Isnin, 21 April 2014

Anwar Ibrahim

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Anwar Ibrahim

Mahkamah ‘gopoh’ buat keputusan penghakiman Liwat II, kata bekas polis

Posted: 21 Apr 2014 02:36 AM PDT


Penghakiman Mahkamah Rayuan terhadap kes Liwat II Ketua Pembangkang Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim dibuat secara tergopoh gapah, kata Datuk Mat Zain Ibrahim.

Bekas ketua pengarah Jabatan Siasatan Jenayah Kuala Lumpur itu menegaskan, selain mahkamah melakukan kesilapan, prosiding rayuan berkenaan turut dicemari campur tangan kerajaan, terutamanya Peguam Negara Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail (gambar).

“Hakim Mahkamah Rayuan membuat keputusan tersebut secara tergopoh-gapah, tanpa memberi pertimbangan yang mendalam dan menyeluruh kepada keterangan-keterangan yang dibentangkan kedua-dua pihak sejak mula prosiding tersebut diadakan.

“Selain Mahkamah Rayuan sendiri ada membuat tafsiran silap menyentuh fakta mustahak, prosiding rayuan tersebut dicemari tindakan pihak kerajaan dan khasnya Peguam Negara,” kata Mat Zain dalam satu kenyataan di Kuala Lumpur hari ini.

Beliau berkata, kerajaan dan peguam negara juga mengemukakan beberapa kenyataan tidak benar, dan/atau membenamkan keterangan mustahak atau yang memihak kepada tertuduh daripada pengetahuan mahkamah.

Dalam penghakiman setebal 85 muka surat yang diedarkan kepada media minggu lalu, mahkamah memutuskan adalah selamat untuk mahkamah mensabitkan  Anwar terhadap pertuduhan meliwat bekas pembantunya Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan kerana terdapat cukup keterangan untuk mengesah dan membuktikannya.

Mahkamah berkata, sekiranya diandaikan tiada bukti menyokong keterangan Mohd Saiful tentang fakta berlakunya penetrasi, adalah selamat untuk mensabitkan Anwar.

Panel tiga hakim Mahakmah Rayuan diketuai Hakim Datuk Balia Yusof Wahi dalam penghakiman bertulis bertarikh 11 April berkata, terdapat cukup keterangan lain yang membolehkan elemen pertuduhan dapat disah dan dibuktikan.

Penghakiman mahkamah itu turut memutuskan isu kemungkinan sampel DNA diambil daripada Mohd Saiful diusik oleh pegawai penyiasat kes Superitenden Jude Blacious Pereira dan tercemar juga tidak dapat dibuktikan.

Mat Zain berkata, sekiranya mahkamah rayuan tidak tergopoh-gapah membuat keputusan, sebaliknya meneliti mendalam keterangan yang dibentangkan oleh kedua-dua pihak, semenjak prosiding bermula pada 2008, mereka sendiri akan menemui fakta dan banyak lagi keterangan yang menunjukkan salah laku terancang pihak pendakwaan dan penyiasatan dalam prosiding kes tersebut.

“Pada pendapat saya, perkara yang terpenting dalam hal ini ialah Gani Patail hilang kelayakan dari sudut moral dan undang-undang, untuk terlibat dalam apa kapasiti pun, bersangkutan dengan pertuduhan yang dikenakan terhadap Anwar dalam kes ini.

“Apa-apa keputusan yang beliau ambil atas sifat Peguam Negara berkaitan perkara ini dan termasuk melantik Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah mengepalai pasukan pendakwaan di peringkat rayuan ini, boleh dipertikaikan dan wajar disemak semula,” katanya.

Beliau turut berpendapat, hakim Mahkamah Rayuan bergantung bulat-bulat kepada hujah yang dibentangkan Shafee sahaja, tanpa menghiraukan semua bantahan dan laporan polis yang dibuat berkaitan pemalsuan yang diikrarkan oleh Shafee, dalam afidavitnya.

“Hakim Mahkamah Rayuan sendiri mendedahkan tingkah laku dan tindakan mereka untuk orang ramai menyimpulkan mereka memang berada di bawah tekanan dan pengaruh yang kuat daripada tangan-tangan tersembunyi,untuk mensabitkan kesalahan ke atas Anwar dengan apa cara sekalipun,” katanya.

The Great and Magical Gabo

Posted: 21 Apr 2014 01:22 AM PDT

Foreign Policy

Fame, acclaim, and a notorious friendship with Fidel Castro: The life of writer Gabriel Garcia Márquez was as fantastical and politically charged as his reality-bending novels.

Few contemporary writers and none from Latin America could match the scope of his influence or the radical inventiveness of his imagination. Affectionately called “Gabo,” Gabriel Garcia Márquez, the Colombian Nobel laureate, journalist and author, was the most celebrated Latin American cultural export of his era. He died, at 87, on April 17, in his home in Mexico City. His glamorous mystique — the houses and apartments strewn across Europe and the Americas, the glossy magazine profiles, the voluptuousness of his words – was offset by the author’s self-deprecating charm and humble back-story. The chasm between his socialist beliefs and the opulent lifestyle to which he ultimately grew accustomed attracted criticism, to be sure, yet his literary reputation never sagged under the weight of that paradox.

It was the 1967 publication and 1970 translation into English of his most famous novel, One Hundred Years of Solitude, that vaulted the author to stardom. In that novel, the head of the allegorical Buendía family interprets the world according to his own perceptions. In a warped chronology of events, Macondo’s founding family is regenerated ceaselessly, through revolution, natural disaster, and incestuous coupling. Translated into English by the peerless Gregory Rabassa, One Hundred Years of Solitude has sold tens of millions of copies worldwide. It gave exuberant voice to a region of the world that had previously been viewed as lush but inscrutable, best known by many Americans and Europeans for its political instability and violence.

As in most of his fiction, in One Hundred Years of Solitude, the author said he sought to destroy “the lines that separate what seems real from what seems fantastic.” He did so with rapturous virtuosity, emotional insight, and humor.

When the New York Times reviewed the book in 1970, the reviewer, John Leonard, described the work not so much as a piece of literature, but as an experience: “You emerge from this marvelous novel as if from a dream, the mind on fire. A dark, ageless figure at the hearth, part historian, part haruspex … first lulls to sleep your grip on a manageable reality, then locks you into legend and myth.”

While One Hundred Years of Solitude is a sweeping metaphor for Colombian cultural history — ghosts and modernity, colonialism and liberal reform, the introduction of railroads, the hegemony of American corporate interests and military jackboots — the mythical town of Macondo itself was inspired by Aracataca, the Colombian village where Garcia Márquez lived with his maternal grandparents until the age of eight. There, he absorbed his grandmother’s supernatural folklore. His left-leaning grandfather, a retired colonel, bequeathed the author a lifelong fascination with military and political power.

Garcia Márquez was the eldest of 11 children (though his father, a pharmacist, also claimed several illegitimate offspring). In the fictional Macondo, the character Colonel Aureliano Buendía, “had seventeen male children by seventeen different women and they were exterminated one after the other on a single night before the oldest one had reached the age of thirty-five. He survived fourteen attempts on his life, seventy-three ambushes and a firing squad.” Such prose, at once epic and compressed, inspired an entirely new lit-crit lexicon, including terms like “Macondic.” Along with other Latin American writers, Garcia Márquez helped to popularize the genre known as Magical Realism.

But it’s the realism in his writing that’s often forgotten.

Garcia Márquez  was born in 1927, the year before the so called “banana massacre,” in which striking Colombian workers for the United Fruit Company were crushed by the country’s military, who were anxious to forestall a threatened invasion by the U.S. Marines — a scenario he recasts in One Hundred Years of Solitude. He was a gifted student and attended a state-run boarding school. Later, under pressure from his family, he studied law at the National University of Colombia in Bogotá, but soon turned his attention to writing and never completed his degree.

When a Colombian Liberal Party member was assassinated, triggering La Violencia, a decades-long period of civil strife and violence that led to hundreds of thousands of deaths and displaced citizens, Garcia Márquez gave up his legal studies completely and became a journalist. But he also read deeply the literature that would inform his development as a fiction writer. A particular obsession of young Garcia Márquez’s was William Faulkner, whose mythical Yoknapatawpha County in the American South has been called a precursor to Macondo.

As a columnist in Bogotá in the 1950s, Garcia Márquez wrote an expose about a naval shipwreck — the piece was later published in English as “The Story of A Shipwrecked Sailor” — that earned him the ire of the Colombian dictator, Gustavo Rojas Pinilla. To quell the fallout, the author’s newspaper sent him to Europe as a correspondent, but soon the government shut down the paper altogether. Garcia Márquez kept writing fiction while working as a journalist and moving frequently, with spells in Venezuela, Columbia, New York, and Mexico City. In 1958 he married Mercedes Barcha Pardo, who remained the unmovable pillar of his personal life until his death. The couple resided primarily in Mexico City and had two sons.

The left-leaning Garcia Márquez wrote admiringly of Fidel Castro, eventually befriending the dictator. Both trouble and fame attached to him; The Colombian government planned to have him arrested for his political activities, Mexico offered him refuge, and the French awarded him the Legion d’Honneur. In 1982, he won the Nobel Prize for literature. Later, he would say that he put the prize money in a Swiss bank account and forgot about it for years; he eventually used it to buy the weekly magazine Cambio.

While he was lauded for his literary achievement, there were those among even his most ardent admirers who were disheartened by his politics, particularly his cozy relationship with Fidel Castro, who showered his writer friend with gifts that included a house on the outskirts of Havana. He, in turn, described Castro’s “childlike heart … political intelligence, his instincts and his decency, his almost inhuman capacity for work, his deep identification with and absolute confidence in the wisdom of the masses….”

Critics and curious contemporaries reasoned that Garcia Márquez was simply star struck by a man in uniform. Others theorized that that the writer was using the friendship to bend the dictator’s ear, and help Cubans leave the island or avoid harsh treatment.

According to a 1999 New Yorker profile by Jon Lee Anderson, García Márquez, ”confirmed that he had helped people leave the island, and he alluded to one ‘operation’ that had resulted in the departure of ‘more than two thousand people’ from Cuba.

‘I know just how far I can go with Fidel. Sometimes he says no. Sometimes later he comes and tells me I was right.’

‘I know just how far I can go with Fidel. Sometimes he says no. Sometimes later he comes and tells me I was right.’” The White House, however, was not philosophical about the author’s political engagement, and for a period of years he was obliged to apply for a special visa to enter the United States. Garcia Márquez seemed able to live with the moral contradictions posed by his friendship with Castro. But, given the complex dilemmas he assigned his most compelling characters, it’s hard to imagine that he was a man who would fail to grapple with that relationship.

Take the journalist-narrator of Garcia Márquez’s slim, 2005 volume,Memories of My Melancholy Whores, who, nearing the end of his life, shares a ruthless self-analysis: “I discovered that I am not disciplined out of virtue but as a reaction to my own negligence, that I appear generous in order to conceal my meanness, that I pass myself off as prudent because I am evil-minded, that I am conciliatory in order not to succumb to my repressed rage….” Such honest writing is what makes Garcia Márquez’s characters so universally accessible, his fiction so humane.

But Garcia Márquez also embraced popular imagery, using melodrama, romanticism, and sentimentality unabashedly in novels like Love in the Time of Cholera, based on his own parents’ romantic history. He was a fan of telenovelas and boleros and even wrote a profile of pop-singer Shakira in 2002. The female characters in his fiction, while diverse, often fall into the category of dusky cat-eyed temptresses — the fiery Latinas of a good bodice-ripper. At the same time, child prostitutes and a scene during which a housemaid is raped while doing laundry, reveal a more pitiless and exploitative form of sexuality in his writing.

Through his fiction he undermined crude American stereotypes of Latin Americans and informed the world about the region’s recent political history. The author himself once noted, “For Europeans, South America is a man with a mustache, a guitar and a gun.” Perhaps not so much anymore, thanks in large part to what Garcia Márquez has left us.

[VIDEO] Gagal jelaskan MH370, Anwar cadang Hisham letak jawatan

Posted: 21 Apr 2014 01:17 AM PDT

MH370 scrutiny on Malaysia deals wild card in Anwar case

Posted: 20 Apr 2014 11:04 PM PDT


The intense global scrutiny brought upon Malaysia's government over the fate of flight MH370 has tossed a wild card into its controversial efforts to send opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim back to jail.

Just hours before the Malaysia Airlines plane disappeared on March 8, a court overturned Anwar's 2012 acquittal on sodomy charges he says are false and part of a long-running government attempt to wreck his political career.

Sentenced to five years in jail, Anwar, free on appeal, would be expelled from parliament if the conviction holds — a severe blow for a fractious opposition that has enjoyed unprecedented success by uniting around his star power.

But Anwar feels the negative global attention due to MH370 could force the government to think twice.

"(MH370) certainly will have a bearing," said Anwar, 66, when asked by AFP whether concern over international reaction to his jailing could make his political foes pause.

"The entire radar is on Malaysia — that it is opaque, semi-authoritarian, no transparency, no accountability."

Fears of backlash

Unaccustomed to answering for itself at home, Malaysia's government has faced a barrage of international criticism for the unexplained loss of the plane with 239 people aboard, and a stumbling response.

Anwar's opposition says the saga has exposed institutional decay and incompetence in a government dominated since 1957 by the ruling United Malays National Organisation (UMNO), which is widely accused of rampant cronyism and corruption.

A former deputy premier with UMNO, Anwar has cultivated strong friendships in Washington, where he is lauded for his calls for reform, and the US State Department has questioned the March 7 ruling against him.

However, President Barack Obama does not plan to see Anwar when he is in Kuala Lumpur next week, though US officials have not ruled out a lower-level meeting. It was not clear whether Obama would raise Anwar's case with Malaysia's government.

"Jailing Anwar will be a big mistake, as it will galvanise people around his struggle. The last time they did that we saw the biggest protests ever," said Wan Saiful Wan Jan, head of Malaysian public policy think-tank IDEAS.

Anwar was sensationally ousted from the government in 1998 after losing a power struggle, and his subsequent jailing for six years on sodomy and corruption charges was widely considered politically motivated.

The biggest protests in Malaysia's history resulted, and Anwar emerged as a formidable opposition campaigner after the sodomy conviction was overturned in 2004.

Jailing Anwar would heap further pressure on the government and make it "a laughing stock", Wan Saiful said.

Current Prime Minister Najib Razak, a relative moderate, has consistently sought international favour, but is constrained by UMNO conservatives who deeply fear Anwar and the political threat he poses.

In elections last year, the opposition won a majority of Malaysia's popular vote for the first time, though UMNO's coalition clung to control of parliament.

The March ruling came just two weeks before Anwar was to stand for an assembly seat in Selangor, Malaysia's richest state.

The seat was seen as a springboard to becoming the state's chief minister — a powerful soapbox ahead of the next general election due by 2018 — but the ruling disqualified Anwar.

Influential conservatives may gamble that the long-term gains from jailing Anwar are worth any overseas backlash, said Bridget Welsh, a Malaysia politics researcher at Singapore Management University.

"There clearly are people in that party who want Anwar in jail," she said.

"The focus is the domestic arena and what they feel they can get away with."

 'Major battle'

UMNO is widely believed to influence the courts in sensitive cases, though Najib's government denies this.

No date for an appeal has yet been set.

Anwar, who brought tens of thousands to the streets after last year's disputed elections, warned of a "major battle" if he is jailed.

"You can take me, beat me up — you can shoot me if you want to — but I'm not going to take this lying down," he said, hinting demonstrations may be called.

Multi-ethnic Malaysia enjoyed rapid economic growth and rising living standards over recent decades while a controversial UMNO formula reserves political supremacy for majority Muslim Malays.

But voters have increasingly rebelled over endemic corruption, slowing growth, and impatience with UMNO's authoritarian tactics and divisive racial politics.

Since last year's elections, Najib's government has shelved reform promises and brought sedition charges or other pressure against opposition figures and reform advocates.

On borrowed time, Anwar struggles with Karpal’s replacement

Posted: 20 Apr 2014 09:19 PM PDT


With five days to appeal against his conviction in the Sodomy II trial, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim is yet to fill the gap left by the late veteran lawyer and ally, Karpal Singh.

The PKR de facto leader told a crowd of 800 here that he must look for a lawyer to take charge of the appeal against his second sodomy conviction by the end of today, in order to file the petition of appeal on time.

"Not only am I about to go prison but I also have to look for the money to pay legal fees," said Anwar jokingly, at the Reformasi 2.0 ceramah at the Lembah Pantai parliamentary constituency.

"But that is for me to worry. What I want from you here is to know the truth and judge accordingly," he said.

Karpal was killed in a fatal accident last Thursday when the vehicle he was travelling in collided with a five-tonne lorry near Gua Tempurung in Gopeng, Perak. The accident also claimed the life of his long-time assistant, Michael Cornelius.

The former DAP chairman and Bukit Gelugor MP had been due to file the petition of appeal at the appellate court on April 24, a day prior to the expiry of the ten-day deadline on Friday.

Karpal had appeared as Anwar's lead counsel since the former deputy prime minister's first sodomy charge against him in 1998.

Karpal had taken up the case on a pro bono basis and fought relentlessly for the past 15 years, said the Anwar today.

Other speakers at the event last night alleged that the Court of Appeal's ruling was politically motivated, accusing the judges of noting events irrelevant to the case.

PKR vice-president N. Surendran pointed to the pains the judges took to defend themselves against the accusation of having hurried the judgement.

"They were defending themselves as if they were politicians," said the Padang Serai MP, after having studied the 85-page judgement.

PKR strategy director Rafizi Ramli added that not content with the damage to Anwar's reputation, the government was still appealing for a harsher sentence despite the victory.

"On normal circumstances it is the losing party that appeals but because this is Anwar they are after, the government is appealing," he said.

Anwar was sentenced to a five-year jail term last month after the Court of Appeal overturned his second sodomy acquittal, ruling that the High Court judge erred in rejecting DNA evidence adduced.

On January 9, 2012, Anwar was acquitted of allegedly sodomising Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan at the Desa Damansara condominium on June 26, 2008.

The appellate court's full judgement, which was delivered to Karpal's law firm last Wednesday, among others, questioned Anwar's decision to give his statement from the dock, which the bench found to be nothing more than a bare denial.

The bench led by Datuk Balia Yusof Wahi and assisted by Datuk Aziah Ali and Datuk Mohd Zawawi Salleh stated that Anwar's statement of defence should have provided evidence with which to deflect the allegations made against him.

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Tolak hudud: Saya bukan Dr Mahathir, kata Anwar

Posted: 20 Apr 2014 09:18 PM PDT


Model dan pelaksanaan hudud yang bakal diguna pakai oleh kerajaan negeri Kelantan perlu difahami terlebih dahulu sebelum Pakatan Rakyat (PR) mengambil keputusan bersama untuk mempersetujuinya, kata Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

Ketua pembangkang itu berkata, kerajaan perlu membincangkan beberapa perkara asas dalam Islam terlebih dahulu seperti masalah ajaran sesat dan anti hadis sebelum membawa hudud ke satu peringkat yang lebih serius.

"Kita sebagai orang Islam, kita tidak boleh pertikai undang-undang Al-Quran. Saya bukan Mahathir. Kita kena terima. Hal ini harus difaham. Kalau tunggu fatwa, semua fatwa kena pada kita.

"Curi duit tak nampak, kenyataan Mahathir tak nampak, Mahathir sokong Kassim Ahmad anti hadis tak mengapa. Kita yang kena," katanya ketika berucap di hadapan kira-kira 1,500 hadirin dalam Himpunan Reformasi 2.0 di Kuala Lumpur, malam tadi.

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad pada Jumaat menyelar tindakan pihak berkuasa agama menangkap dan membicarakan Kassim kerana tindakan tersebut mencalarkan identiti Malaysia sebagai negara Islam sederhana.

Bekas perdana menteri itu berkata, dalam keadaan Kassim yang bertongkat dan tidak sihat, pegawai agama Islam dan dibantu polis tergamak menahan aktivis berusia 80 tahun itu.

"Saya sedih. Saya sedih kerana Kassim umur 80 tahun, bertongkat dan sakit ditangkap dan akan dibicara. Kenapa Kassim? Kenapa tidak orang lain? Yang menghina agama Islam di Malaysia ramai," tulisnya dalam artikel di blognya

Anwar berkata, hudud hanya dapat dilaksanakan sekiranya pembaharuan dilakukan terhadap jabatan agama Islam dan kaedah penguatkuasaan.

Katanya, hudud perlu dilaksanakan secara telus menepati kehendak ajaran Islam sebenar dan tidak memberi kepentingan politik kepada pihak tertentu.

"Kalau dilaksana digunakan undang-undang, curi RM500 juta dari Tan Sri naik Tun. Kamu curi motor, tangan dipotong. Dalam Islam bukan begitu.

"Semua perubahan baru kita kena bincang undang-undang itu macam mana. Saya saman Saiful, empat tahun Mahkamah Syariah tak sidang pun," katanya merujuk kepada bekas pembantunya Saiful Bukhari Azlan.

Anwar yang baru tiba selepas memberi penghormatan terakhir kepada mendiang Karpal Singh di Pulau Pinang berkata, pelaksanaan hudud di Kelantan akan diteliti dan Menteri Besar Kelantan, Datuk Ahmad Yakob akan memberikan penjelasan.

"Itu yang kita jemput menteri besar Kelantan untuk datang dalam mesyuarat kita mencari muafakat supaya (hudud) tidak digunakan untuk menekan sesiapa dan menjamin undang-undang itu difahami," katanya.

Berhubung isu kehilangan pesawat Malaysia Airlines (MAS) MH370, Anwar mempertikaikan senarai kargo pesawat itu yang masih belum disiarkan kepada umum.

Katanya, ekoran daripada sikap kerajaan yang enggan memberikan lebih maklumat mengenai pesawat itu, Malaysia terus mendapat kecaman serata dunia.

"Mengapa cuba tutup maklumat itu? Apa barang yang dibawa? Saya tanya mana dia senarai kargo? Setiap kali ada penerbangan dikomputerkan. Bila tanya, sampai hari ini tak dapat jawab.

"Sekarang saya tuduh, kamu sengaja menyembunyikan bukti. Ada bukti, kamu padamkan. Dia kata ada manggis 4 tan tetapi tiada musim. Di Thailand pun bukan musim manggis," katanya yang berpakaian serba hitam malam tadi.

Hujung bulan lalu, Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif MAS Ahmad Jauhari Yahya mengesahkan selain empat tan manggis yang dibawa di dalam pesawat itu, ia turut memuatkan bateri lithium-ion.

Katanya, bateri lithium-ion pada asasnya bukan barangan berbahaya tetapi ia diisytiharkan sebagai bahan berbahaya di bawah ICAO.

"Kami bawa beberapa bateri kecil lithium-ion, ia bukan bateri yang besar dan ia pada dasarnya diluluskan di bawah Pertubuhan Penerbangan Awam Antarabangsa (ICAO) di bawah barangan berbahaya," katanya.


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