Sunday, 29 March 2009

TaleNtime


I did it, after almost 30 years since I watch 'Esok Masih Ada' at the Grand Cinema at Ipoh, I finally watch my first malay movie since then; last Friday.

It was raining so heavily that nite, that I was not sure if i can make it to Cineleisure, but since I was there earlier in the morning to buy 13 (yes 13, I was appointed by Seira to buy tickets for 12 other lawyers) tickets, I thought; what the heck, just go. My hesitation was down to the fact that I was gonna watch a Malay movie, and after watching some local movies on TV over the years, I was not that excited.

If you watch Gerak Khas on TV, you would understand the apprehension to watch horrible acting and poor scripts. 

But this is a Yasmin Ahmad's Talentime. She, after all, gave us Sepet which I liked very much. I watched that on DVD. 

So, me together with 12 other lawyers walked into the cinema, and after 2 solid hours; I came out feeling wrong, proud and heartfelt. 

I was wrong - because Talentime is not a Malay movie, but a MALAYSIAN movie. It touched a few stories. The love between a young malay girl and a deaf indian boy. The love between a malay boy and her dying mum. The inner battle of a chinese boy trying to please his dad. And it had Harith and Jit Murad in it. Great recipe for a great movie.

I was proud - that Malaysians' can make a movie which can touch on social issues, related to religion, race and status. Talentime touched on the religion of the chinese lady maid, the race of lovers and the social status people placed themselves in. The movie tackled it well, and  effectively. The movie should be the official movie for the Human Rights Committee, if you ask me. 

It was heartfelt - because no one can honestly say that they left the hall without feeling emotional.  The scene of a dying mum hugged and loved by her only son, The scene of an indian boy promising his mum that he will leave the girl he love just to please his mum. The scene of a heart-broken sister, who saw her brother killed on his wedding day. They were all beautiful emotional scenes. 

I hope you will all consider watching the movie. Maybe I had low expectations before I watched it, but I am certain even with the highest expectations, you will still feel good after watching the movie. 

It would have been better had Yasmin chose to shoot the school scenes at St Michael's Instution, Ipoh instead of our old rival school of Anderson; but I suppose we cant get the best of everything. :)

Go watch it, and do leave a message after you have done so. We can share some comments about the movie.

In the meantime, applauds and bravo to Yasmin. What a movie! What a great MALAYSIAN movie!

Monday, 23 March 2009

Ibrahim Ali + Zulkifli Nordin = Obtuse





























Ibrahim Ali yesterday, warns non-malays not to 'cabar' the malays in Malaysia.

Zulkifli Nordin proposes an Amendment to the Federal Constitution, to add in a Clause that all Laws in Malaysia be made subject to Islam. 

There is no real need to write a long comment on this 2 chaps, but the 2 paragraphs above, speaks for itself. 

Pure Obtuse!

Saturday, 21 March 2009

School Days



Weekends are the time to rest, recuperate and recapture your form for the following week. We are like the working bee, taking a break for the next week, and somehow every week, its gets tougher and tougher. 

I recall the seniors we met when we were in School, telling us to enjoy our times in College and in School. School was all about exams. Study Study Study! But we had our share of care free days, chasing after girls, and experimenting our feelings everyday as we try to learn the trade of life, to prepare ourselves for life at Work. 

It's been almost 18 years since I left School, and I have to agree with the Seniors. The time at School/college was the best time of most our live.  From the first kiss to the last day at College, those days were full of optimism and enthusiasm. Pessimism and negativism were out of fashion then. 

But now, everyday we awake, we are actually a day nearer to the end of our road. We are not sure when it will end, but end it will. I have tried to live my live as if there is no tomorrow, but with a caution of wind. To try build a life with sufficiently conservation, not holding back too much but to do whatever can be done, for tomorrow, we may not be around anymore. 

I sure miss School.


Tuesday, 17 March 2009

What a Wonderful World...

Gobind mention in Parliament that Najib is involved in Altantuya's murder, he get suspended for one year, but compare with this:-

1. Badruddin calling Malaysian Indians, derogatorily as 'Keling', is OK.

2. Same hero, Badruddin telling all Malaysians, if you dont like Malaysia, since Malaysia is an Islamic Country, then "Get Out of Malaysia". That is also OK.

3. Bung Mokhtar (who was forced to apologize and gave a feeble apology) called all ladies in Malaysia as 'Bocor setiap bulan'. Also OK!

4. Best of all, former MP for Jasin Mohd Said Yusof, went to Parliament, demand the DG for Customs to resign for not approving an import of timber involving a 'Company' in his Constituency (which later turn out to be HIS own Company), clearly abusing his position in Parliament, only apologized to PM (not even Parliament), and got off.

So in Malaysian Parliament, my conclusion is this:-
1. It is OK to be racist in Parliament
2. It is OK to be sexist in Parliament
3. It is OK to abuse your position as MP for your own personal agenda in Parliament.

But you cannot mention that Najib is involved in Altantuya's case. 

As Louis Armstrong sang "What a Wonderful World"...

Monday, 16 March 2009

Sedition, Suspension and Suppresion

Karpal Singh will be charged for Sedition tomorrow. Apparently this is due to his threat to sue Sultan Perak. How that can be sedition, beats me.

His son, Gobind was suspended by Parliament. Why? Because in Parliament, Gobind made comments that Najib is involved in Altantuya's death. He made the comments inside Parliament, during one of the Parliament session. Therefore he is protected by Privilege, to be able to speak freely inside Parliament.

But we can see what Malaysia will be getting into. With Najib coming into force, he wants to grip the country tighter so that he can control the Country. No effort to improve administration. No effort to have transparency. No effort to listen to the people. Just pure greed to control. 

But the tighter he tries to grip the Country, there will be more people who will slip away. His suppression will only led to his downfall. 

The UMNO led Government's current effort to clamp down on the opposition will only push the people further away from them. There is only one way to solve this problem - Change the Government!


Insulting Sultan Perak

Recently 6 individuals were charged all over Malaysia, under Section 233 of Communications and Multimedia Act 1988 (S233 CMA 1988) which states:-

233.  Improper use of network facilities or network service, etc.

(1) A person who-

(a) by means of any network facilities or network service or applications service knowingly-

(ii) initiates the transmission of,

any comment, request, suggestion or other communication which is obscene, indecent, false, menacing or offensive in character with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass another person; or

(b) initiates a communication using any applications service, whether continuously, repeatedly or otherwise, during which communication may or may not ensue, with or without disclosing his identity and with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass any person at any number or electronic address,

commits an offence.

(2) A person who knowingly-

(a) by means of a network service or applications service provides any obscene communication for commercial purposes to any person; or

(b) permits a network service or applications service under the person's control to be used for an activity described in paragraph (a),

commits an offence.

(3) A person who commits an offence under this section shall, on conviction, be liable to a fine not exceeding fifty thousand ringgit or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding one year or to both and shall also be liable to a further fine of one thousand ringgit for every day during which the offence is continued after conviction.


S233 CMA 1988 is a provision which may be used by the Authorities for a few offenses, and in the case of the 6, it is used to charge them for allegedly insulting Sultan Perak. S233(3) states that the sentence is either a fine of RM50,000 or imprisonment of a year or both penalties. 

For these 6 cases, we reckon the prosecution would have to prove, amongst others, beyond reasonable doubt that the 6 person :-
1. Posted comments on a Blog;
2. That the 6 respectively owned that Blog;
3. That the statement in postings insulted Sultan Perak.

This section is rarely used, and it would create new precedents in Malaysian Information Technology Law. The interesting part would be how they prove 'insult'. The Oxford Dictionary defines insult to mean a remark which offends another person. 

By right, the prosecutor would have to call Sultan Perak as a witness to ask if he felt insulted, though I dont think that would happen. So, by whose standard then, the word 'insult' be defined? Also, a person cannot be deemed to have insulted someone, if the statement was an accurate account of what a person feels. 

Unchartered territory!  


Sunday, 15 March 2009

The Associate Law Firms








Sunil and I merged our respective law firms in January. Our practice is now called Messrs Richard Wee Lopez. 

Today, a mini history was created. 6 lawyers (including Sunil and I) met to discuss on how we can form an Associate Law Firms in Malaysia. We are either sole proprietors or Partners of our own firm, and we congregate today to see what we can do share our knowledge, resources and expertise. 

It was nice to see friends with the same ideals and endeavor meeting up to try chart our careers and destiny together. We are experimenting and there is always a chance this Association may not work out. But we have to try, for if we dont, we wont know if it will work out. 

Legal practise, for a long while now is a difficult and challenging step for any lawyer, what more if the practise is one's own Firm. The Court systems is trying to improve which would place premium on law firms with many lawyers, and place smaller firms like ours at a disadvantage. Law Journals and Reports are getting dearer by the year, and Law Books is slowly becoming a luxury instead of a necessary tool. Younger Lawyers are forced to juggle between time in Library, Traffic and Courts these days. Unless one practises in a large Law Firm, your day would likely be filled with the 3 items I just mentioned. 

If one desire to be a Corporate Lawyer, the demands (with the availability of modern technological tools like Blackberry, and Laptops) had increased 3-4 folds. Corporate clients expect work to be ready, yesterday; when they pass the matter to you today. 

So today, 6 fairly young chaps met up at our office at Hartamas to see what we can do. We hope this will work out for all of us, as we all try to earn sufficient money to retire as early as we can :)

Our friends, all who met at the National Young Lawyers Committee are now a committee with a united effort to best ourselves. They were:-
1. Benjamin (BM, Penang)
2. Kenny Lai (Ipoh Perak)
3. Lai Chee Hoe (KL)
4. Damian Yeo (Melaka)
5. Desmond Ho (Melaka)
6. Robin Lim (KL)

and of course, Sunil and I.


Thursday, 12 March 2009

KLBC 2009/10


The new term has started. We were elected 2 weeks ago, and to day, KL Bar will call for the first meeting. We will know what portfolio to take. I am prepared to take any portfolio from the list given:-
1. Court Liaison
2. Criminal Practise
3. Social, Arts & Culture
4. Sports
5. Young Lawyers Committee
6. Pupils Welfare
7. Information Technology
8. Editorial
9. Environmental Law
10. Legal Aid (probably will be lead by current KL LAC Chair, Ravin Singh)
11. Professional Development 

So far since 2005, I had led the Young Lawyers movement in 2005-7, then asked to take care of Pupils Welfare in 2006 and last term was chairing Information Technology Committee.

The new Chairperson, Anand Ponnudurai will likely pick the leaders of each portfolio after hearing out who prefer to do which portfolio.

It would be another interesting year. My 5th year in KL Bar Committee. Time surely flies. I can still remember my speech when I sought the post of YLC Chair. Have not looked back since then. 

Lets hope this term will be better than before. 


Monday, 9 March 2009

Semi-finals


24th appearance in the FA Cup semi-finals for Everton, when we play MU next month. 

Only MU and Arsenal had played at that stage more than Everton. But we nearly did not reach there, last night. Our first half performance was simply not good. Boro seized control of the midfield and it showed. I was a little surprise that Moyes rested Gosling, as I feel with Gosling in, he can play him on the right, Pieneer on the left with Osman, Fellaini and Neville in the centre. 

Whilst Rodwell did decently well in the first half, but we look much better in the 2nd half with Saha spearheading the attack. The 2 goals were well taken though I felt the first goal was more due to Boro's keeper's error. Oh well, football is about taking your chances. 

So, now we meet MU. At this stage it matters not who we meet. The other options were Chelsea or Arsenal/Hull. Maybe Hull may upset Arsenal, though I am sorry to say this to Hull fans, but i think Arsenal is a little better than them. So, either way, we have to play a big team at this stage. 

On that note, I have to concede similarly that MU is, on paper a far better team than Everton. The team itself cost 3-5 times more than Everton. Look at this:-

1. Rio Ferdinand - 30 million pounds
2. Berbatov - 30 m
3. Fatboy traitor - 28 m
4. Hargreaves - 20 m
5. Carrick - 18m
6. Vidic - 7m 
7. Evra - 5.5m
8. Ronaldo - 18m
9. Anderson and Nani - total around 20m - 30m (not sure what is the precise amount)
10. Tevez - on loan, but if confirmed, expected transfer 30m.


Everton:-
1. Howard - 3.5m
2. Jag - 4m
3. Lescott - 4m
4. Yobo - 4m
5. Baines - 6m
6. Neville - 3.5
7. Arteta - 2m
8. Pieneer - 2m
9. Cahill - 2m
10. Gosling - 1m
11. Saha - free transfer (contra for outstanding transfer fee from Fatboy traitor's move to MU)
12. Yakubu - 12m
13. Fellaini - 15m. 

So, looking at the transfer fee itself, you can see who is the more awesome team. I am hoping we can upset MU. It will be difficult without Arteta, but we cant complain too much. We just need to make do with what we have and move on.

Lets hope we can make it to Wembley for the 2nd time in May.



Sunday, 8 March 2009

One Year already


Yes, Its already one year since that historic day, 8th March 2008. 

Since then we see BN particularly kelam kabut, trying to gain back votes with promise of change, but they are still the same. The last election at KT was clear proof that UMNO is still the same; the bully tactics, the scare tactics, and the money politics is very much UMNO way of doing things.

This is what happens when you have a group of people low on IQ, high on immorality and mediocre at best; running a Political Party which is ruling the country. We have seen the worst of UMNO this year. How they try to bully people to vote them back, and how they try to buy their way to people's heart. They continue to divide the Country by making racists statements. They continue to try to rule the country by separating our Malay friends from the other races. They continue to perpetrate corrupt practice and despite the formation of MACC, they have failed to carry out their promised crackdown on corruption. 

Am I am making sweeping statements here? Let's see my top 10 list on BN's failings:-
1. No IPCMC till now

2. VK Lingam is still out there

3. Eusoffe Chin is still out there

4. The policemen who whacked up Kugan and Francis Udayappan are still out there

5. Ahmad Ismail, the 'cina-pendatang' UMNO chap is still out there

6. Khir Toyo, the 'teresa-kok-babi' UMNO chap is still out there

7. new MACC, but same shit and same people. What are they investigating, people who receive Cows, investigate Perak Speaker etc etc. MACC is nothing more than new name, new uniform, but same shit. 

8. Sedition comments made in 2007 UMNO general Assembly, purportedly investigated by Police, but nothing till now.

9. The new 'saya-hanya-jaga-dalam-parlimen' Police, who is now confirmed to be UMNO's crony and uniformed gangster for UMNO. Instead of saving Malaysians, protecting the safely of the people, defending the security of the people, Police is more interested in taking care of UMNO. 

10. UMNO is about to elect a man clearly involved in a murder. We will be the coolest country in the world, how many countries out there have a murder conspirator/abettor/accessory as a Prime Minister?

So, I dont think I am making any sweeping statements. 


Now, Pakatan themselves, who I know are struggling to keep the fight going on as the States they controlled dont have funds from the Federal Government, have let me down a few times. 

Let me give my list on Pakatan:-

1. Zulkifli Nordin is still out there

2. Ibrahim Ali is still out there

3. Selecting Postman and some Camry-loving person to run for ADUN in Perak.

4. Till now, no shadow cabinet.

5. Jumping into the bandwagon during the Permatang Pauh election by giving Lee Chong Wei datukship. Clearly a political ploy. 

6. DAP Perak unable to keep things cool, with allegation of infighting etc etc. Not the best time for infighting when opposition needs to be strong.


No Top 10 for Pakatan, as I feel they have done fairly well despite they having little money and very little experience running a State. 

But clearly the villain of the country, for me, is still UMNO and to some extent BN. They have to go, and hopefully in a few years time, we get rid of them!


Thursday, 5 March 2009

Terang Bulan


Perak's State anthem is called Terang Bulan. Our Negaraku is based on that song.

The moon over Perak is now no where near being 'terang'. Its cloudy times in Perak and definitely gloomy days ahead. The political and Constitutional fiasco there is truly getting out of hand. 

BN has chosen to get an Injunction against the Perak State Assembly when they got wind that the Assembly will pass a vote of no confidence against Zambry and gang. He claims he has the majority in the Assembly, but he is too afraid to face the Assembly. 

When BN took over Perak, they forgot about the Speaker. The Speaker is the most powerful chap in the State Assembly. He has the power to carry out many things in the Assembly, and whilst some of the stunts the Perak State Speaker has carried out is maverick and unchartered, but you got to give credit to that guys for having the guts to carry out what he does.  

Many of the things he does is not wrong. We are not sure if it is right, as almost everything in Perak today is unchartered with regards to Constitutional Law.

But I will say one thing - when the Constitutional law is unclear, and when there is ambiguity in the Constitution, the interpretation must lean towards the interest of the People. Why? Because we are a democratic state. In democracy, the voice and will of the People must prevail above all else. 

Hence why, despite the cock and nonsense we went through in the last 30 years or so under Mahathir and Pak Lah is something we had to accept as the majority of the people voted in the BN regime.

In Perak the last election showed the people wanted a non-BN government. So the majority's will must be respected. 

Back to the Constitutional aspects here - what is important is when the Court decides on matters related to Perak, the Court must take into account the views and will of the People. The Court represents the people conscious, and hold the keys of justice.  

Lets hope the Court will not be cowed by the intimidation of BN, particularly UMNO, but will rise to defend the interest of the people. 

May the Bulan be Terang in Perak again.