Umno shouldnt worry about Anwars return

Given the prevailing political scenario in the country, I do not see how Anwar Ibrahim's new-found freedom will, in such a short period of time, spearhead him to the forefront of the nation's consciousness.

I do not under any circumstances subscribe to some political findings that say Anwar will be another political icon to contend with in the mainstream political struggles of the various communities.

In my heart and mind, it is time now for the young and highly-educated second echelon political leaders to emerge and run for public and corporate office. They will have to emerge before the next general election and start their strategic political planning now.

I refer to the young and capable youth leaders like Hishammuddin Hussein Onn, Khairy Jamaluddin, Lim Guan Eng, Ezam Mohd Noor and perhaps a number of other yet to be identified young grassroots politicians within the Barisan Nasional camp as well as within credible opposition parties.

Unfortunately, the country is without prominent Indian youth leaders, as long as S Samy Vellu refuses to give up his ivory tower and presidential seat. Hopefully, Gerakan's Lim Keng Yaik will call it a day soon and promote the party's younger leadership before he, too, is ousted into the wilderness.

As for Anwar Ibrahim, let us not hero-worship him for he is only a one-man show with a few thousand reformasi supporters.

I believe Anwar will not have a chance of rejoining Umno and there is no need for the Umno leadership to shake the political rice bowl with all sorts of unhealthy political theories. We in Umno should remain strong in our own convictions and maintain the status quo in the forthcoming general assembly this week.

We certainly have better things to do than worry about whether Anwar will rock the solidarity of the Malays. There is absolutely no basis to the theory that Anwar's people are still in Umno and will welcome their idol back with open arms.

Pak Lah also need not have responded to those who had questioned him on rumours that Anwar had sent twitty birds around saying that he may return to Umno after recovering from his back surgery in Germany. (God knows when this will be for Anwar is like a robot and unpredictable at times).

Pak Lah, have confidence in yourself and you will prevail. You have capable people around you that you can trust - Khairy Jamaluddin and his team are not the only ones relevant to you. The people are with you as you have performed very well lately, particularly with the 2005 Budget which will stimulate the economy and bring social developments for the rakyat and nation.