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Umno-PAS marriage means they are now one and the same

Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad  |  Published:  |  Modified:

MP SPEAKS | The announcement by acting Umno president Mohamad Hasan that the party and PAS would form a committee and opposition caucus in Parliament finally confirms - despite years of denials by leaders from both sides - that the two are in an alliance.

Mohamad even went as far as to describe the alliance as a "marriage". I had declared them "married" as far back as the Seri Setia by-election in August 2018 after the "courtship" that emerged after the fall of Pakatan Rakyat.

With the revelation of the deals that PAS leadership made with Umno involving monetary compensation, it seems this is less a "marriage," but a commercial arrangement involving a willing donor and willing recipient.

After months, if not years, of colluding and enabling each other, Umno and PAS are now essentially one and the same.

It is unclear what benefit, if any, the new arrangement will bring to the wider Malay community given that both parties have lately seemed more concerned with jockeying for political power, justifying alleged past wrongdoings and attempting to stir communal feelings.

The two parties have only provided tired rhetoric without any clear alternatives, and have whittled down to become more like regional rather than national parties.

Their former leaders, in contrast, including Onn Jaafar, Tunku Abdul Rahman, Abdul Razak, Burhanuddin Helmy, Fadzil Noor and Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat, were towering Malaysians and Malays who upheld not only multiracial cooperation, but also the highest standards of integrity in public life.

The actions of today’s crop of Umno and PAS leaders, as well as their so-called “marriage,” mean that both parties have turned their backs on the spirit, as well as legacies of their former icons.

NIK NAZMI NIK AHMAD is the MP for Setiawangsa.

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

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