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Sunday December 22, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Sunday December 22, 2013 MYT 8:45:25 AM
KUALA LUMPUR: Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai won the MCA presidency with a 186-vote majority in a hard-fought race.
He polled 1,186 votes to defeat his main challenger Gan Ping Sieu who garnered 1,000. Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat was a distant third with 160 votes.
The 52-year-old Liow is a fourth term Bentong MP and deputy president prior to the elections yesterday.
The deputy presidency went to Datuk Dr Wee Ka Siong who won 1,408 votes to defeat Datuk Donald Lim Siang Chai who polled 927.
Liow said after his victory that he would work on transforming the party and lead it into a new era.
“It is time for us to put the party’s unsatisfactory performance in the last two general elections behind us,” he said at the 60th MCA annual general meeting at Wisma MCA here.
In 2008, MCA won 15 parliamentary and 31 state seats out of the 40 parliamentary and 90 state seats it contested.
In the May 5 general election this year, the party only won seven parliamentary and 11 state seats.
Liow said he believed all elected leaders could work as one.
The former Health Minister said the leaders were all great assets to MCA, and he believed they would give their best to rebuild the party.
“We will make sure that whatever we do is based on people-oriented principles,” he said, adding that they would continue to reach out to the grassroots.
Commenting on the voting trend in the party elections, Liow said central delegates had also sent out a signal that they rejected factionalism.
On whether MCA under the new leadership would accept posts in the Cabinet, Liow said any decision on the matter would have to go through the central committee first.
Gan congratulated Liow on his victory. He urged his supporters to back the new president and said it was vital for all members to close ranks and work for the betterment of the party.
Gan believed his loss could have been due to his lack of experience and that he was not an elected representative.
He said he would continue to serve the party in his capacity as MCA Kluang division chief.
Former president Ong, for whom this is a second failed bid to to regain the top position, could not be contacted for comment.
For the four vice-president posts, Datuk Lee Chee Leong topped the list with 1,642 votes, followed by Datuk Dr Hou Kok Chung (1,475), Datuk Chua Tee Yong (1,343) and Datin Paduka Chew Mei Fun (1,230).
Chua is a second term Labis MP and MCA young professionals bureau chief.
Lee is Kampar MCA chief, Dr Hou is former Kluang MP and Chew is former PJ Utara MP.
For the 25 central committee member posts, Chenderiang assemblyman Datuk Dr Mah Hang Soon took the top slot while Penang Wanita MCA chief Ooi Siew Kim was the only female winner.
She polled 1,250 votes to clinch 13th spot.
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Politics, mca elections, liow
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