Broken Zaid withdraws from PKR’s No 2 race

By Syed Jaymal Zahiid, Free Malaysia Today

PKR supreme council member Zaid Ibrahim has announced his withdrawal from PKR’s heated deputy presidency race. The decision was made following the failure by the party’s leadership to address accusations of electoral discrepancies in the contest for the coveted post despite persistent complaints.

He has also resigned from all posts in the party. He is currently the party’s head of Federal Territories, and a member of the powerful political bureau and supreme council. He was also tasked to oversee the formation of Pakatan Rakyat’s common policy.

Zaid made the announcement via a statement released in his blog at about 3am today.

Apparently dejected, Zaid repeated his accusation that the party’s top leadership is conspiring to ensure a victory for Azmin Ali, the party’s vice-president and the leading contender for the post.

Azmin is said to be the favoured choice of PKR supremo Anwar Ibrahim.

“I was offered to join this party under the belief that I could promote enlightened and progressive politics; and nurture and develop principled political values and culture that I consider indispensable to the development of democracy and good governance in this country. I was mistaken.

“Over the course of the party elections, events have shown that the leadership actively condones malpractices and electoral fraud to achieve its designed objectives”.

Top-down conspiracy

Once hailed as the potential successor to Anwar who is now facing a second allegedly trumped-up sodomy charge, the former law minister’s frequent open and scathing criticism towards the party’s top leadership has corroded his popularity within a party that is struggling to fend off allegations of nepotism.

Zaid has made repeated claims that there is a conspiracy among the party’s top echelons to undermine his rapid ascent in PKR, an allegation the party denies.

The claims included his accusation that the party’s election committee and secretariat are under direct instructions to overlook any form of alleged fraud involving Azmin.

Azmin, known to be Anwar’s right-hand man, is currently leading the three-cornered deputy presidential race, even surpassing expectations by garnering majority support in states like Sabah, a supposedly Zaid stronghold.

Again the former Umno man, who was sacked from the ruling party following his flirts with the very outfit that he is now crusading against, made a thinly veiled accusation that the circumstances surrounding the aforementioned scenario was a top-down conspiracy:

“Finally, I hope those adoring fans of Anwar Ibrahim will no longer regard me as a ‘spoiler’ standing in the way of their march to Putrajaya. I wish them well,” he said in the strongest and explicit statement yet against the party supremo.