PETALING JAYA: Penang DAP’s former deputy chairman, P Ramasamy, who left the party yesterday, said he had not needed DAP to help him in his political career, after being told by a former party colleague to be grateful for the opportunities he was offered while with the party.
Ramasamy, a former university professor, said there was no need for him to have joined the party “to rise to fame”.
He claimed that the post of deputy chief minister II had been created specifically for him given his standing in society. “It is not that DAP wanted me for nothing,” he said in response to a scathing statement by former Batu Kawan MP Kasthuri Patto.
He said DAP knew that his standing in the Indian community would get them the much-needed support, especially as the Hindraf movement saw Indians gravitating towards DAP.
“DAP wanted me as much as I wanted to join the party. She is blind to these facts, obviously.”
Earlier today, Kasthuri said Ramasamy should “count his blessings” for the opportunities he was given by the party in his political career.
Kasthuri attributed Ramasamy’s success in the 2008 general election, when he made his electoral debut, to the momentum propelled by Hindraf’s “Makkal Sakti” movement and the “people’s tsunami” which resulted in changes in five state governments.
She said Ramasamy, who joined the party in 2005, had been given the chance to contest both the Perai state seat and the Batu Kawan parliamentary seat in the election.
Kasthuri also claimed that Ramasamy “enjoyed the power, privilege and the perks that came with the job and, most importantly, it was because of DAP”.
However, Ramasamy said that nothing could be further from the truth. “What personal advancement? Have I engaged in the illegal accumulation of wealth?” he said.
He accused Kasthuri of making an uncalled-for attack against him, and of having shown “all the traits of a sycophant par excellence”.
Ramasamy was elected MP for Batu Kawan in 2008, defeating former Penang chief minister and Gerakan president Koh Tsu Koon by a majority of nearly 9,500 votes.
He did not stand for re-election, being replaced by Kasthuri, who served two terms. She chose not to contest the 2022 general election, the seat being won by Penang DAP chairman Chow Kon Yeow, the current caretaker chief minister.
Ramasamy served three terms as state assemblyman for Perai. He was elected in 2008 with a majority of 4,200 votes and was re-elected with higher majorities in 2013 and 2018.
He was not selected to contest the seat in the current state elections and was replaced by S Sundarajoo, former chief operating officer of property developer Eco World.
Ramasamy has declared support for independent candidate David Marshel, his protégé, who resigned from DAP to contest the seat.