PKR's Zahrain calls Penang CM "authoritarian".


GEORGE TOWN: PKR’s Bayan Baru MP Datuk Zahrain Mohd Hashim has intensified his criticism of Lim Guan Eng, calling the chief minister’s style of administration “authoritarian”.

This, he claimed, had not only affected the Malays but also Penangites in general.

“He came from Malacca where many did not like his style over there. He should be winning the hearts of Penangites and not be arrogant and run the state like a one-man show,” he said.

A protest took place here on Friday against Lim by Gabungan Melayu Sedaq which is said to comprise at least 30 Malay NGOs, the National Malay Students Federation (GPMS) and the Penang Malay Chamber of Commerce.

The demonstrators carried banners denouncing Lim and also burnt his effigy.

“I pray that the rakyat will be mindful and that Guan Eng will have to mend his ways now that the message has been sent out,” he added.

State opposition leader Datuk Azhar Ibrahim claimed that many Penangites had now realised their folly of electing an outsider like Lim who has only started to show his true colours.

“The protest by a group of Malay non-governmental organisations reflected their disappointment in Lim’s leadership. It should serve as an eye-opener for Lim as these protesters will not stop until their objectives are met,” he said.

Deputy Chief Minister I Mansor Othman said the burning of Lim’s effigy was not the right way for the NGOs to go about addressing the Malay agenda.

“I had called the NGOs for a discussion earlier and had even invited them to submit their proposals on issues affecting the Malays but nobody came forward.”

However, he said a discussion between Lim and the Malay Chamber of Commerce tomorrow would proceed as planned.

In Ipoh, Penang Umno liaison committee chief Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi described the protest by the group as a manifestation of the people’s frustration.

“It is no longer a crisis. It has erupted into a war between the two parties,” he told reporters after opening a gathering for army veterans in Perak.

Ahmad Zahid, who is also Umno vice-president, said Penang Umno had long anticipated the troubles between PKR and DAP.

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