KUALA LUMPUR, March 5 — Umno and PAS have today officially announced their collaboration with Umno deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan declaring that they were now “married”, a news report said.
English daily The Star reported that despite their marriage, the two parties will not be contesting under the same banner but will work together in an unconditional political cooperation especially for by-elections in the interest of uniting Muslims and Malays.
Mohamad said a committee, comprising five top leaders from each of the parties, will be set up to prepare the framework for their cooperation.
“This main committee will be chaired by both me and the PAS deputy president. There will be a technical committee chaired by the two vice-presidents of the parties, namely Umno vice president Datuk Seri Khaled Nordin and PAS vice president Dr Idris Ahmad,” he said.
They will also form an opposition caucus in Parliament but will not form a coalition.
However, Umno’s acting president added that despite their cause to unite Muslims, their agenda is not to create a Malay pact against non-Malays but to unite the Muslims and Bumiputera without sidelining other races and religion.
“We will also be an opposition that will debate on any issues, and we will give support on matters that will benefit the people and the country.
“We will not agree to anything that will not bring good to the people and the country,” he reportedly said.
Earlier, Mohamad and the party’s supreme council members including Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican, Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abd Kadir, Wanita chief Datuk Dr Noraini Ahmad and Youth chief Datuk Seri Dr Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki attended a three-hour meeting with the top guns from PAS.
PAS was represented by deputy president Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man, vice-president Idris Ahmad, secretary-general Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan and Muslimat chief Nuridah Mohd Salleh.
“We ‘exchanged rings’ in Sungai Kandis, were ‘engaged’ in Seri Setia and then we decided we wanted to get ‘married’ — this is the official ceremony. And now we are sitting on the dais,” Mohamad reportedly said, referring to the two past by-elections.
Touching on contesting under the same logo and banner, Mohamad joked that only the mentally impaired from Hospital Bahagia in Tanjung Rambutan, Perak would make that claim.
Tuan Ibrahim added that the new committee will meet alternatively between Umno and PAS headquarters in the first formal talks between both Malay-based parties.
After the press conference, Mohamad also said that now allied parties will be holding a nationwide roadshow to explain the formal collaboration to their respective grassroots.