A match that ends in misery

Fed up with PAS’ antics, Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said that the Islamist party needs to stop “marrying for political convenience”.

(MSN News) – Based on his previous experience cooperating with the Islamist party, the Barisan Nasional chairman said that PAS would repeatedly drop its political partners just to find new ones.

“They believe in a marriage of convenience similar to a contract marriage. If they don’t like it, they will dump you. They have done it up to five to six times already,” Ahmad Zahid, who is the Deputy Prime Minister, told reporters.

“If they have had five to six marriages of convenience, in the end those who are ‘married’ to them will be fed up,” he said after attending the Wawancara Belanjawan 2024 Selamat Pagi Malaysia’ programme at Wisma Berita, Angkasapuri, here, yesterday.

He was commenting on Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s remarks about not dismissing the possibility that PAS could join the unity government that currently includes Barisan, Pakatan Harapan and parties from Sarawak and Sabah.

In a recent interview with US news magazine Time, Anwar, who heads Pakatan, revealed that he had once invited PAS to be part of the unity government.

“I have been open to the idea from the beginning. After all, this is a unity government and we do what is best for our country,” Anwar had told Time magazine, adding that PAS had to accept that Malaysia was a multi-religious country with Islam as the religion of the Federation.

On a separate matter, Ahmad Zahid said that Barisan will careful in choosing a candidate for a potential by-election in Kemaman given that Perikatan Nasional had won the seat before by a huge majority in the 15th General Election.

“We are not scared… but for that particular seat, of course we will field the most suitable candidate and a leader that is acceptable by the people of Terengganu,” he said.

On Sept 26, the Kuala Terengganu Election Court annulled the victory of Kemaman MP Che Alias Hamid from Perikatan after finding that bribery had occurred during the GE15 campaign.

On the 2024 Budget, Ahmad Zahid, who is also Rural and Regional Minister, said that the government aims to ensure that at least 50% of rural areas get 5G coverage by the middle of next year, while by the end of 2024, not less than 855 areas will be covered.

The Orang Asli community, meanwhile has been allocated RM333mil, which covers socio-economic development projects, infrastructure and welfare aid.

His ministry is aiming to enrol a total of 400 Orang Asli children to enter university next year, in addition to ensuring that more of the community’s members sign up for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) programmes.

Ahmad Zahid, who is also the National TVET Council Committee chairman, said such efforts are aimed at elevating the community’s standard of living.

“We find that Orang Asli settlements in the country are scattered, but we will discuss with the Attorney-General’s Chambers and carry out detailed studies with the state governments because many of their areas have been encroached,” he said.