Top 10 Malaysians in 2011 news
These Malaysians have made headlines in international news, stirred interest in social media and provided gripping (sometimes amusing) stories for all to read. By Surekha Ragavan
1) OWC (Obedient Wives Club)
This largely controversial group of women (wives, to be exact) has preached unorthodox views on sex, marriage and well, more sex. The story first broke out in June when club vice-president Dr Rohaya Mohamad made a bold statement about how wives should ‘serve their husbands better than a first-class prostitute’. If wives better fulfill their husbands’ sexual desires and needs, men should have less reason to stray and cheat. It didn’t stop there. In November, an explicit sex guide was published but banned immediately by the Home Ministry. This video made by Australian news network SBS is an eye-opening delve into the minds of these women.
2) Asyraf Haziq
The Malaysian student was mugged during the London riots in August and boom, made headlines. The news reached the attention of British PM David Cameron who said the attack had left him ‘disgusted’. The extent of empathy showered towards Asyraf was incredible and a Tumblr titled ‘Let’s Do Something Nice for Asyraf’ popped up where donations streamed in. The PSP stolen during the events of the attack was replaced by the Malaysian government.
3) Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak
It would be a naked list if our PM didn’t make it in. There were three major incidents involving Najib this year which sparked ruckus on international and social media platforms. The first being this. The second being a picture of the Queen, clad in a yellow dress greeting Najib during an official visit to the UK. The third being the repeal of the ISA (Internal Security Act), mostly received with jubilation among Malaysians. A ban on students engaging in politics was also lifted. Opposition parties viewed the move as a tactic to win public support, but however you view it, the news went global. Incidentally, his wife made the list too (see number 9).
The local singer-songwriter is doing all the right things, and collected a few prestigious awards (Best Female Vocal at Anugerah Industri Muzik) as a result. She has every right to have her head in the clouds, but instead continues to make comforting homey music and with accident along the way, inspired millions of fans. Currently working on a record in LA, the glamorous musician is no stranger to gaining online popularity; Youtube hits, Twitter followers and over a million (!) fans on her official Facebook fan page. More than Shania Twain, mind you.
5) Azizulhasni Awang
The local cyclist became a hero at the Track World Cup in Manchester in February for achieving what very few men can. During the keirin final, he crashed and was knocked off his bike resulting in a 20cm splinter piercing his left calf. Despite the (what we can only imagine as excruciating) pain, he soldiered on to finish the race and claimed a bronze medal at it. These pictures show Azizulhasni groaning in pain after the race before being wheeled off for surgery. His feat became an instant news story worldwide.
6) Chef Wan and Chef Riz
Chef Wan’s son, Mohd Nadzri Redzuawan (or Chef Riz) faced controversy as he was caught out falsifying credentials on his resume which eventually went up on his biography on the official Masterchef Malaysia website, the show on which he is a judge. As reported, Chef Riz claimed to have worked at two restaurants in the US later turning out to be bogus. Not only did Chef Riz face the music from ‘fans’ and Malaysians, he also had a tough time with his father who responded with this on his Facebook fan page: ‘As an adult, he should be a role model to these kids. Shame on him. Now nak buat apa, nasi sudah menjadi bubur (there's no use crying over spilled milk)!’
7) Anwar Ibrahim
When you search Anwar Ibrahim on the BBC news site, no less than twenty entries show up, nine of them recorded in 2011. The Opposition figurehead has been the centre of controversy this year, as his sodomy trial continues while the politician claims the accusations are part of a political campaign to smear his name. Whether you’re for or against, his story garnered a strong international following. On a side note, his daughter, Nurul Izzah Anwar was the subject of a New York Times article in late 2010.
8) Fahmi Fadzil
The story goes like this: Fahmi Fadzil (local social activist) claimed on Twitter that his pregnant friend had been badly treated by her employers at a local publishing company. As an agreement to avoid a defamation lawsuit against Fahmi, news broke out that he was to send out a hundred apology Tweets over the course of three days to make up for what he did. We (and the rest of the social media entity) observed his Tweets which were drilled out every 30 minutes each day. There's no telling who won in this episode but Fahmi did Twitterville proud. The issue sparked discussion on social media boundaries and the repercussions of crossing (virtual) lines.
10) Aunty Bersih
Aunty Bersih (aka Anne Ooi) brought along a yellow flower and rode the bus alone to KL to support the Besih rally for clean and fair elections in July. An illegal rally it may have been but the spirit of Anne Ooi remained undeterred even when allegedly shot with chemical water by local policemen. Pictures of her circulated the internet, making her an overnight sensation and we witnessed the cropping up a Facebook Fan page which has collected over 23, 000 fans since. Lim Kit Siang reported on his website that the lady of liberty was ‘frightened by all the madness on Facebook’ and went into hiding soon after.