PKR hints at by-election after pardon for Anwar

Datuk Saifuddin Nasution Ismail speaks to the press at Cheras Rehabilitation Hospital in Kuala Lumpur May 11, 2018. — Picture by Azinuddin Ghazali
Datuk Saifuddin Nasution Ismail speaks to the press at Cheras Rehabilitation Hospital in Kuala Lumpur May 11, 2018. — Picture by Azinuddin Ghazali

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CHERAS, May 11 — PKR is aiming to put its de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim in “a position that he deserves” after a royal pardon is obtained for his sodomy conviction, with a by-election possibly on the cards, a senior party leader said today.

PKR secretary-general Datuk Saifuddin Nasution Ismail said that PKR plans to secure a pardon for Anwar first, after his release from jail.

“For PKR, our plan is that after his release, we will work towards obtaining a pardon.

“The pardon is the licence to enable Datuk Seri Anwar to be involved in political parties. Certainly, after returning to politics actively, he won’t remain as just a member of Parliament (MP).

“We aspire to put him in a position that he deserves to be in,” he told the media here after meeting Anwar in the wards.

Saifuddin indicated that Anwar would not be appointed to a position, but rather seek an election.

“Bringing him back does not mean appointing him as senator. Certainly, there will be efforts for another electoral process,” he said, before replying “yes” when asked if there would be a by-election.

When asked if Anwar would be made an adviser to the Cabinet or if the newly sworn-in Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad would have to make way for him, Saifuddin said: “We haven’t discussed to that stage.”

“The matter now is to obtain his release, obtain his pardon so that Datuk Seri Anwar can be active in politics.

“Our wish is to put him in a position that he deserves,” he reiterated.

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