Monday, March 31, 2008

Qingming Festival - A Major Chinese Festival

Qingming Festival (or Ching Ming Festival) is a traditional Chinese festival falling on April 4 of the Gregorian calendar this year.

Also known as Grave Sweeping Day in English translation, Qingming's significance lies in the cultutral value of the filial piety that Chinese have been upholding for centuries. This attachment is so deep- rooted that Qingming has been traditionally regarded as a major festival.

On Qingming Day, young and old go to their ancestors' grave sites to pay tribute to them. This fine custom has been well preserved by Chinese throughout the world.

In Sibu, Qingming festival is fast taking over Chinese New Year as an occasion of reunion for families.

Some 15 years ago, my recollection tells me that the Sibuians who settled on outstation used to come back for family reunion on Chinese New Year.

But the scenario took a gradual turn about 10 years ago when Qingming fast caught up in significance as an occasion for family gathering.

Qingming has, therefore, been a festival for Sibu market to bustle with crowds.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Bursa Malaysia - Cautiously Optimistic In The Week Ahead

Last week's trading saw Bursa Malaysia bucking the trend. Against the gloomy market sentiment in the States, the local bourse advanced with an impressive gain.

The bullish sentiment last week was driven by window-dressing activities by the fund managers. This season-end dressing up provided a short- term impetus for the market.

With the curtain drawn, the heightened mood is predicted to subside. On top of that, the market shall witness no fresh leads in the coming week. As such, Bursa Malaysia is not expected to give surprises. Ahead of us shall be a week of correction to consolidate KLSE. Be prepared, therefore, for uncertainty-bound trading days in the week to come.

Although KLSE surged last week, the uptrend has been held to be unsustainable. Stay cautiously optimistic in your trading for a simple reason that Bursa is still risk-bound.

The external shocks and the internal uncertainty in political scenario shall swing our market with no mercy.

All the best in your trading.

Friday, March 28, 2008

"No" To A Public Apology To Tun Salleh Abas

Tun Dr. Mahathir gave an outright "no" to a public apology to Tun Salleh Abas in his response to a proposal by the newly appointed Minister in the Prime Minister's Department.

Reason? It's very simple. As Tun Dr. Mahathir pointed out in Sin Chew Daily today, he had done no wicked act during his 22-yrar tenure as Prime Minister of Malaysia.

Tun is as diplomatic as ever!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

A Proposed Apology To Tun Salleh Abas

The newly appointed Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Senator Datuk Zaid Ibrahim made a proposal to the new cabinet to apologise to the victims of the 1988 judicial crisis, one of whom notably was Tun Salleh Abas.

I applaud loud to the open-minded approach by the new minister.

The judicial crisis and the subsequent constitutional amendments marred the Malaysian system of government and made us a laughing stock of the world.

Our system of government was based on the principle of separation of powers between judicial, executive and legislative branches on equal footing, with each exerting a check and balance against each other.

Following the infamous crisis in 1988, Tun Dr. Mahathir pushed through the parliament amendments to the constitution to effectively put the supremacy of the executive over and above that of the judicial branch. In one way or another, this distorted our principle of separation of powers.

Quoting the words of Tun Dr. Mahathir in 1988, " we seek to divest the courts of the judicial power of the Federation and give them only such judicial power as Parliament might grant them in justifying the amendments", the constitutional amendments had done tremendous damage to our judicial system in terms of its independence and power.

Public noise is getting louder to dig up the case.

The picture shows Datuk Zaid Ibrahim.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Teregganu's MB - A One-Man-Show Affair

Palace-appointed, but short of ADUN back-up, Ahmad Said reported to duty as MB of Teregganu yesterday. He is perfectly on a one-man-show, a scenario first time seen in Malaysia.

But for how long is he going to last?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Terengganu's MB Issue - A Challenge To Pak Lah

Terengganu's trauma is just one in a series of episodes in the aftermath of the recently concluded general election.

Gone was a big chunk of BN's base, leaving the ruling front wobbly in control of both states and parliament.

Eroded was Pak Lah's supremacy over the front as a result of the painful slice away of the ruling front's political grip.

From outright refusal to accept appointments as deputy ministers as a show of protests, rumour mongering all over on cross-over to the open defiance by Ahmad Said to PM's directive, the signs are more than enough to show that our PM's grip has been eroded.

You may call the episodes a stark reflection of the political reality. Prior to the political tsunami on March 8, it would have been a wild imagination to even let a slight idea to cross your mind on anybody in BN having guts to openly defy Pak Lah!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Bursa Malaysia - A Quiet Week Ahead

The Federal Reserve's slash on the rate to spur on the sinking economy provided a fresh lead for the stock markets in the States to leap by 2% on last Thursday. Temporarily, this stabilised the volatile external forces, giving the local bourse a sigh of relief.

Lack of fresh leads and continuing political uncertainty at the local front are expected to keep Bursa Malaysia on base-building phase and quiet trading.

Externally, the Reserve's rescue packages to shore up investor confidence are not expected to take effect in short term. The credit crunch is far from over, with the sources still rooted deep. In the immediate future, the American stocks shall hinge on the potential losses to be sustained in the financial market.

In Asian region, the stocks are expected to tag closely behind that of the United States. But the victory of Ma Ying-jeou in the just concluded presidential election in Taiwan is expected to spur the region's bourses to a fervent run. Ma's open-minded approach to mainland China is predicted to cool off the tense cross-straits relations under President Chen Shui-bian. Regionally speaking, the Ma's syndrome is definitely positive.

The mixed external factors, coupled with the wobbly local political scene have put off funds on wait-and-see. As such, the volume in this week is expected to stay thin in quiet trading.

If you are in the market, you have my best wishes!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Easter Sunday

Today is Easter Sunday, the day our Lord Jesus Christ resurrected on the third day after his crucifixion around AD33.

The rise of our Lord from the dead gives hope to mankind that there is eternity in living through Him.

Rev. Wong of The Masland Methodist Church shared this point in her sermon in this morning's Easter Sunday service.

"If Jesus Christ was not risen from the dead, then we have absolutely nothing to look forward to," Rev. Wong preached to the congregation.

Let's all rejoice and sing out loud to our Lord for the wonderful gift of hope!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Taiwan- Into Ma Ying-jeou's Era

Taiwan voters went to the polling stations today to vote in the 12th term President and Vice-President of The Republic of China.

Ma Ying -jeou and his running mate Vincent Siew of Kuomintang were in a straight fight with Frank Hsieh and Su Tseng-chang of Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

The intense election scenario and the closeness of the fight kept me glued to the T.V. for the outcome after 5:00pm. The progressive release of the electoral results showed Ma leading all the way through, with victory claimed at 7:30pm by a majority of 2 million votes after a month-long explosive election campaign against DPP's Frank Hsieh.

The electoral results fell within our prediction, but the magnitude of the majority took me by some surprise.

This presidential election saw Taiwan blowing a strong wind of change. The eight-year control of the government of Taiwan by DPP's President Chen Shui-bian sent the economy of the island state to a state of devastation. Strong urge was prevalent to vote out the corrupted DPP-controlled administration.

The conclusion of the election ushers in a new Taiwan - an era of Ma Ying-jeou.

Good Friday

Today (March 21) is Good Friday and it is a public holiday in Sarawak. This is the day when Christians worldwide mourn the crucifixion of Lord Jesus Christ.

The Bible clearly proclaims in Luke 24:46-47 that the Messiah is to suffer death and to rise from the dead on the third day, and that in his name repentance bringing the forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed to all nations.

Jesus shedded blood and died on the cross on Good Friday for all sinners and he promised to all that whoever repents and accepts him as personal saviour, he shall be saved and have eternal life.

Good Friday is a constant reminder to all Christians that we have to face reality head on, taking up the cross if you will, fully conscious that the Christian walk is seldom in the park.

But Good Friday is also the time for Christians to confess the Christian hope that no tragedy - not even death - can overwhelm God's providence, love and grace.

Have a good day!

The picture shows The Last Supper service at Sibu Trade & Exhibition Centre attended by a congregation close to 2,500. This picture is by courtesy of Wong Meng Lei.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

The State-Level Maulidur Rasul (Prophet Muhammad's Birthday) Procession In Sibu

I was stuck in the middle of a long traffic line which was brought to a standstill by the state-level Maulidur Rasul procession in Sibu this morning. The hour-long jam turned out to be a wonderful opportunity for me to join in with other spectators to watch the spectacular procession passing by.

The miles-long procession line was in conjunction with the state-level celebration of Prophet Muhammad's birthday. The particupants , no less than 10,000 in number, were drawn from the Islamic religious bodies, various government departments and schools from all over the state. Together they fascinated the spectators with religious and cultural chants, kompang, citation and music.

As the seemingly non-stop procession passed by, it struck me that blessed is Malaysia with such admirable degree of tolerance in religion and race. While racial groups in some other countries still get entangled in exchanging slurs and fists, here in Malaysia we exchange festive visits in harmony.

Racial harmony and religious tolerance are fruits of hard work by all Malaysians. Let's preserve them with brotherly love and mutual respect.

The picture shows Head of State Tun Datuk Patinggi Abang Muhammad Salahuddin leading the procession.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Slimline Cabinet Versus Stronger Opposotion

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah unveiled the new line-up of the cabinet yesterday, the size of which surprised no rakyat at all. As hotly speculated, the cabinet came out leaner, with the team downsized to reflect the much diluted base of BN in the parliament.

The slimline cabinet is now subjected to tighter check by a much stronger opposition front in the parliament. From a force of less than 20 previously to the present 82, the opposition has a lot more muscle to flex now to exert pressure on the ruling front. Gone were the days when our parliament was so very lop-sided, giving the ruling front plenty of room to wrestle with the opposition.

With the political tsunami rocking all over, the new parliament would be much more thrilling.

YB Lim Kit Siang has been renowned to electrify the otherwise dull parliamentary sittings with his shocking speeches. These are certainly not my words - I read about it years ago in Asiaweek and it struck me.

And now with the enlarged front, the opposition would very likely keep the ruling front on the toes and under more severe surveillance.

On this point, the political tsunami has taken our nation on a path to a greater maturity in democracy.

A big "hip, hip, hurrah!" to the rakyat!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

For Thinking Sibuians

I lazed away in a kopitiam with some buddies in a lazy afternoon last Saturday. Over a cup of kopi-o, we indulged in blah on Sibu .

Sibu, our dear homeland, is always so mind-boggling, giving Sibuians both fascination and puzzlement. Kopi-o session is, therefore, never short of thought-provoking Sibu affairs to chat about.

Sibu was again short hit by gruesome flood arising from the torrential rain in the upper Rajang. Much to blame has been the silted-up Rajang, so sickening that we are now much more frequently flooded in Sibu.

Certain victimised residents at the low-lying spots once told me they wished to let their votes to speak loud and clear for them.

The election pledge by the ruling front of a grand flood treatment project to alleviate the nightmarish attacks was like a shot in the arm, giving Sibuians both thrill and hope.

But what is intriguing is that the grand flood project is short of mention of dredging the river.

Isn't it supposed to be more down to the root? My buddies put it to me.

Very thought-provoking for thinking Sibuians!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Rumour Mongering Abounds In The Market

The dramatic change to the Malaysian political scene brought about by the 12th GE has left the whole nation rumble over the new political climate never seen before.

All positive-thinking Malaysians would take the quaking change with open-mindedness and forward-looking mentality.

Now we are already into the 10th day after the 12th GE and the market is still buzzing with rumours. Worse still, short messages of highly explosive nature are flooding the market, making it worrisome if they are let to slip out of hands.

All peace-loving Malaysians should put those unfounded and maliciously- intended messages to a stop. Fear mongering at this crucial time to frighten citizens and influence their political views is most condemnable.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

KLSE - Volatile Trading Ahead

KLSE is filled with an air of uncertainty arising from both internal and external sources. On the domestic front, the dust of the political tsunami is still not settled yet, thus giving players a deep sense of caution. Externally, the bearish sentiment is intense, taking investors and punters alike to the sideline.

The precarious scenario is expected to persist in the trading week to come. Therefore, any news not favourable to the local trading sentiment would very likely send the market nerve-racking.

On Friday, Dow Jones broke through the psychological barrier of 12,000 to close at 11,951.09 points, down by 194.65 points. This fall is expected to impact the worldwide market on Monday's trading with downcast sentiment, giving added sell-down pressure.

Two events of profound significance to Bursa Malaysia in the coming week are noteworthy by market players. Firstly, Pak Lah shall lay out to the nation his new cabinet line-up. Secondly, the America's Federal Reserve Open Market Committee shall have a sitting on March 18 to deliberate on its rate policy with the view to revamp the slow moving economy.

New faces are anticipated to show up in the new cabinet. I don't expect them to excite the market much. But if the new line-up is of high calibre, the nation shall stand to benefit in the medium to long-term. The depressed sentiment arising from the political turmoil is not expected to dwindle away yet.

The market talk is that the FOMC sitting on March 18 would very likely see another slash of 0.75% to the rate to spur on the economy. Last week, this optimistic expectation might already have been integrated into the market. Therefore, if the actual cut falls short of the expectation, the market worldwide would slip in response to it.

In view of the anticipated local and external factors ruling the local market, it would be prudent for players to take extra caution to trading.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

General Election 2008 - Open Tender System In Penang

The open tender system long chanted by DAP is ideally conducive to establishing a transparent system of government.

Most of the established democracies opt for this system of tendering to promote a spirit of openness and efficiency.

When Lim Guan Eng took office of Chief Minister of Penang, amongst others, he put forward in absolutely clear terms to introduce an open tender system in Penang.

This is perhaps the first time such a transparent system of tendering is being put to use in Malaysia. Reactions to Lim's policy are mixed. I heard of loud applause to the emboldened move to reform. But there are protests also to the new system, claiming that it is encroaching on their rights and privileges.

The reform road ahead of the coalition government in Penang appears to be bumpy. But Lim Guan Eng has pledged to stand firm on the open tender system.

Let's stay well tuned in to further developments!

The picture shows the protests going on in Penang against the open tender system.

Friday, March 14, 2008

General Election 2008 - Penang Under The New Coalition

When AirAsia flew high with profits at very affordable fares, making it possible for almost everyone to fly, MAS was still saddled with shocking losses, taking the national carrier to the verge of collapse.

Then MAS took it up sternly to trim the excesses, gear up the efficiency and scale up the transparency. In just two years' time, it turned surplus, doing the nation proud.

Both AirAsia and MAS have shown that a goal is achievable so long as you have determination to go for it.

Certainly AirAsia and MAS have nothing to do with the recent political shake-up in Malaysia. However, they inspire me to look at things in their right perspective.

After YB Lim Guan Eng was sworn in as the 4th CM of Penang, he laid down a clear agenda for the state. Putting it in a nutshell, Lim set to turn Penang into a clean, lean and efficient state.

This is a vision most admirable and refreshing. For decades, we have been vocal, but nothing much in concrete form has been forthcoming. DAP's Penang took it up to show to the nation that it is boleh!

At this juncture, it is far too early to be conclusive, but the take-off is most heartening. If Lim Guan Eng scores well, Penang might be a model for other states to emulate.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

General Election 2008 - KLSE Moving Into An Uncharted Territory

The electoral shock of tsunami-scale of the 12th GE vibrating throughout Malaysia instantly sent KLSE (Bursa Malaysia) heading towards an uncharted territory.

With the two thirds majority in the parliament denied and a loss of ruling power in four states (Penang, Selangor, Perlis and Kedah ), a big chunk of BN's base has been sliced away, leaving its foothold shaky and most awkward.

The implications for the first ever political shake-up are profound, giving rise immediately to a lot of uncertainty in the front.

As such, KLSE reacted strongly with a big slump on March 10. The frenzy sell-down reflected the jitters in the market in the aftermath of the political tsunami. The choppy scenario is widely expected to persist with no certainty.

In short, KLSE is now quite directionless, moving into an uncharted territory with immense uncertainty lying ahead.

The most reasonable reaction by the foreign funds to the local political quake is to sideline first to avoid a lock-in.

Although the magnitude of impact from the political tension on KLSE cannot be reasonably ascertained at this juncture, the market sentiment is definitely depressed for the time being.

Caution is the word of the day if you wish to surf in this uncharted territory!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

General Election 2008 - A Coalition With Contradictory Ideologies

PKR, DAP and PAS made a wonderful pact to pose a challenge to BN in the 12th GE - and it worked fantastically well.

Although the three opposition front parties had contradictory ideologies, they humbled and cast aside all ideological differences during the election campaign. As such, the coalition avoided all slashing or casting slurs against each other. Equally beautiful was their consensus on seat arrangement, thus paving way for straight fights without dilution of force.

The smart partnership carried the coalition through with astounding success never expected of by anybody.

There is this question now of how well the front might be able to work together. The contradictory ideological stand over an islamic state would certainly make DAP and PAS awkward in their working relationship.

Two days ago,YB Lim Kit Siang made it clear with affirmation that DAP is to abide firm by its stand on anti-islamic state.

It is definitely an issue of concern to all Malaysians now with the changed political climate.

The picture shows YB Lim Guan Eng being sworn in as the 4th Chief Minister of Penang yesterday.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

General Election 2008 - Race-based Politics Versus Multi-racial Politics

Malaysian politics has been treading along race-based line since 50s. In other words, communalism has been the established framework of our political system, with racial groups consolidated under their respective parties to safeguard their interests.

The 12th GE saw a divergence from this deep-rooted political line. Although at this juncture it is far too early to be conclusive, the trend does signify a wider perception by the electorate of a non-communal political line.

Besides DAP, PKR's multi-racial approach has proven to be appealing to the voters of all races in the election.

The breakaway of Malay votes from UMNO sent a clear message across the nation, that the communal line in politics in this new era may not necessarily work like it did in the past 50 years in Malaysia.

The voters' perception may have moved away from the previous narrow-based communalism to the broad-based multi-racialism.

Presently it is still very much at an infancy stage. I hope it is going to progress well.

The picture shows Dato' Seri Anwar Ibrahim at a press conference after the election.

Monday, March 10, 2008

General Election 2008 - A Two-Front System Seemingly In The Making

The political hurricane has obviously changed the local political scenario, from that of a one-sided single-front system to that of a more balanced two-front system. If nothing crops up, the shape is definitely there!

The 12th General Election saw not only a massive exodus of Chinese and Indian votes to the opposition front, but also a big chunk of Malay votes, traditionally staying steadfast behind UMNO, crossing over to the non-BN camp. The results threw a lot of political pundits off balance.

This represents a marked difference between this election and the previous ones in 1990 and 1999 when the opposition parties similarly teamed up in a coalition to wrestle with BN.

In 1990, Tunku Razali called for an alternative front to wage a challenge against BN. But Malay voters backed away from the front for fear of losing their dominant political power at the last minute. As such, the AF failed to gather the momentum to get through.

1999 witnessed an upsurge of anti-Mahathir sentiment in Malay groups. However, the Chinese and Indians chose to to consolidate under BN. As a result, the wind of change blew to a futile end.

2008 saw a wind blown with might to shake the BN's base, laying foundation for a probable two-front system in Malaysia.

The picture shows Tun Dr. Mahathir at a press conference one day after the election.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

General Election 2008 - The Wind Of Change Turned Hurricane

The dramatic swing of votes from ruling to opposition took a lot of political watchers by shocking surprise. I anticipated a dent in BN's overall performance, but a collapse in 5 states and a total denial of 2/3 majority in the parliament was really a meltdown far beyond my expectation.

Days before the voting, I already felt strong winds of change hovering over in West Malaysia. The strongly worded messages sent chill down my spine, making me feel worried that the high emotions might run the risk of getting out of hands. Deep down in my heart, I sensed it: Something was brewing!

But little did I expect an otherwise strong wind would gather momentum to turn into a hurricane, giving a complete shake-up to the Malaysian political scene.

I have to cool my head down and balance my state of mind to sort out my thinking and figure out the whole political turmoil.

What led the voters to jump on BN and give a harsh blow? The first factor that came to my mind was the pinching spiralling prices of daily necessities. The suffocated consumers had no way to turn to except the votes.

Next to follow up was the state of malpractices in Malaysia. Back in 1998 when Malaysia was deep in economic turmoil, IMF offered a rescue package. In return for the package, Malaysia would have to commit to curb the prevalent corruption and nepotism. Tun Dr. Mahathir turned down the offer entirely.

In the past 10 years, our malpractices had gone from bad to worse. Our CPI ( Corruption Perception Index) had dropped fron 34 to 44 in a matter of 8 years' time.

Our electorate in West Malaysia might have taken to votes their extreme frustration with the system.

Finally, the major swing of Malay votes could have reflected the power of Anwar's syndrome.

I had very much underestimated the forcefulness of this factor. I thought Dato' Seri Anwar would not have the charisma to move the Malays away from their steadfast loyalty to UMNO. But the results proved otherwise!

The picture shows Dato' Seri Abdullah in a depressed state last night.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

General Election 2008 - A Decisive Polling Day

Amidst an air of tense excitement and a politically strong whirlwind of change, the power of our government is surrendered back to rakyat for them to vote in the next government today.

This is the virtue of democracy which requires every government to go back to rakyat to ask for mandate upon expiration for a new term.

I cast my vote at SMK Methodist which is a polling station for Lanang constituency. The premises were peaceful and quiet with absolutely no campaigning in accordance with the election law when I arrived there for voting this morning.

At 6:45pm, I started receiving news on election results. It was thrilling, sending my family to nerve-racking excitement over the outcome.

At the time of blogging, it is confirmed that, out of the seven seats contested in Chinese-majority areas in Sarawak, DAP has managed to blast off only one rocket to sky.

I just learned that the polling results in West Malaysia have deep implications for Pak Lah and BN.

Friday, March 7, 2008

General Election 2008 - Powerful Electronic Messages

With only one more day to go before we put the fate of the nation to voting, I feel more and more perturbed with the ongoing election campaign nationwide.

I have practically been swamped with electronic messages these few days. Definitely powerful in getting across messages to the electorate, the contesting parties are resorting to innovation and creativity to fight a winning battle.

I gave minute reading to every piece with a cool head and balanced state of mind. Some of the messages are purposeful with good intention, whereas the rest are just sheer poking fun at the ruling parties with cheap substance.

But the messages from West Malaysia truly make me frown at the tense situation there. The voters' sentiments are running pretty wild in certain states and the vibrating emotions might get out of hands.

An e-mailed message this afternoon is most worrisome. The seditious contents of the mail are insensitive to the social structure of our nation and the political realities prevailing here. The writer should have exercised some restrain.

As we go to polling stations tomorrow, let's not take emotions there. We should cast our votes with a clear mind for the next government to come in.

The picture shows an awful scene in KL.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

General Election 2008 - A Sea Of Banners

Our election law spells out clearly that campaign may kick off straightway after nomination and to hold the brake immediately at 12:00 midnight before election day.

Initially it was only DAP and SUPP scattering around banners and posters. Later, PKR joined in and it soon erupted into a banner war.

Goodness, Sibu is now practically submerged in a sea of colourful election banners and posters of the contesting parties vying for the voters' sentiment.

So far, SUPP, DAP and PKR are well restrained in wording and depictions. This eases off my initial concern about the parties carrying things too far!

In West Malaysia where sentiment is running quite wild, emotions tend to get out of hands. In Seputeh, the explosively suggestive caricatures on the campaign billboards blew up into a hot issue. Carol Chew of BN erected several huge billboards carrying suggestive caricatures of Teresa Kok, a Seputeh incumbent from DAP. In the end, Teresa Kok had to take up the matter with EC to order Carol Chew to pull them down.

Sibu is fortunate to have been spared incidents of this nature.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

General Election 2008 - Heated Political Rallies

The political rallies heat up the on-going election campaign and they fill the air in Sibu with tense excitement.

You may jeer at the rallies, saying that they are just avenue for the candidates to air their rhetoric to hook voters.

In reality, election rallies are a perfect venue for the contesting parties to get across to the public their political stand on burning issues and their aspirations for the nation.

This time around in Sibu, political rallies are staged every night at different strategic locations by SUPP, DAP and PKR.

Judging from the sizes of the turn-up, it appears that DAP is most appealing to the electorate. The party's eloquent hit-out on sizzling hot issues make their ceramah very engrossing to the electorate.

The voters are moderately responsive to SUPP's rally. The party's steadfast stand on development, stability and prosperity is most down-to-earth and relevant

PKR has relatively scant presence in Sibu and its foothold here is still weak. Nevertheless, Robert Lim manages to garner some grass-root support to keep the campaign going. Tonight, YB Dominique Ng is going to bombard DAP and SUPP at PKR's meet-the-rakyat session.

You really can't afford to miss out the steamy election campaign!

The picture shows YB Dominique Ng blasting out at an election rally: I want to make public of discreditable facts!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

General Election 2008 - The Chinese Electorate Is Torn

The Chinese electorate is badly torn between SUPP and DAP, particularly in this election.

The Chinese voters' political sentiment is a lot more complex than that of other races. You see, on the one hand, they aspire to have the ruling SUPP to bring to them more developments. On the other hand, they are frustrated to the extreme by the burning issues affecting them. There are easily more than half going to the polling stations with a burst of high emotions. This may sound quite terrific, but the reality is not going to be too far away.

As such, the two parties are running a very tight race to win the Chinese vites, hoping to outmatch the rival to emerge a winner.

Split up and you run the risks of weakening your political power, SUPP tells the Chinese voters vehemently.

Deny their two-third majority and weaken their supremacy, DAP calls on the Chinese.

What on earth are they talking about, some Chinese voters ask me with a puzzled look.

My goodness, it is a long granny's story to tell!

Thje picture shows Tan Sri Dr. George Chan and Mr. Chong Chieng Jen in a dramatic show yesterday at MBKS Building over the mayor post of MBKS. What was supposed to be a solemn signing ceremony of a Letter of Challenge turned out to be a dramatically messy show.

Monday, March 3, 2008

General Election 2008- Development For Better

SUPP's "Development For Better" is a very old theme. But it is absolutely relevant and most down-to-earth.

However, in the present circumstances when electorate is entangled with burning issues like land lease and livelihood, the development theme has become much less touching. In other words, promise of development has been far outweighed by the emotional outburst of discontent.

In a matter of less than two months, I have encountered several cases of land-related issues affecting the ordinary folks, the latest being an outright rejection for renewal of land lease. When they almost burst into tears, although I felt for them, I ran so very out of words.

When I shared with them about development in economic sense, dismally they told me from the bottom of their hearts: Development is much less meaningful to us now!

Instantly I turned speechless!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

General Election 2008 - Development Versus Change

The tussle between SUPP and DAP in the seven Chinese-majority seats is definitely tense with excitement in this election.

Tickling the nerves are the issues relating to the livelihood, land lease renewal and social concerns. DAP's candidates eloquently sensationalise the issues of relevance to touch the inner feelings of the folks. The voters' emotions are stirred up to swing towards DAP to exhibit their discontent with the ruling BN. As such, DAP heavily capitalises on the election issues to gain an edge on SUPP.

This election sees DAP coming out with "Change For Better" as its theme. The thrust of the party is to blow up a wind of change, calling on the nation to cast a vote of denial to the two-third majority of seats of BN in the parliament

With that mandate from the rakyat, DAP hopes to put BN under greater surveillance. But my common sense tells me that it would be far from reach for DAP singly to achieve that. I guess there is certain pact with PKR and PAS to work towards giving BN a hit.

"Development For Better" is the theme of SUPP to counterattack DAP.

SUPP - Development for better!

DAP - Change for better!

Saturday, March 1, 2008

General Election 2008 - SUPP Versus DAP

The 12th Parliamentary Election is the first fight between the two Chinese-based parties after the pain-stricken defeat the ruling SUPP suffered in the previous state election in 2006.

In that furiously fought battle, SUPP dishearteningly lost several seats to DAP, making the infamous fiasco a painful lesson for the component party of the ruling front.

The issues that killed SUPP off included land lease renewal, spiralling oil price and the toll issue.

In just less than two years, SUPP has to face up to the tough challenge posed by DAP in the parliamentary election on the same issues, albeit with some abatement in land lease.

In this election, a close fight is inevitable between the two rivals.