As we usher in the New Year, let's just reflect a bit on beloved country, Malaysia.
1. Datuk Dr Chua Soi Lek's resignation after admitting to be the one in the VCD. VCD aside, many were saying that it's rare for a politician to admit his/ her faults, and this is commendable. And in a surprise 'comeback' he later went on to become VP in MCA in October.
2. 8 March General Elections
This 'political tsunami' must be the biggest election fever ever in Malaysia - with intense campaigning. However, many were stunned with the results - where the ruling party Barisan Nasional (BN) didn't managed a 2/3rd majority vote and 5 states are now under the Pakatan Rakyat alliance.
3. Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim
From leading the opposition coalition to make massive inroads during the 8th General elections, to his rare appearance in the much aniticipated oil debate on TV, and his bigger majority win to be MP after his wife Datuk Seri Datin Wan Azizah stepped down to allow him to contest, he really made headlines in Malaysia.
On the other hand, there is the Saiful Bukhari allegations, the Bala incident and the 'haven't materialised' Sept 9 takeover.
4. Raja Petra & Behind Bars
The blogger behind the popular Malaysia Today site and the many articles on Altantuya's murder case was sent behind bars twice. And his site blocked in Malaysia. He has since been released.
A Sin Chew reporter (Tan Hoon Cheng) and MP Teresa Kok (MP of Seputeh) were also sent behind bars, and later released. Apparently, the reporter was sent in order to protect her.
5. Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad & his blog
From being an instant famous blogger in his blog, causing a big buzz in the blogosphere and off, he has his fair share of opinions on the current government.
His blog is his source of voicing his opinions and is many times quoted by the Singapore press.
What's also interesting is that there was a front page photo of him & Pak Lah shaking hands and all smiles when they bumped into each other during one of the festivals.
6. Petrol price
The increase of petrol price. The arguments are - with continuing subsidy, this will affect the country's oil reserve in the very short future... while on the other hand, some argued that the oil rates are high for an oil producing country. Oil prices has since been revised a couple of times.
In between, some proposals - banning Singapore cars or cars from Thailand to pump at nearby petrol stations were suggested and nearly implemented.
7. Pak Lah's Retirement & UMNO Elections
Pak Lah first set his retirement in 2010, but later brought it to an earlier date in 2009.
There was also much guessing on the UMNO elections dates, which was brought to 2009.
8. Datuk Shah Rukh Khan
The datukship honoured to Bollywood actor caused quite a stir in the nation. The arguments - there were more deserving Malaysians or even other international acts who've yet to be awarded. On the other hand, a well known celebrity can bring much attention to the state.
9. Olyimpics: Malaysia Silver Medal
Some positive news - Malaysians came together to support shuttler Lee Chong Wei who reached the finals and brought home a silver medal in the Beijing Olympics. This is really the 'silver lininng' in Malaysia's 2008 history.
10. UNESCO Award
If going by other countries benchmark, this is something to be proud of - where Penang & Melaka (Malacca) are listed as one of the World Heritage areas by UNESCO.
There, the top 10 things that make us read news updates and the endless coffee-shop talk. I wonder what's in for 2009.
To Malaysia, Malaysians, and those who love the country - here's a Happy New Year! :)
This list is compiled by the author in his eyes only and is merely stating the facts.