The move comes as no surprise as Chia, also a national vice-president, had been widely tipped to replace state party chairman Datuk Dr Teng Hock Nan who was nearly ousted in a no-confidence vote just over two weeks ago.
Dr Teng scraped through by 29 votes in the extraordinary general meeting (EGM) called by party dissidents to pass a vote of no-confidence against him on Oct 10.
The announcement was made during a press conference at the state Gerakan headquarters on Wednesday, which Dr Teng denied was a "witch hunt" but part of the state party transformation agenda.
"We have to move on (from the EGM) and transform the party as the general election is looming," he said.
Dr Teng said Chia would remain a state liaison committee member as "he is a central liaison committee officer appointed by the central leadership."
Another state party vice-chairmen Teng Chang Yeow, however, survived the revamp despite having admitted that his relationship with Dr Teng had "soured" for months.
There are now four state vice-chairmen instead of three.
The other three new appointees are former state secretary Ong Thean Lye, Gerakan Bayan Baru division head Wong Mun Hoe and Nibong Tebal Gerakan division chief Dr Lim Boon Han. State party assistant secretary Goh Kheng Sneah was appointed secretary. - Star