KUALA LUMPUR, June 22 ― Civil society Kuasa chastised Pakatan Harapan today as being “morally reprehensible” for not naming its prime minister candidate, labelling such a move as deceiving to voters.
The watchdog, which focuses on organisational development for politicians, activists and their groups, lamented that the Opposition are too concerned about their own sentiments on the candidate, rather than focusing on who the voters want.
“They have to put someone there. If not, we at Kuasa feel they are morally reprehensible. I think it's very insulting to the Malaysian public.
“For example, if you are asking Parti Amanah Negara voters in Selangor to vote for a Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia candidate, on the belief that the coaliton will run the country, and if that is so, then they are transferring their vote. They need to know who are they supporting, who will be the prime minister.
“Because after election day, I voted only once and suddenly the guy I don't want becomes prime minister. That's not my intention,” the group’s chief executive Praba Ganesan said.
He pointed out two risks that will arise from such a situation: that voters are left with no recourse, and the candidate can not then be removed even by his party.
Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail had today dismissed calls for Pakatan Harapan to name its prime ministerial candidate before the 14th general elections.
The PKR president said it was more important to win the elections first and then decide the leader based on who has the most support from the other elected representatives.
Praba said today the decision would leave voters helpless after election day, and would take away the powers from the common public.
“They are thinking the Malaysian public don't need to be included in that discussion. They think after they have selected, the elites in this country, the blue bloods, those who served in the same Barisan Nasional government years ago, can decide who should be prime minister. We think that's taking away, abrogating power from the voters,” Praba said.
Anwar said in a statement last Saturday, that he will not offer himself to become Pakatan Harapan's candidate for prime minister, describing the debates around the issue as “tiring” as such a decision should be in the hands of voters.
This comes as Anwar’s former nemesis Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has again expressed readiness to be the Opposition pact’s prime minister, although with a caveat that the decision should be unanimous among its member parties.