19 June 2015
KUALA LUMPUR — Two years after narrowly losing Malaysia’s last elections, and despite the opportunity to capitalize on Prime Minister Najib Razak’s role in an escalating scandal at a state-owned investment company, the country’s opposition coalition appears to have disintegrated.
The consequences could significantly affect the country’s tense political landscape.
After months of internecine fighting that highlighted some of Malaysia’s long-standing ethnic and religious divisions, the end for the three-party Pakatan Rakyat (People’s Alliance) coalition came after a blistering attack on June 15 by the largely ethnic-Chinese Democratic Action Party on the mainly-Malay Parti Islam Se-Malaysia (Malaysian Islamic Party). The Islamic party, commonly known as PAS, had on June 6 voted to sever links with the DAP, throwing the future of the alliance in doubt even before the DAP’s announcement.
… “In stark contrast to the more progressive and politically ambitious elements [of PAS], the conservative elements in PAS stress more on abstract religious aspirations than earthly political democratization,” said Oh Ei Sun, a senior fellow at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies at Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University.
“This leads inevitably to loggerheads with the secular-minded and ideologically progressive DAP,” Oh told the Nikkei Asian Review.
IDSS / Online
Last updated on 16/11/2015