By Asrul Hadi Abdullah Sani
KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 7 — Shah Alam MP Khalid Samad praised today’s PAS seminar as a key milestone in the party’s history.
Khalid stressed that if PAS wants to become a “mainstream” party then the leadership must be willing to accept criticism.
“If you want to become the Prime Minister or whatever minister you must be willing to face the criticism, you can’t say that he is an ulama so you can’t criticise. Part of the thing is that we want to educate our members,” he told reporters outside the seminar hall in Taman Melewar here.
Khalid hopes the seminar will educate party members that nobody is immune from criticism.
“As I said it is something new so you must expect there to be a mixed reaction. We are not used to having our ulama criticised but we are saying even the Prophet was criticised so it is the education that we have to undergo,” he said.
The seminar today was to discuss PAS’s future direction but could well throw up the need for an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) to decide the fundamental issue of whether to co-operate with Umno to advance Islam and Malay unity or stay with PR and hope to capture federal power in the forthcoming general election.
The seminar is unlikely to resolve the fundamental difference over the issues and which course to take to safeguard the future of PAS — how best to capitalise on the new forces at work in the political system to stay ahead.
PAS spiritual leader Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat wanted a special muktamar to rid the party of leaders whom he described as “problematic” and seen to favour working closely with Umno instead of strengthening PR.
He had named Selangor PAS commissioner Datuk Hasan Ali along with Nasharuddin and secretary-general Datuk Mustafa Alias those who had made the party look inconsistent.
However, PAS central committee members recently unanimously decided not to call for a special muktamar but to hold today’s seminar instead.
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