KUALA LUMPUR: Bintulu MP Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing's statement on the Health director-general has been twisted by the Opposition, says Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim (pic).
The Perikatan Nasional Backbenchers Club chairman (PNBBC) said Tiong only wanted clarification on why the Health director-general had not gone to the ground in Sabah.
"That was not Tiong's intention. He was only asking what the people and frontliners are saying.
"Then the Opposition lawmakers took advantage and asked him to retract his statement," he told reporters at the Parliament building on Wednesday (Nov 11).
Earlier, Tiong's remarks that Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah "is afraid to die" for not going personally to Sabah to monitor the Covid-19 situation had sparked an outcry in the Dewan Rakyat.
The shouting match saw emotional rebukes from Opposition MPs, and RSN Rayer (PH-Jelutong) was ejected by Deputy Speaker Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said, who was visibly incensed after the DAP lawmaker refused to heed her calls to sit down.
Shahidan, who is the Arau MP, said that the Perikatan government was serious in its efforts and had taken various measures to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.
"The general public knows that the Perikatan government is serious in its efforts to fight Covid-19, unlike the Pakatan Harapan government," he said.
Pressed whether Tiong should apologise for his remarks, Shahidan said Pakatan should apologise first as the coalition had appeared to be not as serious in tackling Covid-19 when it first hit the country.
"They should apologise first as they did not do much when they were in power," he said.