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Does Malaysia Have Race Relations Problems?

Photo Credit: Olivander

Outgoing Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi mentioned that Malaysia’s race relations are at an unhealthy level and that he will spend his remaining time in the administration to cool these tensions.

I’m aware that being both a multi-cultured and united society is very challenging indeed. At the same time, I can’t help but think that this issue has been blown out of proportion lately.

Seriously, I’m sure that a huge majority of Malaysians have already accepted the fact that we’re a nation of multiple ethnicities and religious backgrounds. Heck, we’ve been this way even before independence. Yet, I’m very sure we recognized that nationhood is not an issue of the individual; but rather, what we can become as a community.

The way I see it, the only people who are making this issue a big deal are the politicians. Both the ruling coalition and the opposition look to me hell bent on making this issue larger than life.

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Petrol Prices To Be Revised: Guess The New Price And Win $30

Petrol Price

Image Credit: TedsBlog

So it’s virtually confirmed; the price of petrol (or gas for you American folks) in Malaysia will be hiked. Abdullah Badawi says it will be announced and implemented tomorrow (Wednesday, 4 June 2008). Shahrir Samad (Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister) says although the announcement might come tomorrow, implementation would take longer.

So who’s right? Our PM flip-flops so much that I find it becoming harder everyday to believe what he says. I tend to swing towards Datuk Shahrir in this issue, primarily because he’s a trained economist and petrol price control is under his ministry’s area of responsibility.

However, I can’t resist the temptation to guess what’s the new price of petrol would be soon. I’m sure many Malaysians and non-Malaysians do to. So why not make this guesswork (or speculation as our beloved PM seems to call it) be both fun and profitable.

I am now officially launching the “HTNet Speculate Guess The New Price Of Malaysian Petrol Contest” where there can only be one winner. The first person who guesses the correct revised price for a liter of petrol in Malaysia will be given $30 (USD)!

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Malaysian Parliament Dissolved, Polling Day To Be Announced Tomorrow

Less than 24 hours after denying that parliament will be dissolved today, he did exactly just that just a few minutes from the time of this post. However, this is no surprise since there was a lot of speculation that today would be the day anyway. Abdullah Ahmad Badawi added that the official date for polling day would be announced tomorrow.

I don’t really care when the election date would be. The only thing that’s on my mind is that I have to perform my duty as a Malaysian and go out to vote on that day. Are you a registered voter?

UPDATE: Polling day is 8 March 2008.

Dissecting The Pak Lah Wedding Effect On HTNet

If you’re Malaysian, you’d probably know by now that our dear Prime Minister, YAB Dato’s Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi dropped a bombshell yesterday by announcing his imminent marriage to Jeanne Abdullah. The private function will be held this Saturday.

I first heard of this news via SMS at 12:15pm. I was having lunch and almost choked when I read the message. I thought, surely this is just another rumour. I ate as fast as I could and returned to the office in a hurry. Google returned blanks, and I headed towards PPS

Lo and behold, there were about four or five blog posts there mentioning this news. A quick session of blog-hopping led me to the official press statement from the PMO.

I’m sure my blog post was one of the first 50 (I’m absolutely positive that it’s within the first 100) or so on the blogosphere which touched on the topic. Being among the first to write about this announcement garners significant amount of traffic.

So massive was the sudden influx of traffic, that it’d choked my poor server for about 10 minutes. To illustrate the “Pak Lah Wedding Effect” on HTNet, I prepared some before and after screenshots of my web stats.

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Wedding Bells For Malaysian PM This Saturday

This is not a rumour.

Malaysian Prime Minister, Dato’ Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi will be marrying Jeanne Abdullah this Saturday in a private function to be held at Seri Perdana (the official residence of the premier).

The press release, which is in Malay, can be read here.

For the benefit of those who can’t read Malay (or is it Bahasa Malaysia now), here is my translation of the text:

Press Release Announcing the Wedding Ceremony of The Prime Minister

With happiness, we’d like to inform that the Prime Minister, Dato’ Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi will be marrying Jeanne Abdullah on Saturday, 9 June 2007 (23 Jamadilawwal 1428 Hijrah).

Jeanne Abdullah was born in Kuala Lumpur on 29 July 1953 and is the first of four siblings. She received her education from Assunta Secondary School and is well experienced in the field of administration and hotel management. She has been involved in the management of some of the most well-knowned hotels in Malaysia including Hilton Kuala Lumpur and Pan Pacific Hotel. Jeanne has also served as a supervisor of the official residence of the Deputy Prime Minister as well as being a manager of the Seri Perdana Complex.

Jeanne has two children, Nadiah and Nadene.

The function will be held at Seri perdana and will be attended by close family members only.

There’s an unconfirmed picture of the soon-to-be Mrs PM here. Please note that I cannot confirm nor deny that that is really her picture!