Allegedly not to make things difficult for Anwar and to rid himself of ungrateful opportunists.
According to Sin Chew Daily, it was told by a PKR source that Rafizi Ramli suddenly announced to quit politics because he was trying to dissolve the intra-party conflicts and not to make things difficult for Anwar Ibrahim.
Rafizi, who is still PKR’s vice president, is going on leave at this moment.
The newspaper said it has attempted to approach Rafizi to find out the reason for his departure but he declined to answer any questions related to politics.
It was reported that the source said Rafizi had left all PKR’s WhatsApp groups since half a year ago, and had closed his own Rafizi media group about two months back.
“He has not attended any party meeting for almost half a year!”
Rafizi apparently has not discussed his decision at any meeting although he has consulted and informed party president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim in private.
“Rafizi has become a target of attacks by Azmin’s camp. It is good for him to back off now, for the sake of party unity.
“It is generally believed that Rafizi only quits temporarily and will return once Anwar becomes prime minister, but we can’t say for sure.
“As a matter of fact, Anwar does not want him to make aggressive remarks, and probably because of this he feels there is nothing much he can do now.”
Rafizi tweeted on Sunday that he would focus on artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and Internet of Things (IoT) after leaving politics.
“It’s obvious I tweeted because I am making it clear I am not coming back to politics.”
Meanwhile, PKR MP Wong Chen has bemoaned the lack of support for Rafizi when he was charged and subsequently acquitted under the Banking and Financial Institutions Act (Bafia).
The Subang MP said that when the former Pandan MP was acquitted by the Shah Alam High Court on Nov 15, “less than 10 MPs congratulated him in the PH WhatsApp group”.
“Not turning up for his trial to support him is forgivable but (being) unwilling to type a simple message to congratulate Rafizi for his acquittal, for fear of upsetting powerful politicians, is a new low.
“I think a valid reason for his departure from politics is to rid himself of the company of ungrateful opportunists,” Wong Chen said in a Facebook post.
Paying tribute to his “dear friend”, he described Rafizi as a major contributor to Pakatan Harapan’s victory in the May 9 polls and the force behind PKR-linked think tank Invoke.
He said Rafizi had to endure multiple court cases after the last general election, which drained his already low personal finances.
He also had to struggle to keep Invoke alive with the help of a few of his closest friends, he said.
Wong Chen said Rafizi was vilified when he spoke out against Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad last year, with some saying he was “too clever for his own good”.
He also noted that while Rafizi did not stand in GE14 because of his Bafia conviction, he was not even appointed to a senator’s post while those who “contributed almost nothing” took up ministerial posts.
“I don’t think he wants a reward, but to be recognised and thanked for his momentous work is fair,” he said, adding that unlike other PH politicians who had their criminal cases dropped immediately, Rafizi was “hounded” by Putrajaya for another year-and-a-half.
“Bear in mind that in the Bafia case, Rafizi benefited absolutely nothing financially and had in fact acted as a courageous whistle-blower,” he said.
He said this was why he did not try to dissuade Rafizi from retiring from politics.
“Yet I can’t help but feel a tinge of sadness to see the best and most hardworking politician of this generation leave the political stage,” he said.