PETALING JAYA, Oct 10 — PKR has today launched a website to allow party members and members of the public to register themselves as prospective candidates to contest under the party’s ticket, for the upcoming 15th general election (GE15)
PKR deputy president Rafizi Ramli said that those who are keen, can register their names at www.calonkeadilan.org, and the party is expecting at least 10,000 nominations to come in.
Making the announcement at a press conference today, Rafizi said that this is after considering voters’ shifting sentiment towards parties, based on a PKR research outfit’s study of voting patterns in the last two years.
“It is our belief that unless you remove the subjectivity of the candidate selection, we will continue to perpetuate the bootlicking culture, apple polishing and we remove talent and service from politics.
“At the end of the day, we have lived the last 60 years, where a person will become a party candidate, and eventually will rise to become a senior minister, only by ‘apple polishing’ the top leaders.
“It does not matter what his talent is. It doesn’t matter what his track record among the public is. It doesn’t matter if you hardly ever hear them speak about anything. But they become senior ministers,” he said.
Rafizi said there has been a marked shift in voter mentality, given issues such as party hopping and the Sheraton Move, which caused the collapse of the Pakatan Harapan government just 22 months after the 14th general election.
He said people were now looking beyond political parties when deciding their support, and were increasingly concerned that they could be voting in politicians who were only interested in positions but did not contribute.
The PKR deputy president said that since being placed in charge of the party’s election efforts, he was been reforming its internal processes including for candidate selection.
Rafizi said there would be mechanisms to identify and vet potential candidates, and advised those planning to make lengthy pitches for themselves to do so in writing.
“A candidates’ committee will be fully responsible for finalising candidates for each seat, to be discussed between the party president, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, and I, as the elections director,’” he said, adding that Anwar would also periodically attend the committee meetings.
Aside from the website, Rafizi said candidate nominations could also come from PKR’s wings, state leadership committees, divisions, and branches.
“Deadline for nominations will close one week from now, meaning it will end next Thursday, subject to whether the dissolution (of Parliament) will be done tomorrow or next Tuesday.
“If dissolution is done tomorrow or next Tuesday, then if there is a need for us to close early, we will close it early, but we feel that for now, the process to send nominations at all levels, be it from PKR or the public, the one-week period from now until October 13, 2022, we feel it is enough,” he added.
He said PKR members will have priority for evaluation as they were the foundation of the party.
Rafizi explained that the scoring system would take into account one’s election machinery strength, experience in the party and contributions, influence among voters, and personal background, among others.
Rafizi acknowledged that opening up the party’s candidacy to the public would risk upsetting existing party leaders and members, but said PKR must innovate to ensure the quality of its leaders.
“We are willing to risk it. This time around, albeit it being only one month away from the election, but we will take the risk if this means that we can convince voters out there, that we are trying our best to shortlist and present the best league of candidates for this election,” he added.