GEORGE TOWN: The offer by DAP and Amanah to Muda to contest six seats in the Johor elections may sway urban voters to “return” to the opposition, an analyst said.
It comes at a time when these voters have become unhappy with Pakatan Harapan (PH), said Azizuddin Mohd Sani of Universiti Utara Malaysia.
Azizuddin, who has just completed a three-day study of the political situation in Johor, told FMT: “The urban voters, who were previously PH supporters, have had a change of heart. They are not happy with PH anymore.
“The PH branding is poor after a 22-month stint in Putrajaya. Many are unhappy with its performance. As you can see, even PKR is choosing to go under its own banner instead of PH’s.”
Yesterday, DAP and Amanah said they had decided to allow Muda to contest in six seats in the Johor elections on March 12, though Muda’s negotiations with PKR were ongoing.
In a joint statement, DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng, Amanah president Mohamad Sabu and Muda president Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman said they wanted to ensure there were no clashes among the three parties.
The six seats Muda will contest – Puteri Wangsa, Tenang, Bukit Kepong, Parit Raja, Machap and Bukit Permai – had been given to Bersatu in the previous elections.
Azizuddin, whose findings will be released later, said Muda was now poised to win the support of the urban youth – once a PH vote bank – given its good branding under Syed Saddiq.
He said the current situation indicated that Barisan Nasional and Umno would do better in the polls based on the overall voter sentiment.
“There are a vast number of hardcore BN voters in Johor. Let us not forget this is the coalition’s fortress. The rural seats will go to BN as they are happy with the menteri besar’s performance,” he said.
University of Tasmania’s James Chin said Muda’s success rate would be hard to tell.
He said voters likely to support the new party were those who had voted for DAP and PKR before.
“The people who are likely to vote for Muda are the young people and these are the people who want to see change and reform.
“If Muda did not exist, this same group of voters would probably be voting for PKR or DAP,” he said.