PAS today stressed that it remains committed to defending the unity of the ummah or Muslims in the country.
Its deputy president Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man said this was proven by PAS’ attendance at this year’s Umno general assembly, to strengthen the unity of the ummah through Muafakat Nasional as previously agreed.
“It is for the sake of wanting to see Islamic unity in the country,” he told Bernama after Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi delivered his policy speech at the assembly at the World Trade Centre in Kuala Lumpur.
He and PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang had attended the opening ceremony of the general assembly along with the leaders of other Barisan Nasional (BN) component parties – MCA president Wee Ka Siong, MIC president SA Vigneswaran, United Sabah People’s Party deputy president Arthur Joseph Kurup – as well as representatives of Friends of BN. PAS is Umno’s partner in the Muafakat Nasional alliance.
Zahid, who is also BN chairman, had said that Umno as PAS’ political partner in Muafakat Nasional would continue to be honest in translating the charter and memorandum of understanding signed by the two parties in September 2019.
He said the partnership with PAS, which had been proven in the seven by-elections after the 14th general election, had received strong support from the people. He said it was believed that it would open up a space for BN to return to lead the country.
Vigneswaran, when met by reporters, said PAS needs to make a decision on its cooperation with Bersatu-led Perikatan Nasional (PN).
“Umno doesn’t want to work with PN, so PAS needs to make a decision first. Who knows they might decide not to work with Umno, that is up to them,” he said.
On Umno going solo on a BN ticket in GE15, Vigneswaran said it was the right decision.
“For now, this is Umno’s intention. We (MIC) will contest on a BN ticket,” he said.
Meanwhile, Wee said to win GE15, BN needs to work hard in light of the country’s latest political scenario.
“The challenge that we will face is not something that allows us to say with confidence ‘we can do it’. We have to work hard, we must humbly seek the support of all races because this is something that we need to do,” he said.
On Umno’s decision to cease cooperation with Bersatu, Wee said this was up to Umno.
“This is the party’s AGM, they can discuss anything they want. I think for our part, we can leave it to them (Umno),” he said.