KUALA LUMPUR: RHB Banking Group (RHB) has affirmed that an employee at its Inanam branch in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah tested positive for Covid-19 on Oct 21.© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 26 — Twelve Chinese nationals including two women were arrested in a police raid on a hotel, here last Friday for suspected involvement in a non-existent online stock investment scheme targeting investors from China..
Bukit Aman Commercial Crime Investigation Department (CCID) director, Datuk Zainuddin Yaacob said those detained comprised 10 men and two women, aged between 23 and 37, with nine of them not having valid travel documents.
He said the investigation found that the scam syndicate had been operating since last year and regularly moved by turning luxury condominium units and hotels around Klang Valley as centres for their activities.
“They promoted (the investment scheme) and influenced investors by using scripts given by the syndicate’s mastermind through the WeChat application where the syndicate could show the current stock market situations.
“So far, there have been no reports linking the syndicate to locals and it used the WeChat Pay and Alipay functions to do contactless transactions with customers in China,” he said at a press conference, here, today.
He added that the syndicate was able to pay salaries of RM2,500 to RM4,000 monthly to its members and was also able to rent luxury condominium units and hotels at RM9,000 to RM13,000 a month.
All the suspects are remanded since Saturday until tomorrow, while police are also tracking down a local man, believed to be protecting the syndicate.
During the raid, police also seized seven laptops, 125 mobile phones and Malaysian, China, Hong Kong and Macau currencies amounting to RM28,144.
The case is being investigated under Section 420 of the Penal Code, Section 6 (1) and Section 15 (1) of the Immigration Act 1958/63 and Rule 39(b) of the Immigration Regulations 1963.
Zainuddin said a total of 617 individuals were arrested in 60 raids throughout the country between early January and Oct 23 in connection with criminal activities using call centres. — Bernama
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 26 — Bank Muamalat Malaysia Berhad (Bank Muamalat) today confirmed one of its Johor Baru Regional Office employees tested positive for Covid-19.
Bank Muamalat in a statement said as a precautionary measure, all employees at the regional office and branch in Johor Bahru who had been in direct contact with the said employee had been asked to self-quarantine at home for the next 14 days.
“Contact tracing is also underway, in line with the Health Ministry’s guidelines.
“Thorough sanitisation and cleaning procedures are being carried out at both premises located at Kebun Teh Commercial City, Jalan Kebun Teh, in Johor Baru, Johor,” it said, adding that five employees from the Kota Kinabalu branch had previously tested positive for Covid-19, one of whom had since recovered.
To mitigate possible health risks due to the rising number of Covid-19 cases, selected Bank Muamalat branches would now operate from 9.15am to 3pm.
“Bank Muamalat is taking aggressive steps to safeguard the health and safety of its customers, staff and communities while ensuring the smooth delivery of important financial services.
“Bank Muamalat would like to assure its customers that business continues to operate as usual, with minimal disruptions whilst maintaining safety as its number one priority,” the statement said.
For further information, members of the public may visit Bank Muamalat’s website or call 03-2600 5500. — Bernama
Educational institutions in Selangor, KL, Putrajaya to remain closed until Nov 9, says Education Ministry
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 26 — All educational institutions registered with the Education Ministry (MOE) in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya will remain closed until November 9.
The ministry said in a statement that this was in line with the announcement made by Senior Minister (Security) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob today on the extension of the conditional movement control order (CMCO) period in the three areas for another two weeks.
It said the closure involved kindergartens, schools, boarding schools, private schools, vocational colleges and Teacher Education Institutes (IPG).
As such, administrators in these institutions have been directed to ensure all teachers and students continued their teaching and learning sessions at home, adding that the manual could be downloaded from the MOH’s portal at www.moe.gov.my.
Previously, the CMCO in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya, which began on October 14, is scheduled to end tomorrow. — Bernama
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 26 — RHB Banking Group (RHB) has confirmed that an employee at its Inanam branch in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah tested positive for Covid-19 on Oct 21, 2020.
In a statement today, the bank said the affected employee was identified by the Ministry of Health (MOH) as a close contact to a Covid-19 positive person on Oct 8.
“As such, the employee has been away from the branch and under home quarantine since that date,” it said.
It also said that deep cleaning and sanitisation activities had been carried out at the branch in accordance with MOH guidelines.
“We have taken all necessary precautionary measures to ensure the health and safety of our customers, employees and the community,” the banking group added. — Bernama
AMSTERDAM, Oct 26 — The number of coronavirus infections in the Netherlands jumped by more than 10,300 in 24 hours, hitting a new record, data released by the National Institute for Public Health (RIVM) today showed.
The RIVM said the number of confirmed new cases of Covid-19 reached a new high of 10,343, while the total number of infections in the country passed 300,000 during the pandemic. — Reuters
BISHKEK, Oct 26 — Kyrgyzstan’s acting leader Sadyr Japarov said today that he will stand in a presidential election called after weeks of political turmoil in the Central Asian nation.
Japarov, a populist politician and convicted kidnapper, became prime minister and acting president during unrest that swept the ex-Soviet country following a disputed parliamentary vote in early October.
The Central Election Commission announced on Saturday that it had set a new presidential vote for January 10.
“I will step down in early December and participate in the election,” Japarov said in a statement.
“I will participate in the elections as an ordinary citizen. If I am elected, I will be president. If not—I will remain an ordinary citizen,” Japarov said.
The 51-year-old had been serving a prison sentence for hostage-taking and was released from jail during violence that erupted after the October 4 vote.
Election results were cancelled after a protest led by losing parties against vote-buying and other violations escalated into clashes pitting protesters against police.
Then-president Sooronbay Jeenbekov resigned from his post amid the unrest, leaving power in the hands of Japarov who promised new parliamentary and presidential elections.
A parliamentary vote was set for December 20 but then cancelled, as Japarov called for constitutional changes and the disbanding of the elections commission.
Kyrgyzstan is the most pluralist among the Central Asian states that became independent with the collapse of the Soviet Union, but it is also the most politically unstable.
Jeenbekov became the third president to resign since the country, which had also witnessed two revolutions, gained independence in 1991. — AFP
WASHINGTON, Oct 26 — US Vice President Mike Pence tested negative for coronavirus today, his office said, after multiple senior aides tested positive for Covid-19 over the weekend.
“This morning, Vice President Pence and the Second Lady tested negative for Covid-19,” Pence’s office said in a statement. — Reuters
PUTRAJAYA: The Health Ministry has denied claims that there has been manipulation of the numbers of Covid-19 cases in the country.© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 26 — DAP MP Tony Pua said today he would never ever support a government that relies on the backing of disgraced former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
Following reports of the latter lobbying for Barisan Nasional (BN) to support PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim as prime minister, Pua described Najib as the “biggest crook in the country” who brought shame to Malaysians worldwide and burdened the country with tens of billions ringgit of debt.
“Absolutely nuts. Some who may have unprincipled hunger for power would lap up Najib’s support to form a new government. I would never sign up to such a government.
“A government who has to depend on Najib’s support can go to hell. We already see that happening for Perikatan Nasional,” the Damansara MP said in a statement tonight.
The DAP publicity secretary also said Najib has demonstrated neither remorse nor expressed any guilt despite being convicted for corruption related to the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) scandal.
His stinging remarks come after Malaysiakini reported that Najib had lobbied BN to support Anwar during the meeting between the pact’s MP held at the KL World Trade Centre earlier today.
An anonymous source had claimed the BN meeting was almost put on hold after the former coalition chairperson made the proposal.
Umno leaders are set to decide later tonight if the party would continue to back Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin or withdraw their support, following the embattled prime minister’s failed bid to declare an emergency.
Earlier, Najib revealed no decision was made at the BN Supreme Council despite the various views expressed about the royal decree that rejected Muhyiddin’s proposition for a state of emergency to be declared.
Several weeks prior, a purported letter which claimed that a certain number of Umno MPs had allegedly rescinded their support for Muhyiddin who is leading the PN government and were purportedly backing Anwar to be prime minister went viral.
The letter had allegedly carried Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s name as the purported author of the letter, and had allegedly contained both Zahid’s and Najib’s signatures.
This comes as DAP Senator Liew Chin Tong said yesterday that Muhyiddin could secure the support of political opponents to stabilise his administration if he were willing to remove Senior Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali and Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin from the Cabinet.
OCTOBER 26 — Yesterday, the Deputy Minister for Energy and Natural Resources, made known his qualification as an engineer, and used his engineering logic, to support the call for a Proclamation of Emergency to be declared. Or so it has been reported. Short of calling the Deputy Minister to verify, I can only quote what has been reported. Apparently, he said as a trained engineer his profession has taught him to have “a fail-safe pause or emergency button” to be built into any device. And thus, it seems the Constitution must also function as a machine with this useful pause or emergency button. And further, listen to this: “And So Tommy’s legal language simply defies the rational logic of an engineer.” I hope the good Deputy Minister has been misquoted. “Tommy”, of course is none other than Tan Sri Tommy Thomas, the country’s previous Attorney-General. “Tommy”, I can safely assure you, does not have an engineering degree. He has law degrees and to my knowledge years of legal experience. I should think he is eminently qualified to comment on the constitutionality of the attempt to have a Proclamation of Emergency made under Article 150 of the Federal Constitution. The Deputy Minister, I think, does not have a law degree or is legally qualified. So, there is no need really to entertain this “interesting” principle of “pause/ emergency button” constitutional interpretation. We can leave it at that.
Today, however, we have constitutional pundits, very legally-qualified, coming to the fore ( move aside, Ali Biju) to argue ( if in court, “submit”) the Yang di-Pertuan Agong has no discretion to refuse the advice of the Cabinet to issue a Proclamation of Emergency under Article150 (1). The arguments get slightly technical. Lawyers thrive on technicalities so much so sometimes we fail to see the wood for the trees. If we are in court, these arguments can easily take up approximately three full days. If a very senior counsel is arguing, it might take three months or more, what with copious citations from case-law, local, Indian, the Commonwealth and what else.
I don’t propose to entangle the reader with the “trees”. Let’s look a the “wood”, the general, big issue at hand. Is the Federal Constitution so static that the Yang di-Pertuan Agong must agree with an advice given when that advice is based on an implausible basis? Extend the argument further. What if the advice itself is questionable? Is the answer in the Federal Constitution that simple? The Yang di-Pertuan Agong has no discretion? He must agree no matter what. It this what constitutional monarchy is about? Are we forgetting the role of the constitutional monarch as a moderating influence in the intricate system of checks and balances that comprise the basic principles of the Constitution?
But, some will say look at the case law. Look at the learned commentaries. They say the Agong must act strictly according to the advice of the Cabinet or a Minister authorized by the Cabinet. These commentators are still clinging on to the “trees” which by now are very “old” and “dated”. The Constitution is a living document. It must be interpreted accordingly in a dynamic and progressive manner anchored on its basic principles.
So, if in Article 150(1) it says “if the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is satisfied that a grave emergency exists whereby the security, or the economic life, or public order in the Federation or any part thereof is threatened, he may issue a Proclamation of Emergency ”, there is an element of discretion, a residual discretion to the general rule that in normal cases the monarch is expected to act in accordance with the advice of the executive. There is nothing in Article 40(1) or (1A) to obliterate this residual discretion.
Look again at the wording of Article 40(1) and the general heading “Yang di-Pertuan Agong to act on advice”. What does it exactly say? In the exercise of is functions under this Constitution or federal law the Yang di-Pertuan Agong shall act in accordance with the advice of the Cabinet or of a Minister acting under the general authority of the Cabinet, EXCEPT AS OTHERWISE PROVIDED BY THIS CONSTITUTION ” One of the exceptions stares at us in the face in Article 150(1).
What about Article 40(1A)? This amendment which came in the wake of other amendments on the breadth of the royal assent to legislation, refers to the “exercise of his functions under this Constitution or federal law, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is to act in accordance with advice...”, where is that “federal law” to compel the Agong to act on the advice in the context of Article 150(1)?
So, when the Federal Constitution is properly appreciated and neutrally interpreted based on its technical wording, its underlying purposes, its dynamic structure and a consciousness that it functions as a high instrument to regulate raw politics sometimes carried to an excess, the decision by our constitutional monarch to refuse the advice to proclaim an Emergency has a sound constitutional basis.
It has nothing to do with engineering principles, Yang Berhormat Timbalan Menteri Ali Biju.
* Tan Sri Ariff Yusof was Speaker of the Dewan Rakyat.
** This is the personal opinion of the writer and does not necessarily represent the views of Malay Mail.
KLUANG, Oct 26 — A man was charged at the Magistrate’s Court here today for murdering a police retiree in a premises here, in August.
The accused, Lim Fong Kim, 37, nodded after the charge was read out to him in Mandarin before Magistrate ND Arun, but no plea was recorded as the murder case comes under the jurisdiction of the High Court.
According to the charge sheet, Lim allegedly killed Su Kim Chiang, 57, by using a motorcycle fork at a premises on 22nd Mile, Jalan Ikan Merah 5, Kahang Dalam here between 8.10pm and 9pm, on August 31.
Lim who was an employee of a tyre shop was charged under Section 302 of the Penal Code which carries the death sentence upon conviction.
Meanwhile, Saharudin A Samad, 42, was jointly charged with Lim for burying the body of the police retiree to assist Lim to escape legal punishment at an oil palm plantation at 26th Mile, Jalan Mersing, near here, between 8.10pm on August 31 and 1.30am on September 1.
Saharudin claimed trial for the offence under Section 201 of the Penal Code and read together with Section 34 of the Penal Code, which provides imprisonment of up to seven years and fine if convicted.
Deputy public prosecutor Nur Zahida Muhammad Ruzi prosecuted while both the accused were unrepresented.
Magistrate Arun allowed bail of RM5,000 with one surety for Saharudin and fixed November 26 for mention and submission of documents and autopsy report. — Bernama
PUTRAJAYA: Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah has urged the public to report to police any gatherings they witness being held in areas under the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO).© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd
LONDON, Oct 26 — Jose Mourinho has said his free-scoring Tottenham Hotspur side still have a long way to go in match the attacking threat of the celebrated Real Madrid team he guided to La Liga glory.
Spurs have scored 31 goals in their last nine games in all competitions ahead of today’s trip to Burnley in the Premier League, with England star Harry Kane and South Korea’s Son Heung-min both in fine form this season.
Yet even that glut is overshadowed by the 121 goals that Real managed when winning La Liga in 2011/12 under the guidance of the much-travelled Mourinho, also a title-winning manager in his native Portugal with Porto, in England with Chelsea and in Italy with Inter Milan.
At the Bernabeu, Mourinho had the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema and Gonzalo Higuain to call upon up front in addition to a solid defensive unit.
But Tottenham, who were last crowned champions of England nearly fifty years ago, have been unusually profligate for a Mourinho team which they demonstrated while letting slip a 3-0 lead in the final 10 minutes of an extraordinary 3-3 draw with London rivals West Ham last week.
“In Real Madrid, I had amazing, amazing attacking players and we managed to build the team in a certain way,” Mourinho said.
“I have to be honest and say we have lots of good attacking players here but we need to give stability to the team because the team needs stability in the back to feel solid, confident — to (be able to) have a go,” he added with Spurs currently a modest 11th in the Premier League table.
“So we need to find that balance... Behind, we need to improve in some details — that’s obvious.”
Mourinho was criticised for being overly defensive during his time in charge of Manchester United and in his first season at Spurs.
But he insisted tactics were conditioned by the players at his disposal, saying: “Depends on the team. They cannot say that about my Real Madrid team that scored 121 goals in the league.
“If they say that about the way to finish second with Manchester United or last season to try to get a way to finish top six and to be in the Europa League, I think they are right.” — AFP
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 26 — Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who is facing calls to quit as prime minister, finds himself at the mercy of Umno as the latter’s Supreme council meeting tonight will decide if they will continue to back his Perikatan Nasional government.
His hold on power appears to be precarious as Umno’s meeting tonight will scrutinise all the views discussed during the meeting with Barisan Nasional(BN) earlier this afternoon.
First to arrive at the KL World Trade Centre was Umno Youth chief Datuk Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki after 8pm, followed by former Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Abdul Rahman Dahlan.
Pasir Salak MP Datuk Seri Tajuddin Abdul Rahman arrived at 8.30pm, followed by Datuk Rosnah Abdul Rashid Shirlin.
The most recent arrival at 9pm was Deputy Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Zahidi Zainul Abidin.
None of the council members spoke to the press and remained tight-lipped to the meeting room.
Earlier today Zahidi said one of the strongest views given was for Umno to renegotiate with Muhyiddin because there are so many posts given to Bersatu.
Malaysiakini also reported this evening that former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak also had lobbied BN to support PKR president Anwar Ibrahim during the meeting between BN parliamentarians earlier today.
The report quoted several sources confirming the matter to the portal.
Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi will be chairing tonight’s meeting that comes after the King’s decision yesterday to decline Muhyiddin’s proposal for an Emergency declaration.
The King also warned MPs against political manoeuvres that could destabilise the government.
In tonight’s meeting, ultimately Umno could decide to continue backing Muhyiddin and the latter would live to fight another day, at least until his Budget is passed by Parliament.