KUALA LUMPUR: Supporters may feel “kecil hati (slighted)” if forced to support DAP candidates in the upcoming state elections, says Isham Jalil.
The Umno supreme council member said Umno cannot lose their base voters as they could then lean towards voting for Perikatan Nasional.
“Our supporters will not like it and might consider voting for others as this is a sensitive matter.
“We need to look at things carefully, our animosity with DAP has spanned 60 years, it cannot be fixed in six months.
“We cannot lose our voters and their respect for us.
“If they lose respect for us, we will not be able to revive ourselves.
“It is true that it is difficult for us to ask our supporters to support DAP as they are ideologically not compatible with us,” he said in a Facebook Live session on Wednesday (May 24).
Isham also said there was no need to praise DAP too much.
“There is no need to praise DAP too much or else our supporters will be discouraged, and that will be a problem for us.
“We do not need to be DAP apologists, they are not doing the same for us.
“Our supporters will not like it and might vote for others, which we do not want.
“We cannot lose our voter base, if we want to win new votes and lose our existing ones, we are finished,” he said.
Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Maslan, who is also an Umno supreme council member, had recently called for Umno supporters to cast their votes for DAP candidates in the six state elections.
Isham, a former Umno information chief, said the six state elections will be crucial in determining the level of support for the Federal Government.
“Although these are just state seats, it will send a signal as to where the votes are going.
“Personally, I want this (unity government) to work as I do not want the government to continuously change.
“It is not good for the economy and investment in the country,” he said.
Isham said the main thing is to build trust between the parties in the unity government.
“The distribution of seats among parties in the unity government, especially between the Pakatan Harapan components and Umno, will go a long way in proving their sincerity.
“I am confident DAP can win seats in its strongholds without the help of Umno voters.
“The concern is about the voter turnout in the Malay-majority seats, which Umno, PKR and Amanah usually target.
“When we used to be against Pakatan in the past, voters who did not like them (Pakatan) voted for us but now that we are with Pakatan, will Malay voters want to vote for us or will they consider Perikatan, which we do not want,” he said.
– The Star