Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Chinese Schoolboy Vandalizes Egyptian Temple

It is saddening to hear that there are some visitors do not show their respect and preserve the historical sites from vandalism. Chinese travelers have been criticized for their uncivilized behaviours such as being rude and arrogant, disobey rules and regulations, vandalism, talking very loud in the public, running instead of walking, spitting, pushing (jumping) on queues and many more while they are traveling outside of China. As such, these incidents remain a lot of negative impressions and hatred by other culture. Chinese travelers should be educated and reminded about their behaviours, mannerism and to show their respect towards other culture while traveling in overseas countries

Chinese boy defaces ancient Egyptian sculpture, prompts online outrage

ChinaFotoPress / NBC News
A 15-year-old Chinese boy is feeling the full weight of online opprobrium after it emerged that he had scrawled his name on a 3,500-year-old Egyptian sculpture during a visit to the country with his family.
BEIJING – A 15-year-old Chinese boy is feeling the full weight of online opprobrium after it emerged that he scrawled his name on a 3,500-year-old Egyptian sculpture during a visit to the country with his family.

Parents of the boy, Ding Jinhao, have apologized publicly for their son’s actions after a photo of the graffiti surfaced and prompted more than 254,000 mentions on China’s Twitter-like service Weibo.
Internet users decried the defacement of the ancient site and called for renrou sou suo, or the Chinese phenomena of “human flesh search engines,” in which netizens expose those who have run afoul of Internet communities.

As the online manhunt gathered steam – becoming one of the most popular trending topics on Weibo this past weekend – Ding’s family found out that photographic evidence of their son’s vandalism as well as private information about him was being published publicly online.
In a bid to stop the hounding, Ding’s parents did an anonymous interview Sunday with a local newspaper, Modern Express. In it they both apologized for their son’s behavior, describing him as “a good student” but a little bit “introverted.”   
They declined to say how old Ding was when they visited Luxor, but they implied that he had been much younger. They also confessed that they had not been watching their son while on tour in Egypt and that they discovered their son’s vandalism the same day it happened.
“When we were told by our son about it, we disciplined him immediately and he realized his wrong doing then,” his mother was quoted as saying.

The couple blamed themselves for their son’s actions.

“When he was little, we often took him travelling,” she said.  “When we saw similar situations [of graffiti], we never told him it was wrong.”

Fallout from the confession was immediate and severe. Users hacked the website of Ding’s primary school so that visitors first had to click on an image saying "Ding Jinhao was here" before continuing to the homepage.

“Would an apology be enough if he had destroyed that cultural relic?!?” one Weibo user demanded. “You should take responsibility if you have done something wrong, no matter if you are a kid or not.”
Many users were quick to blame Ding’s parents.

“It is the parents’ fault, children should be taught what cannot be done,” one user wrote,
Others said Ding’s actions reflected a cultural insensitivity on the part of many Chinese abroad.
“All tourists leaving China should be given a brochure and tested to see if they can behave themselves,” another joked. “If they can’t pass the exam, they shouldn’t be allowed to go abroad.”

Cultural sensitivity and bad manners have increasingly become topics of discussion in China. This month, Vice-Premier Wang Yang warned that “uncivilized behavior” of some Chinese tourists was harming the nation’s image.

To combat what Wang called the “poor quality and breeding” of Chinese tourists, China recently passed a new tourism law that will attempt amongst other things to “promote a healthy and civilized way to travel [and] to improve the level of civilization of tourists.” The new tourism law still faces many issues, such as the fact that its existence isn’t even recognized by the government agency charged with handling Chinese travel. A representative who picked up the phone at China’s National Tourism Administration told NBC News that there was no tourism law and that there had been no discussion of one.

With over 83 million trips overseas last year, Chinese tourists are increasingly leaving a bigger global footprint. It is also an extremely lucrative one for host countries: The United Nations World Tourism Organization reported that Chinese travelers spent a record $102 billion visiting overseas last year, a 40 percent jump from 2011.

NBC News’ Yanzhou Liu and Dalin Liu contributed to this report.


Luxor temple relic restored after teen’s vandalism, govt urges tourists to be civilized 
Global Times | 2013-5-29 0:08:01
By Zhang Yiwei
A scenic area in Pingdingshan, Henan Province, provides visitors with stones to satisfy their graffiti habit on Tuesday. Photo: CFP
A scenic area in Pingdingshan, Henan Province, provides visitors with stones to satisfy their graffiti habit on Tuesday. Photo: CFP / Global Times

Egyptian authorities Monday removed the characters scratched on a 3,500-year-old relic by a 15-year-old Chinese schoolboy, while Chinese media drew attention to a government convention that aims to promote civilized tourist behavior.

Officials from the Temple of Luxor in Egypt said the damage is not permanent, and the relic has been restored, China Radio International reported. 

The teenage vandal, from Nanjing, capital of Jiangsu Province, was traveling in Egypt with his parents when he scratched "Ding Jinhao was here" in Chinese characters on the relic.

Another Chinese tourist, who saw the vandalism, posted a photograph to his Sina microblog, and spoke of his shame that a fellow Chinese had done this. 

 The incident has triggered a backlash against poorly behaved Chinese tourists, both at home and abroad, with media reports exposing other examples of historic or protected sites that have also been defaced. Many have blamed the bad manners on a lack of education. 

The Chinese government announced recently a new raft of guidelines aimed at improving tourist behavior, encouraging them to be civilized. Spitting, littering, vandalizing, jay-walking and cutting queues are improper, the Xinhua News Agency reported Tuesday.

Xiong Bingqi, deputy director of the 21st Century Education Research Institute, said that while education in basic civility is lacking in schools, the Chinese education system is also a problem.

"We stress the sense of collectivism, instead of strengthening children's awareness of individual responsibilities. In this case, people are talking about the child making the whole country suffer from shame, which is not right," said Xiong, adding that children should be educated to have good manners. 

Li Mingde, vice president of Beijing Tourism Society, agreed that education is the problem, saying that there is always a wave of criticism following these incidents, but it never lasts long.

"Including more content on Chinese culture and national spirit in basic civilization education is the ultimate way to solve the problem," Li said.


Schoolboy's Egyptian temple shame

China Daily, May 27, 2013

The parents of a teen vandal from Jiangsu province have apologized to the public for the graffiti their son scratched on a stone sculpture in an ancient temple in Egypt, which triggered an online uproar as Internet users dubbed it a "loss of face" for all Chinese people.
Graffiti on the defaced Egyptian artifact says 'Ding Jinhao was here'. [Photo/china Daily]
Graffiti on the defaced Egyptian artifact says "Ding Jinhao was here". [Photo/china Daily]

A micro blogger found the Chinese characters carved on a cameo at the Luxor Temple, one of Egypt's most renowned archaeological sites, in early May. The characters say "Ding Jinhao was here".
The micro blog, posted on Friday night, triggered heated discussion online as the act of vandalism was condemned as being disrespectful to cultural relics.
Ding Jinhao's parents, who live in Nanjing, the capital of Jiangsu province, apologized for his behavior on Saturday and asked for forgiveness from the public after angry Internet users discovered and revealed the identity of the young man, aged 14, a middle school student in Nanjing.
"We want to apologize to the Egyptian people and to people who have paid attention to this case across China," Ding's mother said in Modern Express, a local newspaper.
Ding has realized the seriousness of his misconduct, according to his mother.
His father said they felt regretful after news about the case was spread online.
Shen, the micro blogger who posted the picture of vandalized relics, visited the Egyptian temple on May 6. "I felt embarrassed. It was my most unhappy moment in Egypt."
He said he hopes the case will remind Chinese tourists to behave while abroad and teach them the importance of protecting cultural relics.
The bad manners of some Chinese tourists, which include spitting and littering, have featured prominently in the media in recent years.
In March 2009, a retired man from Changzhou, Jiangsu province, carved his name on a rock in Taiwan's Yehliu Geopark, which triggered intense criticism.
In February, a tourist carved his name on a large cauldron in Beijing's Palace Museum. Failing to find the culprit, one of the museum's staff posted a picture of the vandalized cauldron online.
Chen Xu, a researcher from the China Tourism Academy, said the Tourism Law, which will take effect in October, will force some Chinese tourists to behave properly at tourist sites, but in the long run the key is to raise awareness of the importance of cultural relics and proper manners.
"Travel agencies and guides should also be responsible for preventing tourists from vandalizing cultural relics," he said.
Ye Qianrong, a professor of Chinese studies at Tokai University in Japan, said Chinese tourists' practice of writing their names at tourist sites could date back to the "cultural revolution" (1966-76), when many young students wrote their names in many places.
Ye, who hails from China, said the lack of education for good manners in schools and families is also to blame.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Japan's Shrinking Building Technology

Have you ever thought of the alternative solution to demolish high-rise buildings in densely built-up areas without using explosives? A company in Japan introduces new technological advances in the approach of Green Environmental Friendly by shrinking the building without causing a lot of noise, smell, dust and danger to the public.

Japan presents - the incredible shrinking building

Feb. 19, Reuters - A construction company in Japan has developed a method of tearing down a building without the noise, smell or dust caused by conventional demolition. It's a novel but effective approach to deconstruction in densely built cities. Rob Muir reports.


Saturday, May 11, 2013

Boss Force Employees to Crawl in Public in China

This is really unbelievable, which can happen in a fast growing and developed country, where we constantly promote for humanitarian and non-slavery treatment among our generations. 

These employees are working for a Cosmetic Company and they are "tortured" to crawl on their knees around Liberation Monument in the busy commercial district of Chongqing in China. This controversial event took place on May 2, 2013 where, the local residents captured the video and photos and shared on microblogging. 

It causes a lot of anger from the online users, who condemn and criticize the employer for exploiting his power and money by mistreating and humiliating these employees as his/her slaves.

Company Has Employees Crawl in Public as Training Exercise

The employees are crawling.

From QQ:

Company in Chongqing Orders Employees to Crawl on Their Knees, Claims It Is to Challenge Their Resilience to Pressure

According to multiple weibo posts by Chongqing netizens, at noon on 2013 May 2, the employees of a certain company circled around Liberation Monument by crawling on their knees, attracting many onlookers. Soon after, the Chongqing Yuzhong District Public Security Sub-bureau claimed on their official microblog account ”Through investigation, this was an exercise a cosmetics company gave their employees to train them to deal with pressure, and the police have already persuaded them to leave, and have also criticized and educated the organizers of the company.” Pictures are of photos taken by netizens at the scene.

 The employees are crawling.
The employees are crawling.
The employees are crawling.
The employees are crawling.
The employees are crawling.
The employees are crawling.
The employees are crawling.

From iFeng:

Company in Chongqing Has Many of Its Female Employees Circle Around Liberation Monument Crawling on Their Knees

In front of hundreds of bystanders, a group of people wearing uniforms knelt in the bustling business area, simultaneously crawling in circles and cheering each other on. May 2 at noon, this shocking scene at the Chongqing Liberation Monument was broadcasted live on many netizens’ microblog accounts, causing a big controversy. On the 2nd, the police of Yuzhong District responded that this incident was a “challenge exercise” conducted by a certain cosmetics company nearby with their employees. The police have already persuaded them to leave and have also criticized and educated the organizers of the company.

Comments from QQ:
腾讯上海市网友 湖影偶心:
This boss is finished! His good intention has ruined the name of his company! Such low behavior, how did he come up with something like this?! What would the customers feel if they saw this!
腾讯网友 王明富:
One look and you can tell this company’s culture is the same as that of a multilevel marketing scheme, a bunch of nao can~~!
腾讯网友 ∞:
This is not challenging their resilience to pressure, this is making people completely give up their bottom line as a human being. In the end, arriving at the edge where one becomes so low that one becomes invincible!
腾讯网友 ⒉Ь 。:
I’d just quit. To sell one’s dignity only for that little money?! To crawl like a dog in public?
腾讯网友 Winnie:
This is reality. Some people have to put up with all kinds of unfairness and humiliations for survival.
腾讯网友 梦隐:
This boss is clearly fucking with his employees. You think yourself so high and mighty just because you’re a boss? If you’re so great, how come you didn’t take the lead and crawl!
腾讯江西省网友 旅途+独男:
The boss is crazy!
腾讯临汾市网友 永恒: (responding to above)
This is the so-called one must be crazy before one can be successful!
腾讯德阳市网友 誰是誰的誰:
If it was me, I’d just quit. This is simply humiliating human dignity.
腾讯网友 春天的雪:
Want to be famous! Can’t just ignore the employees’ dignity, right? Did the boss get on his knees?
Comments from iFeng:
凤凰网陕西省宝鸡市网友 btnyeed:
The boss is truly a worthless piece of shit. This is simply not treating one’s employees as human beings. It’s clear that his employees only have two legs, yet they’re used as if they have four legs, just what is the meaning of this?
凤凰网河北省邯郸市网友 雪千山:
“Challenge their resilience to pressure course”? In other words, it’s just putting down your dignity, and crawling around like a dog!
凤凰网山东省泰安市网友 sdlm:
It’s only been a few days since the May 1st International Labor Day, where is the laborers’ dignity???
凤凰网中国网友 wushunzao:
To put on such an employee-humiliating scene right at the Liberation Monument is so evil! Have they been liberated?
凤凰网四川省巴中市网友 马鱼儿55:
Every time when I see news like this, I feel as if we’ve returned to the extremely evil Old Society [feudal China era]. The Chinese government should heavily punish the boss of this company!
凤凰网四川省宜宾市网友 小人也:
This reminds me of multi-level marketing schemes. Nowadays, many hotels, hair salons, and other similar businesses here where I am are doing this kind of thing. Every morning before work, [the employees] stand in front of the storefront to receive education [lectures, pep talks], then shout out slogans. It’s said that this came from Japan. Chinese people only know how to learn these superficial things. Pathetic.
凤凰网黑龙江省佳木斯市网友 老爪子:
There was a time when it was quite good, but now it’s a mess again. Just what kind of society is this?
凤凰网浙江省网友 三wu:
China needs slaves right now, it has nothing to do with human dignity.
凤凰网陕西省网友 老鼠与鹰:
This is one of the steps towards making employees into slaves–—in the eyes of the boss, employees are simply slaves.


Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Malaysia Dirty Politics Election 2013

I have been thinking for sometime if this is an appropriate to talk about Malaysian General Election (PRU 13) which was held on May 5, 2013. All the mainstream media is controlled and censored by the government except for the internet. Even though the results of the General Election has been announced two days ago with the majority winning from Ruling Coalition of Barisan National (BN), many people including Opposition Party (Pakatan Rakyat) express dissatisfaction and anger against the dirties tactics used by BN with the support from the police force and so called "Independent Electoral Commission" or also known as SPR, who also works closely for the government.

Many short clips and videos captured and posted by the public over Youtube and Facebook, about the dirty politics used such as bribing the people to vote, flying in the foreigners with fake Identity Cards (IC) to be eligible to vote, mystery ballot boxes appeared in the middle of night at polling stations while counting was in the process and even promoting to apply the indelible ink on every voter's index finger to prevent electoral fraud which can be easily removed after washing.

This year is the biggest voters participation throughout the history as many young voters and Malaysians flew home from abroad to vote for A Change of Government which also known as "UBAH."

I have extracted some interesting news from Bloomberg, Yahoo!, Reuters, AlJazeera English News etc. about the current situation of Malaysian General Election as below. You can also read the Dirty Politics in Malaysian General Election on CNN website.

Dirty Politics in Malaysia Election 2013 
Published on May 6, 2013  Source: Youtube
The Unfairness in Malaysia's GE13 (2013).
Election and democracy was stolen from Malaysian.
Real life events. Videos gathered from all around Malaysia from Youtube and Facebook


Malaysia PM sworn in as opposition protests

AlJazeeraEnglish AlJazeeraEnglish  Published on May 6, 2013 Source: AlJazeera English via Youtube


What Now for Malaysia's Opposition?

May 6 (Bloomberg) -- Monash University's James Chin discusses the outcome of the Malaysian election with Haslinda Amin on Bloomberg Television's "On The Move Asia." (Source: Bloomberg)

BBC News Stakes high in Malaysia's pivotal general election
Published on May 3, 2013
Source : via Youtube

A general election in Malaysia on Sunday could result in the first change of government since the country's independence 56 ago.

The ruling Barisan Nasional coalition is credited with bringing economic development and political stability to Malaysia.

But - with growing discontent over corruption and racial divisions - the opposition has been gaining ground, particularly among young voters.


Malaysia PM faces limited future after worst electoral showing

By Niluksi Koswanage and Stuart Grudgings  Source: Reuters & Yahoo! News

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) - Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak may have to step down by the end of the year, ruling party sources said on Monday, after his coalition extended its 56-year rule but recorded its worst-ever election performance.

Najib, 59, had staked his political future on strengthening the ruling coalition's parliamentary majority in Sunday's general election on the back of a robust economy, reforms to roll back race-based policies and a $2.6 billion deluge of social handouts to poor families.

But he was left vulnerable to party dissidents after his Barisan Nasional coalition won only 133 seats in the 222-member parliament, seven short of its tally in 2008 and well below the two-thirds majority it was aiming for.

It also lost the popular vote, underlining opposition complaints that the electoral system is stacked against it. Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim's People's Alliance won 89 seats, up 7 from 2008 but still incapable of unseating one of the world's longest-serving governments.

Anwar, a former deputy prime minister, said in a statement on Monday that he would not accept the result because it was marred by "unprecedented" electoral fraud. He has called for a rally in the capital Kuala Lumpur on Wednesday.
Undermined by the result, Najib now faces a difficult task persuading his dominant United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) to press ahead with economic reforms and phase out policies favouring majority ethnic Malays over other races.

"We could see Najib step down by the end of this year," said a senior official in UMNO, which leads the coalition.

"He may put up a fight, we don't know, but he has definitely performed worse. He does not have so much bargaining power," said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, still a powerful figure in UMNO, told Reuters last year that Najib must improve on the 140 seats won in 2008 or his position would be unstable.

Kuala Lumpur's stock market <.klse> surged nearly 8 percent in early trade to a record high on investor relief that the untested opposition had failed to take power, but later gave up some gains to close 3.38 percent higher. The Malaysian ringgit jumped to a 20-month high.

Ethnic Chinese, who make up a quarter of Malaysians, continued to desert Barisan Nasional, accelerating a trend seen in 2008. They have turned to the opposition, attracted by its pledge to tackle corruption and end race-based policies, undermining the National Front's traditional claim to represent all races in the nation of 28 million people.

MCA, the main ethnic Chinese party within the ruling coalition, only won seven seats, less than half its 2008 total.

Najib, the son of a former prime minister, said he had been taken by surprise by the extent of what he called a "Chinese tsunami." Alarmingly for Najib, support from ethnic Malays also weakened, particularly in urban areas, a sign that middle-class Malays are agitating for change.

Najib, who polls show is more popular than his party, could face a leadership challenge as early as October or November, when UMNO members hold a general assembly and elect the party leader.

"In the next round of elections within UMNO, you will see some dissidents emerging and asking for Najib to resign," said the official, who has held cabinet positions in government. He said Mahathir would be among those who back the dissidents.

Barisan Nasional also failed to win back the crucial industrial state of Selangor, near the capital Kuala Lumpur, which Najib had vowed to achieve.

"Najib is now leading a coalition that lost the popular vote, a coalition that will really struggle to prove its legitimacy," said Wan Saiful Wan Jan, head of the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs in Kuala Lumpur.

"My feeling is it's not going to be very easy for him."

Investors had hoped that a strong mandate for Najib would enable him to push ahead with planned reforms such as subsidy cuts and a new consumption tax to reduce Malaysia's budget deficit, which is relatively high at around 4.5 percent of GDP.

Those reforms now seem in doubt, Credit Suisse said in a report on Monday, although Najib is expected to push ahead with $444 billion Economic Transformation Programme aimed at boosting private investment and doubling per capita incomes by 2020.

For Anwar, the election was likely the last chance to lead the country after a tumultuous political career that saw him sacked as deputy prime minister in the 1990s and jailed for six years after falling out with his former boss, Mahathir.
His three-party opposition alliance had been optimistic of a historic victory, buoyed by huge crowds at recent rallies, but faced formidable obstacles including the government's control of mainstream media and a skewed electoral system.

Anwar, 65, had accused the coalition of flying up to 40,000 "dubious" voters, including foreigners, across the country to vote in close races. The government says it was merely helping voters get to home towns to vote.

"My heart is with every Malaysian who does not accept the results," Anwar said in his statement.

Malaysia's Bersih (clean) civil society movement, which has held large rallies to demand electoral reform, joined Anwar in witholding recognition of the result, saying it needed to study numerous reports of fraud. (Additional reporting by Yantoultra Ngui and Siva Sithraputhran in Kuala Lumpur and Saeed Azhar in Singapore; Writing by Jason Szep and Stuart Grudgings.; Editing by Raju Gopalakrishnan)


Malaysians in S’pore react with anger, disappointment over BN win

By | Yahoo! Newsroom – Mon, May 6, 2013

For many Malaysians in Singapore who stayed up late on Sunday night waiting for the results of the 2013 elections, anger and disappointment were the most commonly echoed sentiments when Barisan Nasional's narrow win was announced.

"We won't give up – I'm proud to be from Penang and we will stay strong despite all the dirty tricks," said online entrepreneur Gwendolyn Yeo, 30, who closely monitored the Facebook and online feeds of all her friends back home and was convinced that BN had not played a clean game.

"We're sick of our families back home working so hard to pay for (current Prime Minister) Najib Razak's wife's shopping sprees," said Yeo who was not able to make it home to vote but is a staunch supporter of opposition PKR leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, and cried when the results were out.

Anger over 'unclean play' by BN

Yahoo! Singapore spoke to 15 Malaysians based in Singapore, and out of that number, 13 believed that BN had not fought fairly and that the results were rigged.

On Sunday night, social media sites Facebook and Twitter were rife with allegations that BN had cheated its way into a narrow win by smuggling in boxes of false votes and concealing it by causing electric blackouts at voting stations where the party was lagging behind.

Citizen journalists also posted video clips of policemen allowing BN supporters past security but blocking those from the opposition. Another accusation was that BN brought in foreigners to vote illegally and tip the balance.

Singapore-based bank executive Nick Chong,  29, who took two days off to return to Kulai, Johor and volunteered as a polling and counting agent, told Yahoo! SG that he witnessed first hand how unfair the polling process had been.

"I thought there was a lot to be done as an agent supervising the polling process, but there was little that we could do to change it (to be fair). I hope that the unjustified as well as unfair result can be changed after the opposition leaders submit all the proof that we have."

"I'm really upset. We tried our best to stop the fake foreign voters from coming in, but when the blackout happened things got totally out of control. There weren't enough polling and counting agents, and many stations had no agents from the opposition to supervise the process."
Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib Razak (C) and his other party leaders celebrate after winning the elections at his party headquarters in Kuala Lumpur early May 6, 2013. Malaysia's governing coalition ... more 
Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib Razak (C) and his other party leaders celebrate after winning the elections at his party headquarters in Kuala Lumpur early May 6, 2013. Malaysia's governing coalition won a tight national election on Sunday to extend its 56-year rule, fending off an opposition alliance that pledged to clean up politics and end race-based policies in Southeast Asia's third-largest economy. REUTERS/Stringer (MALAYSIA - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS)

‘We want justice’

"I ride (sic) over nine hours to get home with the traffic jam and even my motor(bike) breaking down, but I went home to vote because I am fed up with BN and I want things in my country to change, Ubah! (Change!)" said 27-year-old Malacca native Rajoo Rangarajan, who works as a cook in a five-star hotel in Singapore.

"When we gave BN our vote last time (sic), they did not do anything for us. Our country only suffered under them. I am sad they won, but I think they are scared that we are not afraid of them anymore."

Only three spoke out in support of the badly-bloodied BN, which barely held on to its mandate among Malaysians. The ruling coalition won 133 parliamentary seats compared to 93 from Pakatan Rakyat to extend its 56-year rule. But news website Malaysian Insider estimates that BN lost the overall popular vote, garnering only 5.2 million votes compared to PR’s 5.4 million.

"At the end of the day, BN has the resources to make change happen, I think they have made mistakes but maybe the result will make them realise their errors and serve Malaysia better," said health products salesman Mohamed Esmail, 37, who works for a Singaporean company.

Police lay out concertina wire to keep unwanted trespassers out of the MPJBT counting station. (Yahoo! photo/ Shawn Danker)

Many Singapore-based Malaysians have taken to expressing their anger and dissatisfaction online, replacing their profile pictures with black squares in protest of the alleged blackouts used to cover up fake votes.

"I feel powerless as I am not in the country, but change can start from anywhere, even if we are just speaking up online, as long as we are not scared to put our name and our face to our feelings, I'm sure that we can make a difference," said Malaysian marketing manager Ivy Leo, 26, who, together with a group of her friends, booked a bus back to Johor on Saturday to vote for the opposition. 


BN wins, Najib shocked by ‘Chinese tsunami’; Anwar rejects outcome

ASSISTANT NEWS EDITOR  Source: Malaysian Insider & Yahoo! News

KUALA LUMPUR, May 6 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s Barisan Nasional (BN) survived a hard-fought polls battle in face of “Chinese tsunami” yesterday, but rival Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has vowed to fight the result following allegations of widespread fraud.The BN chairman admitted it had not expected the wholesale abandonment by the Chinese community, which he blamed on the Pakatan Rakyat’s alleged play on racial sentiments to woo support from the country’s second largest ethnic group.

“I think they were taken in by some of the undertakings given by the opposition... and that’s why there was that swing.... and a lot of sentiments there, some of them racial in nature, that were being played up in this election, which is not very healthy for this country,” he told a 1am press conference at the Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC) today, shortly after a simple majority victory cemented BN’s place in Putrajaya.

“I expected it but I did not expect it to this extent. None of us expected it to this extent. But despite the extent of the swing against us, BN did not fall,” he added.

At a separate press conference, PR de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said the pact rejected the results of the poll, pointing to unanswered allegations on electoral fraud.

“As of now, we are not accepting the results... until the EC (Election Commission) responds and issues an official statement to the allegations of irregularities and fraud,” he told reporters.

As at 12.50am this morning, BN retained federal power with a simple majority, scoring 112 seats to PR’s 58.

Najib urged Malaysians and leaders in the federal opposition to accept tonight’s results “with an open heart”, and warned against any street demonstrations to protest the outcome.

He said BN will establish a mechanism to look into all the promises it made during campaigning to ensure that these will be implemented in full.
“One of the things we will do is the process of national reconciliation,” he said, noting the trend in Chinese support for the opposition.

“Overall, the decision made by the rakyat shows a certain trend in votes that worries the government because if it is not handled well, it could create tension and conflicts in our country,” he said.

BN scored poorly in the most Chinese-majority seats nationwide, indicating a massive swing in the community’s support towards the opposition.

The pact suffered significant defeats in its Johor fortress, losing in key seats like Kluang, Kulai and Gelang Patah, where DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang trounced political heavyweight Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman, the state’s four-term mentri besar.

“There are a lot of factors that occurred, effects from the support of the Chinese to BN. The tsunami that I mentioned earlier, this tsunami of the Chinese community, led to large numbers supporting the opposition,” Najib said.

“We are still trying to absorb the results and the total ramifications. Give us a few days or weeks for us to hold discussions and have a kind of national reconciliation.

“We can reject the politics of extremism and racism, and work towards more moderate policies for the country,” he added.


Malaysia election sees record turnout


Jonathan Head reports from a polling station queue in Kuala Lumpur, where he says turnout was "very impressive", driven by a "real hunger" for change

There has been a record turnout in what is widely expected to be the most closely contested general election in Malaysia's history.
Some 80% of registered voters cast ballots, said election officials.

PM Najib Razak's Barisan Nasional (National Front) coalition is up against Pakatan Rakyat, a three-party alliance headed by Anwar Ibrahim.

Voters were faced with returning the ruling party, in power for 56 years, or choosing an untested opposition.

Ahead of the polls, allegations of various forms of fraud emerged.
Early results showed Barisan Nasional had won 38 parliamentary seats to Pakatan Rakyat's 16, with at least 112 of 222 parliamentary seats being needed to win federal power. Final results are not expected until Monday.
'People do change'

“Start Quote

We hope for a change of government”
End Quote Karunamoorthy Malaysian voter
At polling stations in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday, there was a palpable sense of excitement among the many voters there who support the opposition coalition, says BBC's Jonathan Head in the Malaysian capital.
Some said this was the first time they felt their votes had mattered.
But Barisan Nasional has been campaigning very hard to shore up its base among poorer ethnic Malay neighbourhoods and in rural areas, and opinion polls suggest a very close race. 

Barisan Nasional, while credited with bringing economic development and political stability, has also been tainted by allegations of corruption.
But it remains to be seen whether Mr Anwar's coalition, comprising parties of different ethnicities and religions, can persuade voters to choose an alternative government. 

Mr Najib, 59, said he was confident that Malaysians would retain his coalition and even return the two-thirds parliamentary majority Barisan Nasional lost in the 2008 polls.
Najib Razak greets a voter in Pekan, Malaysia, 5 May Najib Razak voted in Pekan
During the last four years, he said during a campaign rally on Thursday, the coalition had proved it could "protect and benefit all Malaysians".

"The task of transformation is not over yet," he told supporters in his home state of Pahang on Saturday. 

Mohamed Rafiq Idris, a car business owner waiting to vote in the central state of Selangor, told the Associated Press news agency the ruling coalition had made "some mistakes" but he believed it would do its best to take care of the people's welfare.

But first-time voter Bernie Lim, a banker, said: "I grew up recognising that my parents voted for the present coalition at almost every general election. This time, they voted for the opposition. People do change."

Ethnic Indian voter Karunamoorthy told BBC News in the capital: "We hope for a change of government. There needs to be a change because of abuse of power."
Mr Anwar, 65, has said people's clamour for change means that Pakatan Rakyat will emerge victorious.

Malaysia 2013 polls

  • Election was considered Malaysia's most keenly contested poll since independence
  • PM Najib Razak leads the long-dominant coalition Barisan Nasional (National Front)
  • Anwar Ibrahim leads the three-party opposition coalition Pakatan Rakyat
  • Key issues include corruption, race-based policies that favour Malays and the economy
  • Turnout was estimated at a record 80%, election officials said
"People have enough of this semi-authoritarian rule, of complete [government] control of the media, of strong arrogance, of power and endemic corruption," he told AP in an interview. 
He advised supporters "to remain calm, not to be provoked, not to take the law into their own hands, support the process".

"Unless there's a major massive fraud tomorrow - that is our nightmare - we will win," he told AFP news agency.

Online drive Allegations of election fraud surfaced before the election. Some of those who voted in advance told BBC News that indelible ink - supposed to last for days - easily washed off.

"The indelible ink can be washed off easily, with just water, in a few seconds," one voter, Lo, told BBC News from Skudai.
Anwar Ibrahim, centre, greets supporters with his wife Wan Azizah after voting at Penanti in Penang state in northern Malaysia, 5 May Anwar Ibrahim voted in Penang state
Another voter wrote: "Marked with "indelible ink" and voted at 10:00. Have already cleaned off the ink by 12:00. If I was also registered under a different name and ID number at a neighbouring constituency, I would be able to vote again before 17:00!"

The opposition has also accused the government of funding flights for supporters to key states, which the government denies.

Independent pollster Merdeka Center has received unconfirmed reports of foreign nationals being given IDs and allowed to vote.

The international organisation Human Rights Watch said there had been well-planned attacks against the country's independent media ahead of the polls. 

Both sides actively engaged the electorate online, especially the country's 2.6 million new voters, the BBC's Jennifer Pak reports from Kuala Lumpur.

Visiting the social media unit for PKR, one of the opposition parties, she found activists posting messages to encourage people to vote despite heavy rain in some regions.
PKR social media activists PKR social media activists reported an attacks on their Facebook page
Most traditional media in Malaysia are linked to the governing parties so opposition parties rely almost exclusively on the internet to get their message out, she says.

"This is our only way to get our message out but, even then, we do struggle," said activist Praba Ganesan. "Our Facebook account this morning was attacked, we had to remove content, we had to fix it. There are fears that things are being compromised." 

Officially, just 18 foreign electoral observers are in Malaysia. They are joined by 1,200 local observers from 17 non-governmental organisations.

The electoral commission said on Saturday that the foreign observers comprised six each from Indonesia and Thailand, and two each from Burma, Cambodia and the Asean secretariat.