JOHOR BARU, Oct 30, 2015:

Johor PKR has confirmed that it will be in talks with the state’s PAS leadership to form a loose coalition pact — outside of the Pakatan Harapan coalition.

However, PKR stressed that it was only in a working relationship with PAS in the state and this was not a revival of the defunct Pakatan Rakyat pact.

Johor PKR deputy chairman Jimmy Phuah Wee Tse said the party’s state leadership had always taken the position that they would engage with any parties or organisations within and outside of Pakatan Harapan that shared the same objectives.

“Yes, it may seem awkward for the Opposition (in Johor), but hopefully our role can in fact show the rakyat that it is possible to have a loose coalition pact with PAS,” he told The Rakyat Post recently.

Phuah said that Johor PKR, despite its support for Pakatan Harapan with DAP and Parti Amanah Negara (Amanah), would also establish and maintain a working relationship with PAS in the state.

“We are open to talks with PAS. However, it is still too early to be discussing about reviving Pakatan Rakyat at this point of time.”

Last week, it was reported that PAS deputy president Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man said a recent meeting held with PKR resulted in an agreement to strengthen cooperation through discussions at the state and the federal levels.

PAS had also on several occasions insisted that the Pakatan Rakyat coalition was not defunct, and was still a functioning even without DAP.

Phuah said for PKR, such a situation depended on the respective states and added that the party in Johor was hopeful that they could work something out together with PAS.

“It is hard work for us (PKR), but we will see how it works out for both parties.”

The PAS leadership had earlier this year, during its muktamar, severed ties with DAP.

This led to the end of the seven-year-old Pakatan Rakyat coalition that is based on three parties, namely PAS, DAP and PKR.

Shortly after that, DAP and several former PAS progressive leaders, which have since joined Amanah, established the Pakatan Harapan coalition.

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