ALOR SETAR, Aug 9 (Bernama) -- The Kedah state assembly descended into chaos Sunday after a Pakatan member accused Barisan Nasional (BN) of being a "pariah".
Lim Soo Nee (PKR-Kulim), who was debating the pig abattoir issue, said that the BN had acted like a pariah when it was in power.
The remark riled up several BN members including Datuk Syed Sobri Syed Hashim (BN-Kuala Nerang), Tajuddin Abdullah (BN-Belantek) and Mohd Rawi Abdul Hamid (BN-Air Hangat) who demanded that he retract the statement.
Lim was adamant and defended his choice of word, saying "pariah" was not a derogatory word.
Speaker Datuk Dr Abdul Isa Ismail intervened and explained that the word could be very derogatory, afterwhich Lim agreed to retract his statement.
Meanwhile, the state assembly was told that Kedah had 32 confirmed Influenza A(H1N1) cases so far, with 42 learning institutions being closed to prevent its spread.
Executive councillor Dr Ismail Salleh said of the total, two people were still undergoing treatment in hospitals.
"We are following all the guidelines issued by the Health Ministry and the federal government," he said in reply to a written question from Datuk Paduka Ahmad Bashah Md Hanipah (BN-Bakar Bata).
Dr Ismail also said that a committee, which he chaired, had been formed to convey the correct information on the disease to the people.
"The pandemic causes 100 per cent rise in the number of people seeking treatment in hospitals. The public should understand the burden borne by hospital in dealing with the problem," he said.