Monday, February 9, 2009

Hee gets her Camry - The Malaysian Insider

By Lee Wei Lian

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 9 - For the past few days, will-she-won’t-she speculation has been swirling around Jelapang assemblywoman Hee Yit Fong. No, not over whether she will or won’t jump, that’s been established.

The wondering is over as Umno sources today confirm that she is among seven state representatives named to the Perak Executive Council as a reward from Barisan Nasional for delivering the Perak government.

Hee, possibly the most hated woman in Malaysia right now, has been the subject of ridicule and abuse in and around her Ipoh hometown as well as in cyberspace, far more than the other three state representatives who switched allegiance from Pakatan Rakyat to Barisan Nasional.
She was the deputy state speaker in the Pakatan Rakyat government and had been in DAP for some 20 years.

The clerk-turned-politician was said to have been upset with the state party leadership and because she did not get a new official car when the Pakatan Rakyat government bought Toyota Camrys to replace an ageing fleet of Proton Perdanas.

Two of the new exco members will be Chinese, the sources say, with the other being Chenderiang state assemblyman Dr Mah Hang Soon, who is also MCA Youth deputy chief.

Three more will be decided later, possibly after the first seven are sworn in tomorrow by Sultan Azlan Shah. The swearing in ceremony is expected to take place at 10am tomorrow at the Istana Iskandariah in Perak’s royal town of Kuala Kangsar.

Another woman who has been appointed to the exco is Sungai Rapat’s Hamidah Osman, who was rumoured to be upset over losing the menteri besar post to Datuk Zambry Abdul Kadir.

Umno sources have denied she was upset, saying she is supportive of the 47-year-old BN menteri besar.

The tricky task of determining of the executive line-up is one of the first tests that Zambry has to pass, apart from handling a hostile Perak electorate upset over the manner in which the state government changed hands.

“To head off dissatisfaction, he (Zambry) explained that there are only 10 exco positions but 31 candidates,” a source told The Malaysian Insider.

“He emphasised to them that the major thrust has to be to win the hearts of the people, not Camrys and houses. He also told them to speak their minds and not just be yes-men, which they found refreshing.”

Several names were nominated for each portfolio, based on their skills and abilities.

Discussions were held with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi and his deputy Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, who is widely credited forwith masterminding the Perak takeover, until the early hours of this morning.

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