Feb 1, 09 6:31pm
Perak state assembly deputy speaker Hee Yit Fong today fuelled speculation of her imminent crossover over to MCA following her disappearance from the public.
Hee, 46, who is the DAP's state representative for Jelapang, was rumoured to be defecting to MCA.
The speculation intensified after she had missed a state and party function recently. She was also absent from the meeting chaired by Mentri Besar Mohamad Nizar Jamaluddin this morning.
The media went into overdrive when all attempts to contact her via her mobile telephone had been unsuccessful.
And sources said she would be attending a MCA function tonight in Ipoh.
However, the mystery over her disappearance was solved when her party leaders managed to contact her later in the day.
It was learnt that Hee had stressed to her party leaders of her continued support for DAP and Pakatan Rakyat.
Perak DAP chief Ngeh Koo Ham also confirmed to Malaysiakini that Hee had been in touch and would not be defecting.
Found in her house
The Chinese media had also tracked her to her house in Ipoh.
She had reportedly told the reporters that she was not in hiding but had switched off her handphone due to too many phone calls asking her to comment on the defection rumour.
Talks of Hee defecting from DAP is not new. Such talks first emerged in May last year but Hee continued to stay with DAP and Pakatan.
It is an open secret that Hee has not be on good terms with DAP state leaders, in particular the Ngeh-Nga cousins - Perak DAP chief Ngeh and the party's state secretary Nga Kor Ming.
In recent days, Hee has missed two key events.
The first was DAP's Chinese New Year open house on Jan 26, in which Hee said that she went back to her hometown in Penang.
The other was Perak government's Chinese New Year celebration in Ipoh padang two days ago.
She said that she had a prior meeting with her supporters.
BN may have the numbers
If Hee had defected, BN would have had the three additional representatives it needed to claim government.
The other two are Behrang assemblyman Jamaluddin Mat Radzi and Changkat Jering assemblyman Osman Jailu, both of whom have been missing for almost one week.
At present, Pakatan has 32 seats in Perak with DAP (18), PKR (8) and PAS (6), while BN has 27 with Umno (26) and MCA (1).
Menteri Besar Mohamad Nizar Jamaluddin may however exercise his option of calling a snap election in Perak.
But the Perak sultan will be called to play a pivotal role on whether to agree with Mohmad Nizar in dissolving the state assembly or hand over the state government to the one which commands the majority, which in this case could be BN.
However, with only two likely defections, Mohamad Nizar will most likely to be pressing for by-elections in the two state seats held by Jamaluddin and Osman.