Thursday, 27 January 2011

Phang Resigns, and Gani Patail Lies for PPPA?

"Abdul Gani told reporters at the Jalan Duta Court Complex
the A-G’s Chambers has also engaged the Bar Council
and stakeholders on the proposed changes to the laws. "

Bar Council refutes A-G’s claim over publishing law

January 27, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 27 — The Bar Council said today it has not been consulted on Putrajaya’s plan to change a publishing law widely believed will restrict media freedom, contrary to the Attorney-General’s statement yesterday, adding to the controversy.

“No, we were not consulted on that. We were only consulted on preventive laws, laws that allow for detention without trial, like the ISA (Internal Security Act) and the Emergency Ordinance (EO),” the law society’s chief, Ragunath Kesavan (picture), told The Malaysian Insider today.

A public furore broke out after a Home Ministry official disclosed two days ago that the Printing Presses and Publications Act (PPPA) 1984 will be amended to expand its scope to cover online “publications” and plug loopholes created by advances in technology.

National news agency Bernama reported Home Ministry secretary-general Datuk Seri Mahmood Adam as saying the ministry was working with the Attorney-General’s Chambers to study the proposed amendments.

“We hope the amendments will be tabled in Parliament by March this year because we need to overcome weaknesses, especially those involving multimedia content,” Mahmood was quoted as saying.

Yesterday, A-G Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail confirmed his department has drawn up drafts to amend several laws.

He named the PPPA, the Sedition Act 1948 and ISA among them.

Abdul Gani told reporters at the Jalan Duta Court Complex the A-G’s Chambers has also engaged the Bar Council and stakeholders on the proposed changes to the laws.

He refused to comment when pressed further on who the stakeholders were, or the scope of the amendments, or even if the drafts were final.

Instead, Abdul Gani redirected the questions back to the Home Ministry.

“If he said that, it must be true. They are my clients,” he said, referring to the Home Ministry secretary-general’s statements.

“I’m not they policymaker. I don’t make the law,” he replied when asked to confirm if the laws were to be amended to cover online news.

However, Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein appeared to backpedal on the issue in a news conference held later the same day.

The minister said the proposed amendments were still in the early stages and had not been finalised.

Robert Phang Quits in DISGUST!!


PRESS STATEMENT BY: TAN SRI DATUK ROBERT PHANG MIOW SIN. Justice of Peace, Chairman – Social Care Foundation

1. Recently, I came under personal attacks from various anonymous blogs after I raised concerns about public perceptions on a host of issues namely about the lack of action in the MAS Scandal; AG Gani Patail’s Haj Trip under suspicious circumstances; AG Gani Patail’s relationship with the former Chairman of MAS, Tajudin Ramli’s proxy, one En Shahidan Shafie; whether AG Gani Patail was compromised in his decision to not act on the recommendation of Dato’ Ramli Yusuff to institute prosecution against Tajudin and several others; about perceived selective prosecution; and also the attempt to clear AG Gani Patail of these allegations of wrongdoing without any investigation.

2. For merely asking AG Gani Patail to be accountable for all these controversies that were already in the public domain, I suddenly became the subject of these venomous attacks. On January 19, the anonymous blog also accused me of trying to bribe a Secretary-General of a Ministry. I was subsequently told that that the Attorney-General had directed an investigation paper to be opened against me. On January 21, I met the Chief Commissioner, Datuk Seri Abu Kassim Mohamed to confirm that information. He told me that was not true.

3. Despite what Datuk Abu Kassim had told me, the Malay Mail subsequently reported that the Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Liew Vui Keong, had urged the MACC to initiate an investigation against me. The Malay Mail also quoted that the MACC Anti-Corruption Advisory Board member, Tan Sri Megat Najmuddin Megat Khas, had said that the MACC cannot allow its credibility to be undermined by an advisory panel member.

4. On January 22, the NST carried a news report that the Malay rightist movement, Perkasa, had lodged a report against me and that the MACC will be investigating me. Then on 22nd January 2011, I received a telephone call from Tuan Haji Mustafar Ali that he wished to record my statement. I was surprised as that was inconsistent with what Datuk Abu Kassim had told me earlier.

5. All these seem to be a concerted attack against me. The attacks against me centered on my past business activities in Sabah and most of it were fictitious. It is a fact that AG Gani is from Sabah. It is also a fact that Datuk VK Liew is from Sabah. Datuk VK Liew is Deputy to Dato Seri Nazri Aziz, our de facto Minister of Law. To me, fanning these issues publicly is a calculated and orchestrated effort to discredit me. It is to put me on trial by media in a most unfair manner.

6. On January 24, I asked the Chief Commissioner for confirmation on the following :-

(a) Whether the identity of the blogger has been identified. If so, that I be provided with their full particulars;

(b) Whether the blogger has lodged a report against me. If so, that I be provided with a copy so that I may ascertain the exact nature of the complaint;

(c) Who is the Secretary General referred to by the blogger;

(d) Whether an investigation paper has been opened, and if so, when and at whose initiation.

7. I have lived long enough to know that this is an attempt to intimidate me for speaking out. The trial of Dato’ Ramli Yusuff has shown how cover reports after cover reports were filed to conceal the fact that there never was a real complainant and that there was never a predicated offence to prosecute him. The same is about to be done to me now. The speed at which an investigation has commenced against me is also amazing considering the inaction over the public disclosure of AG Gani Patail’s association with En Shahidan Shafee. I consider all these wholly unsatisfactory and smacks of double standards.

8. On January 25 when my Panel convened a meeting, I have informed the Chief Commissioner and all my Panel members that if they consider that I have caused disrepute to the MACC, I would resign. They have advised me not to do so.

9. I am not unmindful of the argument that unlike the position of the Attorney-General who controls criminal prosecutions, in my position as a non-executive Panel member I cannot interfere with the process of investigation or any decision for prosecution. That seems a compelling reason for me to remain on the Panel.

10. However, I feel very aggrieved at this orchestrated attempt to discredit me by rogues from within and outside the government. What has happened to me in this case can happen to any of the MACC Panel members and also to any innocent citizens of this beloved country. It is a sad day when a person should face action merely for speaking out the truth and for seeking accountability by those who wield power.

11. I have considered this matter and I will walk the talk. I think tendering my resignation is only the right thing for me to do to sincerely help facilitate investigations. Thus, in order to protect my integrity and that of the MACC, I hereby announce my resignation. I give my assurance that I will give my fullest co-operation to the MACC’s investigators.

12. I remain committed in the fight against graft. I will keep my pledge to continue speaking out against injustice and abuses until all these rogues within and outside of government are weeded out. That is a pledge that I will keep.


Tan Sri Datuk Robert Phang Miow Sin

Justice of Peace

Google and blogger sued by curry fish head restaurant

Google and blogger sued by curry fish head restaurant
Thursday January 27, 2011

KOTA KINABALU: The director of a fish head curry restaurant which is recommended by Lonely Planet is suing a blogger and Google for defamation.

Jothys Sdn Bhd director Tharumaraj Sivaperumal filed a RM6mil civil suit at the Kota Kinabalu High Court, naming blogger Poh Huai Bin as the first defendant and California-based Google Inc as the second defendant.

The suit filed on Monday is over allegedly defamatory statements made about Jothys Fish Head Curry Restaurant here which was posted in May last year by Poh, who is originally from Sibu, Sarawak and now resides in Kuala Lumpur.

The company, which is represented by counsel Marcel Jude Joseph, is seeking exemplary or punitive damages and an order to restrain Poh from defaming the restaurant on the Internet.

Lonely place: Tharumaraj says business at his restaurant in Kota Kinabalu has been affected by the blogger’s negative postings.

The company is also seeking an order from the court to remove the offending articles from Google and other popular search engines used on the Internet.

The company claimed that the alleged defamatory statements published by both defendants would be injurious to its business.

Tharumaraj said he felt very let down when the blogger demeaned his fish head curry and banana leaf restaurant and urged the people to “avoid it like a bad case of herpes”.

“There were many people who posted positive things about my restaurant in his blog but it was removed and only the negative chats were kept,’’ he said, adding that he did not know the blogger.

On why he decided to sue Google, he said if one used Yahoo or other search engines, the offending blog does not appear immediately but in Google, it would show up first.

As a result of the defendants’ action, Tharumaraj claimed he suffered losses and damages and his restaurant’s reputation had been affected, both locally and internationally.

The plaintiff claimed that the restaurant, which opened in 1987, was known globally and had been reported as a well-known destination in Sabah in a global TV and book series known as Lonely Planet, which was an authority for tourists throughout the world.

The company also claimed that Google conducts business within the jurisdiction of Malaysian courts by reason of the fact that its search engine is used regularly by Internet users in the country.

When contacted, a Google official in Kuala Lumpur said the company could not comment on cases that were in litigation.


I believe it is silly for this guy to sue a blogger for a personal opinion he published. That was his taste, for gottsakes!!
For all you know, there might have been some conflict between the two parties - maybe the defendant was "taken for granted", and treated like an ignorant tourist, when knew knew Indian food very well.
Just because Lonely Planet mentions them (for which he might have paid), or tourist ignorant about really good Indian food know his outlet - doesn't mean they are good!!

This smug-looking Tharumaraj fella would do better by improving his food/ services, instead of making things worse for himself with added negative publicity for the restaurant- now everybody knows such an article was written, and would intead of avoiding it like herpes- would instead avoid it like the plague!!
Personally- Based on my experience in KK around last June, I'd concur with the opinion of Mr Poh Huai Bin- and my better half would vouch for it. Another (unair-conditioned) restaurant futher down the street served better South Indian food- although still far from the quality of the food served in the average Banana Leaf shop in Semenanjung/KL .......