PH has good chance of winning in Pulai, Simpang Jeram with non-Malay votes - Experts
SHAH ALAM - Pakatan Harapan (PH) has a good chance of winning the Pulai and Simpang Jeram seats if the turnout of non-Malay voters is high for the upcoming by-election, experts say.
International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) Political Science Association Professor Dr Syaza Shukri said there is a good chance for PH to win Pulai parliamentary and Simpang Jeram state seats in the Johor state polls.
She added, however, that it indeed depends on the turnout of non-Malay voters.
"There might be some who may not go out to vote for various reasons, including dissatisfaction with the current government, fatigue, and the non-transfer of votes from Barisan Nasional (BN) to PH.
"With Malay votes going to Perikatan Nasional (PN), the turnout of non-Malay voters will be able to give a win to PH," she said.
Besides, Singapore Institute of International Affairs senior fellow Dr Oh Ei Sun added that PH is likely to win Pulai due to the non-Malay majority there, and Simpang Jeram has a Malay majority, making it a tough fight for PH.
"There could well be. But the non-Malay no-show did not significantly materialise in the recent state elections.
"In Pulai, certainly. Not so in Simpang Jeram, as Malays are likely to vote solidly for Pas or its allies," he expressed.
Commenting further, Institut Kajian Etnik (KITA), Political Sociology, Professor Datuk Dr Shamsul Amri Baharuddin said the issue is the ethnic demographics of voters; the Malay versus non-Malay divide is not big.
"The logic of Sharir is simple. The PH-Amanah candidate gets solid non-Malay votes.
"The Malay voters are divided, so PH will win," he said.
Shamsul added that maybe some Umno members who are against the Umno leadership will vote PN.
"Without non-Malay votes, PN can't hope to win. In Pulai, PH must win, or else PH Semenanjung seats will be reduced by one seat and its 112-seat majority reduced to 111.
"Sarawak and Sabah can squeeze some more from Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, or else they leave and then Anwar’s government falls," he expressed.
The Pulai parliamentary and Simpang Jeram state by-elections were called following the death of their incumbent, Datuk Seri Salahuddin Ayub, on July 23.
In the Simpang Jeram by-election, Nazri Abdul Rahman (PH) faces Dr Mazri Yahya (PN) and independent candidate S Jeganathan.