Pulau Tikus rep stays with DAP

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KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 15): Despite facing a six-month suspension, Penang Pulau Tikus DAP assembly member Koay Teng Hai will not quit the party or contest as an independent candidate in the next general election.

Koay said that what the DAP was fighting for was consistent with his political faith, and as long as the party stayed true to its ideals, he would not quit.

"Although some leaders will make inappropriate judgements sometimes, but this is just the minority, the truth will be with the majority. I respect the decision of the disciplinary committee on Nov 1, 2012, as they have their own perspective. Although I was suspended, I will continue to discharge my obligations until the state assembly dissolves," he said, according to a Sin Chew Daily report.

It was also reported that Koay would appeal to the disciplinary committee. He said he had not made any serious mistake after joining the party in 1999 and expressed hope that the disciplinary committee would reconsider its decision.

Koay was slapped with a six-month suspension by the disciplinary committee because he was absent without leave when the Penang anti-hopping enactment was put to the vote at the state assembly. Koay said he had obtained leave from the Speaker Datuk Abdul Halim Hussein.

He explained that he was invited to the US under the "US Election: A Project for Young Political Leaders", which was organised by the US Embassy to observe the presidential election. However, he was stranded in the US by a winter storm.

Koay said his intention in participating in the trip was to learn the election strategy, which could be used by the party in its aim of capturing Putrajaya. He had not expected things to turn against him as he had scheduled his timetable so that he could attend the sitting when the enactment was put to the vote. He had also extended his apology to the voters and party peers for his miscalculation.

Nanyang Siang Pau reported that Koay had refuted the report by Utusan Malaysia that he had quit the party, and reserved the right to take legal action against the paper. Koay said the seat was allocated by the party and did not belong to him, therefore he would not betray his party.

"Although I was elected by the people, I contested under the party ticket," he said.

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