Sunday, July 17, 2016

Broad opposition bloc most important thing now, says Saifuddin.

 Pakatan Harapan chief secretary Saifuddin Abdullah said that the most important issue, following yesterday's announcement of a new party, is the need for a wide platform that would be able to unite anyone who is against BN.

This, he said, should be the main takeaway from the meeting yesterday between opposition leaders, former Umno leaders and former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

"The real shape of the platform can be borne in several ways. What should be prioritised is creating a huge opposition bloc that is united and strong so that we can achieve what the rakyat wants, which is one-on-one fights between the opposition and BN," Saifuddin said in a statement today.

Those who are against BN are many, such as Pakatan Harapan, other opposition parties like PAS, PSM and Saksama, NGOs as well as individuals like former Umno deputy president Muhyiddin Yassin, former Kedah menteri besar Mukhriz Mahathir and former Umno vice-president Mohd Shafie Apdal, he said.

Saifuddin also noted that even though Pakatan Harapan had hoped that "certain individuals who are now without a party" would join them, they also understood that a new party might be needed due to certain dynamics.

Citing the example of Sabah which has a political dynamic which is unique, he said they would understand if Shafie, who is from Sabah, wanted to form a new party.
"What is important is that Pakatan Harapan work together with him (Shafie) in Sabah," he added.
Saifuddin also stressed that yesterday's meeting was not a statement or attack against any opposition party.

"This is the kind of spirit that's important.

"Opposition parties do not necessarily have to agree today to form a new coalition or expand Pakatan Harapan.

"Let's stop attacking each other first. Let us discuss to (our) heart's content," he said.

Saifuddin also noted that the main goal – a broad opposition bloc that is united and strong – does not necessarily have to exist formally.

It could also, he said, be in the form of "Pakatan Harapan consists of more than just the three parties", "Pakatan Harapan Plus", "Pakatan Harapan & Co" or others.

Yesterday, after the meeting, Mahathir had confirmed there are talks to form a new party to be part of the Save Malaysia movement where he will be "first among equals", though not necessarily the president, arguing that this is necessary as existing opposition parties are "sometimes not attractive" to others.

[Source: Mkini]

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