Anwar Ibrahim

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Anwar Ibrahim

In effort to keep Selangor, Anwar campaigns in Malay heartland

Posted: 01 May 2013 05:28 AM PDT

The Malaysian Insider


Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim took the battle to keep Selangor in the Umno-held Malay heartland of Selayang today, telling youths to vote for change in Election 2013.

A 1,000-strong crowd turned up for his visit to Kuang, within the Selayang federal seat helmed by Umno, prompting the opposition leader to proclaim it was a sign of increased support just four days ahead of the May 5 polls.

"If it's like this, the SPR can lie and so can the media.. but the people have risen to back Pakatan Rakyat to form the new government in Putrajaya," he told the predominantly Malay crowd in a packed town hall here. (SPR is the Malay acronym for the Elections Commission)

These final few days of campaigning will be the most critical for Anwar and the PKR-DAP-PAS alliance as the battle for federal power intensifies, making every vote counts especially those from Barisan Nasional (BN) fortress seats such as Kuang, a rural seat located within the Selayang parliamentary district.

Anwar said today's huge turnout indicated a shift in the "political conscience" of the rural Malays who now no longer accept Umno's attempt to veil its corruption through communal politics.

"They always talk about the Malays but it is always the Malay youths who are left with no jobs. If they have a job, their salary will only be RM1,000.

"We must change this," he said to a loud shout of "ubah" or "change", a popular slogan now used as PR's campaign fodder.

In the 2008 elections, PR won 36 of the 56 state seats in Selangor with most coming from urban areas while its rivals Umno, BN's Malay lynchpin, remain indomitable in the rural districts.

The pact's caretaker Mentri Besar Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim had said he was confident of retaining all the seats it won in the March 8 polls.

PR, however, is aiming big this time around and penetrating the Malay heartland would be crucial to PR's ambition for national power. This, Abdul Khalid said, remains an uphill battle.

"It is a bit difficult but I believe we have made much progress," he told The Malaysian Insider in an exclusive interview recently.

To help PR make inroads into these red areas, PAS had roped in the popular Tan Sri Muhammad Muhammad Taib whose long tenure as the state's mentri besar and his charitable leadership had earn him the love and respect from Selangor's rural Malays.

Few of those attending today's ceramah told The Malaysian Insider PR's tactic to ride on the popularity of these leaders have begun to draw more Malays towards the opposition.

"I was never into politics but I wanted to see Anwar. He's got charisma and I think a lot of young people look up to him," said Faisal Mohd Bakri, a 26 year-old Kuang native who now works in the capital as an engineer, told The Malaysian Insider.

Despite his age, Faisal will join some 2.6 million others who will be voting for the first time come May 5. Analysts note that the demographic will be the determinant to the 13th general elections' outcome.

These voters is also crucial for PR to bridge the generational gap in the rural areas as most of their parents tend to be pro-BN while the young are more inclined towards the opposition.

Pakatan makes May Day pledge of extra pay for civil servants

Posted: 01 May 2013 05:25 AM PDT

The Malaysian Insider

The Pakatan Rakyat (PR) promised to change civil servants' pay scheme to weekly from monthly when it takes power, potentially giving civil servants an extra four weeks' pay annually, in a move to get votes from the 1.4 million-strong civil service.

De facto PR leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim delivered his Labour Day's address here, to greet thousands of supporters at the same ground in Precinct 3 where PAS' spiritual adviser Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat was given a historic welcome last week.

"Our approach is to give benefits and rewards to defend the fates of workers, equivalent to their sacrifices and work load. This is the principles that is not understood by our friends on the other side," Anwar said to the crowd here who welcomed him with standing ovations and "Reformasi" chants earlier.

PR's pledges for civil servants, called "Declaration of Putrajaya 2013", were delivered to Anwar by its author PAS' Datuk Husam Musa, who is making a bid for the federal administrative capital in the May 5 polls.

Civil servants are also slated to get interest-free home loans for first-time home buyers, and earlier pension age – 45 for women and 50 for men – should PR win Election 2013.

PR also pledged to reduce the promotion period from 15 to 10 years. Workers union will also be allowed, and any political interference in the civil service will be stopped.

Earlier on, Anwar praised the civil service for contributing towards his good record while in the Ministry of Education and the Treasury, but lamented that the workers have been demoted due to political interference and use of foreign consultants.

He also criticised the Public Service Remuneration Scheme (SBPA) which was introduced on January last year. It was scrapped just after two months, after being criticised for only benefiting top government servants while leaving the majority of the civil service with paltry salary hikes.

"This shows the attitude of Umno-BN leaders, they have always sided with the rich people above," said Anwar.

It was revealed last year that under the SBPA, the Chief Secretary would draw a salary of RM60,000 while those in the "Premier Service" category were to rake in RM36,000, a vast difference from those in the lower pay grades, some of whom were only given increments as low as RM1.70.

The then prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had announced that the existing Malaysian Remuneration System (SSM) would be maintained with improvements, where salaries of the Chief Secretary to the Government and top-tier civil servants in the "Premier Service I" (Turus I) category would only be adjusted by seven per cent.

Civil servants in the management and professional groups and Grades 1 to 54, in turn, would see their salaries hiked by 13 per cent across the board.

"I assure you, a PR government will restore people's trust towards the civil service's professionalism and we will reform the service to increase their dignities as competent civil servants," Anwar said to cheers from the crowd.

Malaysia's bureaucracy is powered by some 1.4 million workers. Some 80,000 people live in Putrajaya, with 15,798 of them registered to vote.

Time running out for veteran reformer Anwar

Posted: 01 May 2013 05:20 AM PDT


On Sunday, Malaysia’s Anwar Ibrahim has his best – and seemingly last – chance to complete an extraordinary political comeback from beaten-down prisoner to leader of his country.

The 65-year-old former deputy prime minister and finance minister told Reuters in an interview he will step down if his three-party alliance fails to wrest power for the first time from the ruling National Front (BN) coalition in Sunday’s election.

“I’ll have given my best and if the people are not ready for change, it’s better that you have a post-Anwar situation,” he said after a gruelling day of campaigning in Malacca, a BN stronghold.

Anwar is closer to power than at any time since his meteoric career came crashing down in 1998 when he fell out with the then prime minister Mahathir Mohamad, his mentor and Malaysia’s longest-serving leader.

His alliance surged to its best-ever election result in 2008, gaining support from ethnic Chinese and Indians disillusioned with race-based policies favouring majority Malays and discontent over a lack of political and economic reform.

NONEThe charismatic former rising star of the ruling United Malays National Organisation (Umno) party said he was optimistic about going one better this time.

“What is encouraging compared with 2008 is that we have built the momentum rather early this time.

“Normally, you don’t see a crowd like tonight until the end of the campaign trail,” Anwar said as he sat down at a roadside restaurant close to midnight after a long day of campaigning.

Late diners mobbed Anwar for pictures and hand shakes, a reminder of how he remains a popular figure after his tumultuous political career.

‘Premature power play that failed’

Anwar, who had long been tipped to succeed Mahathir, was dismissed in 1998 and charged with sodomy and corruption after he clashed with Mahathir over his handling of the Asian financial crisis that battered Malaysia.

Many saw the events as a premature power play that failed badly for Anwar, who critics say is still motivated by intense personal ambition. However, his arrest sparked street protests calling for “reformasi”, or reform, that still resonate today, especially for a younger generation eager for change.

anwar ibrahim black eye small 080206Images at the time of the goateed, bespectacled Anwar appearing in court with a black eye and bruises sparked international outrage. Only a year earlier,Time magazine had put him on its cover, calling him “The Future of Asia”.

Anwar spent six years in solitary confinement and was forced to sit out Malaysia’s next two elections before returning to parliament in 2008 with a sweeping by-election victory.

Fresh allegations of sodomy then surfaced and many expected Anwar’s political career to end with a guilty verdict in court.

Instead, he was given a new lease on political life when he was acquitted in January 2012 following a trial that gripped the Muslim-majority, multi-ethnic nation of 28 million people.

Anwar has always maintained the charges against him were politically-motivated, a view shared by international human rights groups and a majority of Malaysians in opinion polls.

Fallen heir

Anwar has promoted a rival vision for Malaysia that would abolish or scale back its most authoritarian laws and scrap a system of ethnic preferences for majority Malays.

A magnetic speaker who has cultivated a range of international allies, Anwar rails against the network of patronage that has grown up between Umno and well-connected business people, fostering inefficiency and corruption.

His critics say he is far from clean himself, having long thrived within the very same establishment.

“Malaysia must mature as a democracy. And we must be able to ensure that the (country’s) enormous wealth be well and prudently managed,” Anwar said.

Anwar was born in northern Penang island in 1947, the son of a hospital porter who later became a member of parliament. He attended one of Malaysia’s top schools and made his name as a firebrand Islamic youth leader.

NONEHe was jailed for 20 months in 1974 under a sweeping Internal Security Act (ISA) for leading anti-government demonstrations against poverty.

Mahathir invited him to join Umno in 1982 to bridge a gap between the party’s ethnic Malay nationalist image and its rising Islamic aspirations.

He held a string of senior cabinet posts, including the ministries of agriculture and education, and had been finance minister since 1991 when he was sacked.

After his first sodomy conviction was overturned in 2004, Anwar quickly returned to politics as the head of a revitalised, multi-ethnic opposition, centred around Islamists and secular social reformers.

The 2008 election put Anwar’s coalition tantalisingly close to a parliamentary majority, challenging the coalition which has controlled Malaysia since independence from Britain in 1957.

- Reuters


Posted: 01 May 2013 05:10 AM PDT


MEI 1, 2013


Saya ingin merujuk di sini kepada laporan media oleh En Azlan Mat Lazim, bapa kepada Saiful Bukhari. Laporan media menyebut bahawa beliau menarik balik mohon maaf yang dibuatnya kepada Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim dan turut mengumumkan dirinya keluar dari Parti Keadilan Rakyat dengan serta merta.


Kami ingin menjelaskan di sini bahawa En Azlan Mat Lazim tidak pernah menjadi ahli Parti Keadilan Rakyat. Permohonannya untuk menyertai KEADILAN belum pun diluluskan. Saya juga ingin menjelaskan di sini, bahawa En Azlan Mat Lazim yang meminta untuk bertemu kami dan bukan sebaliknya. Beliau dengan sendiri telah menawarkan untuk membuat pengakuan bahawa segala dakwaan terhadap Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim merupakan satu konspirasi politik.


Perkembangan sebegini bukanlah sesuatu yang luar biasa terutama di musim pilihanraya. Apa tah lagi modus operandi sebegini sudah sinomim dengan muslihat politik UMNO. Beberapa hari sebelum ini En Azlan Mat Lazim telah menghubungi saya dan menyatakan beliau menghadapi tekanan yang sangat kuat dari UMNO. Tekanan ini turut dikenakan ke atas keluarganya. Saya yakin "penarikan balik" pengakuannya ini adalah natijah dari tekanan ini.


Dato' Johari Abdul,

Ahli Majlis Pimpinan Pusat,


Anwar Ibrahim: Challenging one party rule in Malaysia

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 06:18 AM PDT

Dhaka Tribune

Malaysians will go to the polls on May 5


Malaysians will go to the polls on May 5 in what is predicted to be a closely fought election, with 55 years of one-party government being challenged by Anwar Ibrahim, leader of the People's Justice Party and head of the opposition coalition Pakatan Rakyat.

Campaigning for the ideals of empowerment, justice and equity, the coalition is calling for an end to corruption and the reform of civil and democratic institutions. Anwar Ibrahim emphasises social justice, poverty eradication, education and civil society and he has been a powerful symbol of integrity in the shadowy world of Malaysian politics for many years.

He was a former deputy prime minister in Malaysia, holding various cabinet positions in agriculture, commerce, education and finance before becoming right hand man to former prime minister Mahathir.

While finance minister he was recognised as an "Asian tiger" and Newsweek named him its 1998 "Asian of the Year" for his role in rescuing Malaysia from the Asian financial crisis.

When establishing a reform movement, he courageously accused the prime minister of corruption, which led to his temporary downfall and six years in jail on trumped-up charges.

Emerging from the politically motivated accusations in 2004, he gained a notable result in the 2008 elections, winning one-third of the seats and five states from the incumbent National Front party.

Attempts to smear his reputation again failed when accusations were finally dismissed last year for lack of evidence. He is regarded as Malaysia's best hope against an autocratic and corrupt government which many think have ruled Malaysia for far too long.

The incumbents are using the usual tactics such as tampering with the electoral rolls and using huge amounts of public money to campaign against the opposition.

At speeches and rallies Anwar Ibrahim is compelling, charismatic and persuasive as he remains steadfast in his trust in true democracy and his faith in the wisdom of the people.

His followers are joining him in their hundreds of thousands in the call for electoral reform and an end to corruption scandals, crime and police brutality. Anwar knows well that he is up against a well-oiled propaganda machine that calls itself "Moderate Malaysia" and controls the media's often empty vote-getting slogans which distort the meaning of freedom, democracy and human rights.

His own coalition is a triumph of bringing to consensus the disparate elements of his People's Justice Party, the Pan-Malaysian Islamic party and the ethnic Chinese Democratic Action party. He has managed to bring them together into a broader liberal community through "active and vibrant intellectual discourse," acknowledging extremists with respect and tolerance.

The objective is a multi-party democracy where leading parties will change every few years as a way of being accountable to the people, putting an end to the single party domination of Malaysian politics.

The twin issues of corruption and living costs are of major concern to voters. Anwar's People's Alliance has established a good track record in the states it currently governs, and he told reporters on April 4 that he was "cautiously optimistic" about winning a majority in parliament. The people of Malaysia have become more aware of national issues and their right to criticise, question and condemn their current rulers whose excesses and extravagances have no limits.

In the culture of patronage and political largesse, huge sums of public money have been squandered in failed economic ventures and speculative projects, which certainly have not benefitted Malaysians.

Education, housing and health services are all in need of upgrading and investment and the country suffers from stagnant wages and a huge and growing national debt, as the government borrows to maintain handouts to retain political power.

It is a tragic state for a Muslim country to be in, as it has moved far from the tenets of Islam which include moderation, piety, justice and fairness to all. The Pakatan Rakyat offers the best hope of reform and change and the fact that the coalition contains diverse interests and competing ideologies can be seen as one of its strengths. By bringing together different ethnic and religious groups the PR coalition is more representative of a truly democratic Malaysia, more concerned for the good of the country and all its people than the nationalist Malay group represented by the ruling Barisan Nasional.

If the nation is to eradicate poverty which is one of the often repeated campaign promises of the current government, then mismanagement, corruption and abuse of power will have to be replaced with a moral government with the interests of the people at heart.

Anwar Ibrahim has an opportunity on May 5 to save his country from the one-party rule that threatens to hold back the country with stagnating ideas and economics; hopefully the people of Malaysia will recognise the moment for its historical significance and give Anwar Ibrahim the chance to lead his country to a renaissance of integrity, prosperity and true democracy.

Dr Azeem Ibrahim is a Fellow at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding.

Jelajah Pakatan Harapan Rakyat Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim ke KEDAH

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 02:36 AM PDT

3 Mei 2013 (Jumaat)

1)   1.00 ptg – Solat Jumaat – Masjid Ulu Melaka, Langkawi2)   2.00 ptg – Sepetang Bersama Anwar Ibrahim     Lokasi: Pdg Maktab Mahmud, Ulu Melaka, Langkawi

3)   4.00 ptg – Sepetang Bersama Anwar Ibrahim     Lokasi: Pekan Naka, Pedu

4)   5.00 ptg – Sepetang Bersama Anwar Ibrahim     Lokasi:  Kg Tanjong Musang, Pokok Sena

5)   5.45 ptg – Sepetang Bersama Anwar Ibrahim     Lokasi: Pej PKR Negri Kedah, Bakar Bata, Alor Setar

6)   7.15 mlm – Solat & Tazkirah Maghrib     Lokasi: Surau Taman Peruda, Sungai Petani

7)   8.30 mlm – Ceramah Perdana Pakatan Harapan Rakyat     Lokasi: Taman Ria Jaya, Sungai Petani

8)   9.45 mlm- Ceramah Perdana Pakatan Harapan Rakyat     Lokasi: Taman Semarak, Sungai Petani

9)   11.15 mlm – Ceramah Perdana Pakatan Harapan Rakyat    Lokasi: Stadium Mini Keladi, Kulim

Sambutan Hari Pekerja bersama Anwar Ibrahim di Putrajaya

Posted: 30 Apr 2013 01:15 AM PDT


Perutusan Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim kepada penjawat awam sempena Hari Pekerja bersama Dato’ Husam Musa, calon bagi Parlimen P125 Putrajaya di Presint 3, Putrajaya pada hari Rabu (1 Mei 2013) jam 2 petang.


Pejabat Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim

Who exactly will be in chaos if Pakatan wins?

Posted: 29 Apr 2013 08:31 PM PDT

The Malaysian Insider

by Abdul Ghani Mohamad

If Pakatan Rakyat (PR) wins the general election on May 5, it will be because a majority of Malaysians decided that it wants a new leadership at the helm of our country.

But Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said today that PR's cry for change in Election 2013 is a call for chaos, division and national bankruptcy.

How's that again?

If a majority of us — and that remains an if — want PR to run the country for the next five years, why exactly would there be chaos?

I would think the only chaos would be among Barisan Nasional (BN) parties and their leaders.

Surely, Muhyiddin is not suggesting that BN leaders, their parties and the voters who support them would be sore losers and create chaos?

Or is there an implied threat there? I would like to have more confidence in my fellow Malaysians.

After all, a significant number of Malaysians — millions, in fact — have consistently voted for opposition parties since independence.

And the result has more often than not been peace. Except in 1969 when BN's predecessor the Alliance scraped through but lost the popular vote.

So, there has always been division in our country too, just like there is in any country, organisation or even family. We have different opinions but we are still Malaysians.

As for bankruptcy, I am assuming Muhyiddin is referring to Pakatan's many promises in its election manifesto.

I do not agree with some of the proposals in Pakatan's manifesto but it is rich of him to suggest the opposition, if given a chance to rule, would bankrupt the country.

BN's policies in facing this election are equally if not more populist, what with handouts being announced every week.

I can only come to one conclusion — Muhyiddin's remarks are nothing more than a self-serving bid to stay in power, and not an attempt to offer Malaysians a chance to make an informed choice between BN and Pakatan.

Maybe, it was too much to expect from the man.

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