PAS under fire over use of Islam to win votes

  • Nation
  • Tuesday, 09 Mar 2004

UTUSAN Malaysia questioned the opposition's alleged tactics of using Islam to gain votes. 

Its editorial and articles referred to reports that PAS had used heaven as bait to fish for support and the allegations by PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang that Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi was merely playing to the gallery when he led prayers during the Ramadan month. 

Abdul Hadi said this was because the Prime Minister did not lead the prayers at his mother's funeral and had left the task to an imam

National Fatwa Council chairman Datuk Dr Ismail Ibrahim wrote in the daily that Muslim voters should be able to tell the difference between religion and politics, especially partisan politics.  

He said a political party was not a religion handed down to humans through messengers from God.  

Thus, he added, a person's religious principles and commitment to a party should remain separate. 

Dr Ismail said Malaysians had voted wisely in the last 10 elections.  

The coming general election would be a test of their intellectual capacity, he said. 

In Berita Harian, two of the country's biggest trade unions, Cuepacs and the Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC), which together represented some 11.4 million workers, urged them to vote for a government with a proven track record. 

MTUC president Datuk Zainal Rampak said voters must consider the country's political stability and economic progress before voting.  

Cuepacs adviser Datuk N. Siva Subramaniam said Malaysians should heed Abdullah's advice to not gamble away the country's future. 

He said voters must take the election seriously and vote for a government that wanted to bring progress to the nation.  

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