Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has called on Malaysians, especially Tanjung Piai voters, to practise tolerance and not be easily influenced by extreme sentiments. (NSTP/HAIRUL ANUAR RAHIM)

PONTIAN: Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has called on Malaysians, especially Tanjung Piai voters, to practise tolerance and not be easily influenced by extreme sentiments.

In an open letter penned by the Pakatan Harapan chairman to Tanjung Piai voters, Dr Mahathir said they should not forsake the country’s future simply due to political sentiments.

He said the country had managed to record many achievements and developments due to its people of different racial and religious backgrounds coming together to help build the nation.

This spirit, he said, was lost and the PH government was doing its best to bring it back to ensure the country’s future.

“It must be remembered that this racial political game is being played by those who are desperate as they are now facing legal action due to their greed and arrogance when they were in power.

“They do not care if their actions could cause racial clashes because to them, if disturbances occur, their wrongdoings will be put aside.

“Because of that, we have to ensure that we will not be easily influenced by these narrow-minded politics for the benefit of some of them.

“Don’t give them any space to continue to pit the people against each other and the best way to do this is by not voting for their candidate in this upcoming Tanjung Piai by-election,” he wrote.

The Tanjung Piai seat fell vacant after Datuk Dr Mohd Farid Mohd Rafik, who was also deputy minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, died on Sept 21 due to heart complications.

Karmaine Sardine was chosen as PH candidate and Dr Mahathir said he was confident of the former’s ability to care for all the voters in the constituency.

On the people’s dissatisfaction with the government’s performance, the Langkawi member of parliament said Putrajaya was facing many challenges in trying to get Malaysia back on track.

“It is true that we can’t keep blaming the previous government and at the same time we are trying to continue to develop the country and ensure the people’s welfare.

“At the same time, those who follow the ongoing court cases must have noticed that all the damage done following cases of corruption and abuse of power had almost destroyed the country.

“This is why the government is taking steps to ensure that such things will not recur and so that our leaders will no longer have a chance to acquire wealth without fearing the consequences,” he said.

The Tanjung Piai by-election will be held on Nov 16 and will feature a six-cornered fight.

Aside from Karmaine, those contesting are Datuk Seri Dr Wee Jeck Seng (Barisan Nasional), Wendy Subramaniam (Gerakan), Datuk Dr Badhrulhisham Abdul Aziz (Berjasa) and two independent candidates, Dr Ang Chuan Lock and Faridah Aryani Abd Ghani.