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PRN6: PH-BN Forecasted To Retain Selangor, N9 and Penang: Analysts

The groundswell of support drummed up by political heavyweights from both Pakatan Harapan (PH) and Barisan Nasional (BN) in the first week of the campaigning period bodes well for the unity government alliance, which is forecasted to retain Selangor, Negri Sembilan and Penang when elections are held on Aug 12.

The aggressive campaigning, especially political ceramahs and visits by PH chairman Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, an attractive manifesto and sterling track records by the respective state governments are what will give the Unity Government alliance of PH-BN the advantage of triumphing over their erstwhile rivals in the Perikatan Nasional (PN) bloc, political analysts and observers shared with Bernama recently.

The fight for 56 seats in Selangor, 36 in Negri Sembilan and 40 in Penang will likely be between PH-BN and PN as other parties like the Malaysian United Democratic Alliance (MUDA), Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM), Parti Rakyat Malaysia (PRM), Parti Utama Rakyat (PUR) and Penang Front Party (PFP) have yet to show that they can mount any sort of meaningful challenge against the two dominant coalitions.

Universiti Selangor (Unisel) deputy vice-chancellor Assoc Prof Dr Hamdan Mohd Salleh said that the PH-BN partnership is expected to win Selangor comfortably, as the coordination and mobilisation of party machineries were well-organised and running smoothly in the past week of campaigning.

PH-BN state chairmen of Selangor, Negri Sembilan and Penang have reported that most of their candidates have managed to engage voters in almost 80 per cent of their constituencies so far and that response is very encouraging. Candidates were also placing effort into campaigning on social media channels, including Facebook, Instagram, X (Twitter) and TikTok, using them to broadcast their missions and visions to reach a wider audience.

Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (USIM) political analyst Dr Mohd Faizal Kasmani shared with Bernama that the PH-BN alliance would not face any difficulty in forming the state government just based on the previous track record and its administrative experience as the previous state government.His opinion mirrors that of state PH chairman Datuk Seri Aminuddin Harun, who has said that the Unity Government parties would be capable of obtaining more than two-thirds majority of 24 seats from a total of 36.

“There were one or two grey areas at the initial stages due to miscommunication but now we can see the light… we are focusing on certain areas, so in two or three more days, we’ll see some changes… We will try to defend the 19 seats (simple majority) and BN is confident of obtaining 17 seats,” he said.

In Penang, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) political analyst Prof Datuk Dr Sivamurugan Pandian said that the PN-BN alliance is still ahead in the race, but added that the second phase of the campaign period was critical to parties and candidates, especially the last 72 hours, as they must convince as many fence sitters as they could, as that group was prone to making decisions at the last minute.

Penang PH chairman Chow Kon Yeow expressed his confidence that 95 per cent of voters were behind PH and that the Unity Government alliance would retain the state, a PH stronghold, with at least 32 state seats while rival Penang PN deputy chairman, Oh Tong Keong, shared that campaigning had received positive response from local voters so far.With only five more days left before voters go to the polls on Aug 12, candidates will be upping the tempo, packing nearly every available hour with various activities to win over voters’ hearts and minds and the lack of big issues has steered campaigns to focus on the various deals and visions to develop the six states and its many constituencies.

Voters in Selangor, Negri Sembilan, Penang, Kedah, Kelantan and Terengganu will go to the polls on Aug 12 to elect their new state governments, with early voting being held on Aug 8. The Kuala Terengganu parliamentary by-election will also be held simultaneously on the same day. –BERNAMA

BacalahMalaysia Team

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