‘Will Dayak-based BN parties also welcome UMNO-PAS alliance?’

Baru Bian

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KUCHING: State PKR chief Baru Bian has challenged other Dayak-based Barisan Nasional (BN) parties to take the same approach as PKR when it comes to issues championed by PAS such as hudud law and the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act or RUU355.

Baru, who is also Ba Kelalan assemblyman said he is keenly waiting for the reactions of other BN component parties to news of a possible UMNO-PAS pact.

“What intrigues me most is how the other BN component parties in Sarawak view this development in national politics.

“Having mocked and condemned the opposition in the DUN during previous sessions for our former association with PAS despite our staunch and vocal opposition to PAS’s hudud agenda, it would appear now that the shoe is on the other foot,” said Baru in a press statement today.

He expressed eagerness to see if the other Sarawak BN component parties will toe the PBB line and “be as equally welcoming of the impending “marriage” of PAS and UMNO.”

“What is their stance on the hudud agenda of PAS? Are they alarmed to read the remark by UMNO information chief Annuar Musa that UMNO and PAS have the same DNA and goal, which is to champion Islam and the Malays?

“Even when PAS was in the Pakatan Rakyat coalition, we were vehemently against their attempts to turn Malaysia into an Islamic country by the tabling of their hudud bill RUU355.

“We do not champion any race or religion, instead upholding fairness and justice and the rights of all citizens in this secular country as guaranteed by the Federal Constitution.

“Will the other Dayak-based BN parties take the same approach as ours? Or do they now find the PAS hudud agenda acceptable?” asked Baru.

He said it was interesting to note the reaction of PBB supreme council member Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah to reports of UMNO’s overture to PAS in forming a pact.

“The anticipated pact has been the subject of speculation for many months, and now it is confirmed that UMNO has given the green light to (its president Datuk Seri) Najib Razak to negotiate with PAS, with Abdul Karim Hamzah welcoming the news, saying it will strengthen BN in the coming elections,” said Baru.

Baru was responding to Abdul Karim saying he had no issue with UMNO combining forces with PAS in Peninsular Malaysia, saying that it will make BN stronger in the coming general election.

“Anything that can bring strength and unity to BN and Malaysia is very much welcome and if this electoral pact would serve that purpose, then why not,” Abdul Karim who is also Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Minister was quoted saying.