PUTRAJAYA – The Barisan Nasional victories in the Kuala Kangsar and Sungai Besar parliamentary by-elections proved that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak is more than capable of leading BN into the next general election, said BN strategic communications director Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan.
He said the landslide wins proved false former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s claim that BN would lose under the leadership of Najib.
In a statement issued here Monday, Abdul Rahman, who is Housing, Local Government and Urban Wellbeing Minister, said Tun Mahathir’s Anti-Najib Campaign had failed and the opposition was split and incoherent and seemed incapable of administrating a government.
“The people trust BN under the Prime Minister’s leadership to deliver economic development and security,” he said.
Abdul Rahman said the people had demonstrated that they were against any attempt to topple a democratically-elected government.
Abdul Rahman said Tun Mahathir must accept the democratic will of the people, even if it was not aligned with his personal interests.
“â€ŽIt would serve him better to retire quietly now, rather thanâ€Ž subject himself to further humiliation,” he said.
Datin Mastura Mohd Yazid polled 12,653 votes to retain the Kuala Kangsar seat for the BN by a 6,969-vote majority, beating Dr Najihatussalehah Ahmad of PAS (5,684 votes), Dr Ahmad Termizi Ramli of Amanah (4,883) and Independent candidate Izat Bukhary Ismail Bukhary (54).
Mastura is the widow of MP Datuk Wan Mohammad Khair-il Anuar Wan Ahmad who died in a helicopter crash in Sarawak on May 5. Tan Sri Noriah Kasnon, who was the MP for Sungai Besar, was also killed in the accident, which necessitated the by-election in Sungai Besar.
That by-election was won by Sungai Panjang state assemblyman Budiman Mohd Zohdi who garnered 16,800 votes to record a 9,191-vote majority. He beat Azhar Abdul Shukur of Amanah who obtained 7,609 votes and Dr Abdul Rani Osman of PAS who got 6,902 votes.
In KANGAR, the Perlis UMNO Veterans Association said the Kuala Kangsar and Sungai Besar victories should serve as a guide and provide the formula for BN on the selection of candidates for the 14th general election due in 2018.
Its chairman, Datuk Selamat Saad, said it was important to ensure that BN candidates were competent and ready to serve the people.
“Furthermore, UMNO members including divisional and branch leaders must accept whoever the top leadership picks as candidates instead of resorting to sabotage,” he said.
Selamat, who is also the president of the Perlis Association of Former Elected Representatives (Mubarak), told Bernama the spirit of camaraderie among the BN component parties in supporting the selected candidates regardless of community and religion should be the guiding principle at all times.
I am confident that if this formula is adopted for the 14th general election, the BN can retain its seats and recapture the states now administered by the opposition,” he said.