JOHOR BARU, Nov 20 — Johor Barisan Nasional (BN) chief Datuk Seri Hasni Mohammad expressed his surprise that the coalition only managed to secure nine parliamentary seats in the state at the 15th general election (GE15).
Describing the off-target figure as something unexpected, he said the coalition appreciates and respects the decision of the people.
Berita Harian reported Hasni, who is also Johor BN election director, as saying that the coalition believes that no single party can establish a government post-GE15 on its own.
He explained that BN chairman and Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi will take responsibility for yesterday’s drubbing.
“Of course, we do hope that a federal government can finally be formed and will continue to ensure the people’s future.
“As a government, we must be prepared to find a way to help the people,” said Hasni to reporters at the official vote-tallying centre at Dewan Muafakat Majlis Daerah Simpang Renggam.
The former Johor mentri besar was commenting on Johor BN’s lacklustre performance last night that saw it win only nine parliamentary constituencies in the state.
The mainstream Malay news portal reported that the loss of support from many non-Malays in the state was among the factors that led to Johor BN’s poor showing.
Hasni also shared his experience, as the newly elected Simpang Renggam MP, where he discovered that first-time youth voters had supported other parties, and not BN.
“We take note of the situation, and we will change how society views the party,” he said.
Meanwhile, Ahmad Zahid, in a statement this morning, said BN sees the GE15 results as a major signal sent by the people.
“Nevertheless, BN is committed to contributing to establishing a stable government.
“We are ready to set aside our previous differences and sentiments,” he said in the statement.
As of midnight, BN unofficially managed to retain the parliamentary seats of Simpang Renggam, Sembrong, Ayer Hitam, Parit Sulong, Tenggara, Kota Tinggi, Pengerang, Pontian and Tanjung Piai.
Johor has a total of 26 parliamentary constituencies.
In the last general election (GE14), Pakatan Harapan (PH) managed to secure 18 parliamentary constituencies in the state.