Sahabat Rakyat akan mengemukakan pendapat khusus mengenai situasi politik di negara kita selepas "Rampasan kuasa Sheraton" pada 9 September 2020 untuk tatapan rakan semua bangsa dan semua strata yang komited terhadap reformasi demokratik tulen negara kita. Kami bersedia bertukar pendapat dan saling belajar dengan semua rakan-rakan sehaluan.


Bersatu padu, mempertahankan reformasi demokrasi tulen, buangkan khayalan, menghalang pemulihan Mahathirism.

 photo 2021.png

人民之友恭祝各界2021新年进步、万事如意!在新的一年里,联合起来,坚持真正的民主改革! 抗拒'马来霸权统治'! 丢掉幻想,阻止马哈迪主义复辟!

 photo mahathir_PRU14_1.png


 photo LimChinSiongampArticle.jpg


 photo 513StudentMovement.jpg

新加坡“5•13学生运动” 有/没有马共领导的争论【之一】与【之二】

 photo the-new-phase-of-democratic-reform-reject-state-islamization.jpg

马来西亚民主改革的新阶段 / The New Phase of Democratic Reform in Malaysia / Fasa Baru Reformasi Demokratik di Malaysia

 photo Bannerv2blue_small.jpg

 photo Banner%2BForum.jpg

 photo Banner_WorkReport2016.jpg


 16 Anniversary.PNG



人民之友根据2017年9月24日发表的《人民之友 对我国第14届大选意见书 》的内容与精神以及半年来国内和国外的政治形势,对5月9日投票提出具体意见,供全国选民参考。



Tuesday, 23 June 2009

An Act that will fix the racists

An Act that will fix the racists
Kua Kia Soong | Jun 20, 09 6:31am
Anyone who had attended the talk by Prof Aneez Esmail on ‘Race Relations in Britain’ organised by Kita (Institute of Ethnic Studies) in UKM will be left in no doubt as to the efficacy of the Race Relations Act 1976 in dealing with racism and racial discrimination in Britain.

malaysians 050905Twenty-four years ago, I wrote in The Star, “The need for race relations legislation” (Nov 28, 1985) because there was an alarming incidence of “institutional racism”, a point stressed by Aneez.

In that article, I elicited many examples of racism and racial discrimination in Malaysia which could be dealt with if such an Act existed in our country.

It was not taken seriously for the obvious reason that if we had such a law, many Umno politicians including the present prime minister would have been dealt with under such a law; many policies such as the enrolment of “bumiputera only” students into institutions - for example, UiTM - would have been declared racially discriminatory long ago.

The British Race Relations Act 1976 has a section on ‘Incitement to racial hatred’ which said:

“A person commits an offence if he publishes or distributes written matter which is threatening, abusive or insulting; or he uses in any public place or at any public meeting words which are threatening, abusive or insulting, in a case where, having regard to all the circumstances, hatred is likely to be stirred up against any racial group…”

In 1987, Umno Youth organised a rally at the Jalan Muda Stadium in Kuala Lumpur at which banners read: ‘May 13 has begun: Soak the keris in Chinese blood’, among others.

This is not the invention of the opposition. It can be corroborated in the government white paper, ‘Towards Preserving National Unity’, 1988. It was also covered by the Chinese-language press at the time.

Play transcript of Najib’s 1987 speech

On stage to fan the flames of such flagrant racism during that fateful rally was the Umno Youth chief and present prime minister.

Of course, he has denied in Parliament that he uttered the exact words as those on the banners. But as the police often warn us, the organisers must bear the responsibility for any utterances and banners displayed.

If we had a Freedom of Information Act, we would be asking for a transcript of the Umno Youth chief’s speech at that rally.

Since we do not have a FoI Act, the prime minister can try to clear his name by asking the authorities to make public the transcript of his 1987 speech. At least, if no one else, our Special Branch should have a copy. They told me during my ISA detention that they were one of the best intelligence outfit in the world and their library had more information than any other resource centre in the country.

Is there any wonder why such a FoI Act will meet the same fate as a Race Relations Act under such a government?

No action was taken against the main rabble rousers on stage at that rally. The main targets of the police were people like me who had nothing to do with this racist rally. More than a hundred of us were subsequently arrested and detained without trial under the ‘Operation Lallang’.

Since then, we have been treated to nauseating racist taunts by delegates at the Umno general assemblies and the ritualistic flaunting of the keris by the Umno Youth chief.

I remember a few years ago, an education minister tried to play to the gallery at an Umno general assembly by saying that, as long as he was the education minister, he would not allow a single non-bumiputera to be admitted into UiTM.

This is the reality of racial discrimination in this country. When we bear in mind that UiTM has a total enrolment of some 100,000 students and that it is a public-funded institution, it is shocking that the government can get away with such blatant racial discrimination by justifying it as “affirmative action”.

If we had a FoI Act, we would be able to get the statistics on other areas of such blatant racial discrimination.

Set up a Race Relations Court too

The statistics I got in Parliament in 1990 were as follows - an average of 90 percent of loans for polytechnic certificate courses, 90 percent of scholarships for diploma of education courses, 90 percent of scholarships/loans for degree courses taken in the country, almost all scholarships/loans for degree courses taken overseas were given to bumiputeras.

Regarding the enrolment of students in residential schools throughout the 80s, 95 percent were bumiputeras; the enrolment in Mara Lower Science College, Maktab Sains Mara was almost 100 percent bumiputera throughout the 80s... do you call this affirmative action?

Is there any wonder the government has not ratified the United Nations Convention Against Racial Discrimination up to the present day?

A Race Relations Court will be able to determine and define the legality or illegality of such actions and a Commission for Racial Equality could be formed to work toward the elimination of racism and racial discrimination; promote equality of opportunity and harmonious ethnic relations, and keep under review the workings of the Act.

I concluded my article of Nov 28, 1985 thus:

“While such a Race Relations Act may not strike at the roots of racial polarisation, at least it should ensure that the limits of the implementation of government policies are scrupulously delineated, and just as importantly, the Malaysian public is not treated to racist garbage, which should be spurned with all the contempt it deserves.”

KUA KIA SOONG, a director of Suaram, is former Petaling Jaya Utara MP. He was arrested in 1987 under the Internal Security Act and detained for 14 months. He is author of ‘445 Days Behind the Wire’.

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Lossing our mangrove

Losing our mangroves

Various development projects in Johor have carved up pristine mangroves.

IN 1980, a special report to the then Science, Technology and Environment Ministry recommended a conservation strategy through rationale use of Sungai Pulai mangrove forests in Johor. It called for a Mangrove National Park because the area is important for fisheries and is a food production zone under the National Agriculture Policy.

Some forms of conservation efforts were implemented when the Johor government in 2003 nominated Tanjung Piai, Pulau Kukup and Sungai Pulai in south-west Johor for the Ramsar list – a global initiative to conserve wetlands of international importance.

Once a sleepy hollow, south-west Johor is seeing the development of a modern township and is poised to be the jewel of the Iskandar Development Region, one of five economic regions unveiled by the Government last year.

But what is one of the country’s most productive and pristine riverine mangrove ecosystems is now being carved up for a port, power plant and soon, two petrochemical hubs. In the late 1990s, vast tracts of land on the west bank of Sungai Pulai was cleared for the Port of Tanjung Pelepas (PTP), followed by reclamation of 400ha of mangroves for the Tanjung Bin coal-fired power plant on the opposite bank. Public-listed Malaysian Mining Corp (MMC) holds a 70% equity in PTP and operates the power plant through its sister company Malakoff Bhd.

The latest development is an integrated petrochemical facility on 40.5ha of reclaimed island at the estuary by Asia Petroleum Hub. When it opens next year, it expects 2,000 vessel calls and will handle annually 60 million tonnes of petroleum products – industrial and marine fuel oils, diesel, jet fuel and biodiesel.

MMC, through its subsidiary Seaport Worldwide, will clear a further 902ha of mangroves for a petrochemical and maritime centre on the east bank.

The comprehensive Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the project was approved last July. But critics, who said that there was no public comment and expert panel review, urged for a detailed EIA, given the project size and the area being a Rank 1 “environmentally sensitive area”. Such a ranking allows only low-impact nature tourism, research and education, not development, agriculture or logging.

A fishing jetty in one of the tributaries of Sungai Pulai in south-west Johor. The reclamation of 902ha of mangrove forests along the river for a petrochemical hub is likely to affect the livelihoods of at least six riverine communities that have for the longest time enjoyed the bounty of the rich ecosystem. In the background are high tension wires that transmit electricity from the Tanjung Bin coal-fired power plant.


Johor executive councillor for environment Tan Kok Hong points out that the area is designated for petrochemical industries under the Pontian District Structural Plan (2002-2015) and PTP had acquired the land in 2001. He says the project proponent is required to replant cleared mangroves and a task force will ensure that development is carried out in a sustainable manner as the Iskandar Develop ment Region is envisioned as a green city.

PTP chairman Datuk Mohd Sidik Shaik Osman, speaking on behalf of Seaport, says the comprehensive EIA approval came with 62 conditions to safeguard the environment.

“We recognise the area has certain ecological sensitivities and we have to fulfil the conditions. Half of the land is sacrificed as a buffer between the project site and the Ramsar area, villages and rivers. As a master developer, we’ll develop the land responsibly. The individual companies will have to prepare detailed EIAs,” he says, stressing that all legal requirements are being observed.

Sidik, a director of MMC, explains that growth is imminent due to the huge demand for industrial land in the vicinity of PTP, owing to its strategic location in a busy international shipping lane.

Inaccurate claims

Criticising the EIA report, Save Our Seahorses (SOS) co-ordinator Choo Chee Kuang says the document misidentified species and lacked mitigation measures.

He says the sole seahorse species found in Sungai Pulai – the spotted seahorse (Hippocampus kuda) – was misidentified as the pygmy seahorse (Hippocampus denise). And instead of Rhizophora apiculataand R. macronata, the dominant mangrove tree species was named theAvicennia lanata.

EIA consultancy Hijau Sekitar refused comment, citing client confidentiality.

Choo argues that further disturbance in the estuary could lead to local extinction of endangered species such as the seahorse and dugong.

“The type of heavy industries proposed could cause irreversible damage to the Sungai Pulai ecosystem that harbours the country’s most extensive seagrass bed, the densest seahorse population, productive fish and shellfish nursery grounds.

“The consultant’s estimation of loss at RM4mil over 99 years has severely under-estimated the economic value of the mangrove forest. According to the United Nations Development Programme, the output of mangroves in terms of fisheries alone would amount to US$215,000 per hectare per year. That is RM200mil per year from the area earmarked to be cleared. Will the country experience more loss than gains in the long run?” he asks.

Aerial view of the Port of Tanjung Pelepas in Johor (file photo). In the late 1990s, vast tracts of land on the west bank of Sungai Pulai was cleared to build the port.

In the picture

While SOS is petitioning against further large-scale development in the area, another conservation group is collaborating with PTP. The Johor branch of the Malaysian Nature Society (MNS) has received RM60,000 to document the natural and cultural heritage of Sungai Pulai in a coffee-table book.

It will also work with researchers from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia to analyse water samples and map the Merambong seagrass meadow and its biodiversity.

MNS president Anthony Sebastian says the partnership compels PTP to protect Sungai Pulai and the seagrass bed: “Through engagement, the MNS is part of the process and hopes to make things better, as opposed to choosing not to participate.”

PTP’s Sidik says: “We agreed to fund research for the seagrass bed although it isn’t within our port limit. The coffee-table book is to kick-start the collaboration that will inc lude other research and awareness activities.

“We want our business to grow but we’re also willing to sit down with concerned parties to mitigate the impacts – as a responsible corporate citizen way of approaching development,” he adds.

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

HRSC: Petrochemical Industry issue at Tanjung Bin, Pontian











问题四:石油化学工业将带给附近居民(大约1公里)巨大的环境及健康影响,尤其是排出的多环芳香警烃(polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH))和各种毒物。为什么石油化学工业要兴建在与龟咯实叻角居民区区只有1公里的范围内?






1) Himpunan aman sebelum perarakan

2) Perarakan bermula

3) Pemusnahkan pokok bakau telah mula dijalankan

4) Penduduk berdiri diatas tempat penebangan

5) Anak-anak sekolah turut sama menyertai himpunan aman




ChinaPress.Com: 將毀1000個足球場大紅樹林,建石化廠破壞生態.

更新: June 9, 2009 17:41





















































康復班/新班分為午間班(下午2時30分至5時)及晚間班(晚上8時至10時),地點:47, Jalan Budaya, Taman Bandar, Batu Pahat(峇株巴轄智能氣功協會會所)。























And insert the rest of it here.

HRSC: Petrolchemical Industry issue at Tanjung Bin, Pontian

Bantahan penebangan pokok bakau secara senyap-senyap!

SUARAM cawangan Johor Bahru mendesak pihak berkuasa wajib menjawab persoalan yang dibangkitkan berikutan cadangan pembangunan industri petrokimia dan industri maritim yang melanggar polisi dan akta-akta.

[kenyataan akhbar SUARAM caw. JB pada 9hb Jun 2009]

Dua minggu selepas MB Johor Datuk Abdul Ghani melancarkan program penanaman anak pokok bakau di Stesen Janakuasa Tanjung Bin, Pontian, penebangan hutan paya bakau seluas 913 hektar untuk memberi laluan kepada pembangunan industri petrokimia telah bermula sepertimana yang telah dirancangkan. Tindakan pihak berkuasa yang tidak mempedulikan suara penduduk sekitar Mukim Serkat sebelum ini jelas apabila mereka mula menebang pokok bakau secara senyap-senyap. Ini juga jelas menunjukkan bahawa program pelancaran penanaman anak pokok bakau hanyalah suatu sandiwara pihak berkuasa untuk menipu rakyat bahawa kononnya kerajaan negeri Johor mencintai dan memelihara alam sekitar.

1) Himpunan aman sebelum perarakan

2) Perarakan bermula

3) Pemusnahkan pokok bakau telah mula dijalankan

Pada 8 Jun 2009, lebih kurang jam 5:30 petang, kira-kira 50 orang penduduk kampung telah hadir dan mengadakan perarakan sejauh 500 meter ke tempat penebangan pokok bakau untuk membuat bantahan. Mereka yang menyertai himpunan aman ini bukan sahaja terdiri dari orang dewasa, bahkan turut disertai oleh anak-anak sekolah. Muka mereka dilukis dengan pelbagai imej spesis hidupan laut seperti ikan, kuda laut, penyu dan sebagainya. Ada juga yang memakai kad-kad dengan gambar ikan dugong, rumpai laut dan ada juga kad yang memaparkan mesej supaya penebangan pokok bakau ini dihentikan. Kain pemidang dengan perkataan “Kami SOKONG tanam Pokok Bakau, Kami BANTAH tebang Pokok Bakau” sekali lagi direntang oleh penduduk kampung dengan tujuan agar tuntutan mereka didengar oleh pihak berkuasa.

4) Penduduk berdiri diatas tempat penebangan

5) Anak-anak sekolah turut sama menyertai himpunan aman

Pelbagai soalan perlu dijawab oleh pihak berkuasa. Antaranya termasuk:-

Soalan Pertama; Kawasan Sungai Pulai yang diitakrifkan sebagai Kawasan Sensitif Alam Sekitar (KSAS) tahap pertama tidak boleh digunakan untuk sebarang penebangan, pembalakan dan projek besar-besaran, tetapi bagaimana cadangan pembangunan industri petrokimia ini boleh diluluskan?

Soalan Kedua; pembangunan projek mega yang memerlukan penebangan hutan paya bakau melebihi 500 hektar perlu menjalankan kajian Detail Environmental Impact Assessment (DEIA), tetapi dimanakah kajian DEIA?

Soalan Ketiga; perlindungan kepada haiwan terancam seperti dugong dan kuda laut adalah wajib dibawah Akta Perikanan 1985. Pembangunan industri-industri berat seperti kilang petrokimia dan maritim di Sungai Pulai akan memusnahkan pokok-pokok bakau dan rumpai laut yang merupakan habitat bagi pelbagai hidupan laut, dan haiwan-haiwan yang mengalami kepupusan seperti dugong dan kuda laut. Apakah jaminan keatas pemulihan haiwan terancam dan pembekalan sumber laut di selatan Johor?

Soalan keempat; industri petrokimia memberi kesan ketara terhadap kesihatan penduduk yang tinggal berhampiran (lingkungan kurang dari 1km) akibat pelepasan polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) dan bahan toksik lain, Mengapa industri tersebut dicadangkan untuk dibina di lokasi kurang dari 1 km dari kawasan kampung di Mukim Serkat, Pontian?

SUARAM cawangan Johor Bahru mendesak kepada pihak berkuasa agar persoalan-persoalan diatas wajib dijawab kepada rakyat kerana cadangan projek petrokimia dan industri maritim di Sungai Pulai telah melanggar polisi dan akta-akta institusi kerajaan Persekutuan dan Negeri yang dirangka untuk menjamin perlindungan sumber asli dan kesihatan penduduk sekitar.

SUARAM cawangan Johor Bahru berpendapat bahawa segala pembangunan perlulah mengutamakan kepentingan rakyat dan juga nelayan-nelayan sekitar Mukim Serkat dan bukan hanya untuk kepentingan pihak korporat semata-mata serta tidak mempedulikan risiko kesihatan yang bakal timbul akibat aktiviti-aktiviti pembangunan Wilayah Pembangunan Iskandar yang diwar-warkan.

SUARAM cawangan Johor Bahru juga menyeru agar pihak berkuasa melibatkan peranan penduduk kampung dan nelayan secara langsung dalam segala proses perancangan pembangunan perairan Tanjung Bin supaya kepentingan dan hak mereka dapat dipertahankan.

Akhirnya kami menyeru kepada semua lapisan masyarakat, badan-badan NGO, parti-parti politik dan pihak media agar terus memberikan tumpuan kepada masalah-masalah akibat pembangunan Industri Petrokimia dan Industri Maritim ke atas penduduk kampung dan nelayan-nelayan sekitar Mukim Serkat.

Gambar-gambar seperti berikut:-

1) Himpunan aman sebelum perarakan

2) Perarakan bermula

3) Pemusnahkan pokok bakau telah mula dijalankan

4) Penduduk berdiri diatas tempat penebangan

5) Anak-anak sekolah turut sama menyertai himpunan aman

SUARAM cawangan Johor Bahru

Jawatankuasa Sahabat SUARAM negeri Johor

09 June 2009

Monday, 8 June 2009

New Era College row: The betrayal of DJZ, Pt 4

New Era College row: The betrayal of DJZ, Pt 4
Kua Kia Soong | Jun 3, 09 10:27am

This New Era College (NEC) controversy has another aspect which may be of interest to political scientists and sociologists. It has divided the old left movement in Malaysia. Now, ever since the end of the armed struggle by the Left in this country, they have put their efforts into the Chinese education movement.

Those who critically follow the developments in the Dong Zong and New Era College secretariats know what's going on. But there are others who unthinkingly consider Dong Jiao Zong as inviolate without questioning the actions of the leadership.

During the controversy, certain statements by certain former leftist leaders have created consternation among others on the Left. The article by Fangshan (published in Chinese by Merdeka Review on December 12, 2008) apologised for Yap and his cronies by arguing that this "new stage of development for Chinese education" involves compromising with the ruling coalition.

kua kia soong launch new book 230509 01.jpgThe glorious history of the Left in this country must not be smudged by such renegade or otherwise unthinking left who have chosen to take a reactionary position in this controversy. Yap himself has tried to make use of his "leftist" past and to try to influence the former lefties who have joined the Chinese education movement since their retirement from active politics.

We have also seen another so-called lefty and Chairman of the KL/Selangor Old Friends' or ex-detainees' Association sabotage NEC in his attempt to discredit me by saying that only one course had been approved by MQA (See Chapter 2). One of Yap's mercenary writers is also supposed to be a former lefty but has shown his true colours by employing a MCA lawyer to sue me for defamation.

There are other lefties who say they are "neutral". If they are neutral in this controversy, can they claim to be lefties? If they cannot make out the facts and see what's just and unjust, what's democratic and what is not, who's reactionary and who's progressive...can they still be considered lefties?

If these are lefties, then who needs rightists? They would like the status quo in Dong Jiao Zong (DJZ) to prevail but it is a status quo that allows Yap to execute his agenda, i.e. get rid of Bock and Kua and to hell with all the young people who want to leave DJZ. This reminds me of a South African song in the seventies:

"There are those who cry out for peace
But do not cry out for justice...
We want peace
But we also want justice!"

The real and democratic Left should instead be asking for the truth and the democratisation of the Chinese education movement. Asking our heads of departments to leave the Board meeting in the name of "legalism" and "professionalism" is right wing reactionary ideology.

Save the Chinese Education Movement

All that Yap can show for his three years as Dong Zong chairman is his successful purging of Bock and Kua from the secretariats of Dong Zong and New Era College. Instead of seizing the opportunities afforded by the March 8, 2008 general elections and learning from the vision of great leaders such as Lim Fong Seng to forge a more democratic society and a brighter future for mother tongue education, Yap has chosen instead to launch his putsch. This has sapped the energy and time of the whole community throughout much of 2008. Nor does his collusion with the MCA augur well for the erstwhile non-partisan and fiercely independent Malaysian Chinese education movement.

The Board's function is to help fund-raise and to plan the development of the college. They have failed and the college has faced a crisis of space toward the end of 2008 while the Board has been idle over the Sepang project since 2000. The momentum of development of the college has thus suffered.

Year 2009 sees the beginning of a movement to ‘Save the Chinese Education Movement'. We want leaders who are visionary, principled, who cannot be compromised by the ruling coalition, and who have an inclusive attitude to all who can contribute to the movement. Corrupt leaders and saboteurs of the movement will be toppled and be held to account.

Unless these unprincipled leaders are replaced, the Chinese education movement will not be able to attract the talented young activists we have seen since the Lim Fong Seng era. The vision of a unique and multi-lingual community-run university will not materialise and even the reputation of the Unified Examination Certificate will be in question ... It will be the beginning of the end of our erstwhile incomparable Malaysian Chinese education system, one of the largest community-run mother tongue education systems in the world.

Read Part One, Part Two, and Part Three

DR KUA KIA SOONG was the principal of New Era College (2000- 2008). He has also been opposition Member of Parliament for Petaling Jaya (1990-95); political detainee under the ISA (1987-89) and academic adviser to Dong Jiao Zong (1983-85). He is the author of ‘May 13: Declassified Documents on the Malaysian Riots of 1969' and ‘New Era College Controversy: The Betrayal of Dong Jiao Zong'

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

New Era College row: The betrayal of DJZ, Pt 3

New Era College row: The betrayal of DJZ, Pt 3

Kua Kia Soong | Jun 2, 09 2:14pm
This book on the New Era College (NEC) controversy details how Dong Zong chairperson Yap Sin Tia executed ‘Operation Axe Kua’ in their attempt to discredit and oust me as the college principal.

It reveals his control strategies and hidden agendas and ultimately the erosion of confidence in his leadership.

On Oct 20, 2006, Goh Kean Seng, the Confucian school headmaster confided in me that Yap had asked his opinion about me since my annual contract was nearing renewal.

yap sin tian djz chairman hq 030805Yap (right) had indicated to Goh that I was “a bit of an impediment”, and had been going round saying that he was the chairperson of the board but had no power to touch NEC funds.

I told Goh that Yap had not divulged the real story. What had happened was that at one board meeting, Yap had wanted to use the college Endowment (sponsors’) Fund for the use of the parent company, DJZ Higher Learning Centre Bhd (DJZHLC).

I had opposed this because, I said, this was a breach of sponsors’ trust who had donated specifically for the college use. Again, this became another example used by the directors to say that the CEO had too much power, even more powerful than the chairperson of the Board

Through their sabotage in casting doubt on the management of the college, Yap and his cronies have done irreparable harm to the college. The enrolment this year has dropped. Many donors have indicated that they will not donate any more funds. Yap and the other directors had destroyed the principles of the college even before I left.

1. The whole controversy exploded because Yap ordered our heads of department out of the June 14 meeting of the Board of Governors. This was a breach of the democratic practice of not only the college but also the whole Chinese education movement.

2. Yap, as chairperson of the Board of Directors, had shown contempt for the Board of Governors by failing to schedule any meetings since August 2008, despite the need to approve urgent college agenda. Even though the Board of Governors is the only college body recognised as accountable by the Higher Education Ministry and therefore we could have easily obtained an injunction against the directors, we chose not to, in deference to an appeal by our elder, Sim Mow Yu.

3. Yap has taken away the checks and balance from the college governors by concentrating the power to sign cheques in the hands of the directors of the parent company. He has destroyed a democratic practice established in 1998. There is now no transparency and accountability. Three years ago, I prevented Yap from using the Endowment Fund of the college for the purposes of the DJZHLC.

4. Yap has violated the autonomy of the campus by overriding the CEO of the college and demanding a head of department to ‘show cause’ as to why he sent an email to the press. As in Dong Zong, Yap has interfered in the running of the college. According to the spirit of the Instrument of Government of the college, the CEO is in charge of the college. The Private Higher Education Institution Act 1996 stipulates that the CEO is responsible to the Registrar-General.

5. Yap and the directors have, for the first time in the history of the Chinese education movement, compromised its cherished political independence, through their actions regarding the college. First they allowed the MCA, through the deputy minister of higher education, to intervene in the NEC controversy with various offers to me and my heads of department, and saying that the government has the right to intervene.

The lawyer he has employed to sue Goh is a MCA lawyer. His apologist in the parent company’s Higher Education Committee is Chua Yee Yan, another MCA man. But their historic compromise was seen in their joint caper with the MCA leaders and then Selangor Menteri Besar Dr Mohd Khir Toyo just before the last general election when they signed a MOU on the Sepang project.

6. As soon as the new principal assumed office in mid-January this year, he changed the weekly management review meetings into monthly meetings. This is in line with the disempowerment of the heads of department started by the directors last June. Thus, decisions are no longer collectively and democratically made. Worse, he has even given over the power to decide on minor posts (e.g. transferring a technician to another department) to the chairperson of the Board.

Account for Sepang campus

The Sepang project has been dragging on since 2000 when Hong Leong announced that it was donating a 100-acre piece of land to NEC. At the time, we all supported Quek Suan Hiang, the Dong Zong chairperson, for accepting the offer mainly because Hong Leong was fully supporting us – they actively raised funds for us, putting donation boxes in all their branches and they were the manager of the project. They even invited Andy Lau to come for a fund-raising concert in 2001 when RM2 million was raised.

However, in 2001, after the authorities had ordered the cancellation of the launching ceremony of the Sepang project, Hong Leong began to pull back. They stopped raising funds for us and also pulled out as project manager.

When it came to the renewal of the contract, we decided that we could not accept the contract as it stood, because this would mean we would be raising funds on our own and we would have to have the land in our name before the public would donate to the project. The negotiations over the contract have continued since then.

At the end of 2004, we faced a crisis over whether to proceed with the Sepang project. There were problems over extending the agreement. It was risky because the agreement was not in our favour. Hong Leong had backed out of being the project manager and wanted us to take full responsibility for this. They also wanted us to foot the bill for the infrastructural work.

On the Sepang project, it must be put down on record that in the January-February 2007 report of the parent company DJZHLC, the contract had been almost fixed. At the Feb 5, 2008 Executive Directors’ meeting, the Sepang contract had already been accepted and the directors were ready to sign the new contract.

selangor adun ceremony 220408 khir toyoOn Feb 19, 2008 at Wisma MCA, Yap signed the MOU with Vintage Heights together with MCA ministers and Khir (left), with Quek as witness. It was front page news in all the Chinese dailies. It was clearly an orchestrated press event to give the impression that the MCA/BN was supporting Dong Jiao Zong and the college. The MOU stipulated that the contract would be signed within three months.

It was obviously an attempt by the BN with the cooption of Yap and the other Dong Jiao Zong leaders to try to swing the Chinese votes to the BN during the March 2008 general election.

At the April 28, 2008 Executive Directors meeting, it was minuted that the Sepang contract would be signed before May 19, 2008.

After the college management had expressed our opposition to the terms of the new contract that had been negotiated by the College ‘legal adviser’, the June 6, 2008 Executive Directors’ meeting expressed the view that they could not accept the contract stipulation that construction of the campus had to be completed within 15 years and that each phase had to be completed within 3-5 years.

education quek hin siang farewell 080805 talkingOtherwise, Vintage Heights had the right to take back the land or buildings that had not yet received the Certificate of Fitness. The meeting resolved to write to Quek (right) for assistance.

Then at the June 14, 2008 Board of Directors meeting, I pointed out that the college must have the right to develop anywhere it likes apart from Sepang. At this meeting, I pointed out that I had already submitted to the board the City Campus concept with the Kajang campus as its centre. This would have the advantage of attracting more students since it is nearer to KL and the transportation routes.

At this meeting, it was resolved that it should be left to a committee of professionals to evaluate the Sepang project and the result should be reported to the public. The problem with the Sepang campus is not only that of the quality of the Sepang land but also the problem of attracting students to such a distant campus and the feasibility of development there.

The meeting resolved to let a committee comprising the three organisations, ie. Dong Zong, Jiao Zong and Merdeka University Bhd, follow up with Vintage Heights before deciding what to do with the land.

It is now nearly a year and Yap has still not accounted to the Chinese community on the Sepang project.

At the June 9, 2007 Board of Directors meeting, I pointed out that the Sepang contract had been dragging on long enough with new problems being raised every time. As such, it would be more advisable for us to consider a ‘city campus’ concept around Kajang. The meeting requested I put forward a concrete proposal.

We put forward this more practical ‘city campus’ project which Yap had refused to discuss. Our development plan around Kajang is popular among stakeholders as it increases our accessibility, deepens our community involvement and requires a lighter investment from the Chinese community.

Yap must explain why he does not want to discard the Sepang project. Does he have any personal interest in this?

The four-part series will conclude tomorrow.

Read Part 1 and Part 2

KUA KIA SOONG was the principal of New Era College (2000- 2008). He has also been opposition member of parliament for Petaling Jaya (1990-95); political detainee under the ISA (1987-89) and academic adviser to Dong Jiao Zong (1983-85). He is the author of ‘May 13: Declassified Documents on the Malaysian Riots of 1969' and ‘New Era College Controversy: The Betrayal of Dong Jiao Zong’.

SMS News Alerts
Maxis users
- Type "BUY MKINI" and send to "26000" (RM 5.00 per month)
- Type "BUY WMKINI" and send to "26000" (RM 1.50 per week)
Umobile users
- Type "ON NW MKINIENG" and send to "28118" (RM 5.00 per month)
Digi users
- Type "ON MKINI" and send to "2000" (RM 5.00 per month)
Share your views

Got a short comment or two on our reports/articles? Send it over to Vox Populi, a free forum for readers to air their views on Malaysiakini’s news reports, columns, opinions, letters and analyses. Please keep your comments brief and provide a pseudonym if you so wish. Vox Populi differs from Letters to the Editor in that it caters specifically for brief, to the point comments. Do please indicate which report/article you are referring to. Send your Vox Populi comments to:


Diy Day Banner

Advertise here ( RM15/day )

Advertise here ( RM15/day )

Diy Day Banner

And insert the rest of it here.

Monday, 1 June 2009

New Era College row: The betrayal of DJZ, Pt 2

New Era College row: The betrayal of DJZ, Pt 2
Kua Kia Soong | Jun 1, 09 12:36pm
Quek Suan Hiang, the Dong Zong chairperson from 1993-2005, can be credited for his role in raising funds for the two new buildings of the New Era College (NEC) and for leading the way to China and Taiwan in 1997 to seek partnership of their top universities.

He was very appreciative of the leadership of Bock Tai Hee as CEO of the Dong Zong secretariat throughout much of his term - after Bock retired in 1999, Quek have him a five-year contract in 2001.

dr yap sin tianIn contrast, the next chairperson Yap Sin Tia (left) gave me a contract from 2005-2008.

But Quek’s first major failure in his leadership of the Chinese education movement was his capitulation to Umno Youth during the Suqiu affair in 2000.

Although the Chinese Associations’ Suqiu Working Committee meeting had decided not to give in to the threats, Quek went against the decision by acceding to Umno Youth leader Hishammuddin Hussein’s demand that several of the demands be retracted. No Chinese educationist leader from the time of Lim Lian Geok had ever shown such weakness.

Quek’s second failure of leadership of the Chinese education movement was seen during the 2004 general election when he expressed the position that we were “neutral” in the elections. For the first time in Malaysia’s post- Independence history, the Chinese education movement did not present any demands to the ruling coalition.

From then on, Quek’s relationship with Bock deteriorated. He no longer confided in Bock as he became closer to the MCA. He would go with the Jiao Zong chairperson Wang Zhaoqun whenever he wanted to discuss educational or political issues with the MCA leaders. The Jiao Zong chairperson’s close relations with the MCA leaders are well known!

During the earlier part of his term, Quek had always been appreciative of the fact that whatever praise he received did not accrue from personal achievements, but his position as Dong Zong chairperson. However, toward the end, he developed delusions of grandeur especially being awarded honourary doctorates and professorships by Chinese universities.

Quek’s attitude to Bock changed critically. This was when Quek attempted to push through a research project with Xiamen University - this did not succeed because the college academic committee had considered it too expensive and there was no real advantage for the college.

The college would have had to share the cost of RM300,000 for the first stage of the project alone and the college would merely have the role of collecting material for the Xiamen University researchers.

quek sin hiangAt the decisive meeting, Quek (right) expressed his dissatisfaction with us because he had unilaterally agreed to this joint research project when he had attended the Xiamen meeting in his capacity as a director of that university. It was a question of losing face more than anything else. We had no option because we put the college interests and capacity first. At the time, the college budget was still in question and there was no indication of where this research allocation would come from.

Bock was mainly going by our democratic decision which had been reached after much discussion. But I remember Quek’s angry remark at the end of the meeting: “…And I never thought that even you, Bock, would oppose this project!”

After that, Quek’s relationship with Bock went downhill. At his farewell speech on 2006, he specifically called on the new directors of Dong Zong to reconsider the role of the CEO in the Dong Zong secretariat: “The CEO has too much power!” he insisted.

After his retirement, Quek played mentor to Yap, who took over. Yap’s subsequent actions to override Bock can be traced to Quek’s farewell speech in 2006. Quek’s loud silence throughout the NEC controversy of 2008 should be seen in the light of what I have revealed above.

A hidden agenda

How did the Chinese education movement with its history of illustrious leaders produce a leader like Yap? This is a question our children will ask and which the movement will have to answer.

Some have put it down to his inferiority complex, hence the need to acquire so many dubious PhD titles and the obsession to get rid of Bock and myself, who he claimed “look down on him”. My wife Anne puts it down to the possibility that he lacked maternal love!

Whatever the reason, Yap’s unsuitability for the post of Dong Zong head can be seen from his actions. His integrity and academic capability are in doubt from his acquisition of dubious PhDs.
In education, there are no shortcuts to success and recognition.

Amassing questionable PhDs only lead to cynicism and invites derision. Someone who has so little regard for academic honesty can hardly lay claim to be the chairperson of the Board of Governors of such an institution as NEC which aspires to be a ‘world-class tertiary institution’.

Yap’s political agenda can be seen as early as the 1998 Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall (SCAH) elections when he sided with the pro-BN Liu Panshi (who had organised a tea-ceremony for premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad in 2001) and who tried in vain to form a breakaway ‘Kuala Lumpur Assembly Hall’. Many of the leaders in the SCAH have not forgotten how he sold them out.

In December 2004, MCA leaders had a closed-door dialogue with DJZ leaders. Among other things, MCA leaders complained about the “Opposition sympathies” of some of our lecturers, mentioning Pan Yongqiang in particular, who had written an article in the press criticising MCA’s ‘Lifelong Learning Campaign’.

Soon after, when Pan was selected to represent NEC at a conference in Guangzhou, he was supposed to go with Yap and the Jiao Zong chairperson Ong. The two were not happy with the choice of Pan and asked why he was representing NEC and were against him presenting any papers at the conference.

When Pan heard about this, he refused to go. This was another example of how the DJZ leaders had violated the NEC principle of academic freedom.

In another incident in August 2008, Yap telephoned the organiser of a conference on Malay-Chinese translation demanding to know why he had invited NEC’s head of research centre, Zheng Wenquan. Apparently, Zheng’s paper had been critical of some translations which happened to include Yap’s but the criticism had been totally academic in spirit.

Questionable stance

Yap’s position during the March 2008 general election was highly questionable. Unaware of the political tsunami that was coming, he announced that DJZ was taking a neutral stand.

As the leader of the Chinese education movement, he failed to put forward the demands of the community, like Quek in the 2004 election. Worst of all, he worked hand in glove with the MCA and Umno Selangor menteri besar by signing the MOU on the Sepang project, an attempt to give the Chinese community a signal that the BN was working for the good of Chinese education. Now, nearly a year later, the MOU promise that the Sepang contract would be signed within three months has still not been kept!

new era college yap sin tian beaten 110109Again, in the NEC controversy, we see that Yap’s lawyer in the defamation suit against Goh Kean Seng is MCA’s Chan Tse Yuen, while the apologist for his dubious PhDs is MCA academic Chua Yee Yan. Chan was again heading the panel of lawyers issuing threats to our head of drama and film department Sun Chunmei, warning her not to comment on the Yap’s ‘bloody nose’ incident.

As chairperson of Dong Zong, Yap has filled the Board of Directors and Governors with his cronies even if they know nothing about higher education. If one looks at the members of the Board of Directors of DJZHLC and the Board of Governors of NEC, we would be hard pushed to spot any academic among them.

Worst of all, Yap has displayed a lack of courage and accountability. This is uncharacteristic of a Chinese education leader. He failed to show up at any of the forums called by the members of the community, including the series of 18 public events in October 2008, all of which I attended.

He even failed to organise the open forums that he had promised the public when the controversy first started. Nor has he accepted my challenge to debate the controversy on radio or television.

Repeatedly, he avoided facing the people at important events where he, in his leadership role, was expected to attend viz the NEC annual general meeting on June 29; Khoo Siong Chi’s memorial on Dec 7; and Lim Lian Geok’s memorial on Dec 14, all held last year.

Unlike previous Dong Zong heads who ran their businesses from offices elsewhere, Yap did not have any business office. He began to play the role of ‘executive director’ by setting up office in the Dong Zong secretariat and by over-riding Bock by directly giving orders to heads of departments.

If he was a sincere and competent leader, he would have invited Bock to discuss how the latter could contribute to the movement after retirement. Instead, his sole objective seemed to be to make sure that Bock would no longer play a role in the Duzhong working committee.

Despite the efforts by veteran educationists such as Lee Ban Chen and Low Sik Thong to work out an amicable solution, Yap chose to mount a whisper campaign against Bock and to avoid discussing a post-retirement role for him. I leave the writing of this sordid affair to Bock.

Part 3 of the four-part series will appear tomorrow.

Read Part 1 here

KUA KIA SOONG was the principal of New Era College (2000-2008). He was opposition member of parliament for Petaling Jaya (1990-95); political detainee under the ISA (1987-89) and academic adviser to Dong Jiao Zong (1983-85). He is the author of ‘May 13: Declassified Documents on the Malaysian Riots of 1969' and ‘New Era College Controversy: The Betrayal of Dong Jiao Zong’.

New Era College row: The betrayal of DJZ, Pt 1

New Era College row: The betrayal of DJZ, Pt 1
Kua Kia Soong | May 30, 09 11:14am
The New Era College controversy raged in the Malaysian Chinese press throughout the second half of 2008. There were occasional reports in the English-language press but it made headlines in all the Malaysian and Singapore media when the Chairman of the Board of the college was given a bloody nose by a graduate of the college during the graduation ceremony on 11 January 2009.yap sin tian new era college punched in the nose by student 130109 06


This chronicle of the controversy counts as the memoirs of my last year of service at the Dong Jiao Zong-run New Era College. It will be of interest to those who are concerned with the affairs of the Malaysian Chinese community, in particular, the Chinese education movement. Among other things, this controversy revolved round the issue of the termination of my contract as principal of New Era College.

In the process, it split the Chinese education movement as well as the remnants of the former left movement in Malaysia. It even split families within this left movement. Dong Zong, the United School Committees Association of Malaysia had to call an unprecedented Emergency General Meeting over my contract, the first time in all its 54 years of existence.

I joined the movement in 1983 when I had just returned to Malaysia from my studies abroad. The visionary leader of the movement at the time, Lim Fong Seng invited me to serve in the organisation and it was my honour and pleasure to be in his team. Throughout the eighties and nineties, the Chinese education movement faced numerous obstacles put in its way by the ruling party, UMNO.

While every leader of the Malaysian Chinese education movement has stoically faced sabotage from this external force, from 2005 onward, the secretariat of Dong Zong began to face internal dissension when the new Chairman of Dong Zong, Yap Sin Tian took office. In 2006, he terminated the service of Bock Tai Hee, the CEO of the Dong Zong secretariat who had led the secretariat since the eighties. This led to the departure of nearly twenty committed and talented young activists from the movement. This new leader of the Chinese education movement appeared to have a new agenda of his own, quite different from his predecessors.

Once Yap had completed this operation in the Dong Zong secretariat, he turned his sights on New Era College, the other organisation run by Dong Jiao Zong (Jiao Zong is the United Chinese School Teachers Association of Malaysia) on the same campus in Kajang, south of Kuala Lumpur. (See Kua Kia Soong, "The Chinese Schools of Malaysia", 2008; "The Malaysian Civil Rights Movement", 2005)

I had been principal of the college since 2000 and as can be seen in Chapter One, our goal was to create a unique college that nurtured independent-minded, service-oriented students. Three of our graduates actually got elected as members of the federal and state parliaments under Opposition banners in the 8 March 2008 general elections. However, I had been a fairly well-known dissident ever since the eighties and in 1987, I was detained for 445 days without trial under the infamous Internal Security Act during Operation Lalang.

The "New Era College Controversy of 2008" will go down in history as the darkest hour of the Malaysian Chinese education movement. Our children will ask:

* How did we allow someone with three dubious PhDs become the Chairman of the Board of New Era College which has a vision of being a world-class tertiary-level institution?

* How did we allow someone who lacked leadership qualities, with his own hidden agenda, get rid of some of the most committed and competent activists in the movement?

* How did the Chinese community and mainstream Chinese-language press allow such a leader and his cohorts to execute dirty tricks comparable to the Watergate scandal and get away with it?

This chronicle of my last year at New Era College (NEC) is intended to serve as a wake-up call to the Chinese community, to alert them to the fact that "the barbarians are not at the gates", the barbarians are WITHIN our gates"! New Era College is being destroyed before your eyes - the ten years of constructing a vibrant sustainable campus culture based on campus autonomy, academic freedom and student self-governance have been methodically destroyed.

kua kia soong last day in nec 311208 jolokNow, those who think that I (left) had wanted to stay on as principal as long as possible should think again. Ever since my return to Malaysia in the early eighties, my actions have been decided by the collective decisions of my comrades and colleagues in the movement. Hence, there were at least three important reasons why I decided to stay on as principal of NEC:

* My management team in NEC and I had witnessed the destruction of the Dong Zong secretariat ever since Yap became the Dong Zong chairman in 2005 and we had decided to put our foot down and defend NEC. When the challenge came on 14 June 2008, we had even greater resolve to see through this battle. My total support for my heads of department the following day was the most natural thing to do.
* The management team of NEC had been concerned about the lack of initiative in planning for the college expansion which had reached a crisis in 2008. We had come up with a preferable "City Campus" plan.
* As the controversy unfolded, it was clear that the staff, students and parents all wanted me to stay on as the principal to complete the task at hand.

But the biggest loss to the Chinese education movement is not the purging of Bock Tai Hee from the Dong Zong Secretariat nor the ousting of Kua Kia Soong from the NEC top line-up, but the departure of more than twenty of the most competent and committed young activists who have served the movement since the eighties and nineties. They have left in protest against the blatant destruction of the democratic traditions and working methods of the movement built up by the former Dong Zong Chairman Lim Fong Seng since the seventies.

The other serious consequence of Yap's operations against Bock and I is that the MCA, the component party of the ruling coalition has now got more than a foot in the movement. Yap has destroyed the independence of the movement by his collusion with the MCA, as we shall see below.

Leadership of the Chinese Education Movement

Lim Lian Geok, acknowledged as the soul of Malaysian Chinese education, had a well-known rallying cry to the community which was: "The best antidote to sabotage is to construct." Throughout the fifties and sixties, Malaysian Chinese education faced incessant sabotage from the ruling party, UMNO, and Lim Lian Geok paid the price of adhering to his principles by losing his teaching permit and even his citizenship.

Later, Lim Fong Seng, the father of the Unified Examination Certificate and the Independent Chinese Secondary Schools Movement, ignited the campaign to construct Merdeka University. In the eighties and nineties Lim was leader of the Malaysian Chinese Civil Rights movement and he too paid a high price for holding firmly to his principles, by losing business opportunities and suffering detention under Operation Lalang in 1987.

Sim Mow Yu, in the same steadfast manner did not flinch in his belief that Mandarin should be an official language of Malaysia. He too paid for his principles by being charged under the Sedition Act in the seventies and losing his freedom during Operation Lalang in 1987 together with Lim Fong Seng and the author.

Inspirational leaders such as Lim Lian Geok, Lim Fong Seng and Sim Mow Yu adhered strongly to their principles. And they stood out because they walked their talk! They had a vision of upholding and developing mother tongue education into a complete and excellent educational system in the country. Leaders such as Lim Fong Seng inspired confidence among all sections of the community. Above all, he welcomed intellectuals and professionals into the movement on an inclusive basis. Likewise, his vision for a Merdeka University and his defence of our civil rights through a two-front political system was unflinching.

Leaders like Lim Lian Geok, Lim Fong Seng and Sim Mow Yu had character and character includes honour, integrity and a deep respect for others. Such leaders stand out as having vision which allows them to transcend the "small mind" mentality. They were not men who hankered after titles or other superfluous status; they had a sense of serving their historic destiny. These leaders had an authentic presence and were able to connect with their team through dialogue. Such competent leaders command respect and history has accorded them due recognition.

Now the movement has, at its helm, a visionless leader with a questionable agenda that betrays the trust placed in him by the college stakeholders, thousands of parents and their children. There is no longer a positive and exciting environment that can attract young talented activists. The Malaysian Chinese education movement is today faced with a crisis that is unprecedented and that has been created by its own leaders!

To understand how this has come about, one has to go back at least to the nineties to see how the Chinese associations have been steadily infiltrated by members or supporters of the ruling coalition ever since Lim Fong Seng stepped down as the Dong Zong chairman in 1990. Things had begun to change during the term of Quek Suan Hiang, Yap's predecessor.

Part two of the four-part series will appear tomorrow.

Dr Kua Kia Soong was principal of New Era College (2000- 2008). He has also been opposition Member of Parliament for Petaling Jaya (1990-95); political detainee under the ISA (1987-89) and academic adviser to Dong Jiao Zong (1983-85). He is the author of ‘May 13: Declassified Documents on the Malaysian Riots of 1969' and ‘New Era College Controversy: The Betrayal of Dong Jiao Zong'.

通告 Notification


人民之友工委会2020年9月27日常月会议针对徐袖珉(英文名: See Siew Min)半年多以来胡闹的问题,议决如下:



[ 漫画新解 ]




尤其是在新冠病毒疫情(COVID-19)课题上,她公然猖狂跟人民之友的政治立场对着干,指责人民之友服务于中国文宣或大中华,是 “中国海外统治部”、“中华小红卫兵”等等等等。她甚至通过强硬粗暴手段擅自把我们的WhatsApp群组名称“Sahabat Rakyat Malaysia”改为“吐槽美国样衰俱乐部”这样的无耻行动也做得出来。她的这种种露骨的表现足以说明了她是一名赤裸裸的“反中仇华”份子。



[ 漫画新解 ]

注:这“漫画新解”是与<人民之友>4月24日转贴的美国政客叫嚣“围剿中国”煽动颠覆各国民间和组织 >(原标题为<当心!爱国队伍里混进了这些奸细……>)这篇文章有关联的。这篇文章作者沈逸所说的“已被欧美政治认同洗脑的‘精神欧美人’”正是马来西亚“公知”及其跟班的精神面貌的另一种写照!

[ 漫画新解 ]

编辑 / 来源:人民之友 / 网络图库

注:这“漫画新解”是与《察网》4月22日刊林爱玥专栏文章<公知与鲁迅之间 隔着整整一个中国 >这篇文章有关联的,这是由于这篇文章所述说的中国公知,很明显是跟这组漫画所描绘的马来西亚的“舔美”狗狗,有着孪生兄弟姐妹的亲密关系。


Malaysia Time (GMT+8)