Archive for category Elections

If Maria Chin is to be held under Sosma for 28 days because of a puny grant from OSF before 2011, then Najib should be detained for life for receiving RM4.2 billion from foreign sources

Gerakan President Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong’s had been Minister for nearly two-and-a-half years after he defeated DAP candidate Dyana Sofya in the Teluk Intan by-election on May 31, 2016 with a wafer-thin majority of 238 votes.

Mah’s 30 months in Parliament and Cabinet are marked by three political and economic disasters: firstly, the government’s increasingly repressive measures highlighted by the undemocratic detention of Bersih chairperson, Maria Chin; secondly, Malaysia’s ignominy and infamy for being regarded worldwide as a “global kleptocracy”; and thirdly, the unchecked decline in the value of the Malaysian ringgit, reflecting widespread loss of investor confidence in the Malaysian economy and the country’s political leadership.

Gerakan claims to be the “conscience of BN government” but if Gerakan is able to play this role, these three national blackmarks would not have taken place.

The Gerakan is not the “conscience” of the BN government, for Mah’s 30 months as a Cabinet Minister is distinguished by Gerakan subservice to and compliance with UMNO’s repressive and kleptocratic policies, as Mah had not dared to say a single word whether about Maria Chin’s detention or the multi-billion dollar 1MDB global kleptocratic money-laundering scandal, which catapulted Malaysia into the stratosphere of a “global kleptocracy”.

When will Mah and Gerakan speak up to demand the immediate and unconditional release of Maria Chin, and to condemn her detention under Sosma, which is a clear-cut violation of parliamentary undertaking by the UMNO/BN government that the Sosma legislation would only be used against terrorists and not peaceful NGO activists and political opponents? Read the rest of this entry »

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Is IGP’s preposterous statement a signal to the Red Shirts that the police will not uphold the law and ignore Section 18 of Peaceful Assembly Act, allowing the Red Shirts to go on a rampage tomorrow?

All decent and law-abiding Malaysians are shocked by the statement by the Inspector-General of Police, Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar, who asked the preposterous question why those who do not abide by the law are requesting for police protection, asserting that “Those who want to ask for protection should obey the law first”.

Is the IGP’s response to former Bersih chairperson Datuk Ambiga Sreenivasan who had said that there are existing legal provisions that can be applied to prevent the Bersih rally and the Red Shirts counter-rally to occur simultaneously a signal, a blank cheque or even an invitation to the Red Shirts that they could do their worst as the police will not uphold the law and will ignore Section 18 of the Peaceful Assembly Act, allowing the Red Shirts to go on a rampage tomorrow?

Using Khalid’s logic, what should be the Inspector-General of Police’s role in a country which is regarded world-wide as a ”global kleptocracy”?

Is it to tell the Prime Minister and the government that they cannot expect the police to protect them and uphold the law until and unless they purge and cleanse Malaysia of the infamy and ignominy of such an epithet, as the Police and IGP do not want to be known worldwide as Police and IGP of a “global kleptocracy”? Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysia’s Running Out of Trump Cards

By Andy Mukherjee
Bloomberg
Nov 13, 2016

Amid a deepening emerging-market rout, three of Donald Trump’s seven promises to American workers are making Asia particularly nervous.A U.S. withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership would kill the 12-nation deal, while labeling China as a currency manipulator is set to provoke a tit-for-tat response. If the president-elect delivers on those two threats, the export-led region will wait for Trump to make good on his vow to end “all foreign trading abuses.”Although no Asian nation would relish the prospect of an all-out trade war, Malaysian investors are perhaps most at risk.

Why Malaysia? China, Japan, South Korea, India and Singapore are among America’s 15 biggest trading partners; Malaysia is not. And while it’s a TPP member, the accord’s demise is the least of Kuala Lumpur’s worries. It might even be a short-term boon. After all, the Southeast Asian country is an energy and palm-oil exporter. It’s not terribly competitive at much else.

Opening up Malaysia’s consumer economy of 30 million people as part of the free-trade bargain could turn a fast-vanishing current-account surplus into a permanent deficit. That would weigh on the ringgit, scare away investors in Malaysian bonds, and lead to a spike in companies’ cost of capital.

But TPP being dead doesn’t help either. For one, dollars are in short supply in the banking system, and therefore a flight to safety among investors jittery about a Trump presidency makes Malaysia a particularly vulnerable emerging market. Read the rest of this entry »

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What would have happened if Bersih 5 supporters had been as unruly, provocative and violent as the Red Shirts in Teluk Intan on Saturday?

What would have happened if the Bersih 5 supporters had been as unruly, provocative and violentn as the Red Shirts in Teluk Intan on Saturday?

Undoubtedly, the Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar would have tweeted for the whole world to know about the Bersih 5 supporters’ provocative and violent conduct, how they had deliberately defied the law and order in the country as well as tweeted his “instant” directive to the relevant police officers to bring the offending persons to book or to hunt them down if they do not surrender themselves to the authorities within 24 hours!

More than 72 hours have passed since the hooliganism and thuggery exhibited by the Red Shirts in Teluk Intan, but there is not a squeak either from the Inspector-General of Police or the top police authorities!

What is even more ignominious and infamous is that the Barisan Nasional political leaders are using the Red Shirts hooliganism and thuggery in Teluk Intan as an excuse to issue seemingly even-handed calls to organisers of the Berish 5 and Red Shirt rallies to call off their demonstrations, publicly exhibiting the continuing loss of the UMNO/BN leaders of their moral compass to be unable to distinguish right from wrong. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Pakatan Rakyat Common Policy Framework can be the basis of the Grand Opposition Coalition to bring about fundamental political changes in Malaysia in 14GE

AMANAH Deputy President, Sallehudin Ayub reported that AMANAH has 85,000 members on its first anniversary.

I congratulate Parti AMANAH on its success, for DAP can only boast of having 85,000 members after a decade of political struggle.

Today is a special day for BERSIH 5 launched off its Nov. 19 campaign with publicity convoys from six places in Malaysia – Johor Baru, Lumut, Kangar, Kota Baru, Sandakan and Miri.

The BERSIH 5 campaign for clean, free and fair elections is even more pertinent than in the four previous four BERSIH campaigns, as the proposed redelineation of electoral constituencies have demonstrated that we have an electoral system which is utterly rotten and corrupt to the core.

The Election Commission had violated the constitutional mandate as laid down in the Thirteenth Schedule of the Constitution which stipulates that in any constituency redelineation, “the number of electors within each constituency in a State ought to be approximately equal except that, having regard to the greater difficulty of reaching electors in the country districts and the other disadvantages facing rural constituencies, a measure of weightage for area ought to be given to such constituencies”, but have instead done the exact opposite – widening the disparity between the largest and smallest electorates in both parliamentary and state assembly constituencies.

The Election Commission was not only acting against the Thirteenth Schedule of the Constitution, but was working with a political agenda to gerrymander the constit uency redelineation so that in Parliament, it an achieve the twin objectives of returning UMNO-BN to power in Putrajaya and with a two-thirds parliamentary majority; while at the State Assembly level, ensure that UMNO-BN can win back Selangor state power and ensure that UMNO-BN maintain the state government in both Perak and Kedah, and even secure a two-thirds state assembly majority in Perak. Read the rest of this entry »

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Najib, Mahathir and the timing of Malaysia’s polls

Ooi Kee Beng
The Straits Times
16.9.2016

According to its Constitution, Malaysia has to hold its next general election by Aug 24, 2018. That is still almost two years away. And yet, rumours of early elections persist, both at the state and federal levels.

This needs some explaining, given how Prime Minister Najib Razak waited until almost the last minute to go to the polls back in 2013.

The exercise to delineate constituency boundaries now being concluded heightens speculation that early polls are coming. Having lost its two-third majority since 2008, the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) has not been able to increase the number of parliamentary constituencies; it is now able only to realign the existing ones – or rename them. And that, it is doing.

That in itself is a substantive exercise of power, especially with the independence of the Election Commission that is in charge of the delineation being in serious doubt. Read the rest of this entry »

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Barisan Nasional Supreme Council has degenerated from Federal coalition government’s highest decision-making body into a superfluous and even super-annuated creature without any bite, role, authority or purpose whatsoever

Nobody is impressed with the Barisan Nasional Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor’s announcement that the Barisan Nasional Supreme Council will meet on Friday to discuss the Election Commission’s (EC) proposed redelineation exercise.

This is because the Barisan Nasional Supreme Council has degenerated from the Barisan Nasional Federal coalition government’s highest decision-making body into a superfluous and even superannuated creature without any bite, role, authority or purpose whatsoever.

It has followed the footsteps of the Cabinet to become an utterly toothless, purposeless and irrelevant body.

Despite protestations and denials by the EC Chairman, Datuk Mohd Hashim Abdullah that the constituency redelineation exercise was being carried out for the benefit of certain parties, nobody believes that the Election Commission would dare to propose the most unconstitutional, blatant and flagrant constituency redelineation proposals – the most undemocratic of all five redelineation exercises in the nation’s history – without “greenlight” from the highest “political strategists” in the corridors of power in Putrajaya (which do not include anyone from outside UMNO)!

Mohd Hashim’s protestation and denials lack credibility or conviction, for the EC Chairman is unable to explain why he had jettisoned his predecessor, Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof’s previous redelineation plan to abide by the Constitution and the democratic principle of “one man, one vote” by ensuring that there will be no super-size parliamentary constituencies exceeding 100,000 votes. Read the rest of this entry »

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Election Commission Chairman Mohd Hashim should explain why he had jettisoned his predecessor’s redelineation plan to abide by the Constitution and the democratic principle of “one man, one vote” by ensuring that there will be no super-size parliamentary constituencies exceeding 100,000 voters?

The DAP MP for Serdang, Dr. Ong Kian Ming’s repartee to the denial by the Election Commission Chairman, Datuk Mohd Hashim Abdullah that the constituency redelineation exercise is being carried out for the benefit of certain parties is a gem: “Yeah right, and I’m sure that Jho Low had nothing to do with 1MDB either…”

Can Mohd Hashim explain why he had jettisoned his precedessor, Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof’s redelineation plan to abide by the Constitution and the democratic principle of “one man, one vote” by ensuring that there will be no super-size parliamentary constituencies exceeding 100,000 votes?

Abdul Aziz had gone on public record to say that in the new constituency redelineation to be proposed by the Election Commission, “a constituency with a large number of votes, more than 100,000, has to be divided into two, so that the constituents could obtain good service from the elected representatives”.

Why did Mohd Hashim abandon this important Constitutional and democratic principle in the final proposal of the Election Commission for the redelineation of electoral constituencies?

Is this at the behest of the powers-that-be in UMNO? Read the rest of this entry »

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Pakatan Harapan will have to consider the option of snap polls in Selangor as the Election Commission’s constituency redelineation proposals have mangled and butchered the map of Selangor with the sole purpose of returning UMNO to power in the state

Pakatan Harapan will have to consider the option of snap polls in Selangor as the Election Commission’s constituency redelineation proposals have mangled and butchered the map of Selangor with the sole purpose of returning UMNO to power in the state.

The Barisan Nasional only won 12 UMNO state assembly seats in the 2013 General Elections, but it is hoping to recapture the Selangor State Government which it had failed in two general elections in 2008 and 2013 through the most unashamed, blatant and flagrant violation of the democratic principle of “one man, one vote” in the redelineation of the constituencies, both for Parliament and State Assembly, in the Selangor state.

The Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Razali Ismail, has denied that the
redelineation exercise is lop-sided and in favour of UMNO and Barisan Nasional, claiming that the allegation is aimed at tarnishing UMNO’s image. He needs to only look at the redelineation proposals in Selangor.
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Why the BN Government Will Lose in the Next GE

Koon Yew Yin
18.9.2016

The latest hot news in town is whether Najib and BN are going for early elections, Various UMNO ministers have been calling on their constituency members to be prepared with some UMNO leaders claiming that this is the best time to take advantage of the wins in the two recent by elections in Perak and Selangor and the state elections in Sarawak.

On the other hand, PM Najib has not dropped any hints. But the Deputy PM has discounted early elections. According to Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, the claim that the general election could be held as early as next March was based on speculation. He also stated the conclusion was reached using the predictions of unnamed Umno leaders polled by the media outlet. “That is a prediction based on structured sampling which they did. But the reality is that we must keep our feet firmly planted on the ground and while the leaders in the government, BN and Umno don’t deny that the survey was done academically, but the reality is different”.

Whatever the truth is on this matter, I hope it is true that an early election will come about. In my previous posting, I had noted that we have had a lifetime of UMNO/Aliance and UMNO/BN rule in the country. Read the rest of this entry »

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Election Commission’s constituency redelineation proposal the worst gerrymandering in all five redelineation exercises in nation’s history

The Election Commission’s constituency redelineation proposal is the worst gerrymandering in all five redelineation exercises in the nation’s history.

Under the proposed redelineation, the parliamentary quota in the Peninsular states – which is the average number of electors per parliamentary constituency in the peninsular states, derived from dividing the total electorate by the total number of parliamentary constituencies in all the peninsular states – is 68,814.

The parliamentary quota for each state in Peninsular Malaysia are as follows:

2016 Redelineation:-

State Registered Voters Parliamentary Constituencies Parliamentary Quota
Selangor 2,078,311 22 94,469
Johore 1,649,131 26 63,428
Perak 1,407,529 24 58,647
Kedah 1,044,444 15 69,626
FT (KL) 788,413 11 71,674
Penang 867,748 13 66,750
Kelantan 940,591 14 67,185
Pahang 740,023 14 52,859
Negri Sembilan 557,137 8 69,642
Terengganu 669,546 8 83,693
Malacca 456,645 6 76,107
Perlis 137,098 3 45,600
FT (Putrajaya) 17,627 1
Peninsular Malaysia 165 68,814

The Election Commission owes the Malaysian electorate a full explanation why the present exercise is even more unfair and undemocratic in disregarding the “one man, one vote, one value” principle than the previous four constituency redelineations.
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Election Commission’s proposed redelineation of constituencies is not only undemocratic but runs afoul of the 1Malaysia Policy to build a nation of Malaysians

In my 53rd Malaysia Day message, I asked whether the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s 1Malaysia Policy is dead or alive.

This was because the Election Commission’s constituency redelineation proposals, made public on the eve of the 53rd Malaysia Day, was not only undemocratic in violating the “one man, one vote, one value” principle, but clearly against the 1Malaysia policy to create a nation where every Malaysian perceives himself or herself as Malaysian first and race, religion or region second.

Let the Election Commission Chairman, Datuk Seri Mohd Hashim Abdullah explain whether the constituency redelineation proposals had been inspired by the 1Malaysia policy to promote a nation where every Malaysian regards himself or herself as Malaysia first or will in effect exacerbate racial polarisation and consciousness, and undermine national unity, in the country.

Furthermore, let him answer critiques that the new redelineation proposals are in fact more undemocratic than previous redelineations in violating the democratic principle of “one man, one vote, one value”. Read the rest of this entry »

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Onus is on Election Commission to prove that it is not gerrymandering the current constituency redelineation exercise as in the past to keep UMNO in power

The onus is on the Election Commission to prove that it is not gerrymandering the current constituency redelineation exercise as in the past to keep UMNO in power.

There are two reasons why the Election Commission shoulders such an onus.

Firstly, the public admission or confession at the end of 2013 by the former longest-serving Secretary and later Chairman of the Election Commission, Tan Sri Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman, who managed six of the 13 general elections and responsible for three of the four electoral constituency redelineations in Malaysia that he had gerrymandered the redelineations to ensure that the Malays remain in power.

Secondly, preliminary study of the current redelineation exercise indicate that it is driven by the overall agenda to keep UMNO in power and to eliminate Opposition leaders in vulnerable seats from Parliament, like Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin in Pagoh and Nurul Izzah Anwar in Lembah Pantai than to comply with the democratic and constitutional principle of “one man, one vote, one value” and to establish that the Election Commission is transparent, independent and professional not beholden to the dictates of the government of the day. Read the rest of this entry »

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Murmurs of Early Malaysia Election After Najib Weathers Storms

Shamim Adam
Bloomberg
September 9, 2016

There’s the whisper of an early election in the air in Malaysia.

Prime Minister Najib Razak and senior officials of his ruling United Malays National Organisation have used dozens of annual party events across the country in recent weeks to exhort members — the bulk of whom are ethnic Malays — to get out and meet potential voters, especially younger ones.

Amid repeated references to the next general election, it’s raising speculation Malaysians will head to the polls before the due date of the middle of 2018. Some senior UMNO officials say it could be as soon as March.

Najib, 63, has weathered more than a year of turmoil amid political attacks over a funding scandal that left foreign investors wondering at times if he would survive in the job. Getting an election win under his belt could dispel doubts about his ability to lead, while providing him with a new mandate to implement economic reforms for a long-touted goal of becoming a developed nation by 2020.

“March has been talked about,” said an UMNO division leader from a southern state, who asked not to be identified, citing the confidential nature of the information. “And why not? The opposition is not together. We are ready as we can be for elections.” Read the rest of this entry »

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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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