KUALA LUMPUR – Feb 7, 2017: Pas deputy president Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man has insisted that the party will never have any kind of political cooperation with Umno ahead of the 14th general election.
He told The Mole that the party intends to remain as an opposition party and is considering to work with Pribumi Bersatu in its fight against Barisan Nasional.
Tuan Ibrahim nonetheless admitted that Pas is not yet certain what sort of cooperation it may have with Pribumi Bersatu.
He said the matter will be discussed by the Pas central committee and finalised by the Syura council.
“We have yet to iron out the extent of our cooperation. But, we are willing to work with Pribumi on the basis that both (parties) are opposition parties. As long as Pribumi respects our principles, cooperation is possible,” he added.
Tuan Ibrahim was responding to an ongoing debate among Pas supporters in social media over the direction of the party’s electoral strategy, following the announcement of a joint technical committee between Pas and Pribumi Bersatu last week.
Many of the party’s supporters think that such a decision is “confusing”, as Pas leaders have appeared to enjoy an increasingly cordial relationship with their Umno counterparts of late.
Pas president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang was also quoted as saying that the meeting which set-up the joint technical committee was “just an ordinary meeting” requested by Pribumi Bersatu.
“There was a meeting yesterday (Feb 1). Pribumi Bersatu wanted to meet Pas. It was just a meeting. There are yet any decision because the matter could only be decided by the Pas central comittee.
Tuan Ibrahim, however affirmed to The Mole that it is impossible for Pas to work politically with Umno and the rest of BN.
“This (decision) has been said many times by the party president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang.
“Logically, Umno will not follow our terms, for instance, it will not give up its seats in Terengganu to us. Likewise, we (Pas) will not give up our seats in Kelantan to them.
“We maintain our stand as an opposition party. That (electoral cooperation with Umno) has never crossed our mind.”
Tuan Ibrahim also countered claims that Pas is considering to become Umno’s ally following the two parties’ apparent partnership in the solidarity programme to help the displaced Rohingyas.
“Contrary to the popular beliefs, we do not cooperate with Umno. In fact, the solidarity and charity events that we had attended were not organised by Umno, but by the non-governmental bodies together with the government to stop the genocide.
“What we have with the government on this matter, is an understanding and an unanimous rejection against violence. We accept any cooperation that is based on general causes, in line with Islamic values.”
He also said the idea of Pas-Umno electoral cooperation might be a spurious thought sparked by several parties to cause confusion and rupture among Pas members.