Loyal Followers

Friday, November 19, 2010

"K" for "kelam kabut"?

Zaid Ibrahim's short-lived love affair with PKR is a reminder to all of us of many things.

First and foremost, I do not think for a moment that PKR's "one member one vote" system was well thought out, in terms of planning, management and implementation. It was a good idea and I am sure it was laced with good intention. But we have seen that good intention alone does not make an act good. Take the New Economic Policy as a prime example. Need I say more?

It must have been thought that UMNO's delegation system was too feudal in its outlook. Then it would not have escaped PKR's top echelon - as Anwar Ibrahim himself was a hot shot in UMNO - that the UMNO's delegation system was and is still in fact a fertile ground for abuse and corruption, as well as an incontrovertible proof that UMNO's top-down leadership is almost as feudal as it comes, making a mockery of modern democracy anchored to the will of the vastness of the real people, as opposed to elected agents and delegates.

And so PKR had to be different. All members must have the power to choose their leaders. To that end, it was well intent. However, unfortunately, how that end was to be achieved was a different matter altogether.

From the riotous and almost farcical party election that PKR is now going through, I doubt whether the intended end is achieved. When records show about 80 people in attendance and yet about 800 people voting, surely PKR could expect dissent and resentment from the candidates vying for posts. That is only to be expected.

To top it up, when party outsiders such as Haris Ibrahim could produce ballot papers issued for the party elections, one wonders whether Roy Hodgson is in charge of the ballot papers in PKR. Additionally, the low turn out for the elections has put the whole election in a really bad spotlight.

Secondly, the power play which underlies the political dynamics which results in Zaid's departure from PKR leaves a really bad aftertaste to Malaysians who were, up till recently, pinning their hope for a strong PKR showing in the next general election. A lot have been said by Zaid, his supporters and detractors as well as his opponents and even Anwar Ibrahim himself.

To the Malaysian public, these dynamics are not relevant nor significant. The average Malaysian voters are not appraised of these things. There will be Malaysian voters who want change. And from these change-seeking voters, some may see PKR as an alternative. Some others may remain hopeful that PKR would be a viable alternative.

The obvious question is how would this fiasco affect their thinking and perception of PKR. Would they now still see PKR as a viable alternative? Would they remain hopeful as such? How about the new-aged voters, namely the current crop of young cyber/iPhone/iPod/iPad-era voters who, despite their affliction for Lady Gaga and Adam Lambert, are more politically aware then we even care to give them credit for?

What will they think about PKR now?

I don't know about how they feel and think. But frankly, in my perception, PKR is so full of crap then it would even dare to admit. And if the farce that PKR calls and labels as party elections is to be a yardstick of its ability to govern this country, I would rather vote for the Siberian Husky in front of my house. And by that, I don't mean to insult the dog.

Thirdly, all of us would begin to wonder what will happen to Zaid after this. He was disciplined by UMNO before. Despite that, he became a Minister. A de facto law Minister at that. His push for reform saw him resigning in protest. He then left UMNO.

His sojourn to PKR was, to me, an expedient course, rather than a diligent one. He thought he needed a platform to move on with his reformist agenda. It was thought that PKR welcome him with a open arms. Recent events showed that while the arms were wide open while welcoming him, the  hands may have held a knife to his back during the traditional welcome hugs.

Zaid could have been PKR's trump card. Coming from the deep end of the "enemy's" territory, he must have possessed bountiful of knowledge about the "enemy" and their ways. He has always been steadfast in what he believes in and if needs be, he would not shy away from going against the mainstream.

He has proven this time and time again. When he was practising law, he was the first to have started and pursued the idea of a super-sized legal firm. In 1987-88, when the Malaysian Bar was up in arms over the Tun Salleh affair, Zaid bucked the trend. He in fact supported the proceedings against Tun Salleh. He then established the Malay Lawyers Association.

While a Minister, he pursued what he thought was a necessary agenda for the BN government. He did not even get approval from his colleagues. He left.

In PKR, barely some months after joining the aprty, he was issued a ban from traveling to Sabah and Sarawak. That was the first sign of trouble for him in PKR. But being true to himself, he soldiered on with his own reformist agenda within PKR.

He must have either overrated the party's willingness to change or underrated the strength of his detractors from within the party, or both. But what would hurt him the most would be the killer blow delivered against him by the party's leadership.

The arguments against him are numerous. Some say he was being impatient in challenging for the number two seat. But that would go against the very ideal which the party so fervently and loudly preach, namely, a true and dynamic democracy which gives the opportunity to every worthy man to lead, or challenge for a seat to lead. Does PKR practice what it preaches? Or does PKR think what it preaches only applies to others but not itself?

Some say he was selfish and almost obstinate in his pursuit of reformation within the party. However, if ordinary members are not given the opportunity to test the worthiness of  his or her ideas within the party, what political dynamism are we talking about? If a party only wants to hear what it wishes to hear, what differentiates it from its opponents against whom it complains for being dictatorial on a daily basis?

This debacle, in all its high resolution glory, coming after PKR's self-induced loss in Batu Sapi and viewed from the spectre of the two state assemblymen on pogo stick in Perak, a kangaroo MP from Kulim, a frog from Bayan Baru as well as the legendary 16th September black comedy, makes one begin to wonder what the "K" in PKR stands for.


*P* said...

political goings-on here so often bring on a flood of tears...

KS Cheah said...

The road to hell is paved with good intentions. "K" for "kabur"

Anonymous said...

Is Zaid so great a person? Is he an angel that came to salvage PKR? Is he a poltician? No. This man is just an opportunist. He was an opportunist and is an opportunist. Forever an opportunist. He was 'sacked' by UMNO. He was not forced by anyone to join Pakatan. He came into Pakatan on his own. Just see how he behaved when in Pakatan. When he was 'losing' he 'quit'. He stayed on earlier when he was 'winning'. DO WE WANT A LEADER LIKE HIM? Sorry. He is not a politician neither is he saviour. He is just an opportunist - A SORE LOSER. HE IS A GOOD RIDDANCE TO MALAYSIAN POLITICS.

Norman Noordin said...

Bro, your article took the words right out of my mouth. Well put!

Anonymous said...

To the Malaysian rakyat "K" is "King" and here PKR signifies "Parti KING of RAKYAT" becos we all believe only PKR can be the best candidate to take over the important role from UMNO Baru. Why PKR? Becos we have Anwar. Why Anwar? Becos he was our DPM when in UMNO Baru. Why do we want to defeat UMNO Baru? Becos we want to resurrect UMNO A. A=Asal. But why choose PKR? Becos most people still believe it is only Anwar, who is a better man now after that black eye, who can bring Malaysia to a better tomorrow and here Anwar represents "malay leadership". We will fully support Anwar for the team he picks. If Anwar and or his successors did not perform to their best then only, the next GE vote returns to BN.

Anonymous said...

Give Zaid the man a break. He is only trying to do what he believes in.I wish him well. Be patient and dont be too early to condemn. Patience is a virtue.

Anonymous said...

K untuk "Kalut". Atau mungkin "Kelakar". Cumanya tak ada sapa yang gelak.

Anonymous said...

A public listed company may have a few thousand shareholders, but during general meetings, normally less than a hundred attend. Resolutions, except special ones, are passed with simple majority of members present. The attendees are less than 10% but that does not invalidate the resolutions passed.

Similarly, low turnout during PKR elections does not mean that the candidate with the highest number of votes isn't properly elected. If 80 members out of 800 turned up to vote, what's wrong. The remaining 720 may not be interested in who is the deputy president (knowing that Anwar is still the supremo). They will be out in full force come the 13th general election. However, if turnout was 80 but votes totalled 800, an investigation is definitely required.

When Zaid joined PKR, he was thought to be able to strengthen PKR. It seems to be otherwise. There is no doubt in most PKR members' mind and also Pakatan supporters' (but not members) that, between the 2 IBRAHIMS, whom is the best person to lead PKR and Pakatan.

A person who claims to be a better leader must be able to withstand criticisms whether from within or outside. Otherwise that person will either turn into a dictator or a quitter.

Zaid seems to have underrated the force behind Anwar.

Zaid burned his own bridges when he publicly requested Anwar to quit PKR.

Anonymous said...

I believe Zaid has been wronged by PKR. I strongly feel that this will cause a serious setback to the greater cause. However, I sincerely hope that Zaid is able to rise up and be amongst the Rakyat to forge forward to REGAIN our beloved Malaysia.

Anonymous said...

Why is it when Zaid left UMNO, He did not get personal with UMNO......

The very second he say he is quiting, he ran everyone in PKR useless...even b4 that he call Syed nyanyuk.....

Remind me of a Dr C............

What exactly does Zaid whanna do.....

All what he does indicate a trojan horse....to me tis is a sulking old man.....

Anonymous said...

thanks for your article. also agree with what your wrote.
K for Kuntut

Anonymous said...


Blogs like yours, haris ibrahim's, zorro's, MT, when very early on you had comments on anwar and pkr that zaid is now precisely saying, you (as well as your readers) dismissed them as umno cybertroopers. Now who's having the last laugh?!

I'm so enjoying this. And please, i'm not an umno member or supporter. Just someone more grounded in reality, more savvy politically than you hoity-toity, airy-fairy, bleeding heart idealists.

Now to do hisham rais...kahkahkahkah

Maszma said...

Any political party is filled with individuals with bigger egos tham most
Zaid,if he was a seasoned politician should have known better than to try accelerate his climb right to the no 2 spot upon just joining the party

he should have bided his time and contributed to the party and built up his support and image without coveting for positions and power

He acted like a novice and so naive on what politics is all about how to deal with personalities

he tried to bulldoze his way up not caring on how many people got crushed along the way

The Phoenix Foundation said...

Art Harun!


It is lust for power - notice that all "elected person", from kami becomes saya.

When I review all that sods like you & me{yes my friend}struggled to earn a living- only torealize that we have been conned.

An Example: for 20 years I was a properly registered user of TM.
Through all the rubbish programmes they conned us all, I survived.

This morning, I needed to revamp my internet modem, as my TM modem was fried{substandard}- called TM for user name & password - line suspended becoz outstanding of RM292.12!

22 years of usage - at the average of RM100/- per month = RM100 x 12 x 22 = RM 26,400/-, but for 292.12, my service was suspended.

But all the big persons in TM are reaping benefits without caring about service.

This is exactly what has happen to our politicians/elected reps - before March 2008, they will kiss our hANDS & EVEN FEET:

I went to see the Selangor State Government after March 2008 - well I got my car clampled & abused - never agin will I venture to see any of the fellows!

So Art Harun,let us all in our own voting areas - become the FORCE.

We, each of us , if we have a situation/problem,march/walk/drive up to our Elected persons & get them to "buat kerja" - if they are being funny -call the media make a police report....

Anonymous said...

This is in response to anonymous 18.48

When you have high expectations on something or someone it's natural that you get hurt more when you are let down.

Everyone knows what UMNO is all about - but not everyone expects PKR to be proud of a voter turnout of 6%-7% and claim democracy is at work or have 800 people vote in a division which has only 80 registered members or for DSAI to privately route for Azmin but claim he is neutral. PKR's elections was the biggest mockery of all that PR champions.

I definitely, as RPK points out, do not subscribe to the ABU mentality i.e. we let anyone take power but UMNO - asal bukan UMNO. There is no point having the same shit in different packaging.

I believe that UMNO, after being in power for 53 years, is too old and entrneched in its ways to change. PKR can save for the fact many are ex-BN in there.

I wish Zaid all the best in his future endeavours.

Ng Yoon Fatt said...


i. Your TM service is suspended probably due to you not settling your bills.Though the amount is only RM290+, the principle is, you must pay you bills. Just because you have been using TM for 22 years doesn't give you the right not to pay or pay late.

ii. Your car was clamped probably due to your illegal parking. Just because you voted for them, again, doesn't give you the right to park mana2 lu suka, bro..!

It's immaturity like yours that is screwing up this beloved country of ours.

Dangdut King said...

Wah! Anwar's cybertroopers also like Umno's lah. Was waiting for them to start maki hamun only! Only Zaid the decent character left and rightly he left. Zaid for PM! Reformasi! Reformasied! LOL!

Piqued said...


I quote from your article "when the Malaysian Bar was up in arms over the Tun Salleh affair, Zaid bucked the trend. He in fact supported the proceedings against Tun Salleh. He then established the Malay Lawyers Association."

Seeing as how Zaid was instrumental in getting the former justices their compensations, doesn't his actions now mirror the opportunistic actions of his past; right down to forming a new association. Possibly with the intent of causing dissension within the association that he was part of.

And he formed a race based association no less, something that was in line with the UMNO agenda.

Which is not to detract from your rightful criticism of PKR.

It's just that the rakyat is really left with little or no choice in their need for good leadership.

Anonymous said...

I agree Zaid is just an opportunist....power crazy.He's not made to be a politician and leader.He wants to be a heroby bad mouthing.He's full of sh.t!

Buttercup said...

Anon 10.54

Very true. We see many PKR supporters eating their words now.
Syioklah tengok.
I realy dont care much about Anwar or Zaid.
They can go to hell for all I care.

Anonymous said...

zaid itu sanggup pakat dengan utusan utk hentam orang sendiri.
orang macam ni great leader?


Anonymous said...

Contrary to what analysts believe, UMNO is not at a cross-road. It is on a 6 lane highway, driving against traffic, in a car made in 1956 with a lose drum brake. It is a calamity waiting to happen.

""HAHA,, you are cute" such a sense of humour of "paradoxication"