The ‘cat is out of the box’ now which means the ‘marriage of convenience’ between parties in Pakatan Rakyat (PR) may see a ‘divorce which may be permanent’.
When PAS Ulamak Council chief Datuk Harun Taib advised party members not to participate in the Black Out 505 rally as the party accepted the May 5 general election result with an open heart, little did party deputy president Mohamed Sabu or Mat Sabu and vice-president Datuk Husam Musa see the issue would ‘take a long term effect on their positions in the party.’
Despite Husam and Mat Sabu success in getting the party leaderships’ agreement to allow members to participate in the rally’s grand finale event at Padang Merbok in June which was a ‘failure’ as the rally did not even get the one million target participants, Harun has started the ball rolling to ‘purge’ the party of outside or rather Anwar Ibrahim’s influence or supporters.
The party Ulamak Council had proposed a review of the party political relationship specifically with Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) following several matters that could weaken and damage that relationship.
A main topic in the speech at the opening of the Ulamak Convention of Malaysia by Harun himself at the Ulamak Convention of Malaysia organized by PAS at Alor Setar onm Saturday, he said a special committee should be set up to study and evaluate the erosion of Malay voters in PAS as a result of the political relationship.
“The changing, scrambling and giving away potential PAS winning seats to PKR was one of the main factors that needed studying,” he said.
Harun and several leaders in the party youth wing have been against the close political co-operation with PKR ever since the three political parties had a ‘marriage’ before the 2008 general election aimed at unseating the Barisan Nasional (BN) government from Putrajaya.
The recent May 5 general election also saw the party support dwindled from 23 parliamenatry seats to 21 and lost Kedah which the party grabbed in 2008 general election.
PAS veteran fundamentalists who are friends to Anwar know Anwar’s aim and they also know who are Anwar’s ‘men’ in the party leadership line-up and they know what they are in for.
They went along with the ‘marriage’ at that time as all the three parties have the same goal but the events leading to May 5 general election and the aftermath have cause the party grassroots, the Ulamaks and the youth wing members ‘jittery’ and uneasy.
Issues such as the use of word Kalimah Allah, the Black Out 505 issue, the surprise ‘Chinese tsunami’ saw the party ‘derailing’ from its path of setting up an Islamic state and implementing the Hudud Laws.
In fact, the veteran fundamentalists also saw their leadership style being threatened as the leaders aligned to Anwar managed to place themselves in the leadership line-up right up to the party deputy presidency.
And they saw the ‘damaged done’ such as the displacement of Nasharuddin Mat Isa who was a fundamentalist despite being young and intellectual but not aligned to Anwar and Datuk Hassan Ali, who was expelled for being vocal against Anwar.
Harun’s proposal, like it or not, is expected to take centre stage in the November party assembly and it may see the purging of liberals aligned to Anwar from the leadership line-up.