KOTA BARU: PAS has begun consolidating its strength in the wake of new challenges it is facing with the changing political landscape and approaches other political parties are taking.
The Islamist party held rally on Saturday night at Kota Baru stadium in Kelantan which was considered a success where the turn out was some 100,000 members when the party leadership targeted just 60,000.
Titled Fastaqim 60K or Steadfast 60K, the rally was aimed uniting the party leaders and members and celebrate the party 25 years rule in Kelantan.
High on the Islamist party list is to keep the keep the members fightingÂ spirit high as the next general election as the general election is still years away and its rejected leaders headed by former deputy president Mohamad Sabu has formed a new party and is tying hard to take its members with him.
In addition, the party now stands alone again after it had a irrecondiliable rift with DAP which saw the break up of the unregistered opposition alliance of Pakatan Rakyat (PR) and the formation of a new Pakatan Harapan with which the Islamist party is not a part of it.
Pakatan Harapan, with DAP seems to be the dominant player, had taken in PAS splinter Parti Amanah Rakyat (Amanah) where it is to play the role of PAS, to attract religious minded Malays who have been supporting PAS all along.
The change in the political equation had PAS reverting to its old styleÂ of co-operating with any NGOs that champion similar issues – Malay and Islam and clean governance that included equality in all aspects.
Leaders that spoke in the rally stressed on the importance of staying loyal and committef as well as steadfast in the struggle for Islam, staying away from hitting out at any party and individual.
Except for the party president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang, who described the rejects as “monkeys who jumped to other trees upon seeing those trees have more and better fruits by abandoning the bai’ah or sacred oath they had taken to stay steadfast in thw struggle for Islam.”
The rally showed the Islamist party had come through a very long and winding road to stay in the country’s political mainstream – changing its kampung image and party for poor Muslims to a modern and comfortable party that it is now.
With the peaceful approach it walks now, the party managed to attract the most boval Malay NGO Perkasa to co-operate in what leaders of both organisations – Abdul Hadi and Perkasa’s Datuk Ibrahim Ali – termed as fighting on similar platform which are Malays and Islam.
However, with Perkasa’s nearly one million members of whom 70 percent are Umno members, observers and politicl analysts are suspicious that political co-operation is not being considered.
This is here Umno has to worry and the Hudud issue is one that gives PAS an edge over Umno, an issue that no practicing Muslim will reject as it is obligatory, no matter how intellectual and professional the debate on the matter can be.
Given such background, PAS is actually not alone despite beinh ignored by the new Pakatan Harapan.
DAP may find itself disappointed for ignoring PAS because the Chinese-based multi-racial party may not achieve its objective without the support of he Islamist party’s members and supporters.-MYNEWSHUB.CC