GEORGE TOWN, Oct 8 — The Pakatan Rakyat (PR) Penang government decided today to keep Iszuree Ibrahim as an island municipal councillor after the state PAS chapter offered to bear full responsibility for its representative’s attack against Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng.
The initial decision to sack Iszuree last week was reversed today after Penang PAS leaders met with Lim on October 2, said state executive councillor Dr Afif Bahardin on behalf of the state council.
“The state government has decided not to sack Iszuree from the council until we have further discussions with other parties including the other MPPP councillors,” Dr Afif told a news conference at the Chief Minister’s office in Komtar here.
The state councillor added that Penang PAS had offered to take full responsibility of Iszuree’s criticisms against Lim and the state government during a meeting last Thursday, in a bid to mend its tie with PR ally, DAP.
Iszuree was removed from three standing committees in the Penang Island Municipal Council and had his councillor’s allocation frozen due to his speech at his party’s annual congress in Johor last month that was seen as criticising Lim’s state development policies.
The PAS town councillor was quoted as saying the DAP state government was adopting Barisan Nasional’s pro-developer policies at the expense of the people in Malaysiakini on September 19 under the headline “PAS delegate says Penang pro-developer, like BN”.
Iszuree claimed he was misquoted by the news portal and explained he merely wanted the state to implement policies to protect the rights of villagers faced with eviction.
However, his explanations were not accepted by the state. He was also barred from making further statements by Penang PAS.
Dr Afif said the state government still holds the view that Iszuree spoken out of turn and made defamatory remarks against it in his speech.
“We feel that he has failed in his professional ethics as a councillor and he had lost the trust of all other councillors,” he said.
He added that while Iszuree will remain a councillor for now, he will not be reinstated to the the island council’s three standing committees and his allocations will be given to another PAS councillor, Nasir Yahya, and managed by the Islamist party in Penang.