Malaysiakini Opinion

Is factionalism in PKR really such a bad thing?

James Chai  |  Published:  |  Modified:

COMMENT | PKR has 50 seats in Parliament. This makes it the largest political party in government.

But somehow, it is still viewed as the ‘weakest link’ in Pakatan Harapan. Outsiders see it as a party wrought with factionalism and infighting, unable to agree on anything because its members are self-interested and uncompromising.

So how did the ‘weakest’ party in Harapan win the most number of seats in the 14th general election? My answer is that the open factionalism in PKR has given the party more vibrancy and organisational efficiency than its coalition partners.

Factions in political parties are universally seen as a problem. They are regarded as the ‘dark side’ of political parties, even though they have existed in every major political party throughout history.

While factions exist in Bersatu, Amanah and DAP, the contests between the factions in PKR are the most open and public.

We hate this factionalism so much that we ask for PKR not to ‘air their dirty laundry in public,’ because this leads to perceptions of disunity, which will cut through the veins of the party and culminate in rupture.

But I challenge that notion...

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