PKR will throw full support behind Bersatu: Anwar

07 Feb 2019 / 11:44 H.

KUALA LUMPUR: PKR will endorse Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia’s (Bersatu) candidate for the Semenyih by-election.

Party president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim expressed support and confidence in whichever candidate Bersatu wishes to field.

“We will give our full support ... given that it is a Bersatu seat,“ he told reporters here after attending a forum at the International Institute of Islamic Civilisation last night.

Earlier yesterday Bersatu secretary-general Senator Datuk Marzuki Yahya said it was decided in the Pakatan Harapan (PH) presidential council meeting that Bersatu will contest the seat.

Meanwhile, Anwar acknowledged it would be a tough challenge for PH to retain the seat, just as it had been in the past five by-elections post-GE14.

In the by-elections since GE14 on May 9, 2018, Pakatan Harapan have won the Sungai Kandis, Seri Setia and Balakong state seats in addition to winning the Port Dickson parliamentary seat. The recent Cameron Highlands parliamentary seat was won by Barisan Nasional.

So far Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM), and independent candidate, Kuan Chee Heng, the founder of the Community Policing Malaysia have confirmed they will contest, although the former is yet to name its candidate.

PSM secretary-general, A. Sivarajan, said in a statement that the party considered various factors, including the views of members and supporters, and felt that the people needed a “third voice”.

He said PSM would announce its candidate before nomination day on Feb 16, and added that the party welcomed assistance in the form of funds and volunteers to beef up its election machinery.

The by-election is being held following the death of assemblyman, Bakhtiar Mohd Nor, 57, of Bersatu from a heart attack on Jan 11.

In the 14th General Election last year, S. Arutchelvan of PSM lost in the four-cornered contest that also involved Johan Abdul Aziz (Barisan Nasional), and Mad Shahmidur Mat Kosim (PAS).

Bakhtiar garnered 23,428 votes to win by a majority of 8,964 votes.

On a separate matter, Anwar denied there is a rift between him and Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, saying these were attempts by certain quarters to sow seeds of discord between them.

“Earlier today (Wednesday) Prime Minister Mahathir said that we need not entertain such rumours, I have also met with (Economic Affairs Minister) Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali after his surgery. There are no issues between us,“ said Anwar.

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