Friday, July 25, 2008

Stop Umno-PAS talks, urges Nizar - The Star

IPOH: Jul 25, 2008

The top level Umno-PAS dialogues should be stopped as it would lead to speculation, said Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin.

Noting that the speculations were not healthy, Nizar pointed out that it was Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi who eagerly wanted the talk between both parties.

“Pakatan Rakyat is not in dire need of that relationship as we are now stronger,” he said yesterday.

Speaking to reporters after launching the public service work quality group convention at the State Secretariat building here, Nizar said he was more open to the idea of muqabalah (face-to-face discussions).

“You cannot disconnect relationships between individuals. We cannot avoid meeting or extending salam (greetings) with leaders of other parties,” he added.

On whether the muqabalah would lead to uneasiness among Pakatan Rakyat parties, Nizar said: “I don’t think so as there had been an understanding among the three parties.”

On a suggestion by Ipoh Timor MP Lim Kit Siang that the talks should be on Malaysian unity, Nizar said that would be one of the agendas.

“The main agenda concerns all Malaysians and not a particular community,” he said.

Asked about Kelantan’s proposal to hold an inaugural meeting of mentri besars and chief minister from the five Pakatan Rakyat states, Nizar said it was a good idea.

“There are many issues that need to be ironed out with the Federal Government such as water and land.

“The five states can speak as one voice to present their views to the Government,” he said.

Kelantan had proposed the meeting to be held next month to counter allegations of a split in the alliance.

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