21 Mar 2016
What a remarkable line-up of strange bedfellows. Has-beens. Wannabe Arabs. Back-stabbers. ‘Devout’ Muslims with plenty to say on hudud, but not a word about punishing corrupt politicians. Back-pedallers. Misoygynists.
This new political line-up hopes to become a formidable opposition force, the ‘third force’ of Malaysian politics; but it is more farcical than forceful. The combo is more of a vanity political coalition, than a serious political entity.
The Ikatan president and former tourism minister, Abdul Kadir Sheikh Fadzir, had a joint press conference (PC) with Hadi Awang, the PAS president, about the new pact.
The Malaysian equivalent of Donald Trump (physical attributes), and a wannabe Arab. How can anyone have any confidence in this duo? Their track record is not a glittering success.
Hadi flirts with anyone whom he thinks can serve his purpose, but does not seem to realise that he is being used. He ignored the wise words of PAS’ spiritual adviser, Tok Guru Nik Aziz Nik Mat, to be wary of Umno Baru, but like Adam in the Garden of Eden, he ate the forbidden fruit, and today, his party has been banished from Eden.
For years, Hadi denied having unity government talks with Umno Baru, and when it was finally revealed that he had been having secret discussions with them, he was unashamed about his role. Is this the behaviour of a trustworthy individual?
Hadi played a major role in destroying Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) in the Kajang move and it took him a month to reveal that he did not want a woman as menteri besar.
During that time, he claimed that he could not disclose his reason for not supporting Wan Azizah Wan Ismail’s candidacy, pretending it was top secret stuff. Nothing of the sort. He is a misogynist through and through.
Hadi uses hudud as a weapon against the parties and people that PAS wants to discredit. When PAS was aligned with Pakatan Rakyat, the hudud issue was made into a political hot-potato in the final lap towards GE13. It threw the opposition coalition into disarray. Coincidence or political treachery?
Today, Hadi and Abdul Kadir want us to believe that “there are more important issues than hudud”.
Abdul Kadir is either more dense than we thought or extremely optimistic, like a woman who marries a roué in the hope that she can change and tame him.
Hadi has a bad track record, and has confirmed that he is an Umno Baru stooge and a fifth columnist.
Abdul Kadir once served as tourism and information minister, and in 2011, climbed Mount Kinabalu and said, “If I had known the place was so beautiful, I would have done the necessary to develop and improve the areas around Mount Kinabalu.”
So, is he finally admitting that he was a useless tourism minister? The rakyat knows that ministers don’t normally take an interest, unless there is a financial incentive for them.
Abdul Kadir is a spent force who is trying to re-establish his relevance. In 2012, he claimed that he resigned from Umno Baru because he did not agree with money politics.
After 56 years in Umno and Umno Baru, did it suddenly dawn on him that corruption in the party was a new phenomenon?
A distant memory
Last year, at the official launch of his party, Ikatan, The Star reported that Abdul Kadir had said, “The country’s founding fathers, Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Tan Cheng Lock, Tun Dr Ismail, Tun VT Sambanthan are crying in their graves at the state of Malaysia.”
Today, Abdul Kadir’s remark about past Malaysian leaders, are a distant memory.
He struck a confused tone at the launch of Ikatan’s alignment with PAS when he said, “We want to be a pact that opposes the government, by advising them.”
Really? The rakyat and various NGOs like human rights groups and Bersih, have been giving plenty of free advice, but the government refused to listen. What makes Abdul Kadir think he can make a difference?
Abdul Kadir said that Najib need not resign because he has the rakyat’s support. How desperate is the Ikatan president?
The reality is that this combo will act as a political spoiler to confuse the fence-sitters, and try to prevent people from voting for Pakatan Harapan.
Hadi has gone down in history as the man who brought Malaysia to its knees when he betrayed Pakatan Rakyat. Abdul Kadir does not seem to want to learn from Pakatan Rakyat’s painful lesson.
Some conservative Malays like to claim that they often receive divine messages. So, what should we make of this incident?
At the start of the press conference of the PAS-Ikatan launch on March 16, a power cut plunged the PAS building into darkness. Was that a divine hint?
Or a portend that PAS-Ikatan would throw us into the dark ages?
MARIAM MOKHTAR is a defender of the truth, the admiral-general of the Green Bean Army and president of the Perak Liberation Organisation (PLO).