DAP had previously criticised the PAS-led Kelantan state government for the same move.
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Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow’s new ride was welcomed with criticism from pretty much everyone.
The RM458,000 selenite-grey, Mercedes-Benz S560e luxury hybrid saloon, was bought by the state to replace the Chief’s old official car – a Mercedes S300L purchased for and used by the former Penang CM Lim Guan Eng since 2013 and cost RM298,263.
The new car was said to be purchased in 2019 with a discount of RM127,765
Not the best time?
Many began questioning the State Government’s decision to get the new car considering how loud members of the Opposition were at condemning the Kelantan State Government for its purchase of luxury vehicles, which made headlines in 2020.
Former Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman took to social media and openly compared the Penang State government with Kelantan’s and added that the rakyat was fed-up by the extravagance shown by “VIPs” – with their fancy imported cars, luxurious meals and events.
The rakyat are struggling, sick and hungry. The Covid-19 crisis, the flood crisis. There are those who slept for over 8 months in their car because they couldn’t afford rent. There are those who drowned due to collapsing from exhaustion helping kampung residents because of floods.via Facebook
Terengganu PKR Youth Chief Nazhan Zulkifli was also reported as saying that such behaviour would make the rakyat sick of politicians and said that the Penang government owes the people an apology.
We do not want to be an opposition that only knows to attack the other side, but at the end of the day, we do things just like them. This is akin to a crab trying to teach its offspring how to walk straight.Nazhan Zulkifli via Malaysiakini
Of course former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak also took a shot at DAP, saying that the party would only be “furious” when the Kelantan PAS government made such purchases.
It’s okay for Penang’s DAP government to buy a new Mercedes for Guan Eng in 2014. It was okay for Penang’s DAP government to buy a new Mercedes for Chow Kon Yeow months after the pandemic. But don’t let it be Kelantan’s PAS government that buys a Mercedes because Guan Eng would be furious.via Facebook
On social media, netizens were also voicing their dissatisfaction over the issue saying that it was a waste of taxpayer money.
No, I do not agree with the Penang CM's purchase of the RM420k Mercedes-Benz while others are suffering.— Ivan Ong 🇲🇾 (@IvanAlexOng) January 8, 2021
There is no necessity to buy a luxury car using the people's money when hundreds of thousands have lost jobs due to Covid-19 and thousands are affected by bad flooding.
Some even took to comparing how members of the Opposition were critical on other accounts of luxurious spending but remain silent in light of the current situation.
Still no respond from some DAP leaders such as Hannah Yeoh, Marina Ibrahims and etc on this Penang Chief Minister’s new rm400k++ Mercedes during such a disastrous pandemic. where have they gone?— August Teh 🧢⚖️🇲🇾 (@august_teh) January 8, 2021
They can condemn others, but why keep silent on one of theirs? pic.twitter.com/lkRWP8EUZs
Greatest hits. pic.twitter.com/Clmhx2xvn9— 🇲🇾 MVP (@RimauXI) January 7, 2021
Malaysian cars not good enough?
Penang has reportedly been upgrading its fleet of state official vehicles since 2019, explaining that new cars would be safer and cost less on maintenance.
In 2020, the Kelantan State Government purchased 14 Mercedes-Benz for the use of state officials with Kelantan Menteri Besar Datuk Mohd Amar Nik Abdullah reported as saying that it was also due to safety reasons.
Perak’s former Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Faizal Azumu also had his official car upgraded from a Toyota Camry to a Lexus ES sedan, last year.
However that same year, Guan Eng who was Malaysian Finance Minister at the time, announced that the Federal Government would keep using the Malaysian-made Proton Perdana as its official car after it was reported that the government intended to replace its fleet of official vehicles with imported cars.
Typing out trending issues and walking the fine line between deep and dumb.