KUALA LUMPUR: The father of Fahmi Fadzil is not only proud of his son, the Pakatan Harapan candidate for Lembah Pantai, but also envious.
“I never had a chance to do what he is doing now…to do something meaningful,” said Fadzil Yunus, 72, as he and his family members joined Fahmi and his supporters outside the nomination centre in Bukit Bandaraya, Bangsar.
Fadzil said Fahmi, the second of three sons, was not the first in the family to go into politics.
Both sets of Fahmi’s grandparents were staunch Umno party workers. His maternal grandmother, Hawa Musa, was a member of the Umno Supreme Council and head of KL Wanita Umno in the 1960s.
Fadzil said Fahmi’s strength was his confidence.
“He is confident but not arrogant. I am not worried for him, it’s his choice to join politics and I was told it is safer now to be in the opposition, unlike last time.”
Fadzil, a former civil servant, said he had learnt a lot from his son. “For example, I now thank everyone, from the maid to the shopkeepers.”
Fahmi’s mother, Fauziah Ramly, 70, was also beaming with pride as his son was mobbed by supporters.
She said she was initially against Fahmi becoming active in politics.
“I am a child activist and I wanted him to be just an activist too. But he wanted to do more, so as a mother, when your child tells you it’s a calling, you have to support him,” she said.
Fauziah jested that Fahmi had always been a leader. “He was the ‘chief’ in kindergarten and a head boy in school,” she said with a laugh.
Asked what advice she had given Fahmi, Fauziah said she told him to be well-mannered and to campaign based on facts, not emotion.
She also stressed to her son on the need to have a multiracial society and this could be seen among the multi-racial crowd of supporters who had gathered. Some even turned up in traditional costumes to drive home the point.
Asked if she was worried for Fahmi’s safety, the ebullient Fauziah said: “Of course, I am, but hopefully Malaysians are now more matured.
“We need to have a strong opposition to act as check and balance. We must agree to disagree.”
And being a mother, Fauziah can’t help but worry about her son’s health during the taxing campaign period.
“I hope he takes care of his health,” she said.
But most of all, Fauziah has one important reminder for Fahmi: “Be the Yang Berkhidmat and not the Yang Berhormat.” (Be of service, and not just a parliamentarian).
Fahmi, who is PKR communications director, replaces PKR vice-president Nurul Izzah Anwar as the party’s candidate in Lembah Pantai. His rivals are Raja Nong Chik Raja Zainal Abidin (Barisan Nasional) and Fauzi Abu Bakar (PAS).
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