Malaysia

Not all said ‘no’ to PM, says Penang BN of open house jeers

By Clara Chooi
Assistant News Editor


February 13, 2013

Najib and other BN leaders toss a “yee sang” salad on stage during the coalition’s Chinese New Year open house in George Town, February 11, 2013. — Picture by KE OoiNajib and other BN leaders toss a “yee sang” salad on stage during the coalition’s Chinese New Year open house in George Town, February 11, 2013. — Picture by KE OoiKUALA LUMPUR, Feb 13 ― Penang Barisan Nasional (BN) believes rivals sent saboteurs to heckle the prime minister and his entourage during its Chinese New Open House event on Monday, Sinar Harian reported today.

State BN chairman Teng Chang Yeow said he suspected it was this group that yelled “No!” when Datuk Seri Najib Razak asked the crowd, “Are you ready for BN?”, purportedly to offer the impression that Penang residents did not support the ruling coalition.

“Not everyone present had yelled ‘No’. We have video records showing a large segment of the audience had yelled ‘Yes’ when the PM asked that question several times.

“I believe there were those sent to sabotage the open house that we organised and we also found that there were those who wore colours that DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng had asked them to wear as a sign of protest,” he was quoted as saying today in the Malay daily.

He added that it would only have been worrying if those who had shouted “No” were BN members or supporters.

Videos of the hoots, boos and “No” shouted to Najib, and the “Yes” to the prime minister’s question of whether the crowd was ready for Psy, have been posted on the Internet, attracting observations that BN was unlikely to win back voters in Penang during the coming polls.

Penang, which was held by BN’s Gerakan for some four decades, fell to the opposition’s hands when the ruling coalition recorded historic losses in Election 2008.

DAP’s Lim Guan Eng was then installed the state’s chief minister, and since then, the state has been seen as PR’s sturdiest fortress against its political foes in BN.