MCA lifts Tee’s party suspension

KUALA LUMPUR - MCA has lifted Pulai Sebatang assemblyman Datuk Tee Siew Kiong's three-year suspension from the party with immediate effect.

Party president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek said Tee had been restored as an MCA central committee (CC) member and could take part in party elections.

This was after Tee produced a statement from the Johor Palace which stated that Tee's appointment as state executive councillor member was based on the Sultan's decision.

"It was with a royal command that Tee was appointed as a Johor exco member.

"Therefore, the majority of the CC members felt that Tee's suspension should be lifted immediately," he said after chairing the party's CC meeting yesterday.

Tee's appointment had ignited a storm with­in MCA as it went against the party's decision to not accept any government posts after its dismal performance at the general election.

MCA then froze Tee's membership for three years for violating the party's resolution when he took up the government post.

On whether MCA conducted background checks on their members to see if they were triad members, Dr Chua said the party did not ask if its members were gangsters or not.

"We render our service to everyone. As long as they are Chinese and above 18, they can be MCA members. Even if they are gangsters, they wouldn't tell you that they are," he said, adding that vetting would only be done for election candidates.

On the Education Blueprint, Dr Chua said MCA proposed for the allocations for Chinese vernacular schools to be increased from RM100 million (S$38 million) to RM200 million.

"There is also a need to improve the standard of English and Bahasa Malaysia in Chinese schools.

"We propose that lessons for each subject to be increased from 180 minutes to 210 minutes a week," he said.

Dr Chua said MCA was also supportive of the rationalising of subsidies by the Government as such a move would ensure that the nation did not go bankrupt.

"The Bantuan Rakyat 1Malaysia aid needs to be increased in line with the petrol and diesel price hike," he said.

Dr Chua said Malaysia's oil prices were the eigth cheapest in the world and oil producing countries like Iraq and Sudan had more expensive fuel prices compared to Malaysia.

On the Budget 2014, Dr Chua said MCA vice-president Datuk Donald Lim was preparing the party's proposal for the Budget after getting input from the CC.

"We will discuss this next week," he said.