Showing posts from 2015

HARESH SAYS: People need assurance, comfort ... not stress

As published in Malay Mail today HARESH SAYS By Haresh Deol DATUK Ahmad Maslan, the man best known for decorating his wok with cucumbers, hogs the limelight again. The deputy international trade and industry minister, in his latest suggestion addressing the rising costs of living, encourages the masses to take on two jobs. Such a practice is common around the world, he was reported as saying on Boxing Day. Malaysians are generally finding it tough changing their lifestyles. They rant on social media about the hikes in goods while sipping RM15 coffee. Some complain of low wages yet have no qualms maxing out their credit cards. But let’s keep that for another day. Encouraging Malaysians to take up two jobs is not wrong but will derail work-life balance. Young couples may hold back plans to raise a family. Less time spent at home could see the family institution crumble. In other parts of the world, people are reducing the number of hours spent at work while some organisati

FOOTBALL: 'No will to make changes'

As published in Malay Mail today By Haresh Deol KUALA LUMPUR — It was a revelation that shocked the football world.   Malay Mail had on April 25 exposed a damning video that saw then Asian Football Confederation (AFC) financial director Bryan Kuan Wee Hoong claiming former AFC general-secretary Datuk Alex Soosay telling him "protect me" before asking "can you tamper or hide documents which relate to me?"   An internal probe was initiated by AFC, only for the regional body to close investigations five months later citing "inability to obtain any additional evidence". Soosay was suspended in May and quit a month later.     Former AFC general-secretary Datuk Peter Velappan expressed regret over the inaction by AFC, adding "nobody has the will to make changes".   "After spending 50 years in football, it pains me to see the bribery scandal in Fifa. Africa is gone ... so are parts of Europe and now, that disease ha

Rewind 2015: Pathetic footballers

As published in Malay Mail on Dec 17 By Haresh Deol MALAYSIAN football plummeted to an all-time low following the 10-0 drubbing to United Arab Emirates (UAE) during the 2018 World Cup and 2019 Asian Cup qualifiers on Sept 3. The tragic score line was plastered on the front page of almost every major daily in the country, including Malay Mail. It was Malaysia’s worst result since losing 8-2 to New Zealand in Kuala Lumpur almost 50 years ago. National coach Dollah Salleh quit after claiming responsibility for the national team’s pathetic performance. Harimau Muda coach Datuk Ong Kim Swee was then tasked to take over for the remaining qualifying matches as interim coach. Ardent supporters demanded key leaders in the FA of Malaysia (FAM) to quit, including its president Tengku Abdullah Shah, who had previously said he would step down if Harimau Malaya failed to make the cut for the Asian Cup. For the record, Tengku Abdull

GOING NUTS: Sleeping officials bring shame to country

As published in Malay Mail today.  GOING NUTS By Graig Nunis ON April 8, news broke that Malaysia would host the next three World Championships for women’s squash starting from December. It was a big deal with local newspapers highlighting the fact eight-time world champion Datuk Nicol David would have three opportunities to finally win a world title on home ground after failing to do so in March 2014 (this was for the 2013 World Championship which was postponed after prospective hosts Hong Kong and Egypt had their bids rejected). The 2014 event was in Cairo, Egypt in December where David won her record-extending eighth world crown. However, in August of that year, Hallmark Events Group was awarded the rights to three consecutive world title events with a guaranteed prize-fund in excess of US$500,000 (RM2.1 million). Between August and April Hallmark was “negotiating” with prospective hosts before revealing Malaysia had won the right to host the World Championsh

SQUASH: Hallmark of trickery

As published in Mailsport on Dec 6 Comment by Graig Nunis PETALING JAYA — The old saying “it is all fun and games until someone gets hurt” holds true for the Women’s World Squash Championship. The attempt by Hallmark Events Group to “blackmail” the sports ministry into giving them RM3.5 million for “security arrangements” is a prime example of how badly we need a strong sports commissioner to uphold the Sports Development Act 1997. Hallmark cited security reasons for postponing the Dec 11-18 tournament but in an email reply to Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, they had admitted they do not have enough funding. Khairy said the organisers told him: “We can still organise this next week if you give us RM3.5 million for private security arrangements.” Khairy rightly shut them up, saying: “I don’t appreciate being blackmailed, especially after they had used security as an excuse and painted Malaysia in bad light when they admitted they had decided to pos

HARESH SAYS: No action, talk only

As published in Malay Mail today HARESH SAYS By Haresh Deol A NASTY pothole in Section 13, Petaling Jaya, did more than just create a loud thud on my way back from work on Saturday. It dented my rim pretty bad. I had arranged a series of meetings on Monday and they had to be cancelled as I had to visit a service centre nearby to get the rim inspected. I could have taken my car to my regular tyre shop but I did not want to jeopardise the vehicle’s warranty. Such paranoia stems from reading letters sent to Malay Mail Hotline by those taking issue with car manufacturers that cancel warranties over minor jobs carried out by third-party workshops. I drove to the service centre, parked my car, obtained a number and waited for my turn. A young chap attended to me and I showed him the rim. He said: “Sorry sir, but we don’t repair rims here. I suggest you take it to a tyre shop to get it fixed.” I looked at my watch. Thirty minutes wasted. I went to my regular tyre

New AFC general secretary ‘wishes dad was here’

As published in Sunday Mail today By Haresh Deol KUALA LUMPUR —  Kedahan Datuk Windsor Paul John was named Asian Football Confederation (AFC) general secretary on Friday, an appointment he wished his dad could have seen. John, who was the deputy general secretary, was made acting general secretary after Datuk Alex Soosay was suspended in May following an internal investigation over a controversial “tamper or hide” video exposed by Malay Mail on April 25. Soosay quit on June 17. Mailsport had on June 18 quoted insiders as saying John was “most likely” to occupy the hot seat.  He joined a host of Malaysians who served as general secretary, including  Datuk Peter Velappan (1978-2007) and another Kedahan, Datuk Paul Mony Samuel (2007-2009). “It’s a great honour for the (AFC) executive committee to recognise my capabilities and have faith in me. There are many new things, especially reforms introduced, for us to move forward and

Being Frank: Bad ‘guardians’ take zing out of wonderkid’s feat

As published in Sunday Mail today Being Frank By Frankie D’Cruz MALAYSIA’S newest sporting hero, sprinter Badrul Hisyam Abdul Manap, 18, should be a household name. Sadly, he isn’t so. Certain media don’t even get the spelling of his name right. That’s disappointing. Badrul who clocked 10.29s to break Watson Nyambek’s 17-year national 100m record by one-tenth of a second last Monday is one of the best stories this year. Sadly, his story has not gripped the nation. That’s depressing. The schoolboy’s spectacular achievement is one of the defining moments of Malaysian athletics, yet it has been virtually ignored by the authorities including the Malaysian Athletics Federation (MAF) that has had a series of poor stories in recent years. The education and youth and sports ministries also failed to make Badrul, a young inspiring Malaysian, top news. Here’s the thing: at a time when the authorities are struggling to encourage the young to excel in sports

HARESH SAYS: Please help ailing taxi industry

As published in Malay Mail today HARESH SAYS By Haresh Deol WE sat at the corner of a rather dingy eatery near the former Rothman’s roundabout in Petaling Jaya. It was there that Kumar shared his taxi driving tales over some tomyam. “It’s not pretty … just like this place,” he said, slurping the spicy dish while stray cats stared at us, hoping for a morsel. In his mid-30s, Kumar is a frustrated man. He thought he could make an honest living as a taxi driver in Kuala Lumpur. “But I hardly make anything these days,” he sighed. Kumar bought a second-hand taxi — a 2010 Proton Saga BLM — from a taxi company in 2013. He paid a down payment of RM2,500 and his “loan” had him paying RM47 daily for two years and five months. The daily payment includes the car loan, driver’s permit fee, installation of a natural gas vehicle (NGV) tank and insurance. Once he finishes paying the loan, the car will be his. But if he plans to continue driving, Kumar will

Former Badminton Association of Malaysia presidents

1934-1937: John L. Woods 1947-1949: Lim Chuan Geok 1949:        Heah Joo Seang 1950-1953: Khoo Teik Foo 1954-1959: Heah Joo Seang 1960:     Low Hoot Yeang 1961-1985: Tan Sri Mohd Khir Johari 1985-1993: Tan Sri Elyas Omar 1993-2000: Datuk Dr Abdullah Fadzil Che Wan 2000-2013: Datuk Sri Mohd Nadzmi Mohd Salleh 2013-2015: Tengku Tan Sri Mahaleel Tengku Ariff Oct 18, 2015 (acting president):   Tan Sri Al Amin Mohamed Al-Amin Abd Majid

HARESH SAYS: We need to secure our stadiums

As published in Malay Mail today. HARESH SAYS By Haresh Deol   THEY gathered at the Stade de France, eager to see two world class football teams in action. France hosted Germany in an international friendly in Paris last Friday, as 80,000 fans chanted, took selfies and cheered for their favourite players in action. But the smiles quickly turned into panic, and for some, tears. Those at the stands, including French President Francois Hollande, were jolted following terror attacks that hit various parts of the French capital. They later learnt one of the three bombs set off near the arena was supposed to be detonated inside the stadium. Authorities said an explosion at the terrace would have triggered a deadly stampede. The death toll of 129 could have increased to thousands. Bodies would be seen all over the field as some of the best footballers in the world would have also been killed. Those in the stadium have one man to thank — an unidentified security personnel. Security