Umno set on wresting Kelantan from PAS, ending pact rumours

Amin Iskandar

A Kelantan Umno liaison committee meeting at the 'White House' residence of Gua Musang MP Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah in Kuala Lumpur last week decided that cooperating with PAS in the east coast state is not feasible. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, December 3, 2017.

UMNO will not work with Pas in Kelantan, and is ready to end the Islamist party’s control in the state since the last six elections, sources told The Malaysian Insight.

The decision, which was made last week in a meeting involving Umno’s Gua Musang MP Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah and Prime Minister Najib Razak, puts to rest speculation surrounding the form of political cooperation, if any, between the parties for the 14th general election.

According to a source, Kelantan Umno leaders voiced their desire to go it alone during the liaison committee meeting, held at the “White House” residence of Tengku Razaleigh in Kuala Lumpur.

However, it is unclear if the decision would extend to Umno’s dealings with PAS in other states.

In October, Umno information chief Annuar Musa said the party had given Najib the mandate to negotiate an electoral pact with PAS, marking the first time an alliance would be formally built between Malaysia’s two largest political parties.

The meeting last week was meant to brief Najib on election preparations in Kelantan, but state party leaders took the opportunity to voice their concerns about working with PAS, the source told The Malaysian Insight.

“It was here that Kelantan Umno asserted its stand to Najib, that it will not cooperate with PAS in the state,” said the source.

This was because PAS leaders had continued their attacks on Najib’s administration, despite the state receiving assistance from the federal government, said the source.

“The federal government is helping the state, giving it monetary aid and billions of ringgit worth of projects.

But, Kelantan PAS continues to ‘hurt’ us. So, how can we be friends with them?

“This is why Umno will not agree to an electoral pact in Kelantan. PAS is our enemy in Kelantan.”

Pakatan Rakyat crumbled in 2015 after DAP and PAS ended their cooperation over the Islamist party’s insistence that shariah law be implemented in Kelantan.

The current opposition bloc of Pakatan Harapan comprises PKR, DAP, PAS splinter party Amanah and Bersatu, which was formed by Dr Mahathir Mohamad and former Umno leaders.

Another source told The Malaysian Insight that Tengku Razaleigh, or Ku Li as he is popularly known, was also in agreement regarding the plan by Barisan Nasional to take back Kelantan.

“Ku Li has agreed to help Kelantan BN for the last time to win back the state.

PAS captured Kelantan after forging a cooperation with Ku Li in the 1990 election, but this time around, Ku Li will help us wrest the state from PAS.

The 79-year-old Kelantan prince, who is the country’s longest-serving lawmaker, had challenged Dr Mahathir, the then prime minister and Umno president, in 1987.

Ku Li had formed the Semangat 46 party, dubbed the “Team B” faction in Umno. However, he disbanded Semangat 46 in 1996 and rejoined Dr Mahathir in Umno.

Ku Li previously said Umno should carefully study any cooperation with PAS in GE14 as history had shown that the struggles of the two parties were not aligned. – December 3, 2017.

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  • Good!!! if it is true !!!! Let both PAS and Umno go for each others throat. BUT If it is a sandiwara purposely to mislead Amanah to be complacent for which I believe so as a ploy to ensure PAS will still have a hold in Kelantan thru PH sympathy and forgiveness in the cause not to create 3 corners fight for votes. Honestly I think it is good for Kelantan overall to have Umno to win and start some developement and later on wrested back from them in 5 years. With the yearly episode of continuious flooding, PAS is at loss in doing anything right and still leaving the last year affected evacuees homeless. PAS needs to loose this election very badly to understand humility and allow the demise or a revamp.

    Posted 6 years ago by Lee Lee · Reply

  • UMNO always planned to take Kelantan. It is Selangor, Kedah, Johor that they will make the pact

    Posted 6 years ago by Bigjoe Lam · Reply