Press Statement by Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng In Komtar, George Town On 10.8.2014.
The Penang PR state government is willing to assume full responsibility if permitted to take over the National Park Advisory Council, the statutory authority that controls and manages the Penang National Park. It is self-contradictory and ridiculous for Penang Barisan Nasional chairman Teng Chang Yeow to blame the state government for trying to wash our hands off the nudist camp issue at Teluk Kampi inside the Penang National Park, when we have no final decision-making powers relating to the National Park.
I am surprised that Teng is so ignorant of the basics of governance as a former Penang EXCO member, when he claimed that the state has powers of authority over the Penang National Park solely on the basis of the State Secretary and 3 other representatives nominated by the state to the National Park Advisory Council under Section 5 of the 1980 National Parks Act. Teng is wrong because the Chairman of the National Park Advisory Council is the Secretary-General of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and a majority of the members of the Council are appointed by the Federal government.
Following Teng’s perverse logic, is the Penang Development Corporation(PDC) under the control of the Federal government just because the Federal government can appoint 3 representatives on the PDC’s Board of Directors that is chaired by me? That is why on any matter related to PDC, the state government assumes full responsibility and does not blame the Federal government.
It is this perverse logic of Teng where the minority state government representatives in the National Park Advisory Council can control the majority Federal government representatives in the Council that is false and unacceptable. No wonder BN is running the Federal government even though they won a minority of the votes with 47% of the popular vote in the 2013 general elections!
However if the Federal government is willing to cede control over the National Park Advisory Council to us, the state government will take up the challenge and assume full responsibility. The state government has chosen not to politicize the nudist camp issue even though a former Gerakan Wanita leader is said to be one of the organizers.
Instead the state government has stated that both the federal and state government would not have approved the nudist camp. We have also urged the public to give the federal authorities time to complete their investigation, even though a Penang National Park Ranger(who is under Federal government payroll) has assisted the participants of the nudist camp.
However even though the state government has not brought up the involvement of a former Gerakan leader in the nudist camp, nor blamed the Federal government, Teng has decided to exploit the issue politically by blaming the state govenment. I wish to advise Teng that doing so would not help him reverse his two heavy defeats in the 2008 and 2013 general elections. The beauty in the wisdom of the people of Penang is that when you point a false accusatory finger, there are four fingers pointing back at you.
Lim Guan Eng
—- Mandarin Version —-