Press Digest - Pakatan after MB saga: Ball is now in PAS court

28 Sep 2014 / 22:16 H.

    PETALING JAYA: The dust is settling on the Selangor mentri besar issue but the conflict among the three Pakatan Rakyat parties remains and analysts believe the ball is in the PAS court.
    Institute of Democratic and Economic Affairs (Ideas) chief executive officer Wan Saiful Wan Jan said although the Selangor mentri besar impasse has ended with the appointment of Mohamed Azmin Ali as the new mentri besar, the relationship among the Pakatan component parties – PKR, PAS and DAP – has been badly dented as a result of the acrimony.
    He said Pakatan now faces the arduous task of mending the strained ties, and opined that PAS's attitude will be key to rebuilding mutual trust as the Islamist party had flip-flopped and taken a different stand from DAP and PKR on the MB crisis.
    PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang had publicly questioned the ability of PKR chief Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, a candidate for the mentri besar post, to lead the state government, as well as hitting PKR and DAP hard at the recent PAS muktamar, seriously undermining the cohesion within Pakatan.
    Wan Saiful said the MB crisis has impacted Pakatan on two levels – inter-party cooperation and conflicts within component parties, particularly PAS.
    It will be very challenging for Pakatan to mend the frayed ties within the coalition, he told Oriental Daily News.
    Asked if he thinks voters will lose confidence in Pakatan following the MB crisis, Wan Saiful said given that Malaysians have a short memory, the coalition can regain the public's support before the next general election if it works hard to win back the voters' trust in PAS.
    Political scientist Wong Chin Huat said PAS's stand will decide if the Pakatan parties can walk the same path. He said PAS needs to re-look its direction – whether it wants to be a party for all or take the ethnic line.
    He told Oriental Daily that PAS not only has to resolve its infighting but also regain the trust of the non-Muslim voters if it wants to win in mixed constituencies in the next general election.

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