KLUANG, Nov 1 — An Umno Youth leader has suggested that MCA was irrelevant in representing the Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition for the Kluang parliamentary seat for the 15th general election (GE15), having previously lost twice in row.
Kluang Umno Youth division chief Mohd Khairul Ishak said Umno candidates should then be given the opportunity to retake the seat from Pakatan Harapan (PH).
“This is in line with the wishes of Umno and BN’s leadership to ensure that the coming GE15 contenders are ‘winnable candidates’ compared to candidates who have lost two terms, especially for Kluang.
“Basically, it has been proven that the people have rejected the previous BN candidate. The Kluang seat does not have to be a tradition for BN to maintain its defeat for two terms without efforts to assist in winning,” he said when contacted by the media today.
In the 14th general election (GE14), DAP’s Wong Shu Qi who contested under PH, defeated the BN candidate from MCA Gan Ping Sieu and Hasbullah Najib from PAS with a majority of 23,053 votes.
Mohd Khairul said changes were needed, starting with giving opportunities to new candidates from Umno.
“We are confident that if Umno is given the chance to contest in Kluang, the move will be able to restore trust and also secure the people’ s mandate.
“This will then contribute to BN’s victory in Johor and assist with forming the next federal government,” he said.
The Kluang parliamentary constituency, located in central Johor, was created in 1974. It was previously called Kluang Utara.
According to the 2018 census, Kluang is a Chinese majority seat, where they make up 47.49 per cent. The Malays make up 41.63 per cent, followed by the Indians at 9.38 per cent and other races at 1.5 per cent.
The Kluang parliament constituency was previously a BN stronghold under MCA before it fell to PH in the 2013 national polls in a heated campaign that was led by DAP strategist Liew Chin Tong.