GEORGE TOWN: Former DAP state representative Teh Yee Cheu today confirms he will contest in the Sungai Pinang state seat in the coming general election under the Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) ticket against his former party.
Teh, who was the Tanjung Bungah state representative, said he would maintain championing issues close to the hearts of Penangites, especially environmental issues just like he did when he was the DAP representative in Tanjung Bungah.
Teh said just like Tanjung Bungah, there were many environmental issues in Sungai Pinang, such as the pollution in the river there starting from Air Putih and Air Itam, incessant land reclamation, including the flood woes in Penang which was synonymous with Sungai Pinang.
“The problems in Sungai Pinang actually stem from Air Putih, Air Itam and also caused by land reclamation here,” Teh told a press conference at the PSM service centre in Sungai Pinang here today.
Teh said that by contesting against his former party, it will ensure a better check and balance and to continue with a second wave of reformation in the state government as the first one has failed to do so.
“By right, the backbenchers’ voice should always be heard in the state legislative assembly but their voices have been suppressed by higher authorities,” he added.
Teh stressed the importance of people’s participation to bring issues to the authorities and for the authorities to empower the people.
“This should be the political culture, not one who suppresses people’s voices and I am confident PSM will be able to provide such platform.
“I hope to continue championing issues I have always been championing regardless whether it is in the same area or not as in Penang, it is all related and many issues revolve around the environment here in Penang with such massive development going on at the expense of mother nature,” explained Teh.
On Penang DAP chairman Chow Kon Yeow’s remark that Teh’s absence would not affect the DAP in Penang, Teh described Chow’s opinion as unimportant.
“What is more important is we provide check and balance in the state government because there is a lack of it in the Penang state government which is oppressive.
“It is important to allow check and balance so it can see through a better form of reformation as the first one was flawed,” added Teh.
Meanwhile, PSM Central committee member Choo Chon Kai said it was the first time PSM is contesting in Penang as the party does not simply contest just about anywhere but Teh is seen is a suitable candidate considering his experience and criteria.
“However we give him the freedom whether to remain under PSM or to become an Independent after the election.
Yesterday, Teh officially announced that he had left the DAP after Parliament was dissolved on Saturday.
The two-term Tanjung Bungah assemblyman kept to his words of quitting the party once the 14th General Election was called.
Teh was yesterday asked if he would contest in the elections hence the press conference today.
The former two-term DAP state assmblyman was known for being vocal about environmental issues in Penang as he claims rapid development approved by the state government has damaged the environment and eco-system here.
Teh was also known for proposing for a two-term limit to the Chief Minister post and had been at loggerheads with Penang Chief Minister who is also DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng.