PN Penang aims 15 seats, extra six a major plus to form simple majority govt

TASNIM LOKMAN
TASNIM LOKMAN
15 Jun 2023 08:00am
Photo for illustrative purposes only. Bernama FILE PIX
Photo for illustrative purposes only. Bernama FILE PIX
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SHAH ALAM - Booted-out Bertam assemblyman Khaliq Mehtab Mohd Ishaq is confident that Perikatan Nasional (PN) will be able to sweep all 15 Malay-majority seats in the upcoming Penang state election this year.

He said the coalition; namely Bersatu, Pas and Gerakan, has the right people and experienced professionals to govern the state well.

“A lot more can be done. Give PN a chance. Penang Try Kalih, that’s the tagline,” he told Sinar Daily during an episode of Top News podcast.

Khaliq said should PN win the 15 targeted seats, it would reflect the key messages by the people of Penang, with the first being a signal to Pakatan Harapan (PH) that they should not “be messing around with PN” and secondly, that PN was here to stay.

“We are here to stay and a force to reckon with.

“We want to deny PH the two-thirds majority they’ve been enjoying all this while, if you have two-thirds majority you can enact laws to your whims and fancies.

“We do not want that to happen, and if we can win 15 seats, we automatically deny the two-thirds they enjoy all this while,” he said.

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Khaliq Mehtab
Khaliq Mehtab

Despite Penang being a DAP-PH stronghold, Khaliq remained optimistic with their chances.

Not only that, he also said it was not impossible to win an extra six seats for a simple majority and form state government.

“But you never know, if we win 15 seats, we only need six more to win a simple majority.

“Anything is possible, like what happened in the 15th General Election. Nobody expected PN to win 70 over seats,” he said, adding that they needed a total of 21 seats to form a government.

Khaliq said the six seats would be mixed seats where most of the Malay population was at 40 per cent while non-Malays stood at 60 per cent.

He cited unhappiness among Umno and DAP members as a major key factor for their possible win.

“What I’m saying is it is not impossible for us to win Penang like what happened at the federal level. Even more so now that Umno and DAP are friendly, sleeping on the same bed but not the same pillow.

“Many of their supporters at the ground level are unhappy about this. During GE15, they were against each other, Umno was ‘No Umno, No DAP’ and PMX (Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim) was always on stage saying ‘we reject corruption, we don’t want people who abuse their power’ and yet, what do we see now,” he said.

Khaliq said he was merely transmitting the messages as told by his friends in Umno and PH who felt betrayed by their top leaderships.

“The issue now with Umno and PH supporters is they feel betrayed; ‘kena tipu hidup-hidup, ’ they say.

“Where to put your faces? You supported your party that went against cronyism and all that, then you know... they are together. PH-BN, or Umno-DAP more precise, now it’s a lovey-dovey relationship up there, but on the ground it is a different story,” he said.

Khaliq was appointed Penang Opposition on March 3, just three days prior to being forced to vacate his seat after a motion was tabled by the state legislative assembly.

Khaliq, Dr Afif Bahardin (Seberang Jaya), Zulkifli Ibrahim (Sungai Acheh) and Zolkifly Lazim (Teluk Bahang) were booted from the state assembly after the House approved a motion to vacate their seats for party-hopping.

The four had won their seats in the 14th general election (GE14) under the PKR logo.

They were all deemed to have “lost” their seats after Bersatu left PH – following the Sheraton Move in February 2020 – based on the anti-hopping provision contained in Article 14A of the state constitution.

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