Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Action will be taken against those found to manipulate crime figures, says IGP

Inspector-general of police Ismail Omar has defended the National Key Result Area (NKRA) statistics on crime index, saying there has been no manipulation.

                  Inspector-general of police Ismail Omar 

"I will be committing a big sin if I am seen to be manipulating the figures, just to promote that crime under my tenure is under control. I would be committing a big sin to create this false impression to the rakyat. How can we do that, I will not allow my officers to do that.

"Prove to me where the statistics are manipulated, and I will take action on those who do this. It is not true that the government has given us certain targets and we manipulate. If (crime is rampant) I would not be able to face you.

"Action will be taken against those found to have manipulated it. I am open to criticism, and the people and politicians are welcome to see me or my state or district police chiefs if something is not right. Give positive criticism and ideas and don’t just condemn us," Ismail said.

The IGP said the police force had inherited looking after the security and safety of the country and that is what it intends to do.

He said he took note that there were much publicized incidents of crime and said the police were handling or are investigating them.
“We take note that there are people afraid of crime. We are aware that the public is not satisfied and we respond straight away. Last month there was concern over safety in the malls and we met with the management and directly dealt with them to resolve the safety at parking areas,” he said.

Ismail said this when asked about allegations raised on the manipulation of crime statistics, especially those on index and non-index crime.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Is Cameron Highlands parliament constituency the ultra-safe seat for MIC?

A parliamentary safe seat is a seat that at any election, the seat is sure to be held by the party as held before and the chances of changing hand are very little. 

Often than not, the safe seats are allocated to the leaders of the political parties to ensure that these so called talented politicians remain relevant and alive in political arena. These political elites should remain in control of Malaysia’s overall social and political scenario.

There seems to be no safe seat for MIC after the 12th Malaysian general election which was held on March 8, 2008 other than Cameron Highlands parliamentary seat. It’s claimed that there have no significantly weakened the constraints within the grassroots voters. Therefore the question is there such a thing as no safe parliamentary seat remains. 

Undeniably, Cameron Highlands has become part of the internal crisis and instability in MIC if the allegation of the Tamil daily that Cameron Highlands MIC members were actively conducting signature campaigns to enable Devamany to contest the seat is a reality.
Currently, MIC is said to pay full attention to nine Parliamentary seats which is Hulu Selangor, Kapar, Kota Raja, Subang, Teluk Kemang, Cameron Highlands, Tapah, Sungai Siput and Segamat together with three state constituency seats which is Ijok , Andalas and Batu Caves. 

MIC vice-president and Cameron Highlands MP, Datuk S. K. Devamany today denied that he had done anything to tarnish the image and credibility of the party or its leadership, as alleged by certain parties, as reported by Bernama.

Saying it was public knowledge that the party’s candidate list and seat allocation for the 13th General Election was the prerogative of Prime Minister and Barisan Nasional (BN) chairman Datuk Seri Najib Razak and MIC president Datuk Seri G. Palanivel, he emphasised that he had never acted beyond his powers. 
“Our (MIC) focus should be to ensure BN’s success and to wrest the seats lost during the last general election,” he told Bernama.  

Devamany, who is also deputy minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, was commenting on a Tamil daily report which questioned his stance and loyalty towards the party and its president.
The Tamil daily alleged that Cameron Highlands MIC members were actively conducting signature campaigns to enable Devamany to contest the seat. 
The daily further claimed that the campaign was a form of protest to prevent Palanivel, who is also a minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, from contesting the seat which is considered ‘BN’S Safe Seat’.  

Speculation as to where Palanivel would contest at the next general election has been rife in the nation’s Tamil dailies since he became MIC president in December 2010.  

At the last general election, Palanivel lost to PKR candidate, Datuk Zainal Abidin Ahmad in Hulu Selangor by only 198 votes after serving in the constituency since 1990.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Pakatan’s cheap cars plan would not help Malaysian

In Malaysia, taxes are the major source of income for the government, which uses the revenue collected to run the country, but on the contrary, people never enjoy paying taxes.

Revenue collected by the government mainly from corporate and personal income tax. Other big sources of tax revenue are come from taxes on vehicle sales, besides excise taxes on cigarettes, alcohol, tobacco, tires and others.

                      Proton Prevé - the Official Name for Proton's New Global Car

The tax imposed is not a voluntary payment or donation, but an enforced contribution to pay for the government numerous developments, social and economic programs for the benefits of the people in return.

The entire programs necessary for maintaining and developing the country such as infrastructure, public services, public health, school, roadways, prisons, police, military, disaster, subsidies and others tasks that are necessary for everyday life of the people.

PKR promised that its proposal to slash car taxes would help Proton and the thousands of workers in Malaysia’s automotive industry flourish, thus does not justified.

Big sources of tax revenue in Malaysia come from taxes on vehicle sales.

The cars in US are CBU (complete built up) but in Malaysia are CKD (complete knocked down) cars with more than 50 percent Malaysian content.

Mainstream car prices in US and Malaysia are as follows:

Honda Accord       -US$21,480 (RM64, 440)    -RM150, 000

Honda CRV           -US$22,495 (RM67, 485)     -RM150, 000

Honda Civic          -US$15,955 (RM47, 865)      -RM115, 000

Toyota Altis           -US$16,130 (RM48, 390)     -RM112, 000

Toyota Camry       -US$22,055 (RM66, 165)     -RM180, 000

Kia Sorento           -US$23,150 (RM69, 450)     -RM160, 000

Hyundai Tucson   -US$19,245 (RM57, 735)      -RM140, 000

Hyundai Sonata    -US$20,895 (RM62, 685)    -RM150, 000

Hyundai Elantra   -US$16,695 (RM50, 085)    -RM 98, 000

Luxury car prices

BMW 328i             -US$36,500 (RM109,500)   -RM300,000

BMW 528i             -US$46,900 (RM149, 000)  -RM400, 000

BMW 535i             -US$52,500 (RM157, 000)   -RM600, 000

BMW X5                -US$47,500 (RM142, 500)   -RM580, 000

Mercedes E350  -US$51,000 (RM153, 000) -RM400, 000 (In M'sia for only CKD E250)

Jaguar XF              -US$53,000 (RM159, 000)   -RM500, 000

Jaguar XJ              -US$73,700 (RM221, 000)  -RM1, 000,000

Porsche Cayenne  -US$48,850 (RM146, 000) -RM570, 000

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Diaoyu Islands or Senkaku Islands - Power Shift and Institutional Failure?

The landing of Hong Kong activists on a disputed island, known as the Diaoyu islands in China and the Senkaku islands in Japan sharply intensified tensions between the two countries.

After Japan arrested the Chinese group Wednesday, there were anti-Japan demonstrations in Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Beijing.China warned Japan not to allow Sunday's landing, urging it not to "undermine China's territorial sovereignty," according to China's state-run Xinhua news agency.

Furious anti-Japan protests erupted in mainland China cities Sunday after a Japanese group landed on an island that both countries claimed to be theirs to raise the flag. Protesters toppled Japanese-made cars, burned Japanese flags, and shouted that the island is Chinese territory and Japan should get out, according to the state-run China Daily newspaper report.

A significant number criticized the Chinese government for its timidity. The outspokenly hawkish called on the Chinese government to take radical action including the Chinese military to seize Japanese ships in defending the islands.

Confrontations between Japan and China on or near the dispute islands thus claimed by some analysts have the potential to become larger international incidents, but under current circumstances, the full-scale war between the countries might not happen.

The root cause of the anti-Japanese protest  rises seems to be the timidity of the Chinese government besides the issues of the country's sovereignty, national unity and territorial integrity over the dispute, as claimed by the Chinese hawkish.

According to some analysts, it reflects the historical animosities especially bitter Chinese memories of war-time atrocities carried out by the invading Japanese army in the 1930s and 1940s notably the Nanking Massacre during the Second Sino-Japanese War, which hundreds of thousands of Chinese civilians and disarmed soldiers were murdered by soldiers of the Imperial Japanese Army; the Boxer Protocol of 7 September 1901 which caused severe punishments, including an indemnity of 450 million taels of silver, more than the mainland China government's annual tax revenue, to pay as indemnity over a course of 39 years to the Eight-Nation Alliance which brought 20,000 armed troops to China to captured Beijing; and the legacy of Genghis Kahn Mongol Empire.

On the other hand, China's emergence as an economic giant after 1990 dimmed the memories of Japan's achievement. As major economic power but overtook by mainland China, Japan still has the world's third-largest economy and the world's fourth-largest exporter as claimed by economists.  Although Japan has officially renounced its right to declare war, it maintains a modern military force used for self-defense and peace keeping roles, and seems be prepared to use it aggressively in the dispute islands, according to some international analysts.

Both sides say they have a history of economic use of the islands. The mainland China and Taiwan claim that the islands have been a part of Chinese territory since at least 1534. Taiwan stressed that the islands were serving as important fishing grounds administered by the province of Taiwan. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs says that this is "fully proven by history and is legally well-founded".

They acknowledge that Japan took control of the islands in 1894–1895 during the first Sino-Japanese War, through the signature of the Treaty of Shimonoseki. They assert that the Potsdam Declaration (which Japan accepted as part of the San Francisco Peace Treaty) required that Japan relinquish control of all islands except for "the islands of Honshū, Hokkaidō, Kyūshū, Shikoku and such minor islands as we determine", and they state that this means control of the islands should pass to China.

Japan says it surveyed the islands for 10 years and determined that they were uninhabited. That being the case, on 14 January 1895 it erected a sovereignty marker that formally incorporated the islands into Japanese territory. The Senkaku islands became part of the Nansei Shoto islands - also known as the Ryukyu Islands and now as modern-day Okinawa prefecture.

After World War II Japan renounced claims to a number of territories and islands including Taiwan in the 1951 Treaty of San Francisco. But under the treaty the Nansei Shoto islands came under US trusteeship and were then returned to Japan in 1971, under the Okinawa reversion deal.

Japan says that China raised no objections to the San Francisco deal. And it says that it is only since the 1970s, when the issue of oil resources in the area emerged, that Chinese and Taiwanese authorities began pressing their claims.

Based on the above chronology, it seems that the super power especially US strategized the plan to safeguard its interest and to suppress mainland China and segregate Taiwan by returning the disputed islands to Japan.

Are integrative strategies the solution or sharing the sovereignty to solve the dispute between the two nations? 

Some claimed that the international politics is more of a zero sum game than most people realize, will it be the zero sum game?

Politics is an art of the impossible; but who can rewrite the political impossibility? Let’s wait and see.