Satu Pandangan Dunia BARAT Pada Masa Depan Pemimpin Malaysia
After the first accusations in 1998, Mr Anwar spent six years in prison for corruption and sodomy before being cleared of the second charge by the country’s supreme court and released in 2004. This time the judge ruled that the prosecution case against Mr Anwar was too flimsy for a conviction; the DNA evidence, in particular, was ruled unreliable.
If the two sodomy charges really were invented by some in UMNO bent on wrecking Mr Anwar’s career, then the strategy has backfired. The first case in 1998 rallied huge public sympathy for Mr Anwar. With Sodomy 2.0 he has been publicly vindicated, despite a widespread belief that he was going to be convicted. Indeed, the government swiftly attempted to exploit this by claiming that the verdict showed “the government does not hold sway over judges’ decisions”, framing this as part of its vaunted reform programme. The independence and quality of the judiciary has improved a little since the days of Dr Mahathir, but many in Malaysia remain cynical and conspiracy theories abound.
How will the verdict affect Malaysia’s politics? In the short term Mr Anwar’s victory will give a much-needed boost to the coalition of opposition parties that he leads. So much so, in fact, that the cautious prime minister, Najib Razak, might even postpone going to the polls.
In the longer term, however, things are less clear-cut. Although Mr Anwar remains a charismatic figure and a forceful speaker, his reputation has been tarnished. That won’t matter to his acolytes, but at 64 he also seems a distant and untrustworthy figure to many younger Malaysians. He has failed to nurture a new generation of opposition leaders. Rather than turning his party into a vibrant, modernising force in politics he has allowed it to become something of a family-run affair, riven by infighting.
In prison, some political operators say, he could have served as a useful martyr figure to rally the opposition. Now, they are stuck with him indefinitely as a leader. Mr Anwar may still be popular enough to land a few blows on the government. But he may also be too weakened to deliver the knockout punch.
KUALA LUMPUR 15 Jan. - Ketua Pembangkang, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim yang baru dibebaskan daripada tuduhan meliwat bekas pembantu peribadinya dianggap sebagai pemimpin yang tidak boleh dipercayai walaupun beliau terselamat daripada hukuman penjara.
Menariknya, label itu diberikan majalah antarabangsa, The Economist dan bukan datang daripada pemimpin UMNO mahu pun Barisan Nasional (BN) yang selama ini sering dituduh sebagai pihak yang berkonspirasi ke atas pertuduhan liwat tersebut.
Menurut The Economist, walaupun Anwar seorang pemimpin yang berkarisma dan memiliki kehebatan sebagai pemidato, tetapi imej serta reputasinya sebagai ketua pembangkang tercemar khususnya dalam kalangan generasi muda di negara ini.
"Bagaimana keputusan (mahkamah) itu akan memberi kesan kepada politik Malaysia? Dalam jangka pendek, kemenangan (pembebasan) Anwar sudah tentu memberi rangsangan sangat diperlukan kepada pakatan pembangkang yang diketuainya.
"Namun, untuk jangka masa panjang belum jelas. Reputasinya tercemar dan beliau seorang pemimpin yang tidak boleh dipercayai khususnya bagi generasi muda Malaysia," kata majalah tersebut sebagaimana dipetik dari laman webnya, http://www.economist.com hari ini.