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All eyes on Tanjung Piai by-election in Johor as polling date set for Nov 16

All eyes on Tanjung Piai by-election in Johor as polling date set for Nov 16

Tanjung Piai is the southernmost tip of mainland Asia continent. (File photo: Bernama)

PUTRAJAYA: The Tanjung Piai by-election will take place on Nov 16, the Election Commission (EC) announced on Tuesday (Oct 1), amid signs of a lack of consensus within the opposition on which party is likely to lock horns with Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM). 

The Johor parliamentary seat, located at the southernmost tip of the peninsula, became vacant following the death of its member of parliament Dr Md Farid Md Rafik on Sep 21 due to a heart attack.

Dr Md Farid, a deputy minister in the Prime Minister’s Department and member of PPBM, was 42.

READ: Tanjung Piai MP and deputy minister Dr Farid Rafik dies in Malaysia

A fishermen jetty in Tanjung Piai. (File photo: Bernama)

In the May 2018 general election, he had polled 21,255 votes to snatch the seat from incumbent Wee Jeck Seng from the Malaysian Chinese Association (MCA), who garnered 20,731 votes.

Another candidate, Nordin Othman from Parti Islam Se-Malaysia (PAS), received 2,962 votes.

PAS TO STAY OUT OF THE CONTEST

Tanjung Piai is a racially-mixed seat with 57 per cent Malays, 42 per cent Chinese and 1 per cent Indian.

A straight fight between Pakatan Harapan (PH) and Barisan Nasional (BN) is expected in this by-election, as PAS has indicated that it would not contest.

Its vice-president Mohd Amar Nik Abdullah said PAS – which has earlier formed a political cooperation pact with United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) – would support any BN candidate fielded in the seat.

“PAS will cooperate with BN on this like what we have done in previous by-elections. Based on the last election, the seat (Tanjung Piai) belonged to BN, so chances of winning are higher (for BN),” he said, according to New Straits Times.

READ: Racial politics to heat up in Malaysia after PAS-UMNO pact: Analysts

MCA, meanwhile, has shown keen interest to stand in the seat, which used to be its stronghold.

UMNO grassroots, on the other hand, have demanded for the seat on the reason that MCA no longer commands the support of local voters.

The Malaysian Insight reported that all 88 UMNO branches in the Tanjung Piai division reached a consensus in a meeting last week to ask for the seat.

As for PH, Deputy Prime Minister Wan Azizah Wan Ismail had said that the ruling coalition would only meet to discuss its candidate for the seat after EC announces the date for the by-election.

Johor Chief Minister Sahruddin Jamal told local reporters on Sunday that PH would still field a candidate from PPBM for Tanjung Piai.

“As far as I am aware, god willing, the candidate will be from Bersatu. We wait for the announcement from the Bersatu Supreme Council and Pakatan Harapan,” he was quoted as saying by Malay Mail.




Source: CNA/bernama/tx

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