When written in Chinese, the word ‘crisis’ is composed of two characters. One represents danger and the other represents opportunity.–John F. Kennedy, 35th president of United States
It was never about justice, it was all about getting in power.
I am talking about the manner of which the Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) has fared in the last few months.
Right from the get go when defections were afoot last February, Sarawak PKR was dealt a blow when its chairman and prominent party leaders decided to call it quits and leave the party with a leadership vacuum.
The party lost influential leaders in Baru Bian, Ali Biju, See Chee How as well as Willie Mongin at the parliamentary level.
For the first time since 2006 the party is unrepresented in the state legislature, back then it was Dominique Ng who broke the glass ceiling, becoming the first PKR assemblyman in Sarawak winning the Padungan seat.
Despite the mass exodus of party leaders and members at branch level of the party, Sarawak PKR felt that the ‘virus’ was entirely wiped and that for once, the party can move forward and champion the people’s cause.
That is not the case however as this week a supposedly consolidated, rejuvenated and recovered Sarawak PKR is returning to its old habits.
Sarawak-based PKR leader Iswardy Morni now claimed that he is aligned with state vice-chairman Japar Suyut to take over the state leadership from Larry Sng and Co.
In one of his live Facebook sessions recently, he said that he along with Japar has enough support and with their faction in charge of the party, they have the strength to defeat Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) in the upcoming state election.
Of course this didn’t go well with existing party leaders with Sri Aman branch coordinator Tay Wei Wei taking to social media to slam Iswardy, describing his intention as khianat (treachery).
The straw that may have broken the camel’s back was a PKR fundraising dinner organised by a faction within party purportedly inviting prominent leaders from Malaya to make an appearance.
This, however, was without the knowledge of the state leadership council (MPN), with them condemning the organisers over such move.
Much like how the current leadership who is said to be aligned with party president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and invited the latter to officiate at a non-sanctioned party convention in Miri last year, they are simply getting a taste of their own medicine by another rebellious faction in the party.
I guess what goes around comes around.
Another division would just plunge the party further in crisis and the aftermath of mass defections which some would say rob Sarawak PKR of its heart was never been fully dealt with.
With the people’s trust in the party waned further with its lackluster performance when being part of the collapsed former Pakatan Harapan (PH) federal government, it is dark days ahead for the party.
The recent unveiling of the party’s manifesto was not met with open arms by the public, citing that its past manifesto in GE14 was not fulfilled in the first place and that there is no reason to trust the party the second time around.
The party suffered a dip in its credibility and lost its support base, with its supporters now backing Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB) with their popular leaders now plying their trade in another shirt.
The onus is now on Sng, who only joined the party two years ago, to steer it away from turmoil and prevent another wave of defections due to infighting in the party.
It is not easy and with some supporters and leaders believing and gobbling up the prophecy in their party president, it could be messy.
Sng had indicated back in May that there was a move within Sarawak PKR from a group which wanted to cleanse the remaining ‘cartel’ members from MPN line up.
He said he took the issue seriously and brought it to the attention of the party leadership, adding that it severed his relationship with a party VP and being labelled as another Baru.
Well now, it appeared that the same group may have thought that the party may need to be cleansed further and taking over state leadership may only be the way for that to happen.
While a coup may as well be a trend by our politicians across the nation now, whatever is brewing in Sarawak PKR is no less exhilarating — not by a long shot.