PETALING JAYA — Which factor would the voter consider, the candidate or the party?
This question would arise on every election. A survey by Bernama in the Seri Setia state constituency by-election this Saturday shows that the decisive factor could be the party.
A strong party is seen as an important factor to care for the people as well as being the voice of the people at the state assembly sitting.
Among the many who opted for the party was housewife Che Lat Aring, 57, as she felt that the overall strength of the party was more important than the candidate factor.
“I am more inclined to choose the contesting party as the support, trust and loyalty to the party were the factors for me to vote,” she said.
A housewife, R. Maggeswery, 47, said she would consider both the candidate and the political party represented by the candidate.
“If we are looking for a real change, only a strong party would be able to hold the responsibility (to bring that change) for the people. A candidate would only represent a small part of the party,” she pointed out.
Although the party factor is a popular choice among voters, the ability of the candidate is also a factor that could not be overlooked.
A self-employed youngster Hanif Wardi, 28, said he preferred to look at the credibility of the candidate to improve the future of society and the government for better reforms in development.
“Since Malaysia has been revamped, it is necessary for us (as the voters) to think about the fate of the local community, in terms of the location we are residing.
“Hence, we need to choose a candidate who is able to provide inputs to the people and outputs to the government,” he said when met by Bernama.
For a registered voter Shafika Mihat, 28, from Taman Dato Hormat Park, she would be considering the candidate’s leadership skill as well as the candidate’s ability to practice the ‘walk the talk’ principle after being given the mandate.
“For me, credibility is an important factor and they should be able to walk the talk. Also, this time the candidate has to be committed to resolving issues related to this area (Seri Setia constituency),” she added.
Universiti Malaya political analyst Professor Awang Azman Awang Pawi concurred that the party factor could bring great opportunity to the Pakatan Harapan (PH) candidate to win the by-election, although the popularity of the PAS candidate seems to be in the forefront.
“In this by-election, the voters on average, would consider the stability of the party to choose from, and certainly the PH logo because it is the current government of the day. Also, the Seri Setia constituency is the stronghold of the party,” he added when contacted.
According to Awang Azman, the two rivals would try to woo the voters from the B40 group because most of them had not decided on who they would choose.
“Meanwhile, most of those from the middle-class group are already decided who they would vote for this Saturday,” he said.
However, he also predicted that the percentage of voter turnout would be reduced or not as much as the turnout of the last 14th General Election (GE14).
“The voters are still tired from the last election and they have also expected PH to win,” he said.
PH candidate Halimey Abu Bakar is contesting against PAS candidate Dr Halimah Ali in the Seri Setia by-election following the death of its incumbent Prof Dr Shaharuddin Badaruddin on Aug 2 after a battle with colon cancer.