Wan Azizah & Nurul Izzah: Rebuilding A Nation Long Divided

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Ooi Kee Beng: Thank you for taking the time to meet me. Should I call you Nurul or Izzah?
Nurul Izzah Anwar: Izzah. We are five girls and one boy, and all the girls have “Nurul” in their name. Nurul just means “Light of” in Arabic, so you need another name to go with it. [Izzah means Might or Power].

The last time we met was at a lunch following a talk in December last year at the Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Singapore. The Pakatan coalition at that time was not in good shape, I remember. Today as we meet, the picture looks very different. After July 14 this year, Pakatan Harapan looks promising after the parties managed to agree on the coalition’s power structure. Do you feel it is more hopeful than Pakatan Rakyat was?
These are in different contexts and it would be flawed if we equate these developments to be one and the same. In 2008 the opposition obtained an agreement for one-to-one fights across the board, and Pakatan Rakyat came into being only after the results proved impressive. And then there was agreement on a policy framework that bound everyone together.


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