DAP to investigate Liu in Tee’s case

By Clara Chooi, The Malaysian Insider

In a twist to the saga involving sacked DAP councillor Tee Boon Hock, the party’s disciplinary committee will now haul up state executive councillor Ronnie Liu on as a suspect in the same graft allegations.

The committee’s chairman Tan Kok Wai said in a press conference today that this was because Tee had implicated Liu during his hearing with the committee yesterday.

“We fixed a date on August 12 for our next hearing because yesterday, Boon Hock made a counter-allegation against Liu (picture, left).

“He said that all the letters of support he had signed for the contractors were done under Liu’s instructions,” said Tan.

Tan added that Tee (picture, right) had also filed an official complaint against Liu during yesterday’s hearing and the committee had accepted it.

“We will summon Liu to investigate if Boon Hock’s claims were true,” he said.

The support letters referred to were issued by Tee, using Liu’s letterhead and signature, addressed to the Klang Municipal Council to secure contracts worth over RM1 million for several companies.

The issue cropped up last Tuesday when The Star reported the allegations and since then, Liu has denied that his letterhead had been misused. Tee was sacked yesterday by the committee on grounds that one of the companies he had issued a support letter to was linked to his family.

Besides Liu, Tan said the committee would also be summoning another prominent party leader — Selangor state Speaker Teng Chang Khim — to explain his statement on micro-blogging site Twitter yesterday which read “OMG! Real culprit freed”.

Tan said that Teng’s tweet ultimately accused the committee of persecuting the wrong person.

“With regards to this, Teng has to enlighten the committee, inform us and provide evidence, proof and testimonials on what he meant by his Twitter statement and if he can, to name the real culprit,” he said.

He noted that as a party leader and the chairman of the Selangor’s Selcat (select committee on competency, accountability and transparency), Teng had a responsibility to uphold the good name of the party.

“As a responsible person, I think he will cooperate with the committee. This statement (on Twitter) is one that is serious… by saying this after we gave our verdict to sack Tee yesterday, it is tantamount to him questioning the credibility of the committee.

“He is saying that we acted unfairly and unprofessionally and that we persecuted an innocent man,” he said.

Tan noted that if Teng failed to provide a name of who he claimed was the “real culprit”, the committee had the right to punish him accordingly.

“This is a violation of party discipline,” he said.

Tan said the committee would also summon representatives from 15 contractor firms that had been issued support letters by Tee.

He explained today that a total of 16 contractors had been named in all of Tee’s support letters, one of which was Perkhidmatan AA, a company co-owned by his son Chin Chin.

Tan however said that according to Chin Chin’s partner in the firm, when the support letter recommending Perkhidmatan AA’s services for cleaning jobs was issued on August 12, 2008, Chin Chin had been unaware of it.

“This was testified when we spoke to Chin Chin’s partner in the company, Soh Chee Hwee, yesterday. Soh told us that his partner, Boon Hock’s son or Chin Chin, was not aware that he was bidding from a project and had sought the help of his father,” he said.

He added that during his hearing, Tee had also claimed he was unaware of his son’s involvement as a partner in Perkhidmatan AA.

“Tee’s son turns 21 this August 15. He was apparently only 18 years old when he became a partner in the firm, which was formed in April 2008,” said Tan.

Tan also slammed a report in The Star today which quoted a state leader as alleging that the support letter had been issued even before Tee became a councillor.

“The support letter was dated August 12, which is exactly 42 days after he became a councillor. So the newspaper report is wrong,” he said.

Tan said that during the investigation, Soh had also pleaded ignorance over the number of jobs secured by Perkhidmatan AA and its cost.

“He told us he was not sure. He said maybe two or three jobs. And he said he did not know how much they cost. This does not make sense because if it was between 200 and 300 jobs and he cannot remember, then I can understand,” he said.