‘GE hopefuls must take stand on Najib’

Wong Chin Huat

PETALING JAYA: A political analyst has rejected the theory that the alliance between PAS and Parti Ikatan Bangsa Malaysia will split opposition votes or work in Umno’s favour.

Wong Chin Huat, who heads the Penang Institute for Political and Social Analysis, noted that the new alliance had yet to make clear where it stands with regard to Prime Minister Najib Razak’s administration. Until that happens, according to him, any speculation about vote splits or Umno’s future would be premature.

Speaking to FMT, Wong said the next general election would largely be a referendum on Najib’s prime ministership and Umno’s position as the ruling power.

“You’re either with Najib or you’re against him,” he said. “That’s how people will vote, and parties that do not make a clear stand will be left out.”

He commented that PAS had entered into an alliance with a multi-racial party in order to remain politically relevant and to have a bigger chance of winning back non-Malay votes.

However, he questioned PAS’s wisdom in its decision to work with an “unknown” party that had yet to prove it had “political value.”

“Trying to make itself look relevant has actually made PAS look rather silly,” he said. “On top of that, allying itself with Ikatan will bring it no value.”

Wong also questioned why PAS had broken away from the Pakatan coalition if it could “so easily” agree with Ikatan not to pursue the hudud agenda.