As expected, MCA MP for Labis Chua Tee Yong has declined to debate with DAP MP for PJ Utara Tony Pua over the Talam debt restructuring deal despite his claims of massive wrongdoing by the Pakatan Rakyat-led Selangor state government.
Tee Yong, who is also the son of scandal-tainted MCA president Chua Soi Lek, has been written off by many pundits and members of the public as a 'sure loser' if the debate took place. At 32, Tee Yong may be the one of the youngest 'Datuks' in the country but his oratorical skills and ability to articulate himself still needs seasoning.
Threatening to expose more Talam misdeeds by Mentri Besar Khalid Ibrahim's administration, Tee Yong also declined to respond to another Pakatan leader - PKR's Rafizi Ramli - who had a day ago warned that he would expose MCA's links with Talam.
“I am not going to respond to his statements and threats,” the MCA-owned Star newspaper reported Tee Yong as saying.
Tony had a day ago slammed Tee Yong for his huge mathematical errors over the Talam deal, which Tee Yong has yet to acknowledge. Tony challenged the Labis MP to a debate so that the Malaysian public could gauge for themselves and decide who was telling the truth and who was lying.
"Datuk Chua (Tee Yong) has become an embarrassment for the MCA as he stumbles from one mega-blunder to another. I call upon Datuk Chua to end his misery once and for all, with a public and open debate in any language, at a time and place of his choosing, even if it is held at Wisma MCA over the Talam Debt Recovery: A Billion Ringgit Bailout or a Billion Ringgit Mega-Blunder," Tony had said in a statement.
Khalid has also announced Selangor would appoint 5 accounting firms to review the Talam deal. Tee Yong has also failed to respond to this. So far, he has clung on to his claims, despite the errors pointed out to him.
This perceived lack of fair play has sparked great public annoyance with him for being a sore loser.
Father and son 'disaster team' for the MCA
The recent fiascoes hatched by the father and son team has caused deep rumblings in their party. Within MCA, a simmering revolt is already out in the open. The party has been fractious for years and after Soi Lek took over the presidency from Pandan MP Ong Tee Keat in 2010, there was a lull but only waiting for the storm to break.
Earlier this week, MCA elders were forced to use the party grapevine to warn against a purported plan by Soi Lek to sell 45-acres of land belonging to Kolej Tunku Abdul Rahman for RM100mil.
The rumor sparked massive outrage as not only was the college land considered a 'sacred trust' to be reserved for future expansion, the price tag was shockingly low. One pundit said it was at least ten times less than the market value given the prime location of the land in Setapak, Kuala Lumpur and accused Soi Lek of trying to benefit himself and his cronies with the deal.
Like his embattled son, Soi Lek has come out to deny the rumor - pinning the blame on arch rival DAP.
“The motive to destroy MCA is clear as the rumour was spread right after the DAP insulted the inception of TARC during the debate on Sunday as there are people who do not wish to see the success of TARC,” Soi Lek said in a statement on Friday.
Cowardice in Malacca too
Earlier this month, Soi Lek and team had also tried to discredit DAP secretary-general and Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng with accusations of an extra-marital affair.
But instead of hitting Guan Eng directly, they did so through the Malacca state assembly, where Guan Eng's wife Betty Chew is the Kota Laksamana assemblywoman.
When Guan Eng challenged them to repeat their accusations outside the assembly where they would no longer enjoy legal immunity, Soi Lek and team did not do so for fear of being sued for defamation as they could not stump up the proof.