KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 12 — PAS president Tan Sri Hadi Awang was demeaning the intellect of Malay-Muslims by suggesting they did not look beyond skin colour when voting, said DAP election candidates from the community.
Responding to Hadi’s “concern” yesterday that they were only being used to fish for Malay votes, the group said the PAS president must realise that Malay-Muslim voters were capable of mature and nuanced views.
“Hadi Awang continues to look down on the ability of Malay Muslims to think when choosing their leaders and elected representatives,” they said in a joint statement.
“Hadi Awang was simultaneously undermining Malay Muslim leadership figures, such as Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim who is admired both locally and globally, by depicting them someone who could be manipulated.”
They then suggested that Hadi was projecting when he expressed his supposed “concern” that they were being used to attract Malay voters to DAP.
“Most now realise that the party that rides on Malay sentiment and Islam to draw votes is PAS and its allies. Their short-term view causes them to only know how to use racial and religious sentiments to win elections,” they said.
Conversely, they said rival parties such as DAP and its PH allies were presenting candidates with the ability to lead and to propose policies that would benefit the country as a whole and solve real issues affecting Malaysians.
The group added that PAS was unusually preoccupied with attacking DAP in the general election despite the two parties on clashing directly in a handful of seats.
They suggested this could be because Hadi was concerned that the tide was shifting towards DAP and Pakatan Harapan among his party’s supporters.
The DAP candidates who signed the statement were Zulhazmi Shariff (Jerai), Syerleena Abdul Rashid (Bukit Bendera), Tarmizi Mohd Jam (Gerik), Young Syefura Othman (Bentong), Syahredzan Johan (Bangi), Sheikh Omar (Ayer Hitam), Fatin Zulaikha Zaidi (Mersing), Shazwan Zdainal (Pontian) and Khairil Khalid who was running for the Pulau Manis state seat.
Yesterday, Hadi said he was “concerned” that DAP was using Malay candidates as a façade to approach the Malay community, while simultaneously trying to link the party to Singapore’s PAP.