Is PKR a democratic party or secret society, asks Tian Chua

Veena Babulal

KUALA LUMPUR: Tian Chua appeared to take a dig at Rafizi Ramli today, asking if PKR was a democratic party or secret society.

This, after PKR deputy president hopeful Rafizi remarked that some party matters were only discussed between the party's incoming president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, outgoing president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and himself.

Tian Chua earlier criticised Rafizi's announcement that a parliamentary seat would soon be vacated to pave the way for Anwar to contest in, saying it was made without the knowledge of PKR leadership.

To that, Rafizi said the criticism could be because Tian Chua as vice president of the party felt awkward that he was not directly involved in the discussion.

Taking to Twitter this afternoon, Tian Chua said, "A while ago you talked endlessly about openness, transparency and the truth; now it is perfectly ok to claim the selected few can secretly make major decisions for the party without consulting others in the leadership.

“Is this a democratic party or a secret society?,” he Tweeted in what is broadly believed to be a retort to Rafizi.

"Isn't that the same guy who criticised PM for making unilateral decisions on cabinet appointment & policies without consulting PH (Pakatan Harapan) leadership?" Tian Chua added in a second tweet.

This was most likely in reference to Rafizi having previously criticised Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad for making Cabinet appointments without consulting the ruling coalition's leadership.

In his earlier criticism of Rafizi's announcement, Tian Chua said it forced Dr Wan Azizah's hand in the matter where she subsequently confirmed what Rafizi said but declined to reveal which MP was giving up his or her seat for Anwar.

Tian Chua told the NSTP that no one knew of the move.

“Just like the ‘Kajang Move’, no one knew. This should be discussed at the leadership level, it cannot be done in secret,” he added, referring to the failed strategy by Rafizi.

The “Kajang move” saw its assemblyman Lee Chin Cheh resign less than a year after winning the seat in the 13th General Election (GE13).

This was supposed to pave the way for a by-election for Anwar to contest in, and clear the path for him to takeover as Selangor Menteri Besar.

The plan however was thwarted by the Court of Appeal's decision on March 7, 2014 which sentenced Anwar to five years in prison for sodomising Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan.

Dr Wan Azizah contested instead and defeated Barisan Nasional's (BN) candidate Datin Paduka Chew Mei Fun. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd