Media statement by Lim Kit Siang in Kuala Lumpur on Wednesday, 2nd February 2011:
PR should move on from Tenang to get support from all Malaysians for political change although MCA leaders are now claiming BN secured 50% Chinese voter support despite professional analysis that BN Chinese support had fallen to 32% in by-election
MCA President Datuk Seri Chua Soi Lek, who previously claimed that Barisan Nasional had secured 45% Chinese voter support in the Tenang by-election, has now upped the claim to 50%, quoting as authority former MCA Minister, Tan Sri Dr. Fong Chan Onn. (Guang Ming Daily)
However, the first professional analysis of the voter trend in the Tenang by-election has given a completely different picture, showing that I had erred on the conservative side when I estimated that Chinese voter support for the Pas/Pakatan Rakyat candidate was in the region of 65% when it was probably closer to 68%.
According to the analysis “Soi Lek wrong on Chinese support” by psephologist Ong Kian Ming, writing today in Malaysiakini, Barisan Nasional’s Chinese votes in the by-election on Sunday fell by 3% to 32% from 35% in the 2008 general election, while BN increased its Malay votes from 80% in 2008 to 86% in the by-election and increased its Indian votes from 74% in 2008 to 86% - based on Chinese, Malay and Indian voter turnout rates of 55%, 79% and 50% respectively.
PR should move on from Tenang to get support from all Malaysians for political change although MCA leaders are now claiming BN secured 50% Chinese voter support despite professional analysis that BN Chinese support had fallen to 32% in the by-election.
If PR is to succeed in its campaign to effect political changes, it is the responsibility of all the three component parties to ensure that we can continue to get increasing support from all the communities for the PR common policy programme for justice, freedom, democracy and change – whether Malays, Chinese, Indians, Kadazans, Ibans or Orang Asli.
I do not think any PR leader really expected PR to win in the Tenang by-election but the target not only debunking Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s 5,000-vote majority boast but also slashing BN’s 2008 majority of 2,492 votes would have been achieved, if not for the incessant rain and heavy floodings resulting in unprecedented low voter-turnouts in pro-PR areas when there was selective and discriminatory reliefs by government agencies in ferrying voters to polling stations.
It was most regrettable that there was no walking the talk of “1Malaysia. People First. Performance Now” when action was called for by the government agencies to provide reliefs in natural and man-made disasters like the big floods on the by-election polling day and after.
*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Ipoh Timor