Monday, May 13, 2013

New faces from Sabah, Sarawak expected to be in the Federal Cabinet Lineup, post General Election 2013

This is an article by Bernama, the Malaysian National News Agency

New faces from Sabah and Sarawak have been speculated will fill vacancies following the decision by Barisan Nasional (BN) component parties, MCA and Gerakan not to accept any posts in the Cabinet.

The decision by MCA and Gerakan, which are the biggest Chinese parties in BN, were on the basis of 'respecting the decision of voters, after they performed poorly in the 13th general election (GE13) on May 5.

Among the names mentioned to be appointed as ministers to represent the community is Sarawak Progressive Democratic Party (SPDP) deputy president Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing, 52, who is Bintulu Member of Parliament and ex-chairman of the BN Backbenchers Club.
Tiong, a holder of a Masters degree in business administration and political science from the Royal Ireland Institute of Business and Technology, is an entreprenuer in property development, construction and timber industry for the past 20 years.

Other than Tiong, two members of Parliament from Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS), namely Datin Linda Tsen Thau Lin, 57, (Batu Sapi) and Datuk Mary Yap Kain Ching @ Mary Yap Ken Jin, 62, (Tawau) are also speculated will be new faces in the Cabinet.

Linda Tsen, PBS Wanita deputy chief first won in the Batu Sapi by-election on Nov 4, 2010 following the death of her husband Datuk Edmond Chong Ket Wah in a road mishap, and was a professional musician from the United Kingdom Trinity College of Music and Fellowship at the London College of Music.

Meanwhile, Mary Yap, who contested for the first time in GE13, was a former super principal who held the JUSA post before retiring in 2007.

Mary Yap, who has a Masters in Education from Leeds University, United Kingdom, was also a senior consultant at Institute Aminuddin Baki and was on the advisory panel to the Education Minister for cluster schools.

Other than the three Members of Parliament, several Members of Parliament from Umno were also mentioned. Among them is Datuk Halimah Mohd Sadique, 51, the Tenggara Member of Parliament who is said will fill the post of Women, Family and Community Development Minister following her four terms experience as Johor's Family Development, Women's Affairs and Health Committee chairman.

Halimah, a former teacher, who contested in the Tenggara Parliamentary seat for the first time in 2008, is also seen as among the aggressive Members of Parliament.

Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin, 37, and his Information chief Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merizan, 41, are also said will be among the new faces in the Cabinet this time.

Khairy, Perbadanan Usahawan Nasional Bhd chairman, who won the Rembau parliamentary seat in GE13, holds a Masters degree in "Legal and Political Theory" from University College London.

While Reezal Merican, who was the political secretary to former Prime Minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, made his election debut in GE13.

Also said to be in the running are three former menteris besar. They are Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim, 62, (Perlis), Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid, 53, (Kedah) and Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh, 58, (Terengganu).

Former Cabinet members expected to make a comeback are Datuk Dr Jamaluddin Jarjis, 61, and Datuk Seri Dr Hilmi Yahaya, 64.

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