Pua: Anwar deserves a second chance

By Stephanie Sta Maria, FMT

KUALA LUMPUR: Petaling Jaya Utara MP, Tony Pua, publicly vouched for Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim during a forum after a participant demanded to know why the former deputy prime minister should be given another chance in power.

The unidentified man asked what had changed in Anwar that DAP was now championing for him to be returned into government.

“This is fundamentally flawed,” he told Pua. “You are asking us to trust a man who created the financial mismanagement in the country during his tenure as deputy prime minister.”

Pua, who had earlier delivered a talk on “Economic Transformation: For Better or Worse”, replied that he had two reasons for backing Anwar. The first was based on what he has personally witnessed and the second on guesswork.

“This is a man who used to be a little more Malay and religious,” he reminded the 100-odd crowd at the Hotel Sri Petaling ballroom.

“It is one thing for him to be telling you that we need affirmative action based on race but it is another thing altogether for him to be saying that to the rural Malay heartland.”

Pua said that Anwar had taken a very challenging line in explaining to the rural Malays that what they really need is affirmative action based on needs so that financial aid will reach them instead of just the upper crust of society.

Political suicide

“For many politicians this would be political suicide,” he stated. “But the fact is that Anwar is willing to take that risk. And if Pakatan wins on that premise, then there is no reason for him to reverse what brought him into power.”