Zuraida criticises decision to vacate PD seat for Anwar

Mohd Anwar Patho Rohman, Syed Umar Ariff

PETALING JAYA: The decision to vacate the Port Dickson parliamentary seat should have been made collectively by all top leaders in the party.

PKR Wanita chief Zuraida Kamaruddin in a statement today, questioned the decision-making process which was made to allow Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's return to the parliament.

She also labeled those involved in the matter as "shallow-minded" (dangkal) because the decision was not reached through a proper channel.

"Every decision made by this party should be made within a consensus in order to garner an overall support from party members, inline with the spirit of reform and democracy.

"I am worried that if the decision-making process was not done openly, transparently and democratically, it will result in confusion among the people and it is as if PKR had been manipulated by certain quarters."

Zuraida said it was important for all PKR leaders to uphold the party's reformation agenda.

"I really hope that Anwar himself will make an announcement on his stand concerning the issue."

Zuraida was commenting on a report in which several PKR leaders today suggested that PKR deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali was not side-lined in the decision to vacate the Port Dickson parliamentary seat.

At a media conference today, which was regarded as a show of force by party deputy president aspirant Rafizi Ramli, his staunch supporter PKR secretary-general Datuk Saifuddin Nasution Ismail said there "were no camps" in making the decision.

Saifuddin was asked whether Mohamed Azmin was side-lined or not consulted in vacating the seat.

Outgoing Port Dickson member of parliament Datuk Danyal Balagopal Abdullah today announced his resignation to make way for Anwar's return to parliament.

Another PKR vice-president Tian Chua when contacted, refused to comment at the moment.

"Too early to comment," he said in a text message.

Previously, Tian Chua 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.

Additonal reporting by Fahmy Azril Rosli Esther Landau © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd