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Two more Perak DAP big guns heading south

 | March 23, 2013

The duo will join DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang to do battle in Johor.

TAIPING: Two more Perak DAP leaders may bring the battle to Johor in their bid to boost Pakatan Rakyat’s chances of breaching the Umno stronghold in the coming general election.

And Perak DAP will also see a shake-up, with new faces being fielded to replace “non-performing” incumbents.

The speculation is that Ipoh Barat MP M Kulasegaran and Batu Gajah MP Fong Po Kuan may join DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang to lead the charge into Umno’s birthplace.

PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim has already announced that Lim, the Ipoh Timor MP, will contest in Gelang Patah parliamentary seat of Johor.

Kulasegaran was initially picked to contest in the Segamat parliamentary seat, but according to media report, Johor PKR chief Chua Jui Meng has been identified as the candidate for Segamat.

A DAP source said that Kulasegaran, who is closely linked to Lim, will contest any parliamentary seat in Johor that the party picks.

After crossing swords with the Perak DAP chairman Ngeh Koo Ham and secretary Nga Kor Ming over the years, Kulasegaran is preparing to enter a new political frontier of Johor.

Ngeh is Beruas MP and Setiawan assemblyman while his cousin Nga is Taiping MP and Pantai Remis assemblyman.

It is speculated that Fong, who has also clashed with cousins Ngeh and Nga, may be tipped to contest either Kluang or Kulai.

She may join her husband, Johor DAP secretary Tan Chen Choon who is tipped to contest the Bentayan Johor state seat.

With the exit of these three party leaders, Perak DAP has reshuffled the cards to fill the vacated slots. For a start, incumbent Pasir Pinji assemblyman Thomas Su Keong Siong may fill Lim’s shoes in Ipoh Timor.

Pasir Pinji may go to Perak DAP Youth state secretary Howard Lee Chuan How.

Non-performing incumbents

Former Pakatan State Legislative Assembly Speaker and Tronoh state assembleman V Sivakumar is likely to be fielded in Batu Gajah, while the Tronoh seat may go to Ngeh’s Sitiawan political secretary Paul Leong.

State DAP Youth chief, publicity secretary and Canning assemblyman Wong Kah Woh may be fielded in Ipoh Barat.

According to a DAP source, the state is dropping all non-performing incumbents and replacing them with new faces who support the state party leadership and are service-oriented.

The source also said that Teluk Intan MP M Manogaran may make way for Teluk Intan party legal adviser Terence Naidu. But this is subject to the approval of the party’s central committee.

New faces may also be fielded in the state seats of Malim Nawar, Jelapang, Kepayang, Pokok Assam, Jalong, Tronoh and Bercham.

Both Malim Nawar and Jelapang incumbents Keshvinder Singh and Hee Yit Foong respectively have turned Barisan Nasional-friendly independents after abandoning DAP.

Lawyer Leong Chock Keng is set to contest in Malim Nawar while DAP organising secretary Tay Hock Kee may go to Jelapang, where he is likely to face a three-cornered fight with PSM’s M Sarasvathy and possibly MCA candidate Lee Kong Yin.

Kepayang incumbent Diamond Loke Chee Yan has indicated that he wants to retire from politics and Kualasegaran’s political secretary Cheong Chee Khing is eyeing this seat.

Meanwhile, it is speculated that Nga may consider contesting the Bercham state seat currently held by Sum Cheok Leng.

Pokok Assam incumbent Yee Seu Kai may be replaced by Nga’s Taiping political secretary Teh Kok Lim.

The DAP source said the list of the proposed candidates will have to be endorsed by the party’s central committee.

In the 2008 general election, Perak DAP had won six parliamentary seats out of the seven it contested. It lost Kampar to MCA’s Lee Chee Leong who is also Deputy Home Minister.

However, the party won all the 18 state seats it contested but only to see later the loss of Malim Nawar and Jelapang whe the respective state representatives left DAP.


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