MALAYSIA ASEAN/APEC LEAD CONSUMERIST DR JACOB GEORGE SAYS – THERE SHOULD BE NO COVER UP ON STUDENTS DEATH!

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NO COVER UP ON STUDENTS DEATH JOHOR EXCO TOLD!

From what I know, the Ministry of Health (MOH)has still to come out with its report!

As for the Police, I am aware that they are still conducting their investigations.

And if I know the IGP, as I know him to be the professional he is, he will make certain that no stones are left upturned as they investigate this horrendous issue and tragedy which has now become both national and international!

For the record, I have received no less than 15 calls from the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, India, Vietnam, Nepal, Sri Lanka, New Zealand, France, South Africa, Singapore, Mexico, and the US!

But Syabas, to Johor executive council member in charge of religious affairs, Abd Mutalip Abd Rahim, who said the Johor Islamic Affairs Department (JAIJ) has completed its investigation, and his rather controversial and contentious statement, if indeed he is quoted correctly (pun intended!) that the tahfiz school did not commit any offence!

Sounds super-fast and premature?

Though it may sound rather ingenious to some, his statement, to me is totally unacceptable and premature pending both MOH and the Police investigations!

It is embarrassing and unreasonable when we have a politician who comes out with such an insensitive statement when a student died from injuries due to suspected physical abuse by an assistant warden of the school.

Let us start with the basic!

Does this Johor executive council member know at least how many public and private religious schools there are in Johor?

And the total population of students at such entities?

Their finances, background of their management and administrative community?

And for these private entities, are they being monitored, regulated, visited and have surprise visits and postmortems initiated by those under whom the responsibility herein lies?

If this politician, his behavior and response is not bad enough, we have another politician in charge of health, environment, education and information, Ayub Rahmat, who instead of keeping silent, decides to jump on the bandwagon to give an uncalled for lecture on the protocols of the MOH investigation, when no one asked him!

It becomes intolerable when he tries to advice the public not to be too quick to judge any party until the post-Morten report was ready as no other student from the same religious school was experiencing any sign similar to the deceased.

Gosh! How does he know?

Did he conduct a comprehensive audit and investigation at the school which is the epicenter of this horrendous crime and tragedy?

Seriously?

Are such exco portfolios not needing an academic background, track record, critical thinking, professionalism, ethics, sensitiveness, knowledge of the law, and most importantly empathy?

Is the problem me being too super sensitive?

Does it not matter that a poor tormented and tortured child has lost his life?

And those obviously caught napping and incompetent and under whose watch this happened not be exposed for their incompetence and replaced?

Must they be protected?

Must we cover up?

The truth hidden at any costs?

After all only one person here lost his life!

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And there we have the infamous MH370, where there is a total of 239 people, 14 nationalities on board that plane, which is still missing, all presumed dead post 8 March 2014!

Seriously Malaysia?

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MALAYSIA ASEAN/APEC LEAD CONSUMERIST DR JACOB GEORGE SAYS – TODAY WE ARE ALL MOHAMAD THAQIF MOHD GADDAFI’S PARENTS!

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TODAY WE ARE ALL MOHAMAD THAQIF MOHD GADDAFI’S PARENTS!

Yes, we are all Mohamad Thaqif Amin Mohd Gaddafi Parents!

Words cannot describe the sadness and hurt like hundreds of thousands of Malaysians, I too feel!

It is tragic that 11 year old Mohamad Thaqif Amin Mohd Gaddafi is no more with us in Malaysia!

There are so many questions that need answers and investigations done without fear, favor, in transparency, accountability and following a strict compliance protocol end to end!

Like others, I cannot but cry out that this form of heinous crime and tragedy must never happen again in Malaysia!

I dread to imagine what pain, suffering, anguish and scars this 11-year-old student, underwent, whose legs were amputated due to alleged physical abuse by an assistant warden at a religious school in Johor Baru!

Like others, I pray for the ALMIGHTYS healing and blessings upon his father, Mohd Gaddafi Mat Karim, 43, at the premature loss of his son!

I have always believed, that as parents we should never outlive our children as that will be a rather traumatic experience.

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I am very certain that the Malaysian Police, led by the no nonsense tolerating professional IGP, with the assistance of our medical experts from the MOH, will get to the bottom of this tragedy leaving no room for speculation, defamation, or truth to be swept under the carpet!

A crime has been committed!

A life has been lost!

There must be justice!

The truth must prevail and if there is foul play, then the wheels of justice must turn speedily, that justice is done and leaves a message in the public interest, that sends a warning to others who have a duty of care to watch over our children.

This child who was in a comatose state, had his legs amputated after the blood cells and tissues were destroyed by bacterial infection.

His right hand had also turned black due to the same infection while blood clots appeared on his left shoulder.

What is sad is that this child, had in his diary, reportedly detailed his suffering at the school and prayed his parents would allow him to transfer from the religious school.

It never happened!

Worst, in employment in the school as the school assistant warden, was one who was a convicted felon who served 15 months in jail for theft, who is the epicenter of this investigation!

It must not end with him as the administration and others in the system must also be made accountable!

There is no time for spin, for pretense, for hypocrisy or pussy footing on what is expected that needs to be initiated in all schools in Malaysia.

Schools must play an essential role in protecting children from abuse.

Those who are employed at schools must have close, regular contact with children and young people.

They must be individuals who have the academic and track record and love children to:

1. identify child protection concerns early

2. provide help and support

3. help children understand how to stay safe from abuse

4. And when a situation arises not to cover up but refer a child to relevant agencies

We cannot and should not pretend to be puritans!

Schools have a statutory duty to protect children in their care.

They must have a child protection policy, child protection procedures, a designated lead for child protection – both on the board of trustees and in the senior management team and safe recruitment processes.

The school environment must be a safe place for children.

And schools must ensure that adults who work in the school, including volunteers, do not pose a risk to children, directly or indirectly!

There should be comprehensive background checks done before someone is employed therein. Which includes with the Police, who are always ready and willing to help assist!

Staff should receive training how to identify and respond to child protection concerns.

All schools should create a whole school ethos that makes it clear to children that if they have a problem, however big or small, they can talk to a member of staff. Ways to do this can include:
1. displaying posters signposting children to services that might be able to help them if they are worried.

2. Using ‘Feedbacks/Worry boxes’ – which are either placed inside the classroom or around the building. If a child is feeling unsure about approaching an adult this can be a good way for them to share their worries.

3. Having visiting child safety advocates provides an environment to encouraging children to post questions and help third parties identify issues that may be worrying a child.

4. Peer mentoring – where children may be more likely to disclose abuse to a friend or peer. If a school has a peer mentoring scheme in operation, mentors will need to be taught how to respond and be aware of the importance of passing concerns to an adult as soon as possible.

In many circumstances in Malaysia, we have a situation where we have failed to assure our children that when they disclose abuse or other needs, they will be believed, and that those teaching will demonstrate time and patience to understand and help the child to understand that disclosure is a process rather than a one off event.

That those who drive this will with honesty and clarity share the process and uphold confidentiality and gain the children’s trust!

That we are committed and dedicated to support and intervene to help those who suffer to recover.

It is also pertinent that school boards and administration make certain that all of them, must have entrenched a child protection protocol and procedures if a child discloses that they, or another child, has been abused.

If there is an attempt by the board or the administration to cover up, there should be a process that will facilitate whistle blowing to the relevant authorities!

This is why, I have always encouraged school policymakers to have multi-agency meetings with education policymakers, healthcare and child protection advocates and the Police!

It is now all our prayer that by this very tragic death, a way would be found, a process put forward in our schools and places of instruction that protects the rights, interests and safety of children!

Malaysia cannot afford another – Mohamad Thaqif Mohd Gaddafi!

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MALAYSIA ASEAN & APEC LEAD CONSUMERIST DR JACOB GEORGE SAYS: POLITICAL WILL NEEDED TO ASSURE THE NAJIB BLUEPRINT FOR MALAYSIAN INDIANS SUCCEEDS!

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POLITICAL WILL NEEDED TO ASSURE THE NAJIB BLUEPRINT FOR MALAYSIAN INDIANS SUCCEEDS!

I refer to Malaysiakini – ‘Najib dishes out millions for Indians, says not for polls’ (23 April 2017)

Premier Najib Razak hails the federal government’s first-ever blueprint to uplift Indians in Malaysia, with an allocation of more than RM1 billion, as a serious document and not just empty talk or political rhetoric!

A former deputy minister, who resigned from the government claims it is an ‘April fools trick’, while, a well-respected academician and deputy chief minister of Penang, calls it ‘a political ploy to remain in office, a little while longer!’

Of course, you have also at this launch, many political shenanigans, adventurers, past politicians and persona non grata types, who are truly the reason why the Malaysian Indian community is at the bottom of the economic and social barrel, screaming their heads off in excitement, hypocrisy and superfluous claims!

I am certain Prime Minister Najib is only too aware, whom I am alluding to, after all he has being in politics for far too long and know of these actors?

As for me, as one who has had a track record of service, to both the government and consumers in Malaysia, ASEAN and APEC, in volunteerism, I pray dear friend, the premier will not take these individuals seriously, for they are great actors, full blue blooded professional apple polishers, who with their family members and cronies benefited from the allocations that was made available by the government in the past and the real reason, why Malaysian Indians are where they are today!

Now what is the main penetration and emphasis of the announced 10 year plan to uplift Malaysian Indians?

The 10-year Indian blueprint plan includes:

– RM500 million for a shares scheme under Permodalan Nasional Berhad for the B40 group (those whose household income represents the lowest 40%);

– special assistance to increase admission of Indians into higher education institutions like universities, colleges and polytechnics by at least 7%;

– cooperation with the Indus Education Foundation, with a sum of RM40 million for four years, to tackle problems related to progress in higher education;

– raising the participation of Indians in the public service by at least 7% at all grade levels by 2016;

– a special approval system under the home ministry to help Indians born before 1957 to gain citizenship; and,

– a Special Implementation Task Force to be the “touch-point” between the government and the community via 10 service centers located in areas with high Indian populations.

First, for any initiative to succeed in Malaysia, it must be chaired by both the Premier, his deputy, the Chief Secretary to the Government, Head of the Economic Planning Unit (EPU), the Performance Management and Delivery Unit (Pemandu), senior civil servants and new faces both political, civil society and NGOs to be effective!

The operative word being “new faces!”

For good governance, transparency, accountability, compliance reasons, we cannot and should not allow a political party or their nominees, to drive this which is a national effort – period!

For far too long we have had great programs planned but allowed political parties, recycled political nominees, individuals, and groups who are not passionate, committed to initiate change, and they have no clue about, except enriching themselves!

Prime Minister sir, we need individuals with a track record of sincere calling to holistic change types sitting and making decisions for a demography left behind by public policy decades ago!

And unless this is done, this initiative will also fail!

Then, another pertinent issue is the authenticity of the data contained in this blueprint, since the last blueprint might have been in 1974, about four decades ago?

This is why questions are being raised, as to the background and identity of the researchers associated with the genesis of this blueprint, which is to propel the Indian community to advance in the age of globalization and global competitiveness?

The fear is, if the blueprint is based on false or inaccurate data then before even starting, we have failed!

It is thus better to address what is the true nature of the Malaysian Indian population first, as I am certain they are more than the 1.7 million touted by sources?

This is also pertinent, as to address the exact number of Indian families who fall below the poverty line, or, who receive certain levels of income?

As an advocate of good governance, my fear is, if the data gathered is political in nature, questionable or suspect, questions may be raised on the blueprint, which we should avoid!

As you Prime Minister sir rightly pointed out.

What is also the real number of locally born Indians not accorded citizenship, is it about 20,000 to 25,000 or more than 300,000?

We need to finalize that as you rightly alluded to!

It is critical to know that number as we want them to benefit from this blueprint!

As a lead consumer advocate in the country, I have no other agenda but want this historic blueprint, which I will call herein, the Najib Blueprint for Malaysian Indians to succeed!

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MALAYSIA ASEAN & APEC LEAD CONSUMERIST DR JACOB GEORGE: Zaid Hamidi Correct That Our Diversity Of Race & Religion Our Strength!

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‘As our deputy premier and home minister, Zaid Hamidi, stated, the diversity of religions and cultures in Malaysia has been the symbol of our strength and unity, my appeal is – let us not allow an outsider and others supporting a wrong, non-defensible and untenable cause, divide us further!’

Zaid Hamidi Correct That Our Diversity Of Race & Religion Our Strength!

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As an opinion shaper and lead consumerist, not just in Malaysia, but, both ASEAN and APEC, I fully support what Malaysian deputy premier and home minister, dear friend, Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today urged, that Malaysians reject any form of religious extremism as this could jeopardize the peace and harmony in the country.

It is also encouraging to hear the deputy prime minister encouraging Malaysians to celebrate the diversity of religions and cultures in Malaysia, which has been the symbol of strength and unity of the country all this while.

We all know that no sane Malaysian will disagree the need to set aside the differences among us, which today has left the country polarized and in a state of extreme disintegration, as religion and race is weaponized at each and every turn, when legitimate questions and concerns, are raised by the civil society or affected communities!

Only to see it been shouted and threatened down, by fanatics, persona non grata types and sometimes racist politicians, NGOs in political expediency!

Which is why, I am indeed glad to hear Zahid, stating that there is no place in Malaysia for any kind of extremism, whether Islamic, Buddhist or Christian!

I am encouraged at his statement today, after being extremely shocked at his 18th of April keynote speech, of all places, at the Human Ecology International Conference 2017, where he spoke of “social disorder but worse than that, our streets will be littered with blood and dead bodies” if our social contract is broken?

That address and its timing, was a colossal mistake by his minders and speech writers, which portrayed the deputy premier in bad light, to an international audience, after winning positive reviews, post his US and UN stint with stakeholders!

More so, in the aftermath of very strong rebuke from all walks of peace loving and law abiding Malaysians, and others, on the questionable permanent residence status accorded, to a foreigner who is wanted by his country of birth, on money laundering and other serious chargers, and, who is banned from several other countries!

This individual’s speeches have often touched on Christianity and Hinduism, and rightly, he has been criticized for stoking hatred among those of different communities.

Now in Malaysia, he is on record creating a diplomatic row with New Delhi, as he fires away salvos after salvos, and allegations, against that government with whom, we have a friendly diplomatic relationship!
Which is unfortunate!

And as a result, creating a serious standoff between Malaysians of all race and religious persuasions!

Sabah and Sarawak have already gone on record saying he is not welcomed there!

However, on record we have extremist racist groups and political parties clamoring for him!

One has even given him a “warrior’s award!”

This is a warrior who is running away from warrant of arrest from his native country on criminal charges, refusing to meet his accusers on home soil in full glaze of the international community!

That is not all, as we have a former respected religious leader, who goes on record to incite a poem!

A poem which was posted on Friday allegedly criticizing religious practices of Hindus and appeared to be defending an unnamed preacher from an “evil government”.

Does not leave much to one’s imagination and you need not be a rocket scientist to know whose being the target!

Even to a nonpartisan reader, the said poem ridicules Hinduism!

However, after huge pressure from domestic sources, the religious leader does a U-turn and goes on record stating that it was meant for India!

I am advised this mischievous act, has since caught the eye of New Delhi politicians, NGOs, and Hawks, who took cognizance of the former’s vulgar outburst and assault on India and Hinduism and now preparing their own response, which may affect our trade and bilateral ties, which includes several MOUs initiated, recently by our beloved Premier, Najib Tun Razak, during his recent high powered visit to India!

Inexplicably, we are now told that the said poem has since being taken down!

It is very hurting and saddening that an outsider’s presence and his inappropriate defense, has truly today exposed, that we are a truly, a polarized nation divided by race, religion and the ugliness, it can introduce when weaponised, in a multi-racial, religious nation like ours, that got its independence from the British, in 1957 on an undertaking our founding fathers gave them, which is been challenged at each turn of events, sixty years after?

As an opinion shaper, I appeal to others, who similarly are influential members of a community, group, or society to whom others turn for advice, opinions, and views.

Let our opinions and response, be legitimate, fair, reasonable, beyond repute, nor, an incitement and free of the politics of race and religion, two fundamental elements, that can create chaos in a multi-racial and religious contexts, when used, abused by political, race and religious shenanigans, to bully, intimidate, threaten and abuse!

As our deputy premier and home minister, Zaid Hamidi, stated, the diversity of religions and cultures in Malaysia has been the symbol of our strength and unity, my appeal is – let us not allow an outsider and others supporting a wrong, non-defensible and untenable cause, divide us further!

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MALAYSIA’S ASEAN/APEC LEAD CONSUMERIST URGES MALAYSIA TO CLOSE ITS DOOR TO ZAKIR NAIK!

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‘Whether we like it or not, there is a larger international audience watching and assessing each of our policy deliberations and the last thing, we need, is a confirmation that Malaysia is now a safe haven, a rest and recreational destination or a hideaway for those directly, indirectly or by behavior international terrorists or their financiers and sympathizers?

We respect our leaders and pray that they do the right thing for Malaysia and Malaysians!’

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MALAYSIA TOLD TO CLOSE ITS DOOR TO ZAKIR NAIK!

In the past, I had already raised several pertinent issues in international law and diplomacy on this matter!

As such, I will now focus on the domestic backlash expected with this confirmation and action, if not resolved, from various demography prior to in the impending GE14!

If someone had thought Zahid’s confirmation would cause “shock and awe” that an individual now wanted by India, Interpol and banned in several other countries notably Canada, the United Kingdom, Bangladesh was granted a Malaysian Permanent Residence status – it did not!

I am certain that well connected Malaysians and international diplomats are fully aware of the circumstances that led to it and the current backlash and embarrassment it is causing the nation which has yet to clear allegations of violating UN sanctions on North Korea by politically connected individuals and companies?

I am advised there is currently UN agencies and other state departments looking at this.

By the manner the deputy prime minister and home minister worded his reply, on this controversial individual, it is quite clear neither he nor his predecessor were responsible for this rather ‘inexplicable and strange decision’ that go against all norms, diplomatic reasoning, fair play, ethical considerations and its fall out and impact on a nation still reeling from international spotlight on other issues and controversies!

Worst, the recipient of this privilege was not given to others in Malaysia among them, professional wives of locals, local born and bred having technical problems, Malaysians born to locals and foreigners post-divorce or estrangement and those who have been part and parcel of the nation from independence or others whose offspring still denied documents.

It broke my heart and brought a tear, when I read of an individual sharing that his mum was borne in Labu, Negeri Sembilan 86 years ago to Sri Lankan parents and that his grandfather was in service with the British as a civil servant.

That despite his grandmother having a baptism certificate issued a month from her birth by a Church in Labu, though torn and tattered was refused by the authorities and little Napoleons?

His grandmother, he reiterates speaks and dresses like a Malay.

And today 86 years old and still stateless!

She has 8 Malaysian children, umpteen grandchildren who comprise of Indian, Malay and other mixed races and Malay and Indian great grandchildren.

Sounds perfectly 1Malaysia to me which should be enough!
But sadly no?

As Malaysia’s and ASEAN/APEC lead consumerist, I have come across many other cases of such anomaly and certainly gross injustice pertaining to undocumented Malaysians and the footprints of irresponsible little Napoleons!

Inexplicably, the decision to give a PR to this controversial individual with ‘dark clouds over his head’, and against such a backdrop raises many questions and opens old wounds among Malaysians!

International decorum and guidelines are strict when one is given a Permanent Residence privilege.

One is expected to not attract or indulge in controversy which puts the state that has given the PR in bad light!

There are comprehensive background checks made internationally.
Was it done?

Like in other countries, here in multi-racial and religious Malaysia, his religious talks have upset the multi-racial and multi-religious fabric of the country.

There are allegations that even his recent religious frolic and adventure in Indonesia, raised many alarms both in Jakarta, within the region and in Malaysia.

And now, his media outburst against India from Malaysia is unbecoming of him.

Instead of making a physical appearance to address the allegations and chargers against him, in India, Zakir Naik is using the Malaysian vernacular media, urging the Indian government to take up any case against him in an international court, or even in Malaysia.

He is also making derogatory remarks about India and of Muslims there which is a blatant lie!

This is unfortunate and in international law, firing salvos against the Indian government, or others, from Malaysia obviously pits in this case, Putrajaya against New Delhi.

This is a rather mischievous thing to do, trying to use local sentiments to beef up his defense, avoid accountability and thus create bilateral issues between two independent countries and trade partners.

We were very fortunate that India’s fair and free media were advised not to raise this issue during our beloved Premier’s visit to India and they kept to the script as not to embarrass a visiting dignitary!

We may not be lucky the next time, as this individual continues to fire away salvos, makes wilful, exaggerated claims and accusations on the Indian government and others, as if there is an international conspiracy against him and Islam!

There are no two ways about this!

The Malaysian government has to decide, whether this one individual, is more important and priceless to the rights, interests and needs of this nation, over Malaysians and others, who are born, bred and living and contributing to the nation’s needs!

Our politicians should be made accountable too.

We cannot talk with a forked tongue, making public policy based on short term political expediency!

We cannot indulge in fake news for the local consumption thinking rather stupidly that there are no international readers monitoring the scripts!

Whether we like it or not, there is a larger international audience watching and assessing each of our policy deliberations and the last thing, we need, is a confirmation that Malaysia is now a safe haven, a rest and recreational destination or a hideaway for those directly, indirectly or by behavior international terrorists or their financiers and sympathizers?

We respect our leaders and pray that they do the right thing for Malaysia and Malaysians!

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