PETALING JAYA: PKR president-elect Anwar Ibrahim will contest the Port Dickson seat as he attempts to make a parliamentary comeback and eventually take over as the eighth prime minister, the party announced today.
It will be the first time that Anwar stands in a seat outside his hometown of Penang, where he represented Permatang Pauh twice, including for 16 years before his dramatic sacking as deputy prime minister in 1998.
The Port Dickson seat was won by former Navy officer Danyal Balagopal Abdullah, who got 36,225 votes, defeating Barisan Nasional’s VS Mogan (18,515 votes) and PAS’ Mahfuz Roslan (6,594 votes).
The first-term MP today thanked PKR vice-president and deputy president aspirant Rafizi Ramli for his work during the campaign in Port Dickson in May.
“It was not easy for me to adapt to my role as a politician,” Danyal, who served in the armed forces for more than 40 years, told reporters today while announcing his resignation as MP.
Danyal said he felt obliged to offer the seat to Anwar, whom he likened to the late Nelson Mandela due to his incarceration.
He said he had discussed his intention with Anwar, Rafizi and PKR secretary-general Saifuddin Nasution.
“Last night, I was informed that Anwar agreed with my offer to contest in Port Dickson,” said Danyal, adding that his resignation letter was sent to the Dewan Rakyat speaker today.
Earlier, Saifuddin said Anwar had been offered several seats by PKR MPs. He said he had informed top leaders of Pakatan Harapan component parties of the decision to field Anwar in Port Dickson.
“They have assured us of their full cooperation to ensure Anwar’s victory,” he told a press conference today, accompanied by other PKR leaders and MPs.
“We believe that Anwar’s victory will add value to Pakatan Harapan. As an MP, Anwar who is also part of the PH council can play a more effective role in helping the government,” he added.