DAP leader Loke Siew Fook today dismissed any possibility of working together with Umno for the impending general election, saying the two parties have a long history of conflict between one another.
Speaking on a talk show today hosted by the National Council of Professors, the DAP organising secretary said cooperation between Umno, DAP and PKR to form the government appeared easy on paper but had yet to be tested.
“We need more details,” he said. “Can our respective supporters accept this? That is the question.
“This is why there is no possibility yet of DAP working together with Umno in GE15,” he added.
He was commenting on the “big tent” approach announced by Pakatan Harapan (PH) several days ago through which the coalition said it was seeking to restore parliamentary democracy by ending the suspension of Parliament.
The phrase refers to the policy of permitting or encouraging a broad spectrum of views among a party’s members.
The PH presidential council had said it would send a memorandum to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, signed by all MPs who support the reopening of Parliament.
It also stressed the need to engage and cooperate with any party based on the principles and agenda of reform, although “without including kleptocrats”.
Loke said it was difficult for Umno and DAP to work together as the parties had spent decades at odds with each other.
When asked how Chinese voters would react to any cooperation between them, he said the response from DAP supporters had been mixed.
“Some (in DAP) said we need to explore the possibility (of working with Umno), but some said we had fought hard to bring down Umno in the last general election and therefore they totally reject it,” he said.
Umno recently moved to cut ties with Bersatu in a decision which its president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said received unanimous support at the party’s general assembly.
An audio recording of a phone conversation between Zahid and Anwar Ibrahim later surfaced in which the PKR president is heard congratulating and giving instructions to Zahid, who thanked Anwar for his moral support.
Zahid has denied it is him in the recording, while Anwar said there was nothing wrong even if the conversation had taken place.