Looking forward to a gentleman’s fight in Johor

Pauline Wong
The Sun Daily
Posted on 21 April 2013

JOHOR BARU (April 21, 2013): The state of Johor is without a doubt, the state where all eyes are drawn – whether from the Barisan Nasional side, or from the Pakatan Rakyat.

Big names from the opposition have been parachuted to this southern state of Malaysia, where they hope that the 1.5 million voters here will cast ballots in their favour.

For the Barisan Nasional, the pressure is on to retain power in this birthplace of Umno, and they are more determined than ever to keep Johor in their grasp.

Even with so much at stake, the battle for Johor has taken off in a gentlemanly fashion, with fierce rivals going so far as to praise each other.

On Saturday, the arguably ‘hottest’ seat in Johor – Gelang Patah – saw both DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang and former Mentri Besar Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman shaking hands amicably with each other when they arrived almost at the same time at the nomination centre in Skudai here.

Each was accompanied by some 500 supporters, who marched to the centre ablaze with spirit (and lion dance troupes!) but were relatively respectful to one another — but of course, the barbed wire blockade set up by the police was a major contributing factor to their peaceable gathering.

Even so, during a DAP grand ‘ceramah’ later that night on nomination day, Lim had gone up on stage and praised Ghani to some 8,000 people, saying that “he (Ghani) has done a good job in Johor, but it is time for change.”

Notably absent are personal attacks or mudslinging in the week leading up to ‘crunch-time’, or the 15-day official campaigning period, as ceramahs and mini-ceramahs given by both sides focused on what each side will bring (or rather, promise) to the people of Johor.

Many leaders, like Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Khaled Nordin (who is contesting the Permas state seat, and is touted as the next MB if BN wins Johor) chose to rally the machinery to spread BN’s message of transformation, instead of spreading rumours.

Candidates even showed restraint when it came to commenting on their opponents, never delving into character attacks, but generally criticizing the manifestos or promises of the other side.

One only hopes that this spirit of political maturity continues well into the two-week campaign period until May 5.

However, this seemingly amiable atmosphere was slightly marred by the whole DAP ‘rocket’ symbol debacle, where the Registrar of Societies had notified the DAP that it did not recognize DAP’s central executive committee elections last December, mere 48 hours before nomination day.

This meant that there was a possibility that the Election Commission could reject the letter of appointment issued by DAP leadership under its symbol, as the derecognition meant the DAP leadership was not ‘legal.’

Although the ROS insisted that the DAP could still contest under the rocket symbol, the DAP had nonetheless taken an emotional approach to it, with DAP veterans insisting it was a ‘diabolical’ sabotage by the BN.

Nevertheless, now that the candidate nominations have been accepted, the fuss seems to have died down.

Perhaps it is now time to turn eyes to winning the hearts (and votes) of the people, preferably with little to no dirty tactics and a matured approach to politics – after all, the rakyat can judge, very clearly, the calibre of each candidate based on his or her substance, and will reject blustering and wild allegations.

  1. #1 by chengho on Monday, 22 April 2013 - 7:34 am

    Ghani to win, he is gentleman
    Kit at 72 too old another 5 years 77 , time to move without politician like Kit

    • #2 by assamlaksa on Monday, 22 April 2013 - 9:34 am

      chengho launching personal attack, LKS may be old but he is still better than most BN politicians young and old

    • #3 by Bunch of Suckers on Monday, 22 April 2013 - 12:16 pm

      WOW!!! Your ChangingHoles business flourishing into NY market, “Amerika”!!! Good job, ChangeHoles alias Chengho.

      Mat Sallehs’ little ayam befit your holes. eating hole and sh*ting hole!!!

  2. #4 by boh-liao on Monday, 22 April 2013 - 9:24 am

  3. #5 by boh-liao on Monday, 22 April 2013 - 9:27 am

    Gunfight at the O.K. Corral/Gelang Patah

  4. #6 by omeqiu on Monday, 22 April 2013 - 4:49 pm

    Apalah pakcik Ghani itu racist boleh jadi gentleman? Tun MM sudah 84+, dia masih muda lagi! Chengho tahu kirakah?

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