Gerakan's Teh Leong Meng accuses Penang state exco Chow Kon Yeow of 'tying his opponent's hands in a boxing match'.
GEORGE TOWN: State exco Chow Kon Yeow has come under fire from a local Gerakan leader for selectively using the 1994-95 minutes of island council (MPPP) meetings to hit out at state Barisan Nasional chairman Teng Chang Yeow.
Penang Gerakan local government bureau chief Teh Leong Meng accused the state DAP chairman of being “unprofessional and lacking political ethics”.
He pointed out that the state government had only declassified MPPP minutes between 2006 and 2012.
He criticised Chow, who was in charge of state local government and traffic management executive portfolios, for using non-declassified minutes to reveal that Teng, then a municipal councillor, had attended MPPP meetings that approved two projects above 250ft in 1994 and 1995.
He rebuked Chow for now claiming to be prepared to declassify all MPPP minutes from 1985 to 2012 after hitting his opponent unethically, when the DAP leader should have declassified the minutes from the beginning.
“Chow’s act is tantamount to tying his opponent’s hands in a boxing match,” he said.
Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng’s administration had been criticised for approving high rise projects and hillside developments.
The state government defended itself by claiming that the previous BN administration had also approved 37 high-density and hillside projects above 75m or 250ft.
Teng later told reporters that he could not remember MPPP approving any such projects.
But he welcomed the state government’s move to declassify meeting minutes of the state planning committee and MPPP planning and building standing committee to substantiate its claim.
However, Chow had only declassified MPPP minutes after 2006 for two weeks for public perusal.
But he later accused Teng, the Gerakan secretary-general, of having selective memory with regard to the approval of projects during his tenure as a municipal councillor in 1994 and 1995.
Declassify all documents
Continuing his attack, Teh said MPPP’s planning and building standing committee approved 15 to 20 projects every two weeks, some 40 projects per month and 480 projects per year.
“Teng could not possibly recall such details after 18 years,” he said.
He said Chow’s approach of making amendments and declassifying documents at his whim and fancy illustrated that the MPPP management was in a mess.
Teh called on Chow to declassify all documents without conditions attached, unlike now, for public access to reflect the CAT spirit of competency, accountability and transparency that the state government claims to subscribe to.
By revealing history, he said Chow, the Penang DAP chairman, was not addressing or resolving current problems but covering up the MPPP mess.
“Penangites are more concened about their current problems than listening to the past,” he said.