GEORGE TOWN: Penanti assemblyman Dr Norlela Ariffin is quitting politics for good after losing confidence in her party, PKR.
The embattled lawmaker said she has been disheartened by the attacks against her by party members and party allies over the Sungai Lembu illegal carbon filter factory issue.
She said even her family members had been harassed over the matter.
“My family is also upset with me after being subjected to all the harassment, that I feel like I have nowhere else to go.
“I am so stressed by this entire issue,” she said when contacted today.
The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission and several others agencies raided the carbon filter processing factory on Aug 10.
This was followed by other raids at Seberang Perai Municipal Council's licensing department, State Environment committee chairman Phee Boon Poh's office in Komtar as well as service centre and houses in mainland Penang.
Phee was arrested the following day.
Norlela said the Sungai Lembu illegal factory fiasco was the last straw that broke the camel's back.
"I suffered a stroke on July 21, following attacks over a Facebook live video where I spoke out about the Penang Transport Master Plan (PTMP) not covering the Penanti area.
"Following that, I have been in an out of the hospital and my doctors discovered that I could be suffering from an auto-immune disease, where my immune system attacks my body when I am under stress.
"My doctors have advised me to take it easy, but now I am being attacked over the Sungai Lembu illegal factory issue that I cannot take it anymore," she vented her frustration.
"I feel so lonely with everyone attacking me.
"I feel it is not worth it anymore to be in politics, especially since I have done everything I planned to do to help my constituents," she said.
Norlela also added that the attacks she had been getting over the Sungai Lembu issue had also left her with a bad impression about her party.
Norlela had been under attack since April after she revealed in a Facebook post that her assemblyman's allocation had been frozen for failing to attend the Yang di-Pertua Negeri Tun Abdul Rahman Abbas' swearing-in ceremony.
She also drew flak again over her complaints that the PTMP did not cover her constituency.
On Friday, the embattled assemblyman took to her Facebook account again, thanking the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission for taking actions against the Sungai Lembu illegal factory.
Yesterday, Norlela revealed that she was asked by her party to explain her Facebook post thanking the graft buster for taking action against the illegal factory.
"I received a call from Penang PKR chairman Datuk Mansor Othman saying that he did not object to my complaints over the factory to various local authorities, including Seberang Prai Municipal Council, the Land Office and Health Department.
"However, the party wanted my explanation on my Facebook posting which read 'Alhamdulillah... finally. Terima kasih SPRM (MACC)'," she added.
Norlela said the post had allegedly raised the ire of many.
The expression was he response after receiving news of the raid at the factory by MACC and several other agencies while she was warded in a hospital, she said.
It was an expression of being thankful of action taken against the factory that had been operating illegally in Sungai Lembu for 10 years and burning 2,000 tonnes of sawdust annually.
“However, at that time, there was no arrest made. It was only later that I learnt that Phee was (arrested and) remanded...I hope Phee is given the space to defend himself as he had willingly cooperated with MACC. I hope no one is oppressed in the handling of this case,” she said.
Norlela also said she hoped that MACC would also take actions against all complaints, no matter how big or small, and regardless of whether the opposition or ruling party were involved.