In making this call, K Loganathan the Bukit Gelugor MIC division chief said Palanivel two days ago had told Kajang MIC branch leaders and members that the BN will lose the by-election at a closed door meeting.
“He should not be permitted to campaign in the Kajang by-elections …10% Indian voters could be a decisive factor in this elections.
“Palanivelu on Feb 21 told Kajang MIC members that BN will lose the by-election. It is totally unacceptable that he leads the MIC election operations in this by-election.
“He should remember that in the Hulu Selangor by-elections, the BN won fielding a new face. Palanivel was the one who lost the seat in the 12th general election after holding it for three terms. Now he says the Kajang seat is a forgone conclusion even before the nomination.
“Even in the Ijok by-election before the 12th general election. The MIC fielded a new face and won against the now Selangor Menteri Besar Abdul Khalid Ibrahim,” he added in a statement.
The Kajang state seat fell vacant following the resignation of incumbent assemblymen Lee Chin Cheh of PKR on Jan 27. The seat comprises 39,728 registered voters. It has 48% Malay voters, Chinese 41%, Indian 10% and others 1%.
At the last general election in May, 2013, PKR’s Lee garnered 19,571 votes followed by Lee Ban Seng (BN-MCA) with 12,747 votes and Mohamad Ismail (Berjasa) 1,014 votes.
The three independent candidates who contested were Mohd Iwan Jefrey Abdul Majib (249 votes), Ong Yan Foo (85 votes) and Mohd Khalid Kassim (83 votes).
Lee won with a comfortable 6, 824 vote majority. Except for the MCA candidate, all the others lost their deposits.
The by-election will not have a bearing on who runs the state as Pakatan Rakyat has 44 seats in the 56-seat Selangor state assembly. The remainder 12 are held by the BN.
The opposition has named PKR de facto chief and parliament Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim as its candidate.
Former PKR vice-president Zaid Ibrahim has also expressed his intention to contest the seat as an independent candidate.
Loganathan said the BN leadership should ask the MIC president to refrain from demoralizing the party cadre in a crucial election.
“His statement is totally unacceptable coming from a leader of a BN component party during an election.
“It is best the MIC campaign is led by the deputy president Dr.Subramaniam, who is also Health Minister, and Palanivel should not join the fray with a negative, defeatist attitude,” he added.
It must be noted that this is the second occasion the MIC president had given-up on the BN in favour of the opposition.
Early this month a former MIC central working committee member confirmed that Palanivel did not field strong candidates in Penang at the last general election so as not to “disturb” the DAP in the state.
FMT, on Jan 30, reported a former MIC central working committee (CWC) member’s claim that Palanivel shot down S Vell Paari’s suggestion on MIC’s candidates in Penang so as to take care of DAP’s interest in Penang.
Paari when contacted by FMT early this month confirmed that the incident took place at one MIC CWC meeting prior to the May 2013 general election.
Paari had suggested that former youth treasurer J Dheenagaran and incumbent CWC member Henry Benedict Aasirvaatham be given the opportunity to contest under the BN banner in Bagan Dalam and Perai state seats respectively.
However, Palanivel immediately dismissed his suggestion by claiming that MIC should not “disturb” the DAP in Penang.
Palanivel had also said then, that Penang chief minister Lim Guan Eng and his deputy (II) P Ramasamy were his close friends.
The MIC CWC were shocked with this line of argument from the president and were speechless when Palanivel told them that the DAP was doing an excellent job in Penang and that the opposition party should remain in power in the state.
– FREE MALAYSIA TODAY