Why Barisan Should Forget About Penanti

THE WRITING IS ON THE WALL. Barisan Nasional will lose if the party decides to contest in the Penang by-election.

Have we forgotten how Anwar Ibrahim embarrassed Barisan and Pak Lah with an even greater majority when he won the Permatang Pauh by-election in August last year.
The PKR de-facto leader was returned to Parliament with a majority of 15,671 votes, exceeding the 13,388-vote majority won by his wife Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail in the March 8 general election.
Anwar garnered 31,195 votes to beat Barisan candidate Datuk Arif Shah Omar Shah, who polled 15,524 votes, while Angkatan Keadilan Insan Malaysia candidate Hanafi Hamat lost his RM15,000 deposit after getting only 92 votes. There were 447 spoilt votes.

Our Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak had said that Barisan might not contest in the Penanti by-election as it would waste a lot of money, time and energy.

Tun Mahathir said Barisan should contest as the party should not disappoint its supporters in Penanti. For once, I don’t agree with Tun as Tun might not be aware the sentiments in Permatang Pauh or Penanti itself for that matter.

Let me tell you why Barisan should keep Penanti out.

The Malays are split with mostly supporting PKR. The Chinese voters too are not supporting Barisan as they want a change in the Government. They do not mind the gamble by changing government as gambling is thick in their blood and culture.

Permatang Pauh Umno is in disarray. Backbiting and infighting is still widespread in the division. It’s chief Datuk Abdul Jall Abdul Majid is a warlord in the division. No one can go against his words.

It is an open-secret that he and Seberang Jaya state assemblyman Datuk Arif Shah Omar Shah cannot see eye-to-eye. Arif is being suppressed by Abdul Jalil and the latter wrote a five-page complaint letter about Arif to Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop, who was Second Finance Minister then. Nor Yakcop is Tasek Gelugor MP and chair the state’s MTEN.

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