Hence the questions arise: Can UMNO or UMNO president Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi uses this as a leverage to strengthen UMNO and if so, to what extent? Is Ezam an asset to the party or otherwise?
Ezam Mohd Nor said his focus now was merely to help UMNO leadership in reforming the party and the government. He doesn’t want to be involved in any power struggle in the party.
He was previously sacked from UMNO in 1998 for criticizing the then president Dr Mahathir Mohamad for terminating Anwar from both the party and government.
He had been a vocal critic of Mahathir and then Abdullah. He played a vital role in the setting up of PKR in 1999 with Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail. In the intervening years, he had been charged and jailed under the Official Secrets Act and the Internal Security Act for siding with Anwar. In PKR, he helmed the Youth wing from 1999 until 2005.
Last year he had a bitter fall out with Anwar and vice-president Azmin Ali. This followed an internal power struggle, which resulted in Ezam quitting the party.
Since then he had been critical of Anwar's style of leadership and Azmin's role as a dominant schemer in the party. After that he had concentrated on his anti-corruption NGO, Gerak, of which he was the head. He has now quit that post as well after joining UMNO.