KUALA LUMPUR: The outcome of the Tanjung Piai by-election showed that voters in the parliamentary constituency had vented their dissatisfaction against Pakatan Harapan (PH).
The result also does not necessarily mean that the voters of the southern Johor constituency had accepted the collaboration between Umno and Pas said Gerakan president Datuk Dr Dominic Lau.
He said Pas president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang’s interpretation that Barisan Nasional’s (BN) victory in the by-election was due to the people’s acceptance of the Umno and Pas cooperation was an oversimplified idea.
“If you analyse it carefully, you can know that the people only wanted to teach PH a lesson,” he said in a statement, today.
Lau pointed out that in the May 9 General Election last year, BN received 20,731 votes and in the by-election, this time around it garnered 25,466 votes.
“Not much difference. On the contrary, PH has lost by more than 10,000 votes in this by-election”.
He said since the by-election did not affect the Federal Government, this made Tanjung Piai voters cast their votes for the BN, ensuring that PH was defeated.
Lau believes that Tanjung Piai voters, especially the Chinese voters, had clearly expressed their dissatisfaction with the government’s ethnic policy.
Therefore, the government and the BN must immediately turn to moderate politics, through the implementation of fair and just policies, to restore the confidence of the people, he said.
Lau also urged PH to immediately honour its GE14 manifesto, as the people had already conveyed a clear message that the government must keep its promises.
This includes the recognition of the Unified Examination Certificate (UEC) of the Malaysian Independent Chinese Secondary Schools.
He also said that Gerakan would continue to defend moderate and pluralistic politics and would never agree with racist and religious extremism.
BN wrested the Tanjung Piai seat from PH by a huge 15,086-vote majority on Saturday, 18 months after it lost the seat to the pact in the last general election.
BN’s Datuk Seri Dr Wee Jeck Seng, who had been a two-term Tanjung Piai member of parliament, polled 25,466 votes, while PH’s candidate Karmaine Sardini received 10,380 votes.
Gerakan’s Wendy Subramaniam garnered 1,707 votes and Berjasa candidate Datuk Dr Badhrulhisham Abdul Aziz polled 850 votes. The two Independent candidates, Faridah Aryani Abd Ghani and Dr Ang Chuan Lock, only garnered 380 and 32 votes, respectively. All four also lost their deposits.