Wednesday, April 23, 2008

A-political Malay Mail

The, run by mostly people who were once on the payroll of the New Straits Times Press, has this exclusive story.

'Malay Mail' to be political sheet

KUALA LUMPUR, April 23 — The Malay Mail, the Kuala Lumpur daily that has seen better days in its 112-year history, will turn into a political afternoon newspaper focused on Pakatan Rakyat-ruled states when relaunched May 5.

The Simpletech-Gabungan Kesturi consortium that bought The Malay Mail from NSTP Berhad has appointed industry veteran Tony Francis as editor with the tabloid's old news editor Frankie D'Cruz as consultant.

The Malaysian Insider has also learnt that former The Star political correspondent K. Baradan is

helming The Malay Mail's political desk and is looking to hire reporters for states under the Pakatan governments.

The tabloid, which will continue to cover sports and entertainment news, has offered to retain its staff who were earlier employed by NSTP. The media giant sold the newspaper after revamps failed to stem falling circulation.

But the new owners are optimistic the newspaper's new direction and return to afternoon editions to be sold in the Pakatan Rakyat states will bring it back to black. They also expect higher revenues from the Euro 2008 football championships this June.

Simpletech's owner Datuk Ibrahim Mohamed Nor (picture left, taken from sirloinskipper fotopages) is a politically-connected businessman with a stake in Blue Inc that owns string of lifestyle magazines. Gabungan Kesturi is a substantial shareholder of public-listed Media Prima Berhad, which in turn is a major shareholder in NSTP Berhad.

NSTP sold The Malay Mail for less than the sticker price of RM15 million, while keeping its valuable archives of reports and photos gathered since the paper's first hit the streets on December 14, 1896.

The new owners have opted for experience when they chose editor Tony Francis who used to be New Straits Times chief news editor after decades in the sports desk. His last job was editor-in-chief of sports weekly The Malaysian Today.

Frankie D'Cruz was news editor when The Malay Mail regularly hit 100,000 in circulation in the late 1980s and early 1990s. He left in 1993 to found English-language free sheet The Leader owned by the Utusan Group.

The newspaper's relaunch will be at the Nikko Hotel, sources said.


Anonymous said...

so big ambitions, so few journos.

Anonymous said...

This is a sad chapter of media in Malaysia...
Malay Mail widely known for its exclusive crime news..Sports scoop and other interesting coloured stuffz covered by the paper...NOW wants to turn politic...sigh
Just wondering the jovial and happy go lucky atmosphere at MM would now turn into a serious fast moving political station...
Crime stories from Yaakob and sport hits from Bro Rizal(open letter would be always missed), Haresh and Ghaz the duo which brought great coverage from Korat and the news on motorsport...Weekend Mail columns on La Liga coverage by editor, Mus was always nice to be read...
Everyone is going miss all the wonderful days I suppose...the superb coverage on World Cup and Euro over the years which includes the pullouts had been excellent...the colourful Samba girls among those still fresh in my mind...
Bring back those great days MM....dun turn politic and ruin its image...

rizal hashim said...

Anon 6.02pm,

If you read the report properly, the paper will continue to carry reports on sports and entertainment.

Sports will always be the paper's forte, first because of its honest reporting, second the afternoon window will enable the paper to carry the latest reports especially on European football.

The challenge lies in providing the readers what they cannot find in the Internet.

Mus, Ghaz and Haresh will still be there, don't worry. They are the mainstays, together with Tony Yee, Graig Nunis and Zam from Penang.

The colourful Samba girls was Graig's idea!

Anonymous said...

As usual the mm staff are last to know anything.
Questions were asked during meetings but bosses always say the same thing - don't worry.
That Tony Francis guy, from what I hear, he is probably the most hated boss in the 100++ year history of the malay mail.
Good thing you left bro.
Tony Francis may have been good when he was young but he is a dinosaur now. See how he destroyed malaysia today.
He don't know how to treat the staff or maybe he wants all of them to leave so he can bring in his machais.
No promotion or pay rise for loyal staff but big bucks for his pals.
Rumours in balai berita tony francis takes orders from an old pal in the nst, a guy named chandran.
He is said to be influential and has links to dato kali and brendan who hope to see malay mail fail.
It is no wonder malay mail going political in the office so much politics.

Anonymous said...

ah rizal
is it true you were forced out of malay mail because bosses takut u?
will u reveal all? what happened to your posts on your life in the malay mail? were you forced to stop?

Anonymous said...

to anonymous 10.39pm


Anonymous said...

ofis malay mail sekarang ini macam hq mic.

Anonymous said...

rumour has it malay mail deputy editor YY fed up and is running to the star.
to be honest, yushaimi has been a failure.
tony francis and gang can turn paper round but only because malay mail going back to being an afternoon daily.
if nst had done so, it would have made lots of money but it is no secret datuk kali hated rocky's guts and wanted to and still wants to see malay mail fail.

Anonymous said...

it is not chandran it is chandra.
he is the puppet master. tony francis is just the dummy ... in more ways than one.
frankie, bill and now baradan will save malay mail but tony will get the credit. now that's a smart operator.
chandra is rumoured to be coming in as no 2 once he finishes his stint in nst.
that is why current no2 yushaimy is in cold storage.

Anonymous said...

tanyalah spy mu di Malay Mail about a couple more reporters tendering in their resignation.

aziz said...

my correction/vies -- nothing wrong with going political but risks are greater. one of first mistakes newspapers make is to pre-determine type of news to dominate your space. good news is good news, no matter what it's about & where it's from.

mm's highest daily average was 70k and climbing (in 1986) but went down drastically from october till next 1 year after changes at the engine room -- the news desk. down to 55k in fact. even when start was out of circulation at best mm could do about 64k. later climbed up slightly from about 1990 and stayed at about 60k for a couple of years and then the long steep drop began. it was down to about 30/35k and until a few months ago was struggling at 20k.

Anonymous said...


Ayu, sister of Shamsul Akmal, has tendered reisgnation and abandon Malay Mail joining rahman, yaakob, grace, nirmala, mariam who left a few days ago. exodus bro, exodus

Anonymous said...

hey malaysianinsider,

when in the history of Malay Mail that circulation went up to 100,000. if you want to support FDC return to the malay mail, dont spin the figures like the old GE of NST did the last time.

Anonymous said...

good luck to tony francis with the new paper. its good ibrahim nor took over. at least he will get a lesson he will never forget

Anonymous said...

Is it true your old comrade, SS Dhaliwat is returning to the Malay Mail?
With Johnson "Game All" Fernandez already back in Sports Desk, the dynamic duo can help the paper.
And both are good friends with Chandrasekar, who is said to be the power behind Tony Francis.

Anonymous said...

All I can say is that it is so sad to see young loyal and very hard-working reporters there losing faith in the MM leadership and this is happening by the hour. They lose faith and resign. In comes new faces and rookies who do not know what is in store for them.

The so-called leaders there are only interested in the ke-ching that comes with their positions. Nobody cares about backing up staff, about team spirit especially the old MM spirit. Nobody cares about the is all for one and one for himself. And I am not talking about just TF either. As far as I am concerned, TF is there to do a job. I am talking about someone there who so wanted to become Editor. If anything he should know who he is. Eat chili lah...whoever that man is.

But to those who have put in the effort and time, sweat and tears, maybe one day we will meet again.


Anonymous said...

Satwant wanted to come back but shot down by Tony Francis. Maybe when housemate Chandra joins the board of directors he will get his chance.
Till then, keep up the good work Rizal.

Anonymous said...

Ayu left only to get a counter offer. Moral of the story...start'll get better pay!!

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

The new Malay Mail will be launched on May 5 as an afternoon daily, at Nikko Hotel. Expect to see a different masthead, and a tagline that i think does not do your paper justice.

Anonymous said...

why don't we all resign en-bloc so that they counter offer us like what they did to Ayu? It's not fair la Ayu dapat salary raise. Badrol pun did the same scam, after that he was removed from running the news desk, which was what he wanted.

Anon 12:35, I beg to differ. YY will not go to The Star. Where is his famous "keep the faith" motto then? Where to put his face? Where are his balls?

Our former news editor, muzli, (how i miss him) likes to say this "there is no bad soldiers, only bad generals" and now I understand his drunken wisdom. He deserved to be counter-offered. We did not suffer like this when he was around.

Ibrahim, if u read this pls do something quick, otherwise you'll lose your money, no thanks to your "con"sultants. Bring back Muzli to run the desk. I heard he's not happy in Nst and looking for job elsewhere.

Anonymous said...

Whats the problem if MM takes a new course. Its already dead and putting life to it may help some people ...others who dont subscribe to the new direction and go elsewhere like former top notch sports hitter Rizal Hashim...and others. Whats the problem...its a huge task for any management to bring back MM from dead. In the meantime, its a free makret situation..if you dont like the new product or read others.

Anonymous said...

Many say Rizal Hashim is a fair journalist. By allowing some of the biased comments about Tony Francis to be posted on his blog, I beg to differ.
Tony has been in the business long enough not to be influenced by anybody.
Chandra Segar Pillai is his great friend. He does give some pearls of wisdom once in a while just like all great friends do.
He has no interest in going back to the Malay Mail as he has it made in the NST. Why go to a second rate newspaper when he is already at a top notch newspaper.
The Malay Mai staff are bitter. They blame the NST for their failure and the paper's fall.
Be rest assured, Malay Mail's failure is its own fault. Don't blame others.
After being in the doldrums for so long, Mailsport was at its peak between 2001 and 2004.
Three glorious years where it put other newspapers to shame. It had breaking news stories on a daily basis. But it treated its staff badly and fine reporters left. Now Mailsports is a joke.
Rizal talks about Mus, Ghaz and Haresh. They are nobodies compared with the 2001 until 2004 team.
Tony Yee couldn't hack it and was transfered to Buzz. Graig Nunis is a second rate reporter who spends more time polishing bosses apples. He is plotting to overthrow Mus as the editor but Tony knows he is useless. Zam? Never heard of him.
What kind of team is this? That is why Tony is smart. He knows the present Mailsport team is akin to the "indian crabs in a pail" situation. There is no unity.
Tony knows all this. That is why he has gotten Johnson Fernandez back in the fold. A. Devaraj is also part of the team.
They are now currently helping the news team but it won't be long before they become the editor and assistant editor of Mailsports.
Too many mistakes are occuring. They even got Arsenal player Phil Senderos as a Manchester United player. Unprofessional. It is a crying shame.
Please Rizal be fair. You have left the Malay Mail. Don't hold a grudge.
Give Tony a chance. Please don't allow any more comments about him being under Chandra's command.
Under Tony, there is finally light at the end of a dark tunnel for Malay Mail.

Thank you for listening.

An impartial observer

Anonymous said...


Why wait. Just leave. Look at their faces and ask youself whether you trust them? Offers don't come daily. If they don't want to accept your resign letter it is not your fault. Someone there just interested in protecting his interest not yours. All the while it is just about him and that the reason his friends left MM

Anonymous said...

Malay Mail staff are upset as proxy boss Chandra pulling the strings and getting nst graphic designers to help do mock up of the new paper as Tony Francis rejected malay mail staff's work without looking at it.
Then Blue Inc staff did one version but it was deemed not good. NST artists reworked and now with relaunch days away, Tony has passed it on to malay mailers to finish it.
Why no faith in his own people? Why the desire to outsource work?
The staff think he is getting a cut from the people he is going to outsource to, of course that may not be true, but this is how rumours begin.
Tony having clandestine meetings with Chandra because he knows staff are watching them. The feeling is they are trying to get staff to leave so they can bring in their own people.
Chandra has already got his number one spy Guna a job as the chief sub editor. He will report for work on May 1.

My days are numbered

Anonymous said...

In the beginning was the Plan.
And then came the Assumptions.
And the Assumptions were without form.
And the Plan was without substance
And darkness was upon the face of the workers.
And they spoke among themselves, saying
"' It is a crock of shit, and it stinketh.""
And the Workers went unto their Supervisors and said
""It is a pail of dung, and none may abide the odor thereof"
And the supervisors went unto their Managers, saying
""It is a container of excrement and it is very strong
such that none may abide by it.""
And the Managers went unto their Directors, saying
"" It is a vessel of fertilizer, and none may abide by its strength.""
And the Directors spoke amongst themselves, saying to one another,
"It promotes that which aids plant growth, and it is very strong.""
And the Directors went unto the Vice Presidents, saying unto them,
""It promotes growth, and it is very powerful.""
And the Vice Presidents went unto the President, saying unto him,
""This new plan will actively promote the growth and
vigor of the company, with powerful effects."
And the President looked upon the Plan, and saw that it was good.
(this is how shit happens )

Fowler is God

nstman said...

I know Tony Francis. Have worked with for many years. He demands loyalty and subservience. You play him out, you are dead. He has a long memory. He hangs out only with his fervent ball carriers. Mr Rizal, I suppose I dont have to elaborate.

Aziz said...

i would just leave the "new" mm team alone. it's ibrahim's money, ibrahim's choices although media prima still has some interest, if i'm not mistaken thru the newco that bought over the paper.

u'll never know what may or may not work. as for the people brought back to senior positions itupun their choices. many were my colleagues either at nst or mm. if things don't work out it's their $ that is involved and if it works, dia ibrahim juga yang benefit.

biasala about how people are rated by themselves and others. a pain in the ass to some may be a god-sent angel to others and vice-versa. biarlah. best to move on and do something we enjoy doing.....

Anonymous said...


Tony certainly has a long memory. I once stood up to him when he was at nst.
Guess what, that was the end of my career.
But now I am enjoying my life and anticipating his fall.
It's called karma.

An old man with nothing to do

Anonymous said...

The Gambler is the man behind the scene at the Malay Mail. How could we forget him. When he lost at the gambling table, he recouped his loses by submitting incredible over time claims. And who signed it? Ten sen for the right guess

Anonymous said...

Ayu Musa Kamal leaving? not a surprised because Tony f had no respect for MM staff. The day MM was sold Tony F ran down everybody at the Malay Mail. Everybody useless and now he persuading them to stay. He played politics with the poor staff. Tony F wanted to get rid of everybody. only him the smart one. now begging staff to stay. he and yushaimi two times five. yushaimi willing to ran down on staff in front of tony frankie and bill just to drama that he is the smartest so that he got to be the editor. god safe mm staff

Anonymous said...

i think anonymous zorro went off topic a bit. comments mostly on the new team assembled by tony. those not in the team should mean nothing unless people not involved are sabotaging and can be pinned down by evidence.

don't agree with any1 who says tony most hated guy, etc. on the contrary tony is soft, uses popular approach, not known to immediately reprimand any1 who misbehaves. don't know if he's the right guy because he was never editor of a paper except malaysian today. but that was sports -- his main background -- and free. his time as CNE nst by accident. but now he has another diplomat in shivadas as chairman. maybe this is what ibrahim wants. maybe he doesn't want strong-minded guys.

as for the overwhelmingly indian/grago line-up maybe that too has to do with ibrahim's personal preference. who knows he may have had bad experience with malays and chinese and now wants to experiment with indians/others. then they can always call it indian mail, other name for mm in 60s and early 70s.

don't know if he knew about shit that appeared on the internet about 1 or 2 people he has recruited. things like the bar at mm office two months ago, about problems linked to frankie when he was with nst and mm. but all risks are ibrahim's. whether he is aware now or finds out later that is for him to bear.

Anonymous said...

To Impartial Observer (11.01am),

You are a two-tongued snake. I bet you enjoy licking Chandra and Tony's balls at the same time.

Thank you for listening.

Anonymous said...

Has it occurred to you whingers that the role of the chief is different from that of the journos? Tony has no choice but to follow the diktas of the Owners at least as fars as the look and layout of the paper is concerned. After all, they are putting up the money.

Judge the new MM and Tony atfer the papers has been launched and given time to find its new identity. Then we will know if it is a newspaper or just a news sheet (pun intended).

But I agree that hanging out with NST (nasty by name and nasty by nature)management can either make youa dummy or embittered. But give Tony and the paper a chance. As journos, you also need to look at the bigger picture. The MM will never match the blogs that a re truly independent. It could just be an attemp to 'suck' the advertising away from the PKR newspaper in the 5 states by UMNO cronies.

People also,very often, 'grow' to fill the job. Not all, I agree, but the Judge in the Watergate case (who was appointed by the Republicans) gives me hope. Closer at home there are people like Justice Harun & the Sultan of Perak who made their mark and added to the esteem the High Court was held in then.

Anonymous said...

macha macha mail i want to be in the macha mail... sung to the tune of macho macho man ....
for the benefit of the younger readers ... google or wikipedia it

personally,I have no problems with the mic taking over malay mail ... as long as they are good, race should not matter.

Hidup Bangsa Malaysia

carlos said...


lots of interesting comments here and lot of anons too.

always so many drama in the newsroom.

Indian Crab In a Pail said...

An impartial observer says;

'He knows the present Mailsport team is akin to the "indian crabs in a pail" situation.'

SS Dhaliwal in his blog (Being Away) says;
'At times it makes me wonder how people in the sports fraternity are akin to the "indian crabs in a pail" situation.'

You decide while catch some indian crabs to fill my empty pail.

Thank you for reading.

Anonymous said...

to anonymous 7.38am

Are you one of those 'Impartial Observer' named?
Siapa makan cili,dia rasa pedas.
Do us a favor and grow up. This forum is for mature adults. You're a small kid.
Impartial Observer has valid points. The current Mailsports team is not good enough.
The best thing Tony Francis can do is replace the whole lot of them.
Get Johnson back. Devaraj may be out of touch but is better than all of the current team put together.
PS. I know Graig. He is too pro-Liverpool which may explain his screw ups. Everyone knows how dumb Reds are. Anyway, he is too busy making money outside 24 hours a day seven days a week to concentrate on his job.
Look how he treated Sarjit and Tunku Majid during the Champions Trophy tournament last year in December.
What a disgrace.

mamat johor said...

saudara rizal,

posting anda ini telah mengundang lebih banyak komen berbanding isu-isu SUKAN yang lain.

sudah jelas mereka yang menulis, baik atau buruk, merupakan pekerja, bekas pekerja mahupun kroni-kroni bos baru.

seloka dan sandiwara ini tidak menghairankan.

Ia tidak dapat dinafikan teman-teman seperjuangan mu di Berita Harian tidak disukai ramai termasuk rakan-rakan sekerja mereka.

Ada penulis NST yang tidak tahu menahu erti penulisan, sehinggakan bahan tulisannya menjadi tajuk berbicaraan (atau lawak) dikalangan para penulis sukan.

The Star juga apa kurangnya. Bosnya pun tidak disukai perkerja terutamanya selepas memilih perkerja kesayangannya ke Olimpik.

Inilah suasana kerja. Tiada apa yang perlu dihairankan.

Apa yang berlaku di Malay Mail berlaku di mana-mana jua.

Yang berbalah kian berbalah, yang duduk tersenyum sudah tentunya saudara Rizal.

Jangan kerana mulut (atau tulisan), badan binasa.

Anonymous said...

To anon 4:43pm,

No, I am not named in Impartial Observer's posting. I am one of mm news desk reporters. It made sick me reading his comments. He calls himself an 'impartial observer' but his comments are biased. he does not know our sufferings under Tony F and his 'friends' and he ran down my colleagues. what is his motive? he asked Rizal to be fair but he was not being fair. A two-tongued snake? Are you too?

Thank you for reading.

Anonymous said...

The topics is A political Malay Mail but most of the comment here is about Tony Francis.
Leaf that for another topic.
Just say whats you think about this grands old paper go to be political.
Don't calls peoples names.
Rizal work there before and he has not refuted anything written abouts his ex colleagues in the mailsports team.
He has not written abouts Tony F. Maybe he know more than the peoples who posted here.
Is Malay Mail better as political paper. Decide

Anonymous said...

abg rizal, kenapa tak defend bro bro u?
ada khabar angin, rizal yang nak jadi editor sukan.

Anonymous said...


A drunken little bird (and they are many) has revealed the following items

1. Tony F and gang are going all out to find out who are the "traitors" leaking info to this blog. TF will speak to head of departments and feed each of them different misleading news about the new malay mail.

2. They hope to catch out the traitors by the stories which appear under comments.

3. Planning to block access to this blog ... nst did same to rocky's bru

4. Divide and conquer ... pit colleagues against colleagues ... just the staff not brought in by TF. Expect a flood of comments criticising the current staff still in Malay Mail.

5. TF's real boss not Dato Ibrahim, but Chandra is said to be ready to make his move ...expect surprises ... then again, this could be a ploy and I could be ratted out ...

6. Malay Mail staff, please be careful what you write on blogs. You could be giving yourself away.

Anonymous said...

aha aha aha tony f sudah marah. kita kena read and post comments outside the office aha aha aha...

they still refuse to acknowledge that mm ada internal problem dan Tony f made a bad start.

arrogance and stupid, that's what he is. tak tau nak handle crisis, macam mana nak handle a paper

Anonymous said...

There are some grammatical mistakes in your post, but otherwise I found it somewhat useful.
I don't think it's up to anyone to judge what people's posts should be about. Why not allow everyone to just say what they want (in designated threads, ofcourse)?
I'm looking for an expert in this field for some off-site work. Anyone interested?
I'm a little slow, please don't remove my comments or I will get upset.

He who laughs last thinks slowest!