JOHOR BARU, Oct 28 — Johor Pakatan Harapan’s (PH) newly announced Ayer Hitam candidate Sheikh Umar Bagharib Ali is confident that the people’s support will bring the coalition a win over Barisan Nasional (BN) in the 15th general election (GE15).
The Johor DAP vice chief and party’s central executive committee (CEC) member said he accepted the trust given to him with fortitude to help win Ayer Hitam for PH in GE15.
He acknowledged that winning Ayer Hitam will not be an easy task as he is expected lock horns with MCA president Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong, who is also the incumbent BN MP.
“I believe the power of the people and the grace of Allah SWT will be the deciding factor. I believe that honest and intelligent people will reject a party that is mired in corruption, power abuse and double standards.
“For us, this GE15 is important to ensure that the PH government formed after November 19 will govern the country well, with trust and integrity,” said Sheikh Umar in a statement here today.
Sheikh Umar, who is also the former Paloh assemblyman, was named as the PH candidate for Ayer Hitam by DAP secretary-general Anthony Loke at a fundraising event in Muar last night.
The event also saw the unveiling of two other DAP candidates for GE15: Pang Hok Liong, who will be defending his Labis seat, and former Skudai assemblyman Tan Hong Pin, who will stand in Bakri.
Sheikh Umar explained that there was an automatic addition of 21,000 new voters under Undi18 in the coming national polls, making the scenario in Ayer Hitam different from past elections.
“The Ayer Hitam constituency is a multiracial one. In order to win this seat, a simple approach that is characteristic of being Malaysian is the main ingredient.
“It is very compatible with the spirit of democracy and the Malaysian Constitution which PH upholds,” he said.
Sheikh Umar appealed to Ayer Hitam voters to support PH in order to chart a better future for Malaysia.
“PH’s victory is very important for the future of Malaysians. It is important to ensure that we will get job opportunities, we will be able to buy quality goods and services at cheap prices, and that our children can go to school and pursue further study at university,” he said.
In the Johor state election in March, Sheikh Umar lost his bid for Paloh to BN candidate Lee Ting Han. He only managed to garner 4,901 votes to Lee’s 8,077 votes.
In the previous 14th general election (GE14) in 2018, Sheikh Umar won Paloh with a majority of 783 votes, defeating BN candidate Teoh Yap Kun and independent candidate M. Shamugam.
He was then appointed as a Johor state government exco responsible for the youth, sports, development of entrepreneurs and cooperatives portfolio.