Media statement by Lim Kit Siang in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday, 9th February 2012:
Let MPs have a free vote when Parliament reconvenes on 12th March on whether Shahrizat should resign as Minister for Women, Family and Community Development over the RM330 million NFC “cattle condo” scandal
Now, even Gerakan, the political party whose President had to get into Cabinet by the backdoor of Parliament, has joined the pack of wolves in Barisan Nasional demanding for the resignation of Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil as Minister for Women, Family and Community Development.
Although couched in the sweetest of words, calling on Shahrizat to “sacrifice” for Barisan Nasional and expressing “much sympathy” for her, the Gerakan Deputy President Datuk Chang Ko Youn hoped that the Wanita UMNO chief will have the “magnanimity to vacate her position as a minister in the cabinet and focus her energy on combating this...assault on her family”.
It will not be long before Gerakan leaders themselves will be asked by their Umno counterparts to make “sacrifices” for the larger interests of UMNO and Barisan Nasional.
Be that as it may, it is clear that the Gerakan Deputy President has either not heard or believed Shahrizat protesting in the loudest of voices that she is married to the chairperson of National Feedlot Corporation (NFC) which has nothing to do with her official duties as Minister of the Cabinet.
The question is how many Ministers, Members of Parliament and Barisan Nasional leaders at all levels are of the same mind - not heard or believed Shahrizat's protestations.
MCA President Datuk Seri Chua Soi Lek had publicly blamed Shahrizat for “poor handling” of the “cattle condo” scandal causing the public to perceive the NFC project as “real rotten”.
UMNO internal protests against Shahrizat has become like a suppressed volcano in UMNO – despite calls by the former Prime Minister Tun Mahathir, former Wanita UMNO chief, Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz and the current Wanita UMNO deputy chief Datuk Kamila Ibrahim that Shahrizat should resign as Cabinet Minister.
Would Shahrizat survive a secret ballot in the Cabinet if there is a vote whether she should just pack up her bags and resign as Minister for Women, Family and Community Development?
May be, all Members of Parliament should have a free vote when Parliament reconvenes on 12th March on whether Shahrizat should resign as Minister for Women, Family and Community Development over the RM330 million NFC “cattle condo” scandal.
Would Shahrizat agree to such a free vote as the first item of Parliamentary business next month?
Would the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his deputy, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yasin have any objections to let MPs decide Shahrizat's Cabinet future?
*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Ipoh Timor