The Tenang by-election may see a contest of the fairer sex.
KUALA LUMPUR: There is a high possibility that the Tenang by-election would witness a contest between the fairer sex, with the main political parties from both sides of the divide contemplating fielding women candidates for the polls fixed for Jan 30.
Indications are that the Barisan Nasional (BN) is keen on pitting a woman candidate to retain the seat, while PAS sources revealed that the party, on behalf of the opposition pact Pakatan Rakyat, would likely give the green light to Normala Sudirman, the PAS Labis Muslimah chief, to file nomination papers representing the opposition on Jan 22.
Sources said that PAS has decided on the fairer sex for the by-election during its central committee meeting at its headquarters in Jalan Raja Laut here recently.
However, the candidate will only be officially announced on Jan 16.
“The candidate is Normala, an ex-teacher who is also the PAS Labis Muslimah chief,” said the source.
However, party secretary-general Mustafa Ali, when contacted, refused to confirm or deny that Normala is the candidate, saying only that the name would be made known on Jan 16.
He also said that the candidate was one of the two names proposed by the state PAS leadership and one of the names was a woman.
Talk is rife that both BN and PAS would field women candidates. BN is said to be keen on nominating Umno Labis Wanita chief Haslinda Salleh as its candidate.
Hailing from Chaah, Johor, Haslinda is said to be the potential candidate due to her outspoken stand in championing various issues. She is also said to be close to former Tenang state assemblyman Sulaiman Taha.
The Tenang by-election was called following Sulaiman’s demise on Jan 17 due to diabetes.