KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 27 — Umno information chief Shahril Sufian Hamdan has hit back at PAS Dewan Ulama committee member Mokhtar Senik over his claim that the nationalist party is power hungry for offering the Islamist party only four seats in the upcoming Johor state election.
Shahril said that while PAS claims it wants to work with Umno, its leaders’ have shown hostility by making barbed remarks.
“Umno will make its own decisions in accordance with the views of its supreme council and will not succumb to pressure from external parties, not at all.
“Accusation after accusation is thrown at Umno... such as Umno is greedy. Umno must be healed by a defeat. Umno must realise it has no choice except to work with PAS and Bersatu.
“Umno will not secure seats until it can rule (Johor) by itself without PAS and Bersatu. There were many other accusations and slander,” he said in a statement on his Facebook page last night.
Shahril said Mokhtar did not want Umno to contest a number of seats that would allow it to form a government on its own.
He added that whether Umno would choose to work with other parties in Johor would be left to the state liaison body chairman Datuk Hasni Mohammad and Umno deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan.
Shahril warned PAS leaders that Umno may just decide that it will not work with the Islamist party in the general election if the former continued its attacks.
Yesterday, Mokhtar was reported saying that Umno has forgotten the role PAS had played in earlier state elections in its eagerness to retain power without them.
He said Umno should not seek to form a government without its Perikatan Nasional allies PAS and Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu).
Rumours of a snap state election in Johor started shortly after the death of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia’s Osman.
His death, whose party is part of the ruling PN coalition, had put the current state government situation as a one-seat majority in the Johor state assembly.
Hasni leads the state government with 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).