Guan Eng apologises for no Q and A session

by Susan Loone
Jul 5, 2013

Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng did the honourable and a rare thing for him – apologise for the suspension of the question and answer session at the current legislative assembly sitting.

Lim said the occurrence was a “mistake” and could have been avoided.

He added that the state has decided to appoint executive councillor Jagdeep Singh Deo to oversee matters in the assembly, to ensure there would be no repeat of such a situation.

“I was shocked and could not accept the excuse of lack of time to suspend the session,” said Lim while wrapping up the debate of thanks to the Governor for his speech on Tuesday.

“The assembly secretary and state secretary have been made to understand and advised that when a new speaker had been appointed a verbal question and answer session cannot proceed.

“This advice was accepted fully by the state government,” he explained.

Lim admitted that as an executive body, they did not look into the rationale of the matter thoroughly and assumed it was the business of the state assembly.

“This is a mistake which should not have happened and I apologise on behalf of the state government,” he said.

Lim said Jagdeep will ensure that democracy will proceed effectively in the state assembly.

“The Dato Keramat assemblyperson will review every recommendation and advice related to the assembly and will consult the state opposition leader Jahara Hamid (right) after obtaining guidance from the speaker,” he added,

Lim absolved speaker Law Choo Kiang from the ordeal, saying he was only appointed on June 28, Friday, the same time when the YBs were sworn in, which was one working day from the opening of the proceedings on July 2, Tuesday.

In an immediate response, Jahara said Lim’s apology and decision to appoint Jagdeep as state assembly overseer was welcomed.

She added that it was a technical matter which had eventually brought grave repercussions.

Jahara also drew the assembly’s attention to the delay in sending replies to written questions by elected representatives in past proceedings, adding that this should be avoided.

“There are also sensitive questions which are not debated or raised, which cannot be accepted, please do not continue to do this,” she added.

Lim and his administration, including Law, have been widely criticised.

According to the House regulations, the YBs should be notified 21 days before the commencement of the state assembly, and during this period it is their responsibility to forward written and oral questions to the speaker.

However, no representatives have forwarded any questions to the House.

  1. #1 by sheriff singh on Friday, 5 July 2013 - 1:42 pm

    Come on GE you are no amateur as you have been a SA and MP for some terms now. Your excuse on this matter is very flimsy and unconvincing and cannot be condoned. Act like a responsible CM. Even though you apologised, you still have to behave honourably and not like your usual fighting-cock style. One day you will fall and there will be no weepers.

  2. #2 by sheriff singh on Friday, 5 July 2013 - 1:52 pm

    Penang should lead the way to show the rest of the country what can be achieved with a strong, committed, fair and capable government. So stop all antics as it is not necessary. When will GE grow up and mellow down?

    As a small state, the SA can meet more frequently to decide on things and get them moving. Let us start each session with Questions for the CM to answer – intelligently and responsibly, not fighting-cock mumbo-jumbo.

  3. #3 by Winston on Friday, 5 July 2013 - 8:36 pm

    Very minuscule matter.
    And put right immediately by LGE.
    Unlike the monstrous corruption, scams and scandals accumulated over decades and is still ongoing but that nobody bothers about.

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