Ex-Selangor MB: PAS ulama who only read Quran unfit to be PM


(Malay Mail Online) – PAS leaders from its ulama (clergy) faction who are only well-versed in the Quran but not real-world issues are not qualified to become prime minister, former Selangor mentri besar Tan Sri Muhammad Muhd Taib said today.

Muhammad, now a PAS member, said he noticed the emergence in the Islamist party of young religious scholars returning from their studies in the Middle East with ambitions to be leaders.

But he said many of them only excelled at memorising the Quran, the Muslim’s holy text, and hadith or teachings attributed to Prophet Muhammad, as well as reciting prayers.

“But this young group, when we ask, try to explain what is 1MDB, (they say) ‘don’t know, I don’t really understand’; on GST (Goods and Services Tax), don’t dare; ask about international relations, don’t know,” the former Umno man told a forum here, also noting their alleged ignorance in providing aid to the Rohingya refugees.

“If want to be leader, only want to read hadith and Quran, and after that want to be crowned as a leader, I don’t think you are fit to be a prime minister,” he added.

“You cannot be prime minister of this country. What more our country is multicultural, there’s Malay, Chinese and Indian,” he said.

Muhammad further said that “something is very wrong” with those who join PAS with the desire of getting God’s approval and believe that taking over Putrajaya is not important.

He also alleged that there was a move in the PAS elections next month to dispose of leaders who are articulate on international and national issues such as the GST, adding that he was praying for the “combination of the best”.

PAS should have a leader like the late party spiritual advisor Datuk Nik Aziz Nik Mat, who was loved by all ethnicity and groups including the Buddhists and Siamese, he said.

Earlier, he said that only three parties in Malaysia are currently qualified to put forth their leaders as the next prime minister: PAS, Umno and PKR.

But he said the present Umno is no longer qualified to provide a new Malaysian leader, claiming it has now became a party where members join to seek riches and projects, and buy voter support with gifts.

For PKR, its president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail is still doing “on the job training”, he claimed.

But there is a “pool of good leaders” in the party headed by the jailed Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, he said.

“Possibly when they mature, maybe not much longer, maybe some of them can be the new Malaysian leader.”

He was speaking at a forum titled “Mencari Pemimpin Baru Malaysia — Demi Rakyat dan Negara” (Finding Malaysia’s new leader), which also featured former law minister Datuk Zaid Ibrahim and former deputy finance minister Datuk Affifuddin Omar.