• 1MDB to be ‘wound down’, Abu Dhabi firms to help cut extra RM16b in debt

    — Reuters picKUALA LUMPUR, May 29 — The deal with International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC) and its Aabar Investments unit could remove another RM16 billion in debt from 1 Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) that will be wound down, according to national news agency Bernama. In its report, Bernama asserted that the two Abu Dhabi firms that will extend a US$1 billion payment to 1MDB next month could take on more of the firm’s debts via additional deals in coming weeks. It further added that 1MDB will be wound down by next year and its operations transferred to three separate firms. “[The] deal reached with Abu Dhabi-based IPIC and Aabar will help reduce the debt by RM16 billion and in exchange, 1MDB will provide IPIC and Aabar with a number of financial assets, including units that are held in the company’s BSI Singapore account,” Bernama reported.

    The Malay Mail Online | Malaysia q
  • Lawyer applies to withdraw as Azilah’s counsel in civil suit by Altantuya family - The Malaysian Insider

    – The Malaysian Insider pic, May 29, 2015.Lawyer Datuk Hazman Ahmad's application to withdraw as former chief inspector Azilah Hadri's counsel in the suit filed by deceased Mongolian model Altantuya Shaariibuu's family will be heard on June 11. High Court judge Datuk Suraya Othman fixed the date in chambers when the application was brought before her for case management today.

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  • Bicycle allowance among culprits in MAS financial drain, says new boss - The Malaysian Insider

    – Reuters file pic, May 29, 2015.Some 180 types of allowances paid out by Malaysia Airlines, including a monthly bicycle allowance to one employee, contributed to its financial drain, The Star reported today. It quoted MAS chief executive officer Christoph Mueller as saying that huge overtime claims, over-priced contracts and salaries also added to the airline's costs. But Mueller said that this phenomenon was also prevalent in many airlines.

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  • Why do Malaysians hate migrants? - The Malaysian Insider

    Why do Malaysians hate migrants? When a racial riot broke out in southern Italy sometime in early 2010, the mindless attacks on African immigrants prompted Pope Benedict XVI to respond by reminding people that, "an immigrant is a human being, different in background, culture and tradition, but a person to be respected, and possessing rights and duties". Malaysians tend to get emotional when such issues arise and share the same concerns with the rest of the world when it comes down to how we feel about migrants. Whether you want to believe or not, Malaysia is one of those countries made up of migrants.

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  • Renovation of terrace houses not in harmony, say Bangsar Baru folk - Community | The Star Online

    VARIOUS terrace house renovations around the Bangsar Baru area have caused many raised eyebrows among the community who are worried about its safety, legality as well as its jarring design that does not fit in with the rest of the neighbourhood. Earlier this month, the matter was raised in a resident dialogue with Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) by Bangsar Baru Residents Association (BBRA) past president Chang Kek Wei. “There are quite a number of renovations going on in the area. “The problem is that these homes are rebuilt into much larger homes, a storey higher than its immediate neighbours, and the facade is such that it does not look in harmony with the other houses” he said.

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  • Foreign-born college graduates hot commodity in US tech fields

    — Reuters picNEW YORK, May 29 — Ask any US recruiter: Competition for science, technology and engineering talent is getting fierce. Benefiting big from that trend are foreign-born college graduates, who are seeing fast wage gains as they help American employers fill those hot jobs. Among full-time wage and salary workers in the US with a bachelor’s degree or more, those who were born outside the country earned higher wages than native-born workers for the second year in a row in 2014, according to Labour Department data. Unadjusted for inflation, median wages increased a sluggish 3.6 per cent for native-born college graduates from 2010 to 2014, while they rose 9.2 per cent in the same period for foreign-born workers with at least a bachelor’s.

    The Malay Mail Online | All q
  • Richest Australian Rinehart loses control of family trust - The Malaysian Insider

    – AFP pic, May 28, 2015.Australia's richest person Gina Rinehart was Thursday ordered by a court to relinquish control of a multi-billion dollar family trust to her eldest daughter, culminating a long and bitter feud. The New South Wales Supreme Court appointed Bianca Rinehart as head of the trust, reportedly worth Aus$4.0-5.0 billion (RM11-15 billion), which was established by her grandfather, the late mining magnate Lang Hancock. It ordered Gina Rinehart to deliver the trust documents and accounts to her daughter.

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  • No respite yet for Malaysia’s stock market - Business News | The Star Online

    KUALA LUMPUR: The FBM KLCI again slipped into the red early Friday as  investors were disappointed with most of  the corporate results amid  also growing anxiety over the plunge in China markets the previous day. At 9.25am, the KLCI was down 4.58 points or 0.26% to 1,750.98. JF Apex Research said following the negative performance of global markets due to Greece, “we expect the KLCI to remain lacklustre with immediate support at 1,747”. BIMB Securities Research expect the local market to remain bearish due to poor sentiment.

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  • Is Jho Low back in town?

    — File picKUALA LUMPUR, May 29 — Flamboyant and controversial businessman Low Taek Jho is believed to have returned to Kuala Lumpur via a Cathay Pacific flight from Hong Kong yesterday evening, according to news portal The Ant Daily. According to the report, the tycoon called Jho Low took the CX729 flight that landed at Kuala Lumpur International Airport at 7.43 pm yesterday, before he was whisked away by a tall ethnic Indian man. Low’s return came amid a tumultuous time for strategic fund 1 Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB), which has been repeatedly linked to him. Responding to the PAC saying it will not yet summon Low for its investigation, Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin insisted there was too much speculation about the former’s involvement with 1MDB to be ignored.

    The Malay Mail Online | Malaysia q
  • MAS union warns of possible protest by retrenched staff

    — Picture by Saw Siow FengKUALA LUMPUR, May 29 — A union representing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) employees who may find themselves jobless next week has sought legal recourse and may resort to staging a protest due to the “unjustifiable” terminations. According to local daily New Straits Times, the National Union of Flight Attendants Malaysia (Nufam) is currently in talks with legal experts on the lawfulness of MAS firing 8,000 of its 20,000 employees, adding that it will protest the unjustified termination if necessary. “What happens to those who do not agree to the retrenchment conditions or those who do not sign the rehiring offer letters? “We are also looking to proceed on grounds of unjustifiable dismissal and we may stage a protest against the terminations,” Nufam president Ismail Nasaruddin was quoted saying.

    The Malay Mail Online | Malaysia q
  • ‘I dug my friend’s grave,’ says escaped transit camp victim

    — Bernama picALOR SETAR, May 29 — Digging his friend’s grave was one of the unforgettable experiences for Rohingya Mohamad Toha Naziullah, who escaped the horrifying human trafficking transit camp over a year ago. After undergoing two months’ detention, Mohamad Toha, 23, ran away from the camp, which was located in a dense forest area of Wang Kelian, near here, at the Malaysia-Thailand border. Mohamad Toha was among thousands of Rohingyas fleeing persecution in Myanmar but only to fall into the hands of traffickers and extortionists, which in many cases saw them witnessing deaths and suffering from abuse and hunger. One day, the caretakers pulled Yunus out and demanded RM8,000 payment for his freedom to Malaysia, said the grief stricken Mohamad Toha.

    The Malay Mail Online | Malaysia q
  • Shahrir defends meeting 1MDB’s Arul, says it is to understand issues - The Malaysian Insider

    – May 29, 2015.Barisan Nasional Backbenchers Club (BNBBC) chief Tan Sri Shahrir Samad said today he met with 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB)'s president Arul Kanda Kandasamy and that the meeting was for him to understand in depth the issues faced by the debt-laden firm. According to a report by portal BNBBC.my, the Johor Baru MP said as a Barisan Nasional federal lawmaker and president of the club, he had to understand all important issues in a comprehensive manner and this does not solely include 1MDB only. "It means the support and stand of BN parliamentarians are based on fact and correct information, and it is not merely on loyalty towards party," he was quoted as saying about the meeting. Shahrir said BNBBC also from time to time, gets briefings from all quarters on issues that are of public interest.

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  • Arul Kanda explains why he could meet Shahrir but not PAC - The Malaysian Insider

    – May 29, 2015.Under fire for not turning up at a scheduled inquiry by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on Tuesday, 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) president and group executive director Arul Kanda Kandasamy insisted he was abroad at the time. He also confirmed that he met Barisan Nasional Backbenchers Club (BNBBC) president, Tan Sri Shahrir Samad the following night in Kuala Lumpur, but said this was only after he returned to Malaysia.

    The Malaysian Insider q
  • Suspected Rohingya boats evade Malaysian rescue team - The Malaysian Insider

    – Reuters filepic, May 28, 2015.Two boats believed to be carrying more than 40 Rohingya refugees from Myanmar evaded Malaysian rescue forces Thursday, officials said as the international community prepared to step up efforts to save boat people in Southeast Asian waters. The two boats, carrying more than 20 people each, were spotted by a Malaysian patrol near the resort island of Langkawi early Thursday but were in Thai territorial waters, said a senior Malaysian naval official. "The orders are to search for them and provide humanitarian assistance.

    The Malaysian Insider q
  • Surprise US$2,000 tip leaves restaurant staff in shock

    — AFP picWASHINGTON, May 29 — A Washington man shocked the staff of a neighbourhood restaurant earlier this week by leaving a US$2,000 for a meal of beer and gumbo he shared with a friend, the proprietor said Wednesday. The man, described by Blue 44’s owner Chris Nardelli as a gumbo-loving regular who lives nearby, left the tip on a US$93 bill on Monday night. “Thank you for the gumbo!” he wrote on the bill after indulging his taste for the Louisiana Creole dish, a specialty of the house. “It was pretty shocking to say the least,” said Nardelli, who also is a chef and bartender at the four-year-old restaurant in the Chevy Chase neighbourhood.

    The Malay Mail Online | All q
  • Pele to Harimau Malaya: Play abroad!

    Nothing beats the exposure you get when playing away matches, says the legend.

    Malaysiakini q
  • BNM deputy governor raises concern over insurance fraud

    — Picture by Yusof Mat IsaKUALA LUMPUR, May 29 — Insurance fraud continues to grow at an alarming pace worldwide with the magnitude to some extent aggravated by technological advancement, Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) Deputy Governor Datuk Muhammad Ibrahim said. He said in the UK, home to the biggest insurance market in Europe and the world’s third largest, insurance claims fraud exceeded £2.1 billion, of which nearly 60 per cent concentrated in the motor (vehicle) insurance. He said the situation was no different in Malaysia as insurance fraud was also serious in motor segment, with an estimated loss of RM760 million suffered by insurers and takaful operators in 2013 alone.

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  • Japan evacuates island after volcano erupts | theSundaily

    TOKYO: A violent volcanic eruption in southern Japan forced the evacuation of an island on Friday, as a huge column of ash was shot high into the sky. Footage by the Japan Meteorological Agency captured the moment the plume rocketed from Mount Shindake on the far southern island of Kuchinoerabu. Television pictures showed the after-effects of the pyroclastic flow, which had cascaded down the mountainside towards one of the island's harbours. Community leader Nobuaki Hayashi told public broadcaster NHK how the eruption, which came around 10:00 am (0100 GMT) had blocked out the morning light.

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  • Monday is D-Day for MAS staff - Nation | The Star Online

    PETALING JAYA: Monday will be red letter day for 20,000 Malaysia Airlines (MAS) employees. The airline’s new chief executive officer Christoph Mueller made it clear that this difficult period of anxiety will be over then. On June 1, termination letters will be sent out to all the employees but about two-thirds of the staff will be offered jobs with the new company, MAS Bhd. They have until June 12 to decide if they want to join up on new terms. The new airline, a smaller entity, will only be able to accommodate about 14,000 employees.

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  • 1MDB’s TRX and Bandar Malaysia to be standalone entities - The Malaysian Insider

    – The Malaysian Insider pic, May 29, 2015.1Malaysia Development Berhad's (1MDB) two real estate developments will be separated into stand alone companies as part of a rationalisation plan to reduce its massive RM42 billion debt. Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah said the Tun Razak Exchange (TRX) financial district project and Bandar Malaysia development will be run as separate entities with full autonomy and accountability for their operational and financial performance.

    The Malaysian Insider q