Home English News PH’s victory at KKB polls at what price?

PH’s victory at KKB polls at what price?

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COMMENT BY PROF DR P.RAMASAMY
CHAIRMAN, URIMAI PARTY

PH’s victory at KKB polls at what price?

Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim is obviously glad that the Madani government won the Kuala Kubu Bharu by-election. This is understandable because there were speculations that the PH/DAP coalition had the chance to lose the election.

Anyway, the result in the favour of the government is nothing extraordinary.
Low voter turnout among the races ensured that both the PH and the opposition coalition PN retained their share of the votes.

#TamilSchoolmychoice

Anwar must thank the Chinese voters because the lack of serious political alternative prevented them from experimenting with the other political parties or coalitions. It is unfortunate that the Chinese voters are still caught in the entrapment of the DAP representation.

Yes, DAP wants to be more Chinese than the MCA or Gerakan without offering the Chinese a future in the country. The DAP by falsely labelling itself as a multi-racial political party has disowned other ethnic groups in the country such as Indians and Malays.

Some pockets of the Malay society might have been enthralled by the “bribes” offered by Anwar in the form of increase in salary for the civil servants, but the vast majority of Malays stuck to the identity politics represented by PN.

Low voter turnout and absence of Malay voters from other states might have decreased the voter majority of PN. At the end of the day, PN remains the best option for the Malays not Umno or even the PKR.

By-elections in the country during the BN days and under the present unit government provides the best opportunity to “buy-elections”. This is exactly what happened in the KKB polls. The announcement of RM5.21 million for development projects in the Ulu Selangor area and the announcement of 13 percent salary hike for the civil servants amounting to a whopping RM10 billion were nothing but “bribes” to the voters to shift their loyalty to PH coalition.

How do you explain the shift of the allegations of the uniformed personnel of the military and police to support the PH coalition?

The rise in the salary was the main reason. However, the Malays by and large were not swayed by material benefits as they stuck to identity politics as represented by PN.

Anwar who talked endlessly about reforms should be ashamed of himself for “bribing” the voters in favour of the unity government. Even the announcement of RM75 million estate housing project in Bistari Jaya area to entice the Indian working class was not successful.

In the KKB polls, Indian voters turnout was less than 50 percent splitting the support between PH and PN. As a protest that begun in the 2023 state elections, Indians were daring enough to cast their votes in favour of the PN.

The Anwar government might be under the mistaken belief that throwing bread crumbs at Indians might get their votes. But then, like the Malays, economic and social deprivation has manifested in identity politics among the Indians.

Years of discrimination and neglect, insults hurled at the Indian community, calling them as “Keling”, warning them not to raise sensitive questions about the admissions into the matriculation programme, the religious conversion of an Indian youth presided by Anwar, the non-appointment of an Indian Tamil minister and not the least telling the Indians not to be jealous of Malays and others are incidents that have wounded Indians in the country.

These are the reasons why an Indians shied away from the PH coalition. The trend began in the last state elections in 2023, has continued in the KKB polls and has the potential to continue in the future.

What is there for Anwar to be proud of this Pyrrhic victory in the KKB by-election. Essentially, the government “bought” the victory through the allocation of public funds.
I would not be surprised that there will be political parties wanting to take the government to the Electoral Court for contravening election laws. We well have to wait and see.

The KKB by-election is not about winning but rather what waits for the government in the future. Malays and Indians are dissatisfied on the question of identity politics. The question is: how long the Chinese community is going to put up with the political stunts of the DAP.

As someone remarked recently, while the Indians are quick to desert the PH coalition, it will take a while for the Chinese. The DAP has to be exposed about its shameful and disgraceful representation.

The KKB victory is something temporary for the Madani government. When the dust settles down, the realities of the country will have to be faced.