SUNGAI BESAR – June 5, 2016: Only two days has passed since ‘baju Melayu’ and ‘keris’ were worn and brandished by Pas leaders and now it seems as if everyone want to be pally with them.
Obviously, everyone except those from Amanah, the Pas splinter party.
Even some DAP leaders tried to approach Pas during today’s Sungai Besar by-election candidate nomination day.
Some deemed that Pas was starting to become appealingly more Malay after shedding part of its Arabic image where leaders tend to be more comfortable wearing attire akin to those worn in the Middle East.
And the first to make such friendly move was of course those from Barisan Nasional (BN).
Moments after he arrived at a BN tent, Umno supreme council member Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek immediately went to greet Pas secretary-general Datuk Mustafa Ali.
Then, one thing led to another and suddenly there was Mustafa along with Pas deputy president Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man enjoying their breakfast inside the BN tent.
“Everyone, this is my brother (Mustafa),” Shabery quipped, sending BN leaders, including Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, into a hearty laugh.
A senior reporter noted that the chummy engagement was rather unlikely.
“They usually exchange smiles and handshakes, sometimes they put up small talks…but enjoying a meal together, moments before they start campaigning against each other is definitely new,” the reporter said.
Several minutes after that, it was PKR’s turn.
Leading the entourage was PKR president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali.
Dr Wan Azizah insisted that she and Pas’ Hulu Langat members of parliament (MP) Dr Che Rosli Che Mat must take a picture together so that she can upload it on her Facebook page.
Azmin was equally polite and friendly, he put on a smile and joked with Pas’ leaders and from the looks of it they seemed to enjoy his company.
But the magic, however, did not happen when DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang stopped by Pas’ tent.
Only Mustafa entertained him whereas the rest of Pas leaders and members paid him no heed…but they did stole quick glances from time to time.
Lim, himself, had probably noticed the rather frosty reception which may be the reason why he looked rather uncomfortable when talking with Mustafa.
He however, was not the only fish out of water, as DAP’s Seputeh member of parliament Teresa Kok was seen awkwardly marching with Pas supporters towards the nomination centre.
She claimed that she was lost and that it was the Pas’ members who invited her to join them.
“She seems like a nice woman but that does not mean we have forgiven DAP for the way they treated us,” said Syaidah Harun a 42-years old housewife and staunch Pas supporter from Meru.
But DAP was not the only thing Pas members were wary of.
Unlike their leaders, it appeared that a large majority of Pas members were still sceptical in burying their hatchet against Umno.
Make no mistake, they were all for the whole ‘kesatuan ummah’ (Muslim unity) agenda but for many of them, the thought of tangoing with Umno was rather awkward.
“It will happen one day but I don’t think it will happen anytime soon because we, old timers know what those on the other side (Umno) can do,” said a 56 years old hawker, Farhadi Zawud from Tanjung Karang.
The idea of a Pas-Umno unity was heavily hinted during Pas’ 57th Muktamar (annual assembly) by a lot of the party leaders.
Umno members who were interviewed by The Mole at the nomination centre seemed to understand that Pas leaders were calling for a ceasefire.
“The bitterness between us has to end,” said BN supporter Amir Hamzah Yahaya.
“It’s okay if they do not want to join Umno but we need to band together so that Malays and Islam won’t be played for a fool,” the 35 years old Klang-based engineer added.