Seen frequenting ministers’ offices, Johor PKR MP insists not crossing over to Perikatan
Tebrau MP Steven Choong denied that he was joining the ruling Perikatan Nasional (PN) coalition as alleged. — Picture courtesy of Facebook/Steven Choong Shiau Yoon

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KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 25 — PKR’s Tebrau MP Steven Choong today denied that he is joining the ruling Perikatan Nasional (PN) coalition as alleged.

But the Opposition lawmaker acknowledged that he had been visiting ministers in their offices, adding that it could be what triggered the speculation.

“I was approached by my party regarding a news report speculating I will join PN.

“I think this speculation must have arisen because I was seen going to see certain ministers on solving citizenship issues, house quarantine permission when returning from overseas, white dividing lines and potholes issues and flooding issues and etc,” he wrote on his Facebook page.

Choong said he has given an explanation to his party, including its president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

He regularly raises issues to the ministers’ attention in the last few months.

He also disclosed that each time, he would be offered a government-linked company position, but that he has told PKR leaders that he is not after lucrative posts.

“I just want to serve the rakyat,” he said.

Choong explained that he felt very embarrassed when he failed to make an appointment to take his constituents to meet ministers back when Pakatan Harapan (PH) was the government.

He related that some said it would be easy to fix an appointment with the minister’s personal assistant (PA), but he said the reality was that “the PA will not take calls or reply messages and after a few months no appointment at all”.

He added that even after being granted a meeting, it would be brief, leaving him scant minutes to highlight the problem.

“I have pressing big issues in my kawasan but all not are solved or even being offered an answer as to why they can’t be solved during the 22 months PH was in power.

“So my question to a few PN ministers which I have met to bring issues to them is whether I can get to see any other minister within a reasonable time as an ordinary MP and I will not suffer the same humiliation that I suffered during PH time?

“My party leaders accepted the above explanation on the basis that they don’t believe PN could satisfy my so-called demand which to me is not a demand but merely to put them off from trying,” Choong said.

The first-term MP was alleged to have quit PKR last May, shortly after PN came to power.