Tuesday, June 19

Babar Ahmad's story

Today is a new Tuesday for me. Yesterday was Monday, the day I got my throbbing-heart-reliever result, and today I'll be visiting Abang Bahar the 2nd, whom I first met last week while shopping a few days ago.

Babar's father Ashfaq Ahmad campaigns for his son's freedom

This means that it has been exactly a week since this happened last Tuesday.

Last Tuesday, FOSIS condemned the decision by the House of Lords which has allowed for the extradition of Babar Ahmad to the United States.

Who is this guy named Babar Ahmad? Babar Ahmad is a British citizen who was born in London in 1974. He grew up and went to school in South London. He is a computer expert who no still lives in Tooting, south London. In December 2003 Babar was arrested under the Terrorism Act 2000. He is being accused of running websites supporting terror and of urging Muslims to fight a holy war.
But now, the UK is sending him to the US for the judgement to be held there, in the US. This is the statement released by FOSIS;

“The decision by the House of Lords is incredibly disappointing. The fact that a British Citizen can be extradited to the United States without a single piece of evidence being brought against him is shocking. If Babar Ahmad is suspected of any criminal activity then evidence should be brought forward and as a British citizen he should be tried within the legal system of the United Kingdom.”

To know more about his story and news, log on to FREE Babar Ahmad

1. These are what the Parliament in the UK consist of. The House of Lords is the upper house of the Parliament of the United Kingdom and is also commonly referred to as "the Lords". So, The Sovereign (the Queen!), the House of Commons (which is the lower house of Parliament and referred to as "the Commons"), and the Lords together comprise the Parliament.

Monday, June 18

Nahr al-Bared

Can you see where is Nahr Al-Bareed?

It has been a busy and hectic week for me and my colleagues. We are busy packing, moving out and wrapping souvenirs for our families and friends back home in Malaysia.

Before it become lost from my mind, I'd like to share another fund-raising that were made after the Friday prayer last week. This time, another brother from the famous Human Appeal International made a reminder that the post war Lebanon is still in crisis. Urgent donations are required from all regardless Muslims or non-Muslims. I still remember that he keep on repeating while holding the donation bucket -"Do not hesitate in helping our brothers". It doesn't really matter whether we differ in political point of view, of whether we believe in different faith, but extending our hand for help and aware of other's predicament must always happen.

For us to fathom the real situation, here is a basic fact for us to ponder upon ;

Did you know that over 40,000 Palestinian refugees have fled from the Nahr Al-Bareed refugee camp?

To understand this fact better, we must first know what is Nahr Al-Bareed. Literally in Arabic, it means Cold River. It is a Palestinian refugee camp in northern Lebanon, near the port city of Tripoli. Some 30,000 displaced Palestinians and their descendants live at the camp, which was named after the river that runs south of the camp. Can you imagine how far have they traveled from Palestine?? And currently, due to the war, these people who have already lost their home, had to fled away because the camp became a centre of fighting in May 2007.

Now they are desperate. They need urgent emergency relief of food, water, medical aid, temporary shelter, mattresses and baby milk! And at the same time, thousands more are still trapped in their homes.

According to Human Appeal International (HAI), they had allocated more than GBP 100,000 (thats about RM 700,000!!) for emergency relief for the current crisis.

So, don't think twice. click here to know more from HAI.

Tuesday, June 12

Congratulation Alin!!

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My father emailed me the photo of my second sister, Alin, who graduated with flying colours from MRSM Tun Ghafar Baba (formerly known as MRSM Jasin). She's the one in the graduating gown. Really wish I can be there, but Nottingham and Alor Star is so farrrrr away, but I'm coming back soon in ten days time.

It seems like it was just yesterday when I accompany her for the enrollment in Jasin in early 2005, because during that time our parents went for pilgrimage in Makkah. She could have chose MRSM Langkawi which is nearer to home, but Jasin became her first choice, and she beat my record for being the one who went to the furthest school from Alor Star. And today, Alhamdulillah, with the blessings from Allah, she is on her right track to pursue her dream in medicine.No hurdle is insurmountable and congratulation Alin for having the great inner strength and believing in yourself!

Finally, I would like to thank those who helped her to achieve her dream and made it possible for her continue being a good Muslim. May Allah repay all your good deeds. Thank you everyone....

Sunday, June 10

Wafa Relief

While I was having my lunch today, suddenly I remembered that last Friday, after the Friday prayer in the Portland prayer room, the main place in which students perform their prayers, there was one man who went to publicise about Wafa Relief.

Basically, it is charity body established in Manchester since 2003, whose primary focus is to help relief the suffering of the destitute communities in Africa. This is where the poorest of the poor live.

Their annual projects include Ramadhan appeal, Eid ul-Adha appeal and emergency relief wherever a crisis erupts. Their humanitarian aids in time of crisis are endless.

For the time being, Wafa's area of operation covers Ethiopia, Ghana, Mozambique, Nigeria, Northern Africa, Somalia and Sierra Leone, and they are planning to extend their field of work to include other African countries.

The good thing about Wafa Relief is that they work through equitable partnership with other charitable body, thus this will ensure a more effective assistance for the places which require immediate aid. For further info, feel free to visit them.

So, after this, to you who have read this, please have confidence with Wafa Relief and do not hesitate in donating to those who are really in need!! We've nothing to lose, as this will be our share in the Hereafter, after we die.


Saturday, June 9

boycott Israeli academic

On the 30th May 2007, a resolution to boycott Israeli academic institutions was passed by Britain's University and College Union* (UCU) in protest at Israel's "40-year occupation" of Palestinian land and to condemn the "complicity" of Israeli academia.

Certain “pro-israeli occupation” groups have been trying to undemocratically over turn this motion.

Thus, peace-loving people out there, we need your help by signing this petition to stop these attempts.

The vehement opposition to the UCU’s motion to boycott Israeli Academics is ever intensifying. The US are now involved, threatening to take action against British academia should this motion not be reversed. Tony Blair in person requested from the UCU to ‘overturn’ this motion. Undoubtedly the UCU now find them selves under potentially unbearable pressure.

Fosis is urging all members of the public to take the following simple actions:

1. Visit this online petition and sign it

2. Write letters of support to Sally Hunt, Gen Sec of UCU at shunt@ucu.org.uk and CC President, Linda Newman (preident@ucu.org.uk). A template for the letter is provided at the bottom of this alert.


Letter to Sally Hunt, Gen. Sec. UCU (TEMPLATE)

Dear Sally Hunt

I write to you to commend the UCU for their stance regarding the boycott of Israeli academics. This motion sends a strong message of solidarity and support to the Palestinian people who’ve been suffering at the hands of the Israeli occupation for more than 5 decades.

Academics play an instrumental role in shaping the perceptions and world views of a population. By standing on the fringe and refusing to actively condemn the continuous brutality of the occupation and its implications on the welfare and future of the Palestinian people, Israeli Academics are complicit in this heinous crime.

We take pride in seeing our academics taking a principled stance on this issue and supporting the struggle to attain justice for the oppressed away from the distortions and contaminations of the media and politics. This is the true spirit of academia, and we are certain that this stance by the British UCU will set an example for all such institutions around the world.

We trust that as secretary of the Union you will do whatever is in your power to ensure all such democratic decisions are duly implemented.

(*Your name*)

1. FOSIS (est. 1962) is the umbrella organisation of student groups in colleges and universities throughout the UK and Ireland, representing over 90,000 Muslim students.

2. UCU is the largest trade union and professional association for academics, lecturers, trainers, researchers and academic-related staff working in further and higher education throughout the UK

Thursday, June 7

Comparative Religion

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Ijam and Almie at the discussion

Another geart success! Yesterday, Ijam, Almie (our special guest from Bristol) and I went to a Christianity-Islam discussion in Portland Building.We had been looking forward for this event as we believe this is our chance to know and understand more about Christianity and at the same time to deepen our knowledge and understanding on Islam. Mr Matt was the guest speaker representing the Christian Union, whilst Sister Romaissa, a final year pharmacy student talked on behalf of the Muslims.

Basically, the main topic was about the creation of Adam, as the first human being. The talk started at 1930 and last for about 30 minutes, swiftly followed by small group discussion until 2130.

A big thank you to both, the Christian Union and the Islamic Society, who did an excellent job in enhancing mutual understanding between this two most dominant religion in the world. Credit also goes to Allahyarham Mr Deedat, who was and still is, a great teacher on mine. He did taught me a lot via his great debates.

All in all a great day was had, and we would like to thank all who has made this discussion a reality, especially Matt, Eden, Muaz, Ikhwan, and Johnny (our table mate), for giving us the opportunity to be part of something special, something so meaningful, that will remember forever for it did strengthen our faith in the One and Only God, Allah. May Allah Accept our good deeds on Yaumul Qiamah, inshaAllah.

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Brother Muaz (standing), Firdaus and Almie

Murahnya roti canai!

This was a news reported in Utusan Malaysia on 7 June 2007. Despite this rise in price in a lot of goods in Malaysia, this chap managed to sell roti canai at a very competitive price. Can you imagine having a glass of tea with milk, pratha bread and netted bread for just 13 pence?? Congratulation and thank you to Mr Abd. Nasir Abd. Ghaffar for the cheap roti canai, and may Allah bless your business, and Alor Star rock!

90 sen untuk roti canai, roti jala, teh O


ALOR STAR 6 Jun – Mungkin ramai yang beranggapan nilai RM1 terlalu kecil ketika ini lebih-lebih lagi dengan kenaikan harga pelbagai barangan keperluan harian, namun di Restoran Nasi Kandar Aina di sini nilai itu mencukupi untuk membayar harga sarapan pagi yang lengkap dengan minuman.

Dengan 90 sen sahaja, pengunjung restoran yang terletak di Pekan Simpang Kuala itu boleh menikmati tiga jenis menu iaitu sekeping roti canai, sekeping roti jala dan segelas air teh O.

Pengurus restoran itu, Abd. Nasir Abd. Ghaffar berkata, harga baru tersebut yang menyaksikan penurunan kira-kira 50 peratus daripada harga asal telah bermula sejak semalam.

Saiz roti canai yang dihidangkan tetap sama seperti sebelum ini.

‘‘Saya mahu menyahut cabaran kerajaan agar peniaga tidak menaikkan harga barangan ekoran daripada kenaikan gaji kakitangan awam,” katanya ketika ditemui di restorannya di sini hari ini.

Menurutnya, langkah sesetengah peniaga menaikkan harga barangan termasuk roti canai pada kadar yang tidak berpatutan mungkin menyebabkan orang ramai dan kakitangan awam tidak dapat merasai kesan positif kenaikan pendapatan mereka.

Abd. Nasir berkata, beliau percaya tindakannya menurunkan harga itu tidak akan membawa kerugian kepada Restoran Nasi Kandar Aina kerana perniagaannya tidak terlalu bergantung kepada jualan roti canai.

‘‘Saya percaya lebih ramai pelanggan akan datang ke restoran ini dan kami juga menawarkan pelbagai makanan lain terutama nasi kandar dan lauk pauk masakan kampung,” ujarnya.

Beliau telah mengusahakan restoran itu sejak tahun 1998 dan menerima kira-kira 1,000 pengunjung setiap hari.

Katanya, kos sekeping roti canai mungkin kira-kira 29 sen sekeping.

‘‘Bagi peniaga yang bergantung sepenuhnya pada jualan roti canai, mereka mungkin tidak dapat menjual pada harga 30 sen sekeping kerana kos bahan mentah dan pekerja tetapi saya mempunyai makanan lain untuk dijual,” ujarnya.

Abd. Nasir yang turut mengekalkan harga makanan lain bagaimanapun mengakui kenaikan harga barang mentah antara 20 hingga 30 peratus ketika ini berbanding harga tahun lalu menyebabkan keuntungan peniaga makanan turut menurun.

‘‘Saya berharap kerajaan dapat mengambil tindakan mengawal harga barang terutama memastikan pihak pemborong dan pembekal makanan tidak menaikkan terlalu tinggi harga barang yang dibekalkan,” ujarnya.

Wednesday, June 6

Selamat Pengantin Baru Pak Lah!

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After living alone since the demise of his wife, Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi will marry Jeanne Abdullah, 53, on this Saturday. My friend Udon text me a message from Warwick early in the morning at 0844 Uk time, informing me about this wonderful news. The original press release was announced by the Prime Minister’s Office.

This is the official announcement from the Prime Minister's Office.

Dengan sukacitanya dimaklumkan bahawa YAB Perdana Menteri Dato’ Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi akan melangsungkan majlis akad nikah dengan Jeanne Abdullah pada hari Sabtu 9 Jun 2007 bersamaan dengan 23 Jamadilawwal 1428 Hijrah.

Jeanne Abdullah dilahirkan di Kuala Lumpur pada 29 Julai 1953 dan merupakan anak sulung daripada empat orang adik-beradik. Beliau menerima pendidikan di Sekolah Menengah Assunta dan mempunyai pengalaman yang luas dalam bidang pentadbiran dan penghotelan setelah terlibat dalam pengurusan beberapa hotel terkemuka di Malaysia, termasuk Hotel Hilton Kuala Lumpur dan Hotel Pan Pacific. Jeanne juga pernah bertugas sebagai Pengelola kediaman rasmi Timbalan Perdana Menteri dan Pengurus Kompleks Seri Perdana.

Jeanne mempunyai dua orang anak, Nadiah dan Nadene. Majlis berkenaan akan diadakan di Seri Perdana dan akan dihadiri oleh keluarga terdekat sahaja.

Indeed, we all believe that this is the strongest of bonds, in which Allah unites the two Muslim partners, who come together on the basis of love, understanding, co-operation and mutual advice. We know it was hard for Pak Lah (the name he is fondly known as) to live with the absence of a supporter and his greatest joy. Pak Lah had always needed a strong motivator and to a person who could renew his energy so that he may fulfill his mission of steering the country.

I've never met Jeanne before, but based from the widely circulated photo of her it seems that she doesn't wear hijab. This no good, but I hope that Pak Lah will ask her to do so after their solemnization of marriage. Hijab is a must in Islam and Muslims must obey God's word. Even I'm sure Jeanne will look more beautiful in a nice proper tudung!

Congratulation to both of them and I hope that Jeanne will be respectful towards Pak Lah and is always eager to please him and make him happy to lead the country.

And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that you may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your [hearts] . . .

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(Qur’aan 30:21)

Goodbye Loga Alleycats

I am so sorry to hear that after a long-year battle with lung cancer, Loga Alleycats, or his full name, Loganathan Arumugam died on Monday. He was young, 54 years old.

Loga and co was my favourite singer when I was about 3 or 4 years old. Obviously, I don't remember vividly how deep was my attachment with Alleycats, but apparently I liked their songs, I grew up with their wonderful tunes and Loga's and his brother's trademark of Afro hairdo. My mother keep telling me that when I was small, I'd immediately grab a seat in front of tv set to entertain myself once I hear Alleycats' song. Even years later when I first met my buddy, Dann, who has similar hairstyle, Loga's face first came into my mind.

I did run across him once at KLIA June last year. At that time his hair was huge as usual, but he was very thin and skinny. A few people was following him, asking for an autograph.

Whatever it is, for us who are reading this, its still not the time yet for us, but for Loga, he has experienced the greatest affliction, the stage at which the soul becomes disconnected from the body. He has transcended from this world (here-now) to the Hereafter. Death has agonies, the extent and severity of which are known only by those who have experience it like Loga and others. Given that death is enough as an admonition, are we prepared for our turn which will pop up anywhere and anytime soon?

In the middle of the morning on 4th June 2007, Loga died to the tune of a collection of early Alleycats songs being played on a portable disc player placed at his bedside. It was unfortunate that it was not the Quran, the words of God, that accompany his depart from this world. I don't know whether he died along with full submission to the One and Only God or not, but I surely hope he did.

Finally, I'd like to express my condolence to his widow, son and daughter, and goodbye Loga, may I wish you a fond farewell.

"And the stupor* of death will come in truth; this is what you have been avoiding!"

al-Qur'an: Qaaf, 34

*a state in which a person is almost unconscious and their thoughts are very unclear

Sunday, June 3

The King

I didn't got the chance to congratulate His Royal Highness Sultan Mizan when he was formally enthroned as the new King of Malaysia on the 26th of April as this blog was still under construction at that time. So now, as the first Saturday in June is the Kings official birthday, I would say 'Congratulation' and 'Happy Birthday' to him. In Malaysia, the king is officially known as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and he is elected to a five-year term among the nine Sultans of the Malay states. Malaysia are one of the few countries which practices true elective monarchies. Other countries are Kuwait, Cambodia and Vatican City.

I'm very pleased and chuffed with our new King. I'm very happy that his consort, Her Royal Highness Sultanah Nur Zahirah wears the proper hijab as a true Muslim woman should wear. Well, this precisely is the just Islamic dress whose features have been clearly defined by the Qur'an and Sunnah. This had made her character distict, and indeed she clearly epitomises the current generation of modest Muslim women not only in Malaysia, but all over the world.

Some women wear hijab because it is a tradition or custom enherited or only to be worn on special occasion only. For instance, when a live telecast of a death of a well known person is aired, the woman news presenter will surely wears hijab. But on the very next day, everything is gone and her blond hair can be clearly seen. Now you see it, now you don't! But believe it or not!

Muslim woman wears hijab on the basic belief that this is a command from the One, Allah. If this is God's word, no wasting time...true Muslim will practice it swiftly.

Finally, may under the reign of HRH Sultan Mizan and Permaisuri Nur Zahirah, women in Malaysia will continue to participate in public affairs, playing vital role in strong family which is a core subunit of a good community, and not merely women who think sex appeal is everything.

Daulat Tuanku!!

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