Monday, March 30, 2009


I had in August last year mentioned in an article regarding Tourism Malaysia's Director General Dato Mirza Muhammad Taiyab who is being charged for accepting a payment for settlement for his dental treatment amounting to RM 13,000 or thereabout. It is reported that he is presently being suspended from official duties, and his case will again be heard in May this year.

I had written about Dato Mirza's case then, based on what had been reported in the mainstream media, and my strong intuition that Dato Mirza could not have been easily enticed into accepting the settlement for his dental treatment.

Of late, I have been meeting several people from the tourism industry, and from the conversation that I had with them, there appears to be a lot of sympathy for Dato Mirza whom they say is a victim of a treacherous conspiracy to fixed him for corruption. They say that some of the person(s) involved in the conspiracy are known, and could well be officers from within the ministry and department itself.

Dato Mirza who had served under several ministers in his various official capacities, is known for being forthright, dedicated, honest, friendly and does not easily succumb to corrupt practices. Most who have known him, were surprised at the charges made against him, and finds it hard to believe that he did commit the offence.

Words are abound that the conspiracy to bring down Dato Mirza is because he did not relent to the persistent request, to award business contracts to selected individuals with links to officials of the ministry.. Many says that a certain politician is known to have had a hand in the conspiracy, and there is every likelihood that the politician is himself or herself corrupt.

Having being told of this case, and the sufferings that Dato Mirza and his family has to endure since August last year, I plea that he be given a fair and just hearing. And to those who have been a party to this treacherous conspiracy, may I say that you may escape judgment on earth for your misdeeds, but you will not escape the wrath of Allah SWT in the hereafter.

And to Dato Mirza and his family, have faith in Allah SWT, and may you be guided to seek the truth, and be redeemed your honour and pride as a trustworthy and honest public servant.

Posted at 10.20 pm on March 30, 2009

Saturday, March 28, 2009


The Selangor state government is still not finished with Khir Toyo, and the extravagance of Badan Amal dan Kebajikan Isteri-Isteri Selangor (Balkis). If one were to follow the on-going proceedings of the public hearing on the affairs of Balkis since it was formed, one tend to be confused as to whether Balkis is indeed a charitable and welfare organisation to serve the wives of the people of Selangor, or whether it is purely to serve its restricted members pecuniary interest. Balkis was said to be headed by the wife of Khir Toyo, and is now de-registered following the fall of the BN government to PR during the March 8, 2008 general elections

From reports on the on-going public hearing, one is amazed at the amount of money paid to Balkis by Permodalan Negeri Selangor Bhd (PNSB), a subsidiary of the Selangor state government, totalling RM 5 million over a period of five years beginning 2002 until 2007. If indeed the money was spend for charitable and welfare purposes, the details of spending revealed otherwise.

How could Balkis justify an all expense paid holiday and recreational trip to Disney land, and a trip to Australia to visit the son of so-and-so, as being for charitable and welfare purposes? What about the lavish gifts purchased overseas and the sumptuous dinner parties thrown to entertain VVIP's? Are these categorised as charitable and welfare activities?

As a Selangorean, I am thoroughly displeased with the extravagance of Balkis in conducting its affairs. Blame should also be shouldered by Khir Toyo, who seemed to have ignored that PNSB does not belong to him or Balkis, and the profits could have been better utilised, rather than giving it to Balkis to be spend for wasteful purposes that benefited a few. Had Khir Toyo remained the Menteri Besar, Balkis would still be enjoying themselves with more oversea trips, lavish parties and gifts, unknown to many in Selangor.

It was reported that Balkis had illegally transferred RM 10 million (or thereabout) from its account, fearing that the money will fall into the hands of the PR government. This is indeed an irresponsible act that only reflects the bad intent that Balkis harbours of the new PR government. I would further add that such an act smacks of stupidity and selfishness.

Whatever be the outcome of the public hearing, one thing is for certain i.e. Balkis should be made totally responsible for their misdeeds, and that they be asked to pay back all that they had spend under the guise of charity and welfare. Should they fail to pay up, the only recourse is raise the matter to MACC and to be investigated upon.

I believe Balkis though defunct, will not find it too difficult to settle the dues, rather than having to appear before MACC.

Posted at 8 pm, March 28, 2009


A reader of my blog wrote a comment that commends and salute Domestic Trade and Consumers Affairs Minister Shahir Samad for being forthright and sincere in resigning his ministerial post after not being elected to UMNO's Supreme Council. I believe every highly principled and like minded Malaysians will without any hesitation support Shahrir's decision, and he will leave his post with pride, honour and be well regarded by Malaysians at all times.

Shahrir has shown his true self; a dedicated, trustworthy and a dignified politicians who speaks his mind, and shows no personal interest, but is respectful and honour the voices of his party members more. His resignation has set an example for others who had lost their bid to follow. But the big question remains whether the rest would be willing to follow the steps that Shahrir has taken. Or will it be Naijb who will show them the exit door. If this is what they choose, rest assured, their exit will one of shame and humiliating.

Shahrir's reasoning for quiting is simple and forthright. He says that if he as a minister no longer has the support and confidence of the party, why then has he to cling to the appointment. A no vote simply means that one has lost credibility and is no longer entrusted for the job. What other alternatives does one has, except to resign, and that is what Shahrir rightfully has decided to do. Certainly, Shahrir is one of an exceptional person that will be the pride of the Malay race, emulating the historical example shown by the founder of UMNO Dato Onn Jaafar.

For all those ministers and menteri besar's that had lost their bidding, Shahrir has shown them the way. But are they willing to take up the challenge to quit, or are they to remain mute and indifferent to voices of the party members, by entrenching themselves deeper to their post?

To quit is be honourable, but to stay is to be scorned and humiliated. The final choice is theirs to make.

Posted at 9.30 am on March 28, 2009

Friday, March 27, 2009


Tun Mahathir has been forthright in declaring that the reason for not attending the UMNO General Assembly is directly related to Khairy winning the UMNO Youth post. He believes that Khairy does not deserve to win, or for that matter be allowed to contest in the party election at all, because he was found guilty of money politics.

In the case of Ali Rustam who was found quilty of a similar offence, was barred from contesting, and even his appeal was rejected. If this isn't selective punishment, what else can one say of Khairy's judgment by the disciplinary committee. Many believe that some mysterious hands were at work to ensure that Khairy gets a lesser punishment, and it was not surprising that some in UMNO had even called for the dissolution of the disciplinary committee.

To the people that I talked to, they seemed amazed and bewildered at how Mukriz Mahathir could have lost badly in the contest. He led the nominations, with Khairy at third placing. But the reverse happened at polling day. Even the time taken for the counting and recounting of ballot papers was exceptionally long. Was it money politics that gave Khairy the winning edge, or was it the mysterious hands at work again? Doubts has been raised, and UMNO members ought to be forgiven if they have a negative perception of Khairy.

The jeering heard following the announcement that Khairy had won the contest, clearly indicates the animosity and dissatisfaction of certain UMNO groups against Khairy. This is not a healthy sign, and Khairy has to be weary that the opposition from within UMNO can be even more damaging and serious, than the opposition from outside the party. The path for Khairy will therefore not be smooth and easy, but one that is full of turbulence and pit falls. And with his father-in-law no longer at the helm of government, Khairy will certainly not be able to get the political patronage that he enjoys in the past.

The major test for Khairy's leadership is yet to come. But with his uncertain popularity among the grassroots, will he be allowed to appear at the up-coming by-election rally scheduled this April? Or will he be told to skip the rally and to concentrate on strengthening UMNO Youth, and also to remodeled his character and image first. Certainly, shouting, showing his fist and fiery stunts will no longer be acceptable by UMNO anymore.

Posted at 11.05 pm on March 27, 2009


CONGRATULATIONS to Muhyiddin Yassin for winning the UMNO Deputy President’s post, which by convention will most likely make him the No. 2 in government, when Naijb is appointed the Prime Minister later. I do believe that most outside UMNO are satisfied with the outcome, and even if Ali Rustam were allowed to contest, the best bet would still be Muhyiddin.

As for Muhammad Muhammad Taib, he will have to be contented with losing the bid for the Deputy President, and at the age of 63, he may decide to call it quits in the next general assembly scheduled three years from now. His ministerial post may also be in a quandary, and if it is true that Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Shahril Samad will be vacating his post after losing his bid for the Supreme Council seat, Muhammad Muhammad Taib should similarly quit his ministerial post.

Other ministers and menteri besar’s (MB) that lost their bids includes Foreign Minister Rais Yatim, Home Mnister Syed Hamid, Higher Education Minister Khaled Nordin, Tourism Minister Azalina Othman, Negeri Sembilan MB Mohamad Hassan, Pahang MB Adnan Yackob, Perlis MB Md. Isa Sabu and Johor MB Abd Ghani Othman. Will they decide to quit on their own accord, or will they decide to leave their fate in government to Najib? My bet is that non will willingly quit, and quitting now at a time when UMNO is at its lowest ebb, may not be a wise proposition either.

One is quite surprise that Tourism Minister Azalina Othman is allowed to contest despite her being under investigation by MACC. It would have been honourable for her to withdraw rather then to contest. And the silence about her in the mainstream media days before the assembly, is clear indication that her popularity is at the lowest. Neither has the media made any attempt to interview her, or write about her during and after the assembly.

Now that UMNO has decided on its new leadership, it is now left to Najib to set the pace and to determine the future direction of the party. Much has been said by him during the opening speech to delegates of the assembly. What is left now is for his newly appointed team to translate all that he has said into action. This will the biggest challenge to the new leadership, and with the 13th General Elections in 3 years from now, time is certainly at a premium for UMNO.

Posted at 4.00 pm on March 27, 2009

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


There has been rumours floating outside the corridors of the Defence Ministry claiming that some senior military officers have been awarding contracts to companies where their family members are employees of the company.

My first impression upon being told about this was to say, “how blatant these senior military officers are today”, and I wonder where have they acquired this unethical habits from. To have been told earlier that some senior military officers have also acquired the shameless act of accepting monetary favours from defence agents and contractors; the award of contracts to family members is therefore not at all surprising.

If this rumour is found to be true, and if the senior military officer(s) involved has the slightest tint of dignity and honour left in them, I would suggest that they take the honourable act of discharging themselves from the military service. The military service is not an occupation to acquire personal wealth through dubious means, but it is an occupation that is most honourable and dignified.

I will be following this rumour closely and if it found to be true, I will not hesitate to name the officer(s) involved, regardless of their status and position in this blog, and to report it matter to MACC.

Posted at 22.30 pm on March 25, 2009


There is an apparent lack of responsibility on the part of the commander of Malaysia’s elite forces based at Sg. Udang Camp, Malacca. Reports are abound that a number of buildings in the camp are in such dilapidated state due to lack of maintenance, and this has affected the moral of the soldiers and families residing within the camp area.

Sg. Udang Camp which was built to accommodate the Commonwealth Forces during the colonial period, is presently the home of the Special Forces Training Centre and including two special forces regiments.

The buildings in the camp that are so badly affected due to lack of maintenance are the married quarters for both the other ranks and officers, officers mess, warrant officer and sergeant’s messes, living accommodation for other ranks and the swimming pool.

One is surprised to note that senior officers from the Department of Army that visits the camp occasionally are not unaware of the poor state of buildings in the camp, and the sufferings that the occupants has to endure, living in dilapidated buildings all this while. I am informed that there is no effort to show visiting senior officers the affected buildings, and the visiting officers would normally end up with a sumptuous meal at the officers mess.

It is obvious that the commander who is a one star general, has shown little concern to ensure that proper preventive building maintenance is carried out on scheduled. The attitude shown by the senior officer reflects poorly of the army, and certainly he does not deserve to be where he is today. He should not seek excuses, but to accept the fact that he has failed in his responsibility to ensure that the men (including families) under his command are being well looked after, and not to be treated like trash.

I would like to appeal to the Department of Army to take a serious view into this matter, in order to restore the moral of the men and their families that are badly affected by the lack of proper building maintenance at Sg. Udang Camp, Malacca.

Posted at 16.30 on March 25, 2009

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


UMNO Deputy President aspirant Muhammad Muhammad Taib is reported to have said that UMNO requires a Meiji revolution to redeem itself from its current abysmal rating and falling deeper into abyss and certain demise. Indications of a weakening UMNO are obvious, all because of a power grab, which saw several of its members (including senior party members) being punished for breach of party ethics and discipline.

Even the varying nature of punishments meted down to party offenders has come under scrutiny, both from outside and within the party itself, resulting in the question as to the relevancy of the disciplinary committee. Many now believe that the disciplinary committee has not been thoroughly fair and wise in its judgment, and this had caused further resentment from among supporters of those who were punished. Any amount of explanation from the disciplinary committee now will not be sufficient to placate the anger and dissatisfaction of some of the UMNO members who were affected by the punishment. It had only aggravated dissenting voices and resentment even more.

The Meiji revolution in UMNO that Muhammad Taib has alluded to, is wholesomely correct. But Muhammad Taib has failed to provide sufficient examples of the remedial courses of action that the party members need to adopt, to rid itself of the party’s abysmal image.

And having to come from Muhammad Taib, (and even if he becomes the Prime Minister), I have little confidence that he is able and serious enough to force a Meiji revolution in UMNO, in order for the party to return to its former glory. My only advice to Muhammad Taib is for him to look at himself in the mirror, to see whether he is the most forthright and righteous person to institute positive changes to the party. And my sincere answer is NO………he is certainly not the most righteous person to institute positive changes in UMNO.

The only person that could make positive changes in UMNO now is Najib, when he assumes the premiership of the country. And such changes can only be done if he is judicious in his final selection of his team of ministers.

The whole country now awaits that final selection of Najib’s team of ministers, and if he decides to continue flogging the same old horses and dead wood, then that marks the beginning of the end of BN/UMNO.

Posted at 17.30 pm on March 24, 2009

Saturday, March 21, 2009


Two candidates out of the race, and will there be more in line before the start of the UMNO general assembly? The two candidates i.e. Ali Rustam is confirmed out of the race, and Norza who was recently charged for corruption in Temerloh, Pahang will only know his status as a candidate this Monday. Both claimed innocent of the charges brought before them.

Surprisingly too, two names have now appeared in a local media for alleged corrupt practise and abuse.

Firstly, the People's Movement Against Corruption (Gerak) has handed over to MACC documents of proof, alleging that the former International Trade & Industry Minister, Rafidah Aziz had in 1993 abused her position as the minister then by awarding special bumiputra shares to a relative of hers.This must be a 'revised version' of her past misdeeds though reported, but was never investigated. And to have the case revived days before the UMNO general assembly, is a cause of concern for Rafidah's supporters. Is this a case of sabotage by the 'enemies' of Rafidah?

Secondly, Public Works Minister Mohd Zain Mohamed is alleged to have received bribes totaling RM 25 million from Silkway Cargo, an agent of MAS in Bangladesh. The bribe was paid out from the National Bank of Bangladesh account at various periods from September 2000 to August 2007. Apparently, there has already been a report submitted to the police and MACC, to which there has been no action taken to date. One Faisal Mustafa who made the report has vowed to reveal all, when the case is being heard in court.

Even UMNO is without its problems. A local bumiputra company have laid claims for non payment to UMNO for several million ringgit. The company is said to have supplied assorted items for use by UMNO during the March 8, 2008 general elections, and no payment was made. UMNO's Secretary General Tenku Adnan has denied such claims, and is reported to have said that UMNO does not cheat or lie to its suppliers.

Denial is not the answer to this case. There has to be someone from within UMNO that must have instructed the company to supply the items. It will be damn silly of the company to supply the items without proper orders. Rather than give a flat denial, the least that Tenku Adnan could have said was that he will investigate the matter throughly. The amount spend by the company is not small, and for a bumiputra company, it would mean having to face a closure. This must be clearly understood by UMNO.

In Pahang, UMNO's Paya Besar Division chief Ahmad Tajuddin has willingly accepted a challenge from Menteri Besar Adnan Yaakob, to swear that the latter was behind the suspension of four senior UMNO party members by the UMNO disciplinary committee recently, for money politics. Swearing to rid one of an allegation seems to be the trend in UMNO. Najib has taken the lead from Saiful, and now it is Adnan and Ahmad Tajuddin. Wonder who the 'judge' will be?

There seemed to be no end to the fued, corruption and abuse in UMNO, and as the general assembly draws closer, will there be more revelations of 'misdeeds' by UMNO candidates/members?

Posted at 3.55 pm on March 21, 2009

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


Dissenting voices rejecting Najib as the next Prime Minister get louder. This time it is from the former Law Minister Zaid Ibrahim. He had appealed to the King that Najib should not be made the PM, fearing the worse to befall the country if Najib is appointed.

The earliest to have voiced the same was Kelantan Menteri Besar Ustaz Nik Aziz who repeatedly said that the country ought to be served by a better PM. If the reason is for want of impeccable character, then Najib does not qualify. Presumably, Zaid Ibrahim may have a similar view of Najib with that of Ustaz Nik Aziz, or probably more, since having been once an UMNO insider and a cabinet minister.

Tun Mahathir who once stood for Najib, has now turned around to say that Najib is weak and a non performer as the Deputy Prime Minister. By this, it can be reasonably assumed that Najib in the eyes of Tun Mahathir is unsuitable as the next PM. And if the voices of the opposition party members is to be accounted for and including the poll results, Najib should oust himself from politics and go for a long deserve holidays in the Carribean with his family.

It is unfortunate that Najib is mired in a number of 'unhealthy personal issues' that no other aspiring PM had ever experienced. There are too many unanswered questions affecting Najib and including Rosmah, personal or otherwise, that has been haunting both of them. Even some foreign news media has taken a shot at Naijb's character, that had further soiled Najib's image.

Even at parliamentary sittings, Najib is not spared, and he had made him speechless to counter a barrage of allegations from the opposition. He looked worn out, and this is so obviously portrayed of him on TV and the print media.

With the general assembly nearing and the leadership change within Najib's grasp, will the tormenting of Najib and Rosmah's character continue? Will UMNO make a unified stand to defend Najib, or will there be the opposing voices from within, that will cast further doubts as to Najib's unopposed appointment as the sixth PM of the country.

Najib has now to worry more of what UMNO has to say of him, than for him to worry about what has been said of him by those outside UMNO.

Posted at 10.40 pm on March 18, 2009


Damn those who are corrupt. That has been my stand since I started blogging. But the stand in UMNO is quite different as seen from the recent decision made by the party's disciplinary committee upon those found guilty for money politics; to be exact.......corruption. The wisdom of the committee in dealing with money politics is now being questioned and challenged; not only within the party, but more so among the common people in the streets..

One would expect a punishment for the same offence to be meted consistently, but in the case of Ali Rustam and Khairy Jamaludin, it was glaringly different. Despite the explanation given by the disciplinary committee's chairman, many are confused, resulting in various perceptions that will only create more uncertainty, suspicion and mistrust among supporters of those individuals involved and party members.

Voices of discontent are being heard in the streets and around coffee shops. Many says that the punishment is bias and laced with favouritism, especially one that was meted on Khairy. One even commented that the disciplinary committee be made redundant, as the decisions clearly does not reflect the seriousness of the party in dealing with the scourge of corruption.

What is even more laughable is the statement made by Najib of Ali Rustam, that despite being found guilty of money politics and being barred from contesting in the general assembly, Ali Rustam's position as the Chief Minister and other party post in the state are not affected. One cannot understand the rational of the party being hush in one instant, and being soft like a pussy cat on the other. This raises the question that UMNO is toothless and is not at all serious in dealing with cases of corruption. Little wonder that corruption is so well entrenched in the party.

One is reminded of the former FT Minister Isa Samad, who was found guilty of money politics (somewhat similar to Ali Rustam), and was suspended from the party and lost his position as the minister as well. What is so serious in Isa Samad's case, and what is not so serious in Ali Rustam's case that the latter is given a lesser punishment? This needs to be explained by party leaders if the disciplinary committee is to remain relevant.

Now, Ali Rustam has submitted an appeal against the punishment, and it was also reported that he had met the PM, presumably to seek a redress of wrong. Will Ali Rustam be given a reprieve and be allowed to contest? What will be the reaction of his supporters if he is not given a reprieve? Will there be more protest that can distract the running of the general assembly?

These are tough questions for the PM and more so for Najib. And whatever the answers may be, this will certainly not solve the never ending scourge of corruption in UMNO.

Posted at 8.50 pm March 18, 2009

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


'Sepandai pandai tupai melompat, ahkirnya jatuh ke tanah jua', aptly describes the fall from grace of Ali Rustam when it was announced by UMNO's disciplinary committee that he was found guilty of money politics, and is therefore barred from contesting for the deputy president's post in the up-coming party elections. Ali Rustam however escapes suspension from the party.

UMNO youth aspirant Khairy Jamaludin is lucky not to be barred from contesting, although he was also found guilty under a similar offence as Ali Rustam. He got away with a warning. This sounds strange isn't it.........and as a friend who had called me remarked, 'that UMNO too has selective punishment for a similar offence'.

The much awaited announcement concerning Khir Toyo was to most Selangorean an anti climax. He got a a clean slate, and is therefore free to contest. I had all along thought that he was liable for punishment and with his new found 'freedom', he is now placed in a better position than Khairy for the top UMNO youth post. However, Khir has to contend having to face Mukriz Mahathir who is currently in pole position, and does not have a blemish record.

I wasn't surprise that Azalina's name was not mentioned for reasons best known to UMNO and MACC, and I do not wish to speculate either. However, with her case purportedly under investigation by MACC, Azalina's candidacy for the Supreme Council member is very much in a balance.

Will there be more candidates for the chopping block? This will have to be seriously looked at by Najib, as these are the party leaders that will most likely form members of his cabinet..............corrupt free as demanded by Tun Mahathir.

Posted at 6.40 pm on March 17, 2009


A few days ago, it was Azalina Othman. And now they say it is Ali Rustam, and will the list stops here? Haven’t these people learned their lessons? Are these the kind of leaders that UMNO wants……corrupt to the core. Certainly not me, and I can tell you that most non UMNO Malays that I regularly talk to, have little regards and respect for UMNO leaders who are corrupt, and who will do such despicable acts to cling to power.

We now have to believe in what has been said repeatedly by Tun Mahathir and Tengku Razaleigh, ‘that UMNO today is sick, corrupt to the core and is beyond redemption’. Most do not see any hope of UMNO reviving to its past glory, and should the Malays be returned to its medieval era, this will be an act of betrayal by the UMNO leaders that is certain to ignite a serious backlash on UMNO leaders. This will be the worse scenario confronting UMNO if the party is not willing to take punitive actions on those who are known to be corrupt. There is no other alternatives for UMNO and no apologies to accept. Expulsion from the party is the only remedy for the party betrayers.

Knowing the unhealthy state of affairs in UMNO today, will Pak Lah or Najib be ready to take a stand that is unpopular, at a critical time when UMNO is about to elect its members for the top party leadership? And will all those who have been hauled by MACC, or by the party’s disciplinary committee, or have been duly charged by the courts, be asked to voluntarily withdraw their candidacy for the election?

As of now, the few that have reportedly been involved in corruption have stubbornly said that they will not withdraw from the election, and claimed innocence until proven guilty. There was even a call by a party leader to defer all investigations after the elections. I simply cannot understand the rational behind their stubbornness and excuses, and I can only conclude that they are all absolutely shameless and dishonorable, and even if they are later found to be innocent, redeeming their lost pride will not be easy.

Many may not agree or even dislike all that I have said in my earlier writings regarding UMNO today. And I would like to confess that UMNO was a party that I once loved, but what I see happening in UMNO today makes me sick with anger and hate. I feel betrayed by UMNO, and I only see diminishing hopes for the future of my children and grand children, if the party is unable to revive itself.

Posted at 1.20 pm on March 17, 2009

Monday, March 16, 2009


Am I glad to have partners as bloggers who are like me..........retired military personnels. I do not know some of them because their identity is not revealed, but I do know for sure that they once served the military from their style of writing and the content of their articles.

Blogging has been interesting for me because I am now free to express my views about anything. I know my limitations, and I am fairly careful in the use of words in my writings that may sound offensive and distasteful to some.

I have been perceived as being anti government in my writings by some of my former colleagues; a perception that is debatable, and which I don't fully subscribe. I am merely trying to be frank and direct in my views, and that has nothing to do with me being loyal or disloyal to the government of the day. Anyway, that is how I have been trained to write by the military, and if it is wrong, please don't blame me; blame the Armed Forces for having trained me.

I recall once towards the end of my career, that I was told to stop making comments in the newspapers by my higher headquarters, over a case of a soldier who was charged for murdering an Indonesian illegal immigrant. I was offended by the way the police had handled the soldier who was merely performing his duties by arresting an illegal immigrant that had just landed on the beaches of Johor, who later died after a brief scuffle with the soldier. The soldier has since been freed of charges of murder by the courts.

Verbal or written comments aimed at senior officers are rarely heard in the Armed Forces, and doing so is tantamount to insubordination. This is a situation where officers do not want to be slammed with, as a 'black dot' in ones record of service is a virtual 'death certificate' for the officer concern. Serious verbal arguments between a subordinate officer and a senior officers is seldom heard too, and this is because officers are trained to remain loyal, honourable and subservient to their superiors.

There is however a provision in the Armed Forces for officers to submit a redress of wrong to his superior officer, if he feels that he has been unjustly punished for an offence. However, in my 34 years of military service, I have not experienced having to preside over a case involving a redress of wrong, and I believe the reason being that the punishment meted to offenders are well within the bounds legally permissible to the presiding officer, over an offence being presided or 'judged' by him.

I noticed that some of the military bloggers share a common desire to expose all forms of corruption and abuses, linking officers to these unhealthy practices. I have been watching quite closely some of the 'unhealthy on-goings' in the Armed Forces and the ministry, and the exposure is merely to correct what is believe to be seriously wrong. Military officers in particular have to be extremely careful not to be associated with corrupt practices, and to avoid being in the circle of defence contractors and businessman.

The military profession is one that is sworn to loyalty and allegiance to the king, and the readiness to sacrifice ones life in defence of the country. It does not say anything about the profession having to indulge in business of any kind with anybody. Taking just a cent from a contractor or a businessman, is no different from taking a million. The offence is still corruption, and this must be avoided at all costs.

Military officers must remain true to his profession, and never to succumb to greed, or to anything that will only bring shame and dishonour to the military profession.

Posted at 10.45 pm March 16, 2009


The decision taken by Selangor Menteri Besar Khalid Ibrahim to have all executive council members (exco) declare their personal assets, and to have it posted in the internet for public viewing, must be applauded. Hopefully, this will be the trend setter for all other PR controlled state governments to adopt, to fulfill their pledges to uphold good corporate governance, transparency, sincerity and the integrity of its exco members.

It would have been better if all PR state and parliamentary elected representatives do likewise, and this could well be a winning strategy for the PR in their effort to win over greater public confidence towards the party. The question asked is ‘will BN/UMNO elected representatives takes a similar action?’

Talks of exco members and elected representatives enriching themselves and their families by gaining easy access to business opportunities are abound. Even if they claim that they do not indulge in corrupt practices, or even swears by the holy books, it would still be difficult to change public perception that they are persons of high integrity, and are incorruptible.

Most would argue that it is BN/UMNO led government leaders that is the main cause for such public perception, since the public knows no other government since the country attained its independence, except for the BN/UMNO government.

Changing public perception is no easy mean for BN/UMNO leaders. And recent unhealthy developments within UMNO, such as the incidences of money politics has dampened any hope of UMNO leaders redeeming themselves in the eyes of the public as being clean, honest and incorruptible leaders. Many have commented that drastic and corrective measures must come from within UMNO itself, but the lingering question remains as to whether UMNO leaders has the will to correct the ‘ills’ that is so rampantly obvious today. Obviously, in this regards UMNO has failed miserably.

For Najib who is to lead BN/UMNO in the next few days and the nation, this will be his most trying period in his entire political career. Even Tun Mahathir has commented that for the BN/UMNO to survive the next general election, will depend on who Najib chooses as his cabinet members. If Najib chooses those who are known to have a blemished personality and are corrupt, then there is little hope of BN/UMNO winning the next general elections.

Tun Mahathir is no soothsayer, but his comments cannot just be ignored by Najib. And it would be better still for those who knows themselves to be corrupt, and has been severely criticised by the public, to voluntarily withdraw from politics. The public knows too well who are corrupt and who are not.

Posted at 1.00 pm on March 16, 2009

Friday, March 13, 2009


I am not a ‘tukang tilik’ nor a ‘dukun’, but having heard from the many people that I met who are generally non-partisan in politics, I tend to be influence and is in agreement with what they say concerning the bickering within UMNO today over the up-coming party elections, and most importantly the change over of party leadership to Najib.

Najib was reported to have said recently that he has no knowledge of a specified date for the change over, and leaves it entirely to Pak Lah to decide. To most observers, this is a departure from the norm, especially with the date of the general assembly being just a few days away, and a significant event such as the change over of party and national leadership is yet unknown.

This uncertainty in the change over has given rise to various perceptions and speculations among the concerned public.

There was one which says that because of the immense pressure for Najib to clear all allegations leveled against him, particularly in respect of the murder of Altantuya, corruption and his tarnished reputation in the international arena, Pak Lah may decide to stay on a bit longer until Najib’s problems are resolved.

Another speculation is that Pak Lah will hand over the leadership to Tengku Razaleigh (former finance minister), with the latter assuming the post of Prime Minister for an interim period, allowing sufficient time and space for Najib to resolve his problems. In this scenario, Najib will have to relinquish his post as Deputy Prime Minister, and hand it over to who ever is elected UMNO’s deputy president in the general assembly.

A third scenario will be that Najib will be asked not to accept the position of party president, and to allow the elected deputy president to become the Prime Minister. The post of deputy Prime Minister will be given to the person having secured the highest votes in the contest for UMNO Vice Presidency.

Should UMNO chooses any one of the above scenario, Najib’s future in UMNO is sealed.

But if Najib is to survive the general assembly, and to prove the above speculations wrong, he will be faced with the unending allegations, accusations and worse still, mocking by the opposition and the public, that will make his tenure as the sixth Prime Minister an unsettled one.

Posted at 12.10 am on March 13, 2009


Former Selangor Menteri Besar Khir Toyo must be feeling the heat, not only as the opposition leader in the Selangor state assembly, but also from within UMNO itself. Having pointed a finger at Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim's alleged abuse and corruption over the 'cars and lembu issue', now the four other fingers are pointed at Khir Toyo over his alleged excesses when he was the chief executive of the state.

Khir Toyo was reported to be extremely angry when it was disclosed in the state assembly by Ulu Kelang assemblyman Saari Sungib, that Khir Toyo's wife was given a Range Rover vehicle costing RM 500,000 purchased by a subsidiary of Kumpulan darul Ehsan Bhd (KDEB), and for which he vehemently denied.

It was also reported that KDEB of which Khir Toyo was its Chairman, had sought to purchase two luxury Mercedes Benz cars costing RM 2.5 million, and of which RM 1 million has been paid to Cycle & Carriage prior to the March 8, 2008 General Elections. The car was never delivered, and the money has yet to be returned. Had BN/UMNO won the elections, the car would have been a grand present for KDEB's Chairman and President. To this, Khir Toyo claimed no knowledge of the purchase, and said that the decision to purchase was made by the management.

It was also revealed that the state subsidiary had to cough out RM 1.2 million being traveling expenses for the wives of former state excos (Balkis) for a trip to Disney land. One would have thought that visits to Disney land (where ever it may be) were meant for kids, but to see a group of elderly ladies wading through crowded Disney land seems like a joke. One wonders what benefits would the state derived out of this trip. To most, the trip is purely a joy trip and a waste of money.

Interestingly, it was also reported that the state subsidiary had presented Khir Toyo with a watch costing RM 159,000 for which he denies having received it. Imagine, the number of hungry families that can be fed with the money spent on just a watch. Whoever made the decision to buy the watch must be a dumb idiot.

The amount of money that Khir Toyo spent for his trips overseas during the period beginning September 2001 to January 2007 was also raised in the state assembly. A total of more than RM 300,000 was paid to a travel agency for the purchase of air tickets, and this amount does not include other expenses to cover the trip. Khir Toyo must have traveled First Class in full comfort, while many of the state's poor are left to live on a meager income and probably on just one meal a day.

Now, with just a few days before UMNO's General Assembly convenes, Khir Toyo a strong contender for the top UMNO youth post had claimed that there are internal politiking and manoeuvres out to 'sabotaged' him. Being an experienced politician, he should have known that this is a usual game in UMNO politics, and he should not be complaining.

The blame game in Selangor is getting to be more interesting by the day, and Khir Toyo seemed the obvious target. What of the other former excos..........not a word in support of their former boss. Why the absolute wonders.

Posted at 7.30 am March 13, 2009

Thursday, March 12, 2009


One, particularly those who works in the Tourism Ministry, or those who have business dealings with the ministry should not surprised at the news that MACC has raided the ministry (Malaysian Insider March 11, 2009). In fact, many says that the ministry should have been raided a long time ago.

And with the recent arrest of the political secretary to Tourism Minister Azalina Othman on suspicion of corruption, will open up the ‘crates of skeletons’ that has been kept hidden in the vaults of Azalina’s ministry since becoming its minister. The results of the raid and the outcome of the investigations on the political secretary, will be closely watched by the concerned public, as well as a test of MACC’s pledges to arrest the scourge of corruption, regardless of the position and status of the person(s) involved.

Azalina, and including those implicated in this ‘scam’, may be the unlucky ones not to have been smart enough to cover their trail of alleged abuses and corrupt practices. It is now left for her and those implicated to defend themselves, and to rid the stigma of corruption attached to their persons.

Azalina certainly cannot now claim to having no knowledge of the affairs of her ministry. It will be better for her to accept the fact that this is indeed a testing time for her, and to allow fate to decide what is left of her political career.

The telling question now is whether Azalina, an aspirant for the UMNO’s Supreme Council should or should not be allowed to make her bid during the up-coming UMNO’s General Assembly because of this investigations. Many in UMNO will say that she is deemed innocent unless proven otherwise; hence she should be allowed to contest. But what if MACC investigations were to prove later that she is guilty? How would UMNO react then?

The answer the above question, it is best left to the big wigs in UMNO to decide in the best interest of the party. And to those outside UMNO, the question asked is, “will there be more to surface after Azalina?”

Posted at 12.20 am March 12, 2009

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


In an effort to cut unnecessary and wasteful defence spending, US President Barack Obama has instructed that a review be made with regards to the award of defence contracts, that had during the Bush administration resulted in a two fold increase in defence spending to sustain the unjust war in Iraq and Afghanistan.

What is so glaringly unpopular was that the Bush administration had been awarding major contracts to companies like Halliburton through selective bidding costing billions in taxpayers money. Halliburton, an oil and gas company was once associated with the former US Vice President Dick Cheney, and it was obvious that presidential patronage had favoured the company for contracts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

President Obama’s move to curb further deterioration in wasteful defence spending, and to cease selective bidding is seen as a popular move that will pleased defence contractors and the US taxpayers. It was reported that more than 140 investigations are currently on-going to prosecute those involved in ‘murky and highly doubtful contracts’ that are either unfulfilled or partially fulfilled.

President Obama was open in his criticism towards the Bush administration by referring it to ‘the era of irresponsibility’ that saw defence spending increased two fold, in excess of RM1.86 trillion since 2001.

The Malaysian government, and in particular the Defence Ministry have somewhat been emulating the US in its defence spending.

Isn’t selective bidding a preferred method of awarding defence contracts by the Defence Ministry? Isn’t Target Resources Sdn Bhd the preferred company to be offered contracts by the ministry that had now amounted to almost a billion? Isn’t Sydney Franklin the preferred foreigner to act as the agent for capital purchases for the ministry that is reported to have also amounted in excess of one billion? Where lies the transparency, integrity, honestly and good governance that our civil service is so proud off in dealing with contracts?

It is high time that our Prime Minister takes a serious note from what has been said by President Obama, and to make a similar statement as a matter of urgency, before the rot in the Defence Ministry (other ministries included) becomes unbearable.

Posted at 2 pm on March 9, 2009

Monday, March 9, 2009


The younger generation of officers of the Armed Forces today may not know that Sudan's President Omar Hassan Al Bashir was a student at the Malaysian Armed Forces Staff College (MAFSC), popularly known as Haigate, in 1983. He was of the rank of Colonel at the time, whereas other students were only of the rank of Majors and Lt Colonels.

In 1973 and in the rank of Captain, I was previliged to have attended a course at the School of Infantry, Quetta, Pakistan. Among the many overseas students attending the course with me was Major Omar Hassan Al Bashir and three other officers from the Sudanese army.

Students from overseas were accommodated in a three room bungalow houses located a walking distance from the school. I was placed in a bungalow next to Major Omar Hassan.

The course also had two officers from Jordan who lived within the proximity of our houses. One of them (the name I could not remember) frequented my house for discussions on the day's work. Somehow, this particular officer is fond of wrestling, and I was his usual victim. There was no way that I could stop him from coming to my house and to wrestle with me. Neither could I beat him in the wrestle because he was much larger than me. It was better that I declare myself the loser early, than to suffer his brutal twisting of my entire body.

This regular wrestling match came to the notice of Major Omar Hassan, and speaking in Arabic, warned the Jordanian officer to stop bullying me. It was only after this warning that the Jordanian officer ceased coming to my house for a wrestle. I was so relieved, and had to thanked Major Omar Hassan for having saved me from the regular bashing.

In early 2000, President Omar Hassan was in Malaysia to attend the Langkawi International Dialogue at Langkawi. Before returning home, he was in Kuala Lumpur to attend the Malaysia – Sudan Business Forum at Nikko Hotel. Since I was at the forum, I thought I would take the opportunity to meet him and to see if he could still remember me.

When the forum ended, I stood and the entrance of the hall to await him. As he walked the gallery, he noticed me, raised his hands and as he approached closer to me, he called me by my name. I was surprised that he could still remember my name, and when I shook his hands, the first words that came out from him was “Arshad, are you now a millionaire?”. I quickly replied ,'Sir, certainly not”. A brief conversation ensued, and before parting he asked me to visit Sudan, which till today I have yet to make the trip.

Now the International Criminal Court (ICC) of the Hague has indicted President Omar Hassan for crimes against humanity in the Dafur. What we read and hear from the media concerning Dafur is mainly the western reports and perspective of the war in that region. Personally, I do not believe President Omar Hassan is personally involved in the killings in Dafur, and the charges against him are part of a grand design by the US and its western allies to evict him from power.

If it was merely on the basis of President Omar Hassan being the President and the military commander, then former US President Bush, Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfled, these three rumour mongers, should similarly be indicted for even worse war crimes against humanity in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The war in Iraq is now in its fifth year, with more than 4000 US soldiers dead and thousands more innocent Iraqi children, women and men had been shot and bombed to smithereens. Just look at the untold destruction caused by the US forces in the two countries, that had brought the countries back to its medieval days. And have we forgotten the infamous Abu Gharib torture of Iraqi prisoners by US troops? Why has the US and its western allies been so concern with the war in Sudan? Is it not the enormous oil resources of Sudan that they want?

Let us all watch how far the indictment of President Omar Hassan will go, and the on-going call by some US citizens to bring Bush to face trial in the US courts for declaring the illegal war on Iraq.

Posted at 8.20 pm on Mar 9, 2009

Sunday, March 8, 2009


Despite the issue being raised in parliament; despite resenting comments in the internet, the Defence Ministry is still proceeding to renegotiate the award of the submarine rescue services to a favoured company whose core business is infrastructure works, building and quarry activities.

From reliable sources, the company is believed to be Target Resources Sdn Bhd, and is reportedly owned by a Dato from Pahang. Upon further checking, the same company is believed to have been awarded several projets by the Defence Ministry that runs into millions, through direct negotiations. If one does not see this as being a blatant and hideous act of cronyism by the ministry's top official, what other better words can be used to described the aforesaid act.

Now, Target Resources Sdn Bhd is again being invited to renegotiate and propose to the Defence Ministry a new pricing from an initial quoted figure of RM 98.4 million per year for a period of 20 years. What a profitable deal this will be for the construction company, where even the blind, mute and deaf can become instant millionaire, if the deal were to go through, unnoticed to the concerned public and tax payers.

The company is said to have made a new proposal of RM 60 million per year to the Defence Ministry. For those in the submarine rescue service industry, they claim that this figure is still unrealistic, and has been inflated by almost 100%. A realistic figure would be RM 30 million per year or thereabout, and there is already a reasonable commission factored into the figure. How did Target Resources Sdn Bhd derive a figure of RM 98.4 million initially, and then later proposing a figure of RM 60 million demands full public explanation from both the ministry and the company.

Public perception of the Defence Ministry has never been good with regards to the award of contracts. Public resentment is cleverly being subdued from public knowledge. The powers-that-be has ignored totally the practice of transparency, fairness and honesty in the award of contracts, and by so doing, they have betrayed the trust that is beholden upon them as loyal, faithful and honest public servants. Whims and fancies rules the day, and the talk around the ministry is that 'the higher the cost, the better it is'.

To put this highly controversial deal in its correct perspective, it is incumbent upon the ministry's Secretary General to explain the rational of insisting that Target Resources Sdn Bhd be awarded the contract by direct negotiation, as well as to explain the basis of reasonable pricing to be accepted by the ministry. An explanation given by the Deputy Defence Minister or the Minister himself isn't enough.

To deliberately ignore competitive bidding, the Defence Ministry and in particular the Royal Malaysia Navy, will not be able to get the desired scope of services at the best price. And certainly, RM 60 million per year is certainly not the figure worth accepting at all.

Posted at 8.00 am on Mar 8, 2009

Saturday, March 7, 2009


ARE WE TO BELIEVE when senior UMNO politicians says that all reports on money politics that has been investigated by UMNO disciplinary committee have been fully resolved? Now, with the recent hauling of an UMNO minister's political secretary by MACC for alleged involvement in money politics supposedly at the behest of his boss (wonder who is he), where then lies the truth and honesty in the pronouncement made by these senior UMNO politicians?

Are we not reminded, time and again that corruption (UMNO prefers it to be called money politics) is like cancer, and despite cutting it off, there is no guarantee that the person suffering from it is completely cured. Are they not aware that corruption in the party is so well embedded, that even a meager sum of RM200 is enough to satisfy those within the lower echelons of the party? This is the state of the UMNO Malays today where dignity is being thrown out of the window; religious reasoning is muted and greed for the worldly pleasures and power are all that they care for.

One cannot imagine the kind of leadership that will rule the party and the nation, if its leaders are elected on the basis of corruption. And to remain in power, these corrupt leaders will continue to be corrupt in order to be sufficiently wealthy to dole out money as inducement for popularity and support. This has been the modus operandi of our UMNO leaders, and it has now become impossible to undo the vices and ills that is slowly (but surely) degenerating UMNO to its final resting place.

Look at Khir Toyo, the aspirant for UMNO's Youth leader who seemed to be looking more youthful by the day. He raised the allegations of corruption against Selangor Menteri Besar Khalid Ibrahim, and what did Khir Toyo get in return? A series of past corrupt practices by the Khir Toyo regime is being unveiled and thrown back at his face. He claims total innocence, but the people of Selangor today are not so foolish to let him off the hook this time. And more 'skeletons' will be unveiled from his hidden closet over time, and hopefully more of his cohorts (the former exco's in particular) will be drag out to face justice as well.

This blissful country will be damn if we continue to vote in corrupt leaders (regardless of party), and be damn if we do not vote them out.

Posted at 120 pm on Mar 8, 2009

Thursday, March 5, 2009


I would like to share with readers, an email that I had received from Kamal Omar, reflecting his personal grievance at what is happening to the country today. I share his personal grievance........what about you?

by Kamal Omar – Anak Malaysia

Day by day as it goes by, never had we stooped so low. That's how I personally felt today. We were once Malaysia, the pride within the region. We stood tall among our ASEAN members, be it political, economy, social, security be it.

Out of WW 11, through the wake-up call came the long years of communist insurgency. We were made to come together as one, as to rub-shoulders and struggled, strive with lost of lives, fell with grace and glory and certainly with beaming pride, merely to seek for the sake of independence and democracy, to be followed with our eventual Merdeka.

But after all these years, where are we today? Are we any better? In fact, I feel sort of shy to ask these questions, what more being asked by foreigners/tourists. Instead of focusing on the world-wide deteriorating economy, we (the political figures) are fighting and pointing fingers at each other while the rakyat are being sidelined and suffering. It's a real shame.

To add salt to the wound, the recent happenings in Perak! Just unbelievable! All those responsible for the uncalled for upheaval, shame on you all. Calling yourself our leaders? Take a good look of yourself in the mirror. MALU. You all seemed to forget the suara rakyat – they just want an immediate call for fresh elections in Perak. Nothing more, nothing less. That's the only way to go about it and to proof your leadership credibility.

Posted at 9.30 pm on Mar 5, 2009


Talks are abound that corruption is fast breeding among the defenders of our nation i.e the noble profession of the armed services. In the past, one rarely hears of reports of corrupt practice and abuse among the officers corps, and the armed service has always been looked upon with honour and dignity. But of late, this view has somewhat changed, and one will be surprise to view postings in the internet alleging corrupt practice and abuse, and of all persons, senior army officer.

If this allegation is true (and hopefully it isn’t true), the shameful act of just one person can tarnish the entire service, and with it goes the honour and dignity that is associated with the armed service since its inception.

Having served the army before and have held so dearly to the sacred pledges of loyalty to king and country, one cannot fathom how the hearts and minds of the alleged senior army officers can be so twisted and disarrayed to succumb to the ills of corrupt practices.

Civil society have all along claimed that corruption and abuse is somewhat ‘synonymous’ with politicians (not Malaysians only). There is also a saying that for one to become rich, go into politics. This may or may not be true, but that’s the perception that one has of politicians.

Now, this perception is beginning to take its roots among officers of the armed services, notably the army, and this is a scary thought.

Are they to be in a league with the Royal Malaysia Police that has come under criticism for corruption and abuse by its former Inspector General of Police, or the Immigrations Department where its top officials were roped in recently? Even the judiciary is alleged to be corrupt, and so is PUSPAKOM.

We, the retired members of the army takes a serious view at the allegation of corrupt practice and abuse among senior army officers today that has been posted in cyberspace. We plea to them to discard this dishonorable practice, and to return to their sacred pledges of loyalty to king and country.

Posted at 2.30 pm on Mar 5, 2009

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


I wish to refer to a Bernama report citing the Prime Minister’s remarks that direct negotiations for defence equipment contracts “were for those that involved security equipment or certain strategic projects which must be kept confidential such as the purchase of weaponry systems”.

The Prime Minister said this in a written reply in parliament recently in responding to a question from Tian Chua (PKR – Batu) who wanted to know what is the total value of purchases or projects carried out by the Defence Ministry from 2006 until last year.

Personally, I don’t believe the answer given by the Prime Minister is totally correct.

Malaysia being a net importer of defence equipments (strategic or otherwise) cannot possibly keep its purchases a secret from the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) or from any of its competitors. This is a well known fact, that the moment a planned purchase is known, manufacturers of similar equipment (through its authorized agents) will be knocking at the doors of the Defence Ministry to start proposing their product.

It is also a fact that authorized agents will even have in their possession the full specifications of the equipment almost immediately upon an intended purchase is made by the ministry. Under normal circumstances, the specification of the equipment will be prepared by specially designated military officers and held under restricted distribution. However, this does not really happen and the specification document will invariably be leaked out. How this occurs is anyone’s guess.

On the part of the international defence media, they too have their own means of acquiring ‘intelligence’ regarding any intended defence equipment purchases by a potential buyer. Even if there is no firm letter of intent issued to the OEM, a write-up in the defence media will already be published. One only need to refer to Jane’s defence magazine to read an entire write-up of the intended purchase. And on the local scene, the Asian Defence & Security magazine will also have something to write.

Then how do we ensure confidentiality in the purchase of certain defence equipment? This will be a question that only the Defence Ministry can answer.

And once again, I wish to reaffirm that the award of contracts through direct negotiation is undeniably a source of corruption.

Posted at 5.00 pm on Mar 4, 2009


I was surprise when a friend called me up to view a blog that is hitting hard at the Army top brasses for alleged corruption. Never have I expected that a blog such as this could appear in cyberspace, confirming the many calls that I have received alleging the web of corrupt practices that has infected the officers corps of the Malaysian Armed Forces. Blog can be viewed at

This is indeed a sad day for the noble profession that I was part off, and if it is true that corruption has seeped dangerously into the very veins of the Armed Forces,then it is time that the authorities stepped in to weed the 'disease' out before it becomes cancerous.

The officers and soldiers have a noble duty to perform i.e. to defend the country to its very last breath......but never to indulge in corruption.

Posted at 2 pm on Mar 4, 2009


Many maybe wondering who is Sydney Franklin. But for those in the Defence Ministry, that name has been in circulation around the corridors of the ministry for quite a while, and is a popular figure, especially among the top brasses in the ministry. He is full of generosity; readily making contributions for important golfing events organized for the top brasses. He takes pride to be in the inner circle, and he features regularly at weddings and functions hosted by the ‘who’s who’ of the ministry

Speculations are rife among defence equipment representatives, suppliers and contractors that Sydney Franklin, a British citizen is one of the favoured defence equipment ‘middlemen’ for the Defence Ministry. He is said to have been instrumental in securing several defence contracts through direct negotiations with the Defence Ministry over the last 5 years or so.

He operates an office from a penthouse located in a posh apartment at Jalan Pinang, Kuala Lumpur. His official business address is in London where he is a registered contractor for the UK Defence Ministry (

The first known contract involving Sydney Franklin was for the supply of the Astros II Multiple Launcher Rocket System (MLRS) for the Army in 2002. The MLRS is a product of Avibras Industria Areospacial International Ltd of Brazil, where a total of 18 launchers were supplied to the Army at the costs of US 207,764,155.00 (RM 727,174,542.50 approximately). Sydney Franklin is said to have been the ‘middlemen’ for this contract, concluded between the Defence Ministry and the equipment manufacturer.

In a speech by the Chief of Army at a parade to mark the 76th Army Day celebration on 1st March 2009, it was announced that the Army will be receiving its second consignment of 18 MLRS launchers scheduled to arrive before the end of the year, to complete the second MLRS regiment. The cost quoted by the Chief of Army was RM 27 million (Star 2 March 2009) which is believed to be an error, as the figure is grossly different to the cost quoted in 2002 above. It was said that Sydney Franklin was once more a party to this contract, which was again offered through direct negotiations. And anymore purchase of this same equipment will be a waste of public fund.

What is unusual about the purchase of the MLRS (and questioned by many) is that the award for the maintenance of the entire system is believed to have been given to Sydney Franklin. This deal certainly sounds odd for a strategic purchase like this. Wouldn’t it be proper for the maintenance job be awarded to a Malaysian company; thus developing some local expertise in the maintenance of strategic weaponry? Little wonder that despite the millions spend on the purchase of assorted weapons over the last five decades, the country is yet to produce a simple weapon indigenously.

In 2007, the Army acquired and was supplied with the VERA-E passive surveillance radar; a product of the Czech Republic. A similar product was also acquired by the People’s Republic of China earlier at the costs of US54.7 million for 10 systems (JDW 28 April 2004). It will be interesting to know how much was paid by our Defence Ministry, which many says is many times more than what China had paid. Again, Sydney Franklin’s role in acquiring this contract sticks like a sore thumb.

The question that need to be asked urgently is how many more defence contracts will portray prominently Sydney Franklin’s role as its middlemen? He has no official business representation in Malaysia, nor does he own a registered company in Malaysia. But yet he is consistently involved in a direct negotiated defence contract with the Defence Ministry. How could this possibly happen right under the noses of our policy makers, is beyond anyone’s belief. Are they that dumb and stupid not to have noticed the fallacy in awarding strategic defence contracts involving a foreigner without the participation of a local representative? This is a question that only our political masters and the powers-that-be in the Defence Ministry (both civilian and military) could answer.

Recently, there was a talk about acquiring the Airborne Early Warning Aircraft (AEWAC) for the Armed Forces. Will Sydney Franklin again feature in this deal through the infamous direct negotiation?

Posted at 10.00 am on Mar 4, 2009

Tuesday, March 3, 2009


One ought to be puzzled at the statement made by Deputy Defence Minister Abu Seman in parliament Monday March 2nd, 2009 (Star, Tuesday March 3rd, 20009) regarding the award to a bumiputra company for the submarine rescue services for the Royal Malaysian Navy. He is reported to have said that the offer made by the company was RM 98.4 million per year for a period of 20 years which was disagreed by the ministry. Hence, a fresh offer has to be made by the company.

The deputy minister further said that, “the offer to the company was through direct negotiations as the navy wanted to gain full knowledge on the submarine rescue procedures and also to get the best terms for the services”.

The statements made by Abu Seman is littered with contradictions, and smells of nothing less than an attempt at inflating costs and awarding the contract to a favoured company. This has been the issue that most defence related companies has been arguing all along i.e. why direct negotiation, and worse still the award was made to a company whose core business is not defence related, but that of a construction company. This is where Abu Seman was shy in revealing.

Most in the defence industry will vouch that the Royal Malaysian Navy is about the best of the three services in terms of planning for its force development, as well as in making decisions for capital purchases and support services. This being so, the statement made by Abu Seman to justify the award through direct negotiations to a construction company is arguable.

The submarine rescue service is a highly specialized service, and the navies within the ASEAN region (notably Singapore and Indonesia) does not have a dedicated submarine rescue service within its organization. The service is being outsourced, and presently there are only two renowned submarine rescue service companies available in the world i.e. one is a US company and the other a UK company.

There is in Malaysia today representatives representing the two foreign submarine rescue service companies. The question asked is why were the representatives not called in to offer their bid. Knowing that the services required is so specialized, wouldn’t it be better for the navy to have more than one company bidding, thus allowing a thorough evaluation be made? Isn’t the open tender system the best in terms of getting good value for money?

Certainly the statement made by Abu Seman needs rethinking, and knowing our Royal Malaysian Navy, most would agree that the decision to award the job through direct negotiation is not the navy’s wishes, but that of someone else with pecuniary interest.

Posted at 11.00 am on March 3, 2009

Monday, March 2, 2009


One can't help but laugh at how desperate the new BN Perak state government's closure of the State Secretariat building to disallow a special sitting of the State Assembly to be convene Tuesday 3rd March 2009. The action smack of stupidity, foolishness and sheer arrogance that only reflects the archaic state of mind of the BN assemblymen.

Don't the BN assemblymen know that the special sitting can be convene anywhere, and not necessarily at the State Secretariat building? What if they elect to have the special sitting at the Ipoh Stadium or in some restaurant? Will Zambary and his merry-men declare the sitting to be illegal? And if he does, under what laws or rules will he be applying?

The new Perak state government has to accept that the growing confusion in the state is unlikely to be resolved that simply, and definitely not as easy as the way the new state government was installed. There is now a serious constitutional crisis that even the nations' constitutional experts are at tangent.

Didn't Zambary dispatched his lawyers to the UK to seek the expert opinion of the Queens Council? Has he lost the confidence of his own counsel? Even Najib has to declare that the new state government has to await the court's decision to affirm its rightful 'ownership' to the state. What does this imply? Simply put, it is an acceptance of defeat of the BN state government, but put is very subtle terms.

Nizar is persistent and has declared that he is still the duly appointed Menteri Besar, in 'defiance', if you may, to the Sultan's pronouncement.Zambary's co-hoots was quick to evict Nizar from the Menteri Besar's official residence and did an excellent job at clearing the office. The mainstream media was all around to catch a glimpse of Zambary at his first official day in office, with a broad smile to show.

More confusion was to follow with the PAC now unable to ascertain which of the two Menteri Besar is entitled to an official salary. Even Zambary's appointment of his 'special officers' with executive councilors status are being questioned by the PAC. It appears that Zambary has over stepped his powers by unilaterally deciding upon state appointments, which he is not empowered to do. Obviously, his showing off his executive power did not work. A shame isn't it.

Tuesday 3rd March can be an exciting day to watch. Let us see how Zambary reacts and the development to follow. These are exciting moments for Perakians.

Posted at 9.30 pm Mar 2, 2009

Sunday, March 1, 2009


Dato' Seri Abd Najib Tun Razak was reported to have said, “the Perak state assembly cannot be held because there has been a court action”. He further said, “we have to first establish the status of the Perak government in terms of the constitution”.

Surprisingly, it is only now that Najib realise the illegitimacy of the new Perak state government which he had crafted. From the statements of Najib, Zambry and his exco can now take a rest until such time the court decides the status of the new Perak government. Meanwhile, it is only proper that Nazir be reinstate the Menteri Besar (that is rightfully his), and to run the state government during the interim period, which will also resolve the salary payment to the rightful Menteri Besar.

Najib is still left with an option to retain Perak, if he is so desperate not to lose i.e. to declare a state of emergency in Perak, citing the prevailing constitutional crises. It will be foolish if he does this, and the consequence of such a declaration can be devastating to the state.

This is the third time Najib has failed the BN. The first two being his failure to win back Permatang Pauh and Kuala Trengganu by-elections. Should he now fail to win Perak through the constitutional and legal means, this may be a signal of his political demise. But being so close to being the sixth Prime Minister of Malaysia, surely his supporters within UMNO would be working hard to shove Najib popularity, despite the negativities about him, that has been drumming load outside UMNO.

There is no doubt that Najib will be the next Prime Minister, but will his term in office be smooth sailing? This will be interesting to watch.

Posted at 9.00 am Mar 1, 2009