Port Dickson by-election is as history-making as the 14th General Election result of May 9, 2018 with a three-point five-month verdict endorsing a New Malaysia, Anwar Ibrahim as the eighth Prime Minister-designate and a New Port Dickson to restore PD’s previous glory and pre-eminence
The Port Dickson by-election is as history-making as the 14th General Election result of May 9, 2018 with a three-point five-month verdict endorsing a New Malaysia, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim as the eighth Prime Minister-designate after Tun Dr. Mahathir and a New Port Dickson to restore Port Dickson’s previous pre-eminence and glory as a premier tourist destination.
Despite a low voter turn-out of 58.3%, Anwar secured 31,016 votes or a 23,560-vote majority, which eclipsed that of the PKR’s Danyal Balagopal Abdullah who won the seat in the 14th general election by a margin of 17,710 votes with a voter turnout of 83%.
In winning 71.3% of 58.3% turnout of 75,770 votes, or 44,136 votes cast in the by-election, Anwar has probably set the record for the highest popular vote for the lowest voter-turn out.
In fact, Anwar’s 71.3% of the popular votes cast is higher than that of the former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, who only secured 62% of the popular votes cast in Pekan parliamentary constituency, or PAS President, Datuk Seri Hadi Awang, who secured only 59.3% of the popular votes cast in Marang, or UMNO President Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi who secured only 51.4% of the popular votes cast in Bagan Datuk or the sole MCA MP and MCA President-aspirant Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong, who secured only 43.98% of the votes cast in the Ayer Hitam parliamentary constituency in the 14th General Election.
The Port Dickson by-election results is a very promising signpost for Malaysia’s future as it showed that Pakatan Harapan has been able to maintain two goals which are significant not only to the continued success of Pakatan Harapan but the building of a New Malaysia – the ability to sustain and maintain the support of the non-Malay voters and the ability to win more Malay electoral support with the passage of time.
It is a confirmation of my theory that the political extremists and opportunists in UMNO and PAS who fall back on the toxic and vicious politics of race, religion, hate, fear and lies are fighting a losing battle in an information era in plural Malaysia.
When I visited Canberra in my recent tour of eight Australian and New Zealand cities last month, I got a note from a Malaysian expert in Australia, Dr. John Funston, of the Department of Political and Social Change, College of Asia and the Pacific of Australian National University (ANU) whose preliminary studies showed that Malay support for UMNO in Peninsular Malaysia in the 14th General Election was only about 5% higher than support for Pakatan Harapan, and not 15% as had earlier been estimated by Merdeka Centre.
I do not believe that the Malay voters who voted for UMNO or PAS in the 14th General Election wanted a global kleptocracy, a sham democracy or a rogue state.
I believe that they would have supported the Vision of a New Malaysia if they realise that Pakatan Harapan stands for an end to corruption, repression and injustices, and not exploitation of any race or religion, in particular Malays as well as Islam.
In the Port Dickson by-election, Pakatan Harapan had made inroads into many Malay-majority polling districts – which are good signs for the future.
As Anwar pointed out in his victory speech in Port Dickson last night, what is most astounding about the by-election is that all ethnic groups have come together to support Anwar as the MP for Port Dickson and the eighth Prime Minister-designate.
I am very intrigued by the statement by the PAS President Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang who said that the low voter turnout was a sign of Pakatan Harapan being punished for not fulfilling its election promises, and that the tide was turning against Pakatan Harapan.
Hadi is welcome to his illusion, as he seems to have acquired one of former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s traits after co-operating with the former Prime Minister – constantly subject to fits of hallucination.
Hadi should be more worried about the tide turning against PAS and PAS’ declining fortunes than that of Pakatan Harapan, after leading PAS to an unprecedented shrinkage from a national party with elected representatives throughout Peninsular Malaysia to a regional party ensconced in the Malay states in the east coast and Kedah and Perlis, and undoing all the successes and achievements in the reach-out efforts to all races, religions and regions undertaken by the two previous PAS Presidents, Fadzil Noor and Yusuf Rawa and the previous PAS Mursydul Am, Tuan Guru Dato' Nik Abdul Aziz bin Nik Mat for over two decades.