Ask Lord Bobo: Hudud, Rosmah and Bumi conditions

From the Selangor Times 14 December 2012. Ask Lord Bobo is a weekly column by LoyarBurok where all your profound, abstruse, erudite, hermetic, recondite, sagacious, and other thesaurus-described queries are answered!

Dear Lord Bobo – on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being “definitely not” and 10 being “definitely yes” – how likely do you think it is that hudud will be implemented nationwide if Pakatan Rakyat and PAS come to power? (Unisex Hair Salon, via email)

Firstly, Lord Bobo is not going to waste his omniscience-powered scale to answer this question. For future reference though, His Supreme Eminenceness’ scale is on a scale of 1 to 1,000,000,000,000, with 10 decimal points. Yes, we are nothing if not precise.

Back to hudud. If you spent more time thinking about the issue and reading the responses from various parties, instead of just reading one newspaper, you would not be so concerned about this ridiculous fear.

The collective person’s paper in recent weeks should have changed its name to The Hudud Daily. It carries fear-mongering “reports” of “the rakyat’s fears” about hudud, which seem to be entirely based on a quote from one politician from one political party.

But anyway, those make entertaining reads, and it sells papers apparently, so let’s not be wet blankets and blame a newspaper for doing what it is supposed to do – make money (what do you mean “report news”?).

Lord Bobo cannot completely blame you for being confused though. The truth is difficult to pin down in Malaysian politics. And “Malaysian politics” seems to mean “anything under the bloody sun” these days.

In fact, it is easier to get hold of a truly curly fry in McDonald’s “curly fries” (as opposed to broken-off pieces of deep-fried potatoes that are not remotely curly) than to identify something as “the truth”.

Yes, despite what Moses Chua TY and his personal daily newsletter may want you to believe, he is not the one who will lead you to the promised land and the way, the truth, and the life. Happy reading, Malaysia.

Lord Bobo, what do you think we can expect to read about in Rosmah’s upcoming book? (Reconsidering Book Burning, via email)

Tan Twan Eng must be shaking in his expensive moccasins, as there will soon be a new Malaysian writer in bookstores soon, and she is unlikely to be unimpressed with nothing less than months and months on the bestseller list.

“Rosmah Mansor”, a book about the life of the self-proclaimed First Lady of Malaysia, Rosmah Mansor, was launched this week. The book’s publisher says readers will get a “well-rounded” (steady now) “glimpse into her life from childhood to the present”.

The publisher also gave a few hints of what to expect in the book. There will be a chapter specifically responding to “slanderous comments” aimed at her.

Readers can also look forward to lots of photographs old and new – perhaps we can see the evolution of hairstyles; we will definitely be surprised if there are not lots of photos of her with famous folk.

For more specifics, we will just have to wait for the 164-page magnum opus to be available in stores. The publisher says that the most important intention of the book is to respond to the slanderous rumours, and also to highlight Rosmah’s best attribute.

Her best attribute (according to her publisher, we hasten to add), is “her humility”.

His Supreme Eminenceness will certainly be obtaining (though probably not purchasing) a copy of what should be a hair-raising read.

Coincidentally, some of Lord Bobo’s loyal minions have recently re-read Herman Melville’s Moby Dick, also known as The Whale. The story is of course told by Ishmael, of his journey on the Pequod, led by Captain Ahab.

It is a truly epic tale with many layers of symbolism and metaphor coming together to lead readers to reassess society, culture, status, religion, and life itself.

By the end of the story, we are left wondering whether the whale or Captain Ahab is the violent, evil one.

Lord Bobo, I am a business owner looking to expand into new industries, but have been increasingly frustrated at the need to comply with Bumiputera equity requirements. I thought these equity requirements had been removed. How come they still exist in so many industries? (Discriminated, via email)

There is a huge misconception that Bumiputera equity requirements have been removed. Some equity requirements were removed amidst much hoopla, fist-bumping, and back-slapping. But many of them still remain.

These equity requirements remain very much in force in many, many industries.

If you do not have the requisite percentage of Bumiputera shareholding (usually 30% or 50%), you will not get a licence to do business, provide services, or be in any way involved in some industries.
Anyone who goes to the Petronas website will be able to see a list of equity requirements for every single type of business relationship with Petronas, including providing photocopying services.

And the conditions do not just involve the shareholding percentage mind you – they also include the composition of the board of directors, racial composition of management and staff, and even the equity compliance of sub-contractors and suppliers.

So the next time someone tells you that Malaysia has liberalised its business sector by doing away with Bumiputera equity conditions, please tell them to do a bit of reading instead of just taking what our politicians boast about at face value.

Have a question for Lord Bobo? Call on His Supreme Eminenceness by emailing [email protected], stating your full name, and a pseudonym (if you want), or tweeting your questions by mentioning @LoyarBurok and using the hashtag #asklordbobo. What the hell are you waiting for? Hear This, and Tremblingly Obey (although trembling is optional if you are somewhere very warm)! Liberavi Animam Meam! I Have Freed My Spirit!

You can read archives of all the Ask Lord Bobo columns by clicking here. These are the divinely-inspired words of His Supreme Eminenceness Lord Bobo Barnabus PhD SP GBE OMGWTFBBQ.

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Ask Lord Bobo is a weekly column by LoyarBurok where all your profound, abstruse, erudite, hermetic, recondite, sagacious, and other thesaurus-described queries are answered! It is the ONLY place that His Supreme Eminenceness' thoughts are regularly channeled, via His Lordship's most loyal meditating purple-banana munching minions.

Posted on 14 December 2012. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0.

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