PETALING JAYA: While PAS’ coalition partners are fuming over a WhatsApp conversation discussing a possible pullout from Pakatan Rakyat, the Islamist party is now on a witch-hunt for the “whistleblower”.
Central committee member Nasrudin Hassan Tantawi has labelled the person who leaked Dr Mohd Zuhdi Marzuki’s controversial WhatsApp remarks “a coward and a traitor”.
He said the conversation among members of the PAS central committee WhatsApp group was over two days and would fill about 115 A4-sized pages, and yet that person chose to leak only 11 lines of Dr Mohd Zuhdi’s remarks.
“If this individual does not come forward to reveal the entire conversation, he is a coward and a traitor who stabbed a friend in the back to satisfy the desire of his warlord from outside the party,” Nasrudin said in a Facebook posting yesterday.
He defended Dr Mohd Zuhdi’s remarks, made in his capacity as the party’s research centre operations director, and blamed the whistleblower for the rift between PAS and its coalition partners.
“The person who sparked the real problem is not Dr Zuhdi but the individual who leaked the closed-door discussion,” he said.
Nasrudin, who is Temerloh MP, said Dr Mohd Zuhdi was targeted for his bold and open criticism of Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim over the Selangor MB issue.
“It is not only Dr Zuhdi who strongly criticised Anwar over the Selangor MB issue but many others. It is whether they are brave enough to do it or not. In the end, it is the brave ones like Dr Zuhdi who are targeted,” he said.
Although Nasrudin said he was able to reproduce the entire WhatsApp conversation, he has no intention of doing so.
“Don’t ask me to reveal it because no matter how mischievous I may be, I am not as malicious and unwise as the individual who released excerpts of the conversation,” he said.
Nasrudin had support for his Facebook posting.
“The individual must be found. It does not matter who he is or why he leaked the secrets. He is a traitor and a hypocrite,” said Azmir Abdullah in the comments section of the Facebook page.
Another person who commented was Kak Ain, who asked why no investigation was carried out by the PAS leadership to identify the individual so that action could be taken against the culprit.
Nasrudin said Dr Zuhdi had the support of several PAS leaders.
Dr Mohd Zuhdi’s remarks, branded “racist and extremist” by some, have sparked fierce condemnation from several Pakatan leaders, with DAP calling for him to leave Pakatan if he failed to apologise for his statements.
PAS Youth chief Suhaizan Kaiat asked party leaders to convene a meeting immediately to resolve the crisis.
Meanwhile, Umno has adopted a wait-and-see approach on the issue.
Its executive secretary Datuk Abdul Rauf Yusoh said the issue was still subject to clarification.
“We do not know if this is real or not because PAS members claim that it (the leaked discussion) is defamatory against them. We don’t wish to comment at this moment,” he said at a Hari Raya open house at his home in Masjid Tanah, Malacca, yesterday.