Penang in Malaysia to make Sept 16 a public holiday
Guan Eng: It will take effect next year 2009
George Town Penang will declare Sept 16 a public holiday - but it will probably not happen this year.
Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said the day would definitely be made a public holiday, but only from next year.
"We probably cannot have it this year as we already declared a public holiday on Aug 26.
"We have to take the business industry into consideration, as a day off would greatly
impact the sector," he told reporters yesterday after attending a drainage cleanlhress campaign in Tanjung Bungah near here.
He said it was the prerogative of the state government to give the holiday and there was
"spare dates" to declare Sept 16 as a holiday.
He said this in response to PKR adviser Datuk Seri Anwar lbrahim's proposal that all
Pakatan Rakyat states make Sept 16 a public holiday.
Anwar had said the Government should declare the day as a public holiday to mark the
anniversary of Malaysia's formation as it was the day when Sabah and Sarawak joined the country in 1963.
Penang Chinese Chamber of Commerce president Tan Sri Tan Kok Ping said the busi-
ness community would not be affected by the extra holiday as long as ample time was given.
"Since Lira said the public holiday would only be declared next year, everyone will have ample notice to prepare themselves to cushion the impact," he said.
He said the holiday should not be turned into an issue "as it is an important date to mark the anniversary of Malaysia's formation in 1963."
Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers northern branch chairman Datuk O.K. Lee said
the extra public holiday would not be "too costly" to the state.
"It is up to the management of the companies to observe it as a holiday. The management can always reschedule offdays for its employees or pay them overtime," he said.