Open letter to Anwar Ibrahim — Nasaruddin Ismail Yusof

JUNE 29 — Dear Yang Berhormat Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, assalamualaikum and selamat sejahtera.

I am writing to you to express to you my support and admiration to your leadership and idealism. From my personal admiration and appreciation to your continuous struggle for the last 20 over years for the fight in the name of justice and reform, I would humbly ask you to allow me to forward to you the following points of view of mine for your kind consideration.

There is no doubt that the electoral success of of Pakatan Harapan in the last general election was a fruit of the years of struggle and effort from the heydays 1998 years up till the formation of Pakatan Rakyat and subsequently Pakatan Harapan.

It is also due to your belief that one should not underestimate the wisdom of the masses — the Malaysian people at large.

The infamous Sheraton Move would in hindsight remain a black mark in Malaysia’s political history, while we should treat it as a lesson to all — the incident certainly is a heavy test for your leadership and character.

It is also fair to say it is actually a blessing in disguise whereby the traitors among Keadilan have exited the party. Keadilan can now move forward with some better discipline among its ranks and the remaining traitors will have to leave sooner or later.

I have been following closely the latest debacle on the prime minister candidate should Pakatan Harapan return to power, the latest of which Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad mooted the idea of Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal being a candidate for the top job. In the minds of many Malaysians including myself, we are sincerely tired of Dr Mahathir and his antics.

The leadership in Amanah and DAP should ask themselves how long are they willing to be taken for a ride by Dr Mahathir, there needs to be a stop to the circus created by Dr Mahathir as there many issues that are affecting the economy, and the well-being of the country is at stake now.

While many Malaysians and myself would want you to lead us as prime minister of our beloved nation, most of us are a bit doubtful about the materialization of that dream of ours as for now. Partly, due to the current political circumstances of Pakatan Harapan component parties — Amanah and DAP and also Warisan of Sabah plus the Mahathir 5.

Which brings me to next point, with this temporary reality in mind and your vision for reforms to be implemented, I do strongly believe that there is a need for you to think about a new sacrifice from your side to save Malaysia and the Reformasi cause.

It is known that evil is not of the same degree of gravity; rather, some evil is graver. Evil and harm must be eliminated or avoided as long as this is possible, based on the well-known Fiqh principles: “Harm must be eliminated,” and, “there should be neither harm nor reciprocal harm.”

However, if evil cannot be eliminated or avoided and there is no other way but to choose one of two evil, then one should opt for the lesser of the two. The graver evil must be eliminated or avoided while enduring the lesser in such a case.

Similarly, in the situation today that Malaysia is in. you are put in a position that you have to make a choice and personally I think it is right for you and Keadilan throw your support behind Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin over Dr Mahathir in applying the principles above.

It is apt for you to apply a similar approach as Rached Ghannouchi of Tunisia in 2011 in willing to cooperate in governing and implementing reforms. You may also relate to Prabowo Subianto, your fellow rising star in the echelons of power in South-east Asia in the 90s where Prabowo and his party Gerindra joined the Jokowi administration after battling for the top job for years.

Dr Mahathir has created a circus out of DAP, Amanah and Warisan but Keadilan and yourself should not be part of it anymore. Based on the matters mentioned above, I sincerely and humbly am of the opinion that you and Keadilan should cooperate and throw your support behind Muhyiddin and demand to be the deputy prime minister in his cabinet.

Primarily because political stability is what Malaysia terribly needs now to steer the country through the Covid-19 pandemic and the economic downturn/recession as a consequence of it.

With Keadilan and yourself in government Keadilan shall be able to play a an effective role in governing in these testing times of our nation and also be able to implement reforms. Make no mistake deputy premiership with Muhyiddin is not similar to a deputy premiership with Dr Mahathir.

Muhyiddin and yourself go way back to the heydays of the Team Wawasan days in Umno and are of the same age. In fact Muhyiddin and yourself have showed how mature and wise you both are in being able to sit together in a four eyed meeting between both of you in April during the movement control order (MCO).

It is time for Muhyiddin Yassin and yourself to steer this nation forward together as one. This partnership is best fit to define and create a new dynamic leadership for what appears to be a Malaysia in transition as you both have the right governing experience during your years in the Umno-led government and also the dark and lowest point of your careers upon being sacked from the No. 2 job in government.

This duo would be able to open a new chapter putting behind the Dr Mahathir years and at the same time creating the pathway for a new generation of Malaysian political leadership comprising the likes of Rafizi Ramli, Wong Chen, Khairy Jamaluddin, Nurul Izzah and many more.

What Keadilan and yourself offer is what is badly needed by the administration in place currently — for which Keadilan is a multiracial and dynamic party free of the infamous Kartel baggage. Keadilan brings together a diverse pool of talents in the ranks of their 38 Members of Parliament from various races and background namely:

Wong Chen — who is well versed in the economy

Chang Lih Kang — a young and promising Chinese leader

Larry Sng — an experienced hand having served in the Sarawak administration at a young age

Saifuddin Nasution — a senior abled politician and diplomat

Sim Tze Tzin and Muhammad Bakhtiar — who were fairly good performers as deputy ministers

William Leong and Sivarasa Rasiah — experienced hands who may offer a lot to implement legal and administrative reforms

Fahmi Fadzil, Nik Nazmi and Akmal Nasir — young and dynamic leaders who will offer many new policy and ideas

And there are many more among Keadilan with experienced legislators in the likes of Dr Michael Teo, Dr Xavier Jayakumar, Fuziah Sallehto name a few.

The partnership and cooperation of this nature between yourself and Muhyiddin is what is needed to put a stop to the never ending politicking of Dr Mahathir.

With a proper cooperation and unity with Prime Minister Muhyiddin, Keadilan, Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS), Umno, PAS and Sabah based parties like Warisan, STAR, PBRS others, the current administration may implement the proper rule of law by letting the judiciary rule without fear and favour towards the cases involving Najib Razak in 1MDB and Zahid Hamidi.

This would enable the administration to continue to work with representatives from Umno in particular who are free from pending cases.

This cooperation is what the nation direly needs in this juncture — able hands to steer the nation. Surely the cooperation is conditional with the removal of the traitors from your party which are in the current administration.

Not just that, it is timely for Keadilan to grow to stand on its own one day — free of the baggage from DAP and Amanah especially during 22 months' tenure in government and free of the dictation and grip of Dr Mahathir over them.

As I have reiterated before, majority Malaysians are just tired and fed up of Dr Mahathir.

Keadilan will be able to maintain its goal for reform and the rakyat instead of being accused of a never ending pursuit of premiership of one man.

I sincerely believe this is the right step taken to protect and preserve the interests and wellbeing of many Malaysians — be it the Malays, Chinese, Indians, Dayaks, Melanaus, Kadazans and Muruts who are badly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic effects.

Again I humbly remind you — you can’t underestimate the wisdom of the masses which would appreciate your move in doing what is best for the country and putting an end to the politicking of Dr Mahathir.

While there is no denying your involvement and achievements in Malaysia’s success during your years in government in the 80s and 90s — you have only been given the chance to be known as an opposition leader to many from the younger generation.

What is much needed right now is deliverables and you are best positioned to address the issues involving the economy, governance, Malay/Bumiputera well-being and population at large by being in government not the opposition.

Dear Anwar, the year 2020 should be a repeat of your 1982 where you make a pragmatic decision in your political career where you were able to do and implement your vision and idealism. For which we shall not underestimate the wisdom of the masses which are tired of politicking and would want to see results and deliverables for the betterment of our beloved Malaysia.

Please consider this as a way to move forward and means to achieve the premiership one day in the remaining years of your political career

While I continue to hope Malaysia will survive and move forward, I pray to the Almighty to bestow upon you good health, longevity and wisdom.

* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of Malay Mail.

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