(Malaysia Digest) - PAS has declared its intent to rope in former Prime Minister Tun Abdullah Badawi as a key member of the party.
This is because they believe that Abdullah, popularly known as Pak Lah, is already “a PAS member by nature.”
In the shock announcement today, PAS central committee member Mazlan Aliman (pic) said he will approach Abdullah and persuade him to join the Islamic party.
“This is my goal. I will pursue this aim regardless of how many years it would take,” he told reporters during a press conference at the PAS headquarters in Jalan Raja Laut here today.
Mazlan expressed confidence that he would be able to coax Abdullah into joining the party.
“Tun (Abdullah) is already a PAS member by nature. I am confident that I will be able to influence him to join PAS just like I did with Datuk Ramli Buyong, after two years of persuading the latter,” he said.
Ramli, who is the former Felcra Berhad vice president, was announced earlier this week as the latest addition to the party. PAS had declared its intention to raise the issues affecting Felcra settlers as part of their ammunition in the upcoming general election.
Mazlan, meanwhile, speculated that Abdullah could have been upset by the government’s move to list Felda Global Ventures Holdings Sdn Bhd (FGVH) in the bursa on June 28.
He said they still hoped that Abdullah would join the upcoming Orange Rally organized by the National Felda Settlers' Children's Association (ANAK), to be held on July 14 in Kuala Lumpur.
Organizers claim that the rally will draw around 20,000 people.
Mazlan said Abdullah’s views on the Felda issue and his desire to uphold the rights of Felda settlers have remained consistent throughout.
“We have extended an invitation to both Abdullah and Umno veteran Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah to attend the rally. However, we have yet to get any confirmation of attendance from their side,” he said.
Mazlan also defended the decision by the organizers to place images of Abdullah and Tengku Razaleigh on the rally’s promotional posters.
“This does not necessarily mean that the two will appear. I think the organizers have placed the pictures there as a drawing factor, or maybe these two leaders had spoken against the Felda listing in the past,” he said.
During his tenure as prime minister, Abdullah had shot down the proposal to list Felda on the stock exchange. The idea was first proposed by former premier Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad in 2003.
Pak Lah served as the prime minister from 2003 to 2009, succeeding Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
He had also propagated the concept of Islam Hadhari, or ‘civilizational Islam’, a theory of government based on the principles of Islam derived from the Al-Quran.