Another government department, seriously? — Wong Chun Wai

Source: The Star Online

BY WONG CHUN WAI

YET another government department is going to be set up. Isn’t it common knowledge that the Government has serious budget constraints and is not recruiting to add to an already bloated civil service? And now, another tale of bureaucracy is being spun.

No wonder Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission chief commissioner Tan Sri Dzulkifli Ahmad is upset over the planned formation of the National Integrity and Good Governance Department (JITN).

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Paul Low has said the proposed department is expected to improve good governance in the civil service.

How would the JITN as a new and probably tiny department be able to do the job? It would probably involve plenty of miracles since there is a reported 1.6 million civil servants to deal with, although Cuepacs says the figure is only at 500,000. It will be a Herculean task to move this mountain of manpower for what’s needed. Read more

Sense and sensibility must prevail — Wong Chun Wai

Source: The Star Online

BY WONG CHUN WAI

The EC must serve the interest of Malaysians of all races, certainly not politicians as they come and go.

IT’S a good way out with the Barisan Nasional setting up a panel to assess and consolidate different views among the ruling coalition on the Election Commission’s proposed redelineation of electoral constituencies.

The objection from the MCA, MIC and Gerakan against the proposal is clear but Umno has also put on record that it is not happy with the proposed changes.

The proposal, had it been allowed to be implemented in the planned form, would have turned the clock back for Malaysia.

The last time Malaysia had a redelineation exercise was in 2002 after the 1999 general election which saw Umno politicians holding on to their seats because of the decisive Chinese votes.

In that elections, the old electoral logic of Malay voters in rural constituencies faithfully supporting Umno, was rudely chucked out. Read more

Discourse vital in democracy – Wong Chun Wai

Source: The Star Online

BY WONG CHUN WAI

We don’t have to agree with each other but we must have meaningful discussions to have a healthy exchange of opinion. That’s how we learn.

Wong Chun Wai - The Star Online file pic

Wong Chun Wai – The Star Online file pic

FINALLY, we get to see some common sense and sanity. Malaysians certainly welcome the decision of Attorney-General Tan Sri Mohamed Apandi Ali in dropping the sedition charges against Dr Azmi Shahrom.

It’s better late than never. Enough time and energy have been wasted by the authorities and the Universiti Malaya law professor in having to deal with the charges.

Azmi is a law professor and he is expected to give his opinion on legal issues. That is what lawyers and law professors do.

But to accuse Azmi of sedition is way off tangent and to haul him to court seriously smacked of absurdity. It was completely ridiculous. For many, it seemed like a poor attempt to suppress criticism. Read more