MELAKA: PKR vice-president Tian Chua went into the PKR National Congress today with guns blazing despite having to address a crowd which was hostile to him.
The long-time party leader spoke against the dangers of having a mob mentality in the party, but his speech was interrupted with loud jeers after he mentioned the name of PKR No. 2 Datuk Seri Azmin Ali.
A known ally of Azmin, Tian Chua questioned the ability of his party to move forward amidst its rift which culminated with bloody brawls during the youth national congress two days ago.
He said he was not afraid to speak out despite many people labeling him and his fellow Azmin-aligned leaders as traitors.
"I do not want to see my party to be held by mob mentality. This is not about the issue of the eighth prime minister or the ninth or the 10th. We have seen our supporters becoming more extreme.
"That is the danger when our party has become the ruling party. It's not all about (Datuk Seri) Anwar (Ibrahim). After Anwar, there will more prime ministers..." Tian Chua said amidst more jeers from delegates gathered at the closing of the party's annual congress at the Melaka International Trade Centre.
Tian Chua said blind loyalty and a personality cult were evident in the party and the onus was on the rank-and-file to overcome these problems.
"For a new party which has gained power and considering our history is still a long way to go, the bigger danger is (party) members forming a fanatic mentality. It is a dangerous thing to have blind loyalty and to attempt to create a personality cult.
"This is not Anwar's problem but ours. We have to be aware of this. Every member has to take critical action ," said Tian Chua.
It was widely observed that a majority of debaters in this year's congress stated their full support to have Anwar become the eighth prime minister, while also blaming the opposing faction.
Azmin had blamed Anwar for this occurrence as he claimed that the party president had went against their agreement to ensure debaters would not hurt the feelings of any quarter during debates.
Hundreds of Azmin supporters staged a muted walk out on the first day of the congress.
Tian Chua had earlier started mentioning Azmin's name when referring to the contributions of PKR's entire line up of leaders, specifically in his work in Selangor.
He also hoped that PKR would not become an Umno 2.0, a description referring to the lynchpin party of Barisan Nasional that lost power in last year's general election after six decades at the helm at federal-level.
"I want to stress that the rakyat is watching whether PKR is qualified to become the ruling party. Being qualified here is not about receiving loud applause but about how we form a united party which is inclusive, accepts various opinions and provides solutions for the rakyat." he said.