BUTTERWORTH: A Pakatan Harapan (PH) leader is confident the ruling pact will win over the Malay electorate in the next few years through targeted plans to improve business opportunities and reforms in Islamic development.
Amanah vice-president Mujahid Yusof Rawa said while the lion’s share of the Malay votes were still with Umno and PAS, he believed PH would win over their support.
He said PH would implement comprehensive economic policies for the Malays and push for a progressive Islamic agenda.
Mujahid said while the prime minister had lined up “entrepreneurship programmes” for Malays, a new Islamic affairs portfolio in the government would see a change in the national policy on Islam.
“We will win them over in the next few years. It might be sooner, just like how we did in Penang.
“Our target is to reform and mould progressive Malays who embrace multiculturalism so that in the end, we will have Malays who identify themselves as Malaysians first, rather than Malays first.
“The key is to break that Umno dogma. Give us time, they have been around for over 60 years and insyaAllah we will prevail,” he said after hosting a Hari Raya lunch at Sungai Dua here today.
Mujahid was responding to a question on Umno’s Khairy Jamaluddin claiming that the party still had the majority of Malay votes in the May 9 general election.
Khairy had said on Friday that Umno had 60% of the Malay-Muslim votes in the country with 50-odd seats in Parliament and Umno members ought to feel proud and not dejected by its electoral losses.
“KJ (Khairy) can keep on dreaming while holding on to that statistic that Umno holds more sway over the Malays. Anyway, we are very excited to see him as an opposition member in Parliament,” Mujahid said.
Meanwhile, commenting on the Umno polls, Mujahid said he was shocked at Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s victory as party president, as he was expecting a major change in leadership.
He said that when a party suffered a major electoral defeat, it was normal to resort to new faces, but in the case of Umno, they had stuck with the old leaders.
“I am stunned and shocked over Zahid winning. It appears Umno members are still stuck in the old Umno mindset. How can a member who is being investigated (by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission) be elected,” he said.
In a brief message, Amanah president and Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu said he hoped Umno, under Zahid’s leadership, would play the important role of check and balance in Parliament.
“His party should criticise us, whenever they feel something is not right, through democratic means in Parliament. They should be responsible opposition members,” he said.