Hornbill Unleashed

October 6, 2016

The bitter truth: Opposition needs PAS

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 9:01 PM

pasNo opposition coalition can hope to defeat Barisan Nasional without having PAS on board, according to political analyst Faisal S Hazis of Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia and Merdeka Centre Director Ibrahim Suffian.

They agreed with former law minister Zaid Ibrahim that the opposition should move beyond racial and religious politics, but they said that was an ideal Pakatan Harapan and Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) could not afford to cling to if they were hoping to win the coming general election.

In a speech on Monday night, Zaid urged opposition parties to focus on fundamental principles rather than “quick fix” solutions. He said they should keep PAS out of any opposition coalition.

Faisal, speaking to FMT, said Zaid’s suggestion was not realistic in the context of winning an election.

“To defeat BN, you need an alternative to Umno, one that caters to the needs of the Malays, and you have to keep in mind that those needs are diverse by geography.”

As an example, he said, the needs of the Malay community in the south, such as Johor, were different from the needs of the Malay community in the East Coast.

“Umno is very diverse in its struggles,” he said. “No party can challenge its dominance in the Malay heartland, aside from PAS.”

The challenge for the opposition, he said, was bringing PAS back into an opposition alliance while achieving a consensus on what to do to move forward, including what narrative to sell to Malaysian voters.

Ibrahim gave a similar opinion. “While politicians need to uphold principles, they also have to mesh those principles with realities on the ground,” the Merdeka Centre head told FMT.

“Sometimes you have to work with parties that don’t fully agree with your agenda but may provide you with victory.”

He said Zaid needed to keep in mind that PAS might have a sizeable support and this meant that the opposition parties needed to make compromises to improve the chances of their beating BN.

According to Zaid, the Pakatan Rakyat coalition fell apart because it was based on convenience rather than shared principles.

He also commented on PPBM chief Muhyiddin Yassin’s efforts to bring PAS to the negotiating table to ensure a one-to-one fight against the BN.

“This idea of pursuing a one-to-one fight is being perpetrated by those who want to be PM,” he said. “What they should be doing is canvassing for a one-to-one fight based on the political beliefs of equality, of non-discrimination, and an agreement to uphold the dignity of all Malaysians.”

Sheith Khidhir Bin Abu Bakar and Robin Augustin


  1. PAS will lose at least half of Kelantan and Trengganu state seats to Amanah.

    Comment by Mat Som — October 8, 2016 @ 7:12 PM | Reply

  2. PAS should offer its services and advice to the Sultan of Brunei or better still start a branch in Brunei. Malaysians are rather fed up with their stupidity and misguided ideology.

    Comment by Mat Som — October 7, 2016 @ 7:53 PM | Reply

  3. Forget about PAS to move forward!

    Comment by Harith — October 7, 2016 @ 2:44 PM | Reply

  4. And PAS cannot get to the top job without the other oppositions…AND THATS ANOTHER BITTER TRUTH😎😂..unless of course they marry umno and ride on the gerrymandering umno/bn train?

    Comment by Brian — October 7, 2016 @ 12:16 PM | Reply

  5. This assumption was flawed because Umno Baru controlled BN would have lost without the support of Sarawak and Sabah which viewed PAS as a radical party. PAS won in mixed seat in urban constituencies in Peninsula Malaysia because of the help from DAP and PKR. PAS could only win rural seats with majority Muslims composition due to its radical preaching but rural voters have also awakened.

    Comment by Awaken Dayak — October 7, 2016 @ 6:44 AM | Reply

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