graphic by DYG NORAZHAR
NOW that a new statutory declaration has been made public and picked up by some of the news portals, it can be surmised that some Malaysians will travel into another dimension, one where mindlessness forms the boundaries.
Much as there is a twist from Rod Serling’s narratives, imagination, or rather the lack of it, is still central.
In fact, the latest statutory declaration, or more frequently called SD, which accused PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim of sexual misconduct was almost anticipated.
In the dog-eat-dog world, after Anwar’s deputy, Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, was implicated in a sex video scandal, and with many accusing fingers pointing at Anwar’s circle of being the originator, such an SD emerging is not beyond anyone’s imagination.
Some may view it as retaliatory, others will probably argue that it was the opening of the floodgates, a case of those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.
For the mindless, it did not matter whether the person throwing the stone was actually the dweller or not, what was important, retaliation of the lex talionis nature must be effected.
When the sex video implicating Azmin first emerged and some of those accused of being behind it were linked to Anwar, it was already argued that if Anwar suffered from such accusations and suffered, surely Anwar’s supporters would feel for Azmin and outrightly reject the video and accusations regardless whether it was true or otherwise.
Instead, given their disenchantment towards Azmin and the bad blood between Azmin and Anwar, the scandal was celebrated and amplified, and used to justify their point that Azmin is not qualified to hold on further to his position.
To a certain degree, Azmin’s reputation was tattered and the relationship between Azmin and Anwar went further south.
Now, the elephant in Anwar’s room is back. Whether the claims made by the person in the SD has any merit is secondary. What is primary is that it brings back a past which was somewhat exorcised when Anwar received his pardon.
Of bigger implication is the almost irreparable crisis in PKR, which had been going on since the party elections last year and with the new SD in tow, it is unlikely that reconciliation is in the pipeline.
But there are other opinions that the new SD may jolt some of those bent on pushing Azmin out of PKR and claiming to have Anwar’s blessings will now reconsider their strategy and may even want to smoke the peace pipe.
The theory is simple, very much like the nuclear arms’ race: Once you are nuked, others with nuclear arms will stop their threats.
But such peace is never altruistic, rather a case of live and let live and only going for the kill the next time when a finality is assured.
The underlying concern is that, given the voters’ near collective disaffection towards Pakatan Harapan (PH), the trouble in PKR aggravates the situation and the unsavoury disclosures have affected its stature as the leading party in the coalition and its president the prime minister (PM)-in-waiting.
While nobody from PH is likely to raise issue over the transition as the promise seems to be cast in stone, the views from non-partisan voters continue to go against the coalition.
The logic, if it can be of essence is very simple. If the PM designate can’t command the support from his own party, how does he expect to convince the rest of the country that he commands the majority support in Parliament, a pre-requisite for the appointment of the PM?
On that score, given the almost equal distribution of power among the four parties in the coalition, unlike in the Barisan Nasional structure where Umno had an overwhelming majority, if any of the PH coalition partner chooses to withdraw, the government is likely to collapse and if the new PM is to command the majority support, a new political construct, a coalition or a unity government needs to be established.
Of course, it is still a moot point, but given the endemic crisis besieging the coalition, the external forces are looking at the likelihood of a new construct as not a farfetched possibility.
And the external forces, especially those facing the possibilities of long-term incarceration are extremely keen to affect the new construct or bring a premature end to the coalition’s rule.
Across the divide, Umno is also holding its annual general assembly as PKR is. Umno’s affair is also looking like they exist in a zone of their own, almost isolated from the damning national narratives of their former president Datuk Seri Mohd
Najib Razak and current president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi. Najib continues to enjoy tremendous support from the party members, including the youth and they seem oblivious to the revelations in the court over the misappropriation of billions of ringgits of public funds. If they want to give Najib the benefit of the doubt, the least they could have done was to also give the prosecution and the courts similar benefits as well.
And the fact that Ahmad Zahid continues to lead while a record-breaking list of cases are in line for him to answer, re-affirms the contention that they are in a different world altogether.
The problem is that such values, ideals and philosophy have the tendencies of spilling over into other people’s area and territory, affecting their lives and adding to their miseries.
That, however, is the least of their concern. After all, they live in a place where illogic and mindlessness is pervasive, not to mention the lack of imagination.
And their next stop is unlikely in the brighter zones.
Shamsul Akmar is the editor of The Malaysian Reserve.