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July 8 — 10, 2011/ issue 32

community

CHARGED: (From left) Kajang Municipal councillors Tan Boon Wah, Zulfikar Ali Ariffin, Ong Seng Peng, Lee Learn Eng, Steven Chan Jeong Hon, Lee Kee Hiong, ST Chandra Mohan, Cheong Siow Foon, Ng Tien Chee, Mohd Mohyiddin Mohamed Mesbah and Razaly Hassan outside the magistrate's court in Putrajaya on Wednesday. Ten of them were charged on Thursday under S47 of the Societies Act 1966 for wearing Bersih t-shirts during their municipal council meeting last week. STORY ON PAGE 2

By Tang Hui Koon

BUKIT BERUNTUNG: The state is extending the grace period for up to 60% of unlicensed factories in Selangor that have yet to legalise operations. The estimated 1,800 factories, mostly small and medium industries (SMIs), have until December 2012 to comply with requirements under the amnesty programme. Ean Yong Hian Wah said the deadline for the amnesty expired on June 30, but it had to be extended because red tape and technicalities made the process lengthy. "It involves applications to many departments and agencies, and includes land conversions because many of these factories are on agricultural land," said the state executive councillor. Ean Yong, whose portfolio includes the legalisation of illegal factories, illustrated the difficulties involved during a visit to one such factory in Bukit Sentosa on Tuesday. The company's application to

More time for factories to legalise ops legalise operations has been rejected twice by the Hulu Selangor District Council. Owner CC Lim, whose factory assembles buses, said his application was turned down because his factory was built on agricultural land. Lim said he relocated his decadeold business from Sungai Choh to the present site three years' ago. While he admitted building the

new factory before obtaining approval, Lim urged authorities to allow him to continue operations. “By setting up a factory here, I help to bring development to the area and provide jobs for local residents,� said Lim. Ean Yong said Lim's chances of legalising his operations were high because the factory is some distance away from residential areas.

He noted that the district council had yet to determine development plans for the area, but might consider earmarking it for industrial use. Ean Yong added that the state had established guidelines and rules for legalising unlicensed factories. However, they would consider individual cases to determine if the factories can continue to operate at the present sites.

"Most of these factories are in Klang and Petaling Jaya," he said. He said the amnesty for illegal factories started under Dr Khir Toyo's administration before 2008, but more factories are coming forward to legalise their operations for the past three years. But only 40% have managed to fully comply with all regulations, he said.


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news July 8 — 10, 2011

Kajang councillors stand firm Their request for the councillors’ bail to be lowered to RM500 was denied. “As they are councillors and employees of the state government, they are responsible and do not have a high risk of flight,” said Lim. However, Deputy Public Prosecutor Mohd Azahari Harun asked the court to take into account the seriousness of the accusation. He said Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein had declared Bersih an illegal organisation, and there were over 3,000 police reports against the group to date. Meanwhile, other members of the public, including two traders from Kelantan, have also been charged in court for wearing or possessing Bersih 2.0 t-shirts. Six Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) leaders, including Sungai Siput Member of Parliament Dr Michael Jeyakumar Devaraj, have been detained without trial under the Emergency Ordinance for 60 days. Deputy Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Khalid Abu Bakar said 235 people, including national and state lawmakers, have been arrested as of July 7. The police have been cracking down on Bersih 2.0 supporters since two weeks ago in a bid to thwart the Saturday rally from being held. Yesterday, the police obtained a restriction order from the magistrate’s court under Section 98 of the Criminal Procedure Code to prevent 91 individuals from entering the city. Among them are Bersih chief Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan, Perkasa chief Datuk Ibrahim Ali, Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin, and Bersih steering committee member Maria Chin Abdullah. Those barred include 66 from Bersih, 14 from Perkasa, and 11 from Umno Youth. Despite the authorities’ crackdown, Bersih 2.0 is set to hold its rally to call for free and fair elections at Stadium Merdeka on Saturday. Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had on Monday promised to allow Bersih 2.0 to hold its rally in a stadium after the King re-

By Gan Pei Ling and Basil Foo

PUTRAJAYA: Ten Kajang Municipal Council (MPKj) members, who were charged yesterday for wearing Bersih 2.0 t-shirts, stood by their actions. They collectively wore the attire during their council’s full board meeting on June 29 in support in support of the coalition for free and fair elections. “At that stage, we didn’t know it was unlawful. But the issue is not about wearing t-shirts,” said MPKj councillor S T Chandra Mohan. He pointed out that Bersih’s goals are legitimate democratic demands. Chandra, along with nine of his colleagues, were  charged in the Magistrate’s Court in Putrajaya under Section 47 of the Societies Act 1966. Their “crime” – “displaying a statement in picture and writing on a shirt worn in interest of an illegal organisation”. They face imprisonment of up to two years and a fine of RM5,000. The other councillors were Zulfikar Ali Ariffin, Ong Seng Peng, Lee Learn Eng, Tan Boon Wah, Razaly Hassan, Lee Kee Hiong, Chan Jeong Hon, Mohd Mohyiddin Mohamed Mesbah, and Ng Tien Chee. Bail was set at RM2,000 by Magistrate A Akhiruddin @ Boy Acho. Another MPKj councillor, Cheong Siow Foon, who is in Terengganu, could not be present in court yesterday and will be charged on Aug 8. “I disagree with the charge. Rightfully, Bersih should not be considered illegal as they were recognised by the Agong,” said councillor Mohamed Yusoff Bachek. He said he was surprised that he wasn’t among those charged, as he was also wearing the Bersih shirt during the closed-door meeting at MPKj tower on June 29. The councillors were represented by lawyers K A Ramu and Lim Lip Eng, who is also the Segambut MP.

Selangor WEATHER Friday

Saturday

Sunday

Morning

Afternoon

Night

Source: Malaysian meteorological department

phone (603) 5510 4566 fax (603) 5523 1188 email editor@selangortimes.com

EDITORIAL CHIEF EDITOR COMMUNITY EDITOR

KL Chan

Neville Spykerman

Tang Hui Koon, Chong Loo Wah, Gan Pei Ling, Basil Foo, Alvin Yap, Gho Chee Yuan, Brenda Ch’ng COPY EDITORS Nick Choo, James Ang

WRITERS

DESIGNERS

Jimmy C. S. Lim, Chin Man Yen

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Timothy Loh, Ivan Looi

Faekah Husin, Arfa’eza Abdul Aziz

MPKJ councillors looking through the Societies Act with their lawyer Lim Lip Eng (right) at the magistrate’s court in Putrajaya on Thursday.

quested both parties to hold consultations in a from entering the city. bid to diffuse tension between the two parties. Putrajaya is also attempting to impose Bersih 2.0 had agreed before the govern- what’s described as a citywide lock and reportment backtracked and rejected Bersih’s pro- edly order a shutdown of the Puduraya bus posal to use Stadium Merdeka. station starting midnight on Friday, along with In addition, Home Minister Datuk Seri closures of major roads in Kuala Lumpur. Hishammuddin Hussein declared on WednesThis is the second mass rally organised by day that Bersih 2.0 is still an illegal organisation. Bersih. Over 50,000 people took part in the Information, Communication and Culture 2007 rally before being dispersed by the police Minister Datuk Seri Rais Yatim said the govern- with water cannons and tear gas. ment would not entertain any application by Bersih 2.0, and that the coalition should hold its rally in stadiums located in Pakatan Rakyat-led states. Roadblocks have been set up around the Klang Valley since Wednesday, and temporary bus permits to travel to Contact Timothy Loh 019-267 4488, Kuala Lumpur have been susIvan Looi 014-936 6698 pended to prevent protesters

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Villagers get 99-year leases AMPANG: A hundred home owners have benefited from Selangor’s Private Residential Ownership Scheme (SPKP) since it was launched a month ago. Among those who received their 99year leasehold titles after paying only RM1,000 were 14 home owners from Kampung Bukit Sungai Puteh. The villagers received their titles from Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim at the village last Saturday.  “I’ve waited 13 to 14 years for this [the land title],” said retiree Mio Zainal Abidin, 50.  Mio said he would not have been able to afford the hefty premium to secure his Khalid presents a leasehold title to a villager as Hulu Langat district officer land title without the SPKP programme. Haris Kasim (left), Lembah Jaya assemblyperson Khasim Abdul Aziz The scheme allows Temporary Oc- (behind) and Ampang Member of Parliament Zuraida Kamarudin (right) cupation of Land (TOL) licence holders look on. to attain leasehold status by paying RM1,000 instead of the full premium. Owners only have to pay the remaining premium when 5A Forms from Khalid. they transfer or sell their properties. They, too, will only need to pay RM1,000 to obtain leaseAnother 13 individuals who paid the full premium prior hold status from district and land offices. to the SPKP scheme also received their titles from Khalid. Among the 193, 115 are from Kampung Bukit Sungai Mazli, 47, paid around RM38,000 for the land premium Puteh, 32 from Kampung Tasek Permai, 13 from Kampung soon after she received her 5A Form last December, having Ampang Campuran and 33 from Kampung Pasir. waited two decades to get the title. Khalid also announced that the state had set aside RM2 “I bought the house when I was single back in 1992, now million for eligible owners who cannot even afford to pay I’m a mother of three and my oldest child is already 14 years RM1,000 to get the titles. of age. But the long wait was worth it,” said Mazli. “They will have to perform community service in return A total of 193 residents from four villages are also looking for the RM1,000. [This is because] land cannot be given free, forward to receiving their land titles after receiving notices for one must obtain it through his/her own effort,” said Khalid.


SELANGOR TIMES ⁄ July 8 – 10, 2011 ⁄ 3


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News July 8 — 10, 2011

Events Sign language courses The Young Men’s Christian Association of Kuala Lumpur will hold introductory sign language courses every Tuesday and Thursday. The classes will be held at 95, Jalan Padang Belia, Kuala Lumpur, from 7.30pm-9pm. For more information, contact 03-22741439, ext 117 or 017-232 0833 (Eeyong) or e-mail eeyong@ ymcakl.com.

Australian High Comm pays courtesy call on state By Alvin Yap

SUBANG JAYA: Australia’s top diplomat here was received by Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim during an official visit at the state secretariat last week.

Australian High Commissioner to Malaysia Miles Kupa also met members of the state executive council, and top civil servants and officials. He was briefed on the state’s welfare programme under Kha-

lid’s administration by the Selangor Economic Planning Unit. After the meeting, which was described by administration officials as “fruitful”, Kupa said: “I want to know more

MTV roadshow The MTV World Stage 2011 roadshow kicks off at e@Curve, Mutiara Damansara tomorrow (July 9) and Sunday from 1pm-6pm. Fans stand a chance of winning free tickets to MTV World Stage Live In Malaysia 2011. For details, visit www.worldstage.mtvasia.com

Talk on hearing loss D’Happy Club Activity Centre for seniors is collaborating with the Hearing Solution Group Malaysia to organise a talk titled “Types of Hearing Loss” at Pusat Community Touch, 124 Jalan SS2/6 Petaling Jaya today (July 8) from 10am. It aims to educate seniors on the causes and symptoms of hearing loss. There will also be free hearing tests. Admission is free. For details, call 012-323 0560 (Christopher Lee)

Art exhibition The Malaysian Institute of Art (MIA) will hold an interior design diploma show titled “Link with Nature” on July 11-July 29 at the MIA Art Gallery, 294-299 Jalan Bandar 11, Taman Melawati, Kuala Lumpur. The gallery is open during weekdays from 11am-5pm and on Saturday from 11am-1pm. It is closed on Sundays and public holidays. Admission is free. For more information, call MIA at 03-4108 8100 or visit www.mia.edu.my.

Hatha yoga Regain equilibrium and balance in life by taking up a three-month hatha yoga course for beginners conducted by experienced instructors at Devine Life Society’s Petaling branch. The course will be held at 16, Jalan 18/16, Taman Kanagapuram off Jalan Klang Lama, Petaling Jaya, on July 11 at 7pm. For details, call 012-278 7409 (Mrs Maheswaran).

Architects’ exhibition The Malaysian Institute of Architects is holding an exhibition at MapKL@Publika in conjunction with Datum:KL 2011 Kuala Lumpur Architecture Festival. It will end on July 18. For details, visit www.datumkl.my.

Premier skills for coaches Football coaches in Malaysia will have an opportunity to work with referees from the English Premier League in an international project titled “Premier Skills”. The courses will be held on July 17-19 in Kuala Lumpur and on July 19-22 at the Garden International School. Entries close on July 10. For details, visit www. britishcouncil.org.my.

Executive councillor Dr Xavier Jayakumar and Khalid presenting a token of appreciation to Kupa.

Kemuning Chinese schools get aid SHAH ALAM: SRJK (C) Chung Hua and SRJK (C) Khe Beng received RM25,000 in financial aid from the state on Wednesday. Representatives from the two Chinese primary schools in Kota Kemuning and Jalan Bukit Kemuning received the donations from Sri Muda assemblyperson Shuhaimi Shafiei. “The state identified the needs and allocated the funds accordingly,” said Shuhaimi. The money was presented to the Parent-Teacher Association (PIBG) of the schools at the office of  Shah Alam city councillor Tan Ah Kow in Kota Kemuning. He said the state government would continue funding schools in Selangor. He explained that economic growth and development were dependent on the younger generation receiving proper education. “We don’t want to make learning and teaching a political battleground. It’s everyone child’s right to have quality education,” he added. Also present were councillor Kamarudzaman Sanusi and Kuala Langat Parti Keadilan Rakyat chief David Cheong.

about the policies and economic planning of Selangor.” He added that a follow-up visit will gather more information on the state’s socioeconomic plans and other welfare programmes. Kupa was also kept abreast of the investment opportunities in the state by Selangor State Investment Centre chief executive officer Datuk Mohd Jabar Ahmad Kembali. Khalid and Kupa also discussed the current political affairs in the country, as well as the relationship between the Pakatan Rakyat state government and Barisan Nasional federal government. During the meeting, Khalid said: “Not all plans by the federal government are rejected by the state if it brings benefit to the majority.” He pointed out that the state administration welcomes ideas and policies from Putrajaya if they are in Selangor’s best interest.

We are community newspaper which focuses on events and happenings in Selangor. If you are interested to join a passionate team of young people bent on contributing to Selangor’s development through the media, join us.

Sales and Marketing Executive

(Basic salary  + allowance + commission) We are looking for young men and women with the following qualities: • Responsible for media sales and marketing activities • Proactive and self motivated • Pleasant disposition with interpersonal skills • Diploma or degree in any discipline • Ability to converse in English and/or Mandarin • Target and sales oriented • Possess own transport • Computer literate • Those with sales experience would be an added advantage • Training and coaching provided.

Accounts cum Administrative Executive • Candidates should have a Diploma or Degree in Accounting or LCCI Higher • Minimum 1 year experience in keeping full set of accounts • Familiar with accounting software – SQL Accounting Software • Computer literate • Able to speak good Bahasa Malaysia and English • Self motivated with good communication skills • Able to work with minimum supervision Job Description • Prepare and submit monthly accounts, billing statements, monthly payroll and expenses statements, prepare and distribute employees monthly pay slips and yearly EA Forms. • Monitor and update staff leave • Other administrative functions as assigned

Wind Band concert The Seri Kembangan Youth (Sky) Wind Band will hold a Sky Wind Premier Concert on July 17. The band will showcase former members of the SMK Seri Kembangan Wind Band. The concert will be held at Auditorium Perdanasiswa Universiti Malaya from 3pm5.30pm. For details, contact 012-325 7108 (Vincent Ng) or 012-944 7132 (Lim Yee Chen).

Attractive remuneration package will commensurate with qualification and experience. Interested applicants must send resume and letter to editor@selangortimes.com PIBG committee members from SRJK (C) Chung Hua with Tan (second right) and Suhaimi (right).

Shortlisted candidates will be notified.


news July 8 — 10, 2011

Outing and shopping event for the elderly By Alvin Yap

SHAH ALAM: Senior citizens reg­ istered with Skim Mesra Usia Emas (SMUE) will get to shop with their RM100 cash vouchers soon. Those who have registered with the scheme have been asked to check their eligibility through their assembly­ persons’ service centres. “I call on senior citizens who have registered with SMUE to check on their eligibility,” said executive councillor Rodziah Ismail. Menteri  Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim will launch the inaugural event on July 15. The Jom ke Supermarket event is part of SMUE’s programme to engage senior citizens and bring them out for social events and gatherings. Rodziah, who is charge of the welfare portfolio, pointed out that the scheme was aimed at helping people in their golden years. Participants will get free rides to hypermarkets of their choice in

Selangor where they will get to buy nutritional food items at subsidised prices with a RM100 cash voucher. The participating stores are Tesco, Giant and Econsafe. The RM100 gift is part of the RM1,000 allocation for each senior citizen in Selangor to participate in welfare programmes. The remaining R M900 will be used for future events. The state initially allocate d RM2,500 to help families of the elderly with their funeral expenses, but they later decided that RM1,000 could be spent while the participants are still alive. Participants will be asked in a survey to decide what kind of events and functions they prefer. Latest figures show that some 170,000 senior citizens have registered, but Rodziah is targeting 250,000 participants. Senior citizens who have not registered can seek help from their assemblypersons.

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Misleading figures on disabled seeking help The Society of the Blind Malaysia (SBM) would like to refer to The Star article titled “Learning to be financially independent”, which appeared in the Metro Perak section on July 5. Though the figure quoted by Deputy Women, Family and Community Development M i n i s t e r He n g S e a i K i e showed an increase in the num­ ber of working disabled receiv­ ing financial assistance from the government for the first six months of 2011 compared to the whole of last year, to say that more disabled persons are working is incorrect. SBM would like to refute this claim. First, there is no uniformity in approving applications from state to state. Approvals de­ pend a lot on the officer in charge. Some of them are very lenient, while others just reject all applications. All recipients must reapply for financial assistance due to the cut-off maximum salary of RM1,200. Hence, the number of recipients applying for fi­ nancial assistance fluctuates

from year to year. Second, due to the rising cost of living, especially in ur­ ban areas, disabled persons who were not willing to apply for assistance in the past are now forced to do so in order to obtain extra income to meet their expenses. Third, as the ceiling for ap­ plying the Elaun Pekerja Cacat (EPC) has been raised from RM750 to RM1,200 a month, more and more working dis­ abled persons are coming for­ ward to take advantage of the scheme. Fourth, each year, more disabled persons leave schools, universities and training cen­ tres, inevitably swelling the ranks of the unemployed. SBM calls upon the govern­ ment to do the following to address unemployment among the disabled: • Enforce the policy of allo­ cating 1% of public sector jobs for the disabled. It is no point having a policy when it is not enforced. Since there are 1.2 million civil servants currently, 1% of the jobs will give the disabled

12,000 jobs. If 12,000 are em­ ployed by the gov­ ernment, SBM believes that more than 4,824 will re­ ceive the EPC from JKM. • The policy should be ex­ tended to the private sector. By doing so, more disabled persons will have opportu­ nities to seek employment. • SBM urges the government to make it mandatory for parents and guardians to register with the Depart­ ment of Social Welfare any disabled child under their care in order to ascertain the number of disabled in Malaysia. This will enable the government and nongovernmental organisations to plan for their needs. Loh Kong Ken Chairperson Communication & Accessibility Committee Society of the Blind in Malaysia


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NEWS JULY 8 — 10, 2011

RM2 mil to improve low-cost flats By Gan Pei Ling

SHAH ALAM: Joint Management Bodies ( JMBs) of 18 low-cost developments earmarked for refurbishment under state’s Restoration Assistance Scheme received offer letters last Saturday. Iskandar Samad said the state is providing RM2 million to aid low-cost flats in repairing broken elevators, leaking roofs and other basic facilities. “The state will pay 80% of the repair cost and the residents will only need to pay the remaining 20%,” said the executive councillor for housing. Iskandar said the funds were allocated because many JMBs could not afford the high repair cost. He pointed out that the cost to fix a broken lift could be as high as RM100,000, depending on the repairs needed. The 18 selected low-cost flats are spread across seven local authorities. Originally, 69 low-cost flats had been offered the forms to apply for aid, but only 31 applied. The final 18 were selected based on their facilities’ level of damage, safety concerns, and needs of residents. The financial strength of the JMBs or management committees was also taken into consideration. Iskandar pointed out that some management bodies had rejected the state’s scheme as they were unwilling to fork out the 20%. When asked why the state is not providing 100% financial assistance, he explained that the government had spent RM1.6 million to restore lifts in three low-cost flats last year, but one of them broke down again not long after due to vandalism.

“When it is given free, people take it for granted,” said Iskandar, who heads the state housing, building management and squatters committee. By asking residents to fork out 20% of the repair cost, the state hopes the people would better appreciate and take proper care of the repaired facilities. Iskandar added that the joint management councils or bodies can pay the 20% by installments. “We’ll make sure each resident will not have to pay more than RM50 per month,” said Iskandar (left) presenting the official offer letters to representatives of low-cost flats the Cempaka assemblyperson. selected to receive monetary assistance. He further said the state would review the scheme upon completion of the 18 projects. is the first time the state is trying to address it holistically,” said Iskandar further said that the state executive council had Alinah. approved the setup of an annual trust fund worth RM7.7 She told Selangor Times that there are over 600 low-cost million to provide aid to other low-cost flats. flats around Selangor, and the scheme is set to improve the He said 61 more low-cost flats will be selected to benefit quality of life of working-class residents. from this fund. This is Selangor’s second initiative to refurbish low-cost Selangor Housing and Property Board (LPHS) executive flats, following an earlier announcement in April that state director Datin Paduka Alinah Ahmad praised the state for investment arm Selangor Development Coporation (PKNS) setting up a pioneering scheme and fund to refurbish low- is spending RM5.2 million to repaint low-cost flats. cost flats. Both are under the state’s Merakyatkan Ekonomi Selangor “In the past, the aid is usually given at an ad hoc basis. This agenda.

JMBs laud Restoration Assistance Scheme SHAH ALAM: Management bodies of lowcost flats are grateful to the state for providing funds to help them repair facilities, some of which have been in disrepair for years. The main challenge ahead is to convince residents to fork out the remaining 20% repair cost so that everyone can enjoy the facilities, they said. Last Saturday, the state announced that it would allocate RM2 million to defray 80% of repair costs for 18 selected low-cost flats. “Without this scheme, we wouldn’t have been able to afford the repair cost,” said Sahar Ab Rahman, who chairs the Joint Management Body ( JMB) from Mawar and Cempaka Apartments in Klang. The group had received an allocation of RM280,000 from the state last Saturday to repair five broken lifts in two blocks of apart- JMB representatives at the state assembly building in Shah Alam last Saturday. Sahar (fourth from left) is the chairperson of Mawar and ments with a total of 619 units. Sahar said three out of the five lifts have Cempaka Apartments in Klang, while Nazeerudin (second from right) been completely down for years, while the is the treasurer from Pendamar 7A Apartment. remaining two are working but need major repairs. residents have to collectively pay RM30,000. “We’ll have to pay 10% of the repair cost (RM35,000) up Nazeerudin highlighted that currently, only around 10% front to demonstrate our commitment to the scheme, but of the 220 households in the nine-storey apartment are paythe state allows us to pay the remaining 10% in installments,” ing their monthly maintenance fees consistently, and the he told Selangor Times. management has had to increase the fees early this year due Sahar said the repair work is expected to commerce once to the low payment rate. they paid the RM35,000 collected from residents. However, some JMBs remain optimistic that residents The first of its kind, Selangor’s Restoration Assistance would support the scheme as it would enable them to enjoy Scheme was set up to provide financial aid to low-cost flats long-broken basic facilities again. to repair broken elevators, leaking roofs and other basic faTham Jiun Shyang, chairperson of Ampang Mewah Apartcilities in a bid to improve the residents’ quality of life. ments’ JMB, said they would inform the residents of the good Also from Klang, Pandamar 7A Apartment JMB treas- news this week. urer Nazeerudin said the “most tedious and hardest part” The group received RM80,000 to repair four rusty would be to convince the residents to pay up. water tanks, and Tham said they would persuade the 428 He said two lifts are expected to be repaired with the state’s units to pay up in order to restore clean water supply to allocation. The state would provide RM120,000, while the their households.

Overwhelming support for affordable homes By Alvin Yap

SHAH ALAM: Over 1,800 applicants have applied for 200 medium-cost homes in Bangi, proving that the state’s scheme to provide affordable homes for those who need them is a success. Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim said the pilot project in Bandar Baru Bangi is slated to be completed in two years, and he hopes the demand will spur property developers into building more medium-cost homes. “I accept that there is market demand for these medium-cost homes in the area in Bangi,” said the Menteri Besar during a press conference at the launch of the affordable homes seminar here on Monday. The homes will be constructed with amenities like parks, playgrounds and open spaces. Khalid pointed out that there is a shortage of affordable homes in the state, especially for families with a household income of RM2,500 to RM5,000. The scheme is geared towards this group as they are not eligible for low-cost homes. “There is growth opportunity in this market. Homes are getting more expensive,” Khalid said. He pointed out that banks have approached the state administration to act as lenders to prospective buyers. He said the development in Bangi is the first phase of the project, which will be followed by other areas in Selangor. Khalid added that the selling price of the dwellings is kept a minimum as the state administration is closely involved with the Selangor Development Corporation (PKNS) to lower costs. He said the state is charging PKNS low land premium rates to build the medium-cost homes. The seminar was held to gather feedback, notably from the House Buyers Association, and architectural and engineering firms. Khalid said the seminar was a success in garnering input from the various groups, with some 200 parties taking part in the debate and discussion.


news

State willing to defray burden of medium-cost housing SHAH ALAM: Selangor is willing to build mediumcost homes on its own if there are no partners from the private sector. Describing housing as paramount and a primary need, state executive councillor Iskandar Samad said it would emulate other governments in the region that build homes for their citizens. “Even a highly capitalist country like Singapore builds close to 90% of houses in the country under the Housing Development Board,” he said. He cited studies undertaken by the Selangor Housing and Realty Board (LPHS) and the House Buyers Association (HBA) that pointed to a shortage of medium-cost housing in the state. The exco for Housing pointed out that many households were caught in the middle-income trap with average wages of RM2,500 to RM5,000. However developers have been keen to build high-end homes, which middle-income families cannot afford. These middle-income families are also not eligible for low-cost housing. “The solution is that the state government must build more medium-cost housing,” Iskandar said. The study also showed that demand for medium-cost homes will be greater than that for low-cost ones. The state is also reviewing its 20:20:10 policy imposed on developers who must build low-cost, medium-lowcost and medium-cost housing according to the ratio. The new policy will be based on market research and demand in an area. As an incentive to make developers build more medi-

um-cost houses, the government will look to reward developers by increasing their plot-ratio density. Iskandar explained that developers might be able to get approval to build more high-end units if they agree to construct more medium-cost houses. The Cempaka assemblyperson was speaking to housing industry professionals during the affordable homes seminar here on Tuesday. He was explaining the state government’s decision to build medium-cost homes under the affordable homes scheme launched recently. The homes will have a floor size of between 750 sq ft and 800 sq ft and fetch a price between RM85,00 and RM100,000. Later, LPHS executive director Datin Paduka Zalinah Ali said her department would vet applicants for the medium-cost homes. She said this is to ensure that applicants who earn middle-income levels will be able to purchase the homes. Applicants must be 35 years and below, and be firsttime housebuyers. Zalinah said those staying in low-cost houses can opt to upgrade to the medium-cost ones. She pointed out that many families staying at low-cost flats are able to move to medium-cost dwellings as they are earning middle-income levels. She said the large number of low-cost units is a result of the mass eviction from villages arising from former Menteri Besar Dr Khir Toyo’s Zero Squatter Policy. It is estimated that 50,000 families were relocated to low-cost flats from 2000 to 2008 under the policy.

PKNS FC tops Premier League

July 8 — 10, 2011

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Know Your Councillor: T Chandra Mohan By Basil Foo

KAJANG: Helping low-cost flat dwellers to set up Joint Management Bodies (JMB) is one of the priorities of T Chandra Mohan. “A major problem affecting low-cost flats is the inability to form a JMB,” says the three-term councillor with the Kajang Municipal Council (MPKj). As a result, many flats are in poor condition because residents do not pay maintenance fees. “The regulations make this more difficult because the JMB has to be formed by property owners. But in most cases, residents in low-cost flats are tenants,” he says. He admits there is no silver bullet to the problem because even flats with JMB face difficulty in getting all residents to pay their maintenance fees. He points out that there are 80,000 flat and condominium units in the municipality, and that the problem is widespread. Chandra has suggested that local councils improve the maintenance of low-cost flats by taking charge of landscaping and grass-cutting services in addition to garbage collection. Another major issue affecting high-rise residents is the lack of

information about the proposal to switch from bulk to individual water meters. Residents of condominiums and flats who continue to use bulk meters do not enjoy the first free 20 cubic metres of water provided by the state. Chandra, who lectures parttime at local colleges, says the most challenging aspect of his job as councillor is bringing about a mindset change. “In my three years as a councillor, I found that some MPKj staff have many reasons for not doing things,” he says. The father of two, who turns 58 in November, enjoys reading and playing badminton in his free time. “My hope for Kajang is an improvement in basic amenities, local infrastructure, better rubbish collection, and a higher quality of life,” he says.

School gets land for expansion By Alvin Yap

Khalid presenting the trophy to PKNS FC.

SHAH ALAM: PKNS Football Club (FC) and its players have received accolades for winning this year’s Premier League football tournament. “PKNS FC players once formed Selangor FC, which was successful nationally. And at any one time, eight to nine Selangor players represented Malaysia,” said Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim. The Menteri Besar congratulated players during a ceremony on Monday. He added that the players had the potential to follow in the footsteps of national legend, the late Mokhtar Dahari, who was once a PKNS FC striker. PKNS FC executive committee member Raja Muhammad Raja Harun said this was one of the team’s best performances with 18 wins, three draws, and one loss in 22 matches. “The players scored 54 goals and con-

ceded five during the league which ran from January and ended last Friday,” he said. He added that they would compete in the Piala Malaysia in September. Having topped the Premier League, which is the second tier of Malaysian football, the club will now play in the top-flight Super League next year. Skipper Fadhil Hashim, who received the Premier League trophy from Khalid, said motivation, teamwork and focus were behind their success. “In my first year [at PKNS FC], we were mid-table, then fifth, then third, and finally champions this year. It was my most memorable year yet,” he enthused. The 28-year-old defender added that he would save his prize money for the future. PKNS won RM200,000 for winning the title.

SHAH ALAM: SR JK(C) Khe Beng , which is bursting at the seams with 1,300 students on a 0.36-hectare site, will soon get land for expansion. “The state has identified a 1.61-hectare site nearby for the school to expand and cater to the educational needs of the community here,” said Shuhaimi Shafie. The Seri Muda assemblyperson said the state would gazette the land for the vernacular Tan (blue shirt) and Shuhaimi (extreme right) looking at school to cater for the proposed engineering plans for the school extension. Kota Kemuning area. He expressed hope MBSA councillor Tan Ah Kow said the the Education Ministry would approve the city council’s one-stop centre had approved plan as the classrooms were already filled plans for the land. to capacity. He said the owner of the land, ParaShuhaimi also announced the formation mount Properties Development, had ceded of a committee to prepare a paper for the the area to the state government. state executive council. “The community in Kota Kemuning, The committee – chaired by Shuhaimi Kemuning Utama, Batu 8 and Taman Sri – will comprise the school’s Parent-Teach- Muda thank the developer for their kind er Association committee members, Shah assistance,” he said. Alam city councillors, and representatives Tan said the community also hopes the from the state Education Board. Education Ministry will speed up their They will also ask state executive coun- request to build the extension. cillors Elizabeth Wong and Dr Xavier Shuhaimi and Tan were speaking to the Jayakumar along with Kota Raja Member press during the handover of allocations to of Parliament Dr Siti Mariah Mahmud to two Chinese schools in Kota Kemuning on act as advisers. Wednesday.


8

News July 8 — 10, 2011

Flat forms JMB to ensure water supply By Brenda Ch’ng

SERI KEMBANGAN: A Joint Management Body ( JMB) will be set up for Anggerik Serdang Lama flats to help residents manage funds and avoid future water supply disruptions. “A JMB is badly needed because the developers management company who is handling the funds isn’t doing a good job,” said councillor Loka Ng. The Subang Jaya Municipal (MPSJ) councillor said a JMB would help residents take responsibility to manage and better maintain their own property. Just last month, the low-cost flat’s water supply was disconnected by Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor (Syabas) for 11 days from June 16-27. This water cut – the fourth one since 2005 – was due to the flat’s outstanding bill payment of RM62,000. On June 27, their water was reconnected after a joint effort by all residents to collect RM26,000 in three days to pay off some of the debt. “Some residents even have to pay three to four months’ maintenance fees in advance,” said Ng. To add on to the RM26,000, Seri Kembangan assemblyperson Ean

Yong Hian Wah allocated an additional RM2,000. According to the management company, this outstanding bill is due to the non-payment of maintenance fees by more than 40% of residents of the 260 units there. Some residents even owe maintenance fees of more than RM7,000, accumulated since 2005 when they moved in. Last year, the management company was only able to collect RM185,083, which helped pay off just half of the flat’s expenses worth RM320,130.

Recently The Star newspaper reported stories of “unfulfilled promises” of the Selangor state government and the promised 25% non-governmental organisation (NGO) councillors appointment. We would firstly like to recognise that after the March 8 2008 General Election, the Pakatan Rakat (PR)-led state governments are definitely more inclusive than its predecessor, and the democratic space is much wider. Consequently, local councillors are closer to the people, and the public is more empowered to participate in the development of their own communities. We would like to also state in no unclear terms that Conpac continues to applaud the PR state governments for the achievements in this short term of a little more than three years in governance. Some examples include the revival of the local village council ( JKKK) elections, and upcoming MBPJ Local Council Elections. These achievements are great leaps in comparison to the 54-year track record of the Barisan Nasional (BN) government, who has never even considered inviting members of civil society organisations to participate in governance, and instead always sidelined and labelled NGOs as troublemakers. We strongly call upon the federal government to follow this example set by the PR-led Selangor and Penang governments to revive local council elections in all states. Incidentally it was the BN government that removed local council elections in 1964. We also urge MCA Deputy Chairperson Datuk Teh Kim Poo, who called for the resignation of Selangor exco member in charge of local government Ronnie Liu to resign, to firstly assess their own BN track record before pointing the accusing finger at another. Furthermore, Selangor MCA Public Services and Complaints Bureau chief Datuk Theng Book, who said the “Pakatan government should come clean during the assessment of the 288 councillors in August”

As of May this year, the total collected was RM58,429, while total expenses amounted to RM123,644. In short, the flat’s accumulated liabilities since 2005 amount to RM466,269. To help ease the burden of residents, the developer is applying for the coupon entitling each household to 20 cubic meters of free water from the state. This coupon worth RM11.40 will be given out to all residents on a monthly basis, which can help reduce their debt by RM35,568 every year.

Ean Yong and Ng with some residents in front of Pangsapuri Anggerik.

Open burning in Sumatra to blame for haze By Alvin Yap

Selangor, Penang governments more inclusive should also look into their own “backyard” before making weak attempts to project an image of being transparent and accountable. Conpac will continue to engage in dialogue with the Selangor government to address the issue of local councillor appointments and local council elections. Our stand remains: • 25% allocation for local council seats must be for those who are not card-carrying members of political parties. They must have a track record of working in civil society and possess the relevant professional skills and experience to serve as a councilor. If this allocation cannot be fulfilled, then openly declare the achievable percentage of independent NGO/professional councilors in the final lineup. • If local councilors continue to be appointed, then the Coalition for Good Governance (CGG) should have its representation in the state government’s selection committee, which compiles the list of potential NGO/professional candidates. • Ultimately, we support the adoption of local council elections expressed by the Selangor and Penang governments and hope to see its realisation in the next term of local councillors. In any administration, there will always be “sensitive issues” to be worked out, and the practice of “criticism and self criticism” is one of the basic tenets of an active and true democracy. Tan Jo Hann Conpac chairperson and MPSJ councillor

SHAH ALAM: The haze that Selangor and other parts of the west coast have been experiencing is due to open burning in Sumatra, Indonesia. A low-level haze has been blanketing the skies over some parts of the west coast, notably areas in Perak, Selangor and Negeri Sembilan. “There’s open burning in Sumatera and the wind is blowing the smoke directly at parts of Selangor,” said state executive councillor Elizabeth Wong. She released satellite pictures that showed hotspots in the eastern parts of the island, and wind direction that was causing the smoke to drift across to Peninsular Malaysia. The state executive councillor for Environment pointed out that the region was encountering a dry spell that could last until September. Wong warned the public to refrain from taking advantage of the dry season to carry out open-burning activities. She pointed out that the dry weather could exacerbate even the smallest fire, turning it into a conflagration.

The Bukit Lanjan assemblyperson said the hotspots in Johan Setia were vulnerable to uncontrolled fires as the land is composed of peat soil. Johan Setia in the Klang-Banting area has been a thorn in the side of the state government for many years due to open burning that takes place there. The Klang Municipal Council (MPK) and the Selangor Department of Environment (DOE) have been directed to carry out aroundthe-clock monitoring and surveillance of the area. “They will be our early warning system to check on open burning,” Wong explained. She said other hotspots have been located in the Kuala Langat area, and the district council there will work closely with MPK and the DOE to enforce the open-burning ban. Wong said 28 compound fines, amounting to RM56,000, have been issued to parties guilty of conducting open burning. Thirteen cases have been successfully prosecuted, while another 11 are awaiting trial. The Air Pollutant Index registered a “moderate” quality reading on Wednesday.

Open-tender policy up for debate next week SHAH ALAM: Allegations raised against Selangor’s open-tender policy will be answered and debated in the five-day state assembly sitting which starts on Monday. “I will give a current report on the tenders given out so far, along with the total costs, and to whom,” said Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim on Wednesday. The Menteri Besar was responding to allegations by MCA that there were no open tenders for 44 infrastructure projects amounting to RM143 million. MCA Public Services and Com-

plaints Department head Datuk Theng Book said there were no advertisements in any media for the projects that were given out. “State lawmakers are welcome to ask questions on the procedures. We want to show that after we took power, the procedures have been transparent and above board,” said Khalid during a press conference. Khalid said he welcomes the chance to clear the air. He also hoped that MCA will use the same sitting to give an account of its own finances.


VIEWS JULY 8 — 10, 2011

Whither BN’s logic? wit pleasure Lee Hwok Aun

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hen Nick Leeson, the infamous rogue trader, was convicted in 1995, his lines of defensce did not include “I lost money, how could I have committed fraud?” When professional cyclist Bernard Kohl was found guilty of doping in the Tour de France, he did not plead: “I didn’t win the race, how could I have cheated?” Such unreason would not have held in any upstanding court of law. The argument that I did not cheat because I did not eventually profit – in fact, I lost – is pure nonsense, a slimy attempt to deflect attention from the crime, a septic pander for pity. The use of unfair tactics concerns the process, not the outcome – the rules of engagement, not the products. Too bad Leeson and Kohl were not in the courts of Umno-BN. They could have been guilt-freed by the stroke of a ministerial pen. In the buildup to the rally on July 9 for free and fair elections, a familiar claim is being shoved at Malaysians, while the crackdown on the movement’s leaders continues. Our electoral system cannot be unfair. Why, if it were unfair, how could Barisan Nasional lose some to Pakatan Rakyat? As PM Najib Razak insisted on June 26th: “Barisan does not manipulate the election. If we do, why should we want to lose four states to the opposition?” (Actually, BN lost five states in the March 2008 general elections, but that miscount is another story.) BN propagates an insane logic to justify its brutal tactics. I wish they would not; it is embarrassing the nation, exacerbating “brain drain”, and

Teohlogy patrick teoh

F

dumbing down our human resources. And it actually stunningly backfires. Consider the PM’s argument. Basically, he says manipulation equals victory. So, absence of BN victory in four states proves there is no manipulation. All is fair. Ah, but if you claim the above as valid, the converse must also be valid. Therefore, victory by the BN in eight states proves there is manipulation. All is unfair. Some might like to pounce on this own goal, but I don’t want to go in that direction. The dubious and devious flaw of the entire BN argument is that it completely and willfully ignores issues of electoral processes, which have nothing to do with who wins and who loses, and which are precisely what the protest is all about. Are our elections free and fair enough? Numerous Malaysians do not think so, among them nonpartisan, concerned and critically minded citizens. At this point a voice from the corridors of power attempts to distract by retorting, “Isn’t participating in the rally part of the opposition’s quest to gain power?” Well, yes. But isn’t putting down the rally part of the government’s quest to retain power? Yes, indeed. Again, nobody wins. It’s the process by which political alliances fight for power that we are concerned about at this time. On this front, some contrasts are clear. One side campaigns for freer and fairer electoral process and democratic reforms, not for the overthrow of past results; the other side insists the process is free and fair, represses that campaign, and blusters that the only way for citizens to express their voice is at the ballot box. Wherever one stands on the political spectrum, isn’t it better for parties to make commitments to democratic causes before elec-

tions take place, so that if they win they are accountable to deliver on those issues? What is on the list of demands to make elections freer and fairer? Some, like cleaning up the electoral roll, reforming postal ballots, and longer campaign periods, are issues that have been advocated for a long time. Others, like the use of indelible ink, are reminders of broken promises. More broadly pertaining to democracy than just elections, the calls to strengthen public institutions, curb corruption and stop dirty politics have been voiced by people of various political persuasions. All, except the ink one, are features of democratic free and fair elections generally

9

practised in all high-income countries. Highincome countries also allow peaceful public demonstrations, in which the role of the police is to preserve order and safeguard the right to assembly and freedom of thought. I believe democracy holds intrinsic value, regardless of its effects on economic growth; but at the same time, we cannot ignore the fact that high-income countries democratised before, not after, they attained high-income status. As people earn more, they simply expect more. The better thing for this nation is to have the electoral process cleaned and democracy deepened so that election results – whoever wins and whoever loses – are more legitimate in the eyes of reasonable and informed people.

The Great Clean-up

or the past week or more the whole of the Klang Valley has been quavering with excitement, fear, anger, frustration and maybe a little despair.People have been arrested. Threats have been issued by both government and normally level-headed Malaysians. Balai Polis stores are bulging at the seams from overstocking of bright yellow t-shirts which everybody wants but cannot have. After all they’re perfectly good shirts. 100% cotton some more. But the Home Minister has declared that the t-shirts are illegal. Although he never said under which law he was declaring the t’s illegal. But of course this is Malaysia and the Home Minister, or any minister for that matter, never needs to really explain his/her actions. To anybody. “You gave us the mandate ma. So you just relax. We do everything for you. Sure good one okay?” Anyway, the reason for all the buzz happening the past few days is a march. Some call it a rally. Others a demonstration. And still others an attempt to topple the government. And some overly dramatic ones insist on it being a war against the King! Which I think it is a bit severe la. Still some others say it is a civil society movement that’s been hijacked by political highwaymen. Which is something worth thinking about. Anyway…  By the time you read this more people might have been put in jail. Either for wearing yellow t-shirts or for walking along a certain route on a certain day. Or just simply for wanting to say something in some way that will be heard by someone. Pessimists say that after the march/rally/demonstration/ whatever life in Malaysia will be changed forever. For better or worse. Optimists say that a lot of Malaysians in the Klang Valley are just going to end up with too much food stocked up in the larder. And that life in Malaysia will be changed forever. For the better. Whatever happens, as I write this a week away from the BIG Yellow day, the buzz, at least in the Klang Valley, is all about the big Clean. But elsewhere, my Penang cousin just

emailed to ask why so many people have changed their profile photo in Facebook to yellow. And my old school chum in Ipoh is wondering why he’s been advised to postpone his trip to visit his family in KL to a later date. And even in the Klang Valley I dare say that quite a few of us are losing track of what the big day is about. No? Yeah we all know about the eight demands made of the Elections Commission. All very good. As things should be in a democratic country. Especially after that big screw-up over in Borneo when our Prime Minister openly offered the electorate millions IF they voted for his candidate.  And of course we have heard the jokes about general elections being good for members of the rakyat who have lost loved ones to the netherworld because these departed souls get resurrected. At least on election days. And none of the demands made are political in nature. So the confusion sets in when political parties and personalities begin to claim ownership of the event. Just as much as the government has caused widespread concern about the safety and security of the event, this political hijacking has caused many Malaysians to be a little wary about the blurred objectives of the event. In any case, it is a confusing time. Are we not conforming to the law which clearly states that freedom of assembly is our right as citizens of Malaysia? If so, why is the government reacting the way they are? The latest news is that even the Yang DiPertuan Agung, our beloved King, has come out and said that the rally will cause more bad than good. Why ah? All we the people want to do is to be heard. So we have eight demands which we want to hand over to the King at his palace. So just accept and look into the demands la. What is so bad about that? And so far all the violence seems to be done by the authorities. Threats, arrests and strong words calculated to intimidate the citizens of the country who are just trying to exercise their basic right enshrined in the Constitu-

tion. If that also cannot, then what good is the Constitution? And as I finish this column I read that the organisers have said that they will try and get an audience with the King and then abide by whatever decision His Majesty makes. Also the Prime Minister has announced that the rally will be allowed to take place in a stadium. Aiyoh! This is soooo confusing la. But one thing is sure. Both Najib and his cousin have helped to popularise the rally to an extent which I am sure the organisers themselves have not dared to hope for. And I suppose for that we all owe a debt of gratitude to the YBs. So whatever happens or doesn’t happen this weekend, Malaysians have proven a point. We are not apathetic. We love our country. We want to be involved in its development. Hidup Malaysia! STOP PRESS!!! Now they have decided to accept the Prime Minister’s offer and rally in a stadium and stay off the streets, after an audience with the King. A lot of people, especially wives and mothers, are heaving huge sighs of relief chorused by all the shopkeepers and taxi drivers who have been belly-aching about the loss of income and whatnot. But that also raises more questions. So now will the Home Minister and the police issue a permit to allow it to happen? Then if they do, it will raise another question about why it has suddenly become UN-illegal. And will all those flers who were arrested be able to sue for wrongful arrest? And now somebody will probably want to start another rally to CLEAN up that mess. Woo hoo! What a wonderful country we live in. And I have managed to write this whole thing without mentioning the name of this thing that we are not supposed to talk about. Good and CLEAN leh. Good hor? Wait a minute…after this audience with the Agong and the agreement to move the rally into a stadium can we mention the word now? And wear yellow t-shirts again? Hiyoh! Confused la.


Insight

10 July 8 — 10, 2011

By Gan Pei Ling

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Cleani

ommunist threat. Foreign agents. Foreign Christian funding. These are some of the labels the Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections (Bersih 2.0) has been given by the police and mainstream print and broadcast media. Made up of 62 non-governmental organisations, Bersih 2.0 was also declared “illegal” by the Registrar of Society on July 2. Bersih 2.0 has been made out to be a malicious group out to create chaos in the lead up to the July 9 rally. In an effort to thwart the rally, the police have arrested 235 people as of July 7, including state and national lawmakers, for wearing yellow attire or allegedly campaigning for Bersih 2.0. The federal government had initially softened its stance and offered Bersih 2.0 to hold its rally in a stadium after the King’s intervention to cool rising tension between the authorities and the government Demonstration against the Malayan Union staged by thousands of on Sunday. Bersih 2.0 had accepted the offer Malays in 1946. (All archival pics courtesy of Fahmi Reza) after meeting the King on Tuesday and had chosen Stadium Merdeka as their new venue. However, the government would backtrack on its promise and reject Bersih 2.0’s proposed venue. In addition, Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein declared that Bersih 2.0 is still outlawed even if the group has met with the King. Disappointed, Bersih 2.0 said it would still hold its rally at Stadium Merdeka on Saturday at 2pm “in an orderly fashion to call for clean and fair elections” in a statement issued late Wednesday night. Selangor Times spoke to its steering committee members Datuk Dr Toh Kin Woon and Andrew Khoo to find out the reasons behind Bersih 2.0’s determination to hold the rally despite the authorities’ continous Umno protested against the Malayan Union in Perak in 1946. crack down. Written in Jawi on the placard: “Raja Dan Rakyat Patut  When we disco Toh is a retired academic and currently the mands that we put forward to the EC instead. Bersatu, Umno Setapak, Kuala Lumpur”. Photo taken in 1946-47. tions during the Sara chairperson of cultural education organisation Are they not valid? were very disappoin LLG Cultural Development Centre, while Khoo is a lawyer from the But how could PR have won five states in wanted to get our me Malaysian Bar. the 2008 General Election if our elections That’s why we’re hol want the EC to act were rigged? Bersih 2.0 claims to be an Toh: It’s inaccurate to conclude that our stop corruption and nonpartisan alliance, but electoral system is fine just because PR won Barisan Nasional (BN) five [out of the 13] states in the last gen- Khoo: And why n politicians and even the eral elections. There was massive support for dum to the PM? M Election Commission them, so even though the electoral roll was that according to o have accused the July 9 not clean, the campaign period was shorter members of the EC rally to be a political ploy than desirable, and there were the usual by the King withou of Pakatan Rakyat (PR) abuses of state-owned machineries [by BN], PM. The King on to create public dissent and monetary inducements, among others, Conference of Rule and gain momentum PR managed to win. They have won despite members to the EC confidence. prior to the next general the defects in our electoral system. That’s one of th elections. What is Bersih   But you can’t deny that our electoral 2.0’s connection to PR? system continues to be tilted in favour to- handing the mem Toh: Let’s make it clear, wards the ruling coalition. For example, the You see, unlike the we don’t side with anybody. print and broadcast media always devote the PM is not allow We will criticise anyone, be disproportionate amount of coverage and appointment of EC it BN or PR component advertisements for BN. And with the short a conflict of interes   Where electio parties. That’s what we campaigning period, opposition parties often meant when we declared don’t have enough time to put their messages EC’s status is eleva institutions includ that Bersih 2.0 will stay across to the public. Report on the rulers’ boycott of the Malayan Union dated April 2, 1946 in The This means that the people cannot make that the judiciary Malaya Tribune. Inset: A anti-Malayan Union picture from a Form Three history book above partisan politics. We’ve 14 steering com- informed choices because they are usually arm of the executiv published in 1979. mittee members, including exposed to only one side of the argument, while the constituti the chairperson (Datuk S) [except for those who have access to the recommends to th Ambiga herself, leading online media]. We would like to see the appointed as judge Bersih 2.0. All of us are development of healthier elections in our senior members of from civil society, and none country, where there’s a level playing field the person who reco of us are holding leadership for contesting political parties, with equal appointment of EC position in any political space provided for parties to debate on poli- PM and his coalitio in the elections, I t parties. cies and issues.   When we decided to  The election outcome will only be an ac- the PM is prevented relaunch Bersih last year, curate expression of the popular will if we’ve appointment proce we decided that it will be an informed electorate.   Can the PM and led by civil societies’ leaders only. Although we wel- But why is Bersih 2.0 submitting the interfere in the se come political parties, be memorandum to the King instead of, say, didates before th submitted to the it from BN or PR, to join the EC directly or the Prime Minister? us in our struggle for elec- Toh: We met with the EC not long after the Khoo: They shou toral reforms, we’ll always re-launch. To be fair, the EC did invite us to constitutional. Any remain nonpartisan and Putrajaya for a dialogue and we submitted needs to respect th will not take instructions a memorandum listing our short, medium impartial conducto from political parties. and long-term demands to the EC. We said ernment should be  We’re only fighting for we would like to meet them again in January when it comes to e fair and free elections, if to follow up and see if they were acting on not the other way a   The EC should anyone wants to challenge our demands, but the second meeting never Capt Gammans’s visit to Malaya in 1946 from The Malay Mail. ment what to do. us, challenge the eight de- materialised.

misco


ing up

onceptions

overed the electoral violaawak elections in April, we nted with the EC, and we essage across to the public. lding a peaceful walk. We t against these violations, d dirty politics.

not submit the memoranMany people don’t realise our Federal Constitution C are actually appointed ut consultation with the ly needs to consult the ers to ensure he appoints C that will enjoy public

he reasons Bersih 2.0 is morandum to the King. e appointment of judges, wed to intervene with the C members as there’ll be st. ons are concerned, the ated above other public ding the judiciary. Note is considered an equal ve, so it is significant that ion provides that the PM he King who should be es (in consultation with f the judiciary), he is not ommends to the King the C members. And since the on are one of the players think it is only right that d from intervening in the ess.

d ruling government election of the EC canhe final selection list is King? uld not. It would be uny government of the day he work of the EC as an or of elections. The gove subservient to the EC election-related matters, around. d be telling the governAny recommendations

From left: Ambiga talking to national laureate A Samad Said and Kota Damansara assemblyperson Dr Nasir Hashim during the launch. (Pic courtesy of Andrew Khoo)

by the EC to improve our electoral system shouldn’t be treated as mere suggestions the government can ignore. For example, if the EC wants indelible ink to be used in elections, the government should get it done. In India, the EC tells the government what to do and has openly criticised their prime minister’s party for cheating in the elections.  Our constitution gives the EC an elevated status compared to other public institutions in the country in election matters. It is supposed to be independent. Many people don’t realise the proper roles our EC could and should play, including the EC members themselves. You mean the EC should be bolder than it is now? Khoo: Yes, it definitely shouldn’t act like a government department. Unlike Singapore, which only has an Election Department, Malaysia has a proper Election Commission to conduct elections. It should be consulting both the ruling government and opposition parties on ways to improve the electoral process. And it should not just recommend the mainstream media to be fair to all political parties, the EC should name and shame the newspapers and broadcasting stations that are biased in their reporting. Also, during elections the ruling government should go into caretaker mode. In India, Canada, Australia and elsewhere, the ruling government is not allowed to announce any new policy or spending measures during the campaign period to sway voters. But in Malaysia, the government of the day can promise various projects, often using emergency allocations. We cannot stress enough the importance for the EC to be impartial in carrying out its duties and calling out the cheating parties to ensure a level playing field for all parties. Bersih had organised a rally previously in 2007, but nothing seems to have changed since then, so why march again? What’s the significance of this second rally? Toh: Any struggle for [political reforms] is a long-term struggle. Like the struggle for the abolition of the ISA (Internal Security Act, which allows for detention without trial), the

UUCA (Universities and University Colleges Act which restricts tertiary students’ political freedom), the PPPA (Printing Presses and Publications Act which curtails media freedom) … These struggles have been going on for decades, but the struggle goes on as long as the goals are not attained.  We will continue our struggle until we’ve fair and free elections in our country. And we believe if there is massive public support for the July 9 rally, then the ruling government and the EC will have to respond. How is Bersih 2.0 going to make sure the rally remain peaceful? Toh: We’re stationing 5,000 crowd marshals to ensure the march remains peaceful and steer clear of any provocation. Volunteer doctors will be on standby as well. If you look at past rallies, such as the recent ones organised against Lynas in Kuantan, or those held by human rights or women’s groups, there have been no untoward incidents. We cannot speak for those with other ulterior motives, but for ourselves, we believe that Malaysians are peace-loving people. Also, holding peaceful walks is part and parcel of a healthy democracy. It is a common practice in democratic countries, business goes on as usual and nobody gets hurt. If the federal government wants Malaysia to be a first-world country, then it needs to provide the space for dissenting views to be heard. If thousands of people can gather peacefully for a cause in other cities, why not in KL? We’re appealing to the police to work together with us, to help us regulate traffic and make sure nobody creates trouble. Malaysians abroad are holding simultaneous rallies on July 9 in support of Bersih 2.0’s demands for free and fair elections in 30 cities including London, Seoul, Sydney, Osaka, Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York.

Rallies are part of our history hen arguing against allowing the public to hold peaceful W assembly on the streets, the Barisan Nasional-led government had often claimed that protest is not a Malaysian culture.

However, historians would tell you otherwise. “The Malays demonstrated when the British tried to implement the Malayan Union,” Prof Emeritus Tan Sri Dr Khoo Kay Kim (pic) told Selangor Times in a phone interview. Then Umno president Datuk Onn Jaafar and other leaders had led the anti-Malayan Union demonstrations of 1948, which successfully compelled the British colonial government to reverse its policies. In a bid to debunk the myth that protest is not a “Malaysian practice”, self-taught historian and artist Fahmi Reza also collected scanned photos of protests by the people in Malaya and newspaper reports on the demonstrations in the 1940s. Even the Malay Sultans have protested against the Malayan Union by boycotting the appointment ceremony of the Malayan Union Governor Sir Edward Gent, based on a report in The Malaya Tribune dated April 2, 1946. In The Malay Mail dated May 27, 1946, British officer Capt Gammans, who was on an unofficial visit to Malaya commented that he had an “amazing journey” travelling from Johor to Kuala Lumpur. “At every kampong from Johore Bahru to Kuala Lumpur large crowds of Malays, men, women and children, have lined the roads protesting most vigorously against the Malayan Union proposals. “In some towns such as Batu Pahat and Muar, there have been mass demonstrations running into thousands of people. And what has interested me the most is to find that Malay women, who in my day took no part in public affairs at all, making speeches,” he said in the 1946 report. Another historian, Farish A Noor, noted that historically, demonstrations have taken place in Malaysia during the colonial era over issues ranging from citizenship rights to the status of Muslim marriage law. “In almost all cases, anti-colonial demonstrations were deemed a security threat by the colonial government, but that was not a surprise to anyone. “What is surprising is perhaps how the post-colonial government still thinks that demonstrations are potentially dangerous,” said Farish in an email interview. However, Khoo did caution that potential clashes may occur if three different parties Bersih 2.0, Umno Youth and Perkasa do march on the same day. “It’s better to take precaution,” said Khoo.

During the Bersih 2.0 rally launch on June 19, supporters held up placards describing the coalition’s eight demands to achieve free and fair elections: Clean the electoral roll; reform postal ballots; use indelible ink; allow free and fair access to media; set a minimum 21-day campaign period; strengthen public institutions; stop corruption; and stop dirty politics. (Pic courtesy of Andrew Khoo)


VIEWS 12 JULY 8 — 10, 2011

How protests made me a Malaysian

As Lord Bobo’s minions busy themselves bailing people out, we interrupt our usual Ask Lord Bobo column to attempt to answer a crucial question: Is living in fear the Malaysian way of life?

By Yin Shao Loong

A

bout 13 years ago I lost my protest virginity on the streets of Kuala Lumpur. Like many other Malaysians of the Reformasi generation, I was deflowered in a mass crowd under assault from Federal Reserve Unit troops in the shadows of the Twin Towers. It was actually a two-for-one loss of innocence. I had been attending the Asia-Pacific Peoples’ Assembly (Appa) at the Federal Hotel, had my first taste of Special Branch officers, with their awkward moustaches and unfashionable leather jackets, as well as my first taste of Malaysian activism. The week-long conference culminated in a protest for migrant worker’s rights outside KLCC. Conveniently enough, a Reformasi protest was scheduled around the other side building. They seemed to be daily affairs back then. Prior to the event, I remembered weighing up the merits of going to the Appa protest. Early jitters, no doubt. I asked an old schoolmate, now head of Umno Youth, what he thought. He cautioned me that the government could be vicious and without mercy towards demonstrators. He gave me the impression that he feared the consequences of going and that it would be unwise for me to attend. However, fear was precisely the reason that I did attend. Like my schoolmate, I had lived much of my life outside of Malaysia, due to my father’s career. At the age of eight, I was belatedly informed (or reminded) by my parents that I was Malaysian and not British, as I thought, and that I had a national language to learn. Thus began my acquaintance with Sang Kancil books and Bahasa Malaysia. So I entered a world of mousedeer and jungle capers while I went to school in a wintry land. I had very little conception of what Malaysia was like aside from the rare trip for family matters. One thing I did learn quickly when we moved back a year later was fear. Fear of the government. Fear of the government such that when criticism was voiced – and that was frequent enough – my parents would drop their voices, even whilst in the four walls of our home. Maybe they had good reason to do so, because when I was 10 our house in Jesselton Heights in Penang was raided by police one Friday evening on the pretext of investigating reports of “gambling and prostitution”. If you are at all familiar with Penang real estate, you will know that Jesselton Heights is not exactly the most wretched hive of scum and villainy on the West Coast. Fifteen or so officers tore through our home, finding nothing, and left us bewildered and frightened in their wake. My father didn’t know why until sometime later. Those were Operasi Lalang days, and prior to the raid my dad had cheerfully agreed to fill in as chairman for a talk by Lim Kit Siang to a group of doctors. The previous chairman had seen the souring political trend and had decided that getting my father to take over was better than valour. Operasi Lalang helped confirm my parents’ fears that the government was repressive, brutish, and intolerant of dissent and criticism. I grew up with the belief that, aside from enthusiastic gastronomy and an overweening obsession with race, an integral

Bersih rally in 2007.

part of being Malaysian was fear. Those that spoke up got locked up, the rest lived their lives in quiet fear and anxious expectation of the next mall opening. Years later as a young adult, I found that I had little respect for what I thought of as the quiet desperation of the “Malaysian Way of Life”. Having studied overseas much of my life, my national loyalties were tenuous, and they were encouraged to be such. I felt little empathy for what I thought were a frightened, cowed people. That all changed in 1998 when I protested outside of KLCC. Suddenly, at Appa and in Reformasi, I had found thousands of other Malaysians who weren’t afraid to show their dissatisfaction, their anger, their outrage at injustices. These were Malaysians who weren’t content to lie down and let the politicians and their cronies walk all over them. These were Malaysians I could respect, and more importantly, identify with. And with that, on the streets of KL, protesting against a cruel government, I found my nationality, my Malaysian-ness. I found courage, not just in myself, but in my countrymen and countrywomen. To hell with finding a secure career in some “developed country”. My place was here. Though studies and work took me around the world, to more protests in London, New York, New Delhi, the Hague, Johannesburg, Bali, Porto Alegre, and beyond, I never lost sight of my goal to return to Malaysia and work alongside those brave women and men who were committed to making this country, our country, better. Am I going to the Bersih gathering? Hell, yes. Am I going to wear yellow? Absolutely. Am I scared? Some nervous anticipation, sure. But, one can’t be brave until one has tasted fear. In a country famed for its melange of flavours, the taste of fear is the one flavour I like least in Malaysian life. The

taste of freedom and fairness is too rare here, but it is one that I will chase until the end of my days. I am so proud and encouraged that there are so many who share the same hunger. This article first appeared on loyarburok.com on July 4. Yin Shao Loong works as an environmental policy adviser with the Selangor government. Have a question for Lord Bobo? Call on His Supreme Eminenceness by emailing asklordbobo@loyarburok. com, with your full name and pseudonym (if you want), or tweeting your questions by mentioning @LoyarBurok and using the hashtag #asklordbobo.


By William Tan

PETALING JAYA: A silent walk in the night illuminated by 100 candle- or lamp-carrying participants was held at 1Utama Central Park last Saturday to raise awareness on children with special needs. Organised by Raise Voice @ Dignity and Services Bhd, the walk was a symbolic gesture by members of the public along with various non-governmental organisations that work with such children. “I aimed to replicate that feeling when we go to bed, when we take our troubles into that darkness, that silence, hoping for a change to happen,” said event organiser Rebecca Jane Thomas.

news13 July 8 — 10, 2011

Lighting the darkness for change

Leading up to the walk was a day of booths and performances to help raise funds as well as showcase the talents of these special children. Rebecca, who is a private educator for slow learners, said there isn’t enough done by the government, the public or even parents to help these children. “We don’t even have proper numbers of how many of them are out there,” she said. Many of them Signing a banner in support of special-needs are denied their bachildren.

sic rights to education or fair employment, occasionally even hidden away by ashamed parents, she said. Rebecca added that they have no safety net; they are misunderstood, bullied, ridiculed and outright discriminated by the public. Thus, such events are critical in proving that they are indeed talented, and have a voice and a right to be understood. A champion of the movement, Brian John Yim, was present with Malaysia’s first autistic children’s choir. “ We would have gotten the world’s first if Guinness [Book of Records] had a disability category,” said the performing and recording artist.

Participants during the walk at 1Utama Central Park.

He said his choir was proof that one should not underestimate these children, as many of them are truly gifted, perhaps more so than the average child. Despite the difficult training process he has to undergo with each child, he said it all pays off when he sees the joy of their parents. Eventually, the artist hopes to open up his own Music Dream Centre to reach out to more children and promote awareness on autism. Raise Voice @ Dignity and Ser-

vices Bhd is an affiliate of Dignity and Services, an advocacy movement for persons with learning and intellectual disabilities. Raise Voice was established in May this year, and has raised up to RM 10,500 through sponsorships and events, which it will channel into spreading awareness, requesting for rights, and creating job opportunities for children with special needs. For more information, visit http://dignityandservices.blogspot. com.

Blood donations held ahead of fasting month By Basil Foo

Teng (in pink) with volunteers at the blood donation drive in Klang Parade last Sunday.

KLANG: A blood donation drive was held here last Sunday to boost supply in blood banks ahead of Ramadan. The event was run by volunteers led by Datuk Teng Chang Khim. “There is usually a shortage of blood during that time as Muslims cannot donate during the fasting month,” said Sungai Pinang assemblyperson. The state speaker, along with supporters who call themselves Rainbow Volunteers, held the donation drive at Klang Parade. The blood supply was sent to

Tengku Ampuan Rahimah Hospital in Klang. The programme was part of the group’s monthly efforts for charity. “Previously we cleaned up a field Lee (left) with a nurse from the Klang in Taman Eng General Hospital. Ann, visited an orphanage for Mother’s Day, event of disasters like floods or and visited an old folk’s home fires. for Father’s Day,” said Teng. Lee Teck Hao, a 20-year-old He added that the Rainbow student, said this was the fourth Volunteers, which has about 50 time he had donated blood. permanent members, would also “I’m glad to be able to help,” serve as a relief group in the he said.

Pilot parking project underway in USJ By Brenda Ch’ng

Rajiv showing some of the parking lots drawn in a side alley.

SUBANG JAYA: Sixteen additional parking lots have been drawn up in two side alleys in USJ 9, as part of pilot project to determine if the move can solve parking woes at the commercial centre. Public support for the move by the Subang Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ) will determine if 300 additional parking lots will be drawn up in other alleys here. “If the majority of feedback received is positive, MPSJ will add 300 more parking spaces in both back alleys and side lanes, in stages,” said MPSJ councillor R Rajiv. There is no timeframe set yet for

this pilot project, but the council hopes residents will respond promptly so that they can carry on with the next phase. The proposal for the additional 300 spaces was approved by the council at the end of last year. “This is the only logical next step to take to help end double parking in the commercial area,” said Rajiv. Rajiv reiterated the need for additional parking here because the current parking spaces are all taken up by shop owners and workers, leaving none for patrons. He hopes that the implementation of side-lane parking will be supported by all residents to help ease congestion in the busy area.


News 14 July 8 — 10, 2011

Underground pipes blamed for roadworks delay

A meeting was held concerning the issue between JKR, the Selayang Municipal Council and Hasan in June.

By Khaulah Azwar

GOMBAK: Delays in road upgrading works, which caused part of Jalan Kampung Sungai Pusu to erode, were blamed on underg round cables that were not moved in time. “We have been waiting for Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) to remove three underground cables,” said Public Works Department ( JKR) Gombak district officer Norfariza Ramli. She said JKR had sent two notice letters to TNB on May 31 and June 21 on the issue but has yet to receive a response. She said if the cables were moved, JKR could direct their appointed contractors, Fiber Fiber Connavative Sdn Bhd, to continue with their work. “Previously, during a site visit with JKR, TNB and the contractors, it was agreed that the underground cables were getting in the way of the road upgrading works,”

she said. The road upgrading works began last November and were slated to be completed by March 21, but were delayed due to the presence of the cables. State executive councillor Datuk Hasan Ali, whose portfolio includes Infrastructure and Public Amenities, said he hoped the delay would be resolved quickly. “The delay not only inconveniences road users, but the collapse also causes residents here to fear for their safety,” he said. He said if the issue was not settled soon, JKR should charge TNB with paying compensation for the section of road that eroded into a nearby river. The Gombak Setia assemblyperson further said the RM2 million project, which was awarded by the state, should not be done carelessly. “A new date should be set to complete the road works speedily without sacrificing quality,” Hasan added.

Lights on for evening activities at MPSJ stadium SUBANG JAYA: Lights are being turned on nightly at the Subang Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ) stadium to enable the public to use the field from 7pm to 9.30pm. Since last week, one in four floodlights is being switched on every evening. “Only one light is turned on because it is bright enough to light up the whole area. Plus it conserves electricity,” said MPSJ councillor R Rajiv. He said residents had been complaining about the lack of track and field facilities here, with the only one available not well lit at night. Following the complaints, councillors urged the council to light up the stadium every evening. Now, people of all ages are seen either running, walking, and playing football or netball. “I’ve been there on certain nights to make sure the lights are on, and I even see people throwing frisbees around,” Rajiv said. He said residents no longer have to rush home from work just to exercise at their neighbourhood park before it gets dark. The floodlights will be on even later than 9.30pm if there are still people exercising at the stadium.

The collapsed section of road posing a danger to motorists.

MPK launches mobile counters for summonses By Brenda Ch’ng

KLANG: Mobile counters to help the public take advantage of the discount offered for traffic compound will be available at different locations here this month. Under the Klang Municipal Council’s (MPK) Special Offer Campaign, each traffic compound has been reduced to RM20. “Please take advantage of this opportunity and pay up all outstanding compounds now,” said MPK secretary Ikhsan Mukri. He said legal action may be taken against those who fail to settle all their outstanding compounds from next month. The mobile counters are scheduled to be set up at strategic locations around the town daily except Fridays. The schedule for Monday to Thursday is from 10am to 3pm, and during weekends from 10am to 10pm. “I hope this initiative will help lessen the public’s burden so they do not have to travel far to pay their compounds,” he said. Residents who are unsure of their compounds can make checks at all mobile counters as well as at the counters in the MPK lobby.

MPK mobile counters Date Day Time

Location

5/7/2011

Tuesday

10am-3pm

Bandar Baru Klang (in front of Maybank)

6/7/2011

Wednesday

10am-3pm

Taman Intan (in front of Maybank)

7/7/2011

Thursday

10am-3pm

Pelabuhan Klang (in front of Affin Bank)

12/7/2011

Tuesday

10am-3pm

Klang Utara (Maybank Jalan Nangka)

13/7/2011 Wednesday

10am-3pm

Bdr Bukit Tinggi 1 (in front of Public Bank)

14/7/2011

Thursday

10am-3pm

Bdr Bukit Tinggi 2 (in front of CIMB)

18/7/2011

Monday

10am-3pm

Taman Intan (in front of Maybank)

19/7/2011

Tuesday

10am-3pm

Bandar Baru Klang (in front of Maybank)

26/7/2011

Tuesday

10am-3pm

Klang Utara (Klang Parade)

27/7/2011 Wednesday

10am-3pm

Bdr Bukit Tinggi 1 (in front of HSBC)

28/7/2011

10am-3pm

Bdr Bukit Tinggi 2 (in front of CIMB)

Thursday

MPK counters in shopping centres Date

Day

Time

Location

2/7/2011

Saturday

10am-10pm

Jusco Bukit Raja

3/7/2011

Sunday

10am-10pm

Jusco Bukit Raja

9/7/2011

Saturday

10am-10pm

Giant Bukit Tinggi

10/7/2011

Sunday

10am-10pm

Giant Bukit Tinggi

16/7/2011

Saturday

10am-10pm

Jusco Bukit Raja

17/7/2011

Sunday

10am-10pm

Jusco Bukit Raja

23/7/2011

Saturday

10am-10pm

Giant Bukit Tinggi

24/7/2011

Sunday

10am-10pm

Giant Bukit Tinggi

30/7/2011

Saturday

10am-10pm

Carrefour Batu Belah

31/7/2011

Sunday

10am-10pm

Carrefour Batu Belah


USJ residents voice their complaints By Basil Foo

SUBANG JAYA: Poor public infrastructure and security were major concerns raised during a dialogue between USJ residents and the authorities on June 30. Residents from USJ 16 to 20 took turns to voice their grievances, which were then addressed by the police and Subang Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ) representatives. “There are cracks in the USJ 18/1 road which need repair. If it is possible, resurface all USJ 18 roads,” said USJ 18 residents association chairperson Nasaruddin Abu Bakar. He said the roads in his area have fallen into disrepair since they were last resurfaced over a decade ago. Echoing his sentiments was USJ 17 residents association chairperson Felix Thai, who said roads in his area have also not been re-tarred for a long time. However, Engineering Department deputy director Mohd Ariffudin Ismail said the road resurfacing programme for Subang Jaya would only be focused on major roads. He admitted that most of the roads in Subang were more than a decade old, but said the council needed more time to resurface the roads in stages. Ariffudin said the council would need RM70

million to resurface all Subang roads, and called for assistance from the allocations of elected representatives who were in attendance. Present at the dialogue were Kinrara assemblyperson Teresa Kok, who moderated the session, and Puchong MP Gobind Singh Deo. Rubi Isni Zainuddin, a resident of Sri Tanjung apartments in USJ 16, complained that there is no exit from her home into Puchong and Shah Alam. “There are about 3,000 residents here who can only turn into Subang Jaya. Although there is an entrance from Puchong, we cannot exit the same way,” she said. Mohd Ariffudin said MPSJ had proposed that the Public Works Department ( JKR) construct an exit via the Damansara-Puchong Highway (LDP). Although the proposal was rejected, he said another request would be made using the feedback gathered from the dialogue. A resident from USJ 16 who wanted to be known as Tan complained about a basketball court in his area already cracking midway through construction. “As the court is built in phases, it has started cracking from the foundations possibly due to heavy rains,” he said. Landscape Department assistant officer Khairulnizam Ahmad said he was aware of the cracks, and explained the problem was due to the contrac-

Puchong schools get state funds

tor not following specifications. He said the contractor has already been instructed to demolish the court and build a new one before handing it over to the residents. Members of the USJ 20 Basketball Club also presented their request for a roof over the basketball court in their area. They claimed keeping the elements out would solve a host of problems plaguing their court, from rusty benches to wiring problems with the lights. “As we receive international visitors who conduct basketball clinics at our court, it is important that we have proper facilities,” said Hoh Soo Hing. Kok commended the club for their initiative and said this matter would be looked into. Security was also a hot topic, with residents associations claiming they have been told to demolish their makeshift guardhouses. “We even had the electricity cables to the guardhouses cut off,” said one resident. A chorus of complaints ensued, with residents saying they have earned their right to security as they pay taxes. MPSJ councillor Ismail Kamal said the residents deserve security, but legally, guardhouses require Temporary Occupation Licences. The councillor agreed that the electricity should be reconnected until the matter is resolved at the next meeting.

NEWS 15 JULY 8 — 10, 2011

Nasaruddin

Tan

Hoh

Khairulnizam

PKNS goes green with new HQ By Brenda Ch’ng

Kinrara assemblyperson Teresa Kok during the cheque presentation to four schools in Puchong.

By William Tan

PUCHONG: Four schools here received RM73,420 from the state last Saturday to help improve conditions for their students. Kinrara assemblyperson Teresa Kok handed out the financial aid to Sekolah Agama Kafa Integrasi Al-Firdaus, SJK(T) Castlefield, SJK(C) Sin Ming and SJK(T) Bandar Kinrara BK1. “We are happy to get the funds,” said SJK (T) Castlefield’s Parent-Teacher Association (PIBG) chairperson Pariyaka Ellapan. She said they had earlier received a call from Kok advising them to apply for the funds. The RM5,000 that the PIBG received will be used to hold extra classes and sport functions, for transportation and other general purposes. The Tamil school, which is almost a century old, has 485 students. The bulk of the funds was given to the 77-year-old SJK(C) Sin Ming, which re-

ceived RM 60,000. “The funds will mainly be used to construct a multipurpose hall, which will cost us up to RM5 million,” said the chairperson of the school’s board of directors, Chai Yoon Peng. He said they were happy with the state’s support for their efforts, having received sponsorships twice since 2009 when they first started collecting funds. The board hopes to start construction by the end of the year, having already collected RM2.8 million. The school has a 1,750 students. Sekolah Agama Kafa Integrasi Al-Firdaus and SJK(T) Bandar Kinrara BK1 both received RM5,000 and RM3,420 respectively. The schools will use the funds for general purposes and possible expansion works. Kok said RM16 million is allocated by the state annually to help schools. However, schools must apply for it, and the allocations are based on requirements.

SHAH ALAM: The Selangor Development Corporation (PKNS) expects long-term utility savings of up to 60% for its new green headquarters being built here. “ We’ve hired an environmental consultant to ensure we maximise our green initiatives,” said PKNS general manager Othman Omar. PKNS is targeting to obtain the international Green Building Index (GBI) platinum ranking for the building in Section 14. GBI is a point-system tool (From left) Khalid, Dr Xavier Jayakumar, Othman used to evaluate the environmen- and Iskandar Samad looking at a model of PKNS’s tally sustainable aspects of build- new headquarters. ings, which emphasises energy efficiency and indoor environment quality. opment of their new headquarters. Buildings that meet standards are ranked A series of roadshows will be done to help silver, gold or platinum. the public understand the building’s land“It is a good move forward, both environ- scape design during the period leading up to mentally as well as financially,” said Othman. the completion of the project in mid-2013. Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim said the move was Among the green initiatives incorporated a step in the right direction. are a solar roof to help reduce electricity “The move is a crucial step to make PKNS costs, solar tube to cool down the building, an internationally recognised developer,” said and the collection of rainwater for all plants the Menteri Besar. in the building. He said it was time that PKNS stepped The premise will also be fitted with lightout of the shadows of other developers and emitting diode (LED) lights and windows start spearheading major developments. made out of special glass made to deflect “This will help them gain a more credible sunlight. reputation, not only within the state but The building is strategically located beinternationally,” he said during a site visit to tween Persiaran Indah, Jalan Indah and the construction site last Thursday. Persiaran Sultan, and will also come equipped For over 40 years, PKNS has been playing with recreational facilities. a secondary role through joint ventures with These include a gymnasium, recreational other private developers. park, nursery, auditorium, PKNS museum, Now, it is making a fresh start by planning, auditorium, multipurpose hall, prayer rooms developing and maintaining the entire devel- and a rooftop cafe.


NEWS 16 JULY 8 — 10, 2011

Illegal car washes raided By Basil Foo

PUCHONG: Illegal car washes staffed by foreign workers are mushrooming in Bandar Puteri despite raids by the Subang Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ). “It is not possible to completely eradicate these illegal car washes, only reduce their number,” said Enforcement Department assistant officer Mohamad Hadzim Zulkafli. Mohamad spoke to reporters after leading 17 other MPSJ officers in a raid on six illegal car washes in Bandar Puteri last Thursday ( June 30). He said the council has repeatedly raided car washes on street corners and in parking lots in the area, and have seized equipment like barrels, hoses and water pumps. “This isn’t our first time. We have raided this area over five times. We will be conducting a raid in Puchong Utama

next,” he said. While the illegal car washes continue to be set up despite the raids, Mohamad insists that his department’s action is keeping the numbers down. Illegal car washes have dropped to about 50 from 100 previously, in areas under MPSJ jurisdiction like Puchong, Subang and Seri Kembangan. “The workers are mostly foreigners without passports. We took their details and released them. They are the Immigration Department’s responsibility,” Mohamad said. He added that the car washers can reclaim their seized items from the council after paying a RM250 fine, but none of them have done so. The raids were carried out in accordance with the Street, Drainage and Building Act 1974 Section 46(1)(a), which prohibits setting up car washes in public areas.

‘JOM Durian’ makes it into record books

Navaratnam (right) and Teng (second right) trying their hand at opening durians.

SUBANG: JOM Durian IV, an annual event organised jointly by Subang Parade and the Children’s Wish Society (CWS) of Malaysia, got itself into the pages of the Malaysia Book of Records as the Biggest Charity Durian Fest ever organised in the country. With almost 2,000 people showing up at the annual fundraising event for CWS Malaysia and raising approximately RM180,000, JOM Durian IV has become the darling of durian lovers who quickly grabbed the 1,400 tickets up for sale. The tickets, which were priced at RM20 each, were sold out days before the event. Some durian lovers and supporters of the national charity came as far as from Kuching, Sarawak to participate in the event on July 3. “This event has been acknowledged as the Biggest Charity Durian Fest in the Malaysia Book of Records because of the overwhelming support we received from everyone present here today. “The support and response from the corporate sector and members of the public has been overwhelming ,” said CWS Malaysia president Tan Sri Ramon

Navaratnam. He said it was encouraging to experience a sell-out crowd days before the event itself. “It shows Malaysians are a caring lot and they care for the well-being of sick children,” he said. “We have proven time and time again that doing charity can be fun, too. We are proud and honoured to announce that there will be a JOM Durian V in 2012 in Subang Parade again.” Selangor state assembly speaker Datuk Teng Chang Khim was present to witness the handing over of the Malaysia Book of Records certificate to the organisers and launch the event. Also lending their support were Kelana Jaya Member of Parliament Loh GwoBurne, Subang Jaya assemblyperson Hannah Yeoh, and members of the Subang Jaya Municipal Council. Funds raised will be channelled to the Children’s Wish Society of Malaysia, a Subang Jaya-based national charity which fulfills the wishes of children stricken with life-limiting or terminal illnesses across the country.

MPSJ officers seizing water pumps used by illegal car-wash operators.

Primary school gets financial aid By Alicia Mun

SUBANG JAYA: Sekolah Kebangsaan Bandar Sunway received RM5,000 from Hannah Yeoh to aid the building of a new multipurpose hall.
 The Subang Jaya assemblyperson was represented by Edward Ling at the primary school’s canteen day last Saturday, which was held to raise funds.
 Ling, a councillor with the Subang Jaya Municipal MPSJ councillor Edward Ling (second left) presenting Council (MPSJ), said it was the RM5,000 donation to the Parent-Teacher Association important for the school to committee of SK Bandar Sunway. have a proper hall in order to facilitate more education programmes for The new hall will also serve as a games hall the pupils. 
 and shelter for students during rain. 
 Parent-Teacher Association (PIBG) chairStalls with creative activities such as paintperson Esa Adam said they had been raising ball, fruit darts, wheel of fortune, and mini funds for the new building since last year. 
 golf were among the highlights during the Their target is to have the hall built for its fundraiser. 1,200 pupils by the end of the year. 
 
Other hits among visitors were a haunted “We need a proper hall because we are cur- house and fishing competition at the school rently using a makeshift one by utilising three pond.
 classrooms that can only accommodate 500 Parents and teachers also pitched in by students,” said headmistress Tee Seok Tin.
 holding a jumble sale to help raise funds.

Help for needy students KLANG: A total of 110 students from SRJK (T) Batu Ampat received financial assistance from Dr Xavier Jayakumar on Saturday ( June 25). The state executive councillor said the financial assistance amounting to RM5,310 was to help the students, who will soon be sitting for their UPSR examinations, pay their school fees. The students were attending a motivational talk attended by Dr Xavier at their school in Kampung Jawa, Dr Xavier also donated RM20,000 to the school to buy new tables and Dr Xavier donating funds to SRJK (T) Batu chairs, in addition to RM7,500 to the Ampat on June 25. school’s Parent-Teacher Association (PIBG). 4.30pm, ended with the parents collecting The event, which lasted from 8am to report cards of their children.


TECHNOLOGY 17

Home office options N

owadays, the term Small Office, Home Office (SOHO) is quite common. Driving this trend forward is not only the choice that people make to work from home rather than from an office location, but also the advent of consumer-friendly technology.  As you think about how to set up a SOHO, there are a few common issues you should sort through. Naturally, a place to start is to get a personal computer (PC), as this is an indispensible tool in today’s world. If you’re a mobile worker, opt for a laptop instead, as this will give you far better flexibility.   Most laptops range between RM2,000 and RM3,500, and are Windows based. Aim for a lightweight machine and extended battery life if you’re moving around. However, if you think you’ll be working mostly at home without moving around, opt for a desktop as you’ll get better bang for your buck.   A fairly feature-packed desktop comprising a quick processor with a 21-inch LCD flat screen, DVD burner, high-capacity disk drive (2TB or more) and memory (4GB) costs about RM2,000, whereas a laptop with more or less the same specs could cost you in excess of RM3,000.  Some have asked me if they should consider tablet computers. Note that while the Apple iPads and some Google Androidpowered devices are very mobile and nice to behold, tablets are generally not good devices for creating content as they are much better at showing off content. So if your work is skewed towards content display, you could do with getting a tablet.  As for a printer, you have basically two options – a laser or an inkjet printer. If you opt for a monochrome laser printer (RM400-RM1,000), you’ll get clear, crisp copies but they will be in black and white only. Colour laser printers are more costly (RM1,200 and above) and should only be considered if your business really needs it.   Inkjets are much cheaper (RM300-RM600), and are very reliable while offering you the option of colour printouts. Also, many of today’s inkjets come as all-in-one (AIO) printers (RM400-RM1,000). This means you’ll not only be able to print but scan, fax and copy all on a single machine, so this is a good option to consider.  The one drawback is that the ink cartridges for inkjets are quite expensive, roughly RM50-RM100 for less than 1,000 pieces of printouts, so inkjets are not recommended when you engage in heavy printing.  It’s also wise to get an external hard disk as a backup disk drive should you need to store important information outside of your PC/laptop. A laptop-sized disk drive (2.5”) with a

JULY 8 — 10, 2011

PCs and allows your PCs to talk to each other wirelessly.  Software

Now that you’ve got all your hardware set up, the next is to consider software. A product that’s almost always used is a productivity suite such as Microsoft Office. It can cost quite a bit, but if you’re starting out, aim for the SMB editions – they are usually cheaper to purchase. If you’re in some specialised business such as graphic design, you’ll probably need specialised software such as the Adobe product suite.  Two kinds of software are a must for you to have – firstly, a good internet security suite to fend off security breaches; and secondly, a backup software. Look for backup software that not only backs up your data files but your e-mail files, favourite preferences and Windows internal registry files, too.   There are a lot of software that can do the job, but good backup software supports what is known as incremental backup, backing up after little changes have been made instead of saving the entire file.  capacity of 160GB and a good casing would cost about RM300. Throw in a webcam (RM100) and you’ve more or less got your home office.   Connectivity

The most common is to subscribe for TM’s Streamyx ADSL (asymmetric digital subscriber line) service. This wired broadband option is quite reliable depending on where you are based.   Of late, TM has been offering its UniFi fibre to the home service. Packages vary from RM149 to RM249 for speeds of between 5Mbps and 20Mbps, several internet TV channels, and free local calls.  To decide, you’ll need to ask yourself if you need the bandwidth for your business. However, most don’t know is that you’ll have to change your fixed line phone number if you subscribe to UniFi. An alternative provider to consider is Time Fibre, but its coverage is pretty limited to only apartment buildings and not landed properties.  Of course, there are also other wireless services available such as 3G services from Maxis, Celcom, DiGi as with WiMax operators like P1 and YES.  If you have more than one computer that you want connected in your home office so that you can share common resources such as a printer or share files between PCs, get a wireless router. This is a device that directs traffic between two

Important extras

Besides having your mobile phone and fixed line phone, another possibility is to use voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) technology. Basically, this mode of communication treats voice like any internet traffic and sends it over the computer.   With your broadband connection and webcam, and assuming your contacts are using the same programs, you should also be able to set up free communication software such as Skype, MSN Chat or Google Talk so that you can conduct audio/ video calls for free over the net.  Some other software you could consider to round up your home office setup is an accounting software such as MYOB and antivirus software, which I’ve written about before. You might also want to consider having an online presence either through a blog or through a formalised website. You can set up a blog for free by going to providers such as Wordpress or Blogspot.  If you want your own website, you’ll have to do two things: get your own domain name and get a hosting provider, which can give you a web space. This way, you can establish your own brand identity and publicity for your business. You can normally go through hosting providers, or you can even go online and search out some more reputable overseas hosting providers.  Since you will be spending quite a fair bit on your office, do consider office content insurance to protect you in the event of theft or robbery. 

When you can’t breathe easy N

ose block or nasal obstruction remains one of the most common symptoms in a patient. It refers to reduced airflow through the nose, either one-sided or in both nostrils, and can affect children and adults. Some factors of nasal obstruction are: Allergic Rhinitis

Inflammation of the inner lining (mucosa) of the nose due to airborne allergens such as dust mites, pollen and mold, leading to sneezing, coughing, runny nose, sore throat and itchy or watery eyes, phlegm dripping into the throat, chronic cough and puffy/red itchy eyes. Nasal infection

Nose block occurs when the nasal lining is inflamed and congested. There may be accompanying cough, runny nose with clear or yellowish discharge and fever. An acute infection normally resolves on its own. In chronic infections, these symptoms may persist or wax and wane. Structural deformities

A deviated nasal septum – the midline partition dividing the nose into halves – might narrow or block the nasal passage. Some people have large turbinates, the shelf-like projection from the side wall of the nose, which may also result in nasal blockage. Both can be surgically corrected. Adenoids

Adenoids are lymphoid tissue in the back of the nose, which usually shrink when a child is about seven years old. However, in the

presence of recurrent or persistent infection, inflammation or allergy, the adenoids persist or even grow. Nasal polyps, tumours and cancers

The most common nose cancer in Malaysia is nasopharyngeal carcinoma, which arises from the back portion of the nose. Symptoms include nosebleed, one-sided ear blockage, and neck swelling due to enlarged lymph nodes. If detected and treated early, the cure rate is good. Non-cancerous tumours and polyps can also arise spontaneously and may be accompanied by symptoms like runny nose and blood-stained discharge. Foreign bodies

This condition usually occurs in children when a foreign material is inserted into the nostril. Immediate removal is warranted as it may corrode and permanently damage the inner lining of the nose. Medication

Nasal decongestant sprays are easily available to provide relief of nasal blockage. Unfortunately, unsupervised continuous use can worsen nasal congestion. Your doctor will be able to differentiate between these conditions. Nowadays, fibreoptic technology has allowed endoscopes to be introduced into the nose and throat to visualise the problems within these narrow cavities. When masses or tumours are encountered, a biopsy or radiological imaging (CT scan, MRI) may be necessary to aid diagnosis. Your doctor will be able to best advise on how to proceed.


MEDIA 18 JULY 8 — 10, 2011

Universal McCann bags top media awards SHAH ALAM: Universal McCann won the two top prizes, Agency of the Year and Grand Prix, in the Malaysian Media Awards (MMA) 2011. This the second year Universal McCann has won the coveted award of Agency of the Year. Universal McCann also bagged four gold, two silver and two bronze in the MMA organised by the Media Specialists Association (MSA) last weekend. Universal McCann, Mediabrands CEO Prashant Kumar said integrated communications and digital media are two of the most critical needs of the marketing industry today. “We won the Gold in integrated and won four out of six digital awards, including the Gold for search marketing. “The Integrated and digital categories were the most fiercely fought-out categories with 100-plus entries. The tough competition tells us that we need to keep raising the game.” In second position was Mindshare, with two gold, three silver and four bronze. In third place The winners. was Vizeum Media Services, followed by Carat Media Services. ing planning and placement of advertisements in the various In the night of glamour attended by media planners, clients, media. media owners and creative agencies at the Black and White In his speech, Media Specialists Association president Glam, the media specialists were recognised for their outstand- Ranga Somanathan noted that the awards were about recogni-

Première Hotel raises RM3,800 for breast cancer

Hotel manager Johnny Yap (left) presenting the cheque to CEO of Breast Cancer Welfare Association Malaysia Ranjit Kaur.

SHAH ALAM: Klang’s latest business hotel, Première Hotel, helped raise funds and public awareness for the Breast Cancer Welfare Association Malaysia (BCWA) in conjunction with the recent Mother’s Day during May 2011. In an informal cheque presentation, Première Hotel manager Johnny Yap handed over a cheque for RM3,700 to BCWA chief executive officer Ranjit Kaur during the hotel’s monthly associate gathering. The funds are for BCWA’s activities and projects in disseminating comprehensive information about breast cancer, including the methods of early detection in order to reduce premature deaths among women in Malaysia. BCWA also promotes a balanced lifestyle for women living with breast cancer, and support to those affected by the cancer. The hotel conducted a string of breast cancer awareness activities during the campaign period from

May 1 to 10. Throughout the campaign, the hotel invited its guests to add an optional RM1 donation onto their room as well as food and beverage bills in support of the initiative. This contribution was matched ringgit for ringgit by the hotel management. The hotel also collaborated with BCWA in the sale of pink ribbon items during the entire period. A number of collection boxes were placed throughout the hotel for anybody who wished to make a donation. “Première Hotel is proud to be part of this initiative, as we believe that breast cancer awareness is an excellent platform to raise consciousness of efforts of BCWA with regards to the disease. “The campaign is also a prime opportunity to remind women to learn about early detection,” said Yap. To find out more about the Breast Cancer Welfare Association Malaysia, visit www.breastcancer.org.my.

tion, and the agencies had delivered strong business results for clients via excellent strategy, solution and execution. It is about recognition of people behind the success of these campaigns, he said. “For some, it was a race to catch up; for some, a race to make progress; and for many, a race to retain their position. “The awards allow us the opportunity to pause, review, reflect, recognise and hopefully realise our potential,” he added. Vizeum Malaysia chief executive officer and chairperson of the organising committee Andy Miller said media planners had achieved a high degree of status at a time of ever-increasing award-show options being put into place. “Our success is generated by the very transparent nature of our awards and the trust our industry has in how we are open to all comers and our judging is unbiased. “To this effect, we even invited the Malaysian Advertisers Association and Association of Accredited Advertising Agents members to join our judging panel this year. “This adds to our normal contingent of MSA members and their clients and major sponsors. This has created our largestever jury of some 40 people.”

New media advertising on the rise ADVERTISING has a much different definition in today’s world. As technology continues to evolve, advertising is now found on new media such as websites and mobile phones. Mobile advertising – i.e. marketing done on a mobile device – is gaining popularity among advertisers, who are paying more attention tp the medium as an effective way to reach their target markets. This in turn increases the prospects for mobile advertising networks. Mobile advertisers are topping the charts in having the largest market of users. In fact, the number of mobile users surpassed PC users in 2006. The world population then was 6.6 billion, and in that same year, it was reported that worldwide mobile phone users reached 2.6 billion. In comparison, PC users only peaked at 900 million. In February 2011 alone, MobiThinking reported that there are 5.3 billion mobile subscribers, which is 77% of the world population. It is predicted that more and more users will access the web via mobile than via desktop, laptop or tablet. Previously, advertisers who wanted to engage users through mobile advertising faced many difficulties. But today, there are several notable mobile advertising networks available to aid them.

One such network is MobGold, a mobile advertising network and mobile transaction solutions provider for advertisers, brand owners, publishers, network operators, web portals and mobile phone retailers who wish to monetise their users’ traffic around the world. Equipped with the expertise and know-how regarding hightraffic, high-speed transaction platform architecture, web development and mobile content provisioning , MobGold is uniquely positioned to offer complete end-to-end solutions for both advertisers and publishers, from advertisement format conversions, campaign management services and provision of statistical data, to final delivery and even billing. MobGold believes that the mobile platform is the future of digital marketing, and that the new media that will outshine conventional web media. Mobgold’s CEO Alan Chang once revealed that “Mobgold has more than 10 million minutes spent by our users on Fonwar IM” – Fonwar IM being a mobile instant messaging service that was launched in 2005 by Ozura World. Next week, we will cover how mobile advertising lowers your promotional costs. In the meantime, for further information, visit www.mobgold.com.


Gallery 19 July 8 — 10, 2011

Australia’s top diplomat Miles Kupa and Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim during a visit by the Australian High Commissioner to Malaysia at the state secretariat last week.

Puchong Member of Parliament Gobind Singh Deo and Kinrara assemblyperson Teresa Kok (third and fourth left respectively) during a dialogue on June 30 with USJ residents for them to voice their grievances.

Officers from the Subang Jaya Municipal Council stopping operations of illegal car washes in Bandar Puteri Puchong on June 30.

Chairperson of SJK(T) Castlefield’s Parent-Teacher Association Pariyaka Ellapan and some pupils with a statesponsored cheque for RM5,000, presented by Kinrara assemblyperson Teresa Kok last Saturday.

Volunteers jumping for joy during the JOM Durian IV event at Subang Parade last Sunday, which made it into the Malaysia Book of Records.

Members of the public swarming a Klang Municipal Council counter to settle their traffic compounds at a reduced rate of RM20.


SELANGOR TIMES ⁄ July 8 – 10, 2011 ⁄ 20


Connecting with Velocity

SELANGOR TIMES ⁄ July 8 – 10, 2011 ⁄ III

SHAH ALAM: After the success of townships in Damansara, Shah Alam, Mont Kiara and Semenyih in the Klang Valley, Sunway City Bhd has unveiled another iconic master integrated development. Located just 3.8km from Kuala Lumpur City Centre, the new development, Sunway Velocity, is set to change the way people live, work and play. The mixed commercial development comprising service apartments and retail shops will merge office and home needs, recreation and wellness with shopping and entertainment. Sunway Velocity’s Phase 1A, which comprises 124 units of shop offices, was launched earlier. Its service apartments are scheduled to be launched soon.

Despite its state-of-the-art facilities and advancements, the retail shops are priced from RM2.4 million, and office suites are priced from RM1.2 million only onwards. The indicative pricing for the 264 units of ser vice apartments is from RM600,000 onwards. Unlike other developments, the advantage of Sunway Velocity begins with superb connectivity. This new hub of activity will be connected via major roads and highways, plus public transportation including the LRT and a proposed MRT station. Sunway Velocity will also ease the way traffic flows in this booming quarter of KL with a direct tunnel and underpass cutting across Jalan Cheras. The numbers and the facts are

equally impressive as KL’s next landmark development features a lifestyle shopping mall of over a million square feet, with more than 5,000 parking bays, a pedestrianfriendly environmental deck and a two-acre Central Park. Beautifully integrated with luxury service apartments and topnotch shop-offices spread over 22 acres of valuable freehold land, Sunway Velocity embraces the latest technologies in design and architecture to enhance your life, day in, day out. Sunway Velocity is also where you can inject stylish vigour into your life whether at work, business or at home. The pedestrian-friendly elevated environmental deck links all three.

Basking in a lush, bright and breezy ambience, you can enjoy shopping or simply observe the scenes of day-to-day outdoor living. Al fresco dining and wining takes on the ultimate in style and comfort. In the heart of it all is the huge Central Park. In line with Sunway embracing the Lohas philosophy, the Central Park is a twoacre green lung offering tranquil and wholesome moments to help balance the pace of work with play and leisure. For more details, plea se contact 03 -92055500 or 0123189656.

Environmental Deck at Level 1.

10 lucky shoppers win Macau holidays

SUBANG JAYA: Ten Sunway Pyramid shoppers were pleasantly surprised recently when they were told that they had won a three-day, two-night trip to Macau each. In collaboration with the Macau Government Tourism Office, shoppers who spent RM150 or more in a single receipt, or purchased any Macau holiday packages were eligible for the lucky draw held by the shopping mall in conjunction with Macau Festival 2011. During the festival, the shopping mall’s concourse area was transformed into a mini Macau to showcase the peninsular’s places of attractions, culture, heritage and famed delicacies. “We were extremely pleased to be able to host the Macau Festival in Sunway Pyramid this year. The Macau Festival is held every two years by the Macau Government Tourism Office, and we had heard that their festivals are spectacular,” said Sunway Pyramid marketing director Phang Sau Lian. “Macau is famous for its unique blend of western and oriental cultures, historical sites and monuments listed in Unesco. Macau also has new architectures which formed a ‘New Macau’. We thought that the festival is a great way to reach out to Malaysians and open their eyes to this place,” she continued. One of the winners, Anne Monice Theseira, said she was ecstatic when she heard the good news as she wants to enjoy a short holiday with her son before he continues his studies in Indonesia for five years. “This is a great opportunity for “After I was told that I was one us to take a break and have some of the 10 winners, I immediately mother-and-son time to ourselves made plans to visit Macau with my before he starts his course. I am son in June as he will be leaving to definitely looking forward to have study medicine in Indonesia come a good time in Macau.” August,” she said. The Macau Festival 2011 was

Eight of the winners collecting their prizes from Cherry Lee and Phang Sau Lian at Sunway Pyramid.

held for three days at Sunway Pyramid’s LG1 Main Concourse. “This festival gave visitors ‘a feel of Macau’ because Macau is a unique and fascinating destination, one of the premier tourist destinations in the Asia Pacific

region that must not be missed,” said Macau Government Tourism Office representative Cherry Lee. “We hope more Malaysians will visit this fascinating destination and see it through their own eyes. “This is the first time we are

working hand-in-hand with Sunway Pyramid, who jointly organised the Buyer Contest. “We hope to work with Sunway Pyramid again for any other opportunities in the future,” she added.


Published by Selangor State Government and printed by Dasar Cetak (M) Sdn Bhd No. 7, Persiaran Selangor, Seksyen 15, 40000, Shah Alam, Selangor Darul Ehsan.


SELANGOR TIMES 8 JULY 2011