KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 5 — The Batu parliamentary seat will see a colourful contest with 10 candidates vying for the seat in the capital city, with six political parties and four independent candidates involved.
In the intense fight in the 15th general election, key contenders include incumbent MP P. Prabakaran from Pakatan Harapan (PH), and his fellow PKR member and former mentor Chua Tian Chang who has decided to contest independently without quitting PKR.
Chua, also known as Tian Chua, is contesting using the logo of a chair.
Also in the bid for Batu are Barisan Nasional's Datuk A. Kohilan Pillay from MIC, Perikatan Nasional's Azhar Yahya from PAS, Parti Pejuang Tanah Air's Wan Azliana Wan Adnan, Parti Warisan Sabah's P. Naganathan, and Parti Rakyat Malaysia's Zulkifli Abd Fatah.
Pakatan Harapan candidate P. Prabakaran Parameswaran arrives at the nomination centre, November 5, 2022. ― Picture by Firdaus Latif
The three other independent candidates are lawyer and activist Siti Kasim, influencer Nur Fathiah Syazwana who is better known as Cleopatra and Too Cheng Huat.
Siti is contesting using the logo of a pair of spectacles, while Too is using the logo of a key, and Cleopatra is using the logo of a tree.
For the ballot paper, the name of choice selected by Warisan's P. Naganathan is "Nathan Batu", which is the same phrase printed on the white t-shirts of his supporters present today outside the nomination centre.
Too's aide Datin Seri Tan Pei Chuen confirmed to Malay Mail that the candidate's name is Too Cheng Huat, but that the name printed on ballot papers will be "Too Gao Lan".
She explained that the name takes after his surname, and also several acronyms: "TOO is what we call him, GAO is Give All Out, LAN is Let's Action Now."
Batu almost became a seat with 11 candidates, but Indian Taxi Group's SAI Mahendran this morning said he was withdrawing his nomination in indirect support of Chua after he found out Chua was contesting.
At the end of the nomination process, the Election Commission's (EC) returning officer for Batu Khairul Azmir Ahmad confirmed that these 10 individuals had submitted their nominations and that he was satisfied with their nomination papers, stating that none of their nominations had been rejected.
When the names were announced, there were loud cheers, especially from the supporters of Prabakaran, Kohilan, Azhar, and Naganathan, with cheers for Wan Azliana and Siti also heard.
Siti's supporters today included those from Batu and also 16 Orang Asli villagers of the Temiar tribe from Gua Musang, who answered the chant of "Siti rocks where" with the call "Batu".
Waving pink flags, they wore shirts bearing Siti's face and the phrase "Siti Rockz @ Batu" and the words "Gerak Independent".
The area around the nomination centre was a sea of flags, with Barisan Nasional and Perikatan Nasional's flags in different shades of blue at one side, and with the other side featuring supporters holding the white flags of Pejuang and Warisan, next to the red flags of PH, while Chua's white-clad supporters carried yellow flags bearing an image of his face, and Cleopatra's supporters were dressed in black sport jerseys featuring her name and with stripes of yellow, blue and red while waving small Malaysian flags.