‘Centre-right Malay’, ex-Perkasa leader among young names considered for Semenyih

From top left (clockwise): Wan Ahmad Fayhsal Wan Ahmad Kamal, Dr Muhammad Faiz Na’aman, Mohd Ashraf Mustaqim Badrul Munir and Ulya Awamah Husamuddin.

KUALA LUMPUR: A minister’s aide, a former Perkasa member, a dentist and a former journalist are among the names being bandied about by the PPBM leadership to represent Pakatan Harapan (PH) in the upcoming Semenyih state by-election.

FMT has learnt that the four names are being seriously considered by PPBM, after the individuals were carefully vetted for their academic achievements and contributions to the party.

“Not all of them are prominent activists. Some may not be used to the political pressure that comes with the job, but they are young and dynamic,” a source from the inner circle of the PPBM leadership told FMT.

Among the names is Wan Ahmad Fayhsal Wan Ahmad Kamal, a former research analyst closely affiliated with Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s Perdana Leadership Foundation in Putrajaya.

The engineering graduate from Universiti Teknologi Petronas (UTP), described by a source as a “centre-right Malay”, is currently a special functions officer to Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman.

Apart from a master’s degree he earned from King’s College London after attending UTP, Fayhsal, known among his close friends as a philosophy buff, was also actively involved in civil society movements in Penang including the Consumers’ Association of Penang.

The PPBM source told FMT the party was aware of the huge challenge it would face in Semenyih, adding that leaders were still reeling from its defeat in the recent Cameron Highlands by-election, which analysts blamed on a lack of Malay support for the ruling coalition.

The Semenyih state seat fell vacant following the death of its incumbent, PPBM’s Bakhtiar Mohd Nor, on Jan 11.

Bakhtiar, who got 23,428 votes, had defeated three other candidates from Umno, PAS and PSM, with a majority of 8,964 votes.

Another potential candidate under consideration by the PPBM leadership is Dr Muhammad Faiz Na’aman, a medical graduate who was part of right-wing Malay group Perkasa before joining PPBM.

Faiz is currently part of the PPBM Supreme Council, and in charge of its youth wing’s integrity unit.

The two others are Mohd Ashraf Mustaqim Badrul Munir and Ulya Awamah Husamuddin.

Ashraf is an education activist who stood for the Paya Besar parliamentary seat in Pahang last year. He came in third after Barisan Nasional’s Shahar Abdullah and PAS’ Azhar Mohamad Nor.

Ulya, meanwhile, is a Middle East graduate who studied dentistry in Jordan. He is currently PPBM Youth’s information chief.