KUALA LUMPUR – Berjasa, a component party of the third political bloc led by PAS, will lend indirect support for Umno in the 14th General Election by not contesting in constituencies held by the ruling Malay outfit.
Its deputy president Datuk Hasyim Karim said the policy was part of the party’s effort to ensure sustained Malay political dominance.
“Wherever Umno contests we will back down,” Hasyim told Malay Mail Online.
“We want to ensure that in Parliament, Malay-Muslims are in control,” he added.
Hasyim did not explain if this was the official position of Gagasan Sejahtera, the third political force comprising PAS, Ikatan and Berjasa.
Berjasa is a splinter party of PAS formed in 1977.
In the previous national election Berjasa contested in several Malay-majority parliamentary and state seats, but won none.
Some of its candidates were also members of Ikatan Muslimin Malaysia (Isma), the controversial Islamic hardliner group that grew popular among the extremist fringe of the conservative electorate that included some PAS members.
But today Hasyim said the party has yet to decide if the same candidates would contest in the upcoming polls.
“We’ve not decided. But whatever it is we will need to sieve the candidates based on their ‘winnability’,” he said.
Hasyim also clarified that Isma leaders who contested as Berjasa candidates in the 2013 polls were members of the party, and did not contest as “parachute candidates” as reported by the media.
“They are members of Berjasa. They didn’t contest as Isma leaders. We have people of various backgrounds,” he explained
– Malay Mail