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A writing on the wall for PR

I fully agree with this writer’s prediction on Kedah and Penang political landscape.

BN will win back Kedah due to more Chinese and Indian voters lose confidence on PAS-led government.

Penang Chinese votes for DAP will drop to 65-70% from 75% historical high in 308. With 55-60% Indians support BN against 50% in 308 and another 5% Malay votes swing back to BN, PR will lose a few state and parliament seats in Penang.

The possibility of PR losing to BN is there.

Instead of dreaming to march into Putrajaya, PR may end up only winning in Kelantan and Penang.

PR may need Bersih 3.0 and Hindraf support to turn the tide.

You can come back to spit on me after GE13 if my prediction in this posting is wrong.

A trip to Penang

13th general election Opinion 2012-01-12 13:49

Translated by SOONG PHUI JEE
Sin Chew Daily

It was my first time to Penang since the 2008 general election.

I was there for a company dinner and after collecting opinions from my colleagues, let’s analyse the possible results of the 13th general election in two states.

Penang is nowadays cleaner than the time when the BN was in the office. The people can also feel the difference between the DAP and BN administrations. The DAP state government is more daring, such as starting from 11 December last year, the area around Beach Street in George Town has been off limits to motor vehicles every Sunday from 7am to 5pm in conjunction with ‘Car Free Day’.

It is generally predicted that Chinese voters would continue supporting the DAP while Malay voters would tend to vote for Umno. The Pakatan Rakyat could easily keep Penang. However, could the Gerakan and the MCA make a breakthrough? The situation of the Gerakan is better than the MCA’s as Gerakan is fielded in some mixed constituencies and coupled with sympathy votes, it would not lose so miserably. As for the MCA, the outbreak of withdrawal, poor organisation and factional problems would bring more difficulties for the party to revive.

Another possibility is, the BN held 38% of Chinese basic votes before the 2008 general election but the percentage dropped to 25% in the previous general election. There should be a rebound and the Pakatan Rakyat would not gain a big victory this time.

There are 40 state seats in Penang and among them, only 22 are Chinese-majority constituencies. Therefore, the DAP has to maintain high Chinese support rate to reach a record close to the one created in the 2008 general election.

Meanwhile, Kedah is the most vulnerable among the four Pakatan Rakyat states. Therefore, the Pakatan Rakyat coalition will hold its 3rd National Convention at Stadium Sultan Abdul Halim in Alor Setar, hoping that the coalition’s manifesto to be declared on 14 January can help promote the Kedah Pakatan Rakyat and turn the tide.

Kedah is a Malay-majority state. Under the trend of the return of Malay votes to Umno, it will be difficult for PAS to win. The party is aware of the situation and thus, it is trying to fight for Malay votes, even the moves might lead to the lose of Chinese votes.

For example, the Kulim district office has decided to stop issuing liquor licences at the end of June this year to make Kulim a liquor-free district, affecting hundreds of businesses. In addition, the requirement to pay entertainment outlet operation licence fees every six months or yearly instead of monthly has triggered complaints that they would be financially burdened with paying a hefty sum every six months or every year.

The move is intended to fight for the support of rural conservative voters. However, it will affect the confidence of Chinese businessmen and the effect is believed to reach other areas outside Kedah. It is indeed an unwise move, particularly when PAS is committed to restructuring.

It is understood that Kedah Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Azizan Abdul Razak is not daring and people friendly enough, while his relations with the party’s central committee is not good, resulting in the signs of split in Kedah PAS. At the same time, the PKR’s grassroots are not well organised but it still insists to contest for seven parliamentary seats and 11 state seats. It is indeed too ambitious.

Compared to Penang, Kedah seems lethargic. Chinese businessmen are not happy while the people are complaining. Even if the Pakatan Rakyat National Convention is held in Kedah, it would not help much.

The momentum of the two camps is reflected in Penang and Kedah. However, who knows whether there would be chances before the end is reached?

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