New PAS Ulama chief praises Umno, says former rival ready to negotiate GE15 seats

Newly appointed Dewan Ulama chief Datuk Nik Muhammad Zawawi speaks at the 58th PAS Dewan Ulama in Kuantan June 20, 2019. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
Newly appointed Dewan Ulama chief Datuk Nik Muhammad Zawawi speaks at the 58th PAS Dewan Ulama in Kuantan June 20, 2019. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

KUANTAN, June 20 — Umno is always open and willing to negotiate with PAS the seat allocations for GE15, said newly-minted PAS Ulama Chief Datuk Mohd Zawawi Salleh.

“Seat allocations is still ongoing but I would like to thank Umno who always willing to offer seats with us, even if the seat belongs to them but there are many voices from Umno who stated if PAS wants the seat we can negotiate, not a problem.

“This shows a good attitude but the same goes for us. If Umno contests a seat and have a good chance of winning, not a problem for us to let Umno have the seat and vice versa for us,” he said to the press after concluding the PAS Clergy wing Muktamar here today.

Zawawi said if they were to combine the number of votes obtained by Umno, PAS and other friendly component parties in Sabah and Sarawak, they could gain more than 130 federal seats. 

But Zawawi also admitted that the cooperation between Umno will come with its own problems, however, he did not specify further.

“There will be some problems here and there, but PAS and Umno can learn and be more mature from it,” he said.

When asked on grass root members who are uncomfortable working with Umno due to the parties fierce rivalries, Zawawi relates the experience to the cooperation between the two parties under the Perikatan government of 1974.

Zawawi explained that both parties were still formulating its own ideologies at the time thus creating a fragile relationship which eventually failed and saw the departure of PAS from BN in 1978.

“I have to be fair, both sides were at fault at the time but what is important is that we learn from our mistakes,” he said.