Azizah’s solid and impressive win in Permatang Pauh by-election paves the way for her to be re-elected as Parliamentary Opposition Leader


Datuk Seri Dr. Wan Azizah Wan Ismail’s solid and impressive win in the Permatang Pauh by-election paves the way for her to be re-elected as Parliamentary Opposition Leader.

UMNO/Barisan Nasional leaders had belaboured under the mirage that the Permatang Pauh by-election was a “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity to wrest back the seat which for the past 17 years had been the command-and-communications centre for political change and the concept of Ketuanan Rakyat.

Despite UMNO Vice President Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi’s promise of “shock and awe” at the beginning of the by-election, the UMNO/Barisan Nasional campaign, which was one of the dirtiest and dishonest in Malaysian election history exploiting and abusing the social media with lies and falsehoods, fizzled out and did not even materially improve on UMNO/BN’s share of the total votes cast.

UMNO/BN had the Election Commission to be grateful and thank, for if the polling had been held on a weekend, allowing more voters from outstation to return to vote, and the voter turnout had reached 80% and not just 74% recorded yesterday, Azizah would have no problem securing a bigger majority than the 11,721-vote majority won by Anwar Ibrahim in the 2013 general election (when voter turnout was as high as 88.2%).

Azizah’s victory in the Permatang Pauh by-election is a signpost that the future lies with inclusive politics – which embraces all Malaysians, regardless of race, religion or region – and not with sectarian or exclusive politics bound to any single race or religion or the politics of dishonesty, either by peddling lies or delivering different political messages to different communities as UMNO/BN campaigners were guilty of in the by-election.

A lot of political pyrotechnics were staged during the Permatang Pauh by-election which attracted media publicity and frenzy, but the results showed that voters are more level-headed and have more common sense to be swayed by such histrionics and media hypes.

There are lessons to be learnt by Pakatan Rakyat parties from the Permatang Pauh by-election – the urgent need to regain the confidence, hope and trust of the majority of the national electorate who had voted for PR in the 13th General Election.

There is no future for Pakatan Rakyat if the three PR parties cannot restore the confidence of Malaysians who had placed such high hopes and trust in Pakatan Rakyat.

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  1. #1 by Justice Ipsofacto on Friday, 8 May 2015 - 4:13 pm

    Once the wave gathers sufficient speed and energy and then rises, it has to roll its full course.

    Nothing can stop it.

    Umno quite clearly has failed to appreciate this crucial fact.

    The tsunami we witnessed has gathered a great deal more strength and speed since the last GE.

    And its waves are still rising.

  2. #2 by Sallang on Friday, 8 May 2015 - 4:27 pm

    History has repeated itself.
    However this time we have Hadi, the torn in PR’s flesh.
    PKR need to start gathering good quality members, the like of Rafizi, to spearhead the party.
    As of now, PKR is deem to be weak, unlike DAP, where we have more good choices.

  3. #3 by pulau_sibu on Saturday, 9 May 2015 - 5:54 am

    not an easy job to win it with large majority. you have had Penang CM and Selangor MB behind it. Mat Sabu is a nice person, perhaps my most respected leader from PAS.

    even under heavy criticism by TM, NR is still finding ways to steal, and now even stealing the al lah money. buying land? he wants to make the piece of land as new Mecca for the pilgrims?

  4. #4 by Sallang on Saturday, 9 May 2015 - 7:06 am

    ‘ he wants to make the piece of land as new Mecca for the pilgrims?’
    pulau_sibu, you gave Selangor government an idea.
    Since Selangor is on the west, it is not a bad idea to create a new Mecca.
    After all, not all Muslims can afford to go for pilgrimage in the real one. Some may not have even come to KL in their lifetime.
    Symbolically, all those poor Muslims around the country, having reached the age of 55, can come to Shah Alam Mosque to pray, where free food will be provided.
    I think it will give more meaning in life.

  5. #5 by Bigjoe on Saturday, 9 May 2015 - 3:48 pm

    I keep wondering why not more is made of the fact BOTH ROMPIN AND Permatang Pauh proved that HUDUD is no winner but a loser issue for PAS?? In Rompin, the Chinese voted against Hudud while in Pematang Pauh, opposition against Hudud proved to not lose Malay votes.

  6. #6 by winstony on Sunday, 10 May 2015 - 9:02 am

    The greatest rub here is that even the Malay voters are deserting them.
    The opposition must ensure that this momentum is not lost.

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