Pakatan Harapan's defeat in Cameron Highlands and Semenyih by-elections was a collective failure and not that of DAP alone, said the party's youth wing today.
DAP Youth vice-chief Muhammad Shakir Ameer said it was thus wrong for Bersatu leaders such as Rais Yatim to pin the blame on DAP for Harapan's defeat in Semenyih.
"It is unfair for a Bersatu leader like Rais Yatim to use DAP as a bogeyman for the loss in the recent Semenyih by election.
"He should not easily fall for the PAS-Umno narrative that paints DAP in a bad light.
"The victory of the 14th General Elections is the collective success of all four component parties of Pakatan Harapan as a whole. It should be acknowledged that DAP managed to deliver the necessary number of seats that also contributed to the victory of Pakatan Harapan.
"Nevertheless, the failure of the last two by-elections is also a collective failure of Pakatan Harapan as a whole. Therefore, the recent Semenyih loss should be seen as the collective responsibility of all four component parties," he said in a statement.
Shakir's statement came in the wake of the salvo fired by Rais yesterday, who said DAP's image must be softened if Harapan wants the Malays to focus on the corruption allegations against former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak.
Rais' remarks came when he was commenting on whether anti-DAP sentiments among Malays were the cause of Harapan's loss in the Semenyih by-election on Saturday.
Stop pointing fingers
In his statement, Shakir (photo below) also reminded Harapan leaders that they should not blame one another when there are setbacks.
Instead, he added, the leaders should learn from the election losses and find ways to regain the people's trust.
Shakir pointed out that Harapan cannot be dependent on allegations against Najib to keep the people's support.
"The people know that former prime minister Najib is corrupt, which is the reason why he lost power. We cannot keep depending on the allegations against one man to seek support from the people.
"Seeking support comes from us, collectively as Pakatan Harapan, and not the flaws of one man or his party who has already lost power.
"Bumiputera-centric parties like Bersatu need to convince the Malay and bumiputera communities to accept Pakatan Harapan as a whole and reduce their insecurities, while promoting national unity among races," he said.
He added that Harapan should not forget other ethnic communities and continue their reform agenda, and reminded the coalition on the need to counter PAS and Umno tactics "to instigate hatred among races."