COMMENTARY, Oct 8 ― While existing political parties struggle trying to figure out how to tackle young voters aged 18 and above, a new multi-racial party emerges claiming it is the right time to enter the saturated political scene.
Saying it is not just for youngsters, the party also claims the causes it is championing are those that right-thinking voters are concerned with.
Adding colour to the country's political landscape, People’s Power Party or Parti Kuasa Rakyat aims to champion the causes of “peasants” or B40 and M40 (those representing the lower- and middle-income groups in the country).
At the top of the list is free education until university level and job opportunities at management level; right now only a few from these groups are given the chance at either.
This party will support Barisan Nasional (BN) given their similar objectives like eradicating poverty and uplifting the economic standings of the poor. Parti Kuasa Rakyat's prime mover Kamaruzzaman Yaacub said the ruling party or parties need to go back to basics ― re-engineering of National Economic Policy (NEP) ― to correct imbalances of economy, etc.
“NEP mooted by the late Tun Abdul Razak Hussein was the best solution to eradicate poverty and correct the economic imbalances in society but a pity the policy was hijacked by the few who were successful.
“We will champion this cause so that all will taste the economic wealth of the country but first we have to change our mindset ― we are Malaysians and not see each other by race.
“Our slogan is government by the people, for the people. It is multi-racial as this is the right moment to unite and forego racial thoughts.
“The sufferings during the past two years in the period of pandemic have taught all of us that we are Malaysians and unity is the pillar to achieve success.
“Thus this is the right time we all think as Malaysians and act as Malaysians for the nation,” he said when met.
Kamaruzaman, who is the elder brother of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri, said the party has nothing to do with Ismail or as many assumed it was set up as a platform for Ismail if he is out of Umno.
“All the assumptions and theories are nonsense because both of us have different political ideologies,” he stressed.
Why support BN? Kamaruzaman said other than Umno which is the Malay-based party in coalition, there is no more support for the Chinese-based MCA and Indian-based MIC.
He said both parties are considered irrelevant by the races they are supposed to represent and here is where Parti Kuasa Rakyat will play its role.
“As we are multi-racial, we will have each race speak as Malaysians on the real issues affecting the people as poverty knows no race and the poor are just not Malays but all the races are affected,” he said.
The party will have seven deputy presidents and seven vice-presidents while Sabah and Sarawak will have three representatives each for the deputy presidents and vice-presidents post.
The party will be launched on Sunday and already has some 70,000 members; Kamaruzzman foresees the party having some 300,000 members by March next year.
The party will not field any candidate for the coming general election but will campaign for and support BN.
It is now preparing all the paperwork and documents to be presented to the Registrar of Societies after which if approved, it will hold its first annual general meeting where party elections will be held.