Independent candidate #1
“I decided to withdraw for Barisan, not for MIC. I do not care about the party. I care about Barisan and will support it 110%.
“I felt bitter towards him. I was angry at MIC. I had a chance to win but I am withdrawing for the sake of Barisan.”
INDEPENDENT candidate VS Chandran stood in the Hulu Selangor by-election for only two days before withdrawing from the contest on 19 April 2010. His prime motivation for running was his anger towards MIC president Datuk Seri S Samy Vellu, Chandran told reporters on nomination day earlier.
He said Samy Vellu suspended him from the MIC after he complained about the poor performance of former Hulu Selangor Member of Parliament Datuk G Palanivel, who is also MIC deputy president. Following his withdrawal from the by-election, Samy Vellu said the party would lift Chandran’s suspension, and promised that Chandran would not be expelled from the party. (Source: Independents quit race, The Star, 20 April 2010)
Independent candidate #2
“I thank him very much. At least now, it gives me a bigger opportunity in the contest because the votes will only be divided three ways instead of four.
“After today, I will embark on a more aggressive campaign style to plead for votes from Hulu Selangor constituents.”
The other independent candidate, Johan Mohd Diah, thanking Chandran for giving way. When launching his campaign operations centre at his family’s home in Felda Sungai Tengi in Hulu Bernam, Johan told reporters that he would not withdraw from the race.
Johan, an Umno member, said he accepted his sacking from the party for standing against the Barisan Nasional (BN) candidate. He was motivated to contest after the BN allowed the MIC to field a candidate, even though the Indian Malaysian-based party lost the seat in the 2008 polls.
About three hours after his press conference, Johan filed his withdrawal with the Election Commission. He subsequently couldn’t be reached for comment. (Source: Straight fight as Johan quits race, The Malaysian Insider, 19 April 2010)
The NEM’s attraction
“Besides the introduction of the New Economic Model, the economy has started to recover, plus PKR is facing internal strife. I am confident that the BN candidate’s vote count will increase to around a 3,000 majority.”
Pasir Mas independent MP Datuk Ibrahim Ali, who is campaigning for the BN, speaking at a ceramah in Batang Kali on 18 April 2010. Ibrahim, who also heads the Malay Malaysian right-wing pressure group Perkasa, said people were warming up to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s policies. (Source: BN confident of 3,000 majority win in Hulu Selangor, The Malaysian Insider, 19 April 2010)
“Where is the stake for the Malay [Malaysians] in the distribution of the country’s economic cake? What’s important is fairness and not equity.
“Foreigners who were involved in formulating the NEM will not be bothered about the indigenous people. If strategic areas are developed under the open tender system, the Malay [Malaysians] will not be able to compete.”
Ibrahim, criticising the New Economic Model (NEM) for its ambiguity on how it would benefit Malay Malaysians, and what would happen to affirmative action policies. (Source: NEM lacks Malay agenda, The Star, 2 April 2010)
Zaid, the “alcoholic”
“PKR has presented a candidate who is a drunkard, an alcoholic, there is a mini bar in his house where beer and whisky are served.
“If you don’t believe me, you go meet him you can smell from his breath.”
Halim Tuah, one of Umno Youth orators’ unit members, speaking against PKR candidate Datuk Zaid Ibrahim at a ceramah in Kuala Kubu Baru on 18 April 2010, the second night of campaigning. The BN campaign, in particular Umno, is milking Zaid’s admission that he used to drink alcohol. Umno is banking on character attacks against him to sway Malay Malaysian voters, who are seen as the key to victory for either side. (Source: Reject drinking candidate, Umno tells voters, The Malaysian Insider, 19 April 2010)
“Based on past campaigns, spreading lies was a big mistake which should be avoided. I have told our BN machinery that we will only campaign in a clean manner based on my past achievements, what the BN can do, and what Kamalanathan can do if given the opportunity by the voters.”
BN candidate P Kamalanathan from the MIC, in an interview with TV3′s Soal Jawab programme on 19 April 2010. By this time, media like Utusan Malaysia and pro-Umno blogs had capitalised on the charges against Zaid’s “liberal lifestyle”. Conveniently, though, the Umno campaign has dissociated itself from these reports. (Source: Avoid spreading lies during campaigning, P Kamalanathan, Bernama, 20 April 2010)
The new defector
“[It is] unlikely [that I will help the BN campaign]. I am going overseas, [but] not because I want to run away.”
Former PKR Hulu Selangor treasurer Dr Halili Rahmat, who announced his defection to Umno on 19 April 2010, when asked if he would campaign for the BN candidate. Halili was tipped to be the PKR candidate in Hulu Selangor, but Zaid was chosen instead. (Source: PKR’s Halili defects to Umno, Malaysiakini, 19 April 2010)
“As a sensible person, I knew I needed to be at the right side.”
“I was attracted to [Najib's administration] for quite some time now and I think Najib is a good prime minister and is able to steer Malaysia towards success.”
The same night, Halili appeared at a BN ceramah in Sungai Buaya near Bukit Beruntung to campaign for the BN. (Source: Ex-PKR man Halili joins BN’s ceramah circuit, Free Malaysia Today, 20 April 2010)
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