KLANG: The upcoming state election in Selangor is expected to be an acrimonious and vengeance-charged event, as political veterans say events and incidents that have transpired over the last few months will shape the mood and the setting of the polls.
Some are also expecting primordial sentiments to be played out for support and votes.
Other pertinent questions looming ahead are whether Pakatan Harapan will do as well as it did in the 2018 polls or if Perikatan Nasional will advance ahead through the the green wave.
Former PKR vice-president Tian Chua said he believes Selangor voters will not be moved by sentiments, as they are educated and value economic progress.
“Religious and racial sentiments will not play out well amongst the Selangor voters as they understand the economic ecosystem and value professional leadership,’’ said the former Batu MP.
On PAS grabbing three of PKR’s seats in the last general election, Chua said the credit should go to Perikatan instead of just to PAS.
However, he added if PAS wants political longevity in Selangor, it must not spook people and be prepared to embrace a multi-racial, pro-business, moderate stance.
“Businesses and investors must not be frightened away because if Selangor’s economy is negatively impacted, it will adversely affect the national economy as well,’’ said Chua.
Former Kapar Umno chief Datuk Faisal Abdullah said Selangor will be the focus in the upcoming state election given that it is a developed and rich state which both political coalitions want control of.
Faisal reckoned racial and religious sentiments will continue to be used by some as it is one of the most popular election strategies.
“But this will not be effective in urban Selangor as the voters are sophisticated and are more interested in economic development rather that anything else,’’ said Faisal.
He added it would also not be easy for the current Selangor administration to change hands as the state has almost 50 % non-Malay voters.
According to Faisal, the scenario will not be the same in rural areas as the voters there have different wants and needs compared to their urban counterparts.
Faisal also believed there will be some shake-up along the Kuala Selangor stretch due to the Tan Sri Noh Omar factor.
The six-term Tanjong Karang MP was sacked from Umno last year over alleged close ties with the Opposition during the general election.
Known to be a political warlord, Noh was also dropped by the Umno leadership from defending his seat.
“Noh is well-known in the area and during his tenure as the MP, had brought a lot of development to Tanjong Karang and the surrounding areas as well as helped many people,’’ said Faisal.
Noh is currently working closely with Perikatan and his daughter Nurul Syazwani Noh, who is with Bersatu, is touted to be contesting the Permatang state seat, which falls under the Tanjong Karang parliamentary constituency, in the coming polls.
Faisal added Noh’s influence will be a thorn in Pakatan’s side in the state constituencies under Tanjong Karang as well as seats under the neighbouring Kuala Selangor and Sungai Besar parliamentary constituencies.
– The Star