GEORGE TOWN: Penang PKR has defended outspoken Penanti assemblyman Dr Norlela Ariffin’s criticism that the state executive councillor lineup, unveiled on Wednesday, was imbalanced and benefited only one party.
Penang PKR chairman Datuk Mansor Othman said Norlela’s concern was right, and he agreed with her 100 per cent.
Stressing that the current lineup is not proportionate, Mansor said the power within the component parties in Pakatan Harapan should be shared equally.
“I fully support what Norlela raised. We also want more members in the lineup as we also contributed to PH’s victory in the state.
“In fact, I did request for another state executive councillor’s post for PKR, but was turned down,” he told the NSTP when contacted.
Mansor expressed hope that the PH presidential council will re-look the matter seriously.
“I also hope the newly-formed state government will take serious heed to the concern raised,” he added.
Penang Chief Minister and state DAP chairman Chow Kon Yeow, when contacted, declined to comment on the matter.
State DAP vice-chairman Zairil Khir Johari refuted claims that the party was being greedy and one-sided in the appointment of the state executive councillors.
He said the decision was made by Chow, using the same formula, as the last 10 years.
“There is no issue here as we are using the same formula as in the past decade.
“We also need to look at this as a whole as the state government too has other posts like the speaker and deputy speaker, who are usually appointed from among PKR representatives,” he said.
On Thursday, Norlela said that compared to Selangor, Johor and Negri Sembilan, Penang’s lineup seemed to be imbalanced and benefited only one party.
Norlela pointed out that DAP, which contested and won all 19 state seats, had the Chief Minister’s post, Deputy Chief Minister II post and six state executive councillors.
PKR, which contested and won all 14 state seats, only had the Deputy Chief Minister I post and two state executive councillor seats. Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) and Parti Amanah Negara (PAN) both won two state seats each, but received no posts.
“If we add together PKR, PPBM and PAN’s state seats, all three contested and won 18 seats, which is almost equal to DAP’s 19,” she was quoted as saying.
Norlela also said that the main portfolios, such as housing, flood mitigation and local government, remained the same and were not shared with others.