ARAU: Pas remains unconvinced that the issue concerning the ratification of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD) has been put to rest, and believes it could still be raised by the government in the future.
As such, the Islamist party says it is sticking to its guns and will proceed with its planned demonstration against the convention on Dec 8.
Pas Ulama Council chief, Datuk Dr Mahfodz Mohamed, said although the government had announced that it would not be ratifying it, this was only done via a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office.
He noted that it was not announced personally by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
“Based on the latest information we received, the government has not cancelled the ratification of ICERD but has merely postponed it. This means there is a possibility that it could be raised again in the future.
“Therefore, we have decided to proceed with our plans to hold a demonstration against ICERD on Dec 8. This is being done to let the government know that ICERD will never be accepted by the Malays as it goes against the Federal Constitution,” he told reporters after a meeting with the party’s election machinery here on Saturday.
The Prime Minister’s Office had on Friday announced that it would not be ratifying ICERD, and said it would continue to uphold the Federal Constitution and the social contract within.
The government’s decision came after weeks of intense backlash from Pas, Umno and various non-governmental organisations against the United Nations convention, which critics claimed could affect the position and privileges of Malays and Bumiputera, as well as Islam in the country.
Meanwhile, commenting on the status of the cooperation between Pas and Umno, Mahfodz said Pas is not discounting the possibility of working with its one-time nemesis to face the 15th general election.
“For now, our cooperation only extends to the ICERD issue. All Malays have to remain united as this involves their rights.
“As for political cooperation, we have yet to touch on that as GE15 is still a long way off. But it’s not impossible (to forge a political cooperation),” he said.