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Go big. Go bold. Go radical. Or you may as well go home.

A new me

October 22, 2008

Lectures have ended, only 2 exams left before I am completely through with uni life. So I heard, working life is more challenging huh? Well, bring it on. I simply can't wait to join the corporate world, the competitive capital market, the place where only the strong survives so to speak. Hopefully working life is not overrated.. I just hope for a fresh start in Petronas (if I manage to get accepted).

And more importantly, I can't wait for the day me and Aim tie the knot. Finally..I will have someone I can call my own. Not that I don't already have one at the moment (my parents), but I guess husbands and wives have stronger sense of belonging to each other as compared to other family members. And that is something I can't wait to experience.

Speaking of sense of belonging, my circle of friends have began to notice I actually have a blog. It never occurred to me that it would be an issue...but apparently it is. To my friend Hedaya and Hazwani, I have always wanted to announce the blog to you guys, after all you guys are the best of friends, but there is always this...


Tags: personal

Posted at: 02:51 AM | 15 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

1 Syawal 1429 - Istimewa dengan cara tersendiri

October 2, 2008

Aidil Fitri pada tahun ini memberi pengalaman baru kepada diri ku. Rinduku teramat kepada kampung halaman di Damansara Jaya, beraya di samping mak, ayah, abang, abangah dan kakak. Tetapi kerinduan itu berjaya diredakan, terima kasih kepada gelak tawa di samping sahabat taulan yang bagaikan keluarga baru ku sejak 3 tahun yang lepas. Walaupun tadi ketika solat Aidil Fitri, Tok Imam dari Fiji banyak memberi peringatan dan kata-kata nasihat lantas membuat hatiku sedikit gundah gulana, semuanya bertukar menjadi ceria sebaik sahaja bertemu kawan-kawan. Kami bergurau senda, bercerita tentang memori raya di Malaysia sambil menjamu selera dengan hidangan istimewa Hari Raya. Ketupat nasi, rendang, briyani, kuih senperit, semuanya mengimbas semula ingatan ku kepada ibunda yang tiap-tiap tahun tidak pernah gagal untuk menyediakan makanan di pagi Syawal.


Raya tahun ini di tengah-tengah minggu; kuliah tetap berjalan seperti biasa. Lucunya gelagat menyambut 1 Syawal semalam. Tuan rumah Ali, Shazwan dan Aio mengkhabarkan betapa mereka malas untuk ke kelas. Tetapi mereka memujuk hati untuk ke kuliah jua kerana risaukan assignment yang pastinya lebih sukar...


Tags: personal

Posted at: 10:21 PM | 4 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink


September 29, 2008

A video on Islamophobia.


Unlike Fitna, this film made a clear distinction between the radicals, who are the minority, and law-abiding Muslim citizens, who are the cheers to that.

But a bigger task awaits us: Where do we draw the line between what is radical and what is not? 


Tags: religion

Posted at: 07:27 AM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

English, English and more English please!

September 23, 2008

I am impressed with Khairy Jamaluddin. He is indeed capable of making cogent arguments when he is not playing politic. However, much as I would like to agree with him that students find learning Math and Science in English really difficult, I’m afraid the system must go on.

By claiming that the system fails to improve English proficiency among students, Khairy is evidently an impatient guy. One year of learning Math and Science in English and you expect them to speak and write English like you? Come on, get real Khairy. I live in New Zealand for almost 3 years already, yet I still can’t make sense of the Kiwi accent, let alone talk in that accent. Given the policy is only 1 year-old, it is only natural that it hasn't been fruitful.

And of course there are flaws in the policy, one of them being Math and Science teachers not proficient in English themselves. But this is just as true as not all Math and Science teachers are proficient in Bahasa too. I had first hand experience learning Phisics with a teacher who can barely speak in Bahasa; most of the time she taught us in English. Malay...


Tags: education

Posted at: 06:14 AM | 4 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

Dexion - What is behind the numbers?

September 13, 2008

Calculating ratios is indeed what most people (including me) thought what Financial Statement Analysis is all about. But after reading the first chapter of TKWAV, my view has changed whereby I realised they are of no good to me in assessing my firm’s value mainly because the figures are historical – they tell us little about the future. However, to my disbelief, as I am doing this write up, my view has changed again. Financial ratios are of much assistance in fact. They tell me what has happened in the business in the past, what’s happening now, and some hints about where the firm is heading in the future. I feel like I can talk about Dexion with greater confidence.


After calculating the come financial ratios, I thought I should compare them to the industry trend, but unfortunately I can’t find a firm similar...


Tags: dexion ltd

Posted at: 08:44 PM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

Project Malaysia

September 8, 2008

I have quoted Malik Imtiaz Sarwar a few times in my writing. I look up to him as a person who is brave enough to delve into the issues of race and religion. I may not necessarily agree with all his principles, but I believe credit is due to his effort in trying to tackle the 'real issues', unlike many others who are more interested in manipulating them to serve their own interests.

His commitment in finding solutions for a stronger and more united Malaysia is evident in his act of launching a website called "Project Malaysia". With the intention of sharing my thoughts with others, I sent in my writing about my experience attending some interfaith talk here in New Zealand. And it has just been on-line recently today. This is my first article being published. Comments are welcome. Apologies if it is not up to your standard or expectation :D.

Posted at: 07:39 AM | 1 Comment | Add Comment | Permalink

University Education

August 31, 2008

Three months from now I will be graduating from university. I tried to recollect all the things that I have studied for the pass three years and ask myself – what have I learnt? I may be getting a university degree, but am I getting a university education?

Not long ago I had an interesting conversation with a lecturer. He teaches Financial Statements Analysis, and hence he is the ‘guru’ in analysing firms. This course has neither tests nor exams; just assignments and surveys. Every week after class we are to report anonymously what we learnt in his class, after which he will publish them in the course website. He told us that  “Judging by the surveys that the students have done, I finally come to a conclusion that I have overestimated your knowledge in accounting”. He went on saying “How do you explain final-year accounting students not knowing the real meaning of equity?”

I was struck by this question. To be honest, I took more than a dozen of accounting courses but surprisingly I could not apply any of them in my daily life. How pathetic is that? I went for class, I sat by myself, took some notes,...


Tags: accounting, education

Posted at: 06:56 AM | 5 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

You can't teach moral

August 25, 2008

Is the Pengetahuan Moral subject taught in schools ineffective in instilling moral values into the heart of our youth? Most would say yes, Hishammudin said yes. Because it is too narrowly structured, students could memorise the answers and regurgitate them in exam, which is useless. So the government is thinking of reviewing it, maybe adding some 'kerja khusus', reducing some of the nilai(s) and wa-lah. There you go, the 'modified' version of Pengetahuan Moral is ready to rumble. But how different could it be? No matter how you dress the syllibus with, teaching moral is still teaching moral.

Malaysia is not the only country facing this dilemma of how to teach moral values to its citizens. Many other developed countries, like Britain, Australian and New Zealand are in similar situation as well, though the scenario is somewhat different.

The lack of moral values among Malaysians is causing corruptions to happen. Leaders are practicing cronyism and nepotism, civil servants especially the police are taking bribes, business entities causing pollution to the environment, drivers are impolite, teenagers indulge in drugs, alcohol and adultery, and the overall citizens are hopelessly civic-minded creatures with negative habits like littering everywhere especially the river...


Tags: ethic

Posted at: 01:54 AM | 1 Comment | Add Comment | Permalink

3rd World Mentality: Malaysians or the Malaysian government?

August 22, 2008

Often we hear Malaysians who have gone to overseas to further their studies came back with the conclusion that Malaysians are terribly stuck with 3rd world mentality, despite having 1st world facility. It is not the Malaysians really, rather it is the government who is stuck with such cookie-cutter mentality, though there are some 'loyal' citizens who decided to join in too.


Although the Malaysian government is made up of fellow Malaysians, we have to be able to distinguish between the two by acknowledging the fact that not all Malaysians are involved, or allowed to be involved, in policy making.


Malaysian Government has problems dealing with criticism. Whenever our policy is being criticized by the western (most of the time it is U.S.) someone from the government will make statements that sounds like this: “It is funny how the U.S. talks about democracy when they themselves are disrespectful of other country’s right”. Then they start blabbering about issues like Iraq, nuclear weapon, so on and so forth. Shouldn't they at least ponder upon the criticism presented to them and work on it to improve their policy, rather than dismissing it because it comes from an unworthy...


Tags: government, race, religion

Posted at: 04:14 PM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

Dexion Ltd - Simple yet complicated

August 21, 2008

When going about restating Dexion’s financial statements, I found myself smiling throughout the process because Dexion has a relatively straightforward business operation whereby, with reasonable diligence, readers of its financial statements can easily comprehend its business. Dexion has no minority interests, neither does it enter into agreements like interest rate swaps or forward rate agreements. Unlike Ryman Healthcare, Dexion does not even revalue its assets, except for intangible assets which they are required to under the IFRS. Therefore, I spend more time comparing Dexion’s FS with that of other firms.


On the balance sheet, I found only one item to be classified as financial activity i.e. loans and borrowings. But after reading through the notes, I found that Dexion has many other financial activities. For example, Note 5 discloses that Dexion uses forward exchange contracts to hedge any currency risk. This is further explained in Note 28 which discloses that at balance date, Dexion had taken out foreign exchange cover for the initial payment due for the acquisition of Shanghai Xiao Bao Storage Systems Equipment Co Ltd (from Note 34) by purchasing forward RMB12million (AUD equivalent $1.9million) for delivery in March 2008. $1.9million is a material amount,...


Tags: dexion ltd

Posted at: 10:24 PM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

Interfaith Talk: Can't We Handle It?

August 14, 2008

Back in Malaysia I have never asked myself, neither have I been asked by others why Muslims have to wear hijab, why is Muhammad our last prophet, what is the logic behind our 5-time prayers, why doesn’t Islam allow homosexuals, why can't Muslims withdraw from Islam, and many other issues pertaining Islam which non-Muslims would surely want to know. If only they could have an interfaith dialogue with us Muslims.

Too often these questions are taken for granted which results in shallow understanding of Islam among Muslims. And this could be the explanation for the staggering amount of Muslims choosing to leave the religion, or “murtad”.

It is high time for Malaysia to allow interfaith dialogue to take place. The government’s attitude of banning this type of talk, book or even movies like Fitna, are doing more harm than good to Islam. The argument that it could threaten the harmony among Muslims can no longer be sustained. The world needs to understand us as much as we need to understand the world, but they can't do that if we don't allow them to. This policy of banning such talk is backfiring us if you haven't noticed. How else could...


Tags: religion

Posted at: 01:27 AM | 1 Comment | Add Comment | Permalink

Dexion Ltd's Shares - A bargain, or going down the drain?

July 24, 2008

I am doing analysis on Dexion Limited, a leading Australian firm who manufactures and distribute a broad range of storage products in Australia and the Asia Pacific. Their core product range is pallet racking and shelving products designed for efficient space utilisation and logistics solutions, for both the industrial and commercial sectors. While they were listed on the ASX in April 2005, the firm have a 60-year history. Despite this, neither me nor my friends have heard of this firm before (until Martin give it to me), so I dare not comment on the firm’s brand being either well-known or not.


Their mission is to create value for their stakeholders by being the first choice provider of commercial workspaces, integrated systems and industrial storage solutions. Dexion’s dream or vision or management philosophy is “to be better than anyone else at what they do”. Their strategy is to defend and extend its position in established markets, to build and grow businesses in attractive markets and to create new growth platforms through driving innovation. They go by the tagline “Smarter Thinking”. Based on what I have read so far, I feel that this tagline suits their identity perfectly. They provide solutions...


Tags: dexion ltd

Posted at: 10:12 PM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

Harvard Graduate vs 9th Grader

July 14, 2008

Before you continue to criticise Malaysian education system for the 134th time, watch this video and read this website. It is so comforting to know that Harvard education is also flawed somehow. It proves there is no such thing as a perfect education.


We always complain how the Malaysian education system is too exam-oriented that students don’t actually understand what they are learning. Even if they understand they are not able to apply their knowledge in their daily life. I am one of those who criticise the structure of our public examinations especially PMR and SPM where the string of A’s that students achieve, poorly reflect their intelligence.


The video is about an education research about the dilemma facing all educators i.e. students learning through memorizing facts and regurgitating them in exams. Harvard’s science graduates were interviewed, asked to explain the causes of the seasons. Surprisingly 21 out of 23 graduates had the same misconception that they had even before entering Harvard, which a 9th grader would usually have i.e. the seasons happen because the Earth travels around the sun, so it is hotter as the Earth gets closer to the sun and colder as it’s further...

Posted at: 01:38 AM | 1 Comment | Add Comment | Permalink

Petronas Integrity Being Questioned

July 3, 2008

Petronas has been under great public scrutiny after the sudden rise in oil price last month. Petronas Financial Statements would be the first target where most people would rush to. Here is the breakdown of Petronas's profit worth RM600 billion.

There are arguments saying that Petronas does not do justice to the Rakyat as it doesn't lay out the exact figures pertaining how its profit is being spent. But the reality is, this is how business is run. You cannot expose too much information to the public as these information could be taken advantage of by Petronas competitors. Henceforth, only the summary is being revealed to us.

But I do agree that Petronas financial statements should be tabled in the Parliament where it will be subject to scrutiny by our MP's, after all Petronas belongs partly to the government and therefore it belongs partly to us. We deserve the right to know and to be given justification on the result of Petronas' performance. Petronas is too precious to us - it is the backbone of Malaysia. We can't afford to have any misconduct to happen, nor can we allow any act of asset misappropriation or any negligent business decision to...


Tags: ethic

Posted at: 12:20 PM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

Dressing in Islam

June 25, 2008

Sisters In Islam (SIS) are again outraged that Kelantan has issued directives on dressing for women. The latest is the Kota Baru Municipal Council's circular asking Muslim women not to use heavy lipstick nor wear high-heels as they could lead to immoral activities. Read more here.


Wait a second, why so serious SIS? Why are you so outraged over something so harmless such as this? What is so surprising about “guidelines on how Muslims should dress”, after all, they are just guidelines. Are you reading it as an “order”?


Besides, did you not read the Quran my dear Ms Norhayati Kaprawi? What is it about the guide that you haven’t already know? For Heaven sake, the directives on dressing for women are from Allah. Even my 10 year-old niece is familiar with it. It is not something new if you have been reading the Quran you know.


I am aware that one of your objectives is to create public awareness on issues of equality, justice, freedom, dignity and democracy in Islam, but you are totally going towards an opposite direction. Are you trying to say that the guideline will somehow make women less equal than man?...


Tags: religion

Posted at: 11:10 AM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

Accounting for CSR - A Tool to Construct Reality

June 5, 2008

Catlett once claimed that the accounting community has constructed and developed a motivated notion called accounting – it is designed to accomplish certain objectives; not the objective per se.


CSR is provision of information about various facets of an organization social performance, including information about its environment performance, health, support of local community etc. Unlike financial reporting, it is largely unregulated. It is done on a voluntary basis. 


The core issue in CSR is the openness of the CSR definition. Because CSR is largely unregulated, managements can take a variety of interpretations. They can report anything they wish, from receiving minor environmental award to paying billions of dollars of environmental fines. They can even choose to report only favorable information and omit unfavorable information, and claim themselves as CSR.


There is a question of substance over form and reliability in CSR reporting. For example, McDonald’s CSR reports about its efficient water usage at its outlet but did not report that each of its quarter-ponder requires 600 gallons of water. It also reports about its practice of recycling paper but did not report about the bacteria-infested waters caused by its large-scale pork production in Southeast U.S. This...


Tags: accounting, ethic

Posted at: 09:43 PM | 1 Comment | Add Comment | Permalink

Islamic Law: How Far Should We Go?

May 25, 2008

Does Islam need the law to protect itself?

Does Allah expect us to punish those who does not perform his/her 5 times prayer?

Does Allah expect us to punish those who eat in the fasting month of Ramadhan?

Does Allah expect us to punish those who refuse to pay his/her zakat?

Does Allah expect us to punish those who refuse to perform haj?

And finally, does Allah expect us to punish those who leave Islam to embrace other religion?

We human beings, are in no position to answer any of these questions as we cannot speak on behalf of Allah. So the issue now becomes “whether we could?” Is it within our capacity to deem someone as sinful and therefore punish them?

Imagine yourself manufacturing a laptop. Only you would know everything about that laptop. Only you would know what the laptop should do, how it should function, and whether it is functioning the way it should.

The same concept applies to humans beings. Allah is our creator. He creates us, therefore he knows everything about us. He tells us what to do and what not to do, and only He is able to monitor our deeds i.e. whether what...


Tags: religion

Posted at: 02:44 AM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

McDonald's Bogus CSR

May 5, 2008


The Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) at McDonald’s has just started blogging. In his blog, he claimed that the driver that motivates them to adopt CSR is doing the right thing and because it is part of their company ethic and identity. But is McDonald’s really doing the right thing? For decades McDonald's has been criticized for selling unhealthy food, exploitative advertising targeted at children, production of packaging waste, and ecological damage caused by industrial processing of its products. One could argue that the CSR programmes that McDonald’s have undertaken are actually done to distract the public from the ethical questions posed by their core operations. I agree with this because most of the changes that McDonald’s had introduced for the past decade has not been successful in addressing the main concern of the public i.e. the food it serves still harms people, promotes obesity among children, and has detrimental effects on land and water.


On May 1 2002, the Centers for Disease Control issued a report stating that childhood obesity and related diseases had doubled in the past 10 years, specifically citing high-fat fast-food as a cause. If McDonald’s is truly concern about...


Tags: ethic

Posted at: 09:15 PM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

My Chinese and Indian Schoolmates, I'm Sorry

April 22, 2008

I may not know much about the world, but this is what I know.


When I was in Year 3 (9 years old), we had to sit for PTS examination whereby we get the option of skipping Year 4 if we pass the exam. Only 5 students were successful, and all 5 were Chinese.


When I was in Year 6, a total of 13 students got 5A’s for UPSR. Only 3 were Malays, the remaining 10 were Chinese and Indians.


When I was in Form 1, the top class consists of 40 students. Only 3 were Malays, the remaining 37 were Chinese and Indians.


When I was in Form 2, I was going to receive the Best Student Award for the subject Pendidikan Islam. I went for the rehearsal and realized all the other 9 recipients were Chinese, including the recipient for Bahasa Melayu award.


When I was in Form 3, around 30 students got straight 8A’s for PMR. But only 5 or so were Malays whereas the rests are mostly Chinese.


Throughout Form 1 till Form 4, the school’s Head Prefects were Chinese consecutively.


My school’s English debate team, which were represented...


Tags: race

Posted at: 12:39 PM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

Auditor General - Where Art Thou?

December 4, 2007

It is very ironic in Malaysia that despite the government as its daily routine engage in deplorable acts of corruption, no one was bothered with what the Auditor-General (A-G) has to say about this. If the scenario were to take place here in New Zealand where the audit profession is under round-the-clock public scrutiny, the A-G would have long ago been thrown out of the office for its inability to ensure transparency and accountability over the public funds.


I couln't agree more with what Malik Imtiaz Sarwar had presented here, here and here on how the A-G is responsible to provide accountability information to the parliament who would then scrutinise and monitor the government’s performance. He highlighted an important trait of the A-G that most Malaysian citizens (including me) are not familiar with i.e. the fact that A-G is a creation of the parliament therefore it sits on the same level as the executive branch, the legislature branch as well as the judicial branch. This effectively means that the A-G can report anything it wants because unlike other civil servants, it does not have any interest in the government. Hence theoretically, the A-G’s independence is secured. But...

Posted at: 06:58 AM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

The Future Of Islam in Malaysia

August 10, 2007

The debate on whether Malaysia is an Islamic or secular country has been further heated by the Lina Joy case. Realising this Al-Jazeera has conducted an interview with Malik Imtiaz Sarwar and Sulaiman Abdullah to get a grip on what it really means to be an Islamic State.


Mahathir once made a politically-motivated statement that Malaysia is an Islamic State, but in substance we are not and I doubt we will ever be. If Malaysia is in fact an Islamic State, his wife wouldn’t even dare to expose a single thread of her hair, as Islam through the Hudud Law requires women to cover their aurat i.e. from head to toe, exposing only our face and palms.


Being an Islamic State means you apply the Hudud Law, as per what PAS is currently proposing. But the nature of the Hudud Law is unlikely to be accepted by non-muslims in Malaysia. So the claim that we are an Islamic State should be entirely dismissed. This automatically means Malaysia falls into the other category i.e. a secular state. And in a secular state, no one should be coerced into embracing any religion.


I couldn’t agree more with an...

Posted at: 01:11 AM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

Value of Information

April 25, 2007

Malaysia is very lacking in terms of carrying out research and studies. It is no surprise to me that Malaysian mentality has never been at par with its modern technology and facilities like KLCC, KLIA, Internet HotSpot, etc. In case some of you are still not aware, those technologies are imported from developed countries. Malaysia is effectively plagiarizing, except that we pay those countries to allow us to plagiarise. Hence it is legal and we can brag about them and use them to justify that Malaysia is towards becoming a developed nation.


But let’s face it, we Malaysians are no cleverer nor nicer than our fellow Indonesians, Thais, Burmese and other developing nations. We have pickpockets even in KLCC, our public toilets are far from dry and clean, our drivers are extremely impolite, and the list goes on and on. How are we to overcome this? How can we be proud with the KLCC Twin Tower when we have our men committing rape and murder against a Muslim lady who was dressed modestly and according to Islam?


This is where the importance of research and study comes into picture. We need people to ask questions to the public....


Tags: nz, policy

Posted at: 01:57 AM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

When Intellectualism is Not So Intellectual

November 1, 2006

We live in a world of society who reveres intelligent people. This is the reason why we perceive intellectualism as the one sure thing that can lead us to success.

Talking about intellectualism itself is an area of subjectivity. I am in no position to either define or classify what intellectualism is. Everyone is free to label anyone as intelligent; no one is ever going to be bothered to check or verify his/her IQ test scores, exam result, how many books he has read, how many quizzes he has won so on and so forth.

I have no problem with the fact that society cherishes smart people, as they deserve the credit for their hard work, and most importantly it is gift from God. My worries are on how a person’s attitude towards acquiring knowledge can be damaging to the individual itself as well as the society as an aggregate. A person who places extremely high emphasis on ‘gaining knowledge’ will somehow unable him/her from reacting to the world in a more 'fair' manner. It follows, by having intense desire to become smart or knowledgeable, there will be other aspects of life that has nothing to do with intellectualism, to...


Tags: academic, ethic, university

Posted at: 09:00 PM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

Is University Education Overrated?

April 15, 2006

I’m already 18. But I still can’t justify why university education is important. How pathetic is that? Here I am, in Victoria University of Wellington. It feels really good to finally be in uni – a great place to gain knowledge, meet intelligent people, develop and exchange ideas – everybody knows that. But why should we go to university in the first place? Peter November, my FCOM lecturer once posed the question "Why are you at university?" The first thing that crossed my mind was a degree – the target set by most parents and teachers. Contradictorily to my answer, his answer was “to ask questions”. Peter is a rather philosophical guy, therefore his answer was meant to be somewhat philosophical too. Regardless of what he meant by that, I am keen to disagree to it. It did not sound quite right to me. Imagine paying a total of NZ$70,000 for tuition fees. Coming here just to ask questions is simply inadequate.


My father was sent to university by his parents so that they could overcome poverty. So is that why people go to university? To get a degree, earn high salary and live an extravagant life, if...


Tags: university

Posted at: 06:39 PM | 0 Comments | Add Comment | Permalink

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