Gerakan in quandary on place in Perikatan Nasional?
Internal calls grow for party to leave Malay-dominant coalition
(The Vibes) – A call has been made within Gerakan to rouse members to provide compelling arguments to the leadership on why the party should exit from the Perikatan Nasional (PN) coalition.
Kelantan Gerakan leader Ong Khang Woon said that he knows who are behind proposals to split from the opposition coalition, saying that they mean well for the party, but Gerakan needs to tread carefully over the matter.
We cannot base decisions on sentiments or the push factor from race and religious issues. We need data analysis and a convincing argument if the party wants to exit from the mostly Malay-dominant coalition,” he said.
There are fears that Gerakan is entrapped if it remains in PN, whose dominant components are Islamist party PAS and Bersatu, and that it will likely continue to lose the chance to regain seats in its former stronghold of Penang.
However, Gerakan still needs Malay votes to have a chance of winning since the non-Malay votes are now comfortably with the Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition, which is leading the national unity government.
Of late, several quarters in Penang Gerakan have indicated that they prefer for the party to go it alone in the looming six state elections, after they found PAS and Bersatu to be too aggressive in championing the Malay agenda until it began hurting Gerakan.
“We do not want history to repeat itself in this year’s polls,” said an insider.
“Gerakan was rejected after it was seen as subservient to Umno in Barisan Nasional during the 2008 election.
“The same may be seen this year as PAS and Bersatu are domineering and have irked the non-Malays with some demands.”