KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 11 — Islamist party PAS is poised to gain from Perikatan Nasional’s resurgence in the 15th general election campaign in which the coalition was previously considered a non-starter, based on Merdeka Center’s analysis.
According to the Free Malaysia Today portal, Merdeka Center director Ibrahim Suffian said there could be a swing in Malay votes towards PN, which would allow it to leapfrog Barisan Nasional.
“The real winner of the increasing support for PN would be PAS. PAS is likely to sweep all the seats that are made up of at least 70 per cent to 80 per cent Malay voters,” Ibrahim was quoted as saying, citing an upcoming poll result from his research outfit.
Up until caretaker prime minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob dissolved Parliament and called for GE15, BN had been thought the clear favourite due to its dominating performance in preceding state elections.
However, Merdeka Center released the results of a pre-election poll last week that showed the coalition to have an approval rating of just 31 per cent, far below the level that saw it voted out for the first time in 2018.
Today, Ibrahim said there was a prevailing view among Malays that PN chairman Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin had been punished for opposing then prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak on the 1MDB scandal in 2015.
Najib was imprisoned in October after losing his final appeal against his conviction of all seven charges related to the misappropriation of RM42 million from a former 1MDB subsidiary.
“If PN is able to gain more than 50 per cent of the Malay vote in the general election, the outcome will be fatal to BN,” Ibrahim said.