Zahid to announce Umno’s stance on Perikatan soon

PUTRAJAYA: Umno will make known its stance on Perikatan Nasional amid talk that the party does not want this new alliance to be formalised.

Party president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said he would issue a statement soon on the party’s position.

According to reports, the Umno supreme council meeting on May 4 had reached a unanimous decision not to formalise the alliance but would continue to defend the Perikatan Federal Government, which it is a part of.

Party sources said Umno believed there was no need for the party to formalise its new relations with Bersatu, at least for now, and that the stand was made “in the interest of the party”.

“Reject is too strong a word to describe the situation. We just feel that there is no need to formalise our relations, which is working well right now. Furthermore, Perikatan, unlike Barisan Nasional which Umno is a coalition member, is not registered, ” said a source.

The source said, however, the party supported the Perikatan government and Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s premiership. It is understood that Bersatu had approached Umno to set up Perikatan.

Another source pointed out that it was difficult to be in partnership with Bersatu when its internal affairs had not been sorted out.

“There is Bersatu which is with Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Bersatu with Muhyiddin. Bear in mind, Dr Mahathir does not want to have anything to do with Umno.

“So the big question is, how do we resolve this?” said the source.

Barisan, comprising Umno, MCA, MIC and PBRS, as well as its Muafakat Nasional partner, PAS, had backed Muhyiddin, who is Bersatu president as Prime Minister to end a political impasse back in February.

This spelt an end to Pakatan Harapan’s (which Bersatu was once part of) administration after 22 months in Putrajaya.

Political analyst Prof Dr Sivamurugan Pandian said politics should be set aside as the country grapples with the after-effects of Covid-19, both socially and economically.

“People want to know what the government’s plans are to revive the economy after the pandemic. Everyone is affected economically and politics is the last thing people are interested in, ” he said.

Sivamurugan said before Perikatan could be formalised, a common ground must be found, pointing out that the collaboration would not be a success if parties did not share the same understanding, common ideology and agree to disagree.

“It is possible to work together in a loose collaboration. Perhaps when things are better, these parties can fine-tune their relationship and have something that is more firm and solid, ” he said.

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