GEORGE TOWN: Penanti assemblyman Dr Norlela Ariffin dared PKR to fire her after she was attacked by the party and the state government, who were not comfortable with her comments to Berita Harian on the undersea tunnel issue, on Friday.
“Sack me if you do not like the way I work,” she was quoted as saying.
Dr Norlela, who is also the state Public Accounts Committee (PAC) member, said the move by PKR and the DAP-led state government in urging her to sue Berita Harian over the article was nonsensical.
She also said that the Berita Harian article on the mega project, estimated at a cost of RM6.3 billion, did not deviate from its original meaning and she deemed the order to sue the paper as personal attack by PKR and the DAP-led state government.
“This (undersea tunnel project) is public record which was stated in the state’s PAC report, involving a huge sum of money and is of public interest. Hence, there is no need for the state government or PKR to ask me to keep quiet on the matter.
“Even I do not know what they (PKR and state government) are furious about the article to the point that they asked me to sue Berita Harian. I do not have time to entertain this,” she said when contacted by Berita Harian Sunday.
On Friday, Norlela was reported as saying that the feasibility cost of the mega project, in the form of land deals, has been previously raised by several assemblymen including those from DAP during the last state legislative assembly sitting.
“The matter was also brought up at the state PAC meeting, with the intention to get a detailed explanation from the state government. At that time, as a member of the PAC, we questioned the reason for the exorbitant cost for its feasibility study.
“Was the payment made is considered reasonable with the work done by the appointed consultant?
“PAC members including those from Barisan Nasional (BN) at that time questioned if the state government followed guidelines involving the cost saving as issued by the state treasury before they paid for it,” she added.
At the same time, Norlela also labelled the move by PKR and DAP-led state government contravened with its freedom of speech slogan which is often vocalised by state government officials and the party.
“On this matter, I believe PKR and the state government deliberately want to find fault with me. However, there was no such insistence made directly by Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng when we met during a programme recently.
“Perhaps the insistence was channelled to the State Leadership Council because I know he is not fond of my previous actions, which do not side with him or the state government,” she said.
Translated from Berita Harian