10 November, 2009

Zulkifli Noordin challenged R Sivarasa to quit and battle him for the top post

"I challenge Sivarasa to step down within the next 24 hours and go against me, man to man.

"Let PKR members exercise their democratic right to decide if it is the party's policy to defend the right of Islam and Muslims or otherwise,"

Zulkifli was responding to Sivarasa's statement in an English newspaper today that Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim's warning to party representatives to shape up or ship out was targeted at Zulkifli.

Among others, Sivarasa said the PKR supremo's warning was aimed at people like Zulkifli who constantly issue statements contrary to the party's stand.

Zulkifli alleged that "Sivarasa and the likes of him" have their own personal agenda, and are using Anwar's political clout for their own purposes.

"I hope Anwar is aware of this because the public would one day know about it, and this would tarnish the party's image," he said.

Meanwhile, Anwar told a press conference later that he did not specifically target anyone in his warning.

"What I said was that everyone who is PKR must abide by the party's agenda and principles... no specific reference was made," he said.

The opposition leader also felt that Zulkifli had crossed the line in issuing a challenge to Sivarasa.

"I spoke to him (Zulkifli) after his press conference. I feel that he could have simply explained his position... but he went overboard with his challenge which I think was unnecessary.

"He wanted to respond to the negative perception towards him and that is not wrong, but I feel that he could have refrained from issuing a challenge," he added.

Asked if he was angry with the PKR MP over his statement, Anwar replied: "It is not fair to be angry at him because his name was singled out (in the report quoting Sivarasa)."

Anwar stressed that no disciplinary actions would be taken against both parties,and declared an end to a policy spat between the two hours after it happened.

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