KUALA LUMPUR (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - A new movement made up primarily of the progressive faction from the opposition Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS) was launched on Monday.
Calling themselves Gerakan Harapan Baru (New Hope Movement), they will eventually set up a new political party based on Islamic principles.
The new party is seen as a replacement for PAS in the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) opposition alliance. The PR was recently declared dead after a fallout between PAS and the Democratic Action Party (DAP) over disagreements on the implementation of hudud laws, or Islamic criminal laws, in Kelantan state which PAS controls.
Its interim committee chairman Mohamad Sabu said that the PR alliance could not function as before, disrupting the agenda to make changes to the country.
"The objective of this movement is to get the cooperation between the political parties, NGOs and the people moving," he said during a press conference to launch the movement on Monday.
Mohamad said the movement would be inclusive, progressive and cared about the people.
The movement is made up primarily of PAS progressives such as Khalid Samad, Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad, Dr Hatta Ramli and Hanipah Maidin who lost in the recent PAS polls in June.
Former Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Muhammad Muhammad Taib is also part of the movement.
When asked about the numbers they had, Sabu said they did not have a headcount yet but the response to the movement was encouraging. He declined to say if the movement would rival PAS but noted that it would not be aligned with the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition. "We are against Umno and Barisan Nasional," he said.
Dr Dzulkefly said the movement would be open to everyone regardless of their race or religion.s
The movement has also planned on road shows all over the country from the end of July to the end of August.