On 25th October, 2009, in a post entitled ‘The end days of PKR in Sabah?’, I wrote :
“Keningau division chief, Datuk Dr. Jeffery Kitingan, is the choice of the strongest PKR divisions in Sabah.
My source who was at the meeting at Merchant Square today said Anwar made it clear at the meeting that he was not going to have any of this.
“No way in hell will I have Jeffrey as chief”, Anwar is reported to have blasted.
Anwar, it seems, is determined to see a Muslim lead PKR in Sabah because, it is said, he insists that Muslims make up the majority in Sabah.
That may be so, if we take into account the millions of illegal Muslim immigrants granted citizenship during Anwar’s days as DPM to Dr M.
Surely Anwar must know this. His hands are as tainted as that of Dr. M’s with the dilution of the political strength of the indigenous people of Sabah by the influx of Muslim immigrants who were later given citizenship in return for enforced allegiance to BN at the ballot box.
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?
Is that not what PKR and Pakatan are supposedly championing?
The decision on the new Sabah PKR state leadership would suggest otherwise, at least as far as PKR is concerned.
I am told that the party leadership will announce that the man given the task to lead PKR in Sabah is Libaran division chief and Sabah PKR state secretary, Ahmad Thamrin Hj Zaini…
…Malaysiakini reports today that Sabah Peoples Progressive Party (SAPP) has rejected overtures to get them to join the anticipated formalised and registered Pakatan Rakyat coalition, if it ever materialises.
Yong Teck Lee, SAPP president, gave as reasons for this, that SAPP sees little difference between BN and the proposed opposition alliance and noted that “Pakatan in Sabah still took orders from Kuala Lumpur and this apparently made it impossible for Sapp to be a member of the opposition alliance”.
Anwar had his way, proving Yong’s words to be true. Disregarding the wishes of the majority of division leaders, Thamrin was appointed as Sabah state chief.
Looking back now, it would seem that the party leadership’s insistence in having it’s ( read this as Anwar’s and Azmin’s ) own way had set the stage for an avalanche in Sabah and Sarawak that the party might never recover from.
The trouble-ridden party nationwide direct elections from August through to November last year proved to be historical for all the wrong reasons.
Hairline cracks hitherto noticed in the party’s states and national leadership soon came to be seen as full blown fractures.
Fractures which some of the President’s men were determined to see never heal.
Zaid quit the party, formally in December.
Gobala also finally quit a few days ago.
By letter dated 31st December, 2010 e-mailed to the party President, Jeffrey Kitingan confirmed that he, too, was severing his membership with the party.
His reasons : “Anwar’s obsession is to capture Putrajaya without listening to us and our Borneo Agenda. Therefore, after a deep soul-searching I have decided to resign from PKR with immediate effect. We have learnt from the 47 years of our so-called independence and our partnership with Sarawak and Malaya in the federation of Malaysia that we cannot trust others to defend our rights and to do things for us… We have to take responsibility for ourselves and our future.”
5 days later, the party’s 26-member Kadazan-Dusun-Murut (KDM) Task Force dissolved itself and resigned from the party.
FMT reports the Task Force’s chairman, Daniel John Jambun, as saying that “After a deep soul-searching, we found that being a peninsular-based party, PKR is just like Umno and can never be trusted to fight for Sabah and Sarawak’s cause”.
On 10th January, the President announced little-known Pajudin Nordin of Tuaran
On this, FMT reports Pajudin as saying that “his appointment was part of PKR’s bigger plan to put young, capable leadership to helm the party’s state liaison team”.
“I appeal to all divisional heads to leave behind their differences. I pledge to work with all divisional heads. We uphold the constitution and we shall respect the decision of the president,” he said, adding that everyone in PKR should work to topple the Barisan Nasional.
Thamrin had this to say of Pajudin’s replacing him : “It is the prerogative of the president. I have no problems”.
Once again, Yong’s words were proven true. Party leadership at Merchant Square, through the vehicle of the President’s prerogative, had ridden roughshod over the choice of the divisional leaders in Sabah.
Pajudin’s attempt to convene his first state liaison meeting a week after his appointment turned out to be a disaster.
Only 6 out of 25 divisional leaders showed up.
A rumour that PKR leader, Kalakau Untol, armed with signatures from 17 divisional chiefs, was then in Kuala Lumpur to meet PKR leaders over the deteriorating situation in Sabah might explain the poor attendance at Pajudin’s first failed meeting.
On 25th January, FMT reported that 19 of the 25 PKR Sabah division chiefs called for president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail to take charge of state affairs.
Yesterday, PKR in Sabah hit an all-time low.
Pajudin not only quit as state chief and party member but, having earlier urged everyone in PKR to work to topple BN, formally applied to join UMNO.
According to this FMT report, Pajudin said that he felt “disappointed with Anwar (Ibrahim) and Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail because they are just fooling us, the PKR Sabah leaders. My credibility and loyalty to the party should not have been doubted but due to their action it has led to a further crisis in Sabah PKR ... I am very disappointed that all this while Anwar said that PKR is fighting for Sabah and the people’s right but he cakap tak serupa bikin (did not walk the talk)…I have lost confidence in the leadership of PKR…I have seen that under the leadership of Najib Tun Razak and in Sabah under Musa Aman, only Umno and BN could take care of the rights of the people and bring development to the country and state”.
All this now coming from the man who was hand-picked by party leaders at Merchant Square in KL?
On Gobala’s quitting the party, Malaysiakini reported PKR vice-president and strategic director Tian Chua as saying that “During the 2008 general election, people expected us to have better quality representatives… unfortunately, during the last election we were unable to do that, because we were in a rush, we got so many candidates that were not competent enough and Gobalakrishnan was one of them”.
I wonder what profound explanation PKR’s number 1 strategist will offer in respect of this latest debacle?
During my recent 3-day working visit to Kuching and Kota Kinabalu at the end of last month, I spoke by phone with one of the 19 Sabah division leaders who are calling for the President to take over the state leadership.
In despair and total resignation, this person said, “Haris, PKR is finished in Sabah, lah. Sarawak will follow. Habislah”.
In my earlier post where I posed the question if the end days of PKR in Sabah was at hand, I had closed the same with three questions and one message for Anwar.
I repeat the same now below.
First, how the *#@* did you ever dream of taking the federal government last September 16th, apparently counting on the support of Sabah and Sarawak when, it would seem, you haven’t a clue of how to win the hearts and minds of their locals, leaders or otherwise?
Second, is your ‘Ketuanan Rakyat’ any less sloganeering than Najib’s ’1Malaysia’? Is it from the heart or just skin deep?
Third, are you truly the changed man from your UMNO days, or are you now a closet Malay nationalist, because you see it as politically expedient?
I want to repeat here something I had said in my letter to Anwar on 18th August last year.
“On Black 14, I heard you use the phrase ‘Ketuanan Rakyat’ for the first time.
Do not waver from this.
End race politics.
End the politicisation of Islam.
You must be brave enough to tell the Malays that this country belongs to all the anak-anak Bangsa Malaysia, to remind the Malays again and again that UMNO’s ketuanan Melayu is unIslamic and has been their evil tool to enrich themselves and divide this nation.
Do this, and be assured of the strongest support from the majority of anak-anak Bangsa Malaysia who, by far and large, are decent people.
…A final reminder.
The rakyat today are not like that of 16 years ago.
We understand national issues better, we are better informed, and we have a greater sense of commitment to the ideals of justice and equality.
And we have a newly found self-belief to pursue these ideals and to pursue change.
Understand and remember that we are no longer afraid.
We fully understand today that governance of this nation was intended to be in the hands of the people, and that when you and your party leaders offer to govern, it is with a view to serve us.
Therefore, understand and remember that it is we, the rakyat, who govern through those who have taken oath to serve us.
It is only by abiding by that oath that you might honourably be called a leader of men.
Any less and you would have proven yourself to be no better than those whom you now endeavour to displace”.