PETALING JAYA: Kelantan seems to have a new ‘opposition chief’ who raises issues that now makes the 12 Barisan Nasional (BN) assemblymen taking a back seat.
PAS Salor assemblyman Datuk Husam Musa is now simply sacrificing himself for reasons only known to him as he launches a ‘lone crusade’ against PAS-led Kelantan state government.
Breaking ranks when he began criticising the state government for approving logging concession and a hike in water tariff, Husam is now seen as the new ‘state opposition leader.’
With PAS 31 seats, Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) one and BN 12, Husam seems to be playing the opposition chief role which issues are supposed to be raised by the state BN.
Sitting back and probably ‘laughing’ at the new scenario, BN assemblymen now need not have to thump tables and involve themselves in shouting matches with the state government representatives in assembly sittings as Husam has ‘unofficially and indirectly’ appointed himself to speak against the state government for them.
Husam started by questioning the state government for approving logging land at Ulu Sat Permanent Forest Reserve in Machang and an increase in water tariff in the state in August.
Logging has been a very sensitive matter in the state when Husam was the exco member under Mentri Besar the late Datuk Nik Aziz Nik Mat where he himself was accused of giving out logging land to DAP politicians who are also businessmen.
Being the ‘blue-eyed boy’ of Nik Aziz at that time, Husam who was the state economic, finance and welfare committee chairman, was tipped to take over as Menteri Besar when Nik Aziz’s vacated the seat but fate has a way to disappoint him
Nik Aziz had his deputy Datuk Ahmad Yaacob to replace him after the 2013 general election and from then on, Husam’s political path has taken a downturn.
Since then, he began distancing himself with the state government and also from the ulamak leadership in the party where he joined the chorus of liberals who went all out to unseat incumbent party president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang in the party June poll.
When he and the other liberals failed in their attempt to unseat Hadi and the ulamak leadership, Husam began hitting out at Hadi and the Kelantan government from within as he did not join the other liberals who had formed Parti Amanah Nasional (Amanah).
Husam had repeatedly stated that he would not leave PAS and join Amanah, citing PAS as the party he had lived with since he joined politics in the nineties after quitting the Islamic Youth Movement of Malaysia (Abim), a prominent Islamic organisation made popular by PKR de facto chief Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
Husam’s ‘new role’ has already taken a toll on him when Amanah deputy president Salahuddin Ayub claimed that Husam confided to him that his wife received a death threat through SMS.
True or not, Husam has already made himself vulnerable to attacks as he had openly declared a second ‘war’ with the party ulamak leadership and while his friends go on the onslaught from a new political vehicle, Husam continues to fight from within.
The Islamist ulamak leadership does not seem to care much about Husam’s attack as they know whatever issues Husam raised at present are the same ones that the party leaders had raised when Husam was the state exco.
To them, Husam’s criticisms are nothing more than just words of a frustrated man who failed to climb up the political ladder and now is confused on which path to take in his own mid-political crisis.
With BN assemblymen who are all from Umno who seem to be toning down in their criticisms that may pave the way for a political co-operation with the Islamist party, they welcomed Husam’s ‘new role’ which will obviously absolved them from being seen as being antagonistic.
With Husam’s lone crusade and branded by the Umno assemblymen as the new opposition chief, Husam is putting his neck in the hangman’s loop.
If he is not disciplined by PAS leadership, he may face expulsion and this is what he is waiting for which can be a reason for him to join Amanah without being blamed for running away from the Islamic struggle.
This is so because Amanah does not aim to set up an Islamic state and implement the Hudud laws, the two objectives PAS has been fighting for the past 67 years of its formation.