Azmin ready to defend Gombak, if Anwar comes calling

KUALA LUMPUR: Datuk Seri Azmin Ali is ready to defend the Gombak parliamentary seat against his former mentor and PKR supremo Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

The Selangor Perikatan Nasional (PN) chairman said anyone can contest in the constituency in the 15th General Election, and stressed that he is a "anak jantan" who would stay and fight.

"There is someone who is interested in coming (to contest) in Gombak (in the polls). Silakan (You are welcome).

"Gombak is open (to all aspiring candidates) and you are welcome.

"You can either send your wife or (any of your) children (to stand in Gombak). If you are brave, nominate yourself (to contest in Gombak in GE15)," said Azmin, who is the Senior International Trade and Industry Minister.

He said this in his speech at the Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia's (Bersatu) event in Shah Alam near here today.

Although he did not mention names, it was understood that Azmin was referring to Anwar, his wife Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and daughter Nurul Izzah Anwar.

"Why are you cheering? Do you know who they are? I did not mention any names here," Azmin told in response to loud cheers and applause from the crowd.

Azmin, who is also the Bukit Antarabangsa state assemblyman, also took a dig at Anwar over his remarks that he was ready to contest in a parliamentary seat held by a PKR and Pakatan Harapan (PH) 'traitor' in GE15.

"I wanted to respond, but to me he is no longer relevant.

"However, his accusation has crossed the line, creating a narrative as though we are traitors.

"Let me ask that person this: who is the real traitor?" he queried.

Azmin then reminded the crowd of the infamous "Kajang Move" by PKR in 2014.

"There was an elected representative by the name of C.C. Lee (Lee Chin Cheh). The person contested in the general election democratically, elected by the Kajang constituents, and subsequently became the Kajang assemblyman.

"Later, came along a greedy person instructing Lee to step down because he wanted to contest at the seat and became the (Selangor) Menteri Besar," he said.

During the infamous "Kajang Move", Anwar had announced that he would contest in Kajang following Lee's resignation.

It was his wife instead who contested at the seat after Anwar, in the same year, was sentenced to five years' jail after he was found guilty of sodomy charges.

Wan Azizah won the by-election when she got 16,741 votes in a straight fight against MCA's Datin Paduka Chew Mei Fun, who polled 11,362 votes.

Anwar and Azmin parted ways following the Sheraton Move in February 2020, which saw Bersatu quit the PH federal government, causing the first non-Barisan Nasional administration to fall.

Azmin and then housing and local government minister Zuraida Kamaruddin's support for the Sheraton Move saw the duo being sacked by PKR. This also saw nine other PKR federal lawmakers, aligned to Azmin, followed suit by quitting the PH component party.

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