GEORGE TOWN: April 21, 2008
Three Umno assemblymen who were offered seats in various state administrative committees recently have rejected the offers, claiming it could be a political trap.
The three are Sungai Acheh's Datuk Mahmud Zakaria, Seberang Jaya's Datuk Ariff Shah Omar Shah and Pulau Betong's Muhamad Farid Saad.
State Umno liaison committee secretary and state opposition chief Datuk Azhar Ibrahim said the party had expected the new state government to make such an offer and had agreed from the start to reject it.
Azhar, who is also Penaga assemblyman, said Umno wanted to give the state government space to fulfil its election promises.
He said the party's involvement in the state administration would make it difficult for them to debate any motion tabled at the state legislative assembly.
"However, we are prepared to give them our advice and help," Azhar said.
Mahmud said he received official offers from state Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Committee chairman Abdul Malik Abdul Kassim and state Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Committee chairman Low Choo Kiang.
The latest offer was from state Health and Welfare Committee chairman Phee Boon Poh.
He has rejected all offers.
Farid, who received a similar offer from Low two weeks ago, also rejected it, saying he wanted to concentrate on his constituency first.
He said the offers showed the present leadership had no experience in governing the state.
Ariff Shah rejected Malik's offer as he wanted to focus on the party and his constituents