COMMENT | Aside from Rais Yatim, nobody seems to know who the other candidates are for the post of speaker of the 14th Parliament.
Speculation has swirled over this appointment, with media reports saying that Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad is in favour of Rais Yatim.
But apart from Rais, there has been no mention of other nominees for the post.
An unusual discretion reigns, an indication perhaps the post is not an object of contention among the four component parties of the ruling Pakatan Harapan coalition.
This is unlike the speculation that burbled over the identity of the candidates for the 13 ministerial posts announced a week ago today.
Before that announcement was made, there was avid speculation of who would be on the list, evidenced by the floating on social media of different lists of nominees.
The apparent lack of jostling for the post of speaker aside, a decision on who is to be the one impends this week, as the presidential council of Pakatan Harapan meets – today presumably – to make their choice.
The 14th Parliament, the first federal legislative session of what is being touted as the 'Malaysia Baru' (New Malaysia) era, opens next week.
The identity of the speaker is critical to sustaining the good reformist vibes in the country inaugurated by Harapan's epochal victory at the polls on May 9.
A speaker who is a holdover from the ignominious recent past, as Rais would be in spite of his not inconsiderable merits for the position, would dampen those vibes.
Conversely, a speaker from among the ranks of the lonely few who were rejects of the Najib era would accentuate the "new broom-ism" coursing like adrenaline through the vein of this country...