Malaysian transgender conversion plan sparks alarm

Source: The Malay Mail Online

File picture shows supporters of transgender rights group Justice for Sisters at the Palace of Justice, Putrajaya, October 8, 2014. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 30 ― A Malaysian state plans to run a conversion therapy course aimed at transgender women, officials said today, sparking alarm among LGBT activists in the conservative Muslim-majority country.

The course would run over several days next year after authorities had completed a survey of the transgender population, a Terengganu state official said.

Participation in the course would be voluntary, Ghazali said, adding that the programme would include medical, psychological and religious experts, as well as transgender women who have “returned to normal lives”. Read more

Learn about us first, transgender activist tells Terengganu over proposed rehab course

Source: The Malay Mail Online

LGBT activist Nisha Ayub — Pic taken from FMT News

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 29 — A transgender activist has lashed at Terengganu state executive committee member Ghazali Taib for proposing an “awareness course” aimed at bringing the community “back to the right path”.

Nisha Ayub from Justice for Sisters said today that state authorities should first educate themselves on sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression, and the history of the community here, before even trying to organise any outreach programme.

“Stop assuming that you can change a person into the mould of your own beliefs or understanding. This is not about a puppet but about a human being,” Nisha said in a statement on her Facebook page. Read more

Terengganu not ready for hudud law yet, says MB

Source: FMT News

KUALA TERENGGANU: Terengganu is not prepared to implement hudud law until an in-depth study on it is conducted first, says Menteri Besar Ahmad Razif Abdul Rahman.

He said the decision to implement hudud law must be determined by the state legislative assembly and only after getting the consent of the Terengganu Sultan.

“We are now focusing on Bill 355 … once it is approved, only then can we see which Islamic law provisions can be implemented under the bill. We should not rush into this matter.” Read more

Perkasa tells IDEAS more children won’t result in poverty

Source: FMT News

Slamming the think tank's Azrul Mohd Khalib, Perkasa says his statements on Terengganu's money-for-births plan is not backed by evidence.

Slamming the think tank’s Azrul Mohd Khalib, Perkasa says his statements on Terengganu’s money-for-births plan is not backed by evidence.

PETALING JAYA: Perkasa has slammed Azrul Mohd Khalib, of the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS), for criticising the Terengganu government’s cash incentive programme to encourage more childbirths in the state.

In a statement, the Malay rights group’s Islamic affairs chairman Amini Amir Abdullah said Azrul’s take on the matter was not supported by “evidence, data and statistics”.

Perkasa, Amini added, also believed Azrul, who is the institute’s external relations manager, was making wild assumptions.

These included Azrul’s statement that Malaysians should learn from the “bitter lessons” of other countries where unplanned pregnancies and policies, which encouraged having children beyond one’s means, have had detrimental effects. Read more

Cash incentives for births a bad idea, says IDEAS

Source: FMT News

It is irresponsible to encourage people to have more children than they can afford, says think tank on Terengganu government’s plan to offer higher payments for more births. Pic from FMT News.

It is irresponsible to encourage people to have more children than they can afford, says think tank on Terengganu government’s plan to offer higher payments for more births. Pic from FMT News.

PETALING JAYA: The Terengganu government’s cash incentive programme to encourage more childbirths in the state could lead to a cycle of poverty, says the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS).

IDEAS external relations manager Azrul Mohd Khalib said he disagreed with the programme.

Azrul said encouraging families to have more children was not a problem, but encouraging them to do so when they could not afford it was irresponsible and dangerous.

He said the programme’s prescribed one-off RM500 cash incentive for the eighth and consecutive child did not deal with the consequences of having children beyond a person’s means. Read more

Terengganu eyes gender-segregated lines at government offices

Source: The Malay Mail Online

The move is the latest in the state’s increasingly Islamic administration. — Picture by Saw Siow Feng, the Malay Mail Online.

The move is the latest in the state’s increasingly Islamic administration. — Picture by Saw Siow Feng, the Malay Mail Online.

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 21 — Male visitors could be kept apart from women at government offices in Terengganu under a proposed initiative from the New Terengganu Transformation (TTB) plan.

The move is the latest in the state’s increasingly Islamic administration, which has so far outlawed unmarried men and women from riding motorcycles together and required shops to close between 12pm and 2pm on Fridays for Muslim prayers.

“This (the gender-segregated lines) is very good in facilitating women. We will make two main lines in government offices that are most visited,” Mentri Besar Ahmad Razif Abdul Rahman was quoted as saying by state news agency Bernama.

“There is no problem in implementing this and it can be translated in the TTB.”

Federal agencies in the state such as the Road Transport Department and National Registration Department had between Tuesday and Thursday prepared counters specifically for women.

Gender segregation is a hallmark of Kelantan that has been ruled by conservative Islamist party PAS since 1990, but has gradually emerged in neighbouring Terengganu. Read more

RM1 billion flood, coastal erosion allocation remains under 11th Malaysia Plan, says Wan Junaidi

Source: The Malaysian Insider

The RM1.07 billion allocation under the 11th Malaysia Plan to overcome coastal erosion and flooding in Terengganu remains, as announced earlier.

Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said after referring the problems faced by Terengganu to the federal government, the latter agreed not to cut the amount approved to build a flood mitigation system and breakwaters to prevent further erosion at the affected areas.

“The RM1.07 billion allocated will not be affected although there have been reports of a cut,” he told reporters after the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the federal and Terengganu governments on a conservation programme at the Kenyir Elephant Conservation Village (KECV), in Hulu Terengganu, today. Read more

Report highlights weaknesses in Terengganu’s mining sector

Source: The Star Online

Room for change: The 2014 Auditor-General’s Report (Third Series) has several recommendations to improve Terengganu’s mining industry.

Room for change: The 2014 Auditor-General’s Report (Third Series) has several recommendations to improve Terengganu’s mining industry.

KUALA TERENGGANU: Tereng­ganu’s mining sector has weak monitoring and ineffective enforcement, leading to procedures and regulations being violated.

This was stated in the 2014 Auditor-General’s Report (Third Series), which was released on Monday.

It pointed out several weaknesses in the state’s booming mining sector. Read more

A-G: Although worst-hit, Kelantan, Terengganu not given priority in flood mitigation projects

Source: The Malay Mail Online

File picture shows an aerial view of houses and plantations being submerged in floodwaters in Pengkalan Chepa, near Kota Baru, Kelantan on December 28, 2014. — AFP pic

File picture shows an aerial view of houses and plantations being submerged in floodwaters in Pengkalan Chepa, near Kota Baru, Kelantan on December 28, 2014. — AFP pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 23 — East coast states such as Kelantan and Terengganu were not given priority in the RM3.35 billion Flood Mitigation Projects (FMP) by the Department Of Irrigation and Drainage, said the latest Auditor-General’s (A-G) Report 2014.

The Third Series of the report released today also said that there were components of the FMP worth more than RM6 million that were not utilised optimally, while some were just not well-maintained.

“Some states particularly in the east coast such as Kelantan and Terengganu were among the states with the largest flood area and highest average losses caused by flood.

“However, they were not given priority in the implementation of FMP,” said the report. Read more

As haze lifts, Terengganu braces for floods

Source: The NST Online

KUALA TERENGGANU: It has begun raining non-stop in the east coast of the peninsula, and every millimeter of rainfall recorded poses a danger to lives and to property here.

Nevertheless, the rain has brought welcome relief after months of choking and hazardous haze.

But the arrival of the monsoon thunderstorms offers a different safety perspective.

Realising this, the Terengganu state government has established a coordinated plan with the various agencies to mitigate the annual monsoon flash -floods which are imminent.

Even the Army has been roped in along with the police, firemen, civil defence, Rela, paramedics and non-governmental organisations to ensure no effort is spared to safeguard the lives of the locals here. Read more