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Saturday, March 31, 2018

Guan Eng slammed for using Bagan as ‘excuse’ to avoid debate

MCA deputy chief Wee Ka Siong said Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng was merely finding excuses not to debate the undersea tunnel issue by asking him to contest in the DAP leader’s Bagan constituency.
Speaking to reporters after the MCA forum on the undersea tunnel in Bagan last night, Wee said he had urged Lim to debate him "many times" but the CM had simply refused to do so.
"First, he spoke about party hierarchy, second, when I proved that he was wrong as he had challenged other Umno ministers with lower rank to a debate. He had even challenged then inspector-general of police (Khalid Abu Bakar); what protocol is he (Lim) talking about?" Wee asked.
"A chief minister must get someone with the same status to debate with him, but according to his theory, a federal minister (like me) has no right to debate with him.
"I think when I posed questions to him about the undersea tunnel (project), he is duty bound to answer them as he is the number one leader in Penang," Wee stressed. "That is the responsibility of the chief minister."
Wee was asked to respond to Lim's remark earlier yesterday that he would only debate the MCA minister if he contested the Bagan seat - which Lim is MP - as the tunnel goes through from the island (on Gurney Drive) to Bagan Ajam, which is located under the constituency.
Lim had declined Wee's earlier invitation to debate and said he preferred to do it with MCA chief Liow Tiong Lai as Wee is merely "the number two" leader.
Wee, together with BN strategic communications deputy director Eric See-To, MCA state chief Tan Teik Cheng and the party's Bagan chief Dr Tan Chuan Hong, spoke on various issues at the forum titled "Political Talks on Penang's Truth".
The three-hour event, held at the Tan Si Eng Chuan Tong Association on Jalan Kampung Paya last night, saw the audience fed with various information on the tunnel, most of it came from news reports on the subject.
Wee, who is Johor's Air Itam MP, spoke at length about the controversial RM6.3 billion undersea tunnel, reminding the 500-strong crowd that the project is subject of a massive probe by the MACC, which has queried more than 100 individuals and arrested five high-ranking officials.
‘A coward’
Meanwhile, Wee said Lim should not dismiss his questions or his challenge to a debate by asking him to contest in Bagan in the upcoming national polls.
Wee said Lim has the right to contest elsewhere, but to ask someone - including a federal minister who wants to question him - to contest in his constituency before he can agree to a debate is not right.
"Remember former minister of communication and multimedia Ahmad Shabery Cheek had challenged PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim to a debate in 2008," recalled Wee.
"Anwar did not talk about protocol so since when this has become the rule of the game?" Wee asked.
“My proposed debate is not about the policies of our two parties and what policies each party can offer better. This is purely government matters; but when I question, he does not answer," Wee lamented.
See To (photo) described the Penang CM as "a coward" for not wanting to take up the challenge of the debate on the tunnel.
He said just because Lim has the support of the people in Bagan, it does not mean he can hide his alleged wrongdoings behind them.
"Wee wants to raise all these questions in a forum so you can answer them," See-To told Lim.
"In case one day the chief minister is called up by the MACC, who can you blame when you cannot answer the questions?" He asked.
"So I hope by that time, people will understand that we are sincere to find out what happened to this project, which has allegedly caused Penangites some RM20 billion losses." -Mkini


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