PETALING JAYA: PPBM has dismissed Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram) adviser Kua Kia Soong as being “delusional” over his assertion that PAS enjoys greater support among Malay voters than Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
Its policy and strategy bureau chairman, Rais Hussin, said Kua seems to be afflicted with “confirmation bias” which would mean that he interprets new evidence as confirmation of his own belief or theory.
“He believes what he wants to, in his own view. He chooses information which confirms his prejudices and believes so much in it that he ignores other facts. For me that is confirmation bias,” Rais told FMT.
He said this in brushing aside Kua’s statement yesterday that Pakatan Harapan (PH) had made a “mistake” in believing that PPBM chairman Mahathir, a former prime minister of 22 years, would be able to attract the desired Malay electoral support.
Kua claimed that the majority of Malays would support PAS in the upcoming 14th general election (GE14).
“Do they (PH) really see Mahathir winning Malay votes rather than PAS? I am willing to bet anyone 20 sen that the Malays will go with PAS instead,” he said.
Kua claimed that many had still not forgiven Mahathir over numerous alleged scandals he was involved in during his long tenure as prime minister.
Rais said PPBM, which was formed in August last year, had seen its support growing in strength among people in Felda estates.
“Before there was PPBM, it was a bit difficult (to get their support), but now when we organise a programme in a Felda area we are all welcomed,” he said.
“In fact, thousands have come to support. To say that Mahathir or PPBM has no impact on the Malay community is wrong,” he added
Rais also said PAS was only strong when it was in a coalition.
“No doubt that PAS has strong followers, but they only do well in a coalition. Just look at previous performances when they were in a coalition and managed to win more seats,” he said.
Former PPBM member Khairuddin Abu Hassan also slammed Kua, claiming that his statement that PAS would garner more Malay support in GE14 was baseless.
“Where did he get such facts? It is a mere assumption,” he said, adding that people were reacting positively to the coming together of Mahathir and PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim in leading the opposition.
“The recent announcement by Pakatan Harapan on its leadership lineup has received positive response from the people, and the union (between Mahathir and Anwar) has conjured a new force among Malays in villages to support these two strong figures,” said Khairuddin.
On Thursday night, PH finalised its coalition logo and leadership structure, with the lineup including Mahathir as chairman, Anwar as the de facto leader and PKR’s Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail as president.
The decision was announced by Mahathir at a press conference held after midnight following the coalition’s meeting at the PKR headquarters in Petaling Jaya.