Fuziah Salleh: Saying it as it is
By Syed Jaymal Zahiid
PETALING JAYA, April 28 — Rumours of an internal sabotage within PKR during the Hulu Selangor by-election was rubbished by party elections director Fuziah Salleh today.
The rumours about rival camps within PKR intentionally slowing down campaigning efforts are widespread online with many saying that the sabotage took place in Azmin Ali’s faction.
The PKR vice-president does not have a good relationship with Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim who was handpicked to lead PKR’s Hulu Selangor campaign.
Although Fuziah conceded there was some rivalry between the different factions, she said they were minor and did not amount to sabotage.
“The allegation of sabotage is baseless. I wouldn’t go as far saying there was a sabotage,” said the Kuantan MP in a brief interview with The Malaysian Insider here.
“Let’s just put it this way. If you favour someone, you’ll go all out but if you don’t, you won’t,” she said, adding that “there was still commitment by all of those who worked on the ground.”
Zaid lost the by-election to Barisan Nasional candidate, P.Kalamanathan, by 1,725 votes. While there were accusations by Pakatan that its rival Barisan Nasional played dirty in the by-election, there is also acknowledgement that PKR’s machinery was shoddy. It had to rely on PAS and the DAP’s election machinery to get things going.
“I was very concerned. Up until the third day the campaigning materials had not arrived but all the hiccups were sorted on the third day itself and our machinery was moving full-force by then,” said Fuziah.
The newly-minted PKR elections chief said the snail-paced campaigning can be attributed to the lack of experience by local low-level leaders. They could not cope with the stacks of operations procedures, and the intra-party collaboration was too much for their ground co-ordinators to handle, she added.
“There was a lack of competence. They really wanted to help but it was too overwhelming. It was their first time handling such a massive by-election.”
Although the co-operation between the three component parties during the eight-day campaigning trail was satisfactory, Fuziah said a joint machinery representing the coalition would have maximised their chances of winning even in the face of BN’s behemoth election machinery.