The High Court recently held that Jawi’s actions in raiding Borders and seizing copies of an Irshad Manji book were illegal. The bookstore’s day in court reminds us how it falls on citizens to know the law and their rights to prevent state authorities from abusing power.
The promise of political violenceShape of a Pocket by Jacqueline Ann Surin
THE Barisan Nasional government has been making a lot of promises as a decisive general election looms. Of all the promises the Umno-led coalition has made, which should citizens be most concerned about?
Uncommon Sense with Wong Chin Huat: Lahad Datu — How might Malaysians vote in the GE?By Ding Jo-Ann
THE Sulu militants who invaded Sabah on 9 February 2013 now appear to be on the run after being attacked by Malaysian armed forces. But why did it take three weeks for the Malaysian government to take decisive action to deal with the invasion? And what impact will this episode and the government’s response have on the coming general election?
What’s wrong with Bersih 3.0?Shape of a Pocket by Jacqueline Ann Surin
IF we were to believe everything the Barisan Nasional (BN) is saying about Bersih 3.0, the movement for free and fair elections is indeed problematic in several ways. According to BN elected representatives, the planned 28 April 2012 sit-down protest at Dataran Merdeka, known as Bersih 3.0, is “unnecessary”. It has been hijacked by, or […]
Restricting the government’s choices?Holding Court by Ding Jo-Ann
IT was troubling to read Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein’s reasons for the release of eight immigration officers detained without trial under the Internal Security Act (ISA). Hishammuddin said he decided to release the eight, detained “in connection” with human trafficking activities, because they showed “remorse” over their mistakes. He also considered their wishes […]
Uncommon Sense with Wong Chin Huat: Bersih 2.0 – what next?By Ding Jo-Ann
PRIOR to 25 June 2011, all seemed to be going relatively well for Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s administration. The Barisan Nasional (BN) government was hard at work improving public perception, with extensive media coverage on government programmes such as the Government Transformation Programme and Economic Transformation Programme. There were talks of a possible […]
Bersih 2.0: “Illegal”, chaos-causing “communists”?By Gan Pei Ling
Waging war against the king. In cahoots with foreign conspirators. Possible communists. Planning to overthrow the government. Illegal T-shirts. Bersih 2.0 seems to embody many evils to the authorities, who have arrested more than 100 in attempts to stop Bersih’s 9 July 2011 march. But have the authorities gone overboard in demonising the rally? What about Malaysians’ constitutional right to freedom of expression and right to peaceable assembly?
Uncommon Sense with Wong Chin Huat: Government and the mediaBy Ding Jo-Ann
*Corrected on 31 May 2011, 10.30am: This was earlier published as “partly free”. THE Barisan Nasional (BN) government is hardly an exemplary proponent of press freedom. Its wide ownership and control of much of the Malaysian press probably contributed to Malaysia’s “not free”* rating in a recent survey by Freedom House, a global press watchdog. […]
Umno’s tangle over “Allah”By Jacqueline Ann Surin
YET again, in the tussle over “Allah” and Malay-language Bibles, the Umno-led Barisan Nasional government shows how unclear it is about what it means to respect the religious rights of non-Muslims.
Regulating the internet: What’s BN afraid of?Holding Court by Ding Jo-Ann
CAN the Malaysian government actually be thinking of imposing more controls on our already overly-regulated right to freedom of expression? There’s a myriad of laws available to arrest, charge, fine and jail Malaysians for speaking their minds in ways the government disapproves of. But apparently, these controls are still not enough. On 24 Jan 2011 […]