Has PAS Become A Cult of Hadi Awang ?

Hadi Awang affirmed that he has “often met with Prophet Muhammad in his dreams.” Such theatrics are delivered with the goal to redeem the now mortally wounded PAS.When PAS resorts to cult-like behavior to retain the loyalty of the rank and file members, that party is way over it’s head.

By Mustaqim Abdullah

A cult is defined by the perpetual worship of the single authority at hand, irrespective of the gender of the leader. In the case of Hadi Awang, the president of PAS has been mouthing some very strange things over the last few days.

When Nik Omar, one of the better sons of the late spiritual guru Nik Aziz agreed to join Amanah, indeed to compete for office in Chempa, Kelantan, Awang Hadi had him summarily sacked on April 27.

But what was more shocking was not the dismissal. Rather it was the explanation offered by Hadi Awang that came after. According to Hadi Awang, the late spiritual guru Nik Aziz appeared to him in a dream, though hobbled and only left with one leg.

No one knows if Hadi Awang had been reading the works of Sigmund Freud or Carl Jung, two of the earliest psycho analysts, but the use of dreams of explain a certain event is quite jarring in some sense.

First, it established the grey zone where only Hadi Awang is right, and everyone else wrong. Second, it may also be a concoction or a sheer fabrication.

Just today, Hadi Awang struck again. Still reeling from the audio tape that the top echelons of PAS has received huge amount of money from Barisan National, a confession that came from Nik Abduh, younger brother to Nik Omah.

Hadi Awang affirmed that he has “often met with Prophet Muhammad in his dreams.” Such theatrics are delivered with the goal to redeem the now mortally wounded PAS.

At 160 seats, PAS knows that it cannot win any major seats, let alone 1/3 of them to be “KingMaker.” PAS’s best performance was 27 seats in 1999, due largely to the cross over of UMNO members to PAS, not as a result of Prophetic intervention as much as the backlash against the jailing of Anwar Ibrahim.

By sensationalizing any emotional and religious incidents, Hadi Awang plans to retain some semblance of strategic relevance left. In fact – by calling to the ghayb – Hadi Awang has found his bread-and-butter issue of the implementation of Sharia and its associated corporal punishments is not enough to stem the tide. Not to mention that ever since he started his courtship with Najib Razak, he has failed to deliver on substantive legislation to advance the hudud agenda. That point must not be lost on PAS members wondering whether their leader still has what it takes.

When PAS resorts to cult-like behavior to retain the loyalty of the rank and file members, that party is way over it’s head.

In fact, there is every likelihood that the process of revulsion of PAS has begun. Instead of projecting a sane, and saintly disposition, PAS has flipped 360 degree. It is now using religion by all means necessary to remain on top of it’s electoral roll.