Category Archives: video blog

A photo print of an ultra-poor Hazarat family in Bamiyan, Afghanistan


Mohammad Musa and his family outside his cave-house.
Mohammad Musa and his family at their home in Bamiyan, Afghanistan. (Zan Azlee, 2011)

In war-torn countries, it is almost too common to see the ultra-poor unable to bring themselves ahead in life. And this was what I saw in Afghanistan.

In the mountains of Bamiyan where the historical cavities of the great Buddhas of Bamiyan were, there are also a group of Hazarats who live in caves. They literally live in holes in the mountains.

The picture above is of Mohammad Musa and his family standing outside their home. If he’s lucky, he can earn about RM1 a day working odd jobs in the market.

Musa gave me a tour of his living space (in the video below):

 

Own a limited print of the picture above, framed (21cm x 30cm) and signed by yours truly for RM90. You can play a role in supporting independent journalism by clicking below.

If you are in Malaysia, you can also purchase by transferring RM110.00 (includes RM20 for postage and handling) to Maybank account 1141 2365 9174 via Maybank2U or ATM. Please make sure to e-mail (purchase.fatbidin@gmail.com):
1. Name of item purchased
2. Transaction date/time and reference number
3. Your full name
4. Shipping address

Or if you prefer more bang for your buck, there is also THE ADVENTURES OF A KL-ITE IN AFGHANISTAN SUPER FAN PACK!! You will get the photo, an official t-shirt and the book ‘Adventures of a KL-ite in Afghanistan’ for only RM120!

Thank you for the support.

Jom keluar makan! Tapi GST bagaimana?


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Jom keluar makan! Tapi GST bagaimana?
By Zan Azlee

Saya sering keluar makan bersama keluarga dan juga kawan-kawan saya. Masa bersama mereka, sambil menikmati juadah yang enak, merupakan masa yang berkualiti.

Oleh kerana industri pemakanan akan dikenakan GST, tentu sekali ia merupakan sesuatu yang akan mempengaruhi kehidupan saya, keluarga dan kawan-kawan saya.

Sebelum 1 April apabila GST dikenakan, saya sering membayar bil restoran begitu sahaja tanpa meneliti dengan betul (selain dari melihat caj makanan yang dikenakan).

Caj perkhidmatan 10 peratus dan cukai jualan 6 peratus yang dikenakan selama ini (jumlah 16 peratus) sudah pun sebati dengan bil yang kita perlu bayar apabila makan di luar.

Lebih kurang dua minggu sebelum 1 April, saya dan keluarga saya telah ke sebuah restoran kegemaran kami yang menghidang daging masakan Brazil.

Ketika membayar selepas perut sudah kenyang, pemilik restoran itu memberi tahu saya bahawa harga mereka tidak akan naik apabila GST dikenakan nanti.

“Jangan risau. Kami cuma akan gantikan cukai jualan sebelum ini dengan GST baru. Kadarnya sama, iaitu 6 peratus. Maknanya tiada beza harga,” senyum beliau.

Oh, begitu rupanya. Tidaklah begitu rumit prosesnya. Saya pun mula rasa lega kerana hobi kegemaran saya, iaitu keluar makan, tidak akan bertambah mahal selepas implementasi GST.

Selepas dua minggu berlalu, dan GST sudah pun diimplementasi, saya dan isteri saya mempelawa ibu saya ke restoran untuk berjuadah dim sum pada hari minggu.

Selepas makan, kami pun memanggil pelayan untuk membawa bil. Apa lagi. GST sudah bermula, kami pun mengkaji bil yang sampai itu dengan begitu teliti sekali.

GST sebanyak 6 peratus jelas tertera pada bahagian bawah bil. Tetapi, isteri saya menyoal kenapa caj perkhidmatan 10 peratus masih dikenakan kerana ia tidak seharusnya ada lagi selepas GST.

Pelayan di restoran itu tidak dapat menjawab soalan kami. Dia pun memanggil pengurus untuk cuba menerangkan bil tersebut pada kami agar kami lebih memahami.

Tetapi pihak restoran sendiri tidak begitu memahami implementasi GST dan cara mereka menerangkan caj perkhidmatan itu cuma sekadar “itu memang caranya encik.”.

Tanpa ingin merumitkan keadaan, kami membayar. Apabila pulang, saya teringat bahawa sebenarnya caj perkhidmatan itu tetap ada bagi restoran yang selama ini mengenakannya, tidak kira GST.

GST hanya menggantikan cukai jualan dan bukan caj perkhidmatan yang dikenakan restoran besar di mana ada persetujuan di antara pihak restoran dan pekerja mereka.

Pada hari lain pula, ibu dan bapa saya pula mempelawa kami makan malam untuk menyambut ulangtahun perkahwinan mereka yang ke 38.

Restoran itu sering kami kunjungi dan masakan ketam mereka sangat sedap. Kami teringat bahawa sebelum ini, bil yang kami dapat selalunya hanya ditulis dengan tangan di atas sekeping kertas.

Tetapi, kali ini, kami tersenyum apabila pelayan membawa bil itu kerana ia elok dicetak setiap item yang kami telah pesan. Dan di bawah sekali, tercatat GST!

Kami juga sedar bahawa mereka tidak mengenakan caj perkhidmatan sebanyak 10 peratus. Hanya 6 peratus GST yang mereka kenakan pada jumlah bil.

Sebelum 1 April, restoran itu tidak pernah mengenakan caj perkhidmatan dan cukai jualan. Selepas 1 April, dengan adanya GST, harga di restoran ketam itu kini lebih mahal 6 peratus!

Kesimpulannya, bagi restoran yang sebelum ini pernah mengenakan caj perkhidmatan 10 peratus dan cukai jualan 6 peratus, mereka hanya perlu menggantikan cukai jualan dengan GST 6 peratus.

Bagi restoran yang sebelum ini tidak pernah mengenakan caj perkhidmatan dan cukai jualan, mereka tetap perlu mengenakan GST (jika keuntungan perniagaan mereka RM500,000 keatas setahun).

Ikutilah video ini untuk mempelajari dengan lebih lanjutnya.

 

[Artikel dan video ini pertama kali diterbitkan di KopitiamEkonomi.Com]

A limited photo print of the Malaysian military helping local Afghan villagers


Major Dr. Mohd Arshil Moideen demonstrating how the water filter system works.
Major Dr. Mohd Arshil Moideen demonstrating how the water filter system works in Bamiyan, Afghanistan (Photo by Zan Azlee, 2011)

The Malaysian military team who were in Afghanistan (MALCON ISAF 2) were on a humanitarian mission rather than a combat one. They helped to build water filtering systems, consult and advise the Afghan Ministry of Health on combating diseases and organising traveling clinics. Of course, there were a small group of Special Forces who were there as security detail.

That picture above is of Major Dr. Mohd Arshil Moideen (now Left. Colonel) demonstrating to the locals in Bamiyan, Afghanistan, how a water filtering system works to eliminate the risk of getting sick from drinking well water.

Here is also a video story shot on that exact day it happened.

If you would like to own the picture for your wall, today is your lucky day! Get a limited print of the picture all nicely framed (21cm x 30cm) and signed by yours truly for RM90. You can play a role in supporting independent journalism by clicking below.

If you are in Malaysia, you can also purchase by transferring RM110.00 (includes RM20 for postage and handling) to Maybank account 1141 2365 9174 via Maybank2U or ATM. Please make sure to e-mail (purchase.fatbidin@gmail.com):
1. Name of item purchased
2. Transaction date/time and reference number
3. Your full name
4. Shipping address

Or if you prefer more bang for your buck, there is also THE ADVENTURES OF A KL-ITE IN AFGHANISTAN SUPER FAN PACK!! You will get the photo, an official t-shirt and the book ‘Adventures of a KL-ite in Afghanistan’ for only RM120!

Thank you for the support.

Watch or listen to my #TanyaGomen session with minister, Datuk Seri Shabery Cheek


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If you remember, last month in April, I hosted a chat session with Minister of Communication and Multimedia, Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek, for PEMANDU and the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP) called #TanyaGomen.

Well, you can now view the whole session on YouTube:

Or you can listen to a more summarised podcast version on Soundcloud:

 

A photo print of the Malaysian military assisting injured victims of a Taliban attack


MALCON ISAF 2 assessing the situation of the Afghan National Police (ANP) who were ambushed by the Taliban.
MALCON ISAF 2 assessing the situation of the Afghan National Police (ANP) who were ambushed by the Taliban (Bamiyan, 2011).

One of the most dramatic moments during my time with the Malaysian Armed Forces in Afghanistan was when the Taliban attacked an ANP (Afghan National Police) checkpoint. They were rained with gunfire and rocket-propelled grenades, and they came to the Malaysians desperate for help.

The picture above is of the Malaysians (MALCON ISAF 2) assessing the situation and trying to gather intelligence in order to decide their next step.

And for some context, below is a video of the exact incident that took place in the mountains of Bamiyan, Afghanistan.

 

You can own a limited print of the picture all nicely framed (21cm x 30cm) and signed by yours truly for RM90. You can play a role in supporting independent journalism by clicking below.

If you are in Malaysia, you can also purchase by transferring RM110.00 (includes RM20 for postage and handling) to Maybank account 1141 2365 9174 via Maybank2U or ATM. Please make sure to e-mail (purchase.fatbidin@gmail.com):
1. Name of item purchased
2. Transaction date/time and reference number
3. Your full name
4. Shipping address

Or if you prefer more bang for your buck, there is also THE ADVENTURES OF A KL-ITE IN AFGHANISTAN SUPER FAN PACK!! You will get the photo, an official t-shirt and the book ‘Adventures of a KL-ite in Afghanistan’ for only RM120!

Thank you for the support.