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  • ☕️ Deputy PM Zahid Hamidi's corruption trial resumes today

☕️ Deputy PM Zahid Hamidi's corruption trial resumes today

The end of the road for PJD Link. Scam Alert: Personal Banc Bhd, probably the most insane scam promising returns of 20-30% per month. Man U x Adidas renewed a 10-year, GBP900 mil sponsorship.


The cost of sponsoring Manchester United — GBP900 mil (RM5.21 bil). The football club has extended its partnership with Adidas for a 10-year period until June 2035. The earlier 10-year deal, which started in the 2015/16 season, was worth GBP750 mil (RM4.34 bil). There’s a catch - if Man U fails to qualify for the Champions League for two consecutive seasons, its annual payment will be reduced by 30%.

Taylor Swift's Eras Tour isn’t just record-breaking but has also become earth-shaking - literally. A seismologist said Swift’s concerts on 22 and 23 July in the US city of Seattle had generated seismic activity equivalent to a 2.3 magnitude earthquake. In general, an earthquake starts inflicting damage when its magnitude reaches about 4 or 5.

RM8,479 — the average household income in Malaysia, up by 2.4% in 2022 compared to RM7,901 in 2019, according to the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DoSM). The median figure, though, is just RM6,338 in 2022, up 2.5% compared to RM5,873 in 2019. These figures are measured with the assumption of an average household of 3.8 people with an average of 1.8 income earners. Check out the thread below for further analysis of DoSM’s stats.


Deputy PM Zahid’s corruption trial resumes - a free man, he might beDeputy PM Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s corruption trial is to resume today, from 1 to 3 Aug, following an adjournment on 10 April after Zahid’s lawyer told the court that Zahid had sent representations to the Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) about new evidence in the case, which was being investigated by MACC and would only consider the representations after the commission has completed its investigation. 

Should the AGC accept Zahid’s representations, the charges against him will be withdrawn, and he will be acquitted of all 47 charges over the alleged misappropriation of funds from Yayasan Akalbudi. Zahid, back in Sep 2022, was acquitted of all 40 charges in the Foreign Visa System (VLN) case

Speaking about VLN — MACC chief commissioner Azam Baki revealed that the hawala system was used in this corruption case to move large sums of money. The hawala system is an informal network used to transfer money around the world without actually moving any through a system of contra — learn more here.

The end of the road for PJD LinkSelangor caretaker Menteri Besar Aminudin Shari announced that the Selangor state government has rejected the controversial 25.4 km Petaling Jaya Dispersal Link (PJD Link). Aminudin said the impact assessment reports (Environmental, Traffic and Social) submitted by the developer were unsatisfactory and did not meet certain conditions set by the state government, especially on the social front. An online survey conducted between February to May this year found that 88.6% of respondents strongly disagreed with the project, with 93.6% of them stating they and their families will be affected by it. 

The concession holder, PJD Link (M) Sdn Bhd, has earlier secured RM922 mil in funding to develop the project. The company is also eyeing a listing via a reverse takeover of Practice Note 17 (PN17) company Scomi Energy Services Bhd. Back to the drawing board.Read: What is a reverse takeover, its advantages and disadvantages.

New investment scam alert: Personal Banc BhdThe police said it has detected a new investment scam after having received 13 police reports, which has resulted in RM8.45 mil losses involving the Personal Banc Bhd scheme that is offering 20-30% returns monthly to investors — the probably the highest investment scam returns we have heard so far. The scheme is being promoted via social media. The investigations revealed that the lowest investment made was RM50k and the highest was RM3.25 mil, though it isn’t clear if these were losses suffered from amongst the 13 reports made. When something is too good to be true, more often than not, it is. Exercise your judgement.

PAS angers Sultan Perak with out-of-context videoThe Perak palace has denounced a video clip that was heavily edited to suggest that Sultan Nazrin Shah was endorsing PAS. A palace spokesperson said the video, which included an excerpt from a 90-minute 2013 speech by the regent of Perak, was edited and taken out of context. In the speech, Sultan Nazrin expressed positive words not just on PAS but also UMNO on “ummah unity”, though the mentioning of both parties was a small excerpt of the 90-minute speech. A police report has been lodged.


  1. OCBC’s subsidiary and insurance arm, Great Eastern Holdings, is said to be in talks to acquire MetLife Inc’s Malaysian venture, AmMetLife Insurance Bhd, which could value the company between USD250 to 300 mil (RM1.14 to RM1.37 bil). AmMetLife is jointly owned by MetLife and AMMB Holdings Bhd (aka AmBank). Great Eastern has more than SGD100 bil (RM339 bil) in assets and over 14.5 mil policyholders.

  2. Gamuda Bhd was the second largest loser on Bursa Malaysia yesterday, falling as much as 7.6% due to negative news linked to its Sydney Metro West project in Australia. The government refused to rule out cancelling or delaying the AUD25 bil (RM76.6 bil) project. Gamuda, through its joint venture with Laing O’ Rourke, bagged an AUD2.16 bil (RM6.62 bil) 9 km tunnelling works project. The stock pared its losses at the close, down 4.4%, giving it a market cap of RM11.4 bil.


Saudi Arabia to host peace talks aimed at resolving the conflict in UkraineSaudi Arabia will be hosting peace talks that will take place on 5 and 6 Aug in Jeddah, for the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, with some 30 countries attending. The Jeddah summit will discuss the Ukrainian Peace Formula, which contains 10 fundamental points, which include the withdrawal of Russian troops, the release of all prisoners, security guarantees for Ukraine and a tribunal for those responsible for the aggression.

Arab nations have been mainly neutral in the Russia-Ukraine conflict due to their military and economic ties to Moscow. Saudi Arabia has maintained close ties with Russia as part of the OPEC+ group.

It’s difficult to see any material result that can be achieved from this summit as Russia, the other important half of the conflict, has not been invited to attend, according to the Associated Press.

Of burning holy books and musical instruments

  • Denmark is contemplating the implementation of restrictions on protests that involve the burning of holy texts, citing security concerns following backlash over such incidents in Denmark and Sweden that saw the Quran desecrated. The Danish government, however, stressed that such a move should fit within the freedom of expression protected by the constitution. The government also acknowledged that it is feeling the heat from the protest as many parts of the world view Denmark as a facilitator of insult and denigration of other countries’ cultures, religions and traditions.

  • Meanwhile, in Afghanistan, freedom of expression is being assaulted by the Taliban government. The Taliban burned a large pile of musical instruments, claiming that music “causes moral corruption” and playing music would “cause the youth to go astray”. The incident has raised concerns about the restriction of cultural freedom and expression in Afghanistan under Taliban rule, impacting Afghan artists and musicians. A bit of this vibe is felt in our home country.

Why presenteeism persists despite significant changes in the workplacePresenteeism, the phenomenon of employees coming to work even when unwell or unproductive, remains a prevalent issue despite modern workplace changes like remote work and flexible schedules. One reason for this persistence is the cultural emphasis on physical presence regardless of productivity. Fear of job insecurity and performance evaluation also make employees feel compelled to be present. Managers unintentionally promote presenteeism by rewarding physical presence over productivity. Additionally, employees fear missing opportunities or being perceived as less committed if they work remotely or take time off.


  1. A new entrant into the crowded streaming space - the National Aeronautics and Space Administration or more popularly known as NASA. The new streaming service, called NASA+, is set to launch in the summer, offering a diverse range of content related to missions, research, and space exploration. Viewers can access live streams of rocket launches, spacewalks, and significant events, along with educational content, documentaries, and behind-the-scenes footage. Most importantly, it’s going to be ad-free and no-cost. Check out the beta website here.

  2. The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) had asked Coinbase to remove trading of all cryptocurrencies except Bitcoin before it sued the cryptocurrency exchange in June, the Financial Times reported, citing Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong. The SEC deemed all these assets besides Bitcoin to be securities (Bitcoin is considered a commodity). There are more than 200 tokens traded on Coinbase. Coinbase did not relent, as it could set a bad precedent for the industry. Armstrong said it was “ made an easy choice” to go to court to settle.

  3. Twitter’s rebranding to X is not without its controversies. The article here explores the symbolic and psychological power of ‘X’ in English, which is associated with excitement, innovation and mystery, making it versatile and emotionally appealing.


  1. Well played, WWF Germany. The wildlife charity’s German arm capitalised on Twitter’s logo change to highlight the threat of extinction facing the world’s animals.

  2. Twitter’s logo change came about due to the below person’s love for X, not just Canada.