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Tuesday, July 31, 2018

AZIZAH PULLS THE RUG FROM UNDER AZMIN, OPENS UP PKR POLLS TO ALL MEMBERS AMID RESOUNDING DEMAND: ‘THIS IS NOT THE FIRST TIME SUCH A LEEWAY HAS BEEN GIVEN,’ PKR OFFICIAL

WHILE the PKR deputy presidency is shaping up to be a key contest, the party is now opening its elections to anyone who registers by today.
PKR members who joined the party for less than a full year are now allowed to contest in the September polls with approval from party president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.
The controversial move was conveyed in a letter by Wan Azizah to members yesterday, instructing that such requests be sent to her by noon today.
“There are too many requests this time. So, the applications must reach me latest by noon, August 1,” she said in the letter sighted by The Malaysian Insight.
The letter has been confirmed by party election committee chairman Rashid Din.
“It allows anyone to send in an application. This is not the first time a leeway like this is given,”  he said.
A separate circular on the election conditions states that a PKR member is deemed to have fulfilled a one-year membership if he or she has been a party member for no less than 12 months by June 26.
The circular, also sighted by The Malaysian Insight, said exemptions can be given by the party president after discussions with the political bureau.
Wan Azizah’s letter follows an Utusan Malaysia report two days ago about complaints of a deliberate plan to push certain candidates ineligible to contest into the polls.
Kelantan PKR members reportedly said they believed this was part of a secret plan and questioned whether the approvals would be transparent.
They said they knew of some members with less than a year’s membership receiving consent letters form the president’s office, and alleged that one of them was a minister’s political secretary.
“Is it true that they have discussed the matter at the political bureau? We at the grassroots think there is an effort to sabotage this party elections,” Utusan reported them as saying.
The rationale behind Wan Azizah’s decision is not known but it was reported last month that some 300,000 new members joined the party between May 9 and June 26.
Party secretary-general Saifuddin Nasution Ismail said these members brought the total membership to more than 800,000, all of whom will vote in the coming elections.
Elections for leaders in the 2018 to 2021 term will begin with nominations on Sunday for central leadership council positions.
The elections for the central committee, youth and women wings will be carried out between September 14 and October 7 through a new electronic voting system.
Currently, the only candidate for the president’s post is Wan Azizah’s husband and PKR de facto leader, Anwar Ibrahim.
Vice-president Rafizi Ramli is running for deputy president and could face the incumbent Mohamed Azmin Ali, who said he has not decided on which post to contest.
– https://www.themalaysianinsight.com

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