More Pain Than Gain To Be Part Of Malaysia - Says Sabah, Sarawak Leaders

The Federation of Malaysia is meaningless if Sabah continues to be "occupied" by "Malayan" government officers and federal agencies, said Borneo Heritage Foundation chairperson (BHF) Jeffrey Kitingan.

"The over-presence and overbearing dominance of the federal ministries, departments and agencies showed that Sabah is just a 'colony' of Malaya in the name of the federal government," he said in his Malaysia Day message at the Batu Sumpah, Keningau. Read more »

Judges Must Have Moral Courage To Make Unpopular Decisions

Judges must have moral courage to make decisions that are unpopular with politicians, the media and the public, said Chief Justice Tun Arifin Zakaria.

He said judges should not fear any party being dissatisfied with their decision if they had provided a clear judgement based on established case law authorities.

He said there was no directive issued to judges to agree with the majority decision of the presiding panel at the Court of Appeal and Federal Court. Read more »

Sedition Dragnet Prompts Lawyers To Hold Peaceful March

The Malaysian Bar will debate a resolution at its extraordinary general meeting (EGM) on Friday whether lawyers should hold a peaceful march, after a spate of prosecutions under the Sedition Act 1948.

Sources said the Bar Council was not against the motion seconded by 121 lawyers who included retired federal court judge, Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram and former head of prosecution in the attorney-general's chambers, Datuk Stanley Isaacs. Read more »

Finally, A Minister Disagrees With Sedition Charge On University Malaya Professor

Minister Datuk Seri Idris Jala criticised today the use of the controversial Sedition Act 1948 on Azmi Sharom, nearly a fortnight after the University of Malaya (UM) law lecturer was charged.

The minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of government efficiency broke away from the Barisan Nasional (BN) government that has so far defended the use of the colonial-era law on dissidents, saying on Twitter that academic freedom is vital to the pursuit of knowledge. Read more »

Activists Want RCI On Malaysia

Rights activists behind the Borneo’s Plight in Malaysia Foundation (BoPIM), a UK-based human rights NGO, sees a Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) on Malaysia as perhaps the best way forward in Borneo after over 50 years of Sabah and Sarawak in Federation with the peninsula.

“We need to institutionalise the debate through a mechanism and RCI would be the ideal approach under the circumstances,” said BoPiM President Daniel John Jambun in a telephone call. Read more »

Sarawakians ‘Confused’ Over Merdeka Day

Sarawakians on both sides of the divide are unanimous that Aug 31, the common day for Sabah and the peninsula, is not their Hari Merdeka (Independence Day).

Otherwise, they appear divided on what should be seen as their independence day.

The Sarawak Government, for the first time in 50 years, recognised July 22 as Sarawak’s Independence Day which then Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud referred to as Liberation Day. Read more »

Malaysian Bar: Sedition Act Panders To Extremists

The Sedition Act 1948 was never intended to create national harmony but it encourages extremism instead, Malaysian Bar president Christopher Leong said last night.

He said the colonial-era law panders to extremists and perpetuates disunity as it is wielded whenever others claim to be insulted or disrespected.

“The Sedition Act is the antithesis of democracy, rule of law and justice,” he said at the official launch of the #MansuhAktaHasutan campaign by the Bar Council’s National Young Lawyers Committee (NYLC) last night to repeal the Sedition Act. Read more »

Viewpoint: Women Can Be MBs Too – By Dr. Prema Devaraj

The recent upheaval in Selangor over the post of Menteri Besar (MB) has suddenly led the country to a situation where we might soon be witnessing a major breakthrough for women in politics.

Over the years we have seen women slowly occupy positions in the political arena.

Data from the Ministry for Women, Family and Community Development shows that in 2013 women made up only 13.1% of local councillors, 28.8% of senators, 11.3% state legislative assembly members, 10.4% members of parliament and 12.3% of cabinet ministers and deputy ministers. Read more »

The Right Perspective On 1963 Federation

Two leaders from Sabah and Sarawak, one from the Opposition and another from the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN), found common ground on the Sept 16, 1963 Federation of Sabah and Sarawak with the peninsula.

Sarawak Minister of Land Development James Masing and Penampang MP Darell Leiking told a book launch at a university in Petaling Jaya on Fri that the celebration of the independence of the peninsula on 31 Aug, 1957 should not take precedence over Malaysia Day. Read more »

Viewpoint: Merdeka Is Coming But How United Are We? – By Mariam Mokhtar

Are Malaysians aware of the significance of Aug 31? Are they puzzled that Sept 16 is also an important milestone in Malaysian history? So, which day carries more weight for Malaysians?

There is rising discontent among both Sabahans and Sarawakians over several issues, such as freedom of religion, allocation of funds for infrastructure, and the provisions for education and medical care.

We think Selangor has a problem with its menteri besar sitting on a RM3 billion stockpile. Read more »

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