KUALA LUMPUR, July 19 — Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim should relinquish his presidency of PKR and retire from politics, a founding member of the party Khalid Jaafar said.
Khalid, who is also adviser to PKR deputy president Datuk Seri Azmin Ali, reminded Anwar of the dangers of living in a glass house and throwing stones at imaginary targets, amid a clear schism within the party over a sex video scandal that the police have concluded to be a smear tactic against the Cabinet member.
“In the run-up to GE14, he was portrayed as the seventh prime minister. After GE14, Anwar is certain to be the eighth prime minister as there is apparently an agreement. Only an inch from the prime minister’s seat.
“Only an inch left but Anwar is impatient. He worries someone else will overtake him. He throws a stone at his rival. He does not realise he lives in a glass house,” Khalid wrote on his Facebook page yesterday.
“At an advanced age, the return journey is long. It’s best Anwar Ibrahim retires from politics,” he added.
Khalid’s strongly-worded post is the latest open rebuke from senior PKR members, 23 of whom are members of the ruling Pakatan Harapan (PH) component party’s central committee, after Anwar suggested his deputy should resign as minister if the sex videos in which Azmin is alleged to be a participant prove to be authentic.
In a joint statement yesterday, the group led by PKR vice-presidents Zuraida Kamaruddin, Chua Tian Chang and Ali Biju chided Anwar for making inappropriate public comments against Azmin when the allegation had yet to be proven.
Late yesterday, Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Abdul Hamid Bador announced that the sex videos that first emerged in May were authentic, but added that the identities of the two men could not be verified.
However, Hamid added that police investigations revealed the videos were the creation of a political party leader who spent hundreds of thousands of ringgit to embarrass and tarnish the reputation of a certain individual, without naming either parties.
“It revives the saga of the China doll video that was nearly forgotten. The then inspector-general of police said forensic investigations showed the video was genuine,” Khalid wrote on Facebook, referring to the 2011 sex scandal that surrounded Anwar then.
The executive director of think tank Institute for Policy Research noted that Anwar’s latest remark on Azmin echoed the call by his party information chief Datuk Seri Shamsul Iskandar Md Akin.
He noted their remarks departed from the full support Azmin and the rest of the PKR leadership gave Anwar when their leader faced similar sex allegations that he categorically denied.
“Anwar who is addicted to the prime minister’s chair has once again committed a tactical blunder by repeating Shamsul’s call.
“The information chief’s call means precisely that Anwar must let go presidency of Keadilan,” Khalid said.
Azmin has consistently denied involvement in the sex videos in which he was alleged to be a participant by Shamsul Iskandar’s former ministerial aide Haziq Abdullah Abdul Aziz who was also the Santubong PKR Youth chief and sacked from the party earlier this month.
Police have arrested nine people in connection with the sex videos to date, the latest including Anwar’s political secretary Farhash Wafa Salvador Rizal Mubarak.
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said Wednesday that he considered the real crime in the scandal to be the conspiracy to “bring down Azmin.”