SHAH ALAM: Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim will contest the PKR deputy president post in the party elections in May.
He sprung the surprise on everyone at a dinner at his official residence here last night after having earlier informed reporters that he will not be making any major announcement.
The hall at his residence erupted into applause when, midway through a speech where he urged everyone to make the Kajang by-election their top priority, he said he would be going for the deputy president post.
Since afternoon, news that he would announce his candidacy sent reporters on a wild goose chase.
Various media had reported that Khalid was expected to make the "big announcement" at the dinner which was attended by party members.
During the dinner, Khalid continued to maintain that he would not be making any announcement.
Khalid’s political secretary, Azman Abidin, was more forthright and confirmed even before his boss spoke that the Mentri Besar will throw his hat into the ring.
"It is no secret. It is not even 99%, but a 100% sure thing," he told The Star at the function.
However, Azman said Khalid wanted to concentrate on the water deal that was signed between the state government and Federal Government on Thursday.
Khalid’s other staff members also confirmed that he would go for the post and it was only a question of when he will declare his intention.
The PKR election is expected to be held in May and Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has confirmed that he will be going for the presidency.
Khalid’s bid for the deputy president post will pit him against Azmin Ali, who will be running for the position for a second term.