The True Net http://www.thetruenet.com True News That Matters Wed, 08 Apr 2020 11:17:27 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.3.2 Ismail Sabri: Hotel Quarantine Centres Can’t Charge More Than RM150 per Room Night http://www.thetruenet.com/news/ismail-sabri-hotel-quarantine-centres-cant-charge-more-than-rm150-per-room-night/ Wed, 08 Apr 2020 11:01:23 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57489 Hotels which have been gazetted as quarantine stations for Malaysians returning from abroad cannot charge more than RM150 per room per night as agreed with Putrajaya.

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Hotels which have been gazetted as quarantine stations for Malaysians returning from abroad cannot charge more than RM150 per room per night as agreed with Putrajaya, Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said today.

In his daily press conference, Ismail said that the RM150 covers room charges, food and drinks of the occupants who are to be quarantined.

“Hotels that are registered as quarantine centres and gazetted, we have already reached an agreement that their rates; rates for their room rentals, including food and drinks, is RM150 only.

“This has already been agreed upon, so there is no issue of them being charged extra,” Ismail said.

He made his remark following fears by some already quarantined that they may have to pay more after some hotels were reported saying there was no such agreement.

The Malaysian Association of Hotels has since clarified that all its members have discussed the matter with Putrajaya and agreed to the RM150 rate.

Ismail Sabri said that currently, there are 172 quarantine centres, including 12 hotels which are in operation, with 8,153 people under mandatory quarantine.

He said that 697 people returned to Malaysia yesterday, with 679 taken for quarantine and 18 sent to hospitals.

“Though we said that all are to undergo mandatory quarantine, those who have symptoms like having cough, flu and all others which we classify as symptomatic, will be sent straight to hospitals,” he said. – MMO

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Government to Distribute 4 Face Masks per Household http://www.thetruenet.com/news/government-to-distribute-4-face-masks-per-household/ Wed, 08 Apr 2020 10:57:59 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57486 A total of 24.6 million face masks will be given away to households nationwide to protect themselves against Covid-19.

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A total of 24.6 million face masks will be given away to households nationwide to protect themselves against Covid-19.

Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said the Civil Defence Force would distribute the face masks to the state National Security Councils and then to the districts.

It would then be passed on to the state Natural Disaster Management committees to the respective district frontliners who will then hand it over to the households.

“Each household will receive four pieces of face masks for free. As recommended by the Health Ministry, only those with flu-like symptoms should be wearing the masks.

Bernama

“As for those in Sabah, Sarawak and Labuan, it will be flown over by the Royal Malaysian Air Force on Friday,” said Ismail in Putrajaya today.

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Authorities Slammed for Inaction Against Airlines Refusing to Refund Cancelled Flights http://www.thetruenet.com/news/authorities-slammed-for-inaction-against-airlines-refusing-to-refund-cancelled-flights/ Wed, 08 Apr 2020 10:50:23 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57482 Matta has voiced its disappointment with the authorities for their silence on fare refund issues faced by travel agents and passengers of cancelled flights due to Covid-19.

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The Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (Matta) has voiced its disappointment with the authorities for their silence on fare refund issues faced by travel agents and passengers of cancelled flights due to Covid-19.
Najjua Zulkefli/TMI

In a statement, Matta vice-president Shazli Affuat Ghazali said the Transport Ministry (MOT) and the Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) should make clear what measures are in place or will be introduced for customers to get their money back.

“One of Mavcom’s functions is to provide a mechanism for protection of consumers.

“MOT must take into cognisance that airlines are the first in the long line of supply chains and every action taken by them will ripple across the entire tourism industry,” he said.

Shazli said the airlines’ top priority should be making cash refunds to customers instead of issuing credit notes, which may have little or no value if they become insolvent.

“Airlines should give full refund for payments made by passengers and travel agents without applying standard terms and conditions, which are applicable during normal times but not in a pandemic.

“While they are being bailed out or given loans to resume operations post-pandemic, they must first pay out cash refunds to restore public confidence.”

Matta said it has been normal practice for airlines to provide such refunds after major but localised disasters, and this practice should continue along with established precedents in dealing with this pandemic

“It is a matter of principle to return payments collected from customers for services not rendered due to the current extraordinary circumstances.

“What the country needs now is strong and decisive leadership to resolve the issue,” Shazli said.

He said although it is painful enough for individual passengers to await their refunds for an indefinite period of time, the real agony is much greater among travel agents who have to answer to constant pressure by angry customers.

According to Mavcom, there have been about 14 million flight cancellations by both Malaysian and foreign carriers for the period between January and December in addition to further seat reductions of 15% for domestic routes and 20% for international routes. – TMI

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Cops to Issue RM1,000 Fine for Violating MCO from Today http://www.thetruenet.com/news/cops-to-issue-rm1000-fine-for-violating-mco-from-today/ Wed, 08 Apr 2020 10:43:22 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57478 Flouters of the movement control order will face a compound of at least RM1,000 from today.

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Flouters of the movement control order will face a compound of at least RM1,000 from today, said Bukit Aman’s Internal Security and Public Order director Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani today.

Acryl explained that the move was to address concerns that custodial sentences for MCO violations created the risk of exposing the prison population to the coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

He said police have received the compound forms last week, and offenders will have to settle their dues at Health Ministry offices.

“We will issue the compound notices today, and the penalty for the initial offence is RM1,000,” he said.

He said the notice will not be issued at roadblocks, but at police stations.

“If offenders fail to pay the compound in two weeks, they will be brought to court.”

Acryl Sani said no discounts will be offered.

“So, be aware, everybody. The compound is not cheap, any government aid you might have got could be wasted on this compound.”

Acryl Sani said the compounds were provided for under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988.

Meanwhile, as of April 7, he said 66 policemen have been tested positive for Covid-19 and 1,225 more are under quarantine.

“Among those quarantined are 155 senior police personnel, 654 rank-and-file as well as 381 family members.” he said.

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Jailed for Fishing to Feed Family amid MCO, Duo Now Sentenced to Community Service http://www.thetruenet.com/news/jailed-for-fishing-to-feed-family-amid-mco-duo-now-sentenced-to-community-service/ Wed, 08 Apr 2020 10:40:11 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57475 Two labourers who were sentenced to three-month jail after they were caught fishing during the MCO to feed their families, were ordered to perform community service.

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Two labourers who were sentenced to three-month jail by Sungai Siput Magistrate’s Court after they were caught fishing during the movement control order (MCO) to feed their families, were ordered to perform community service by the High Court today.

High Court Justice Muniandy Kannyappan meted out the alternative punishment after lawyer Balakrishna Balaravi Pillai from the National Legal Aid Foundation sought for revision of the Magistrate’s Court’s decision.

In accordance with the provisions of the Offenders Compulsory Attendance Act 1954, both Chin Chee Wei, 45, and Chong Poh Wah, 56, were required to report to the Parole Department in Kuala Kangsar which will determine the type of community service to be performed for four hours a day over a three-month period.

Farhan Najib

(L) Chong Poh Wah and Chin Chee Wei.

However, the punishment will be only carried out after the MCO.

Until then, the duo has to report to the Sungai Siput Police District Headquarters every Monday.

The court also sought help from an ethnic Chinese reporter to interpret the judgment to Chin and Chong, as no Mandarin interpreter were available during the time of the proceeding.

Last Friday, the duo was sentenced and sent to Tapah Prison after pleading guilty to the offence before Magistrate Norhabsarina Ayob when they were charged at the Sungai Siput Magistrate’s Court.

According to the charge sheet, both Chin and Chong, who were on a motorcycle, had gone to a pond in Rimba Panjang in Sungai Siput on April 2 at 5pm and were stopped by policemen, who were patrolling.

They were unable to provide a valid reason for being there and were arrested under Section 269 of the Penal Code and the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act (Measures within the Infected Local Areas) Regulations.

Both Chin and Chong were charged under Rule 3(1) the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988, which carries a RM1,000 or imprisonment not more than six months or both.

Earlier, Balakrishna submitted that prison should be the last option as there were alternative punishments available for the offence committed

“Even though they did not comply to the MCO and went to fish, but they have a valid reason to do so, which is to provide food for their families.

“So prison should be the last option and alternative punishment such as community service should be considered,” he said.

Meanwhile, Deputy Public Prosecutor Mohd Azrul Faidz requested for a sentence that could educate the public so that there will be proper compliance with MCO.

“We pray for a sentence that could strike the balance between the public interest and also the interest of the accused,” he said.

Justice Muniandy then meted out the alternative punishment and ordered both Chin and Chong to perform community service.

Both Chin and Chong, when met outside the court, said that they are happy that they have escaped the jail punishment and promised that will not repeat the offence again.

“We will also report to the Sungai Siput Police District Headquarters every Monday until MCO is over as per instructed.

“And we will not go out if it is not necessary. We thank everyone who helped us,” he said. – MMO

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Covid-19: Recoveries Top New Cases for Second Time http://www.thetruenet.com/news/covid-19-recoveries-top-new-cases-for-second-time/ Wed, 08 Apr 2020 10:36:05 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57472 Malaysia for the second time this week recorded more recoveries from Covid-19 than new cases.

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Malaysia for the second time this week recorded more recoveries from Covid-19 than new cases, when Director-General of Health Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah today announced that 166 people have been discharged, while 156 new infections have been recorded.
  • 156 new infections, with total infections at 4,119
  • Two new deaths, with tally at 65
  • 76 in ICU, with 45 needing respiratory support
  • 15 transferred from ICU to regular wards
  • 166 discharged today, with total recoveries at 1,487

He said the total number of Covid-19 recoveries is now 1,487, while the country has logged 4,119 infections of the coronavirus.

Shafwan Zaidon

“Our recovery is at 36.1 percent,” he said.

Dr Noor Hisham said two more people have died of the virus – one of them a Pakistani national who had attended the tabligh gathering in Sri Petaling. Sixty-five people have died of Covid-19 in Malaysia so far.

The death toll so far is 65 or 1.58 percent of the total cases.

He said 76 Covid-19 patients are in intensive care, with 45 of them needing respiratory support.

Dr Noor Hisham also said 15 Covid-19 patients previously in intensive care units (ICU) have been transferred to regular wards.

On Monday, Malaysians cheered when 236 Covid-19 patients were discharged against 131 new cases, sparking hope that the country was making inroads in the battle to “flatten the curve” of infections.

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Hadi Started on a Bad Note as Middle East Special Envoy http://www.thetruenet.com/opinion/perspective/hadi-started-on-a-bad-note-as-middle-east-special-envoy/ Wed, 08 Apr 2020 09:31:13 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57462 The letter described PH as being controlled by communists, Christians and foreign powers, such as the United States, Europe and Zionists.

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The letter described PH as being controlled by communists, Christians and foreign powers, such as the United States, Europe and Zionists.

Abdul Hadi Awang’s new role as a diplomat started on a bad note as a letter he wrote to Muslim countries explaining the change of government in February has tarnished his image, said political analysts.

They told The Malaysian Insight a diplomat’s role is not to demonise Malaysia’s opposition and play up political rhetoric, but to build bridges between the government and foreign states.

Hadi’s letter, dated March 22 allegedly contained half-truths, was sent to countries in the Middle East and major Muslim groups justifying his party’s role in the bloodless coup in Putrajaya on February 24.

Hadi’s appointment letter as special envoy to the Middle East was dated March 22. Putrajaya announced his appointment on April 3.

The letter is awkward because it slanders Pakatan Harapan (PH) leaders – Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Anwar Ibrahim – two leaders who are well respected in the Middle East, the political analysts said.

They, however, said Malaysia’s relations with the Middle East are not expected to sour as it has a long-standing reputation among them as a modernised and moderate Muslim country, largely because of Dr Mahathir and Anwar.

“As a diplomat, Hadi has to build good relations between Malaysia and foreign governments,”   said political scientist Mazlan Ali of Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM)

“He has to stop talking about local politics with foreign governments. He has to learn to put aside domestic politics and focus on building relations.

“His attacks against Anwar and PH harms his own image because Anwar is very well-known in the Middle East. It does not affect PH’s standing because foreign governments deal with whoever is in power,” said Mazlan of the Razak School of Informatics.

“If PH and Anwar come back to power, then foreign governments will accept them and deal with them.”

No one takes Hadi seriously

Hadi and his party, PAS, supported Perikatan Nasional’s (PN) peaceful overthrow of the PH government led by Dr Mahathir on February 24.

PAS supported PN and its leader, Bersatu president Muhyiddin Yassin, who was then appointed prime minister on March 1.

Hadi’s March 22 letter, which was originally in Arabic, was to explain why an Islamist party colluded with PN to bring down PH.

Najjua Zulkefli/TMI

The letter described PH as being controlled by communists, Christians and foreign powers, such as the United States, Europe and Zionists.

Hadi even accused PH of being controlled by freemasons.

The PAS president also called Anwar, who was due to succeed Dr Mahathir as prime minister this year, as a “pragmatic secularist”.

P Ramakrishnan of the Human Rights group Aliran said Hadi’s intention to “paint PH as an enemy of Islam” is an effort to absolve his own party’s role in the February coup.

“So far, neither Hadi nor his party has refuted the existence of such a letter,” said Ramakrishnan.

“Neither have they denied the contents of the letter – which had been quoted and condemned – in spite of attempts seeking confirmation on its authenticity. Both Hadi and PAS leaders have chosen to keep mum.

“If his strategy was to denounce PH falsely to win over support from the Muslim leaders for PN, it is bound to fail miserably.

“They know what had happened. They know the crooks who engineered the backdoor takeover of this government,” added Ramakrishnan, Aliran’s former president.

Another political scientist, James Chin, said Hadi is trying to project himself as a capable Muslim leader, on a par with Anwar and Dr Mahathir.

“In many parts of the Middle East, Hadi has to explain himself because Anwar and Dr Mahathir are very big brands,” said Chin, director of the Asia Institute of the University of Tasmania.

“It doesn’t matter if he looks good or not. He has to establish himself. But world leaders always get weird letters. So, no need to get excited over this.”

Another analyst, Oh Ei Sun, said the Middle Eastern countries are not likely to take Hadi too seriously.

“The envoy appointment is a consolation prize for not being included in the cabinet,” said Oh, a senior fellow of the Singapore Institute of International Affairs.

“So that the president of a major component party in the ruling coalition could at least be afforded some diplomatic courtesy in those countries where he is most likely to travel to, and nothing much more than that.

“The overwhelming majority of countries in the Middle East are actually very pragmatic, both ideologically and diplomatically, so not many powers there will take him too seriously.

“What matters more is Malaysia’s long-famed national prowess, for example, as a modernised, moderate country in stark comparison with quite a number of countries in the Middle East.” – TMI

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Fortune Plunges but Kuok Remains Malaysia’s Richest in Forbes’ List http://www.thetruenet.com/news/fortune-plunges-but-kuok-remains-malaysias-richest-in-forbes-list/ Wed, 08 Apr 2020 09:03:35 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57457 Malaysia’s richest man Robert Kuok Hock Nien loses US$3.2 billion of net worth as Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Albukhary drops from the latest Forbes’ 2020 Billionaires list.

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Malaysia’s richest man Robert Kuok Hock Nien loses US$3.2 billion of net worth as Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Albukhary drops from the latest Forbes’ 2020 Billionaires list.
Reuters

Kuok, dubbed the Sugar King of Asia, again led the Malaysians line up on the list, but his net worth plunged from US$12.8 billion in 2019 to US$9.6 billion.

He fell 37 spots to 141st place, from 104th spot on the list.

Syed Mokhtar was ranked 1,349th last year with a total net worth of US$1.7 billion.

There were a total of 12 Malaysians on the list.

Hong Leong Group’s Tan Sri Quek Leng Chan climbed two places to 147th from 149th in 2019.

But his net worth came in slightly lower at US$9.2 billion from US$9.4 billion last year.

Maxis Bhd’s Ananda Krishnan fell to 361st from 261st last year, with a total net worth of US$4.7 billion against US$6.2 billion in 2019.

Casino mogul Tan Sri Dr Chen Lip Keong was at 437th with a total net worth of US$4.1 billion. He was ranked 355th with a net worth of US$5 billion last year.

IOI Group’s Datuk Lee Yeow Chor and Lee Yeow Seng were at 514th with net worth of US$3.6 billion.

Other Malaysian billionaires on the list are:

Tan Sri Teh Hong Piow of Public Bank Bhd

Rank: 538

Net worth: US$3.5 billion

Hartalega Holdings Bhd’s Kuan Kam Hon and family

Rank: 804

Net worth: US$2.6 billion

Tan Sri Lim Kok Thay of Genting Group

Rank: 1,063

Net worth: US$2 billion

Hap Seng Group’s Tan Sri Lau Cho Kun

Rank: 1,267

Net worth: US$1.7 billion

Tan Sri Paul Koon Poh Keong of Press Metal Aluminium Holdings Bhd

Rank: 1,613

Net worth: US$1.3 billion

Top Glove Corp Bhd’s Tan Sri Dr Lim Wee Chai

Rank: 1,613

Net worth: US$1.3 billion

Sunway Group’s Tan Sri Dr Jeffrey Cheah

Rank: 1,851

Net worth: US$1.1 billion

Overall, 2,095 billionaires made up the 2020 list compared to 2,153 in 2019, while 267 were dropped off this year’s list.

Over half of them or a record 1,062 saw a drop in their fortunes, following the pandemic-driven market rout.

“The richest people on Earth are not immune to the coronavirus. As the pandemic tightened its grip on Europe and America, global equity markets imploded, tanking many fortunes,” Forbes said in its website on the release of the list.

“As of March 18, when we finalised this list, Forbes counted 2,095 billionaires, 58 fewer than a year ago and 226 fewer than just 12 days earlier, when we initially calculated these net worth.

“Of the billionaires who remain, 51 percent are poorer than they were last year. In raw terms, the world’s billionaires are worth US$8 trillion, down US$700 billion from 2019,” Forbes added.

Amazon’s Jeff Bezos is No. 1 on the list, with a net worth of US$113 billion.

Bloomberg

This was followed by Microsoft’s Bill Gates with US$98 billion net worth and LVMH’s Bernard Arnault and his family (net worth of US$76 billion).

Berkshire Hathaway’s Warren Buffett took fourth place with a total net worth of US$67.5 billion, while Oracle Corp executive chairman Larry Ellison was fifth with a total net worth of US$59 billion.

Forbes said US President Donald Trump’s net worth had plunged US$1 billion in less than a month.

“As of March 1, Forbes valued President Donald Trump at US$3.1 billion. The market took a turn and reporters went back to work to approximate how much the coronavirus affected the president’s fortune.

“Trump’s newly estimated fortune is now US$2.1 billion, bringing him to No. 1,001 on this year’s ranking, down from No. 715 last year,” it added. – NST

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UK PM Johnson Stable After Second Night in ICU Battling Covid-19 http://www.thetruenet.com/news/uk-pm-johnson-stable-after-second-night-in-icu-battling-covid-19/ Wed, 08 Apr 2020 08:48:40 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57454 British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was set to spend a second night in intensive care on Tuesday to help his fight against a coronavirus infection.

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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was set to spend a second night in intensive care on Tuesday to help his fight against a coronavirus infection, as his designated deputy said he would pull through because “he’s a fighter.”

Johnson is receiving oxygen support, but is stable, in good spirits and breathing without assistance, said Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, who is standing in Johnson, adding that he had not needed mechanical ventilation.

“I’m confident he’ll pull through because if there’s one thing I know about this prime minister, he’s a fighter, and he’ll be back at the helm leading us through this crisis in short order,” Raab told a daily news conference.

Johnson’s personal battle with the virus has shaken the government just as the United Kingdom, now in its third week of lockdown, enters what scientists say will be the deadliest phase of its coronavirus epidemic, which has already killed at least 6,159 people.

Johnson, 55, was admitted to St Thomas’ Hospital, across the River Thames from parliament, late on Sunday after suffering symptoms, including a fever and a cough for more than 10 days.

Peter Summers/Getty Images

His condition deteriorated, and he was moved on Monday to an intensive care unit in case he needed to be put on a ventilator.

In an update yesterday evening, his Downing Street office said he would remain there for close monitoring and no further update was expected before today.

Queen Elizabeth wished Johnson a full and speedy recovery and sent a message of support to his pregnant fiancée, Carrie Symonds, and his family, echoing warm words from the likes of US President Trump and other world leaders.

Raab said: “He’s not just the prime minister and, for all of us in cabinet, he’s not just our boss, he’s also a colleague and he’s also our friend.”

Who leads?

However, the absence of Johnson, the first leader of a major power to be admitted to hospital with COVID-19, the respiratory illness caused by the new coronavirus, has raised questions about who is truly in charge at such a crucial time.

Britain has no formal succession plan if a prime minister is incapacitated, and Raab, 46, said Johnson had asked him to deputise for as long as necessary. If Raab was incapacitated, finance minister Rishi Sunak would stand in, though ministers refused to say who now had ultimate control over Britain’s nuclear weapons.

“I’ve got total confidence in the arrangements that the prime minister has put in place so that I can discharge responsibility for him, deputising for him while he’s out of action, and obviously we hope that will be for a very limited period of time,” Raab said.

He said decisions were being made collectively by the cabinet, a number of whom have also tested positive for the virus. Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove was the latest to self-isolate.

Raab said ministers had “very clear directions, very clear instructions” from Johnson. It was not clear, though, what would happen if there was a major disagreement.

Lockdown to be reviewed

The government is due to decide early next week whether to start easing a near-total economic and social lockdown meant to stem transmission of the virus.

Some ministers have suggested it should be extended, after seeing some people using sunny weather as an excuse to flout the rules. Raab himself said the government was not yet in a position to review the lockdown.

Britain’s chief scientific adviser said it would be another week or so before it was clear whether the graph of new cases was flattening. Yesterday’s daily death toll of 786 was the highest to date.

The pound dipped in Asian trading on news of Johnson’s intensive care treatment, but then rallied in London trading. Against the dollar, it ended the session up 0.9 percent.

Even before the coronavirus, Johnson had had a tumultuous year.

He won the top job in July 2019, renegotiated a Brexit deal with the European Union, resoundingly won a snap election in December and then led the United Kingdom out of the EU on January 31 — promising to seal a new trade deal with the bloc by the end of this year.

The government has said it is not planning to seek an extension to that deadline in light of the epidemic.

Johnson has been criticised for initially approving a much more modest response to the coronavirus outbreak than other major European countries, though he then imposed a lockdown as projections showed half a million people could otherwise die.

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Indira Gandhi Sends FB Birthday Wishes to Abducted Daughter, but Asks IGP to Convey Message http://www.thetruenet.com/news/indira-gandhi-sends-fb-birthday-wishes-to-abducted-daughter-but-asks-igp-to-convey-message/ Wed, 08 Apr 2020 08:42:43 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57450 M Indira Gandhi today penned a heartfelt message to her abducted daughter Prasana Diksa, on what is her 12th birthday.

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M Indira Gandhi today penned a heartfelt message to her abducted daughter Prasana Diksa, on what is her 12th birthday.

“Happy 12th birthday to loving Prasana Diksa. Love, amma, akka, anna,” wrote the Hindu mother who mounted a legal battle to reclaim her daughter from her Muslim-convert former husband.

Hari Anggara/MMO

She also accompanied her post with a hashtag (# igpplsconveythistoher) requesting that Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador convey the message to her youngest daughter.

Indira’s ex-husband and fugitive, Muhammad Ridhuan Abdullah, took the couple’s daughter in 2009 when she was just 11 months old, shortly after converting to Islam. He had also converted their three children to Islam without Indira’s knowledge.

Farhan Najib/MMO

After a protracted court battle, the Federal Court ruled in January 2018 that the unilateral conversions of Indira’s children were unlawful.

However, the police have yet to recover Prasana and return her to Indira despite the decision and a previous mandamus order she secured compelling the IGP to execute the recovery.

A task force was formed under former IGP Tan Sri Mohamad Fuzi in April 2019 to locate Prasana but until now, there have been no updates.

Indira was reported in January to be planning to sue Abdul Hamid for RM100 million after the latter still failed to locate and return her daughter.

However, Abdul Hamid said that he has his own ways to handle the issue, when it comes to ensuring that the police locate Prasana and stressed that he does not need to publicise how it will be done.

Hamid said handling a case that is seven years long is not easy and he wants a happy ending by tracking Prasana and returning her to her mother.

“I want to see a happy ending occur as being apart is not good for anyone. I have my own ways of achieving such a goal, but I don’t publicise it,” Abdul Hamid was quoted as saying by The Star newspaper. – MMO

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Dennis Ignatius: Coronavirus, Breweries and Wannabe Mullahs http://www.thetruenet.com/opinion/perspective/dennis-ignatius-coronavirus-breweries-and-wannabe-mullahs/ Tue, 07 Apr 2020 14:14:31 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57447 As usual, we keep getting fixated on the wrong things at the wrong time.

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As usual, we keep getting fixated on the wrong things at the wrong time.

In the middle of a deadly pandemic, some of our politicians are engaged in yet another futile religious debate about alcohol. This latest episode in Malaysia’s long-running beer wars comes on the heels of revelations that the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs had given approval to Heineken and Carlsberg Breweries to operate during the Movement Control Order (MCO).

PAS, which fancies itself the custodian of the nation’s morality, was as usual, quick to work itself into a frenzy over the issue with multiple PAS leaders expressing their indignation.

Central committee member Nasrudin Hassan said that “the Muslim community, in particular, will be offended” by the decision to allow the breweries to operate. His colleague Ahmad Fadhli Shaari chimed in that it was “mandatory for a Muslim like myself and the Muslim community to stand up and voice our protest against this leniency and privilege given to the alcohol industry, let alone during the Covid-19 outbreak.” Continuing, he said, “what value is left for a Muslim who prays to God while they allow alcohol to flow freely when they could stop it.”

PAS Youth quickly followed up with a statement of its own saying that the “government should be educating the rakyat to avoid the drinking culture as it has been proven to bring more damage than benefit.”

Now, I really couldn’t care less whether breweries operate or not during the MCO though I must confess that I myself stocked up on my favourite beer to wait out the crisis. What irks me, however, is that some of these wannabe mullahs seem to think that they have a right to impose their values on the rest of us. While I understand that alcohol is haram to some, PPBM, UMNO and PAS should also understand that Malaysia has a sizeable non-Muslim population which has the right to make its own decisions on these matters.

When we start imposing the religious values of one group upon the rest of society, we start down a slippery road that can only end in a kind of hellish religious authoritarian orthodoxy. It is not as far-fetched as it might seem given that PAS has tried to impose its own ideas about dress codes and other such things on the rest of us.

Besides, it is just too much to hear some of these politicians go on and on about the dangers of the “drinking culture” when they do nothing about the far more deadly culture of corruption that hangs over the country like a pall of death.

Where was their moral outrage when the whole 1MDB scandal was being played out? Where was their righteous indignation when helicopters and gun boats bought with public funds were not delivered? Why were they not moved to action when corruption was allowed to flow more freely than alcohol ever did?  Why were they silent when their own party leaders used public funds to purchase for themselves posh limousines when so many of their own people remain mired in poverty?

Isn’t it incumbent on men of faith – whatever the faith – to uncompromisingly stand against corruption instead of sanctioning it with their silence? Doesn’t religion place far greater emphasis on integrity, honesty and justice than on superficial things like what one drinks or what one wears?

Kudos, however, to the Deputy Minister of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Rosol Wahaid (who is from PAS) for standing up for his officers in the midst of the controversy. He was quoted as saying: “There are reports stating that the minister (Alexander Nanta Linggi) and I were not informed about the matter [i.e. the decision to grant the breweries permission to operate]. That is untrue. We knew about it.” It took courage and integrity to admit it and I, for one, salute him for it.

I’m not sure why the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs gave approval to Heineken to continue operating during the MCO; if it is inconsistent with the MCO, then by all means withdraw the approval but for heaven’s sake, spare us all the hypocritical paternalistic religious moralizing. Cheers!

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Malindo Air Ceases Flight Operations, Most Employees on Unpaid Leave This Month http://www.thetruenet.com/news/malindo-air-ceases-flight-operations-most-employees-on-unpaid-leave-this-month/ Tue, 07 Apr 2020 14:06:48 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57444 Malindo Airways Sdn Bhd (Malindo Air) is ceasing all flight operations effective this month, and has asked most of its employees to go on unpaid leave from April.

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Malindo Airways Sdn Bhd (Malindo Air) is ceasing all flight operations effective this month, and has asked most of its employees to go on unpaid leave from April.

Malindo Air chief executive officer Captain Mushafiz Mustafa Bakri said the measures were taken due to continuing nature of the Movement Control Order (MCO) and restrictions across its international markets owing to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I foresee the situation to be the same in early May. We may perhaps review the situation later in the month and in all possibility only operate a very limited number of flights,” he said in an internal memo to employees sighted by the New Straits Times (NST) today.

He said Malindo Air had to relook at its manpower requirements, citing that the airline was unable to generate any revenue to support its operations.

“Across the company, effective April, only individuals who are identified by your head of department will have to report for work and be paid on a daily wage basis for the work carried out on specific days, while others would be deemed to be furloughed with no pay,” he added.

Mushafiz said the non-operational departments would have to work with much reduced numbers.

“This policy will also continue into the next month or till such extended time when we revoke the same,” he said.

Meanwhile, he said Malindo Air will be waving all bond and notice periods, allowing its staff to voluntarily leave with no contract obligations.

“I am extremely sorry for the circumstances we currently find ourselves in. Sadly, we are unable to offer any tangible confidence for the time being.

“We have made representations to the Minister of Finance and remain hopeful that our appeal to the government for financial help to pay salaries will soon bear some positive response,” he said. – NST

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Man Who Assaulted Senior Citizen with Helmet Detained http://www.thetruenet.com/news/man-who-assaulted-senior-citizen-with-helmet-detained/ Tue, 07 Apr 2020 14:00:02 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57439 A man who assaulted a senior citizen with a helmet in a road rage incident last week was detained by police today.

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A man who assaulted a senior citizen with a helmet in a road rage incident last week was detained by police today.

Northeast district police chief Assistant Commissioner Soffian Santong said the 35-year-old security guard was picked up near Jalan Macalister about 12.30pm.

“We have also seized the helmet which was used to assault the elderly man on that day.

“He will be remanded tomorrow,” Soffian said in a statement today.

A video of the suspect assaulting the elderly man went viral on social media recently.

Please help to viral this video clip to all your group of friends so that this fellow who hit an old man with his helmet will be arrested by the Police. 🥴Shared from Penang Farlim

Posted by David Ong on Monday, April 6, 2020

The 26-second video showed four people talking to each while standing next to a taxi when the suspect suddenly lunged at the senior citizen and hit him on the face with a helmet.

The incident is believed to have taken place following a minor accident between a car driven by the 80-year-old man and a motorcycle near Bandar Baru, Farlim about 5.30pm.

The case is being investigated under Section 324 of the Penal Code for intentionally causing injury using weapons or other dangerous objects. – NST

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Malaysian Workers in Singapore Told to Stay Put for Two Weeks http://www.thetruenet.com/news/malaysian-workers-in-singapore-told-to-stay-put-for-two-weeks/ Tue, 07 Apr 2020 13:54:39 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57438 Malaysians working in Singapore have been urged to stay on for two more weeks, if possible.

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Malaysians working in Singapore have been urged to stay on for two more weeks, if possible, before trying to come home in the wake of stricter enforcement to curb the spread of Covid-19 in the republic.

Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the Malaysian Ministry of Health (MOH) was discussing with the Singapore authorities the possibility of employers in the republic keeping their Malaysian workers for two more weeks.

Bernama

“Those who want to return will be screened and once we (MOH) conduct the screening, we will take the subsequent action,” he said at a daily media briefing on Covid-19 today.

Dr Noor Hisham said this when asked to comment on reports that Malaysians have been crossing the Johor Causeway on foot to return home since April 2.

Edgar Su/Reuters

Bernama learnt that 12,000 Malaysians had returned from Singapore between April 2 and yesterday.

This follows Singapore’s move to enforce stricter measures from today until May 4 to curb the spread of Covid-19.

During this period, most workplaces will be closed, except for essential services and key sectors of the economy.

Asked on the procedure to bring back bodies in case Malaysians died of Covid-19 overseas, Dr Noor Hisham said it would have to follow the guideline set by MOH.
However, there had been no Covid-19 deaths involving Malaysians overseas, he added.

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Hotel Group Says Not Told Putrajaya Only Paying RM150 Per Room Night http://www.thetruenet.com/news/hotel-group-says-not-told-putrajaya-only-paying-rm150-per-room-night/ Tue, 07 Apr 2020 13:19:37 +0000 http://www.thetruenet.com/?p=57426 The Malaysian Association of Hotels today said it was not aware the government would only subsidise the stay of those under Covid-19 quarantine at a cost of RM150.

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The Malaysian Association of Hotels (MAH) today said it was not aware the government would only subsidise the stay of those under Covid-19 quarantine at a cost of RM150, as opposed to paying for the rooms in full.

This was after Defence Minister Ismail Sabri said the government would pay up to RM150 in subsidy per room for hotels which are three-star and below, while those wanting to stay at high-end hotels should “pay on their own”.

Those arriving on international flights at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport are subject to a mandatory 14-day quarantine by the health department, where they will be sent to quarantine centres, including hotels designated for the purpose.

“That’s not what we were briefed,” the association’s CEO, Yap Lip Seng, said in an immediate response to Ismail’s statement.

Earlier, Yap said hotels which allowed themselves to be turned into quarantine stations had agreed to charge a “very low rate” which would be fully paid by the tourism, arts and culture ministry.

He said most hotels had agreed to a standard fee to be paid for boarding out of national interest and corporate social responsibility. He did not want to divulge the quantum of the rates.

“There shouldn’t be any complaints as all being quarantined are staying there for free, with meals provided,” he said.

On the issue of five-star hotels being part of the list, Yap said these luxury hotels were picked due to their sanitary levels by the health authorities.

He said as far as the hotels were concerned, those selected and sent to five-star hotels were picked at random, depending on time schedules.

“In the eyes of the authorities, the better the hotel is, the better it is for quarantine for a controlled environment. It also makes sanitation work easier,” he said.

Separately, Sabah Health Minister Frankie Poon said three hotels in Kota Kinabalu were unaware of who would foot the bills for those quarantined.

He said the three hotels were the Monaco Boutique Hotel, Ming Garden Hotel and Residences, and Pan Borneo Hotel.

Poon said his office was seeking a response from the national disaster management committee on the matter.

Meanwhile, Deputy Health Minister I Dr Noor Azmi Ghazali said the selection of hotels was made by the tourism, arts and culture ministry and the National Disaster Management Agency (Nadma).

He said the health ministry’s engineering division would carry out disinfection at these hotels, including cleaning of linens, while police, Rela and maritime officials would take care of security.

“As for food and beverages, that is coordinated by the welfare department…the hotel charges per day are between RM150 and RM200,” he said.

FMT has contacted tourism, arts and culture minister Nancy Shukri for comment. – FMT

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