Ahad, 9 Februari 2014

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The Star Online: Nation

Inaugural Harmony walk delays wedding but welcomed

Posted: 08 Feb 2014 08:00 AM PST

KOTA KINABALU: Hundreds of city folk, transcending race and religion, visited places of worship to promote national unity through the inaugural Harmony Travelogue and Walk event here.

Starting out at the Sikh Gurdwara at Sembulan, they dropped by at Buddhist and Taoist temples in Penam­pang before joining a wedding at the Catholic Church of Mary Immaculate in Bukit Padang yesterday.

The 9am ceremony was held back for about 30 minutes – but nobody minded the delay.

The group, led by Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Tan Sri Joseph Kurup and state Commu­nity Development and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Jainab Ahmad Ayid, was greeted by family and friends of Joe Liew and his bride Tracy Ho. Along with Kurup and Jainab were imams and Buddhist monks.

"This is a pleasant surprise," Joseph Ho, the father of the bride, said.

"We don't mind the delay because it's great to see so many people of different faiths visiting our church."

The group also included National Service trainees later stopped by the Sri Pasupathinath Alayam Hindu temple nearby before concluding their walk at the Nurul Hikmah mosque.

Kurup told reporters later that the National Unity Department was asked to organise more such events to foster better rapport among groups of other faiths.

For a start, he said, the department would liaise with the state governments to organise similar events.

"Events like this serve as an icebreaker among people of different faiths," said Kurup, who chairs the Committee on the Promotion of Understanding and Harmony among Religious Organisations.

"This is an opportunity for members of different communities to better understand each other's faiths," said the minister, who led panel members and representatives of 18 religious organisations in a courtesy call on Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman on Friday.

Meanwhile, Musa said Sabah had set a good example for peace and harmony despite the diversity in ethnicity, religion and cultures.

"We, in Sabah, never had problems with religious issues," he pointed out.

"We live in a society where inter-marriage is common, visiting each other's open houses during festivities is normal and to sit and drink together is part of our daily lives."

New Immigration D-G joins ops against illegals

Posted: 08 Feb 2014 08:00 AM PST

KUALA LUMPUR: Barely a week into her new post, newly appointed Immigration director-general Datuk Aloyah Mamat has conducted her first operation under a nationwide crackdown against illegal immigrants.

Aloyah, the first woman appointed as director-general of the Immigration Department, was present during the operations at GM Plaza in Chow Kit here yesterday.

It was part of the Ops Bersepadu 6P nationwide crackdown.

During the operation, 200 illegal immigrants aged between 20 and 40 were arrested for various offences.

Aloyah said most of their offences were about not possessing identification documents, having fake travel documents or overstaying.

"They will be placed in our detention depot for further investigation," she told reporters during the operation.

On the job: Aloyah (right) inspecting the passport of a detained foreign worker in Kuala Lumpur. — Bernama

On the job: Aloyah (right) inspecting the passport of a detained foreign worker in Kuala Lumpur. — Bernama

She also noted that most of the foreigners were from Indonesia, Pakistan, Thailand and Myanmar.

Aloyah said since the beginning of Ops Bersepadu 6P on Jan 21, 438 operations involving 5,600 officers were carried out across the country with 16,000 foreigners screened and 3,550 arrested.

"The number of foreigners arrested from each country so far are 1,400 from Indonesia, 537 from Myanmar, 451 from Bangladesh, 264 from Philippines and 239 from Nepal," she said.

Aloyah said that 30 employers were also arrested with 22 of them Malaysians, four Indonesians, three Bangladeshis and one from Nepal.

They were suspected of hiring or protecting illegal immigrants.

Sitcom suspended over Kok video link

Posted: 08 Feb 2014 08:00 AM PST

KUALA LUMPUR: Radio Television Malaysia (RTM) has suspended the broadcast of 88 Kopitiam, a weekly Chinese sitcom over TV2, following allegations that one of its actors appeared in Teresa Kok's Chinese New Year video clipping Onederful Malaysia.

In a statement here yesterday, information director-general Datuk Norhyati Ismail said RTM would investigate any programme where it is found the actors were involved in activities that could tarnish the country's image.

"RTM will not hesitate to take stern action against individuals involved in such activities," she said.

The video drew a series of brickbats from political and civil groups and some 50 people, claiming to be part of a so-called Council of Muslim NGOs, who carried out a protest here on Thursday denouncing the Seputeh MP.

They also offered a RM500 reward to anyone who slaps Kok, who is a DAP national vice-chairman. The reward was later raised to RM1,200.

The protesters slaughtered chickens and smeared the blood on poster images of Kok, Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, DAP adviser Lim Kit Siang and Machang Bubuk assemblyman Lee Khai Loon.

The group is being investigated for violating the Peaceful Assembly Act.

The video purportedly poked fun at national leaders and national issues, like the education system, cost of living, public safety and foreign intrusion into Sabah in February last year.

Norhyati said RTM would be meeting with the 88 Kopitiam producer to ascertain the involvement of the actor in Kok's video.

"This is to ensure that no parties were wronged or used by irresponsible parties," she said.

The sitcom, which airs on TV2 on Mondays, highlights issues affecting the Chinese community in Malaysia.

Related stories:

Zahid: Offering reward for slap not a threat, so no probe needed

Khairy: Video in bad taste but slap offer extreme

PAS offers bodyguards to protect Kok from threats

Kredit: www.thestar.com.my

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