ThroughTheLens

A wise old man December 20, 2007

Filed under: Miscellanuous — saifulrizan @ 11:39 am
I met an old friend in Brunei yesterday. He is a taxi driver, and I am his regular customer. It’s been like that ever since I work with my Australian boss (which I’ve quit the company couple of months back). He’s still the same old same old nice guy. To make it easy, he speaks in Malay fluently. I guess it’s not a big problem for Chinese people in Brunei to speak in Kedayan or Malay or English; fluently.

He asked me how my life has been going. Being a gentle old man with his humble appearance, he spoke slowly. Not because of his age, but that is his way of communicating. I respect him for that, although on some occasion, we both went beyond proper etiquette of conversation.

I guess there’s not much to talk about. Since I returned to Labuan and decided to live a simple life, the only thing I consider about is my life insurance license and to make the office more functional. What else is better to talk to an old man, other than spinning the question back to him? Older guy loves attention, so to reverse his question about my life back to him was a victory of dodging intermediate invasion of my personal life (Of course to share something with someone you know is not an invasion, but I prefer to keep it low).

He burst his breath. It’s a sign of something has been bothering him and there has never been anyone to spoke with. I guess.

Adjusting his gold chain slinging on his left wrist, he put his hand on the dashboard.

“The taxi is getting older, I need a new one” followed by a soft sigh.

This man dedicated to his job. I think he likes it so much. The Japan made car still working well. Perhaps the car interior and exterior that look a bit obsolete made him think to get another car; for him and his customers comfort. He says, “I’m going to get a Toyota Avanza soon”, and this time, he smiled. I thought that was his intention 6 months ago, and it’s still unrealized till these days. I hope he will get what he wanted soon.

Then he talk about his daughter whom studying in Australia now. He’s been planning to visit her sometimes early next year. He wanted to go to Gold Coast; of course with a big grin on his face. Then we talk about Brunei in general. This guys carries a lot of Brunei information in his mind that most of his foreign customers stays loyal to him. Good for him!

That guy demonstrates the importance of communication. He’s cautious, but yet the topic of conversation never been boring. He tried to retain the fun content, so the long journey with him will never be boring. Sometimes, he realized the gap between our ages, but still he manages to share something without crossing the boundary. He’s really good in conversing. 45 minutes drive from Muara to Bandar Seri Begawan has never been boring with him, my friend, Mr Lim.

nuffnang_bid = “081fd07fd721ff375650480881a47c88”;

 

Get the right gear October 15, 2007

Filed under: Miscellanuous — saifulrizan @ 7:53 am

My recent trip to Australia was not fun – at first. I have to deal with an all-day raining, with the temperature dropped to negative 1 degree Celsius at night. Staying on an open wide land, on the highest point in the state would make your life easier with North Face jacket

Sometimes, I would crumple under 4 layers of comforter, to make me comfort the least. The heater would be a big help if it’s not broken! My friend said I bought blessings to their land, because they haven’t get any rain for the past 4 or 5 months, and it really affected their business, and other cotton, wheat and grain farms as well.

Blessing my ass! After 1 week of shaking terribly, I know every joints in my body started squealing already!

 

ForeverTulip tagged me September 18, 2007

Filed under: Miscellanuous — saifulrizan @ 12:21 pm

Note : I’ve added more links in my Friend list – which I’ve visited daily. They’re Ratu Syura, Naz Shemah, Papa Joneh and Mind Juice in Full Throttle. I will update more link soon.


Cindy tagged me, so I guess this is my first time ever replying a tag from a friend. Wait, hold on. Is this the first time?

1. Where is your Cellphone?
– Next to my laptop

2. Relationship?
– With God, fine. With family, good. With someone special, hopeless.

3. Your Hair?
– straight at the back, and a bit curl at the front. WTF!

4. Work?
– Doing great here in OZ, but pile of workload waiting in Labuan, kan Adam? heheh

5. Your sister?
– Two, both with different attitude but they share a caring and loving and handsome brader.

6. Your favorite thing?
– Work things out… the least I can do rather than sleeping all day long.

7. Your dream last night?
– Wet, threesome, and I woke up with big grin. How the hell I got such dream during bulan puasa???????

8. Your favorite drink?
– Ice Lemon Tea & Teh Tarik. 🙂

9. Your dream car?
– I can list them now. Mazda RX7 (FD3S) & RX8, BMW 3281,Toyota Supra 2000GT, MR2 SW20 3SGTE, Bugatti Veyron, Lambo Diablo, Maseratti Quattroport (F! Is that the correct spelling?) and many more that I can’t afford of.. yeah.. MY DREAM CAR, right?

10. The room you’re in?
– 6 f x 3 f. Good enough for one person. But can fill in more – only girls allowed.

11. Your shoes?
– Lost count..

12. Your fears?
– AIDS..

13. What do you want to be in 10 years?
– A good, responsible and handsome father to my beloved children. Can ah?

14. Who did you hang out with this weekend?
– Duh..

15. What are you not good at?
– Trying to act cool…

16. Muffin?
– Chocolate

17. One of your wish list items?
– Dopod 838! Can I list more?

18. Where you grew up?
– Many places. Semporna, Beaufort, Labuan, Johor Bahru, Kota Kinabalu, Labuan…

19. Last thing you did?
– Fed Amelia (my GodDaughter) some food – and she keep kicking my face. Arrgh!!!!!

20. What are you wearing?
– You really need to know that? *blushing*

21. What aren’t you wearing?
– bikini. Lol!

22. Your pet?
– Belang.

23. Your computer?
– Toshiba Satellite

24. Your life?
– Quite ok, but there’s still many things laying on the table that needs my attention.

25. Your mood?
– Stuffed. Just arrived after 3 hours driving from Brisbane to Dalby.

26. Missing?
– No one.

27. What are you thinking about right now?
– Singapore Chicken Rice.

28. Your car?
– The last I heard the engine got f**ked up after being abused roughly and raped mechanically by the irresponsible driver. I’m so gonna change the engine when I’m going back to Labuan.

29. Your kitchen?
– Haven’t cook anything since I left Labuan.

30. Your summer?
– It is winter now..

31. Your favorite color?
– Black & red.. but my dad just painted my room purple last Saturday. *slap myself real hard!*

32. Last time you laughed?
– Just now.

33. Last time you really cried?
– Hmm…

34. School?
– I can list em down… but I guess none will ring your bell.

35. Love?
– Being myself.

Ok, Im going to tag this to Maslight, Julian, Flanegan, and anyone that ran out of idea for their blog post. And for Mas, Julian and Flanny, there’s no urgency for you to reply this tag. Just that you’re among the people I can think of now (excluding those Cindy have mentioned here)

 

Review on Malaysia Budget 2008 September 7, 2007

Filed under: Miscellanuous — saifulrizan @ 1:36 am

Pak Lah tabled the Budget 2008, themed “Together Building The Nation and Sharing Prosperity”, in Parliament today, 7th September 2008. I never fell for this kind of thing, since I have no doubt on whatever areas the government will spend the tax payer money. Besides, I guess KLCC was made with a portion of my income declared for annual tax. But this time, few matters with regards to the Budget 2008 caught my attention, despite there’s still a bitter of ignorance floating inside my typical Tak Apa mind.

As what I’ve read yesterday, Thursday, there’s few significance point that will be implemented in the practice of Budget 2008. And today, I am still reading the long speech delivered in the Parliament today, presenting each components and plans consisted in the Budget 2008. First few glances confirmed what I’ve read today (at least, it was delivered in national TV. Nevermind the implementation then, times will tell).

So, this was what I read yesterday morning, tabulated the main essence of Malaysia Budget 2008

The broad framework of the Budget essentially covers three areas:

  1. Improving the quality of life;
  2. To make common consumer items affordable and not a burden to the lower-income group; and
  3. Beefing up the police force to fight crime, a major concern of Malaysians.
I wouldn’t want to touch on the third point, given that there was a major hauling over Government reaction towards bloggers, with both parties trying their best defend their side disregard the sanity and rationality of actions taken by both side (disregard the volume of action taken). Besides, I wont risk my future just for voicing out about my opinion related to things that still to shallow (for me the least) and by my fair bit judgments towards Pak Lah promise to Malaysian citizen when he first lifted as PM, to fight corruption in Malaysia. Well said.

However, the Budget 2008 today presented with the implementation on three (3) strategies, that is:

First – Enhancing the nation’s competitiveness;
Second – Strengthening human capital development; and
Third – Ensuring the well-being of all Malaysians.

With few matters arose with regards to the first strategy; Enhancing the nation’s competitiveness, proposals submitted to the Dewan Rakyat includes

  1. Providing a Conducive Environment for Private Investment (Private investment continues to be the catalyst of the nation’s economic growth)
  2. Competitive Tax Regime (Implementation of single-tier tax system – rofits are only taxed at the company’s level and dividends received are exempted from tax. dividends can be more easily distributed. )
  3. Simplifying Issuance of Work Permit and Visa for Skilled Workers (I hope the implementation only imposed to Skilled and Professional workers only – not those PTIs and GROs)
  4. Enhancing Competitiveness of the Capital Market
  5. Strengthening Corporate Governance (This will see an implementation of Corporate Governance in PLCs, as it will effect the period of approving corporate proposals, licensing, etc.)
  6. Encouraging Mergers & Acquisitions (the Government has given stamp duty exemption on instruments related to mergers and acquisitions (M&As) of PLCs, approved by SC up to 31 December 2007. To encourage more PLCs to undertake M&A, the stamp duty exemption will be extended to 31 December 2010. )
  7. Competitive Commission Structures (To encourage greater direct retail participation in share investment and trading as well as the greater use of technology in the capital market, the commission rates for internet trading and cash upfront transactions will be fully negotiable)
  8. Positioning Malaysia as International Islamic Financial Centre
  9. Promoting Investments from the Middle East
  10. Takaful Industry (the Government proposes several enhancements in the tax treatment, including tax deduction on the share of distributed profits. )
  11. Increasing the Competitiveness of Labuan as an Offshore Financial Services Centre (the Government proposes that Labuan offshore companies be given the option to be taxed under the Income Tax Act 1967, in addition to the existing options. )
  12. Stimulating Property Sector
  13. Agricultural Sector (The main thrust of agriculture sector development is to enable this sector to become one of the major sources of economic growth. For this purpose, a sum of RM6.5 billion is allocated for the agriculture sector.)
  14. Biotechnology Sector (the Government will continue to provide infrastructure and technological facilities. For this purpose, a sum of RM236 million is provided in the 2008 Budget)
  15. Tourism Sector ( RM858 million is allocated for the implementation of various programmes, including the provision and upgrading of tourism facilities as well as diversification of tourism products. An allocation of RM22 million is provided to increase homestay activities in 47 selected villages.)
  16. Promoting Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) (Recognising that SMEs may face cash flow constraints at the initial stages of operations, the Government proposes giving them flexibility to pay taxes at the end of financial year instead of monthly instalments. This flexibility is for a period of 2 years from the date of commencement of operations. )

With few matters arose with regards to the second strategy; Strengthening human capital development, proposals submitted to the Dewan Rakyat includes

  1. Strengthening Primary and Secondary Schools (RM 30 billion to make school looks interesting – and teachers are cool.)
  2. Free Education For All (Last year, examination fees for PMR, SPM & STPM abolished. 2008 will witnessed the same goes to Sijil Tinggi Agama Malaysia, primary and secondary school – smile to all parents out there!)(Text Book Loan Scheme will be provide to all students, irrespective of their parents income)
  3. Important Role of Teachers (Allowance to be increased to Special Education teachers, degree & diploma holders teaching Chinese and Tamil language in national schools)
  4. The Role of Charity Organisations in Education (Schools that are funded and well managed by trust and charitable bodies will be tax exempted)
  5. Strengthening Higher Education (aims to transform the higher education sector to produce highly knowledgeable and first class human capital as well as develop world-class higher education institutions.
  6. Increasing Scholarships Rates (Govt will increase between 23% to 84% for students in local higher learning institutions)(Overseas students will get an increment to support their Cost Of Living Allowance up to 97% effective September 2007)
  7. Enhancing Skills Training ( Polytechnic, community colleges, GiatMARA and ILP will benefit from this)
  8. Life Long-Learning (the Government proposes tax relief of up to RM5,000 on education fees be extended to all post graduate studies. )
  9. Research, Development and Commercialization
  10. Human Capital Development in ICT
  11. Nurturing A Knowledge-based Society (the Government has targeted to increase the broadband penetration rate to 50% of households by 2010, from 12% currently.)

With few matters arose with regards to the third strategy; Ensuring the well-being of all Malaysians, proposals submitted to the Dewan Rakyat includes

  1. Adequate Affordable Housing (1. this particularly targeted at low income group, with a sum of approximately RM 381 million will be spend on Program Perumahan Rakyat (PPR) Disewa and PPR Bersepadu. 2. The government will provide loans to a group that cant prove their income of stream specifically those from low income group, amounted to RM 50 million allocated to provide such guarantees to Bank Simpanan Nasional and Bank Islam Berhad, effective 1st January 2008 3. Those with EPF, you can withdraw your account balance in Account 2 for financing the repayment of your house loan.)
  2. Efficient Transportation System (this goes to improving the public transportation system at Kuala Lumpur and Penang. In Penang alone, the Penang Outer Ring Road will be implemented on tender basis shortly)
  3. Balanced Regional Development ( RM 4 billions will be allocated for Sabah, in areas such as the main road construction connecting major districts in Sabah, upgrading/building rural health and hospital facilities, low cost housing, electricity and water supply, as well as upgrading roads and railway) ( RM 4 billions will be allocated for Sarawak as well, mostly in development projects which related to public facilities) (RM 200 million to promote tourism activities in Sabah and Sarawak)(More efforts will be taken to help boosting local native in Sabah to upgrade their quality of life in all aspects)
  4. Eradicating Hardcore Poverty (A mere total of RM 330 million will be spend on the development programs to generate income for the population in less developed and remote areas, as well as providing housing to ease the hardcore poor status)
  5. Urban Poverty (Emphasis will be given on construction of adequate low-cost houses, provision of job opportunities and improving the public transport facilities)
  6. Rural Development (in order to reduce the gap among the rural and urban areas, more facilities upgrades will be focused on basic facilities and an addition of ICT education in rural areas)
  7. Improving the Quality of Life of Orang Asli (a total of RM 220 millions will be allocated to providing housing assistance, social ammenities and programmes and projects to upgrade the Orang Asli quality of life)
  8. Youth and Sports (surprisingly, they will add in RM677 million for National Service Training Program – after a heated debate on the credibility of NS responsibilities on the 14 deaths recorded in NS history)
  9. Women, Family and Community
  10. Well-being of Senior Citizens (Their monthly allowance will be increased to RM 300 per month, effective 1 January 2008) (RM 25 million granted to NGOs to expand existing capacity – because many Malaysians throw their mom and dad to Rumah Seri Kenangan la)
  11. Assistance For The Disabled (Monthly allowance will be increased to RM 300)(Allow tax deduction on renovation costs in the work place incurred by employers for the disabled to encourage the private sector to hire more disabled workers. )
  12. Provision of Health Services (RM 13 billion to improve quality of hospital services, building of nursing colleges and hospitals)
  13. Inculcating Corporate Social Responsibility (Public Listed Companies will be implemented to practice good Corporate Social Responsibility)(Beginning financial year 2008, PLCs will be required to disclose their employment composition by race and gender, as well as programmes undertaken to develop domestic and Bumiputera vendors. – Personally, why would there a report on race composition in CSR report? What’s the rational behind this anyway? )
  14. Public Safety (A sum of RM6 billion is allocated to the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM) in 2008.)
  15. Nurturing Maintenance Culture
  16. Restructuring the Water Supply Industry
  17. Conservation and Preservation of Environment (If this implemented at the level of 100%, you wont see Mr Karam Singh Walia reporting on pollution anymore *wink)
  18. Enriching Culture, Arts and Heritage (A sum of RM 733 million to fund the awareness of culture, art and heritage in Malaysia, with the lots going to National Library, FINAS and the National Textile Museum)
  19. Important Role of Civil Service (Salary increase to civil servants- as announced before)

It is important for you to know that this blog only provides a short insight of the Budget 2008, just to give an idea on what the Government will spend for 2008 (and the year to come). This blogger is not responsible for any mistakes spotted in the representation of Budget 2008 in this blog. Please go to Full text of PM’s Budget 2008 speech to read the full disclosure of Budget 2008.

 

Foo Fighters – A320 August 24, 2007

Filed under: Miscellanuous — saifulrizan @ 12:53 am


Note : Can you please respond to the Poll next to this post, under my picture? Thank you very much for doing that. 🙂

Recently I caught up with this video in YouTube. It’s the Superman Return clip, but with Foo Fighters A320 song. The creator of this sync vid clip nailed it down. The song matches the clip perfectly! Originally, this is a song from Godzilla Soundtrack called A320.

Here are the video clip and the lyric. Enjoy!

There is a place I’d love to go
Strangers takin’ me there
I dream about the day I learn to fly

I’m afraid of aeroplanes
Even though I act the way
that it feels to be a person in the sky

It’s alright
and it’s good
this time

I look out and on the ground
really don’t believe it
gravity can pull me from this height

One day we’ll come crashing down
What will I do
Never had a chance to say goodbye

Close my eyes and hope that it’s
a real smooth flight
this time
Close my eyes and hope that it’s
a real smooth flight

And it’s good
this time

I look down and on the ground
I look down and on the ground
I look down and on the ground
I look out, we’re going down

 

Labuan – Sabah bridge? July 5, 2007

Filed under: Miscellanuous — saifulrizan @ 2:11 am

I am all prepared for my trip to Kota Kinabalu this coming Friday. I think this will be the last time for this year, since I’ll fly to Brisbane on August, and going back to Labuan at the end of the year. I am not sure yet of my period of stay there, but if there’s necessity that I need to extend my period of stay , I will obey. I need to get things done properly so I can settle down in Labuan temporarily before looking for job opportunities or perhaps starting a new business.

After a couple of months in HARD WORK MODE, I need a vacation I guess. I’ve been sluggishly dumb and out of this world for many days last June. I think if woman have PMS, I have PMS too, but in terms of emotional lah. Weekend does not mean anything to me, because work load has set my mind to be flexible to think about work everywhere. Gosh, I was mentally raped from the trauma of dealing with paper works.

This coming Friday, I’ll drive my car to Kota Kinabalu via Menumbok. I really miss the moment driving on that road, with the panoramic view of Sabah skyline and the big truck testing their speed limit all the way from Beaufort to Kota Kinabalu. Recently I heard some rumors about the proposal on building a bridge connecting Sabah to Labuan, via Menumbok. With approximately 5 millions spent on the research alone, this said project might be an opening for economic and lifestyle development in Labuan, and perhaps, our duty free status will be stripped off permanently. For the people that don’t drink alcohol, that might not affect them much. With alcohol, cigarettes and automobiles being the main item that is tax-free, many people will face a big change in their lifestyle. Personally, I think that’s the best. Besides, why focus on such petty things when we can experience the development in our economies factor, society development and change of lifestyle? We’re talking about big scale changes here.

But then, I will miss the long drive dearly, since I really enjoy driving in such way. With the bridge in research (and perhaps will be executed), the period of driving from Labuan to mainland will be shorter, and more convenient. After all, we have to face the changes before facing the actual development.

Among other things that I concern is, will this bridge affect the flooding of PATI (Pendatang Asing Tanpa Izin) or illegals in Labuan. Since the access is will be very easy, it might be an opportunity for total mobility for them in Borneo. Last night Buletin Utama TV3 covers the dilemma that local people in Sabah facing with regards to these alien. With the Permanent Resident status will be considered to be given to illegal (mostly from Philippines) in Sabah, this will raise issues on securities and public awareness. I am not racist, but other than working as hard labor building a skyscraper, would there be any benefits that comparable to their crime and uncivilized lifestyle? It’s obvious the journalist that covers the segment last night in Buletin Utama TV3 voice out the problems on crime, hygiene awareness and breaking Malaysian law without concern on Malaysian sensitivity. Whoever the Minister that issued such proposal to give PR status to these illegal should reconsider such proposal.

Perhaps for initial, we should start sending these alien to West Malaysia, and let them see and experience how it’s like to have aliens among them. Besides, if PR will be given to these people easily, they should reconsider the rules and requirements to apply for Malaysia My Second Home. For expatriates to live in Malaysia, they are required to purchase an assets valued at certain amount; which I am not sure about the figure, but it’s more than these aliens annual income. That’s only one of the requirements.

It’s undeniable that these aliens will do the work that most Malaysian refused to do. Does anyone really interested in lifting bundle of bricks, work under burning sun, get your hands dirty and receive small salary? I used to work in construction after SPM, and I know how hard it used to be. That is what reminds me to look on where I stand before raising my hand touching the sky. But, do them feel the same?

We’re all the same, but not all of us can be the same.

 

Saturday morning June 30, 2007

Filed under: Miscellanuous — saifulrizan @ 5:54 am

It’s Saturday again. Oh, I am so going to rest for the whole day. After a couple hours of rearranging the furniture in my room, I’m so delighted that I woke up today in my ‘new’ room. Maybe you got that question mark on your head now, “why would he re-arrange furniture at night?” I know working on such thing at night is a much uncomfortable for the noise it create, being sweaty for the hard work (at least I burnt extra useless fats) and so on. But I know it will pay off the moment I wake up the next day. And YES, it was!

My loyal morning partner (after spending outside sleeping all night)

The company I’m working with decided to shut down their operation in Labuan, and there’s too many plan ahead of time at it requires most of my time to get this company manageable in few months to come. One of the sacrifices I have to burden is turning my room into an office. It was my intention to spend more time at home after coming back from Australia (next November, or perhaps next February) and getting work done from home. With few basic office facilities, I planned the location of those in my room. I only took that office furniture that small and simple to use back home. I don’t need much shit in my house for some simple Director work. All I need is my laptop and broadband connection.

Then, I think again. Actually I’m setting up this office not just for the company purpose, but for my good sake as well. With next week I’m going to Kota Kinabalu to attend course (to regain my Life Insurance license back), this office will be more useful and profitable (I hope). And I was thinking how my life would be by the time I get back to Labuan after this final trip to Australia. Am I going to be someone new, more efficient, more effective, more organized, and importantly, better in personality?

Nah, it’s Saturday. Why should I think so much when I can read magazine, watch movies and go out with friends. Have a good weekend, you all!