Archive for category Elections

One-to-one electoral contest is one of the two elements for an united Opposition to replace UMNO/BN in 14 GE – the other more important is a minimum common electoral programme

Everyone agrees with National Human Rights Society (HAKAM) Chairperson Datuk Ambiga Sreenivasan who said at the 69th birthday celebration for jailed Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim outside Sungai Buloh prison on Wednesday night that the best birthday present for Anwar would be a united opposition against UMNO/BN to face the 14th General Election.

A one-to-one electoral contest is one of the two elements for an united Opposition to replace UMNO/BN in 14GE – the other more important is a minimum common electoral programme.

Can we for instance replicate or improve on the Opposition’s performance of the 13th General Election on May 5, 2013 when the Opposition, then in the form and name of Pakatan Rakyat, won three state governments, polled 53% of the popular vote, and elected 89 Members of Parliament and 229 State Assembly men and women, excluding Sarawak?

As things stand today, assuming that the current political climate holds without any major changes, it would be naïve to assume that voters would simply revert back to their GE2013 voting habits if one-to-one fights can be guaranteed in the next general election.

Lets consider Selangor, using the results of the recent Sungai Besar by-election as a benchmark.
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Malaysians must be able to hope again that change of Federal Government which was within a whisker of achievement in the 13GE was possible and realizable in 14GE, even if held in July/August next year

In the 13th General Election in 2013 three years ago, Malaysians regardless of race and religion were never so united in wanting to bring about a change of Federal Government, which would be regarded as unthinkable and impossible just five years earlier before the “political tsunami” of the 12th General Election in 2008.

Although the majority of voters voted for change of Federal Government, the undemocratic and unfair electoral system allowed Datuk Seri Najib Razak to become the first minority Prime Minister in the country because he won some 60 per cent of the parliamentary seats with only some 47% of the popular vote.

Many Malaysians have become disappointed, disenchanted and given up hope that there is a possibility of democratic change in Malaysia, and have voted with their feet with a surge of migration in the past three years.

The greatest challenge in Malaysia today is to ensure that Malaysians can hope again that change of Federal Government, which was within a whisker of achievement in the 13GE, is still possible and realizable in the 14th General Election even if it is held in July/August next year. Read the rest of this entry »

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UMNO/BN must be voted out of Putrajaya at least once if Malaysia is to become a normal democratic country and break the present national trajectory trending down the slippery slope towards a fractured, failed and rogue state

Many are asking about the future of Malaysia after the two big Barisan Nasional wins in the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections a week ago, with the backdrop of the BN landslide victory in the Sarawak State General Election and the previous Teluk Intan by-election.

Is it still possible for Malaysians to hope for political change in Putrajaya at the 14th General Election whether in 2018 or a year earlier in July or August next year or in the near future?

Let us have a reality check as we have travelled quite a political distance in Malaysia. Only eight years ago, before the 2008 General Election, if any Malaysian was asked if it was possible foresee a change of Federal Government, the answer would be an unanimous and and unambiguous “No”.

But the “political tsunami” of the 2008 General Election had completely changed the political landscape, and what had been “unthinkable” and “impossible” had been transformed into a “thinkable”, “possible” and “achievable”, and the question of a change of Federal Government has taken the quantum leap from “whether” to “when” and “how”.

The 2013 General Election was fought on the platform of a change of Federal Government, and although 53% of the voters voted for change, victory was denied them because of the undemocratic electoral system which allowed Datuk Najib Razak to become the nation’s first minority Prime Minister by winning 60 per cent of the parliamentary seats though only securing a minority of 47% of the popular vote.

Malaysia is now an extraordinary paradox – on the one hand, Najib Razak an increasingly more powerful and unshakeable Prime Minister of Malaysia inside the country , while internationally he is under increasing siege perceived as corrupt, haunted and hounded by the RM55 billion 1MDB global scandal (which contained within it the RM4.2 billion “donation” scandal) which is being investigated by seven other countries. Read the rest of this entry »

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A paradox, but two by-election victories make UMNO/BN leaders more desperate for general election victory and there will be greater demonization campaign against the opposition – such as painting me as anti-Malay, anti-Islam or even anti-Chinese

This is a paradox – but the two by-election victories in Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar have made UMNO/BN leaders more desperate for victory in the 14th General Election and I expect a greater demonization campaign against the Opposition – such as painting me as anti-Malay, anti-Islam and even as anti-Chinese.

I will give three examples post twin by-elections:

Firstly, I would place in such a category the statement by the former Chief Justice Tun Abdul Hamid Mohamad who alleged that Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s support of opposition parties DAP and Amanah in the recent by-elections were “detrimental to Malays”.

He said that the former prime minister could try and oust Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak from within Umno, but should steer clear of lobbying for support within the Pakatan Harapan opposition alliance as the chances of Malays retaining power once they have lost it is “very slim”.

Could the former Chief Justice answer the two questions which had been posed by the National Laureate Pak Samad:

“How are Malays under threat? How can religion (Islam) and Malays be threatened when those in power have been Malay for over five decades?

“What have they (Malay leaders) been doing for five decades (if Malays can be under threat)?”

Whatever happens in the 14th General Election, whether Najib is toppled as Prime Minister or UMNO loses the Federal Government, the Malays in Malaysia will continue to exercise political power in Malaysia as there is no way they will lose their political power. Read the rest of this entry »

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Why a one-to-one fight is not the “magic potion” to defeat Barisan Nasional without a common policy commitment

There has been a vehement reaction to my suggestion that the results of the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections may be justification to revisit an earlier proposal that PAS concentrate in Kelantan, Terengganu, Kedah and Perlis while AMANAH focus on all the other states, subject to adjustments to the arrangement by two political parties.

PAS Vice President and MP for Bukit Gantang Idris Ahmad described the suggestion as “illogical” and that PAS should be allowed to contest in areas it had previously contested in to “maximise victories for the opposition” – as in last Saturday’s Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections.

He said there would not have been an issue in the first place if PAS was up in straight fights against the Barisan Nasional in the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections.

Idris cannot be more wrong, for the recent two by-elections are good examples why after the break-up of Pakatan Rakyat because of the refusal of the Hadi-led PAS leadership to honour the Pakatan Rakyat Common Policy Framework and the Pakatan Rakyat consensus operational principle, the one-to-one fight is not the “magic potion” to defeat the Barisan Nasional. Read the rest of this entry »

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An early GE14 on the cards?

P Gunasegaram
Malaysiakini
21 Jun 2016

QUESTION TIME While most people had expected BN to win the parliamentary seats of Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar hands down, the huge margin of victory must have surprised both BN and the opposition and raises the possibility of early general elections in the wake of the euphoria and an opposition in disarray.

But before we discuss that, what caused the rout and what are its implications? By numbers, two things seem fairly obvious. One, there was a massive swing to BN of Chinese votes and two, Amanah’s support among Malay votes were even lower than expected. Read the rest of this entry »

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Fallacies and facts on the two by-elections

Kim Quek
Malaysiakini
21 Jun 2016

COMMENT Bombastic assertions abound since the conclusion of the by-elections in Sungai Besar, Selangor and Kuala Kangsar, Perak. Chief among these are Malaysians’ resounding endorsement of PM Najib Abdul Razak’s otherwise precarious leadership and the allegedly corrupt rule of the Barisan Nasional government, as well as a huge shift of Chinese support to BN.

These claims are in reality more fallacy than fact. Read the rest of this entry »

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The June by-elections and the politics of losing

Bridget Welsh
Malaysiakini
21st June 2018

COMMENT The by-election results for Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar are in. Umno held onto their seats, and increased its majorities.

Given the tragedy surrounding the polls stemming from the helicopter accident in Sarawak last month, the fact that by-elections disproportionately favour those with access to resources, and the reality that these contests were three-cornered fights with a divided opposition, these results are not unexpected.

The important implications of these by-elections lies less in the winning, but in the losing – as the shifts in campaigning, voting and political alignments reveal that old dreams are gone. Malaysian electoral politics is shifting, and all indications are that the direction is not toward a stronger, more vibrant polity that offers meaningful choices to the electorate. Read the rest of this entry »

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If Hadi is right, it must be Allah’s will that 65-year-old PAS is defeated by nine-month-old AMANAH and crushed in Sungai Besar by-election securing one per cent of Chinese votes when it received 75% Chinese voter support in 2013GE

This must be the first time that the UMNO President has beaten PAS President in claiming divine intervention for an electoral victory.

On Saturday night, the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said he had turned to God for answers if he was on the right path or whether he had really strayed, and Barisan Nasional’s “thumping victories in Kuala Kangsar and Sungai Besar by-elections was God’s answer to his prayers”.
Najib said:

“I don’t reply with harsh words. I only want to work. I prayed to Allah, if I am right, then show it.

“(Then) God gave us victory beyond our expectations.”

It will not be long before there will be claims that Najib’s RM55 billion 1MDB and RM2.5 billion “donation” twin global scandals have received God’s blessings as well.

In the two by-elections, the student has outshone the teacher, as the “adviser” took two full days to recover from PAS’ stinging defeats in the two by-elections and to urge PAS supporters not to despair as it is in Allah’s powers to dictate victory for all who uphold Islam.

If the PAS President, Datuk Seri Hadi Awang is right, it must be Allah’s will that the 65-year-old PAS is defeated by nine-month-old AMANAH and crushed in Sungai Besar by-election, securing one per cent of Chinese votes when it received 75% Chinese voter support in 2013GE. Read the rest of this entry »

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Let Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections be the last battles for the politics of race and the opening salvoes for the battle for the new politics of good governance, democracy and nation-building

The two Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-election results on Saturday have given rise to ecstasy and euphoria on the one hand and gloom and doom on the other.

The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib was so elated by the twin by-election results that he even proudly embraced Tun Mahathir’s description of him in Jerlun two days earlier and proclaimed that “Idi Amin of Malaysia is more popular” than Malaysia’s former longest-serving Prime Minister.

UMNO/Barisan Nasional leaders celebrated the “return” of the Chinese voters to Barisan Nasional and there is talk of an earlier 14th General Elections next year although it was scheduled for 2018.

UMNO/BN virtually proclaimed a new political dawn with the mythical “skyrocketing” majorities in two by-elections – 9,191 votes in Kuala Kangsar and 6,969 votes in Sungai Besar.

But as the former Batu Kawan Umno vice chief Khairuddin Abu Hassan has rightly pointed out, BN’s majority was not that big once all the votes for the opposition were taken into account.

If the Amanah and PAS votes are combined, BN’s majority is reduced to 2,086 in Kuala Kangsar or 8.73% of the total votes cast and 2,289 in Sungai Besi or 7.31 per cent. Read the rest of this entry »

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Najib sticks it to nemisis Mahathir with twin byelection victories

Amanda Hodge
The Australian
JUNE 20, 2016

The party of Malaysia’s scandal-tainted Prime Minister Najib Razak has won two by-elections in a landslide, further strengthening his rule despite corruption allegations.

Malaysia’s Teflon-coated Prime Minister Najib Razak has claimed a key victory over political mentor-turned foe Mahathir Mohamad with landslide wins in two weekend by-elections.

Mr Najib has survived not only an international scandal over an alleged misappropriation of ­billions from his pet 1MDB state development fund, but also allegations he profited by as much as $US1 billion from the fund, which he denies.

Mr Najib’s Barison Nasional coalition held the west coast seats of Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar on Saturday with increased majorities. Though the victories were expected, the by-elections had been billed as a test of Mr Najib’s ability to lead the party, which has ruled Malaysia for 57 years, back into government at the general election.

On Saturday night, Mr Najib took aim at Dr Mahathir, who referred to the Prime Minister as the “Idi Amin of Malaysia”.

“He called me the Idi Amin of Malaysia. (Well) the Idi Amin of Malaysia is more popular,” Mr Najib told party loyalists. Read the rest of this entry »

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Election victories bolster scandal-tainted Malaysian leader

By ASSOCIATED PRESS
Daily Mail
19 June 2016

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — The party of Malaysia’s scandal-tainted Prime Minister Najib Razak has won two parliamentary by-elections in a landslide, further strengthening his rule despite corruption allegations.

Najib’s United Malays National Organization retained the Sungai Besar seat in central Selangor state and Kuala Kangsar in northern Perak state in the elections Saturday with much larger majorities. The elections were triggered after the deaths of the incumbents in a helicopter crash.

The victory was expected due to a fractured opposition, as well as the ruling coalition’s well-oiled machinery and money. Voters in the two rural constituencies are mostly ethnic Malays, the bedrock of support for Najib’s Malay party.

Najib said the victory showed that the people rejected “politically-motivated slander” against his government. Last month, he also secured a major win for the coalition in a state election. Read the rest of this entry »

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Embattled PM wins by-elections in Malaysia

AFP
Bangkok Post
19 Jun 2016

KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysia’s ruling party won two parliamentary by-elections Saturday that were closely watched for indications of whether graft allegations hounding Prime Minister Najib Razak were affecting his governing coalition’s support.

The results in two mainly rural constituencies were largely expected, as support typically runs strong in such areas for the dominant United Malays National Organisation (UMNO).

The UMNO-led ruling coalition also enjoys huge advantages in money and machinery over a splintered opposition.

UMNO candidate Budiman Mohamad Zohdi won the parliamentary seat of Sungai Besar of west-central Malaysia, while Mastura Mohamad Yazid won the Kuala Kangsar constituency seat in the country’s north, the election commission announced.

Both candidates also pulled off a thumping victory as predicted. Read the rest of this entry »

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Twin Malaysia By-Elections to Reveal Level of Support for Najib

by Shamim Adam
Bloomberg
June 18, 2016

Voters in two Malaysian districts head to the polls Saturday in by-elections that will indicate the extent of Prime Minister Najib Razak’s hold on his party.

More than 42,600 people in Sungai Besar in Selangor state and 33,000 in Kuala Kangsar in the northern Perak region will pick new lawmakers after a helicopter crash last month killed incumbents from Najib’s United Malays National Organisation, or UMNO.

The vote is the first test of public support for Najib on peninsular Malaysia after a year of political turmoil over funding scandals. Losses or narrower victories could spur concern in UMNO about his ability to steer it to another win in a national election due by 2018. Equally, a strong win for seats already held by UMNO would bolster his grip.

Former leader Mahathir Mohamad has recently lost traction in his bid to convince party officials that Najib is a liability and will cost them a reign unbroken since 1957. Most UMNO divisional chiefs back the premier, even amid concerns about slowing growth and its impact on ethnic Malays, the cornerstone of the party. Convincing wins would help Najib silence the Mahathir-led murmurings about his leadership. Read the rest of this entry »

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It is still not too late for every voter, especially outside Kuala Kangsar and Sungai Besar, to make the historic trip home to vote in the two most important by-elections in nation’s history

The 13-day campaign for the Kuala Kangsar and Sungai Besar by-elections are over and it is for the 32,632 voters in Kuala Kangsar and 42,365 voters in Sungai Besar to decide the outcome of the two historic by-elections today.

For the past two weeks, I had been shuttling between Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar, and it is my hope that on the 50th anniversary of my political work in Malaysia, I can get a big present – a historic and miraculous victory in the Kuala Kangsar and/or Sungai Besar by-elections.

Can we “write history, create miracle” today?

I confess to be disheartened by a good round-up article in Malay Mail Online, “As poll looms, Sungai Besar voters ask: Should I bother?” by its reporter, A. Ruban, quoting several voters who were staunch supporters of the now defunct Pakatan Rakyat in two minds about casting their ballots in the Sungai Besar by-election. Read the rest of this entry »

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A Pakatan Harapan Federal Government will promote Sekinchan as an international tourist destination just as Suee Lin has succeeded in making Sekinchan a top national tourist spot in Malaysia

The Sungai Besar by-election on Saturday will have far-reaching implications and consequences for Sekinchan, Sungai Besar as well as Malaysia, and those who think that the by-election is just about who will be the new MP for the area and will have no other larger meaning or importance cannot be more wrong.

Although both the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections cannot materially change the respective parliamentary numbers and strength of the political parties, a defeat by UMNO in the sixty-year-old UMNO traditional stronghold of Sungai Besar and/or Kuala Kangsar would have an traumatic effect which will affect the future of Datuk Seri Najib Razak as Prime Minister – whether immediately, in the next 24 months or during the 14th General Election by 2018.

In fact, a defeat for UMNO in Sungai Besar and/or Kuala Kangsar will be world news and make history for by-elections in Malaysia, for it would tally with international perceptions and sentiments about the1MDB global scandal hounding and haunting the Malaysian Prime Minister and government, and a clear signal that even Malaysians in semi-urban areas are not politically apathetic or unconcerned about global scandals, good governance and the great questions of right and wrong in public affairs as many had thought. Read the rest of this entry »

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Five “atomic bomb” issues for the AMANAH candidates to hurl at Najib in Parliament if they are elected as MPs on Saturday

PKR Secretary-General and MP for Pandan Rafizi Ramli created quite a stir when at a Kuala Kangsar by-election ceramah, he said that if the AMANAH candidate, Ahmad Termizi Ramli, who is a nuclear physicist, is elected, he would be asked to hurl an “atomic bomb” at the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak in Parliament.

Everybody had a good laugh as they knew that it was a figure of speech, meaning that Ahmad Termizi would be raising in Parliament mega Najib scandals and wrongdoings, as it would be physically impossible for any human being to “hurl” any atomic bomb at anyone in Parliament – as an atomic bomb will be too heavy for any human being to hurl it around as if Termizi is a superhuman weight-lifter. For example, the two atomic bombs, “Little Boy” and “Fat Man” dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki which ended the Second World War in Asia-Pacific in 1945, weighed more than 10,000 pounds each!

But there are cretins who took Rafizi literally as even to lodge police reports as if
Rafizi was issuing a grave threat threatenning the life and limb of the Prime Minister (if so, even DAP leaders will be the first to deplore Rafizi’s speech) and what is even more shocking, the Police took the police reports of the cretins so seriously that Rafizi had been questioned by the police and there is even a possibility that Rafizi may be charged in court for an action which would be the first in the world – for issuing a threat through use of figurative language.

We will wait to see what the Police and the Attorney-General will do in this case, but there is no doubt that if Azhar Shukor and Ahmad Termizi Ramli are elected as MPs in Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar respectively, they will be expected to raise issues and scandals of “atomic-bomb proportions” in Parliament. Read the rest of this entry »

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820 Indian voters in Sungai Besar will be king-makers in the by-election on Saturday if the contest between the UMNO/BN and AMANAH/PH candidates is a close battle

The Sungai Besar by-election on Saturday is expected to be a close fight between the UMNO/Barisan Nasional and AMANAH/Pakatan Harapan candidates with the PAS candidate taking a poor third position.

If the Sungai Besar by-election is a close battle with the victor winning by a very slim majority, then the 820 Indian voters in Sungai Besar will be the “king makers” who will decide whether Pakatan Harapan candidate Azhar Shukor or Barisan Nasional candidate Budiman Mohd Zohdi is elected as MP for Sungai Besar on Saturday.

I call on every single voter, whether Malay, Chinese or Indian to come out to vote so that there is an even higher voter-turnout than during the 13th General Election in May 2013 when over 88% of the voters cast their votes.

Voters should cast their votes, not as Malays, Chinese or Indians, but as Malaysians to ensure tolerance and harmony among the diverse races, religions, languages and cultures as a fundamental principle for the creation of an united, democratic, just and prosperous Malaysian nation.

Malaysia will be destroyed if we allow the politics of race and religion to create distrust and hatred among the different races and religions, which is why it is important that we educate every Malaysian to respect the diverse races, religions, languages and cultures in Malaysia. Read the rest of this entry »

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Was ransom paid or not to Abu Sayyaf for the four Sarawakian hostages? Why has Purtrajaya lost the capacity to guarantee the safety and security of Malaysians in their homeland and waters whether from Abu Sayyaf or Indonesian authorities?

Something is wrong with the governance capability in Putrajaya after some six decades of UMNO/BN government.

When will the soul of Malaysia find peace and tranquility?

The latest trauma to hit Malaysians is today’s report from the Philippines media in Tawi-Tawi that another four Malaysian nationals had been kidnapped off the coast of Sabah and brought to Sulu.

Has the Malaysian government lost the capacity to ensure safety and security for Malaysian nationals in their homeland and waters? Read the rest of this entry »

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Ismail Sabri reminded of my three tweets to him that I am prepared to forgive him but he must apologise for his nefarious lies about me or I will pursue the matter and not let matter rest

Earlier today, I sent three tweets to the Minister for Rural and Regional Development, Datuk Ismail Sabri Yaakub, as follows:

1. @IsmailSabri60 You can run, you cannot hide. Where are your examples to substantiate your allegation that I had been anti-Malay anti-Islam?

2. Most shocking in this holy month of Ramadam @IsmailSabri60 can still tell such nefarious lies. Am prepared to forgive you if you apologise.

3. If @IsmailSabri60 does not apologise, I will pursue the issue whether in Parliament or the courts. Ball in your court. Over to you.

There has been thunderous silence from Ismail who had pretensions that he is one of the most Internet-savvy Cabinet Ministers in the country.

Ismail had said that he can compile a whole book to prove that I am anti-Malay and anti-Islam and I had told him that the book can wait, but to cite an instance a day up to the by-election polling day on Saturday 18th June 2016 that I had been anti-Malay and anti-Islam in my 50 years in politics.

Three days have passed and Ismail already owed me three examples. Will he come up with one example a day today and tomorrow, to produce a total of five examples in time for the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections – which should be “chicken-feed” since he claimed that he could compile a book, which should have at least 100 examples.

I had hoped to make some money from Ismail but he seemed to have realised that he is on a slippery slope which would be very costly for him. If Ismail has now realised that he had wrongly defamed me, he should have the honesty and decency to publicly apologise for telling baseless lies and falsehoods about me – especially in this holy month of Ramadan. Read the rest of this entry »

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