By Liang Teck Meng
I want to state that Penang registered the absolute lowest salary growth and 4th lowest household income growth among all 16 states and territories.
Yesterday, I had issued a statement in reply to the attack by DAP’s Steven Sim Chee Keong (MP for Bukit Mertajam) on Gerakan over our recent revelations of the true picture of Penang’s underperformance in relation to the rest of the states since 2008.
Sim had used the Department of Statistics (DOS) Wages and Salaries Survey to show that Penang’s median salary is higher than Malaysia’s average to claim that Penang had done better than Malaysia.
I had then corrected him to say that under the previous BN state government, Penang had always been more developed than the majority of the states due to our efforts — not DAP.
I had also pointed out that the Median Household income reports from the same DOS were a more complete and holistic measure of income levels as they take into account other sources of income rather than just salary.
I had also shown that Penang ranks 4th lowest in terms of median household income growth from 2009 to 2014 while Selangor is 3rd lowest.
Not only has Penang fallen further behind Kuala Lumpur and Labuan for median household income but Penang was also overtaken by Johor and Malacca since 2009.
Under DAP, Penang had fallen from 5th highest household income in 2009 to 7th highest in 2014.
In my statement yesterday, in reply to Sim, I had incorrectly stated that the wages and salaries report was only available since 2014. I was sent a more detailed report that showed that such reports were available from 2010.
Based on this same Wages and Salaries report, which was proudly cited by Sim in his own statement, Penang was at rock bottom among all 16 states and salaries growth since 2010. Selangor was second lowest.
Penang registered a median salary growth of only 17.2%. Penang was 4th highest in 2010, but dropped to 7th position – overtaken by Johor, Negeri Sembilan and Labuan.
It was politically dishonest of Sim to use the DOS report to only cite 2015 figures to claim Penang is still high in ranking without stating that Penang had performed horribly in median salary growth since figures were first made available in 2010.
But I would like to thank Sim for highlighting yet another failure of the administration of the Penang DAP.
Over the past week, it has been proven that since DAP took over in 2008, Penang’s GDP growth had underperformed the Malaysia average, Penang had the 3rd worst GDP per capita growth, 4th worst median household income growth and the worst salary growth.
I repeat that DAP must stop engaging in political dishonesty and propaganda to cover the hard facts or go into self-denial mode over what the true economic situation in Penang is.
The people on the ground in Penang are already feeling something is wrong.
* Liang Teck Meng is Gerakan secretary-general and Simpang Renggam MP
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