Review Category : English

Train was run inadvertently without software protection – investigations



SINGAPORE: Preliminary findings have shown that a train was run inadvertently without a software protection feature, resulting in a collision at the Joo Koon station of East West Line this morning, says Singapore Land Transport Authority (LTA).

In its latest update, LTA said the findings were that the first train departed Ulu Pandan Depot with the software protection feature, but the feature was inadvertently removed when the first train passed by a faulty signalling circuit.

“This train then arrived at Joo Koon station without the feature. The removal of this feature resulted in the first train giving off a train profile on the new signalling system of a three-car train, instead of a six-car train.

“As a result, the second train detected the first train as a three-car train and misjudged the distance between the two trains, therefore resulting in the collision,” it said.

LTA noted that Thales, the supplier of the signalling system, had confirmed the old and new signalling systems continued to be safe for operation.

LTA said the East-West Line was currently running on the old signalling system from Pasir Ris to Pioneer, and the new signalling system from Joo Koon to Tuas Link.

As a precautionary measure, trains would go through an additional layer of control measures and manual checks before they were deployed, it said.

“Operations from Joo Koon to Tuas Link will also be suspended tomorrow, Nov 16, 2017, while we conduct assurance checks with Thales. Bus bridging will be deployed for the affected stretch for the duration of the suspension,” added LTA.

According to LTA, about 8.18am today, a train heading in the direction of Tuas Link station stopped at Joo Koon station to detrain passengers due to an anomaly in the train signalling system.

At 8.19am, a second train stopped 10.7 metres behind the first stationary train.

“This is in accordance with the safety protocol of the signalling system protection that ensures safe stopping distance between two trains,” said LTA.

At 8.20am, after detrainment, the first train’s doors closed and before this train could move off, the second train, activated by the signalling system, moved towards the first train and hit it.

Thales, LTA and SMRT Corporation are investigating the incident.

The collision involving two trains today, was the second such incident in Singapore MRT’s 30-year history.

— BERNAMA



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Yemen End blockade avert famine



The threat of mass famine in Yemen is as real as ever — in spite of the reopening of the port of Aden and the Wadea land crossing on the Saudi-Yemen border. This is not enough, according to the UN Office of Humanitarian Aid (OCHA). The blockade of all ports especially Hodeida should be lifted immediately. Most humanitarian aid goes through ports other than Aden.

The government of Saudi Arabia had imposed a total blockade of all Yemen’s seaports, airports and land crossings on the 6th of November 2017. This was in response to the firing of a missile from Yemen on the 4th of November that was brought down near Riyadh’s international airport. The Saudi Heir Apparent, Muhammad bin Salman, the country’s de facto ruler, has alleged that the missile was supplied by Iran and represents “an act of war.” Tehran has denied the allegation.

However, Tehran does provide moral support to the Houthi rebels who control the capital, Sanaa, and most of Western Yemen.  These rebels have been fighting against the government of Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, who is backed by Saudi Arabia, for a few years now. The Houthis are also linked to the former president of Yemen, Ali Abdullah Salleh.

The Houthis who have lauded the firing of the missile insist that they had manufactured it. They justify the missile attack as retaliation for the Saudi bombing and killing of Yemeni civilians which has been going on since early 2015. The bombing has destroyed Yemen’s water and sanitation systems. Hospitals and schools have been targeted. Farms and factories have also been subjected to aerial bombardments. Even residential areas have not been spared.  Thousands have died as a result of the military action of the Saudi-led coalition. Earlier UN reports observed that children in particular have suffered a great deal, not just directly from the bombing but also indirectly from the rapid spread of communicable diseases such as cholera.  In fact, 2100 people (including a lot of adults) have died of the disease since April 2017 and the number is expected to increase to 1 million by the end of December this year.

It is against this backdrop that chief of OCHA Mark Lowcock pleaded with the UN Security Council on the 8th of November to act with a sense of urgency.  He warned that there will be a famine in Yemen, exacerbated by the blockade.  He stated bluntly that, “It will be the largest famine that the world has seen for many decades, with millions of victims.” Lowcock noted sombrely that the Yemen Humanitarian Response Plan tasked with addressing the crisis is only 57 % funded with just 1.3 billion US dollars out of the 2.3 billion needed to prevent millions from dying of starvation and disease.        

Women and men of conscience everywhere should respond to this grim situation by persuading their governments to pressurise the Saudi leadership to end the sea, air and land blockade at once, without conditions. Humanitarian aid organisations should have free and unimpeded access to all segments of society in North and South Yemen. The UN should also at the same time revitalise its drive to collect more funds from not only member-states but also well-heeled corporations and philanthropic bodies right across the board.

Perhaps of all governments it is the US administration that has the greatest influence and impact upon Saudi Arabia. It is in a position to coax Prince Muhammad bin Salman to remove the blockade.  It can ensure that aid reaches everyone through legitimate channels. If the American people also come forward to help the Yemeni people through fund-raising activities, it may prompt people in other countries to also reach out.

Of course humanitarian assistance however generous is not the real solution. Given the nature of the conflict and the crisis in Yemen, the various parties concerned will have to forge an enduring solution through mediation and negotiation. It is not just the various actors who are directly involved in the conflict that should come to the negotiating table. Saudi Arabia and Iran should also play their role. So should the United States.

There must be a willingness on the part of everyone to compromise, to make meaningful concessions. There must be a realization that there is no military solution especially since the whole world has witnessed what the use of force can lead to — the death and devastation it causes and the sorrow and suffering it engenders. Right from the outset, there was only one solution, a non-violent political solution.  

And the only institution which is in some position to bring everyone to the negotiating table is the United Nations, specifically the UN Secretary-General. Antonio Guterres has been deeply concerned about the tragedy in Yemen from the time he assumed the office of Secretary-General on the 1st of January 2017. If he can end the bloody conflict and help formulate a solution, he will earn his spurs. The entire human family which yearns for peace in Yemen and elsewhere would be eternally grateful to him and to the UN.


* Dr. Chandra Muzaffar is the President of the International Movement for a Just World (JUST).

** The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of Astro AWANI.



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Expressway pileup kills at least 18 in east China



ANHUI: At least 18 people were killed and 21 others got injured in a more than 30-vehicle pile-up on an expressway in east China’s Anhui Province on Wednesday.

A helicopter rushed to the scene as a flying ambulance for the first time in the province after firefighters pulled out 17 people from wreckages.

Four of the motor vehicles burst into flames as the pile-up snarled up 2.5 kilometers of expressway.

Unexpected occurrence of fogs had reduced visibility to within 100 meters on that section of the expressway.

Road management and traffic police are busily working to re-open that expressway.



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Putin Trump hell-bent on defeating ISIS in Syria



DANANG: Presidents Trump and Putin, meeting on the margins of the APEC conference in Danang, Vietnam, confirmed their determination to defeat ISIS in Syria.

They have issued a joint press statement expressing their satisfaction on the progress their two countries have achieved in the de-confliction efforts between US and Russian military professionals.

In the statement, they said that this cooperation have dramatically accelerated ISIS’s losses on the battlefield in recent months.

Both the Presidents have agreed to maintain open military channels of communication between their militaries that will help in ensuring the safety of both the US and Russian forces and continue in US-Russian combined efforts to fight ISIS.

They confirmed these efforts will continue until ISIS is finally defeated.

MILITARY SOLUTION IN SYRIA IS A NO-GO

The Presidents agreed that there is no military solution to the conflict in Syria and confirmed that the ultimate political solution to the conflict must be forged through the Geneva process pursuant to the United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 2254.

They also took note of President Assad’s recent commitment to the Geneva process and constitutional reform and elections as called for under UNSCR 2254.

The two Presidents affirmed that these steps must include the full implementation of UNSCR 2254, including constitutional reform and free and fair elections in Syria, under UN supervision, and is held to the highest international standards of transparency.

Such process must involve all Syrians, including members of the diaspora, eligible to participate. The Presidents affirmed their commitment to Syria’s sovereignty, unity, independence, territorial integrity, and non-sectarian character, as defined in UNSCR 2254, and urged all Syrian parties to participate actively in the Geneva political process and to support efforts to ensure its success.

DE-ESCALATION IN SYRIA PARAMOUNT

Both President Trump and President Putin confirmed the importance of de-escalation as an interim step to reduce violence in Syria. They also want to enforce a ceasefire agreement and to facilitate an unhindered humanitarian access to those involved.

The reviewed progress on the ceasefire in southwest Syria that was finalized the last time the two Presidents met in Hamburg, Germany on July 7, 2017 must be upheld.

AGREEMENT BETWEEN RUSSIA, JORDAN, AND THE US

The two presidents also welcomed the Memorandum of Principles concluded in Amman, Jordan, on November 8, 2017, between the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, the Russian Federation, and the United States of America.

The said memorandum reinforces the success of the ceasefire initiative, to include the reduction, and ultimate elimination of foreign forces and foreign fighters from the area.

The countries wants to ensure a more sustainable peace to be achieved.

The monitoring of this ceasefire arrangement will continue to take place through the Amman Monitoring Center, with participation by expert teams from Jordan, Russian, and the United States.



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Zimbabwe military says seizes power to stop criminals President Mugabe safe



HARARE: Zimbabwe’s military said it had seized power in a targeted assault on “criminals” around President Robert Mugabe who were causing social and economic suffering, but gave assurances the 93-year-old leader and his family were “safe and sound”.

Zimbabwean soldiers and armoured vehicles blocked roads to the main government offices, parliament and the courts in central Harare, a Reuters witness said on Wednesday.

While nearby, Zimbabweans queued for cash outside banks as public taxis ferried commuters to work.

“We are only targeting criminals around him (Mugabe) who are committing crimes that are causing social and economic suffering in the country in order to bring them to justice,” Zimbabwe Major General SB Moyo, Chief of Staff Logistics, said on national television on Wednesday.

“As soon as we have accomplished our mission, we expect that the situation will return to normalcy.”

The military detained Finance Minister Ignatius Chombo on Wednesday, a government source said. Chombo was a leading member of the so-called ‘G40’ faction of the ruling ZANU-PF party, led by Mugabe’s wife Grace, that had been vying to succeed Mugabe.

Soldiers deployed across the Zimbabwe capital Harare on Tuesday and seized the state broadcaster after Mugabe’s ruling ZANU-PF party accused the head of the military of treason, prompting frenzied speculation of a coup.

Just 24 hours after military chief General Constantino Chiwenga threatened to intervene to end a purge of his allies in Mugabe’s ZANU-PF, a Reuters reporter saw armoured personnel carriers on main roads around the capital.

Aggressive soldiers told passing cars to keep moving through the darkness. “Don’t try anything funny. Just go,” one barked at Reuters on Harare Drive.

Two hours later, soldiers overran the headquarters of the ZBC, Zimbabwe’s state broadcaster and a principal Mugabe mouthpiece, and ordered staff to leave. Several ZBC workers were manhandled, two members of staff and a human rights activist said.

Shortly afterwards, three explosions rocked the centre of the southern African nation’s capital, Reuters witnesses said.

Mugabe, the self-styled ‘Grand Old Man’ of African politics, has led Zimbabwe for the last 37 years.

In contrast to his elevated status on the continent, Mugabe is reviled in the West as a despot whose disastrous handling of the economy and willingness to resort to violence to maintain power destroyed one of Africa’s most promising states.

The United States and Britain advised their citizens in Harare to stay indoors because of “political uncertainty.”

“U.S. citizens in Zimbabwe are encouraged to shelter in place until further notice,” the U.S. statement said. The British Foreign & Commonwealth Office statement told “nationals currently in Harare to remain safely at home or in their accommodation until the situation becomes clearer.”

The Southern African nation has been on edge since Monday when Chiwenga, Commander of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, said he was prepared to “step in” to end a purge of supporters of sacked vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Only a few months ago, Mnangagwa, a former security chief nicknamed “The Crocodile”, was favourite to succeed his life-long political patron but was ousted a week ago to pave the way for Mugabe’s 52-year-old wife Grace to succeed him.

‘POLITICS OVER THE GUN’

Chiwenga’s unprecedented statement represented a major escalation of the struggle to succeed Mugabe, the only leader Zimbabwe has known since it gained independence from Britain in 1980.

Mugabe chaired a weekly cabinet meeting in the capital on Tuesday, officials said, and afterwards ZANU-PF said it stood by the “primacy of politics over the gun” and accused Chiwenga of “treasonable conduct … meant to incite insurrection.”

The previous day, Chiwenga had made clear the army’s refusal to accept the removal of Mnangagwa – like the generals a veteran of Zimbabwe’s anti-colonial liberation war – and the presumed accession of Grace, once a secretary in the government typing pool.

Local government minister Saviour Kasukuwere, a leading figure in her relatively youthful ‘G40’ faction, refused to answer Reuters questions about the situation in Harare. “I’m in a meeting,” he said, before hanging up shortly before midnight.

Army, police and government spokesmen refused to answer numerous phone calls asking for comment.

‘DEFENDING OUR REVOLUTION’

Neither Mugabe nor Grace have responded in public to Chiwenga’s remarks and state media did not publish his statement. The Herald newspaper posted some of the comments on its Twitter page but deleted them.

The head of ZANU-PF’s youth wing, which openly backs Grace, accused the army chief of subverting the constitution.

“Defending the revolution and our leader and president is an ideal we live for and if need be it is a principle we are prepared to die for,” Youth League leader Kudzai Chipanga said at the party’s headquarters in Harare.

Grace Mugabe’s rise has brought her into conflict with the independence-era war veterans, who enjoyed privileged status in Zimbabwe until the last two years when they spearheaded criticism of Mugabe’s handling of the economy.

In the last year, a chronic absence of dollars has led to long queues outside banks and an economic and financial collapse that many fear will rival the meltdown of 2007-2008, when inflation topped out at 500 billion percent.

Imported goods are running out and economists say that, by some measures, inflation is now at 50 percent a month.

According to a trove of intelligence documents reviewed by Reuters this year, Mnangagwa has been planning to revitalise the economy by bringing back thousands of white farmers kicked off their land nearly two decades ago and patching up relations with the likes of the World Bank and IMF.

Whatever the outcome, analysts said the military would want to present their move as something other than a full-blown coup to avoid criticism from an Africa keen to leave behind the Cold War continental stereotype of generals being the final arbiters of political power.

“A military coup is the nuclear option,” said Alex Magaisa, a UK-based Zimbabwean academic. “A coup would be a very hard sell at home and in the international community. They will want to avoid that.”



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Soldiers seize Zimbabwe state broadcaster anti-Mugabe coup talk intensifies



HARARE: Soldiers deployed across the Zimbabwe capital Harare and seized the state broadcaster on Wednesday after 93-year-old President Robert Mugabe’s ruling ZANU-PF party accused the head of the military of treason, prompting frenzied speculation of a coup.

Just 24 hours after military chief General Constantino Chiwenga threatened to intervene to end a purge of his allies in Mugabe’s ZANU-PF, a Reuters reporter saw armoured personnel carriers on main roads around the capital.

Aggressive soldiers told passing cars to keep moving through the darkness. “Don’t try anything funny. Just go,” one barked at Reuters on Harare Drive.

Two hours later, soldiers overran the headquarters of the ZBC, Zimbabwe’s state broadcaster and a principal Mugabe mouthpiece, and ordered staff to leave. Several ZBC workers were manhandled, two members of staff and a human rights activist said.

Shortly afterwards, three explosions rocked the centre of the southern African nation’s capital, Reuters witnesses said.

Despite the troops stationed at locations across Harare, there was no word from the military as to the fate of Mugabe, Zimbabwe’s leader of the last 37 years and the self-styled ‘Grand Old Man’ of African politics.

In contrast to his elevated status on the continent, Mugabe is reviled in the West as a despot whose disastrous handling of the economy and willingness to resort to violence to maintain power destroyed one of Africa’s most promising states.

In the only official word from the government, Isaac Moyo, Zimbabwe’s ambassador to neighbouring South Africa, earlier dismissed talk of a coup, saying the government was “intact” and blaming social media for spreading false information.

“There’s nothing really happening. They are just social media claims,” Moyo told Reuters.

The Southern African nation has been on edge since Monday when Chiwenga, Commander of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, said he was prepared to “step in” to end a purge of supporters of sacked vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Only a few months ago, Mnangagwa, a former security chief nicknamed “The Crocodile”, was favourite to succeed his life-long political patron but was ousted a week ago to pave the way for Mugabe’s 52-year-old wife Grace to succeed him.

“POLITICS OVER THE GUN”

Chiwenga’s unprecedented statement represented a major escalation of the struggle to succeed Mugabe, the only leader Zimbabwe has known since it gained independence from Britain in 1980.

Mugabe chaired a weekly cabinet meeting in the capital on Tuesday, officials said, and afterwards ZANU-PF said it stood by the “primacy of politics over the gun” and accused Chiwenga of “treasonable conduct … meant to incite insurrection.”

The previous day, Chiwenga had made clear the army’s refusal to accept the removal of Mnangagwa – like the generals a veteran of Zimbabwe’s anti-colonial liberation war – and the presumed accession of Grace, once a secretary in the government typing pool.

Local government minister Saviour Kasukuwere, a leading figure in her relatively youthful ‘G40’ faction, refused to answer Reuters questions about the situation in Harare. “I’m in a meeting,” he said, before hanging up shortly before midnight.

Army, police and government spokesmen refused to answer numerous phone calls asking for comment.

“DEFENDING OUR REVOLUTION”

Neither Mugabe nor Grace have responded in public to Chiwenga’s remarks and state media did not publish his statement. The Herald newspaper posted some of the comments on its Twitter page but deleted them.

The head of ZANU-PF’s youth wing, which openly backs Grace, accused the army chief of subverting the constitution.

“Defending the revolution and our leader and president is an ideal we live for and if need be it is a principle we are prepared to die for,” Youth League leader Kudzai Chipanga said at the party’s headquarters in Harare.

Grace Mugabe’s rise has brought her into conflict with the independence-era war veterans, who enjoyed privileged status in Zimbabwe until the last two years when they spearheaded criticism of Mugabe’s handling of the economy.

In the last year, a chronic absence of dollars has led to long queues outside banks and an economic and financial collapse that many fear will rival the meltdown of 2007-2008, when inflation topped out at 500 billion percent.

Imported goods are running out and economists say that, by some measures, inflation is now at 50 percent a month.

According to a trove of intelligence documents reviewed by Reuters this year, Mnangagwa has been planning to revitalise the economy by bringing back thousands of white farmers kicked off their land nearly two decades ago and patching up relations with the likes of the World Bank and IMF.

Whatever the outcome, analysts said the military would want to present their move as something other than a full-blown coup to avoid criticism from an Africa keen to leave behind the Cold War continental stereotype of generals being the final arbiters of political power.

“A military coup is the nuclear option,” said Alex Magaisa, a UK-based Zimbabwean academic. “A coup would be a very hard sell at home and in the international community. They will want to avoid that.”



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Axiata Digital Challenge An opportunity for Malaysian tech start-ups to shine



KUALA LUMPUR: Axiata Digital, the digital services arm of Axiata Group Berhad, will extend the services of its Application Programming Interface (API) platform, known as Mobile Internet Fulfilment Exchange (MIFE), to Malaysian businesses as a gateway into the regional marketplace across its footprint countries in ASEAN and South Asia.

Collaborating with Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) via its Malaysia Digital Hub initiative, the extension of Axiata Digital’s MIFE platform will enhance regional market access for Malaysian businesses consisting of domestic and global tech companies.

MDEC’s Malaysia Digital Hub provides start-ups and tech entrepreneurs the connections and dynamic workspace to achieve rapid growth. It also offers incentives for growth to start-ups, investors, global tech companies, accelerators, and talent builders to help businesses achieve scale.

Chief Executive Officer of Axiata Digital, Mohd Khairil Abdullah said, “We are excited to partner with MDEC and jointly fast-track the digital transformation amongst Malaysian businesses”.

Datuk Yasmin Mahmood, Chief Executive Officer of MDEC said “through this collaboration with Axiata Digital, Malaysian digital and online businesses can offer better consumer experience and better monetisation opportunities.”

About the Axiata Digital Challenge

The Axiata Digital Challenge was conceptualised with the sole intention of unearthing innovative solutions and ideas from Malaysian tech start-up community.

The objective was for tech start-ups to present their ideas on effective utilisation of MIFE’s APIs from a concept to a functioning product, to a panel of judges.

The Challenge was first announced at the Introduction to MIFE event on August 22, 2017.

Participants of the Axiata Digital Challenge were expected to comply with the following criteria:

  1. Clear demonstration of business idea
  2. Pitch to demonstrate quality and innovation of business idea
  3. Compelling use of MIFE’s APIs to demonstrate tools and technologies
  4. Passion and commitment to drive and accelerate market growth as part of market reach expansion strategies

The panel of judges consisted of representatives from MIFE, Axiata Digital, Axiata Digital Innovative Fund (ADIF), and WORQ.

Leading to the Challenge, MIFE organised a Technical Deep Dive that attracted the participation of 50 start-ups. A series of demonstration and consultative sessions were organised for the participants.

Participants had the opportunity to learn more about MIFE’s Access Gateway (MAG), and the sandbox that would allow them to experience MIFE’s APIs in a test-bed environment.

MAG is an online self-service gateway which allows start-ups to sign-up, purchase packages, and utilise services such as SMS, Voice, Direct Operator Billing, and soon, Mobile Money.

The panel of judges have selected five winners who will stand to enjoy the following prizes:

  1. Two x 1 month Hot Desk memberships at WORQ per winner
  2. RM 1,000 worth of free APIs
  3. Mentorship by Axiata Digital and ADIF
  4. RM 2,000 cash prize

Winners of the Axiata Digital Challenge 2017 are:

  1. Vectory Innovation Sdn Bhd
  2. Silentmode Sdn Bhd
  3. PicHere
  4. Moneybay
  5. CanBoleh



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Gunman kills four in Northern California shooting spree



CALIFORNIA: Five people, including the suspected shooter, died in a shooting spree on Tuesday (November 14) at a cross roads near a school in a remote area of rural Northern California. Some children were among the wounded, according to officials and local media.

Law enforcement officers shot to death the gunman, who was among the five people who died in a series of shootings at seven or more locations, according to Redding, California, newspaper the Record Searchlight.

The shooting spree began at a home and ended at Rancho Tehama School near the town of Corning, the Sacramento television station KCRA reported, citing law enforcement.

The shooter was armed with a semi-automatic rifle and two handguns, Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston told local media.

A number of students were airlifted for medical care after gunfire at Rancho Tehama School, Johnston said.

Law enforcement did not immediately say what might have motivated the shooter.

Sheriff’s Office officials could not immediately be reached for comment.

Enloe Medical Center in Chico, more than 40 miles (64 km) southeast of the school, received five patients, and three of them were treated and released, hospital spokeswoman Natali Munoz-Moore said by phone. She declined to provide any details on their conditions.

St. Elizabeth Community Hospital in the community of Red Bluff received two patients, including one who was stabilized and transferred to another facility, Amanda Harter, a spokeswoman for the facility, said in an email. Mercy Medical Center in Redding received three patients, including one who also was transferred elsewhere, said Harter, whose company, Dignity Health, runs both hospitals.

Shots were fired at the school and some people were injured at the campus but no students or staff members died, Corning Union Elementary School District administrative assistant Jeanine Quist said by phone. The area is about 120 miles (190 km) north of Sacramento.

California Governor Jerry Brown said in a statement he and his wife were “saddened to hear about today’s violence in Tehama County, which shockingly involved schoolchildren.”

A parent, Coy Ferreira, said he was dropping off his daughter when he heard gunshots.

Once inside a classroom, Ferreira said he heard gunfire for over 20 minutes and a student in the room was struck.

Brian Flint told local media his neighbor was the shooter and had stolen his truck.

The shooter’s name has not been released.



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It makes no sense to ban the headscarf – CENBET



KUALA LUMPUR: Local hotel operators should be more flexible in imposing dress code for their employees.

The local management of international hotel chains should request their headquarters to waive the ban on
frontline female Muslim staff from wearing the headscarf.

Rightfully, the hospitality industry should reflect the country’s diversity, that has been a major draw
for foreign tourists over the years.

Islam is a major religion in this country and it makes no sense to ban the headscarf. Just because the rule has been in place for a long time does not make it right.

This issue should be considered in the wider context of plural Malaysia that celebrates diversity. Hotel
operators need to play their part in promoting the “Malaysia, Truly Asia” slogan.

They should protest one-size-fits-all rules that do not take into account local sensitivities, that reeks of discrimination.

So long as the attire does not hamper an employee from effectively carrying out their jobs, the clothing should not be banned.

On a related note, clothing preference is a personal choice. In public, no one should be told what is
proper attire and what is not, so long as it is within the confines of the law.

Of late, some government agencies had stepped into moral policing by denying entry into its premises, some members of the public deemed to have dressed inappropriately.

Such decisions are often arbitrary. These civil servants who try to impose their personal values on the public’s dress code, is behaving no differently from multinational companies imposing dress codes that are insensitive to local settings.

Such attitude is not helpful in a plural society, which ought to embrace diversity. Embracing diversity
can go a long way in building the much-needed bridges in a society riven by radicalized elements that
manifests in issues like how a shop in Johor only serves one ethnic group.


* Gan Ping Sieu is the Co-president of the Centre For A Better Tomorrow (CENBET)



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Bellew must pay four months salary to MAB



KUALA LUMPUR: Former Malaysia Airlines Bhd (MAB) Chief Executive Officer Peter Bellew must pay four months’ salary to the national carrier for resigning earlier than the notice period.

Second Finance Minister Datuk Johari Abdul Ghani said Bellew failed to comply with the six-month notice period in his contract agreement with MAB, instead he gave only two months’

“The CEO contract was for three years and both parties may give a six-month notice to each other.

“In the case of the CEO, he resigned by giving less than four months’ notice. So, he has to pay us four months’ salary,” he said when winding-up the 2018 Supply Bill for the Ministry of Finance at the Dewan Rakyat today.

Johari however, refused to divulge details as to how much Bellew has repay MAB.

Bellew tendered his resignation on Oct 8 to take up a position at Ireland’s Ryanair and he will be succeeded by MAB Chief Operating Officer Captain Izham Ismail effective Dec 1, 2017. – BERNAMA



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