UNDERCURRENTS GROW IN UMNO: NAJIB WON’T CALL FOR ELECTION THIS YEAR -ANALYSTS

KUCHING: A political analyst Assoc Prof Dr Ahi Sarok believes the 14th general election will not be held this year, saying that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak will go for a full term.

He said Najib would wait until the country’s economy recovers before calling for an election.

Another reason, he said, was that Najib had studied the past election, when former prime minister Tun Ahmad Abdullah Badawi called for a snap election.

“I am of the opinion that the 14th general election will not be held this year. Najib has seen the trend of past election, when Pak Lah lost many seats to the opposition for not going for a full term.

“Furthermore, our economy is still bad and Naib will wait for the economy to improve before he calls for an election,” Ahi said when contacted yesterday.

He was asked to comment on a report by the research arm of international economic daily Financial Times saying the 14th general election would be held in the third quarter of this year and Najib was on track to retain his grip on power.

Ahi is also of the opinion that Barisan Nasional (BN) will still win in the election, but with a smaller majority, adding that BN would also win some new seats created following the re-delineation exercise.

“Infighting among the opposition on the issue of the next prime minister and the creation of new seats are giving the BN an added advantage (to win) in the general election,” he said.

He also believed that BN would win Miri and Sarikei seats.

This, he said, was due to the BN victory in Repok and Bintangor state seats (under Sarikei parliamentary seat) and Piasau and Senadin (under Miri parliamentary seats) in the recent state election.

Ahi also said the 1MDB issue would not have any impact on the rural voters.

“For the rural voters, the 1MDB issue which links Najib will not have any affect, but for the educated voters…yes,” he said.

A PBB supreme council member Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah, meanwhile, said he was confident that the majority of Malaysians would acknowledge the commitment of the government and vote for Najib and BN.

“Looking at how committed BN and our prime minister are in addressing whatever problems faced, whether it’s the economy, political issues, infrastructure development, inter-faith and religious and racial issues…

I have full confidence that the majority of Malaysians will vote for Najib and BN,” Abdul Karim, who is Assistant Minister for Youth and Sports, said when contacted.

Abdul Karim, who is also Assistant Minister for Housing, said Najib and BN were also committed in addressing the many nitty-gritty issues thrown at them by the opposition.

He said the opposition was in disarray, adding that only God knows what would happen if they were given the power.

“They (opposition) will be scrambling for position and wealth which will bring a worst case scenario,” he said, adding that when the time came the people would give their mandate to whom they thought were sincere in their struggle State PKR chief Baru Bian, meanwhile, said the opposition had a chance to win the coming election with all the mounting allegations levelled at the top leaders of the country.

“If we were competing on a fairly level political field, the opposition has the chance to win with all the mounting allegations made against the top leaders of the country.

“But since money politics is very entrenched in our political system, Najib is correct,” Baru Bian, who is Ba Kelalan assemblyman said.

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