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Soi Lek: Rank should be not an issue in debate

 | September 13, 2012

I, too, was a nobody when Lim Guan Eng debated me twice, says the MCA president.

KUALA LUMPUR: Selangor Menteri Besar Khalid Ibrahim should emulate Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng when the latter debated a “lower-ranked” leader from the MCA.

MCA president Dr Chua Soi Lek said a person’s rank should not be made an issue when it comes to a debate as Lim has faced off with him twice before.

“When I debated Lim, I was not on the same level with him. I was a nobody, and he was a chief minister,” he said.

Soi Lek was responding to DAP national publicity secretary Tony Pua who last night said that MCA young professional bureau chief Chua Tee Yong was unqualified to debate the menteri besar.

Pua and a slew of Pakatan leaders, who were representing Khalid, walked out of a debate on the Talam debt restructuring exercise after they were not allowed to take to the stage.

“It’s like [Barack] Obama coming to debate with Mitt Romney. Who is Romney? He is a contender. But can Obama say he will not debate with him because Romney is a nobody?” asked Soi Lek.

Where’s the White Paper report?

Soi Lek said Khalid was the best person to debate with on the matter as he had all the details but was avoiding a debate to suppress the truth from the public.

He said Khalid also failed to keep to his promise to table a White Paper report on the Talam debt-recovery exercise and to provide an explanation at the State Legislative Assembly.

“Why must you hide? It’s already two and a half years since he announced in the Selangor legislative assembly to release the paper. Until now we are still waiting,” he said.

Meanwhile, Soi Lek said it is improper for the menteri besar to appoint four spokespersons including Pua to represent him to speak on the Talam issue.

He said the spokespersons were not part of the Selangor government and not privy to confidential information on state matters.

“As a menteri besar, Khalid should bear full responsibility on any decision made. Only he is fit to come to the debate,” said Soi Lek, who is Tee Yong’s father.

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