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Malacca election: Amid reformists’ gloom, some positives emerge

Here are some quick thoughts now that Barisan Nasional has cruised to a commanding victory in today’s Malacca state election.

Many who had hoped that the polls would reignite the momentum for reforms are feeling despondent. But there are some positives.

The first positive is that Umno-BN does not need Pas’ support to win. This means Pas’ bargaining power will be much reduced in the coming general election. Why would Umno want to allocate seats to Pas to contest in some Malay-majority seats when Umno would fancy its own chances in those seats? Full article on the Aliran website

Even before Malacca election, People Power wins

How? There were several issues drummed up in the run-up to the polls.

  • The ridiculous brouhaha over the Timah whisky
  • Restrictions on alcohol sales in Kuala Lumpur
  • Former Prime Minister Najib Razak’s ridiculous attempt to get a house and a large tract of land – worth a total of RM100m – supposedly in recognition of his services as a former PM.

Storm in a Timah cup blows over

Now can we get on with more important business? That seemed to be the general reaction of many upon learning that the cabinet has allowed the whisky maker to continue using the name Timah for their product.

Yes, Timah just means tin ore, as anyone could have told the bigots that. And no, Timah is not short for the name of the Prophet’s daughter, Fatimah.

It is amazing what a couple of state elections – in Malacca and Sarawak – and a looming general election can do to get rid of this non-issue. After all, how wa the government going to explain this ridiculous controversy to voters? Full article on the Aliran website

Visionary sustainable mobility expert Eric Britton, friend of Penang, dies

Eric Britton, a leading sustainable mobility expert and editor of World Streets, who was closely following Penang’s mega-transport plan, passed away on 31 October.

Never again! Operation Lalang anniversary

Today is the 34th anniversary of Operation Lalang, the crackdown against critics and dissidents under the administration of Dr Mahathir Mohamad. Never again should the country be subject to the use of such draconian laws that violate basic human rights.