Monday, December 22, 2008


Lately, Dewan Rakyat passed two important Bills, Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) and the Malaysian Anti- Corruption Commission (MACC).The passing of these two bills will certainly correct the misconception held by the public towards these government institutions.

In the past, the rakyat has, to a certain extent, lost confidence in our judiciary system and efforts undertaken by the Anti Corruption Agency (ACA) to fight the corrupt practices deemed to be prevalent rampantly in the public sector.

The passing of the JAC and MACC in Dewan Rakyat by the present government, which lacks 2/3 majority, is said to be a corner stone for Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s premiership. Indeed it will be regarded as a signature legacy of Pak Lah in Malaysian politics.

Even the opposition party members, led by Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim, also endorsed the JAC bill with some reservations. This indicates that the changes initiated by Pak Lah to improve the judiciary system is welcomed by the opposition party, a rare scene in Malaysian politics.

The infamous V.K.Lingam video clip issue has exposed the ill practice which has crept silently in the judiciary system. At the same time the rising number of unresolved corruption cases in the past has also caused a great concern to public.. These two major issues of public interest has made public miserable and it has seared the Malaysian psyche very badly , regardless of age , race, religion and income level.

Taking advantage of the poor image of government caused by these two issues, the opposition party launched a relentless efforts to make inroads in the voters heart to vote BN out. Incidently, the rising in prices of the basic house hold needs, has caused unsurmountable pressure on public to vote the opposition in the last 12th General Election which is regarded as a political tsunami by political analyst. BN lost 2/3 majority in Dewan Rakyat.

It is argued covincingly that the voters were strongly influenced by these misconceptions. Nevertheless, with the JAC and MACC bills passed, the rakyat are now assured that the appointment of judges would be carried out in a transparent and fair manner and the ACA is equipped with some strong ‘tooth’ to bite the ‘big fish’ to wipe out corruption in Malaysia without fear or favour.
The passing of JAS and MACC bills are part of Pak Lah’s promises when he took over the helm of government .His initiatives to restore the image of the government institutions will certainly improve and enhance to a greater level of confidence among rakyat on government institutions.

Rakyat fervently hope that all his initiatives which derived from his ‘inner voice’ will gradually but surely will improve the government institutions to serve the rakyat with fairly and justly .

Hence, let us take this opportunity to wish our prime minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Haji Ahmad Badawi a very good Syabas!


Lately, the media bombarded with reports that a conglomerate Sime Darby Berhad have made a proposal to acquire 51% stake in the IJN. This unpopular proposal has taken aback public who are concerned about a quality cardiac medical care in Malaysia.

According to the government source, the government intent to privatize IJN in order to be less burdened by the high cost of subsidizing treatment at the institute.

The public outcry is the National Heart Institute (IJN) should not be privatized as it provides health care for many cardiac patients who can’t afford it in private medical centers.

Tan Sri Dr. Yahya Awang, who was the head of a team which performed a coronary bypass operation on then prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad at the Kuala Lumpur Hospital, vouched that IJN was never meant to be a commercial institute.

According to Tan Sri Dr Yahya, who was a pioneer directly involved in the setting up of the hospital in 1990, explained that besides providing quality health care , IJN was also build to serve as a center of research, a premier academic institute.

So, it is clear that the IJN was build by government fund to provide good and quality health care to public, particularly to the poor and middle income group.

Considering the loud public outcry against the IJN privatization proposal , deputy prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak promptly announced that the deal had been postponed until an indepth review was undertaken. Najib's announcement has relieved the anxiety and unhappiness it has caused among the concerned public.

Government deferment to conduct an indepth study is welcomed by many medical enthusiast of quality medical care.

Health is a service which is considered as a major social responsibilities of a government to public who elected them to office. So, IJN being providing an excellent and quality medical care for cardio dieses was the only choice for many middle income group.

The public grievances and opinion must be heard and sought by the Government at all times in order to remain relevant. Government by the people and for the people shall always heed to the public opinion regards to providing the essential service to the public, particularly the medical care.

Hence, the idea of privatization of IJN is not only a good move by the government at the moment but also in the future.

Dato’ Seri Anwar says that the deferment is a political move due to the upcoming Kuala Terenganu by election.But, will the government has the political will and courage to discard the idea of IJN privatization in order to prove him wrong?

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Fatwa on Yoga

The National Fatwa Council had issued on Suturday 22rd November 2008 an edict (fatwa) declaring yoga as forbidden (haram) for Muslims . The council claims that the ancient form of Yoga exercise involved “chants and acts of worship in order to be one with the god of another religion”.

The edict on yoga by the National Fatwa council has caused a mix reactions and controversy among some non-muslim and muslim groups.

First of all, let us comprehend the meaning and importance of fatwa among muslim community in a proper perspective. According to the Kamus Dewan Bahasa Dictionary, the word ‘fatwa’ derives from an Arabic word and it means “ keputusan agama yang diberikan oleh alim ulama atau mufti mengenai sesuatu masalah”.

Hence, the term ‘ fatwa’ means ‘ a decision made by the learned religious scholars or by a learned Islamic scholar who is empowered to make an edict on religious matters concerning a problem face by the ummah of the Islamic faith.

Simply. fatwa are theological and legal reasoning given by the mufti or the ulama to enlighten and educate the public so Muslims can arrange their affairs in accordance with Islamic teachings.

Having said this, the fatwa on Yoga is ONLY directed to the Muslims fraternity . The Hindus should not construed it as intented to demean the practice of Hinduism in this country.

Therefore, there is no reason for the Hindus or Indians to be upset with the word haram as the ban is meant only for the Muslims.

Nevertheless, the phrase “haram” on yoga practice has caused some concern and confusion among the Indian community because yoga and meditation are commonly attributed to Hinduism.

With this scenario , it was reported in the vernacular media that Dato’ Seri S.Samy Vellu , President of the Malaysian Indian Congress, wanted to meet the Prime Minister, YAB Dato’ Seri Abdullah Hj Ahmad Badawi , to clear the confusion over the label ‘haram’ on yoga.

Meanwhile, the Hindu Sangam's president Dato’ A. Vaithilingam, also has displayed his concern and frustration by describing fatwa as 'regrettable' because the Fatwa council forbids Muslims practice yoga due to its Hindu elements. Vaithilingam claims that this edict is tantamount to demean Hinduism.

The concerned prime minister, Dato’ Seri Abdullah Haj Ahmad Badawi has readily cleared the confusion and vouched that the edict was not to interfere the practice of yoga by non-muslims but merely forbidding Muslims from indulging in the practices of other faith. He was quoted elsewhere saying that even the Muslims shall continue to practice yoga as a physical exercise without the Hindu elements in it.

With PM’s glaring clarification, the Hindus who practice yoga have nothing to be alarmed or disgruntled about this edict ( fatwa) because this fatwa has nothing to do with them and their faith. The Hindus are free to practice yoga as usual without any fear or intimidation.

Having said this, let us hope that the Indians and the Hindu community be wise and diligent in handling issues concerning religious sensitivity and avoid debating the relevance of fatwa on yoga . Let us be assured that the edict (fatwa) on yoga has NOT at all demean the dignity and sacredness of Hinduism in this country.