Saturday, September 27, 2014

Paul Low should resign from the Cabinet for not supporting PM’s promise to repeal the Sedition Act



Press Statement by M Kula Segaran, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat in Ipoh on September 26, 2014

Paul Low should resign from the Cabinet for not supporting PM’s promise to repeal the Sedition Act 

Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Paul Low had yesterday defended the use of Sedition Act 1948 at the International Law conference. 

It did not surprise me that Pual has become a defender of the draconian Act after he became an apologist for government’s wrong doings last year.

Last year, when there were strong and widespread public resentment against the abuses, wastage and inefficiencies revealed in the Auditor General Report, instead of telling the public what were the actions that would be taken against the culprits and the effective steps to minimize the defects, Paul said it would be unrealistic to expect zero defects in government agencies and that private firms also had their fair share of governance problems.

He added that not all the revelations in the reports are related to corruption, there were possibilities that the officers also lacked the skills and knowledge in carrying out their jobs.

What an apologist!

Yesterday, Paul said that the Sedition Act is needed to preserve peace and harmony in a multiracial society.
“Some are insecure while others are aggresive. How do you maintain harmony?" he said in response to a question by former Bar Council chairman Datuk Ambiga, during a law conference on whether the colonial-era law should be repealed.

Let me first ask Paul if he understood why the Prime Minister made the promise in 2012 to repeal the Act? Secondly, why is he breaking ranks with the Prime Minister on this issue? 

Can Paul deny that the recent sedition blitz is plain selective prosecution when only government critics are targeted?  

Last year, Paul Low had tried to defend the government agencies’ wrong doings by saying that it would be unrealistic to expect zero defects. But the fact is no MP has ever said that there must be zero defects. 

Yesterday Paul said he did not agree with absolute freedom and felt some form of restriction must exist. The question is who has been asking for absolute freedom? What Malaysians ask for is democratic freedom, not absolute freedom.

Paul must be the most confused Minister when he talked about zero defects and absolute freedom.  But he must not confuse the people. 

In fact, for not being prepared to support the Prime Minister’s promise to repeal the draconian Sedition Act, Paul who has been a big let down to those who have high expectation of him to uphold human rights and democratic principles, should resign from the Cabinet.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Khalid departs with two indelible black marks

Khalid departs with two indelible black marks


September 23, 2014
Refusing to step down and refusing to speak up against gender inequality has tainted Khalid’s time as the MB.
COMMENT
By Koon Yew Yin


khalidThe
inevitable exit of Khalid Ibrahim from the Selangor Menteri Besar’s
(MB) post marks the end of a turbulent and sorry phase in our country’s
political history.




In his last official address, the outgoing political leader told his
audience of state civil servants to ignore the political drama and to
let politicians do war with one another. He also stated that their drama
will eventually become a joke.




Perhaps Khalid was not aware of the supreme irony of his statements.
The consensus of informed judgement among non-politicians as well as
from professionals in the legal fraternity including from academia is
that it was Khalid himself who brought about the needless drama. Many
will also see Khalid as the biggest joker as well as the principle
villain in this wayang kulit.




As a politician, Khalid should have been fully aware of, and
honoured, the rules of democratic leadership. The first rule is that a
leader has a position and stays on for as long as his party has
confidence in him and supports him in the post that he is selected to
hold.




This is the same for all positions in the party or the state –
beginning with whether it is as branch chairman or at the highest level
of the state. These rules of the game applies not only to political
parties. It also applies to all organisations that subscribe to
democratic norms.


Not only did Khalid refuse to abide by this basic principle of
democratic leadership but he also gave the public – as well as other key
stake players such as the monarchy – the false impression that he had
the support of the majority of state assembly members in his attempt to
resist being replaced as the MB.




Whatever the reason for his unhappiness at the way in which he was
replaced, and however justified he was at being let down by his fellow
party leaders, his response and attempts at delaying or circumventing
the termination of his tenure, could in no way justify his blatant use
of the palace and other individuals and parties to extend his stay in
office. Neither can he justify what is commonly perceived to be his
efforts at trying to influence the selection of the next MB.




Besides being castigated as the politician who attempted to cling to
power by fair or foul means and who wilfully provoked an untimely and
unnecessary crisis between his own party, PKR, and PAS, history will
judge Khalid harshly for several other reasons.




Perhaps the most important is that he contributed, wittingly or
unwittingly, to a redefinition of the powers of the constitutional
monarchy which resulted in the undermining of our parliamentary
democracy system.




We will never know the contents of the discussions held between the
Selangor Sultan and Khalid . However, as the outgoing MB and political
adviser to the Sultan, it was surely incumbent upon him to reiterate the
basic principles and processes which underpin the country’s
parliamentary democratic system, whether at state or federal level; and
to ensure that these principles and processes are not undermined in any
way.




Further, as someone who gives the public the impression that he
respects gender equality, Khalid should have been the first person to
refute the objections raised in various conservative quarters on the
prospect of a female MB.




Instead he chose to remain silent and by doing so, contributed to a major setback in gender equality in the country’s politics.




There are several other reasons why Khalid can be seen to have done a
disservice to the cause of democratic, parliamentary and gender
advancement in the country.




However these two indelible black marks will remain forever
associated with his name – in legal, constitutional and historical
books.




Koon Yew Yin is an FMT reader

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Justice delayed is justice denied

Justice delayed is justice denied

 |
September 19, 2014
Indira to challenge the ex-parte order obtained by the IGP in connection with the arrest of her ex-husband.
Indra GhandiGEORGE
TOWN: Former kindergarten teacher M.Indira Gandhi will challenge the
ex-parte order obtained by the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) giving
him the right to ignore the Recovery Order and a Warrant for Committal
issued by the Ipoh High Court on May 30 this year.




Vowing to mount a serious challenge against the ex-parte order,
Indira’s lawyer M. Kulasegaran said, “Justice delayed is justice
denied.”


Kulasegaran revealed that the Attorney-General’s (AG) Chambers
obtained the order dated Sep 17 for IGP Khalid Abu Bakar from a single
Justice of the Court of Appeal (COA).




Although the AG’s Chambers was entitled to make such an application,
Kulasegaran said it would have been fair for the AG to serve all
ex-parte application papers to him and have the matter heard before a
three-man COA bench.




Kulasegaran was of the opinion that the AG’s decision was only going
to delay matters while causing serious prejudice to the welfare of
Indira and her youngest daughter, Prasana Diksa.




Saying, “It would create a great disservice to the administration of
justice”, Kulasegaran added, “The IGP merely had to arrest Indira’s
ex-husband and commit him to prison. Something which he, as a policeman,
is duty bound to do.




Pointing out it was a trite law in which both parties in the case
ought to have been heard, Kulasegaran said, “Justice must not only be
done but must be seen to be done.”




“Had the court heard us, it might have come to the conclusion that the application was baseless.”




“The AG must convince Malaysians that ex-parte applications such as
these are being made for the interest of the public and not for any
ulterior motive,” stressed Kulasegaran in a statement here today.




Last Friday, the Ipoh High Court Judge Lee Swee Seng granted Indira’s
application to obtain an order of mandamus against the IGP, who had
steadily refused to arrest her former husband, Muhd Ridhuan Abdullah @
K.Pathmanathan for being in contempt of court.




IGP Khalid was also ordered to retrieve six-year-old Prasana and hand
her over to the mother, which he has steadfastly refused to do.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

In all sense of fairness and justice, the AG should discontinue the IGP’s appeal to Court of Appeal



Media statement by M. Kula Segaran , MP for Ipoh Barat and DAP National Vice Chairman in Ipoh on 18th September 2014
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

In all sense of fairness and justice,  the AG should discontinue the IGP’s appeal to Court of Appeal

 
Last Friday at Ipoh High Court, Indira Gandhi in her application obtained an order of mandamus against the Inspector General of Police (IGP) who refuses to arrest and retrieve Prasana Diksa, the youngest daughter of the family and arrest the ex-husband Patmanathan Krishnan for being in contempt of court.

The Attronet Gneeral ( AG ) has on Monday served on our law firm a Notice of Appeal by the IGP against the above order to the Court of Appeal.

Although all parties have an inherent right to appeal against a decision of the court, this opportunity must be pursued prudently and with public interest in mind by the AG.

I would think it would be both prudent and wise for the AG to decline to appeal to the Court of Appeal. If the AG does not proceed with the appeal , it would do justice to Indira as her husband has yet to purge his contempt of Court and Prasana Diksa is yet to be found.

An appeal will only impose unnecessary mental torture and cause much anguish to Indira Gandhi and to her other children. Public interest would dictate that all court orders and warrants of arrest must be obeyed without question and it is in the welfare of Prasana Diksa for her to be reunited with her mother and her other siblings.
Further, an appeal only confirms that the AG, as the principal lawyer of the Government of the day, agrees and feels that what the IGP is doing is correct and right. Is this truly the case?

The AG should realize he advises the PM and cabinet members on all legal matters as per Article 145(2) of the Federal Constitution.

In my view , the AG should have advised the IGP to execute the orders made by the High Court,  namely to arrest Patmanathan Krishnan and to recover Prasana Diksa.
Is the Prime Minister and the Minister of Home Affairs going along and agreeing with the AG and the IGP?

By appealing, the AG is sending a message to the IGP and other public servants that orders of Courts are open to question despite conclusive determination by the Courts. All decisions of the Court can now be open to question by the IGP and every police officer. The Rule of Law becomes an illusion in Malaysia.

The AG and the IGP should not delay this matter by further appealing to higher courts. The husband has no further appeals pending. He has exhausted all legal avenues. What is still outstanding on his part is to purge his contempt. A refusal to arrest him only sustains the false proposition that orders of the Court can be disregarded with impunity.

In the case against the IGP, the decision of the Ipoh High Court is very sound and comes after mature deliberation of the matter by the trial Judge Lee Swee Seng. His Lordship said among other things:-

“While we may pontificate and propound on the legal principles and precepts, the child grows older with the passage of time by the day, the weeks, the months and the years. The appeal if successful cannot prove to be nugatory as all that happens would be that the child be returned to the father with mother having reasonable access.

We must not forget to put a human face to the law and here it is a case of a mother having to wait for 5 years to see the child of her womb”

Matters regarding parental abduction by converting spouses cannot be resolved if the AG continues to lack the political will to see that the Rule of Law prevails and no injustice is caused to any particular spouse or member of any minority community in Malaysia.

The AG must consider this dispute from a human perspective and consider the 5 years of anguish Indira Gandhi has had to go through. She filed her case in 2009 and it still remains unresolved till this day. The final stroke is the return of the child. Be reasonable. Be fair.  To further torment the family with appeals will benefit no one. Our national ethos remains clear “Keluhuran Perlembagaan, Kedaulatan Undang-Undang”.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

'Forced labour' rife in electronic factories

Forced labour’ rife in electronic factories


September 17, 2014


Several US, European, Japanese and South
Korean multinationals have operations in Malaysia, including Samsung
Electronics Co Ltd, Sony Corp, Advanced Micro Devices, Intel, and Bosch
Ltd.
Myanmar nationals hold up their passports outside the embassy of Myanmar in SingaporeKUALA
LUMPUR: Nearly a third of some 350,000 workers in Malaysia’s
electronics industry – a crucial link in the international consumer
supply chain – suffer from conditions of modern-day slavery such as debt
bondage, according to a study funded by the US Department of Labor.




The survey by Verite, an international labour rights group, found
that abuse of workers’ rights – particularly the tens of thousands from
low-wage countries like Nepal, Myanmar and Indonesia – was rife in a $75
billion sector that is a mainstay of the country’s export-driven
economy.




Several US, European, Japanese and South Korean multinationals have
operations in Malaysia, including Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, Sony Corp,
Advanced Micro Devices, Intel, and Bosch Ltd.




Some big brands use suppliers such as Flextronics, Venture
Corporation, Jabil Circuit, and JCY International to make parts for
smartphones, computers and printers.




The US government funding adds credibility to the report which is likely to come as a surprise to many consumers.




Malaysia is a middle-income country where labour standards have been
seen as better than in some of its Asian neighbours such as China, where
questionable labour practices have drawn scrutiny in recent years.




Verite did not single out any companies in its report, released on
Wednesday, but blamed a system in which government and industry policies
have given Malaysian recruitment firms increasing control over workers’
pay and other conditions.




“These results suggest that forced labour is present in the Malaysian
electronics industry in more than isolated incidents, and can indeed be
characterised as widespread,” the group said.




Several US companies with operations in Malaysia told Reuters they
could not comment until seeing the full report. An Intel spokesman said
most of the chipmaker’s 8,200 employees in the country were Malaysian
and it did not use contractors. Flextronics said it was aware of issues
related to foreign workers and had “rigorous” policies to prevent
abuses.




Malaysian government officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment.




The study comes three months after Malaysia was downgraded to Tier 3
in the US State Department’s annual Trafficking in Persons report, which
cited a lack of progress in protecting the rights of about four million
foreign workers.




The report, based on interviews with 501 workers, found that 28 per
cent of employees were in situations of “forced labour”, where work is
coerced through factors including indebtedness from excessive fees
charged by recruiters.




That figure rose to 32 per cent for foreign workers, who are often
mislead about salary and other conditions when they are recruited in
their home countries, and are commonly charged excessive fees that lead
to indebtedness.




Verite said the numbers were based on conservative definitions. It
found that 73 per cent of workers displayed “some characteristics” of
forced labour.




Stability


Malaysia’s electronics and electrical industry made up 33 per cent of
exports in 2013. In 2011, foreign investment in the sector accounted
for $2.68 billion, or 86.5 per cent of the total.




Malaysia has benefited in recent years from a reputation for
stability and low costs, gaining fresh investments after floods in
Thailand in 2011 crippled factory operations there.




On average, workers in the survey were found to have paid 2,985
ringgit to brokers in their home country and in Malaysia as payment for
their passage and jobs. That is more than the average per-capita annual
income in Nepal.




Unable to afford a lump sum upfront, more than two thirds of workers who paid broker fees had to borrow money.




One in five immigrants were working more than the suggested 60 hours
of overtime a week – the industry’s international standard limit – the
group said. Malaysian law allows employees to clock up to 72 hours of
overtime.




Malaysian laws have been amended in recent years to encourage the
growth of recruitment companies that provide workforce services to
multinationals, including paying, accommodating and disciplining
employees.




“Liability over violations of worker rights is obscured, creating
vulnerability on the part of the worker to exploitation and abuse,” the
group said.




The group found workers’ passports were often confiscated by
recruitment firms, which is illegal in Malaysia. Some firms were found
to charge more than $1,000 for a worker to “borrow” his or her own
passport. - Reuters


Monday, September 15, 2014

No body is above the law and that includes the IGP



Media statement by M. Kula Segaran, MP for Ipoh Barat and DAP National Vice Chairman in Ipoh on 15th September 2014

No body is above the law and that includes the IGP

It’s most heartening to speak yesterday day at a Tanjong Malim forum to the local population on the on going saga of the Indira Gandhi custody case.  Indira Gandhi also spoke at the forum.  Many present shed their tears as they listened to the pains which she has gone through.

The present Inspector General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Khalid has said to the media ,among other things,  that Police will not arrest the convert Patamanathan who committed contempt of Court after failing to surrender his 6-year old child to his former wife M. Indira Gandhi.

Last Friday, the High Court of Ipoh gave the order of mandamus against the IGP, ordering him to immediately arrest Indira’s ex husband Patamanathan (now known as Muhammad Riduan Bin Abdullah) and retrieve the child. The child was snatched away by the ex husband from Indira Gandhi when she was only 11 months old and was breast fed. Since then, Indira Gandhi has not seen the child who is now about 6 years old.

The Attorney General Chambers has, immediately after the court granting a mandamus order, applied for a stay pending their appeal to the Court of Appeal. The Judge Lee Siew Seng refused to grant a stay. We are given to understand the AG Chambers will be filing papers to appeal.

It is most heartening to note that the former IGP Tan Sri Hassan Musa has openly supported the immediate arrest and retrieving Indira Gandhi’s child. This statement emanating from the former IGP is shocking and is disbelief but most welcomed. I am sure the former IGP has deeply thought how unfair the present IGP is on refusing to exercise his power to act against Patmanathan and retrieve the child.

However shocked the IGP should feel by Musa Hassan’s remarks, as pointed out by the Judge to set aside his personal opinion and carry out his police man duties without fear or favor, Khalid should do what ought to do as  a professional cop.
The whole nation is talking about what Tan Sri Khalid and his more than 100, 000 policemen going to do.
It would be good to have a look at the  Police Act Section 20  “General duties of police officers”
…… 
(f) executing summonses, subpoenas, warrants, commitments and other process lawfully issued by any competent authority;
Section 20 is crystal clear and has spelt out the duties and obligations of a IGP. The IGP cannot, but carry out the orders of the court.

The child has not seen the mother and the mother has not seen the child for over 5 years. A young child of this age needs the care and protection of the mother as these are formative years of the child more than any other time .Enough damage has been done. 

The ex husband’s lawyer En Anas has told the court that he has spoken to his client and he can be contacted by phone and that the fugitive stays in Kota Baru. This is a open and shut case for the police to locate for the fugitive. 

Presently the public perception is not in the police favour. Generally the public feels the Police are irresponsible by not caring out the orders of the court. If the police can ignore Court orders what about ordinary lay people?

The IGP Tan Sri Khalid should take the views of his predecessor very seriously and be persuaded to carry out his duties with vigour and arrest Muhammad Riduan Bin Abdullah and retrieve the child immediately. By this good deed, the public perception would be favorable to the police force and would further enhance the confidence in the Police force

No body is above the law that includes the IGP.

http://ipohbaratvoice.blogspot.com
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http://facebook.com/kulasegaran
http://youtube.com/user/ipohbaratkula

Friday, September 12, 2014

Court gives IGP seven days to locate and hand over child to Indira Gandhi



Court gives IGP seven days to locate and hand over child to Indira Gandhi

BY V. ANBALAGAN, ASSISTANT NEWS EDITOR
Published: 12 September 2014
The Malaysian Insider
 
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar has seven days to locate Prasana Diksa and return the girl to her mother. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, September 12, 2014.The High Court has given the Inspector-General of Police seven days to locate Prasana Diksa and return the girl to her mother, M. Indira Gandhi, who is embroiled in a custody battle with her ex-husband.

Judge Lee Swee Seng, who allowed Indira's mandamus application, said Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar must set aside his personal opinion and enforce the law.

"The police have the means and apparatus to locate the child," the judge said.

The IGP had previously refused to enforce the civil's court's order to locate the child because of a shariah court order awarding custody of the girl to the father, a Muslim convert.

Lee also rejected a stay of his decision pending appeal by senior federal counsel Noor Hisham Ismail.
"There must be a human face to her application. She has not seen her daughter since 2009." Lee said.
M. Kulasegaran, who is in Indira's legal team, described Lee's directive to Khalid as "courageous to uphold the rule of law".

"We will have to wait until the seven days lapses before deciding the next course of action," said Kulasegaran, who is also Ipoh Barat MP.

Muhammad Riduan Abdullah or previously known as K. Pathamanaban had converted to Islam in 2009.

The Shariah High Court in Ipoh gave Riduan custody of the three children, including Prasana Diksa, after he unilaterally converted them to Islam in 2009.

Riduan had refused to hand over Prasana Diksa despite a 2010 High Court order awarding custody of the couple's three children to Indira.

In July last year, Lee quashed the conversion of the children and ruled that the certificates of conversion were unconstitutional.
On May 30, the court found Riduan guilty of contempt of court for failing to return Prasana Diksa to Indira.

On that day , Lee also granted her a recovery order and warrant of arrest against her former husband.
The girl, who is now five, was separated from the mother when she was a 11-month-old. She is believed to be in Kota Baru.

Another order was to arrest Riduan and place him in a civil prison until he offers an explanation to the court why he refused to return Prasana Diksa to the mother.

Khalid, however, refused to enforce the court order and said police were caught between two court systems because of the different custody orders from a civil and Shariah court.

Indira then went back to the High Court on July 25 to file an order of mandamus against Khalid to enforce the May 30 directives. – September 12, 2014.