Sunday, January 18, 2009

Greetings from Washington, DC

This posting is actually coming to you from Washington, DC. I'm here on an official trip, having been selected and sponsored by the United States Department of State for the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) on Transition of Power in the U.S. Federal System.

At Washington Harbour

16 participants comprising politicians, lawmakers, government officials and senior members of the media from all over the world (including India, Pakistan, Philippines, Egypt, Turkey, UK, New Zealand, Nepal, Norway, Papua New Guinea and others) and my friend Steven Sim, special assistant to the Penang State Exco were selected for this program to study the following:

1. To examine the transition of power in a civil society from one administration to another;

2. To enhance understanding of the origins and development of the U.S. federal system of government;

3. To address the separation of powers and the divisions of authority and responsibility at the national, state and local levels of government.

My first stop is at Washington, DC. The President Inauguration 2009 will take place this coming Tuesday, January 20th. Preparation works for the big day have started in the city. 4 million people are expected to participate in the Inauguration Day. I hope to be able to stand amongst the millions to witness this once-in-a-lifetime-for-me event provided I can withstand the cold winter (maximum 3 degrees celcius and can go down to -5 degrees celcius). An official welcome concert will begin in the city today.

I feel privileged to be chosen to participate in this leadership program and also to be able to witness the historic inauguration of America’s first black president. I do hope to meet Barack Obama but we were told there is a very slim chance for this to happen.

Preparation works in the city

I will try to blog as often as I can from here if the schedule permits. I am still suffering from mild jet lag and trying to get adjusted to the cold weather. I want to extend my congratulations to YB Mohd Abdul Wahid Endut and our friends from PAS for winning the by-election in Kuala Terengganu! Syabas Pakatan Rakyat!


Anonymous said...

Really proud of you Hannah, my SJ MP ... way to go !

Greeting from Saudi Arabia.


hmatter said...

Hi Hannah,
Have a good break. I am sure that you will learn as much as you can from the land of the great eagle.

Darick said...

Nice to know that u r 1 of d selected few to Washington !
keep up ur good work ! d nation is waiting much more fr u after this trip !

wongjolene said...

do have a nice break visiting when you've time..

Anonymous said...

Hi Hannah,

Congratulations! I'm so very happy for you. You really make us proud. Have a good rest too besides all the study.

The cold can help you feel invigourated.

Best regards.

Meng Kung Chng

Anonymous said...

How will this program help Malaysia?

Anonymous said...

Hi YB Yeoh

Congratulations on being chosen for this Program.

In the early 1960s, Martin Luther King gave his "I Have a Dream" speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. With the inauguration of Barack Obama as the 44th President of the United States, his dream is being partially fulfilled.

Progressive Malaysians should proclaim our "I Have a Dream" speech too e.g. the Dream that it does not matter what the colour of skin or the religion or ethnicity of a future Prime Minister of Malaysia should be as long as he or she is competent, unites rather than divides us, and serves in office for the good of all Malaysians!

Phua Kai Lit

bayi said...

Way to go, YB! We are proud of you.

pycazu said...

Congratulate! This is a good chance to take some break too!
Hopefully what you going to learn in coming days able to be applied in Bolehland here... it won't be too long to go... I believe, because Malaysian does "have a Dream"!

elizabethwong said...

Give Obama a big hug!
ps. there's a nice Malaysian restaurant in DC if you get homesick....

Anonymous said...

Focus on the seperation of powers portion. If Malaysia can ever seperate religion from state, it has a chance to be great nation. If it can't it would just be another corrupted muslim led nation. No different then any other terrorist support muslim nation in the middle east.

Simon Tan said...

Congrats Hannah, and look forward to your views of the transition. Our turn in Malaysia will come soon enough...

true patriot said...

Wow ! Congratulations to those who selected you. They have selected the right person. Their fund & effort will not be wasted. (Value for Money :) )

With full confidence that you will bring back something beneficial to Malaysia, & play a part to make this world a better one !!

keith khoo said...


Hannah's The WAY!

rainstorm said...

Nice shots !

Anonymous said...

Nice pics, cheap shots... The Programme you attended is typical of any Foreign Ministry (called State Dept in the US) foreign exchange programme in any country. While it was your privilege to have participated in the International Visitor Programme, it is a cheap shot to boast that you were "selected ... and be able to witness" as it is a co-incidence that you were in Washington during Obama's inauguration.

Anonymous said...

Wah anonymous, why so bitter? How on earth did you arrive to the fabulous conclusion that Hannah's presence at the inauguration was a co-incidence. Jealous that our beloved ADUN is selected and not anyone from Bee-End? ha ha ha

Anonymous said...

Greetings to you,YB Yeoh, good and lucky of you to get and watch obama inauguration as US President.

Gee... even President Obama took notice of our ADUN from Subang.

But wait a minute..u said you were handpicked to attend the inauguration,are u sure?

You were one of the participants for the International Visitor Leadership Programme which took place also in Washington during that time.. It was coincidental that you were there in Washington during the inauguration.

Anonymous said...

Yah, it is only a co-incidence that the schedule of your International Visitor's Program took u to Washington that auspicious morning. The same programme would probably take u to Washington on 20 January be it last year or next year. If you are a respectable ADUN, you should clarify wiht the MalaysiaKini report that you were selected after being nominated, and not handpicked.

Anonymous said...

It is erroneous of Malaysiakini to report that you were picked to attend the inauguration, when actually you participated in the International Visitor Program which co-incidently included a trip to Washington.

USJ resident said...

To all the anonymous commentators who are so bitter with Hannah being selected, if you have a problem with how Malaysiakini reported the news, then take it up with Malaysiakini lah! Don't waste your time here on Hannah's blog!

And furthermore, who are you ppl to question the agenda of the program? Get this right - it's a Transition of Power program! The program is clearly built around the inauguration on President Obama lah! Why so dungu one all of you?

Now we all know how bitter and silly these MCA/BN goons can be!