The Kajang Move: Game Changer in Putrajaya Quest

I am aware that there is a lot of explanation that has to be made on the decision to vacate the Kajang seat to force a by-election. I am also acutely aware of Dato’ Ambiga’s advice communicated personally to me that we have to be as honest as possible with the people.

Apology to the public

So let me begin by offering the sincerest apology to the Malaysian public especially the voters of Kajang. The by-election will certainly consume public money and public space at the time when the people have to go through economic hardship.

There is no excuse for wasting public money except to offer my sincerest apology and for the party to be prepared if the voters of Kajang decide to punish us.

In all honesty, as the strongest proponent of the scheme I bear most responsibility for the decision.

Dynamics in Umno, racial and religious controversies

Yet precisely because we are honest to ourselves and the people, we have to acknowledge that there are problems and challenges that we are facing in Selangor that require intervention.

While Khalid Ibrahim’s administration has shown sterling performance over the last 6 years that endears him to the public, there are rooms for improvement in many areas especially given the latest dynamics in Umno.

It is an open secret that the move to remove Najib Razak has begun. As a party strategist, I cannot rule out the possibility that Najib is removed and Umno falls to the ultras led by Mahathir Mohamad’s faction.

The unscrupulous attack and schemes to take Selangor by hook or by crook will begin the moment the weak Najib is removed. Even as we speak, Umno’s cards are all too obvious in the latest round of racial and religious controversies stirred up in Selangor in the last few months.

Should Najib fall, expect a full blown manipulation of racial and religious issues to create mistrust and frustration with the Selangor government.

Model state as a launchpad for Putrajaya

While Khalid Ibrahim’s administration has set a gold standard in integrity and prudence in managing public funds, we also have to admit there are also other areas that we can improve. We need radical approach to solving the traffic woes, the pace of affordable public housing has to pick up. There is a need for more rigorous forward planning of water resources in Selangor and some hard decisions have to be made soon. We have to vigorously protect the rights of the minorities who are the targets of Umno’s political game.

As an MP, I certainly believe we can do better especially with regards to cleanliness and livelihood of the people. We have the potential to be a model state with least potholes in densely populated areas.

In other words, Selangor has to be doubly better than what it is today if it were to become a showcase for Pakatan in its quest for Putrajaya. Just as Istanbul was a launchpad for Erdogan and Jakarta is a launchpad for Jokowi, Selangor can be a great launchpad for Pakatan to take over Putrajaya.

Fortification of Pakatan in Selangor

The job is not done and we are about to face another round of onslaught from Umno.

Therefore, while it is certainly inexcusable to spend public fund unnecessarily in a by-election, it is an even bigger dereliction of public duty if we do not do anything, knowing that this round is going to be tougher.

What PKR and Pakatan Selangor need is a fortification so that we can expedite reforms and simultaneously fend off political attacks and manouvres from Umno. We need as many of our top leaders around Selangor to defend Selangor because it remains the crown jewel of any political coalition in the country.

Hence the decision to field Anwar Ibrahim for a state seat as this provides an option that we can readily exercise should the need arise.

Does this mean there will be a change of stewardship of Selangor government? Maybe yes, maybe no. But we do have the option to optimize our leadership potential if Umno stirs up more trouble.

Option is key. Having the option means having the flexibility of manouvres that can easily frustrate Umno’s game in Selangor especially with regards to racial and religious controversies.

Avoid the Kedah experience

At the end of the day, I know no amount of explanation can sooth the public anger. I only appeal for time to let the rationale sink in and space for us to do the necessary.

I also have to apologise on behalf of my party for the differences we have among ourselves that are seen as factional and often frustrates the public. Yet we trying our best to resolve it now for the sake of Malaysians, because not doing it now will certainly condemn us to the same experience of Pakatan in Kedah. We learn the lesson bitterly that differences must be managed early because the party always has to be whole to face Umno.

The game-changing Kajang Move

Good political leaders will never be popular. It pains me that we have to drag Anwar Ibrahim through this and subject him to public anger, yet his willingness to be a part of the bigger picture is the mark of the man.

Throughout the last few days, I reassured myself that it was Churchill who chose to be unpopular and remained a minority voice of alarm against the advancing Nazis till the end despite a public popularity to appease the Nazis. An the height of Nazi’s power, Churchill stood alone when every one else in Europe bowed to Hitler.

The conviction of doing the right thing, in the face of extreme criticism and public anger, remains a yardstick of what an honest leadership is.

I thank the top leadership of Pakatan who understand the necessity of doing this. I thank my comrades in the second leadership line up of Pakatan who have given the moral and political support for us to proceed.

I hope that one day when we are in Putrajaya, we can look back to the difficult days of what will be called the “Kajang Move” as the game changer in our quest for Putrajaya. I honestly hope that it will our defining moments that allow us one step closer to Putrajaya.

I maybe naïve and ridiculed for my naivette, but that’s as honest as I can be.

Let’s look ahead for a stronger Pakatan in Selangor posed to take over Putrajaya in the next election and don’t look back.

37 thoughts on “The Kajang Move: Game Changer in Putrajaya Quest”

  1. A round of applause for this romantic explanation. But it does not answer this question, viz: Is it necessary for Anwar to be part of Selangor’s state government to “expedite reforms and simultaneously fend off political attacks and manouvres from Umno”? Is this a concession that Selangor does not have any credible leader(s) to lead the defence against UMNO’s ‘annexation’?

  2. tq for the expelanation yb, do hope the rakyat also understood the ‘kajang move’ being placed. good luck with the PRK.

  3. It seems that Kajang Move is the 2014 blitzkrieg game changer to Putrajaya and it precedes the proposal for national consensus. It make sense.(below is take on the national consensus which is on FB)

    Indeed a major & risky gamble and am sure much later he will put up a well thought rational of why taking up the Kajang DUN seat despite the fact he is a Muslim Democrat. Last 26 Jan. he alerted the county the necessity to have a dialogue/agenda for national consensus. Are these two events interlinked one another? Honestly, I don’t do teka teki.

    Eight months already passed since PRU13. Eight months of political uncertainty and instability that sure to create unnecessary political bickering and polarization upon the country. To Anwar “….one would expect that this cohesiveness is not only in existence but should be growing stronger by the day. Unfortunately though, there has been particularly in the last few months, a series of circumstances and developments that collectively are fast eroding the cohesiveness that is so crucial to our identity.”
    What is seen is not partisan bickering but the larger picture of lacking of bipartisanship in administering and stewarding forward the country. Malaysian parliamentary system of democracy demands prime minister to be the prime minister for all Malaysians. Same thing is with opposition leader. He is the opposition leader for all Malaysians. Both positions should be better use to take care the wellbeing of the country and the people.

    This does not take roots with current person who currently occupy the office of the Prime Minister. For the last eight months Najib practically fail to right up many political wrongs that the country is in. He is a very partisan Prime Minister. He should shift back to the political center. Unfortunately, up this moment, he still could not master himself to the center.

    Due to this reason PM Najib is not in the position to issue either simple or joint “Sense of Parliament” Resolution to address convincingly to tackle some fundamental issues that are embattling the country and the rakyat. Somehow lots of inactions or do nothing is seen.

    It is politically feasible and nicer that Sense of Parliament Resolution/Statement be co-authored by PM and OL. This co-authorship reflects political bipartisanship of the Parliament. The rakyat are rest assured and of the perception that their PM and OL are putting up national interest above everything.

    This failure on the part of PM Najib to issue either simple or joint resolution forces OL Anwar to address the country and proposes national consensus.

  4. Sorry Rafizi, but much as I appreciate your explanation, I cannot buy it. The strategy you have in mind as a party (I doubt very much that this is a strategy of the Pakatan coalition) may not be flawed but your peddling of it post-event certainly is. I think the communication strategy is poor and could have been handled much better.
    I’m certainly no fan of the ‘decide first, engage later’ move that bears the hallmark of an UMNO-style administration. It makes me trust PKR less.
    I can understand political strategy and expedience in the bigger picture (which is why I can understand the PM’s wishy-washy stand on the Allah issue even though I am no supporter of his)but you guys have to absolutely break this culture of dictating before ‘engaging’ to explain your decisions. If I were a voter in Kajang, I would vote an independent or abstain altogether

  5. I read YB Rafizi’s article (and the explanation of #Kajang) with mixed feelings. But I am happy at least he wrote it – for one, he’s the only from PKR offering the apologies to the people while trying to explain and justify the #Kajang Move. Whereas or not you buy his “sales pitch” of #Kajang Move is a separate matter. In fact, his line of explanation should have come out first yesterday, to save PKR/Pakatan from its public relation nightmare.

  6. No matter how apologetic the party can be in this article, it’s still reads as a decision that might benefit PKR and not the People.
    1) If PKR wants Selangor to be that model state, then develop the to-be state that you want to achieve and work towards it. This will become the MB’s KPI. What’s the point of having billions in the coffers when Denggi cases skyrocketed.
    2) And every political position has it’s threat and for everything you want to throw Anwar Ibrahim in. Where is the depth in the party? Takkan dia sorang jer boleh jalan.
    3) Indirectly you are saying the Selangor government is weak. Shouldn’t PKR look at how to strengthen this weakness. How are you thinking of governing a country when you are shaken from a state already. If you control Putrajaya, you think you will be untouchables.

  7. Thank you so much for sincerity.
    1)But are you saying the current Selangor Pakatan leaders are so weak to withstand the threat of one man? Didn’t the voters of Selangor proven that by voting Pakatan in?
    2)Model state is fantastic idea, however why can’t it be achieved by the current team? What has the new candidate has that the entire team do not?
    3)Even with the change in Adun Kajang, do you think the onslaught of racial issues won’t be used? Is the public naive to fall for that trap?

    Think about these questions honestly before your next strategy or perhaps you should get feedback from individuals who strategies on a daily basis. Good luck in Kajang.

  8. Salam.

    I strongly agree with you. Pray and keep praying. The hearts of rakyat are in Allah’s hands. Only He can make the difference.

  9. You have always been my hero. I hope that one day after Pakatan has taken over Putrajaya you will be there to lead our country to greater heights. There is now little that the country can offer and friends who have migrated overseas to greener pastures have expressed no regret. With people of your likes helming the country, I hope to prove my friends wrong for having stayed behind in this country I love.

  10. First and foremost salute and hats-off for your honesty. We need this kind of MP’s in Malaysia. Sad that doesnt belong in BN. Whatever it is we know radical game plan inquest needed to capture Putrajaya. We are fully behind Pakatan and will walk togather towards the glory. Remember , there will be alot of thorns on the path to glory! So be strong my brother.

  11. First and foremost salute and hats-off for your honesty. We need this kind of MP’s in Malaysia. Sad that doesnt belong in BN. Whatever it is we know radical game plan inquest needed to capture Putrajaya. We are fully behind Pakatan and will walk togather towards the glory. Remember , there will be alot of thorns on the path to glory! So be strong my brother !

  12. kan nampak jiwa besar sikit bila pandai rasa bersalah… berbanding top-top leader yang lain… asyik bagi menanam tebu di bibir mulut tak habis-habis

  13. If there is no Churchill, palestine will be peace by now, and europe will be in hitler hand, emmm how bad its going to be?

  14. i think the point are quite rational . but the most important thing , is there any discussion between PKR and PAS , DAP before make this decision . it is very – very important matter . if no , i hope PKR can make statement to apology to your teammate PAS and DAP..

    just 20 cent from me

  15. I guess its fine to have the election compared with billions gone under the UMNO regime. I agree with Marina ” fight the good fight” and create new age Malays who are united against racism and discrimination which is viewed as UMNO’s version of Apartheid. Let ensure PR wins with a strong majority and teach those bastards in UMNO a good lesson.

  16. I hope this painful decision will bring real benefit to the people in Selangor in particular and Malaysia as whole. I trust the honesty of YB Rafizi.

  17. I believe the motive for the “Kajang Move” is now very clear and I pray that God will be with is in this endeavour to rid this country of all the parasites that are having a ball up there while ordinary Malaysians are struggling and even suffering to have a decent life. God Bless you PR. My prayers will always be with you.

  18. This is the answer that we are looking for. So let’s stop beating around the bush, we have a lot of work to do in order to fortify our stronghold in Selangor.

  19. hope that who read this soon understand the pain in making big decision such as this one. Good luck, all the best, and may Allah bring success and just to all.

  20. the last few weeks in jan saw Malaysia being hit by the onslaught of price hikes and racial issues and tension . This is further mad worse by the unnecessary faction within PKR and the unnecessary speculation of the resignation of the Menteri Besar in Selangor . The dismissal of Azmin Ali is a minor issue and do not need to be blown out of proportion . What you all need is just a thorough investigation . The current disunity in PKR only cast doubts on the minds of the Malaysians on their ability to capture and rule Putrajaya . The manoeuvre spells of political intrigue and twists and similar to the ruling party strategy .If the MB does his job well with integrity and endear himself to the public ,let him continue his job .

  21. PR was in the forefront in the hearts of the people but this move is not the best option as put forth in your explanation above. I am a little voice that had provided a lot of input to both Mahathir and DSAI during the times when DSAI was the deputy PM. I played a big part in stabilising many challenges that Malaysia faced, in the background. As a practising strategist, I suffered during the fallout. We could have a face to face chat and if you can find a niche of use for my talent then for the sake of the people, I can contribute to your struggle for the people.

    Remember the strength of PR must not be from a single person, otherwise if the head falls the rest of the body will too! For the past 8 years, I have been watching every move of both BN and PR, trying to see who should I help.

    Siah CT

    012 278 1468

  22. Its a tough one RR. Pls do all that’s necessary “Kajang move” or otherwise, so we are better guarded on our turfs and come next round we are better off to fight for it. its ok to be paranoid alot. rather then to sit and regret later on what should have been done and lick our wounds if we fail again. Bravo!

  23. YB, I’m hoping it is the right move, politically, although I’m against it. By the way, it should be Keadilan and not PKR…?

  24. Ok. Appologise accepted. While more money wasted by federal, I think Anwar as Selangor’s MB will have more coverage shall any crisis arise and they will not likely to allow it happen. Hence, I think Selangor’s problem will be highlighted less than usual.

    And please do not repeat this again. And please also do tell Azmin, do not, I repeat do not behave like Hasan Ali.

    Remember, those who betray will always find himself alone.

  25. If Azmin is smart, he should lead assault in N9 or Perak. After capturing a state, he would be hailed as hero but he choose short cut. Azmin is repeating PAS Kedah mistake.

  26. Your apologize is accepted.Whatever the outcome is we still support pakatan till we get this Dumno out of power.So we malaysian can have a better tomorrow.

  27. Or perhaps it’s a move to pacify Azmin Ali after being removed from PKNS and his constant pressure and threat to realised his ambition as the next MB?

    When Anwar take the MB seat..
    It seals the fight to topple Khalid..

    Maybe PKR should start to purge the old remains of UMNO warlords / political baggage that only fights for the benefits of politician rather than people.

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