Budget 2023 tabled by the Ismail Sabri Yaakob administration was not passed before Parliament was dissolved.

It consists of two components. First, to pay for emoluments and aid, the government is taking RM107.7 billion from the Consolidated Fund.This will also be used to fund aid programmes such as direct cash transfers to the public. The second component involves RM55.96 billion from the Development Fund, to fund development projects that are already ongoing. - mk

PM Anwar quoted Shakespeare’s Macbeth as he took opposition parliamentary chief Hamzah Zainudin to task for hurling unfounded accusations amounting to personal attacks against him on the first day of parliamentary sitting when confidence motion was debated. - melgoh

PMX lawat mangsa2 banjir di pantai timur...

PN furious & chaos after all political appointees sacked - yet too coward to vote against PM Anwar...

Khazanah Nasional Berhad (KNB) has made changes to its list of the board of directors. The latest update on the website of the sovereign wealth fund of Malaysia shows two figures have been removed – former Prime Minister Ismail Sabri as chairman and Azmin Ali as director. The quick removal came after newly crowned PM Anwar Ibrahim boldly terminates all political appointees.

Sabri, one of three vice presidents of UMNO, was a strong supporter of rival Bersatu president – Muhyiddin Yassin. Azmin, on the other hand, was the infamous traitor who led 11 PKR MPs to quit the party and caused the collapse of the democratically-elected Pakatan Harapan government after just 22 months. Both were part of backdoor government of Muhyiddin.

But Sabri and Azmin were not the only senior politicians who have lost their chairmanship and directorship. Bersatu president Muhyiddin Yassin and PAS president Hadi Awang, as well as other Perikatan Nasional loyalists were stripped of their top jobs, resulting in losses of salaries, allowances and perks after failure to form a government after last month’s 15th General Election.

And this is one of the reasons 74 MPs of Opposition Perikatan Nasional went ballistic in the first sitting of the 15th Parliament today. Had Muhyiddin and Hadi accepted the royal decree to form a unity government with Pakatan Harapan, which won 82 parliamentary seats, all the 74 Bersatu and PAS MPs might have become ministers, deputy ministers, chairmen or directors.

Prime Minister Anwar’s blanket sacking of all political appointees also means powers to award projects to family members and cronies have been removed. While Wannabe Prime Minister Muhyiddin desperately wanted power to prevent corruption and money laundering investigations against him, other Perikatan Nasional leaders wanted power to enrich themselves.

Unable to move on, former backdoor PM Muhyiddin has been scraping the bottom of the barrel, trying to convince the people that Anwar Ibrahim had stolen his premiership. Even after Barisan Nasional, Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS), Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS), Warisan and other parties have pledged support for Anwar, the Bersatu president still insists he had the support of 115 MPs.

Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim - Parliament

Anwar, in order to prove that not only he is a legitimate prime minister, but also possessed the support of 148 MPs or two-thirds majority in the 222-seat Parliament, has courageously promised on the same day he was sworn in as the 10th Prime Minister to table a motion of confidence, which he did today. This has further infuriated Muhyiddin and his followers.

Exactly why was Muhyiddin so furious and mad at the idea of a vote of confidence in the Parliament? Should not he and Perikatan Nasional rejoice and celebrate as if they had beaten Argentina in the 2022 FIFA World Cup? Clearly a vote of confidence would allow him to legitimately prove that he indeed has the support of 115 MPs, therefore PM Anwar must resign.

However, instead of celebrating, both Muhyiddin and Hadi have childishly called Anwar-led unity government illegal, despite the fact that it was the Agong (King) who had proposed the unity government before approved by all the nine Malay Rulers. It’s both treachery and treasonous to condemn the royal unity government as illegal because it means the Malay Monarch had violated the rule of law.

There’s another reason why the opposition sore losers did not actually want a vote of confidence to take place. It would expose how Perikatan Nasional Malay leaders had tried to cheat and scam the Malay Rulers with false claims that they had 115 MPs through the dubious statutory declarations (SD). If Anwar has at least 112 MPs, it means Muhyddin did not have 115 MPs.

The last straw that broke the camel’s back was when the leaders of five political coalitions and parties in the unity government signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to support Anwar administration on Friday (Dec 16). The MOU, among other things, stated that all parties should vote to support the PM in all matters related to confidence and supply, and matters that can affect the legitimacy of the government.

The MOU is quite similar to the one signed between Pakatan Harapan and Ismail Sabri administration in Sept 2021 after Muhyiddin was toppled by his own governing partner UMNO. Back then, the MOU was inked to ensure Pakatan’s support for Sabri’s fragile unelected government in exchange for certain reforms, including anti-hopping law, which is proven useful today in preventing Muhyiddin from stealing MPs again.

Unity Government MOU - Hajiji, Zahid, Anwar, Openg, Shafie

It certainly screams hypocrisy when Muhyiddin-led Perikatan Nasional condemns Anwar’s MOU as illegal and unconstitutional, but kept quiet over Sabri’s MOU. Of course, the Opposition is screaming till foaming at the mouth now because they are not part of Anwar administration, but had gladly accepted any MOU when they were part of Sabri administration.

The primary reason they make a mountain out of a molehill in the latest MOU drama is the condition that says whoever does not support the prime minister will cease to be a member of the party and lose their position as an MP. A warlord of Perikatan Nasional has argued that it would lead to dictatorship. Well, if Anwar is a dictator, then it must be true that Muhyiddin is a communist.

When Muhyiddin became the country’s first backdoor prime minister by snatching power in February 2020, he quickly locked down the Parliament to prevent any vote of confidence because he did not have the minimum support of 112 MPs at all. Only a communist leader would rule with absolute power by declaring a State of Emergency and shutting down the Parliament.

Anwar’s Pakatan Harapan has only 82 MPs. Other leaders – Barisan Nasional chairman Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) chairman Abang Johari Openg, Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) chairman Hajiji Noor and Parti Warisan president Shafie Apdal – willingly signed the MOU without pressure. No one holds a gun to their head to sign the MOU.

In fact, it was GPS who said the coalition can still pull support for the unity government whenever they like. The fear of losing independence does not arise at all because the MOU is only meant to ensure a stable federal government. Barisan Nasional, GPS, GRS and Warisan are not part of Pakatan Harapan government. And if any of the coalitions leave en bloc, there’s absolutely nothing Anwar can do.

The burning question is – why was Perikatan Nasional so concerned and busybody about the internal affairs of the unity government? Who is Perikatan Nasional to say the MOU is illegal and unconstitutional when all the five political coalitions did not think there was anything wrong with the agreement? Obviously, the opposition was afraid that the unity government could last till the end of the 5-year term.

Muhyiddin Yassin and Hadi Awang - Racist Bigots

Racist bigot Muhyiddin and religious extremist Hadi should stop insulting people’s intelligence with fairytales that the MOU has forced MPs to support Anwar under duress. Are you saying all the 30 UMNO MPs, 23 GPS MPs, 6 GRS MPs and 3 Warisan MPs were so dumb that they had blindly signed an MOU against their will as if Anwar was the one-eyed man in the land of the blind?

The strangest – yet hilarious – part was when Perikatan Nasional sent his newest clown Shahidan Kassim to the Parliament today to spark a verbal war. Instead of rallying at least 115 MPs (whom Muhyiddin has repetitively claimed to support him) to defeat PM Anwar in the vote of confidence, the despicable Shahidan said there was no reason for Anwar to test his majority.

The opposition appeared to be in confusion, contradiction and chaos when the former UMNO warlord said – “Since Anwar has received the consent of the King, just let him be the prime minister. Why do we need to do this?” Did Shahidan realize that it was an admission that Anwar has the majority support, which means Muhyiddin has lied all along?
Shahidan Kassim – Former Perlis Menteri Besar (Chief Minister)

A shouting contest in the Parliament was deliberately started by Shahidan to delay the vote of confidence. By right, the opposition should not waste time in voting against Anwar Ibrahim. It was a lame and cheap tactic to prevent Perikatan Nasional from losing the vote of confidence, which would be a spectacular humiliation to Muhyiddin and his minions in the event Anwar gets the 148 votes.

As expected, PM Anwar easily wins the motion of confidence via a “voice vote” because the Opposition was too chicken to go for a voting process. Muhyiddin ran away while Hadi kept quiet and new opposition leader Hamzah Zainuddin hid in a corner, allowing Shahidan to distract everyone with his silly circus stunts. By cowardly refused to vote, they managed to avoid an embarrassing defeat.

The opposition knew from the beginning they would lose, but the sour grapes just wanted to reserve the right to twist and spin at a later stage that Anwar didn’t get the numbers. It would make their loyalists and supporters feel better and not demoralized. Crucially, it would allow Muhyiddin to save face after crying wolf over dubious claims that he had the numbers.

It doesn’t matter that the premier did not manage to prove he has the support of 148 MPs in the vote of confidence. The appointment of Johari Abdul as the new House Speaker with 147 votes (deputy economic affairs minister Hanifah Hajar was absent) is the clearest proof that Anwar has the support of at least 148 MPs. The entire world knows Anwar has the numbers. - FT