PORT DICKSON, July 19 — PKR deputy president Datuk Seri Azmin Ali was noticeably absent at the start of the party’s three-day retreat, amid rising tensions with president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim over a sex clip scandal involving the former.
It is understood that Azmin and PKR vice-president Zuraida Kamaruddin, who is said to be firmly in his camp, are attending a charity event in Kuala Lumpur tonight. Both will reportedly attend the retreat from the second day onwards.
When prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad arrived at 8.45pm sharp, only Anwar, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and several other senior PKR leaders cordially greeted him at the lobby.
After giving his speech to the assembled PKR leaders, Dr Mahathir was questioned by the press about Azmin’s absence.
“That is his business. It is none of my concern,” was all he would say on the matter.
Earlier today, banners were spotted around Port Dickson town demanding Dr Mahathir resign as prime minister and let Anwar take over.
The banners, reading Mahathir letak jawatan, serah negara pada Anwar (Step down Mahathir, hand over the country to Anwar), could be seen on a bridge and along Batu 4.
Azmin and Anwar have engaged in a war of words, after the latter said Azmin should resign as Economic Affairs minister if the individual in the video was irrefutably proven to be him.
In turn, Azmin told Anwar to take a good look at himself before passing judgement on anyone else.