Monday, June 08, 2015

Pakatan Rakyat's End Will Not, and Ever, Delude Our Principles

Pakatan Rakyat Selangor is in unchartered waters post-PAS Muktamar.

The PAS General Assembly (“Muktamar”) has decided to sever all ties (“putus hubungan”) and stop all political cooperation “kerjasama politik” with DAP. As a result, Pakatan Rakyat in Selangor has undoubtedly entered unchartered waters. The only thing certain under such circumstances is that nothing can or will be the same again.

It is inconceivable for anyone to think or believe that Pakatan Rakyat can continue to exist in its current state given the above unequivocal motion. The Pakatan Rakyat government comprises of three political parties which subscribed to a common policy platform. However, when the common policy platform is breached, compounded by the decision of one party to stop cooperation with another within the coalition, then the coalition naturally collapses.

How does the Government function, when the state executive councillors (Exco) of PAS refuses to cooperate with the Exco from DAP when carrying out their respective duties? Can one even imagine how surreal the state Exco meeting will be, with the PAS Exco ignoring the DAP Excos or pretending that they don’t exist?

The problems do not just exist within the Executive Council, but with all levels of the Selangor Government. Will PAS local councillors for example, pay no heed to all comments, suggestions and proposals by DAP local councillors when carrying out their responsibilities at the local government level?

What’s more, such refusal to cooperate will be egged on by PAS leaders such as Nasruddin Hassan Tantawi, the top vote-getter amongst the 18 newly elected central committee members. After all, he urged the Party faithfuls to fight DAP with his now-famous war cry, “We may be dressed in jubah (robes) and turbans, but you must remember that underneath this jubah, there are elbows and knees that can be used (against DAP).”

Hence it will never be “business as usual” again. The question which remains, and is still unanswered is what form of political realignment will take place to allow a new coalition government to remain in power in Selangor.

As my colleague, Johor state chairman and MP for Kluang, Liew Chin Tong has alluded to, there is now a vacuum in the anti-establishment, moderate and progressive Malay political space after PAS swerved hard to the far-right. He said,

"In the weeks and months to come, the search for new paths by the progressives and all other Malay moderate opinion leaders to fill the vacuum would see major political realignments in Malaysian politics."

The ability for this gap to be filled, whether by the DAP and/or PKR, or by the rise of new factions or parties, will determine the future of the new coalition for Selangor.

The failure of this gap to be filled, which will allow a tenable coalition which subscribes firmly to the “Common Policy Platform” endorsed by the Rakyat in the last general election, may lead to a collapse of the Selangor state government and for elections to be called.

As of today, no final decision have been made by DAP Selangor. In the coming days, we will engage and discuss with DAP Central Executive Committee and abide by any decision which is made at the national level. Unlike leaders of several other political parties we know of, Malaysians can be assured that DAP leaders in Selangor will not be hypocrites and betray our principles to remain in power at all cost.

Tony Pua

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