PETALING JAYA: MIC has no problems with PAS but has issues with the “arrogant and rude behaviour” of Kedah Mentri Besar Muhammad Sanusi Md Nor, says Datuk Seri S. Vell Paari.
The MIC Senator reminded Sanusi that during the 14th General Election, PAS was not a component party in Barisan Nasional and that it had also contested in constituencies that were Barisan’s stronghold seats.
“How can MIC support PAS during the 14th General Election when PAS was contesting against Barisan?
“Was the Mentri Besar living in Malaysia or on Mars for the past two years? Is Sanusi so busy looking for rare earth elements on Mars that he didn’t know the political landscape of our country then,” asked Vell Paari.
Vell Paari said this in reference to a comment by Sanusi who said that MIC did not support PAS during the previous general election, and many of the party members had supported Pakatan Harapan instead.
Sanusi said MIC needs votes from other non-Indian communities.
Vell Paari said Sanusi’s recent decision in a few issues related to the Indian communities in the state sends a negative signal to minorities nationwide.
He said Sanusi’s behaviour is sabotaging the efforts made by the leadership of the Islamist party all these years.
Vell Paari said PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang had visited the MIC headquarters in March 2019 when the party was still in the Opposition bloc with Barisan Nasional.
He said Abdul Hadi had appreciated the openness showed by MIC president Tan Sri S.A. Vigneswaran and other party leaders.
“The PAS president had also hoped that both parties can cooperate for the good and harmony of all races in the country.
“Abdul Hadi’s behaviour had opened up opportunities for cooperation between PAS and MIC because MIC believed that PAS will fight for the rights of minorities in the nation.
“Unfortunately, such cooperation between MIC and PAS as hoped by (Abdul Hadi) is now sabotaged and destroyed by the Kedah Mentri Besar,” said Vell Paari in a statement on Tuesday (January 26)
He said this in response to the announcement by Sanusi for cancelling the Thaipusam public holiday, which was given since 2017 in Kedah.
The state said Thaipusam is an “event holiday” (cuti peristiwa) and not a gazetted holiday.
Vell Paari said Sanusi should be reminded that the PAS central leadership is trying its best to front the party as being inclusive and trying to attract the support from all races.
“Sanusi’s bullying attitude in Kedah sends a negative signal about PAS to all minorities in the country.”
The former MIC secretary-general added that efforts by Abdul Hadi to show that PAS is a party that respects the rights of minorities have also been destroyed due to Sanusi’s behaviour.
“Sanusi has planted the seed of fear in the minds of all minorities in the country, and brings questions on what will happen to the minorities in the future if PAS takes over completely at the Federal Government level,” said Vell Paari.
Vell Paari also said that Malaysians often look forward to their public holidays, hence cancelling the Thaipusam public holiday in Kedah does not only affect the Indians there, but also the remaining 94% of people living in the state.