Wednesday, 11 July 2018

FOR A MOMENT I THOUGH THIS BUSINESS INSIDER ARTICLE WAS ABOUT MALAYSIA

For a moment, I thought that the Business Insider article was about Malaysia.

In June 2018, Malaysia's newly minted Human Resources Minister, M. Kulasegaran nnounced that from 1 January 2018, only Malaysian citizens can be employed as cooks in Malaysian eateries and restaurants.

I asked a friend who hires foreign workers as to how this would affect his business and he said that the first question  Malaysian job applicants ask an interviews are how many days of leave they will get and that Malaysian workers are always taking days off, claiming this or that reason - i.e. effectively saying that Malaysians are lazy bums.

Now Business Insider reports more or less the same complaint by Saudi employers about Saudi workers.

Of course, cheapskate Malaysian employers are unwilling to pay for Malaysian workers, so claim that Malaysian workers are "lazy".

Meanwhile, associations of Malaysian restaurant owners challenged Kulasegaran, who then relented and said that it was just a suggestion and later said thathis ministry needs to hold town hall meetings to obtain the views of all parties concerned.

After that, no more has been heard about Kulasegaran's proposal.

Business Insider article follows below.

Read on:-

Yours truly

POLITISHEISS
http://politischeiss.blogspot.com/


800,000 expats have left Saudi Arabia, creating a hiring crisis: Employers say young Saudi men and women are lazy and are not interested in working

Ambrose Carey, Alaco

Jul 9, 2018, 8.52 AM

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman may have portrayed himself as a moderniser rolling back the country's stultifying social restrictions — but he is struggling to turn the country's financial fortunes around, with the economy suffering a crisis of confidence.

Hit hard by the oil-price collapse, the kingdom is now experiencing a plunge in foreign investment and high levels of capital outflow as its de facto leader, MBS as he is commonly known, attempts to consolidate power and steer a new economic course.

The uncertainty caused by his ambitious, some would say unrealistic, plans to modernise the economy has been further stoked by Saudi Arabia's apparent struggle to fill private sector jobs vacated by a growing exodus of expats. As of April, more than 800,000 had left the country since late 2016, alarming domestic companies concerned that the foreigners cannot be easily replaced.

Their departure is part of MBS's attempt to wean the country off its dependence on oil through economic diversification, a significant element of which involves trying to persuade Saudis in undemanding state sector jobs — which make up two-thirds of domestic employment — and those out of work to take up the new vacancies. The authorities want to generate 450,000 openings for Saudis in the private sector by 2020.

MBS has sought to expedite the exodus of foreign workers, who constitute about a third of the population, by stepping up the process of so-called Saudisation — essentially the creation of a more productive local workforce. He is hiking up levies on companies employing non-Saudis, requiring foreigners to pay fees for dependents, and restricting the sectors in which they can work, with employment in many areas of the retail and service industries now strictly confined to Saudis. The measures are said to be driving the expat exodus, evident in the marked downturn in the rental real estate market and empty shopping malls.

While among high-earning Western professionals Saudi Arabia has long been viewed as a hardship posting compensated by their tax-free status, the majority of foreigners in the country are from the Middle East and Asia, many employed in low-paid jobs in the sectors now earmarked for Saudis.

But Saudi business owners are having difficulty getting locals, accustomed to undemanding work in the state sector and generous unemployment benefits, to work for them. Reports suggest many Saudis are put off by what they regard as poorly paid, low-status jobs. The recruitment problems have seemingly sparked so much concern that they have been played out on the pages of the Saudi Gazette, the government's mouthpiece, which normally features anodyne stories about life in the kingdom.

In February, the publication reported that a number of heads of chambers of commerce and industry had called on the government to exempt the private sector from "100%" — or full — Saudisation, especially posts that are hard to fill, such as in construction, amid concerns that many businesses may close down. In May, an item revealed that over a three-month period over 5,000 fines were issued to businesses flouting Saudisation rules in sectors ranging from telecoms to hotels to car rental.

Many companies are reported to be circumventing the policy's local employee quota requirement by hiring Saudis and paying them small salaries for what are in effect bogus jobs — a process termed "fake Saudisation" — prompting some to call for the nationalisation of the jobs market to be reconsidered. In December, columnist Mohammad Bassnawi provided an intriguing insight into private sector concerns over the policy and its possible consequences.

"Employers say young Saudi men and women are lazy and are not interested in working and accuse Saudi youth of preferring to stay at home rather than to take a low-paying job that does not befit the social status of a Saudi job seeker," Bassnawi said, adding that fake Saudisation "could create a generation of young men and women who are not interested in finding a job and who prefer to get paid for doing nothing."

Nonetheless, the authorities seem unlikely to row back on Saudisation. MBS hopes to generate some $17.33 billion through the new expat taxes by 2020 in order to help address the budget deficit — projected to be $52 billion in 2018 — and finance new economic projects. Yet critics question whether the projected tax haul will compensate for the loss of consumer spending resulting from foreigners' departure, as even those who remain are likely to send their relatives home because of the fees on dependents.

"Taxation of expatriates, before Saudi Arabia turns into a productive economy that depends on industry, is like putting the cart before the horse," Tariq A. Al Maeena, a Jeddah-based commentator, said in Gulf News in October. Karen E. Young of the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington, writing in the institute's blog in February, said it will take a decade or more to create a working class of Saudis willing to do service sector, retail, and construction jobs.

In the meantime, MBS's hopes of raising capital elsewhere, and making public expenditure savings, are dimming. His ill-judged roundup of princes and businessmen late last year in an anti-corruption drive, which seemed more like a shakedown, generated a fraction of the $100 billion target, in the process shaking investor confidence. And a plan to slash public subsidies has had to be curbed in the face of public grumblings.

And though a much-publicised tour of Western capitals earlier this year enabled MBS to burnish his self-image as a social and economic reformer to largely uncritical audiences, it's unclear whether the round of diplomacy has salved the concerns of the Saudi business community and Western investors. Foreign direct investment slumped from $7.5 billion in 2016 to $1.4 billion last year, a fourteen-year low, UN figures show. Moreover, in November, a paper by the Institute of International Finance projected capital outflows in 2017 at $101 billion, 15% of GDP. The IIF said capital flight from Saudi Arabia has contributed to the sizeable decline in official reserves. There are strong anecdotal indications that a proportion of these outflows represent concerned businessmen shifting as much of their liquid assets abroad.

Fortunately for MBS, a rebound in the price of oil has provided some financial respite. Foreign reserves, which have in part been used to finance the budget deficit, experienced a month-on-month rise of just over $13 billion, to nearly $499 billion, in April, still way down from their peak four years ago, when they stood at $737 billion.

While he may have more funds at his disposal, MBS can't continue indefinitely to draw them down, nor rely on bond issues, to plug budgetary shortfalls. Yet he might have no choice. With Saudi business and foreign investor confidence in the economy at such a low ebb, and Saudisation under strain, it will be a while before private sector wealth-generation will be able to help him balance the books.

Ambrose Carey is a director at Alaco, a London-based business-intelligence consultancy.

http://www.businessinsider.com/saudi-arabia-foreign-capital-flight-expat-exodus-and-business-unrest-2018-7/?IR=T


Thursday, 28 June 2018

IS THE SELANGOR STATE GOVERNMENT SURE THAT EVERY MOTORIST HAS A SMARTPHONE AND A DATA PLAN?

Star Metro reports today - Friday 29 June 2018, that the Selangor State Government will officially roll out the Smart Selangor Parking (SSP) app across five municipalities in Selangor - namely Shah Alam, Ampang Jaya, Sepang, Kajang and Selayang municipal councils.

The app can be downloaded from the Apple App Store and Google Play was developed by Innovative Technologies and Systems Sdn Bhd in collaboration with Selangor Menteri Besar Incorporated (MBI) through the Smart Selangor Delivery Unit (SSDU).

The good news for Petaling Jaya folks is that the Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) is not participating, well at least not just yet.

This my friends (and enemies), is another case of IT scheiss (IT bullshit).

Do these clowns realise that whilst a large number of Selangor residents carry smartphones required to for use with these apps, however many still carry basic feature phones.

Do they know that many people who have smartphones and use them to access social media, mostly do so within WiFi hotspots because they do not want to incur the cellular data charges when beyond WiFi coverage.

How will they pay the parking fees - from the credit balance of their prepaid cellular account, charge parking to their monthly postpaid account, pay out of a prepaid credit stored in their parking e-wallet or what?

What about out-of-state motorists who come from outside Selangor state - will they know about this method of parking payment, will they have the required smartphones with the data plan and Smart Selangor Parking app plus parking e-credit installed?

Scientist, inventor and artist Leonardo Da Vincci said - "SIMPLICITY IS THE ULTIMATE SOPHISTICATION" - so why do these clowns want to make things complicated not only for Selangor residents but also for other Malaysians and for motorists from neighbouring Thailand and Singapore?

The MBPJ recently did away with coin operated parking machines which printed out parking coupons.



The message on this parking machine's display says "MACHINE SPOILT, USE ANOTHER MACHINE".

MBPJ replaced these machines with prepaid paper coupons which motorists scratched and placed behind our windscreens. These coupons can be bought from participating dealers amongst the shops and businesses in the vicinity, thus making it convenient for all motorists.

KUDOS MBPJ on this move. - SIMPLICITY IS THE ULTIMATE SOPHISTICATION!

However it seems that the clowns in the Selangor State Government seem to think that sophistication is about making things more complicated for people.

Star Metro's article follows below.

Yours most truly

IT Scheiss & Selangor Scheiss




Selangor pays for parking via app from July 1 - Metro News

by shalini ravindran and sheila sri priya 3-4 minutes

THE Selangor government will officially roll out a new parking payment app across five local councils in the state on July 1 as part of its Smart Selangor initiative.

Motorists will now be able to use the app to pay for parking on the street under the Shah Alam City Council as well as Ampang Jaya, Sepang, Kajang and Selayang municipal councils.

The Smart Selangor Parking (SSP) app is created by Leading Innovative Technologies and Systems Sdn Bhd in collaboration with Selangor Menteri Besar Incorporated (MBI) through the Smart Selangor Delivery Unit (SSDU).

It can be downloaded from the Apple App Store and Google Play.

State Local Government, Public Transport and New Village Development committee chairman Ng Sze Han said the app was the first stage in addressing traffic problems in the state.

“The app was developed as an integrated parking payment system that will eventually be used across all local councils,” he said during the official launch of the app.

The app allows enforcement officers to issue compounds, which users can check and pay for, also via the app.

The enforcement officer only has to scan the car registration number or key it into the app to check if parking has been paid.

SSDU managing director Dr Mohammad Fahmi Ngah hoped to integrate the system with other local councils by next year.

Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ), which initially planned to participate in the parking app, however, has put the plan on hold.

On this Dr Mohammad Fahmi said: “As far as we are concerned the method of procurement and evaluation was done based on procedures endorsed by the state government. This app is offered at no cost to the local authorities.”

He added that SSDU was given a grant of RM1mil to study the entire parking system for the state, including indoor parking.

Earlier in the MBPJ full board meeting, Petaling Jaya mayor Datuk Mohd Azizi Mohd Zain said the council decided to look into the terms and conditions of one of the selected app service providers authorised by MBI before going ahead with it.

MBPJ took a stand to approve the system provided by a company only when all conditions are made known and put into the agreement.

He said the councillors were afraid there would be a monopoly in the parking app industry.

“They are also afraid that the agreement may not be a fair one and result in more problems for the council in the future.

“They also raised the issue of intellectual property of the system which is said to belong to one company,” he added.

Mohd Azizi agreed that there should be no monopoly and gave his assurance that there would not be a monopoly in the parking system in Petaling Jaya.

“We concluded that we will approve the system only with conditions,” he said.









Tuesday, 12 June 2018

UNHYGIENIC FOOD PREPARATION AND DISH WASHING STILL A NORM IN PETALING JAYA

To it's credit, Star Metro has been highlighting unhygienic practices at several eateries in Petaling Jaya, following the unhygienic dish washing practices buy workers of Raj's Banana Leaf Restaurant in the Bangsar suburb of Kuala Lumpur, its closure ordered by the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) and the subsequent indefinite revocation of the operating license of Raj's Bangsar premises. It is however surprising that the DBKL had earlier awarded the Raj's outlet in Bangsar an A rating when Kuala Lumpur and the City Hall were under the rule of the former Barisan Nasional government.

I wrote about Raj's Bangsar in my IT Scheiss blog, which provides further details about the incident shortly after news about it went viral.

Following the DBKL's actions against Raj's Bangsar for violation of hygienic standards, the Petaling Jaya City Council inspected and closed three restaurants - i.e. Raju's Restaurant, Sri Paandi and a Chinese coffee shop for unhygienic conditions and practices. These three are all housed in the single-storey shoplots on Jalan Chantek, Section 5, Petaling Jaya, pending rectification of the issues and practices.  

https://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2018/06/06/mbpj-zooms-in-on-dirty-restaurants-council-shuts-down-three-eateries-in-crackdown/

These three restaurants have since been cleared to re-open by the MBPJ.

Raju's Restaurant is an "institution" of sorts in Petaling Jaya, with it being the first banana leaf restaurant in Petaling Jaya since way back in the 1960s, when Petaling Jaya was a young satellite township and a "dormitory town" to Kuala Lumpur, in which most people resided and commuted to Kuala Lumpur for work and business.

For those who are unfamiliar, Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia, used to be part of Selangor state, along with Petaling Jaya and other townships and villages in Selangor but on 1 February 1972, Kuala Lumpur was declared a city and a Federal Territory, separate from and independent of Selangor, something like Washington DC (District of Columbia), the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) which includes Canberra, Australia's capital and some other cities and territories s around the world. In practical terms however, the municipalities of Kuala Lumpur, Petaling Jaya, Subang Jaya, Shah Alam, Klang and Port Klang all one continuous urban sprawl, commonly referred to as the Klang Valley and travelling between them is a routine matter, though each are governed by their own respective local authorities (municipal governments).

Star Metro journalists have been on their rounds inspecting eateries in Petaling Jaya, including in SS2 and Section 14, where I live. Once again for those unfamiliar, Petaling Jaya, Subang Jaya and Shah Alam all new townships, are divided into sections and in Petaling Jaya, the older areas are called Section, whilst the newer sections have the abbreviation "SS" (Sungai Way - Subang) before their number.

The scenes of workers preparing food or washing dishes on the floor or ground behind these restaurants has been a familiar sight for a long time now and the MBPJ has so far mostly turned a blind eye these practices until now and unlike Kuala Lumpur, which only came under Pakatan Harpan rule after the 9 May 2018 genetal elections, however Selangor state, including Petaling Jaya has been under the rule of a Pakatan state government for over 10 years already and these unhygienic practices have been allowed to continue during those past 10 years, so how different really is Pakatan compared to Barisan rule, apart from Pakatan's claims of competent, accountable and transparent (CAT) rule compared to Barisan Nasional's rule?

What is needed here is for the local authorities to specify requirements for proper dish washing and food preparation facilities, and even demand proper training of staff by managements or to provide training of the staff  in the proper practices in food preparation, storage  and dish washing.

The main problem however is that the cheapskate managements of these popular eateries, who tend to cut corners to save costs and who try to maximise as much as possible on available space, since observing proper practices is more costly and makes them less competitive and could drive their customers to less hygienic eateries which charge less. Many of the customers of these restaurants have low expectations, which has led me to conclude that they will gladly eat curried or sweet and sour fried excreta as long as it tastes nice and is cheap and since these customers do not demand higher standards, there is little to compel the managements to strictly abide by hygienic best practices or even to bother to properly train their staff, many of whom are foreign workers from countries with lower standards of hygiene.

Since the customers have such low expectations, the managements will continue to cut corners and this will remain a never ending problem, which blows up in the media once in a while, with local authorities running around doing their job for a while, after which business reverts to as usual.

A very noticeable problem I have noticed in Section 14 and in other sections around eateries, is the presence of huge rats, scurrying in and out of drains at night and besides these eateries, there sometimes also is a wet market in the part of the section where these eateries are, so there is plenty of food for these rats to feed on and multiply.

Once in a while, one of the local authorities' enforcers, sometimes led by the respective state assemblyman, state assemblywoman or city councillor, go on a high-profile rat extermination spree with the media in tow but in the longer term, the rat infestation persists unabated.

I'm pretty sure that such problems will still be around 10 years from now, just as they were 10, 20 or 30 years previously and Malaysian will still be willing to eat curried excreta, sweet and sour excreta or excreta in oyster sauce as long as it tastes nice and quite happily eat from dishes washed in toilet bowls.

Those Libertarians in the US who are forever opposed to any government regulation and control, and who believe that everything should be left to free market forces to regulate, will love Malaysia as a libertarian paradise, where anything goes.

Star Metro's latest report follows below.

Still handling food in the back lanes - Metro News

by elan perumal, jade chan, kathleen michael,  and thanesh jeyamaran

DESPITE Petaling Jaya City Council’s (MBPJ) efforts to curb unhygienic food practices, several eateries in Petaling Jaya continue to flout council regulations, with workers ignoring basic hygiene practices.

During a check by StarMetro, we saw one worker pounding meat in the back lane between two eateries in SS2, while several others were washing dishes and utensils on the ground nearby. Garbage bins with rubbish spilling over could be seen in the background.

StarMetro also observed similar practices of workers washing dishes by the roadside or on the floor at several local coffeeshops in Section 14 and Taman Megah.

The roads and floors were littered with rubbish and food remnants. Some were stained with moss, which clearly indicated that the surface had been wet and mouldy for some time.

Over the past week, MBPJ shut down five dirty eateries during a crackdown in Section 5 and Ara Damansara.

These restaurants were also slapped with fines for having dirty premises, unhygienic practices and flouting council regulations.

Among the offences they were found guilty of were throwing grease and dirty water into the drains. Rat droppings and cockroaches were also found in some of their cupboards and refrigerators.

Shah Alam City Council (MBSA)and Subang Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ) told StarMetro they inspected restaurants in areas under their jurisdiction based on complaints and a grading system.

In Shah Alam, the city council introduced the Food Premises Cleanliness Audit System in 2015 that requires restaurant owners to apply and pay RM100 to have their restaurants inspected and graded.

No washing or food preparation is allowed in the back lanes of restaurants but eateries flout this rule.

No washing or food preparation is allowed in the back lanes of restaurants but eateries flout this rule.


Restaurants that are not graded are given compounds upon routine inspection if they are found to break rules, or when complaints are made.

With the system, restaurants with Grade A are inspected and re-graded every six months, while those graded B or C every three months.

The system also makes inspections more vigorous as spot checks are done more frequently.

MBSA Corporate Communications head Shahrin Ahmad said action would be taken against restaurant owners who failed to apply for re-examination of their premises.

He said eateries that did not adhere to guidelines would face termination of licence.

The guideline states that restaurants must be free from bugs, rodents and pets; workers must receive medical checks and anti-typhoid immunisation; back lanes or public spaces must not be used to prepare food; and food waste must not be disposed into drains.

In Subang Jaya, MPSJ conducts routine and scheduled inspections to ensure that the Food Handling By-Law and Food Establishment Licensing By-Laws 2007 are met.

MPSJ Corporate and Strategic Management deputy director Azfarizal Abdul Rashid said premises that were given Grade A would be inspected at least once a year.

He said those that scored below 65%, however, would be inspected more regularly.

Cleanliness of restaurants are thoroughly checked during inspections by the council from the condition of floors to ceiling, food handling and food storage.

Cleanliness of restaurants are thoroughly checked during inspections by the council from the condition of floors to ceiling, food handling and food storage.

Eateries are assessed based on food handling, overall cleanliness of the premises, sanitation facilities such as oil trap, sink and toilet, and maintenance of premises from its floor and ceiling condition to ventilation and lighting.

“The typhoid immunisation for food handlers is a mandatory condition to getting licensed.

“If a restaurant has no proof of typhoid shots for everyone of its workers, we will issue a warning and compound notice.

“Restaurants will be shut down if the premises is filthy and is graded below 65%,” he added.

From January to April this year, MPSJ has issued 281 compounds and 701 cleaning notices.

StarMetro would like to urge readers to alert us on dirty restaurants and we, on our part, will alert the authorities to act against these irresponsible operators.

Please do not forward old pictures and videos of dirty eateries taken several months ago or those involving restaurants in other countries. Send us only recent or fresh incidents of dirty eateries.

It would be better if there are shots of rats, cockroaches, flies or other pests visible in the eatery.

We plan to highlight eateries that are dirty and messy, and those who cut meat and vegetables at back lanes or beside drains.

In your email, please include your name, contact number, the restaurant’s name and its full address before sending it to metro@thestar.com.my, and, yes, we keep your information confidential.





----
END

"StarMetro would like to urge readers to alert us on dirty restaurants and we, on our part, will alert the authorities to act against these irresponsible operators."

The above has been typical of Malaysia - i.e. newspaper journalists must do the jobs of local authority enforcers, who should be pro-actively doing their rounds of observations and inspections. This has been the case for as long as I can remember.

Yours truly.

SELANGOR SHEISS


Sunday, 11 March 2018

SELANGOR'S WATER WOES COULD SEE THE STATE FALL BACK TO THE BN

Kudos to Star Metro for highlighting the hardships faced by residents fed up with frequent water disruptions and its negative impact on businesses, especially small businesses.

Datuk Dr. Jacob George, President of the Consumers Association of Subang and Shah Alam, Selangor has even called upon the Selangor State Ruler (Sultan) to appoint a Royal task force to ensure that this water problem is solved once and for all.

The article below highlights the plight of residents of Taman Medan due to the recent water disruption and this could result in the Selangor state constituency of Taman Medan changing hands after the upcoming 14th General Elections expected to be held in April or May 2018, and in August at the latest.

The Taman Medan constituency includes my part of Section 14 Petaling Jaya , as well as older, less affluent parts of Petaling Jaya, including areas with a high concentration of low-cost flats. Taman Medan also is a marginal seat, where our State Assemblywoman, Dr. Haniza Talhar won Taman Medan by a slim majority of  3,731 votes out of a total of 37,514 valid votes in the 2013 general elections, versus her opponent from the Barisan Nasional. In the 2008 general elections, Dr. Haniza of the PKR (People's Justice Party), a member of the Pakatan Harapan (Pact of Hope political pact), won Taman Medan with 4,433 votes out of a total of 29,173 valid votes, thus capturing Taman Medan from the Barisan Nasional.

Now with 11,000 families alone in the Flat Cahaya complex in Taman Medan being adversely affected by the recent prolonged water disruption, GE14 could see Taman Medan fall back to the Barisan Nasional, especially since these lower income voters tend to vote Barisan Nasional.

Also, in the past two general elections, PAS (Pan Malaysian Islamic Party) was a part of the Pakatan Harapan (People's Pact), so its supporters voted for the candidate from a fellow People's Pact party but now that PAS is on its own and plans to contest in three or more cornered fights in each constituency, it could well split the vote sufficiently and let the Barisan Nasional win not with a majority of votes in each constituency contested but with the largest minority of votes, for example 40%, 35% and 25% for Barisan Nasional, Pakatan and PAS respectively.

A neighbour living near to Taman Baiduru (Baiduri Gardens), tells me that PAS has a sizeable support base in that part of Taman Medan, and with PAS now out of the pact, they would most likely vote for PAS, which may well not win but could split the vote sufficiently to let Barisan Nasional win.

The StarMetro article referred to follows:-

Yours truly

Selangor Scheiss
http://selangorscheiss.blogspot.my/

thestar.com.my

Extended water cut fraying tempers - Metro News

by sheila sri priya

THE prolonged water disruption has led to calls for a royal task force to be set up for a permanent solution to the issue.

Consumers Association of Subang and Shah Alam, Selangor president Datuk Dr Jacob George said politics should be put aside in addressing the matter and the best way to do so was to have a task force appointed by the Selangor Ruler.

“People are suffering and businesses are facing losses.

“With a royal task force in place, there will be a proper time line and every one will be answerable,” he said.

Residents making a beeline to gather water from Syabas tankers in AU Keramat, Kuala Lumpur.

Residents making a beeline to gather water from Syabas tankers in AU Keramat, Kuala Lumpur.


Forced to shut

Several restaurants in SS15 Subang Jaya have closed following the water cut with more to follow suit over the weekend.

SS15 Business Community Representative Datuk Samson Maman said business owners had no other choice as they were in the dark about when water supply would resume.

“The disruption was meant to only last two or three days but now that it has been prolonged, it is causing uneasiness among residents and business owners.

“Businesses cannot be closed for a week as we have to pay full salary to our staff whether or not we are making sales, but we are left with no choice as we are not getting a clear word on when water supply will resume or even when the water tankers will be making their rounds,” he said.

Samson added that offices and construction sites were also affected.



He suggested that Syarikat Bekalan Air Sdn Bhd (Syabas) sell affordable water containers to ease the public’s burden.

“Each time there is a water cut, people rush to buy containers to store water and the price sky rockets.

“Syabas should sell the containers at cost price, as part of their outreach effort,” he said.

Massage centre operator Joyce Lee, who runs her shop in Jalan PJS 8/2 in Sunway Mentari, said her business was badly affected as the toilets were not usable and water tankers were not sent to the area.

“We cannot go on without water for more than two days. Water tankers must be sent to business areas too,” she said.

Struggles of young and disabled

In Petaling Jaya Selatan, children stayed awake until the wee hours of the morning to help their parents collect water from the Syabas tankers.

Barisan National Taman Medan National Development assistant coordinator Datuk Abdul Mutalif Abdul Rahim helped with water distribution in the area until 2am yesterday.

“I spoke to a Year Five girl who told me she had a test to sit for the next morning.

“This shouldn’t be the case. The pupil should be asleep instead of worrying if her family will have enough water the next day,” he said.

He said Flat Cahaya in Taman Medan, Petaling Jaya, alone had close to 11,000 families.

One of the families was unable to collect water from the tanker due to disabilities and Abdul Mutalif ensured water was delivered to their home on the third floor of the low-cost flat.

Bottled water and containers selling like hot cakes during the water cut in Taman Medan, Petaling Jaya.

Bottled water and containers selling like hot cakes during the water cut in Taman Medan, Petaling Jaya.


“The husband and wife are deaf and dumb and they have a physically disabled child.

“Unlike the abled, they need assistance during a crisis like this.

“All these matters should be considered when aid is provided. Not every one is able to line up and wait for long hours to fetch water,” he said.

He added that schools in the Taman Medan area were affected and help should be channelled to such places.

Mutalif said the Selangor government should focus on basic needs such as water, security and cleanliness.



“My phone has been flooded with text messages and I am receiving non stop calls from residents asking us to help send water tanks.

“We will be going around Taman Medan daily until this Sunday to help distribute water and I hope supply resumes by then,” he said.

Meanwhile, residents from SS7 in Kelana Jaya are heading to the nearby mosque to get water but they fear there will be a shortage today due to Friday prayers.

SS7 Lenggok Golf Residents Association president Datuk Zul Mukhshal Md Shaari said he sympathised with those running small businesses.

“The lady who sells nasi lemak by the roadside here is upset as the water cut issue is affecting her livelihood. I feel sorry for these small-time traders,” he said.

The nine One-Stop Service Centres set up by Air Selangor (see table) will continue operating around the clock until water supply resumes. For details, visit www.syabas.com.my

https://www.thestar.com.my/metro/metro-news/2018/03/09/fed-up-with-stretched-water-cut-call-for-royal-task-force-to-end-woes-of-residents-and-businesses/

SELANGOR'S ONGOING SAGA OR WATER DISRUPTIONS

Residents in Selangor and Kuala Lumpur faced a long water disruption last week, due to the privately owned water consessionaire,  Syarikat Pengeluar Air Sungai Selangor Sdn Bhd (SPLASH), conducting scheduled pipe repair works at the Sg Selangor Phase 3 Water Treatment Plant that "went awry", according to The Malaysian Insight.

Water had to be delivered by tanker to residents in parts of Petaling Jaya, many of whom struggled with having to carry water, including up many flights of stairs, whilst the business of many restaurants and coffee shops suffered due to not having enough water to wash their dishes. 

Former Selangor Menteri Besar (Chief Minister) Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim, who was ousted from his position by his own party, blames the Selangor State government for not taking over SPLASH under state government control, whilst the Selngor State government blames the Federal government and the Federal government blames the Selangor State government.
https://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2018/03/10/selangor-should-have-already-taken-over-splash-says-exmb/

Meanwhile, residents of Petaling Gardens, a part of Section 5, Petaling Jaya, told both governments to stop bickering and come up with a solution to the frequent water disruptions, especially due to frequent burst water mains and occasionally major maintenance works such as this recent one. Good on you!

Malaysia is close to the 14th general elections, predicted to be held in April or May and at the very latest in August 2018 and many voters, including myself, are pretty fed up with important issues such as our water supply being kicked around like a political football between the Federal Government and the opposition held State Government.

The Malaysian Insight article follows below.

The infographic towards the end of the article shows that Selangor, Malaysia's most developed and richest state experienced about twice the number of water disruptions than Johor did in 2016 and about five times the number of water disruptions in "backward" Kelantan state that year.

Yours truly


SELANGOR SCHEISS 
http://selangorscheiss.blogspot.my/

themalaysianinsight.com

Stop bickering and end water woes for good, Selangor folk tell state, federal govts

The Malaysian Insight




Low Han Shaun Diyana Ibrahim Updated 9 hours ago · Published on 11 Mar 2018 8:48PM ·


Stop bickering and end water woes for good, Selangor folk tell state, federal govts An Air Selangor water tanker is seen in Subang Jaya today. Selangor residents faced a five-day water disruption this past week, following scheduled pipe repair works at the Sg Selangor Phase 3 Water Treatment Plant that went awry. – The Malaysian Insight pic by Kamal Ariffin, March 11, 2018. SELANGOR folk want the federal and state governments to stop bickering over who is at fault over the water crisis that hit the state this past week, and find a permanent solution.


The water crisis in Selangor started in 1998, with the most recent problem being the five-day water disruption following scheduled pipe repair works at the Sg Selangor Phase 3 Water Treatment Plant that went awry.

Since then, the state and federal governments have been blaming each other for Selangor's water issues.

Problems, such as low water pressure, dirty water and frequent water disruptions, have been the bane of Petaling Gardens residents for more than three years.

"We have a lot of water problems here. One is the poor water quality. All the households here have water filters in their home," Petaling Gardens Residents Association president Andrew Chan Yik Hong told The Malaysian Insight today.



He said although residents were not affected by the recent water disruption, people in the area frequently face water cuts due to burst pipes.

“We were not affected by the water cut this past week, but a few days before that, we had a water pipe burst, and we had no water for two days,” he said, adding that disruptions have been a regular occurrence over the past two to three years.

Chan said he only wants the water problems to be resolved, or at the very least, be told of when such issues would be resolved.

“Because of all these disruptions, I have installed two water tanks for myself.

“I suppose more information about what they are planning to do (will help). I know they can’t fix the problems immediately, but if they could share their plans and tell us what they are doing, it will at least keep us informed.” Share this quote Share this quote

Association treasurer Jane Kweh said: "Whoever is in charge should fix the problems as promised. If the repairs are said to take three days to complete, then you should restore water supply in three days' time.”

She said whoever is in charge, whether the federal or state government, should "get their act together" and resolve Selangor's water issues. – March 11, 2018.




Thursday, 28 September 2017

WILL THREE CORNERED CONTESTS SEE SELANGOR FALL BACK TO THE BARISAN NASIONAL?

It's always interesting to read what the Chinese language newspapers in Malaysia have to say about Malaysian politics, translated into English and published on the Malaysian Chinese News portal, and I must say they have some pretty astute analysts.


Following the fairly recent fallout between the secular-oriented Democratic Action Party and Islamic-oriented Pan Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS) since the 2013 general elections and the subsequent breakup of the Pakatan Rakyat (People's Pact) coalition of which DAP, PAS and People's Justice Party (PKR), especially the Selangor state government or more particularly its Chief Minister Azmin Ali have been very worried about the possibility of losing seats to the Barisan Nasional (National front) coalition, especially coalition partner the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO), which has been winning elections and the control of the Federal government since 1955, two years before Malaysia gained independence from Britain in 1957. Following the breakup of the Pakatan Rakyat, a breakaway faction from PAS formed a party called Parti Amanah Negara ("PAN" or "Amanah" for short) which formed a new pact the Pakatan Harapan (Pact of Hope) together with the DAP and PKR. Then following the departure of former prime minister Tun Dr. Mahathir and some comrades from UMNO, they formed a new party called Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (roughly translated as "Malaysian United Indigenous persons Party" or "Pribumi" for short, which subsequently became the fourth member of Pakatan Harapan with Tun Dr. Mahathir as Chairman.

The Pakatan Harapan in Selangor or more particularly its pact member PKR is especially concerned over the possibility of losing to the UMNO/BN especially in three cornered fights for a state seat between UMNO, PKR and PAS and has been desperately trying to convince PAS not to split the opposition vote and let the UMNO/BN candidate win the seat, even is only with the largest minority of votes.

To understand their fears, just take a look at the results of elections for the Kota Damansara state seat in 2008 and 2013.

In 2008, it was a one-on-one contest between Dr. Nasir Hashim of the Parti Sosialis Malaysia who however contested under the PKR banner versus Zein Isma Ismail of UMNO/BN. Dr. Nasir received 11,846 votes of 52.38% versus 10,771 votes or 47.62% to Zein Isma, so Dr. Nasir won Kota Damnasara with a slim majority of votes in this marginal state seat.

However, in 2013, PAS contested in a six-cornered fight between Dr. Nasir who ran under the PKR banner, Halimaton Saadiah Bohan of UMNO/BN and three independent candidates and Dr. Nasir got 14,860 votes or 38.33%, Ridzuan Ismail of PAS got 7,312 votes or 18.86%, Halimaton got 16,387 votes or 42.27% whilst three independents got a total of a mere 212 votes or a total of 0.55%. So Halimaton of UMNO/BN won Kota Damansara with the largest minority or 42.27% of the votes in Kota Damansara.

At that time, PAS was still a member of the Pakatan Rakyat, so except for Kota Damansara, there were one-on-one contests (not counting the independents who win an insignificant number of votes anyway) in most other Selangor state seats contested.

However, now that PAS is on its own, it has said that it will contest in 42 of Selangor's 56 state seats and if the above result in Kota Damansara is repeated, with three or more cornered fights in the 42 seats contested, PAS may well lose but let the UMNO/BN candidate win with the largest minority and Selangor could fall back into BN hands.

Without PAS, the Pakatan Harapan has a slim majority of 29 out of 56 seats in the Selangor State Assembly, PAS has 13, Barisan Nasional 12 and two independents, so the loss of a few seats to UMNO BN in the upcoming 14th general elections in 2018 can well result in the BN winning Selangor.     

On the other hand, Pribumi could well split the UMNO vote, since Dr. Mahathior still retains some appeal amongs UMNO voters though there has been no precedent of this before, so itis hard to say how well or badly Pribumi will fare in three-cornered fights with UMNO/BN and PAS, assuming that no other Pakatan Harapan member party will contest against anoter in a given seat.

Given the very different political scenario in Malaysia today, the outcome of the 14th general elections will be very interesting to watch.

Kwong Wah Daily's take on this question follows below.

Yours trully

IT.Scheiss
http://selangorscheiss.blogspot.my/
http://politischeiss.blogspot.my/

Who would win in three-cornered fights?
Posted on 28/09/2017 | 10:58 0 Posted in Kwong Wah Daily

PAS is prepared for three-cornered fights in the coming election. DAP, Pribumi Bersatu and Parti Amanah have all geared up for the tough fights while only PKR seems to be still harboring some lingering hope.

The Pakatan Harapan supreme council has recently resolved and signed an agreement to terminate relations with PAS. However, the pro-PAS faction in PKR is still unwilling to follow but continues to deal with PAS, with the support of Anwar. If that is the case, is the agreement signed by Wan Azizah still valid? Does it mean that Wan Azizah is incapable of making decisions, Azmin is weak and Anwar is blur?

This article is focus on the assessment of the politics in Selangor.

Will the PKR-led Selangor state government change hands because of three-cornered fights? Azmin does not have the full confidence. PKR Women chief Zuraida shows pessimism but Rafizi, the promoter of INVOKE opinion polls, has no fear of three-cornered fights. The two factions have opposing views.

Pakatan partner DAP will contest in Chinese-dominated constituencies. PAS said it would contest in 42 seats constituencies, of which only one will encroach into DAP domain. DAP has 15 seats which it won with high majority votes (even the lowest majority reached 1,702 votes). As such, the cutting of ties between Pakatan Harapan and PAS will not have much effect on DAP’s election results.

Pribumi Bersatu which is starting with zero seat would of course like to see the departure of PAS so that it could share with Parti Amanah the 20 constituencies contested by PAS in the last election (PKR fought in one of them). However, PKR Selangor doesn’t seem bold enough to charge ahead. It is looking back at PAS while trying to sort out the distribution of the 20 constituencies.

Based on the results of the last election, Barisan’s strength is in the north. Except for the Chinese-dominated Sekinchan and Kuala Kubu Baru which were won by DAP, it was blue all the way to the north. PKR made some gains in and around Kuala Lumpur while PAS won in some suburban areas. DAP swept all the urban and suburban seats in Chinese-dominated areas. Chinese support of DAP was at its highest.

Without the Chinese votes and the support of PKR, PAS is likely to retreat to its original spot. In 2004, it was swept aside by the popularity of the new Prime Minister Abdullah and did not win anything.

PAS has failed to assess its own strength. It is still deep in its Utopian dream and one finds it difficult to track its mindset. Three-cornered fights would be suicidal for the party.

In reality, the Selangor state government depends on how much Malay votes the PKR, Pribumi Bersatu and Parti Amanah partnership can win. There is high possibility that PKR can retain the 14 urban and suburban seats, including the seat held by Khalid who has left the party. The fight will be intense for the 13 rural seats held by PAS and similarly for the 12 UMNO seats. With all the trouble created by PAS, it would be difficult for Pakatan Harapan to take any of the 12 UMNO seats.

PAS political base in Selangor is not very strong. Nevertheless, its defeated candidates in all the past elections were able to keep their deposits. It means they still enjoy certain support, about 20 to 30 percent, of the Malay votes in rural areas while the same goes for PKR in rural areas. UMNO can win 35 to 60 percent rural Malay votes but it must be able to garner over 55 percent Malay votes to win the state constituencies as 70 to 80 percent Chinese votes would go to Pakatan.

In a three-cornered fight, PAS supporters will vote for PAS while Pakatan Harapan has to depend on votes won by Pribumi Bersatu and Parti Amanah. Based on Pakatan Harapan’s leadership structure, only two Pribumi Bersatu leaders were included in the lineup, one less than DAP and Parti Amanah. Azmi seems to look up to Parti Amanah but still has doubts on Pribumi Bersatu headed by Mahathir.

My personal assessment is that Parti Amanah can take away 20 percent of PAS votes and Pribumi Bersatu can take away 10 to 15 percent UMNO votes. After all the calculations, three-cornered fights will benefit neither Pakatan Harapan nor Barisan Nasional and a bitter fight will be unavoidable. PAS is bound to suffer massive defeats unless it has some hidden dealings with Barisan.
Original Source: 三角战谁得利?

http://www.malaysianchinesenews.com/2017/09/who-would-win-in-three-cornered-fights/

Monday, 24 July 2017

SELANGOR'S "NO PLASTIC BAG" CAMPAIGN IS PLAIN STUPID

The giving away of free plastic bags by retailers for customers to carry their purchases was prohibited by the Pakatan state government of Selangor state since 1 January 2017, supposedly as a measure to "protect the environment", with the requirement that customers who need plastic bags must pay 20sen a bag or bring their own.

This no doubt has inconvenienced the "plaebian masses" of Selangor, many of whom now just pay the 20 sen for each plastic bag and Selangor state has collected RM1.87 million in plastic bag sales (or let's say 'penalities') since 1 January,

Yet, after nine years of ruling Selangor, the Pakatan state government has not introduced a comprehensive recycling programme - with awareness raising, recycling bins, conveniently located collection centres, deposit-return incentives and so forth to enable and facilitate convenient recycling by the public which I would fully support and which would do more to help protect the environment than to to require that shoppers pay 20 sen for a plastic bag.

Instead the Selangor government could have got especially the large retailers such as supermarkets, departmental stores, malls and so forth to participate in recycling efforts by setting up convenient recycling collection centres for plastic, paper, glass, metal cans, electronic waste and so forth, which would have been a positive move if implemented.

After all, the Selangor State Tourism, Environment, Green Technology and Consumer Affairs Committee chairman in charge of this "no plastic bag" campaign is known to have been a rather passionate environmental activist during her student days in Sydney, Australia.

I wonder what she learned from her experience of recycling programmes in Australia which could have been adopted by Selangor state under her watch.

Well it looks like not much, apart from this "no plastic bag" ruling and it looks like the Chairman is instead proud that Selangor state raked in RM1.87 million as a result of this.

Article in Free Malaysia Today follows.

(If you cannot see the embedded graphics below, please enable "view images" in your e-mail client)


RM1.87 million collected from 20-sen charge on plastic bags 
Bernama | July 24, 2017

SHAH ALAM: A total of RM1.87 million has been collected from shoppers in Selangor through the 20-sen charge for each plastic bag since the “No Plastic Bag” campaign was implemented in the state on Jan 1 this year, the Selangor assembly was told today.

State Tourism, Environment, Green Technology and Consumer Affairs Committee chairman Elizabeth Wong said the collection only involved supermarkets and food premises that had informed the state government, through their respective trade associations, about their collection of the 20-sen charge between January and May.


“Of the total, 63.98% of the collection was made from supermarket operators and the rest by operators of food premises.”

She said this in reply to Lee Kee Hiong (DAP-Kuala Kubu Baharu) who wanted to know the collection made by traders following the implementation of the campaign in the state.

Wong also said that as of June 30, the state government had spent a total of RM213,678.30 for the purchase of posters, buntings and reusable non-woven bags in connection with the campaign.



Below are some of the comments by readers to the above article and none so far defend the "no plastic bag" ruling, whilst some have suggested more practical and effective methods to encourage recycling and better protect the environment, instead of this token measure which inconveniences the Selangor public.



That last comment by Roger Mao is so true - it's a STUPID move.

Here's to you, Pakatan state government of Selangor:- (Free plastic bag courtesy of National Parks, Singapore)

How about using such free plastic bags to "ta pau" (pack) cooked food to carry home to eat. You can pick some of these up for free when you next visit Singapore.


FYI, I generally bring my own carry bag when shopping, so I have not had to purchase a plastic bag but sometimes I forget and  end up carrying my purchases in my two hands.

Yours trully

SELANGOR SCHEISS
http://selangorscheiss.blogspot.my/