DPM: Federal government and BN are one

By Nelson Benjamin, The Star

KAMPALA: Political cooperation between Barisan Nasional and PAS cannot be separated if the Kelantan state government is sincere in wanting to forge closer ties with the Federal Government on development issues.

Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said it was impossible for cooperation to exist at the government to government level minus politics.

“The Government’s programmes are all based on the Barisan’s social development policies,” he said in response to Kelantan Mentri Besar Datuk Nik Aziz Nik Mat’s latest statement that the PAS state government was only interested to work with the Federal Government and not Umno or Barisan.

Muhyiddin said Nik Aziz’s statements were confusing as were his motives.

“I hope the media can report this issue clearly as I do not know which is accurate. I do not know what his motives are,” he said referring to Nik Aziz’s statement on Monday which showed a different tune from when he expressed PAS’ willingness to mend fences with the Federal Government.

Muhyiddin said that the Federal Government has never victimised or neglected Kelantan or any other state.

“We have given Kelantan RM600mil for clean water supply and RM7bil under the 9th Malaysia Plan, of which RM1.1bil was for education,” he said on the sidelines of the 19th Global Smart Partnership Dialogue 2009 here yesterday.

On an unrelated issue, Muhyiddin said Pakatan Rakyat leaders could keep boasting that the cooperation between PAS, PKR and DAP would not break up despite pressures, but everyone knew that the situation among them was getting worse.

“We know that their relationship is not as good as when they first got together after the general election.

“They try to cover up saying that there is no problem but you can see what is happening in Penang, Kedah and Selangor,” he said.

Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng recently said that the alliance would not break up despite the pressure of “growing under a magnifying glass” of its political enemies.

“His statement is a cover up to say that they are okay but there are serious differences between them in terms of ideology and working arrangements on many issues,” he said, adding that Barisan has a charter and experience.

On the dialogue, Muhyiddin said Malaysia would host the Langkawi International Dialogue (LID) next year which was one of the components of the Global Smart Partnership Dialogue.

“We decided to continue with LID but have yet to set the theme although the topic of discussions would centre on Malaysia and Africa in terms of capital development,” he said.

Muhyiddin stressed that LID would offer an opportunity for Malaysia to share its new experiences under Prime Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Razak’s 1Malaysia concept.