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Back-side story

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A couple of Penang state assembly members seem inclined to focus on matters behind them rather than the issues in front of them, observes Mulut Ngah Ngah


Our politicians never cease to amuse us. This May session of the Penang State Assembly seems to have opened with a BANG! Not only did the roof cave in a day or two just before this sitting of Aduns in the State Legislature but hardly a week into serious business, and the “house-war” had started.

The Leader of the state’s Opposition, Umno’s Azhar Ibrahim (BN – Penaga) has earned himself a reputation as an expert at coining vocabulary relating to the human posterior, particularly his own. A few months ago, Azhar was involved in a tiff with the rest of the House when he turned his back towards the government benches, and bent over giving them full view of his ample posterior, after a heated argument over another issue. When accused of being rude to the House and his fellow Aduns (state assembly members), he glibly excused his behavior by saying that he merely bent down to pick up his bag before ‘banishing’ himself from their august presence.

A recurrence of such an act at the present sitting might indicate that Azhar is in the habit of showing off his posterior (bum) to others or has a habit of turning his back on others. The remark that followed this action was totally uncalled for, as it had nothing to do with the subject debated at that moment. Azhar’s jibe that there were two leaders of the Opposition with names starting with ‘A’ possessing the same last name of  “Ibrahim” and that they both had something to do with “punggung” (buttocks) (theSun, 5 May 2010) simply reflects his idea of a joke, albeit, in bad taste.

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However, the punggung debate did not end within that day but carried on into the next day’s news. Jagdeep Singh (DAP – Dato Keramat) entered the fray between RSN Rayer (DAP – Seri Delima) and Azhar, addressing the latter as  “YB Punggung”. This sparked a hot retort of “YB Main Punggung” from the defensive Adun for Penaga (theSun, 6 May 2010).

This spiced-up mud-slinging continued for a while in complete disregard of the Speaker’s request to Jagdeep Singh to desist and carry on debate of the initial topic raised. In the somewhat juvenile exchange, the use of other antagonistic terms, like ‘Pak Turut’ (Yes-Man) and ‘gangster’ were debated; with some Aduns gallantly apologising to the House for such name calling.

So the rakyat can now add a few more derogatory terms to their vocabulary in political debate. Azhar has earned a title and we have all had a good laugh over our Aduns’ antics although they may have wasted precious time in ‘mud-slinging’ rather than discussing important issues affecting the rakyat in Penang.

To end this Backside Story, at least two Aduns have rightly been referred to the Rights and Privileges Committee to be disciplined, like school kids being sent to the Head Teacher to maintain law and order within the august State Assembly. Perhaps, the House can peacefully get down to business now!

The views expressed in Aliran's media statements and the NGO statements we have endorsed reflect Aliran's official stand. Views and opinions expressed in other pieces published here do not necessarily reflect Aliran's official position.

AGENDA RAKYAT - Lima perkara utama
  1. Tegakkan maruah serta kualiti kehidupan rakyat
  2. Galakkan pembangunan saksama, lestari serta tangani krisis alam sekitar
  3. Raikan kerencaman dan keterangkuman
  4. Selamatkan demokrasi dan angkatkan keluhuran undang-undang
  5. Lawan rasuah dan kronisme
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