Hun Sen, the leader in Cambodia, has held the post of Prime Minister of Cambodia for 23 years and breaks the record of Tun Dr Mahathir's 22 years.
A recent article in Cambodia Information Centre on 11th June 2008 showed interview transcripts of PM Hun Sen with The Mekong Times Editor in Chief, Neth Pheaktra.
Read the words from the man himself, PM Hun Sen of Cambodia, here.
Elsewhere in Thailand, the panel of lawyers for Thaksin Shinawatra denied involvement in the recent report of a B 2million "snack box". It was reported that a snack box was left for a Supreme Court judge with B 2million hidden in it.
Assuming RM 10 buys 100 baht. B 2million will carry the value of RM 200,000. Hmm. Sounds like a big sum to me. Thaksin has not said a word but his lawyers have come out to deny involvement in that.
Rationally, is there a need to do so? According to Bangkok Post, Thaksin's lawyer said that the Supreme Court has so far given a fair trial to the Shinawatra family. Hmm.
Thaksin made the mistake of his life when he sold Shin Corp to Temasek. Firstly, Shin Corp controls telecommunications and selling a national security asset to a foreign entity is really not advisable. However, as far as I remembered, Thaksin transferred all his shares to his kids and wife when he became PM to avoid conflict of interest.
Is Thaksin directly responsible for this? Hmm. Indirectly, perhaps - via his family.
I find it a little complicated. He was a businessman and a billionaire when he was voted into the office. The people knew clearly of his background. So, why are the handful of elites hammering Thaksin over his riches? If his family should not hold shares too, then get a buyer for his shares.
Temasek offered to buy and it was a pure business dealing. However, I personally do not agree selling a national security asset to a foreign entity. Thailand's investment arm should have taken over the shares, although that will create problems and accusations that Thaksin is enriching hinself.
A billionaire politician is never easy at all, huh? Conflicts of interest happen everywhere and accusations, wild rumours and speculations fly and spark every day, whether or not they are true.
Secondly, Thaksin's family sold Shin Corp to Temasek tax free. He was not taxed for his sale. And according to reports, he did that under the laws of Thailand. Should he be blamed for that or should the Parliament of Thailand be blamed for overlooking the loophole?
Thaksin is no lawyer. He is just a businessman. And his tax free sale must have been managed under the supervision of a team of lawyers and financiers. If his lawyers managed to find a loophole, would he not want to avoid paying taxes?
Hey. Ask yourself. Are you happy paying taxes? I am sure many businessmen in Malaysia will always try to evade taxes. Not only businessmen, perhaps Government servants and the private sectors too. They will always try to slot this and that in to reduce taxes. Some might declare lower income too.
I recall talking to Jimmy a few days back about tax evasion. The term "tax evasion" should be changed to "tax minimization". It sounds better. Haha.
So should all of us be jailed too? No. We only blame the lack of enforcement and loopholes in our taxation regulation.
From my viewpoint, Thailand had a great time under the CEO style management of Thaksin Shinawatra. They deserve to have another Thaksin. The farmers, the youths and the poor in Thailand needs Thaksin's policies and Government.
Otherwise, I wonder what will happen to Thailand. Recently, the farmers are already lining up outside Government linked banks to ask for soft loans. The poor Thais up North are already feeling the pinch of rising costs of living. Thaksonomics is needed in Thailand.
I hope PM Samak in Thailand will not forget that the seat he has today is because of the people. Thai Rak Thai's spirit remains in all Thais. The People Power Party will need to hold true to their promises, policies, motto and objectives. Hand in hand, live with the people.
Mmm. Asia is interesting.