Is PAS willing to wager its future on gambling?

Perak PAS commissioner Razman Zakaria says he is sure the decision to increase 4D draws in the country was not made by PAS leaders who were ministers in the Perikatan Nasional government or the current Ismail Sabri Yaakob administration.

He told party members not to get excited over the increase in “special draws” which were increased from eight to 22. This means 14 extra draws will be conducted in a year by 4D operators.

Razman said: “I believe this approval was not made by PAS because PAS does not have full power in the government”.

Is Razman saying that only if and when PAS has full power in government can the party do something about this?

At best, Razman’s statement comes off as a flimsy excuse.

It’s better to admit that PAS cannot do anything about the lottery draws despite having its MPs in the Cabinet.

We all know gambling is haram to Muslims and PAS has never been shy about opposing it.

Let’s just look at some of PAS’ previous statements with regards to gambling.

On Dec 9, 2011, the then PAS Youth chief Sharil Azman Abdul Halim said if PAS formed the state government in Pahang, they would close down Genting Highlands. Sharil Azman was supported by PAS assemblymen Syed Hamid Syed Mohd and Syed Mohd Tuan Lonnik who said that “the party could not tolerate gambling and that in Islamic teachings, gambling is a sin”.

On Oct 13, 2020, PAS passed eight resolutions at its muktamar which included the banning of gambling. In December of the same year, PAS information chief, Kamaruzaman Mohd said that a responsible government would see “gambling as a disease that will damage the family, community and country”.

And just in case Razman has forgotten, Ahmad Fuad Hassan left Umno as the religious bureau chief in 1951 to help set up PAS because Umno at that time was planning to raise funds via a national lottery and the organising of funfairs.

He would go on to become the first president of PAS and remain so for the next two years. This was a man of principle.

Razman, however, is making flimsy excuses for his party when, technically, he can do something about it.

He only needs to persuade the 18 PAS MPs to withdraw their support for the present government and it would collapse like a deck of cards. Then you can tell the new incoming government that you will give it your undivided support in exchange for banning all gambling activities in our country.

Are you willing to do that?

By : Clement Stanley (a FMT Reader) – FMT

* This is the opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of The Stringer.

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