Late Nik Aziz did little for Kelantan, Ibrahim Ali says


(Malay Mail Online) – As the nation mourns the passing of PAS spiritual leader Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat, Perkasa chief Datuk Ibrahim Ali today accused the former Kelantan mentri besar of failing to develop the state or enforce hudud Islamic penal law.

Ibrahim said although many had deemed Nik Aziz to be a great Muslim leader, he considered the PAS spiritual leader to have lacked vision and blamed the former MB for Kelantan’s impoverished economy.

“Many Kelantanese adore him because he was deemed an ulama and called Tok Guru (teacher) although he did not really develop Kelantan and the wellbeing of its people,” the Perkasa chief said in a statement.

“In fact the development of Islam had not gone anywhere and even the implementation of hudud had failed while he lived and governed as MB for 20 years,” added the Perkasa chief who was defeated by Nik Aziz’s son in the Pasir Mas federal constituency during Election 2013.

Ibrahim then proceeded to quote contemporary Islamic scholar Ibn Taimiyyah who said that a visionary but less pious leader was a much better choice than a devout one, in veiled reference to the late PAS veteran.

The former Tanah Merah MP, who had contested under a PAS ticket in 2008, said Kelantan with all its resources could have been a great state but suggested that Nik Aziz’s governance caused this potential to go unrealised.

“Kelantan should have been a glorious state in every field because its people are Islamic, hardworking, creative, has beautiful nature and rich in resources… it also should have been a glorious Islamic state.

“But instead we see a mass exodus of Kelantanese as they seek to find food in other states,” he said.

Ibrahim then ended his statement by urging Kelantan voters to judge a leader “not by the book cover” but “by its contents”.

“Let this be history and I hope the Kelantanese people will not adore mere rhetorical leaders and pious, but choose those with vision and morally clean,” he said.

Nik Aziz died from prostate cancer in his home in northern Malaysia late yesterday at the age of 84.

For more than three decades, he was a top leader of PAS, a member of the Pakatan Rakyat opposition pact that, since its 2008 formation, has placed mounting pressure on the long-serving government.

His passing is the second blow for the pact this week. Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim was jailed for five years Tuesday on a sodomy charge he vehemently claims was politically motivated.