THERE is no fixed timeline for the PAS-Umno pact, but if Nik Mohamad Abduh Nik Abdul Aziz had it his way, it would be until judgment day.
However, the Bachok MP is quick to say the Islamist party will not hesitate to pull out of the arrangement should there be backstabbing or if it is not treated with respect.
“There is nothing in black and white about our cooperation,” the son of the late PAS spiritual leader Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat told The Malaysian Insight.
Nik Abduh, who is former PAS Youth chief, said the pact between the parties should run a long course, and not just until the next general election.
He said the cooperation is political in nature (“tahaluf siyasi”) with both parties not thinking of a merger.
While the alliance helps unite Malay-Muslims against Pakatan Harapan, to the benefit of the two opposition parties, PAS will not think twice of ending ties if it finds itself betrayed, said Nik Abduh.
“It would be easy for us to exit. If the relationship breaks, we can leave easily.”
He added that the PAS grassroots have started to embrace the cooperation.
“At first, there were many questions, even from before the last general election.
“The more serious ones were from Terengganu and Kelantan. But, we have convinced them on why we are doing this. Maybe not 100% are convinced, but today, they realise why PAS is doing this.”
He said the old image of PAS and Umno supporters bitterly fighting each other has begun to change.
“It is more positive now. In fact, ties are friendly now, even in the kampung. The grassroots are closer (to each other) than the leaders.”
PAS and Umno began forging an alliance in the run-up to the 14th general election last May and worked on solidifying it this year.
The parties have cooperated with the aim of defeating PH in by-elections held since GE14, and there was no questioning their relationship during the Cameron Highlands contest in January and last month’s Semenyih polls. Both by-elections were won by Umno-Barisan Nasional.
PAS also backed BN’s Mohamad Hasan in the Rantau by-election yesterday, which saw the Umno acting president retaining the seat for the fourth term.
THE MALAYSIAN INSIGHT