Pakatan Rakyat candidate Datuk Zaid Ibrahim, who lost in the recent Hulu Selangor Parliamentary by-election, does not seem willing to offer his other cheek to his enemies after being cheekily slapped by them.
During the election campaign, his political rivals exposed his drinking habit (in the past, he confessed) and his ownership of several racing horses (for the sport and not for gambling, he claimed).
Now that his dirty linen has been washed very publicly, he said he will start a “Know Your Leader” campaign to expose the immoral habits of Umno's top leaders.
“You cannot call (someone) drunk and spare the other Umno leaders. I will expose the hypocrisy of Umno leaders,” he told Malaysian Insider.
“In this matter, one good thing is that they have exposed me, all my shortcomings. I feel it is not wrong if it is true. The issue is that it is twisted, calling me all sorts of names to influence voters. That is not right. But it’s alright, the election is over but there are more to come. I will appeal to the rakyat since they know me very well now with this expose I hope we also know about our leaders. Let’s get to know our ministers better,” said Zaid.
“Which casino they go to, which mistresses they keep. We know,” added the former Umno man. He also told Malaysian Insider that the campaign will openly name ministers and their spouses who are allegedly involved in immoral activities.
“What’s wrong with naming them if we have proof? If we have information?”
The problem is this - this kind of tit-for-tat strategy can backfire very badly. If you dig up some dirt and smear your enemies with it, your enemies will dig up even more dirt and throw the entire bucket of slime back at you.
Zaid must remember his party leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim is still fighting a court battle against an allegation by a former PKR aide that he was sodomised by Anwar.
What of the other PKR leaders? Are they squeaky-clean? Are they "whiter than white" (as one former Umno leader claimed he was)? Are their bedsheets, mattresses, underwear and carpets unstained? Have they checked their hideaways for hidden pinhole cameras and bugs?
Then again, if we ponder for a moment we may come to the conclusion that Zaid's move will really clean up the political scene in Malaysia.
Let's say PKR digs up some dirt on some Barisan Nasional leaders and the BN strategists retaliate by digging up some slime about Pakatan leaders, then politicians from both sides of the divide will be "stripped naked" with their dirty linen unceremoniously pulled from them and washed thoroughly in public.
Frankly, the people will benefit because Malaysia will finally have squeaky-clean leaders.
Come to think of it, Zaid should go ahead with his "Know Your Leader" campaign. All Malaysians are waiting with bated breath to know which leader did what...