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Ahmad Zahid Hamidi
PUTRAJAYA – Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today called for the immediate implementation of more comprehensive measures to combat drug abuse which he described as a growing concern in society.
Ahmad Zahid, who is also Home Minister, said latest statistics showed that 56 per cent of all prisoners in the country were serving time for drug-related crimes and this phenomenon should be given serious attention by all quarters.
“It’s a pretty disturbing scenario. We cannot just leave it to the police and the National Anti-Drugs Agency to deal with the problem,” he said to reporters here.
Ahmad Zahid was asked to comment on a newspaper report today that drug abuse among Malaysians was not only not reducing but was taking on alarming proportions.
The daily quoted statistics of the Prisons Department showing that 56 per cent of all prisoners in the country had been convicted of drug-related offences, some 33,500 of the total 59,600 prisoners.
Ahmad Zahid said that besides undertaking enforcement against drug kingpins, traffickers and manufacturers through the Narcotics CID and arrests and rehabilitation through the National Anti-Drugs Agency, the government took a more holistic approach through other relevant agencies.
Collaboration was also forged with the Royal Customs Department and the Border Control Agency to prevent drugs from being smuggled into the country across the borders, he said.
Ahmad Zahid said cooperation was also established with the Chemistry Department and Forensics Department to determine the evidence pertinent to the enforcement.
“We also hope that society as a whole can help these agencies to ensure that drug abuse and distribution are eliminated,” he said. – BERNAMA
PUTRAJAYA – The squabble between Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz and the Sarawak and Sabah state governments over the tourism tax issue has been settled, said Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
He said the matter was discussed and it was agreed during the Cabinet meeting yesterday, to end the row.
At the meeting, he added, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak decided that the matter be put to rest and all the parties involved, whether federal government or state government leaders, not to issue anymore statements on the matter.
Ahmad Zahid was speaking at a press conference after opening a workshop on renewing Islamic education organised by the lslamic Education Coordination Advisory Board (Lepai), here, today.
The deputy prime minister said he had personally met with Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Abang Johari Abang Openg and Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman over the issue.
He said they both agreed that tourism promotion required a lot of funds as some states collected only a small amount of tax while others collected a lot.
Ahmad Zahid said the tourism tax would be used for promotion purposes not just based on states but also on the sectors or the importance of a tourism product.
“We also decided to close this book (issue) and open a new book,” he added.
The government had recently decided to impose the tourism tax on hotel accommodation at the rates of between RM2.50 and RM20 per room per night with effect from this July 1.- BERNAMA
KUALA LUMPUR, 25 Mei -- Timbalan Perdana Menteri Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi berucap merasmikan Hari Data Terbuka 2017 di Universiti Malaya hari ini.
Malaysia menyasarkan untuk membaiki ranking dari tangga 51 ke 30 dalam Open Data Barometer menjelang 2020.
--fotoBERNAMA (2017) HAK CIPTA TERPELIHARA
BALIK PULAU – Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has ordered Penang police to go all out in combating gambling which is described as becoming more serious in the state.
He said the police, as a security force which had full authority to take action against gambling, must fully eradicate the immoral activity.
Ahmad Zahid, who is also Home Minister, wants those involved in gambling activities, especially the kingpins to be arrested and charged in court.
“I order the state police chief from today (to eradicate gambling). I do not want any more reports of kingpins comprising the big towkays in Penang.
“Don’t worry, don’t be afraid. We at Bukit Aman, Home Ministry will be behind the police to give strong support (to eradicate gambling),” he said in his speech at the Home Ministry’s ‘Instilling Ramadan’s Noble Values’ programme at the Southwest District Mosque, here, today.
Also present were Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar, Deputy Home Minister Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed, state police chief Datuk Chuah Ghee Lye and senior officers from Bukit Aman and the state contingent.
Ahmad Zahid said if the gambling activities were not fully eradicated, it was feared that there would be masterminds financing political parties, especially in the general election.
“This is not an accusation, but a fear over financing of political parties (through proceeds from gambling activities.”
He said he also did not want criminal activities to be associated with race, such as Malays often being associated with drug abuse, Indians with gangsterism and the Chinese, with gambling.
“Gambling is the biggest problem in Penang and I fear the Chinese community may become victims of the gambling syndicates.
“This issue is regardless of race; I sympathise with those who become victims of gambling,” he said.
In this regard, Ahmad Zahid wants efforts to eradicate crime especially gambling to be used as a key performance index (KPI) of the Penang police.
“So far, I am happy with Datuk Chuah’s work as the crime index has dropped,” he said.
Touching on politics in the state, the UMNO vice-president said he foresaw that a big change might take place in the future.
“Hopefully, change can occur…something drastic can take place if we work harder,” he said. – BERNAMA
PUTRAJAYA – Nasyrul Quran, the world’s second largest Quran printing complex here, built at a cost of RM60 million, officially began its printing and binding operations today.
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi who officiated at the ceremony, said Nasyrul Quran was built starting last year not to compete with other Quran-printing countries but was Malaysia’s contribution to upholding and propagating the teachings of the Islamic holy book to the world.
“We respect the biggest (Quran) printing centre in Madinah but as a nation that subscribes to the principles of wasatiyyah (moderation), Malaysia too wants to contribute to the effort through its own bound volumes of the Quran.
“This effort is made not for elation or conceit but to place Malaysia as a Quran-printing landmark as occurring in the Middle East and other countries.”
Ahmad Zahid, who is also Home Minister, said this when launching the National-Level Wakaf Al-Quran 2017 and the operations of Nasyrul Quran, here, today. –
Ahmad Zahid said the complex’s operations would be able to meet the domestic and global need for copies of the Quran as the Muslim population was expected to reach three billion out of the world’s total of nine billion by 2050.
He said out of the Muslim population, a small percentage might not be able to buy a copy of the Quran and so Nasyrul Quran could play a role by endowing the holy book to the needy.
Ahmad Zahid said Nasyrul Quran was targeted to print one million copies of the Quran each year, with 70 per cent for domestic use while the rest could be contributed to other countries in need of it.
“This is the aspiration and commitment of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak as most countries contribute to the development of Islam by building mosques and institutions but not all use the same avenue as Najib’s by printing and distributing the Quran widely for free,” he said.
On the wakaf Al-Quran or endowment programme, the deputy prime minister said the idea which came from Najib and implemented since 2007, was aimed at collecting funds to print the Quran to be donated to countries with poor Muslim minorities and others within Malaysia and outside in need of the holy book.
At today’s event, Ahmad Zahid also announced receiving a contribution of RM2 million from Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, and a foundation and an individual for the purpose.
Besides Tengku Adnan, present at the ceremony was Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom. – BERNAMA
BAGAN DATUK – Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi wants professionals from among ‘huffaz’ to recite the al-Quran and become exceptional leaders and professionals like doctors and engineers, not just become imam or religious scholars.
He said there are currently 200 doctors from among’hafiz’ and ‘hafizah’ serving as doctors in Islamic Medical Institutions.
“I hope there will be lawyers, architects and engineers among ‘huffaz’. This is very important for Malaysia to groom a generation that can help develop the country and esnure peace and harmony in the name of Allah,” he told reporters at a ‘tahlil’ and breaking of fast programme at Sekolah Menengah Agama Al Ulum Alsyar’iyyah in Bagan Datuk, here today.
Ahmad Zahid who is also the Member of Parliament for Bagan Datuk said the government has targeted to produce 125,000 ‘Huffaz’ throughout the country by 2050 under the 2050 National Transformation (TN50).
During the programme, the Deputy Prime Minister approved an allocation of RM100,000 to the school to buy a van that can be used for transporting students. – BERNAMA
Awas! Jangan Baca Al Qur’an Di Waktu-Waktu Ini
BAGAN DATUK – Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today said Muslims should read the Quran every day, and not just during Ramadan.
He said among the benefits of reading the Quran were enlightenment of the soul and having peace of mind.
“No matter how busy we are, we should recite at least one chapter of the Quran or a page every day, and not only during Ramadan.
“The Quran should not merely be recited, but one should also understand its meaning for the good of oneself and family as the holy book has been revealed to guide the entire mankind, including non-Muslims in the spirit of inclusivity,” he said in his speech at the closing of the Bagan Datuk parliamentary constituency-level Quran recitation ceremony, here, today.
Ahmad Zahid, who is also Bagan Datuk MP, said Malaysians should be grateful that the government gave a public holiday in conjunction with Nuzul Al-Quran each year.
“Nuzul Al-Quran is celebrated to unite the hearts and minds of Muslims, but it does not mean we ignore other religions, because we should also respect them,” he said.
Earlier, Ahmad Zahid joined 1,423 participants comprising men, women, and students of tahfiz centres in the Rungkup and Hutan Melintang state constituencies to read the Quran.
Also present were Bagan Datuk UMNO division chief Datuk Khairuddin Tirmizi and his deputy, Datuk Shahrul Zaman Yahya. – BERNAMA
MELAKA – The government targets to produce 125,000 “huffaz” or Quran memorisers across the country by 2050 through the National Transformation 2050 (TN50) policy, says Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
He said the target was important for Malaysia so as to build a generation capable of developing a peaceful, harmonious, prosperous country and blessed by the Almighty.
In this regard, he said the huffaz being produced needed to be moulded to become leaders and professional workers such as doctors and engineers, and not just to be imam or religious teachers.
“With 125,000 huffaz as professional workers, insyaAllah (God willing) one day even Cabinet ministers and the PM (prime minister) as well could be Quran memorisers to that they would provide better leadership.”
Ahmad Zahid said this when opening the ‘Inculcation of Noble Values During Ramadan’ programme in Ayer Keroh, here, with Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammudin Tun Hussein and Melaka Chief Minister Datuk Seri Idris Haron also present.
Ahmad Zahid said to realise the aspiration, the government would strive to ensure that the National Tahfiz Education Policy (DPTN) could be implemented to streamline the education system in this country.
However, he stressed that the implementation of the DPTN nationwide required the consent of all the Sultans, Rulers and Yang Dipertua Negeri as the Islamic religion came under their jurisdiction.
Hence, Ahmad Zahid who is also Home Minister, suggested that all operators of tahfiz centres register with the Malaysia Islamic Development Department (Jakim) in order to create a more conducive teaching and learning environment.
“I hope that any tahfiz centre which has not registered (with Jakim) to do so….this is not because we want to penalise but to assist them.
“(This proves) the federal government’s concern towards religious educational institutions and it is committed to helping them so that the position of Islam can be enhanced,” he said.
Ahmad Zahid said uniformity in various aspects of students’ welfare including safety level, their health, diet and (disciplinary) punishment at the tahfiz centres was necessary so that there would be complete monitoring.
“InsyaAllah, I will ensure that the National Tahfiz Education Policy will be implemented so that there is coordination as I don’t want to see tahfiz centres not receiving aid after a fire outbreak and bully cases in such centres,” he said.
The deputy prime minister also said that the federal government fully supported the Melaka government’s plan to implement the DPTN through a motion that was passed at the state assembly sitting today.
“We will realise this together and I am confident that other states will do the same,” he said.
At the state assembly sitting yesterday, Idris had tabled a motion to implement the DPTN in the state and it was passed today with 23 assemblymen supporting, four abstaining while another, opposition whip Khoo Poay Tiong (DAP-Ayer Keroh) was suspended from attending today’s proceeding. – BERNAMA
PUTRAJAYA – Malaysia has joined the Standard and Metrology Institute for Islamic Countries (SMIIC)’s board of directors from this year, enabling it to play a bigger role in the halal sector globally, says Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
He said the decision was made by the Malaysia Halal Council, in line with the active role played by the government in developing global halal standards and accreditations.
“The SMIIC National Committee spearheaded by the Department of Standards Malaysia will be the coordinating agency for all programmes under the SMIIC for Malaysia,” he said in a statement, here, today.
Ahmad Zahid today chaired the Malaysia Halal Council 2/2017 meeting which was also attended by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom and International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed.
The deputy prime minister said the council also acknowledged the Bumiputera Empowerment Blueprint proposals for the halal industry.
He said the blueprint would be coordinated with the Bumiputera Wellbeing Tranformation (TKB) agenda and Bumiputera Economic Transformation Roadmap 2.0 (BETR 2.0) under the Bumiputera Agenda Steering Unit (Teraju), Prime Minister’s Department.
Ahmad Zahid said since its establishment in 2016, the Malaysia Halal Council had undertaken various initiatives including improving the process of issuing the Malaysia Halal Verification Certificate (SPHM) through the Halal Fast Force programme.
He said the Malaysia Islamic Development Department (Jakim) had been implementing the programme since Aug 1, 2016 and it was being extended to the respective states in stages to ensure uniformity and speed in the SPHM issuing process.
“In the first five months of this year, 977 SPHM applications were received with 966 or 98.8 per cent of the number approved by Jakim,” he said.
To further boost the halal ecosystem in this country, Ahmad Zahid said the government was initiating five important agendas for the period of 2018 to 2020.
These agendas include empowering the Halal Professional Board (HPB) at the international level to produce more professionals in the halal field, setting up the International Halal Authority Board (IHAB) which can harmonise all the world’s halal authorities in the area of halal certification, and establishment of the Halal International Research Academy (HIRA), the first in the region.
The other two agendas are the setting up of the Malaysia Institute Halal Academy (MIHA) to produce generations of technocrats in the halal industry, and establishment of the Halal Innovation and Technology Centre (HITeC) to further increase the levels of creativity and innovation in the halal industry.
According to Ahmad Zahid, seven working papers presented by Jakim, the International Trade and lndustry Ministry, and Science, Technology and Innovation Ministry were also discussed at today’s meeting.
These included the Malaysia Halal Council roadmap until 2020, the Bumiputera Empowerment Blueprint development initiatives in the halal Industry, boosting Malaysia’s involvement in standardisation and accreditation activities in the international halal sector, and the new framework for the Halal Industry Master Plan. – BERNAMA
PUTRAJAYA – The government plans to implement a food aid programme to the urban poor involving various ministries through the National Blue Ocean Strategy (NBOS).
It was among proposals submitted to the Addressing Urban Poverty Executive Commitee meeting, chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, here today to find the best way to handle the issue in an integrated manner.
The meeting had discussed several reports from several ministries and government agencies about the cost of living, especially regarding the issues related to urban poverty.
Domestic Trade, Cooperative and Consumerism Ministry, in a statement, issued after the meeting said the food aid programme would involve cooperation with hypermarkets to supply frozen food to urban hardcore poor.
The ministry said cooked food at a reasonable price for students would also be introduced at public and private higher education institutions, especially in the big cities.
“Implementation of this programme will also involve former students such as operators and workers,” the ministry said.
It also said a committee would be formed to study the production cost as well as the distribution chain to avoid any price manipulation by a third party.
The government would also carry out a study to gather information on supply requirements through data collection on home ownership and rental of homes to identify the needs (of home) and price trends based on a specific location, the statement said.
“There are also plans by the government to give incentives to developers who build affordable housing, in addition to encourage them to use the latest technology to reduce the cost of construction such as the use of Industrialised Building System (IBS) which is more economical,” the statement said.
It added that the government would work with government-linked companies (GLCs) to channel assistance to the Federal Special Relief Fund that would be used to assist the people’s aid programmes.
Among the ministers involved in today’s meeting were Domestic Trade, Cooperative and Consumerism Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainuddin, Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam, Works Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Dr Shahidan Kassim. – BERNAMA
JOHOR BAHRU – Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today proposed that all schools, from pre-school to secondary, set up crime-prevention clubs.
Ahmad Zahid, who is also the Home Minister, said these clubs could help prevent schoolchildren from straying into crime.
The parent-teacher associations of schools could help set up these clubs, he said when launching the national-level Teachers’ Day celebration at the Educity Sports Complex here.
Ahmad Zahid said that besides drug abuse, schools had also reported crime associated with gangsterism and secret societies.
“All quarters must assume responsibility and rectify the situation instead of pointing fingers and finding fault. Schools should not be blamed, the school system should not be blamed, parents should not be blamed,” he said.
Ahmad Zahid also said that the Home Ministry would not compromise in the matter of the arrest of 16 policemen, including senior officers, in investigations into drug syndicates.
He said he took a serious view of the matter because policemen had to maintain security, not commit crime.
Ahmad Zahid said it was feared that the irresponsible action of the policemen would cause negative elements to easily penetrate schools. – BERNAMA
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