Wednesday, September 30, 2015

In RM2.6 billion saga, Putrajaya admitted to foreign interference in polls, says Ambiga

BY KC NAZARI


Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan says the explanation over the RM2.6 billion in the prime minister's bank accounts was an admission of foreign meddling in the general election. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, September 30, 2015.

Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan says the explanation over the RM2.6 billion in the prime minister's bank accounts was an admission of foreign meddling in the general election. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, September 30, 2015.
Putrajaya's explanation over the RM2.6 billion that went into the prime minister's personal bank accounts was a huge lie that was causing the government an even bigger problem, said civil activist and lawyer Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan.

Speaking at a forum titled, "1MDB: Will Najib or Malaysia Survive", Ambiga said by claiming it was a donation from the Middle East and not a corruption, the government was in fact admitting there was foreign interference in the Malaysian elections.
"Do they know what they have done?
"They are actually saying they allowed a foreign government into our elections. Does that make sense?
"They failed to realise that the lie did not get them out of trouble but landed them in a bigger one," the National Human Rights Society president told the forum in Petaling Jaya last night.
Ambiga said the Cabinet should urge Datuk Seri Najib Razak to take leave from his position as the finance minister until the controversy over the billions in his accounts is resolved.
"I hope the Cabinet can be responsible enough to urge the prime minister to vacate his post temporarily," said Ambiga, the former chairman of the Bar Council.
Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua also questioned why Najib repeatedly asked for six months to solve the problems plaguing debt-ridden state investor 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB), which has incurred more than RM42 billion in debts.
Pua said the issues cannot be resolved in the near future as the debt was now huge.
"He asked for six months in January, and asked for the same again in March, June and in September, he asked for another six months.
"He will continue asking for six months as the debt hole had gotten too big to be covered," he added.
News portal Malaysiakini chief editor Steven Gan described the practice of political donations to fund general elections as the main source of corruption in the country's administration.
"Political donation is the mother of all corruption.
"The fact that a political party needs to come up with that much money to win an election and remain in power is itself the source of all corruption.
"We will not be able to deal with this scourge as long as the political financing issues remain unresolved," said Gan, a panelist at the forum.
The forum was mediated by former Temerloh MP Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah, and also featured The Malaysian Insider chief executive Jahabar Sadiq and Universiti Malaya economics professor Terence Gomez as panelists. – September 30, 2015.
- See more at: http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/in-rm2.6-billion-saga-putrajaya-admitted-to-foreign-interference-in-polls-s/malaysia/article/in-rm2.6-billion-saga-putrajaya-admitted-to-foreign-interference-in-polls-s#sthash.yvEg9xGb.dpuf

Ministry defends API data, says meet global standards

BY DIYANA IBRAHIM



Malaysia has yet to measure its air pollutant index (API) based on finer particulate matter like Singapore does due to the bigger size of the country, the Natural Resources and Environment Ministry said today, following  concerns that the API readings may not reflect a true picture of the air quality.
Deputy Minister Datuk Hamim Samuri said the island state was a much smaller land mass, making it easier for them to implement a system that could capture particulates of 2.5 microns (PM2.5) compared with Malaysia, which needed a longer time.
"The honest answer is simple. Singapore is a small country, and does not need many machines.
"We have the peninsula, Sabah and Sarawak," he told a press conference on the smoke situation today.
He said, however, this did not mean that the ministry was not aware of the need to do so, adding that the proposal to use the PM2.5 instead of the 10 microns or PM10 has been outlined in the 11th Malaysia Plan.
Hamim said for now, Malaysia had 12 stations to capture the PM2.5 data throughout the country, and was expected to complete full installation of the system by 2017.
He also said that the difference in API data should not be made an issue as the current Malaysian readings were in accordance with international standards under the United States Environmental Protection Agency (Usepa).
According to Hamim, Usepa made the study by the World Health Organisation to set its levels, and  this was the reason the API data in Malaysia was pegged to  health standards.
"For Malaysia, our API is more sensitive to the health effects while Singapore's is more targeted towards outside activities, so if their API reading is 120 or 150, they would possibly tell their people not to participate in outdoor activities, but ours is pegged to health, that is why we use the international protocol," Hamim added.
Recently, as the smoke situation worsened, PKR's Kelana Jaya MP Wong Chen urged Putrajaya to start using measurements that could capture particulates of PM2.5 as was done in most countries, including Singapore and Indonesia.
He said the PM2.5 data was even available in Department of Environment (DoE) stations here but failure to use it resulted in overall and substantially lower measurements in Malaysia, creating a more positive and "illusionary picture" of the nation's air quality.
Malaysians have also expressed scepticism over the API readings provided by DoE.
Despite the burning smell and grey smoggy skies, the readings have registered only "unhealthy" levels, but some felt that actual levels should be higher.
But Hamim hit out at such allegations being made on social media, and challenged those making them to bring their experts to prove their claims.
"The government is not lying, call any world expert, our method is according to international standards," he said. – September 30, 2015. 
- See more at: http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/ministry-defends-api-data-says-meet-global-standards#sthash.2VHJSqcM.dpuf

‘Free education possible without raising taxes’


 | September 30, 2015
Rafizi says the government only has to stop wasting money on scandalous projects like 1MDB.
rafizi-ramli,1mdb,ptptn
KUALA LUMPUR: PKR has rejected Prime Minister Najib Razak’s claim that the government would have to raise taxes if it were to provide citizens with free education.
In a press statement today, PKR Secretary-General Rafizi Ramli presented some calculations to show that free education was possible if the government “would stop wasting the nation’s wealth on scandalous projects like 1MDB.”
He said there was a great likelihood that the Malaysian public would have to bear 1MDB’s debt of “RM50 billion.” He arrived at the figure by factoring in interest and the declining value of the ringgit.
“If the country’s financial resources were not transferred to 1MDB, the sum given to the investment company would be enough to provide free education and to erase outstanding debts with the National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN),” he said.
According to news reports, Najib told students in New York this week that only by dramatically raising taxes could the government afford to provide free education and wipe out PTPTN debts.
Rafizi said the government could repay the PTPTN loans gradually by spending about RM2 billion a year, which he pointed out was just a little above the annual amount spent by 1MDB. He noted that 1MDB’s statements showed it had spent RM5.8 billion in three years.
He also noted a recent statement by Deputy Education Minister P Kamalanathan that the amount owed to PTPTN as of last March was RM13.3 billion.
“RM13.3 billion is just a small portion of the RM50 billion given to 1MDB,” he said.
He said the government could provide free tertiary education and take over the PTPTN debts by spending RM6 billion a year. The amount was the total he arrived at by adding the RM2 billion repayment of PTPTN loans to the estimated cost of eliminating public university fees, the cost of setting up a fund for private tertiary education loans without interest and the cost of providing living allowances to students in both public and private universities.
~ Free Malaysia Today

Cabinet needs to explain China envoy bungle

Abdul Aziz Bari  



COMMENT It is a bit strange when the cabinet and its members are not unanimous on the standard procedure and practice among cabinet members.
For one thing we have been independent for almost 60 years - all these years held by Umno-BN - and the cabinet secretariat should be clear on the procedures.
I think it is only proper that the cabinet - through the chief secretary of the government - issue a statement on this embarrassing confusion about the summoning of Chinese envoy.
The incident was enough to put the Najib government on the spot.
The one thing that is crucial is that members of the government - namely the cabinet - are bound by the unanimity principle called collective responsibility.
The summoning of the envoy was the government stand/policy and this is beyond question.
Who can do so?
Due to the above principle, constitutionally any cabinet member can do that. Of course it is normally done by the foreign minister or his or her ministry. A civil servant may even be asked to carry out the decision
Now what about a deputy minister? This has become an issue.
Under the constitution, as stated by Article 43A (2) of the Federal Constitution, his job is to assist the minister and he has all the powers to carry out that.
Article 43A (2) states that deputy ministers shall assist ministers in the discharge of their duties and functions, and for such purpose shall have all the powers of ministers.
That is important although a deputy minister is technically not a member of the cabinet - this is a mere practice as the constitution is silent on this.
It was not clear whether there was a minister who was put in charge of foreign affairs in the absence of Anifah Aman, the minister.
In the absence of such and assuming there was a communication between Anifah (photo, right) and his deputy Reezal Naina Merican (photo, left) what was done is fine.
That is why we need the cabinet secretary to enlighten us over what actually happened.
But it is already embarrassing and it signals that even the cabinet is not united on this very simple issue.

ABDUL AZIZ BARI is a constitutional law expert.


Read more:https://www.malaysiakini.com/news/314033#ixzz3nDDwOrdG

Hospitalise Anwar immediately, demands his wife

Koh Jun Lin 



PKR president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail has appealed for her husband and former opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim to be hospitalised, saying that he is not going to run away.
“Perhaps Anwar can receive treatment for an hour, and the rest of the time (the physiotherapist) can treat other patients and not deny physiotherapy to other patients.
“But if you send a physiotherapist to prison (to treat Anwar), half of his day would be wasted. And he is not going to run. Is there an escape plan?” Wan Azizah told a press conference in Petaling Jaya today.
She said this in response to a suggestion mooted by Parti Amanah Negara committee member Dr Mohd Hatta Ramli during the press conference that a physiotherapist can be sent from the Kuala Lumpur Hospital to the Sungai Buloh Prison regularly to treat Anwar, if the authorities insist that Anwar must be kept within prison grounds.
Earlier, at the same press conference, the newly-minted opposition coalition Pakatan Harapan called for Anwar to be hospitalised immediately, so that he could undergo intensive physiotherapy before getting surgery for the chronic pain in his right shoulder.
Wan Azizah said Anwar needed treatment to reduce the pain and avoid long-term effects while awaiting surgery, and that the facilities at Sungai Buloh Prison are inadequate for this.
She said he needs the therapy, both before and after the surgery, and the surgery on its own would be pointless if there is no guarantee that Anwar would be able to undergo regular physiotherapy afterwards.
In lieu of hospitalisation, she said, Anwar should at least be taken to the hospital for treatment no less than three times a week while waiting for the surgery.
This would be the same treatment that he had received during his first prison term, from 1999 to 2004, she said.
Wan Azizah also told reporters that Anwar’s condition was so severe now that he was unable to comb his hair or put on a shirt by himself.
Hatta (photo) added that the treatment for Anwar should not be a problem for the Healthy Ministry to provide, since it was neither expensive nor complicated, but was needed to avoid complications.
“This shouldn’t be a problem that causes a big issue to the ministry. This is needed so that, prior to surgery, there would be no complications to the muscles and bones affected.
“In orthopaedic cases, physiotherapy is something very basic and cannot be denied,” Hatta said.
Anwar’s family and lawyers have repeatedly complained of the supposed lack of medical attention that Anwar was being provided, such as being given physiotherapy only once a month, instead of several times a week as recommended by an orthopaedic specialist.
http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/313671
The Health Ministry has, in its response, countered that Anwar is being treated by 17 clinical consultants from eight medical disciplines, and that he also underwent two magnetic resonance imaging scans over a period of four months.


Read more: https://www.malaysiakini.com/news/314015#ixzz3nD0YU0ln

Systemic failure to protect NCR in Sarawak

SM Mohamed Idris     Published   



In 2002, the Sarawak Penan Association (SPA) released the Long Sayan Declaration 2002, which was signed by more than 40 Penan community leaders.
Among others, the declaration urged the halting of all logging operations on Penan territories, the gazetting of their territories into Communal Forest Reserves and the provision of accessible healthcare, education, quality housing, power and clean water supply as well as agricultural training and support to the community.
However today, more than a decade later - the Penan community of Sarawak by and large are still living without adequate land rights security and in substandard living conditions. Worse, due to the depletion in natural timber resources in Sarawak as a result of three decades of unsustainable logging, timber tree and oil palm plantations are fast taking the place of the declining timber industry.
Plantations, which require the total clearing of logged over forests, will certainly bring about more adverse consequences to local communities, although the impacts of logging operations had all the while been severe enough.
This is the contention of our new publication, ‘Penan Land Rights in Sarawak: 13 years after the Long Sayan Declaration 2002'. The publication contains numerous materials that had been released by Sahabat Alam Malaysia (SAM) and Penan community organisations between the year 2000 and 2013, chronicling for over a decade long, the struggle, grievances and demands of the community.
This new publication draws our attention to the continuous failure of the Sarawak state government and the federal government of Malaysia in resolving the people’s various land rights and welfare issues. It indicates the systemic nature of the oppression faced by the community and ultimately, the failure in good governance.
Reality on the ground remains the same
Despite the many statements of the Sarawak state government in the last year on its intention to strengthen forestry enforcement and forest protection, the reality on the ground for affected communities has remained the same.
This reality extends not only to Penan communities. Only in July, Ajeng Jok from the Kayan village of Long Pilah in Baram, was charged under section 379A of the Penal Code, for the ‘theft’ of properties belonging to a logging company, which Long Pilah has been blockading against since April. Several police reports had also been lodged by the villagers.
Even their attempt to gather information from the Sarawak Forests Department on the logging licence had reportedly failed as such information is considered as sensitive. Having no other option, in June, the people were forced to take possession of the company’s equipment, with the intention of handing it all back to the company, once it agrees to leave their territory.
It is thus timely to ask, after three decades of numerous promises to its indigenous peoples, and especially to the Penan community, what exactly has the Sarawak state government done to ensure the security of their customary land rights and the lifting up of their standard of living?
Our new publication, the recent case of Long Pilah, the two-year old blockade by the Baram-dam affected communities, the advent of plantations, all seem to point out that nothing much has been done. Further, a large section of Sarawak indigenous communities are still facing great challenges to access basic facilities such as electricity, clean water supply as well as quality healthcare, education and transportation services.
In line with the new tone of the state administration and the judicial recognition that states have a fiduciary duty to protect the interests of our indigenous peoples, we would like to request for the Sarawak state government to shed light on why it appears to have failed to do so and how it now intends to provide stronger land rights protection for its indigenous communities and improve their quality of life.

SM MOHAMED IDRIS is president, Sahabat Alam Malaysia (SAM).
Read more: https://www.malaysiakini.com/letters/313892#ixzz3nCyKCDJf

New opposition must reignite hope



Brave New World

Published: Wednesday September 30, 2015 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Wednesday September 30, 2015 MYT 7:04:24 AM

Azmi Sharom



PKR wings want Salleh to quit People want clarity about the aspirations and objectives of the Pakatan Harapan coalition.
THE Opposition has now officially regrouped. DAP, PKR and the PAS breakaway party, Amanah Harapan, have formed a new opposition coalition. Goodbye Pakatan Rakyat, hello Pakatan Harapan. Is this a good thing?
Well, it can’t be any worse than the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) which over the last couple of years has become more and more dysfunctional. Many, including myself, felt that PR’s days were numbered anyway. The very public split between DAP and PAS and the less well publicised disagreements between PKR and PAS meant that things were becoming untenable.
In 2008 and 2013, PAS managed to convince many voters that they had transformed into an inclusive, moderate and forward thinking party. What really happened was that their progressive faction became their public face and the traditionally non-PAS supporters were taken by their intelligence and their progressive message.
We did not see, or we chose not to see the fact that they were only part of PAS. The conservatives were always there and their stance and beliefs are simply not very palatable to those outside their traditional support group.
This schizophrenia was simply not sustainable. After PAS broke ranks by opposing PKR’s Kajang move and then insisted on trying to introduce Hudud in Kelantan (despite having agreed with their PR partners that matters like Hudud could not be decided unilaterally), it became clear that the gang was not all in the same boat.
Plus, with PAS there is always the spectre of Umno lurking in the shadows; that coy flirting between the two parties, with occasional sweet utterings of “Malay Unity” suggesting a coupling between the two.
Which is not to say PKR and DAP have been blameless. Whatever their reasons may be, the Kajang move was, to many voters, still little more than crass politicking.
And the DAP really could have behaved in a more statesman-like manner when disagreeing with PAS, instead of coming over all crude as if they were in a street fight. However, ultimately, PAS was heading off on their own path; a path that even a large number of their own leaders and members could not stomach, hence the creation of Amanah. The breakup of PR simply had to happen.
So, can the new Pakatan Harapan do better? They haven’t really started on a good foot, have they?
At their first official meeting and launch they have already alienated Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM). Sure, PSM was never a part of PR officially but they have always largely worked with and co-operated with the opposition coalition.
And they are, I believe, a very good partner to have. The PSM has made inroads without glamorous appeal or huge party machinery. Their success has been on the back of hard toil at the grassroots level; building trust and belief slowly by doing good works for those in need. Such dedication and principle is not to be scoffed at and in an era where it is more than easy to be cynical about politicians, such a party ought to be embraced.
And so this spat really is disappointing. Especially since it appears to be based on well, nothing really. At its core are the reasons why PSM was not invited to join Pakatan Harapan. It’s a case of he said, she said, followed by name-calling. It seems extremely childish and I, for one, cannot understand why they can’t simply put all their cards on the table, stop trying to cover their respective bottoms in an effort to look good, find out what really happened, put their respective egos in the closet, say sorry, shake hands and then move on.
And how should they move on? I think what the people want is clarity. Clarity as to the aspirations and objectives of this new coalition. We need to see firm policies and ideas of how to rescue this beleaguered nation of ours. We need intelligence and we need politics of principle.
Ah, and here’s another problem: principle. It sounds so good but does it have a place in realpolitik? When Jeremy Corbyn won the Labour Party leadership in England, there was a split in opinion.
Many were very happy that a person with very well defined left wing policies came into the fray. By doing so, he has given voters an actual choice between the Conservatives and Labour, based on principle. Unlike the Blair years when, due to his abandonment of core Labour principles, elections became a choice between the Tories or Tory Lite.
But there are those who say that Corbyn being so far to the left has effectively made Labour unelectable. They say that “middle England” can’t accept such a radical prime minister. And thus the conundrum is to either stand on principle or be pragmatic and fluid in order to be more viable.
The same issue seems to be raising its head here. It would be nice if Pakatan Harapan could lay down their manifesto and ideology and try to win the next election based on that.
But the fear lingers that without PAS, they cannot win Putrajaya. I have no idea if this is the case – the analysis of voting figures is so complicated it looks like it is written in Sumerian by the Ananaki to me.
But whatever the figures show, PKR seem keen to somehow keep on working with PAS. But how can this work?
The animosity between PAS on one side, and DAP and Amanah on the other, is thick enough to cut with a knife. It seems unlikely at this point that PAS will officially be part of the new opposition coalition (and I for one would not want them to be anyway).
What then is left? Co-operation during the next elections in order to avoid three-cornered fights?
But if this is to be, will PAS agree to co-operate not only with PKR but also with Amanah and DAP? Again, at this point that does not seem likely, as they’ve all been busy publicly hating one another.
This is a huge conundrum, in particular for PKR. Do they put 100% into the new coalition or do they keep on trying to work with PAS, who have publicly poured scorn and vitriol on PKR’s partners? Are we going to see politics of principle or pragmatism?
It is all far too early to tell. But one hopes that Pakatan Harapan will be able to sort themselves out. Many pundits have taken great pains to point out how previous opposition coalitions have failed.
They seem to suggest history will repeat itself. This may be true in the light of the PR split.
But we ought to remember that PR actually won four state governments in 2008, they won the majority vote in 2013, and they are currently running two of the more successful states in the nation.
But more than that, they really gave Malaysians hope for a genuine two party system. Sure PR has now crumbled, but they gave us hope. Pakatan Harapan’s job now is to reignite that hope.
Azmi Sharom (azmi.sharom@gmail.com) is a law teacher. The views expressed here are entirely the writer’s own.
~ The Star

Rafidah challenges Salleh's Internet speed claims


Updated: Tuesday September 29, 2015 MYT 10:27:55 PM

BY TAN YI LIANG

PETALING JAYA: Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz (pic) has challenged the statement by Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Dr Salleh Said Keruak, questioning whether Malaysians really preferred slower broadband packages.
"I read that there are a wide range of Internet speeds that Malaysians can choose from, and that 71% of Malaysian Internet users prefer the slower Streamyx broadband," said the former Cabinet minister in a Facebook post Tuesday.
"Oh dear, really? And we want to be a developed economy by 2020, a first-world country which has to be innovation-driven? What and who were sampled or interviewed?" she said.
On Monday, Salleh said most Malaysians chose to pay less for slower Internet speeds instead of spending more on fast connections.
"Actually, there are a wide range of Internet speeds that Malaysians can choose from but about 71% of Malaysian Internet users prefer the slower Streamyx broadband package that offers speeds of between 384 Kbps to 1 Mbps," said Salleh in a blog post.
Salleh pointed out that even though higher broadband speeds were available, the majority of customers subscribed to the cheaper and slower packages.
"In Singapore and Thailand the minimum speeds range from 4-5 Mbps. In Malaysia it is only 384 Kbps. Of course we can also do this for Malaysia.
"We can increase the minimum Internet speed to, say, 5 Mbps and force Malaysians to buy this higher-speed package. But that would mean the cost would be higher as well and Internet usage will be available to only those who can afford to pay the higher cost," said Salleh.
He pointed out that Malaysians could choose a 20 Mbps package if they wanted higher Internet speeds.
"However, most Malaysians would not opt for this and would still prefer the cheaper and slower speed Internet. So in the end it all boils down to affordability and Malaysia offers affordable Internet to those who want it and higher speed Internet to those where money is not a problem," said Salleh.
Responding to Salleh, Rafidah added that it was embarrassing if the world has the perception that most Malaysians prefer the slower option and that the Government was happy with that.
"Why not continue to look east to Korea and Japan to see the advancements there? Investors everywhere want the fastest broadband Internet speed possible on par with what they are used to.
"Our own people want that too, especially people who recognize the benefits of super-fast facilities. And our young who are information and communication technology savvy practically demand it!" said Rafidah.
~ The Star

Not our fault we don’t have better broadband


TIGERTALK  |  SEPTEMBER 29, 2015 6:32PM




STORY BY
sharmila@kinibiz.com
fiery tigertalk inside storyYesterday, Communications and Multimedia Minister Salleh Said Keruak said that the complaints of slow Internet speeds in Malaysia are because the people cannot afford higher speed Internet. His statement seems to imply that the people are not willing to pay for better broadband. Tiger thinks we shouldn’t have to.
Salleh was reportedly refuting a post by DAP’s Lim Kit Siang that he remains unconcerned about Malaysia’s poor Internet speeds, which are slower than other Southeast Asian countries such as Thailand and Singapore.
According to Malaysiakini.com, in a blog post last night, Salleh also said that 71% of Malaysian Internet users preferred the slower Streamyx broadband packages that offered speeds of between 384 kilobit per second (Kbps) to 1 megabit per second (Mbps). According to him, this was their preference over much higher speeds – albeit – more expensive packages offered by the Internet service providers (ISPs).
Well done, Minister, well done. In one blog post, you have not only managed to insult the people’s economic status, you’ve also managed to insult their intelligence.
For one, you’ve insinuated that our lower broadband speeds, compared to neighbouring Singapore, for instance, is because we don’t want to pay more for higher broadband. While that may be true, there’s one important truth you are not conveniently pointing out: the lack of affordable high-speed broadband packages made available to consumers.
While mobile broadband has grown in popularity among Malaysians, it is still pricey and not as cost-effective as having a fixed, unlimited broadband package at home. For those who can afford it, sure, they can pay through their noses to have a 500 Mbps fibre broadband connection at home. And that is if they really need it.
But even for those paying for a basic 5 Mbps fibre broadband UniFi package, they have to dish out about RM158 a month. Bear in mind that UniFi is owned by Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM), a government-linked corporation and listed entity.
tm-unifiA 1 Mbps Streamyx package by TM costs RM116.60 a month and really, that is expensive when you compare to a SingTel (backed by the Singapore government) customer paying S$50 (RM156) for a 1 gigabit per second fibre broadband connection. So effectively, Malaysians are paying more for far slower speeds. The question is, why do we have to?
The reason we are is that there are protectionist policies in place shielding companies like TM from real competition, policies that continue to allow it to dominate the marketplace.
The opposite is true for Singapore, which has at least six broadband players offering retail broadband services to consumers. With countries like Singapore, economies of scale from the competition has allowed broadband prices to decrease over time, making it affordable to the average Singaporean household.
Yes Tiger is aware that Singapore’s broadband infrastructure set-up is different from Malaysia’s and that is part of the problem: most of the infrastructure is owned by no other than TM. TM is hardly to blame of course, it is after all, a money-making entity. The fault lies with the authorities, for allowing a monopoly to continue year after year, thus causing broadband prices to remain high.
Salleh Said Keruak
Salleh Said Keruak
“We want to ensure that by 2020, at least 95% of Malaysians will have access to the Internet. And we also want to ensure that at least 50% of the urban areas and 20% of the rural areas have broadband speeds of up to 100 Mbps,” Salleh also said in his blog post.
Really, now? How do you plan to achieve that, dear minister, when you say over 70% of people clearly are unable to afford more than a 1 Mbps package a month? It is not enough that 95% of Malaysians have access to the Internet, that is truly a laughable goal when Singapore is bent on giving all its citizens access to broadband.
So why can’t we demand the same of ourselves as a nation? Why are we always reaching for the low-hanging fruit and aiming for developed nation status at the same time? At current broadband prices, there’s no way the minister is going to achieve his broadband penetration goal of 100 Mbps for 50% of urban areas and 20% of rural areas.
It’s time the minister and regulator aim higher, that is, to make sure that 95% of all Malaysians have access to affordable broadband by 2020. Any goal lesser than that is a gross disservice to Malaysians.
GRRRRR!!!
~ Kinibiz