Mah Siew Keong is new Gerakan president

PETALING JAYA (Oct 26): Datuk Mah Siew Keong is Gerakan's new president.

The former acting secretary-general defeated the party's Penang state chairman Teng Chang Yeow after securing 1086 votes at the Gerakan's central leadership elections this morning.

Teng only garnered 577.

Mah takes over the responsibilities from acting president Datuk Chang Ko Youn, who had earlier decided not to defend the post.

Meanwhile Kedah state chairman Dr Cheah Soon Hai was named deputy president with 1113 votes. His contender, Kepong division chairman Ma Woei Chyi only managed 545 votes.

Former deputy Foreign Minister A Kohilan Pillay retained his post as vice president after garnering 1144 votes. He was the only incumbent who defended his post.

The other two are former central committee member Asharuddin Ahmad and Johor chairman Teo Kok Chee who garnered 1104 and 1226 respectively.

When met by reporters, Mah said he was proud to work in the same team with Cheah, although the win was not “an easy burden” as Gerakan were facing many challenges.

Among them was to address weaknesses among the grassroots, organisation and the recruitment of new and younger members.

“If we work together, we can bring the party up again.

“We want to get good results in Penang,” he said, alluding to their performance at the next general election in a state which they once administered.

When asked of Teng's political fate, the former deputy Agriculture and Agro based minister said, that he would be appointed as a central committee member.

On whether he will still push for party presidents to serve a maximum of two terms, Mah said it was a concept he believed in and the party would work on a mechanism to implement the idea.

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