“Since we applied to register as a formal political coalition, the ROS has come back to us once,” PKR secretary-general Saifuddin Naution told Harakahdaily.
“They confirmed that no other party has taken the name Pakatan Rakyat and secondly, they also said we could adopt the name Pakatan Rakyat Malaysia and we have agreed.
“Adding on the ’Malaysia’ will give us a greater national sense and flavor. And frankly at this stage, we do not wish to make many objections because we don’t want any unnecessary delay.”
A historic moment
In November 2009, PAS, PKR and DAP had rushed to tender their application after the Registrar of Societies, Md Alias Jalil, publicly said there was no rule that required a formal coalition to have a minimum of seven component parties.
In their registration form, PAS, PKR and DAP had listed about 10 names each together with a list of common targets and goals as detailed in their Common Policy Framework.
The pro-forma chairman stated in their application was PKR senior leader Zaid Ibrahim, who had undertaken the mammoth task of drafting much of the Common Policy Framework, which will form the basis for the formalized coalition.
Indeed, the official establishment of Pakatan Rakyat Malaysia would be a historic and proud moment not just for the three partners but for Malaysians as a whole as it represents a major step in their national development.
Will the ROS succumb to double standards
Since independence from British rule in 1957, the country has only known the Umno-BN coalition. With the Pakatan, the people will not only have another choice, it also underscores the coming of age of democracy in the country and the maturity of its people.
Nevertheless, Pakatan does not expect a smooth ride. Indeed, there is speculation the ROS – like many of the other institutions in the country – may succumb to pressure from the Umno-BN to derail its application.
“Let's be frank, it took years for Parti Sosialis Malaysia, which is aligned to the opposition, just to get approval to become a political party. What more the Pakatan, when we are the No.1 threat to Prime Minister Najib Razak?,” asked Saifuddin.
“No doubt, another party Makkal Sakthi got the green light within months but then this is the double standards that we are talking about. If you are aligned to Umno-BN, approval is in the blink of any eye, if you are not, then you may have to wait for years.”