Kon Yeow: Sungai Bakap result reflects public’s views on current political climate

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

GEORGE TOWN, July 6 — Following confirmation that PAS had retained its Sungai Bakap seat with a larger majority, in an immediate response, Penang Paktan Harapan (PH) chairman Chow Kon Yeow said the loss reflected the people’s voice on the current political situation in Sungai Bakap, Penang and Malaysia.

“This is an interpretation of the people’s voice on what’s happening recently,” he told reporters at PH’s vote tallying centre at Bukit Jawi Golf Resort here.

He said although there was good cooperation between the component parties under the PH-BN unity pact, the results were indicative of their failure to gain the understanding of voters regarding recent national, state and local issues.

“Maybe our efforts to explain these issues were unable to convince them,” he said.

Chow said the results went beyond the choice of candidate, so it was not the candidate’s fault.

He said the loss was probably due to national issues such as the diesel subsidy, increasing costs of living and perceived rising inflation.

“We lost the narrative despite all the hard work trying to convince the voters,” he said.

When asked about the voters’ turnout, Chow said the number of ethnic Chinese and Indian voters who came out to vote dropped by about 13 per cent this time compared to the state elections last year.

He said it may have affected the results by about 3,000 votes which led to the larger majority won by PN.

Moving forward, the Penang chief minister said they will need to conduct a post-mortem on the results and scrutinise the reasons for the loss.

“We remain as MP for this parliamentary constituency so we will continue to manage all issues in this constituency,” he said.

“Putting politics aside, the state will look into all issues raised by the voters here during the campaign period,” he said.

He said the state will not sideline people who needed assistance.

PAS’ Abidin Ismail retained today the Sungai Bakap state seat for Perikatan Nasional in a straight fight with Joohari Ariffin from PH.

The Sungai Bakap state by-election was called following the death of incumbent Nor Zamri Latiff, who was the PAS Nibong Tebal division chief, on May 24 due to abdominal inflammation.

In the state elections last year, Nor Zamri won the seat with a majority of 1,563 votes against PH’s Nurhidayah Che Rus.

Recommended reading: