There is no winner or loser in the debate last night.For a less experience politician Ahmad Shabery Cheek has done well against one of the country's most skilled orator.
It goes without saying that Anwar is a better polemicist and his speech is more memorable for its polemic rather than its substance.Anwar is not interested in facts and figures and as an experienced activist and politician he knew what his audience wanted to hear.He outshines Shabery in term of delivery and display of charisma.Anwar was more interested in playing to the gallery, his target audience the proletarian and the kampong folks.His figure of RM1 to 2 billion to subside reduction of fuel price is fancy mathematics to seduce the people to believe him, which he knew is untrue and grossly insufficient, a populist talk according to Shabery.
He failed to raise nuisance value against the government.
Shabery might have shocked most people with his hidden talent.Many have expected him to be eaten alive by Anwar.He came well-armed with facts and figures and reasons why government had no choice but to increase the price of oil.He tried to kill the myth that Malaysia is a substantial oil-producing country and have quoted Venezuela and Iran as countries that have the cheapest price of petrol but have double digit inflation.He,however, forgot to mention that even at the current price the government still subsidise part of the cost.Aside from taking cheap shots at Anwar, which was unnecessary, he had done well and came out unscathed.
Both came out well, Anwar may be the star but Shabery Cheek is the real surprise and a rising star.