Saturday, May 31, 2014

PESAN RAMBAU HARI GAWAI ARI BARU BIAN



1 JUNE 2014

NGETANKA PEMANAH KAUL PUPU RABAN BANSA ENGGAU JALAI PENGARAP TI MERUAN RAMBAU PENGERAMI HARI GAWAI

Ninting bulan Enam (June), kitai sama berami nyambut gawai udah bekau kitai tembu ngetau enggau chara meri terima kasih ke utai ulih kitai ngagai Petara, Iya ti udah meri kitai berekat ngemudahka pengawa bumai kitai ke taun tu. Dulu menya kitai nyambut pengerami tu enggau chara nyambut bala raban petara dalam tiap pupu raban bansa kitai tiap kali udah badu pengawa ngetau.

Dalam reti jaku kemaya hari tu, baka ni chara kitai nyambut sereta ngintu pengerami tu lalu ke bala kitai ti enda bumai betupi agi, baka ni kitai nyambut gawai kitai tu? Ulih tauka enda gawai diintu kitai ngena asil kitai ti bekereja sepemanjai taun ke udah, tauka bagi kitai dalam ekonomi menua tu? Mayuh bendar bala orang ti napi chabar dalam pengawa sida ti ngidupka diri lalu mayuh agi mega sida nya ti tau disemaka kitai kair pagi empa pagi, kair lemai empa lemai.

Kitai kala dipadahka pasal penyampau tubuh bala orang ti seranta nyau majak nambah direjista di Sarawak ba taun tu, taja pan Gabenor baru kitai nya seruran belunjakka jaku iya ti madahka, ba pengujung taun tu ila penyampau per kapita kitai deka angkat lalu nya tau ngasuh menua kitai kaya agi ari selama tu. Enti bala orang ti endang lama udah kaya raja nya ditejuka majak nyadi kaya, ulih tauka enda per kapita kitai tu nambah, tang nama reti kitai mansar diri ngulihka nama menua ti tau dikumbai kaya enti bida pengaya nya majak besai lalu bala orang ti lama udah seranta nya diberi mimit bendar peluang ngelepaska diri empu ari penyuntuk enggau penyeranta. Kitai patut nekanka pengawa bebagika peluang ngulihka penatai pemisi kelimpah ari kitai ti deka meda pemanah lumur ba statistik ba per kapita.

Kelimpah ari regu dalam ekonomi, kitai benung meratika chabar-chabar ngagai pemanah kaul dalam pupu raban bansa enggau pemereti ati ba jalai pengarap ti udah diasaika kitai ngelama bepuluh-puluh taun tu. Dalam chura politik kitai, mayuh agi tuai politik ari menua kitai tu nadai ngembuan pemerani mansutka penemu mutarka pekara ti nanggul sereta ti dipeda tau ngachau penyerakup kitai ari pupu raban bansa di menua tu.

Pekara ti kala didinga tauka dipeda kitai ti udah mai regu nya baka pengawa orang ti ngelanggar rumah Dewan Undangan Negeri di Pulau Pinang enggau seminar ti ngelaban Kristian ba UiTM nya sekeda ari beberapa siri utai ti udah nyadi ti tau ngasuh kitai irau ati di Sarawak ti berasai besak deka mekuh penusah nya ari ti ngelekai ngagai menua kitai adap kitu. Kitai mega bisi dipadahka pasal pekara ti nyadi di Balai Ringin ti endur sekeda orang ari seraban NGO nguji ngemasukka bala nembiak sekula ngagai pengarap Islam. Nambahka nya mega kes pechara suratberita Herald mega baru deka belabuh ngeruga kitai, taja pan bala tuai politik baka sida Richard Riot enggau Joseph Kurup madahka kitai pekara nya mit lalu enda ulih ngeruga pengidup enggau pengelantang kitai.

Pengirau ati aku diatu nya ba sebengkah kes pechara dalam kot ti endur siku akim udah ngerembaika kes Herald nya ngagai gerija SIB. Kes tu udah kena balut penemu politik ti enda meruan, ti endur bala tuai politik irau agi ke pejalai politik sida ari sida ti patut ngintu pengelikun enggau kuasa pengelantang raban bansa ti betubuh mimit.

Di menua kitai tu empu, kitai rayat Sarawak udah dipadahka pasal Kepala Menteri kitai ti dulu suba, nama iya ti balat dibalut tuduh enggau pengamah penyalah makai suap enggau iya ti udah bisi rekod kamah ba opis MACC dikena ngelaban iya, diatu udah diberi tanda pangkat ari Agong.

Mayuh jaku tanya beduduk ari mayuh pansik ti dipejalaika opis MACC lalu nanya nama kebuah tanda pangkat nya lama bendar dipelalaika nyentuk ke maya meri iya enggau atur ti dipeda baka ti enda mukai-mukai. Sekali ke atur pengawa nya dikena nyeliahka bantah orang mayuh ngelaban siku tuai politik ti chukup kaya raja berindik ba rega nyawa bala rayat di menua tu empu?

Mayuh orang diatu berasai rawan ati; menua Malaysia tu enda agi likun endur ngidupka diri, nadai agi pemaik entara pupu raban bansa baka dulu menya, ti endur kitai tau ngidupka bala anak kitai nyentuk ke maya sida tau bulih bagi ti sebaka dalam pengidup sida dudi ari lalu mega dijaga perintah ti megai menua diatu. Bala anak telesak raban orang ti datai ngagai menua tu kelia ti udah bebendar bekereja di menua tu lalu mantu ngemansangka menua nyau dikumbai ‘orang datai’ lalu diatu sida nya udah disembur ngena jaku jai ti ngasuh sida pulai ngagai menua asal aki ini sida. Mayuh bala kitai diatu berundingka baka ni pemidik enggau pengelansik pengidup raban anak uchi sida tu. Pengerami Gawai kitai tentu deka mai besai agi reti  enti kitai bisi raban tuai ti enda takut tauka nangi ngemetulka sebarang utai ti salah sereta bingkuk ti majak dikereja sekeda bala orang ti lunggar penemu, awakka tau meri kitai pengarap ke sida ti tuai. Ba maya Gawai tu, aku minta semua orang Sarawak sama seati lalu mega minta bala tuai kitai meranika ati diri mutarka penanggul ti nuntung raban bansa kitai ngena sada nyawa ti siti sereta tunggal.

Taja pan genteran jaku aku ti dulu tadi munyi ti enda regas, tang aku keran bendar deka meda semua pupu raban bansa di menua Sarawak tu agi deka mengkang ngasaika pemanah kaul enggau penyerakup enggau pangan diri, semua orang bebasaka chara enggau daya idup enggau jalai pengarap pangan diri. Kaul kitai patut nyadi makin tegap. Aku baru udah pulai ari Gawai Burung di pelilih menua Suai, ti endur bala orang di menua nya nirika gawai dikena sida beterima kasih ke pemenang sida ba kes bechara ngambi pulai kuasa sida ba tanah pesaka sida ti udah kena keruga orang bukai. Baka orang bansa asal ti bukai dini-dini endur di sebelah dunya tu, kitai tinggi bendar perening ba kaul kitai enggau tanah, sungai enggau tasik ti diuan kitai sereta mega enggau pengeraja asal ti dalam iya. Aku ingatka jaku ari siku orang bebansa asal menua Alaska, Antionette Helmer ti nyebut “Tanah ti dikembuan kitai tu mih pengeraja kitai. Tu mih sebengkah pengeraja ti tau diturunka kitai ngagai anak telesak kitai ke guna sida dudi hari ila … tang enti nadai tanah, kitai deka nyadi orang ti seranta.”

Nya alai, lebuh maya kitai begawai ke tanda kitai meri terima kasih ke asil utai ti ditanam kitai, aram kitai sama-sama majak ngetanka kuasa kitai ba tanah kitai empu, tauka kuasa kitai ba jalai pengarap kitai, lalu idup manah begulai orang orang bukai. Aram mih kitai angkat lalu bejaku ngarika bala menyadi enggau kaban belayan kitai ti begunaka sukung kitai, laban kitai di menua Sarawak endang tebilang ngembuan penyerakup ti manah. Ba Pastor Martin Niemöller ti kala idup rambau perintah Nazi Jerman ti jai kelia, nyebut:

“Terubah iya sida datai ngiga bala komunis, lalu aku enda bejaku – laban aku ukai ari raban komunis; Udah nya sida datai ngiga bala sosialis, lalu aku mega enda bejaku – laban aku ukai sosialis; Udah nya sida datai ngiga bala kaban gerempung orang dagang, lalu aku enda bejaku – laban aku ukai kaban gerempung orang dagang; Udah nya sida datai ngiga orang bansa Judah, lalu aku enda bejaku – laban aku ukai bebansa Judah; Udah nya sida datai ngiga akui – lalu nadai orang bejaku ngari ke aku.”
Aku arapka semua pangan ari raban bansa Dayak aku selamat sereta nyambut berekat ari Allah Taala ba maya Gawai tu.

“Gayu-guru, Gerai nyamai”

Baru Bian
ADUN N70 Ba’ Kelalan

MESEJ HARI GAWAI DARI BARU BIAN


1HB JUN 2014

MENGEKALKAN KEHARMONIAN ANTARA KAUM DAN KEBEBASAN BERAGAMA SEMPENA PERAYAAN GAWAI

Setiap 1 haribulan Jun, kita akan menyambut pesta menuai dengan bersyukur kepada Tuhan yang merupakan pemberi nikmat yang telah memberikan kita dengan tuaian padi yang baik untuk satu lagi tahun. Pada masa lalu, kita meraikan roh dewa-dewa dalam masyarakat selepas musim menuai. Dalam konteks moden seperti hari ini, bagaimana pula akan kita raikan terutamanya orang-orang seperti kita yang tidak bercucuk tanam lagi, apa yang boleh kita raikan? Adakah ianya hasil kerja keras kita, bahagian kita dalam pai ekonomi?

Ramai orang yang menghadapi cabaran mencari rezeki dan banyak hidup dengan ‘kais pagi makan pagi dan kais petang belum tentu lagi’. Kita telah diberitahu bahawa jumlah orang miskin yang berdaftar di Sarawak telah meningkat tahun ini, walaupun Gabenor baru negeri kita kerap kali mengulangi bahawa menjelang akhir tahun depan, kita akan mencapai pendapatan per kapita yang akan meletakkan negeri kita dalam kategori sebuah negeri maju. Jika yang kaya terus meningkatkan kekayaan mereka, mungkin pendapatan per kapita akan meningkat, tetapi apa gunanya jika kita ditolak ke dalam kategori yang lebih baik tetapi jurang pendapatan semakin besar dan masyarakat yang miskin mempunyai peluang yang tipis untuk keluar daripada belenggu kemiskinan? Kita harus meletakkan penekanan yang lebih kepada pengagihan pendapatan yang lebih saksama dan bukan pada statistik pendapatan per kapita.

Selain daripada cabaran ekonomi, kita sedang menyaksikan cabaran terhadap keharmonian perkauman dan kebebasan beragama yang selama ini telah kita nikmati untuk beberapa dekad. Senario politik kini adalah di mana majoriti pemimpin tempatan tidak mempunyai keberanian untuk membuat pendirian yang jelas mengenai isu-isu dan kejadian yang mengancam perpaduan masyarakat berbilang kaum dan majmuk ini. Kejadian seperti menyerang Dewan Undangan Negeri Pulau Pinang dan seminar anti-Kristian di UiTM adalah Antara yang terbaru dalam siri peristiwa yang membimbangkan kita di Sarawak yang ingin mengelakkan berlakunya kejadian serupa ini daripada berlaku di sini. Sesungguhnya, kita telah diberitahu insiden di Balai Ringin yang didakwa merupakan suatu percubaan Islamisasi kanak-kanak sekolah oleh NGO keagamaan.

Tambahan pula, keputusan dalam kes Herald yang mula memberi kesan kepada kita, bertentangan dengan jaminan yang diberikan oleh Richard Riot dan Joseph Kurup bahawa ia tidak akan memberikan kesan kepada kita. Kebimbangan saya terbukti seperti yang dilihat baru-baru ini melalui sebuah kes di Mahkamah Tinggi di mana Hakim di dalam kes tersebut telah mengaplikasikan kes Herald bagi Gereja SIB. Kejadian seperti ini adalah hasil daripada berat sebelah politik yang tidak konsisten, di mana para pemimpin lebih bimbang tentang survival politik mereka daripada bersuara mengenai hak-hak kumpulan minoriti.

Rakyat Sarawak pada minggu ini telah menerima berita bahawa bekas Ketua Mentery, yang namanya telah dicemari dengan dakwaan rasuah dan yang mempunyai banyak laporan SPRM yang dibuat terhadap beliau, telah dianugerahkan dengan gelaran Tun oleh Yang Di-Pertuan Agong. Timbul persoalan kepada keputusan siasatan yang dijalankan oleh SPRM dan mengapa anugerah tersebut seolah-olah dirahsiakan sehingga ianya diberitahu. Apakah mungkin ianya untuk mengelakkan rasa malu dan kemungkinan protes terhadap anugerah tersebut kepada seorang lelaki yang mempunyai kekayaan yang dipercayai diperolehi dengan mengorbankan rakyat di negeri ini?

Ramai orang yang bimbang bahawa Malaysia tidak lagi berada dalam keadaan yang aman dan harmoni seperti dahulu kala, di mana kita dapat membesarkan anak-anak kita dalam keadaan yang aman dan penuh yakin bahawa mereka akan diberikan hak sama rata serta perlindungan dari kerajaan. Pewaris -pewaris imigran yang telah bekerja keras untuk menyumbang kepada pembangunan negara telah dilabel sebagai 'pendatang' dengan sewenang-wenangnya dan telah diberitahu untuk keluar dari negara ini. Sesungguhnya, ramai yang tertanya- tanya apakah masa depan anak- anak mereka di sini. Perayaan Gawai kita akan lebih bermakna jika kita mempunyai para pemimpin yanag berani dan adil yang tidak takut untuk memperbetulkan apa yang salah dan ketidakadilan yang sentiasa berlaku setiap hari untuk memberikan kita harapan untuk masa depan yang lebih baik. Pada Gawai ini, saya ingin menyeru agar semua pemimpin Sarawak untuk lebih berani dalam menghadapi pelbagai cabaran yang  dihadapi oleh masyarakat kita dan untuk bersuara untuk hak-hak kita dengan sebulat suara.

Walaubagaimanapun, saya yakin dan percaya bahawa komuniti Sarawak masih mempunyai hubungan yang erat dan harmoni  sesama masyarakat yang pelbagai dan majmuk ini serta sentiasa menghormati budaya dan agama masing- masing. Jalinan dan hubungan sesama kita masih kekal kukuh. Saya baru sahaja kembali daripada perayaan kemenangan Gawai di Suai yang mana penduduk kampug telah mengadakan upacara kesyukuran bagi meraihkan kemenangan mereka dalam mempertahankan tanah adat NCR mereka. Pada perayaan Gawai ini, janganlah kita lupa akar dan umbi serta jalinan kita dengan tanah kita.

Seperti semua komuniti orang asal di dunia, kita sentiasa menghargai hubungan kita dengan tanah dan laut serta sumber yang tersedia ada. Saya ingin memetik kata-kata dari orang asal Alaska, Antionette Helmer yang mengatakan 'Tanah yang kita pegang sebagai amanah adalah kekayaan kita. Ia adalah satu-satunya kekayaan kita yang boleh diwariskan kepada anak-anak kita ... Tanpa tanah air kita, kita papa kedana. '

Oleh itu, marilah kita bersyukur kepada tuaian kita, marilah kita terus mempertahankan hak tanah adat kita serta kepada kebebasan agama supaya kita dapat hidup dalam keadaan aman dan harmoni. Marilah kita terus bersuara bagi pihak adik-beradik kita  yang memerlukan sokongan kita, seperti yang kita di Sarawak yang telah sentiasa berbuat demikian. Sepertimana Pastor Martin Niemöller yang hidup semasa rejim kejam Nazi Jerman, terkenal berkata:

"Pertama mereka datang untuk menangkap komunis, dan saya tidak bersuarakerana saya bukan seorang komunis; Kemudian mereka datang untuk menangkap pihak sosialis, dan saya tidak bercakap di luar kerana saya bukan seorang sosialis; Kemudian mereka datang untuk menangkap ahli kesatuan sekerja, dan saya tidak bersuara- kerana saya bukan seorang penyokong kesatuan sekerja; Kemudian mereka datang untuk menangkap orang-orang Yahudi, dan saya tidak bersuara kerana saya bukan seorang Yahudi; Kemudian mereka datang untuk menangkap saya- dan tidak ada satu orang yang masih tinggal untuk bersuara bagi saya. "

Saya ingin mengucapkan semua rakan-rakan Dayak suatu Gawai yang selamat dan diberkati.

“Gayu-guru, Gerai nyamai”

Baru Bian
ADUN N70 Ba’ Kelalan


BARU BIAN'S GAWAI MESSAGE


1 JUNE 2014

MAINTAINING RACIAL HARMONY AND RELIGIOUS FREEDOM AMIDST GAWAI CELEBRATIONS

Each 1 June, we celebrate the great harvest festival by thanking God who is the giver of all blessings for providing us with a good padi harvest for yet another year. In the past we celebrated the spirit of the gods in the community after the harvesting season. In the modern context, how do we celebrate and for those of us who do not farm anymore, what do we celebrate? Can it be the fruits of our hard labour, our share of the economic pie? Many people are facing the challenge of making ends meet and many are living hand to mouth. We have been told that the number of poor people registered in Sarawak has increased this year, even as the new governor repeats his delusional claim that by the end of next year, we will achieve the per capita income that will put us in the category of a developed state. If the rich continue to increase their wealth, it is possible that per capita income will increase, but what is the point of being pushed into a better category if the income gap is widening and the poor have little opportunities to climb out of the poverty trap? We must put greater emphasis on having a more equitable distribution of income rather than on the per capita income statistic.

Besides the economic challenge, we are witnessing challenges to the racial harmony and religious freedom that we have enjoyed for many decades. The political scenario is such that the majority of local leaders do not have the moral courage to make clear stands on issues and incidences which threaten the cohesiveness of our multiracial and multicultural society. Incidences such as the storming of the Penang State Assembly and the anti-Christian seminar at UiTM are the latest in a series of events which are of serious concern to us in Sarawak who are anxious to prevent similar incidences from happening here. Indeed, we have been told of an incident in Balai Ringin which was alleged to have been an attempt at Islamisation of schoolchildren by a religious NGO. Added to that, the decision in the Herald case is beginning to affect us, contrary to the assurances given by those such as Richard Riot and Joseph Kurup that it would not. My fears have been justified as seen in the recent High Court case where the judge applied the ruling in the Herald case to the SIB Church. This debacle is the result of political bias and inconsistency, where leaders are more concerned about their political survival than about speaking up for the rights of the minority groups.

Closer to home, the people of Sarawak woke up one morning this week to discover that the former CM, whose name is tainted by allegations of corruption and who has had numerous MACC reports lodged against him, had been awarded a Tunship by the Agong. Questions arise as to the results of the investigations carried out by the MACC and as to why the award was seemingly kept under wraps until it was a fait accompli. Could it be to avoid the embarrassment of protests against the award to a man whose immense wealth is believed to be at the expense of the people of the state?

Many people are weary; Malaysia is no longer the safe, secure and harmonious nation it once was, where we could bring up our children with peace of mind and confidence that they would be given equal rights and protection by the government of the day. The descendants of those immigrants who toiled hard to contribute to the development of this nation are being labeled ‘pendatang’ and rudely told to leave the country. Indeed, many are wondering what the future holds for their children here. Our celebration of Gawai would be more meaningful if we had courageous and righteous leaders who are not afraid to right the wrongs and injustices that continue to be committed daily, to give us the hope of better days ahead. This Gawai, I wish to call for a new resolve by all Sarawakians and our leaders to be courageous in the face of the many challenges faced by our communities and to speak up for our rights with one voice.

Notwithstanding the rather somber foregoing paragraphs, I firmly believe that our Sarawakian communities still enjoy a special harmonious relationship with each other, each respecting the other’s cultural and religious rights. Our ties and our spirit remain strong. I have just returned from a victory Gawai celebration in Suai, where the villagers held a thanksgiving ceremony for the successful claim of their native customary rights. This Gawai, let us not forget our roots and our ties to the land. Like all indigenous communities in the world, we value our relationship to the land and the sea and the resources they provide. I wish to quote from an Alaskan Native, Antionette Helmer who said ‘The land we hold in trust is our wealth. It is the only wealth we could possibly pass on to our children… Without our homelands, we become true paupers.’

Therefore, as we offer thanksgiving for our harvests, let us also continue to protect our rights, be they rights to our land, or to religious freedom, or to coexist in peace and harmony. Let us continue to speak up for our brothers and sisters who find themselves in need of our support, as we in Sarawak have been known to do. For as Pastor Martin Niemöller who lived during the cruel regime of Nazi Germany, famously said:

“First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out—
because I was not a communist;
Then they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out—
because I was not a socialist;
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out—
because I was not a trade unionist;
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
because I was not a Jew;
Then they came for me—
and there was no one left to speak out for me.”
I wish all our Dayak friends a safe and blessed Gawai.

“Gayu-guru, Gerai nyamai.”

Baru Bian
ADUN N70 Ba’ Kelalan

English is ‘the’ window to scientific knowledge

10:43PM May 28, 2014

By Lok Wing Kong

Kudos to the chairperson of Parent Action Group for Education Malaysia (PAGE) Noor Azima Abdul Rahim who has continuously put in huge effort in promoting English in general and in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) in particular for umpteen years.

I have in a small way also written on this subject with a view to wake up the powers-that-be to bring back the English medium schools in order to arrest the spiralling decline of this international lingua franca.

The British must be credited immensely for contributing the very unique and useful language - English - to the world.  It is the most powerful and useful language in many human endeavors particularly in STEM. Without it, the world may not be it is today.

In my opinion, every country shall embrace it as one of its own languages. This is the best way to be able to catch up and be at par with other advanced countries. It is “the” window to scientific knowledge. And knowledge is the key to success.

I reckon it is one’s philosophy in life in that good things, whether they are of the west or the east, one must embrace them. For example, all countries in the world have adopted Arabic numerals, French metric systems for weights and measurements, abacus and calculators and later computers etc, etc, which have been parts of our daily life. They are not ours. Therefore to embrace English to be our own is not wrong and shameful in any way.

Don’t let the nationalistic ego to drag us down. When our nationalistic ego is very high and we are far behind the Third World countries, all of them will look down on us. So which one would you prefer?

The British who were at loggerheads with the French for centuries and yet abandoned its imperial system in measurements and weights and embraced the French’s metric system instead.

The German government and many other European Union (EU) countries have encouraged their scientists and researchers to present their papers in English. It is suicidal to uphold national pride and ego and yet steadfastly ignore the very good things in the world.

English is a case in point. It is already an international language, meaning it belongs to every country. Hence it is not shameful to take it as one of our own languages.

It is a sad thing that our teaching academics from primary to tertiary level have been telling the students that we do not use English very often and therefore do not need to learn it with great effort. On top of that they view speaking English as a sign of being unpatriotic and it can reduce their Malay-ness and Muslim-ness.

Since the abolishment of the English schools some 50 years ago, the standard of English has been on the southward spiralling decline. Today, many graduates cannot construct a simple sentence in English without grammatical mistakes. I have read many of their resumes which are badly written and at times I could not figure out what they are trying to tell me.

The Education Blueprint 2013 to 2025 will be a total failure.

This country has been run by a bunch of no-brainers since independence. Thus far good things have been destroyed (e.g. English medium schools) and no good policies have been enacted, this education blueprint included.

This country has been mismanaged resulting in more than RM800 billion in sovereign federal debt, some 56 percent of our Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

‘Self-praise is no praise at all’

In the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) and Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) ratings Malaysian students were at rock bottom. The deputy prime minister and education minister had been boasting that our education system is the best in the world, better than that of EU countries including UK and US. Does he know that “self-praise is no praise at all”.

Besides PAGE, many outstanding personalities like ex-PM Dr Mahathir Mohamad have sounded their opinion in this subject for some time. Somehow the powers-that-be just turn a deaf ear and blind eye to the many rationally good suggestions.

Many students therefore shun the science subjects, turning to art and religious subjects instead. Most if not all Muslim countries are poor in STEM and good at theocracy, Malaysia included. Many Muslims ignore the importance of scientific knowledge. This will make Malaysia a backward country.

In the national education school setup, even with English native speaking teachers, it is not possible to uplift the English standard both in speaking and writing. The environment is not conducive for learning the language. The local teachers will sabotage this due to the aforesaid reasons. And the students do not have the chance to be immersed a for reasonably long time to grasp the language.

The only way to quickly arrest the decline of the English language is to quickly bring back the English medium schools.  Now there is still a sizeable number of retired English language teachers plus many English-educated retirees from the private sectors. If they were given good incentives, many of them would like to teach.

Don’t let this rare asset slip away. It is now or never!
~ Malaysiakini

Judge rules civil court superior to syariah

4:18PM May 30, 2014
The civil High Court has a higher jurisdiction than the syariah court on the religious dispute of a spouse who does not convert to Islam, the High Court in Ipoh ruled today.

In giving convert father K Pathmanathan @ Muhammad Ridhuan Abdullah one week to return his six-year-old daughter to the non-Muslim mother, M Indira Gandhi, the court also found the father guilty of contempt.

Judge Lee Swee Seng said failure to hand over the child would require the police to enforce a warrant of arrest on Pathmanathan for committing contempt and not abiding by the court order.

Reading out his two-and-a-half hour judgment, Justice Lee said the supervisory jurisdiction of the civil High Court is based on the fact that a syariah court decision cannot bind a non-Muslim party in a marriage.

He said the country practises secular law under which the civil High Court has unlimited jurisdiction and is superior in nature to the syariah court.

“Following this, the father must surrender the child to Kula &Associates by noon next Friday,” Justice Lee ruled.

He had earlier rejected an application by Pathmanathan's lawyer, Anas Fauzi, for a six-month stay on the contempt order and ordered that the child be returned within a week.

The contempt order, Justice Lee said, could only be set aside with Pathmanathan returning the child, Prasana Diksa.

Pathmanathan took Prasana away in 2009, when she was 11 months old.

In a landmark decision last year, Justice Leeoverturned the conversion to Islam of all three underaged children of Pathmanathan and Indira.

The couple has two other children, a 17-year-old daughter and a 16-year-old son, who are in the custody of the mother.

Police should act

While Pathmanathan was not in court today, as in earlier proceedings, the court said its custody order is nevertheless binding on him.

Justice Lee said the husband cannot depend on a Syariah High Court order he obtained as an excuse not to comply with the civil High Court custody order.

He further declared that the Syariah High Court custody order as null and void, which Pathmanathan also cannot rely on as a shield for contempt proceedings against him.

“The Syariah High Court has no jurisdiction to grant custody as the other party is not a Muslim,” he said.

Justice Lee warned that any person who disobeys a civil court order will be found to be in contempt, deliberately and willfully.

He also ordered the police to act and not to fold their arms in the event Pathmanathan does not obey this High Court order.

In addition to this, Justice Lee also ordered Pathmanathan to pay RM5,000 as costs to the mother.

The granting of custody to the non-Muslim mother today is the second in less than two weeks, after the High Court in Seremban granted S Deepa custody of her two children. Deepa's convert husband failed to get a stay order from the Court of Appeal.

~ Malaysiakini