MCA founder’s granddaughter lauds Guan Eng’s policies in Penang
The Malaysian Insider
KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 25 — Lim Guan Eng received praise from an unexpected source today when the granddaughter of the MCA’s first president and daughter of the country’s longest-serving finance minister said the Penang chief minister should be given his due for the state’s prudent management of public funds.
Tan Siok Choo, the daughter of Tun Tan Siew Sin and granddaughter of Tun Sir Tan Cheng Lock — both of whom were former MCA presidents — told BFM radio this morning that it was good that Lim had shown what could be done by eliminating waste and implementing open tenders.
“For my father... he was always very particular that government funds should be looked after like your own funds. I think it is in a way, currently, very good that Lim Guan Eng (picture), Chief Minister of Penang, has shown what can be done if you eliminate waste and if you have an open tender.
“The fact that he has been able to run Penang without much contribution from the federal government and yet turn in, yet attract one of the highest rates of investment, I think speaks for itself.
“And this is baring the fact that when my father was in politics, Kit Siang never had a good word to say about my father. So there is history between our two fathers but I think one must give Guan Eng his due,” she told the radio station’s Morning Grille programme.
Siok Choo’s father Siew Sin was finance minister from 1959 until 1974. Guan Eng’s father Kit Siang became an MP for the first time in 1969 and eventually became parliamentary opposition leader.
Her remarks today come as the DAP is increasingly being seen as the party of choice for the country’s Chinese community while the MCA, the party founded by Siok Choo’s grandfather Cheng Lock, appears to be floundering.
Recently, international news magazine The Economist also praised Guan Eng’s open tender policies and credited his administration with helping Penang regain its lustre as a “global city” by lifting the state’s economy to beyond that of a sweat shop industry.
The international weekly dubbed Penang “the first custom-made city of globalisation” and credited Guan Eng for boosting the port city’s revival by axing a racial special treatment economic policy in the state to create a more level-playing field that appeals to foreign investors.
Speaking about the MCA this morning, Siok Choo said the party needed to understand what its constituents wanted if it was to stay relevant.
“I think the good thing about the current situation is that the ethnic lines are getting blurred. You can see this in how Malaysians react to issues... look at issues like Bersih, the call for better and cleaner electoral process, it is being championed across the board, sought by Malays and Chinese. So therefore in terms of civil liberties and soft issues like law and order, no longer seen as Malays vs Chinese... seen as an issue that all Malaysians want.
“I think the party has to realise that if that is what your constituents want, that they don’t see as us and them situation anymore in terms of Malays and Chinese, if the party wants to be relevant and if it wants to move forward, that is the direction it has to go.”