CM the right person to chair SMA, says Wong

Sarawak Legislative Assembly Sitting, November 2017

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KUCHING, Nov 8: Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg should be appointed as chairman of Sarawak Multimedia Authority (SMA) because he also holds the portfolio of Digital Economy and Telecommunication.

International Trade and E-commerce Minister Dato Sri Wong Soon Koh who tabled the SMA 2017 bill explained that was the reason why Abang Johari will take up the chairmanship when SMA is set up.

He was responding to Kota Sentosa assemblyman Chong Chieng Jen who raised the
question why the chief minister is the chairman and not Wong, who is heading the E-commerce Ministry.

“It is public knowledge that the chief minister also holds the portfolio of Digital Economy and Telecommunication. It is only right that he should be appointed as the chairman,” said Wong.

Dato Sri Wong Soon Koh is seen speaking in the State Legislative Assembly in this screengrab.

He added that SMA will not be confined to e-commerce alone.

“It has wide-ranging objectives and it is all encompassing in fact, it includes the development of the entire digital economy,” said Wong in the second reading of the bill which he tabled at the State Legislative Assembly sitting today.

The Bawang Assan assemblyman said the Sarawak government is an elected government where the chief minister was elected by popular vote to govern the state.

He said the chief minister should be in charge of important agencies such as SMA.

“He has to be fully responsible for what this government is doing. How can you leave it to the advisor?

“He has to be in charge and let the advisors and experts advise him what to do. This is the proper way of doing things. This is also based on the Westminster Model,” said Wong. — DayakDaily