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PETALING JAYA: Anwar Ibrahim, president of PKR, has once again denied that his supporters had been responsible for releasing video clips showing sex acts between a party member and another man alleged to be the party’s deputy president Azmin Ali.
“Rely purely on facts,” he said today when reporters asked about suggestions that his supporters were behind the video clips.
“We have a central problem here, we need to deal with it. It does not solve any problems by casting aspersions on anybody,” Anwar told reporters after a Hari Raya open house by the Malaysian Indian Muslim Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
When asked about the allegations, he said: “Why are you bringing it up? What evidence (do you have)? What nonsense is this? You should not listen, should not insinuate. (This is) very bad, libellous, slanderous and grossly unjust.
“We are sympathetic, but it does not make sense for us to cast aspersions on others without a shard of evidence. This is not a culture we promote, support or condone.”
He reiterated that PKR remained united despite the sex video affair. “I was in Sabah, all divisions attended. I was in Sarawak, all divisions attended too. They asked questions, it was a good meeting.”
When asked to comment on an Australian report that experts agreed the leaked sex videos did not show signs of digital alteration, Anwar reiterated that the party would leave the matter in the hands of the police.
Mujahid Yusof Rawa berkata, cadangan menyeragamkan undang-undang kesalahan jenayah syariah antara sebahagian komitmen kerajaan PH untuk memartabatkan Islam berdasarkan Perlembagaan Persekutuan.
KANGAR: Kerajaan akan menghadap Majlis Raja-raja tidak lama lagi berhubung cadangan untuk menyeragamkan undang-undang kesalahan jenayah syariah antara negeri, kata Menteri di Jabatan Perdana Menteri, Mujahid Yusof Rawa.
Ketika ini, undang-undang itu berbeza antara setiap negeri dan raja ialah ketua agama di negeri masing-masing.
Mujahid berkata, kerajaan juga akan mengadakan pertemuan dengan semua menteri besar dan ketua menteri untuk penjelasan mengenai cadangan itu yang disasar dilaksanakan pada 2020.
“Kita dah maklum kepada Majlis Raja-raja mengenai rancangan ini yang antaranya bertujuan memperkasakan undang-undang syariah,” katanya pada majlis ramah mesra dengan ketua jabatan, tokoh masyarakat dan badan bukan kerajaan di Perlis sempena sambutan Aidilfitri hari ini.
Beliau berkata, usaha itu sebahagian komitmen kerajaan Pakatan Harapan untuk memartabatkan Islam berdasarkan Perkara 3 Perlembagaan Persekutuan.
Sementara itu, katanya, kerajaan juga akan menubuhkan mahkamah khas bagi mengendalikan kes ibu tunggal yang menuntut hak dalam hal nafkah, harta dan lain-lain.
Johnson is a massive favourite to become the UK’s next prime minister. (AFP pic)
LONDON: Boris Johnson got a boost in his campaign to replace British Prime Minister Theresa May on Monday when one of his former rivals and EU supporter Matt Hancock backed him saying he was almost certain to win the contest.
Johnson, a former London mayor and foreign minister, is way out in front in the race to become leader of the Conservative Party and despite so far deciding to steer clear of debates with his rivals, his popularity has yet to be dented.
Most of the other five hopefuls concede that Johnson, whose career has been marked by gaffes and scandals, will almost definitely make the final two in the race, when mainly pro-Brexit Conservative Party members will cast the deciding votes.
But the race is on to decide who will challenge him.
Health Secretary Hancock, who dropped out of the race on Friday after winning 20 votes in the first ballot of Conservative lawmakers, said Johnson was the best candidate to lead the party.
“Boris has run a disciplined campaign and is almost certainly going to be our next prime minister,” Hancock said in an article in The Times newspaper, which tapped him as a strong contender to become finance minister.
“My view is that we need to start coming together sooner rather than later.”
Johnson, the face of the official campaign to leave the European Union in the 2016 referendum, has promised to lead the United Kingdom out of the EU with or without a deal. But parliament has indicated it will try to stop a no-deal Brexit, which investors warn could roil markets and shock the world economy, while the EU has said it will not renegotiate the Withdrawal Agreement that May agreed.
According to economists polled by Reuters, the likelihood of a no-deal exit has jumped in the past month.
Almost three years since Britain voted to leave the EU, the country, the parliament and both main parties are still deeply divided over Brexit. But all of the Conservative leadership contestants agree they must take Britain out of the bloc.
Johnson won the support of 114 of 313 Conservative Party lawmakers in the first round of the leadership contest. The second round is on Tuesday with the result due around 1700 GMT.
Any candidate with 32 votes or fewer is eliminated. If all candidates have more than 32 votes, the one with the fewest is eliminated.
For the other five, the fight was on to prove they had what it takes to challenge Johnson, or at least test some of his arguments.
“This is a two-horse race, and we know one of these horses – it’s Boris … There is literally only one question you have to answer, who is likely to beat Boris?” international development minister Rory Stewart said in an appeal to other lawmakers who he needs the support of.
“He (Boris) doesn’t, as far as I can see, he doesn’t have a plan. I say as far as I can see because he doesn’t talk to me, he doesn’t talk to you, he doesn’t talk to the public,” said Stewart, who is now placed second favourite.
Environment minister Michael Gove also took a dig at Johnson, saying his absence from Monday’s hustings in Westminster was described to him as being like “Hamlet without a prince”.
“And of course we all remember that at the end of Hamlet, he isn’t the king,” Gove added.
If Johnson does win the top job and does go for a no-deal Brexit, a constitutional crisis could be on the horizon if parliament tries to block such a departure.
Pro-Brexit candidate Dominic Raab has said parliament could be suspended if necessary, a possibility he refused to rule out on Sunday in a debate with other contenders.
But the speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow, said it was fantasy to think that the lower house of parliament could be pushed aside.
“It’s a joke!” Bercow told French newspaper Le Figaro in comments reported in French. “The idea that the British parliament can be pushed aside when such a crucial decision is to be made is fantasy.”
US singer Lana Del Rey arrives for the 2018 LACMA Art+Film Gala at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in Los Angeles, California on Nov 3, 2018. (AFP pic)
LOS ANGELES: The single will appear on the singer’s forthcoming new full-length, “Norman F*cking Rockwell,” to be released later this year.
On June 15, Lana Del Rey took to Instagram to reveal a teaser clip of the studio version of the title track. “This is so much my favourite for so many reasons,” she revealed in the comments of the post.
The single, produced by Jack Antonoff, sees the singer calling out a former romantic interest.
“Your poetry’s bad and you blame the news / But I can’t change that and I can’t change your mood / Because you’re just a man, it’s just what you do / Your head’s in your hands as you colour me in blue,” she mouths in the video through a lens filter.
“Norman F*cking Rockwell” will appear on Del Rey’s new album of the same name, which will follow her 2017 “Lust for Life.”
Ahead of the record dropping, she has shared “hope is a dangerous thing for a woman like me to have – but I have it,” “Venice Bitch” and “Mariners Apartment Complex.”
Last month, she also dropped a cover of Sublime’s hit “Doin’ Time.”
An immigration officer checks the particulars of foreign workers at a work site in Seri Tanjung Pinang, Penang. (Immigration pic)
GEORGE TOWN: Eighty-seven foreign construction workers were arrested at a construction site in Tanjong Tokong this morning after they were found to have flouted various immigration rules this morning.
In a statement, the Immigration Department said those detained were part of 101 workers inspected at a construction site on Jalan Seri Tanjung Pinang, where two blocks of serviced apartments are being built.
They comprised 46 Bangladeshis, 22 Myanmar nationals, 15 Indian nationals and four Indonesians.
Fifteen other foreign workers, including two from China, were found to be legally employed.
The department said those detained were found to have entered the country without valid passes, possessing expired passes or violating the conditions of their entry passes.
Their employers have been summoned to the immigration office on Wednesday to assist with the investigations.
A labourer walks on steel pipes at a steel market in Hefei, Anhui province, China, Dec 31, 2009. (Reuters pic)
GENEVA: China has halted a dispute at the World Trade Organisation over its claim to be a market economy, a panel of three WTO adjudicators said on Monday, meaning Beijing must accept continued EU and US “anti-dumping” levies on cheap Chinese goods.
One trade official close to the case said so much of the ruling had gone against Beijing that it had opted to pull the plug before the result became official.
“They lost so much that they didn’t even want the world to see the panel’s reasoning,” the official said.
Without a WTO ruling in Beijing’s favour, the EU and United States can keep imposing duties on cheap imports from China while disregarding its claim that they are fairly priced.
China had insisted that they treat it as a “market economy”, countering their view that the price of Chinese exports could not be taken at face value due to state interference in the economy.
It took legal action saying that under its 2001 WTO membership terms it must be recognised as a “market economy” after 15 years.
“China believes that there can be no other plausible reading of this simple and unambiguous treaty language,” China’s WTO ambassador Zhang Xiangchen said at a WTO hearing in 2017, calling the text “crystal clear”.
But the United States and the EU disagreed. They said Chinese goods – especially commodities such as steel and aluminium – were still heavily underpriced because of subsidies and state-backed oversupply, giving Chinese exporters an unfair advantage.
The row had become an explosive issue for the United States, with President Donald Trump threatening to quit the WTO if the organisation did not “shape up”.
Chinese, EU and US officials did not immediately comment on the suspension.
Beijing launched disputes against Brussels and Washington at the WTO in December 2016. It only pursued the case against the EU, but asked to suspend legal proceedings on May 7, the panel said.
After an EU request to take certain considerations into account, China reiterated its request to suspend legal proceedings. The panel accepted and halted the case on Friday.
The official said China was on course to lose the bulk of the case, with only some minor points going in its favour.
“They were going to win something, but it was overshadowed by the huge defeat that they had on the main claim.”
Tsitsipas wants to break the dominance of the old guard in tennis at Wimbledon. (AFP pic)
BANGALORE: Younger players must take responsibility and break the hegemony at Wimbledon to ensure there is a new champion this year, Greek world No 6 Stefanos Tsitsipas has said.
Since 2003, one of Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal or Andy Murray have won the title at Wimbledon, with the Swiss leading the way with eight titles.
Former champion Boris Becker had slated the younger generation’s inability to challenge the ‘Big Three’ of Federer, Nadal and Djokovic – who have won every Major over the last 2-1/2 years – and Tsitsipas hoped to be the one to accomplish the feat at Wimbledon.
“I would love to see something different this year. Hopefully, it will be me,” Tsitsipas, 20, told reporters. “It would give it a little bit of variety, something different to these guys.
“We are responsible as the new generation to work hard to come up with something new and our best games to beat them. Some don’t want to take the responsibility of going out and overcoming all those difficulties and beat those guys.”
Tsitsipas has already beaten Federer and Nadal at the Australian Open and Madrid Open respectively this year but he said it was not up to just him or 22-year-old world No 5 Alexander Zverev to carry the torch for the younger players.
“There are others,” Tsitsipas added. “Felix (Auger-Aliassime), Denis (Shapovalov), Taylor (Fritz), Alex (de Minaur), Frances (Tiafoe) … We want a big, big rivalry in the future.”
Tsitsipas is the top seed at the Queen’s Club Championships, a traditional warm-up grasscourt tournament before Wimbledon, and plays Briton Kyle Edmund in the first round on Tuesday.
PETALING JAYA: Putrajaya didakwa perlahan melaksanakan komitmennya untuk reformasi hak asasi dengan membenarkan Suruhanjaya Hak Asasi Manusia beroperasi tanpa pengerusi dan pesuruhjaya selama 2 bulan.
Bekas pesuruhjaya Suhakam dari 2006 hingga 2010, Denison Jayasooria berkata kerajaan Pakatan Harapan perlu menjelaskan kenapa pengerusi dan pesuruhjaya tidak dilantik untuk menerajui Suhakam sejak 2 bulan lalu.
“Tempoh masa sudah ditetapkan dan kerajaan mesti beri perhatian berhubung masa yang diambil untuk lantikan baru (pengerusi dan pesuruhjaya). Tidak sepatutnya ada jurang masa (pelantikan),” katanya yang turut mendapati Suruhanjaya Pilihan Raya juga berfungsi tanpa pengerusi dan pesuruhjaya pada awal tahun ini.
“Untuk pembaharuan institusi (dilaksanakan), suruhanjaya ini tidak boleh berfungsi tanpa pemimpin mereka,” kata aktivis hak asasi manusia dan ahli akademik itu kepada FMT hari ini.
April lalu, Pengerusi Suhakam, Razali Ismail meletak jawatan 2 minggu sebelum tempoh perkhidmatannya berakhir, susulan siasatan Suhakam ke atas kehilangan seorang pastor dan 2 aktivis. Suhakam mendakwa polis terbabit dalam “penculikan paksa” Pastor Raymond Koh dan aktivis Perlis, Amri Che Mat.
Ia disusuli 7 pesuruhjaya Suhakam – Lok Yim Pheng, Mah Weng Kwai, Aishah Bidin, Nik Salida Suhaila Nik Saleh, Francis Johen, Godfrey Gregory Joitol dan Jerald Joseph, menamatkan tempoh perkhidmatan 3 tahun mereka pada 25 April lalu. Ada di antara mereka yang sudah berkhidmat maksimum 2 penggal sebagai pesuruhjaya dan tidak boleh dilantik semula.
Pada 2016, sebelum Razali mengambil alih jawatan pengerusi, Suhakam juga berfungsi tanpa pengerusi dan pesuruhjaya selama 58 hari.
Hari ini, Jayasooria meminta Jawatankuasa Pilihan Khas Hak Asasi dan Kesaksamaan Gender meneliti perkara ini.
Katanya, laporan tahunan Suhakam belum dibahaskan di Parlimen, walaupun ia adalah satu daripada janji pilihan raya umum ke-14 PH.
“Ini (laporan tahunan Suhakam) mesti menjadi keutamaan bagi sesi Parlimen pada Julai”
Minggu lalu, sumber Suhakam memberitahu FMT tarikh tutup permohonan bagi pelantikan pesuruhjaya ialah November tahun lalu dan sebuah jawatankuasa pemilih sudah mengadakan mesyuarat awal tahun ini.
Di bawah Akta Suhakam, jawatankuasa itu diketuai ketua setiausaha negara, bekas pengerusi Suhakam dan 3 individu bebas. Ia akan menyerahkan satu senarai calon kepada perdana menteri untuk disyorkan kepada Yang di-Pertuan Agong.
FMT sedang menunggu maklum balas Ketua Setiausaha Negara, Ismail Bakar mengenai perkara ini.
Sementara itu, seorang sumber berkata: “Saya faham ia mengenai pemilihan pengerusi yang betul.
“Biasanya, kerusi itu berkhidmat selama 2 penggal, iaitu keseluruhannya 6 tahun, (tetapi) dengan peletakan jawatan pengerusi terdahulu secara tiba-tiba, prosesnya telah tersekat,” katanya kepada FMT.
Suhakam diberi kuasa untuk menasihati kerajaan dan pihak berkuasa berkaitan mengenai aduan terhadap mereka dan mencadangkan langkah sesuai, serta mengesahkan pelanggaran hak asasi manusia. Ia turut diberi kuasa untuk melawat pusat tahanan dan memberikan cadangan.
Najib Razak (centre) is on trial in the High Court on charges of embezzlement, abuse of power and money-laundering.
KUALA LUMPUR: The former chairman of SRC International Sdn Bhd, Ismee Ismail, maintained his stand that the board of directors had to get the approval of Najib Razak for any decisions by the company.
Ismee, the 39th prosecution witness, said he was of the opinion that the “hidden” meanings of the word “advice” from Najib, would also include approval as stated in SRC’s Memorandum and Articles of Association. Najib was advisor emeritus of SRC
To this, lawyer Harvinderjit Singh representing Najib replied that the Memorandum and Articles of Association did not state that the board needed approval from the prime minister.
The lawyer also argued that there was nothing in the company’s M&A to suggest that the board has to get Najib’s approval.
“It is the company act, it did not say direction or approval. That is why I say, by the language in the Article, the word (advice) is tersirat (hidden),” said Ismee when cross-examined by Harvinderjit in Najib’s SRC trial before High Court Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali.
Harvinderjit: It cannot say tersirat because everything is there. Nothing is tersurat, sorry nothing is tersirat. Where is tersirat coming from
Ismee: If you saw the Article…
At this juncture, ad-hoc prosecutor V. Sithambaram objected, saying that the defence could not argue the answer from the witness but should let the witness answer the question to which Harvinderjit moved to another question.
Ismee had previously testified that the SRC’s board still has to get Najib’s approval over the company’s operations.
The trial continues tomorrow. Lead defence counsel Muhammad Shafee Abdullah is scheduled to cross-examine Ismee who appeared calm during five days of questioning by Harvinderjit.
Najib, 66, faces three counts of criminal breach of trust, one charge of power abuse and three counts of money laundering involving RM42 million in funds belonging to SRC International Sdn Bhd.