But I think he should start responding to some bad reviews about him and his job, too. To be fair to him, I am sure he has his side of the story, but an honest, straightfoward one is needed. We don’t want standard responses like what the BN politicians gave us.
It’s a pity because Chow seem like a nice and simple MP (member of Parliament), all the years I dealt with him. I’ve never seen him angry, that’s for sure. Which is why, it seems like I am reading about another person these days when news reports mention him. As he is a blogger, too, he can do a lot of stuff with his blog than allowing the mainstream newspaper to ‘paint’ him in a ‘negative’ light.
For a start, he could tackle such controversial issues as THE LIST. The latest Penang councilors appointment issue should at least be noted in his blog, so people who are seeking answers will find his honest reply there. But alas, the list and the reactions to it, were “black-out” from his blog. Sigh…or did I miss it?
I know Chow gave a standard reply to the press on the appointment of those councillors, but his respond was rather disappointing.
“In the Penang Island Municipal Council (MPPP) we appointed four representatives from NGOs, short of one and you (reporters) are pushing this issue so much,” he told reporters when questioned on the issue after the swearing-in of 24 MPPP municipal councillors.
Three NGO representatives, short of two, were appointed to the the Seberang Perai Municipal Council (MPSP).
“This type of pressure is not giving us any support in our decision to open up the municipal councillors’ post to those other than party members,” he said.
“For the past 50 years, the councillors were only for Barisan Nasional (BN) candidates and there were no complaints and now, we have introduced a newer and better system and there are so many complaints,” he added.
Upon hearing this, and reading Anil Netto’s “Powerful corporate interest penetrate Penang local council“, a Penang blogger said this: Did Chow Kon Yeow screw up at the local councilors appointment?
Err…YB Chow Kon Yeow…are you high on drugs or were you just daft or plain stupid?
Weren’t you the one to promise 10 councillors post to the NGOs but now there are only 7? And by NGOs, shouldn’t you be thinking about a variety of NGOs and not just the business ones? Also, why the secrecy in the selection process?
So, is it so wrong for the public to demand for explanations when you did not fulfill your promises? Is it wrong for the public to demand for ‘transparency and accountability’, the very things the Pakatan Rakyat has always been harping on?
The people voted for Pakatan Rakyat for a reason and that is to see good and major changes. Not some half-hearted attempt!
The blogger was so upset after reading Chow’s comments in the press: Chow lashes out at reporters (SUN), that he or she considered it ‘inedible worms’. The news report also prompted social activist Ong Boon Keong to write a fiery piece, which I received via email title “Nice to Government Orang (NGO)”.
While Exco in charge of Local Government Chow Kon Yeow proved himself to be an avid paper reader his response to the press somehow seems inconsistent with the DAP state chairman whom I know: he joined a press freedom delegation to see the state government when the buy up of Nanyang was a burning issue some years ago. Then he stood for a free press not beholden to any power.
Now: He is reportedly expressing his unhappiness about the media not giving him enough support-not considering that a free media is one free to provide commentaries from professional standards and not one beholden to any power/interests especially the ruling power. Thus the fame of 4th Estate bestowed upon free media. Commendations can only be given freely -not demanded.
He also erred when he said that the media did not make noise about appointed crony Councilors by BN-the media is full of it throughout the years due to complaints by the civil society-and also due to the 3rd Vote Campaign ran by Chow himself-among many DAP leaders. How can he forget so quickly?
Back to the Councilors issue: Chow need to explain himself about what he termed as `ngos’. In a loose sense business groups are `ngos’ -but this is not the usual understanding of the public.
Business groups are too close to the governments/parties that they are not quite `ngos’ -most of them are actually wearing party hats -or doing business with government. To be serious about giving independent voices to the people the State Government need to appoint more reps from the real civil society members ie those not linked by political or business interests to the government/parties.
By this criteria there are only about 1-2 NGO members among the Councilors. Why???? The problem with a developer Ahmad Ismail sitting in MPPP as Councilor during Gerakan’s rule is notorious enough-that is the single cause for so many controversial and destructive developments being approved in Penang.
Now the `improvement’ brought by DAP seems to be in the number of questionable business groups/business related groups in the Council!!!! Please answer the queries from the real civil society/NGOs -about the abundance of these Nice to Government `Orangs'(NGOs)!
Well, Chow, what do you have to say this?