PETALING JAYA: PAS has distanced itself from a leaked WhatsApp chat between party central committee leaders discussing the possibility of leaving Pakatan Rakyat.
PAS secretary-general Datuk Mustafa Ali (pic) said Tuesday that the conversation was just a personal view and did not reflect the party’s official stand.
“That’s just his personal analysis and it has nothing to do with PAS,” he told The Star Online of the leaked chat, which showed central committee member Mohd Zuhdi Marzuki discussing the possibility of the party working together with Umno while retaining Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim as Selangor Mentri Besar.
The conversation is alleged to have taken place in a PAS central committee leaders’ WhatsApp messaging group.
The Islamist party is currently in limbo as there is a split in opinion among party members over the Selangor MB issue.
It has been claimed that the so-called “conservatives” within the party want Khalid to remain as Mentri Besar while the “progressives” are in support of PKR’s decision to replace Khalid.
When asked about the possibility of PAS splitting from Pakatan Rakyat, Mustafa said the issue could be resolved.
“Just wait for August 10,” he said in reference to cut-off date for PAS to make its decision on the issue.
In a statement on Tuesday, PAS research director Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad also said that Dr Zuhdi’s opinion was unofficial and did not reflect the party’s stand.
“As an Islamic party that accepts differences of opinions, PAS is not accountable for any single statement or analysis from its members in the event it sparks a controversy,” he said.
He said that the scenario that went viral was just one of many that were discussed informally including a “worst case” scenario of PAS leaving Pakatan.
“PAS will stand with Pakatan Rakyat’s struggle based on the Common Policy Framework that has been repeatedly stressed by spiritual adviser Datuk Seri Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat and the party president (Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang),” he said.
Khalid is currently under pressure from within his party.
Last Wednesday, the Pakatan leadership had agreed in principle for Khalid to be replaced as Selangor MB by Kajang assemblyman Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.
However, on Friday PAS president Hadi defended Khalid, saying he wanted the latter to remain in office.
He was reported as saying that a majority of PAS grassroots agreed that Khalid should stay on, judging from his track record in helming the state.
In an immediate reaction, PAS deputy president Mohamad Sabu said that Hadi’s statement was merely a personal opinion and not the party’s official stand.
PAS spiritual leader Niz Aziz has also supported Hadi’s view, saying that Khalid has not done anything wrong.