What was the big idea behind Mustapa’s motive in placing the plaque on PAS’ sacred ground?

KOTA BARU: The removal of a plaque placed at Dataran Ilmu here on Saturday is a sure sign of the ongoing animosity between Umno and PAS despite talks of thawing ties ahead of GE14.

In the incident, the local council here acted within three hours after Kelantan Umno chief Mustafa Mohamad had laid down the plaque called Dataran Tok Pa to mark an upgrading of drainage system in the area.

Dataran Ilmu is known as a platform for PAS leaders to run down the federal government and many here are wondering what led Mustafa to actually place the plaque at this PAS spot.

Was Mustafa trying to push his luck to gauge the potential election pact between the two parties or was he trying to mock PAS to prove that it is virtually impossible to work with each other?

Dataran Ilmu is a sacred ground for the bashing of Umno and BN for over 28 years and it was mooted by the late Nik Aziz Nik Mat as a sermon area, and it has become so popular among the PAS crowd.

So, the question is what was the big idea behind Mustapa’s motive in placing the plaque on PAS’ sacred ground.

Kelantan’s local government committee chairman Abdul Fatah Mahmood and Kota Baru Municipal Council president Zamri Ismail both expressed their shock over the move, wondering if Mustapa had pushed the boundaries of friendship for granted.

Dr Kamarul Zaman Yusoff, director of Malaysian Institute of Political Analysis (Mapan) and as attached to UUM’s Ghazali Shafie Graduate School of Government, said it was an unprecedented move by Umno to push their luck in such a manner.

“Why it happened is all a mystery to me. Some say Mustapa wanted to show that Umno and PAS could never work together.

“Others are suggesting that it would be easy for Umno to take over the state when the time comes without any obligations.

“Removing the plaque is not understandable and naming is Dataran Tok Pa is also extreme,” he said when contacted Sunday.

The plaque opening was not actually included Mustapa’s itinerary for the day and even his federal officers were perplexed by the event.

Kamarul also pointed out that it was inappropriate to rename the place known as Dataran Ilmu to Dataran Tok Pa, and concluded that it was a political fodder for the election campaign.

Senior PAS leaders are not taking this lying down, as it is the late Nik Aziz’s platform that has been politicised now.