Malay votes in Penang may swing to Umno

MCA and Gerakan may be wiped out again unless they changed their political outlook and strategies, says a NGO.

(Free Malaysia Today) – The Malay votes in Penang may largely swing to Umno while the DAP will get the lion’s share of the Chinese electorate in the coming general election, says a NGO here.

Persatuan Anak Jati Melayu Pulau Pinang (Pajim) said the prediction is based on feedback from the grassroots and conversations with interest groups.

Pajim adviser Ahmad Mokhtar Muhammad said this trend is unhealthy for multi-ethnic Penang where a party wins entirely on support from only one race.

“It is unhealthy for a state as diverse as Penang. The mixed seats would definitely be up for grabs but essentially the battle is between Umno and DAP. It is not good as either side has the traditional support of only one race,” he said in a statement sent via SMS.

He said a state cannot be progressive if it is bogged down by a perceived lack of harmony among its inhabitants.

Mokhtar also claims that support for PAS and PKR in Penang is eroding because their supporters are abandoning them due to their tolerance of DAP’s alleged aggressive style of governance in Penang.

He said DAP, in its haste to appease its traditional base of supporters, tends to overlook the interests of other groups such as hawkers, squatters, and the low-income earners.

Such groups are mainly Malays, and hence their gradual shift to Umno, although the party may remain as the opposition here.

“PAS and PKR may pay the price for being docile over certain DAP policies which are seen as an affront to the Malays,” Mokhtar said.

He added that the Malays may gravitate back to Umno because they believe that the party can solve their problems such as stable jobs and affordable housing.

He said it remains to be seen if Umno’s partners – MCA, MIC and Gerakan – can survive in the next general election in Penang.