Correspondent, Political and General News
Razak's Feed
Sep 15, 2011

Is a general election looming in Malaysia?

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) – A recent slew of populist measures has strengthened expectations that Malaysian Prime Minister Najib could call a snap election within the next 6 months, as he seeks a mandate to execute economic reforms and strengthen his grip on power.

Bonus payments for civil servants, a cash payout for farmers and affordable housing for low-income earners are among the steps the government has taken to cushion the impact of higher prices and address a major gripe among voters.

Sep 13, 2011

Malaysia PM considers security law reform as polls near

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) – Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak is considering changes to a controversial security law to allow greater freedom of speech, speeding up promised reforms to reconnect with voters ahead of an expected general election in early 2012.

Najib is studying amendments to curb the interior minister’s powers and reduce the period of initial imprisonment under the Internal Security Act, a source with direct knowledge of the matter said on Tuesday. The premier is expected to make an announcement on the reform on Thursday, the source added.

Sep 12, 2011
via FaithWorld

Christian-Muslim tensions simmer in Malaysia, minorities worried about rights

Photo

(The Dream Centre Damansara Utama Methodist Church in Petaling Jaya, outside Kuala Lumpur, September 9, 2011. A raid on the church by Muslim authorities has raised religious tension in Malaysia/Bazuki Muhammad)

A raid on a church by Muslim authorities has raised religious tension in Malaysia and could cost Prime Minister Najib Razak votes in an election set for 2013 but which many expect to come much earlier. The raid has sparked an angry verbal battle between Christians and the majority Muslims, forcing Najib to seek what may be an elusive peace between the ethnic Malays and minorities, both of which believe the government isn’t doing enough to safeguard their rights.

Sep 12, 2011

Religious tensions simmer in Malaysia, corner PM Najib

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) – A raid on a church by Muslim authorities has raised religious tension in Malaysia and could cost Prime Minister Najib Razak votes in an election set for 2013 but which many expect to come much earlier.

The raid has sparked an angry verbal battle between Christians and the majority Muslims, forcing Najib to seek what may be an elusive peace between the ethnic Malays and minorities, both of which believe the government isn’t doing enough to safeguard their rights.

Sep 11, 2011

Analysis: Religious tensions simmer in Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) – A raid on a church by Muslim authorities has raised religious tension in Malaysia and could cost Prime Minister Najib Razak votes in an election set for 2013 but which many expect to come much earlier.

The raid has sparked an angry verbal battle between Christians and the majority Muslims, forcing Najib to seek what may be an elusive peace between the ethnic Malays and minorities, both of which believe the government isn’t doing enough to safeguard their rights.

Sep 4, 2011

Malaysia economic indicators – Sep 5

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 5 (Reuters) – GDP (pct,y/y)
Q2 ’11 Q1 ’11 Q4’10 Q3 ’10 Q2 ’10 Q1 ’10 Q4 ’09 Q3 ’09 Q2 ’09
4.0 4.9 4.8 5.3 8.9 10.1 4.4 -1.2 -3.9

INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION (pct, y/y)
JUN MAY APR MAR FEB JAN DEC NOV OCT SEP AUG JUL JUN
1.0 -5.6 -1.7 2.9 5.0 1.0 4.2 5.1 3.1 5.6 4.0 3.2 9.4

Aug 19, 2011

Eid undimmed for Southeast Asia Muslims despite rising prices

JAKARTA/KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) – They are running out of cars at the Toyota showroom in Kalibata, south Jakarta, as Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim nation, prepares for the festival of Eid al-Fitr in late August.

Sales of popular mid-sized vehicles like the 145 million rupiah ($17,000) Avanza have more than doubled this month as many hope to drive to their hometowns in a new car to celebrate the end of the holy month of Ramadan.

Aug 17, 2011

Malaysia economic indicators – Aug 18

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 18 (Reuters) – GDP (pct,y/y)
Q2 ’11 Q1 ’11 Q4’10 Q3 ’10 Q2 ’10 Q1 ’10 Q4 ’09 Q3 ’09 Q2 ’09
4.0 4.9 4.8 5.3 8.9 10.1 4.4 -1.2 -3.9

INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION (pct, y/y)
JUN MAY APR MAR FEB JAN DEC NOV OCT SEP AUG JUL JUN
1.0 -5.6 -1.7 2.9 5.0 1.0 4.2 5.1 3.1 5.6 4.0 3.2 9.4

Aug 17, 2011
via FaithWorld

Malaysia’s first openly gay pastor says he plans to wed

Photo

Malaysia's first openly gay pastor Ouyang Wen Feng in Petaling Jaya outside Kuala Lumpur August 15, 2011/Bazuki Muhammad

Getting married on the upcoming anniversary of Malaysia’s independence day on August 31 holds special meaning for the country’s first openly gay pastor, who says he is seeking greater tolerance in this Muslim-majority country. Ouyang Wen Feng co-founded a gay-friendly Christian church in the Southeast Asian nation’s capital in 2007 that has been condemned by conservative religious groups. Homosexuality is punishable in Malaysia by caning and up to 20 years jail.

Aug 9, 2011

Malaysia’s MAS, AirAsia swap shares in $364 mln deal

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 9 (Reuters) – Malaysian Airline System
(MAS) and rival AirAsia said on Tuesday they
will swap shares in a partnership that analysts say will
eliminate overlaps and boost the bottomline of both companies.

Under the deal, which is valued at about $364 million, Tune
Air, controlled by AirAsia founders Tony Fernandes and Kamarudin
Meranun, will take a 20.5 percent stake in MAS while state
investment arm Khazanah Nasional will hold 10 percent in
AirAsia, confirming an earlier Reuters report.