Efforts to group all opposition parties under a single umbrella bloc to face Barisan Nasional in the next general election (GE14) seem heading to a dead end.
The main factor blocking it is the total breakdown in relationship between Islamist PAS and Chinese-dominated DAP, both parties which were allies in now defunct Pakatan Rakyat.
The crack between the pair appears too deep and can never be patched up, according to PAS spiritual leader Hashim Jasin.
He has reiterated his party stance that it would never cooperate with DAP again and was even prepared to force or face a three-cornered fight in GE14
However, PAS has not decided on forging working ties with PKR and Amanah, which was formed by a PAS breakaway faction.
It would be decided at the two-day PAS central committee meeting (Oct 22-23) at its headquarters in Kuala Lumpur.
The meeting would also table a study on political cooperation with the opposition parties, but Hashim stressed that the political PAS-DAP divorce was irreversible and beyond reconciliation.
The main factor that had driven the break-up beyond repair was that the DAP had reneged on its agreement to cooperate with PAS President Abdul Hadi Awang.
Hashim said PAS cooperation with DAP in GE13 was based on a conditional political approach while its cooperation with Umno was on the basis of Islamic unity.
It’s a case of once bitten twice shy.
Well! The DAP has actually bitten PAS twice, first post-GE10 and second, post-GE13 during the Selangor menteri besar crisis triggered by the ill-conceived ‘Kajang Move’ by PKR.
“We do not want to repeat our mistakes and be bitten twice on the same spot for resuming ties with DAP,” Hashim told a press conference in Kangar on Thursday.
The former Perlis PAS commissioner for more than 20 years was appointed recently to replace the late Haron Din, who died in California, United States, last month.
Hashim said PAS was not bothered if three-cornered contests took place involving Barisan Nasional and other opposition parties in GE14.
He said the friendly overture towards Umno was not because PAS was seen as weak following internal bickering, which led to the creation of Amanah.
He insisted that PAS’ Islamic struggle had never waned, while adding that it was “different” during the era of the party late spiritual leader and Kelantan Menteri Besar Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat.
He said PAS was now practising mature politics and not politics of seeking sustenance or merely just to win the general election.
On the PKR and Amanah pleas for PAS to join them to stand a better chance of winning the general election, Hashim said PAS was able to visualise that goal.