Review Category : Semasa

Liang Liang Lahir Anak Kedua


indexMO, 17/1/2018, KUALA LUMPUR – Selepas kelahiran anak pertama pada 2015, pasangan panda gergasi Xing Xing dan Liang Liang menerima kehadiran anak kedua seberat 150 gram pada 14 Jan lalu.

Menteri Sumber Asli dan Alam Sekitar Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar ketika mengumumkan berita gembira itu berkata kelahiran anak panda tersebut pada 7.50 pagi iaitu 89 hari selepas tarikh persenyawaan pasangan panda gergasi pada 18 Okt 2017, merupakan kejayaan Malaysia dalam Program Konservasi Panda Gergasi.

“Malaysia sebagai negara pertama di dunia yang berjaya melahirkan anak panda gergasi secara semula jadi dalam tempoh dua tahun selepas kelahiran pertama.

“Kedua-dua ibu dan anak panda gergasi kini berada dalam keadaan sihat,” katanya dalam sidang media khas di Pusat Konservasi Panda Gergasi di Zoo Negara, di sini.

Bagaimanapun jantina anak panda gergasi itu masih belum dikenal pasti kerana Liang Liang masih melindungi anaknya yang sedang dalam fasa menyusu.

Wan Junaidi berkata fasiliti yang kondusif, penjagaan rapi serta perhatian yang diberikan oleh pasukan penyelidik dan pakar veterinar di pusat konservasi itu turut menjadi faktor menyumbang kelahiran anak panda berkenaan.

Beliau berkata Liang Liang dan anaknya kini dikuarantin dan tidak akan dipamerkan kepada pengunjung sehingga suatu tempoh yang ditetapkan bagi memastikan tahap kesihatan kedua-dua mereka dalam keadaan terbaik.

Sementara itu, Wan Junaidi berkata Malaysia akan memaklumkan kelahiran anak panda itu kepada kerajaan China dalam masa terdekat selain membincangkan beberapa perkara berkaitan perjanjian yang dimeterai menerusi Projek Kerjasama Konservasi Panda Gergasi.

Katanya, Malaysia berhasrat untuk memelihara anak panda itu namun perlu dibincangkan secara terperinci dengan kerajaan China termasuk mengambil kira faktor kewangan dan teknikal.

Pada 21 Mei 2014, Malaysia menerima sepasang panda gergasi Xing Xing dan Liang Liang daripada kerajaan China sebagai meraikan ulang tahun ke-40 hubungan diplomatik antara kedua-dua negara.

Pasangan haiwan itu melahirkan anak panda pertama pada 18 Ogos 2015 dinamakan Nuan Nuan yang kemudiannya dihantar pulang ke China pada 14 Nov 2017 bagi memenuhi syarat perjanjian dua negara.

— BERNAMA



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China seeks stronger ties with Kota Kinabalu


MALAYSIA-CHINA

MO,17/1/2018, KOTA KINABALU: China and Sabah will forge closer ties in areas concerning the economy, trade, local government and personnel exchange, said Liang Caide, the Consul General of the People’s Republic of China in Kota Kinabalu. “The Consulate General will continue to make efforts in realising a win-win cooperation between China and Kota Kinabalu.

“We will support the synergy of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and Sabah’s development plan by strengthening and deepening our bilateral cooperation,” he said during a briefing on China’s diplomatic policies and BRI here today. BRI is a development strategy launched by the Chinese government with the intention of promoting economic co-operation among countries along the proposed Belt and Road routes.

Liang said following the development of BRI, more Chinese enterprises would come to the state capital seeking cooperation opportunities with local companies. Those enterprises, he said, specialised in the fields of infrastructure, energy, information and communications, agriculture and fishery, among others.

He also said several Chinese enterprises have in agriculture, tourism, biotechnology and aquaculture in Sabah. He said some large enterprises, such as China National Complete Plant Import and Export Corporation and Huawei, had signed cooperation memoranda with local partners to spur economic growth in the state.

He said the memoranda were related to the Sipitang Industrial Fertiliser project, a regional information, communications and technology hub, a 50 MW Utility-Scale PV plant, the Guangdong Agribusiness Rubber Plantation, and the International Convention Center, among others. “These Chinese enterprises will bring in funds, technology and other resources to the projects, creating jobs and boosting the economy.

“We hope that the Sabah enterprises will establish close relations with more Chinese enterprises to jointly promote the growth of bilateral trade and investment.” He said local tourism sector was a major industry that would be explored by China to create a win-win situation. He said last year, 430,000 Chinese tourists visited Sabah, an increase of 15 per cent from 2016.

There are currently 95 direct flights between Kota Kinabalu and Chinese cities weekly, with the most recent addition being Xiamen Airlines’ direct route between Beijing and the city. “I believe there will be more direct flights, which will attract more Chinese tourists to this beautiful ‘Land Below the Wind’.”

–NSTP



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Zahid receives courtesy call from Japan’s Justice Minister


ZAHID-JAPAN

MO,16/1/2018, PUTRAJAYA: Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today received a courtesy call from Japan’s Minister of Justice Yoko Kamikawa, at his office in Perdana Putra. Kamikawa, who is on official visit to Malaysia, also extended an invitation to Zahid to attend the upcoming 14th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice.

In a statement issued after the meeting, Zahid said Attorney-General Tan Sri Apandi Ali was also invited to the congress which will be held in Japan in 2020. The 40-minute meeting, which began at 2pm, focused on security matters such as terrorism, and touched on Malaysia’s deradicalisation programme.

Zahid who is also the Home Minister, said Malaysia and Japan celebrated its 60th year of diplomatic relations last year. “At the meeting today, both countries agreed to improve and elevate the current relations to ‘strategic partnership’ status. “The momentum of both countries’ close relationship will be continued through the exchange of frequent visits to both countries,” he said.

Zahid said the last working visit from Malaysia was between Nov 15 and Nov 17, 2016 by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, where the latter had invited Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to visit Malaysia. Meanwhile, Japan’s last visit to Malaysia was during Japan Crown Prince Naruhito’s maiden official visit to Malaysia between April 13 to April 17, last year.

Zahid had also visited Japan on a working visit between May 29 to June 2, 2016. He noted that in 2016, Japan was Malaysia’s fourth largest trading partner while Malaysia is Japan’s 10th largest trading partner. “Bilateral trade between both countries stood at RM120.26 billion (US$28.98 billion). Between January and July last year, the trade value stood at RM80.28 billion (US$18.35 billion), an increase of 17.9 per cent from the same period in 2016,” he said.

Zahid said the total amount of investments in 2016 was RM1.9 billion (US$0.4 billion), via 53 projects which created 4,392 job opportunities. “Malaysia believes that the bilateral trade of the two countries will continue to expand in the future through various opportunities created by both countries via the Look East Policy.

“The country also appreciates the presence of Japanese investors which is the main source for foreign direct investment in the manufacturing sector,” he said.

–NSTP



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Felda regaining Jalan Semarak land was not an act: Shahrir Samad


BANTAHAN LARANGAN KESATUAN EROPAH MINYAK SAWIT

MO,17/1/2018, KUALA LUMPUR: Felda chairman Tan Sri Shahrir Abdul Samad yesterday squashed rumours claiming that the issue of Felda ownership of lands at Jalan Semarak was purely an act. He stressed that the issue was legitimate and Felda had monday, managed to secure the lands again.

“Some have said that this was all an act, a miracle. I stress that this is not as suggested and the land owned by Felda was not transferred of its ownership to the developer by said developer themselves. “With the principles of honesty and trust, we have managed to solve the dispute in a matter of 35 days,” he said in a speech during a protest against European Union’s sanctions on palm oil here yesterday.

According to Shahrir, Felda has always been the target of defamation and slander by irresponsible parties. “We are always targeted because we are strong, and we are right. This is not what they (irresponsible parties) are accusing us of.” It was reported that developer Synergy Promenade Sdn Bhd had successfully returned the land worth RM270 million in Jalan Semarak to Felda monday.

The ownership of the land was previously transferred to Synergy Promenade Sdn Bhd without approval since 2015. The return of the land occurred 26 days after Berita Harian had exposed that Felda was at risk of losing ownership of the land to the development of the Kuala Lumpur Vertical City.

–BH



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Xiamen Airlines makes inaugural Beijing-KK flight


Xiamen

MO,17/1/2018, KOTA KINABALU: Chinese tourist arrivals in Sabah will be boosted as Xiamen Airlines has opened the state to the northern China market with its inaugural direct flight from Beijing to Kota Kinabalu. The airline made Kota Kinabalu its first international destination from Beijing and expects more tourists from the city and northern China to travel to Sabah, in addition to those from the southern and central parts of the country.

“We expect the new route to contribute to the growing demand of Chinese and expatriate holiday-makers to Sabah,” said Ou Dong Ying, the airlines’ vice president for its Beijing operations. Xiamen Airlines has been operating direct flights from Fuzhou in central China to Kota Kinabalu since Jan 2017, with an average 80% load on their Boeing 737-800 aircraft.

State Tourism, Culture and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun arrived together with Malaysian ambassador to China Datuk Zainuddin Yahya on the inaugural flight from Beijing. “Tourists from north China can now fly in directly without having to transit,” he said on arrival at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport.

The Sabah Tourism Board also gave a traditional welcome to tourists who got off the plane.  “There will be a strong exchange of visitors that will foster good people-to-people relations between Sabah and China,” he said, adding that about 40 chartered flights from China are expected over the next three months.

Sabah had 3.65 million Chinese visitors last year, a record increase of 430,000 visitors or more than 14% compared to 2016. The value of tourism receipts was estimated as RM7.7bil. Masidi said with such a high number of tourist arrivals, the state cabinet had asked several companies to build more hotels to cater to the growing needs of tourists.

–TheStar



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Felda NGOs want probe on Felda land scandal to continue


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MO,17/1/2018, KUALA LUMPUR: Felda non-governmental organisations have expressed relief at the return of the Jalan Semarak land worth RM270 million to Felda, after more than a month of disputes surrounding the land’s transfer of ownership. They nevertheless want the authorities to get to the bottom of the case, identify the guilty parties and bring them to justice.

Felda Malaysia Youth Council president Muhammad Fadzli Hassan told  that while they are happy at the return of the land, they were pinning high hopes on the perpetrators being caught soon. “Those guilty must be brought to justice. They cannot be forgotten just because the land was returned to Felda. The youth of Felda views integrity very seriously and we hope the issue is kept alive.”

Integrity, he said, needs to be upheld in a case like this as it has been the main thrust of Felda members. “The management of Felda under chairman Tan Sri Shahrir Samad has to be commended for their good work in returning the confidence of the settlers by addressing this issue.” The National Felda Settlers’ Children’s Association (ANAK), on the other hand questioned why developer Synergy Promenade Sdn Bhd (SPSB) had returned the land to Felda so easily.

ANAK president Mazlan Aliman said the return of the 16 plots of Felda land by Synergy Promenade to Felda was proof that the ownership transfer of the land was illegitimate from the beginning as the developer did not defend their ownership of the land. “Felda must establish what were the benefits, if any, promised to Synergy Promenade as Shahrir had, on Dec 21, said the Felda board of directors had decided to put a stop to the Kuala Lumpur Vertical City (KLVC) project.

“Monday however, Shahrir said the development project would be allowed to proceed.” He said it did not make sense for the developer to return the land without enjoying any benefits on their part. He urged the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission and police to continue with the investigation regarding the land ownership transfer in 2015.

“Any individuals or Felda management who have committed a crime must be charged as the transaction was tainted with fraud. “The return of the land does not clear the name of whoever was involved and the crime they committed,” he said. Berita Harian, in an exclusive report late last year, broke the story that Felda was at risk of losing ownership of the piece of land worth more than RM200 million following what had been described as a “dubious deal” in 2015.

The plot of land, which had been earmarked for the KLVC development project, will feature seven towers, including Felda’s iconic tower, to be known as KLVC Tower 1A. The ownership transfer of the land took place when FIC Sdn Bhd appointed SPSB as its main developer on June 3, 2014, and it was granted full power of attorney to develop the land.

On Monday, SPSB returned all plots of land involved on Jalan Semarak and all documents related to the parcels of land alienated to the developer to Felda, at no cost. The KLVC project would also proceed as the land has already received approval for development as would the investigation on who was behind the controversy.

–NSTP



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Najib congratulates national U-23 football team on reaching q-finals


02PMNajib_1509529232

MO,17/1/2018, KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak congratulated the national under-23 (U-23) football team for advancing into the quarter-finals of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U-23 Championship at the Kunshan Stadium in China last night.

“Congratulations #HarimauMalaya U-23 for defeating Saudi Arabia to advance into the quarter-finals #AFCU23! #Negaraku #Kebanggaanku,” he tweeted.

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The national squad booked its berth to the quarter-finals after beating Saudi Arabia 1-0 in the last match of Group C.

Felda United midfielder Danial Amier Norhisham emerged as Malaysian hero after scoring the only goal in the match, enabling Malaysia to finish second in the sudden death round behind Iraq.

On Friday, Malaysia will play against the champion of Group D, in which the competition is still on between South Korea, Vietnam, Australia and Syria. – BERNAMA



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Malaysia reach AFC Under-23 quarter-finals


BOLA

MO,17/1/2018, KUALA LUMPUR: The national youth team created history in the AFC Under-23 Championship when they defeated Saudi Arabia 1-0 in a Group C match to qualify for the quarter-finals at the Kunshan Stadium on Tuesday. Ong Kim Swee’s side finished second with four points behind Iraq, who topped the group on seven following a 1-0 win over Jordan.

The coach only made one change to the team that drew 1-1 with Jordan last week by fielding R. Kogileswaran for Jafri Firdaus Chew in attack while Safawi Rasid and Akhyar Rashid, who were down with injuries before the game, also played. Saudi Arabia started aggressively and had several chances but the Malaysian defence stood firm.

Fahad Al Rashidi’s free kick rattled the Malaysian crossbar in the third minute while goalkeeper Haziq Nadzli blocked Abdulelah Alamri’s header in the 16th minute. However, it was Malaysia who took the lead through Daniel Amier Norhisham in the 28th minute after receiving a pass from Matthew Davies.

In the second half, the Saudis used long balls to trouble Malaysia, but Kim Swee’s boys defended well to hold on to the win. Malaysia will play the champions of Group D, comprising Australia, South Korea, Vietnam and Syria, on Jan 20.

–NSTP



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Zahid teaches cleric a history lesson


zahid

MO,17/1/2018, KUALA LUMPUR: Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi (pic) has taught a Muslim cleric Malaysian history, pointing out that it is absolutely inaccurate to claim that only the Malays fought for the country during World War II and the Malayan Emergency. Referring to writings by historian Tan Sri Khoo Kay Kim, the Deputy Prime Minister said history had shown that the struggle against Japanese occupiers and the Malayan Communist Party (CPM) involved all races in the country.

“History has recorded the contributions made by all races in Malaysia in fighting the Japanese and the communists. “So, to think that only one race had fought for the country, I think that is very inaccurate,” he told reporters at a press conference held after the “Building a nation of integrity” forum at the Malaysian Institute of Integrity. “There is no need to create a polemic because all races have given their best contributions to the country,” added Dr Ahmad Zahid.

At a convention on Saturday, Muslim cleric and Ummah chairman Ismail Mina claimed that only the Malay community had resisted British colonists, Japanese occupiers and the communists. Ummah is an umbrella organisation of around 300 local Muslim NGOs. The cleric, during the convention, had repeatedly said that the minorities could potentially undermine the position of Islam and Malay political dominance in the country.

Ismail’s remarks were met with criticisms by Malaysians, with MCA on Monday calling for him to be investigated for sedition. At the same time, National Patriots Association (NPA) chairman Brig-Gen (Rtd) Datuk Mohamed Arshad Raji also refuted Ismail’s remarks, saying that officers of all ethnicities had fought alongside Malay veterans. Mohamed Arshad said the CPM did not wholly comprise ethnic Chinese, noting that its leaders had included Abdullah CD, Rashid Mydin and Samsiah Pakeh, who are ethnic Malay.

Meanwhile, Dr Ahmad Zahid sent a strong message to potential Barisan Nasional candidates for the 14th General Election, saying that all candidates will be subjected to an “integrity test” conducted by a Barisan special task unit in collaboration with the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).

He said each state had sent a complete line-up of its candidates to contest in the coming polls.

–TheStar



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Leaders: Decision on HSR will be transparent


HSR

MO,17/1/2018. The decision on who will win the bid for the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High Speed Rail (HSR) project will be made in an open and transparent manner and based on many conditions, including reliability and the track record of bidders. Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said a systematic evaluation process was necessary.

Speaking at a joint press conference with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak after their retreat here, Lee said it was not unusual to evaluate a range of factors in a complex project. “It is not just the price but the reliability, the condition of financing, the track record and your confidence in the company over what they have done elsewhere.

“There is a process. In the end, there is a judgment which we will do rapidly but the process is transparent and open. “I think people will have confidence that this is a judgment made in good faith and without prejudice to any party and without intending to favour any side,” he said. “When you have a competition, you must have a winner and a non-winner,” he said.

The leaders were asked on the criteria to decide on the company for the project following Nikkei Asean Review report saying the Japanese government would help a Japanese corporate consortium win a bid for the HSR project. The report said there were plans to provide financial support through a public-private fund. The Malaysian and Singaporean governments started a bidding process last month for the project, which sets out to build a 350km rail line to cut travel time between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore to 90 minutes.

Najib said the assessment would be comprehensive and not just a matter of technicalities and cost. “It will also take into account the longevity of the project, maintenance cost and especially local content. “It is important to maximise local content so that people will see that the project will have tangible benefits even during the construction period,” he added.

Both leaders expressed happiness that the good relations in the last few years had resulted in productive results and would look at new areas of cooperation to move the agenda forward. On water, both leaders agreed that it was becoming critical for Johor and Singapore with increasing demand and new development areas like Iskandar. “Malaysia will look into Singapore’s proposal on a joint hydrometric modelling study of the Johor River to examine measures to conserve Linggiu Reservoir stock,” he said.

The leaders, in their joint statement, reaffirmed the importance of undertaking the necessary measures to ensure reliable and adequate water supply from the Johor River as provided for in the 1962 Water Agreement. Both countries also affirmed the terms of the 1962 Water Agreement, under which Singapore is given the full and exclusive right to draw up to a maximum of 250 million gallons of water per day from the Johor River.

–TheStar



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