PAS-Umno tie-up in Sabak Bernam a concern, says PPBM

pas-umno-1PETALING JAYA: A Sabak Bernam PPBM leader has expressed concern over the possibility of Umno teaming up with PAS to contest in his constituency in the 14th general election (GE14).

Sabak Bernam PPBM deputy division chief Mohd Hamizar Sulaiman said PAS and Umno are considered “solid parties” in the area.

“If one were to look at the results for the last general election for the two state seats of Sungai Ayer Tawar and Sabak, it has always been a straight fight between PAS and Barisan Nasional (BN),” he told FMT.

He was responding to a question on whether PAS has strong influence in the area.

Hamizar said however that if both PAS and BN go against each other in GE14, Pakatan Harapan (PH) would have a chance.

“This is because based on our observation on the ground, we feel that the majority of Sabak Bernam’s Chinese voters and over half of the Indians will support PH.

“I will try to get around 30% of the Malay voters’ support,” he added.

In 2013, BN candidate Mohd Fasiah Fakeh obtained 16,387 votes, defeating former PKR member Aziz Bari with a 1,644-majority to win the Sabak Bernam parliamentary seat.

PAS took Sabak with its candidate Sallehen Mukhyi winning by only 399 votes, while BN won Sungai Ayer Tawar.

Sabak Bernam is a Malay majority area and one of the smallest parliamentary constituencies in Malaysia, with 37,126 voters.

Those who criticise the Election Commission (EC) for malapportionment often give the example of Sabak Bernam, comparing it with the parliamentary seat of Kapar in Selangor which has the largest number of voters at over 146,000.

They say the EC has failed to address voter disparity in redrawing boundaries, as Kapar has four times the number of voters in Sabak Bernam.

Election machinery

According to Hamizar, the PH election machinery in Sabak Bernam is almost ready and can be activated by March if the general election is called.

Hamizar, who was formerly an Umno member and special officer to former Sabak Bernam MP Abdul Rahman Bakri, said he had previously helped Umno mobilise the grassroots’ support.

“I campaigned for Rahman when he contested in the Sabak state seat in 2004 and Sabak Bernam parliament seat in 2008, which he won.”

Hamizar said since he had experience in managing campaigns and serving the people, he believed he could help PH capture the marginal seat.

“I would want to develop the economy in this area by creating a wholesale market where people like tourists can come to shop and make this town more lively.

“It is similar to what was done in Sekinchan where visitors come and shop for local products in the village,” he said, expressing his desire to stand for PH’s newest component party in Sabak Bernam.

“If the village is lively, eventually the state or federal governments will develop this place,” he added.

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