PETALING JAYA, Feb 26 — A Youth wing leader from Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia yesterday said that Umno cannot continuously claim to be the supreme Malay-dominated party, as there are now several other similar parties with its own strengths.
Speaking to the Malay Mail yesterday, the Armada wing information chief Ashraf Mustaqim Badrul Munir said that the country would “see a new ray of light” if Umno bands together with Bersatu and PAS to form a strong pact, instead of being on its own.
“Unity among parties linked to Perikatan Nasional (PN) will definitely strengthen ties between PAS and Bersatu and likewise with Barisan Nasional (BN), led by Umno itself,” he said.
He sat together with Malay Mail after a courtesy visit following an uproar over a report, originally from Malay daily Utusan Malaysia, where his wing chief Wan Ahmad Fayhsal Wan Ahmad Kamal was quoted saying that Umno’s time as a political powerhouse is over.
Ashraf explained that Wan Ahmad Fayhsal was stressing on the need for unity among the three mentioned parties, in order to solidify support from the Malay voters.
“So we hope that PN and BN can determine an aim. The core party is also important. To me, on this core party, I speak in the same tone as what was said by Wan Ahmad Fayhshal, because of the political dynamic now.
“Truly, looking at the three parties that are Umno, PAS and Bersatu, these can be accepted as main parties, spearheading the movement under PN and BN,” Ashraf said.
“However, it is not fair for us to show that we are the main one, as this would seem as if we are disregarding the other component parties, as in PN we have PBS, STAR and others. They too play such a huge role which we may not be able to achieve, in their respective areas,” Ashraf added, using the acronyms to refer to the Parti Bersatu Sabah and Parti Solidariti Tanah Airku.
He added that Wan Ahmad Fayhsal had touched on this new political dynamic, where Umno cannot say that it is the sole core party for the Malays as the landscape has changed a great deal since the 14th general election.
While Bersatu had been part of the Pakatan Harapan Opposition pact previously during the 14th general election, it then split before forming a new alliance with former political rivals Umno and PAS to form the PN government last year.
He said that this shift also means that voter behavior will not be easy to read, as it is not as straightforward as it was before, and therefore cannot be predicted.
Ashraf concurred that while Umno is an influential political party, so are the others who are equally influential to the communities which they lead.
“Just that when we talk about the dynamic; the core party in the context of the Malay community, that is among Umno, Bersatu and also PAS, if we can be combined or amalgamated into one strong force, then our unity and honesty in our fight to change the landscape of the Malay community itself based on a political role would definitely lead to stability in the nation,” he said.
He added that the “national integration” involving other political parties of all races in PN can also take place, opening a “new chapter that is much brighter for Malaysia.”
In the Utusan report, Wan Ahmad Fayshal was also quoted saying that Bersatu is still hoping that Umno would be willing to be a part of PN to avoid three-cornered contests in the coming 15th general election.
This comes as it was previously reported that Umno will not work with Bersatu in the coming general election.