Jeff Ooi

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Jeff Ooi
Jeff Ooi (square crop).jpg
Member of the Malaysian Parliament
for Jelutong
In office
8 March 2008 – 9 May 2018
Preceded byLee Kah Choon (Gerakan-BN)
Succeeded byRSN Rayer (DAP-PH)
Majority16,246 (2008)
25,750 (2013)
Personal details
Ooi Chuan Aun

(1955-11-02) 2 November 1955 (age 67)
Kedah, Federation of Malaya (now Malaysia)
Political partyParti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia (GERAKAN)
Democratic Action Party (DAP)
Heritage Party (WARISAN)
(since 2022)
Other political
Barisan Nasional (BN)
Pakatan Rakyat (PR)
Pakatan Harapan (PH)
Jeff Ooi
Chinese name
Traditional Chinese黃泉安
Simplified Chinese黄泉安
Hanyu PinyinHuáng Quán Ān
JyutpingWong4 Cyun4 On1
Hokkien POJÛiⁿ Choân-an
Tâi-lôUînn Tsuân-an

Ooi Chuan Aun[1] (simplified Chinese: 黄泉安; traditional Chinese: 黃泉安; pinyin: Huáng Quán Ān; Jyutping: Wong4 Cyun4 On1; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: Ûiⁿ Choân-an; born 2 November 1955[2]), better known as Jeff Ooi, is a Malaysian IT consultant, blogger, photographer and politician who served as the Member of Parliament (MP) for Jelutong for two terms from March 2008 to May 2018.

He is a member of the Heritage Party (WARISAN) and was a member of the Democratic Action Party (DAP), a component party of the Pakatan Harapan (PH) and formerly Pakatan Rakyat (PR) opposition coalitions and a member of the Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia (GERAKAN), then component party of the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition.

Early life[edit]

Ooi is from a small town in the northern Malaysian state of Kedah. He was brought up among rural teenagers and is trilingual, fluent in Mandarin, English and Malay.

Blog and internet activity[edit]

Jeff Ooi used to write a blog known as "Screenshots...", which he started on 2 January 2003, covering current issues relating to Malaysia, mainly on politics. From time to time, it also touches on international news and photography.

Jeff Ooi's blog was described as "Malaysia's Most Influential Blog" by Malaysiakini, a local online news publication known for its different stance to the mainstream media. In 2005, Screenshots won in the Asia category of the Freedom Blogs Awards given by Reporters Without Borders.[3]

Ooi is also the administrator at a photography forum called Lensa Malaysia, which receives 200,000-page views per month. He is also the founder and administrator of UEP Subang Jaya and Subang Jaya's community forum,[4] and was hired by CNET Asia as a tech blogger alongside other CNET Asia bloggers. He named his CNET Asia blog Lemak Lemang,[5] a reference to Lemang, coconut-flavoured sticky rice stuffed in a bamboo stick traditionally prepared by Malays.

Political career (2006-present)[edit]

In 2006, it was reported by The Star, a local English language daily, that Ooi was among several local bloggers being approached by the opposition Democratic Action Party (DAP) to run for public office. Ooi, who was at the time a member of Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia (GERAKAN), a component party of the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition, stated that it was "too premature at this point" for him to consider entering active politics.[6]

He joined DAP on 31 July 2007.[7] Ooi stood as a DAP candidate in the 2008 general election for a seat in Jelutong, Penang,[8][9] which he won by 16,246 votes. He retained his seat in the 2013 general election. Ooi was dropped by DAP as a candidate in the 2018 general election.[10]

On 22 January 2022, he was present at a Heritage Party (WARISAN) event namely "Warisan Unity Night" and revealed his hope that his application to join WARISAN would be considered. On 24 January 2022, he was confirmed to have joined WARISAN and been appointed as the state coordinator of WARISAN of Penang[11] He claim more Penang DAP leaders set to join Warisan[12] which hope to contest all federal and state seats of Penang in the next general and state elections (GE15).[13]

Controversies and issues[edit]

Lawsuit as blogger[edit]

On 11 January 2007, Ooi, alongside Ahirudin Attan, was sued by the New Straits Times Press (NSTP).[14] The Malaysian court ordered Ooi to remove more than 10 posts on his blog that the NSTP claimed were libellous by 17 January. Ooi was prohibited from republishing the posts on his blog or anywhere else on the internet until the resolution of the defamation suit. The lawsuits were the first of their kind in Malaysia.[15] Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi defended the legal action launched against Ooi, saying the Internet was not exempt from defamation laws.[16] This lawsuit spawned the 'Bloggers United' campaign to defend bloggers and freedom of expression. Jeff Ooi and Ahirudin chose to defend themselves in court. The situation resulted in various newspapers covering Malaysian blogging. A fund was also set up to protect bloggers and support their activities.

Islamic extremist remarks[edit]

In early August 2009, Ooi had labelled Mohd Razali Abdullah, a Penang Island Municipal Council (MPPP) councillor, an Islamic extremist. This caused a public scandal, especially from within the Muslim community, because Razali was a member of Jamaah Islah Malaysia (JIM), a registered organisation with close ties with Ooi's own party's youth wing, the Penang DAP Socialist Youth.[17] His comments were interpreted as claiming that Syariah Law was extreme and that Muslims are extremists. The Chief Minister of Penang, Lim Guan Eng, ordered Ooi to retract his statements and apologise publicly, which Ooi eventually did after initially refusing. However, he did not offer an apology and continued criticising Razali, calling him "a political burden to the state government".[18] The Islamic religious leaders association of Penang (Persatuan Ulama' Malaysia cawangan Pulau Pinang) subsequently launched a petition to demand that Ooi resign from office for his comments about Muslims and Islam in Malaysia.[19]

Disdain slurs[edit]

In November 2013, Ooi had drew flak by calling 'kucing kurap' (literally mangy cats) two MPPP officers accompanying him as Jelutong MP during his visit to an illegal hawker site when he was unsatisfied with them who were ill-informed.[20] Ooi had apologised for his controversial remark later after DAP chairman Karpal Singh had rebuked and called on him to publicly apologise.[21]

Election results[edit]

Parliament of Malaysia[22][23]
Year Constituency Votes Pct Opponent(s) Votes Pct Ballots cast Majority Turnout
2008 P50 Jelutong, Penang Ooi Chuan Aun (DAP) 30,493 67% Thor Teong Gee (Gerakan) 14,247 31% 46,406 16,246 76.85%
Badrul Zaman P.S. Md Zakariah (IND) 882 2%
2013 Ooi Chuan Aun (DAP) 43,211 70% Ng Fook On (Gerakan) 17,461 28% 61,725 25,750 86.64%
2022 P52 Bayan Baru, Penang Ooi Chuan Aun (WARISAN) 440 0.49% Sim Tze Tzin (PKR) 55,209 61.54% 89,707 34,902 79.63%
Oh Tong Keong (GERAKAN) 20,307 22.64%
Saw Yee Fung (MCA) 13,377 14.91%
Ravinder Singh (PRM) 251 0.28%
Kan Chee Yuen (IND) 124 0.14%

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Puah, Pauline (18 January 2007). NST sues Jeff Ooi, Rocky for defamation Archived 21 February 2007 at the Wayback Machine. The Sun.
  2. ^ "Election strategist among new faces". The Star Online. 12 February 2008. Archived from the original on 8 February 2009. Retrieved 12 February 2008.
  3. ^ Blogs lauded in 'freedom awards'. (17 June 2005). BBC News.
  4. ^ "USJ-Subang Jaya e-Community Frontpage".
  5. ^ "Lemak Lemang - Blogs - CNET Asia". 25 February 2007. Archived from the original on 25 February 2007.
  6. ^ Tan, Joceline (26 November 2006). Cyberspace talent search. The Star.
  7. ^ Media statement by Jeff Ooi, DAP Malaysia, 31 July 2007.
  8. ^ "Screenshots: Jelutong". Ooi, Jeff. 21 February 2008. Archived from the original on 25 February 2008. Retrieved 21 February 2008.
  9. ^ Lim, Ai Lee (14 February 2008). "DAP rockets into Penang eyeing seven parliamentary seats". The Star. Archived from the original on 11 May 2008.
  10. ^ K. Suthakar and Arnold Loh (21 April 2018). "DAP six face the axe". The Star. Retrieved 21 April 2018.
  11. ^ "No antagonism, sloganeering from us, unlike DAP: Warisan's Jeff Ooi". The Vibes. 24 January 2022. Retrieved 24 January 2022.
  12. ^ Audrey Dermawan (24 January 2022). "More Penang DAP leaders set to join Warisan, says Jeff Ooi [NSTTV]". New Straits Times. Retrieved 24 January 2022.
  13. ^ Predeep Nambiar (24 January 2022). "Warisan to contest all seats in Penang in GE15]". Free Malaysia Today. Retrieved 24 January 2022.
  14. ^ Ooi, Jeff (18 January 2006). Bloggers sued in Malaysia Archived 20 February 2007 at the Wayback Machine. Screenshots.
  15. ^ "Court gags Malaysian blogger". Archived from the original on 23 January 2007. Retrieved 19 January 2007.
  16. ^ "Malaysian PM defends legal action against bloggers". Archived from the original on 26 January 2007. Retrieved 25 January 2007.
  17. ^ "Retract statement, Jemaah Islah Malaysia tells Ooi". 4 August 2009. Retrieved 24 August 2019.
  18. ^ "MP urged to apologise for calling JIM an 'extremist organisation'". Archived from the original on 10 August 2009. Retrieved 7 August 2009.
  19. ^ "Signature campaign demanding Jeff Ooi to resign". 9 September 2009. Retrieved 9 September 2009.
  20. ^ "Jeff Ooi apologises for 'kucing kurap' remark". The Edge Markets. 2 December 2013. Retrieved 26 January 2022.
  21. ^ Opalyn Mok (1 December 2013). "MP in 'kucing kurap' row apologises after lashing from Karpal". Malay Mail. Retrieved 26 January 2022.
  22. ^ "Keputusan Pilihan Raya Umum Parlimen/Dewan Undangan Negeri" (in Malay). Election Commission of Malaysia. Archived from the original on 6 September 2011. Retrieved 1 May 2010.
  23. ^ "Keputusan Pilihan Raya Umum Parlimen 2013" (in Malay). Election Commission of Malaysia. Archived from the original on 8 May 2013. Retrieved 6 May 2013.

External links[edit]

Media related to Jeff Ooi at Wikimedia Commons