BACK there on the colourful streets of Sentul, an auntie extends a large plastic bag weighted with plump curry puffs. "Ambik! Ambik!" she gestures, insisting that bashful walkers load up on their carbo-fuel for the journey ahead. She's from the neighbourhood, you can tell, who's simply out greeting her guests. Back there just metres from the Chow Kit Monorail, a drinks and fruit seller guides his vehicle into the thick of the moving crowd. He stops. One hand waving to the people around him, the other grabbing packets of pre-cut fresh fruit, he offers: "Ambik! Ambik!" There is the pakcik in his jubah on Jalan TAR, a crate of mineral water before him. Same gesture, same words pretty much.
Something's different today. You feel this is one special Sunday.
This is Straw Hat culture. Unyielding in principle and unbounded in warmth.
The proposed Social Inclusion Act (SIA) is an initiative by SABM and HAKAM to address increasing poverty and marginalisation plaguing Malaysia. At its core, the SIA seeks to redirect social welfare decisions and programmes away from the centre and place it much closer to the hands of the people who need it the most.
PSM was among the four political parties (PRM, SAPP, STAR Sabah) which readily endorsed the proposed SIA and have included the agenda in their GE13 manifesto. We asked S Arutchelvan, PSM Secretary-General to share his views.
GABUNGAN Bertindak Malaysia (GBM), a multi-ethnic, multi-religious and non-partisan organisation representing 25 NGOs is greatly concerned with the characterisation of the Pakatan Rakyat’s gains in the recent elections as a “Chinese tsunami” by the Prime Minister YB Dato’ Seri Mohd Najib Abdul Razak.
It has since been echoed by the Utusan Malaysia and various facebook entries. The Utusan Malaysia, 7 May 2013, carried the headline, “Apa lagi Cina Mau?” (What else do the Chinese want?). This and other similar entries would undoubtedly instigate hostility of the Malay community against the Chinese.
Prime Minister Mohd Najib Abdul Razak defence of Utusan Malaysia’s racial innuendos is most unbecoming.
The election outcome shows a BN winning only 47.38% of the popular votes. This poor showing cannot be entirely due to the Chinese voters alone.
Notwithstanding gains in Kedah, UMNO’s support base has been eroded substantially in Johor, Melaka and Pahang, where two outgoing Menteri Besar/Chief Minister and two deputy ministers were deposed. Similarly, there was a strong Kadazandusun swing against the BN, resulting in the opposition’s seat gains increase from 1 to 12 in the state legislative assembly. If there was indeed a Chinese tsunami, how could Chua Jui Meng the PKR candidate for Segamat, a Chinese majority constituency, be defeated by a Barisan candidate of Indian origin?
INSOFAR as the integrity of institutions go, it's been an ugly two weeks. The Election Commission, entrusted to be independent, has been dismal in performing its duties; from the indelible ink fiasco to the silence on foreign voters flooding in over the last couple of days. The mainstream media is guilty of running fear-mongering ads. So many government agencies have been exploited to aid the incumbent political coalition party return to power.
This isn't how a self-styled 'best democracy in the world' ought to work.
Yes, it's been ugly but it also underscores the amount of work we have to do post GE13. We.
She’s only 28. And she’s already borne nine children - the last one just six months ago. While I believe that children are gifts, I also believe that gifts come with responsibility. I feel that to leave the conception and bearing of children to chance or fate when you can intervene, to a degree of course, is inexcusable and this when they can ill afford to have another baby. As it is, they have to depend on charity.
I ask her if she's taken steps to stop further pregnancies and she says no. My feelings are mixed. I want to cry because she doesn’t know better. I want to cry because she’s so poor, legacy of an oppressive system and a vicious cycle of learned helplessness. At the same time, I am also angry because I feel she should know better. From my position, I feel that every woman should know instinctively to give the best protection, education, care and love to their offspring, and that if they can’t, they should seriously not consider bringing another kid into the world. Surely she can see what her many children are lacking. The filthy squalor they live in alone is reason enough not to have more children and I haven’t even started on education which is every child’s right.
Her toddlers lie on the cold, sticky and slimy floor of the bare flat - half naked, sharing a dirty bottle which contains what looks more like “kopi susu” than “susu”. The older ones sit with dirty faces and hair staring vacantly, flashing their white teeth in wide grins when I smile at them. I feel pity for them. And her. But I also feel a little angry that she brought them into the world, to a life of abject poverty - without their permission. They did not ask to be born and to be subjected to such a life.
Your are currently browsing this site with Internet Explorer 6 (IE6).
Your current web browser must be updated to version 7 of Internet Explorer (IE7) to take advantage of all of template's capabilities.
Why should I upgrade to Internet Explorer 7? Microsoft has redesigned Internet Explorer from the ground up, with better security, new capabilities, and a whole new interface. Many changes resulted from the feedback of millions of users who tested prerelease versions of the new browser.
The most compelling reason to upgrade is the improved security. The Internet of today is not the Internet of five years ago. There are dangers that simply didn't exist back in 2001, when Internet Explorer 6 was released to the world. Internet Explorer 7 makes surfing the web fundamentally safer by offering greater protection against viruses, spyware, and other online risks.
Get free downloads for Internet Explorer 7, including recommended updates as they become available. To download Internet Explorer 7 in the language of your choice, please visit the Internet Explorer 7 worldwide page.