Friday, July 19, 2013

Govt will ensure fiscal deficit is reduced to 4 pct this year - Najib

KUALA LUMPUR: The government will ensure the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) deficit is reduced to four per cent this year, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
He said the government would also trim the deficit further to three per cent by 2015 without jeopardising the country's growth momentum. 
"The GDP deficit was reduced to 4.5 per cent last year from 6.7 per cent in 2009.
"For the long-term, the government is committed towards achieving a balanced budget by 2020," said Najib, who is also Finance Minister, in a written reply to Lim Lip Eng (DAP-Segambut) in the Dewan Rakyat today.
Lim asked the Finance Minister to explain the measures and strategies taken by the government to attain sustainable growth and reduce the country's deficit and debts.
Najib said the establishment of the Fiscal Policy Committee, at the Budget 2014 Consultative Council meeting on June 18, was aimed at reducing fiscal deficit, strengthening public finances and ensuring the nation's long-term fiscal sustainability. 
The Prime Minister said this was necessary to achieve the fiscal target of reduced deficit and debts, over the years, until a balanced budget is attained in 2020.
In the first quarter of the year, the GDP grew 4.1 per cent.
"The growth was supported by stronger domestic demand prompted by a higher consumption expenditure of 6.1 per cent and investment activities of 13.2 per cents," he said.
Elaborating further, Najib said based on current indicators, the government was confident of a resilient economic growth of between five and six per cent this year. -BERNAMA

Thursday, July 18, 2013

1,079 kamera AES akan dipasang di seluruh negara

Source: (OLEH MD IZWAN, 17/7/2013)
Kementerian Pengangkutan hari ini mendedahkan, sebanyak 1,079 kamera perangkap kelajuan kontroversi Sistem Penguatkuasaan Automatik (AES) akan dipasang seluruh negara.
Dalam jawapan bertulis daripada soalan Ahli Parlimen Segambut Lim Lip Eng di Dewan Rakyat, lokasinya belum dikenal pasti tetapi bakal ditentukan oleh Institut Penyelidikan Keselamatan Jalan Raya (MIROS).
"Sebanyak 1,079 kamera AES masih belum dipasang di seluruh negara. "MIROS sedang mengenal pasti lokasi kawasan kerap kemalangan berdasarkan kriteria lebih terperinci menguna pakai data kemalangan kebangsaan yang terkini," kata jawapan bertulis Kementerian Pengangkutan.
Jawapan bertulis kementerian itu juga menyatakan kerajaan mengutip RM20 juta daripada 673,339 saman yang dikeluarkan sehingga 11 Jun 2013.
"Sehingga 11 Jun 2013, sebanyak 628,045 kesalahan memandu melebihi had laju dan 45,294 kesalahan tidak mematuhi lampu isyarat merah. "Jumlah kutipan kompaun yang diterima bagi tempoh sama ialah RM20,020,500," kata kementerian lagi.
Putrajaya, bagaimanapun enggan mendedahkan terma dan syarat perjanjian konsesi berikutan ia dokumen terperingkat/rahsia dan tidak dapat dinyatakan dalam Dewan Rakyat.
Projek swasta bernilai RM700 juta itu bermula dengan 14 kamera dalam fasa percubaan tetapi JPJ berikrar melancarkan lebih banyak kamera menjelang akhir 2013.
Related news: Over RM20 mil collected from AES summons

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Fugitive cop in Dhamendran's death finally revealed

Police have today released the name and photograph of an inspector who is the fourth suspect wanted for the murder of N Dhamendran, who died in police custody.
In a press release late this evening, Kuala Lumpur criminal investigation department (CID) chief Ku Chin Wah,revealed that the officer was Inspector Hare Krishnan K Subramaniam. Ku stated that Hare Krishnan was serving in his department but has been absent without leave since June 15.
“(Hare Krishnan) is also wanted to assist in investigations of a death in Tun HS Lee lockup, report number: 18468/13,” the statement reads.
Although Ku's press release did not mention Dhamendran's name at all, he confirmed that Hare Krishnan was the fourth suspect when asked by Malaysiakini. Furthermore, the police report number quoted by Ku's press release is the same police report number stated in Dhamendran's autopsy report.
Ku had initially attributed Dhamendran’s death to breathing difficulties, but a post-mortem later found that the 31-year-old’s death was a result of "multiple blunt force trauma", leading police to reclassify the case as murder under section 302 of the Penal Code.
On the run for six weeks
On June 5, three police personnel, a sergeant and  two corporals, were charged with the murder of police detainee Dhamendran, who was found dead in lockup last May 21.
The accused - Jaffri Jaafar, 44, Mohd Nahar Abd Rahman, 45, and Mohd Haswadi Zamri Shaari, 32 - are charged with committing the offence between 12.20pm and 2.50pm on May 21, 2013, at the Special Investigations Division (D9), Level 7 of the Kuala Lumpur police contingent headquarters. However, the fourth suspect could not be charged as he went missing. He was not named in court.
Two days later, inspector-general of police Khalid Abu Bakar revealed that police were on the hunt for an inspector. Prior to this, there had been calls for the police to reveal the identity of the fourth suspect, to which the police offered no replies until now.
Dhamendran died on May 21 after spending 10 days in police custody.
Those with information of Hare Krishnan's whereabouts are advised to contact their nearest police station or send a text message to the Kuala Lumpur police at 32728.
Related news: Cop wanted for Dharmendran’s murder identified

Hunt still on for 4th suspect in Dhamendran's murder

The police are still looking for the fourth suspect involved in the murder of N Dhamendran, who has been on the run for 41 days.
Contacted today, Bukit Aman CID deputy director Abdul Samah Mat said the manhunt was still ongoing for the police officer. He added that the police are working with the Special Branch on the case.
Dhamendran died in police custody on May 22. The post-mortem revealed that he succumbed to blunt force trauma. On June 5, three police officers were charged with his murder and it was announced that a fourth suspect was on the run. However, an opposition leader claimed that there is a conspiracy and accused the police of not attempting to find the suspect.
"I believe this run-away cop is part of a bigger story, they (the police) have a hidden agenda in this murder case," said DAP's Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng when contacted yesterday.
On June 12, Lim lodged a report with the police urging them to release a photo of the suspect so that the public could assist them in their search, however the police have yet to do so. Lim said the police ignored his report and did not record his statement despite it being the normal procedure when a report is lodged.
"The police are hiding something, why else haven't they released a photo? There is no explanation." added Lim, who also questioned whether the police let the officer escape.
Abdul Samah, on the other hand, said the police are working on the case and it is believed that the suspect is still in the country. "We should be able to arrest him. It should only be a matter of time because we are working on it,” he added.
Asked why the police have not released a photograph of the suspect, Abdul Samah said that he is not sure if the photo has been released or not and that he would have to look into it.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Sinking homes cause sleepless nights in Segambut

FOUR houses in Kampung Segambut Dalam, Kuala Lumpur are sinking and the residents are living in fear.
Segambut Dalam Landowner Association chairman Mazwan Darjoh said cracks had appeared on the walls and floors, and that the houses were in danger of collapsing.
He said the problem started when a wall was built next to the houses.
“A developer is putting up the wall before proceeding to develop the vacant land next to the village. “However, there is no signage to inform residents about the project,” he said when met at the site, adding that he checked with Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) and was told that no approval had been given for the development of the land.
Mazwan said two years ago, DBKL had held a meeting with the residents over a proposed 47-storey condominium project there. “We did not object to the development. However, we wanted assurance that the cost of repairing any damage to the houses in the course of the construction would be borne by the developer. “We also asked that they build a proper drainage system and access road. “Following this, no further discussions were held.
“In May this year, contractors suddenly put up the wall separating the village from the vacant land. They have also totally blocked a drain that leads to the nearby river,” he added. “The four houses located along the wall started to sink and cracks appeared, prompting the residents to lodge police reports. “The contractors have stopped work on the wall but the damage is done. I hope DBKL will look into this matter and ensure that the developer carries out repairs at the affected houses,” said Mazwan.
Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng said he would raise the matter with Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, and ask him to help resolve the houseowners’ problem.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Parliament: 44 people were shot dead by police last year

FORTY-FOUR people were shot dead by the police last year, most of whom were Malays and Indonesians, said Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
In a written reply to Lim Lip Eng (DAP-Segambut), Dr Ahmad Zahid said 20 of those killed were Malays while 18 were Indonesians.
“The rest were four Indians and two Chinese,” he said, adding that at the same time, 68 cases of killings involving firearms were recorded in the country.
“Most of the firearms used for criminal activities are believed to be smuggled in from neighbouring countries,” he said.
He said high traffic and economic interaction at the country’s entrypoints along the borders had resulted in more “smuggling opportunities”.
The existence of back alleys along the borders, added Dr Ahmad Zahid, were also being utilised by locals to smuggle in firearms.
“Family ties as well as geographical factors such as the Malaysia-Thailand border with the near proximity of Sungai Golok and Rantau Panjang have created a network that leads to such smuggling activities,” he said.
To overcome the illegal use of firearms, Dr Ahmad Zahid said both the police and other agencies such as the Immigration Depart-ment, Malaysian Maritime En-forcement Agency, Customs De-partment and the Anti-Smuggling Unit had tightened their enforcement as well as shared information and held joint operations.
The police, he said, had carried out Ops Laras and Ops Api to counter the smuggling and usage of firearms in the country’s criminal cases.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Justice for all, not just Khairy, DAP MP tells cops

Source: (BY SYED JAYMAL ZAHIID, 4/7/2013)
KUALA LUMPUR, July 4 — DAP MP Lim Lip Eng today contrasted the police’s swift response to break-in at Minister Khairy Jamaluddin’s home against what he described as slow or even lack of response to similar cases involving ordinary citizens.
The Segambut MP said that while the Royal Malaysia Police’s (PDRM) “efficient” response to the high-profile incident involving the youth and sports minister was welcome, there should be no double standards when investigating crime, before pointing to what he termed a low conviction rate of burglary cases involving the public.
“The police have managed to release pictures of the suspects involved in the break-in of Khairy’s house. I demand the same response for all victims. “I have received many complaints that when it comes to the regular people, no pictures have ever been released or even of the police not going to the victim’s house to follow up,” Lim told a press conference in Parliament here.
The home of Youth and Sports Minister Khairy was invaded last Saturday afternoon by three men who scaled the perimeter wall at the Bukit Damansara mansion before breaking in through the front door. No one, save for Khairy’s maid, was home when the men entered in the 5.30pm incident. The robbers made off with several laptops, watches and other valuables. Within days, police released the picture composites of two male suspects who were believed to be involved in the brazen daylight robbery.
Today, Lim claimed normal break-in victims would never enjoy such efficient response from the police. To support his claim, the DAP leader cited the authorities’ refusal to release the pictures of suspects involved in the murder of N. Dhamendran whose death while in police custody last month triggered a public uproar.
“I demand they release the pictures. If they fail to do so, that means they are Umno police and not for the people,” Lim charged.
Another DAP lawmaker, Tony Pua, previously said the burglary of Khairy’s house illustrated the reality of Malaysia’s dire crime situation, adding in a statement on Sunday night that Putrajaya could not afford to brush aside concerns over growing lawlessness as a “perception” problem any longer.
Prior to that, Khairy had on his Facebook page admitted that the incident was a stark reminder to all about the seriousness of crime in the country. “It is a real issue and not just merely a perception,” he said.
Putrajaya’s efficiency unit Pemandu last year reported a 10-per cent reduction in index crime for the first half of the year, along with an 11 per cent reduction the previous year and a 39.7 per cent drop in street crime for the same duration. The media was also blamed for reporting news of such cases. But these figures were quickly undressed by anonymous and former police officers as well as a crime watchdog who alleged the impressive reductions were nothing more than statistical sleight of hand.
The authorities had defended themselves from such accusations by insisting the numbers were not doctored and that the growing presence of anecdotal crime reports in social media was simply a “perception” rather than fact.
Related news: DAP MP tells cops not to discriminate between Khairy and public:
Photofit out for KJ's burglars, but not for Dhamendran case?

Thursday, July 4, 2013

CCTV In 316 Lock-ups And 50 Interrogation Rooms

KUALA LUMPUR, July 3 (Bernama) -- A total of 316 police lock-ups and 50 interrogation rooms have been installed with closed circuit television (CCTV), said Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
"The CCTV installations in lock-ups were started since 2002 while the interrogation rooms were started in 2011," he said in a written answer to Lim Lip Eng (DAP-Segambut) at the Dewan Rakyat Wednesday.
Lip Eng had queried on the number of lock-ups and interrogation rooms which had been fitted with CCTVs, when they were installed and the cost involved.
Installation costs depended on the tender and offer price implemented by each police contingent based on their individual requirements, he said. --BERNAMA

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

No RCI on GE13 & May 13 racial riots

Minister Shahidan tells Parliament an electoral victory cannot be questioned except through a petition to the High Court.
KUALA LUMPUR: The government has rejected a proposal for a royal commission of inquiry (RCI) on the 13th general election amid pressure from the British government and local opposition leaders to probe fraud in the May 5 polls. Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Shahidan Kassim, citing Section 118 of the Federal Constitution, said a win by an MP or state assemblyman could be questioned only through an election petition to the High Court.
Shahidan said this in a written parliamentary reply to Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng, who asked whether the government would initiate RCIs on the general election, the May 1969 riots and deaths in custody and abuse of police power.
Recently, the British Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Hugo Swire, called for full investigations of “allegations of irregularities made by the opposition parties and civil society groups” in Malaysia.
The past two months have seen Pakatan Rakyat leaders leading a massive nationwide protest to pressure the Election Commission into resigning over its alleged mishandling of the recent polls. Each component party in the opposition pact has filed election petitions, but their leaders have expressed doubt that they would win the cases due to the high burden of proof required.
Shahidan also dismissed the need for an RCI on custodial deaths and police abuses.
He noted that the Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission (EAIC) had already set up a task force to look into the matter, using provisions under the EAIC Act 2009 (Act 700).
“The Royal Malaysian Police Force is considered one of the agencies under Act 700,” he said. According to Section 28 of that act, the EAIC can probe any enforcement agency under the act for abuse of power if there is significant public interest.”
He said an RCI on the 1969 race riots was also unnecessary because the tragedy occurred too long ago and remedial action had been taken. “Among [the remedies] was the establishment of the Muhibbah Council to encourage harmony among members of society and the setting up of the National Unity Department to manage and implement policies and activities to inspire inter-racial unity,” said Shahidan.
Related news:

Astounding discovery of unique flora and fauna at Bukit Kiara

Lim (first man in front) leading the group during the MNS Walk with Nature at Bukit Kiara.
IT WAS not just another walk in the park for 28 participants of Malaysian Nature Society’s inaugural (MNS) “Walk with Nature at Bukit Kiara” programme. Led by Selangor MNS Flora Group head botanist Lim Koon Hup, the participants were briefed on the flora and fauna found along the walk. “The participants were very inquisitive throughout the walk as they did not know much about even the common plants and trees.
“It is not only interesting to learn about the greenery but also the role they play in the eco-system and how it benefits people and animals,” he said.
Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng, who also took part in the walk, signed a green pledge to help expedite the gazetting of Bukit Kiara.
MNS vice-president Henry Goh said the objective of the walk was to highlight the importance of maintaining the bio-diversity for present and future generations to enjoy. “We also want to ensure green lungs are preserved to off-set and absorb the ever-increasing carbon emissions due to development. It is important to have a healthy balance between development and conservation of our depleting national forests.
“In 2007, the Cabinet agreed to gazette 189ha of Bukit Kiara as a public park. Several ministers and top government officers have also made statements to this effect. However, it is puzzling that despite all the assurances, nothing has been done for the last six years.
“The Friends of Bukit Kiara and its coalition partners comprising NGOs and RAs have over the years, written and also held meetings with the relevant authorities and government agencies but nothing concrete has materialised,” he said. Goh said as the turnout was good, MNS will organise more walks into Bukit Kiara to showcase the many “nature treasures” which could still be discovered within Bukit Kiara.
Taman Tun Dr Ismail (TTDI) resident Fariza A. Jalil said she was mesmerised with what nature has to offer in Bukit Kiara. “The authorities must gazette Bukit Kiara fast or else more destruction might take place. It is a threat to the environment and where will the animals go? It will be very sad to see all the beautiful flora and fauna slowly fade away,” she said.
Another resident, Rahmat Hussien, who has been visiting the park for over 30 years, said he had never explored the trails. “I never knew that Bukit Kiara has a natural treasure trove. The flora and fauna found here are very beautiful and picture- perfect,” said the avid photographer who came with his friend Harinto Rashid to take photographs in the park.
Katie Low from Australia, who is visiting a relative here, also joined in the walk after hearing about it. “It is a good way to spend a Sunday morning,” she said.
After the walk, several participants also helped to plant trees in the park.