Umno Youth's DAP apology demand, not the smartest move - analysts

09 Jun 2023 08:21pm
Dr Muhamad Akmal
Dr Muhamad Akmal

SHAH ALAM- Umno Youth's call for an apology from DAP is a no-win issue and not the smartest move, says analyst.

Singapore Institute of International Affairs Senior Fellow Dr Oh Ei Sun said that these are basically common arguments among coalition partners as they gear up for the state elections.

"Umno Youth would like to appear Gung-Ho (overly enthusiastic or energetic), as it has lost much of its lustre.

"There's no win because, on the one hand, DAP's apology would not help garner more votes for Umno; on the other, it could also hurt DAP’s and, by extension, the coalition government’s winning chances.

His comments followed Umno Youth's demand for DAP to apologise to Umno, purportedly for its past mistakes, and to prove its sincerity to the Unity Government.

However, party president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi was quick to dismiss the need for DAP to apologise as the matter does not need to be raised again by his party.

Oh agreed that Umno supporters are likely to be confused by the different standpoints within the party.

"This is why it is not a smart move to bring up these issues. Perikatan Nasional does not need to do much; it will be an easy win, hands down, as PAS is part of PN, and the religiosity momentum seems invincible," he told Sinar Daily.

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Meanwhile, political analyst Associate Prof Dr Syaza Shukri from International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) said that this would not have a huge impact on either the government or the upcoming elections.

"I say this because it is an internal matter and the stability of the government is based on the pact by the highest party leadership. It is an opinion by the youth wing, but it doesn’t represent UMNO as a whole," she said.

She added that Umno supporters would also be happy to hear such sentiment coming out of the meeting.

"As this shows, Umno is still an ideological party with a specific agenda. It could mobilise supporters. However, in the end, they would still support the party and its president.

"The hardcore Umno supporters will continue supporting the party regardless. Then we have the more conservative Umno supporters, who may choose to vote PN or sit out the election.

"But the fence-sitters, I think, will vote for Umno due to the stability brought by the Unity government," she added.

PN, Syaza said, will use the same old tactic of making DAP the enemy of the Malays and show that Umno has lost its cause by choosing PH over PN.

"But UMNO can easily remind PN that PAS used to work with DAP on different levels from 1999 to 2015. It’s just politics, but Malaysians have short-term memory when it comes to politics," she added.