Ibrahim Ali and Perkasa – down but not out yet

By Wong Choon Mei, Malaysia Chronicle

Once riding high, Perkasa chief Ibrahim Ali is now fumbling for support. Hence, the nonstop and rather nonsensical tirade against those Umno and BN leaders who have given him and his ultra-Malay rights group the boot.

So far, only former Umno president and Perkasa patron Mahathir Mohamad has spoken up for Perkasa. Mahathir has even warned Umno it might suffer further loss of popularity with the Malay voters if it cut its ties with Perkasa.

But Mahathir himself is a spent force, done in by his own racism and the slew of revelations that are starting to pour in about his corruption in the various mega and privatization deals hammered out during his 22 years in power.

Najib waits to see which way the wind blows

Nonetheless, not all is lost yet for Ibrahim Ali and Perkasa. There is still Prime Minister Najib Razak. 

Despite the noisy break-up announced by Umno secretary-general Tengku Adnan and cheered by Cabinet ministers such as Nazri Aziz, Koh Tsu Koon, and MCA leaders, Najib himself has kept mum.

But very telling is that the Umno-owned Utusan newspaper has supported Perkasa, even though its top editors were hand-picked by Najib.

“Yes, it is the typical two-faced politics of Umno. Some say Najib is being cautious. I think that is too kind a word. It is not caution, it is outright unprincipled, two-timing misrepresentation. If the Malay response is resounding they want Perkasa, Najib will be first to turn around, no doubt helped by Utusan,” Bukit Gantang MP Nizar Jamaluddin told Malaysia Chronicle.

“In such a case, the ones who will look like the real fools will be Tsu Koon and Soi Lek and the other non-Malay BN leaders for getting all excited over what is nothing more than another big bluff. Fortunately for them, there hasn’t been much response. Few Malays care about Ibrahim Ali and his nonsense but it is not just Perkasa that has faded but also Umno.”