KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 12 ― Former Pandan MP Rafizi Ramli says that people still addressed him with the “YB” honorific even though he was no longer a lawmaker.
Rafizi, who could not run for office in the 14th general election because he was convicted of illegally disclosing banking information in the National Feedlot Centre (NFC) corruption scandal, said he hoped no PKR MPs insisted on being called YB outside Parliament.
“If there is any, you should smack them,” Rafizi told Malay Mail in an exclusive interview here.
“In the beginning, I told people not to call me YB. Culturally, it's still a tall order. Even now, people come for meetings with me and we're discussing about clients and services, they still say ‘I would like to call you YB’. Everyone still calls me YB.”
Rafizi said MPs and government ministers should continuously advocate doing away with the cultural practice of being called YB outside the House.
Rafizi, who is running for deputy president in the PKR election against incumbent Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, also revealed plans to set up a cooperative for party members.
He noted that many PKR members lost jobs during the 1998 Reformasi movement against Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s administration.
“When we won, they still got nothing,” said Rafizi. “I think it’s about time the party looks after the welfare of people in need.”
He said he was looking for RM50 million in paid-up capital for the cooperative that can provide micro credit schemes, training, cheaper rental space, and marketing.
“Most of our members are working class. They sell nasi lemak, they’re lowly paid clerks.”