There are reasons to weigh up on the 2 dates to hold the 13th General Elections. Let’s look at them serously:
For November GE:
1.Global economic downturn will hit Malaysia sooner or later-so earlier GE will avoid the damage;
2.UMNO’s general assemblies will be held by end of this year-so a win in GE will ensure Najib’s smooth sailing to continue hiw power in UMNO; But this bite both ways-a failure to retain the 2/3 majority in parliament will cause his challengers to hurry up with their action to replace him; Such consideration may cause UMNO to purposely under-perform to kick out Najib;
3.The feel good factor from Najib’s various announced `reforms’ and the October budget will be trumpeted to BN’s advantage in a Nov GE; It is doubtful if the feel good factor from these `reforms’ will last too long as most of them will take after march 2012 to start to see materialisation;
4. Irregularities in the electoral rolls and electoral system won’t be rectified under people’s pressures as of November-this may keep some more unfair advantages to BN; see report below:
- EC admits 40,000 names in electoral roll ‘doubtful’
- 2:03PM Oct 13 | 12(Malaysiakini)
- BREAKING NEWS Its chief says there are bits of information that cannot be confirmed or do not tally with the NRD.
For March GE;
1. If November GE is held it will pressure PR to not dissolve the state assemblies under their control due to their lack of preparations; in addition if they don’t dissolve their state assemblies they can concentrate on fighting BN states!
2. Benefits from the Oct Budget will be delivered by March eg RM500.00 handout to families earning below RM3k/month.
3. Numerous preparation for GE will take time to come on stream eg media re-organisation (see below)
4. If Najib win endorsement from his UMNO delegates he will be in a stronger position to face the 13th GE, with a team more to his liking;
5. BN’s component parties like MIC, Gerakan, SUPP will take longer time to reshape themselves-if they ever will; November GE may see their earlier demise;
Umno realigns media units with eye towards polls
By Jahabar Sadiq
October 13, 2011
Umno-liked English newspapers have fallen behind their Malay counterparts. — File pic
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 13 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s media strategist, Abdul Jalil Hamid, is expected to head newspaper publisher New Straits Times Press (M) Berhad (NSTP) from Monday as Umno realigns its media units ahead of the next general election expected by early 2012.
The Malaysian Insider also understands that apart from changes in NSTP, another Umno-linked newspaper, The Malay Mail, is in talks to take news from the MalaysiaKini web portal in exchange for shares in the tabloid. MalaysiaKini, which began in 1999, has been interested in the print media for some time and is suing the Home Affairs Ministry for a publishing permit.
Malaysiakini chief executive Premesh Chandran has since responded to this report, saying that “Mkini is not selling out, neither are we buying a stake in Malay Mail”, via microblogging service Twitter.
Both media companies have planned for a relaunch on November 11 with The Malay Mail returning as a paid morning tabloid while the NSTP’s flagship New Straits Times will sport a new design. It is learnt that NSTP’s current group managing director, Datuk Zainul Ariffin Mohammed Isa, will return to lead the company’s e-Media unit that focuses on putting more content online.
It is also understood that the publisher’s Umno-linked parent, Media Prima Berhad (MPB), have agreed to a “mutual separation” with NSTP chief executive officer Datuk Anthony @ Firdauz Bujang. His post has been re-designated as chief operating officer and is expected to be filled by Mohammad Azlan Abdullah, the current chief executive officer of MPB’s Big Tree Outdoor Sdn Bhd.
“The decision was made at a board meeting yesterday. Both MPB and Anthony have agreed that he can leave but the real surprise is moving Zainul Arifin out effective this Saturday,” a source told The Malaysian Insider.
Several other sources confirmed the new appointments, with one saying that NSTP was abuzz with news that Jalil would take over the newspaper company, which is now a subsidiary of MPB.
“What we hear in Balai Berita is Jalil Hamid, ex-Reuters and ex Securities Commission, will be the new group managing editor,” one newspaper editor told The Malaysian Insider, referring to the NSTP headquarters in Jalan Riong here.
Another source confirmed that only two changes were made in the board meeting yesterday and MPB group managing director Datuk Amrin Awaluddin is expected to brief NSTP staff later today on the changes in the top posts. Anthony took up his post in November 2008 while Zainul Arifin has led the editorial team since July 2009.
Jalil is a widely-respected journalist who had only worked with national news agency Bernama and international newswire Reuters Ltd before it became ThomsonReuters PLC. He was seconded to head Najib’s National Communications Team in September 2010 from the Securities Commission (SC), which he joined as its senior general manager in the Corporate Affairs Department in 2009.
Apart from serving twice in the Reuters Kuala Lumpur bureau, Jalil has also worked in Reuters’ offices in Singapore and London, specialising in commodities, equities and political news.
He was in the news in July when criticised over a leaked note to Umno informationc chief Datuk Ahmad Maslan advising local media on coverage of the July 9 Bersih 2.0 rally calling for free and fair elections. Several newspapers demonised the rally and its organisers while the government cracked down on the rally which is now subject of a public inquiry by the Malaysian Human Rights Commission (Suhakam).
New COO Mohammad Azlan has been with Big Tree since 2001 and will continue to report to Amrin. He holds a Bachelor Business Degree (Accountancy) from University of Tasmania, Australia and is a full member of the Certified Practising Accountant (CPA) Australia and Chartered Accountant, Malaysian Institute of Accountants (MIA).
Media executives say the NSTP stable of newspapers remains profitable and will benefit from increased advertising expenditure in 2012 due to campaigns related to the London Olympics and Euro 2012 football competition. But it is understood the owners are unhappy with the English-language New Straits Times’ editorial coverage and shrinking circulation.
“It is making money but readership is falling off for the NST. Only the Bahasa Malaysia papers are doing well,” an executive told The Malaysian Insider on condition of anonymity. He added that Umno officials had expressed concern and had recommended personnel changes recently.
The Malay Mail, which first began in publishing in 1896, is now under the Redberry Media group that bought a 75 per cent stake of the tabloid from the NSTP group in 2009. It became a free afternoon newspaper in May 2008 but has recently announced plans to revert to being a paid daily.
Both media groups are supportive of Najib, who last month announced that newspapers will not be subject to annual licensing under the Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984 as part of a wider liberalisation package that his political foes say is linked to snap polls next year.