cooks up underground student plot to mislead public: Fadzil
Yee Siong, Malaysiakini
8:04pm Wed Sep 5th, 2001
current media coverage about underground movements in universities
using registered student bodies to unseat the government was
part of an ‘Umno’s sandiwara’ (shadow play) to mislead the
public, said an opposition leader today.
PAS president Fadzil Noor said such a move was to instil fear
into non-Muslims so that they will have misconceptions about
is actually Umno who is trying to use students to give false
statements to the media to insult Islam,” said Fadzil in a
was referring to the claim by former Universiti Teknologi
Malaysia student Wan Noor Hayati Wan Alias that there are
underground movements, influenced by PAS Youth, which are
trying to “brainwash” young students in the campus to topple
Noor Hayati claimed that this was done behind the facade of
religious activities using several organisations comprising
mostly Muslim members such as the Muslim Students’ Society
or Persatuan Mahasiswa Islam (PMI).
Fadzil refuted the claim, saying PMI had been active in championing
the cause of Islam since its establishment decades ago.
added the organisation was gaining popularity among Muslim
students and therefore its leaders had constantly been elected
into student representatives’ council.
candidates have always defeated those puppets of a ruling
secular party,” said Fadzil.
PAS leaders such as deputy president and Terengganu Mentri
Besar Abdul Hadi Awang were quoted as saying that most of
the student representatives are supporters of the Muslim party.
Kelantan PAS Youth chief Takiyuddin Hassan reportedly admitted
that the Kelantan Undergraduates Movement or Markaz Siswazah
Kelantan was affiliated with the party.
he denied that the group had any militant tendencies.
Malays, who formed the majority of student representatives,
have often fought vigorously for the council’s top posts and
most of them are known to be loosely aligned to either Umno
pundits noted that such a stiff competition was because student
leaders supporting different parties hope to exercise their
influence over their peers, who are new eligible voters.
the last general elections in 1999, it was widely believed
that Umno lost a substantial number of Malay youngsters’ votes
to its long-time rival PAS.
said speculation is rife that “certain parties within the
government” are now trying to collaborate with university
administrators to build their own power base among students.
are thinking of setting up a new organisation called Akademi
Mahasiswa Islam Nasional to weaken PMI’s influence,” he said.
recent months, the government has repeatedly warned about
the rising militant trend among university students.
least one student leader from the local varsity was arrested
by police under the controversial Internal Security Act in
July but was subsequently released unconditionally.