Thursday, August 28, 2008

I still couldn’t find the time to write on Permatang Pauh by-election due to work that keeps on pouring in.

But I’m tempted to reply to a friend’s opinion posted on friendster. To dear friend, I hope you don’t mind me posting the response and my reply on my blog.

Fretting because he has no money to move to england because anwar ibrahim won the by-election
"it was regretted that anwar ibrahim won the election. all we don't have much choice in the matter, but electing anwar to the parliament is the gravest mistake one has ever done, worse than the sultan of kedah's mistake. many will not agree, but i will wait for the day when i can gleefully rub it in and say 'i told you so'. mark my word, by then its too late. hopefully by then too i can afford the move to england."

my response:

well my friend, that is how democracy works, the people have made their decisions and they have faith in their decisions. at least IF something were to happen in the future, they are prepared to face the consequences and face the music, here in i always say, its the struggle of the people, for the people. well, its not like things have been ok with our country following mahathir's legacy,thanks to him for ruining the judiciary..thanks to him for paying 4.6 billion to US lobbyist to arrange a meeting with bush.

even if war breaks out,here in Malaysia i pray to God that ill be here together with my fellow malaysian friends to continue the struggle.

no hard feelings-just my humble opinion.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Of Prankster

i just don't know what's getting into me, the sombre mood that i could hardly explain and the constant wandering mind which caused quite an embarrassing moment yesterday. as i parked my car in front of Jabatan Tanah dan Galian KL, i got a call from my boss saying that i left my purse on my desk. careless i was. damage control time: i started forming possible answers in case i got stopped by the Police. upon approaching the main entrance, i went straight to the lift. the guard came and asked me to register first to get the entry pass. and i was like, ''ok'' (I'm so screwed). i told the guard the real story, he eventually allowed me to get the pass, thanks to my ability to buat muka kesian yang teramat, i got away this time, just like always!.

as i was on my way back, the wandering mind syndrome struck again that i decided to drive through the smart tunnel to avoid the bad traffic, (so not smart of me, obviously), forgetting that i didn't have money to pay the toll charges. i only realized that fact as i was stopping at the toll gate. i told the toll gate lady to wait for a while as i was digging my hand bag looking for some coins. too bad that i only had RM1.10!90 cents short! muka kesian part 2 began - "Cik, macam mana ni, saya tertinggal purse kat office, ada 1.10 je ni??"..she was like "takpa2, saya bagi IOU nanti cik bayar". i was so relieved! never knew of that.

coming back to the topic of this entry, a good friend of mine, or rather partner in 'crime' back in uni, and nemesis back in school ( had made a special request that i put this topic up on my blog. well, given the state of mind i'm in now, a chill pill won't do any harm right?:P

i still remember one day after my birthday, while i was in PD for Human Rights Training, i received a call from a 'reporter' from the Star newspaper. he said, he got to know about my blog and how interested he was to republish my entry on polygamy in the youth section in the newspaper. i was cool about it and as he was asking about my particulars, he asked me to write down his contact details.

"please write this down,"..and i was like, hmm..quite familiar with this name. but i dare not ask. it went on and on and i bought that in toto (my naivety is sometimes killing me and i don't really quite like that actually)

then he asked me to take down his mobile number and sms him my details, i took it down and again i was wondering, this number sounded familiar..then he asked me to give a call on that number which i did!Gotcha or rather, Got me! he didn't say that but i was terrible gotcha-ed!

according to my friend, he thought the moment i called up the number, i was gonna find out that it was him who made the call as obviously his name was gonna appear on my phone. and me, being so 'lurus' about this whole thing, dialed up the number without looking what appeared on the phone screen. and he actually had to call back and told me that i got a prank call!

the moment i found out, i screamed like crazy!that was real good that i felt so bad giving him and my other friend a.k.a the accomplice (http// the chance to feel so good about this. the research that they did to make it more real deserved a pat on the back!P

well, i know i had caused you guys so much pain back in school with my garang-ness and non-stop lectures whenever we had a fight, so you guys are forgiven this time, and i have to admit to the fact that you guys really pulled this of!:P

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Of the Bar Council Forum and Islam

headlines after headlines as to the issue of the Bar Council Forum can be spotted in the newspaper and on the internet. endless phone calls kept pouring in, in the aftermath of the forum. As a Muslim who is also a lawyer, i had the duty to explain what this whole fuss was all about.

when i first got to know about the forum weeks before the issue of this forum got heated up in the mainstream newspaper, i was interested to join the discussion as i need to listen to all panelists' point of view on this matter. a respectable former lecturer of mine, Tuan Hj Naim who used to be a Syariah Court Judge was one of the panelists. sadly, the Muslim panelists who first agreed to participate in the discussion pulled out the very last minute. i guess every one knows why.

when we talk about this issue, it all boils down to one thing, understanding, which we have yet to grasp what it means.

to make things worse, this issue was being politicized as to incite racial and religious hatred.many people fell for that. and it couldn't get any worse that there are also sections of Muslims who fail to understand the issue at hand. perhaps, we are so used to the culture of being oblivious as to the duty to find the truth, or in a simpler term : getting the facts right. we are so used to believing in rumors rather than established facts. we choose to be ignorant.

Article 121 (1A) explains the separate jurisdiction of the Civil Court and the Syariah Court. Muslim parties are subject to the jurisdiction of Syariah Court and the non-Muslims are subject to jurisdiction of Civil Court.

when non Muslim parties contracted a marriage under the civil law, their rights and obligations are set out under the civil law and they are both subject to the jurisdiction of Civil Courts.

when one of the parties to the marriage converts to Islam, the situation would change. the non-Muslim party will go to the civil court to ask the court to decide on the issue of custody, maintenance and status of the marriage.

whereas the Muslim party (the convert) will go to the Syariah Court to decide on the same issues.

obviously there is a conflict as to the situation:

1) can two different courts of separate jurisdiction decide on the same subject matter?
2) how does the civil court enforce its decision on the Muslim party where he/she is not subject to the jurisdiction of the civil court?
3) how does the Syariah court enforce its decision on the non-Muslim party where he/she is not subject to the jurisdiction of Syariah Court?

these questions are real questions as there are based on real cases which are brought before the Court.

but the problem is, these questions have yet to be resolved as the courts are unable to rectify the loopholes created by Article 121(1A) in cases of conversion.

the next question is: Is it fair for the parties involved that their predicaments are not being resolved or addressed? is it just that the wife is left without maintenance? is it just that the status of the marriage is being kept in uncertainty?what about the issue of custody of the children?

the forum aimed at discussing these legal/technical problems of A.121(1A) as majority of people have zero knowledge about this issue. and why is it important to discuss this forum in the presence of the members of the public is because we have the duty to address this issue as there are people out there who are suffering from this and all they want is justice. just because this matter does not affect us directly or it does not happen to us or to our family members doesn't mean that we can just ignore the fact that there is a serious issue of law that needs our attention and support.

justice is absolute, be it for the oppressed or the oppressor, the rich or the poor, Muslims or the non-Muslims.

when it comes to issues on Islam, the word ''sensitive'' is often mentioned.why?

Being a Muslim, i truly understand the sentiment that majority of Muslims have particularly in the aftermath of 9/11, where Islam is accused of being a religion of violence. being a Muslim, i understand how hurtful it is having to endure accusations and insulting insinuations directed to Islam by the ignorants time and time again. and as true Muslims, we have to respond to these baseless accusations with wisdom and knowledge.

as true Muslims, it is our duty to show that Islam, as a religion is the key to bridging the gaps with the world at large by holding fast to the principle of justice and truth.

and it is our duty to prove to the world that the divisions in our world is not the result of the Religion.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Of Good News

I just got an e-mail from Sing Yee informing that GMI managed to get to the final round for the Civil Society Award which is to be held on 28th August 2008. Every one is happy to hear this news. Last Wednesday we had a meeting to discuss on our future campaign programs. Good things seem to happen gradually and we couldn't get happier :P. it's always good to know that there are many concerned individuals and organizations that step forward and offer their relentless support.

There has been a proposal from an organization to set up an education fund for the children of ISA detainees. We were also surprised by a donation made by Harakah Daily to GMI. According to them, the donation sum was rather small "sumbangan kecil saja".but i guess it's so not "sumbangan kecil" the moment we learned that the donation sum was RM30,000. Every one was happy to hear the news because two weeks before, during our meeting, we were so worried about our financial standing as it was in dire straits.

At the last meeting, we also had a guest from Amnesty International London, joining us to discuss on future effort to expand the campaign into international scene. that indicates more effort needs to be done to get the campaign going, both, at national and international level. GMI's plate would be spilled over with many plans, but the good thing is, no one is complaining. The road is long, but as long as you have people to walk with you, the distance does not really matter anymore.

"Di mana sahaja kita pergi akan mempunyai sahabat sekiranya kita berada dalam perjuangan yang Agung ini..."