Thursday, May 22, 2008


Anwar was in Singapore yesterday. Speaking to reporters , this is what he said:

(Extract from new paper and today paper published today in Singapore:)

A confident anwar met foreign correspondents yesterday and opened the door a wee bit more on his plans to grab power.

‘Malaysia Day’ sep 16 he hopes to form a new government. Malaysia Day is held in high regard by people in sabah and Sarawak he told journalist at a breakfast meeting. Not many umno leaders are sensitive to this fact, he said referring to the day in 1963 when sabah, Sarawak and Singapore joined Malaya to become Malaysia.

And what gives him the confidence, he says, is the number of ruling party members who made secret trips to meet him. When he visited Hong Kong recently, there were there. On Tuesday night, one of them came all the way to his hotel in Singapore to see him.

Transition will be peaceful, and we have to follow constitution procedures for transfer of power.

But his audience did not seem totally convinced. A sense of expectation mixed with skepticism was evident among the foreign journalist.

Do you really have the numbers or is it just psychological warfare asked veteran journalist Barry Wain , who is now writing a book on former PM DR Mahathir.

Mr anwar smiled coyly, then replied, YES! We have the numbers. Not wanting to give too much away, he gave an example:

Only 3 or 4 of mr badawi’s diehards- and not 30 or 40 paliamentarians rush to his defence every time umno’s top leadership comes under attack.

And look no further than what DR M said recently, YES there is a possibility of anwar taking over, on May 7 at a conference in putrajaya , DR M said, I first wanted to dismiss this possibility but on studying the situation I feel that there is a great danger.

Anwar threw up another possibility: a snap election called by badawi before sep 16.

To me it is quite unlikely because its upto the discretion of the king, and to convince the king for such an extraordinary measure just a few months after a general election may take some doing, he said.

On another question if he can become the next PM, since he is still not an mp?

Mr anwar said, the question of him fighting a by election is in limbo, since he became eligible to contest elections on april 14, he has not received any letter from the authorities stating so.

His lawyers had asked the attorney-general’s office on Tuesday to clarify a clear position on his eligibility in two weeks time.

He also added, if he does come to power he wants to push for a change to PM’s longevity: not more than 2 terms, like the US system. I don’t intend to be active in political life beyond a decade. I think the problem with our society is that people tend to stay on forever.

And he said all these with the seeming assurance of a man already in power not merely one waiting to assume it.

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