KUALA LUMPUR, May 4 — Lim Kit Siang continued today to sound warning bells over PAS's refusal to back down from its hudud bid, warning the Islamist party again that this could lead to the destruction of the six-year-old Pakatan Rakyat (PR) pact.
He said PR may have to revert back to becoming “Barisan Alternatif (BA)”, the loose coalition of opposition parties that was the forerunner to PR.
“Then all the three present component parties of DAP, PKR and PAS will all be the losers. The only winners will be Umno and the Barisan Nasional (BN) parties,” Lim warned in a statement here.
“This will be an unmitigated disaster for all Malaysians.”
BA was wracked by irreconcilable differences between PAS and DAP, specifically over the former’s refusal to renounce its bid to form an Islamic state. The infighting eventually saw BA member parties contesting against one another in multi-cornered fights during the 2004 polls.
During Election 2008, however, the opposition front realigned themselves to strategically avoid such three-cornered fights and went on to deny BN its customary two-thirds parliamentary majority for the first time since 1969.
Lim continued to remind PAS that if hudud had been part of PR's agenda in Election 2013, the pact would have not been able to deny BN its parliamentary supermajority again or win the popular vote contest.
The DAP veteran said there was “no doubt” that all three PR parties of PAS, DAP and PKR would have suffered serious electoral losses.
“The overwhelming majority of the voters who voted for PR in the 13GE did so for change of government and political and nation-building policies, and not for hudud.
“Furthermore, those who do not support hudud law in the country do so not because they are anti-Islam but because the Malaysian Constitution provides for a secular democratic nation,” he said.
Islamist party PAS is looking to find a way to implement Hudud laws in Kelantan and the move has come under fire from mainly ethnic Chinese party DAP which has maintained that such laws are unconstitutional.
Lim has been at the forefront of criticisms against PAS, recently reminding the party that this was the very issue that had decimated the opposition in Election 2004 and gave BN its stranglehold over the government.
“We have been down this path before just prior to the 2004 general election,” Lim said in another statement last month.
“PAS insistence of passing the hudud enactment in Terengganu led to the DAP leaving the Barisan Alternatif in 2001. BN went on to a historic victory in 2004 by winning 91 per cent of parliament seats and 89 per cent of state seats in Peninsular Malaysia.”
Secular DAP and Islamist PAS have become increasingly outspoken in their exchanges over the latter’s plans to introduce two private members’ bills that would remove constitutional safeguards against the introduction of hudud.