Pejuang aims to shake up Johor’s political landscape in maiden state election

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Johor’s Pejuang deputy chief Nornekman Osman (right) speaks to the media at the party’s state office in Johor Baru January 27, 2022. — Picture by Ben Tan
Johor’s Pejuang deputy chief Nornekman Osman (right) speaks to the media at the party’s state office in Johor Baru January 27, 2022. — Picture by Ben Tan

JOHOR BARU, Jan 27 — As it prepares for its maiden Johor state election, Parti Pejuang Tanah Air (Pejuang) is confident that it will make its mark as a political force to be reckoned with.

Johor Pejuang deputy chief Nornekman Osman said the party, which promotes integrity and trust, is optimistic about its public support based on previous community engagement programmes held in the state.

“This is the reason we will be contesting on our own in 42 out of the 56 Johor seats, with the aim of securing at least two-thirds.

“With that, Pejuang is confident about being able to establish a strong, single entity government based on our strength and values,” said Nornekman during a media session at the Johor Pejuang state office in 1Tebrau here yesterday.

Also present was Johor Pejuang treasurer Datuk Abdul Aziz Harun and other party members.

Nornekman said that Pejuang’s leadership felt that the events that led to the state election being held in Johor were timely for the party.

He said the southern state will also be the first test for the party after it was established in 2020 and officially registered last July.

“With the current uneasy political and economic situation here, we need to tell the people that Pejuang is here in Johor,” he said.

Nornekman, who is also the son of former Johor mentri besar Datuk Osman Sapian, believes that Johor needs a new government that upholds integrity and promotes economic progress.

“Pejuang prefers fielding candidates who are Johoreans as they are more attuned to understanding the unique sensitivities and problems in the state.

“At the same time, our candidates (for Johor) also need to think out of the box,” he said, with particular reference to Johor’s economic and political needs that are different from most other states.

Besides integrity and trust as major tent poles for Pejuang, Nornekman also stressed the importance of commitment as well as loyalty.

He explained that such values must be ingrained in all Pejuang members to avoid previous issues that plagued the country after the ‘Sheraton Move’.

Nornekman hopes that all the party’s 42 candidates in Johor are well-prepared to face their opponents.

“A victory for Pejuang in Johor will also be a meaningful win for the party’s chairman Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

“Our spirits are high and we want to return the favour to Tun M for his contributions to the development of the country,” he said.

Last Saturday, Johor Ruler Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar gave his royal assent to the dissolution of the state legislative assembly, paving the way for an early state election.

It was triggered last week after caretaker mentri besar Datuk Seri Hasni Mohammad from Umno sought the dissolution of the state assembly despite still holding a one-seat majority.

The Election Commission (EC) is scheduled to meet on February 9 to decide the nomination and polling dates for Johor.

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