Compare Kelantan with Pahang or NS, not KL, says PAS leader

Deputy menteri besar Amar Nik Abdullah says any other state would be seen as lagging in development compared with KL, Selangor or Penang.

(FMT) – Kelantan only appears to be lagging behind in development as it is frequently being compared with Kuala Lumpur, Selangor and Penang, says the east coast state’s deputy menteri besar Amar Nik Abdullah.

Amar said Kelantan should instead be compared with states like Pahang and Negeri Sembilan, Harian Metro reported.

“If we were to compare with Selangor, KL, and Penang, every other state would seem to be lagging in development. We must understand that KL is the capital city, Selangor is close to the capital, and Penang has long been developed.

“These states already possess various infrastructure, including ports, good roads, and highways,” the PAS vice-president was quoted as saying.

Dismissing claims that the PAS state administration was to blame for Kelantan’s lack of development over the past 33 years, Amar pointed out that the state was governed by Umno for 12 years from 1978 to 1990.

Nonetheless, he said, even Umno could not help Kelantan “catch up” with the likes of Selangor and Penang, despite being aligned with the federal government at the time.

“Look at Gua Musang. When Umno governed (Kelantan) for those 12 years, there was no progress. Now, the district has shops and other facilities (after PAS ruled the state).”

He also cited the hospitals, highways, warehouses and schools in Kelantan as evidence that the state has achieved some development.

Yesterday, deputy prime minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said Kelantan had only contributed 1.8% to the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP) last year.

The Barisan Nasional (BN) chairman and Umno president attributed this to the PAS state government, saying the lack of development forced Kelantan folk to move elsewhere in search of job opportunities.

In 2022, Kelantan’s economy grew by 4.3% as the state generated a GDP value of RM26.9 billion. In comparison, Negeri Sembilan recorded a GDP growth of 6.4% to RM50.8 billion while Pahang’s GDP grew by 10.8% to RM61.4 billion.