Barisan, Pakatan will not be hasty over seat distribution, says Deputy PM

The Deputy Prime Minister said this approach was to avoid clashes or any problems that might arise if the chosen candidate did not win.


May 2, 2023

KUALA LUMPUR – Barisan Nasional and Pakatan Harapan will not be hasty in the distribution of seats for the upcoming six state elections, says Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

The Deputy Prime Minister said this approach was to avoid clashes or any problems that might arise if the chosen candidate did not win.

In addition, Ahmad Zahid said the negotiation for seat distribution among parties in the unity government also involved certain procedures.

This included discussions between Barisan and Pakatan at the state level before bringing it to the national level to be finalised among the presidents of the relevant parties.

“What we will prioritise is that the seat distribution is done not only with a sense of equality, but also the ‘winnability’.

“We feel that it is not only about victory, but (also) about voter acceptance, and the likeability of a candidate among the voters in the area concerned.

“And we still have quite a long time, maybe until July or early August to officially face the election campaign,” he said at a press conference after attending the Pahang Umno liaison body Hari Raya Aidilfitri open house at Laman Sejahtera Sungai Koyan here today (May 1).

Also present were Pahang Mentri Besar and state Umno chairman Datuk Seri Wan Rosdy Wan Ismail, as well as other Umno leaders at the national and state levels.

Ahmad Zahid, who is also Barisan chairman, was responding to claims that seat distribution between Barisan and Pakatan for the state elections in Kedah, Penang, Selangor, Negri Sembilan, Terengganu and Kelantan was behind that of Perikatan Nasional, which was reported to be 85% to 90% completed.

Asked about the views of certain parties that Perikatan had a chance to make an impact in Selangor and Negri Sembilan, Ahmad Zahid who is also Umno president, said his side could not take the assumption lightly.

“Not only in Selangor, but (we cannot take it lightly) in all the states that will face the polls,” he said.

He added that the results could favour the parties in the unity government if they coordinated their machinery well and provided accurate information to the voters.

On whether Barisan would make changes to the list of candidates for the six state elections to ensure their candidates were “likeable”, Ahmad Zahid did not rule out the possibility based on the achievements and experience in the polls in Melaka and Johor.

“Barisan put forward new faces (in Melaka and Johor), in Melaka, it was almost 80% and the same for Johor, which was more than 70%.

“It means that we are very committed to rejuvenating Umno, Barisan and giving the younger generation the opportunity to be in the state leadership through the polls,” he said. – Bernama

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