Perikatan has peaked, says Chin Tong

Ravin Palanisamy

Johor DAP chief Liew Chin Tong says Pakatan Harapan’s double victory in the recently held Johor by-elections proves Perikatan Nasional’s influence is waning. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, September 20, 2023.

JOHOR DAP chief and strategist Liew Chin Tong said Pakatan Harapan’s (PH) double victory in the recently held Johor by-elections proved the influence of Perikatan Nasional (PN) is waning.  

He said PN’s results in the six state elections held last month could possibly be their best achievement, adding that the coalition had already reached its “peak” in using racial and religious rhetoric to win over voters. 

“The twin by-elections of Pulai and Simpang Jeram on September 9, coming after the six state elections on August 12, have further strengthened the unity government.  

“It is now visible to many what I said earlier, ‘PN has reached its peak’.  

“The six state elections was the maximum that PN could achieve with manipulation and mobilisation of race and religious sentiments,” he said.  

PN suffered defeats in both Pulai and Simpang Jeram by-elections.  

Although last month’s six state elections resulted in continuing the status quo, PN was the bigger winner, as they clinched 146 of 245 seats contested, while the PH-Barisan Nasional (BN) unity coalition had to settle for 99 seats.  

PN also made major inroads in Selangor, denying PH-BN a two-thirds majority in the richest state while conquering Terengganu with a victory in all 32-seats.  

Liew said PN’s influence would end if they could not reach out to non-Malays as well as some middle ground Malays.  

“(In this case) the coalition will be constrained to the northern states,” he said.  

Liew said at PN’s peak, PAS would thrive as the party controlled four state governments but Bersatu would fade as time went by. 

PAS contributed heavily to PN in the state elections, securing 105 of 146 seats contested.  

The Islamist party boasted an 82.7% success rate in the state elections.  

Liew added that the twin by-election wins in Johor reaffirmed the strength and resilience of the idea of a multiethnic Malaysia. – September 20, 2023.  

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