Thursday, 31 January 2013

Cyber Scams: Malaysians lost over RM90 mil since 2010

A variety of scams hatched by foreign conmen who promise millions in cash, glittering gems and marriage, have cost gullible Malaysians a staggering RM90 million over the past three years.

Repeated warnings by the police, banks and reports highlighted through the media since such scams surfaced over a decade ago appear to have fallen on deaf ears as the number of victims and amount of losses keep rising over the years.

According to statistics compiled by the Federal Commercial Crimes Investigations Department (CCID):
 2,481 victims were reportedly cheated through such unsolicited emails, social networking and dating websites since 2010;

 60% of the Malaysians scammed were from Kuala Lumpur and Selangor;
Posted on 16:46 | Categories:

MBPJ should not have left vacant flats in disrepair

THE TAMAN Putra Damai and Kota Damansara public housing project were built by the Federal government to uplift low-income families and help them obtain decent, secure and clean housing.

Both the high-rise low-cost projects were handed over to the Selangor government with the Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) acting as the landlord to ensure high standards of maintenance. However, MBPJ has failed to put in place strategic measures to ensure good upkeep of the two projects.

Selangor MCA liasion committee vice-bureau chief for health affairs Datin Wong Fong Leng said the Federal government had built the public housing projects to provide houses with affordable rental for low-income families, senior citizens and the disabled.
Posted on 10:34 | Categories:

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Cops seek 14 for taking kids to Jan 12 rally

Police are looking for 14 people who are believed to have brought children to the Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat or KL112 rally here on Jan 12.

City police chief Deputy Comm Datuk Mohmad Salleh said pictures of those involved have been uploaded on the official City police Facebook page.

The 14 are believed to have violated conditions under the Peaceful Assembly Act and are liable to a fine of RM20,000 or 10 years in prison or both if found guilty.

"We are urging them to come forward as soon as possible to facilitate investigations," DCP Mohmad said.

He added that police were not setting a deadline on the matter but urged for cooperation from those involved.

Najib: Government to hasten effort to make changes to pro-women legislation

Pro-women legislation is to be given due attention and there will not be a repeat of waiting at least seven years for a Bill to be passed, as what happened with the Domestic Violence Act.

“I guarantee you, for something good, it will not take seven years,” Datuk Seri Najib Razak said at the National Council of Women's Organisations (NCWO) golden jubilee celebrations here yesterday.

The Prime Minister assured that the Government would hasten effort to make changes to legislation, regulations, practices and thinking that obstructed the progress of women.

Najib, who is also Women, Family and Community Development Minister, invited NCWO to come up with a working paper on advancing the cause of women.

Baby-for-sale ring suffers further blow

Police have arrested another couple in the crackdown on a baby-for-sale syndicate here, bringing the number of people caught so far to 36.

A three-year-old child was rescued from the couple's home in Bukit Mertajam during the arrest on Monday. The man and the woman nabbed are in their 50s.

Penang police chief Deputy Comm Datuk Abdul Rahim Hanafi said 10 children, aged between two months and eight years, who were sold by the syndicate had been rescued.

“Of the 36 suspects, 22 have been released under Section 118 of the Criminal Procedure Code,” he said.

DCP Abdul Rahim said the children were being well taken care of by police task force members.
Posted on 11:11 | Categories:

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Floods hit two Australian states, thousands evacuated

A deluge fed by the ex-tropical cyclone Oswald dumped more than 200 millimetres (8 inches) of rain in some areas of the Queensland and New South Wales states over the past three days, swelling rivers and swamping towns.

The worst-hit areas were around Bundaberg, Rockhampton and Ipswich in the Queensland state, and around the northern New South Wales towns of Grafton and Lismore.

A fleet of 14 helicopters rescued more than 1,000 people across Queensland overnight and rescue efforts continued on Tuesday.

"Across Queensland the wild weather has broken a lot of hearts," Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard said.
Posted on 16:13 | Categories: ,

Police task force to probe disappearance and death of little William

Police have formed a task force to investigate the disappearance and death of six-year-old William Yau Zhen Zhong.

It will look into various allegations and theories of what happened to the boy, including claims that he had been abused, said Subang Jaya OCPD Asst Comm Yahaya Ramli.

Theories rife on the social media and reported by the press include an allegation that the father had abused William and sought the help of mediums as the boy was believed to have brought bad luck to the family.

Commenting on allegations from William's uncle that the father had abused the boy, ACP Yahaya said there were some marks on the body but it could not be ascertained whether he was abused or he injured himself because he was hyper active.

“We have not received any report in Shah Alam or Malacca that William was abused. We will question the uncle.
Posted on 12:00 | Categories:

PM urges youths to play role in the betterment of the country

Youths should take the initiative to be the agent of change for the betterment of the country, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

“Change is inevitable and critical. The best thing to do is step up and change,” he said in his opening address at the Youth Action Forum 2013 at PWTC yesterday.

The forum serves as a platform to showcase the work and ideas of youths on how they can play an active role in Malaysia's social and economic activities.

It was organised by MyHarapan with the collaboration of the Higher Education Ministry and the Perfor-mance Management and Delivery Unit (Pemandu).

Monday, 28 January 2013

MACC must have more bite

The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission has been praised for the progress made in strengthening its position as the nation’s graft buster.

However, members of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Corruption have proposed more sweeping changes to the law to allow the MACC more bite and independence.

Committee member DAP vice-chairman Dr Tan Seng Giaw said the recommendations were the result of extensive meetings with MACC officers and feedback from several quarters.

“Though the committee felt there has been progress in the MACC, it wants more to be done to strengthen the commission’s integrity while giving it greater independence,” he said.

Barisal Nasional’s Kota Belud MP Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan, who sits on the MACC panel, expressed support for efforts to further transform the commission.

“In principle, I agree with the suggested changes although there are several issues that need to be carefully looked at to ensure the proposed new laws are fair and impartial to all parties,” he said.

He noted that recent efforts to enhance MACC under Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s political transformation programme had shown positive results.

Gunshot victim who lost leg is all smiles again

When 26-year-old Mohd Haffiz Zamri saw his right leg bleeding profusely after being shot at with a pump-gun during a robbery, his immediate concern was if he would ever walk again.

The Projek Lebuhraya Utara Selatan (PLUS) employee’s knee was badly damaged in a robbery on June 14 last year and his leg had to be amputated.

His company has been a caring employer though.

Not only has PLUS assured him that his job is safe, the company will also pay for his imported prosthetic limb which costs more than RM60,000 and a payout of RM70,000 under the group insurance scheme.

“We will do all that we can for Mohd Haffiz. In fact, we have set aside some RM250,000 for his future needs,’’ said PLUS managing director Datuk Noorizah Abd Hamid who visited Mohd Haffiz here recently.

Mohd Haffiz was riding pillion with a pregnant female colleague when they were ambushed near the Seremban toll.

They were on their way to the office to deposit some RM2,000.
Posted on 12:00 | Categories:

Sunday, 27 January 2013

Socso sends free health check vouchers to members

Socso has completed the process of sending out free health screening vouchers to the 1.9 million eligible members, its deputy chief executive officer (operations) Datuk Dr Mohammed Azman Aziz Mohammed said.

Those who have not received the vouchers should contact Socso’s hotlines at 03-4252 1258/03-4252 4475/76 and  03-4252 5089, or the nearest Socso office, he said.

Socso has also completed briefing all general practitioners participating in the scheme.

The free health screening test for private sector workers above the age of 40 was announced under the 2013 Budget.

“Socso has allocated RM200mil for the scheme which has just begun, and will be in full swing by Feb 1,” Mohammed Azman said in an interview.

The screening is aimed at detecting non-communicable diseases like high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer and heart disease.

It would include physical examination, full blood profile and urine test.

For the women, there will be an additional pap smear test and mammogram.

Mohammed Azman said the screening would be an ongoing exercise as those reaching the age of 40 would be eligible for the vouchers.

MTUC has congratulated Socso over the implementation of the scheme within four months of its announcement.

Posted on 18:00 | Categories:

Najib’s Gaza visit a show of support for Palestine. #dontmess with Palestinians

Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has applauded Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s humanitarian visit to Gaza, saying it showed the country’s staunch support for Palestine.

“Malaysia should be proud with the Prime Minister’s bravery in visiting Gaza to see the conditions faced by Palestinians. His visit also reiterates Malaysia’s stand to continue its support to Palestine, in any way it can,” the deputy prime minister said.

Muhyiddin said the Prime Minister, who made the visit with his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, was the first non-Arab head of state to visit Gaza.

“I believe the Prime Minister’s visit will solidify Malaysia’s role in heading international initiatives to fight for the freedom and peace of Palestine,” Muhyiddin said in a statement.

“Malaysia gives its full support to a unity government between Fatah and Hamas that would be a prerequisite to the victory of the Palestinian people in their struggle for freedom,” he said.

A split between the two groups in 2007 led to the West Bank being governed by Fatah and the Gaza Strip by Hamas. The two sides signed a reconciliation plan sponsored by Egypt in May last year.

On a separate matter, Muhyiddin offered his condolences to the family of Chong Chung Ngen who was killed during the hostage drama in In Amenas, Algeria.

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Child trafficking ring busted

Police have busted one of the largest child trafficking rackets in the country with the arrest of 33 people and the rescue of nine children aged between two months and eight years.

A doctor from a private hospital here and an employee of the National Registration Department (NRD) were among the suspects nabbed from various places here, in Perak and Kedah.

Police seized 19 handphones, two cars, five MyKid cards, 18 medical cards and RM15,000 in cash from the suspects, aged between 23 and 62 and took away 14 birth certificates.

The mastermind of the ring is a woman in her 50s who is among those in police custody.

Penang police chief Deputy Comm Datuk Abdul Rahim Hanafi said the syndicate which sold babies and children for between RM18,000 and RM30,000, had been active since 2009.

He said police set up a task force with 25 officers after receiving a report last month about a foreign woman selling a 40-day-old baby for RM4,300.

“Under our operation codenamed Ops Pintar Sayang, we managed to rescue nine of the children from adoptive parents who had bought' them. The children are believed to be of Thai, Indonesian and Bangladeshi parentage,” he told reporters at the state contingent headquarters here.
Posted on 18:00 | Categories:

MCA not leaving any stone unturned in search for William Yau

MCA Public Services and Complaints Department head Datuk Seri Michael Chong is having sleepless nights thinking about the whereabouts of missing six-year-old William Yau Zhen Zhong.

“However, our resolve to find him has not faltered,” he said. “I cannot imagine what his family is going through. The least we can do is to try our best.”

Chong said the department was following all possible leads in its search for William as it could not afford not to follow up on any tips.

“We are working closely with Rela as well as the police,” he said, adding that he had received more than 30 calls as well as 20 text messages since the boy went missing on Jan 16.

“It has been more than a week but we will not relent in our pursuit of William. Finding him is our priority,” he said.

Chong said the department had distributed more than 10,000 posters of William but their effort would not stop there.

Chong added that more than one million MCA members nationwide were also searching for the missing boy.

Friday, 25 January 2013

Three who fled police custody plead guilty. #dontmess with police

Three men who fled police custody last month and caused a massive manhunt to be mounted for them pleaded guilty at a Magistrate's court here Friday to five charges.

Farid Akhtar, 24, Mohd Sharimy Nor, 28, and Mohd Khairulnizam Abdul Rani, 26, admitted to four charges of hurting four policemen who were escorting them to the Butterworth court at around 9.45am on Jan 7.

The offence under Section 332 of the Penal Code carries a jail term of three years or fine or both.

They also pleaded guilty to escaping police custody at the same time and place.

The offence under Section 224 of the Penal Code carries a jail term of two years or fine or both.

Bail was denied.

Magistrate Hizween Azleena Othman Kamal fixed March 5 for tender of documents.

The accused were not represented by counsel.

BR1M will be continued for as long as Barisan is in power

The 1Malaysia People’s Aid (BR1M) is not a one-off thing and will be continued for as long as Barisan Nasional is in power to help ease the financial burden of the rakyat, said Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

He said depending on the country’s resources, the amount might even be increased in the future.

“We don’t want to see such aid be a one-off payment. It should be disbursed on a long-term basis. I believe the Prime Minister will look into BR1M as a programme that should be continued.

“I am sure that it will be continued on a long-term basis when the rakyat retains Barisan as the Federal Government,” he said after distributing the RM100 school aid to students of five schools at SMK Tun Haji Abd Malik in Paya Rumput near here yesterday.

The Government, said Muhyiddin, had distributed BR1M payments worth RM2bil to 4.7 million households, 1Malaysia book vouchers of RM200 each to over 1.3 million university and Form Six students, and the RM100 school aid to over 5.3 million schoolchildren.

Muhyiddin, who is also Education Minister, said such financial assistance had greatly helped to ease the burden of parents of school-going children.
Posted on 13:30 | Categories:

More seek shelter from floods

Johor saw an increase in the number of flood victims yesterday despite the improved weather over the past two days.
A total of 1,700 flood evacuees from 416 families were reported at 5pm yesterday against 423 from 107 families on Monday.

Johor Social Welfare Department director Khatijah Abdullah said three new centres in Kota Tinggi had been opened, bringing the number to seven in the district and Mersing.

State National Security Council assistant secretary Ronzi Mohd Khairan said one of the new centres in Kota Tinggi was Dewan Kampung Mawai Baru Sedili where 12 families were taking shelter.

He said Dewan Semai Bakti Felda Air Tawar 1 was opened at 1pm for 254 victims while Dewan Kampung Baru Sungai Mas, which was closed on Jan 20, was reopened yesterday at 7am.

Five families were taking shelter at the multipurpose hall.

Other centres included Balai Raya Kampung Gembut Dalam Sedili, Balai Raya Kampung Perpat Sedili and Dewan Seri Mahkota Sedili.
Posted on 09:30 | Categories:

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Visit hailed as a testimony of commitment to Palestine

Both politicians and non-governmental organisations have described Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s historical visit to Gaza as a testimony of Malay- sia’s commitment to the Palestinian cause.

In congratulating the Prime Minister for being the country’s first head of government to make such a trip, they said Najib’s visit proved that Malaysia and its people were sincere in extending a helping hand to Palestine.

Perdana Global Peace Organisation adviser Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir said Najib’s visit provided a huge morale boost for Palestinians trying to get recognition from the international community.

“The visit shows that we (Malaysia) put our money where our mouth is and not just provide lip service. Here, we have a head of government visiting a place that was a target of severe bombardment until recently,” he said, likening this to the one made by his father, former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Moham­mad, to Sarajevo during the Bosnian war in the 1990s.

Kota Belud MP Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan said Najib’s visit to Gaza renewed Malaysia’s unwavering commitment to Palestine and demonstrated that foreign relations were as important as domestic concerns.

“I join fellow Sabahans in expressing our support to the Prime Minister to play a bigger role in international peace process initiatives, such as Palestine-Israel and in the southern Thailand region,” he said.

Drug ring busted with arrest of six

A drug syndicate using a hardware shop as a front was busted when police arrested six members and seized almost RM1mil worth of drugs.

“Following a tip-off, a team was sent to the area where we found two suspects outside the shop.

“The team detained the two suspects and they led us to the drug processing centre hidden in the shop,” said Johor Baru (South) OCPD Asst Comm Zainuddin Yaakob during a press conference yesterday.

He said police received information from the public about suspicious activities at a shoplot along Jalan Masai Lama in Plentong on Jan 21.

ACP Zainuddin said the police raided the premises and arrested four more suspects and seized numerous drugs such as ketamine, ecstasy, heroin and syabu.

He said besides the drugs, police also seized a Toyota Hilux and RM14,000 from one of the suspects.

“We also found 100 bullets and a police vest,” he said, adding that the syndicate had been operating for the past one year.
Posted on 11:00 | Categories:

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

MCA branches to display William’s picture

MCA has ordered all its branches nationwide to display the picture of six-year-old William Yau Zhen Zhong in an effort to trace the missing boy.

Party president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek said William’s photograph would be displayed at its 3,000 branch offices throughout the country.

“We pray that he is safe and can be returned to his family as soon as possible. We also appeal to those who may be keeping William to surrender him.

“We do not believe he would have gone missing in such a sudden manner,” he told reporters after chairing the MCA presidential council meeting at Wisma MCA here.

It was important, said Dr Chua, for everybody to work together in finding the boy.

In Malacca, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has joined concerned Malay­sians in appealing to those holding William to return the child safely to his distraught family.

Holding a poster of the boy from a copy of The Star, the Deputy Prime Minister appealed to those with information of his whereabouts to quickly report to the relevant agencies, including the police and the welfare department.

Malaysia supports Fatah-Hamas reconciliation

Malaysia has offered to help unite rival Palestinian groups Fatah and Hamas.

The first Malaysian Prime Minister to visit Palestine, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak expressed support for a reconciliation plan to end the division between the two Palestinian movements.

“A unity government is within reach,” the Prime Minister said after being conferred a honorary doctorate by the al-Aqsa University in East Jerusalem yesterday.

He said that peace and prosperity could only be achieved through unity, a belief strengthened by Malaysia's success in facilitating talks in the southern Philippine to end four decades of conflict that had killed over 120,000 people.

“Should it be needed, we stand ready to offer you the benefit of that experience. Malaysia, always a friend of the Palestine people, is willing to help facilitate the reconciliation plan in whichever way we can,” he said.

A split between the two groups in 2007 led to the West Bank being governed by Fatah and the Gaza Strip by Hamas. The two sides signed a reconciliation plan sponsored by Egypt in May last year.
Posted on 16:30 | Categories:

RM400,000 worth of fireworks seized

Some RM400,000 worth of fireworks were seized after authorities stopped a container lorry in Bunut Payong.

Kelantan Anti-Smuggling Unit commander Mazlan Karim said during the incident on Saturday, the lorry, which was carrying 400 cartons of fireworks, was believed to be on its way to the Klang Valley.

“Based on the modus operandi and the amount of firecrackers seized, we believe that a syndicate is behind such activities.

Ten of our officers managed to stop the lorry in Bunut Payong while it was on its way out of the state.

“However, the lorry driver and his accomplice managed to escape,” Mazlan told reporters at the unit's office at Lubuk Gong here yesterday.

He said the fireworks, which were made in China, were believed to have been smuggled into the country from Thailand.

The contraband, he said, had been handed to the Customs Department for further action.

Source : CLICK

MCA service team hits the streets to help find boy

The 1Malaysia Petaling Jaya Service Team, launched last year by a group of MCA members, went down to the ground to distribute A4-sized posters of six-year-old William Yau Zhen Zhong, who has gone missing for almost a week.

Student Michelle Ng, who saw the group distributing the flyers on the child at the SS2 commercial area here, quickly whipped out her iPhone and took photographs of the poster.

She said she would pass it on to her family and friends via her Facebook and Twitter accounts as well as on her WhatsApp instant messaging application.

“I hope he is found safe and well soon,” said the 20-year-old, who felt sad the boy has been without his family for six days.

Students A. Joycee and K. Lilavathy expressed their worry over the boy's wellbeing, while postman Mohd Sanusi Mustapha said he would keep a lookout for William.

“I saw the news on TV. I cannot imagine the heartache and worry his parents are going through right now,” he said.

Fast food delivery rider Ridzuan Bohari, who has three young siblings, aged eight to 12, said he could relate to the distress of the missing boy's parents.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Missing boy did not enter electrical shop, says salesman

Recordings from a closed circuit television belonging to an electrical shop showed that William Yau Zhen Zhong did not enter the outlet where his mother was looking at washing machines.

Onking Chain Store (M) Sdn Bhd salesman Kelvin Beah said the mother Goh Ying Ying, 26, had come to the shop in Putra Heights on Wednesday and then left about 10 minutes later.

“She returned shortly after, crying and asking me whether I had seen her son. I said I had not,” he said, adding that he then helped her to scour the area for the boy.

“I was on a motorcycle with another supervisor and we searched the entire area for William but he was nowhere to be found,” he said.

Beah said that from their CCTV recording, there was no sign of William entering the store, which was only a few metres away from the parked car.

Separately, Goh and her husband Yau Kok Kang, 32, have not been to their motorcycle shop since their son's disappearence as they continued their daily search for him.

Police scrutinising footage in hopes of finding clues to William’s disappearance

Police are poring over CCTV footage recorded from several locations in and around the area where six-year-old William Yau Zhen Zhong went missing.

Subang Jaya OCPD Asst Comm Yahaya Ramli said so far, there had been no CCTV footage of William although they had collected a recording from a restaurant near the electrical store where the boy was last seen.

“In that footage, the boy is not seen. But we will be taking a closer look at the footage in the hopes of finding an image of a small boy in a car or whatever, which can give us a lead to work on.

“Similarly, we will examine CCTV footage obtained from toll booths after 8.30pm on the day of his disappearance,” he said.

Admitting that this was a time-consuming process, ACP Yahaya said the police were however committed to this task as every minute counted in the search for William.

On Wednesday, William who is 110cm tall with an old scar mark on his right elbow was reported missing in Jalan Putra Mahkota, Putra Heights, near here after he came out of his family car to look for his parents.

2,000 in Sabah flee as rivers rise to danger levels

Nearly 2,000 people in Sabah’s northern Kota Marudu area have been evacuated following floods triggered by non-stop rain due to the current monsoon season.

The evacuees, comprising 549 families including 200 children, were from 14 low-lying villages in the district which is affected annually by the floods.

They have been placed at temporary relief centres at community and school halls, including at SMK Tandek, St Theresa school and SK Ranau in Kota Marudu.

Kota Marudu district officer Luvita Koisun said evacuation began on Friday after two main rivers – Sungai Pongun and Sungai Bandau – crossed the 8m danger level.

Among the villages hit were Kampung Ongkilan, Kampung Morion and Kampung Kedawaiyun.

She said they remained vigilant even though the situation had improved slightly as of 2.30pm yesterday with water levels dropping as rain was still expected.

“We have not allowed evacuees to return as we are still assessing the situation,” she said, adding that all agencies involved in evacuation and relief work were monitoring the situation.

Low-lying areas in the east coast Lahad Datu district were also hit by flash floods yesterday.

Posted on 13:30 | Categories:

Patrol unit making impact

The Motorcycle Patrolling Unit, which was established recently under the Reducing Crime NKRA, scored its first suc­-cess by foiling an attempted armed robbery with the arrest of three suspects.

Lans Korporal Mohamad Saiful Sharan and Lans Korporal Mardini Abdul Hamid were patrolling on their Kawasaki Ninja motorcycles when they suspected something amiss and went to investigate.

The policemen managed to arrest the suspects who were about to attack a 43-year-old mother and her son at their house in Taman Bukit Indah.

The officers were presented with certi­ficates of appreciation by the Federal Po­- ­­lice NKRA Secretariat chief Datuk Ayub Yaa­kob.

Ayub shared that the Motorcycle Patrol Unit (URB) has been operating in four states to monitor housing areas to enhance the safety there.

He also shared that the initiative was still in its early stages and it was difficult to confirm its effectiveness as yet.

The officers assigned for patrol duty needed to get used to the routine and key indicators in the environment, as well as interact with the locals in the area to build a better people-police relationship.
Posted on 09:30 | Categories:

Monday, 21 January 2013

More join search for missing boy

Wanita Umno has joined in the search for missing 6-year-old William Yau Zhen Zhong with its 22,000 branches nationwide distributing pamphlets and flyers.

Before that, the MCA Public Services and Complaints Department offered a reward of RM20,000 to anyone with information leading to Zhen Zhong's whereabouts.

Wanita Umno president Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil issued the directive to all branches yesterday, especially those in Perlis and Johor, to ensure sufficient distribution of the flyers, in case irresponsible parties attempted to take Zhen Zhong out of Malaysia.

Zhen Zhong went missing in Jalan Putra Mahkota, Putra Heights in Subang Jaya, on Wednesday.

Despite a thorough search, conducted by his father and police, he has yet to be located.

Shahrizat paid a surprise visit to Zhen Zhong's parents, Yau Kok Kang and Goh Ying Ying, at their home in Taman Sri Muda yesterday to offer encouragement and words of comfort.

She also appealed to whoever was holding Zhen Zhong to let him be reunited with his family, saying the best Chinese New Year celebration the family could have was to be together again.

Villagers in ‘flood mode’

After being affected by floods as many as five times a year, residents in Kampung Laut, Skudai are so used to it that they have their own emergency protocol on what to do when it starts to rain heavily.

Housewife K. Citra, 30, said she has clothes and important documents packed in a backpack and stored on top of her cupboard.

“When it starts to rain heavily, I will start moving household items onto shelves and higher ground and I will just grab the bag and relocate to the nearest flood relief centre for shelter,” she said when met at her home here.

She added that her home along Jalan Balau 4 in Kampung Laut was flooded up to knee level after just two hours of rain on Saturday.

“I quickly went through the routine and grabbed my emergency bag before rushing to the centre with my 20-year-old son,” she said.

Another flood victim, Zailan Abdul Kadir, 55, who has been staying in the area for more than three decades, said her husband built a RM7,000 concrete shelter on higher ground in front of their house to store electrical items when it floods.

“We built the shelter 10 years ago after having our things washed away and damaged by water so many times. When it rains heavily for more than a couple of hours, my sons will start moving larger items like refrigerators, the TV set and washing machines to the shelter.
Posted on 16:00 | Categories:


Let's do our part to help find six-year-old William Yau Zhen Zhong, who has been missing since Wednesday (Jan 16). Print this poster and stick it up to help with the efforts to find the boy, who was last seen at Jalan Putra Mahkota 7/6c in Putra Heights

Pollutants in river could be waste from mills or unknown sources

The pollutants found in Sungai Semenyih could be industrial waste from palm oil mills or unknown sources along the river and its tributaries, said Konsortium Abass.

Its chairman Suhaimi Kamaralzaman said it had yet to identify the responsible party as there were quite a number of mills and factories upstream of the Sungai Semenyih Water Treatment Plant at Jenderam Hilir.

“The unknown discharge polluted the water and resulted in a foul smell which could not be treated by the plant. It had to be shut down to prevent the polluted water from producing an undesirable quality of treated water,” he said in a statement yesterday.

He said its raw water pumps, with a capacity of 682 million litres per day (mld), had to stop operation for around two and a half hours to allow the polluted water to pass by.

“Therefore, for two and a half hours stoppage, the quantity of water that we could not treat was at least 71 mld,” he said.

Suhaimi said preventing such incidents in future required coordinated efforts from the authorities, including Lembaga Urus Air Selangor and the Department of Environment, to conduct regular and random inspections.

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Cops must be informed of public gatherings

Political parties and groups which want to hold outdoor ceramah or public gatherings should inform the police prior to the event, says Johor Baru South OCPD Asst Comm Zainuddin Yaacob.

They should tell the police the time and location of their events before they proceed, he added.

He said the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012, which was passed last year, stipulates that the authorities must be told of any gathering at least 10 days in advance.

“The organisers need not apply for permits but they have to inform us so we can get feedback from the community first before the ceramah is allowed,” he said after launching the Motorcycle Patrol Unit (URB) at SK Taman Suria here yesterday.

He was commenting on an incident where participants of a ceramah organised by PKR claimed they were assaulted during the talk at Taman Sri Stulang flats here on Tuesday night.

PKR director of communications Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad, who attended the ceramah, claimed that an unknown number of people had manhandled about 20 local PKR leaders.

To this, ACP Zainuddin said the police had received two reports on the incident and the case was being investigated under Section 147 of the Penal Code for rioting.

“The police were also not notified of the ceramah by the organisers,” he added.
Posted on 14:00 | Categories:

Saturday, 19 January 2013

Police to review handcuff SOP

Police are looking to review and revamp its Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) on the handcuffing of detainees in light of the recent escape cases in Penang and the Klang Valley.

Federal CID director Comm Datuk Seri Mohd Bakri Zinin said they were studying the SOP to see if this could be further improved.

“In my opinion, the current SOP to handcuff detainees in the back is good but we must ensure that everyone is following it.

“Nonetheless, we will look to see how this can be further improved,” he said after attending a seminar for state police chiefs and CID chiefs at Sogo shopping complex here yesterday.

The policemen on duty in the escape cases, said Comm Mohd Bakri, had also been suspended pending disciplinary action.

“Our disciplinary unit is investigating these cases. The policemen on duty will be penalised on a case-by-case basis,” he said, adding that authorities were still on the hunt for two fugitives who had earlier escaped from police custody in Butterworth.

“I was told by Penang police chief (Deputy Comm Datuk Abdul Rahim Hanafi) that they have new leads in the case.

“We are confident that the two men will be re-arrested soon.”
Posted on 14:00 | Categories:

Friday, 18 January 2013

Malaysians held hostage in Algeria

Two Malaysians are among a group of 41 people who had been held hostage at the In Amenas gas facility in Algeria.

Wisma Putra said in a statement that it had been informed that the duo, working at the gas field, and the others were taken captive by terrorists in an attack on Wednesday.

The Foreign Ministry has contacted the families of the Malaysians. No names were released.

Minister Datuk Seri Anifah Aman is in touch with his Algerian counterpart Mourad Medelci in determining whether there are other Malaysians involved and also to ensure the safety and secure the release of the duo.

There are 56 Malaysians registered with the Malaysian embassy in Algiers, excluding the two taken captive.

A spokesman said the embassy had sent an e-mail to them, updating them on the situation and urging them to take precautions.

“We have at the same time been trying to get more details from them on the two detained Malaysians as they are not registered with us,” he said via telephone.
Posted on 20:30 | Categories:

Previous cases of Malaysians taken hostage

The latest hostage drama involving Malaysians is not the first of such incidents.

The following are some of the cases in which other Malaysians had been taken hostage.

April 23, 2000: Twenty-one people, including nine Malaysians, were kidnapped by armed militants from Sipadan.

They were later released in batches.

Sept 10, 2000: Three people were kidnapped by an armed group from Pandanan island off Sabah and taken by boat to Jolo. Pandanan Semporna Island. Resort manager Mohamed Noh Sulaiman, 43, divemaster Joseph Joe Ongkinoh, 40, and contractor Kan Wei Chong, 35, were rescued with the help of a Philippine enforcement agency a month later.

Dec 23, 2010: Tsen Vui Chung, 42, and his cousin Lai Wing Chau, 33, were finally freed months after they were kidnapped by gunmen.

Filipino police found them on the coast of Bongao on Tawi-Tawi island in southern Philippines.

April 4, 2011: Pandian Chelliah, 46, was among four people abducted at the height of the civil unrest in Ivory Coast.
Posted on 16:30 | Categories:

Stop water politics

The Selangor government, which has a stake in water concessionaire Syabas, should work towards resolving the current water woes instead of playing politics, said state Barisan Nasional coordinator Datuk Seri Mohd Zin Mohamed.

“The Selangor Mentri Besar (Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim) keeps pointing fingers at others and accusing Syabas of being a Barisan crony when, in fact, it is a state government-linked company.

“The state has a 30% share in it,” he said here yesterday.

The state government, said Mohd Zin, had representatives on Syabas' board of directors and as such, Khalid's claims of being left in the dark with regard to efforts in resolving the state's water woes were baseless.

“It clearly shows that the state government is equally responsible in what is happening but it seems that Khalid is washing his hands off the matter,” he said.

Recently, there have been disruptions in supply to parts of Kuala Lumpur and Selangor after Syabas pump houses in Wangsa Maju and Pudu Hulu Baru broke down.

Malaysian students in Jakarta told to move to higher ground due to floods

Education Malaysia (EM) Indonesia has directed Malaysian students here to move to Malaysia Hall due to the severe flooding in the capital.

Its director, Prof Dr Juzhar Jusoh, said at this time all the students are safe and on standby for instructions to move to higher ground.

Malaysian hostels in Grogol dan Tanjung Duren in West Jakarta are located in some of the severely affected areas with waters rising to 1m due to the monsoon rains which are expected to last for a week.

Most of the affected Malaysians are studying medicine and dentistry at Universiti Kristen Krida Wacana (UKRIDA) dan Universiti Trisakti.
Posted on 12:30 | Categories:

AES traffic fines are valid,says A-G

MCA has reiterated its call for a six-month trial period to educate road users on the implementation of the Automated Enforcement System (AES).

Central committee member Datuk Chua Tee Yong said this would give road users time to adjust to the system.

For example, said Chua, road users caught flouting traffic laws could be issued summonses but would not have to pay during the trial period.

“MCA's stand is that the AES requires time so people can understand how the system works.

“We are concerned with the rise in road accidents and the AES is okay. The issue now is the implementation,” Chua said when met after the launch of the Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Ministry's Innovation Day here yesterday.

Chua, who is the ministry's deputy minister, said this in response to the Attorney-General's Chamber's statement (A-G) to freeze all court proceedings related to summonses issued under the AES.
Posted on 09:30 | Categories:

Thursday, 17 January 2013

49,000 still affected by water supply disruption

It may be another five days before taps that went dry after a seven-hour shutdown of the Sungai Semenyih water treatment plant run again.

Syabas corporate affairs executive director Abdul Halem Mat Som said that as at 8pm last night, 49,000 people were still affected by the disruption in water supply.

“We managed to restore water supply, except for consumers in specific parts of Kajang, Bangi, Semenyih and some areas of Petaling,” he said here yesterday.

Abdul Halem said 24,000 of those affected were in the Hulu Langat district while the rest were in the Petaling district.

“Disruption will end in less than a week,” he said.

It was reported that the Konsortium Abass-run Sungai Semenyih plant ceased operation for seven hours on Monday after pollutants were found in the river.

(Konsortium Abass is a subsidiary of Kumpulan Perangsang Selangor, which in turn is a member of Kumpulan Darul Ehsan Berhad, Selangor's state investment arm.)

Criminals spend RM100,000 to buy talismans to ward off police

Criminals are spending up to RM100,000 to buy “charms” made of boar's tusks, human bones and ashes to avoid from being caught by police, reported Harian Metro.

The Malay daily claimed that gang members would even resort to worshipping the bones and tusks before using them as a charm or talisman to ward off police.

Quoting a former criminal who only wanted to be known as Black, 36, it said the price of these charms would vary depending on their “powers” and ability to help the owner escape the “eyes” of the authorities.

According to Black, who has since repented, many criminals believe in the power of these charms, which are bought from mediums in Thailand and Indonesia for between RM10,000 and RM50,000.

“There are also more powerful charms, which can exceed RM100,000,” he said, adding that he also owned one.

Citing an incident, Black claimed that he once managed to escape a police dragnet after a robbery with his gang members because he had his charm at that time.

However, he admitted that there were also many criminals who ended up caught despite having their charms.

Posted on 16:30 | Categories:

Harmony Act must be specific

The proposed National Harmony Act should be clear and the offences under it precisely defined to prevent abuse, said National Unity and Integration director-general Datuk Azman Amin Hassan.

While some were of the view that the Act should not have punitive measures, he said penalties could be limited to specific negative actions such as hate speeches.

“There must be no vagueness or blanket application as to the sensitivities that the Act may seek to protect,” he said during a session themed Legislating National Har­mony at the Transformation of Security and Fundamental Rights Legislation Con-ference here yesterday.

“If the Act is to contain provisions against hate speech or action detrimental to national harmony, Article 8 of the Federal Constitution, which talks about the equality of all persons, must also be incorporated, in that crimes against national harmony must not only be racial in nature but cover sub-groups such as sexual minorities, migrant workers and refugees,” he said.

Azman said he was also of the opinion that the Act should include religious belief as a facet of ethnic and national identity and that this should be fairly implemented and interpreted so that all ethnic groups and social sub-groups receive equal protection under it.
Posted on 13:30 | Categories:

Police look to adopt new procedure for future rallies

Police will look into the possibility of adopting the new operating procedure used in Saturday’s Perhimpunan Kebang­kitan Rakyat rally for future gatherings given the peaceful outcome.

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Ismail Omar said the new method, which included not deploying the Federal Reserve Unit (FRU) and having minimal police presence, yielded positive results.

“Police actions were conducted in the spirit of the Peaceful Assembly Act (PAA) 2012. We will consider using the procedure for future rallies.

“The police, organisers and participants cooperated with one another in the spirit of peaceful assembly,” he told pressmen on the sidelines of the Transformation of Security and Fun-damental Rights Legislation Confe-rence here yesterday.

On Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s praise over police conduct during the rally, Ismail said everyone involved, especially police personnel, acted professionally and peacefully.
Posted on 09:30 | Categories:

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

We never claimed lack of funds - Syabas

Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor Sdn Bhd (Syabas) has denied allegations that it does not have enough funds to repair the Wangsa Maju and Pudu Hulu Baru pump houses which broke down recently.

Its technical development division executive director V. Subramaniam said Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim had accused Syabas of giving excuses like insufficient funds to repair the pumps because water tariffs had not been raised.

He also claimed that Abdul Khalid had stated that the Selangor Govern­ment would step in if Syabas had insufficient funds and was incapable of managing water supply.

“We never made such claims. But if the state government, which holds 30% equity in Syabas, is willing to provide the necessary funds for the maintenance of the pump houses, such a move would be most welcome,” Subramaniam said.

Dad sells kids to pay off his debts

A lorry driver deep in gambling debts sold three of his children to pay off his debtors.

The children’s mother, Liew Kim Yow, 27, said the 25-year-old man, whom she referred to as her “boyfriend” because they were not legally married, had suggested in September that his mother take care of their two sons, aged one and three and their five-year-old daughter, while they went to Singapore to work.

They have been living together in Serendah, Hulu Selangor, for seven years.

Liew, who is unemployed, stayed at home to take care of the children while the man worked as a lorry driver.

But after three months, she suspected something amiss because their plans to move to Singapore did not materialise and he kept giving excuses each time she wanted to see their children.
Posted on 16:30 | Categories:

Marine cops recover engines

The marine police here have solved a case involving three stolen outboard engines within 24 hours.

Two male suspects in their early thirties were detained and the engines, worth RM20,000, were recovered, said Penampang police chief Deputy Superintendent Ratan Kumar Singh.

Also seized was a boat believed to have been used in the incident.

A police report was made at 4.30am on Saturday in Kg Sipanggil, Putatan.

"Based on a tip-off, the Kota Kinabalu marine police team, led by Inspector Abd Aziz Abu Hashim, caught the first suspect in Kampung Dumpil at 5pm on the same day.

"This led to the capture of the second suspect, who did not have identity documents at the night market in the city centre.

"After admitting to the crime, the suspects brought the marine police to some bushes alongside Jalan Kampung Dumpil where the first engine was found at 7.30pm," said Ratan.
Posted on 13:30 | Categories:

BL1M joy for new motor licence applicants

Some 500,000 new applicants for the B2 category motorcycle licence will enjoy lower fees under the Bantuan Lesen 1Malaysia (BL1M) programme, to be launched at the end of January.

Barisan Nasional Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin said successful applicants under the BL1M programme would pay only RM199 for their licence which included riding and practical theory tests for the B2 licence, which is for bikes below 250cc.

“Based on figures, some 200,000 unlicensed motorcyclists are nabbed by the Road Transport Department (RTD) a year and we hope to address this pressing issue through BL1M,” he told reporters at the launching of the BL1M pre-registration exercise here.

He said that RTD had fixed RM261 for the B2 licence but driving schools currently charged between RM350 and RM690 owing to add-on charges, which most youths cannot afford.

“The BL1M is an effort by us to help the youth, particularly those who are not able to afford it, to obtain their motorcycle licence,” he said, adding that between 300,000 and 500,000 stand to benefit from the programme.
Posted on 09:30 | Categories:

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Five districts in Selangor to face water disruptions

Some 349,000 account holders in five districts are expected to face unscheduled water cuts due to a halt in the operations at the Sg Semenyih treatment plant after the river was suspected to be contaminated by palm oil.

Syabas chief operating officer Datuk Lee Miang Koi said the plant provided treated water for consumers in Petaling, Hulu Langat, Sepang, Klang and Kuala Langat.

“Syabas is still identifying the areas that are expected to be impacted,” he said, adding that the plant, which was run by Konsortium Abass Sdn Bhd, stopped operating at around 1.30pm yesterday.

This disruption, he said, was unrelated to the water cuts due to the recent failure of pump houses in Wangsa Maju and Pudu Hulu.

In SHAH ALAM, the Malay Economic Consultative Council (Mapem) urged the Selangor Government not to politicise water issues but to instead work to replace the aged water assets used by Syabas.

Urging for immediate action, its honorary secretary Halim Mohamad pointed out that the disruptions in water supply were affecting businesses.

‘Government’s reforms working well’

The incident-free rally on Saturday proved that the Government has done the right thing by reforming certain laws, said Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

The Prime Minister said the Government was committed to providing a legal environment that supports human rights and had abolished laws that could cause polemics.

“The rally held in Stadium Merdeka which went peacefully is testimony of the ability of various parties, be it the authorities or organisers, to abide by the law.

“I thank the Opposition, even though I don't agree (with them) for respecting the spirit of the Peaceful Assembly Act,” he said.

Among the laws which the Government had abolished were the Internal Security Act 1960, Banishment Act 1959 and Restricted Residence Act 1933.

Najib told participants attending the Transformation of Security and Fundamental Rights Legislation Conference that the decision to amend, abolish and replace certain laws was not made for political expediency but because the Government had listened to the people's concerns and aspirations.
Posted on 16:00 | Categories:

Secure back lanes at border to check crime

The Home Ministry and National Security Council have been urged to focus their attention on back lanes which exist near the Malaysia-Thailand border.

According to Kedah State Action Council chairman Datuk Mohd Johari Baharom, these lanes in the gated duty-free complex and Bukit Kayu Hitam Golf Club near the border were identified as routes which facilitate criminal and smuggling activities.

Therefore, he hoped all security agencies could heighten surveillance and coordination.

“I was shocked to see that the two-layer wire fencing could be opened and cut. These activities could invite crime such as human trafficking and smuggling prohibited goods, threaten security and the country could lose millions in taxes each month,” he said after visiting the area with enforcement agencies.

A survey revealed that smugglers used the duty-free area by cutting open or opening the gate to avoid going through checks at the Bukit Kayu Hitam Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (ICQ).

Mohd Johari, who is also Kubang Pasu MP and Agriculture and Agro-based Industries Deputy Minister, said he would ask for the Bukit Kayu Hitam ICQ to upgrade its fencing by installing two layers of barbed wire 7km into the duty-free zone.
Posted on 13:00 | Categories:

Going vegetarian for a good cause

Meat-lover Isabelle Zhen decided to give meat a rest for a vegetarian meal to support a good cause.

The 24-year-old radio presenter said she has never tried pure vegetarian food until yesterday during a “Let's have lunch to clean Malaysia” event to raise money for volunteer movement Sampah Masyarakat.

“I went for a burger on Saturday knowing that I'm coming today. So, I mentally prepared myself,” she said at the event held at a restaurant in Brickfields here.

Zhen said she enjoyed the all-you-can-eat vegetarian meal for RM20.

“This is actually my second helping,” she said, adding the event was a good time for her to catch up with friends.

Patrons enjoyed being served lunch by local personalities and celebrities like Datin Paduka Marina Mahathir, Low Ngai Yuen, Daphne Iking, Rina Omar and Afdlin Shauki while taking pictures with them.
Posted on 09:30 | Categories: