PKR president Anwar Ibrahim who is patiently waiting in the wings to take over from Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad made it clear to his opponents and detractors. He says he is a patient man but patience has its limits.
“There are friends who say my patience level is almost godlike.
“I can accept comments and ideas from the people but if someone says that the party is weak, I will not have it. Don’t test me.
“As long as I’m party president, I will defend the party,” he adds.
Several reports indicate there is trouble in Anwar’s party, with party decisions being contested by high-level leaders and ministers who hail from the PKR.
The divergences took a nasty route this week with a public spat among party officials, some asking Anwar to apologize for the party’s sacking of two-party leaders.
Anwar took matters into his own hands, contacting some leaders who allegedly signed a document asking Anwar to apologize. He urged party leaders—mainly cabinet ministers—to go down to the ground to know what was happening.
But Anwar’s message at the Perak PKR’s 20th Convention yesterday (Tuesday, Dec 3) is the strongest stance he has taken towards handling the growing crisis in the party so far.
The PKR has over 50 seats in Parliament and is the largest political organisation in Malaysia after several MPs from the Umno crossed over to Dr Mahathir’s party, the Bersatu.
Anwar faced a direct affront from his party’s youth wing, with several leaders calling for a vote of no-confidence against their president.
Taking the side of deputy president Azmin Ali, the group claimed they were ‘ashamed’ of persistent attempts to kick out leaders who are not supportive of the party’s leadership.
However, a senior leader in the party and a member of the central leadership council Abdullah Sani Abdul Hamid retaliated against the move, saying he could call for a motion to sack Azmin and his allies instead.
The Economic Affairs Minister, Azmin Ali, has been absent from party meetings for the past six months and the party may sack those who do not attend meetings for three months in a row without a valid excuse.
Anwar also said PKR is a democratic party and is not like other parties where no one can speak out.
This he says makes it look like he is weak or the party is broken in two, adding that the democratic process in the PKR allows for everyone to speak their mind. -/TISG