KUALA LUMPUR, July 31 (Bernama) -- Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) president Datuk Seri Wan Azizah Wan Ismail has resigned as Member of Parliament for Permatang Pauh with immediate effect to make way for her husband, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, to contest the seat in a by-election.
Wan Azizah, 55, said she tendered her resignation letter to Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia, Thursday.
She had discussed the matter with the PKR leadership and its partners in Pakatan Rakyat, she told a news conference at the PKR headquarters here, attended by Anwar and their daughter, Nurul Izzah, the MP for Lembah Pantai.
Wan Azizah, who is also the opposition leader in the Dewan Rakyat, has been the Permatang Pauh MP since 1999. The seat was previously held by Anwar.
Wan Azizah said she would remain the PKR president but her replacement as opposition leader would be discussed by the Pakat Rakyat members.
The news conference which was also attended by several party leaders as well as DAP representative Tan Kok Wai, was held in a calm atmosphere although she was besieged by local and foreign media representatives.
Meanwhile, Anwar, 60, said he was moved and indebted to his wife who was willing to vacate the seat although it was not an "easy thing" to do.
He said his decision to contest in Permatang Pauh was because it was a safe seat although he had been offered other parliamentary seats, including Bandar Tun Razak which is held by Selangor Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim and Gombak, whose incumbent is PKR vice-president Mohamed Azmin Ali.