UMNO and PAS alliance may have overtly begun running up to Cameron Highland by-election, but rumours had been spreading around about the two political parties covertly working together since before GE-14.
According to Free Malaysia Today, on January 4, 2018, PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang made a statement that the then Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak was easier to work with especially in terms of enforcing Islamic laws compared to Mahathir.
The statement was made as a reference to Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad’s continuous effort to dismiss the implementation of Islamic laws when he was the Prime Minister in the past.
During the GE-14 campaign trail, PAS was seen to be constantly attacking PH instead of BN.
Fast forward to April 13, Hadi urged the Malaysians to give PAS a chance to win the GE-14, as reported by The Sun Daily.
In his open letters to the Malaysians, he was quoted as claiming that PAS could not work with an accused government (BN) until a jurisdiction was achieved.
On April 21, NST wrote that Hadi had dismissed all claims on the possibility of PAS and BN forming a coalition government after the GE14. Instead, Hadi was certain that PAS alone could win some of the 160 seats contested in the election.
However, on May 4, Hadi changed his previous statement by saying that the cooperation between PAS and UMNO after GE-14 would not be strange (Free Malaysia Today).
Back in August 2016, Sarawak Report editor Clare Rewcastle-Brown revealed in an article on the website that PAS had received RM 90 million fund from UMNO, the article that led Hadi to file a suit for defamation. On the other party, Najib also denied the allegations that UMNO had ever given money to PAS. Both parties have been firm on their statements until now.
Today, the narrative has changed completely since Cameron Highland and Semenyih by-elections, which have witnessed the victory of BN through the union of UMNO and PAS. It was said to be the turning point of UMNO-PAS alliance.
Nevertheless, will UMNO-PAS alliance be strengthened with the formation of United Ummah Government in the four BN and PAS-led states or will they grow apart when they notice that they have opposing ideology in governing the state? Plus, PAS said that they won’t work with a corrupt party in the past. Will the outcome of the 1MDB trial affect their alliance?