How the Islamists bit the Umno bullet, once again!

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The Party Islam Se-Malaysia, or PAS, will never learn the lesson particularly the political ones as history seems to be repeating itself for the Islamists.

Their leader Hadi Awang thought he had a well laid plan, in which he would be proclaimed the hero of Islam in Malaysia with a personal bill to amend the criminal laws in Malaysia consistent with  upgrading it to Shariah or Hudud Islamic laws.

He had this planned for years, while he was the deputy leader of the Islamic party and he also thought he was even more brilliant than the former spiritual leader of the party, Nik Aziz Nik Mat who warned the Islamists not to enter in any political alliances with the United Malays National Organisation or Umno.

But Hadi did not wait too long after the passing of Nik Aziz in 2015 to show his true colours and to push his luck on the national scene, with the Hudud in one hand and the idea of a pact with the Umno in the other.

All seemed to be well for Hadi – until the fatal Wednesday this week – when Prime Minister Najib Razak made an incredible (but expected U-turn by The Independent) on the bill called the RUU355.

The PAS had campaigned for the bill with the thought that it will be voted before the next General Elections and that would seal the alliance it was nurturing with the Umno.

Hadi Awang took full responsibility within the party and among its followers, saying publicly he believed the Umno had veered towards Islam and with this change, the PAS was even more willing to be an ally with the ruling Malay nationalist party.

His tactic was to get the Hudud read in Parliament this year, and even if did not get to be  voted before the elections, it would certainly be the case after his party would win at least 40 Parliamentary seats and four or five states in Malaysia.

This after plotting with the Umno to play the ‘third force’ at national level, forgetting that a third force has always failed in realising anything but a trashing of the opposition forces and big win for the Umno-cum-Barisan Nasional (BN) in any elections in this country.

Now, licking his deep wounds, Hadi must be planning to reverse the situation in his favour amid calls within and outside the PAS for him to quit after failing to get the RUU355 amended.

But Hadi is adamant. PAS leaders who supports the Spiritual leader of the party are now saying the Islamists have gained from the setback from Najib, instead.

The Islamists are now saying even if Najib has abandoned the project – in order to salvage a breaking apart BN – Hadi’s motion still stands and if it is put to vote soon the party would have won in its battle for the Hudud.

Dismissing the political implications of the Najib rejection of the RUU355 is a fine consolation for the Islamists, but it is widely seen as a slap in their faces in the public eye.

The only real thing that matters now, is how the Islamists will take to the streets and ask people to vote for them individually with the hope that the Umno would not sabotage them in the course of the next General Elections?

Would they be so proud to say that a defeat in the next elections would have taught the PAS lessons and that they did not lose after all?