Hadi dismisses soothsayers, says Umno thrives on mercenaries

By FMT Staff

KUALA LUMPUR: PAS has dismissed speculation that it will suffer a setback in the 13th general election, in contrast to its phenomenal performance in 2008.

“I don’t believe in this theory or in the octopus’s predictions,” said its president Abdul Hadi Awang.

“I am convinced that if we work hard and use the right strategy, we can win big in the next general election.”

There is something mercurial about PAS, as Malaysia’s election history shows. It has performed impressively in some elections, but often badly in elections held following the re-drawing of borders to benefit Barisan Nasional. For example, while it won only seven parliamentary seats in 2004, it grabbed 23 in the last election. It now also rules the states of Kelantan and Kedah.

Those impressed by patterns in the flow of history say the pendulum may well swing the other way in the coming general election.

However, this does not seem to worry the party president. He said the doom prophecies were in fact motivating members to identify weaknesses in the party and to focus on addressing them.

“Unlike Umno, we have real support, branches everywhere, people who have faith,” Hadi said at an informal discussion at the Harakah office last night

Umno, on the other hand, had become dependent on mercenaries, he added.  

“Maybe my statement is harsh, but that’s the reality. It is no more about faith and ideology. Faith and ideology is not helping Umno win, but the government machinery is.”

Be patient

He said it had become obvious that Umno now had to pay soldiers-for-hire to ensure its continuity.