KUALA LUMPUR, July 22 ― Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang has dismissed claims that the newly-formed Gerakan Harapan Baru (GHB) poses a threat to PAS, saying the movement will likely fizzle out within the next two years without grassroots support.
In a recent interview with Channel News Asia's “Conversation with” programme, the PAS president pointed out that there have been many PAS splinter groups in the past but none have managed to last for very long.
“In our experience, all these splinter groups won’t last more than two years
“I can see the early signs, from the recent PAS party elections, where they (PAS progressives) only got 20 per cent of the support,” Abdul Hadi was quoted saying in the televised interview.
“They have been rejected by the party and will also lose the support of the people,” he added, referring to the leaders of GHB which includes his former deputy president Mohamad Sabu.
“GHB wants to take a shortcut to Putrajaya without a consistent party agenda,” the Marang MP alleged.
Abdul Hadi also denied claims that PAS has failed to attract the support of progressive Muslims, saying that there were no labels in Islam.
“In Islam, there are no protestants, no orthodox, no liberals. We are one Islam and we follow an Islam that can withstand the test of time,” he said.
GHB was launched last week by PAS’s defeated professionals and is expected to be formally registered as a new political party under a new name on September 14.
The group’s chairman Mohamad Sabu, or better known as Mat Sabu, said while the movement was supportive of hudud, the Islamic penal law that was the cause of a breakdown in the opposition Pakatan Rakyat pact, it will pursue this goal democratically.
Other personalities in the movement include PAS members such as former Kuala Selangor MP Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad, former Youth chief Suhaizan Kaiat, and others who were defeated in the Islamist party’s polls recently.
The new movement is a further step towards the formation of a substitute party to PAS in a new federal opposition pact.