UMNO-PAS Should Stop Hallucinating About a New Govt, Mahathir Is Toying with Them

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The opposition can’t even make up their mind whether they prefer Barisan Nasional, Muafakat Nasional or Pakatan Nasional.

Opposition parties, especially UMNO Malay nationalist party and PAS Islamist party, appear to be still in hallucination. First, they said the new Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition government will be a one-term government. Then, they said Pakatan will not last one year. Then, they said the coalition will collapse by the end of 2018. Heck, the people have lost count how many times they said a snap election will happen.

Perhaps PH, which stunningly toppled the once invincible, but corrupt Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition government in May 2018, would be a one-term government. If it happens, it happens. But if that were to happen, it means the PH would be defeated by the opposition in the next 15th General Election. That also means the existing UMNO-PAS alliance is a formidable force.

But if the UMNO-PAS alliance, created through a national charter on Sept 2019, is incredibly strong and invincible, why are they so desperate sucking up to Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, the same man who had destroyed their gravy train? After all, didn’t the opposition win five consecutive by-elections (Semenyih, Rantau, Cameron Highlands, Tanjung Piai and Kimanis) recently?

Does that mean the new mathematics created by the UMNO-PAS coalition is flawed and nothing but fantasy? Of all the 222 parliamentary seats in the country, 119 are Malay-majority. Yes, it’s absolutely strange that UMNO and PAS, the two biggest Malay political parties that command two-thirds of the ethnic Malay vote bank, are now scrambling to support their biggest enemy – Mahathir.

Why would UMNO and PAS stoop so low – bootlicking Mahathir profusely – when they could win 119 Malay-majority seats – more than the 112 minimum seats required to form a simple majority government? It’s absolutely humiliating that not only PAS (with 18 MPs) sings like a canary for Mahathir, but the once-mighty UMNO is doing the same despite its superior 39 MPs over the premier’s party (25 MPs).

At the centre of the political landscape is rumours of the forming of a new coalition called “Pakatan Nasional”. The rumours spread like wildfire after the emergence of a photo showing what appeared to be a private meeting between PM Mahathir and PAS President Hadi Awang. The rumours say that Mahathir will kick out DAP and PM-in-waiting Anwar Ibrahim in exchange for PAS.

The bizarre proposal to form the new Pakatan Nasional coalition would see Mahathir’s PPBM party teaming up with PAS and UMNO. Seriously? So, after punching some numbers into the calculator, the genius Mahathir somehow figured that it’s worth to betray DAP, an ally with 42 MPs along with Anwar, whose PKR party commands 50 MPs – in exchange for PAS’ 18 MPs and UMNO’s 39 MPs?

How many alliances that UMNO and PAS plan to form in their desperate attempt to grab power through the backdoor? It was barely a month ago that the national cooperation between UMNO and PAS, glorified as “Muafakat Nasional” under the pretext of Malay-unity, was proudly announced by UMNO deputy president Mohamad Hasan as having entered its second phase.

Can the opposition make up their mind whether they prefer BN, Muafakat Nasional (MN) or Pakatan Nasional (PN)? Even prostitutes did not change their name as quickly as UMNO and PAS. This proves that despite all the chest-thumping and gloating, the opposition isn’t convinced the MN could win the 15th General Election, so much so they’ve started plotting PN.

The best part was it’s only the PAS Islamist party that was super-duper obsessed with Pakatan Nasional, supposedly a government ruled entirely by Malay-Muslims only. Ethnic Chinese and Indians, including other non-Malay minorities in Sabah and Sarawak – the native Kadazans, Dusuns, Muruts, Bajaus, Bidayuhs, Orang Ulus, Melanaus, Ibans, Dayaks and others – can go fly kite.

Hadi Awang’s fetish obsession with Mahathir was so pathetic that his PAS party will table a vote of confidence in Mahathir’s leadership in the Dewan Rakyat (Lower House of Parliament) next month. This is like Democrat Nancy Pelosi wants so much for Republican Donald Trump to remain as the US president that she plans to move a motion of confidence in his leadership.

There’s nothing wrong with Hadi’s unhealthy interest in Mahathir. But what is interesting was the fact that the Islamist party’s move was without consultation with its partner UMNO. Until today, UMNO has yet to decide its stand on the “vote of confidence” motion planned by PAS. In fact, UMNO is more divided than before with the party split between Najib’s faction and Zahid Hamidi’s team.

Clearly, Mahathir’s one-off allocation of RM400 million to the PAS-ruled state of Kelantan has done wonders. Not only Hadi and his boys have become Mahathir’s biggest bootlickers, the cash has split UMNO into different camps, jeopardising the so-called unbreakable and undefeatable UMNO-PAS alliance. Not bad for a divide-and-rule strategy hatched by the 94-year-old man.

Lokman Adam, Najib’s loudest cheerleader and an UMNO Supreme Council member, was sacked for leaking an audio recording in which UMNO President Ahmad Zahid Hamidi is heard discussing and agreeing to the PAS “vote of confidence” plan to support PM Mahathir. Zahid (who faces 87 criminal charges) obviously is trying to impress upon Mahathir into dropping the charges.

The clueless Java-immigrant Zahid cowardly said in the leaked audio that the party must work with Mahathir because PAS is doing so. The corrupt UMNO president also claimed that the party could resolve the problems faced by Najib Razak if it follows the PAS footstep in supporting Mahathir, whatever that means. Lokman slammed Zahid as only interested in saving himself.

However, a Muafakat Nasional meeting between UMNO and PAS held on Feb 10 failed to discuss the issue after the audio leak, leaving uncertainties and doubts concerning the “vote of confidence” motion. Amusingly, Mahathir, in an interview with portal The Malaya Post, denied ever inviting UMNO to form Pakatan Nasional. The premier even laughed at Zahid’s attempt to support him.

If Zahid does not have the majority support of UMNO to back Mahathir in Parliament, it means Najib has it (or even Hishammuddin Hussein for that matter). Either way, the premier will not be able to get the entire chunk of 39 UMNO MPs behind him. That means the formation of a new “Malay only” Pakatan Nasional coalition government is highly impossible.

While welcoming PAS’ plan to support him through a vote of confidence, Mahathir politely thanked the Islamist party, but reminded the opposition that he is “already the prime minister” of the country. Like it or not, the 94-year-old leader appeared to be insulting Hadi Awang’s intelligence for proposing something which will not change the status quo.

Had Mahathir really wanted to pull out of Pakatan Harapan and form Pakatan Nasional with PAS and UMNO, he would need every single vote he could get. The last thing he would do is to laugh at Zahid Hamidi and rubbish Hadi Awang’s undivided support. It would make more sense for Mahathir to rejoin and take over UMNO after Najib and Zahid are both sent to prison.

It would also make more sense for Mahathir to offer PAS the option to become a PH-friendly party and quit the Muafakat Nasional in return for more cash allocation, and even with a one or two ministership sweetener thrown in. Abandoning the existing PH coalition to form a new coalition carries the risk of losing everything, including his premiership, if Mahathir fails to get the necessary majority support.

Even with sufficient SD (statutory declaration), there’s nothing to stop the same MPs who signed the SD in support of Mahathir to also sign another SD in support of Anwar. Didn’t private investigator P Balasubramaniam make a second statutory declaration, which reversed an earlier one linking Najib Razak to murdered Mongolian Altantuya Shaariibuu?

Let’s assume for some weird reason, Mahathir quits Pakatan Harapan and successfully form a new government with PAS and UMNO. What then? As the smallest party in the “Malay only” Pakatan Nasional coalition, does Mahathir really expect the 39-seat UMNO and the 18-seat PAS to continue playing second fiddle – kowtow to him until he kicks the bucket?

More importantly, without any representative of minority ethnics – especially the Chinese – the newly formed government would be incredibly hostile to non-Muslims, leading to a more extreme, racist and radical country. Mahathir knew precisely what will happen when investors are spooked by political instability. They will dispose everything and leave the country.

The Bank Negara Malaysia (Central Bank) has just released the country’s annual gross domestic product (GDP) growth for the year 2019. It plunged to 4.3% – the lowest level since the Global Financial Crisis in 2009. To make matters worse, the GDP growth for the fourth quarter of 2019 (4Q19) slowed to a jaw-dropping 3.6% – the lowest in 41 quarters since the third quarter of 2009.

You don’t need a rocket scientist to tell what will happen to the country’s economy if suddenly there’s a change of government (again) through a backdoor method rather than a democratic process of a general election. Get real, if Mahathir seriously wanted to form a new government with UMNO and PAS, would he allow the photo of the private meeting to be taken in the first place?

Mahathir enjoys very much how PAS and UMNO leaders scramble to show their support for him. The idea of Pakatan Nasional also serves as a tool to warn Anwar’s minions to back off from pushing too hard for the prime minister to resign in May this year. The naughty premier is just toying with the opposition parties. He specialises in dividing the Malays and Muslims. – Finance Twitter