Aliran Monthly 26: 3 editor’s note

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Aliran Monthly coverThis month’s cover story by Abang Benet is a timely analysis not so much about the major issues surrounding the upcoming Sarawak polls – even less as to who will win – as about how and why Taib Mahmud has dominated Sarawak politics for so long.

To commemorate May Day, veteran unionist K George reminds readers about the origins of the celebrations and about the legal constraints under which Malaysian trade unions still operate. He laments that the majority of workers are no longer unionised. In an accompanying story, he sadly reports that a group of five unions led by Abdul Razak Hassan of the Railwaymen’s Union of Malaysia, is planning to split from the MTUC. They are aligned to Zainal Rampak who lost in the tussle for the MTUC’s leadership. With unionists like these, no wonder membership is falling.

We carry a must-read article on the Curitiba public transport system, whose mass rapid transit is made up of buses! The system is cheaper and much, much easier to realise than an underground or monorail system. Read on and let’s get the authorities moving in this direction.

P Ramakrishnan highlights how UMNO Youth confronted the Kelana Jaya MP at his service centre late one night for having spoken out in Parliament about matters they deemed out-of-bounds to non-Malays. Significantly, the Youths were not interested in a dialogue with the MP. It is important for us to register our protest against such gangster-like behaviour before it spreads.

Equally, it is important to register our protest against the IGP for rejecting the proposed Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission. It is not for him, a public servant, to oppose publicly this initiative, desired by the people. Our back cover story carries a call by Aliran, Hakam and Suaram for him to resign.

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