Pakatan Rakyat officially dead

Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS) president Hadi Awang (left) and Democratic Action Party (DAP) secretary-general Lim Guan Eng. The highest decision-making body in PAS, the Syura Council, yesterday said it has decided to uphold a decision by party members
Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS) president Hadi Awang (left) and Democratic Action Party (DAP) secretary-general Lim Guan Eng. The highest decision-making body in PAS, the Syura Council, yesterday said it has decided to uphold a decision by party members at its annual congress last month to sever ties with the DAP. The DAP last month announced that Pakatan Rakat is dead, after the PAS congress attacked the Chinese-led party for trying to interfere in the Islamic party's internal elections and its plans to implement strict Islamic penal code in Kelantan. PAS' Syura Council secretary Nik Zawawi Salleh said the decision to cut ties was made as the DAP has constantly interfered in PAS' policies and objectives.PHOTO: AFP, BT FILE

PETALING JAYA • The opposition Pakatan Rakyat (PR) alliance of three parties that shook the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition in the 2013 general election is officially dead.

The highest decision-making body in Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS), the Syura Council, yesterday said it has decided to uphold a decision by party members at its annual congress last month to sever ties with the Democratic Action Party (DAP).

The third member of PR was Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR), led by Datuk Seri Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, the wife of opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim.

The DAP last month announced that PR is dead, after the PAS congress attacked the Chinese-led party for trying to interfere in the Islamic party's internal elections and its plans to implement strict Islamic penal code in Kelantan. The PAS decision yesterday was thus the final nail in PR's coffin.

PAS' Syura Council secretary Nik Zawawi Salleh said the decision to cut ties was made as the DAP has constantly interfered in PAS' policies and objectives.

"The Syura Council decided to revoke our political cooperation. But... we will maintain ties with PKR," he said in a statement.

The council comprises PAS' most senior Islamic clerics and has the ability to overrule even decisions made by the party's elected central executive committee.

The end of the seven-year-old PR alliance comes at a time when its de facto leader Anwar is in jail and its rival BN is weakened by a financial scandal clouding Prime Minister Najib Razak.

The trio of opposition parties continues to rule Selangor, Malaysia's richest state by economic output, with a loose alliance held together by PKR.

THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on July 12, 2015, with the headline 'Pakatan Rakyat officially dead'. Print Edition | Subscribe