Wednesday, February 03, 2010

The Way The Cookie Crumbles
A Kadir Jasin

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IT’S bad luck. The PKR supreme leader, Anwar Ibrahim, could do away with political headache as he faces his sodomy trial.

But it was not to be. While the Zulkifli vs Khalid issue is still simmering and no action has been taken against the Kulim-Bandar Baru PKR MP, a new battle has started.

(Pas had taken action against its Shah Alam MP by suspending him for six months as the Shah Alam divisional head and member of its political bureau for quarrelling with Selangor Pas Commissioner Dr Hassan Ali. Dr Hassan was given a warning.)

The looming PKR-DAP battle pitches the party’s Penang former chief, the Bayan Lepas MP, Zahrain Mohd Hashim, against the DAP Chief Minister, Lim Guan Eng.

The Malaysian Insider news portal reported on Jan. 30 that the Penang DAP was baying for Zahrain’s blood and would reveal that personal issues were behind him calling the Chief Minister dictator, a chauvinist and communist-minded.

Meanwhile, the Malaysiakini writer, Terence Netto in an analysis entitled “Fissures Fester in PKR”, wrote in: “That's the way the cookie crumbles.

“This is what is being touted about PKR in the wake ofthe continued insolence of Zulkifli Nordin and the attacks on Lim Guan Eng by the party's MP for Bayan Baru, Zahrain Mohd. Hashim.

“The antics of a pyromaniac were followed by the reaction-baiting broadsides of the party's former Penang chief.

“There is the scent of mutiny in the salvoes let loose by Zahrain in recent days at the Penang Chief Minister and DAP secretary general.”He is upset with Anwar Ibrahim but apparently can't bring himself to train his guns on the PKR supremo. It appears Guan Eng would do nicely as vicarious substitute.”

Malaysian Insider reported that several top DAP leaders are expected to detail the reasons behind Zahrain ratcheting his simmering feud with Lim.

One of the alleged reasons cited by the news portal was Lim’s last year decision to implement an open tender for the maintenance of the state-owned Bukit Jambul Golf and Country Club of which Zahrain is the president.

“Zahrain has provoked the DAP without just cause and some leaders will make public his motivations,” a senior DAP leader told The Malaysian Insider.

Meanwhile the news portal reported today (Jan 31) that three PKR MPs, including Zahrain, have denied speculation that they are crossing over to rivals Barisan Nasional (BN).

The other two are Merbok MP Rashid Din from Kedah and Indera Mahkota MP Azan Ismail, who just quit as deputy chief of Pahang PKR. Both confirmed they would attend a special PKR supreme council meeting this morning to be chaired by Anwar.

Penang Deputy Chief Minister I and the new PKR state chief, Dr Mansor Othman, had confirmed to The Malaysian Insider on Jan. 30 that three or four PKR MPs wanted to leave the party, but declined to give details.

Preempting the defections and in an attempt to deflect the blame from the party, PKR’s newly appointed elections director Fuziah Salleh was quoted by Malaysian Insider as saying that the MPs were considering defecting to the BN due to their failure to perform and the fear of being dropped from contesting in the next general elections.

The PKR Kuantan MP revealed that the party had been assessing the performance and effectiveness of its elected representatives, sparking fear and pushing some of them to consider their future options.

Anwar himself, according to a Malaysian Insider report, presented another version of the story. Today (Jan 31) he claimed in Petaling Jaya that there were attempt to get his lawmakers to abandon the party by Chinese New Year and attributing it to the Prime Minister, Mohd Najib Abdul Razak.

Well, if that is indeed the case, Anwar is having the table turned on him. A case of “pulang paku buah keras.” It is recalled at in Sept 2008 Anwar claimed that he would topple the government by Sept 16 (the Malaysian Day) with the help of defecting BN MPs.

The beleaguered Pakatan Rakyat defacto leader, according to the Malaysian Insider report, alleged that several MPs, including Indera Mahkota’s Azan Ismail and Balik Pulau’s Yusmadi Yusof had have been contacted by a Parti Cinta Malaysia official Huan Cheng Guan and the Malaysian Ambassador to the United States, Jamaluddin Jarjis, who urged them to leave PKR.

The deeper malice, however, may lie with Anwar himself. He could be sending the wrong signals to his party people and his Pakatan partners.

Anwar is known to be telling different people different versions of the same story to please and appease them and get their support. Upon comparing notes, they would know that they had been let up the garden path.

But to be fair, Anwar could not possibly attend to all party matters and solve all the petty quarrels among the PKR’s ambitious leaders given his upcoming trial and his frequent trips abroad.

Thus far, however, the DAP appears to be gaining the upper hand. Anwar today declared his support for Guan Eng and sending the latter’s critics to be party disciplinary committee.

Anwar told the Press that Zahrain would join the Zulkifli and Mohd Zaid Ibrahim in facing the disciplinary committee.

He said Mohd Zaid who criticised party leadership for not taking immediate action against Zulkifli, would have to explain himself.

And to borrow the concluding remark by Malaysiakini’s Netto, “Like they say, that's the way the cookie crumbles.”
Posted by A KADIR JASIN at 5:14 PM 37 comments

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