Tanjung Piai by-election: Umno may contest there, hints Zahid

Tanjung Piai by-election: Umno may contest there, hints Zahid

JOHOR BAHRU: Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today hinted that the nationalist party may contest in the Tanjung Piai by-election instead of MCA.

Speaking at the opening of the Johor Umno Convention today, Zahid said Malay voters there wanted a change in the area.

“Yes, traditionally the seat belonged to MCA. We know that 56.9% or 57% of Tanjung Piai voters are Malays.

“Umno and the Malays in Tanjung Piai want a change. However, MCA also wants to maintain its tradition.

“We strongly believe that the Barisan Nasional (BN) spirit must be maintained. Therefore, a decision on whether Umno or MCA will contest must be made in solidarity.

“The BN supreme council meeting is the proper platform for us to decide on the candidate for the Tanjung Piai by-election,” he said.

Also present were Umbo deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan, Umno vice president Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin, Johor Umno liason chairman Datuk Hasni Mohamad dan MCA president Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong.

On the by-election, Zahid said that Umno must make new offers to attract voters, and it should focus on spiritual wellbeing, rather than just physical handouts such as grants and allocations.

“Details of the new offers will be discussed by the Johor Umno liaison body and it will be our indirect manifesto for this by-election,” he said.

In his speech, Zahid announced Hasni as the Tanjung Piai by-election director while Tanjung Piai Umno division chief Datuk Jefridin Atan as director of operations.

Tanjung Piai parliamentary by-election is the ninth by-election after the 14th general election.

The seat fell vacant after the death of its MP Datuk Dr Md Farid Md Rafik, 42, on Sept 21 following a heart attack.

The Elections Commission has announced that the by-election will be held on Nov 16, while nomination day would fall on Nov 2 and early voting is on Nov 12.