KUALA LUMPUR, April 17 – As political parties tie up the loose ends to their candidate line-ups for the 13th general election on May 5, the political battle taking shape in hot seats – Gelang Patah, Putrajaya and Lembah Pantai – are being keenly watched.
Billed the “battle royale” or “clash of the Titans”, the tussle for Gelang Patah (broken bracelet) parliamentary seat is a battle between political bigwigs – Johor Menteri Besar Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman and DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang – who is out to create a “political tsunami” in Johor, an Umno bastion.
Kit Siang, a political veteran, was reported to have said in Penang recently that he would not withdraw from contesting in Gelang Patah as he wanted the “political tsunami” created in the 2008 general election to be felt nationwide.
Prof Datuk Dr Mohamed Mustafa Ishak (pic), who heads the Political, Security and International Affairs Cluster of the National Council of Professors, says Ghani’s service track record as the menteri besar and the people’s elected representative is a “good benchmark” to gauge the “best choice” for the rapidly-developing suburban seat.
“Ghani is the supremo and the architect of Johor’s impressive progress. He is also very popular among the electorate vis-a-vis Kit Siang, a relatively newcomer to Johor’s political scene.
“By far and large, the voters, including the Chinese community, appreciate what Ghani has done for Johor. Ghani is instrumental in developing Nusajaya and the Iskandar Malaysia economic corridor, besides being the person very familiar with Johor’s “nooks and corners” as opposed to Kit Siang,” he told Bernama.