Raja Petra’s Latest Claim: Anwar is Willing to Cast Aside Nurul Izzah
PKR is currently struggling under allegations that its top leadership -- its very top leadership -- is pushing aside Nurul Izzah Anwar, First Daughter of PKR, Deputy President of PKR and MP for Lembah Pantai. The explosive allegations, from renegade blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin, have prompted a range of denials from the flat (Nurul Izzah) to the angry (everyone else).
The thrust of the allegations is that this is a continuation of the leadership battle that began at PKR's party elections in 2010, when Zaid Ibrahim was pushed out under suspicious circumstances. Allegedly, the same party leaders who forced Zaid into a short-lived third-force organisation worked to eliminate Nurul Izzah then, but were unsuccessful.
Now, with Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil sidelined, RPK alleges, the party isn't so much actively sidelining her as watching her get set up for a tremendous fall in GE13 to Federal Territories and Urban Well-being Minister Raja Nong Chik Raja Zainal Abidin.
While this might seem counterintuitive for a party that claims it can win Putrajaya in the upcoming general elections, RPK alleges that Pakatan has recognised that it cannot win this round, and must instead build for the future. This entire scheme is a way to clear the decks for -- it would appear -- Azmin Ali, so that at GE14, Pakatan can march behind him to victory.
Occam's Razor teaches us that the simpler the idea, the more likely it is to be correct, and the more convoluted, the less so. But there are many reasons to believe there is something to this latest claim by RPK.
First, Azmin has remained faithfully at Anwar's side for decades, and has undeniably become a power player, learning from the master himself how to obtain chits in Government and now in Opposition. His role in Zaid's ouster is not well-developed, but many PKR figures, including Zaid himself, have laid some of the blame at Azmin's feet.
Second, Nurul Izzah is an accomplished and capable young woman, who knocked Shahrizat from her seat in the latter's prime. Whatever else may be said of Anwar's political career, he clearly helped forge a capable politician in Nurul Izzah.
Third, PKR abhors too many capable politicians in leadership. Anwar has ruthlessly worked to oust those either not related or not bound by years of loyalty to him, and this message has trickled down to the party's base. Having Nurul Izzah in leadership now is tolerable because she is Anwar's daughter, but she is clearly an obstacle to Azmin's advancement.
Were the rakyat to choose who to represent them -- Nurul Izzah or Azmin -- would they really choose Anwar's faithful aide-de-camp over his talented and charismatic daughter?
RPK's allegations in fact make a great deal of sense. The real questions -- which will doubtless take years to answer -- are these:
If this is true -- and again, there is a great deal to suggest it is -- then how has Anwar let the situation reach this point? Is he really allowing his aide of decades to set aside his own blood, especially in light of her tremendous skills as a politician?
And if it is not true, then the worse question: How has Anwar -- even Anwar, for whom PKR is merely another vehicle to Putrajaya -- allowed the situation to reach the point at which these allegations are plausible? How has he not set up a clear succession plan and presented it to the rakyat, like any responsible leader would?
How has he let the vehicle for his own perceived greatness become such a liability? - The Choice