Politics

Malaysia Chronicle

A party insider said some leaders feel that it is not the right time to create enemies because Bersatu needs to focus on defeating Umno in the upcoming Johor polls, as well as in the next general election (GE15).

“If she is not creating any problems and is still aligned with us, then we will benefit.

“So for now, we need collaboration and, more importantly, political friends. It will strengthen our base,” he told FMT on condition of anonymity.

Zuraida Kamaruddin speaking at Bersatu’s national congress in August 2020, shortly after joining the party.

He said Bersatu was at odds with Umno and “we cannot go on creating more enemies”.

“There are some party leaders who want Zuraida dropped from her ministerial post as a warning to other party members to toe the line.

“How will this solve the problem? Will it not weaken us?”

The insider added that the rumours of Zuraida, the plantation industries and commodities minister, joining PBM grew stronger after the new party was formed late last year.

Since its launch, Zuraida’s former political secretary Nor Hizwan Ahmad quit Bersatu to join PBM as the party’s secretary-general. He also announced that over 50,000 members of Penggerak Komuniti Negara, an NGO that is linked to Zuraida, would join the party.

Earlier, Bersatu Youth chief Wan Ahmad Fayhsal Wan Ahmad Kamal said there was no evidence yet that Zuraida had joined PBM, The Malaysian Insight reported.

However, he agreed that the founders of PBM were her allies, including two independent MPs, Larry Sng and Steven Choong, who were previously with PKR, like Zuraida.

According to Wan Ahmad Fayhsal, Bersatu was also waiting to hear her official stand on the alleged ties to PBM.

“No decision has been made yet on her position in the party,” he was quoted as saying by the news portal.

Meanwhile, Hizwan refused to be drawn into the controversy and said it was Bersatu’s “internal matter, and that they should handle it by themselves”.

The Registrar of Societies had on Oct 27 last year approved the application to rebrand the Sarawak Workers Party to PBM. – FMT

Zuraida hasn’t applied to join Parti Bangsa Malaysia so far, sec-gen says

ZURAIDA Kamaruddin has not applied to join Parti Bangsa Malaysia (PBM) so far, said the party secretary-general.

Nor Hizwan Ahmad, however, said the party welcomes anyone who accepts its agenda.

“We recently concluded our supreme council meeting. So far, Zuraida’s name is not on the list of applicants who signed up as new members,” he said in a statement.

This comes after The Malaysian Insight earlier today reported that Bersatu is mulling dumping the Ampang MP from the party over her purported links with PBM.

The Bersatu supreme council discussed her alleged role in PBM at a meeting chaired by party president Muhyiddin Yassin on January 25, according to party sources.

However, they added, no decision has been made due to the lack of evidence.

Armada chief Wan Ahmad Fayhsal Wan Ahmad Kamal confirmed that no action can be taken against Zuraida as there is no evidence that she has joined another party.

Bersatu is awaiting her response, he added.

“We will decide in the near future. It has been raised, but no decision has been made yet. All council members have raised it.

“Zuraida has not said that she wants to leave Bersatu, so we have no proof that she has done so. We presume that PBM founders – assemblymen and MPs – are all her allies.

“We are awaiting her official answer, so no decision has been made yet on her position in the party.”

Zuraida previously denied her involvement in the founding of PBM, which took over and rebranded the Sarawak Workers Party. PBM was approved by the Registrar of Societies on October 27.

At the time, it was rumoured that the lawmaker would be leading the party as president.

PBM, in its extraordinary general meeting (EGM) on November 14, approved the appointment of a new leadership line-up involving two former PKR MPs, Larry Sng (Julau) and Steven Choong (Tebrau).

Sng was made deputy president, while Choong was made vice-president. The presidency was intentionally left vacant, fuelling speculation it was reserved for Zuraida.

However, Sng was elected PBM president in the party EGM on January 8, during which Lembah Jaya assemblyman Haniza Mohamed Talha – a core supporter of Zuraida – was appointed deputy president.

Zuraida was one of 11 PKR MPs who defected to Bersatu during the Sheraton Move in February 2020, which led to the collapse of the then Pakatan Harapan (PH) government.

She held the housing and local government portfolio during the PH administration, a portfolio she continued to hold under the Perikatan Nasional administration led by Muhyiddin, before she was moved to plantations and commodities when Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced his cabinet late last year. TMI

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