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What has prompted Nurul to do all this?

  • Only some extent of dissociation from Mahathir and the PH government he led could pave the way for Anwar's eventual ascension as well as her own political future.

Sin Chew Daily

If you have not followed political developments for months, and only started to flip the newspapers these few days, chances are that you might find yourself completely lost in the country's prevailing political maze.

For instance, Nurul Izzah Anwar slammed Tun Mahathir as a "former dictator who wreaked so much damage".

The two of them have been allies for over a year now, and it was actually Nurul who flew to London to persuade Mahathir, who almost wanted to give up as Pakatan was on the brink of collapse shortly before GE14.

Under any circumstances, such a relationship should only grow stronger and not weaker.

Nurul's PKR comrade Azmin Ali does not seem to lend her his support, calling her instead a "cry baby" and telling her cynically: "If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen!"

And party president Anwar Ibrahim is going heads-on with Azmin.

When Azmin said he was unapologetic for calling to firm up the bumi agenda, Anwar said the government should push for needs-based economic policy.

He also said ironically that while some were defending their principles, others were keen to cling on to their current positions, hinting strongly at his party deputy.

Weirdly, it was Hadi Awang who came to Mahathir's defense when the prime minster was under fire.

"He is not a dictator. He is just being assertive!" the PAS president said.

For so many years, and still very much so until very recently, PAS' number one enemy has been Tun Mahathir, be it the Mahathir of Umno or PPBM.

What I'm trying to say is that recent political developments in the country have shattered all existing norms and old barriers. Allies within the same political camp could turn into foes while sworn enemies from rival camps are suddenly shaking hands now.

This is not a good thing for PH, in particular Tun Mahathir.

The ruling team has not become more cohesive over ten months in office. In its stead, it has gotten increasingly incoherent.

In addition to the earlier pressure from external opponents, it is now facing also internal incoherence.

After two consecutive by-election defeats, the shock bomb from Nurul Izzah takes everyone aback -- from within PH right to people in the street -- given the fact she is widely perceived as a future heir to the country's leadership.

Having earlier quit as PKR vice president, she is now unloading her duties as PAC member, and says she will not run in the next general elections.

On the surface, this appears to be just her personal decision out of frustration with the PH government while highlighting her adherence to her political beliefs and reform agenda.

The overwhelming support for Nurul shows that Malaysians in general indeed stand up for her firm position.

She made no reservation at hitting out straight at Mahathir during a recent interview with The Straits Times of Singapore, which goes far beyond the confines of "complete exit from politics".

Nurul's identity is a lot more than just another disenchanted young politician. She is also an integral part of the Anwar family. Many have also seen her as the embodiment of "idealism" and the country's future.

I personally believe that the political blood is still very much roaring inside her body. Quitting politics is not a decision, but more of a political gesture to express her discontent with Mahathir and Azmin as well as to register her disappointment with the PH administration.

Only some extent of dissociation from Mahathir and the PH government he led could pave the way for Anwar's eventual ascension as well as her own political future.


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