CHIEF Minister Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon was holding back his tears as he spoke about contributions by the late politician Tan Sri Alex Lee.
Dr Koh was addressing the recipients of the Tan Sri Alex Lee Excellence Award 2005 and their parents at the Penang Gerakan headquarters recently.
He became emotional when he was describing Lee as a significant figure in his life.
Those present were momentarily stunned when Dr Koh paused for at least about four minutes halfway through his speech.
When he continued, his voice crac-ked with emotion.
Dr Koh said Lee was a great leader of the Gerakan party who had sacrificed his time, energy and personal resour-ces.
“He was also a man dedicated to-wards the development of sports, especially squash.
“It was through his constant en-couragement that Malaysia today can boast of Nicol David, ranked third in the world,” he said.
A total of 15 students, children of state Gerakan members, received RM1,000 each in recognition of their outstanding academic performance.
Among them were vice-president Datuk Dr Teng Hock Nan’s son Victor Teng Sheng Yeow who scored 12As and state Wanita Gerakan chief Ng Siew Lai’s daughter Sea Yong Shi who obtai-ned 10As in the SPM examination.
The award was instituted in 2000 in memory of Lee’s outstanding service to the party and country.
Lee, who was the youngest son of the late Tun Sir Henry H.S.Lee, the nation’s first finance minister, died at the age of 60 during a scuba-diving outing in Pa-pua New Guinea in 1999.
Lee was Deputy Agriculture Minister and Deputy National Unity and Social Development Minister.