Thursday, April 24, 2014

Conduct urine tests for bus drivers randomly instead

The recent spate of four bus accidents in the space of 11 days is a cause for alarm and concern.
Deputy Transport Minister Abdul Aziz Kaprawi has mooted a plan for all bus drivers to be given urine tests on a daily basis to check if they are high on drugs. Although the idea of the urine tests is a good one, it must be studied further. Conducting urine tests on a daily basis for all bus drivers is indeed a mammoth task. Huge cost will be incurred in this massive exercise and it is time-consuming and involves a lot of hassles.
These urine tests for bus drivers should instead be conducted randomly on an unannounced periodically basis, and not every day. If these tests are conducted daily, those drug addicts may find ways to avoid or even to beat the tests.
No country in the world has such daily exercise of urine tests for bus drivers and knowing that Malaysia has a lack of maintenance culture, it is reasonable to believe that this new daily urine test project won’t last more than a few months.
An academic research study should be done by experts in the relevant field pertaining to the bus accidents and for these suggestions to be adopted by the authorities immediately.
On another issue, I reiterate my proposal which I made two weeks ago that nationwide random urine tests for the police must be carried out regularly as a recent news has revealed that out of 100 police officers who had attended an integrity course, 14 of them were tested positive for drugs. This severely jeopardises the integrity of the police and it is also imperative that the public be informed of the criminal action meted out on these culprits who are licensed gun carriers.
LIM LIP ENG is the member of Parliament for Segambut.
Related news:

Monday, April 21, 2014

Forest no place for barbed wires

Visitors to Bukit Kiara were appalled to see barbed wire at the park, believed to have been installed by National Landscape Department (JLN) workers recently.
The barbed wire was spotted in at least two locations with one very close to a popular bike trail.
Friends of Bukit Kiara (FoBK) pro-tem chairman Tan Sri Salleh Mohd Nor said it was ridiculous to use barbed wire in a public park.
“Apart from the danger that the wires pose to the public, they also prevent the migration of wild animals in the park.”
Malaysian Nature Society (MNS) vice-president Henry Goh said the use of barbed wire in a public park was dangerous.
“The use of concertina razor barbed wire barriers in public parks are banned in some countries. They can cause injury to park users.
“Imagine a cyclist crashing into one of them. Other types of accidents could also occur,” he said.
Goh added that the barbed wire barrier should be removed immediately before any untoward incident occurs.
Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng also questioned the need for barbed wire. “There is absolutely no need for barbed wire in a forested park because users might be injured by it especially when they are running or cycling in the early hours or late evening or when it rains,” he said, when contacted.
Meanwhile, in a tweet on April 11, via JLN’s official Twitter account @NegaraTaman, the department said: “Barbed wire diletakkan sementara sebelum isu sempadan diselesaikan.” (Barbed wire was placed temporarily while the boundary issue is being resolved).
Attempts to clarify the matter with JLN proved unsuccessful.
Salleh said that the boundary between the government and a private corporation should have been resolved first, before using a safer material to demarcate the border.
Bukit Kiara stakeholders have also long been campaigning for the 188.9ha piece of land to be gazetted as a green lung.
Park users and environmentalists have also been pushing the 3.5m-high fence project along a 4.7km stretch to demarcate the area to be removed.

So long, my chairman!

Final respects to my chairman, Mr Karpal Singh, at the Dewan Sri Pinang this morning (20.4.2014) in a state-honoured ceremony.
I'm honored to be a part of thousands in the streets of George Town this morning (20.4.2014) to send Mr Karpal Singh off in his final journey.
It was the least I could do to go there yesterday(19.4.2014) and pay my last respect to Mr Karpal's trusted personal assistant - Michael Cornelius Selvam Vellu.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

DAP: Hishammuddin must lay CIA conspiracy theory on MH370 to rest

(from left) Lim Lip Eng, Lim Kit Siang and Wong Sze Phin at a press conference at the DAP headquarters in Kuala Lumpur, April 11, 2014. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
KUALA LUMPUR, April 11 — Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein must either confirm or deny a report by Umno-owned Utusan Malaysia alleging a US intelligence agency was behind the disappearance of the Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, the DAP demanded today.
In an opinion piece last Sunday, the Malay broadsheet’s assistant news editor Ku Seman Ku Hussein aired a belief among conspiracy theorists that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) was to blame for the missing jetliner, fuelling debate on the Umno-led federal government’s role in the aviation industry’s biggest mystery to date.
“He was implying that the CIA might have a hand in MH370,” Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng said, referring to Ku Seman.
“But until now the Malaysian government, the authorities, especially Hishammuddin, have said nothing. So I want Hishammuddin to respond to this assertion by Utusan,” he told reporters at the DAP headquarters here.
The opposition party’s parliamentary leader, Lim Kit Siang, acknowledged that such conspiracy theories surrounding MH370 had been floating around the Internet for the past month since the Beijing-bound plane vanished on March 8.
But the Gelang Patah MP said the claim had gained prominence for being published in a national newspaper controlled by the Barisan Nasional government’s main party.
“I think it’s a certain reflection of a governmental position on it and I think this and many other conspiracy theories must be dealt with,” said Kit Siang, who was present at the same news conference.
“A parliamentary select committee on MH370 will be a proper body to go through all the conspiracy theories that surfaced and to investigate them,” he said, adding that it would give closure to families of the 239 passengers and cabin crew.
According to the article by Ku Seman, it was time “to think outside the box” on the mystery surrounding the plane as the incident could be a ploy to tarnish the good relations between Malaysia and China.
“If the CIA could arrange for the attack on the World Trade Centre in New York on September 11, 2001, it is not improbable to link MH370 with the intelligence agency,” Ku Seman wrote, referring to speculation on the involvement of American intelligence in the 9/11 attacks.
 “What if the MH370 tragedy had been arranged by certain parties to put Malaysia’s relationship with China in jeopardy?” Ku Seman asked.
Flight MH370 flew off civilian radars in the early hours of March 8, less than an hour after its departure from the Kuala Lumpur International Airport, and remains missing despite a multi-nation hunt.
Searchers trawling the southern Indian Ocean, where satellite data placed as MH370’s final location, have picked up faint “pings” from underwater that are consistent with signals emitted by a plane’s flight recorder.
Related news: Brief Pakatan lawmakers and set up parliamentary panel on MH370, Kit Siang tells Putrajaya
Kit Siang doubts CNN’s report and Hishammuddin’s denial

No penalty for deputy minister’s U-turn

The Dewan Rakyat Speaker decides not to refer Abdul Rahim Bakri to the Rights and Privileges Committee.
KUALA LUMPUR: Dewan Rakyat Speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia today ruled that Deputy Defence Minister Abdul Rahim Bakri did not confuse the House with his conflicting statements relating to MH370.
The Kudat MP escaped being referred to the Rights and Privileges Committee on the ground that he had no intention to mislead.
Pandikar Amin said: “To determine whether a statement uttered in the Dewan is misleading, the following principles can be used as guidance: is the statement misleading; when making the statement, was the deputy minister aware it was false and inaccurate; when making the statement, did the deputy minister intend to mislead the House.
“Based on those principles and the deputy minister’s explanation in his letter to me, I have decided that there was no intent to mislead the House when the statement was made.”
On March 26, Abdul Rahim gave an explanation to Parliament of the air force’s failure to probe an extraordinary blip that appeared on its radar some time in the wee hours of March 8. He said it was thought that the aircraft was not hostile and had received a directive from air traffic control in Subang to turn back.
But the next day, he released a brief statement saying his remarks represented his own assumptions and were not accurate.
Abdul Rahim’s statements prompted Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng of DAP to move a motion to refer him to the Rights and Privileges Committee.
Upon hearing Pandikar’s decision, Lim argued that stern action should be taken to prevent Cabinet members from making statements in the Dewan that conflicted with statements they made outside.
“Which is true? He said in the Dewan that it was the air force’s assumption. Outside the Dewan he said it was his own assumption,” Lim said.
“If we don’t take serious action against him, all ministers and deputy ministers will say one thing inside the Dewan and another thing outside the Dewan. I am not satisfied and hope that the Speaker will reconsider this.”
Pandikar replied: “According to him, what he mentioned in the Dewan was his own assumption, and this was made clear in the statement he made outside.
“After taking all into consideration, I do not see that he had any ill intent.”
Flight MH370 went missing during a routine flight from the Kuala Lumpur International Airport to Beijing, carrying 239 passengers and crew.
It has been established that the jetliner deviated from its original flight path.
Many commentators have said a telephone call from the military to air traffic control could have averted the crisis.
'Rahim didn't confuse House with assumption'

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Plaza Menjalara residents worried about dengue menace

KUALA LUMPUR: Residents of Plaza Menjalara in Bandar Menjalara want the authorities to take proactive measures to prevent their area from turning into a dengue hotspot.
The residents are worried that parts of their neighbourhood have become breeding grounds for the aedes mosquito.
Resident Ong Wie Kiat claims that two neighbouring areas in Medan Putra and Taman Bukit Maluri had become dengue hotspots.
"We heard that those areas are affected by aedes mosquitoes and we don't want our area to be affected as well," he said.
Ong who is a Plaza Menjalara committee member said the management would write to City Hall on the issue.
"We expect to send the letter to City Hall next week. We hope City Hall's health department will come and check the area," he said.
Another resident, Patrick Ho, is worried that water tanks on several buildings in the area could be breeding grounds for mosquitoes.
"The water tanks are not covered and exposed to rain. We believe aedes mosquitoes could be breeding there," he said.
"In the evening, there seems to be more mosquitoes in the area. It really bothers us when we go out for dinner," he said.
Segambut member of parliament Lim Lip Eng said City Hall should send a notice to the owners of the buildings to clear their water tanks.
"City Hall should check to ensure that the area is clean and there are no breeding grounds for the aedes mosquito," he said.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

'Police force only agency without anti-graft officer'

DAP parliamentarians have urged Paul Low, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, to clarify if the decision not to post anti-graft officers in the police force is due to resistance.
Low had issued a written parliamentary reply stating that Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) officers are posted in various agencies "except the police force as it has its own Integrity Department".
"Is the police force so powerful? Is it because no one can touch the police but the police themselves?" Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng told reporters at the Parliament lobby today.
Ipoh Timor MP Thomas Su said that leaving such matters to the in-house Integrity Department has been proven to be a wrong decision.
He said this is because Transparency International's (TI)Corruption Perception Index 2013 showed that respondents perceive the police force to be the most corrupt state agency.
Low, a former TI-Malaysia president, had said that - as at March 6 - 20 MACC personnel had been posted to the Customs, Prison and Immigration departments to curb graft.
He said this is part of the government's civil service transformation plan.
The government has also set up integrity units in all state agencies with effect from last August, he added, without elaborating on the functions of the unit.
Related news: DAP lawmakers question absence of anti-graft officers in police force