Let’s be clear about one thing

I said: let us give the opposition a chance to show us what they can do for one term. Give them just one term, I pleaded with the voters. If we are not happy with their performance then we can always kick them out again. If we can give them power then we can take back that power. If we can make them, we can break them.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

Over the last few days I have been receiving feedback from various quarters (comments in Malaysia Today being one of them) about my attacks on Pakatan Rakyat. Some feel uneasy and some want to know why I am attacking Pakatan Rakyat.

I suppose if you are a Muslim and someone were to disagree with the Islamic laws of stoning adulteresses to death and cutting off the hands of thieves you would view this person as anti-Islam. That is because you are a Muslim and anyone who disagrees with what you believe to be God’s law would be seen as an attack on Islam.

Hence, those who are opposition supporters would look at things the same way. They view me as attacking Pakatan Rakyat. I am not attacking Pakatan Rakyat. I am attacking the government. Sometimes Pakatan Rakyat gets hit (in states where they are the government). Most times it is Barisan Nasional that gets hit (50 times for every once that Pakatan Rakyat gets hit).

Let’s be clear about one thing. The term ‘turncoat’ came about in the days when if you surrendered or changed sides you would take off your coat and turn it inside out. Hence the term turncoat — you turn your coat inside out and wear it with the colours inside and not outside.

Therefore, to become a turncoat, you must first have been wearing that coat. If you were never wearing that coat in the first place then you can’t be a turncoat.

I am not wearing the opposition coat, neither DAP or PAS or PKR. I do remember speaking to Dr Hatta Ramli about joining PAS. In fact, the proposer and seconder on my membership application form were Hadi Awang and Mustapha Ali respectively. I then sent the duly signed form to Kuala Terengganu but never heard of it again.

That was 12 years ago in 2000.

That was when I spoke to Dr Hatta to complain that somehow my membership application has been lost somewhere. Dr Hatta laughed and said that maybe PAS does not want someone like me, whatever ‘someone like me’ means.

That was soon after the November 1999 general election.

In April 1999, I was employed by Parti Keadilan Nasional as the media coordinator. Three days after the November 1999 general election, Haji Hamid, my boss, told me that my services were being terminated with 24 hours notice. I told Haji Hamid, Anwar Ibrahim’s classmate in MCKK, that they should at least give me two months notice. 24 hours is a bit unfair.

When I was interviewed for that job in April, Haji Hamid asked me if I was a Parti Keadilan member. I told him I was not because I supported PAS, although I was not an official or card-bearing member. Haji Hamid told me I would have to become a member of Keadilan if I wanted the job. So, to quality for the job, I did.

Of course, once they sacked me from my job with 24 hours notice, I did not renew my membership. And that was when I signed up to become a PAS member.

However, 12 years on, I am still waiting to be confirmed as a PAS member. Maybe what Dr Hatta said is true: they do not want ‘people like me’.

Anyhow, I later spoke to Ronnie Liu and asked him whether I could become a DAP member. This was after I had left Malaysia.

Ronnie Liu told me that it is a complicated matter. And the complication is, I am seen as being at loggerheads with Anwar. So, if DAP took me as a member, this may upset Anwar. So better that DAP did not touch me.

At least Ronnie Liu was honest about why they don’t want me as a member — to not upset Anwar. PAS, however, never explained what happened to my membership application even after 12 years of waiting.

Anyway, that is the history of my 13 years ‘membership’ with the opposition. Quite funny, won’t you agree? Here I was trying very hard to become a member of either PAS or DAP and they went out of their way to not accept me as a member. Are they that scared of me? Are they worried I would take their job?

So you see, I was never a member of the opposition — except for a brief period from April to November 1999. By early 2000, my membership in PKR had expired and I never renewed it.

I also never held any party post. I never contested the election as a party candidate. I was never a wakil rakyat — either state assemblyman or Member of Parliament. I was never employed in any of the state governments under Pakatan Rakyat (or even Barisan Nasional for that matter).

Hence, how can I be a turncoat even if it is true that I am now supporting Barisan Nasional or Umno? And I am not saying that I am.

Anyway, do you remember the March 2008 election campaign? Some of you who had attended my ceramahs in Pantai Dalam, Lucky Garden, Scott Road, Jalan Thambi Abdullah, Pandamaran, Port Kelang, Kampong Raja Uda, Bagan, Jalan Raja Uda, Gelugor, etc., will probably remember what I said in those ceramahs.

I said: let us give the opposition a chance to show us what they can do for one term. Give them just one term, I pleaded with the voters. If we are not happy with their performance then we can always kick them out again. If we can give them power then we can take back that power. If we can make them, we can break them.

And the crowd clapped and roared and cheered. Some came forward to shake my hand and hug me. Some cried. And they did just that — they voted opposition and gave them five states and 82 seats in Parliament.

So, what has changed? Give them one term, I asked the voters. Try them out for one term. And if you don’t like what you see then kick them out and vote Barisan Nasional back into office.

I told the crowd this. And they cheered and agreed. Have I turned in any way from what I told the crowd back in March 2008?

So, understand what the term turncoat means. It means you are already wearing a coat of a certain colour and you now turn it inside out to display another colour.

I was never wearing any coat of any colour. Okay, I admit it. I did try. But no one wanted to give me a coat. I was left outside, coatless and all alone. Dr Hatta even laughed and passed a remark that maybe PAS does not want ‘people like me’. Ronnie Liu did not want me in case DAP upsets Anwar Ibrahim.

So, I am what they would call in the old days, a ‘freeman’. A freeman, as opposed to a serf, is someone who is not beholden to any lord or master. He is free to either not fight for any lord or master or, if he does want to fight, he is free to choose the lord and master he would like to fight for.

A serf does not have that luxury.

Take note of one thing. I am not whacking Pakatan Rakyat. I am whacking the government that does not perform. At federal level, the government is Barisan Nasional. At state level, some states are under Barisan Nasional and some under Pakatan Rakyat.

I did not campaign for Barisan Nasional in the last general election. I did not ask the voters to vote for Barisan Nasional. I campaigned for Pakatan Rakyat. I told the voters to vote for Pakatan Rakyat and to try them out for one term and see how they perform. I also told the voters that if Pakatan Rakyat fails to perform then we can always kick them out again.

The voters agreed. That was the deal I made with the voters. So it is my moral obligation to fulfil my side of the deal with the voters and expose Pakatan Rakyat in the event they commit a violation, breach or transgression. It is what I promised the voters. I am just delivering my promise to the voters who trusted me and voted Pakatan Rakyat to try them out for one term.

Now, tell me, what has changed? Or are you too stupid to understand what I just said: which will not surprise me judging from some of your comments.