Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Aliens may destroy humanity to protect other civilisations, say scientists

UNIVERSITY PARK, Penn. – We've all heard of the ravaged rain forests and the plight of the polar bear. But as far as reasons for saving the planet go, the one offered by scientists Thursday is truly out of this world.

A team of American researchers have produced a range of scenarios in which aliens could attack the earth, and curiously, one revolves around climate change.
They speculate that extraterrestrial environmentalists could be so appalled by our planet-polluting ways that they view us as a threat to the intergalactic ecosystem and decide to destroy us.

The thought-provoking scenario is one of many envisaged in a joint study by Penn State and the NASA Planetary Science Division, entitled "Would Contact with Extraterrestrials Benefit or Harm Humanity? A Scenario Analysis."

It divides projected close encounters into "neutral," those that cause mankind "unintentional harm" and, more worryingly, those in which aliens do us "intentional harm."

Extraterrestrial intelligence (ETI) "could attack and kill us, enslave us, or potentially even eat us. ETI could attack us out of selfishness or out of a more altruistic desire to protect the galaxy from us. We might be a threat to the galaxy just as we are a threat to our home planet," it warns.
One such scenario is the stuff of many a Hollywood blockbuster, a "standard fight-to-win conflict: a war of the worlds." But another might resonate more with fans of Al Gore's documentary film "An Inconvenient truth."

It speculates that aliens, worried we might inflict the damage done to our own planet on others, might "seek to preemptively destroy our civilization in order to protect other civilizations from us."

"Humanity may just now be entering the period in which its rapid civilizational expansion could be detected by an ETI because our expansion is changing the composition of Earth's atmosphere (e.g. via greenhouse gas emissions), which therefore changes the spectral signature of Earth," the study says.

"While it is difficult to estimate the likelihood of this scenario, it should at a minimum give us pause as we evaluate our expansive tendencies."

But before we brace ourselves for alien annihilation, the report suggests things could turn in humanity's favor.

"As we continue the search for extraterrestrials into the future, perhaps our thinking about the different modes of contact will help human civilization to avoid collapse and achieve long-term survival," it suggests.

Pertukaran Pengarah Pejabat Pembangunan dan Pengarah Pejabat Pengurusan Fasiliti.

Mulai 1 hb.Februari 2012 Pengarah Pejabat Pembangunan iaitu Tuan Haji Alias Taib bertukar menjadi Pengarah Pejabat Pengurusan Fasiliti mengantikan puan Sr Hjh. Zuraida Yahya. Manakala puan Sr Hjh. Zuraida Yahya menjadi Pengarah Pejabat Pembangunan. Semoga Pejabat Pembangunan dan Pengurusan Fasiliti akan lebih maju dan berjaya dengan pertukaran ini.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

The War on Iran is Already Underway - by Leonid Slavin

If the conflict with Iran takes the shape of a protracted bombing campaign and comes as a prologue to the occupation of the country, the US will need to strengthen its positions in adjacent regions, meaning that Washington will be trying to draw the Caucasian republics (Georgia, Azerbaijan) and those of Central Asia into the orbit of its policy and thus tightening the “Anaconda loop” around Russia.

The opposition mounted to the plans underlying the military scenario by China, Russia, and India seems to hold the promise of an alliance of countries seeking to tame US hegemony and raging unilateralism.

The morally charged concepts of humanitarian interventions and war on terror had just as well been invoked to legitimize downright aggressions against Yugoslavia, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

Matthew H. Kroenig from the Council on Foreign Relations recently went so far as to warn that Iran would some day pass its nuclear technologies to Venezuela. The motivation must be to somehow bundle all critics of the US foreign policy.

Chances are that a part of the oil embargo plan is to make the West encounter oil supply problems and start constructing pipelines across Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Yemen, Qatar, and Iraq as alternative routes reaching the shores of the Arabian, Red, and Mediterranean Seas.

Since the new US military strategy implies focusing on two regions – the Greater Middle East and South East Asia - the issue of the Strait of Hormuz appears coupled to that of the Strait of Malacca which offers the shortest route for the oil supply from the Indian Ocean to China, Japan, South Korea, and the rest of South East Asia.

The EU oil embargo recently slapped on Iran and the threats voiced by the US and other Western countries to come up with further sanctions against the country led watchers to conclude that an armed conflict between Iran and the West has finally became imminent.

The first potential scenario in this context is that the current standoff would eventually escalate into a war. The US forces in the Gulf area currently number 40,000, plus 90,000 are deployed in Afghanistan, just east of Iran, and several thousand support troops are deployed in various Asian countries. That adds up to a considerable military potential which may still fall short of what it takes to keep a lid on everything if armed hostilities break out. For example, Colin H. Kahl argues in a recent paper in Foreign Affairs that, even though “there is no doubt that Washington will win in the narrow operational sense” (1), the US would have to take a vast array of pertinent problems into account.

At the moment, maintaining the status quo is not in US interests, holds Stratfor, a US-based global intelligence agency: “If al Assad survives and if the situation in Iraq proceeds as it has been proceeding, then Iran is creating a reality that will define the region. The United States does not have a broad and effective coalition, and certainly not one that would rally in the event of war. It has only Israel...” (2) If the conflict with Iran takes the shape of a protracted bombing campaign and comes as a prologue to the occupation of the country, the US will need to strengthen its positions in adjacent regions, meaning that Washington will be trying to draw the Caucasian republics (Georgia, Azerbaijan) and those of Central Asia into the orbit of its policy and thus tightening the “Anaconda loop” around Russia.

An alternative scenario also deserves attention. EU sanctions would surely hurt many of the European economies – notably, those of Greece, Italy, and Spain - by ricochet. In fact, Spanish diplomatic chief José Manuel García-Margallo Y Marfil bluntly described the sanctions decision as a sacrifice (3).

As for Iran, the oil blockade can cause its annual budget to contract by $15-20 billion, which generally should not be critical but, as the country's parliamentary elections and the 2013 presidential poll are drawing closer and the West actively props up its domestic opposition, outbreaks of unrest in Iran would quite possibly ensue. Tehran has already made it clear it would make a serious effort to find buyers for its oil export elsewhere.

China and India, Iran's respective number one and number three clients, brushed off the idea of the US-led sanctions momentarily. Japan pledged support for Washington over the matter but did not post any specific plans to reduce the volume of oil it imports from Iran. Japan, by the way, was badly hit in 1973 when Wall Street provoked an oil crisis and US guarantees turned hollow. Consequently, Tokyo can be expected to approach Washington's sanction suggestions with the utmost caution and to ask the US for unequivocal guarantees that the White House will be unable to provide. Right now the US is courting South Korea with the aim of having it cut off the import of oil from Iran.

The opposition mounted to the plans underlying the military scenario by China, Russia, and India seems to hold the promise of an alliance of countries seeking to tame US hegemony and raging unilateralism. Stratfor analysts have a point saying that time is not on the US side, considering that the BRICs countries have some opportunities to influence the situation in the potential conflict zone by launching joint anti-terrorism and anti-piracy maneuvers in the Arabian Sea and the Persian Gulf, etc.

Inducing regime change in Iran, which is Washington's end goal, still takes a pretext. The US has long been eying various factions in Iran in the hope of capitalizing on the country's existing domestic rivalries parallel to the employment of tested color revolution techniques such as the support for the Green Movement or the establishment of a virtual embassy in Iran.

Richard Sanders, a vocal critic of US foreign policy, opined that, at least since the invasion of Mexico in the late XIX century, the US permanently relied on the mechanism of war pretext incidents to compile justifications for its military interventions (4). US arch-conservative Patrick J. Buchanan cited in his opinion piece titled “Did FDR Provoke Pearl Harbor?” the fairly common view that US financial circles knowingly provoked the Pearl Harbor attack to drag the US into a war with the remote goal of ensuring the dollar empire's global primacy (5).

The lesson to be learned from the history of the Vietnam War, namely the Gulf of Tonkin incident in which USS Maddox entered Vietnam's territorial waters and opened fire on boats of its navy, is that the initial conflict was similarly ignited by the US intelligence community, the result being that the US Congress authorized LBJ to militarily engage Vietnam. (By the way, no retribution followed in June 1967 when the Israelis attacked USS Liberty, killing 34 and wounding 172). The morally charged concepts of humanitarian interventions and war on terror had just as well been invoked to legitimize downright aggressions against Yugoslavia, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

Speaking of the current developments around the Persian Gulf, Washington's choice of pretexts for aggression comprises at least three options, namely (1) Iran's nuclear dossier; (2) an engineered escalation in the Strait of Hormuz; (3) allegations that Iran supports international terrorism. The US objective behind the pressure on Iran over its nuclear program - to make everybody in the world accept Washington's rules of the game – has never been deeply hidden. The abundant alarmist talk is intended to deflect attention from the simple truth that building a nuclear arsenal with the help of civilian nuclear technologies is absolutely impossible, but Matthew H. Kroenig from the Council on Foreign Relations recently went so far as to warn that Iran would some day pass its nuclear technologies to Venezuela (6). The motivation must be to somehow bundle all critics of the US foreign policy.

The Strait of Hormuz, which is the maritime chokepoint of the Persian Gulf, is regarded as the epicenter of the coming new war. It serves as the avenue for oil supplies from Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Qatar, the Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates and is therefore being closely monitored by all likely parties to the conflict. According to the US Department of Energy, 2011 oil transit via the Strait of Hormuz totaled 17 billion barrels, or roughly 20% of the world's total (7). Oil prices are projected to increase by 50% if anything disquieting happens in the Strait of Hormuz (8).

Passing through the Strait of Hormuz takes navigation across the territorial waters of Iran and Oman. Iran grants as a courtesy the right to sail across its waters based on the UN Treaty on Maritime Goods Transportation. It must be understood in connection with Washington's recurrent statements concerning the Strait of Hormuz that in this regard the US and Iran have the same legal status as countries which penned but did not ratify the treaty, and thus the US has no moral right to references to international law. Iran's administration stressed recently after consultations on national legislation that Tehran would possibly subject to a revision the regulations under which foreign vessels are admitted to Iranian territorial waters (9).

Navies are also supposed to observe certain international laws, in particular those defining the minimal distance to be maintained by vessels of other countries. It constantly pops up in the US media that Iranian boats come riskily close to US vessels but, as watchers note, provocateurs like the CIA-sponsored separatists from Iran's Baluchistan could in some cases be pulling off the tricks in disguise.

Chances are that a part of the oil embargo plan is to make the West encounter oil supply problems and start constructing pipelines across Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Yemen, Qatar, and Iraq as alternative routes reaching the shores of the Arabian, Red, and Mediterranean Seas. A few of these projects, the Hashan–Fujairah pipeline, for instance, are as of today in the process of being implemented. If that is the idea, the explanation behind Washington's tendency to convince its allies to create a “safer” pipeline infrastructure is straightforward. Geopolitics being an inescapable reality, it does have to be taken into account, though, that the region's countries remain locked in a variety of conflicts and, due to geographic reasons, Tehran would be a key player even if the pipelines are launched.

Since the new US military strategy implies focusing on two regions – the Greater Middle East and South East Asia - the issue of the Strait of Hormuz appears coupled to that of the Strait of Malacca which offers the shortest route for the oil supply from the Indian Ocean to China, Japan, South Korea, and the rest of South East Asia. The arrangement implicitly factors into the Asian countries' decision-making related to Iran.

The precedent of “the war on terror” - a campaign during which the US occupied under dubious pretexts Iraq and Afghanistan at the costs of thousands of lives – must also be kept in mind. Ages ago, the White House sanctioned subversive activities against various parts of the the Iranian administration, including the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution. Former CIA operative Phillip Giraldi writes that US and Israeli agents have been active in Iran for quite some time and are responsible for the epidemic of the Stuxnet virus and the series of assassinations of Iranian nuclear physicists. The groups within Iran which aligned themselves with the country's foes are the People's Mujahedin of Iran, the Baluchistan-based separatist Jundallah, whose leader Abdolmajid Rigi was arrested in February, 2010 by Iranian security forces and admitted to cooperating with the CIA, and the Kurdish Free Life of Kurdistan (10).

In essence, a war against Iran – up to date a secret war – is underway. The problem the parties involved are trying to resolve is to find a way of prevailing without entering the “hot” phase of the conflict.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

‘Israel to Give Obama 12 Hours Notice on Attacking Iran’

Israel told visiting US Gen. Dempsey that Obama would get no more than 12 hours notice before an attack on Iran, the London Times reports.
By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu

Israeli officials told visiting USS Chief Joint of Staffs Martin Dempsey that it would give President Barack Obama no more than 12 hours notice if and when it attacks Iran, The LondonTimes reported Sunday.

The Netanyahu government also will not coordinate with the United States an attack on the Islamic Republic, according to the report, the latest in a number of suposed scenarios concerning cooperation or lack of it between Jerusalem and Washington.

It is left to speculation whether the rumors are based on facts or are leaked by officials to mask the possibility of secret military coordination.

The London Times said its sources explained that that Israel fears that President Obama would try to torpedo an Israel attack if more notice were given because he is concerned that Iran will respond by blocking the Strait of Hormuz, sparking a rise in theprice of oil that could cripple Western economies. If the attack were to occur in the next 10 months, it would put President Obama in a tight spot on the eve of his bid for re-election.

President Shimon Peres told Dempsey, "I am sure that in this fight [against Iran] we will emerge victorious. It is a fight that does not belong exclusively to the United States or Israel, but a global struggle to create a safe world for all peoples.”

Dempsey, on his first official visit to Israel, was wined and dined by Defense Minister Ehud Barak and IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gants, who went so far as to arrange an IDF orchestra rendition of song made famous by Frank Sinatra, one of Dempsey’s favorite singers.

Dempsey tried to play down the postponement of what was billed as the largest-ever joint military drill between the Israeli and American armies, involving thousands of U.S. Army soldiers.

Published reasons for the delay have ranged from budgetary constraints, logistical problems to a signal from Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu that he distrusts President Obama’s commitment to stop Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.

Dempsey maintained that the delay, which was announced by Israel, will give both countries more time to prepare and “achieve a better outcome.”

The top American general left Israel on Friday, before the Sabbath began.

(Sources - http://www.israelnationalnews.com)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Tamatkan politik fitnah oleh YB SAIFUDDIN ABDULLAH

Satu daripada asam garam politik, malangnya, ialah fitnah. Lebih malang lagi, semakin dekat dengan pilihan raya umum, maka semakin ligat dan dahsyat fitnah yang diketengahkan.

Fitnah memporak-perandakan parti, politik dan masyarakat. Pemfitnah lazimnya tidak mempunyai apa-apa kekuatan diri terutamanya apabila dibandingkan dengan orang yang difitnah. Pemfitnah kurang ilmu, kepemimpinan dan ketokohan berbanding dengan orang yang difitnah. Maka, cara yang paling mudah – dan murahan – ialah menjatuhkan orang lain dengan memfitnahnya.

Fitnah adalah perbuatan tidak berintegriti, malahan kotor. Justeru, kita perlu bersama-sama menamatkannya. Caranya, ialah dengan kita bangun bersuara dan menganjurkan politik hikmah (bijaksana) sebagai alternatif yang positif dan konstruktif kepada politik fitnah yang negatif dan destruktif.

Politik hikmah adalah politik di mana kearifan ilmu dan kebijaksanaan digunakan dalam berpolitik. Maknanya, hikmah menjadi panduan dalam urusan politik. Seseorang ahli politik harus menggunakan pendekatan yang berhikmah lagi berhemah supaya tidak terlalu gelojoh dalam pergelutan menaiki hierarki parti atau memenangi pilihan raya.

Antara keadaan yang menyuburkan politik fitnah ialah apabila politik bersifat terlalu partisan. Politik terlalu partisan ialah di mana dalam apa jua keadaan, sesuatu pihak akan menyatakan dirinya betul dan lawannya salah, walaupun fakta atau realiti menyatakan sebaliknya. Ia memungkinkan timbul keadaan di mana sesuatu yang betul dikatakan salah, manakala sesuatu yang salah dikatakan betul, semata-mata dek kerana terlalu partisan.

Politik terlalu partisan mungkin menguntungkan sesuatu pihak. Ia akan disanjung pengikutnya yang menganggapnya wira kerana sentiasa mempertahankan pihaknya.

Tetapi, sekiranya pegangan ini terbawa-bawa, sehingga ada keputusan yang bakal menguntungkan rakyat, tetapi tidak dapat diputuskan semata-mata kerana masing-masing asyik bertegang urat memikirkan keuntungan pihaknya sahaja, maka, ia akan merugikan rakyat.
Politik hikmah menolak politik yang terlalu partisan. Ia akan mencari persefahaman. Apabila kepentingan rakyat menjadi lebih penting daripada kepentingan politik, maka, ia bersedia menjadi non-partisan.

Politik hikmah juga melibatkan pendekatan dalam menyeru orang untuk menyokong gagasan sesuatu pihak. Pendekatan yang paling mudah ialah dengan memburukkan gagasan orang lain.

Pendekatan begini sudah lama bertapak, contohnya, ialah sejak zaman Rasulullah, iaitu seperti yang digunakan oleh musuh-musuh baginda. Gagasan tauhid yang didakwahnya didakyah oleh musuh sebagai ajaran sesat.

Tetapi, Rasulullah tidak menggunakan pendekatan yang sama, iaitu fitnah, untuk membalas serangan musuh. Sebaliknya, baginda menggunakan pendekatan hikmah, iaitu menyeru semua, termasuk musuh, dengan kebijaksanaan, dengan pengajaran dan contoh yang baik, dan dengan perdebatan dan hujah-hujah yang lebih baik.

Kesannya, iaitu sebagaimana yang tercatat dalam Sirah Rasulullah dan sejarah semasa, ialah Islam, iaitu gagasan yang didakwahnya, telah diakui, dianuti dan dihayati hingga ke hari ini.

Rasulullah panglima perang yang hebat. Tetapi, selepas memenangi sebuah peperangan, baginda pernah menangis kerana menginsafi bahawa umatnya berhadapan dengan peperangan yang lebih besar, iaitu peperangan melawan hawa nafsu. Antara bahana hawa nafsu ialah politik fitnah.

Sayugia diingat, bahawa kini, ramai sinis dan sinikal terhadap politik. Mujurnya mereka masih yakin pada demokrasi. Tetapi, mereka mahu demokrasi diperbaiki. Justeru, Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak mengetuai transformasi politik ke arah demokrasi yang lebih progresif dan budaya politik baru yang lebih sihat dan segar.

Untuk menjayakannya, kita perlu menggunakan pendekatan politik hikmah, bukannya politik fitnah.

Khutbah Terakhir Nabi Muhammad S.A.W.

Kutbah ini disampaikan pada 9 Zulhijah Tahun 10 Hijrah di Lembah Uranah, Gunung Arafah.

Wahai manusia, dengarlah baik-baik apa yang hendak ku katakan. Aku tidak mengetahui apakah aku dapat bertemu lagi dengan kamu semua selepas tahun ini. Oleh itu dengarlah dengan teliti kata-kata ku ini dan sampaikanlah ia kepada orang-orang yang tidak dapat hadir di sini pada hari ini.

Wahai manusia, sepertimana kamu menganggap bulan ini dan kota ini sebagai suci, maka anggaplah jiwa dan harta setiap muslim sebagai amanah suci.

Kembalikan harta yang diamanahkan kepada kamu kepada pemiliknya yang berhak.

Jangan kamu sakiti sesiapapun agar orang lain tidak menyakiti kamu lagi.

Ingatlah bahawa sesungguhnya kamu akan menemui Tuhan kamu dan Dia pasti membuat perhitungan di atas segala amalan kamu.

Allah telah mengharamkan riba, oleh itu segala urusan yang melibatkan riba dibatalkan mulai sekarang.

Berwaspadalah terhadap syaitan demi keselamatan agama kamu.

Dia telah berputus asa untuk menyesatkan kamu dalam perkara-perkara besar, maka berjaga-jagalah supaya kamu tidak mengikutinya dalam perkara-perkara kecil.

Wahai manusia, sebagaimana kamu mempunyai hak atas isteri kamu, mereka juga mempunyai hak di atas kamu. Sekiranya mereka menyempurnakan hak mereka keatas kamu maka mereka juga berhak untuk diberi makan dan pakaian dalam suasana kasih sayang.

Layanilah wanita-wanita kamu dengan baik, berlemah lembutlah terhadap mereka kerana sesungguhnya mereka adalah teman dan pembantu kamu yang setia. Dan hak kamu atas mereka ialah mereka sama sekali tidak boleh memasukkan orang yang kamu tidak sukai ke dalam rumah kamu dan dilarang melakukan zina.

Wahai manusia, dengarkanlah bersungguh-sungguh kata-kataku ini, sembahlah Allah, dirikanlah sembahyang lima kali sehari, berpuasalah di bulan Ramadan!, dan tunaikan zakat dari harta kekayaan kamu. Kerjakanlah ibadat haji sekiranya kamu mampu.

Ketahuilah bahawa setiap muslim adalah saudara kepada muslim yang lain. Kamu semua adalah sama, tidak seorangpun yang lebih mulia dari yang lainnya kecuali dalam taqwa dan beramal soleh.

Ingatlah bahawa kamu akan mengadap Allah pada suatu hari untuk dipertanggungjawabkan diatas segala apa yang telah kamu kerjakan. Oleh itu awasilah agar jangan sekali-kali kamu terkeluar dari landasan kebenaran selepas ketiadaanku.

Wahai manusia, tidak akan ada lagi Nabi dan Rasul yang akan datang selepasku dan tidak akan lahir agama baru.

Oleh itu wahai manusia, nilailah dengan betul dan fahamilah kata-kata ku yang telah aku sampaikan kepada kamu.

Sesungguhnya aku tinggalkan kepada kamu dua perkara, yang sekiranya kamu berpegang teguh dan mengikuti kedua-duanya, nescaya kamu tidak akan tersesat selama-lamanya. Itulah Al Quran dan Sunnah ku.

Hendaknya orang-orang yang mendengar ucapanku, menyampaikan pula kepada orang lain semoga yang terakhir lebih memahami kata-kataku dari mereka yang terus mendengar dari ku.

Saksikanlah Ya Allah, bahawasanya telah ku sampaikan risalah Mu kepada hamba-hambaMU.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Al-Quran dan terjemahan dalam Bahasa Melayu (Bahasa Malaysia)



Assalamualaikum wbh.

Logik dari kewujudan laman web ini adalah kewujudan kitab suci Al-Quran al karim itu sendiri.

Kita mempelajarinya semasa kecil, bagaimana membacanya dengan tajwid yang betul, tetapi hanya segelintir daripada kita mengetahui makna ayat-ayat suci Al-Quran. Saya terpanggil untuk mendokumenkan Al-Quran terjemahan bahasa Melayu supaya pencarian Al-Quran terjemahan bahasa Melayu di laman web lebih banyak dan mudah dicapai.Sekarang ini laman web ini adalah yang ketiga menawarkan Al-Quran terjemahan bahasa Melayu, dan yang pertama menggunakan engine blog dengan domain .com supaya carian di search engine lebih mudah dicapai. Umum tahu engine blog wordpress memudahkan capaian robot search engine yang mencari data. Jadi kita berpendapat dengan wujudnya web ini akan lebih memudahkan carian maklumat mengenai ayat alQuran bahasa Melayu seluruh dunia.

Ramai orang bukan Islam bila membaca Al-Quran dengan memahami maksudnya mereka terbuka hati dan kembali ke pangkuan Islam. Mereka ini lebih bertakwa dengan memahami Al-Quran. Kita yang lahir dalam masyarakat Islam seharusnya rasa rendah diri dan malu kerana masyarakat kita kebanyakkannya tidak memahami Al-Quran dan ini menyebabkan banyak gejala sosial berlaku di akhir zaman ini.

(Url : http://www.alquran-melayu.com)

Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Failure Factors of Private Finance Initiative (PFI) Projects.

The degree of success of PFI project varies according to the type of project, with the most successful projects being roads. This do not typically involve a clear division between “core” and “ancillary” services to be provided under the PFI deal. Hospitals and university, in contrast, are more complicated in this respect.

The key to concluding a PFI deal that will deliver efficiency savings and a good quality public service at the same time lies in harnessing that experience to maximum effect. Too often, however, this simply has not happened. A lack of clarity about the desired outcome of the public sector purchaser, excessive delays in negotiation, poor project management on the part of the public sector and a lack of understanding of some of the key concepts of PFI have all combined to produce some cases where the taxpayer has definitely not received best value for money; and where the users of the public service have not received the level of service they are entitled to.

One of the key lessons to be drawn from the history of PFI deals to date is the need to improve the expertise of the public service and its advisers in negotiating and concluding PFI deals. Too often, public sector managers conclude a PFI deal and then move back into their normal day job, thus failing to capture what expertise has been built up. The major factors contribute to the failure of PFI projects are :-

(a) Ineffective management by the public sector, and a failure to control costs.

In a number of cases, a lack of expertise and poor project management skills on the public sector side have led to procurement processes being run inefficiently. As a result, costs, particularly those relating to professional advice, have not been sufficiently well-controlled and have escalated.

(b) Poor end product specification by the public sector.

The lack of clarity on the public sector side about what is required, and indeed what is attainable in respect of any particular project, has led to increased costs and unnecessary work, in other words, insufficient thought has been put into the exact specification and requirements at an early stage.

(c) Use of inappropriate measurements

It is almost impossible to calculate how much the public sector option would have cost over the long term. With the benefit of their greater commercial and PFI experience, private sector bidders will tend to be more accurate with their long-term cost estimates. Basing PFI decisions on apparently spurious calculations does not enhance the credibility of the PFI concept.

(d) Ineffective contingency planning.

Many PFI deals get into difficulty because of the lack of contingency planning in the public sector, particularly in relation to large government IT contracts.

FM News

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Advantages of Private Finance Initiative (PFI) Procurement for Government Project.

The reason for growth in the number of PFI projects emerging in Malaysia especially in higher education sector can be attributed to the advantages include:

• allowing capital to be accessed immediately (at a time when governments often claim a scarcity of public funds);

• focusing upon output specifications provides an opportunity for greater innovation;

• taking long-term assets of a department's balance sheets;

• allowing an asset to be delivered more cheaply and efficiently (due to private sector capital and management expertise);

• the transference of risks normally borne by the public sector (including the obligation to invest in the development of new technology or attempt new innovations to meet output specifications);

• imposing the obligation on the private sector to maintain and operate the facility, provides the private sector partner with the incentive to construct the facility using high quality materials, and design the facility so that it can be run economically;

• overcoming the potential for major infrastructure projects being severely curtailed or cancelled following the election of a new government looking for financial savings;

• because the private sector partner must hand the asset back to the public sector at the end of the concession period in the condition it was in on the first day of the concession period, the private sector partner is compelled to maintain the asset properly;

• long term projects provide the service provider with long term capital as well as avoiding the costly process of re-tendering; and

• allowing a public sector body to transfer its non-core functions to a private provider (and thereby allow the public sector body to concentrate on its core functions, facilitating the delivery of higher standards of service and greater value for money).

The advantages of PFI are even more far-reaching than the above. For the structure of PFI itself is also a reason for the growth in PFI. Well drafted output specifications and contract documents which provide for operation, life cycle and routine maintenance and facilities management services will mean that a PFI contractor should (as discussed above) take a whole of life costing approach and formulate an integrated approach to design, financing, construction and the operation of facilities. This should increase economic efficiency as a whole by addressing issues of maintainability, durability and operability from the outset of a project. If all of the above factors can be achieved, then the parties will have gone a considerable way to ensuring that the best overall value is achieved.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Jom Ceria Edisi Jan 2012 Pejabat Pembangunan, Pejabat Fasiliti dan Infotech UiTM Menceriakan.

Penolong Naib Canselor Pembangunan,Fasiliti dan ICT, Prof. Dr. Ir. Sr. Suhaimi Abdul Talib dalam ucapannya semasa program Jom Ceria Edisi Jan 2012 di DATC sebentar tadi menegaskan bahawa adalah menjadi tangungjawab semua kakitangan UiTM untuk memastikan semua keperluan keselamatan dan kesihatan pekerja dipatuhi didalam menjalankan tugas sebagaimana yang termaktub dalam Akta Keselamatan dan Kesihatan Pekerjaan 1994.

UiTM mempunyai Bahagian Khas yang bertanggungjawab terhadap hal ehwal keselamatan dan kesihatan pekerja yang dinamakan Bahagian Keselamatan dan Kesihatan Pekerjaan (BKKP) di Pejabat Pengurusan Fasiliti.

Beliau juga memberikan penekanan mengenai isu integriti semua kakitangan dibawah penyeliaan beliau supaya sentiasa mematuhi semua arahan dan pekeliling kerajaan serta mengikut prosedur kerja yang telah ditetapkan oleh kerajaan. Konsep ihsan perlu diterapkan dalam menjalankan tugas dengan menganggap Tuhan sentiasa melihat kita dimanapun kita berada dan mengetahui apa sahaja yang kita lakukan sepanjang masa.

Sr. Hajah Zuraida Hj. Yahya, Pengarah Pejabat Pengurusan Fasiliti dalam ucapannya menekan betapa kakitangan pejabat pengurusan fasiliti perlu merancang kerja terutama yang berkaitan dengan penyelenggaraan supaya kakitangan PPF berkerja secara sistematik dan terancang. Budaya kerja secara 'fire fighting' telah berlalu ujar beliau.

Hj. Alias Taib, Pengarah Pejabat Pembangunan dalam ucapannya menekan tentang perlunya kakitangan merancang pembangunan diri sendiri supaya menjadi insan lebih baik dimasa akan datang.

Prof. Madya Rahidzab Talib, Pengarah Infotech dalam ucapannya menegaskan dalam kesibukan menjalankan tugas, semua kakitangan tidak mengabaikan kesihatan masing-masing. Beliau mencadangkan supaya semua kakitangan membuat pemeriksaan kesihatan untuk memastikan kesihatan kita berada ditahap yang baik.

Jom Ceria edisi Jan 2012 kali ini diursetiakan oleh Bahagian Projek dan Rekabentuk, Pejabat Pengurusan Fasiliti.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Kodak Files for Bankruptcy

REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz

The event Deal Journal has been anticipating for weeks is finally here – Kodak is filing for bankruptcy.

The company released a statement in the wee hours Thursday confirming that it’s filed for Chapter 11, and said it’s secured $950 million in so-called debtor-in-possession financing to keep the company operating in bankruptcy court.

The full statement here:

Eastman Kodak Company and Its U.S. Subsidiaries Commence Voluntary Chapter 11 Business Reorganization

Flow of Goods and Services to Customers to Continue Globally in Ordinary Course

Non-U.S. Subsidiaries Are Not Included in U.S. Filing and Are Not Subject to Court Supervision

Company Secures $950 million in Debtor-in-Possession Financing in U.S. Kodak’s Reorganization to Facilitate Emergence as Profitable and Sustainable Enterprise

ROCHESTER, N.Y.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–January 19, 2012– Eastman Kodak Company (“Kodak” or the “Company”) announced today that it and its U.S. subsidiaries filed voluntary petitions for chapter 11 business reorganization in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

The business reorganization is intended to bolster liquidity in the U.S. and abroad, monetize non-strategic intellectual property, fairly resolve legacy liabilities, and enable the Company to focus on its most valuable business lines. The Company has made pioneering investments in digital and materials deposition technologies in recent years, generating approximately 75% of its revenue from digital businesses in 2011.

Kodak has obtained a fully-committed, $950 million debtor-in-possession credit facility with an 18-month maturity from Citigroup to enhance liquidity and working capital. The credit facility is subject to Court approval and other conditions precedent. The Company believes that it has sufficient liquidity to operate its business during chapter 11, and to continue the flow of goods and services to its customers in the ordinary course.

Kodak expects to pay employee wages and benefits and continue customer programs. Subsidiaries outside of the U.S. are not subject to proceedings and will honor all obligations to suppliers, whenever incurred. Kodak and its U.S. subsidiaries will honor all post-petition obligations to suppliers in the ordinary course.

“Kodak is taking a significant step toward enabling our enterprise to complete its transformation,” said Antonio M. Perez, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “At the same time as we have created our digital business, we have also already effectively exited certain traditional operations, closing 13 manufacturing plants and 130 processing labs, and reducing our workforce by 47,000 since 2003. Now we must complete the transformation by further addressing our cost structure and effectively monetizing non-core IP assets. We look forward to working with our stakeholders to emerge a lean, world-class, digital imaging and materials science company.”

“After considering the advantages of chapter 11 at this time, the Board of Directors and the entire senior management team unanimously believe that this is a necessary step and the right thing to do for the future of Kodak,” Mr. Perez continued. “Our goal is to maximize value for stakeholders, including our employees, retirees, creditors, and pension trustees. We are also committed to working with our valued customers.

“Chapter 11 gives us the best opportunities to maximize the value in two critical parts of our technology portfolio: our digital capture patents, which are essential for a wide range of mobile and other consumer electronic devices that capture digital images and have generated over $3 billion of licensing revenues since 2003; and our breakthrough printing and deposition technologies, which give Kodak a competitive advantage in our growing digital businesses.”

Mr. Perez concluded, “The Board of Directors, the senior management team and I would like to underscore our appreciation for the hard work and loyalty of our employees. Kodak exemplifies a culture of collaboration and innovation. Our employees embody that culture and are essential to our future success.”

Kodak has taken this step after preliminary discussions with key constituencies and intends to work toward a consensual reorganization in the best interests of its stakeholders. Kodak expects to complete its U.S.-based restructuring during 2013.

The Company and its Board of Directors are being advised by Lazard, FTI Consulting Inc. and Sullivan & Cromwell LLP. In addition, Dominic DiNapoli, Vice Chairman of FTI Consulting, will serve as Chief Restructuring Officer to support the management team as to restructuring matters during the chapter 11 case.

More information about Kodak’s Chapter 11 filing is available on the Internet at www.kodaktransforms.com. Information for suppliers and vendors is available at (800) 544-7009 or (585) 724-6100.

Kodak will be filing monthly operating reports with the Bankruptcy Court and also plans to post these monthly operating reports on the Investor Relations section of Kodak.com. The Company will continue to file quarterly and annual reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which will also be available in the Investor Relations section of Kodak.com.

(Sources - http://blogs.wsj.com)

What people say about IPV6

World IPv6 Launch will mark the largest industry commitment to and deployment of IPv6 in the history of the Internet, with ISPs, home networking equipment manufacturers and web companies around the world permanently enabling IPv6 within their products and services.

We welcome additional participants to join this year’s World IPv6 Launch.

“Web-enabled businesses will need to ensure their applications are available over IPv6 in order to keep pace with the Internet’s ever-expanding audience. Akamai is committed to helping our customers with a smooth transition to IPv6 without impacting performance or requiring disruptive changes to their origin networking infrastructure. The global breadth of our IPv6 deployment helped enable a seamless experience for content providers during World IPv6 Day last year, and we stand ready to support this next important, and permanent, step in the evolution of the Internet.”
– Tom Leighton, Co-Founder & Chief Scientist, Akamai

“We’ve seen unprecedented growth in network traffic over the past several years, and IPv6 is critical to the continuation of that growth. AT&T has been a leader in the transition to IPv6 for many years, and we’re excited to participate in World IPv6 Launch by enabling IPv6 services for new and existing residential customers, in addition to the enterprise customers we support with IPv6 today.”
– John Donovan, CTO, AT&T

“IPv6 is important to all of us. It is critical to the continued growth of the Internet, bringing together people and devices around the globe. As a leader in the development of IPv6 since its inception, Cisco is excited to be an integral part of the industry working together toward the World IPv6 Launch organized by the Internet Society. In addition to the continued support for IPv6 we have in our products today, we will be joining other websites around the world by permanently enabling IPv6 on www.cisco.com, as well as enabling IPv6 by default on our new line of E-series home routers.”
– John Chambers, Chairman and CEO, Cisco

“IPv6 deployment is a key priority for Comcast in 2012, and we’re excited to participate in this Internet Society event that will help catalyze action around the world on this important transition.”
– John Schanz, EVP and Chief Network Officer, Comcast

“D-Link recently completed a new round of IPv6 interoperability testing, underscoring our commitment to customers when the transition from IPv4 takes place. As we continue to develop new and innovative networking products, D-Link will provide support across all of our solutions to ensure a smooth transition to IPv6 for service providers and end users.”
– William Brown, associate vice president of product development, D-Link North America

“Last year’s industry-wide test of IPv6 successfully showed that the global adoption of IPv6 is the best way to keep web devices communicating in the future. Permanently enabling IPv6 is vital to keeping the Internet open and ensuring people stay connected online as the number of web users and devices continues to grow.”
– Jay Parikh, VP of Infrastructure Engineering at Facebook

“World IPv6 Launch marks a watershed moment in Internet history. It breaks the limits of the original address space to open a vast new territory, trillions upon trillions of times larger, and reinforces the end-to-end architecture that made the Internet so powerful at the beginning. Google strongly supports this upgrade. We’re happy to see that everyone is moving to the 21st-century Internet!”
– Vint Cerf, Chief Internet Evangelist at Google

“We are at the stage in IPv6 deployment where it’s time for major Internet Service Providers to make it a transparent part of their customers’ experience. Internode has enabled native IPv6 by default for all new customers, and all the routers we sell all come with ‘IPv6 Inside’. Our experience shows us that IPv6 is now fully capable of providing seamless, uninterrupted and efficient access to the Internet, dual-stacked with IPv4. It’s time to jump in – the water is fine.”
– Simon Hackett, Managing Director at Internode

“Last year, in the event of the World IPv6 Day, KDDI’s IPv6 networks worked well when the major websites around the world had IPv6 enabled. KDDI is now operating the networks accommodating more than 600,000 dual stack users. We are promoting the launch of IPv6, in order that the Internet may continue to maintain its key role in society.”
–Mr.Yoshiharu Shimatani, Senior Vice President of KDDI

“We are proud to participate in the transition towards IPv6, as one of the first fully IPv6-enabled content delivery networks. IPv6 is a crucial step in facilitating the continued growth and improved performance of IP networks globally. The success of last year’s World IPv6 Day motivated many participants to permanently IPv6 enable their sites. Limelight Networks is committed to working with the industry to increase the level of preparation so that we can accelerate our move to a more scalable, flexible and interoperable Internet.”
–Todd Braning, VP of Network Architecture and Engineering for Limelight Networks

“Bing is excited to bring the next-generation search to the next generation of the Internet. Microsoft has been pleased to partner with so many industry leading technology companies to usher in the next evolution of the Internet.”
– Derrick Connell, corporate vice president of Bing at Microsoft Corporation

“The time to permanently enable IPv6 has arrived. Time Warner Cable is committed to the World IPv6 Launch in June, our customers should be reassured that the platform is ready and our partners should be including IPv6 in all their products and services.”
– Mike Lajoie, CTO of Time Warner Cable

“The Internet has grown to be an essential part of our daily lives. It connects our devices to our apps; more importantly, it connects us to each other. Yahoo! is proud to be a part of the World IPv6 Launch – an event that marks the next chapter of our Internet. IPv6 enables the Internet to grow, while remaining open and accessible to new applications and new ideas.”
– Jason Fesler, Distinguished Architect and IPv6 Evangelist, Yahoo!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Azwan Ali Ditahan Polis Kerana Mahu Membunuh Ummi Hafilda.

Azwan Ali telah ditahan polis setelah satu laporan polis dibuat oleh Adiknya Umi Hafilda.
KUALA LUMPUR: Personaliti hiburan tanah air, Azwan Ali, 46, yang sering mencetuskan pelbagai kontroversi kini disiasat polis atas dakwaan mengugut mahu membunuh dan membakar adiknya, Ummi Hafilda Ali melalui laman twitternya.

Mendedahkan perkara berkenaan, Ummi berkata, dia menyedari ugutan dibuat abangnya itu pada minggu lalu apabila dimaklumkan anak saudaranya dan selepas mendapati ia benar sejurus membacanya sendiri, dia membuat laporan polis pada jam 6 petang Jumaat lalu.

Menurutnya, selama ini dia bersabar dengan cacian serta pelbagai tuduhan yang dilemparkan terhadapnya, namun ugutan itu sudah keterlaluan dan menggugat keselamatan diri, apatah lagi ia dilakukan abangnya.

“Siapa tidak sedih bila darah daging sendiri memburukkan dan mencaci kita hanya kerana perbezaan pendapat serta pendirian politik. Sebelum ini, saya masih mampu bersabar dan berdiam namun kini ia sudah melampau.

“Azwan mengajak pengikut twitternya membunuh saya dengan menulis ‘Jom ramai-ramai kita tangkap perempuan neraka ini...kita kerat-kerat dan kemudian kita bakar’.

“Begitulah lebih kurang ugutan Azwan terhadap saya. Ia sudah keterlaluan dan saya perlu diambil tindakan,” katanya ketika dihubungi, semalam.

Berikut adalah petikan dari twitter @AzwanNur berkenaan ugutan beliau untuk membunuh dan membakar Umi Hafilda.