PETALING JAYA: Election partners Barisan Nasional and Pakatan Harapan were urged today to prepare an inclusive “new deal” for Kedahans that does not only prioritise the Malays.
Kedah Umno chief Mahdzir Khalid said the “new deal” offered by the alliance must make the people feel that the state government would be there for them “whether they are Malay, Chinese, Indians or Siamese”.
“What is our offer to the various people among the 2.2 million Kedahans?” he said at a Kedah convention of partners in the unity government coalition.
Mahdzir, who was Kedah menteri besar from 2005 to 2008, said the Siamese community had long-standing problems with the agriculture certificates while the Indian community suffered social problems as the rubber estates in Sungai Tukang disappeared because of rapid urbanisation.
Some of the children did not go to school and gangsterism arose among the community, he said. He tried to help them to relocate to Sungai Petani but his efforts were cut short when BN lost power in Kedah to PAS and Pakatan Rakyat in 2008.
Kedah PH chief Mahfuz Omar urged PH and BN leaders in Kedah not to be bothered about choosing a “poster boy” or menteri besar candidate. He said the decision should be left to the Sultan of Kedah, after the state assembly elections were decided.
Mahfuz, who is an Amanah vice-president, urged coalition leaders to revise their way of thinking regarding the youth, who now consisted of a large percentage of the electorate.
“If we can get (support from the young), we can bring huge changes,” Mahfuz said.