|Guan Eng: We can do better|
|Politics & Government 2009|
|Written by Regina William|
|Thursday, 05 March 2009 16:56|
At a press conference to mark the first anniversary of PR's takeover of the state government from the Gerakan-led Barisan Nasional government, Lim said he believed his team of executive councillors have worked hard over the past year and would lead the state to greater heights.
"We work as a team and not as individuals and there is synergy among us which has enabled us to carry out our work and I believe we can do even better in the years to come," Lim said.
When asked about his proudest achievement or success so far, Lim said the success was not his own but dedicated it to the people who voted the PR government in.
"The record-breaking RM10.2 billion investments which poured in 2008 as opposed to RM4.7 billion in 2007 is the proudest achievement which I dedicate to the people of Penang," Lim said.
He said since coming into power, there has hardly even been any time for celebrations.
"A year ago on that night, what happened was an unusual victory for the DAP and the PR.
"We never celebrated our victory that night because at that time we feared that that there would be untoward incidents provocated by those who lost.
"When it was clear that we were going to form the state government all the newly elected PR state assemblymen were told to gather at the Red Rock Hotel and even our supporters were told to go home.
"We have never celebrated our victory, and a year later, we should each celebrate in our own way as change has come to our shores and the people should celebrate their victory, for showing the powers that had been who ruled the country," he added.
Lim also announced in line with the state government's competency, accountability and transparency (CAT) philosophy, the state government would initiate the formulation of guidelines for all PR-elected representatives to declare their assets.
He said there would not be differential treatment for the various races, adding that all races would be given equal rights even though the state government's efforts to eradicate hardcore poor in the state by the end of this month would benefit mostly Malays.
On the third vote which had been one of the earlier promises made by the state government when it took over, Lim said the state government was unable to do anything as the local government act was a federal matter.
Furthermore, the local elections all fell under the jurisdiction of the Election Commission, he added.
He said extra focus would be given on mainland Penang, which attracted 80% of the RM10.2 billion investments into the state last year.
Lim also touched on the numerous efforts by the state government to cut costs which generated savings of millions of ringgit, and also the efforts to confront those who owed the state.
"We are ready to confront related parties for what is due to the state and will continue with our efforts relentlessly," he added.
He cited the confrontation with MMC-Gamuda JV which resulted in the company paying a RM4.2 million fine to the state and more than RM3.2 million in water and irrigation fees, sand royalty for six years totalling RM6.6 million which was not paid by the Penang Port Sdn Bhd and even the collection of assessment arrears by Umno and MCA amounting to more than RM238,532.
He said policies implemented by the state government including the open tender system which was criticisd by Umno members was now being followed by the federal government.
"This is a clear sign that policies adopted by PR has been able to change the mindset and administration of the BN.
"They are now recognising the merits of our open tender system," he added.
He also mentioned projects implemented by the state government over the past year which were also well received and benefitted Penangites, including free WiFi project, hardcore poverty eradication, halal hub, RM100 water rebate to 170,000 poor families, conversion of land from leasehold to freehold, installation of bilingual roadsigns and reviving Komtar, among others.