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You know, even in hindsight, it was a pretty good marketing gambit: PKR is walking the talk, we are the beacons of democracy in Malaysia, let’s hold free and fair party elections. Let’s give every one a vote to choose their leaders, from the top of the pyramid right down to the local party machinisms. What a great bunch of visionaries we are.
Its all gone pear shaped since, unfortunately. Allegations of vote rigging, improper ballot handling and a nagging suspicion that the whole purpose of the elections was to reinforce the charade that PKR was “not UMNO”. In the perfect irony, the elections have shown everyone that PKR and UMNO are actually very much alike. From the heights of GE12 in 2008, the darling of the electorate every one expected to make further inroads in GE13 is now being spoken of in cautious tones. The turnaround is almost complete, and instead of GE13 being the litmus test of BN’s rule (as it should be), the people are now wondering instead if it would be better to use the next elections to show their displeasure at how poorly PR in general and PKR in particular have performed.
How the tide has changed.
A long time supporter, Raja Petra, is taking daily pot-shots at PKR, and Anwar in particular. His reasoning is, he helped create Anwar’s career, he certainly has the right to say something when he sees something he doesn’t agree with. He’s right. Do we begrudge our parents for scolding us when we make mistakes? Of course, we don’t.
Not just Zaid Ibrahim, but other senior members of PKR’s hierarchy are telling the tale of two cities. The chairman of PKR’s disciplinary committee, Animah Ferrar, has called for the whole elections to be called off and redone. What a damning verdict on the impropriety only an insider can see.
The PKR fanboys will doubtless argue that PKR is a new party, learning the ropes. Infected with Trojan Horses, it needs time to weed out the rot and to set the ship right, exactly what the elections are supposed to do.
But this just stinks to me, very much, “if you’re not with me, you’re against me” type of mentality. When Zaid Ibrahim spoke out against the ISA, and left the Cabinet on principle, PKR welcomed him as a brother at arms. The moment he turned on them, he is a Trojan Horse. The same has been labelled on RPK, of all people. It’s inconceivable that a man who has been fighting the good fight for the better part of 30 years, spending time in Kamunting, and being forced to live in exile from his motherland, is a “trojan horse” as has been suggested after his recent spate of damning writeups.
PKR, wake up, just because people say bad things about you, doesn’t mean that they hate you or are trying to bring you down. That’s exactly the sort of attitude that will breed a generation of yes-men and yes-sirs, exactly the type of people that we don’t want to lead our country.
I’ve never been fully convinced of PKR’s cause, now even less so than before, though i have been impressed with several of its leaders such as the magnificent Nurul Izzah and even my own MP. It’s a real paradox for people like me. Dislike the party but like (some) the leaders. How can i split my vote between the two?
What a shame, a wasteful shame.