KUALA LUMPUR – December 5, 2016: The cooperation between Umno and PAS over the plight of Myanmar’s Rohingyas is not a precursor to a political pact.
When queried by The Mole, some PAS leaders stressed that the solidarity between the two Malay-Muslim parties on this issue should not be interpreted as a political pact per se.
If indeed there is political cooperation, they pointed out that the two parties would have had discussions on the allocation of seats for the next general election by now.
To PAS deputy president Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man, negotiations on seats are the cornerstone of political cooperation.
“It is impossible for PAS and Umno to have political cooperation and those claiming otherwise are spreading fitnah (slander).
“Yesterday’s rally was the third rally for the Rohingyas that PAS was part of and it was the first for most Umno leaders, so they were merely following our footsteps.
“PAS knows when to cooperate, when to apply pressure and when to protest against the government and we will continue to pioneer this mature approach in our understanding of democracy,” he said.
Talk over such an alliance gained momentum after Umno president Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced that the federal government would take over the PAS-proposed syariah courts empowerment bill in Parliament.
Speculation intensified after Najib and PAS president Datuk Seri Hadi Awang attended yesterday’s peaceful gathering in Titiwangsa in solidarity with the Rohingyas.
PAS Youth deputy chief Muhammad Khalil Abdul Hadi described what happened yesterday as mere tolong menolong (mutual assistance).
“When Prophet Abraham preached to King Nimrod to submit to Allah, he said the latter can continue to be the king as long as he prays to Allah. What toppled Nimrod’s reign were the mosquitoes, not Abraham per se,” was the analogy Khalil used to describe PAS’s current political stance towards Umno.
Khalil also pointed out that Hadi, who is his father, regularly meets Najib not because he wants PAS to join Umno in alliance but rather to save its members and leaders based on Islamic teachings.
“If those in Umno are not willing to come near Pas then it is up to our leaders to go to them,” Khalil texted to The Mole.