PORT DICKSON,. Independent candidate Mohd Saiful Bukhari today said it ‘felt good’ shaking the hands of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, who he once accused of sodomising him.
Saiful, who earlier today expressed excitement at meeting his former employer, said they managed to exchange greetings in the nomination centre.
“It has been a long time. It felt good (to shake his hands). We should be matured enough…To me, we have to move forward.
“There wasn’t any discussion…more like exchanging hellos and we asked how each other is currently doing,” he told reporters at Majlis Perbandaran Port Dickson here today.
In the hall, the duo shook hands twice ? once after Anwar submitted his nomination papers and another time while waiting for the official Election Commission (EC) official announcement.
During the second encounter, Saiful proceeded to take a seat next to Anwar for a brief moment before the latter moved to sit closer to his PAS rival.
Saiful stressed that his candidacy did not stem from personal vendetta but instead his own wish to see more young leaders in the political arena.
He said, however, he wished to move forward from the “old case” and to focus on his first-ever by-election.
He also gave an assurance that he will not use his history with Anwar as a tool to gain votes in his campaigns.
“My narrative is not about the case. I don’t want to talk about the past. The case is settled. Justice was served and he had received his pardon. Let’s move on.
“I’m not playing the fool by contesting. I’m 33 now and I am very serious. I think I am qualified enough to be an MP now,” he said.
Saiful added that his candidacy is not at all meant to hinder Anwar from pursuing his ambition to become the eight prime minister.
“As a former student of Anwar’s, I don’t think it’s wrong for me to compete against him.
“People are fed up with parties because there is too much politicking. An engineered by-election will cause uncertainty to the country and we don’t want that.
“I’m not saying I support Pakatan Harapan or Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad but the new government has only been running for four months, why do we need to have a new leader so soon? Why not wait for say two more years?”
He added that he will reveal the details of his electoral manifesto within the next few days.