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Great difference between Nik Aziz’s and Hadi Awang’s PAS

MP SPEAKS In the last 48 hours, we were shown another aspect of the great difference between the PAS of former spiritual leader Nik Aziz Nik Mat and that of party president Abdul Hadi Awang.

There was the charade and crude display of the spread of fake news and lies purportedly over the Selangor PAS grassroots submitting a memorandum to PAS information chief Nasrudin Hassan, urging the PAS central committee to cut off ties with any party that has relations with DAP and Amanah, accompanied by several posters attacking Pakatan Harapan and Bersatu leaders.

The expensive and multi-coloured banners attacking Pakatan Harapan and Bersatu leaders - including the one with my face and attacking me as “Enemy of Malays/Islam - Racist” - were displayed outside the PAS headquarters in Kuala Lumpur yesterday, to communicate the intensity of the dislike, and even hatred, for the DAP, Amanah and Bersatu leaders like former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Bersatu president Muhyiddin Yassin, Amanah's Mohamad Sabu and myself.

This is something which would not have taken place in Nik Aziz’s PAS, as no PAS information chief would dare to plot and carry out such political mischief, as he would be at the receiving end of Nik Aziz’s wrath.

But Nik Aziz is no more and what we have is Hadi Awang’s PAS.

Nik Aziz would not have countenanced any political trickery and treachery, especially by PAS leaders.

Radical change after Nik Aziz

If DAP and DAP leaders are anti-Malay and anti-Islam, why was PAS a member of Pakatan Rakyat from 2008 to 2013, which received the support of the majority of the popular vote in the 13th general election and would have ousted the Umno/BN from Putrajaya if the electoral system had been just and democratic, instead of allowing Najib Razak to become the nation’s first minority prime minister winning on 47percent of the popular votes cast but securing 60 percent of the parliamentary seats?

If DAP and DAP leaders were anti-Malay and anti-Islam, would Nik Aziz have visited the then-DAP National chairperson Karpal Singh in his Penang house on Thaipusam in January 2013, where Nik Aziz’s 82nd birthday was also celebrated with a “Pakatan Rakyat” birthday cake?

Why did things change so radically in PAS after Nik Aziz’s death in February 2015?

If Nik Aziz were alive, I do not think PAS would have any hesitation in joining the patriotic movement of political parties and NGOs to Save Malaysia from becoming a “global kleptocracy” and hurtling towards the trajectory of a failed and rogue state.

In fact, if Nik Aziz were alive, PAS would be in the forefront to demand full accountability and transparency of the international multi-billion dollar 1MDB kleptocratic money-laundering scandal, instead of having the PAS president cozying up with the Umno president with the shocking stance that it does not matter whether Malaysia is a global kleptocracy, so long as the prime minister is a Muslim.

Although the charade in the last 48 hours is allegedly to be from the Selangor PAS grassroots, who submitted a memorandum to the PAS leadership to cut off ties with any party that has relations with DAP and Amanah, nobody would be surprised if this memorandum and the posters attacking DAP, Amanah and Bersatu leaders, Amanah and Bersatu, were the “masterpieces” of the PAS information chief.

Hiding behind S'gor grassroots

The attacks on the DAP, Amanah and Bersatu amounted to an open declaration of war by PAS leadership against DAP, Pakatan Harapan and Bersatu.

Although the whole charade the PAS leadership attack on the DAP, Amanah and Bersatu is couched as coming from the Selangor PAS grassroots, the real scenario is very different.

In fact, PAS grassroots in Selangor have been very upset and restive about the Hadi PAS leadership’s hardline stand in cozying up with the Najib leadership of Umno, defending Najib from the 1MDB kleptocratic money-laundering scandal.

This explains the extraordinary statement by the PAS vice-president, Iskandar Abdul Samad, before the PAS central committee meeting last week that even the PAS central committee and PAS syura council decided to sever ties with PKR, Selangor PAS state executive councillors, members in government-linked companies (GLCs), councillors and village heads will not resign until a PAS muktarmar decision in April.

Selangor PAS is likely, in the next general election, to lose all the 15 state assembly seats it won in Selangor in GE13, as voters, both Muslim and non-Muslim, are disappointed with the new direction of the Hadi-led PAS leadership.

I believe Nik Aziz would have no problem in endorsing my statement and vision that Malaysians cannot and should not be anti-Malay or anti-Chinese, anti-Indian, anti-Kadazan or anti-Iban or anti any religion, or we would have betrayed the Malaysian vision, which regards every Malaysian, regardless of race, religion, region, class, gender or age, as one Malaysian people.

But Hadi is very different, and I will be extremely surprised if he is able to publicly endorse such a statement and vision.

Umno, PAS voters awake

In my message to the Konvensyen Reformis Malaysia 2017 over the weekend, I referred to three immediate challenges not only to the Reformasi people, but to all patriotic Malaysians who want to save Malaysia from becoming a global kleptocracy and ending up as a failed and rogue state.

These three national challenges in the 14th GE, expected to be held either in the second or third quarter of this year, are:

Firstly, to preserve and sustain the electoral support for reform from the Malay, Chinese, Indian, Kadazan and Dayak voters for DAP and PKR in the 13th general election;

Secondly, to reach out and win over the 3.5 million Umno members and Umno voters to support the Save Malaysia Campaign in the battle between “Democracy versus Kleptocracy”; and

Thirdly, to reach out and win over the PAS members and voters to support the Save Malaysia campaign to ensure the victory of democracy and the defeat of kleptocracy in the 14th general election and to keep alive the memory and spirit of Nik Aziz.

If we can achieve these three tasks in GE14, then Malaysia can be saved and we can look forward to a new dawn in Malaysia, with institutional and systemic reforms to ensure that Malaysia will never return to the trajectory of a kleptocracy and a failed and rogue state.


LIM KIT SIANG is DAP parliamentary leader and MP for Gelang Patah.

The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.

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