Johor polls: Grassroots against cooperation with PAS, says Tok Mat

PETALING JAYA: Barisan Nasional is unlikely to cooperate with PAS in the coming Johor election as the majority of Umno grassroots are against the idea, says Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan.

Nevertheless, The Barisan deputy chairman said the coalition’s top leadership would have the final say on the matter.

“We will scrutinise and study it thoroughly but for now, the majority of grassroots leaders want Barisan to go alone in this election,” he told reporters at a press conference after attending the soft launch of the Barisan election machinery in Johor Baru on Wednesday (Jan 26).

Mohamad, who is also Umno deputy president, said any decision made by the top leadership would be in Barisan’s best interests.

Barisan and PAS used to cooperate under the Muafakat Nasional charter. However, ties between the two parties soured after PAS officially joined Perikatan Nasional as a coalition member.

Umno deputy chief Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed had said that there is no need for Barisan to cooperate with PAS in the Johor election.

Johor Umno chairman Datuk Hasni Mohammad had also said that the state Barisan chapter had informed the central leadership of its intention to contest alone in the state election without cooperation with Perikatan parties.

Meanwhile, Johor PAS commissioner Abdullah Husin was quoted as saying that state PAS leaders still hoped to have an understanding with Umno in the coming state election.

Prior to the dissolution of the state assembly on Saturday (Jan 22) evening, the state government led by Barisan had a simple majority of 28 (Barisan 16, Bersatu 11, PAS one) compared to Pakatan’s 27 (DAP 14, PKR seven and Amanah six) with one seat left vacant following the death of Bersatu’s Kempas assemblyman Datuk Osman Sapian.

The EC will have a special meeting on Feb 9 to decide on key dates and matters on the 15th Johor state election, namely polling day and nomination day.

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