Anwar acquittal to lend spotlight to Pakatan’s policy push

(The Malaysian Insider) – Pakatan Rakyat (PR) is banking on riding the wave of publicity from Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s acquittal last Monday to promote policy thrusts aimed at winning over key voter groups during its national convention here today.

The pact that rules four states won in Election 2008 is gathering here to finalise its plans for elections expected this year.

“We must quickly leverage on the momentum (gained from the acquittal) and build up a groundswell,” PAS central working committee member Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad told The Malaysian Insider.

“Hopefully, we can get some space and get picked up by mainstream media and new media.”

The opposition pact will focus on four policy thrusts — the civil service, Felda, monopolies and the economy, as well as the relationship between federal and state governments — at its third national convention.

It is understood that PR hopes to sway Malay voters, civil servants, the working class and east Malaysians, sizeable vote blocs seen to hold the key to Putrajaya in the next general election.

PKR strategic director Rafizi Ramli said that while the issues had been raised in the opposition’s Buku Jingga manifesto previously, PR would use the convention to delve further into the “nitty-gritty” of the chosen policy thrusts.

“We will examine the mechanics of how to implement these policies,” he told The Malaysian Insider.

“In the first convention, we laid out the broad principles. During the second convention, we looked at action plans. Now we will peel back the layers.”