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Author: savemalaysia   |   Latest post: Mon, 24 Sep 2018, 06:59 PM


For party stability, ‘Ketua Umum’ Anwar may skip PKR election

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PETALING JAYA, July 11 — PKR de facto chief Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim may not run for formal office in the upcoming party election on grounds of maintaining stability to face new challenges under the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government.

Many PKR grassroots said Anwar was not greedy for power and not in a hurry to hold any position in the government, as he also wanted Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to complete his mission to the rakyat as promised in PH’s election manifesto.

The multi-racial party, which was formed in 1998 aimed at reforming the then Barisan Nasional (BN) government under Dr Mahathir, has grown to be the impetus for a new Malaysia that cuts across race and religion.

Anwar, then in prison, was appointed PKR de facto chief and was supposed to take over as party president when he was released, but opportunities did not arise until after the May 9 general election.

Released from prison last month and getting a full pardon from the Yang Di-Pertuan Agong which enables him to fully participate in politics, Anwar does not seem to be in a hurry.

Dr Mahathir appointed PKR president, who is Anwar’s wife Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, as Deputy Prime Minister and PKR deputy president Datuk Seri Azmin Ali as Economic Affairs Minister, which reflected Dr Mahathir’s trust in the party leadership in Anwar’s absence.

Many grassroot members opined that Anwar would not want to “rock the boat”, or rather deprive anyone Dr Mahathir had appointed to the Cabinet as his turn will come when Dr Mahathir completes his mission.

They said Anwar has been promised the Prime Minister’s post after two years and they trusted Dr Mahathir to go by his words, unless the PH government has yet to fulfill its manifesto and the economy needs more refining.

With Anwar not contesting or in short, taking back his rightful place in the party which is the presidency, it looks like Dr Wan Azizah and Azmin may win the presidency and deputy presidency uncontested. This will stabilise the party and endorse Anwar’s decision.

After all, Anwar can just take back his presidency in three years’ time when the party holds its next election, which is still before the next general election.

With speculation that Anwar may stay away from running for office and the two top posts could remain unchallenged, the party will see contests for the vice-presidencies and all other posts – Youth chief, Wanita chief and the supreme council.

The contests, particularly for the four vice-president posts, may reflect the split in the party all this while between those loyal to Dr Wan Azizah and Azmin – the two who dominated the party all along since Anwar was in jail.

The current vice-presidents are Nurul Izzah Anwar, Chua Tian Chang, Shamsul Iskandar Md Akin and Rafizi Ramli.

Despite denials by Dr Wan Azizah and Azmin, party members at the grassroot level and the public at large have viewed the split as “normal”.

The contests for vice-presidents are expected to be keen but not chaotic, as grassroots are expected to retain Nurul Izzah and Shamsul Iskandar, while for the other two posts, the grassroots may pick those in the Cabinet who can give them some kind of patronage.

With Anwar now back active although without a formal position in politics, he is expected to ensure the election runs smooth and the party keeps intact.



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