16 June, 2010

DAP to sue the frogs ?

The DAP will send a letter of demand to recently turned independent Malim Nawar state assemblyman Keshvinder Singh and Datuk Hee Yit Foong (DAP-Jelapang), demanding RM5 million compensation from each of them for breach of agreement with the party.

Perak DAP chief Datuk Ngeh Khoo Ham said all party elected representatives in the state had signed the agreement after the March 2008 general election.

"The agreed that if they leave the party and declare themselves independents, they have to pay RM5 million to the party," Ngeh told reporters at the Parliament lobby today.

"These people must not benefit from betraying the people. Legal action will be taken against them over this agreement and we assure the people that whatever sum we get from them will be put to use for the people," he added.

The existence of such a agreement was not revealed earlier, said Ngeh, because the party did not want people to think that DAP was making money from its representatives.

"We would like to concentrate on abhorrence over betrayal of the people," he said.

"These people must not benefit from betraying the people and legal action will be taken against them over this contract. We assure the people that whatever sum we get from them will be dedicated for the people," he said.

Keshvinder tendered his resignation to DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng yesterday, claiming that there was not enough development funds for his constituency.

He had also alleged 'too much politicking' as his reason for quitting and his belief that only BN can help develop the area, which is largely rural.

“I would like to disclose what might have triggered him to jump - firstly, his financial problem; and secondly, which I won't disclose in detail, is his personal problems,” said Ngeh.

“When he came back from the Sibu by-election, he said his car had been repossessed after he failed to settle his installments for a few months.”

Ngeh said that Titi Serong state assemblyperson and Backbencher Council chairperson Khalil Idham Lim had extended a RM3,500 loan to Keshvinder for him to settle the outstanding amount.

Keshvinder's financial crisis did not end there, Ngeh said. Keshvinder was hit with more problems last month when his clerk embezzled RM45,000 from his law firm.

“He informed us that his clerk had committed criminal breach of trust (CBT) in his office and some RM45,000 of clients' money had vanished and he asked for our help.

“We advised him to lodge a police report. As lawyers we know if our staff take our money, we are covered by professional insurance. He said he would make a complaint but I don't know whether he has done so.

“Thirdly, I received complaints from the Ipoh Royal Club that he has yet to pay his subscription and his name has been posted as a defaulting member of the club.

“He told me that we should help him as it would tarnish his image as a DAP elected representative. In fact I did, I personally spoke to him two weeks ago about his financial problem and he refused to explain in detail and said he was okay.”

Ngeh added that DAP was willing to bail him out of his problems and many people have occasionally loaned him hundreds of ringgit to ease his burden.

“The issue of us not caring is unjust. He must blame himself for the predicament he is in when he accepted the offer from Umno to jump,” he said.

Meanwhile, Kepayang assemblyperson Loke Chee Yan and Buntong representative A Sivasubramaniam denied suggestions that they were also ditching DAP.

S Kesavan (PKR-Hutan Melintang), also rumoured to defect because he was allegedly incommunicado, is reportedly unwell and has also denied the speculations.

Loke, when contacted by Malaysiakini, quashed rumours that he would be next, saying his presence with the state DAP leadership in parliament today was proof of his loyalty.

“I know my name has been bandied around along with the Hutan Melintang representative.

“That is untrue! I am committed to the DAP cause. Whatever was said ... by some media today, that I may be next, is totally untrue,” he said.

He also maintained that he could still be reached at the same handphone number. 'I have not switched numbers,” he said, to rumours that the assemblypersons' refusal to answer calls was a sign that they were ready to jump.

DAP vice-chairperson M Kulasegaran also denied Sivasubramaniam was defecting.

“I talked to him last night and there is no truth to the rumour that he would be leaving the party. This is the work of the BN, who could be trying to split the party up,” said Kulasegaran (left), who is also the Ipoh Barat MP and Perak DAP deputy chief.

Perak PKR chairperson Mustaffa Kamil Ayub also rubbished rumours about Kesavan.

“I just talked to him this morning. He denied to me that he would be leaving the party. Kesavan maintains that this was the work of rumour-mongers who are out to destroy the Pakatan spirit in the wake of Keshvinder's departure,” he said.

The Perak PKR supremo also explained that Kesavan did not entertain any calls yesterday because he was suffering from mouth ulcers.

“But he answered my call when he recognised my number. I feel there is no truth to such rumours.”

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