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Nik Nazmi: S'wak PKR convention fiasco started before Youth-Azmin spat
Published:  Nov 21, 2019 3:29 AM
Updated: 8:02 AM
  • Added Sarawak PKR organising secretary's comments after paragraph 12

Problems surrounding Sarawak PKR's convention allegedly began even before the spat between a faction of the PKR Youth wing with party deputy president Azmin Ali.

The majority of the state leadership council members, who happened to be aligned to Azmin, had sought to annul its state convention on Saturday.

However, state conventions, which come under the purview of the party headquarters, will proceed in Miri as planned.

PKR convention director Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad (photo, above) has highlighted the chronology of events which have caused the venue changes.

He said that Sarawak PKR chief Baru Bian had cancelled the convention with support from a majority of state division leaders, but the party's central leadership had said the event will go on.

Nik Nazmi said on Nov 1 that Sarawak PKR had informed it would be holding the convention in Sibu, but later relocated it to the Naim Clubhouse in Miri on Nov 5.

The convention committee then said the venue was unsuitable and suggested alternatives.

According to Nik Nazmi, Sarawak PKR on Nov 12 unilaterally decided to hold the event at the Imperial Hotel in Kuching.

A meeting was subsequently held on Nov 14 between the convention committee and Sarawak PKR secretary Vernon Kedit and Miri division chief Michael Teo, at which it was decided the event would be held at the Pullman Miri Waterfront.

A day later, Baru announced that the convention was cancelled after PKR Youth rescinded its invitation for Azmin to officiate the Youth wing's congress.

Nik Nazmi said the timeline showed that the PKR headquarters was facing trouble organising the Sarawak convention even before the spat between PKR Youth and Azmin.

"The headquarters has tried its best to involve the Sarawak PKR leadership council through open communication," he said.

"The headquarters has tried its best to involve the Sarawak PKR leadership council through open communication," he said.

Meanwhile, Sarawak PKR organising secretary Iana Akam disputed Nik Nazmi's version of events.

In a statement this afternoon, Iana said the claim that Sarawak PKR's leadership had "unilaterally" decided to hold the event in Kuching was not true.

She added that Sarawak PKR had agreed to hold the convention at the Pullman Miri Waterfront facility after the Miri division had agreed to handover the running of the convention to the state leadership.

This was agreed upon during the meeting between Nik Nazmi, Kedit and Teo on Nov 14.

Baru, at a press conference yesterday, said they were sticking with their decision to cancel the convention with the support of 32 out of 46 Sarawak PKR division leaders.

Despite Baru's cancellation, the convention will proceed after it received the blessing of PKR president Anwar Ibrahim.

PKR is descending into open warfare as tensions between loyalists to Anwar and Azmin continue to butt heads. 

Azmin's political secretary, who is also PKR Youth deputy head, Hilman Idham, has been urged to attend the movement's central leadership council (MPP) meeting on Sunday.

In a statement today, PKR Youth MPP member, Muhamad Alif Asyraf Abdull Rahim, said Hilman's (photo) continued truancy will only lead to poor perception of the movement.

"I've checked the attendance records. Hilman, despite being No 2, only attended one in eight meetings so far. Even then, he was late (for that one meeting)," said Muhamad Alif.

He said Hilman's truancy was a flagrant breach of discipline at a time when young leaders should be committed towards Pakatan Harapan's ideals.

The PKR Youth MPP is currently split between one faction led by the movement's leader Akmal Nasrullah Mohd Nasir and another led by Hilman.

Hilman's faction consist of mostly elected office bearers and they have boycotted MPP meetings chaired by Akmal, who is supported by the other half of the MPP members, most of which who are co-opted.

A similar split is taking place at the MPP for the PKR main body, where many elected office bearers are sitting out of the monthly meetings.

The most prominent absentee is the PKR deputy president Azmin, who is also economic affairs minister. 

He is believed to have never attended any of the monthly meetings since the MPP was elected last November.

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