Think Tank: Malay fence-sitters will face dilemma over MCA, PPBM candidates

Selangor government think-tank Institut Darul Ehsan (IDE) said its recent survey found that only 41 per cent of Tanjung Piai Chinese voters will make the same choice that they did in GE14. Source (pic): TTF

Nearly 60 per cent of ethnic Chinese in the Johor parliamentary constituency of Tanjung Piai appear to be having second thoughts about their vote after Pakatan Harapan (PH) won last year’s general election.

In contrast, 58 per cent of local Malay voters have made up their minds, IDE chief executive Datuk Mohammad Redzuan Othman said today of the survey of 1,518 Tanjung Piai voters that was conducted between October 18 and 20, just before PH, Barisan Nasional (BN) and other Opposition political parties announced the names of their candidates.

Redzuan said it is the undecided Malay voters who will face a dilemma in the November 16 by-election as they could be torn between choosing a Chinese BN candidate who had opposed the introduction of Shariah criminal laws — otherwise known as hudud — and PH’s Karmaine Sardini, a Malay-Muslim and an imam who runs two tahfiz schools.

“This will become a discussion and how far a party uses the sentiments will decide [who will win]. So, the candidate factor will decide the voting trend because whether we want it or not, race politics still exists in Malaysia,” he said.


KUALA LUMPUR: Nearly 60 per cent of ethnic Chinese in the Johor parliamentary constituency of Tanjung Piai appear to be having second thoughts about their vote after Pakatan Harapan (PH) won last year’s general election.

Now that a by-election will be held there in two weeks, Selangor government think-tank Institut Darul Ehsan (IDE) said its recent survey found that only 41 per cent of Tanjung Piai Chinese voters will make the same choice that they did in GE14.




In contrast, 58 per cent of local Malay voters have made up their minds, IDE chief executive Datuk Mohammad Redzuan Othman said today of the survey of 1,518 Tanjung Piai voters that was conducted between October 18 and 20, just before PH, Barisan Nasional (BN) and other Opposition political parties announced the names of their candidates.

Redzuan said that, at first glance, it may appear that the Opposition BN and PAS hold the advantage this time around.

The seat is a Malay majority seat, with 30,541 voters (57.64 per cent) compared to 21, 948 Chinese voters (41.42 per cent) and 479 Indian voters (0.90 per cent).

However, Redzuan said both sides have an equal opportunity at winning, depending on their strategy.

“Why I say this is because there exists a perception that once Umno and PAS combine, Pakatan Harapan has no hope of winning, but the data shows that both sides have an equal chance to win because the swing is small,” he said.

In GE14, the PH candidate from Bersatu Datuk Dr Md Farid Md Rafik bested BN and PAS in a three-cornered fight.

But he won the seat with just 524 votes against former two-term Tanjung Piai MP Datuk Seri Wee Jeck Seng from MCA and PAS’ Nordin Othman.

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The by-election was called after Dr Md Farid died of heart complications on September 21.

Marginal win

In GE14, PH garnered 46.3 per cent of the 53,528 votes cast. BN garnered 45.2 per cent while PAS managed to bag 6.5 per cent.

The IDE survey also showed that in GE14, 57 per cent of Malays voted for BN compared to 32 per cent for PH.

This is, however, in contrast to the Chinese demographic, the majority of whom chose PH, with 64 per cent compared to 32 per cent who voted for BN.

The Malay dilemma

Redzuan said it is the undecided Malay voters who will face a dilemma in the November 16 by-election as they could be torn between choosing a Chinese BN candidate who had opposed the introduction of Shariah criminal laws — otherwise known as hudud — and PH’s Karmaine Sardini, a Malay-Muslim and an imam who runs two tahfiz schools.

“This will become a discussion and how far a party uses the sentiments will decide [who will win]. So, the candidate factor will decide the voting trend because whether we want it or not, race politics still exists in Malaysia,” he said.

Redzuan added the choice will prove tough for Umno loyalists who, he said, prefer a Malay-Muslim candidate.

Tomorrow is Nomination Day and apart from PH and BN, the multi-ethnic Gerakan and two other Malay-Muslim political parties, Berjasa and Putra, have expressed their intention to contest.

Source:



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