Thursday, December 29, 2005
flames of fury 20
THE NATIONAL FRONT PASSES laws to affect nearly half the population, and no Malaysian is concerned at the time when their kind is affected by it. The Malaysian Chinese Association, the Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia, the Malaysian Indian Congress and other parties in the Front other that UMNO would rather not talk about it, and look the other way. Two cases in recent weeks show that it is done. A Malaysian, who was born an Indian Hindu and scaled Mount Everest in his time, was buried a Muslim, after the civil court decided it could not interfere in what should have been other court. But because she is not a Muslim, she could not go to the Sharia court for justice. So the Indian is buried a Muslim, with his family not allowed to take part: the religiious affairs department saw to that. The second case involved women, albeit Muslim, and they objected to their denigration at the last minute. But the two cases are seen in water tight compartments, and so the official actions against one is not seen as affecting the other. So, the Muslim women are up in arms, and the Hindus are up in arms, but seperately. If it is this way, the National Front government is not worried: they would be elected by these groups in the next election or byelection. But there is a link between the two: it shows the National Front reduces views of Malaysias by attacking individual components, knowing full well that parties in the National Front would not object, as it has not in the two cases, and Malaysians will vote the National Front in the next time around.
Why does this happen? The National Front government uses its powers to keep the opposition diffused and weak. The opposition political parties, even Parti Sa Islam or PAS, feels it is more important to survive than make sure the needs of Malaysians are taken care of. The DAP has asked the Yang Dipertuan Agung not to sign the bill, but it happily allowed the Lower House to pass the same act in September. It now have jumped into the action, but it has done after the National Front women senators had raised their cudgels. The mainstream newspapers now find creative reasons to explain whether the act was necessary. What the women did has changed the political landscape once again. The National Front has to look over its shoulders - now to see how the women would react to what it has in mind. In the 1950s and 1960s, it had the Labour Front to check it in Parliament, but it destroyed it by banning the Chinese group in the front, and made sure the Parti Rakyat Socialis Malaysia was not elected to Parliament. The PSRM has broken into two, the Parti Rakyat Malaysia has merged with the Keadilan party to form Keadilan Rakyat Malaysia. The other wing, Parti Socialis Malaysia, fights a lonely path, by believing in a better Malaysia and not elected seats, and issues statements on government intentions, and spread their outpourings to Malaysians up and down the country. They are too small to make an impact. But what they say is taken seriously. It is afraid of the Malaysian Communist Party, and would not allow its long term leader is not allowed into Malaysia, as he can under the peace treaty, and has taken legal action to allow him to. Its views affect the Chinese Malaysian, whatever the Chinese parties in the National Front think or say or do.
In the other case, the National Front government has passed a law disallowing half the population from going to one of its court systems. The civil courts told the wife of Lance Corporal Moorthy that it cannot hear her case, said in effect could not go to the Sharia courts, therefore her husband had to be buried a Muslim. She had no standing in the matter and had to allow the religious affairs department to bury him as a Muslim. The Indians, particularly the Hindus, are up in arms at this 'gross injustice'. The Malaysian Indian Congress, which should have taken the cudgels on behalf of the wife, would rather not. The Peoples' Progressive Party would rather blame National Front politicians for bribery in local councils than get involved in this religious tug-of-war. They know fully well the people would vote the National Front in at the next election or byelection. So why should they get involved. The Chinese and those of Sarawak and Sabah do not want to get involved. So it becomes a women's issue or an Indian issue, and the others stay away.
This is now the National Front would like matters be. When a point of view is argued, the National Front must be told that they would vote against it in an election, and take steps to do so. When more than half the electorate are women, the National Front would sit up and take notice. When the Indian Hindus have a beef, they must make it clear they will vote against the National Front in future if the problem is not solved. Islam is the state religion. One should not deny that. But if that religion is used to denigrate the non-Muslims, and the government agencies are used to enforce that, every Malaysian, including it seems many Malays, must take heed. The Mykad, which replaced the old identity card, has Islam printed on those who practice the Islamic faith, but not of others. Hindus are listed blank, Christians are listed as Buddhists. And the religion is not list in print. It is an arduous process to find out what is written, and the day I went to get my MyKad, the reader was faulty, and many went home disappointed. It is any wonder that many have bought these readers to know what is written about them in the MyKad. Was Corporal Moorthy's change of religion listed in the front of his Mykad? If it was not, then he was buried in the wrong place!
The National Front behaves as it does, keeping its opposition weak and defused. It is up to the opposition to see through this, and act accordingly. But it will and has not. As we have seen in the case of Muslim women and Corporal Moorthy. The others are not involved. But that is changing. In the past, the only people allowed to register new voters were the Election Commission and the National Front, especially UMNO. Many did not bother to vote because of this political party involvement. Now, however, the National Party has found to its horror that four million Malaysians have not bothered to register. It wants them to. But unless it involves the opposition parties and any group willing to register the voters, those who have not would not register. With the National Front breaking at the seams - the membership stating their opposition to the leadership openly, the groups in the Party at loggerheads, in UMNO, the top not agreeing to the bottom, the self-interest groups within not getting along with the leaders, for instance - they need all the help they can. In the next election, the National Front would be voted in, but most analysts believe it would face intense opposition in 2012 or 2017. The National Front leadership is in crisis. So it needs all the help it can. But that help cannot be easily got.
Unless the various disparate groups get together for a common purpose in challenging the National Front, they would not succeed. These groups would insist, to the National Front's pleasure, that they will only be involved in what they fight for and not in politics. But they will ensure that they will fail in what they fight for. But if the groups used what has happened in recent days for a larger purpose, there is hope. There is not much of that around. The Chinese would not be involved in an Indian matter. The men would not be involved in a women's matter. As long as Malaysians think that way, it is easy for the National Front to divide and rule. The Malaysians are concerned about their narrow interests. They would never get out of their narrow selves until it is too late. In the Internet, the Indians groups discuss Corporal Moothy's predicament, as if no other issue exists; and the women groups discuss the denigration of women. Some Malaysian political parties have taken the cudgels on behalf of the women, but they slept through when they had a chance. It had to do with the general feeling that on matters Islamic, no political party, including those in the National Front, would take part, or even take an interest. If they had not taken that informal ruling, matters would not have reached this stage now.
Wednesday, December 28, 2005
flames of fury 19
An Indian convert died. He didnt inform his wife or his family. The wife said he was a Hindu but the syariah court said he was a Muslim. The High Court couldn't overturn the verdict of the syariah court. He was buried as a Muslim with much anguish to his wife and family members. Why the husband didnt tell his wife? Why the authority didn't inform his wife? Because by his conversion his marriage becomes void unless his wife converts too. Since he didnt inform his wife, he had made his own mistake. By right the religious officials should inform his wife about it when he was still alive. Nobody did. So the misery moans on the family. May he rest in peace.
Thursday, December 22, 2005
flames of fury 18
He should know before he becomes the PM. The police act for ministers and PM and not trying to protect the common people. Every one knows the SB can come any time to take a loved one away without telling his/her family why. You can lodge a police report. This is about what you got. A report. And when you make a false report the police charge you. Remember the case of Anwar Ibrahim? He made the police report and he was thrown into jail without any courtesy for a former Deputy PM. I dont like the way the system works. There is no check and balance in the police system. It should work itself for a seperation of authority - like Hong Kong Internal Affairs Department or the US system. In this way any misuse of authority can be checked and any unauthorised arrests can be reviewed and any rogue police officers can be charged and dismissed. By itself the public can file report against any police officer for manhandling during his operation such night clubs, discotheques, massage parlours, gambling dens, prostitution, illegals, robbers, thieves, etc....Every one must accord the decency of the laws until he/she is proven guilty in court of law. What we have the police has the right to detain you for 60 days without trial or attached any reason thereto. Even in ISA itself you can sweat in Kamunting for 2 years or more without trial or charge. Only the police head honcho thinks you are a threat to the country you should be put behind bar for awhile...
There is another tale which happened just recently. A church was demolished by the authority. I thought my country imbues with religious freedom. How sad it had happened! Because the majority rules they could do what they want? What goes around will come back to haunt. This is the basic logical revenge of the Lord. Arent they come from the same Lord? The Torah, The Bible and The Quran directly from the same Holy Grace! Yet what I see is totally disregard of the teaching of the Lord. It saddens me alot. That the government officials do not practised what their religion told them to do. Islam is a religion of peace! I should expect they should show respect in December which is drawing closer to the Christmas celebration of which I know Jesus wasnt born in December but it is the spirit that every Christian jumped into it. By right these Christians shouldnt celebrate this pagan celebration but I think it is the goodwill and friendship which brought smile and forgiveness to these people and so bring peace to the world And what I seen here a group of government officers forget their training and upbringing that one should respect other religions. If these church officials do not follow regulations, call them for discussion and find ways to solve the problem. We tell the world we are a friendly nation with many races and multi religious freedom and yet in our own backyard we do differently. The government should put a stop. Immediately! But the PM is going for his holidays!
Monday, December 19, 2005
nothing to do - guitar learning 9
Sunday, December 18, 2005
nothing to do - Bandar Seri Botani Sungai Raia 8
The house, a single storey terrace, is facing opposite a vacant field which I enjoy though I had to pay extra money just for a house facing an open field. It is a 20X75 ft built up is 20x50 ft. Currently it is 75% completed so by next year maybe in March 06 I could see the whole house up. When the last I saw it cement plastering was completed. The balance is the floor tiles, bathroom basic amenities, doors and grills and finally the OC. I sigh a sense of relief now that I almost complete the transaction for this house. Single storey house is basically a holiday home and in case when I grow old I dont have to claim stairs...which my second home is about - a double storey corner unit only now waiting for CF so I expect to move in next year 2006.
(Thinking ahead the next one should be around a lake or facing a lake.....the place I dont know yet Maybe thinking of my home town - a place I dont recognize no more)
Friday, December 16, 2005
nothing to do - honda city 8
I read a good review in the newspaper and also car enthusiats comments in paultan.org. Next week I open my mind to see..................
Wednesday, December 14, 2005
flames of fury 17
Once the police said it is the SOP
It has been practiced for decades
Now it isn’t in the procedures
How the police hide!
Imagine the police break the law
Uphold justice and rule of law
In the oath taking ceremony
Later it is forgotten
Only the whim and fancy
The police take its course
The uproar on the nude squat
The race blown out of proportion
The loud mouth deputy minister
He didn’t rectify his errors
He only shown his arrogance
This we don’t need him to do
He should protect the country’s image
And not sullen it by his outburst
He had the cheek to say
He was misquoted!
Now the public inquiry
The woman is Malay
Why don’t the police reveal it the first instant?
It tells something fishy
It let the newspapers had a field day
Until the Chinese government demanded action
The police have her records
This is what the police do
Why the silence since happening in June?
Perhaps the police plan to cover it up
As most of the cases gone silence in the past
I think the PM should change his cabinet
Put those who can fight for the people
Even with the uniformed personnel
They can’t open their mouths
Without thinking of the damages done
What a joke we have become!
A weak administration wakes up the demons
It is time the PM walks the talk
He should have done it
Long time ago
If Tun Dr Ismail was around
I believe the Deputy IGP will be kicked hard
Until he gives him the answer
Within the time demanded
Sadly we don’t have another one
He was gone forever
So I guess the demons wake
The open sesame plays the game
The king kong comes
We the helpless suspects cry
Silently and in fear
The police beat on the ground
Will changes come in this inquiry?
Will the police know what to do?
How will they perform when they don’t follow the law?
Surprisingly the government let them ride
For such a long time!
Monday, December 12, 2005
nothing to do - christmas 7
In the mood, the banks increase the BLR by 0.25% which may not affect the swinging mood of most people. In the years ahead it can affect their repayment. So they should need adjustment of their monthly fixed expenses. Short term interest rates adjusted for 3 -6-9 months but 12 months remain at 3.7% Personally I thought the 12 months interest rate should increase sadly it didnt happen. So the banks want to squeeze more profits out of the people. Inflation reported around 3.3% but it may increase in the 1stQ of 2006 because of hike of petrol and petroleum products.
So Air Asia still advertises for cheap fares. I dont think it is really true. There are hidden costs which Air Asia never advertises in the advertisement. You have to pay cost of insurance, embarkation charges, transport, airport tax, taxi/bus....but for all these payments you are not confirmed a seat! So you have to hang around in the airport for many hours just to get these special cheap rates....Damned what a fool! How many hours lost?
Well...my mind is on Christmas and the songs and the spirit....
Saturday, December 10, 2005
nothing to do - hunger strike 6
Thursday, December 08, 2005
flames of fury 16
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
nothing to do - maids 5
I dont think there will be changes only more running around for the people
Monday, December 05, 2005
nothing to do - tea time ya? 4
Study finds coffee reduces liver risk
Sun Dec 4, 8:53 AM ET
Coffee and tea may reduce the risk of serious liver damage in people who drink alcohol too much, are overweight, or have too much iron in the blood, researchers reported on Sunday.
The study of nearly 10,000 people showed that those who drank more than two cups of coffee or tea per day developed chronic liver disease at half the rate of those who drank less than one cup each day.
The study, conducted by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases and Social & Scientific Systems, Inc., found that coffee provided no protection to people at risk of liver disease from other causes, such as viral infections.
"While it is too soon to encourage patients to increase their coffee and tea intake, the findings of our study potentially offer people at high-risk for developing chronic liver disease a practical way to decrease that risk," said Dr. Constance Ruhl, who helped lead the study.
"In addition, we hope the findings will offer guidance to researchers who are studying liver disease progression."
Writing in the American Gastroenterological Association journal Gastroenterology, Ruhl and colleagues said caffeine seemed to hold the key.
They analyzed the records of 9,849 participants in a government survey whose coffee and tea intake was evaluated and who were followed for about 19 years.
Copyright © 2005 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.
I havent decided on coffee. I have to think about it hard. Maybe I will somewhere to add color to my drinking habits. Right now mostly plain water.
Sunday, December 04, 2005
flames of fury 15
Friday, December 02, 2005
nothing to do 3
I have heard alot about wealth creations in the internet. In the newspapers too it is advertised by the so called gurus profiting in the internet businesses. The typical one "making money while you sleep!" Unbelievable! True or false? I havent tried this. But I had read testimonials of those who claimed they made so much at home or while they were sleeping. If so easy, why every one is not catching it? The modern 21st century gimmicks of getting rich without trying - only need your PC or Notebook and a connection - voila! You are in business in the internet.
Leave this aside. Gone over to my new house to cangkul again. I dont know how many rounds I did that. To me it is a good exercise. Sweat for an hour or so one can get refreshed. Then I went for a leisure walk. As usual looking at peoples' houses especially what they did to their homes...some are really terrible while others are quite ok Mine? It is still in my head revolving and looking at magazines to find which designs I can curi or modified to suit my house. When the time comes I hope I have something concrete to paint on my home.
Wednesday, November 30, 2005
nothing to do 2
I am earning nothing just enjoying my freedom for a change. I feel so good up in my head. I dont have to get up early morning nowadays. Last time I used to get early, go to work early too. In fact work always finished late in the night. So now I have my own pocket money to do what I please. Every day looking at the 2nd house and thinking what to put in or change the outlook. This helps me to energize my lazy mind for awhile. Next year I have another one to look at...this one is not that important as the first and second homes. It is more like a holiday retreat surrounding by natural landscape, lakes and perhaps when it is fully completed a nice cozy town.
So now I dont have to run with the pack. I lepak myself and as usual my favourite dwindling is writing poems. I never see how the time passes by. It is the feeling that I have written something for history. Perhaps my own history in poetry. Who knows the poems may become famous? I can't see far ahead. Only know I have used my time the way I think I should spend it
Monday, November 28, 2005
flames of fury 14
True the Chinese women cracked marriages break up as reported the chinese housewives to Women's Wing of MCA. It can happen to any race. To me it is a trend of broken marriages or sex affairs or love affairs. It is nothing new. The housewives should ask themselves why their husbands or boyfriends go for another. To me it is going down to bedroom antics. Yeah...remembering about 'Desperate Housewives'.
Back to DIGP. He should better explain himself. If he can't, I think he has to go. It is no use employing him. It is a waste of public funds. Maybe Anwar's ghost will suck him dry....
Do I hear a ghost? So many now circulating in the air....
Saturday, November 26, 2005
flames of fury 13
Police escapes charges because there is no evidence to show. How to? In close doors and behind the purview of the minister or government. Even it is true, the police will claim it is done by people who hate the force. I know it is true. Of course the police will deny responsibility.
Friday, November 25, 2005
flames of fury 12
KUALA LUMPUR: A 71-second video clip shown to two government ministers and several members of Parliament left them speechless and stunned.
The clip shows a naked woman in a locker room doing ear-squats in front of a woman in police uniform.
Home Affairs Minister Datuk Azmi Khalid, who watched the video, said such an incident should not have occurred and if it does involve police personnel it amounts to police abuse.
He is confident the police will investigate and get to the bottom of the matter, with the force's top brass paying particular attention to the matter.
However, there is no indication as to which police station or police personnel was involved, and this is something which has to be ascertained, said Azmi.
The clip, received by Seputeh MP Teresa Kok in Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS) format, is believed to have been widely circulated among the public who use the latest generation of handphones with MMS features.
Kok showed the clip, stored in her notebook, to several MPs, ministers as well as reporters in the Parliament lobby yesterday.
Chinese daily China Press published two frames from the video on its front page yesterday. It said a businessman had received the images on his bluetooth-enabled handphone and handed it to the newspaper on Tuesday night.
It also reported that a reader passed the clip to its office in Seremban on Wednesday afternoon. The paper showed the clip to a police officer.
Minister in Prime Minister's Department Datuk Mohd Nazri Abdul Aziz said he will forward the video clip to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak. He will also bring it up to the cabinet meeting next week.
"If it did happen, then it's embarrassing ... it's shameful," he said.
Nazri said proper procedures must be followed if the police think it is necessary to strip someone.
Meanwhile, Kok said she believes that the woman in the video was not one of three Chinese nationals who accused Petaling Jaya police personnel of abuse.
"What I want to ask is whether it is a standard practice for the police to make detainees strip naked and to do ear squats?" she said.
There was more excitement in the Parliament building yesterday afternoon when two police officers from the Petaling Jaya station arrived at the press room to view the clip which was recorded by a TV3 crew.
The police officers, however, declined to speak to reporters. to PJ police chief ACP Mohd Hazam Abdul Halim lodged a police report over the video.
This was confirmed by Selangor CPO Deputy Comm. Datuk Yahaya Udin.
He said the report will be investigated by the district police to identify the policewoman in the video clip.
Police will determine if the images were genuine or had been doctored, he said.
Opposition Leader Lim Kit Siang (DAP-Ipoh Timur) said the recent incidents involving police personnel would only undermine the credibility of the force in the eyes of the public.
"Whatever good that was brought about by the Police Royal Commission Report has come to nought," he said, adding that such abuse must be stopped and an investigation conducted.
What now? More silly things out from the can. Top terrorists now this! Shame! Shame! Shame! Will there be an end? I dont think so. A police man wants to sue a student for reporting him to the ACA. Though the Cabinet had directed him not to file charges on the student he went ahead. He should sue the ACA if he wants to clear his name. I think he should be dismissed from his job for not following orders of the Cabinet.
Thursday, November 24, 2005
We think of these people - transsexuals. A shame? A sign post? When I was young in my kampung, my uncle ( I dont know how he is related) used to show us kids then how to dress up as a woman. He did show us with all the make-up and dressing. Yes...he looked quite alright as a woman. Presently, I dont know where he is now. As far as I know he doesnt get married.
Now the Vatican Church came out with an order about homosexuals. The Roman Catholic Church has been plagued by homosexual cases in USA. The Pope doesnt agree that these people should hold any post in the administration of church. They should ask God to expunge them of their desires in the same sex. By right and by law same sex marriage shouldnt be encouraged or allowed to go. I don't show disrespect to these people. They should learn what they are born to do. They can gain respect for themselves if they fight for their rights as human beings. Don't go playing 'god' or follow the footsteps of the 'devil' I understand that most of them are in prostitution which they themselves do it giving that the 'sane' people push them away. Giving excuses are the true test of our own weaknesses. March forward as what they have got. Why feeling shameful as if they have committed the gravest sin in their lives?
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
nothing to do 1
Today(22/11/05) drove up to Ipoh. Measured the whole place of Jusco from top to bottom and side ways or whatever ways. Visited the exhibition of Admiral Cheng Ho Or Zheng He (I didnt know his name changed to Zheng He) Pictures and paitings about his voyages and his final resting place. Actually I dont think it is all about Admiral Cheng Ho. There are books on sale - fictions, cookeries, interior decorations, animals, chinese and english. It is just to pull the crowd nothing really about 'real' exhibition.
Drove to Bandar Sri Botanic before reaching Ipoh to view my house there. It is still in work in progress. I think it is going to be ready by March 2006. This place when it is fully developed could be a very nice place to live and enjoy the scenery. It is situated on a 1,200 acres of palm oil plantation. The whole project will take about 12 years to complete. It has a mixture of single/double storey houses, bungalows by the lake, link double storey houses, playground, schools, police station, shops, post office, market and jungle or jogging treks surrounding the lakes...
It was still drizzling when I drove back home.
Sunday, November 20, 2005
Saturday, November 19, 2005
The government says the housing developers can not collect booking fees which are illegal. When you go to book a house, you have to pay a booking fee. It can be forfeited if you can't raise the 10% down payment in the end. Do the government officials read the newspapers and advertisements? I can safely bet these officers waste time on tea breaks or pretend to be busy with their work but not the real kind of work.
The concept of complete the houses than sell has been dragging on. The government should just pass the laws to benefit the rakyat. No...there will be discussions and more discussions and finally died off in the dustbin. It is only for history buff to record what is happening
Friday, November 18, 2005
flames of fury 11
Mykad is suppose to be full proof but somehow on the latest reports I have my doubt. The plastic card can be broken. The information one couldnt really check on face value. But to ask to buy a reading gadget to read one's information is making a crony rich. In fact the officers must understand both languages - English and Malay. Currently this level has not been reached. These officers have poor command of English language and we are suppose to be known in our languages. How far have we reached this low level? The government policies and its inability to make a difference. Only good talk no substance. Sad really for my country.
I wrote to the Town Council about a road has two names. It is going to be 2 months I haven't got a reply. This is the attitude I have seen in the government department(s) The Chief Secretary should sack these senior officers for not performing to the needs of the rakyat. So I hear only talk and talk and continue to talk. The point is these officers would know how to put name on a road. Afterall the department has the complete layout of the town/city. Yet I think they enjoy sitting in the airconditioned office. This is the reason why I see so many unfinised businesses for the town council. The only excuse I always here through out the years not enough workers!
Thursday, November 17, 2005
gandhi and friends 4
Lanai : At one time Gandhi is involved in law and earning a decent living. Now he spends so much time on politics. So guys he has, I am afraid, a focus in his life. This is what he wanted to do.
Dog : True Lani. But we are the ones struggling to find our roads. Somehow we have lost our direction in our lives. Look at us. We are just struggling to live day by day. Maybe this time we should hit the road with what we want to do. So much time lepaking around until we are all become lazy!
Rat : Shit! Sorry I spill my coffee. It has to do with motivation. What we want to do? One has interest to fight for the poor and under privileged. Yet we are still thinking about it
Lanai : Pick something to throw at!
Rat : You must be joking Lanai! Throw what?! Your head? Maybe we should hang around with Gandhi. Well...he is in politics and you know guys there will be many things to do..
Dog : I second that! At least we all are together again. Wah....that must be fun, man! Just imagine the chorus and the melody....nothing beats it my friends!
Gandhi finishes his telephone conversation and walks over to his friends in his living room. Sparsely decorated nothing catching to bemuse the eyes. This is what Gandhi enjoying the most..a simple life.
Gandhi : What you guys were talking about? I saw you people looking serious at some points. What were the subjects about?
Lanai : Well...Gandhi my friend we are talking about joining you in politics. At least this will give us a focus and motivation to do something good. Afterall our daily lives are involved in politics too. So we thought we must as well help you out. So what you think?
Gandhi : I am very happy! I thought I am going out there alone. Now with you guys, my old kaki friends around, it has become much easy for me. Thank you my friends
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
flames of fury 10
Tuesday, November 15, 2005
flames of fury 9
A premier bank (Maybank) lied and the complainant almost lost his RM500. The bank had informed a Mr Tan (who had complained about the non-dispensation of his RM500 by its ATM ) that according to its records, the money was successfully dispensed. It advised him to refer the matter to the Financial Mediation Bureau if he wanted to pursue the matter further. However the bank’s own video recording showed that the money was not dispensed by the ATM. We believe that this case is only the tip of the iceberg because we at the Consumers Association of Penang (CAP) regularly receive complaints about ATMs. Except for the rare occasion, the banks concerned would smugly reply with the same standard letter. The gist of the letter is that their ATMs were functioning perfectly. Below is an extract of the letter that Tan received. “Based on our records and investigation, the transaction was successfully carried out and cash was dispensed accordingly. Our ATM system was operating normally during that period and no irregularities were detected. “Our branch has performed a thorough check on the ATM and confirmed that the cash position is balanced.” Now we know that the reply is not worth the paper that it is written on. In the above case, Tan’s request to view the video recording on the day of the incident (Oct 11, 2005) was turned down. He was told by a bank officer that he could view it only in the presence of a police officer. He made a police report and went back but was still denied a viewing of the recording. About two weeks after he lodged his report, he received the above standard reply from the bank. He then approached CAP and we arranged with the bank to let him view the video recording. After viewing it, the bank agreed to refund Mr Tan his RM500. When we questioned the bank on how the ATM records could have got it so wrong , the answer was that it was a technical matter which needed to be looked into further by the head office. When questioned how the cash in the ATM could be balanced when the RM500 was not dispensed, the answer was that investigations would have to be carried out, again by the head office. This case has wide repercussions for the millions of ATM cardholders in the country. Firstly, how many other complainants have lost their money because the banks denied liability based on their “irrefutable” ATM records? Secondly, the Financial Mediation Bureau has been rejecting claims based on the flawed ATM reports from the banks. We have another complaint against the very same bank regarding the non-dispensation of RM1,500 by its ATM. The complainant lost his case because the mediator based her findings solely on the report from the bank. Thirdly, it is clear that the security measures taken by the banks are clearly inadequate. Either there is something inherently wrong with the ATMs, or the procedures used when balancing the cash in the ATM are seriously flawed. To protect ATM consumers, we therefore urge the Ministry of Finance and Bank Negara Malaysia to implement the following:- • Instruct banks that they can no longer deny liability by stating that the ATM is operating normal and that cash in the ATM balanced. Unless collaborated by other evidence the complainant has to be reimbursed. • Instruct the Financial Mediation Bureau to review all cases involving ATMs where the decisions went against the complainants because they were based solely on reports from the banks. Since the banks’ ATM reports can no longer be relied on, the cases should be ruled in favour of the complainants unless the banks can come up with new evidence • Instruct all banks to put notices near their ATM machines that customers have the right to view the video recording once a complaint is lodged. • Allow the complainant to be present when the cash balancing of the ATM is carried out. • Make it compulsory for close circuit televisions (CCTVs) to be installed wherever there are ATM machines (and cash deposit machines). The CCTVs should be able to record consumers carrying out their transactions (but not their pin numbers).
The writer is the president of the Consumers Association of Penang.
I dont believe in ATM cards. I had heard so many stories about it. The banks are always right not to admit liability. The consumers can't win with its standard reply. In fact the consumers have no chance of winning because they can't view their records maintained in the banks. The banks always find fault with the ATM users. To me I opt for the traditional route. A passbook and a banking slip, now who can dispute that?
Sunday, November 13, 2005
sex education 16
In the recent 2005 Durex Global Sex Survey, Malaysians overwhelmingly picked the toilet as the preferred place for shagging outside a bedroom. In view of this prevalent practice, Dua Sen presents the definitive guide to toilet bonking... Where:Recommended:• Unisex toilets: Beach Club, Passion, Loft, Thai Club, Liquid KL • Spacious toilets: Imbi Food Court, KL, Press Club of KL.• Lonely toilets: Shell Station, Batu 13 Ulu Langat. • Artistic toilets: Pudu Complex (excellent erotic graffiti on doors). Not recommended:• Rajooz Curry House PJ - Stack of dirty dishes inside.• The Mall KL - The doors are about 3 or 4 feet high.• Boutique Toilet KLCC - Will people who won't pay for a room pay RM 4 for a toilet?• LRT Stations - Gadget mounted to prevent squatting over bowl hinders smooth sex.• Zouk KL - Bouncers get upset. • Toilets for the handicapped - Peter Tan gets really upset. Precautions: • Due to the foul smell in most of our public toilets, it is advisable to SKIP foreplay.• Bring along an aerosol can of air freshener and flush BEFORE sex. • KEEP handbag safely around neck as snatch thieves strike from adjacent cubicles. • Most of the cheap porcelain break easily, so go EASY on the acrobatics.• Some toilets/cubicles come with built-in urinals. They usually stink. DO NOT push your partner's head in that direction. Positions: While most (understandably) prefer an oral quickie, many copulating positions are possible depending on your dexterity and state of desperation...
Handbag About To Be Stolen StylePolitically-correct androgynous mannequin illustrations by Johnny Ong.© 2005 TV SMITH Link to this article: http://www.mycen.com.my/duasen/121105_toiletsex.html See also: SEX PLEASE, WE'RE MALAYSIANS PEEPING TANS
Saturday, November 12, 2005
The Real Estate and Housing Developers Association Malaysia (Rehda) is an association of developers and real estate agents, one for their own good and profit. They have been on a campaign to distract the ordinary consumer from the truth of their ever-increasing oppressive charges and commissions to the ‘poor’ lawyer whose fees have stayed unreasonably low at a rate of 1% or less of the purchase price. The developer’s profits have been increasing. The developer even makes the purchaser pay for the developer’s lawyer. The developer does not pay legal fees and/or disbursement charges to their own lawyers in a Sale and Purchase agreement. The developer and his lawyers deceive many a purchaser into believing that the developer’s own panel lawyer is in fact the purchaser’s own lawyer. In reality, the purchaser is many a time not at all represented by an independent lawyer. The real estate agents, the other group of persons in Rehda, increased their fees from 2% of the purchase price to 3% some years back, and then brought it down to 2.75% of the purchase price. Comparatively, a lawyer’s legal fees is 1% for the first RM100,000 and 0.5% thereafter. In most cases, the developer does not pay the legal fees of his own lawyer but makes the purchaser pay the fees. What is most disturbing is the fact that the purchaser is hoodwinked into believing that he is paying the fees of his own lawyer, who is protecting his interest in the Sales and Purchase agreement. In fact the lawyer on the developer’s panel of lawyers even sends the bill directly to the “client” purchaser, who then pays directly to the said lawyer. This further propagates the belief that this is indeed the purchaser’s lawyer, acting in the best interest of the purchaser but this is not true. The developer selectively picks and chooses lawyers for his panel of lawyers. A lawyer in the developer’s panel of lawyers cannot mean anything but being the developer’s lawyer. Many a developer disallows or discourages the purchaser from choosing and appointing their own lawyer from the over 12,000 lawyers in Malaysia. And if the purchaser still insists on getting his own lawyer – then the purchaser is expected to pay the fees of both the developer’s lawyer and the purchaser’s own lawyer. Many of the purchasers are just conned into believing that the lawyer from the developer’s panel of lawyer is their own lawyer. Whose interest do you think these lawyers will protect – the purchaser’s or the developer’s? After all the purchaser is a one-off client and the developer is a potential long-term client and the source of much work now and in the furture. Hence, reasonably, the lawyers from the developer’s panel of lawyers cannot be independent of the developer and therefore, can never be said to be concerned about protecting the best interest of the purchaser. Why indeed should the purchaser pays the fees of the developer’s lawyer? Why also should the borrower pay the fees of the financier’s lawyer? After all, the developer profits greatly from the increasing purchase prices of houses and buildings. It would be so easy for the developer to pay his own lawyer’s fees. But then Rehda is not interested in helping the consumer this way. The agenda seem to be focus the attention on non-issues like lawyer’s fees and the “no discount rule” so the public will not look at hanky panky of the developers, the inflated prices of houses and poor standards of buildings. Many may believe that this is all ‘propaganda’ by the lawyers but the truth begins to be revealed to the purchaser when it comes to the enforcement of his right in a Sale and Purchase Agreement. For example, if the property is not delivered by the time stipulated in the Sale and Purchase Agreement, the purchaser is entitled to claim for late delivery charges. But when your go back to “your” lawyer, who was a lawyer on the developer’s panel, to help you get your entitled late delivery charges, you will find that the lawyer is not to keen about pursuing your right. The lawyer may even propose that it best that the purchaser take just a certain percentage of the sum claimable as per the agreement. Some of these lawyers even go on to say that the authorities have granted an extension to the developer to finish the project, and thus there can be no claim during these extension periods and that one can only claim late delivery charges for the period after the end of this ‘extension period’. This is a lie – a purchaser is entitled to claim late delivery charges for the period beginning from the date the property was to be completed and delivered as stated in the Sale and Purchase Agreement. The fact that the developers license or permit is extended will not alter the fact that late delivery charges are claimable from the date as stipulated in the agreement. A wise purchaser will see the truth then and know that “their” lawyer was really not their lawyer at all, and most definitely never had any intention of looking after the best interest of the purchaser then or later. The statutory provided standard form for Sale and Purchase Agreements of residential units purchased from a developer do not have the necessary recital stating very clearly whether the purchaser is represented or not, and if represented, by whom? Parliament must look into including this recital to ensure that the poor consumer is less likely to be deceived. There is no statutorily provided standard Sale and Purchase Agreement form when it comes to shophouses, commercial property and for individual sale and purchase agreements (sub-sales). Here it is most important for parties to be represented by their own independent lawyers, who would protect their interest, because it very important to ensure that clauses that best protect their individual interest are inserted into the final agreements. Lawyers generally spend much time exchanging drafts to ensure that their client’s interests are protected. But if they are still going to be paid less than 1% of the purchase price, a most unreasonable and low rate, how much effort can you expect from your lawyer? But alas, efforts to increase legal fees have received protests from many a lawyer and one wonders why ... Rehda should look at itself, consider their charges and fees that they are levying on the Malaysian consumer, and do the necessary to ensure that the best interest of the consumer is protected. They should stop their sad attempts to distract the consumer by pointing fingers at the lawyer, who fees are at present extremely low and have not seen any upward movement for far too long.
Friday, November 11, 2005
flames of fury 8
All the public universities in the country are in a terrible state of affairs. The low academic quality leading to a worsening crises is a result of a variety of factors. First, the open and institutionalised discrimination of non-bumiputeras in academic and administrative appointments has meant that only bumis - particularly those loyal to Umno - are considered for these positions. The vicious discrimination of non-bumis citizens on the grounds of their ethnicity and religion has made mockery of Malaysia as a democratic country. Past experiences reveal that sometimes, as in the case of UKM, even non-citizens holding academic positions are appointed as administrators. Non-bumis are completely by-passed in the administrative appointments. Given this open discrimination, merit has no relevance in the public universities. Second, vice-chancellors in the public universities are all ‘yes-men’ to those in Umno and the Ministry of Education. They simply lack the academic and professional credentials to steer the universities in a healthy direction. They have been appointed to their present positions simply because of their connections to those in power, the UKM vice-chancellor being a case in point. Third, the public universities are merely pathetic appendages of the government; they do not have the requisite autonomy to function in a free and healthy environment. Since there is complete lack of autonomy, the activities of students and lecturers are very much regulated and controlled. Those who are critically-minded face the prospect of punitive actions. Lecturers who are vocal face the prospect of removal or non-renewal of contracts. Fourth, academic promotions are determined by criteria other than merit. Ethnicity, religion and loyalty to the government determines academic promotions. Non-bumis by definition are considered problematic in terms of academic promotions or administrative appointments. So how can one expect our public universities to attain academic and professional standards when there is such a blatant discrimination? How can a country that labels itself an aspiring democracy condone and justify such a nefarious practice of excluding a segment of its population from participating effectively in public universities? It is such a shame. Millions of taxpayers’ money is spent on building universities and paying lecturers. The money comes from all, but the beneficiaries belong to one particular ethnic group. Unless and until the racial apartheid is dismantled in the Malaysian education system in general and in public universities in particular, it makes no sense to talk of the quality of the public universities.
The writer, formerly of UKM, is now Visiting Professor at University of Kassel, Germany.
When you dont admit your mistakes, you never learn. When you never learn, you never know. When you never know, you are stuck of where you are! The promoting of one race and forgetting the other race groups will in the end spell the decaying of the society and the country. The country progress is not measured by one race alone; it is made up of the other races who contribute the progress of the country and society. Every effort must be governed by fairness to every race. You can't say you are in majority in a race, you can do what you want. History has recorded what had happened. Examples are Germany and Rome or Majapahit Empire...all about one race mentality and eventually the empire collapse and people disappeared or merged with other races. Yet humans always craze of power which will destroy themselves in the end
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
gandhi and friends 3
Gandhi: Welcome to my home friends! It is a long time we haven’t met in our usual warong under the flame of the forest tree.
Lanai: Happy Deepavali Gandhi! The gang is all here.
Rat, Bull, Dog and Bird Yo Gandhi Happy Deepavali man!
Rat: You grow thinner now. What happen? Sick or what?
Gandhi: Fasting. It is good for the body. You should try it Rat. Come just feel at home and don’t worry about me. By now you guys should know what I am up to. Please
Lanai: I heard you are going full time in politics. What about your law degree? Be careful my friend. The SB always never gives face. I know these officers will inflict backhand techniques where the injuries can’t be seen.
Bird: I heard they are mean to. Like those yin and yang techniques or the good guys and the bad guys. What in it for you, Gandhi?
Gandhi: To make a change. Stay focus on what one must do. It is no use sitting and talking about it. Without input nothing will change. The country is moving forward. This is a reality, my friends. You can’t stop change, can you? Vision 2020 can only be achieved when every one participates. Back biting is a waste of time. You should take the positive values and surge forward.
Dog: I want my plate of food. This is my life. So I don’t care what the politicians say and do. When I have my daily food and living happy here I don’t think I need to worry. Gandhi life has so many things to worry about. So just play along
Lanai: You miss the point Dog Even if you play dead, changes will come. It is people like you that derail the objectives what the country needs to do. True I agree one should evaluate what the politicians say. Everything said is not what it seems. It is always changing. The Head says something the tail goes and does something else. But it is the right to participate it and bring changes where it is necessary
Bull: Don’t talk about politics. Let’s get something to eat.
Rat: You always want to eat only. Nothing is in your head.
Gandhi: Come let’s eat!
Monday, November 07, 2005
flames of fury 7
We call upon the government to stop the latest scheme by a company (Courts Mammoth) to increase its sales because it will only encourage consumers to get deeper into debt. This company has advertised that it can pre-approve purchases of up to eight times the consumer’s salary. No minimum income is required and approval is instant and hassle free. Consumers can also choose to pay for their purchases in weekly or monthly instalments for up to four years. It is very irresponsible of the company to give such a large sum of credit to consumers. Even banks do not give a credit limit of eight times the salary of credit cardholders. Consumers sign up because they find the instalments affordable. They are not aware of the high interest rates charged by the company. At 1.98% per month the interest charged is almost 24 % per annum. There is also the compulsory documentation fee of RM99. Furthermore since payments are made by instalments, many consumers wrongly believe that they have signed hire-purchase contracts, which come under the Hire-Purchase Act 1967 However their contracts are easy- payment contracts, the terms and conditions of which are dictated by the company as there are no specific laws on easy-payments. Consumers should not be celebrating their forthcoming festivities burdened by unnecessary debt. Being caught in the debt trap is the root of many social problems. The person with unmanageable debt will suffer great stress and fear wondering how to ward off his creditor and to hold on to the goods purchased. The debt trap also leads to the breakdown in family relationships. The government should act to prevent more consumers from falling into the trap laid by the company. The writer is the president of the Consumers Association of Penang.
It is greed that made one bought goods on credit. When the terms are easy and payment are little per week many always think it is easy to acquire a semblance of materialistic status. Worry about payment later. Now it is to show a semblance of 'richness' in the eyes of the neighbours. It is a trap as with other forms of credit purchases. The debt trap will increase when everyone wants to pursue materialistic wants in excess of his/her needs. The interest payment per year is high (24%) yet many folks dont see it that way. What they see are the good in the houses and they could enjoy it. This feel good feeling keeps them smiling on the short term. The long term is repayment period. When one is down the road of hunger or worry about the next meal then one recognizes the folly of acquiring goods beyond one requirements. So live within the means. Dont live on credit as far as possible!
Sunday, November 06, 2005
birds flu 3
Too many people on planet Earth. Time to decrease the population. Something is brewing on earth. And it is so hard to understand! When you try to see, it is all darkness.
Thursday, November 03, 2005
birds flu H5N1 2
Influenza or the flu is often erroneously equated with the common cold. Hence the myth that it is a relatively mild illness which would improve rapidly over 2-3 days. Lots of rest, fluids; vitamin C and aspirin is all that is required. On the contrary, they are strikingly different pathologies. Influenza is often associated with high grade fever lasting 3-4 days; severe muscle aches, chest discomfort; early and severe physical weakness and generalised fatigue which could last up to three weeks. Thirty-one pandemics have been documented, four in the last century. The 1918 Spanish flu killed 20 million people. The epidemic waves of Type A flu comes every 1-3 years whilst Type B flu strikes every 3-4 years. This is due to the to emergence of new influenza virus strains causing high rates of morbidity and mortality, affecting all ages and inflicting high costs to society. Quite evidently, the pandemic clock is ticking; we just do not know what time it is! The Avian flu is caused by Type A influenza virus that typically infect birds. The virus is genetically distinguishable from human flu. The global concern on the Avian flu is due to the following worrisome trends: - The number of affected countries with avian flu is increasing; - The number of avian and human cases are increasing; - The majority of human population have no immunity; - The high case fatality rate. Human flu viruses are circulating in Asian countries and incubating elsewhere. Across Asia, increased episodes of transmission of avian flu virus strains to humans has illustrated the remarkable ability of the virus to jump the species barrier. Hence the widespread efforts to stop transmission of avian flu to humans from poultry through the elimination of animal reservoirs of H5N1. The emergence of the “pandemic virus” is postulated to result from a genetic re-assortment of human and avian viruses within the human anatomy which acts as a “mixing vessel”. This new virus strain would be highly pathogenic with an extreme avidity for humans. And since humans have no immunity, a pandemic is the nightmarish scenario. A strategy to bar the meeting of the viruses in the human body would go a long way towards preventing the emergence of the deadly new virus. It would reduce the opportunities for simultaneous infection of humans with the avian and human flu viruses. Decreasing this dual infection would reduce opportunities for re-assortment and the eventual emergence of a novel and pandemic virus. This, I believe, can be achieved with higher immunisation rates with the influenza vaccine. Higher uptake of the influenza shots would decrease the risk for genetic re-assortment in humans by preventing human flu virus infections. The influenza preparedness strategy should, among others, actively sensitise the population on the importance of influenza immunisation. Mandatory influenza vaccination of all persons likely to be in contact with poultry; cullers and those living and working on poultry farms should be in place. And all health professionals and first-line essential and emergency servicemen (eg, military, firemen, disaster and relief workers, policemen, etc) should be immunised. The experience with the Sars epidemic should be a painful lesson in this respect. This investment in the expanded use of influenza vaccines would prove to be a cost-saving policy. It would undoubtedly decrease the health burden of annual flu epidemics and prevent influenza morbidities and mortalities. Too much attention has been focused on curative strategies namely the anti-viral, Tamiflu. Nations are rushing to stockpile this drug in preparation for the pandemic. My back-to-basics virology and vaccinology would suggest that during this inter-pandemic period, influenza immunisation would be the best option for protection against influenza and would help to mitigate the emergence of a pandemic virus. A protective “pandemic vaccine” would benchmark our pandemic preparedness but would probably not be available for the first pandemic wave. And even if available there would be insufficient stocks for universal usage due to limited manufacturing capacity – let alone to stockpile.
Tuesday, November 01, 2005
Gandhi and friends 2
Gandhi Busy with the ills of society. You never understand even if I try to explain to you. The world is changing so fast that I couldn’t catch up with it. The days in the old town are good Lanai but events have taken over my interests in life. I want to say something in society
Lanai Gandhi what’s the difference? Even while we squat in the old town, we talked of many things and events too. It is not only about politics but it is also involved economics, the poor and relationships. The gang here misses you Gandhi. They need your input of about so many things. So can we come over to your place? You know it is the festival of light…
Gandhi Oh…I have forgotten my manners. Well…Lanai you are welcome to my house and call all the gang to come to. I prepare some food and drinks and we can talk like old times. By the way Lanai, have you heard about Lover guy?
Lanai That rascal! He has no balls though he is our gang. He swindles and sweet talk to women and takes them for rides. In front of us he says he prays so many times. But what he did in our back it is advice throwing to the sea. He is in Johore recuperating from an illness. I heard he is in hospital. Some of us want to go visiting him after the holidays.
Gandhi sound surprise Are you sure Lanai? The last letter I got from him he said he is enjoying life in Johore. It was about 3 months ago. Now I don’t hear from him. So I am rather surprise that he is sick.
Lanai Every mistake has a surprise Gandhi. If you want to enjoy life fooling around with women there is bound to get inflicted with a disease. You know him. He likes to brag about his exploits and feeling proud of it too. He is like a bee floating to a honey. Every sweet thing he wants to taste. He wants it to savor the sweetness of his conquest. Yet he never listens to us even though we had advice him so many times. Now I know he’s very sick. I don’t want to think what get to him…
Gandhi True, Lanai. I can’t teach the world. It is older than me. One has to know one’s limit and enjoy the positive values enrich in our lives. So I see you at my house?
Lanai Right Gandhi and I called the gang too. We talk again Be seeing you and Happy Deepavali!
Sunday, October 30, 2005
flame of fury 6
A story of corruption and police abuse A Better Malaysia Oct 15, 05 1:27pm
What started out as a regular night for a friend, whom I shall call Jack, and I, turned into something ugly. We and two dozen others were detained, handcuffed, jailed, degraded, stripped, extorted and shamed. This is a story of corruption and police abuse. It was a drug bust at a famous night club in Sri Hartamas, Kuala Lumpur. An incident that all of us, later proved innocent by hospital chemical tests, will never forget. The entry (Sept 24 - 10.30pm) It was a great day, in fact, a great week, I was looking forward to this weekend. Nothing special, just a night out for a glass of wine and to Soda, a popular club in the area. Nothing could have forewarned me of the humiliation that awaited. Soda (12pm) After the wine, we made our way to Soda. Some other friends were already there. We had a few more drinks, enjoyed the music and the company. The raid (2am) Came out from the washroom and there was a policeman on the microphone. It was a drug bust, he announced and nobody could leave until urine samples were taken and tested. Fine I thought. No problem, just quickly take my urine and get it tested so I could go out and grab something to eat. Problem is, there were a few hundred of us in the club and they did the test 10 at a time. From the time of the raid, it would end up taking them more than two hours to check all of us. My turn came and I did as instructed, urinated into the plastic container and handed it over for the ‘on-the-spot’ test. They dropped the container in the instant tester, left it in for about a minute. The result showed that I had tested positive for five of the six drugs on the list. I knew this was a mistake so naturally I remained calm. I was then herded into a cordoned off area and had to wait till 7am for the police truck to pick us up. While waiting, we requested for a re-test but this was denied. We were told that our urine samples were to be taken to a hospital laboratory for conclusive tests. The pick up (7am) After a long wait, the truck finally arrived at 7am. We were not told anything, we did not know what was going to happen. And when they did tell us, the policemen came out with different answers. We got into the truck. It was degrading because we were law abiding citizens who had never done anything wrong, except probably speeding on the highway. And here we were, being herded into a police truck used for rounding up bad hats. We were taken to the Kuala Lumpur police headquarters and made to sit on the floor until 11am. We were treated rudely, one policeman had even threatened to beat a fellow detainee. Mind you, we were all proved innocent in the end and these policemen in the narcotics department treated us like convicts and did not entertain any questions. We did not know our rights, we were not informed of our rights and the police took advantage of that.
We were later told to sign a document. When I tried to read the document, I was told off by a policeman. “No need to read the document,” he said. “Just sign!” Still in disbelief over what was happening but confident that it will be settled by the afternoon, I signed. Till this day, I do not know what I signed. At 11am we were again herded back into the blue truck. I did not know where they were taking us. Pudu Jail (11am) The truck took us to Pudu jail, the disused facility, which once housed murderers, rapists and drug dealers. This building was not built to house people like us. Think of your saddest moment, where your heart sinks and your spirit dies, and you would be able to relate to how we felt. Most of us were still in denial. We still thought that everything will be fine and that we will be out soon. We were placed in the prison yard and made to sit in rows of three. We had not eaten or drank since last night, but we were not hungry. Then a policeman showed up, a good ‘samaritan’. He offered us some bread and water and proceeded to collect RM10 from all of us. That would mean RM200 plus. A few hours later we were put in handcuffs. Imagine being in a handcuff, chained together with all the others and led out into the street. We were herded once again into a truck and brought before a magistrate. The magistrate (1pm or so) The magistrate was at the Cheras police station, we were told there that there was no chance for bail because it was a Sunday and the court was not open. I voiced my objection and requested for a re-test for obvious reasons. We were told that the magistrate was powerless to act on anything. All they did was read to us that we were suspected drug addicts and that we will be remanded for 12 days until a court date or bail was set. This was Monday at the earliest. The entire proceeding was held while we were still in handcuffs and chained together. I was later told that when I left the room the lady magistrate had remarked, “All these rich kids, they are all like that”. Even the magistrate was blissfully ignorant of what was happening and had decided on our guilt before a trial. The proceeding was over within an hour and we were once again herded into the blue police truck. Back to jail (2pm - till the next day) We are back in jail. Shortly after, we were called to sit on the prison pavement again to wait for our prison clothes. Names were called out individually. Each person was called into a room to collect our prison clothes. It was a simple process yet took a long time. I did not know why until some of the accused came out of the room. While in the room, the police offered a cigarette in apparent goodwill. So some of them took the offer. With such frayed nerves, anything was welcomed to help take the pain away. After the accused took the cigarette, RM10 was taken out of their wallets. A robbery had taken place, and the robbers were the policemen, and they were walking free… in jail. They couldn’t steal from me though. Simply because I had no cash. I had passed them to Jack’s mother when she came earlier. So naturally they did not offer me a cigarette. Prison clothes consisted of only a pair of track pants. Just a single piece. No shirt, no underwear and no shoes. We were to stay in prison with nothing else but a pair of pants. When we made our way through the walkway into the main prison compound, we were in shock. All the prisons you have seen on TV were nothing compared to the horrid conditions of Pudu jail. Everybody in prison was frail thin and bony. The only fat people were the policemen. We were told to put our belongings into a cell and leave them there, we were then made to strip naked and squat in front of the other inmates. I had never done anything wrong in my life, why was I being treated this way?!! It was degrading. It angered me. After that was out of the way, we were put six to a cell, measuring 2m by 3m. There were no beds, no toilet and no ventilation. Just concrete walls and a concrete platform. If you wanted to urinate, you had to do it in a bottle inside the cell. It was now almost 6pm and all we had for three-quarter’s of a day was a small piece of bread and a small bottle of mineral water. Food finally came. It was indescribable. A pack of rice with a salted fish head measuring no more than 4cm and two pieces of vegetable no larger than a 50 sen coin. It was just meant to keep you alive. Just barely alive. We just sat there for the rest of our stay, being let out only to bathe and defecate three times a day for 10 minutes. Some took the situation harder than me. Somehow, the anger had numbed me. So I joked and we talked, just to diffuse the situation and to allow ourselves to forget this experience. Then there was more daylight robbery and corruption. We were told that our relatives could visit and that they could bring food and other condiments and supplies to us... for a price! Yes… they were asking for money even in jail. RM150 must be paid to them so the items could be brought in. However, that does not guarantee that the items will reach us. I had friends whose relatives paid the police for the food to be brought in. A whole bucket of fried chicken was reduced to three pieces and a burger. Not only were the police corrupt, but they were sadistic and sick enough to eat the prisoners’ food. Why they were all fat was no longer a mystery. Not only did we have to bribe them for food, but a single phone call cost RM150, which must be paid by the visiting relative or friend. Jack got away with RM50, supposedly credited to the policeman’s pre-paid line by his mother. Somehow the policeman missed it and even dared to SMS Jack’s mother after we got out, asking ‘where’s the money’. Not only was it daylight robbery, it was daring and I guess he must have felt invincible while wearing the police badge. Take note that none of our parents or relatives were informed that we were being held. We had to personally call them. We spent the night in prison, sleeping on our bare backs on the cold damp concrete floor. The air was stale, there were other inmates yelling ‘tolong..tolong’ (help...help). It was a dreadful and excruciatingly slow night. All we had was each other. The courthouse (Sept 26 – 8am) Morning came and a large group of our parents, relatives and friends were waiting at the court house to bail us out. Most of them reached there early and were informed that the bail documents would be out first thing in the morning. The bail documents only came out at 11am. And everybody was told that they had to open a bank account, deposit the bail money and make it back to the court house with all the paperwork in order by 12pm. That was exactly one hour. Everyone rushed to the bank, one single bank with only a few operational lines. The queue was long and processing took forever. According to my loved ones, it was the most stressing time of their lives. Because if they did not make it back to the court house by 12, then I would have to stay another night in jail. A few ended up having to stay another night. Keep in mind that 22 of us were proven to be innocent by clinical tests. Yet some of these wrongly accused people had to spend three days and two nights in prison. We put on our civilian clothes and were once again handcuffed. Once again, my heart died and my soul withered. We were brought to the court and I was sickened once again by the antics of the policemen. We were in the van going by the heart of Kuala Lumpur when these two escorting policemen slid open the window and started whistling at a woman walking down the street. These were our policemen. I was sickened to the bone. We all reached the courthouse and were led through the street still in handcuffs and in full view of the public and our loved ones. We were told by the court that we will be set free on bail. We were given some documents informing us where and when to collect the results of the hospital tests for our urine and when to show up in court again. We were told to collect our blood tests results from the Brickfields police station on Oct 2. The recovery I got out on Sept 26. I was driving past the Kuala Lumpur Twin Towers that night and I felt that it did not mean anything anymore. I used to be proud to be Malaysian, the twin towers used to be a source of pride. But now, all my nationalistic pride was gone, I had just been treated like a criminal by my own country. A country which I loved… used to love. I used to think that this country was beautiful. But now all I see is a country so currupted and dirty. No amount of washing will clean away this feeling. The verdict (Oct 2) It was time to collect our results. We showed up at the Brickfields police station where 22 of us were pronounced clean and had to make our way to the court house. I asked for documentation to state that we were clean. But the policemen said there was no documentation and that they would call the court house to inform them. No documentation in an advanced economy like ours, this was unacceptable. Nevertheless, we all made our way to the court house and there, we were proclaimed innocent and free to go. Again, I asked for documentation to state that we were cleared of all charges and that we were free to go. But there was no documentation. No black and white. So technically, we had to trust the word of this court official, whose name or rank we did not know. The anger (now till justice is served) The 22 of us will never be the same again. Malaysia will never be the same again. I was once a fun loving jovial person. Food no longer taste good, the sky seems perpetually cloudy and everybody I meet looks different. My girlfriend had asked if this experience had changed me. I replied ‘maybe’... and she cried.
The writer, who preferred to remain anonymous, is a working professional in Kuala Lumpur.