Saturday, 18 August, 2018

Anwar's release to be 'slightly' delayed

PKR political bureau member R. Sivarasa speaks to the media at Cheras Rehabilitation Hospital in Kuala Lumpur. Pic by MOHD KHAIRUL HELMY MOHD DIN PKR political bureau member R. Sivarasa speaks to the media at Cheras Rehabilitation Hospital in Kuala Lumpur. Pic by MOHD KHAIRUL HELMY MOHD DIN
Kenny Thornton | 16 May, 2018, 07:16

Earlier, when met, PKR secretary-general Saifuddin Nasution said Anwar will be released from the rehabilitation hospital tomorrow upon the pardons board's decision.

Officials in Anwar's political party said he was headed to an audience with Malaysia's king and was expected to address the public in the afternoon followed by a political rally in the evening.

Jailed Malaysian politician Anwar Ibrahim walked free on Wednesday after receiving a royal pardon, paving the way for his return to national politics as the presumptive successor to Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammed following a stunning election upset.

She said her husband's health was improving.

The ruling Pakatan Harapan coalition, for which PKR is the lead party, plans to make Anwar prime minister once he has successfully won a by-election for a parliamentary seat, making him eligible for the premiership.

He has been in hospital for a few months recovering from a shoulder operation.

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Anwar joined forces with his old ally-turned-foe-turned ally, 92-year-old Mahathir Mohamad, to oust scandal-tainted former premier Najib Razak.

"I am disappointed because I had hoped he could be prime minister as soon as possible", said Talib Ibrahim, an Anwar supporter outside the hospital.

However, Dr Mahathir, who now leads the coalition and was sworn in as prime minister on Thursday, has said it may take up to two years for him to hand over the reins as he wants to stick around to fix the problems he sees plaguing the nation. Wearing a white shirt printed with a photograph of Anwar and the words "March 2 Freedom", he said he nevertheless believed Anwar and Mahathir could work together and that the alliance's prospects were good.

Dr Mahathir had promised to stay on as prime minister for two years before handing over power to Anwar, while Dr Wan Azizah would be made deputy prime minister.

Anwar's prison sentence ends June 8, but without a royal pardon he would be barred from politics for five years.

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