Ex-Umno veep Mat Taib joins PAS

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Former Umno vice-president Muhammad Muhammad Taib has joined PAS, but he will only be formally introduced by the party on Monday, two days after nomination day.

This is to deter any accusation that he did so in order to vie for candidacy in the 13th general election.

NONE It is learnt that Muhammad handed his application paper to join PAS to the party's deputy spiritual leader Haron Din (left) .

Central committee member Kamaruddin Jaffar, when contacted today, confirmed the membership of Mat Taib, as he is widely known, but would not say where the announcement would be made.

Kamaruddin, a former PAS secretary-general, made the confirmation when asked about speculation that a former menteri besar was to join his party.

Yesterday, Johor PAS chief Mahfodz Mohamed and PAS vice-president Salahuddin Ayub (below) expressed the possibility of Muhammad being that individual.

Muhammad was Selangor menteri besar from 1986-1997 and a former rural development minister.

NONE His political career comes with baggage, for he had been charged in an Australian court over irregularities in declaring cash amounting to RM3.8 million that he was carrying.

He was cleared of the charge but has been lying low since leaving the political scene in 2009, although he remained a popular and respected figure within Umno circles.

Muhammad’s membership in PAS will be a huge blow to BN head Najib Abdul Razak, who is leading the coalition’s charge to recapture Selangor.

Two other Umno leaders - Tamrin Abdul Ghaffar of Malacca and former corporate figure Abdul Rahman Maidin - have also joined PAS.

Abdul Rahman is slated to contest in the Tasek Gelugor parliamentary seat in Penang.

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