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Monday, March 29, 2010

Soi Lek wins, Liow is MCA No 2

By Clara Chooi and Asrul Hadi Abdullah Sani
KUALA LUMPUR, March 28 — Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek was elected MCA president while Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai became the deputy in a hotly-contested party election today.

He wins...Dr Chua Soi Lek is the new MCA president. - Picture by Jack Ooi
Dr Chua beat incumbent Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat and former president Tan Sri Ong Ka Ting, who was bidding a comeback to active politics.
He won with 901 votes while Ka Ting took 833 votes and Tee Keat 578 votes. For the deputy race, Liow won 1,171 votes against Kong’s 1,106.
Speaker Datuk Yik Phooi Hoong announced the results at the MCA headquarters this evening.
The four new vice-presidents are Datuk Dr Ng Yen Yen (1,528), Datuk Donald Lim (1,469), Datuk Chor Chee Heung (1,202) and Gan Ping Sieu (1,202).
Ong earlier arrived smiling as tension mounted outside Dewan San Choon at the MCA headquarters for the results of the closely-fought presidential race.
Party insiders say early indication had shown that Dr Chua was in the lead with at least 1,000 votes in his favour.
“From what I was told, Dr Chua has 1,085 votes while Tee Keat has something like 600 votes or so. Ka Ting has the remainder,” an insider said.
A total of 2,315 out of the 2,318 central delegates who registered for the polls had cast their votes when the process ended shortly after noon today.
Dr Chua, the former Health Minister whose political career came to an abrupt halt after a sex scandal in 2007, is apparently a favourite among the grassroots leaders, said the insider.
“For Ka Ting, it is not easy for him to make such inroads with the delegates after making a sudden comeback like that. What he is doing is just calling in old favours and reviving old friendships,” he added.
According to officials, three delegates had not collected their ballot papers.
The extraordinary general meeting was adjourned at 12.30pm by assembly Speaker Datuk Yik Phooi Hoong and delegates proceeded to the building’s foyer for lunch.
A total of 101 candidates are contesting for the 31 posts in the MCA central committee (CC).
The election was called after 21 CC members resigned early this month to protest against Tee Keat’s presidency.
The Transport Minister was elected in 2008 after Ka Ting stepped down in the aftermath of the party’s losses in Election 2008.


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