KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 26 — Johor Umno deputy chief Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed has said PAS is trying to hang onto its tenuous position in the federal government by securing a foothold in the Johor state government.
According to Malaysiakini, Nur Jazlan said PAS was attempting “to ride Umno’s coattails” ahead of the impending Johor polls because the party knows it won’t be able to win seats in the state assembly under its own steam.
He cited as evidence the signs that the Islamist party has been making overtures to the state’s caretaker Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Hasni Mohammad, who is also state Barisan Nasional (BN) chief.
“Why should we help weak (parties)? In Melaka, they have proven (they are weak). They did not ally with us and lost everything.
"At the time, we offered them rights to field five candidates but they chose to go (with Perikatan Nasional).
"Support for PAS in Johor is akin to that in Melaka — very little," Nur Jazlan was quoted as saying.
Commenting on PAS’ attempt to meet Hasni last Saturday, Nur Jazlan said that Umno has decided not to discuss further alliances ahead of the Johor polls.
"Ostensibly, they want to cooperate, but they are not sincere," he added.
Last week, Nur Jazlan said that there was no need for Umno or BN to cooperate with PAS for the state election, which had yet to be called at that point in time.
He said it should already be clear by now that BN will be contesting on its own in both the state polls and the 15th general election.
Since then, Johor Ruler Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar has given his royal assent to the dissolution of the Johor state legislative assembly, paving way for an early state election.
Hasni leads the state government with a razor-thin majority of 28 seats. BN holds 16 seats while Bersatu has 11 seats and PAS one.
The Opposition Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition controls 27 seats in the Johor state assembly comprising DAP with 14, Parti Amanah Negara (six) and PKR (seven).