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KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 28 — PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim must lead a joint commitment to reject inter-coalition defections to safeguard the future of Pakatan Harapan, said Amanah Youth chief Shazni Munir Mohd Ithnin today.
Commenting on reports that three of his party’s Johor lawmakers have defected to the allied PKR, Shazni said it was time to accept that party-hopping was the “prostitution” of the country’s democracy.
“The buying and selling of elected representatives is a detestable and despicable culture.
“In fact, it was this prostitution that caused the collapse of the Pakatan Harapan government and stunted the administrative reforms that had been underway at the time,” he said in a statement today.
Noting that PKR secretary-general Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail coincidentally urged his party’s lawmakers to resist defection yesterday, Shazni said it would be hypocritical of the party to accept the three Amanah defectors.
Saifuddin made the call amid rumours that the ruling Perikatan Nasional was inviting Opposition lawmakers to join its ranks in order to regain parliamentary majority it appeared to have lost in January.
Today, Shazni added that political backstabbing was not a practice that PH should embrace or could survive, and warned that ties among the coalition’s parties would unravel and weaken unless the situation was corrected.
“PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim must institute a joint commitment to reject party hopping between components that harms one and benefits the other,” he said.
Aside from being PKR president, Anwar is also the chairman of PH and the federal opposition leader.
Yesterday, news emerged that Senggarang assemblyman Khairuddin A. Rahim, Muhamad Said Jonit (Mahkota) and Faizul Amri Adnan (Serom) quit Amanah for PKR over alleged dissatisfaction with their former party’s leadership.
Khairudding asserted that he has been in PKR since last September and tried to play down the defection, insisting that it should not matter as the three were still with the PH coalition.
The latest crossovers bring to five the number of lawmakers who have gone from Amanah to PKR since last year. Previously, Amanah lost its Meru assemblyman Mohd Fakhrulrazi Mohd Mokhtar and Sabah assemblyman Ahmad Mustain Othman to its PH partner.