PETALING JAYA: Selangor Barisan Nasional treasurer Tengku Zafrul Aziz is one of several candidates the coalition is likely to field in safe seats which DAP and PKR are expected to “sacrifice” in the upcoming state election.
Sources said the international trade and industry minister, who lost the Kuala Selangor parliamentary seat in the 15th general election to Dzulkefly Ahmad of Pakatan Harapan, is expected to be given a fairly safe Malay-majority urban seat.
One insider said PH is likely to hand over at least five “safe” seats to BN in a strategic move designed to keep the unity government intact. DAP and PKR need to do this to ensure Selangor does not fall to Perikatan Nasional, he said.
“This combination is vital for the unity government to stem the green wave that Perikatan Nasional (PN) is trying to bank on. There are a number of seats currently being held by DAP and PKR that have become Malay-majority following the automatic registration exercise held last year,” the source said.
The seats identified include Sungai Pelek, Kota Kemuning, Dusun Tua, and Dengkil. These are mainly Malay-majority seats with a high number of Chinese voters, according to the latest constituency profiles.
PKR is also expected to let Umno stand in seats which it lost to Bersatu in 2018.
PH presently holds 40 of 55 seats in the current Selangor assembly. These seats are held by PKR (19), DAP (15) and Amanah (6). The rest of the assembly is made up of representatives from BN (5), PN (5), Pejuang (2), Parti Bangsa Malaysia (2) and Warisan (1).
The source said Umno stands to be the biggest beneficiary as PH is well aware that the party must be strengthened in all the states to ensure the unity government remains strong.
BN component parties MIC and MCA may also benefit from the move by being assigned one or two seats, he added.
Another source said Umno made the first move by changing Melaka’s BN state government into a unity government recently, with DAP and PKR members now sitting on the Exco.
“This is a prelude to what we can expect in the Selangor, Negeri Sembilan and Penang state elections. Some of the seats that PKR and DAP will give up may not go down well with certain sections of their support base.
“However, the parties are willing to go down to the grassroots to explain the importance of Malaysia continuing with the unity government at all levels. Eventually, the voters will understand as the larger picture is getting clearer now,” he said.
The state polls are expected to be held after July.