Wednesday, June 10, 2009

PAS’ Party Election

In the recently concluded PAS’ party election, it was obvious that the more liberal and pro-Anwar group lost out badly to the more conservative group, led by its own President Hadi Awang and his faithful deputy Datuk Nasaruddin. Even before the party election, Hadi Awang and his faithful followers have been openly talking about unity government and also muzakarah or what we call dialogue between PAS and UMNO. It evoked a strong response from Nik Aziz, the MB of Kelantan who thought it was a stupid idea and mere rubbish.

Of the 3 parties in PR, PAS is the most well organized with the most number of members. It is also the only party with considerable experience running a state in Kelantan. Till this day, Keadilan and DAP do not have much of a party organization to speak of and virtually no experience in running a state government. Hence, strictly speaking, PAS is the ‘taiko’ in PR. Its state EXCOs do function as the party in power in the 4 states. As for DAP and Keadilan, most of the EXCOs behave as if they are still in the opposition.

When PAS leader talk about unity government and muzakarah between UMNO and PAS, it is obvious that DAP and Keadilan feels very uncomfortable having suddenly been notified that PAS have been talking about Malay and Muslim agenda with UMNO. This have not gone down well with DAP and Keadilan since both claimed to champion policies that go beyond the racial line. 

On Sunday night, while officiating a function in Muar, I was asked about the proposed dialogue between UMNO and PAS. My response was that the time has come that parties from both the political divide should reduce politicking and that it is a good idea to sit down to have a dialogue for the bigger picture of national interest and the interest of the rakyat. Confrontational politics will not do the nation, its people and the political parties any good. However, I felt that if PAS and UMNO only talk about Malay and Muslim interests, then it will be unfair to the Non-Muslims and the Non-Malays. There are many common denominators that political parties can talk about. That can form the basis of any form of dialogue and need not necessarily confined to a particular race and religion. Irrespective of race and religion, all Malaysians are confronted with a lot of common issues. This may be a good starting point for a mutually beneficial dialogue so that either party will have a better understanding of each other. We seek common values and objectives to work on rather than be confrontational.

Imagine a situation where UMNO and PAS decides to form the government, then the role of the non-Malays and the non-Muslims will just be observer or opposition. This will not be healthy for the nation in the long run. Maybe PAS by talking about having dialogue with UMNO and posturing itself as a non-racial party, hopes to get votes from the Malays and the non-Malays.  On the other hand, UMNO felt that by doing so, it acts as the big brother who always champions the Malays and the Muslims. If UMNO is accused of doing things without consulting its component parties, then it is obvious from the paper that PAS has not bothered to consult Keadilan or DAP in its proposal to have dialogue with UMNO.

Meanwhile, PAS’ general assembly has generated some rather controversial resolutions. One of its resolutions was to call for the banning of the Sisters in Islam (SIS) purportedly its teaching is against Islam. I had the opportunity to listen to talk given by one of the leaders of SIS and I left impressed by their enlightened views of Islam and other religions. I was thinking that if all Muslim leaders behave or have thoughts or attitude like leaders in SIS, then it will definitely foster greater religious harmony between the non-Muslims and the Muslims. The conservative in PAS who won big in the election must have felt uncomfortable with the liberal views of the SIS. The non-Muslims should not forget the long-term political agenda of the conservative leaders in PAS. I have said this many times in my blog and I will not repeat myself.


Atuk Banjar Masin said...

Kebijaksanaan cina berpolitik memberi kesan kebaikan dan keuntungan kepada mereka, sebalik nya telah memberi banyak keburukkan dan kerugian besar kepada kaum melayu/Islam.

Seperti kata2 Mat Sabu: "Setiap kali PRU diadakan, kaum cina bersatu, mereka menyokong satu parti sama ada MCA, Gerakan atau DAP."
Pada PRU12 yang lepas, mereka bersatu menyokong DAP. Mereka menjadi kuat jika berada dalam satu parti.

lauchaiming said...

Hello Dr. Chua,

I personally feel that dialogue will not help change anything. It is just a mere gimmick. Just like all the previous dialogues and forums held with political leaders. No actions taken by the end of the dialogue.

If unity is to be achieved, then both PAS and UMNO should start talking bout common interest to all rather than just Islam and Malay. No, not just UMNO and PAS but rather all political party. The days of UMNO being big brother are over. Its time to bring back the original BN spirit.

Unknown said...

Why has MCA so quiet , shouldnt it your role to question UMNO since you are not ageeable to PAS ideas of Islamic state. DAP and PKR have!!!

Ooi Beng Hooi said...

What's MCA stand on unity government?

Dr.Alvin Lee Chow Hui said...

This this the strategy by PAS to weaken PKR standing in Pakatan Rakyat and it is not really about unity of malay. Read my analysis in my blog about this unity government.

Unknown said...

Remember that was a year where MCA shouted not to vote for DAP because DAP work with PAS, so, if PAS is to work with UMNO and BN, will MCA find any answer for that?

again it is never a forever enemy in politic.

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