Replying to steadyaku47

Posted on October 28, 2009



Commentator Patriot drew my attention to blogger Hussein Abdul Hamid’s take on my post, ‘The end days of PKR in Sabah?’, and suggested I respond.

Patriot, here goes.

With regard to my source’s assertion that Anwar had, concerning the possibility of Jeffrey Kitingan being appointed Sabah PKR state chief, said,“No way in hell will I have Jeffrey as chief”, Hussein responded that he has known Anwar for over 50 years and has never known him to use the ‘H’ word.

Note here that Hussein does not say he was at that meeting and therefore confirms on first-hand evidence that Anwar did not use the ‘H’ word. His position is based on the reputation of Anwar, as known to Hussein.

Well I cannot claim to have known Anwar for that period of time, let alone any period to boast of, or count him as a friend, but I  will have to go along with Hussein and say I, too, have never, ever heard him utter the ‘H’ word.

Interestingly, though, Malaysiakini reported the day before yesterday that former Deputy Sabah PKR chief Daniel John Jambun had said : “We are disturbed that Anwar said that ‘there’s no way in hell that he would allow Jeffrey to be Sabah PKR state chief’. If it’s true, then PKR in Sabah is finished.”

Wonder if Jambun’s source is the same as mine?

Whatever, let’s assume that Jambun’s and my source, if indeed different, got it wrong or, worse yet, embellished their version of what happened.

No ‘H’ word, then.

Anwar merely said “No way will I have Jeffrey as chief”.

Now, as to why Anwar will not have Jeffrey as Sabah chief, Hussein alludes to Jeffrey’s detention under the ISA on suspicion of plotting to secede Sabah from Malaysia and having switched political parties many times, and then equates Jeffrey with Ibrahim Ali, the former being the ‘katak’ in Sabah and the latter the ‘katak’ in Semenanjung . “Why would anyone want Jeffrey to lead any team against UMNO?”, Hussein asks. Only a moron would trust Jeffrey, and Anwar is no moron, insists Hussein.

Let me respond to this by once again reproducing something I had said in my letter to Anwar last year.

“…most of my friends and I, like my sister, have long forgiven you for your involvement in the atrocities committed by Mahathir during his reign of destruction and pillage, even if only by association and your failure to dissociate with his regime.

But like you, we, too, have not forgotten.

Just as remembrance will serve you well, so too us.

Will we ever forget?

I cannot speak for the others, but for me, I think that is really up to you…

…Many times last year, I wrote in this blog that I wished you would give me a reason to trust you.

Whilst I have to be frank and tell you that I still do not trust you, three things have persuaded me to ‘take a chance’ “.

Most of us are not moronic enough to trust Anwar. We’re only prepared to take a chance with him.

Why should Sabahans, if they so choose, not be permitted take a chance with Jeffrey?

Jeffrey ISAed for plotting to secede Sabah from the federation?

Hussein needs to consider whether that might be the very reason why some in Sabah are prepared to take a chance with Jeffrey.

If Jeffrey did indeed plot to secede Sabah from the rest of Malaysia, he merely attempted what I would imagine a great many Sabahans wished they had the gall to do. In that sense, I suppose Jeffrey will go down in Sabah folklore as a hero, if he did in fact plot to do as is now suggested.

As for Jeffrey being a ‘katak’, I hope that Hussein has not forgotten Anwar’s role, with the use of ‘kataks’, in the 1994 displacement of PBS, which had won the state elections, paving the way for BN to form the state government. I know a great many Sabahans have not forgotten.

And was not Anwar’s drive to wrest the federal gvernment from BN last year founded on a great many ‘froggies’ getting onto his bandwagon?

I certainly hope that the reasons proffered by Hussein in his post as to why Jeffrey ought not to have been appointed as Sabah chief are his and his alone, and not Anwar’s. Were it otherwise, it would not be out of place for Jeffrey to eyeball Anwar and ask, “See ye the speck in mine eye and not the plank in thine own?”.

Hussein disputes that a fax message, signed by 14 Sabah PKR division chiefs in support of Jeffrey as Sabah chief, was sent to PKR president Wan Azizah last Sunday. Hussein insists that his “credible sources indicated that more divisional heads support Ahmad Thamrin Hj Zaini (letters duly signed) compared to Jeffri (letters by Fax)”.

Note that, in this regard, Hussein, like me, depends on a source for this assertion.

Both of us, Hussein and I, will not disclose the identity of our respective sources.

What I will try to do here is to corroborate the information from my source.

Last Monday, in the same Malaysiakini report linked above, it was reported that PKR’s powerful KadazanDusunMurut Task Force was to meet yesterday. The report had it that “High on the agenda would be a fax and hand-delivered brief sent yesterday morning to Wan Azizah by 14 division chiefs proposing that Keningau division chief Jeffrey Gapari Kitingan (left) be appointed as Sabah State PKR Chief”.

Up to this morning, I have not seen any public statement from PKR denying that there was such a fax from the 14 division choefs to the party president. Similarly, up to the time of writing up this post, I have not seen any report in any media of any statement by anyone in PKR that would lend support to Hussein’s contention.

In respect of my statement, “Azmin’s out. The PKR division chiefs have made it clear that he’s not wanted”, Hussein suggests that there “really is no need to malign Azmin. His mandate by Biro Politik Keadilan ends in October”.


On 8th October, Malaysiakini reported that, responding to a memo sent by 16 division chiefs to the party HQ demanding that Azmin be forthwith replaced as Sabah state chief, “Azmin Ali today urged all the party’s Sabah division chiefs to stop demanding that he be removed from his position until everything is organised in the state”.

Azmin is reported to have said : “I was appointed as an interim state chief to get things organised and to strengthen the division. Within a short period of time, I will hand over this responsibility to another leader from Sabah”.

It is reported that when asked when things would be organised so he could hand over his power, Azmin replied: “The sooner the better. The party will appoint a new leader in Sabah and I would be more than happy to relinquish power and cooperate with a new team there. That was the understanding all along”.

Note that not once did Azmin mention that his mandate ended in October.

On 15th October, Malaysiani, reporting on the PKR politburo meeting of the same day, had it that “the political bureau also directed Azmin to convene the Sabah PKR Leadership Council on Oct 25 and report back the prevailing mood among party leaders and members in the state. He is expected to work on his exit strategy based on a face-saving formula which the Sabah divisional heads would be asked to propose. It appears that “Azmin would have to leave Sabah by Christmas at the very latest to stave off an open rebellion which would have political repercussions in neighbouring Sarawak as well”.

Again, no mention of a ‘by end October’ mandate.

My statement that Anwar was determined to see a Muslim lead PKR in Sabah because, it had been said, he insists that Muslims make up the majority in Sabah, it would seem, has been misconstrued by Hussein. Certainly, his response that “This is a most pathetic assumption to say that no Muslim is eligible. That all Muslims are deemed to be racists”, I think, bears this out.

Nowhere in my post had I ever suggested that no Muslim was eligible or that all Muslims are deemed racists.

My point was whether Jeffrey was rejected only because he is not Muslim. That, I believe, is borne out by my inquiry whether “Even if it is true that Muslims now are the majority in Sabah, have we not gone beyond communalist, race-based and religion-orientated politics to that of meritocracy?”.

Hussein closes his post with an assertion that all that he has said is based on fact.

Respectfully, I beg to differ.

Posted in: Digressions