SHAH ALAM, May 5 ― DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng today paid tribute to the late PAS spiritual leader Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat, praising the latter as a just and moderate Muslim leader who stood against extremism.
In his policy speech today, Lim said the former Kelantan mentri besar had also embraced both non-Muslims and non-Malays while his party had been part of Pakatan Rakyat (PR), which has since been replaced by Pakatan Harapan (PH).
Lim credited Nik Aziz’s efforts with helping to lay the foundation for PH’s eventual victory in last year’s general election.
“So we have to also remember the contribution by someone with a moderate political view, and who can accept not only the non-Muslims but also the non-Malays, like Nik Aziz. Unlike now, where they play racist and extremist politics only,” Lim said when stopping short of naming those he labelled as extremists.
“So we have to say well done to Nik Aziz, and based on his legacy, Mat Sabu and our friends made a huge sacrifice to leave PAS and form Parti Amanah (Amanah) Negara, despite being attacked repeatedly. So, well done to Mat Sabu also,” he said, referring to Amanah president Mohamad Sabu.
Nik Aziz had been a key Muslim leader in Malaysian politics whose popularity crossed racial, religious and partisan lines.
He had been PAS’s spiritual adviser for 24 years since 1991 and died aged 84 in February 2015 after battling prostate cancer.
The late politician had also been hailed for rejecting proposals for a PAS-Umno unity government, saying in 2013 that he would not allow this so long as he lived.
PAS and Umno have since banded together.