PETALING JAYA: The recent declaration by three PKR MPs to ditch the party and become Independents to support Perikatan Nasional is a "courageous and principled move", say former party members.
The 10 former PKR members party said that the "dynamic" political move by Julau MP Larry Sng, Tebrau MP Steven Choong and Kuala Langat MP Datuk Dr Xavier Jayakumar meets the aspirations of the rakyat for a fully functioning and stable government.
"No doubt, this is a progressive development that signifies their confidence in the Perikatan Nasional government's handling of the Covid-19 pandemic and the proactive, decisive and timely measures implemented to jump start the economy and ensure sustainable recovery.
"Their decision to leave PKR was also driven by a deep sense of frustration with the leadership of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, whose policy of divide and rule, nepotistic practices and cronyism has plunged the party into self-destruct mode," the group said in a joint statement on Sunday (March 14).
The statement was signed by Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, Datuk Zuraida Kamaruddin, Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah, Datuk Mohd Rashid Hasnon, Datuk Kamarudin Jaffar, Datuk Dr Mansor Othman, Datuk Seri Dr Santhara Kumar, Datuk Ali Biju, Datuk Willie Mongin, and Jonathan Yasin.
They claimed that PKR secretary-general Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution did not have the moral standing to preach about party hopping, as he initially jumped from Umno to PKR, then to PAS and then back to PKR.
"If Saifuddin is really earnest about the rule of law, due process and the fight against corruption... why has he remained silent about the corruption case involving a prominent Pakatan leader which was terminated even as the trial was proceeding smoothly?" they asked.
They also said allegations of Perikatan using enticements and intimidation to garner the support of MPs from Pakatan were baseless.
"These MPs have made their own objective assessment and realised that the Perikatan government has taken responsible measures in dealing with the pandemic by channelling a total of RM320bil for the benefit of the rakyat and to revitalise the economy.
"The allegation represents a completely unwarranted and scurrilous attack on the MACC (Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission) and the police, our integrity and law enforcement institutions which all law abiding citizens hold with the highest regard," he said.
They claimed that the accusations were seditious and could undermine the credibility of national institutions and called for swift action.
They also called on leaders and members of PKR to reflect on why so many top PKR leaders and long-serving members had left the party.
"PKR, under the current formulation, can no longer claim to be championing the principles of justice and welfare for the people, having lost its idealism and gone astray largely because of the insatiable lust for power and ambition of one man to become prime minister," they said.
They added that Anwar must accept the fact that his leadership had been rejected by a large cross section of his own party members.
The group of 10 left PKR one year ago to help form the Perikatan government.