Real leaders don’t hurl personal attacks, Saifuddin hits back at Anwar, Rafizi

By , in Nation Politics on .

Indera Mahkota, Nov 14 — Caretaker Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Abdullah today hit back at PKR president Anwar Ibrahim’s and his deputy Rafizi Ramli over their speeches urging voters in his constituency to turn their backs on him, lambasting the duo for their “cheap tricks”.

“When Rafizi and Anwar came here (Indera Mahkota), they used the opportunity to attack me,” he told reporters when met on the sidelines of his campaign.

“(Bersatu president and Perikatan Nasional chairman) Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has also shown up here, but he didn’t attack any other GE15 (15th general election) candidates.”

“(This goes to show that) real leaders don’t throw personal attacks. Instead, they speak on (their) policies and manifestoes.”

Saifuddin, who is defending the Indera Mahkota seat as a PN candidate for GE15, added that he has taken PH’s attacks in his stride.


“My conclusion is that they (PH) cannot find candidates good enough to run against me, so the big guns have to come down.”

Additionally, Saifuddin accused Anwar of engaging in nepotistic practices, despite apparently taking the “moral high ground of a reformist”.

“Regardless of what (Anwar) says about me, he has to evaluate himself first.”

“He always speaks about reform and (claims to be) against nepotism but the interesting thing (about Anwar) is that he himself is an example of nepotism,” he said. 

He explained his assertion by pointing out that as PH president, Anwar had put his signature down on dotted lines confirming his family members’ participation in the looming national polls.

“He signed the candidacy letters for his wife (Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail) and daughter (Nurul Izzah Anwar) to contest in GE15.”

“He (Anwar) should look in the mirror before saying anything about me,” he said, referencing the political maneuvering in Kajang and Port Dickson to allude that this is not the first instance of Anwar dabbling in nepotism.

The Kajang Move took place in 2014 during the late Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim’s tenure as Selangor menteri besar. At the time, PKR attempted to replace Khalid with Anwar who ran for the Kajang state assembly seat that was vacated for this purpose.

However, Anwar was disqualified from the Kajang election due to a court case and was subsequently replaced by his wife Dr Wan Azizah.

Shortly after the 2018 general election, the Port Dickson Move was triggered when then-Port Dickson MP Datuk Daniyal Balagopal Abdullah vacated the seat to make way for Anwar’s return to politics, following his release from prison.

Besides that, Saifuddin revealed that the three other contestants for the Indera Mahkota federal seat had declined to take part in a public debate planned by a non-government organisation. 

“It is regretful that my opponents do not want to come down for a debate (since debates allow) voters a chance to analyse candidates while bringing political discourse to a higher level.”

The Indera Mahkota parliamentary seat will see a four-cornered fight for GE15, with Saifuddin going against Barisan Nasional’s Quek Tai Seong, PH’s Zuraidi Ismail, and Pejuang’s Mohamad Nor Sundari.

Malaysians will head to the polling stations on November 19, with early voting set for November 15


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