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We’re stronger than DAP and PKR – PAS

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KUALA LUMPUR: Pas secretary-general Datuk Mustafa Ali re-iterated that the party has always been the strongest in the Pakatan Rakyat for its good organisational structure as well as strong grassroot support.

Mustafa disagrees with views from a Parti Keadilan Rakyat leader that Pas was only strong in 2008, pointing out that the number of seats won by PKR and DAP was high due to swing votes.

Previously, PKR Member of Parliament for Kapar S. Manickavasagam said Pas is no longer the strongest in the opposition pact as they were in the 2008 general election.

Manickavasagam claimed PKR is now growing stronger, based on support from supporters, compared with the previous election.

Mustafa countered this, saying: “In terms of organisational structure and support from the grassroot, everyone knows Pas has always been the strongest. This fact can’t be denied by anyone.

“Even if we make a comparison based on the number of parliamentary seats won by each party within the coalition in the previous general election, there’s not much difference,” he said in a recent interview.

Mustafa however pointed out that the strength of political parties should not be evaluated only based on their performance during general election.

“Obviously, during the last election, we had seen swing votes due to several factors, but different strategies should be adopted for every general election,” he said.

In 2008, within Pakatan, DAP clinched the most number of parliamentary seats with 28 while PKR and Pas won 26 and 23 seats respectively.

Last week, the AIDC portal, Pas president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang was quoted as saying that Pas is the strongest in the Pakatan coalition.

Abdul Hadi, who is MP for Marang, insisted that the party will be contesting up to 80 seats, including seats which were classified as non-winnable.

In a recent report, Pas information chief Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man, was quoted in Bernama as saying that the party may introduce about 60 percent new faces as candidates in the 13th general election.

He said the new faces would be 40 percent from the Pas Youth wing and 20 percent from its Muslimat (women) wings.

However, the Penyokong Pas blog claims such a move can cause more problems to the party.

“It is impossible to change nearly 60 percent of candidates. We should remember that it will only bring dissatisfaction and some may rebel,” the blogger said. – The Mole