As Sabah poll looms, Perikatan-linked parties seen paying price for silence over PAS man’s Bible remarks

PAS MP Nik Muhammad Zawawi Salleh’s claim that the Bible was “distorted” could cost Perikatan Nasional (PN) and allied local parties votes in the state election due to their refusal to criticise him, according to observers.

(MMO) – In Parliament last month, Nik Zawawi from PAS claimed the Bible has been distorted from its original meaning and outraged Christians including those in Sabah that will head to the ballot box on September 26.

Multicultural Parti Bersatu Sabah has been the only PN-friendly party to openly criticise him, calling his remarks seditious and “unforgivable” while trying to dissociate themselves from the conservative Islamic party.

Its information chief, Datuk Joniston Bangkuai, sought to dismiss PAS as inconsequential here by noting that the Islamist party has not had any electoral success of note.

“We may be together in the federal government administration but politically we have nothing to do PAS… we are neither a component member of PN and BN (Barisan Nasional),” Bangkuai said.

When asked whether Sabah voters would see it that way during the state election, Bangkuai pointed out that PBS was contesting under its own banner.

PBS had been part of the BN coalition but abandoned it along with other East Malaysian components following its 2018 general election defeat.

“We are contesting using our own symbol and not PN or BN symbol… that should be clear enough,” he said.

However, not all believe this distinction alone would let PN-linked parties escape the fallout of Nik Zawawi’s comments.

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