Jomo’s take on what ails the Malaysian economy

Source: The Star Online

DOES having a balanced budget really matter?

No, according to Prof Jomo Kwame Sundaram.

The prominent economist stresses what’s important is how the Government spends its money annually to generate meaningful growth for the country’s economy. But sadly, that is something that is sorely lacking in the Malaysian context.

Not one to mince his words, Jomo says Malaysia has been running on “humdrum” budget deficits for the last two decades, without any serious effort to put the country’s economy on a sustainable growth path.

As he sees it, the country is presently mired in a political crisis that has led to a paralysis in effective economic policy making. Reform measures have somewhat stalled, and there is a self-defeating illusion that the country’s economy is moving in the right direction, and that it will become a high-income nation in the next four years.

Jomo says Malaysia needs bold leadership to implement bold measures that can take the country’s economy to the next level of growth. Read more

Report: Bar Council probed under security law over Soros funding

Source: The Malay Mail Online

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 5 ― Police are investigating the Bar Council for allegedly attempting to undermine parliamentary democracy because it purportedly received a grant from George Soros’ Open Society Foundations (OSF) for a research study.

News portal Malaysiakini reported Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar as saying that the Bukit Aman five-member special team that is investigating polls reform group Bersih 2.0 and Malaysiakini under the same law ― Section 124C of the Penal Code ― is also responsible with probing the decision-making body of the Malaysian Bar.

“Once investigations are completed, we will submit our findings to the Attorney-General’s Chambers for further action,” Khalid was quoted saying. Read more

Malaysia berdepan kekurangan pelajar aliran sains yang serius

Sumber: Astro Awani

Ketika ini terdapat hanya 90,000 pelajar aliran sains yang menduduki peperiksaan Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM). - Gambar hiasan Astro Awani.

Ketika ini terdapat hanya 90,000 pelajar aliran sains yang menduduki peperiksaan Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM). – Gambar hiasan Astro Awani.

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia berdepan masalah kekurangan pelajar aliran sains yang serius yang mampu menjejaskan usaha mencapai status negara maju.

Presiden Akademi Sains Malaysia, Tan Sri Dr Ahmad Tajuddin Ali berkata ketika ini terdapat hanya 90,000 pelajar aliran sains yang menduduki peperiksaan Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM), jauh kurang berbanding 270,000 yang diperlukan setiap tahun.

Kekurangan itu boleh mengakibatkan jumlah ahli sains yang tidak mencukupi di negara ini.

“Bagi menggerakkan negara ini ke depan, kita memerlukan lebih ramai ahli sains dan jurutera yang lahir daripada mata pelajaran STEM (Sains, Teknologi, Kejuruteraan dan Matematik),” katanya pada sidang media selepas perasmian Pameran Sains dan Kejuruteraan Kuala Lumpur (KLESF), di sini pada Jumaat.

Ia disempurnakan Timbalan Menteri Sains, Teknologi dan Inovasi, Datuk Dr Abu Bakar Mohamad Diah yang mewakili menterinya, Datuk Seri Madius Tangau. Read more

Media freedom on back foot in Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines

Source: The Sydney Morning Herald

Bangkok: A journalist has been sacked from a key Myanmar newspaper after writing about security forces allegedly mass raping villagers, as press freedom comes under increasing attack across south-east Asia.

The English-language Myanmar Times dismissed Scottish-born Fiona MacGregor, the paper’s special investigations editor, after public condemnation of her reporting on Myanmar’s western Rakhine State by the President’s Office and a complaint from the Ministry of Information.

The state is under military lock-down following deadly attacks last month on police border posts which have been blamed on Muslim Rohingya insurgents. Read more

Strong police presence as Red Shirts protest at Malaysiakini

Source: The Star Online

Police maintaining watch outside the Malaysiakini office where Red Shirts supporters had gathered to protest. Pic taken from The Star Online.

Police maintaining watch outside the Malaysiakini office where Red Shirts supporters had gathered to protest. Pic taken from The Star Online.

PETALING JAYA: There is a strong police presence outside the Malaysiakini office off Jalan Tandang where Red Shirts have gathered to protest.

Police were seen on standby in and around the area before protesters began turning up at 1.30pm, Saturday.

The crowd built up significantly at 2pm, with more Red Shirts arriving. Read more

Justify use of ‘severe’ security law on Malaysiakini, media groups demand

Source: The Malay Mail Online

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 5 ― The police needs to justify the use of a “severe” law to investigate Malaysiakini for allegedly trying to undermine parliamentary democracy by receiving foreign funds, journalist groups have said.

Gerakan Media Merdeka (Geramm) spokesman Radzi Razak said Section 124C of the Penal Code ― which comes with a hefty punishment of a mandatory jail term that can go up to 15 years ― was a severe law that cannot be used without clear justification.

“The issue on Malaysiakini’s funding has been raised for years and this newest allegation was addressed by the operators of the news portal as well.

“The police will have to let the public know why they use this Section as it is a matter of public interest,” he told Malay Mail Online when contacted yesterday. Read more

Lawyers: Vague law used against Bersih, Malaysiakini as foreign funding not a crime

Source: The Malay Mail Online

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 5 ― The authorities are just using a so-called vague law to investigate electoral watchdog Bersih 2.0 and media outlet Malaysiakini as receiving foreign funds by itself is not a crime, lawyers have said.

Lawyer New Sin Yew said there is no law prohibiting anyone from receiving funds from overseas, adding that this is also not barred under Section 124C of the Penal Code which is being used to probe Malaysiakini and Bersih 2.0 chair Maria Chin Abdullah.

“If there is no law against receiving funds from overseas, there is nothing for the police to enforce.

“Section 124C is vague and vague laws are prone to abuse. But even with its vague wordings, it does not prohibit receiving foreign funds. The police cannot use 124C as a catch-all and to create an offence when there is none,” he told Malay Mail Online when contacted yesterday. Read more