Melaka polls, a matter of life and death for Bersatu, says analyst

“It may be the main component party in the Perikatan Nasional (PN) coalition but it relies on PAS as its main ally”.

(FMT) – The Melaka state election could seal the fate of certain parties, especially those which are competing for Malay votes, says political analyst Azmi Hassan.

He said it was also likely to bring about a new political realignment, involving a change of allies to face the 15th general election (GE15).

He added that Bersatu, led by former prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin, was especially facing a “life and death” scenario in this state election.

“It may be the main component party in the Perikatan Nasional (PN) coalition but it relies on PAS as its main ally.

“The results in the Melaka polls will, therefore, determine the fate of PN or more precisely the fate of Bersatu,” he told FMT.

According to Azmi, it is not the same for Umno, as regardless of the party winning or losing, it could still go solo with Barisan Nasional (BN).

“The same goes for Pakatan Harapan (PH), they would still be the main opposition if they lose.

“However, if PN loses and PAS withdraws from PN, then it would be impossible for Bersatu to move forward alone. So the Melaka polls is a matter of life and death for its future in politics,” he said.

Another political analyst, Awang Azman  Pawi agreed, saying that Bersatu must gain victory in order to remain relevant in the country’s political arena.

“Bersatu must win big in this Melaka state election to show that the party is relevant. If they do not succeed, they will be considered irrelevant for GE15.

“In fact, they may be abandoned by PAS and PAS may lean towards Umno instead,” he said.

With less than 24 hours before voting begins in 28 state constituencies in Melaka, Umno remains confident of gaining the support of the majority of Malay voters.

Last Wednesday, Umno deputy president Mohamad Hasan said BN was confident of winning 18 of the 28 seats but would be satisfied if it obtained 15 seats to enable it to form the state government.

BN is contesting in all 28 state seats. Its candidates from Umno are facing PAS in seven seats and Bersatu in 11 other seats, with PH candidates from PKR or Amanah also in the mix.