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Saturday, April 21, 2007

PAS - Total Makeover Needed to Win Malaysians Hearts

PAS stands for the upholding of the Holy Al Qur'an Al Kareem as this nation's Supreme Constitution and total observance of the Hadith's of the Final Messenger of Allah, the Prophet Muhammad Sallalahu Alaihi Wassallam.

That is all fine with me and millions of likeminded Muslims here in Malaysia.

The thing is that sometimes it's easy for PAS to lose their focus and get carried away when their political aspirations get overladen with occasional emotional reactions, responses or clashes of opinions and issues with UMNO.

UMNO, the other main Malay Muslim based party is secular in it's political approach and they are the major power in the Barisan Nasional, the ruling coalition running the Government of Malaysia since Independence from Great Britain in 1957.

PAS has always been at loggerheads with UMNO and all these years has seen them take part in many vicious exchanges between their supporters and UMNO's.

As a result, PAS has not been able to make inroads into the other states that are in the West of the Peninsular. They have the most support from the voters only in the East coast States of Kelantan , Terengganu and in some parts of Kedah, Perak and Pahang.

PAS has only been able to win the State of Kelantan and get to hold on to it by a very slim margin. PAS lost Terengganu to the BN in the previous General Election.
What could be the reasons?

Frankly, I am a PAS supporter. I just do not go overboard in stating my support for PAS because I choose to exercise that support only during the General Elections or By Elections.

I have no political ambitions. I am content with blogging my viewpoints and share what I feel about events that take place in my nation. I just want to earn my income through my Uptrend Networking business and live a decent life with my spouse. That's all.

I want Malaysia to be a fair place for all to live in peace and harmony. Hence my concerns.

The problem I face in showing my support to PAS is due to the fact that even when I was living in Penang, my constituency was the Tanjong Parliamentary where PAS doesn't contest.

There are some things that I feel I have to share here as to what I see being the major downfalls of PAS and why they have yet to be able to capture the majority of the Malaysians hearts?

I believe them to be :

1. Image of the party
  • PAS comes across to most Malaysians as a hardline 'fire and brimstones' political party. This image is further cemented into the minds and visualizations of the common citizen when the media portrays the leaders of PAS looking very angry, stern and unfriendly, speaking ferociously at the many "ceramah's" they hold to explain their stand on certain issues.
  • Visual images of orators in an intimidating gesture or posture burns permanently into people's minds and this in turn puts off people from supporting PAS even if they can't stand the corrupt BN all these while.
  • Malaysians especially those who aren't Muslims get scared off by such 'frightening' images and prefer the BN 'Devil' that they know and are used to rather than experiment with the 'fierce' PAS. So, all the 'branding' and image moulding done by the BN and their media manipulation has borne fruit in the minds of the Malaysian public further aided by the folks in PAS who failed to realize and sense their media slip ups.
  • First impressions are lasting impressions yet those speakers and orators of PAS were blind to see the kind of image that their posturing and tantrums created in the views of the Malaysian electorate.
  • A stern face never wins votes and PAS failed to correct their public image all these years. No one votes for any candidate who looks like he'll bite off your head if you cross him.
  • PAS needs to undergo a total makeover in their personalities if they ever want to rule over us in the future. There's no other way but be sincere and amiable towards all Malaysians, irrespective of race or religion. Be more people friendly.
2. Approach of the party
  • PAS needs to be more diplomatic towards the people. PAS leaders need to wake up to the fact that Malaysians come in all races and creed.
  • As we know that Islam is universal in it's nature and is Allah's complete system of living for all mankind, PAS needs to learn how to go about explaining it's stand about ruling according to the Principles of Islam which we know and believe to be fair to all and must be shown to be so in their day to day practice.
  • PAS needs to share info with the people as to why it is implementing certain rules and laws in it's administration of the State of Kelantan and what it intends to uphold if it ever rules this nation in total?
  • Dakwah @ Islamic Information Services needs to be carried out in a more consistent, systematic approach without going overboard in it's implementation.
  • Be gentle and humane in carrying out educational programs and promotions to help Malaysians understand Islam for what it is and what it is not.
  • Compassion and tolerance is the key word here. Practice Islam for what it is - a religion of peace and salvation. Be kind.
  • Be consistent and professional. PAS needs to show Malaysians that it can rule over this nation in a consistent manner and be professional about it.
  • No instances of corruption must take place in the state government which it controls.
  • Kelantan ought to be made into a role model of what PAS is capable of turning a poor state into a well developed, corruption free showcase of what PAS intends to show the other states in Malaysia.
  • The Lojing Highlands devastation sticks out like a raw thumb poking at PAS's claims of ruling by the Qur'an. Practice what you preach!
  • PAS needs to do damage control here. Order those culprits who bulldozed the highlands bald to replant the entire area.
  • Haul those responsible to court and punish them according to the laws of this nation as PAS has not been given the mandate and autonomy to rule by the Qur'an by the Federal Government of the Barisan Nasional.
  • There's no point of wanting to rule over the entire 13 states of Malaysia if they can't do a good job there in Kelantan.
  • I mean, get the State of Kelantan out of the poverty trap many find themselves in and be just to all Kelantanese, irrespective whether they belong to UMNO, MCA, MIC, DAP, PKR, PAS or whatever political party?
  • When PAS proves itself to be a fair, just unbiased political party to all Kelantanese and helps raise the living conditions of all it's people , then the people will show their support and gratitude when it's time to cast their votes in the GE.
There are many more things which I want to point out to my fellow Muslims in PAS and I will share them in the future postings, Insya Allah.

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