JOHOR BARU, Jan 18, 2016:
Johor PKR is still waiting for the state PAS leadership to approach them and work towards mutual objectives as part of the Opposition in the state.
Johor PKR deputy chairman Jimmy Phuah Wee Tse said the state party had not given up on reaching out to the Johor PAS leadership since late last year.
“We (Johor PKR) have always been open and have tried to maintain a working relationship with the PAS leadership in the state despite the split.
“However, the state PAS leadership has yet to meet us to discuss any form of collaboration since several of its members left and formed Amanah late last year,” he said when contacted by The Rakyat Post today.
Phuah said the Johor PAS leadership had been “cold” in the sense that they had yet to open up communications and approach the state PKR leadership.
The Johor PKR’s “open arms” policy was part of the state party’s initiative to bridge and connect with PAS, despite PKR being part of the Pakatan Harapan coalition, together with DAP and Parti Amanah Negara (Amanah).
The ties between PKR and PAS were recently questioned when the Islamist party in Kelantan expressed its disappointment with PKR for supporting Amanah, which is seen as a splinter group from PAS.
Puah, who is also the Bukit Batu assemblyman, said such statements by Kelantan PAS were not fair to PKR.
“My view is that the issue was over-played by certain parties for political mileage and grassroots’ support.”
Phuah explained that it was obvious that PKR was part of Pakatan Harapan and had a duty to support the tri-party Opposition coalition.
“Yes, it takes ‘two hands to clap’ in any working relationship, but don’t forget that as part of the Opposition, we need to work together for mutual interest.”
He hoped that the latest salvo from Kelantan PAS would not throw a spanner in the works for a working relationship between the two parties.
Phuah added that Johor PKR would still try to reach out to the state PAS as they had never had any problems with them.
On Jan 13, Kelantan PAS had sent an official letter to PKR expressing its disappointment in the party leaders’ participation in Amanah events in the state.
The letter, addressed to PKR secretary-general Rafizi Ramli, had called on PKR to consider the sensitivities of PAS’ grassroots supporters, as PKR had initially agreed to a working relationship with PAS.