PH-Umno handshake will work but not immediately, say pundits

11 Jun 2023 09:38am
(From Left-Right) Professor Dr Syaza Shukri, Oh Ei Sun, Professor Datuk Dr Shamsul Amri Baharuddin
(From Left-Right) Professor Dr Syaza Shukri, Oh Ei Sun, Professor Datuk Dr Shamsul Amri Baharuddin

SHAH ALAM - Although it may take awhile for the Umno grassroots to accept its alliance with Pakatan Harapan, the stability provided by the Unity Government is crucial to strengthen the economic growth and unity among the people.

International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM), Political Science Association Professor Dr Syaza Shukri said Umno members may accept the unity government if they feel it is to their benefit and may take a full term to materialise.

Syaza added the stability provided by Unity Government is critical at this time.

"People want the government and party leaders to set aside differences for the good of the country in the aftermath of the 2022 election's polarisation.

"If we can create stability, this will bring back investment. Once the economic growth is felt, this could strengthen the unity of the people.

"At the moment there’s polarisation because of a sense of inequalities." Syaza told Sinar Daily.

Moreover,the Principal Adviser for Pacific Research Center of Malaysia, Oh Ei Sun said Umno appear to be still upset with DAP as seen by Umno youth's recent antics.

He was referring to Umno Youth chief Dr Muhamad Akmal Saleh's call on DAP to apologise for previous statements and allegations made against the party.

Oh believes the change in question is clearly in the direction of regression rather than progression, as seen by the electoral performance of the green wave, referring to the Malay swing for the Islamic party.

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Institut Kajian Etnik (KITA), Political Sociology, Professor Datuk Dr Shamsul Amri Baharuddin said Umno grassroots are still waiting to see what happens next.

He said the current Umno leaders often create a significant amount of noise and yet they fail to provide concrete evidence of their assistance to the grassroots. Similarly, he said Pakatan Harapan (PH) continues to deliver empty speeches and engage in empty rhetoric.

Citing Economy Minister Rafizi Ramli, he said the minister should come up with substantive efforts to help the poor.

Dr Shamsul said the grassroots are not playing "monkey politics," referring to a term for political maneuvers that are seen as cunning, deceitful, or manipulative but the leaders may be seen as playing such politics.