Monday, December 29, 2014

Prime Minister should investigate why the government was caught unprepared for the nation’s worst flood



Press Statement by M Kula Segaran, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat in Ipoh on December 29, 2014

Prime Minister should investigate why the government was caught unprepared for the nation’s worst flood

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s directive to Cabinet ministers who are on vacation overseas to return home to mount operations to assist flood victims is a correct and necessary move.

Najib himself has earlier received a lot of pressures and criticisms for not returning immediately from America but he nevertheless made the right decision to return and take charge of the flood and rescue operations.

How could the Ministers continue to holiday when the Prime Minister himself has returned to assist in the flood rescue and relief operations?

Since the Ministers did not see it necessary to cut short their holidays, it was only right that they were ordered to do so.
Malaysians are still shocked that the nation could face such scale of flood without any prior warning from the meteorological department.

It was also very clear that the government was caught unprepared for such a disaster.

On Saturday, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said that the flood mitigation standard operating procedure (SOP) must be reviewed in order to be better prepared in the future.

Has not the government learned any lessons from the past floods? What have happened to all the previous talks about better planning?

On Jan 31, 2011, Muhyiddin, who is also the National Disaster Management Committee chairman, directed the relevant government agencies to discuss and come out with a more efficient early warning system for flood disaster.

"The early warning system not only allows us to anticipate the flood, but also ensure a more efficient evacuation of flood victims and deployment of rescue assets," he told reporters after visiting a flood evacuation centre at Sekolah Agama Labis in Johore.  

Then on Jan 18 this year, in his speech at the presentation of aid to flood victims in the Pekan parliamentary constituency, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib said the cabinet had accepted the proposals from the national disaster management committee on improving managing floods, including implementing an early warning system and flood-mitigation projects.

He said in line with this effort, the government would ask the Malaysian Meteorological Department and Drainage and Irrigation Department to use the latest and sophisticated technology to ensure a more efficient and effective flood management system.

Najib was reported to have also said - "We must practise the principle of 'sediakan payung sebelum hujan' (to be prepared for any eventuality) to avoid facing a more difficult situation".

DAP has called for full public support to the Prime Minister led response to the flood. When the flood is over, the Prime Minister should conduct an inquiry to find out why the government was caught unprepared for the nation’s worst flood disaster and make public the findings.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Ipoh coffee uncle found, and he's not Chin Peng

7:50PM Dec 27, 2014

Malaysiakini

Ipoh coffee uncle found, and he's not Chin Peng


The mural of an elderly man in Ipoh which generated controversy after a local resident claimed it was the image of communist leader Chin Peng turned out to be a dud after all.

Lim Chai, the son of the man featured in the mural, said his family broke into laughter when they first heard about the claim.
  
"My father looks nothing like Chin Peng, my whole family laughed when we heard about it," he said in an interview with Kwong Wah Daily published today.

On Tuesday, Sinar Harian reported Ipoh resident Mior Azman Mior Aris's claim that the mural by famed Lithuanian artist Ernest Zacharevic resembled Chin Peng and that it was a bid to "subtly" introduce communism.

Lim said his 80-year-old father resides in Penang and older Penangites would know him as he was active in ghost festival activities in the 1980s.

He added that his father in his younger days had also operated a coffee shop.

Lim said Zacharevic met his father at his cousin's coffee shop on Carnarvon Street, Penang, and had taken an interest in the old man.

Mistaken identity

Zacharevic, who had done plenty of street artwork in Penang, later took a photo of the man which was later used to draw the portrait on a building in Jalan Tun Sambanthan in Ipoh.

Lim, who produced the photograph of his father used for the mural, said he hoped the matter would no longer be politicised.

He added that some people have also mistaken his father for another elderly man who worked as a forklift operator who was featured in a video on the making of the mural.

The artwork featured Lim's father holding up an old coffee cup.

The huge mural is part of several street artwork by Zacharevic (left) in collaboration with coffee shop chain Old Town White Coffee to beautify Ipoh town.

The Ipoh City Council insisted the mural was not of Chin Peng and the artwork will remain.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Will the Police investigate Datuk Nazri for stating a legal fact which Guan Eng has also done ?



Press Statement by M Kula Segaran, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat in Ipoh on December 21st, 2014

Will  the Police investigate Datuk Nazri for stating a legal fact which Guan Eng has also done ? 

DAP welcomes Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi ’s criticisms of the  act of a Malay Muslim individual, allegedly from Perkasa, who tore down a Christmas and New Year greeting banner displayed outside the DAP Perak headquarters on Friday.

However, such criticisms will not suffice from a Home Minister and Zahid should immediately direct the Police to take action against the suspect who was also alleged to tug Tebing Tinggi assemblyman Ong Boon Piow by the arm and wanted him to convey a message to Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng: “Malaysia is not China”.

In fact, the Inspector General of Police Tan Sri Khalid who has never been slow to respond verbally to issues , should on his own initiative immediately direct the police to take the necessary action against the suspect.

Malaysia is a multi racial and multi religious nation and mutual respect and tolerance are most essential for racial peace and religious harmony.
The act of taking down the banner must therefore be taken seriously.

This is an issue where all political parties should take a stand and also use it to send a strong and clear message to all that such attack will not be tolerated.

It was reported that the Penang branch of Malay right-wing group Perkasa yesterday lodged 25 police reports over a statement made by Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng on the use of the word ‘Allah’. .

4 days ago, Penang police chief Datuk Abdul Rahim Hanafi said that the case is being investigated under Section 504 of the Penal Code.

Section 504 is for intentional insult with intent to provoke a breach of the peace which carries a jail sentence of up to two years or a fine or both upon conviction.

I wish to draw the police attention to what was said by then Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Nazri Aziz on Jan 18, 2010 .

Part of The Sun Daily‘s report is as follows:-

Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Mohd Nazri Aziz, who commented last week that non-Muslims in Sabah and Sarawak should be allowed to use the word Allah, said today that those in Penang and the Federal Territories could also use the word as there is no state enactment to prohibit its usage.

The Constitution clearly says no religion, except for Islam, can be propagated among the Muslims, Mohd Nazri, who is the de facto law minister, told reporters after launching the public transport consumer rights awareness campaign here.

So will  the Police investigate Datuk Nazri for stating a legal fact which Guan Eng has also done?

Demolishing “100 Quarters” is demolishing part of KL’s history



Press Statement by M Kula Segaran, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat in Ipoh on 20th December, 2014.

Demolishing “100 Quarters” is demolishing part of KL’s history 

“100 Quarters”, one of the most well known icon sites in little India is in the process of demolishment due to DBKL’s failure to protect part of city’s history.

Built in 1915, the “100 Quarters”  comprise three rows of houses along Jalan Chan Ah Tong, Lorong Chan Ah Tong and Jalan Rozario  and were mainly occupied by those working in the then Malayan Railways. 

The development plan  to make way for three residential towers to be developed by Malaysia Resources Corp Bhd (MRCB), which is partly-owned by Malaysia's largest pension fund, the Employees Provident Fund (EPF - See more at: http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/heritage-body-slams-kl-city-hall-over-failure-to-see-historical-value-of-br#sthash.lLpnVF7R.dpuf

“100 Quarters” and the adjoining open space land are all registered in the name of Pengarah Tanah dan Galian Putrajaya. Apparently this land is under the title no. HS (D) 119632 PT 29. The open field adjoining this 100 quarters has been gazetted by the Selangor Government on 9th April 1970 under gazette no WKNS 212/9.4.1970

From records uncovered by NGOs and private persons,  it has come to our knowledge that MRCB has been given the 100 quarters area ( apparently in a commercial exchange of lands) together with the open field.

The lands are located in the most prestigious part of Kuala Lumpur. The open space is the only green area in this locality. They are the icons of the little India area and a great attraction to tourism. This nature’s beauty must be preserved for humanity.

The relevant authorities who gave away these lands must explain why MRCB was bequeathed these parcels of land. The public expects full disclosure namely:
1)    was the giving away of the lands done at arm’s length dealings?
2)    What price the land were sold/ exchanged?
3)    Was appropriate market value used to transact these lands?
4)    The open space being a gazette area, why no degazetting was done to date?
5)    Why the failure of the DBKL to consult with the adjoining land owners and stake holders as this is contrary to Local Agenda 21(basically means Malaysia being a signatory of this Agenda must have open discussion, consultation and agreement with the public before a decision to carry out any development).
 
While visiting the Vivekananda area on 5th of November 2014, the Minister of Culture and Tourism Datuk Nazri Aziz openly said that the adjoining quarters and the open space must be preserved. All present at the site were overwhelmed with Nazri’s bold announcement. We know MRCB is well connected to the powers to be and all the more reason for Nazri to prevail on them.

MRCB must consider its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and give effect to the local stake holders’ interest.

I urge the proposed redevelopment of these areas to a concreted jungle to be halted immediately by the relevant authorities



Thursday, December 18, 2014

How can Indira Gandhi retrieve her child without IGP’s assistance?



Press Statement by M. Kula Segaran, Dap National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat on17th December 2014 at Palace of Justice, Putra Jaya.
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How can Indira Gandhi retrieve her child without IGP’s assistance? 


On 11th March 2010, the Ipoh High Court granted custody and control over the three children of Indira Gandhi. Prior to this decision, the father of the three children and then husband of Indira Gandhi had obtained a similar order from the Syariah Court. Notwithstanding this order, the husband Pathamanathan @Riduan failed to return the last child of the family to the mother thus forcing her to institute committal proceedings against the husband.

On 30th May 2014, the Ipoh High Court granted a warrant of arrest order commanding every police officer to apprehend Pathmanathan @Riduan and also an order to retrieve the last child under section 53 of the child Act.
From this order, the Inspector General of Police (IGP) being the police officer named above who had refused to enforce both the above orders. From this, the IGP has appealed to the court of Appeal.

Today, The Court of Appeal  made a majority decision . The Panel comprised Dato Abdul Aziz , Dato Haji Asmadi Bin Asnawi and Dato Tengku Maimun Binti Tuan Mat . Dato Tengku Maimun gave a dissenting judgement wherein she fully agreed with the High Court Judge Lee Siew Seng s decision.

The  Court of Appeal said among others:-
1)      that the IGP has discretion not to enforce the above orders as the orders are not of a public nature but a private family matter.
2) the bailiff of the court can assist in enforcing the order

The reasoning is most shocking of earthquake proportions in that it seems to have failed to appreciate that the IGP by the Police Act must and should enforce a court order without questioning its merits.
By saying that the IGP has a discretion in the court is sending a message that any civil servant can question a court order and need not adhere to it. This will bring a stand still on orders made by courts as they can be ignored by civil servants.

We need to be clear, that the IGP holds a public duty to do all things within the meaning of the Police Act. We would advice Indira Gandhi to pursue this matter to the highest court of the land to bring an end to this ambiguity and conundrum.

In presenting my argument, I said that India is without a remedy now. Justice Abdul Aziz said she can still proceed with the assistance of the bailiff of the High court. I said that as we are unable to locate the where about of the  Pathamanathan @ Riduan , how can anyone retrieve the child with the bailiff assistance. Only the IGP with state resources at hand can do so. To this the majority judges failed to agree with me.

The dissenting judge’s decision is that the mandamus order by Lee Swee Seng has not erred based on the facts of this case is the right and only approach Indira Gandhi has. Otherwise how can court bailiff locate a contemnor who is in hiding?

Lawyers for Indira Gandhi:  M. Kula Segaran, Aston Paiva and Selvam Nadarajah.
Lawyers for IGP:  Puan  Suzanah Atan and Shamshul.
Watching Brief: Philip Koh for The Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism (MCCBCHST)
Andrew Khoo:  for Bar council
Goh Siew Ling: for all the women NGO group

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Indira fails to get IGP to execute court order

10:52AM Dec 17, 2014 Malaysiakini

By Kow Gah Chie

Indira fails to get IGP to execute court order


M Indira Gandhi, the Hindu mother who is embroiled in an interfaith custodial battle with her convert ex-husband, has failed to get the Court of Appeal in Putrajaya to order inspector-general of police Khalid Abu Bakar to recover her child.

The three-member appellate court panel today delivered a 2-1 majority decision in favour of Khalid in his appeal against the mandamus order issued by Ipoh High Court three months ago.

The mandamus order is to compel the police chief to retrieve the child and arrest the errant husband.

Both justices Abdul Aziz Abd Rahman and Ahmadi Asnawi allowed Khalid's appeal, while Justice Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat dissented.

According to judge Tengku Maimun, the High Court did not err in issuing the mandamus order.

On Sept 12, Ipoh High Court issued a mandamus order to compel Khalid to arrest Indira's (right) ex-husband, Muhammad Ridhuan Abdullah, and return their six-year-old daughter to her.

Khalid, who claimed he was caught between two equally valid orders issued by Syariah High Court and civil High Court, has appealed against the recovery order.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Call on PAS to adhere to PR‘s common agenda and policy and to struggle together with PR to topple BN in the next general election to bring about a better Malaysia for ALL



Press Statement by M Kula Segaran, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat in Ipoh on 16th December, 2014
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Call on PAS to adhere to PR‘s common agenda and policy and to struggle together with PR to topple BN in the next general election to bring about a better Malaysia for ALL

Hudud is not part of the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) agenda as announced in the ‘Kenyataan Bersama Majlis Pimpinan Pakatan Rakyat’ signed in 2011. And PAS being a coalition of PR will have to abide by PR policy and agenda.

Hence it is wrong and unacceptable for Pas to want to implement hudud law. 

It is an undeniable fact that PAS and DAP have different fundamental beliefs and there should be mutual respect for each other. 

But this has to also mean that DAP, PAS or PKR must respect and adhere to the PR’s common policies. 

As such, the Kelantan government must not go ahead with its plan to convene a special meeting of the state legislative assembly to table an amendment to the hudud law.

PAS information Chief Mahfuz Omar was reported to have defended the efforts to introduce hudud by claiming that "You can't talk about democracy and then stop people from following the due democratic process”.

His justification is flawed as this is not a question of democracy but a question of the need for a coalition partner to adhere to common policies of the coalition. 

It is illogical for Kelantan Deputy Mentri Besar Datuk Mohd Amar Nik Abdullah to say that DAP can leave the PR if it is uncomfortable with PAS’s plan to implement hudud laws. 

By pushing the hudud agenda, it is PAS that is not adhering to the PR‘s common policy, and it is PAS that should be held responsible for its action.

Let me reiterate that the DAP‘s position is that hudud is unsuitable in Malaysia as ours is a multiracial and multi-religious country. 

Deputy Umno President Tan Sri Muhyiddin has, at the recently concluded Umno General Assembly, warned the delegates that BN could lose Putrajaya with just 2 % drop in support.

Many Malaysians have in the last two previous general elections voted for PR to want to bring about a political change in the nation. 

PR must therefore be more united and work harder. 

I call on PAS to adhere to PR‘s common agenda and policy and to struggle together with PR to topple BN in the next general election to bring about a better Malaysia for ALL.