Bersatu should be wary of PAS’s ‘talks’ with govt, says analyst

Bersatu should be wary of PAS’s ‘talks’ with govt, says analyst

Bersatu should be wary of PAS’s ‘talks’ with govt, says analyst
Abdul Hadi Awang’s PAS is the dominant party in Perikatan Nasional with 43 parliamentary seats, while Muhyiddin Yassin’s Bersatu has 25.

PETALING JAYA: A political analyst has warned Bersatu to be wary of rumours that PAS is engaged in informal talks with the unity government, saying the Muhyiddin Yassin-led party could be left vulnerable if a pact is reached.

Azmi Hassan of Akademi Nusantara said PAS would ease pressure on Umno by joining the Anwar Ibrahim-led administration, allowing Umno to focus on growing stronger.

“Bersatu recognises that a strong Umno is detrimental to its appeal to Malay voters.

“PAS’s Malay vote bank differs somewhat from Umno’s, so a strong Umno will only have a slight negative impact on PAS,” he said.

Azmi suggested that PAS could remain with PN while being on friendly terms with the unity government.

He said this would create a “win-win” situation for both the party and government as Anwar would not need to reshuffle his Cabinet, while PAS would be rewarded with agency positions within the government.

Azmi’s remarks came after unity government spokesman Fahmi Fadzil was reported to have been “non-committal” when asked about the possibility of PAS joining the unity government.


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Fahmi said there were many discussions between the menteris besar of the four PAS-led states, the party’s MPs and the prime minister.

Several PAS leaders have dismissed such claims, with secretary-general Takiyuddin Hassan telling Fahmi to stop twisting perceptions about political opponents.

Bersatu should be wary of PAS’s ‘talks’ with govt, says analyst
James Chin
However, University of Tasmania’s James Chin said Bersatu has little choice in the matter as PAS is the dominant party in Perikatan Nasional (PN).

“It’s a numbers game, and Bersatu can’t do anything, so it’s not a question of being cautious or wary,” he said.

In PN, PAS holds 43 parliamentary seats compared to Bersatu’s 25, making PAS the more influential party within the coalition.


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The Islamic party’s dominance is further evident in the state governments of Kedah, Kelantan, Terengganu and Perlis, all of which are led by PAS.

“This allows them to set up their own patronage networks,” he said.

Chin said that PAS would be quite eager to rejoin the government as some of its leaders enjoyed the benefits of being in power in 2020, including by being given ministerial positions, until Anwar took over two years later.

Several PAS lawmakers were appointed ministers and deputy ministers in Muhyiddin Yassin’s administration.

Among them were the party’s deputy president Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man, who was made environment minister, Takiyuddin Hassan (de facto law minister), and Khairuddin Aman Razali (plantation, industries and commodities minister).

Bersatu should be wary of PAS’s ‘talks’ with govt, says analyst




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