Highlights Highlights en Rohingya humanitarian mission arrives in Chittagong
The group boarded a bus to Cox's Bazar, about 143km away, in a journey which would take about five hours.

The delegation, led by Dewan Rakyat deputy speaker Datuk Seri Ronald Kiandee, included MPs from the Barisan Nasional and the opposition, among them Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Ab Aziz Kaprawi (BN-Sri Gading), Datuk Ago Anak Dagang (BN-Kanowit), Datuk Raimi Unggi (BN-Tenom), Siti Zailah Mohd Yusoff (PAS-Rantau Panjang) and Datuk Kamarudin Jaffar (PKR-Tumpat).

Also in the mission were representatives from the National Security Council (NSC), National Disaster Management Agency (Nadma), Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Defence and the Deputy Prime Minister's Office.

The delegation will hand over some 25 tonnes of food supplies to Malaysian non-governmental organisations, including the Malaysian Islamic Organisation Consultative Council (Mapim) and the Medical Relief Society Malaysia (Mercy Malaysia), to be distributed to Rohingya refugees at the Kutupalong Refugee Camp, about 35km from Cox's Bazar.

In addition, the members of the delegation are also expected to visit the Malaysian-sponsored field hospital being built near the refugee camp.

Earlier this month, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak announced that the field hospital could accommodate up to 150 patients at a time, and included facilities such as an operation theatre, X-ray facility, and special rooms for mothers and children.

Expected to begin operations on Dec 1, the field hospital will be fully managed by the Ministry of Health Malaysia, with a team of 140 Malaysian staff including specialist doctors. — Bernama]]>
Highlights Fri, 24 Nov 2017 13:40:30 +0000 theSundaily 506189 at
Insider trading: Former CEO gets five years in jail, fined RM5m
Judge Zulqarnain Hassan meted out the sentence against Datuk Seri Thai Kim Sim, 57, after finding that the defence failed to raise any reasonable doubt against the prosecution's case.

The court also sentenced Tiong Kiong Choon, 57, a former remisier, to a five-year jail term and RM10 million fine, after being found guilty of two counts of disposing of 6.2 million of Apli's shares.

Thai and Tiong were also ordered to serve another two years in jail each if they failed to pay the fine.

The court allowed a stay of execution for the jail-term against both the accused pending appeal, but the payment of fine was not allowed to be delayed.

During the sentencing, Judge Zulqarnain said the offence, known as insider trading was a modern white collar crime.

"This a serious crime and is in a class of its own because not everyone can be a player on the stock market," he said.

Thai was charged with communicating to Tiong a non-public information on the value of Apli's shares on Oct 26 and 29, 2007, while Tiong was charged with disposing of 2,205,500 and 4,003,000 units of Apli shares from the Central Depository System account of two individuals, while in possession of the same non-public information, hence affecting the value of shares.

He committed the offences at Bursa Malaysia Securities Berhad, Exchange Square, Bukit Kewangan, on Oct 26 and Oct 29, 2007.

They were charged under Section 188 (3) (a) and 188 (2) (a) of the Capital Markets and Services Act 2007, which carries a maximum jail term of 10 years and a fine of not less than RM1 million.

The prosecution was carried out by Malaysian Securities Commission prosecution officer T. Chelvakumar, while Thai was represented by lawyer Datuk K. Kumaraendran, and counsel Chong Loong Men acted on behalf of Tiong. — Bernama]]>
Highlights Fri, 24 Nov 2017 13:30:42 +0000 theSundaily 506187 at
Two Republic of Korea Navy warships visit RMN base in Teluk Sepanggar
RMN Eastern Fleet Commander Vice-Admiral Datuk Syed Zahiruddin Putra Syed Osman said the warships were led by Republic of Korea Navy (ROKN) Cruise Training Task Group Rear Admiral Yang Yong Mo and had 630 personnel, including 140 officers, aboard.

"While they are docked here, we will be working with the ROKN to host a variety of exciting events, including visits to the ships. We will also conduct community activities at the Sabah Chesire Home," he said in a statement to the media upon the arrival of the warships.

Syed Zahiruddin added that the presence of the vessels would further strengthen the relationship between Malaysia and the Republic of Korea.

He said the warships' visit gave a clear indication that the security in Sabah waters remained safeguarded, giving confidence to foreign investors.

Meanwhile, the ROKN communication unit said the two vessels would be docked at the RMN base in Teluk Sepanggar until Nov 27.

"The two vessels are on their maiden trip here and this visit is aimed at providing new experience for the officers.

"Malaysia is the eighth country that we visited, after which we will head to the United States and then followed by Japan before returning to the Republic of Korea," the statement said. — Bernama]]>
Highlights Fri, 24 Nov 2017 13:21:10 +0000 theSundaily 506185 at
Transport Ministry orders probe into KTMB incident
Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said the ministry takes a serious view of the incident, as it concerns the safety of the nation's public transportation system.

"We are actually in midst of encouraging Keretapi Tanah Melayu Berhad (KTMB) to carry more cargo using tracks which is in line with our effort in reducing heavy vehicles on the road but the recent derailment incident is rather disappointing.

"Hence, I have instructed for a thorough investigation to be carried out by both KTMB and the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) to determine the root cause of the latest derailment incident that caused the closure of the tracks for several days," Liow said, after launching the iCargo+, an insurance scheme that provides holistic insurance coverage for marine cargo.

Liow added that if the derailment was not caused by speeding then there is a need to analyse what else could have triggered the incident.

"Once the investigation is completed, we will propose for a solution that we can undertake as soon as possible to prevent such incidents in the future," he said.

He added that both KTMB and SPAD have been instructed to expedite the investigation and the ministry will update the public on the matter.

Meanwhile, Liow announced that the Cabinet has agreed in principle on the setting up of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).

Liow pointed out that the green light was given early this month and various bodies have been roped in to give their views and opinions on the establishment of the board.

"After a lot of hard work, I am pleased to announce that the Cabinet has approved the setting up of NTSB early this month with the support from all relevant agencies and government bodies.

"Now we are in the midst of drafting the act and we have roped in the Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (Miros), Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) and other agencies for their input," Liow said.

Liow was responding to comments made by Serdang MP Ong Kian Ming, concerning an update on the status of the NTSB.]]>
Highlights Fri, 24 Nov 2017 11:15:34 +0000 Adrian Phung 506163 at
SPAD to launch investigation into KTM rail incident
In a statement to the media, SPAD said that they are setting up a "multi-agency safety investigation committee" to determine the root cause of the incident involving KTMB's cargo operations, and to put in place measures for improvements.

"The committee, which will be led by SPAD, will consist of subject matter experts from various ministries, agencies and relevant private sector," read the statement.

SPAD assured that the committee will comprehensively review all frameworks, structures, processes and procedures, and will seek assurances that safety is accorded the highest attention and priority in KTMB operations and maintenance services.

SPAD said that they intend to hold KTMB to the highest standards of operations and safety requirements.

"The creation of this multi-agency safety investigation committee is meant to push for greater transparency and accountability from the rail operator."

In response to two derailments in August this year, SPAD on Sept 5 restricted KTMB from operating cargo trains longer than 30 wagons, other than that they instructing the operator to adhere to suitable speed limits.

Following yesterday's incident, SPAD has ordered KTMB to suspend the cargo services along the Rawang-Salak Selatan stretch until the investigation concludes. In addition, SPAD has tasked KTMB to immediately review and improve its freight wagon operational procedures to ensure safety.]]>
Highlights Fri, 24 Nov 2017 10:48:01 +0000 Timothy Achariam 506150 at
Budget will lead way to Malaysia becoming a Top 20 nation: Najib
He said that the Budget, which covers the needs of 80% of Malaysians, will be the foundation in making the government's vision – to become a top notch country – a reality.

And this can be done if the public has confidence in the government, he added.

"This budget is the platform for us, the government has the ability to do it. We know how to govern the nation and this Budget will lead the way for us to become (part of the) Top 20 of the world," he said in a meet up session with the Kedah state civil servants at Stadium Sultan Abdul Halim here today.

Najib said it was not easy to prepare a Budget that was inclusive, comprehensive, and one which favors almost everyone.

But to ensure that the country moves forward, something had to be done.

He said he has to make sure that the Budget presented by the government was based on what the authorities can deliver, and not just be something theatrical.

According to Najib, what was proposed by the Opposition is unrealistic and as the Prime Minister, he has the responsibility to prepare a budget that was realistic with the best intentions for nation building.

Earlier, Kedah Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Bashah Hanipah called on civil servants here to stay united in helping to raise the public's confidence towards the government by executing their duty as responsible government servants.

He said that the civil servants should work harder in realising the country's ambition to become a developed nation.

He added that the state government will also announce a special monetary incentive to the state civil servants in line with what was tabled in the recent Budget.

"I will announce it at our state (legislative) assembly sitting on Nov 12," he said.]]>
Highlights Wed, 01 Nov 2017 09:37:02 +0000 Imran Hilmy 499008 at
'Unrealistic' to compel private companies to use BM in official comms
Deputy Education minister Datuk Chong Sin Woon said although such regulations exist in the government sector, the same move cannot be implemented in the private sector.

"There is no enforcement for private companies. In business, the usage of other languages must be allowed, especially for those dealing in businesses with foreign countries.

"If we want to make a regulation for all official letters to be made in BM, it will be unrealistic.

However, we have enforced for official letters among government agencies to be in BM," he told the Dewan Rakyat during the question and answer session.

He was responding to a supplementary question from Siti Mariah Mahmud (Amanah – Kota Raja) on whether the government has any plans to make it compulsory for both the government and private sector to produce their official letters in BM.

Chong said the burden to improve the usage of BM among Malaysians should not be placed on his ministry alone as it requires the cooperation of all parties.

He also urged the private sector, non-governmental organisations and the public to play their role to ensure a comprehensive usage of the national language.

He added the government was serious in its effort in upholding the status of BM, with various initiatives being undertaken with cooperation from other stakeholders.]]>
Highlights Wed, 01 Nov 2017 10:16:15 +0000 Haikal Jalil 498991 at
Rism lauds scheme to enable house buyers to pay less in early years
Chair for the Property Management, Valuation and Estate Agency Surveying (PMVS) Division of the Royal Institution Of Surveyors Malaysia (RISM) Sr Choy Yue Kwong said as houses were becoming increasingly unaffordable, it was indeed good news to pay less when income was low and repayment could be gradually increased when income rose over the years.

He said the stamp duty exemption would help the long-suffering original purchasers of abandoned projects and would also act as an incentive for the white knights to rescue abandoned schemes.

However, Choy feels it was rather odd for the government to come up with a scheme of tax exemptions in the rental market by providing a mechanism to offset the rent earned by landlords although it was only 50% and up to RM2,000.00 against income tax, he said.

"Probably the government's intention is to ensure the lower value property owners have the ability to use this incentive to maintain their properties.

"However, it will be more appropriate if the government grants the tax exemption to the tenants who are the parties in need of assistance instead of rewarding the landlords," Choy said.

On the proposed formulation of the Residential House Rental Act, he said that this was timely as this would add clarity to the landlord and tenant's rights, as well as protect both parties, but this should not just cover the residential sector but also the commercial sector.

He noted that the government has allocated a budget of about RM37.34 billion for logistical infrastructure compared with RM8.48 billion to the property sector.

This shows the government's commitment to enhancing connectivity between major towns and cities within Malaysia to spur the local economies and manpower sector, he added. — Bernama]]>
Highlights Sat, 28 Oct 2017 09:46:08 +0000 theSundaily 497570 at
Irma's deadly passage batters Caribbean, 12 dead
The evacuation of coastal areas of Florida and neighboring Georgia was the biggest seen in the US in a dozen years, as Brock Long, head of the US Federal Emergency Management Agency, warned: "It will be truly devastating.

"The entire southeastern United States better wake up and pay attention."

Barreling across the Caribbean, the rare Category Five Irma wielded monster winds and torrential rain, wreaking destruction on tiny islands like St Martin, where 60 percent of homes were wrecked, before slamming into the US Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.

In its westward rampage, Irma packed winds of up to 295km per hour, an intensity that it sustained for 33 hours – the longest of any storm since satellite monitoring began in the 1970s.

The latest bulletin from the Miami-based National Hurricane Center included the first hurricane and storm surge warnings for south Florida and the Florida Keys, even as winds slowed slightly to 165 mph.

The storm left devastation in its wake. The International Red Cross said 1.2 million people had already been hit by Irma, a number that could rise to 26 million.

Tossed aside like matchsticks

On many islands, roofs were ripped off buildings as if by a giant's hand, shipping containers were tossed aside like matchsticks and debris flung far and wide, and airports, sea ports and mobile phone networks were knocked out.

At least two people were killed in Puerto Rico, a senior rescue official said. More than half of the territory's population of three million was without power, with rivers breaking their banks in the center and north of the island. Governor Ricardo Rossello activated the National Guard and opened storm shelters sufficient for up to 62,000 people.

Authorities on the US Virgin Islands also reported four deaths.

"We lost a significant and a good number of assets ... in terms of fire stations, police stations," Governor Kenneth Mapp said in a Facebook post, adding that the region's main health facility, the Schneider Regional Medical Center, lost its roof.

Lisa Poser, a spokeswoman for Mapp, told AFP the territory's critically wounded were transported to Puerto Rico and warned there may be more casualties as authorities continue their search and rescue.

St Martin, a pristine island resort divided between France and the Netherlands, also suffered the full fury of the storm.

France said four had died and 50 were injured, two of them seriously. Sixty percent of homes were so damaged that they were uninhabitable.

The Netherlands said the storm killed at least one person and injured several others on the Dutch part of St Martin.

The Netherlands said it was racing to provide food and water for 40,000 people over the next five days, while France said more than 100,000 packages of combat rations were en route.

Britain said it was sending two warships to help victims in the Caribbean, and earmarking US$41 million, (RM171 million) in aid.

'Everything is destroyed'

Irma also laid waste to tiny Barbuda which suffered "absolute devastation," with up to 30 percent of properties demolished, Prime Minister Gaston Browne said.

Rescue teams were scouring the island for survivors, an AFP correspondent said, as some 300 people without shelter were evacuated to Antigua.

One person is known to have died on the island of 1,600 residents, apparently a child whose family was trying to get to safer ground.

As of Thursday night the eye of the monster storm was located a few dozen miles northeast of Great Inagua island in the Bahamas.

Poor Haitians were left to face Irma's fury alone as authorities showed little sign of preparing for what forecasters said could be a catastrophic event.

Two people were injured when an uprooted coconut tree crashed onto their home near Cap-Haitien, authorities said, adding that the situation was dire in northeastern Ouanaminthe after the adjoining Massacre River overflowed, cutting off food supplies from the neighboring Dominican Republic.

Cuba moved 10,000 foreign tourists from beach resorts in the exposed part of the island, and hiked its disaster alert level to maximum.

Florida is expecting to face the brunt of the storm from Friday night, with forecasters warning of sea-level surges of up to 25 feet (almost eight meters) above normal tide levels.

Tourists in the popular Key West islands were packing their bags on a mandatory evacuation order, with a similar order for residents due to follow.

"We can't save you once the storm starts," Governor Rick Scott told a press conference.

James Nickolos, a 69-year-old theology professor in Miami, said: "This morning I went to the beach as I do every morning, and it was very empty and beautiful but I had the feeling of watching a great beauty walking on a gang-plank to their death."

Trump said he was "very concerned" about Irma, but added: "Florida is as well prepared as you can be for something like this, now it's just a question of what happens".

Irma hit the Caribbean as two other storms, Jose in the Atlantic Ocean and Katia in the Gulf of Mexico, were upgraded to hurricane status.

Katia, a Category One storm, is expected to hit the coast of the Mexican state of Veracruz before Friday.

Jose, following in the path of Irma and located east of the Lesser Antilles late Thursday, strengthened to a Category Three event, packing winds of up to 120 miles per hour, the US National Hurricane Center said. — AFP]]>
Highlights Fri, 08 Sep 2017 05:22:57 +0000 theSundaily 479940 at
BN will ensure it retains Nenggiri state seat in GE14: Ku Li
He said the focus would be on the seat in view of its incumbent assemblyman Datuk Mat Yusoff Abdul Ghani being disqualified from being a member of the state legislative assembly after being declared a bankrupt, as announced by the Speaker, Datuk Abdullah Ya'kub on June 1.

He said the state BN accepted the decision as the Speaker had the right to make the announcement to inform the people of the seat's vacancy due to the incumbent being confirmed a bankrupt.

He was speaking to reporters after a programme with the people in Bukit Chekati, here, last night.

Tengku Razaleigh who is also the MP for Gua Musang, said the loss of the seat could not be regarded as something which had tarnished the party but was due to a problem involving the individual concerned.

"It (disqualification from the state assembly) was not due to political action by us but an issue involving the assemblyman concerned, causing the loss of the seat under the provisions of the Kelantan State Constitution," he added.

On June 1, Abdullah declared that Mat Yusoff was disqualified from being Nenggiri assembyman due to his bankrupcy, thus rendering the seat vacant.

The state assembly received the announcement letter from the Selangor branch of the Department of Insolvency Malaysia on May 28 that Mat Yusoff from Barisan Nasional had become a bankrupt.

Mat Yusoff, 55, had been Nenggiri assemblyman for three terms since the 2004 general election. — Bernama
Highlights Mon, 12 Jun 2017 09:17:04 +0000 theSundaily 452503 at