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Malaysian inflation, etc.

March 19, 2010

KUALA LUMPUR, Mar. 19, 2010 (Xinhua News Agency) — The Consumer Price Index ( CPI), a main gauge of inflation, in Malaysia registered an increase of 1.2 percent from 111.9 to 113.2 in February 2010.

The Malaysian Statistics Department said in a statement here on Friday that the indices for “food and non-alcoholic beverages” and “non-food” for February 2010 rose by 1.3 percent and 1.1 percent compared with the corresponding month last year.

Malaysia’s CPI for the period January to February 2010 increased by 1.3 percent to 113.2 compared with 111.8 in the same period last year, with the indices for “food and non-alcoholic beverages” and “non-food” rising 1.2 percent and 1.3 percent respectively.

The 1.3 percent increase in the CPI was brought about by increases observed in the indices of all the main groups except clothing and footwear (-1.5 percent) and communication (-0.4 percent).

Notable increases among the main groups with high weights were food and non-alcoholic beverages (1.2 percent); housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels (1.1 percent).

Other increases were miscellaneous goods and services (3.5 percent); alcoholic beverages and tobacco (three percent); recreation services and culture (2.6 percent); education (1.7 percent) and health (1.5 percent).

While the index for restaurants and hotels increased by 1.4 percent, the indices for furnishings, household, equipment and routine household maintenance, as well as transport, rose 0.7 percent respectively.

(Source: iStockAnalyst )

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Address Malaysian-Indian concerns in 10th Malaysia Plan, Govt. urged

Kuala Lumpur, Mar. 20 (ANI): The Malaysian Government should address the grievances of its 1.8 million-strong Indian population in the 10th Malaysia Plan, according to a researcher.

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The Star Online quoted Dr Denison Jayasooria, a principal research fellow at the Institute of Ethnic Studies, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, as saying that most government agencies did not seriously look into issues like crime, violence, urban poverty, inadequate infrastructure for Tamil schools and low recruitment and promotion opportunities for Indians.

He added that Indian youngsters must change their mindset so they can cope with the rapid economic development. (ANI)

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Friday, March 19, 2010

by Khoo Kay Peng

Bayan Baru voters must be feeling really frustrated and disappointed with the MP Zahrain Hashim’s parliamentary antics.

The ex-PKR leader has been using his parliamentary privilege to launch personal attacks against his former party leaders and to wash some dirty linen.

He had named eight MPs, whom he claimed were ready to jump ship in the opposition’s bid to takeover the government on Sept 16, 2008. They were Datuk Seri Abdul Ghapur Salleh (BN-Kalabakan), Datuk Seri Anifah Aman (BN-Kimanis), Datuk Bung Moktar Radin (BN-Kinabatangan), Datuk Chua Soon Bui (Independent-Tawau), Datuk Eric Majimbun (Independent-Sepanggar), Dr Mohd Puad Zarkashi (BN-Batu Pahat), Datuk Seri Tengku Azlan Sultan Abu Bakar (BN-Jerantut) and Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah (BN-Gua Musang).

Tengku Razaleigh has refuted his claims today.

Zahrain claimed that there was a link between online newspaper MalaysiaKini and Raja Petra Kamarudin (RPK)’s news portal with the opposition and urged the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission to probe into it.

He is expected to make more allegations in the coming days. It is not surprising that Zahrain is using his parliamentary immunity to run various allegations against his former colleagues.

Zahrain’s action has two implications. First, it reflects an inherent weakness in the Pakatan leadership. This is something the coalition must correct before the next general election.

Second, it reflects badly on Zahrain’s position as an elected representative. His elected position is not personal. He is accountable for his action and behaviour in the parliament. He should use his debating time to focus on key issues such as socio-economic policy, GST, strategy to address economic malaise, abolishment of ISA, inter-ethnic relations, Penang’s development and others.

Zahrain wants us to respect his position and rights as a member of parliament. He has to first respect the wishes and expectations of his voters.

Zahrain’s unparliamentary behaviour should be severely criticized by groups monitoring the performance of parliamentarians.

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