Amid Selangor Menteri Besar Azmin Ali’s attempts to portray a speculated BN coup in his state as undemocratic, an Umno minister has reminded the PKR deputy president of his own past actions.
Specifically, BN strategic communications director Abdul Rahman Dahlan said Azmin could not deny his role in Anwar Ibrahim’s failed Sept 16 coup in 2008.
“Azmin cannot deny that he was a party to the most audacious but failed attempted coup on Sept 16, 2008, engineered by his boss Anwar,” Rahman told Malaysiakini.
The Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department was responding to Azmin’s remarks to The Malaysian Insight, urging Najib to respect democracy amid speculation that Umno was trying to topple the PKR-led Selangor government.
In 2008, Anwar had claimed that on Sept 16 that year, the opposition would form the federal government through the defection of BN lawmakers.
This plan never materialised, as BN scrambled to prevent its lawmakers from defecting.
US embassy cables leaked in 2011 quoted Azmin as saying the defections should occur in May 2008, to avoid “manipulations” by the Election Commission ahead of an August by-election for Anwar to make his parliamentary comeback.
Azmin had said that it was better for the opposition to first take in BN defectors and form an interim government, before the by-election.
Speculation of BN’s attempted coup in Selangor emerged after Najib held a much-hyped special press conference on Sunday.
The presser turned out to be anti-climatic when Najib only announced former Selangor menteri besar Muhammad Muhammad Taib’s return to Umno.
This fueled speculation that Najib was supposed to announce even more defections which would have allowed him to topple the current opposition-led Selangor government.