PETALING JAYA: Umno information chief Annuar Musa has stressed that the Malays of today are smarter and more capable of evaluating which party can genuinely uphold and serve the interests of the people.

He said PPBM president Muhyiddin Yassin’s claim that the new opposition party was drawing substantial support from Malays for the Pakatan Harapan (PH) was far from the truth.

He said the assertion by Muhyiddin, who is also PH deputy president, was an attempt to fool the Malays.

“Malays are historically very wise and astute in politics. The Malays know that Pakatan Harapan is a group dominated by DAP,” he told FMT today.

He claimed that the Malays were aware of DAP’s “socialist policies” and that its struggle was not for Malays and Islam.

He said this in commenting on Muhyiddin’s statement yesterday that PPBM had been proven to have made the correct decision in restricting full membership to the party to only Bumiputeras.

Speaking at a forum at the Perdana Leadership Foundation, Muhyiddin, a former deputy prime minister and former Umno deputy president, had said he had no doubt that PPBM had attracted a lot of Malay support to the opposition pact.

He said this had vindicated the party’s much criticised decision to implement a membership system that bars non-Bumiputera members from voting or contesting in party elections.

“It is a strategy that has worked,” he said. “We now see Malays coming out in droves to support PPBM and ultimately to support Pakatan.”

He claimed that this had made Umno feel threatened and this was the reason Prime Minister Najib Razak, who is Umno president, had tabled “such a populist budget”.

Annuar said Malays knew that PPBM’s existence since it was founded in September last year was due to quarrels involving former Umno leaders who created the splinter party.

“The Malays will not risk their fate and the country’s future with DAP and with those who gamble away their rights and Malay-Muslim status to DAP,” he said.

“The signs are quite clear that Malays and Muslims are starting to distance themselves from Pakatan Harapan, and are increasing their solidarity for the good of Islam in facing the 14th general election (GE14),” he said.

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