Media Statement by Dr.Ong Kian Ming, DAP Selangor Treasurer and Member of Parliament for Bangi on the 15th of November 2021

Challenges and Opportunities for DAP Selangor Moving Ahead

Initiatives at the local government level, and better preparation to deal with public health challenges especially in the light of COVID19 being an endemic virus that needs long term management. The DAP Selangor state committee elections, which have been postponed since May 2021, finally took place yesterday on Sunday, the 14th of November 2021. While the media headlines will undoubtedly focus on who was and who was NOT elected, the elections campaign itself, which was drawn out for more than a year, highlights many of the challenges as well as opportunities that DAP Selangor faces as the party moves ahead in the most developed and economically important state in the country.

1. The false narrative of “Grassroots versus Elites”

The DAP Selangor elections was falsely painted as a contest between the so called “grassroots” candidates comprising of a few local councillors (past and current), a handful of state representatives (or ADUNs) and a few incumbent state committee members versus the “elites” who were mostly the elected representatives (MPs as well as ADUNs). While this may have been a useful narrative for the media to write about and for some candidates to use as a campaign slogan, the truth of the matter is that this is was and is a false narrative.

All elected representatives must be close to their own grassroots, especially with the members in their respective constituencies, so that there can have a good working relationship to increase the outreach and influence of the party. While an elected representative may not get along with ALL members in his or her constituency, I can safely say that nearly all elected representatives in DAP Selangor enjoy majority support of the grassroots in their respective constituencies. Ironically, some of the so-called grassroots leaders do not even enjoy majority support from the members in their own areas because of their poor service records, bad reputations, and the inability to work with other grassroots members.

Some in the media and some candidates during the campaign have tried to paint a division between the supposedly more “educated” representatives who are labelled as the “elites” versus the educational background. A so-called “educated” elite can be more hardworking and goes down to service record can be easily evaluated by members as well as voters and this has nothing to do with his or her educational background. A so-called “educated” elite can be more hardworking and goes down to the ground more often than a so-called “grassroots” leader educational background. A so-called “educated” elite can be more hardworking and goes down to the ground more often than a so-called “grassroots” leader.

Thankfully, the election results in Selangor show that the campaign to paint these false narratives have failed dramatically, despite some last-minute desperate attempts by certain candidates.

2. Teamwork and Check & Balance

The election results in Selangor this time round highlights two distinct trends among the DAP members in the state. Firstly, the members clearly want a strong and united DAP with leaders who can work effectively with one another to increase the influence and reputation of the party in the state and nationally. The candidates without a strong track record of teamwork and some with a reputation of causing disunity and harm to the party clearly lost out. This does not mean that the members do not want a culture of internal democracy and healthy debate within the party. But it does mean that the way this discussion takes place must not result in harming the larger reputation and internal cohesion of the party.At the same time, the members have also shown that they want an element of a healthy “check and balance” within the state committee. Four of the Fifteen candidates elected to the state committee are NOT elected representatives (MPs or ADUNs) while 5 elected representatives (all ADUNs) failed to win enough votes to get into the top 15.

This is a healthy trend as it results in a state committee that has different views on several issues and with different skills and capabilities based on their diverse backgrounds. As long as the core principles and the future direction of the state committee are aligned, these differences demonstrate the strength of diversity within the party leadership.

3. Finding space for new talents DAP

I’ve known has always been focused on giving opportunities to younger members and leaders to gain experience and exposure at different levels of government and elected office since the 2000s. The newly elected Selangor state committee is also relatively young by the standards of politics in the country with no one above the age of 50. Most of us are in our 30s and 40s and I am a relatively “senior” member of the committee at 46 years of age this year. We have appointed a few younger leaders with diverse backgrounds among the five co-opted members including Michelle Ng, a lawyer by training and the ADUN for Subang Jaya, Dr Quah Perng Fei, a medical doctor and local councillor in Klang and Yugarajah A/L Palanisamy, a former assistant to a Selangor exco member and current local councillor in Shah Alam.

The process of giving younger members and leaders platforms at various levels for them to contribute will continue with the future appointment of heads of various bureaus in the state and the continued rejuvenation of candidates at the local, women’s and youth councils in the various districts and municipalities in Selangor. The challenge for the party is to ensure that these young leaders are given the space and opportunity to be effective in their respective roles in the party and in the state government.

4. Working Effectively as a team to advocate for progressive and inclusive policies in the state government

Moving forward, the main challenge facing the DAP in Selangor is to find new strategies for different leaders and members within the party to advocate for more progressive and inclusive policies in the state government. And this must be done in a concerted, organized, and holistic manner with different leaders and members working as a team to achieve common goals. This includes policy domains such as more inclusive housing policies, better public transportation planning, more sustainable initiatives at the local government level, and better prepared to deal with public health challenges especially in the light of COVID19 being an endemic virus that needs long term management. some potentially sensitive issues such as local government elections.ed, and holistic manner with different leaders and members working as a team to achieve common goals. This includes policy domains such as more inclusive housing policies, better public transportation planning, more sustainability this is not easy as there are various channels that can be used to communicate and put into the effect these party aspirations as policies of the Pakatan Harapan (PH) state government which includes other PH component parties. This requires strategic coordination and communication by the DAP with our PH coalition partners to find room to implement some of the policies and plans including on some potential sensitive issues such as local government elections.

But this must start with a clear vision and strategic plan on the part of the Selangor state committee and this needs to be done soon in preparation of ensuring that we have a good report card to show for Selangor before the next general election.

5. Some warning signs to be aware of

As the DAP grows bigger and more diverse in our membership and as the stakes of being elected to positions in the party grow larger, it is not unexpected that the contests and the campaigns for these positions will grow more heated. If done right, these party elections can lead to a healthier culture of democratic debate and contestation within a party. But if not careful, these elections may quickly turn into a contest to see which candidate can offer more “goodies” whether it is in the form of allocations government positions to those branch leaders or local warlords who claim that they control a certain number of branches and the votes that comes with this control.

DAP Selangor plays a crucial role in showing how we can play an effective role as an important component party holding influential positions in the state government to advocate for and implement policies that can bring about long-term positive impacts for the people of Selangor. The effectiveness of DAP in Selangor – the performance of our leaders, our elected representatives, and our local councillors – and how we work with our PH component party leaders to achieve better outcomes for Selangor will provide a clear example of how we can and will govern as an effective coalition at the national level.

6. Final thoughts on the importance of Selangor in national politics

DAP Selangor plays a crucial role in showing how we can play an effective role as an important component party holding influential positions in the state government to advocate for and implement policies which can bring about long-term positive impacts forthe people of Selangor. The effectiveness of DAP in Selangor – the performance of our leaders, our elected representatives, and our local councillors – and how we work with our PH component party leaders to achieve better outcomes for Selangor will provide a clear example of how we can and will govern as an effective coalition at the national level.

The work of the new Selangor DAP state committee began yesterday with the results of the state committee elections and must go on until the next general election.

#dapselangor

#binaharapanbangi

#parlimenp102bangi

Kenyataan Media oleh Dr. Ong Kian Ming, Ahli Parlimen Bangi merangkap Pembantu Pengarah Pendidikan Politik Parti Tindakan Demokratik (DAP) pada 17 Julai 2021

Terima kasih atas peluang yang diberikan untuk memainkan peranan yang membina dalam Operasi Lonjakan Kapasiti di Lembah Klang

Saya ingin berterima kasih kepada YAB Dato Seri Amirudin Shari, Menteri Besar Selangor, kerana memberikan saya peluang untuk mengkoordinasi peningkatan proses vaksinasi COVID19 dalam industri di Selangor bersama dengan agensi kerajaan persekutuan yang berkenaan sebagai sebahagian daripada “Operasi Lonjakan Kapasiti” (OLK). Tujuan OLK ini adalah untuk memastikan setiap orang dewasa di Lembah Klang (Selangor dan Kuala Lumpur) menerima sekurang-kurangnya SATU dos vaksin Covid-19 menjelang 1 Ogos. Saya juga ingin berterima kasih kepada Menteri Koordinasi Vaksin COVID19, YB Khairy Jamaluddin kerana bersetuju untuk mengadakan temujanji ini dan juga untuk inisiatif beliau untuk melaksanakan OLK memandangkan terdapat jumlah kes COVID19 yang sangat tinggi di Lembah Klang dalam dua minggu yang lepas. Saya tidak sabar untuk bekerjasama dengan Dato’ Teng Chang Kim, yang bertanggungjawab ke atas pelaksanaan program industri SELVAX di Selangor bersama dengan pasukan beliau yang berkebolehan di SELCARE, dan juga dengan Senator Dato’ Lim Ban Hong, Timbalan Menteri MITI yang bertanggungjawab ke atas pelaksanaan program PIKAS untuk sektor pembuatan di Malaysia bersama dengan pasukannya yang berkebolehan di MITI.

Masih terdapat banyak kerja untuk dilakukan untuk meningkatkan kapasiti pemberian vaksin yang akan menyaksikan 1.3 juta dos vaksin diedarkan daripada 26 Julai sehingga 1 Ogos 2021, di mana kira-kira 500,000 dos akan diedarkan kepada pekerja di industri (250,000 untuk program SELVAX dan 250,000 untuk program PIKAS MITI). Perkara ini bermakna kapasiti harian di Lembah Klang perlu ditingkatkan daripada 180,000 dos sehari (purata 14 ke 18 Julai) kepada 210,000 dos sehari (untuk tempoh dari 19 Julai ke 25 Julai) dan kemudiannya ditingkatkan lagi ke sekurang-kurangnya 272,000 dos sehari untuk tempoh di antara 26 Julai ke 1 Ogos (lihat Rajah 1 di bawah). Perkara ini memerlukan peningkatan edaran dos vaksin di PPV sedia ada di bawah PICK, dan juga 5 tempat di bawah program SELVAX sedia ada, dan pusat PIKAS yang akan dibuka tidak lama lagi di Selangor dan Kuala Lumpur. 

MITI dan SELCARE (yang melaksanakan program SELVAX) perlu memastikan terdapat koordinasi di antara kedua-dua badan ini untuk mengelakkan pertindihan di antara syarikat yang mahu memberikan vaksin kepada pekerja mereka dalam tempoh pelaksanaan OLK ini. Perlu juga terdapat komunikasi yang jelas di antara MITI dan SELCARE untuk mengenal pasti syarikat yang telah mendaftar untuk kedua-dua program (SELVAX dan PIKAS) dan mengenal pasti syarikat yang belum mendaftar untuk mana-mana program. Sebagai contoh, syarikat yang rela dan mampu membayar untuk program SELVAX patut kekal dengan program tersebut manakala syarikat yang tidak mampu untuk mendapatkan vaksin melalui program SELVAX boleh menunggu dan memohon kepada program PIKAS MITI. Lebih banyak tempat pemberian vaksin PIKAS dan SELVAX mungkin perlu dibuka untuk membolehkan pengedaran lebih banyak vaksin. 

SELCARE juga perlu bekerjasama dengan MySejahtera untuk memastikan status mereka yang telah divaksinasikan dengan program SELVAX dikemaskini secepat mungkin supaya mereka tidak pula diberikan slot vaksinasi dalam MySejahtera. Kebolehan MySejahtera untuk mengemaskini pangkalan data mereka untuk mengambil kira vaksinasi SELVAX ini amatlah penting dalam membolehkan program OLK ini untuk mencapai objektif vaksinasi penuh di Lembah Klang menjelang 1 Ogos. 

Butiran lain perlu diperkemaskan oleh semua pemegang taruh dalam tempoh minggu hadapan, sebelum OLK bermula dengan kapasiti penuh dalam minggu yang bermula pada 26 Julai 2021. Kita perlu bekerjasama dan meletakkan politik ke tepi untuk membolehkan OLK ini berjaya bagi menurunkan jumlah kes harian COVID19, dan lebih penting lagi, supaya jumlah kes COVID19 yang serius yang memerlukan kemasukan ke hospital dan unit rawatan rapi juga dapat dikurangkan. 

Media Statement by Dr. Ong Kian Ming, Member of Parliament for Bangi and Assistant Political Education Director for the Democratic Action Party (DAP) on the 17th of July, 2021

Thankful for the opportunity to play a constructive role in Operation Surge Capacity in the Klang Valley

I would like to thank YAB, Dato Seri Amirudin Shari, Menteri Besar of Selangor, for giving me the opportunity to coordinate the ramp up of COVID19 vaccinations among the industry in Selangor together with the relevant federal agencies as part of “Operation Surge Capacity” (OSC).[1] The purpose of OSC is to ensure that every single adult in the Klang Valley (Selangor and KL) receives at least ONE dose of one of the COVID19 vaccines by the 1st of August. I would also like to express my thanks to the Coordinating Minister for the COVID19 vaccine rollout, YB Khairy Jamaluddin for agreeing to this appointment and for his initiative in coming up with OSC in light of the high number of cases in the Klang Valley over the past two weeks.[2] I look forward to working with Dato’ Teng Chang Kim, who is overseeing the rollout of the SELVAX Industry program in Selangor, and his capable team at SELCARE and also Senator Dato’ Lim Ban Hong, Deputy Minister of MITI, who is overseeing the rollout of the PIKAS program for the manufacturing sector in Malaysia, and his capable team at MITI.

There is still much work to be done to prepare for this ramp up which will see 1.3m doses of vaccines being administered from the 26th of July to the 1st of August 2021 out of which 500,000 doses will be administered for industry workers (250,000 for SELVAX Industry and 250,000 for MITI’s PIKAS). This means that the daily capacity in the Klang Valley will have to be increased from 180,000 daily doses currently (14th to 18th of July) to 210,000 daily doses (from 19th to the 25th of July) and then to at least 272,000 daily doses from the 26th of July to the 1st of August 2021 (Diagram 1 below). This would require an increase in the daily doses administered by the current PPVs under PICK, in the existing 5 sites that are already operating under SELVAX Industry and in the current and soon to be opened PIKAS sites in Selangor and KL.

MITI and SELCARE (who runs the SELVAX Industry program) will have to coordinate to minimize the amount of overlap between companies that want to get their workers vaccinated during the OSC. There also needs to be clear communication by MITI and SELCARE for those companies which have signed up for both programs (SELVAX Industry and PIKAS) and those who have yet to sign up for any program. For example, those who are willing and able to pay for the SELVAX Industry program should remain committed to this program while those who may not be able to afford the SELVAX Industry program can wait and / or apply for the MITI PIKAS program. More PIKAS and SELVAX Industry vaccination sites may have to be opened to cater to the increase in the number of vaccinations.

SELCARE will also have to work MySejahtera to push for those who have been vaccinated under the SELVAX program to have their MySejahtera status updated as soon as possible so that these individuals won’t be allocated slots by MySejahtera to go for their vaccination appointments. The ability of MySejatera to update its database to reflect the SELVAX vaccinations is especially important in impacting the ability of OSC to reach its objective of reaching full vaccination in the Klang Valley by the 1st of August.

Other details will have to be worked out by all of the stakeholders next week, before the OSC begins full force on the week starting 26th of July, 2021. We must work together closely and put politics aside in order for the OSC to work so as to bring down the number of COVID19 daily cases and more importantly, those with serious COVID19 cases and needs to be hospitalized and put in the ICU.

Diagram 1: Key figures in Operation Surge Capacity (OSC) to achieve full vaccination among adults 18 and over in the Klang Valley (Selangor and KL)




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Source: CITF

[1] https://twitter.com/AmirudinShari/status/1416015854886473728

[2] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ObeHAhqSotg (Minute 10) and https://www.malaymail.com/news/malaysia/2021/07/16/khairy-operation-surge-capacity-to-ensure-every-klang-valley-adult-gets-fir/1990440