I was at the parliament around noon today to observe the swearing in of new MPs to the august house. Many of the new MPs are my friends. Congratulations!
At the lobby, there was a record turnout of reporters and journalists too. Altantuya's dad and his Mongolian translator were seen miggling with the press and some politicians. From his facial expression, I am sure he is anxious to seek an immediate justice for his daughter. Which parent doesn't?
I met up briefly with the newly minted Minister of Transport Ong Tee Keat and exchanged pleasantry. I expect Ong to play an important role in the rehabilitation of MCA. He is expected to contest the No.2 position since Chan Kong Choy had announced his intention to retire early. Ong warned of MCA losing its members to the Pakatan Rakyat if the party does not reform fast.
I was greeted by another familiar face, John Phang, who was an aide to Hishammudin Hussein but left Hisham to join a top consulting company and now back to help Kuli (Tengku Razaleigh). We exchanged some views on Kuli contesting the UMNO's top post and his possible running mate. At 71 yrs old, I am sure Kuli can still do what John McCain is doing - running for the top office.
Also, I met up with my MP Liew Chin Tong (Bukit Bendera). I commented on his elegant suit and shoe. As usual, he was grinning ear to ear.
I managed to say hi to Fong Poh Kuan (who is cutting a leaner self), Chong Eng, Nga Kor Ming and others. I missed the presence of Chia Kwang Chye, Lee Kah Choon and a few others whom I have worked with in the past.
Finally, I was supposed to join Penang CM Lim Guan Eng for lunch but he was swarmed by reporters. I quietly made my way out and stumbled upon MP Charles Santiago. I asked him about his failure to submit parliament questions on time. This is not the usual Charles who normally armed with dozens of questions. He was sick and did not make the deadline. Another time, Charles and make up for the lost opportunity. Still as hip as usual, with an ear stud on his left earlobe.
In sum, it will be an exciting session with a record turnout and good attendance. Neither side can afford to slip.