The Long Goodbye: Wan Azizah’s Departure

Wan Azizah (left) intimating advice to PM Mahathir Mohamad.

No ship can have two captains. Anwar Ibrahim’s inevitable procession to PKR party president raises a truckload of questions, however, it does provide one conclusion.

The departure of Wan Azizah Wan Ismail from top political leadership.

Fan or no fan, there has to be admiration for the lady for staying in the game as various avatars for more than twenty years.

Founding president of a new party, parliamentarian, leader of the opposition and now deputy prime minister.

More so since she never wanted it. This life in politics.

She was happy enough to be married to a politician. And despite all her years in the game, there is little to suggest she would not be happy to become only a politician’s wife only, again. Continue reading “The Long Goodbye: Wan Azizah’s Departure”

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Anwar For President, PKR For Democracy

Anwar (front right) walks to the limelight as wife, Wan Azizah, stays a step behind, as she will this PKR election

Anwar Ibrahim vacates PKR’s de facto leader position.

Meaning, he’ll win or lose the party party presidency early October, but either way he ceases to be the party’s unelected leader.

It is a great moment for my party, to forward itself as a party of substance.

While it is no secret over the party’s formation,since then, various factions and in case of Parti Rakyat Malaysia,even a party, came together to realise a better Malaysia through this vehicle.

This elusive vehicle filled with strange bedfellows.

Anwaristas, Anwar’s family, Umno veterans, Islamists, Secular Liberalists, activists, internationalists and more. Continue reading “Anwar For President, PKR For Democracy”

The Selangor Power Mess

The Johor born MB of Selangor, Amiruddin Shari

To say it stinks, it would be kind.

In the same day, Selangor swears in its new mentri besar, a challenge is already underway.

Before that an advisory.

I wants to say two things, firstly, I have no mentri besar preference. So I can’t be arsed about the camps, but really, seriously, do it openly without drama. Continue reading “The Selangor Power Mess”

Selangor MB Mystery Continues

There are 56 legislative seats in my home state Selangor.

Half of those seats were won by PKR in the last election. But if we need to be pedantic about, PKR won 51 as Amanah (5), Bersatu (5) and DAP (13) candidates stood under the Keadilan emblem.

They received their Surat Watikah (Candidature Letter) from PKR President Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.

In all 56 contests, the Keadilan choice was present.

The frontrunner, Shaharuddin Baharuddin?

With the exception of five seats, Umno (4) and PAS (1), the people were in the majority with the Keadilan. That’s a lot of people to favour one coalition in a state. It’s the strongest win in any state this past election.

I say all this because, the state will have a new mentri besar next month, with the departure of Azmin Ali, but there is no control over the matter for PKR. As in the name the new MB. Continue reading “Selangor MB Mystery Continues”

Anwar in prison

This column first appeared in The Malay Mail Online, on February 12, 2015.It is reproduced here.

I was the media go to guy at PKR between 2012-2013, working out of Anwar Ibrahim’s office and managing both social media and traditional media for the party for the duration leading to the 13th General Election.

 

He enjoys the limelight, but shutting the lights out so viciously tarnishes this government .
He enjoys the limelight, but shutting the lights out so viciously tarnishes this government .

FEBRUARY 12 — “Life had already given him sufficient reasons for knowing that no defeat was the final one.” (Gabriel Garcí­a Márquez, from The General in His Labyrinth)

Have you seen Anwar Ibrahim walk into a room? It’s quite foreign in these parts — in Putrajaya certainly no less — to see a consummate public figure soak up the room and make it an occasion whether it is a large coalition meeting or just a small group of out of towners seeking his time.

It’s not aura exactly, it’s the immersion he has to his role. No one believes in Anwar Ibrahim more than Anwar Ibrahim.

It explains why all discussions about the Opposition leader assume a different feel than other politicians past and present. At the same time, his detractors will say verily that that is why he is always entangled in one surreal political subterfuge to the next. Continue reading “Anwar in prison”